“It might be a bit late to ask this, but do you two know each other?”
Lorobel and the girl don’t seem to mind each other too much. I don’t think they’re automatically getting along just because they’re both adventurers.
“It really is a bit late, isn’t it?”
“Well, I didn’t really care, so.”
“Hold up! Care! Ah, that’s why you can run away like it’s nothing!”
As a matter of fact, that is entirely true. So there’s nothing for me for say.
The reason why I’m asking now is because Lorobel and the girl are currently in a situation where they’re sitting together with someone unrelated.
But despite that, they seem fine with bringing up their personal matters. So I was bothered about whether it bothers them or not.
“We’ve yet to take on a job together, but we at least know each other’s name and face. She’s especially famous, after all.”
In place of the girl who’s still fuming, it is Lorobel who answers me.
“Her name is Laila. It was not so long ago that she was brought to the royal capital because of her Ceremony of Determination. Just like you.”
Heeh. So in other words——
“She has ‘a magical Talent’?”
“That’s right. That’s why the adventurer teams scrambled to recruit her. That’s how she became famous.”
Ah, I get it now. No wonder she seems so weak.
She is one of those rookie adventurers that can use magic.
Before her Talent was determined, she had been living as a normal village girl who didn’t really have a need to train.
Becoming a magician all of a sudden wouldn’t resolve her lack of skill and technique, so she should be weak still.
“Magicians are valuable. The presence of a single magician can greatly change the way an entire team operates. That’s why the demand for her was huge.”
Well, it’s enough to get a countryside kid considered for direct employment at the royal castle, so I can gauge how valuable they are indeed.
“And so I chose Black Swan of Dawn, where Horun onee-sama is.”
“Good on you.”
“…… It’s the first time in my life receiving words of commendation with such an absence of emotion.”
There’s no helping it, alright? She—Laila can be a magician or whatever she wants to be. It’s of no consequence to me whatsoever.
“Alright, now it’s Megane’s turn.”
“Me? What do you want me to say?”
“You have business with Horun onee-sama, right? What is it?”
Laila directs sharp eyes towards me, as if to not let me get away with any lies.
I really don’t want to say that we’re family.
If I do, then chances are high that I might get told “the younger brother also shares responsibility with the sister” or “if you’re her brother then look after her properly” for all the problems that Horun’s definitely perpetrated.
“To sum it up in a phrase, she’s an acquaintance.”
“How about two phrases?”
“Acquaintance, from the same village.”
“And more specifically?”
“Eh? Specifically? Umm…… her family told me to check up on her. Since we’re acquaintances from the same village.”
None of that was a lie. It’s just that I haven’t said that I’m part of her family too.
Come what may, I have no intention of revealing anything more. This is the limit of what I’m willing to tell someone who isn’t involved.
Once she knows that Horun and I know each other, that I’m not an enemy, then surely Laila would back off.
“…… For some reason, this Megane seems really suspicious.” (Laila)
“Is that so? I think you’d be pretty hard-pressed to find someone as honest as me.” (Eil)
“You’re saying that about yourself? Seriously?” (Laila)
There’s no one present who knows me, so I think I should be at least given the freedom to justify myself. I mean, I really do think I’m honest. After all, I’m reputed for clearing showing my disinterest in things that I really have no interest in.
“You really are her acquaintance, right?”
Let alone acquaintance, I’m related to her by blood.
“I see…… I’m asking just in case, but it seems that you don’t know Horun onee-sama’s current circumstances, right?”
“Completely in the dark. Two years she’s left the village, and not once has she come back.”
Upon hearing my answer, Laila’s atmosphere changes drastically.
Her restless air has gone, replaced by a brooding serious face. Eventually, her eyes focus as if she’s drummed up the resolve for something.
“If you’re searching for Horun onee-sama, then I’m sure you’ll hear about it somewhere on the way. So I might as well tell you now.”
For an instant, “ah, never mind, I don’t want to hear it after all” flashes through my mind.
From this change in mood, I can tell. My sister has definitely gone and done something.
…… Well, let’s just listen to it first. If it turns out to be something dangerous then let’s run away immediately.
“Horun onee-sama currently has a heavy debt.”
Ah, turns out to be something I indeed didn’t want to hear.
“What did she do? Did she hit someone in authority? Did she throw away someone’s sword? Did she over-splurge on expensive food? Ah, I got it. She broke something and now has to pay it back, right? Or wait, did she fall for a scam? I’ve heard there’s lots of those in the city, right?”
“Wh-, what’s with you. Now you’re talkative all of a sudden.”
I would, why wouldn’t I? It’s a topic that I have an interest in. Depending on what it is, it may involve me and our parents and maybe even our entire village.
“To put it really simply, she requested a job from Black Swan of Dawn. Then the fee from that job became her debt. So her being in Black Swan is also part of returning that debt.”
…… Money for a job request, huh. So it’s not overspending nor compensation for damages.
“What was the job? How did it end up that way?”
“There was a village that was under attack by demon beasts. But the village was poor, so they could only offer a very small amount as compensation. As a result, not a single adventurer was interested.
The country also couldn’t move immediately, citing formalities and paperwork and whatnot. In short, nobody strong was going to help the village in time.
Then at that moment, Horun onee-sama, who just happened to be there, spoke up.”
“She said that she’d bear the entire amount of however much it would take. And so that got processed as a proper job request.”
…… Ahh, I get it.
“And so that was what convinced the famous adventurer team Black Swan of Dawn to move?”
“Yes. The adventurer team jostling for second place in the royal capital moved. Thanks to that, the damage to the village was kept to a minimum. Some livestock died, but all the villagers were saved. There’s no doubt that that really was the lowest minimal damage.”
I see. Thus, the debt.
I knew it. My sister’s caliber really is enormous.
“So that’s what happened.” (Lorobel)
For some reason, even Lorobel, who’s sitting next to Laila, is looking enlightened.
“I’ve also heard some of the rumors about Horun, but it’s my first time hearing the full story.”
Apparently she also knew that Horun is in debt.
“But from what I’ve heard, afterwards Black Swan told Horun that they don’t want the payment.”
Hmm. Is that so.
I may not know what the leader of Black Swan was really thinking, but I suppose it would probably affect the dignity of adventurers as a whole to demand a large sum from a teenage girl who’s only recently turned 15.
Cus, well, if he accepted it, then his reputation would definitely take a hit.
Once a job becomes so tied in with empathy and whatnot, taking profit would definitely be a loss.
But I can all too easily imagine Horun’s actions after being told that she doesn’t need to repay the money.
“She probably said something like ‘something that I’ve already promised, I will carry out even if I die doing so’ and turned it down, right?”
That’s the kind of person Horun is.
“Ah, so you really do know her. Yep yep, she said that and turned down the offer entirely.”
I can go on even further.
“And for the same reason, she also refused money from the village, right?”
“Eh, you can even predict that?! A-, as expected from someone from the same village……”
Thus the large amount of debt, huh.
Horun being Horun, she’s probably also decided to not return to the village until she’s done repaying the debt in full.
Thus the two years, huh.
…… Haha. What an idiot my sister is.
She’s a complete idiot and so gah that she can’t be helped, but she really is my prided sister in the end.
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