Chapter 58 – Glasses boy, before arriving at Haidiga
Visit the assassin’s guild of a different town.
It’s been two nights since I was kicked out of the assassin’s village.
It was now, on the third night, that I finally saw a city in the distance. The town that the old man instructed me to go to, a place called Haidiga.
It’s big enough, but it’s also quite close to that dangerous mountain, so it’s a place where adventurers often come to test their skills and raise their rank.
Haidiga is almost directly across the mountain where the assassin’s village lies.
The old man said it would be possible to cut through the mountain and arrive at Haidiga in less than a day, but I decided to take a detour through a relatively safe route. The mountain is too early for me, and I don’t feel comfortable with traveling through it during the night.
In any case, with the city now being visible, I decided to make a small fire for my last break.
Even if I hurry, I’ll still be arriving in the middle of the night, so there isn’t much of a point in doing that.
Therefore, I’ve decided to rest for a bit, as I’ve been running for three days. I’m tired.
After I eat and rest though, it will be time for the last spurt. I’ll be renting an inn room, and have a good night sleep before tomorrow.
That said… It’s now time to settle things.
After making a small fire on a clearing, I sat down with my back to a rock that was as high as me.
The food was soup with dried meat and leftover wild herbs. This is the end of the camping trip, so I’m going to use up all the preserved food that won’t last much longer.
The dried meat is already salted, so there is no reason to put any more salt in it.
And today, tonight, right now, in this evening, in this very place… In this soup, the slightly rare and expensive farewell gift. This seasoning…
“It’s no good…” I spoke to myself.
My will, instinct, desire and curiosity that wished me to add the seasoning were stopped by something unmistakable… Logic.
How many times have I tried to add the seasoning during this short journey? How many times did I give up on it? How many times did I wish to turn the usual delicious meat into something more special?
However, I hesitate. I always hesitate with this… Because it smells. This seasoning smells completely rotten…!
I’m not my sister. I’m not my sister.
I can’t simply say ‘even if it’s rotten, it’s meat’ like she did, only to then start crying as she realized that it was impossible to eat that.
I’m not my older sister who trembled and shamefully spat out the rotten meat that she had just eaten.
I don’t want to imitate her at trying to do something that was obviously impossible from the very beginning. Rotten meat is not food. Humans cannot eat rotten meat.
Chace said that it was still eatable, even if it smelled like that.
So maybe, it might still be fine.
… But it smells completely rotten. There is not a semblance of freshness in this smell.
If I eat this, I’m sure I’ll break my stomach.
But maybe it’s just the smell? Perhaps the taste is still safe…?
… I have had those conflicting thoughts run through my head throughout the entire trip.
I won’t know the answer unless I put it in my mouth, but when I think about the risks behind it, my logic can’t agree with the idea.
… In the first place, when Chace showed this to me, it was already a liquid that felt too thick to be safe, but… Right now, it’s even thicker, darker, stickier… It feels absolutely dangerous.
… Alright, it’s decided.
Let’s stop this. I’m not my sister.
My older sister had an unusually strong body that seemed to have undergone special training since she was a child, but I’m just a normal, healthy person.
It would be fine if it just gave me a stomachache, but this seasoning might kill a normal human.
I’d hate it if the cause of my death was that I put something rotten in my stomach and died. It would be something that even my sister’s actions would pale in comparison to.
I don’t want to put my life on the line for this kind of thing.
“I’m sorry, Chace.” I muttered, then buried the sticky liquid, which was once a seasoning, inside a small hole that I dug on the ground.
It was a special parting gift, but it couldn’t be helped.
… Though coming to think of it, could Chace have maybe felt too bad about throwing this away himself, so he instead forced it onto me, so as to make me handle it?
… No, I must be overthinking it. Let’s stop worrying about the, now buried, sticky seasoning.
Next, comes this thing.
“… I really don’t want to look at it.” I muttered.
It’s evil. This thing can only be thought of as the embodiment of evil itself.
Thinking about calmly, I don’t know why Florentine gave me this, but unfortunately, this ‘cute’ evil god statue that she gave me still exists in this world.
And that’s because no matter how many times I tell myself that I should throw it away, destroy it or throw it into the fire, my hands always stop.
… Because I saw Florentine working hard at carving it, many times. She was really serious about it. She put her all into it.
She wasn’t trying to make an evil thing, she just carved this with all her heart.
The completed product looks way too evil though. I have to wonder what kind of heart she put into it… Did she carve it while cursing the world?
This is too troublesome… What should I do?
I feel bad for her, but I really want to throw this away, but I haven’t been able to do it, so… I keep on holding on to this ominous symbol that I really can’t let go of.
I sighed, and stared at the evil god statue.
… It’s absolutely evil. I’m finally starting to get used to seeing it, but no matter how I look at it, it’s evil-
I put the evil god statue into my backpack, got up, then quickly climbed on top of the rock I was resting my back at until just a second ago.
I crouched on top of it, then focused my attention to the depths of the forest, paying attention to the noises that weren’t common to a forest.
… Is there someone fighting?
No… Someone is running.
I searched for signs… There were three people being chased by a large monster.
They were somewhat far, but they seemed to be fleeing through the woods, running towards Haidiga.
Perhaps they’re adventurers? They feel stronger than normal people.
Then this should be the end of it. There’s a rule that says that you shouldn’t mess with adventurers who are engaged in battle. You’ll get in trouble if you steal their prey.
I remember one time that adventurers were fighting near the village of Albat, at the hunting grounds that me and my master often went to. At that time, my master told me to not interfere. That one should only participate if the other party asks for help.
“Help me! Someone!” One adventurer exclaimed.
“Aaah! I’m gonna die! I’m gonna die!” Another adventurer shouted.
I did notice they were shouting something for a while, but I couldn’t hear them clearly until just now, as they were fairly close to my position at this moment.
… If they run and shout while being near my position, I can’t help hearing it.
… I suppose it can’t be helped. Let’s go.