The next day. I [Warp] to Bode’s castle after the breakfast.
I take the Alba and the Earring of Offerings off.
The Sacred Spear is already inside the Item Box.
These equipment are not suitable for an Adventurer nor there’s any need to put on luxury items.
“The leader is inside.”
The knight at the reception indicates with his hand when I show up.
It seems I can enter without permission, like always.
I enter and knock on the office’s door.
“Oh, Michio-dono? I’m glad you came. Gozer will be here shortly.”
I go in.
He is alone in the office, sitting behind the desk, doing paperwork.
Gozer isn’t here at the moment.
I hate to be with the Duke without Gozer present.
“I’ll try to finish my work before Gozer comes back. By the way, I was thinking of inviting Michio-dono’s party to the dinner. What do you think?”
Which reminds me that the Duke had his eyes on Roxanne.
Didn’t he give up?
“After all, I want to meet the party members that Gozer praised.”
It seems he still has his eyes on her.
Is there no way out? I won’t accept it.
Even if she were to become Lady Omone Cha, or Lady Cha Omone, the concubine of Tokugawa Ieyasu; I would not let go of Roxanne.
“But I don’t know the table etiquette.”
“Etiquette won’t be a problem when there’s no audience.”
So it’s a problem when there’s audience?
“But my party members are all slaves.”
“I don’t mind. Even this house has slaves employed.”
It’s not a problem?
I wonder if the Duke and slaves eat together.
Because he said there’s no problem, there’s nothing else I can say.
“Is that really alright?”
“Michio-dono has helped me a lot, I have to Invite your party to the dinner, of course.”
It’s a valid reason.
There’s no room for argument.
Help me, Gozeraemon.
“How about tonight’s dinner?”
This is going too fast.
He’s hasty as ever.
“I need time to make preparations.”
“There’s no problem even if you attend in normal clothes. There’s no need for preparations.”
“Even if you say that-”
“Then tomorrow? No, it won’t be possible since I have plans for tomorrow’s dinner. How about the evening after tomorrow?”
I have succeeded in postponing it by two days.
But I don’t know whether it was a good idea to postpone it or not.
It can’t go worse, I guess.
What if he passes away?
It’s possible since the Duke enters the labyrinth.
Well, I’m at more risk than him.
“Let me see.”
“Nope, don’t I have plans with Cassia for the day after tomorrow? A dinner with the Countess, if I remember correctly? Actually, isn’t that in three days? Err, there’s no problem with the evening after tomorrow, I guess.”
The Duke mutters.
Will Cassia be joining us, too?
Since there will be five of us, I don’t think the Duke will be hosting us by himself.
The couple will be hosting us, it seems.
I can’t refuse a dinner with Cassia.
Or rather, I want to have a dinner with her.
There will be no problem if we will be having the dinner together. I will be able manage it.
He won’t be able to ask for Roxanne in front of his wife.
“I don’t mind if you are insisting this much.”
“Do you accept then?”
“Excuse my intrusion.”
After I accept the dinner invitation, the door opens and Gozer comes in.
You are late.
I have already accepted the unreasonable demand of the Duke.
“Gozer, Michio-dono has accepted the dinner invitation. It will be the evening after tomorrow.”
“……Did my Lord forget? I will be going to the Imperial Capital the day after tomorrow.”
“Oh, that’s right. You of all people. Cassia has plans in three days and it will be inconvenient for me tomorrow. Michio-don, how about the dinner tonight, after all?”
The Duke’s unreasonable demands are not over yet.
Apparently, Gozer has some business the day after tomorrow.
It seems Gozer will be joining us at the dinner, too.
That’s good for me as well.
“It will be fine in a few days.”
“I will do something about my plans. Although I will be asking too much of the other side, it should be fine tomorrow. I will go to the Imperial Capital tomorrow. As for the dinner with Michio-dono, there will be no problem the evening after tomorrow.”
Gozer has compromised.
The ordeal was Gozer’s this time around, too.
He really is a man of the world.
You really are a good friend but your Lord is incompetent.
“I see. My bad.”
The Duke is so swift.
“I am really sorry.”
I also lower my head in apology.
I don’t think I am the one in the wrong here, though.
“No, no, don’t concern yourself with it, Michio-dono. It’s not that important a business.”
“Then Michio-dono, I will be having you for the the evening after tomorrow.”
“Well then Michio-dono, please take a seat.”
Gozer insists me to sit on the guest’s sofa.
Gozer takes a seat, too, facing me.
“Actually, it’s regarding the Palmasque mirror. It’s quite difficult to obtain it in the territory, so it has become a favorite gift. Furthermore, the special decorated frame made in Talem of our territory, its value outside the territory is high, too.”
“I am really glad to hear that.”
“Some of them even asked if we are willing to sell the mirrors. Although we are using them as gifts, the request this time came from someone who is difficult to refuse.”
Is there really such a person?
Looks like that person is more influential than the Duke’s house.
I guess there’s always someone, who is hard to turn down, for everyone.
“If we are to sell the mirrors, we need to increase the stock. We must secure a reliable source of supply, so that we can get one immediately if we need it urgently. In this regard, we had a discussion. We have decided to prepare the Adventurers from our house to be able to go to Palmasque. If we prepare several Adventurers, it will perhaps be possible to go as far as Palmasque.”
“It will be possible.”
Gozer is honest.
I wouldn’t know if he kept quiet.
Is it about letting them through to the source?
“It’s okay even if you don’t answer right now. When you visit the day after tomorrow, can you please tell me if it’s fine with you or not?”
“Will it be okay till the day after tomorrow?”
“I am really sorry, especially since we owe Michio-dono. On the day after tomorrow, please bring as many Palmasque mirrors as you can with your party members; I will buy all the mirrors.”
So, what you mean is, it will be the last time you will be buying the mirrors from me?
If the Duke’s house manages to secure a source of supply for themselves, I will just be in the way.
There will no longer be any need to pay higher, buying from me.
There is also the honor of the Duke’s house.
If they are going to officially deal in the mirrors, dealing with an Adventurer of unknown origin will not be in their favor.
Also, it will be troublesome for them to summon me every time.
So, will that be the end of the mirror peddling?
It is not like I am troubled with that.
If you are worried that I am concerned, I am not.
After the conversation was over, I leave Bode’s castle.
I head back home and have Sherry do some smithing.
Roxanne is doing the laundry, Miria is doing the dishes after the breakfast and Vesta is doing the cleaning.
“Isn’t the housework tiring, Roxanne?”
I ask Roxanne while she was drying the clothes.
I think it’s better to talk it over now.
“Not at all, it’s fine.”
“I was thinking of hiring a person who can do the housework while we are in the labyrinth.”
Hiring a person, it’s more like increasing the number of slaves.
A very beautiful slave doing the housework.
I will be able to hire a beautiful maid to do the housework.
Roxanne most likely understands what I am thinking about.
If I manage to increase the number of slaves, there will be many ways to increase the income.
If I am going to lose the option of selling the mirrors to the duke, I will need to find other ways to earn.
Or I can ask Gozer to let me continue selling the mirrors the same way as before.
If I don’t increase the number of slaves, the mirror business is as good as gone.
However, because the revenue from the labyrinth increase has increased, there shouldn’t be any problem.
Lately, I have been able to get a gold coin upon selling the items to the guild with 30% Up.
Also, I still have that white gold coin.
“No, it really is fine. There is no problem because we divide the work.”
“We don’t want to trouble Master in any way. We can do all the housework by ourselves.”
I have been completely rejected.
It means Roxanne didn’t get my plans at all.
It will not be a good idea to keep on increasing the number of slaves without a justified reason.
I don’t want to force it on them either.
I can have up to six party members.
Roxanne hasn’t objected to it thus far.
So, does that mean I can have only one more member?
I better choose carefully.
“What do you think, Sherry?”
“As things are, I don’t have any trouble, so I don’t think there’s a need to employ someone.”
I have been rejected coldly.
However, in another words, I can employ one if you are troubled?
“What do you think, Miria? If I hire someone who can cook while we are in the labyrinth, we will get to eat delicious fish dishes.”
“I will cook, desu.”
I have been rejected by Miria, too.
Even fish couldn’t bait her.
“I think we will be fine without hiring anyone.”
She’s such an airhead.
If all the members are against it, there is no way I can forcibly go against them.
From now on, should I check with my finger if there is any dust speck left?
And then, if Roxanne-san wasn’t able to clean it properly…
I would employ a new maid-san to clean since she wasn’t able to clean.
If I do that, I will be able to increase the number of slaves, right?
I can’t become fraught with emotion.
After waiting for the laundry and the cleaning to be finished, we enter the labyrinth.
“I plan on changing Roxanne’s job to Shrine Maiden. Although I’m not worried for it’s Roxanne, be more careful at the start.”
I switch Roxanne’s job to Shrine Maiden as soon as we enter the labyrinth.
Miria’s Assassin is Lv29.
Initially, I was intending to do it when she reached Lv30 but it has been going well.
I thought of going to Palmasque as it might be the last time.
However, the MP consumption of [Warp] increases depending on the number of people, the weight of the object being transported and the duration of use.
The last time, it was terrible when I went to Palmasque after adding Miria.
This time, it will become even more terrible with the addition of Vesta.
Because it has become increasingly difficult to level up, there shouldn’t be that much difference between this time and the last time.
My MP has probably not increased that much either.
It means I will be carrying Vesta with the MP that hasn’t increased much.
That said, I can at least try and see if I’m able to do it.
For now, however, I will do what I can do. I change Roxanne’s job to Shrine Maiden.
Shrine Maiden has an effect Small Increase in MP.
Because the effects of all the party members are shared, my MP should increase a little.
I can also switch other members to Shrine Maiden but that will make the party weak.
Because the job effects increase with level, there’s no use even if I switch them to a low level job when using [Warp].
If I designate Roxanne as a Shrine Maiden right now, her job Lv can increase from 1 to 20 in a mere day or two.
Later on, I can also choose Medium Increase in MP as the effect of Jobless.
My MP will increase with that, too.
It’ll be good to set it just before going.
The only problem is, I won’t be able to recover (MP) in the labyrinth, heading back with the mirrors.
“I will be a Shrine Maiden? Thank you very much.”
Roxanne shows motivation toward Shrine Maiden.
It’s a good thing.
I select Alchemist and cast Plating on Roxanne.
Because Shrine Maiden is only Lv1, I can’t allow any mishap to befall.
“Just in case, I will teach you the incantation Area of Effect Healing skill.”
“To relieve those who err is the Shrine Maiden’s 《Priest’s》 prayer 《spell》.”
“Umm, to relieve those who err is the Shrine Maiden’s prayer.”
The name of both the Priest’s and the Shrine Maiden’s skills is the same, so the skill incantation should be the same.
If I remove Incantation Omission and invoke the skill, the incantation should float up inside my head.
I teach that to Roxanne.
It should also appear inside Roxanne’s head, though.
It’s my turn, however, since I can somehow handle Brahim with ease.
“It may be difficult to use in the middle of a battle.”
“I guess so. It may be difficult while dodging but I will try it.”
I know the difficulty of casting spells while running.
However, I can invoke [Rush] and [Overwhelming] while fighting monsters.
There may be a slight difference between the skills in respect of the difficulty of use.
There is no other way but to try and see if it is feasible or not.
Two Scissors Lizards appear.
She seemed to be listening to me when I said to take it easy at the start.
The four of them start running.
“Since it’s her first time, Miria, Vesta, you will be taking care of the enemies.”
“I think it will be alright.”
Roxanne crams into the vanguard.
“Vesta, take on that one, please.”
Looks like the vanguard team listens to Roxanne instead of me.
Roxanne and Vesta clash directly with the Scissors Lizards.
Miria thrusts the Estoc of Petrifaction from the side.
“Those who err……”
Roxanne gets interrupted in the middle of the incantation.
The Scissors Lizard swings it’s scissors down.
Roxanne withdraws from chanting the incantation in order to dodge the monster’s attack.
Chanting incantation seems difficult while dodging.
“Thanks, Sherry. To relieve those who err is the Shrine Maiden’s prayer.”
She didn’t get it?
It looks like she didn’t withdraw from chanting the incantation in order to dodge the attack.
Roxanne has now chanted the skill incantation.
She lightly dodges the next attack of the Scissors Lizard.
“Did it, desu.”
The Scissors Lizard, which Roxanne was keeping company, gets petrified.
We encircle the remaining one and finish it off.
“It looks like I can cast Area of Effect Healing while fighting monsters. At least, there will be no problem if I’m fighting one monster.”
“That’s good to hear, really.”
“You stood in line with the waterfall in order to acquire Shrine Maiden; I think it’s thanks to that.”
She means that it’s possible with Shrine Maiden because the concentration of mind is a requirement to acquire the job.
It’s well balanced.
“If I can grasp the flow of the area of effect magic attack of a monster as a whole, I will probably be fine no matter how many I’m against.”
I think it’s impossible, though.
For normal people, at least.
Roxanne seems to have awakened a strange ability.