Chapter 72 – Howler slave trading company

Yor then starts apologizing profusely, but isn’t that a normal reaction from a father who’s daughter hasn’t been home in years and suddenly shows up with some random boy?

Also Dan, her father, was taken away by a priest who came here from the church.
Apparently he just left when he heard Yor is home, even though they’re preparing for the advent festival.

Isn’t a cardinal a pretty important figure? Isn’t that a problem?

He ends up not coming home even after the sun set, so let’s just say we have a nice, quiet time.

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The next day, we all go out for a walk in the holy city.

Yor, or rather Yuri, is showing us around.

She’s all over her big sister at first, but eventually Yuri hits it off with Hikari too, probably because they’re about the same age.

I was worried about Hikari, because she’s inexpressive and blunt, but it looks like Yuri is having fun talking to her, so it’s fine.
We’re going to have to say goodbye eventually, but I think it would be nice if they got along in the meantime.

Yuri is interested in being an adventurer too, so she takes us to weapons and equipment stores, and Leila and her party buy some new equipment.
Apparently Yuri started feeling this way because of Yor’s letters.

Of course, I buy new equipment for Hikari and me too.
I had to part ways with a few gold coins, but it’s cheap if we think of it as paying for our safety.
It’s what I call a necessary expense.

We also stop by normal clothing stores, since we mostly just have clothes to use while on the road, and almost none to walk around town like this.
It would be one thing if it was just me, but I think a girl like Hikari should dress up once in a while.

Since Yuri is taking the initiative to help us pick clothes, I figure I’ll buy something for her too, but I end up buying something for everyone else too.
I don’t know what happened.

I’ve heard people say that shopping with girls gets you in all sorts of problems, so is this what they meant? Looking at it from an outsider’s perspective, I just look like a normie surrounded by girls, so should I consider this a price to pay for that?

The stares from other guys kind of hurt, but I just have to take it.

I’m sure I’d be looking at them the same way if the roles were reversed, but I will say that I don’t feel any sense of superiority.
Not at all!

But there’s no point in trying to escape from reality, so let’s go back.
Hikari looks way more charming dressed up like that, and she looks happy too.

I turn my eyes back to the table in front of us and see it’s packed with sweets, cake, sweets, cake, sweets…

In front of me is a drink that’s like coffee.
The color is the same, but it looks kind of weak.

I take a sip as the girls around me have fun talking and eating.
Hikari likes this stuff too, and she eats one after the other.
I have no idea where it’s all going in that small body of hers.

Yuri is also eating without reserve.
She did show restraint at first, but that was gone the instant she started eating.

This is a popular sweets shop here in the holy city, and we had to stand in line to go in.
And most people in here are girls too!

At least there’s another guy in here.
I’m sure he was brought here for his wallet.
Is his face twitching? Do I look like that too? Comrade, we’ve never spoken to each other, but let’s stay strong.

We buy more cake to take home on the way out.
I was wondering if they were going to eat even more cake, but apparently it’s to share with Loux and the maids.
But Leila paid for that.

I mean, the amount they ate there was enough to buy a reasonably… No, a pretty good set of clothes.

 ◇ ◇ ◇

The next day, I go to the Howler slave trading company with Hikari.
I know where it is because I asked the day we went to the merchant guild.
Apparently it’s far from the center, like in that other town.

“Master, I hope you find them.”

Hikari, you’re setting up a flag.

But after giving so many offerings yesterday (in clothing stores and the sweets shop), something good is bound to happen today.
At least I hope so.

“Hello there sir.
What are you looking for today?”

A man with a hunchback speaks to me with a low posture and suspicious looking smile.
His name is Drett, and he says he’s the brother of Drekk, the one I met before.
They don’t really look alike.

“Did Drekk send you here? I might be able to work out a small discount.”

I’d be happy if you did.

“We travel to various places working kind of like peddlers, and since there’s been a lot of commotion lately, we are looking for a slave to be our guard.
Do you have any?”

“I see.
Give me some time to prepare.”

He brings us eight people, mostly men.
Some look like adventurers, but some look like guards or soldiers.
I was wondering why people with stable income end up here, but some are here because of gambling, some because they couldn’t afford medical treatment, and all sorts of other reasons.

I can tell via People Appraisal that none of them are very high leveled.
Not even half of Hikari’s level.
By the way, she’s level 41 now.

“Isn’t there anyone else? I hear beast people and elves are good fighters.”

“I see… I do have what you are looking for, but there is a small problem…”

He hesitates for a bit, but then takes us to a room.

“She came here twenty days ago through a certain route.
I think it would be more appropriate to say that an acquaintance pushed her on me, rather than me buying her because I wanted to.
She is difficult to handle, and apparently caused a lot of problems where she came from too.”

This person is in a tightly controlled environment, or to describe it in one word, a cell.
There’s the minimum amount of furniture a person needs in there, but I can’t say it looks comfortable.
At least they’re not neglecting hygiene.

When we approach that room, the person sitting in the bed gives us an intense glare, and I hear chains rattling with every move.

The pressure I’m feeling is completely different than the other slaves, and Hikari unconsciously grabs my hand.

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