Dream Life Vol II Chapter 50.1: “My First Armor”

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 November 7th.



 Three days ago, I was wounded in a fight with ghouls.


 At the time, I hit my head so hard that the next day was put aside as a day of complete rest. Fortunately, there were no aftereffects afterward, and it seemed to be just a concussion.


 Yesterday, the sixth, was the day of Professor Ruspede’s lecture, and he went to the academy.



 Normally today would be the day to go into the forest, but I decided to go to the armor shop near the Adventurer’s Guild in the new town.


 Until now, I have been wearing a leather jacket and leather pants to avoid injury from sharp tree branches and rocks, but this latest injury made me realize that this was not enough.


 The four of us headed for the armor shop, which was Beatrice’s favorite place to shop.



 Adventurers generally wear leather armor. This is because metal armor, which makes noise, increases the likelihood that monsters will find you before you do and ambush you. Both Beatrice and Liddy wear hard leather armor made of hardened leather.


 Beatrice, a spearman, is more heavily armored than Liddy, an archer, and she also wears chainmail under her leather armor. She showed me this, and although it looks like a lot of weight, her movements don’t seem to show it. When I mentioned this to her, she laughed and said, “It’s because I train,” but when Liddy told her, “It’s the difference in physique, isn’t it?” she laughed.



 The armor shop was located in one of the rows of armor-related stores, and I had seen it before since I had been in this area from time to time myself. I had come to the store of a dwarven blacksmith named Zergius to take care of the sword of Bertram – a dwarven blacksmith from the village of Rathmore.


 I had first met Zergius in late August, but we quickly struck up a rapport because he was introduced to me by Giselher, the blacksmith of Pericritor. Of course, I do not doubt that the scotch I brought him was helpful.



 The front of the armorer’s shop was labeled “Rufus Lavergne’s Shop.


 When I opened the door, I was greeted by the smell of freshly processed hides and the delicate, fishy odor of glue.


 Inside, many parts of leather armor were laid out, and the hard leather had a luster like candy or agate.


 Beatrice called out, “Is Rufus here?”, and a young woman came out from the back. The woman, who appeared to be an elf, was quite beautiful, but her age was not clear. However, from her soft mannerisms, I assume she must be quite old.


 Beatrice said, “Rachael? Is Rufus not here?” The woman called Rachael smiled and said,



“I’m sorry, I can’t let you go in right now. He’s kind of busy right now. If you wait for about 20 minutes, he will be able to come out. What can I do for you today? Oh, I see you have a new guest.” (Rachael)


“These are my friends who are partying with me right now. Lydiane, Zack, and Sharon. We’re here today to get Zack’s armor.” (Beatrice)



 Rachael stood in front of me and looked me up and down.



“Hmm, this child also uses magic… Beatrice, what is your budget?” (Rachael)



 I didn’t say anything, but she realizes I use magic. I’ve heard that Liddy can see the flow of the spirits’ power, so maybe Rachael can too.



 About the budget, I still have about 20,000 C (= 20 million yen) in cash. But I didn’t set a budget for one reason or another.


 For one thing, I don’t know the market price of leather armor.


 Beatrice and Liddy had given me some idea of the market price, but since the armor is almost custom-made, the price varies greatly depending on the size. If it is a size that is in demand, the price can be lowered by sharing parts, but a custom-made item like Beatrice’s is quite expensive. In terms of my size, I am about the same as a female adventurer from a small beastfolk such as the Catfolk, but I am out of the size range of a human male, which is in high demand. I have no idea how this area will affect the price.


 Another reason is that I don’t know how long I will be able to use it when I am still growing. I guess there is an adjustment fee for protective gear, but I don’t know how much the adjustment fee will cover. I was going to buy the cheapest one I could find if it was more expensive than I thought it would be and I needed to replace it right away because it wouldn’t be worth the cost to replace it so often.



 I greeted Rachael with a smile, “Nice to meet you, I’m Zack.”



“I can’t decide on the budget unless I see your products. But as a reference, I can spend up to 5,000 C (=5 million yen). That’s just my opinion.”  (Zack)



“5,000 C. Should I ask Beatrice about your style of fighting and requirements? Or should I ask the elf lady over there?” (Rachael)



 At first glance at Liddy, she seems to recognize her as a seasoned adventurer. I thought that she was indeed in the business of dealing with adventurers, but then I recalled that since she was an elf, she might have been doing it for quite a long time.


 Beatrice said, “Ask him. That would be fine, right Lydiane?” she confirmed to Liddy. Liddy nodded, “Right,” and Rachael turned her gaze back to me.



“I understand. Even so, that’s amazing. To be trusted by Beatrice. The child she brought before, Beatrice’s opinion decided everything.” (Rachael)



 “That’s not true. I was just giving advice,” Beatrice protested, but Rachael paid no attention and proceeded to ask, “So, can you tell me how you fight?” And I proceed to tell her.


 With a wry smile, I was thinking of a certain person.



(Somehow, she resembles Professor Ruspede. They go at their own pace…) (Zack)



 I wondered how to explain my fighting style, but she asked me specific questions like, “How do you fight wolves” or “humanoid monsters?”


 I answered her questions one by one.



 After about 20 minutes, she seemed satisfied and stopped asking questions. “I’ll let Rufus know,” and returned to the workshop.


 I asked Beatrice, “Do they know with just that?” Beatrice laughed and said,



“That’s what I think at first. But Rachele and Rufus are first-class craftsmen, so don’t worry.” (Beatrice)



“First class must be expensive, right? I said five thousand, but I’m not willing to pay that high.”



 The standard leather armor here in Doctus costs roughly 1,000 C (=1,000,000 yen) for a complete set, from helmet to shin guards. Since rookie rookies can’t afford that, they have cheap second-hand items–things that are on the verge of being scrapped–starting at about 200 C for a set. As expected, I don’t intend to lower the quality that much, but if I can use them for a year or so, I’m thinking up to about 3,000.


 My income from monster hunting for the past month is easily over 500 C (= 500,000 yen). Of course, it is not divided equally among the four of us, but after giving more to Beatrice and Liddy. My only necessary expense is the maintenance of my sword, and Sharon hardly needs it at all. That’s why I give them more, but most of it still goes to savings.


 I guess my nature is to be frugal. I don’t want to spend a lot of money on something I can only use for a short time. Normally, with my current income, it would be well worth it to spend more than 5,000 C, but I feel that it would be a waste. If I had kids, I would probably be the kind of parent who doesn’t want to spend excessive money on children’s clothes.



 Beatrice put my worries aside and said, “Don’t be stingy with it because you’re putting your life in it. If it’s not enough, I’ll pay for it myself.”



“I’m a growing boy. It would be a waste to spend money on something I can’t use for a long time. Besides, the armor is like insurance. I’m not going to change my style, which is basically to move around and evade.” (Zack)



 As I said this, I heard a young man’s voice from the back of the room.



“I’ll let you trade it in when you need replacement. If it’s the style you’re talking about, I think I can get a good deal after.” (Rufus)



 As he said this, a handsome elf wearing a large apron came out of the workshop. He appeared to be the shopkeeper, Rufus.


 He had a friendly and soft atmosphere and looked more like the owner of an ornament store for rich people than the owner of an armorer’s shop for ruffians.



“You must be the customer this time. What kind of material should I use? Insect-like shells of monsters, reptile leather, or just plain animal leather? There are a lot of materials available in this town, so I think I can make almost anything.” (Rufus)



 I don’t know the characteristics of the materials and their prices. When I mentioned this, he started explaining like a machine gun.



“Of course, it’s natural that you don’t know since you came here for the first time to buy. Well, let me explain. First of all, it is insect-based, but the most important feature is that it is hard. It is tougher than metal ones. The disadvantage is that it is expensive. It is difficult to process, so it can only be made according to the shape of the material. That makes it wasteful…” (Rufus)



 He continued to explain the material for the next ten minutes. It seems that I was caught by a man who likes to talk a great deal.


 To summarize, insect-type materials are characterized by their hardness and are difficult to process, which makes them expensive and are usually paid in installments. Reptile-type materials are characterized by water resistance and less deterioration of the material, but the price goes up because the hardness requires materials from higher-level monsters. Another feature of this material is that there are variations from cheap materials such as lizardman skins to ultra-high-end materials from dragons. Incidentally, there are not enough materials to recommend at the moment.


 Animal materials range from familiar cow and horse materials to those of monsters such as four-handed bears, and the prices are said to be extremely high. Since leather is processed to make it hard, its performance deteriorates quickly if it is immersed in water for a long time or if it is not cared for properly. Most cheap leather armor is made of cow or horse.



 Now that I knew enough about the materials, I decided to check the type of armor I needed, but it would take too long to get the same information from Rufus, so I decided to ask Liddy and Beatrice’s opinions. They both agreed that we should try to get a full set, so I told them as I went along.




“I want a full set, from the helmet to the shin guards. Please use common animal materials.” (Zack)




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