Desertion and Discovery
Everyone’s appetite had been sated, the slave merchant had also returned and night had descended.
“Hey? Are you really going to do it?” (anon slave 1)
“I-isn’t it obvious” (anon slave 2)
“But….everyone was nice and the food was great?” (anon slave 1)
“No, those guys are definitely trying to deceive us!” (anon slave 2)
It was noisy outside.
It was dark and hard to see but, for some reason, the new slaves were running towards the fields.
“Haa….Haa” (anon slave)
There was a somewhat strained atmosphere.
Just what were they planning?
*Rustling* They tried to push their way through the Bioplant’s field.
“ “Waaaaaaahhhh!?” “ (runaway slaves)
Ah, they got caught in the defences I established.
Hearing the scream, the other slaves left the house and headed towards the fields to examine the situation.
*Sigh*…..For the time being, I have to go out and have a look.
“Shield-niichan. We heard a scream” (kiel)
When I exit the house, a concerned-looking Kiel rushes over to me.
It seems like Raphtalia went ahead to look at the situation.
“It’s alright. There won’t be any deaths. I’ve already prepared for the worst case scenario and only implemented some defensive measures” (naofumi)
“Worst case scenario?” (kiel)
“I could bind them with the slave crest but then there’s the problem of being unable to give detailed orders. Well in short, I’m talking about desertion” (naofumi)
Yes, the slave crest has the possibility of prohibiting desertion itself.
Once they leave the grounds, inducing death was even possible but, as one would expect, I paid no small amount for these guys so killing them would be bad.
Besides, I have plans to designate slaves to peddle outside the village. That’s why I configured the penalties to only cause chest pains for all the slaves staying in the village at night.
“ “Waahhhh! He-helpー!” ” (runaway slaves)
The monsters I used to maintain the soil, Dunes, had emerged from underground, coiled around the three slaves who tried to escape and hung them up in mid-air.
I had given instructions to the Dunes so that anyone fleeing from the established site would be apprehended.
“To abscond so suddenly, aren’t these guys courageous.” (naofumi)
After discovering the circumstances, Raphtalia joined us with an urgent-looking expression.
I thought this commotion of escaping would happen sometime, but it was later than I had expected.
That was because Raphtalia’s old friends became attached to me for some reason or another.
Moreover, many of them had lived here to begin with.
“Now then you guys, where were you planning to go after you escaped?” (naofumi)
I faced the slaves who were hanging in mid-air and inquired.
“Wh-Who’s going to say anything!” (anon slave 2)
The boy who was acting as the leader, replied.
Hm…. he definitely has a lot of spirit.
It would be a great contest between Kiel and him.
“Is that so, if you don’t talk then I’ll let that fellow play around, but is that alright with you?” (naofumi)
“Gr…” (anon slave 2 – runaway slave leader)
By the way, Dunes also have their own personality, their appearance may be of a huge earthworm but they’re quite amiable and love to play.
If it’s this kind of rebellious kid then I should let them play all night.
To be honest, I don’t have any obligation to raise a slave who just attempts to run away. I’d like to sell them back to the slave merchant immediately but I will give them a chance.
“Look, just talk” (naofumi)
“Wh-Who’s going to say anything!” (runaway slave leader)
“If that’s the case, I’ll turn you into bait for my followers?” (naofumi)
I looked at the situation and gestured indirectly to Firo. The slaves distanced themselves from Firo.
“Eh? Firo-chan also eats people?” (kiel)
“She does have quite an appetite” (naofumi)
“If you defy Shield-niichan you’ll be bait? Seriously?” (kiel)
The slaves gathered together and whispered.
She was just standing around in her human form but, read the mood and turn into your monster form―― .
That Firo, she denied it!
Did she learn some culture when she came here? No way…such unnecessary knowledge.
Raphtalia whispered to the slaves quietly.
“Naofumi-sama is……saying that kind of thing but…..” (raphtalia)
“So really?” (anon slave)
“Shield-niichan is somewhat naive” (kiel)
“I can hear you. You brats!” (naofumi)
Jeez, now I can’t use dignity or bullshit.
“……” (runaway slave leader)
The leader of the captured slaves also had a doubtful face.
You should read the atmosphere.
“But the thing about becoming monster bait is real? If I order you to, then it won’t mean that no one will become bait.” (naofumi)
Become a Caterpiland, become a Dune, if I say be bait then you might get eaten.
When I turned my attention to the monster hut, the Caterpilands were sleeping soundly.
Will they turn into butterflies?
I cast aside these needless thoughts.
The Dunes played with the slave children.
They’re huge so they’re great for using as threats. If this were an 18+ game, the caterpillars and worms would be used for sexual assault.
“Now talk” (naofumi)
“Eep!” (slave leader)
“Look, if you don’t talk then the Dunes might get hungry and eat you~” (naofumi)
The slaves who originated from this village arbitrarily gave the Dunes names and, “They won’t eat him right?” was whispered around.
I want to say that they only eat dirt but now’s not the time for that.
“At the worst, another Philorial will eat you guys” (naofumi)
“Eat us!?” (slave leader)
I could feel a gaze from the hut.
I shook my head with a *swish*.
Everyone was raised naively!
“Look, they’re waiting impatiently!” (naofumi)
“Eat! Eat!” (slaves)
The chant changed the mood, but for those who didn’t know what life in the village was like, it would appear to be excitement.
It would have been great if I could have used this from the beginning.
“What’s your answer?” (naofumi)
“……Fine. But you have to spare the others!” (slave leader)
The runaway slaves’ leader reluctantly revealed their story.
It seems to just be gossip among the slaves but in Melromarc’s harbour and other various places there exists a faction that’s stipulating the release of slaves.
In that faction, a plausible rumour is being spread around saying that Demi-humans can have their slave crest unconditionally removed and will be set free in foreign countries.
Are these Silt Welt’s people?
No, for argument’s sake, even if they resembled Silt Welt or Schild Frieden’s people, It seems that recognition of the same species is strong.
If I had a slogan that said that I would unconditionally free them in another country, I would have some sort of scheme to help me make a profit.
Someone who would do that with good intentions doesn’t exist.
If we could use a boat, it would be convenient as transportation.
To become the working force or a foreign county from a safe place, or something like that.
That would be a crueller treatment than just being a slaves….it’s felonious.
Or it could possibly be that slave merchants circulate it to recycle business.
At the least, I saw that these guys just couldn’t wait for their desired ending.
However, it’s a dependable technique for business. Using a smile to deceive the slaves who turn up.
Come to think of it, the slave merchant said so before he left.
No matter what, orphans have increased due to the Spirit Turtle’s influence.
There are people who become slaves prior to ending up as orphans, and it seems there are few human slaves but I heard they make humans into slaves in other countries.
It seems like the slave merchant is busy thanks to that sequence of events. He did leave pretty quickly after consuming the food I made.
“Did you guys know?” (naofumi)
“Now that you mention it, I’m starting to remember” (anon slave)
“Yeah, there was that kind of story” (anon slave)
If you knew about it then tell me earlier…….Jeez.
“Shield-niichan’s place is just so comfortable that we totally forgot about it” (kiel)
“Yeah!” (anon slave)
It was a good inclination but~……. somehow I feel like I’m being underrated.
“Next time you’d better tell me these things” (naofumi)
Because I have no idea where this money-making story comes from.
Until now, we’ve just been revising our actions after things happen but if we can read ahead of time, then we can not only keep damages to a minimum but it would even be possible to forestall them.
Knowledge is power.
“Now then, desertion is a serious crime. However, I’m not a demon. You guys have only just come here so I’ll postpone it for a short while. Think about it carefully” (naofumi)
I instructed the Dunes to release the slaves, who were then taken in by Raphtalia and the others.
“Educate them properly. That’s all” (naofumi)
The runaway slaves defiantly glared at me with hostility.
If it doesn’t seem like they’ve reflected, I’ll sell them when the slave merchant comes again.
I can recover my money back if I raise their levels and if they become stronger than usual with the shield’s correction skill, he’ll probably buy them happily.
…….Let’s hope that they can get along with Raphtalia and the others until then.
“It’s alright, this won’t be like the other places where all you do is suffer pain, that’s why we’d like you to help with our….village” (raphtalia)
“……..” (runaway slave)
The three slaves murmured to Raphtalia and the other slaves and averted their faces uncomfortably.
“It has been very painful for you, hasn’t it. However……a little bit, with just a short time it’ll be fine so I’d like you to compare him with your previous masters” (raphtalia)
“……..” (runaway slave)
“You know, that person is the Hero of the Shield-sama” (raphtalia)
“Eh!?” (runaway slave)
“You’ve heard the rumours, right? He’s the one who saved this country and even become a legend in the country of the Demi-humans” (raphtalia)
“Y-yeah. I heard about it. Some day…… that he’s the saint-sama who will save us Demi-human slaves” (runaway slave)
“Yes, and you know, that person may have a bad mouth but he has been rebuilding the village to save us slaves, and we’d like you to become a part of that power” (raphtalia)
“But…….” (runaway slave)
“It’s okay if you still don’t believe it yet. Little by little, we’ll show you proof that it’s not a lie” (raphtalia)
Well, for the time being I’ll leave it to Raphtalia and the others.
I returned to my room and resumed my compounding studies.
I’ve become able to do a considerable amount of the difficult compounding. If I have all the ingredients I shouldn’t fail.
I have the materials prepared by the queen so let’s give it a try.
The next day.
“Is Iwatani-dono here!” (knight)
The female knight came intruding early in the morning.
“What’s up? Did the Spirit Turtle appear again?” (naofumi)
“Can you even handle that much excitement!” (knight)
I’m still in the middle of recuperating. This time I’ll have to rely on the Seven Star Heroes.
Well…….whatever happens, I also want to be able to participate in it.
“And? You seem to have some urgent business” (naofumi)
“I have a message from the queen. I was told to convey it immediately” (knight)
“The contents?” (naofumi)
“It seems we’ve discovered a companion of the Hero of the Spear” (knight)
What? Discovered a companion of Motoyasu?
From her words, it doesn’t appear to be Bitch.
So it comes to either Woman 1 or Woman 2.
From this expression you can’t tell who is who.
Well that’s because I don’t know their names.
“A corpse?” (naofumi)
“Wrong. Everything seems to be that an aristocratic father was worried about his daughter but she’s fed up because she was forced to help with her mother’s housework.” (knight)
……It’s a story I’ve heard before.
It’s about her. So now I’m supposed to use her to slay Motoyasu, huh.
And in the end, she returned home and helped with work.
Her assistance didn’t seem very proactive, but that sounds like her. She would have felt it was troublesome.
“Don’t you have to guard her?” (naofumi)
“It seems we’ve listened to her circumstances. And so. We’d like Iwatani-dono to meet with that companion and ensnare the Hero of the Spear” (knight)
I see……there’s the possibility of her attempting to rejoin Motoyasu.
We’ll be gambling on whether it’ll go well or not, but it would be good if we could catch Motoyasu.
“Will Motoyasu’s companion cooperate with that plan? She might double-cross us and pass information back to Motoyasu” (naofumi)
“We’ve already assigned a Shadow for surveillance. We’ve also received a report that she currently wants to cooperate” (knight)
Well, if my assumption is correct, she could discern right from wrong when she cut ties.
And now she was trying to protect her own position by plea bargaining.
“Understood. Where should I be heading?” (naofumi)
“Ah, I’ll give you the map” (knight)
I received the map from the female knight and took Raphtalia and Firo with me to prepare for our departure.
“You guys, please help the newbies level up” (naofumi)
“Yeah. Understood.” (kiel)
“I understand” (rishia)
Rishia stood in the front and nodded.
“Sorry, Rishia. If there’s information about Itsuki then inviting you will take precedence”
“Yes. I’ll be waiting” (rishia)
Recently, Rishia’s level had risen up to 35.
It’s almost time for a Class Up.
As that may be, I want her to Class Up together with the others so it’ll be a bit later but….for now, the capture of Motoyasu has the highest priority.