Drawn Mochi Volume 2 Chapter 3: Living Plaster Statue *2

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 Slaves. Yes. A slave.


 Why a slave, you may ask, because Fay says, “I don’t believe that Tougo can remember to change the sealing tool’s magic stone once a day! Tougo is too incapable of living! If he is left alone, he will die!” And He insisted.


 Regarding the exchange of magic stones, I was going to tell him that it was not true that I would die if I was left alone, but when he mentioned that I had fainted many times due to “magic power depletion,” I was no longer in any capacity to argue with him.


 Then everyone decided that if I was going to live in the forest, it would be better if I had someone close by to take care of me. Mainly in terms of managing my food and shelter.


 …That brings me back to my earlier point. We were talking about “buying a slave”.



 It seems there is slavery in this world. Criminals, the poor, people in debt, and people from enemy countries who have lost a war? These people become slaves.


 …However, I have quite a bit of resistance. Because there is slavery, there are slaves. No matter how accepted… I have a strong attachment to the morals of my original world, and I feel a lot of resistance.



“I see. In your world, there were no slaves.” (Fay)


“Yes.” (Tougo)



 After all, this place is a different world, I think. Their common sense is something that is completely different from what I grew up with, and naturally, our morals are also different.


 Fay is a good person, but at times like this, I can’t help but feel a little distant from him.





“… Huh? What does your world do with the people who were hungry? Don’t tell me they were all begging on the street?” (Fay)



 When Fay started to say that, I felt a bit like, “What?”



“Umm… the government paid for those who couldn’t work or were unemployed.” (Tougo)



 Anyway, I tell Fay a little bit about my world, about welfare, culture, and so on. Yeah. I told him a little about my world.



“I’m not sure I understand. …Well, does that mean that in a way, it’s a system where those with money help those without?” (Fay)


“Hmm… yes, something like that.” (Tougo)



 It’s a rough summary, but maybe that’s mostly it. Mostly.



“If that’s the case, it’s not much different from slavery, is it? It’s rather good that there is a proper place of employment, isn’t it?” (Fay)






“It’s true that if you become a slave, you can’t choose your job. But at any rate, you will definitely be able to sleep, eat, and get a job, won’t you? And when you accumulate some money, you can buy your status back and be free. It’s not that bad, right? Right?” (Fay)



 I feel… that something is different from the “slave” that I thought of.



“…slaves aren’t, you know, being forced to do whatever others say, or being treated badly, or something like that?” (Tougo)



 Just in case, I asked. Isn’t there some kind of difference between the “slave” in this world and the connotation of “slave” in my world?


 Fay snorted and answered.



“No… I can’t say there isn’t. There are times when they are treated that way. It’s just that when you’re a criminal slave, the percentage of that happening is inevitably higher. But at the very least it is illegal to mistreat those who are enslaved because they have no money.” (Fay)



 Oh, there’s a law against it? Something has gone way beyond my expectations. I don’t know, this world is a strange place after all.



“Um… is there such a treatment when it’s illegal?” (Tougo)


“I’m sure there are some people who do it out of sight, out of mind. The only thing is, it’s hard to crack down on this kind of thing. Yeah… Is there no such a thing in your world?” (Fay)


“There are.” (Tougo)



 It is true that there are people in my world who repeatedly commit illegal acts. I know, labor laws are often broken.


 …I see. Slavery in this world is more relatable than I thought. It feels a little strange, but it makes sense now that we talked about it.



 Then we got to town.



“…there are a lot of people here.” (Tougo)


“Ah, Tougo, isn’t this your first time coming to town!?” (Fay)


“Yes.” (Tougo)



 It was the first time I had been in a town since I came to this world.


 The town is made up of many houses made of wood and stone. Well, there is a forest nearby, so there is a good amount of wood available. Naturally so. However, they are not built like Japanese houses, so there is an exotic atmosphere.


 The walls are usually plastered. However, they are not pure white, but rather colored, which is fashionable. Some walls are chic gray, some are light pink beige, and some are champagne gold.


 So that means there are colored materials to mix with the plaster. I’m a little curious…


 Then the windows. There are some with glass windows, but in most private houses there are many with wooden shutters. Apparently, glass is a bit of a luxury item.


 The street is paved with cobblestones. The dark-colored stones give a subdued impression, but among the dark stones, some are pure white. The white accents are quite nice.


 Children were running on the cobblestones. There is a fountain in the plaza, which seems to be a place of relaxation for children and various other people.


 …how unusual.


 I see. The town in the other world is like this.



“Is that right? Is this your first time in town? …Then I should have planned to make it more enjoyable. I failed.” (Fay)



 Fay looked at me and made a face as if he had “failed”. It’s kind of funny.



“It doesn’t matter. You don’t have to do that…” (Tougo)


“But you’re from another world, aren’t you? I have to show people from another world around town, right? It’s definitely better when it is fun, right?” (Fay)



 Oh, so that we can enjoy it, well, not me, but Fay.


 …Yeah, I like that about him.



 We walked a little further and came to the outskirts of town. There I found a big old building. The plaster on the walls was peeling away, revealing stone and brick in places.


 Apparently, this was the place where slaves were sold.



 As soon as we entered the store, Fay started talking with the shopkeeper. I was left out of the conversation, but Fay looked at me and said, “I’m here today to find a caretaker for him, not one of our employees,” to which the shopkeeper looked at me.


 I bowed my head. I felt a little uncomfortable at moments like this.


 Then Fay and the store clerk talked for a bit… at which point, Fay grinned and whispered into the store clerk’s ear.


 …What is it?



 And finally, I was asked to see the slaves.



“All right. What do you think, Tougo? Is there a girl you’re interested in?” (Fay)



 There are slaves in front of me.


 …It feels strange. After all, the slaves here seem… very aggressive.



“Oh, my sweet boy! Hey, why don’t you let me be the one you choose? I can cook and clean.” (Slave)


“Well, why don’t you just pick me over that old lady over there, ‘big brother’? I’m not going to say anything bad about you.” (Slave)


“Oh, my gosh! You’re a beautiful boy! I want you to buy me! Pick me! I’ll do all kinds of fun things for you!” (Slave)





 I’m in trouble.


 I’m looking at a lot of women smiling at me. And they are saying some rather, you know, questionable things. By the way, their clothes are also quite revealing. What should I do with this…?



“Okay, Tougo. Who do you want? Who among them caught your eye?” (Fay)



 And Fay asks me that with a smirk. …I’m sure he’s making fun of me. He’s grinning. No matter how I look at the women in front of me, they don’t look like housekeepers, somehow they’re different.


 …So let me tell him my opinion.



“Well, I don’t like these women because they… make me feel uncomfortable.” (Tougo)



 As far as I’m concerned, I’m not comfortable with someone I’m not comfortable with.



“Eh! Are you sure!?” (Fay)


“Eh?” (Tougo)


“What!?” (Slaves)



 What is wrong?



“No. …Hey, Tougo. You came here looking for a slave to take care of your living, right? You’re going to live with that slave, okay?” (Fay)


“Yes.” (Tougo)


“If they are going to be with you, you’d rather it be with a beautiful girl! If they are going to take care of you, they better be able to do everything, from morning till night!” (Fay)


“Hmm…?” (Tougo)


“You’re all alone in the depths of the forest, you know? You don’t have any social status, and you don’t have any ties, so nobody will complain about you buying a slave like them!” (Fay)


“No. I don’t feel comfortable.” (Tougo)



 A difference of opinion.


 If we are going to live together, I don’t want to be with someone I don’t feel comfortable with.



  At any rate, I decided to ask him to show me the other slaves.


 But I’d like to refrain from a grumpy uncle. I also don’t want to be with a strict-looking auntie. I would like to refrain from the sexy older lady because I feel uncomfortable, and I would also like to refrain from an older brother who looks kind of sexy.


 …There are some people who think that this person would be good, but I don’t think so.


 Hmm… even if I was told to choose a slave, it might be useless because I don’t know who to choose…



 In the end, I decided that it would be faster for me to look around than to have the slaves brought to me, so I asked them to bring me to the slave waiting area.


 There were many rooms with large windows, and the slaves were in them one by one or in groups.


 On the door of each room, there are descriptions of the slaves. I can’t read it, but Fay read it to me. It says that they are good at housework, or that they can use magic or something like that. It seems that such things are written.


 Apparently, the slaves were categorized into several groups. They are “good at housework,” “good at fighting,” “good at farming,” and so on. The slaves are divided into categories to some extent, and there is a line of slaves of similar abilities in one line.


 …There was also a line of people who looked like the women Fay had asked to be brought to me earlier. I felt awkward there, so I walked right past them.



 Then, when I went deeper and deeper into the store, there was a place with iron bars.


 …I wondered what it was, it was very close to the image I had imagined of a store that sold slaves.



“Hey, Tougo. From there onwards is the criminal slave area.” (Fay)



 Oh, I see. Criminal slaves…




 Fay stopped me, but I’m going to go take a look anyway, just to be sure. Because so far, I’m not sure about all of them. If that’s the case, I’d like to look around at all of them and then make a decision after I’m satisfied.



 However… a “criminal slave” was more than I expected.


 The sound of clanging. It was the sound of the iron bars clanging.


 And the one who rang the bars was a man with the appearance of a “bad guy”.



“Hey, you little brat. Are you a nobleman’s kid?” (Man)


“No, mister.” (Tougo)


“I see. If you don’t have money, I have no use for you.” (Man)



 And then, the man who looked like a “bad guy” went away behind the bars again. I was a little surprised.



“Hey, Tougo. That guy…” (Fay)


“I was a little surprised, but I really want to see everyone.” (Tougo)



 Fay stopped me one more time, but I really want to see this one too.


 The people behind the bars could be scary-looking people with glowing eyes, or they could be sleeping all the time, or they could be head-butting against the wall while muttering something. They are definitely not the best people to take care of your daily life. And by the way, I don’t feel comfortable. They are uncomfortable in a different way than the women earlier.


 Some people even threw things through the cracks in the iron bars. Please don’t throw the remains of broken glass bottles too much. I think I’m going to get hurt. Well, Fay’s summoned beasts will protect me, so I’m safe, but…


 Still, I was looking at the row of iron bars. Looking, watching a lot of scary people, looking, watching… and then.


 At the far end of the bars, I found it.



 …Sharp eyes, a straight nasal bridge, a well-trained body, hair, and beard that makes you say, “I just left it alone, and it grew”. The man with the appearance of a “warrior” reminded me of the image of the plaster statue in the art room.



 A plaster statue in the art room.


 It was a statue of Hercules.



“I choose that person.” (Tougo)



 I decided on this person.


 Because I wanted to paint him.



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