Black Cat Chapter 157: Turbulent Market Trends

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“Well then, grandfather, I’m going.” (Derrick)


“Well, you take care of yourself.” (Alvaros)



 Surprisingly, Derrick, the fourth son of the Escalante marquis, was going with the Viscount Lagart’s family in their magical carriage.


 I had thought that the son of a marquis would go with many escort knights in a special carriage, but it seems that this is not the case with the Escalante family.



 After Derrick undergoes the “Nest Leaving Ceremony” in the Royal Capital, he is supposed to join the Royal Knight Order as an apprentice knight.


 Normally, only a person with a great deal of magical ability can join the Royal Knight Order as an apprentice, but for a noble family like the Marquis Escalante, it is possible.



 However, even if a person is admitted as an apprentice, it does not necessarily mean that they will be recognized as an official knight.


 If a knight is judged to be unable to perform as a Royal Knight, they will not be recognized as an official knight.



 An apprentice can be admitted through connections, but to become an official knight, they must demonstrate their ability.


 Naturally, if you are the son of an Escalante family, you will be the focus of attention, and it is quite demanding to be required to show results in this context.



 Therefore, Derrick has been preparing himself for this from the time he leaves home.


 I cried a lot when I left Atsuka Village for Ibouro because it was so hard to say goodbye to Grandma Carisa, but Derrick’s eyes never watered.



 He had only one trunk in his hand, and the rest of his luggage would be provided by the knight training school.


 I learned for the first time that even among the nobility, there are people who live with this kind of attitude.



 After leaving the residence of the Marquis Escalante, the group headed south along the road.


 It would take about seven more days to reach the Royal Capital, and from here on, it would be an unknown land even to me.



“Mr. Novak, how many more territories are we passing through?” (Nyango)


“Next to the Marquis of Escalante is Count Grobrus, next to that is Duke Letburnes, and beyond that is the Royal Capital.” (Novak)



 According to Mr. Novak, who loves to talk, Count Grobrus’s territory is known as the breadbasket of the kingdom, and Duke Letburnes’s territory is a key point on the highway, where commerce is thriving.



“Well, the Grobrus territory is boring because it’s all farmland and the scenery doesn’t change much.” (Novak)



 The fields spread out on both sides of the road to make it easier to carry out the harvested wheat and dug potatoes.


 The fields stretch as far as the eye can see, and the rolling terrain makes it easy to see what is going on, so there is no danger of bandit attack.



 I guess the scenery is boring for Mr. Novak, but for me, it is my first visit to this place and I am looking forward to seeing the scenery like that of Hokkaido.


 We won’t enter Grobrus territory until tomorrow, so we’ll have to wait until then to have some fun.



 I’ve heard that Grobrus Territory, with its good visibility, is safe, but that doesn’t mean Escalante Territory is dangerous.


 The quality of the government officials and adventurers is high, as martial arts thrive in the area.



 Although there are some skilled villains such as Zozon, the overall security is said to be good.


 In addition, when a nobleman’s caravan is in the vicinity, there is no one to attack, in other words, it is boring.



 Mr. Novak, although he is a talker, does not talk to me all the time. He spends time talking with the knights escorting us, planning when and where to rest, and devoting himself to his duties as a servant.


 Such time is very tedious for me.



 So, I used a void microphone to listen to the stories inside the magic carriage.


 The topics of conversation in the car were mostly related to the “Nest Leaving Ceremony”.



 Aida is leading the conversation, probably because we couldn’t talk much last night, such as whether she has been to the cathedral where the ceremony is held, the ceremonial order of the ceremony, and what attributes are good.



“Is fire attribute still your preferred, Master Derrick?” (Aida)


“Well, my grandfather and father were both knight commanders who used the fire attribute, so I’ve always thought that the fire attribute would be good for me as well…” (Derrick)


“Would you like another attribute?” (Aida)


“Hmm, I didn’t know that the void attribute was such a useful attribute. It seems that you can also use Engraving Magic to use water and wind magic, and the power of that magic gun is amazing. With a catkin’s magic index, you can already do this much. So, if I acquire void attribute magic, I’m sure I’ll become a knight commander who will leave his name in history.” (Derrick)



 I had revised Derrick’s evaluation based on the way he had shown interest in void magic last night and the way we had set out this morning, but I was beginning to feel a bit suspicious.


 Every part of his conversation with Aida gives off a sense of overconfidence as if he is a chosen one with a promising future who will definitely succeed.



 If that is the case, then in a way it makes sense that he was so confident in his departure this morning.


 Listening to the conversation that followed, there is no doubt in his mind that if he entered the Knight Training, he would get outstanding results, be ordained as a knight before the end of his apprenticeship, and be on par with his brothers right away… His words continued to be filled with baseless confidence.



 Although we could only hear his voice through the microphone and could not see what was going on inside, we could see Derrick raising himself over with each passing hour.


 Lunch was served at a restaurant in a town on the way to the hotel, which was frequented by aristocrats.



 The knight who had preceded us had contacted the restaurant and arranged for us to be seated so that we could eat without waiting as soon as we arrived.


 Mr. Novak and I would take a light meal on the coachman’s seat while also keeping watch over the magic carriage.



 On that day, however, Derrick approached me as I got off to see him before entering the restaurant.



“Nyango, come with us.” (Derrick)


“Eh…” (Nyanbo)



 I couldn’t help but turn my attention to Viscount Lagart, hearing the words I was not expecting.



“What’s the matter, don’t be shy. I won’t complain even if you squeal.” (Derrick)



 Derrick was in a good mood when he spoke to me, but Viscount Lagart showed no reaction.



“I am sorry, Master Derrick. I have been asked to watch over the magic carriage, so I cannot join you.” (Nyango)



 As soon as I said my refusal, Derrick furrowed his brow in displeasure.



“Hmph, well, if you’re going to refuse my invitation… Fine, do as you please…” (Derrick)


“Pardon me…” (Nyango)



 I bowed with a solemn look on my face, and Derrick strode into the store.


 I looked away from his back and glanced at Viscount Lagart, who gave me a small nod.



 The number of people has already been announced, so changing it now will only cause confusion.


 Besides, the person in charge of this journey is not Derrick, but Viscount Lagart.



 To tell you the truth, I don’t want to be a plaything for a little nobleboy.


 The restaurant was a favorite of the nobility, so the food was delicious, but it would be more fun to eat while having an interesting conversation with Mr. Novak.



“What is it, Nyango? Why didn’t you have him treat you to something good to eat over there.” (Novak)


“I don’t want to. I’ve received requests to be your escort, but I don’t remember receiving any requests to be a babysitter.” (Nyango)


“Hahahaha, as expected from the young Hope of Ibouro Guild, you have something different to say.” (Novak)


“Well… But I’m worried it will have a negative impact on you later on.” (Nyango)



 This time, Viscount Lagart and Derrick are balancing each other, but if this had been a case of Derrick alone, I can’t help but think about how I would have handled it correctly.


 For now, let’s find a way to revise Derrick’s decreased evaluation.



 After arriving at the inn that day, I feared that I might get tangled up again, but it seemed that Derrick’s void attribute magic evaluation had been revised downward and he did not call on me.


 After dinner, it was Viscount Lagart who summoned me.



 He asked me about the new magical tools we had talked about last night and how much development was underway, but since I was not a member of the Caritalan Trading Company, I could not answer.



“I see, that’s true too. I wonder if Derrick’s leaning forward has shifted?” (Frederick)


“I don’t know for sure, but they did have prototypes of the light magic tool and the hair dryer in the works. Also, they said they were going to start working on a super vibrating blade.” (Nyango)


“Super Vibrating Blade? What is that?” (Frederick)



 Viscount Lagart leaned forward to listen as I told him about the theory behind the Super Vibrating Blade and what happened when the Rock Turtle’s shell was cut off.



“Caritalan Trading company has begun developing that Super Vibrating Blade, right?” (Frederick)


“Yes, they said they would start but…” (Nyango)


“Is there a problem?” (Frederick)


“I think it will take some time to put it to practical use because of the particular shape of the magic circle.”



 In order to achieve super vibrations, it is necessary to create a magic circle that is at least one meter thick.


 It is possible to make it with void magic, but it seems to be very difficult to physically fabricate it.



“I see… but it doesn’t matter, the craftsmen’s skill will surely improve as they take on new techniques. The technology related to magical tools has made great progress over the past decade or so, but I hear that it has hit a wall recently. But thanks to Nyango, we will be able to spread new techniques from our territory.” (Frederick)


“I agree. I hope that Ibouro will become a major production center for magical tools and that life in the surrounding villages will improve as well.” (Nyango)



 Since it was a good opportunity, I requested him to improve the disparity in the living level between Ibouro and Atsuka, as well as the situation of the catkins. Viscount Lagart crossed his arms and fell silent as he listened.




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