Chapter 31: The Arguing
Brandt nodded with a mysterious face as she once again forcefully reminded him not to use any spells until his magic circuits were healed.
Now that Brandt has recovered enough to walk normally without pain, they head for the hunter’s guild.
As they slowly reach the hunters’ guild, it is noisy inside, and the members of the guild are busily walking around.
“By any chance, did you go to the [Vampire Tower] yesterday?”
One of the guild members saw them and called out to them.
When they nodded, they were led into a back room. It appeared to be a reception room, with comfortable, high-quality chairs.
Brandt whispered to Anastasia that this is not the kind of room a hunter is normally taken to. They were treated like persons of interest, he says.
After some time, a man comes in. He is an older man with black, mottled gray hair and a gentle face that suggests intelligence.
“I’m sorry to keep you waiting. My name is Lloyd, the branch manager. I’d like to talk to you about [Vampire Tower], Brandt-san, and Anastasia-san, is that correct?”
“Yes… But you understand very well. We were just in town yesterday.”
Brandt responds to Lloyd’s question with a tilt of his head.
Lloyd smiles, and the wrinkles around his mouth deepen.
“Sam told me about you. He said you two saved him in the tower. The members of the guild recognized you right away because you’re a combination of two beautiful men and a beautiful woman.”
On the way to town in the carriage, Sam told them they should go to the hunters’ guild.
But while Brandt is certainly a good-looking man, Anastasia feels uncomfortable including her in this group.
“Sam and his group are one of the best groups in this town. I was surprised to hear that you defeated a monster that Sam’s group has difficulty dealing with with ease and even healed a mortal wound in an instant, but I was convinced when I heard that you are the best students in the Magic Academy. Brandt-san, the first place of the third year, is well-known, and I have heard rumors that the first place of the first year this year is also exceptional. Therefore, I would like to ask you for more details…”
At Branch Manager Lloyd’s prompting, Anastasia and Brandt told him what had happened in the tower.
They told him that a dragon had appeared on the twelfth floor and that after they killed the dragon, a staircase appeared, and when they reached the next floor, they encountered a demon.
However, they did not mention that the demon was Brandt’s parents’ killer or that he possessed the demon lord factor.
They did not give any details about the battle but were not asked for any more information, perhaps because the branch manager was aware it was natural not to reveal their hand.
Finally, as they conclude that the demons have shattered the dungeon core and fled and that the tower has begun to crumble, Branch Manager Lloyd exhales heavily.
“Dragon, demon, dungeon core… it’s hard to believe all of a sudden, but it’s hard to explain otherwise… The dungeon core isn’t revealed to ordinary hunters, but it’s known among advanced hunters.”
Although they showed signs of distress, branch manager Lloyd seemed to believe them.
Anastasia suddenly remembers that she has brought the dragon’s fang with her, and she asks Brandt about them.
Brandt nodded and took out a dragon’s fang.
“This fang came from a dragon. For some reason, the rest of the parts disappeared, and this is all we were able to bring back.”
As Brandt held up the dragon’s fang, branch manager Lloyd rolled his eyes.
“This… It certainly looks like a dragon’s fang. Could you give it up for investigation? Of course, I’ll pay you a reasonable price.
Anastasia and Brandt look at each other as Branch Manager Lloyd makes his offer.
The dragon’s fang is a valuable material, but at the moment there is no particular use for them. Anastasia nodded her head in agreement, and Brandt nodded his head as well.
“Thank you very much. I may have to ask you again, but that’s enough for today. I’ll have the money ready in a moment. Now, if you’ll excuse me.”
In a hurry, branch manager Lloyd left the room.
He must be busy, because a dungeon disappeared.
After a while of waiting, a member of the guild arrived with the money.
As expected of such a precious material, even though there was only one, there was enough money prepared to live on for a few months.
However, the amount of money led to an argument between Anastasia and Brandt.
“Since it was Brandt-senpai who slayed the dragon, at least ninety percent should be Brandt-senpai’s share.”
“No, I just had Anastasia-san set up the barriers for me, and then I just unleashed a magic spell without any ingenuity. Anastasia-san should take 90 percent.”
“But Brandt-senpai was able to defeat it with a single blow. If it had been me, I would have needed more moves, and if I had done so, I would have run out of magic power and lost the battle against the demon.”
“If you look at it that way, it was Anastasia-san who defeated the demons. And I should pay for healing my magic circuits instead of taking her share.”
“Then it’s because the anti-magic spell hit me easily, which hurt Brant-sensei’s magic circuits.”
“No, it’s because I was so damn angry that I ran out of magic so quickly.”
An ugly fight broke out between them. They blamed each other for their own faults.
Both sides argued without backing down, but Brandt finally put his hands up and broke off the conversation.
“…Okay, here’s what we’ll do. As common property, we’ll use it to pay for lodging, food, and equipment. How about this?”
“Yes, that’s fine.”
Anastasia nods at Brandt’s suggestion.
Thus ended their quarrel.
“…I’m kind of tired. Yes, Anastasia-san, do you like sweets?”
Brandt asks with a smirk as he remembers.
“Yes, I like sweets.”
Anastasia tilts her head at the abrupt question, but answers honestly.
Brandt then gave a happy smile.
“That’s good to hear. There’s a good tea and pastry shop. Let’s go there to distract ourselves.”
With these words, Brandt stood up and extended his hand to her.
Anastasia alternates between his hand and Brandt’s face.
They had held hands yesterday as they left the guild, but it had been in the heat of the moment, with Brandt pulling Anastasia’s hand to get away with Toni.
So when he holds out his hand under normal circumstances, she feels strangely embarrassed, and heat rises to her face.
She’s always told herself that she’s just been treated as a valued member of the group, but Anastasia realizes that’s probably not the only reason.
But her wounded heart isn’t ready to accept “that” yet.
Nor can she rule out the possibility that she is mistaken or overly conscious.
Still, I’ll just think about what I want to do now.
“…Yeah, let’s go.”
Anastasia stands up and takes Brandt’s hand.