Dream Life Vol II Chapter 31.2: “Information Gathered”
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Morning of October 2nd.
In the languid afterglow of the festival, Mr. Sai, who I had requested to gather information came to my house.
As soon as he saw my face, he said, “I think I know who Bennett met.” His face wore a satisfied smile.
“He’s Quentin Wagman’s tutor. His name is Archie Croft…” (Sai)
After I left for the academy, Mr. Bennett immediately contacted the Wagmans and met Croft at a diner in the old town that night.
“I found Croft at a diner in the Old City that night. He started out as a researcher at a private school, but he didn’t make it. It is said that he was dismissed from a private school ten years ago because of that. After that, he worked for the guild for a while, but eight years ago, he became Quentin’s tutor. I don’t know the details of how and why, but it smells fishy.” (Sai)
I whispered, “it smells fishy?”
“Yes. The first thing that caught my attention was the fact that it was eight years ago. Eight years ago, was the year Councilor Wagman returned to Doctus from Saltus, the northern kingdom of the elves.” (Sai)
I wondered what part of that bothered him.
“Didn’t he tutor Quentin, four years old that time, because he came back from Saltus? Seems like an extremely normal thing to do, doesn’t it?” (Zack)
He grinned, then said gleefully, “At last, I’ve managed to surprise you.”
“Speaking of eight years ago, that was when Councilor Wagman and Councilor Isherwood reconciled. Councilor Isherwood is a man with a strong background in personnel relations. How did Croft get his job at the Guild? We can’t rule out the possibility that Councilor Isherwood has a hand in it, right?” (Sai)
I must have been a little out of it at the festival.
He was right, and the fact that he was hired mid-career to work for the guild was certainly suspicious. The Magician’s Guild is a more exclusive organization than other guilds. And the influence of the academy is so great that employment depends on what grade you graduated from the Tyria Magic Academy. It is not strange to think that Croft, who worked as a researcher at a private school in conflict with the Magic Academy, was hired as a mid-career staff member by such a guild.
“You’re telling me this much, you’ve got a peek behind it, right?” (Zack)
I said, and he grinned and began to explain from another view.
“Ten years ago, Councilor Isherwood was in charge of the Personnel Committee. And Chairman Seberg was the Personnel Committee Councilor at that time. And at that time, there were rumors of a scandal involving Chairman Seberg…” (Sai)
Ten years ago, he said, there was an attempt to transfer a large number of researchers from the Tyria Magic Academy to a private school. The three major private schools jointly tried to recruit sponsors through the Merchant Guild and used the funds to pull in young researchers.
When the Magician’s Guild got wind of this, naturally the personnel committee had to take action. Councilor Seberg at the time did not get along with his boss, the chairman of the committee, and was even told that he had little chance of being nominated as the next councilor. Therefore, Seberg conspired with his subordinate, Ibbetson, to hold the chairman responsible and to plot his political purge.
The plot was to have the researchers removed to a private school and to place all responsibility on the chairman of the committee. They pressured the personnel committee staff to prevent them from pulling out.
Seberg had a secret agreement with the researchers to bring them back after the chairman took responsibility and was relieved of his duties, with the promise of a post and research funding. He had a secret agreement to bring back all the researchers in a short period of time under the guise of a personnel exchange.
Thus, his scheme was successful. However, rumors began to circulate that Seberg had initiated the sabotage of the personnel committee.
Seberg became impatient with the rumor. The next trustee seat was right under his nose, and if he became embroiled in a scandal, he would not only lose his trustee seat, but even his current position in the guild.
“…That’s where Isherwood made his move, I hear. He indicated to Seberg that the source of the rumor was someone with knowledge of the private school, and that he could do something about the rumor because he had secured the person. So, he told him to put himself to good use. Of course, Seberg did not trust him. Seberg suspected that Isherwood had spread the rumor. And Seberg did not have the gall to put such a dangerous man in his pocket. But Ibbetson was different…”
Councilor Ibbetson was aware of young Isherwood’s ambition but decided to use him. And Councilor Ibbetson was clever.
He suggested that Isherwood make it look like a confrontation on the surface, cleverly concealing their relationship, and furthermore, he brought in someone on his side who was well informed about the private school. He hoped that when the Seberg conspiracy came to light, he would be proactive in exposing the fraud and placing the blame on Seberg alone.
With this insurance policy in place, Ibbetson put out the rumors by ingratiating himself with Seberg. He also ordered Isherwood to oust his rival so that Seberg could become a trustee. As a result, Seberg became a trustee and was succeeded by Ibbetson.
In other words, Isherwood also decided to work with Ibbetson, who was next in line, rather than work with Seberg, who was about to be exposed in a scandal. Of course, the condition was that he would be named as his successor in the future.
“So, you are saying that Councilor Isherwood is connected to Councilor Ibbetson.” (Zack)
“That’s what I’m saying. Assuming, of course, that what I have found out is correct. This rumor is only spoken within the Magician’s Guild.” (Sai)
I was curious as to how he had access to such information, so I asked, “Who told you this?” I asked. Sai gave me a wicked smile and said,
“One is Professor Elvine–Kitley Elvine, an old friend of Liddy’s. She was almost caught up in the commotion, too. And the other, I can’t tell you their name, but they were involved with a private school. They were working for Seberg’s minions at the time” (Sai)
(Does this mean the information is credible? If Isherwood and Ibbetson are scheming together, it would not be surprising if they set out to eliminate Councilor Wagman. What happened to the story about the tutor, Croft? Just now, I wonder if Croft is the one, he was referring to earlier as the one with the private tutoring information?) (Zack)
“Is Croft, Quentin’s tutor, the one who knows the information about the private school you mentioned earlier?” (Zack)
Sai prefaced my question with, “I’d like to think so, yes.”
“I’m actually not sure. There is no doubt that Ibbetson entrusted Isherwood with the people involved in the private school. I think he thought that if he kept them in his possession, Chairman Seberg would become suspicious. Ibbetson may not have fully trusted Isherwood either, but it is not clear whether he had some weakness or whether he thought he could bind him with the promise that he would succeed him.” (Sai)
“In other words, Croft was most likely a person who had the backing of Councilor Ibbetson and Councilor Isherwood. But how could he have such a person as a tutor, Councilor Wagman?” (Zack)
“We don’t know how much Congressman Wagman knows about this story. I don’t know how much he knows about this story, but he may have known and was planning to use it as a bargaining chip against Ibbetson and Isherwood…” (Sai)
I heard Sai talk,
(How could someone as sharp as Wagman not know about the Seberg scandal? The possibility is that Isherwood told him about it and told him that Croft would be his trump card against Seberg and Ibbetson. Ibbetson probably didn’t want Croft, such a dangerous individual go to the shrewd Wagman, but in order to have Isherwood get information on the Wagman family he must. Especially, with Wagman not wanting Croft to quit. He might have persuaded him that the person, in other words, Croft, who has other usefulness, is the best… but most of it is speculation… Now, how to make use of this information…) (Zack)
Later, Sai shared with me some newly gathered information and the reputation of Councilor Wagman in the Merchant and Mercenary Guilds in New City.
He said that Councilor Wagman has a good reputation in the Merchant Guilds as well, and they are hoping that if he becomes the chairman, the researchers will be renewed and new innovations will be made.
Councilor Wagman has a good reputation even in the Mercenary Guild. If his policies are implemented, he expects that the number of mage mercenaries will increase, since many of them will be immediately effective.
I remember on my way to Doctus.
(It’s true that against monsters that attack from the sky, there’s a huge difference between having a magician and not having one…) (Zack)
I thanked Sai and promised to make arrangements to have the reward paid by October 4th.
He patted me on the shoulder and said,
“This job has been interesting. Your thinking was new to me. If you ever need any more information, please feel free to ask me. I’ll make it my top priority.” (Sai)
With that he walked away.
I decided to think of a way to solve the problem based on this information.
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