Translator: Denryuu; Editor: Ryunakama
Having been certified as a Plant Master, I went back to find Lyla still asleep, so I woke her up and we had lunch together.
「Mm… still sleepy…」
「And that’s why you shouldn’t insist on doing it till morning.」
She rubbed her eyes then took a small sip of soup, spilling some of it.
「I received the medicine from Rodje. We’ll visit Djeeta after this.」
「Mhm… how do you still have so much energy?」
「You seem unfazed even after last night.」
「In both kinds of stamina?」
「Well… I shudder to even think about how shameless your training was…」
While still sleepy, she eventually managed to get up, and we headed straight for Djeeta’s house. I had been considering whether to tell Lyla about this morning’s incident, but due to how she had been praising Rodje the previous day, I found it difficult to bring the topic up. After all, that piece of cloth could have been something else altogether, or the elf could’ve simply bought a similar pair for herself.
「I wonder if this will really make Djeeta’s mother better.」
「You never say stuff that gives people peace of mind, do you? You’re not considerate at all.」
「If saying such things can cure her illness, then I’ll say them as many times as I need to.」
I had spoken to Iris about allowing Djeeta to have a stable income. That was all I could do to help him financially, though, and I can only pray that it happens.
Djeeta came out to greet us when we arrived.
「We brought medicine for your mother.」
「Eh? For my mom?」
I gave Lyla a nod, and she promptly stooped to look straight at the young demi-human.
「Made by an elf, this secret medicine isn’t something you can get otherwise. This will help your mother to get better」, she said, smiling.
I don’t recall Rodje mentioning anything about it being a ‘secret’, though…
「Let’s not give him false hope, Lyla. Tell him the facts as they are.」
「No, that’s not how it works! It’s even worse to make him worry! Seriously, you’re too cold-blooded of a human to empathise with others.」
If a demon says something like that of me, then I have no grounds to object. At that moment, Djeeta whirled around as if he had forgotten something.
「I, uh… don’t have any cash, y’know…?」
「We don’t expect any. We’re not here for that.」
He looked at us, using his gaze to ask for permission to call his mother out. Lyla and I nodded at the same time.
「Do we have guests, Djeeta?」, asked his mother from the back.
「Uh, yeah! Roland and Lyla are here!」
「Well then, I’ll explain what the medicine does.」
「I’ll do it. You’re not suitable for the job」, she replied, moving over to the bed at the back of the house.
Now that only Djeeta and I were out on the porch, I took the chance to seek his opinion.
「What do you think of working at the adventurers’ guild, Djeeta?」
「Eh? The guild?」, he said, his eyes as wide as plates.
「Have you heard of Lahati? It’s a normal town, a little to the southwest.」
「Compared to Lahati, its neighbouring towns see a larger number of rookie adventurers springing up all the time. There are more quests available there than in the countryside, and many of them require them to make a trip to a forest or the mountains. Perhaps becoming adventurers make them over the moon or they simply become overconfident, but at any rate, a surprising number of them lose their way and never come back.」
「Eh… how dumb –」
「You can’t brush it off so lightly.」
F-rank adventurers are the most likely to be never heard from again after a month. Only E-rank adventurers and above are allowed to take quests that require combat, so they’re not being sent to any dangerous areas either. As rookie adventurers, they haven’t yet seen the real world for themselves and thus tend to become careless. Therefore, the guild postulates that those who disappeared were caught in a mishap along the way.
Lyla was making all sorts of gestures at the back as she tried to explain the whole thing to Djeeta’s mother.
「That’s why I want you to be their guide」, I told Djeeta.
「Yes. Your sight and smell are both more acute than a human’s. You’ll probably feel right at home with this job.」
「That’s true, but can I really do it…?」
「I’m not asking whether you can or cannot. I’m asking whether you want to.」
He could even become an adventurer, but that can be discussed in the future.
「I’ll do it!」
「That’s a good answer」, I replied, ruffling his hair.
He squinted, evidently enjoying it. After getting his agreement, I explained this to his mother as well. Although she was a little worried for her son, she was nevertheless glad to see that he was intrinsically motivated.
「As demi-humans, we don’t know if we can ever take up proper jobs. Take good care of my son, Roland-san.」
「Rest assured that I will.」
「We are grateful for all your help」, she said, lowering her head, to which her son followed.
「Don’t mention it. But whether your mother can be cur –」
Lyla punched my shoulder, cutting me off. I looked at her and found her making a stern expression, shaking her head profusely. I guess she’s telling me not to say anything uncalled for, as she had already explained everything that was necessary, even leaving a few written instructions on how to use the medicine and slipping it into the bag.
「How can I express my gratitude…?」
「Djeeta will be of tremendous help to us. That alone is enough.」
After making some more small talk, we made our leave.
We went back to Lahati to tell my colleagues the good news.
「Ah, Roland-san! Is the test over? How did it go?」, asked Milia who was the first to spot me.
「Yeah. I passed easily.」
「Wow… we expected nothing less of you, Roland-san! Let’s celebrate～」
「It’s not that big of a deal, really –」
「Oh come on, you’re too humble sometimes. It is a big deal! It calls for a mass celebration!」
Due to her loud voice, Milia was inevitably overheard by everyone.
「Congrats, Argan-kun! Did you study for the test?」
「Eh… not at all!? That’s crazy, bro… you know most people have to study for a few years, right…?」
It was a little embarrassing to receive everyone’s words of congratulations. Also, I think Morley’s on leave. Thankfully. If that guy’s around, he’ll just cause more trouble.
Iris had already heard everything from her office, so there was no need for me to break the good news to her.
「Loud as always, that Milia… anyway, I thought you’d be fine, and it’s great that you were.」
「Thank you. Any news of the ‘supporter’ request?」
「I asked three of the other branches, and all of them are okay with it.」
I proceeded to iron out the details of the ‘supporter’ system with the branch chief.
First and foremost, it was decided that staff would be stationed at three forested areas that were frequently visited for quests on a rotational basis every day. The employees would explain this system while assigning quests and recommend that F-rank adventurers only go to their designated quest areas on days that their respective employees are stationed there.
「…Hmm, how about here?」
「It’s not a particularly large forest, but rookies unfamiliar with the area can still become overconfident and lose their way.」
That’s what they mean by ‘the biggest enemy is yourself’.
Sighing as if she was already tired of the matter, she rested her chin on her hands and smiled.
「You’re a kind person at heart.」
「You’re really not aware of it?」
「Since it’s an efficient system, I found him suitable for this position. That’s all.」
Then let’s put it into action, replied Iris, continuing to smile.
The new system came into effect a few days later.
「I’m really nervous…」
He looked like he had made some preparations, then talked to the adventurers and gave them simple directions. Even that seemed to have taken a mental toll on him.
「But I’ll do my best! My mother is feeling better recently thanks to the medicine!」
「That’s good to hear.」
In the two months after that, Djeeta’s mother’s condition quickly improved until the illness was all but gone with a decent amount of Rodje’s medicine left over. Guess the elf wasn’t as much of a quack as I had expected. Djeeta wanted to express his gratitude, so it was agreed upon for Lyla, Rodje (the medicine supplier) and I to dine at his house.
「The system in which we employed Djeeta has been well received.」
「Ah, I see」, replied his mother.
Djeeta giggled shyly.
Many people had indeed sung praises of the new system. They had suggested that more places have a supporter stationed there. The fresh adventurers themselves were also immensely thankful that the supporters essentially guaranteed that they would not lose their way in the forest.
「Those folks really underestimate the forest. There are really some of them who have never entered a forest before… and even when I warn them of the dangers, they just act of their own accord once I take my eyes off them」, complained the young demi-human.
Despite his complaints, he was still grateful for his new rice bowl and not at all dissatisfied.
「I’m treating Roland to a meal next time! I have an income now, after all!」
「Oh, you wish to dine with me? I’ll show you how pricey my food wishes can be.」
「Eh… please don’t make it too expensive…」, he said, looking crestfallen.
「I don’t get you at all!」
The other three present at the table laughed. With the doting expression of the Holy Mother herself, Lyla and Rodje watched Djeeta and his mother talk.
I caught myself thinking that the ‘warmth’ they felt was a little different from mine.