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A/N: Starting today, it is the beginning of the 3rd Arc.
“Why is Lily here …?”
It was a situation I would have never imagined, so my mind went blank.
What Esther and I entered was a house given to us by the lord.
After our accomplishments from the recent disturbance, I was asked by the lord what I wanted.
It’s a good thing that we were allowed to say what we really wish for.
I have been staying at the inn until a while ago, but I couldn’t practice in the morning because the inn’s guests would be disturbed.
Also, my nightly magic training was forbidden too.
No matter how many skill boards I have, I need to train to be able to effectively use the power I have acquired.
Unlike Japan, Eargard is a world filled with monsters.
If you’re not easy, you will lose your life easily.
In such a world, creating an environment where I should train was an urgent task.
This is where the house comes in.
Once I have a house, I can train freely.
I thought this was a rather unreasonable wish, but surprisingly our wish was readily accepted.
Good thing my achievement was a big deal for Finlis.
The timing was right, the Lord had given us a house, and now it was time for me to get started.
When I entered the house that was given to us, for some reason I found Lily, the owner of the magic shop.
(What does this mean …?)
Lily opened her sleepy eyes slightly and pointed her hand towards me, while I was completely blanked-out.
I feel some signs of magical power moving from the tip of her hand.
“No, no. No! This is the house I got from the lord.”
“No excuses.” (Lily)
When I opened my mouth to try to explain, Lily released the magical power that she had been channeling.
I hurriedly hold out my hand in front of me.
The magic released by Lily clashed with my hands.
It was at that moment.
There came a void of sound.
Silence saturates the room and white noise filled the air.
Before sound came back again.
“Oh, my goodness…”
I almost collapsed on the floor with relief.
I was able to counter her magic.
The magic that I released clashed with the exact same magic.
I couldn’t guess the magic that Lily released just by looking at it.
But – fire magic would burn the house down, and water magic and earth magic would be hard to clean up after release. If she wants to use a spell inside the house, wind magic is the most likely candidate.
–Yes, I got it right.
Then, in an attempt to counter the magic that she released, I deployed a spell with the same power and scale.
The canceling technique used by me is the same principle as active sound muffling. [T/N: Active sound muffling is the technology used by some modern headphones. Google-sensei has lots of headphone brands and models using this technology. It isn’t cheap though.]
Active sound muffling is a technology that can cancel out noise by using opposing frequency.
It is used for noise canceling in Japan. It is a technique familiar to me.
However, I didn’t know if the same thing could be done with magic.
(It might have gone the opposite, but I’m glad I succeeded…)
In front of me who has just been relieved, Lily is channeling her magical power again.
“… Why do I have to wait?” (Lily)
“Talk! Let’s talk!!”
At this point, they would only be attacked unilaterally and the situation would not progress at all.
I desperately asked Lily to talk before fighting.
I managed to get the aggressive Lily to sit around the table for a discussion.
I immediately explained my side (about the reward we received from the lord).
But Lily shook her head.
“… funny. I bought this house, so this is my house.” (Lily)
“But we got this house from the lord.”
“It was probably a different house?” (Lily)
“No, no, no, I used this key to get in, so I’m sure of it.”
With that said, I showed Lily the key to the house.
“Keys can be duplicated.”
“That’s right. But I don’t think the lord gave us a duplicate key.”
If an adventurer, who has been rewarded for his work, were to receive a duplicate of someone else’s house key, it would affect the reputation of the lord.
A decent aristocrat would never allow themselves to do such a thing.
Similar to me, Lily also owned a real key.
She had bought a new house after her house was burned down in an earlier disturbance.
“But this is my house. No doubt.” (Lily)
Now that there are few houses left, the amount of money to buy a house has jumped significantly.
There are tons of buyers for the goods, so the merchants are driving up the price.
Lily was stubborn because she was forced to buy an overpriced house.
But that doesn’t mean I was going to give it away either, saying, “Yes, I see.”
This house is a reward given by the lord. It’s a good idea to be able to have a good idea of what has happened.
Even though we are speaking to each other, we are not connecting at all.
So I proposed.
“Let’s go to the guild for the time being.”
“This time around, we have the guild as the intermediary when we receive the award from the lord. If we go to the guild, you’ll know that we got this house legally.”
I decided to reinforce our own claim for now.
Whether Lily was convinced or not, if she went to the guild, we would have a witness.
Besides, I was curious about the cause of this situation.
It’s only after the cause is determined that the house may be owned by either party.
Otherwise, there would be a lot of trouble left unresolved.
We arrived at the guild and immediately explained the situation to the receptionist, Marie.
“Such a thing…” (Marie)
“Is the key you gave Toru wrong?” (Lily)
“No. This is definitely the key given by the lord.” (Marie)
Marie answered Lily’s question.
This proved that the key was not given by mistake.
“Then why …?”
“That’s right. In this case, would it be okay to have a guild step in?” (Marie)
I thought about Marie’s offer.
It’s a different story if the guild prepared the house, but it was the Lord who prepared it.
The guild is not directly involved in this case.
Just because you visit a lawyer’s office for a free consultation does not mean that they will accept the job for free. There is always a commission fee.
In the same way, does having the guild come in between cost us a fee?
I felt uneasy, but Marie shook her head softly and winked at me.
“This time it is a service.” (Marie)
A slimy, black object stroked my neck.
Esther, who was releasing a poisonous aura at the edge of my field of vision, is glaring at me.
(I don’t know. I don’t know anything!!)
Toru muttered in his chest many times, “I don’t know, I don’t know,” as if he was chanting a Nembutsu to a ghost. [T/N: Nembutsu/Nenbutsu is a Buddhist prayer used in many rituals. Probably to save him from the green-eyed demon possessing Esther. But he’s pretty dense so it might be to save his soul.]
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