The Trap (2)
The merchant, Roberto, waited a moment before he spoke.
He leaned in close to Auburn’s ear.
“This is something related to Dragon.”
“Dra, Dragon household?”
“This is the most treasured object in our group. A book that came from the northern end of the Cold Wood nation, which is being reborn. One might know this to be precisely an article of quality, it does not need inspection, right? My mind also went blank the first time I saw this.”
There was no other choice. It was a dragon household article that was gently spewing out unique magic. Nobles would know the spells of the Dragon and normal humans would feel the unusual aura it radiated.
Roberto closed the lid of the locker. The dazed eyes of Auburn Parker regained its sanity. For a while, he had been inexpressibly fascinated and drawn towards it.
“This is indeed, for yourself. You can record the highest amount……”
“If that’s so, it would be better. Will it be in the secret auction to be hosted by Duke Auburn? It is my desire that your high reputation will be more established with this thing of the Dragon household.”
After the merchant finished his work, he looked at Auburn Parker and got to the point.
“If you don’t mind, may I put up a request?”
“Request? What do you want?”
It was because he saw a great thing.
Or was it because of the flattery that he heard?
Auburn’s voice became smooth.
“For this auction there is a recommended person who needs to be a participant. Please consider inviting them.”
“Hmm, if this wasn’t an auction that I was hosting, as you might know, it wouldn’t be possible for just anyone. You must have known that much.”
“It is someone who does not fall under the category of the nobles. They have a lot of interest in the Dragons and has often bought these kind of antiques from us.”
“Oh, there was someone like that who I didn’t know about?”
“It is possible. That person isn’t a noble.”
“……. Are you kidding me right now?”
Why are those who aren’t nobles called?
A secret hobby of the nobles?
Auburn Parker’s voice raised.
“What did I misunderstand? Nobility cannot be bought with money!”
“Those were the words you’ve spoken. It is a customer who wants to recommend a participant for the auction. He has inherited nobleness that cannot be compared with money; the blood of the Imperial family.”
At this statement, Auburn Parker fell silent for a moment. Someone with the blood of the Imperial Family? Someone from the Imperial family who has interest in dragons and their related things?
‘The fifth prince? No, there is no way for that.’
The fifth prince Ragnar already belonged to the ‘The Order of Dragon’, where Auburn was also a member. The missionary activities do not intervene with the ‘antique collecting trend’ at all. Even if they do, there is no reason for them to interfere in such a cumbersome manner, as it is a simple thing that can be accomplished by oneself or with the teachers.
“Is it definitely someone who has inherited the blood, that is the truth?”
“It’s the truth.”
The person who answered was not the merchant Roberto, as it sounded like a woman’s voice. An elegant and cheerful voice came from the wagon from which Roberto brought the Dragons’ item.
“It has been a while. Duke Auburn.”
The voice belonged to the Imperial Princess.
The only younger sibling of the Prince.
It was ‘Hailey Greenriver’.
“Princess, Miss princess? Miss, what………”
“A trend is something that women are supposed to lead. Aren’t a lot of nobles already taking part in this?”
Immediately, Auburn Parker’s head started to feel dizzy. The princess’s appearance was lacking something that could not be seen. Firstly, what is a trend? It is culture that people follow. As the princess said, many noble women had also started to join the fad. At this point, no one knew.
‘If it is a princess, then it is easy to fall into the fashion.’
A princess lacked a lot in many ways. Using marriage as a tool, the royal family was linked with the nobility, it was nothing more than an ideal setting. Also if one does not fulfill their obligation as a tool, one will be given less priority. There are quite a lot of princesses who are afflicted with powerlessness in history.
‘There is nothing that could be done, except dressing up and buying luxuries.’
Auburn turned his head casually. An emerging wave will start the trend and the crowded markets will turn towards this fad as the princess of the nation surpasses nobility. Furthermore, believing in the princess would lead to a chance for the religious order.
“You did. Even so Miss, I didn’t know that you were interested in matters relating to the nobles. No, it seems like you already have the proficiency to follow the former members……”
“It isn’t that extreme. Um, only a little?”
“Haha, little you say! Since you’ve come, go on with confidence. Everyone is a VIP and every seat has a prize, but I’ll prepare a very special seat for the Miss.”
“You would really do that?”
“That is what I said.”
The secret auction hosted by Parker was held in a cottage a short distance outside of the Empire. Auburn Parker and Princess Hailey went into the cottage. Maybe there would be a few nobles inside.
Once Roberto confirmed that the princess and Duke entered, the bellied Boien group member took a breath and turned away. He was like a vicious trader because of his fat body and the first impression, often misunderstood as lazy, but Roberto wasn’t such a person. He was a merchant who had conscience, but his flesh was bloated because of a chronic illness, struggling to keep up with the body in the following years.
‘I know very well, Roberto.’
He had jumped onto a gambling board in his life.
This was a huge gamble that he needed to do.
‘If I succeed, I will be the first trading partner between the Ivory Tower, its related areas and the group. Ivory Tower, academy, communication centre, alchemy, magic engineering, and many more could be monopolized.’
The name of the Mogrian’s Boien Group was greatly known, as they were on the top of the conduit and were quite large. This was a definite thing six years ago, and they were open to talk about expanding their business.
‘Homage will be paid to me gradually.’
Then an incident broke out inside the Group. It wasn’t just a single case, it was overlapped with numerous betrayals that left them in a difficult spot. When this happened, Ian came to dispose the bodies of the goblins, and were able to process the profits to the urgent problems.
‘Yes, I know very well. As a merchant and as a human. If it wasn’t for Mr. Ian we would be in ruins now.’
The profit for the goblins carcasses did not amount to much. It solved around five of the whites problems, however those five figures were the footsteps for the other problems.
‘The situation was the same, it was the same mentally.’
He just waited for the day he would be paid, and he finally got the chance. Now he felt like he was a young man. The sixth class mage Ian who even climbed up to the tower, came towards Roberto in person.
‘He was obviously a twelve year old kid and he is already in the Ivory Tower. It isn’t a crime.’
Ian Page’s request was a big one: to sell an item in the secret auction held for the nobles and to ask for the princess ‘Hailey Greenriver’ to be a participant in the auction house. Also, they would let him know the situation later, as in the business policies of the Ivory Tower they had promised to pay beforehand for the price that they decided to give.
‘There is no way they would go back on their words.’
Anyway, the opponent was going to provide the Ivory Tower. There was no need to question if they would change their words. In fact, it was the opposite as it was nearly impossible to reject it. To refuse the request of the Ivory Tower Lord? Not just any mage, but the Tower Lords direct request?
‘This was destined to happen eventually.’
From the moment they had met Ian Page six years ago, the merchant Roberto’s destiny was designed to flow like this. At least that was what he thought.
‘I am Roberto Boien.’
It seemed like it would be a long day.
* * *
How long has it been since then?
When the sky was dull, the long awaiting secret auction began.
“The second exhibit is from the Morton Group.”
Many nobles attended the auction that was being held by Auburn Parker. There were a variety of people to be seen, from esteemed ladies to honorable people, the successors, the second Duke, and the third Duke. If they had a common point, it was that only one person from each family attended. In other words, it meant that they all came here to represent their family.
“The legendary dragon called the red dragon, whose leather and scales are like wine, this artist has put its figure into the painting! One of the works left by Albion Cosco, a genius painter of principality……..”
The voice of the auctioneer rose through the voice amplification crystal and reverberated throughout the Parker’s cottage. Of course, the participants were nobles, so there was no way to beat the sound of on ordinary auctioneer.
‘The dragon item is for the last.’
Meanwhile, it wasn’t just the nobles who were in the cottage. Ian sat with them, hidden to the rest of the participants.
A spell that makes its castor transparent.
The spell that deceives everyone’s eyes.
‘If there is anything related to the Dragonian.’
Ian ‘really’ used the dragons’ item as bait. It was impossible to use a fake one. It wasn’t a book that the households possessed, also there was no way to obtain enough of the unique magic and aura that the dragon book had.
‘I’ll definitely ask.’
Whether it would gain more than the adequate amount of funds.
With coercive magic and force.
They will surely show a great obsession towards the Dragon’s item, Ian’s bait.
“This is the moment that you’ve been waiting for. The last item for today’s auction! Well, even for a noble’s child, this has been checked in advance by Duke Auburn Parker, and this is something that doesn’t need to be explained. So, let’s look at it already.”
The stage of the auction rose and the book surfaced. A large book that didn’t seem to be like anything made by a human. There wasn’t even a single movement as everyone looked at the book silently.
“An item that flew in from the Cold Wood Nations, Boien Group, it indeed is a wonderful exhibit. Its name is…..”
The auctioneer purposely paused.
The curiosity of the participants arose.
Finally the Dragon’s Language was up for auction. It was amazing to even look at. It matched the purpose of the antique collectors exactly. Though everyone was looking at it, it was quite overwhelming for them and the auctioneer unfolded the book to show its contents, which were even more perfect. It was filled with characters that no one knew, yet even then they didn’t feel like random doodles.
“Fifty thousand gold.”
For a moment, everyone was frozen still.
The first bidding had started.
It began with five thousand gold.
“Fif, fifty thousand is the opening bid.”
It was staggering for a moment, as it was a huge amount of gold. Everyone’s attention was directed towards the bidder. Even looking at that person was making their heart race. It was the Empire’s princess Hailey Greenriver.
“Fifty thousand gold it seems……”
“This high from the beginning?”
“Also, it’s from Miss princess……….”
Many nobles were talking among themselves. It could be understood that the princess was involved in the secret hobby of the nobles. It was a reason similar to Auburn’s judgment. But, investing that much money was unexpected.
“Fifty thousand gold! No more bidders?”
One didn’t know that the gold wasn’t the princess property and would eventually be returned to the original place.
On top of that, it was just starting now.
“Sixty thousand gold.”
A new bidder came forward.
It was the organizer Auburn Parker.
“Duke Auburn is directly…….?”
“Since he is the organizer, it is not impossible for him to participate…..”
This nonsense couldn’t last long.
No, the target hasn’t taken that long.
“Hundred thousand gold.”
The princess, Hailey Greenriver, who called for a hundred thousand gold.
It was an enormous amount.
It began to go beyond the level of luxury.
A little flustered, Auburn Parker looked at the princess. On top of that, it hadn’t been estimated that one would bid a hundred thousand gold for it. Is the princess capable of investing in it?
‘I don’t know, is this some kind of joke?’
That could also be a possibility. The princess Hailey didn’t know much about these auctions. If it was a character that was similar to the Prince of Orabiin, they’ll have to survive with the playfulness.
‘If bidding is done like this, I need get myself together.’
This was Auburn Parker’s personal thought. But he couldn’t proceed with that thought. Right then, in that moment he came back. Auburn Parker’s brand new owner, the voice of the Holy Spirit.
(Be sure to get it. By any means! No matter how much it costs!)
From where did he hear the sound?
Auburn didn’t understand that.
He just followed the instructions.
“Hundred and fifty thousand go…….”
“Two hundred thousand gold.”
Auburn hadn’t even finished speaking and the princess already called for two hundred thousand gold.
The eyes of the audience fluttered at those words.
Some had their tongues stuck.
He confirmed that it was a joke.
“Two hundred and fifty thousand go……”
“Three hundred thousand gold.”
Auburn didn’t realize when the price soared so high and he stood up. And his voice rose out of excitement.
“Five hundred thousand! Five hundred thousand gold!”
The price of the dragon language book now exceeded that of a grand mansion. Even the princess had a sign of concern in her eyes. It was something that needed concern.
‘Mr. Ian asked to me call up until exactly a million gold.’
The princess came all the way here because of Ian’s request. Just like the target group Boien, she was also promised one thing from Ian, which was for him to immediately become her ‘second mentor’.
‘If I keep bidding until a million, the nobles will look at me strangely….. it’ll be fine if only Mr. Ian could make me his accomplice.’
Being a second mentor was a serious matter. Ian would be a criminal who teaches magic illegally. Indeed, Ian already noticed the truth of the princess, once she accepted.
‘If he could help me without me being involved, if they can all be safe…’
For the last time, the princess got herself together.
“One million gold.”
At that, everyone went silent.
For how long is this silence going to last?
“Two million…….. gold.”
Auburn Parker called it at two million gold.
This was an expression that no one could understand.
The princess couldn’t raise the price even if she wanted to to.
“…………Two, two million gold. Is there anyone else? I’ll start the count now. Until five. Going once, twice!”
The count began.
The last number.
At this, the auction for the Dragon’s Language book was closed at two million gold. It was awkward the entire time for the host, the nobles, and the winner Auburn Parker.
A whopping sum of two million gold.
The amount no one would ever invest in a hobby.
No matter how much the money rotated, it will.
He needed to postpone them.
‘It is not your will.’
Ian was definite.
Auburn Parker, the empire’s noble.
There was obviously someone behind him.
The Dragon Language had an existence that coveted it.
Whether or not it was a dragon.