Konjiki no Moji Tsukai

Chapter 08: An average guy that won’t work for free

Chapter 08: An average guy that won’t work for free
In “Ames” he looked for an inn first of all. Luckily for him, not many adventurers dropped by here, so there were enough empty rooms, only one double room was booked.
“A single room please.”
“Eh, ah, yes. Ex- Excuse me… Are you… an adventurer?”
“I… see.”
Hiiro inclined his head as he somehow didn’t feel welcomed. It was his first visit to this village, nor did he ever did something to them.
Yet, the inn keeper treated him anxiously. It bothered him, but for now, he reserved his room and went to look around the village.
But there he noticed something strange. For some reason, he felt gazes on him. And from all directions at that. It was an atmosphere like he was an uninvited guest.
Just like the inn keeper, they frowned at him. Maybe this village didn’t welcome outsiders. Well, Hiiro was only going to stay for one night, so he didn’t let it bother him.
“Hey, Mister.”
At that moment, someone called out to him. When he turned around, there stood a kid. It was a boy around the age of seven. He glared at him with eyes like looking at someone suspicious. Hiiro ignored him, since he didn’t like that attitude.
“Hey, don’t ignore me!”
The boy got angry. Why would he have to deal with a brat? Hiiro dropped his shoulders.
“What‘s up, shorty?”
“Don’t call me shorty! Not when you’re wearing some weird red robe yourself! It’s intimidating!”
“…Are you a bull or what?”
Not like he wore the red robe to be intimidating. It simply wore it for protection purposes. Although he grew attached to it after wearing it all the time.
With his black school uniform underneath, it was a surreal combination, but Hiiro didn’t care at all.
“Mister, you’re an adventurer, right? Why did you come to such an isolated place?”
“Isolated place?”
“Don’t call it an isolated place!”
“You called it that.”
Why was he so aggressive…? Hiiro couldn’t come up with an answer to that, so he ignored him and walked away as it was too troublesome after all.
“H- Hey, wait!”
Ignore, ignore.
“I told you to wait!”
Turn a blind eye.
“Hey, man! Listen to me!”
Just the wind.
“Hey… Please… don’t ignore me.”
His voice gradually started to tremble. He must have gotten sad from being ignored. Hiiro made a light sigh and stopped.
“What do you want?”
He stopped ignoring him as it would be difficult to stay in the village if he made him cry here. Upon that, the boy smiled energetically, but went back to glare at him right away.
“Sh- Sheesh, you’re such a meanie! All adventurer are like that!”
“I’m me. Don’t lump me together with others, it’s discomforting.”
When he glared at him in a bad mood, the boy cowered with a shiver.
“…Hah. So, what’s up? I’m busy looking around, you know.”
“Eh? Why’re you looking around?”
“What does it matter? It got nothing to do with you, brat.”
“Uh… Uhh…”
The boy got close to tears again, so Hiiro pressed on his temples with a sigh.
“Hah. Just killing time. I got here just now and plan to stay here one night during my travel.”
He looked at the boy, hoping that this satisfied him.
“Oh? You’re not going to sham the village?”
“Sham? Say what?”
According to the boy, certain adventurers lately dropped by the village, barged into the general or weapon store and forcefully haggled products, doing whatever they wanted.
“It was a group of two and they falsely charged the inn to get to stay for free.”
While he grinded his teeth frustrated, the boy clenched his fist.
“Why didn’t you refuse? You could’ve chased them out with all the villagers.”
“We cannot do that.”
It wasn’t the boy, who replied to Hiiro.
“Ah, Uncle Panis!”
The man called Panis looked like in his late 30s. In reality he might be younger, but his gloomy expression made him look older.
“And you are?”
“You seem to be an adventurer. My name is Panis. I run a humble shop.”
That meant he was a victim of the two adventurer.
“Is it true what the brat said?”
“Yes, it is. They currently picking at the general store.”
“…You said you can’t chase them out. What do you mean?”
Panis looked troubled and made a big sigh.
“For some reason, they got title deed of the village.”
“Huh? Why would they have that? Doesn’t the village chief usually keep it?”
“Yes, but the title deed was suddenly gone from the village chief’s house…”
In other words, the two stole it.
“How careless. You reap what you sow.”
“Haha, you got us there.”
Yet another new person answered Hiiro.
“You are the adventurer that arrived earlier? I am the village chief of ‘Ames’, Brey.”
“What are you doing here, Chief?”
Panis asked.
“Same reason as yours. I was told there is an outsider, so I came to check.”
Appearing Hiiro’s arrival was immediately reported to the village chief and he came to see the suddenly visiting adventurer with his own eyes. He seemingly was relieved to see that Hiiro was just an average adventurer.
Suddenly the sound of wood breaking resounded. Everyone present faced the origin of the sound taken aback. The door of a house was burst opened and someone was thrown out.
The village chief widened his eyes and shouted. The man called Mick was thrown onto the ground and crouched. Then two people appeared from the house, where he was thrown out from.
One man was fat with a bald head, the other one slender with a spiky hairstyle like a broom. Mr. Spiky Head spit out while looking down on Mick.
“Keh! Try saying that again!”
The slender man, also qualified to be called spiky beanpole, scowled fiendish. Next to him, the other guy took a bite out of a fruit that was probably from the store. Hiiro named him bald chubby.
Mick desperately pleaded. They most likely told him to hand over the products for free and he refused to. However, spiky beanpole showed an irritated vein on his forehead and kicked Mick’s face.
Quite a lot of blood splashed around. Seeing that, the villagers rushed over to him. Spiky beanpole glared sharply at the village chief.
“Huuh? Look who we have here, the chief. Got something to say? Mh?”
Hiiro calmly observed, taking him for a third-rate gangster, no, delinquent.
“M- More food.”
Bald chubby tried to go back into the house while drooling, probably in search for more food.
“Hey, Junior, give it a rest, we’re leaving.”
“B- But I’m hungry.”
“Tch. Make it quick.”
“Stop it already!”
Unable to watch any longer, the village chief shouted, but winced when spiky beanpole glared at him. The others close by didn’t approach either, scared by spiky beanpole’s look of menace.
(Looks like they’re being compelled to accept it because these guys are beyond their power, not just the title deed)
The village didn’t have any capable people, so they didn’t resist as they would only get killed if they challenged them.
(They could ask the army for help, but I guess the guys would just run away with the title deed then. And there’s a fear for their revenge. The best solution would be for someone to subdue them)
While Hiiro pondered like that, the boy next to him looked up to him. Pretty much ask if he was asking him to do something about it.
“No idea what you want, but this doesn’t concern me.”
“Wha! And you still call yourself human!?”
“What? Do I look like a demon or what?”
“You do! Why aren’t you helping! As a fellow adventurer, you have to stop them!”
“…Listen, brat, I may be an adventurer, but I ain’t some advocate of justice. Ask the Heroes if you want justice for free.”
Hiiro said composed while crossing his arms. The boy gave him a look filled with anger, it was no concern of his.
“Forget it! In the end, all adventurer are like this!”
Saying so, the boy went straight for the two guys.
“Ah, wait, Nies! Don’t go there!”
Panis tried to stop him, but the boy called Nies ran with all his might. Then Panis glared at Hiiro while grinding his teeth. Still, he relaxed soon enough and sighed.
“No, I get it. This has nothing to do with you. A Hero that works for people without charge like from fairytales does not exist.”
“Mh, no idea if such a person exists, but at the very least, I’m not like that. I pass on working for free.”
Hiiro kept it to himself that sadly enough, he considered unprofitable things as bothersome.
“…For free.”
“Huh? What?”
Panis suddenly leaked a voice, so Hiiro inadvertently asked back.
“So it just… has to be paid?”
Hiiro got a bad feeling.
“In that case, I will give you my finest weapon when you help us.”
“Will you help us?”
Panis looked at him earnestly. It was a pain and to be honest, it didn’t concern him at all. However, the finest weapon was appealing. Just taking care of this scum for it was rather cheap.
While thinking so, he made eye contact with Panis. Looking into his eyes without averting his gaze, they stared at each other for a while. After a while, Hiiro sighed like being outlasted.
“Fine. I’ll lend a hand. But keep your promise.”
Panis’ face instantly brightened up, but turned gloomy again.
“I, I know I asked you, but… are you strong?”
He asked while looking anxiously at Hiiro from head to toe.
“Dunno. But at least good enough to do something about them.”
Hiiro said so by looking at the chubby & beanpole combo. Panis had his mouth gaping open from that confidence, but Hiiro ignored that and swiftly went into action.

Nies picked up a pebble from the ground and threw it at spiky beanpole. It pleased him how it hit him right into the face, but needless to say, the other villagers all went pale.
Spiky beanpole’s expression as he slowly looked at Nies spoke volumes: This brat is as good as dead.
Feeling his killing intent, Nies froze on the spot.
“St- Stop it!”
The village chief stopped covering in front of Nies, but was sent flying with hard punch. Then spiky beanpole drew the sword on his waist and pointed it at Nies. Paralyzed by fear, Nies didn’t move an inch.
“Brat, any last words?”
“D- Don‘t…”
Nies shook his head while shedding tears, but that didn’t stop spiky beanpole. He smiled happily and raised his sword into the air, then swinging it down from there.
Everyone gulped and closed their eyes. They all thought Nies’ life was over now. However!
The one screaming in pain and bleeding was spiky beanpole. Something was pierced into his sword arm.
Everyone looked dumbfounded at this scene. A blade, yes, it was a blade. His arm was undoubtedly pierced by a blade.
But the length of it was clearly too long. And they looked at the end of the blade, at the person, who performed the attack. It was Okamura Hiiro.