'Where have I felt this before…?'
Sian thought for a while and then remembered. It was when those Arankals warped him into a different dimension. The place that he was put in for a moment had the same kind of smell.
Sian began chasing the smell. After a while, he came to a small box.
He couldn't figure out what it was made for, but it looked weird and had a strange hook on it. Sian decided to buy it. After all, he was here to shop.
"How much is this?"
The rough-looking man who was selling his items turned to the man who had asked the question. It was a pale-looking man with a beautiful woman next to him. It was a very unusual combination, and so the man was alert. He knew from experience that he always had to get away from any unusual stuff to live a long life and decided to take care of this fast.
The man was pointing to a strange box that he had acquired while ago. It was about the size of a thin book, and he wasn't sure what it was made for. He tried opening it, but it didn't budge. So he just kept it, hoping that some weirdo would purchase it.
"Uh… Five talons will do."
He didn't want to get involved, but he also needed to make a profit, so he inflated the price.
"Five talons… hmm."
Sian scratched his head and thought it wasn't that expensive. So he touched his necklace and summoned five golden coins.
The man looked shocked. That kind of artifact wasn't something just anyone was allowed to have.
"Here you go. Goodbye."
The man kept his calm, took the money, and bid farewell.
"Sian, why did you buy that?" Stiel asked curiously as she watched Sian putting the box into Nitzmatan.
"I just… smelled a familiar scent."
"Scent of an ex-girlfriend? I thought you never had one."
"Do you have to say that? And it's not like that."
The man watched the two leave, closed his stall, and left. It looked like they were probably too powerful for him to handle, since carrying that kind of artifact with such a combination meant that it had some power. But he didn't need to fight them. He just needed to sell the information and take the money.
Third Grade Magic Priest Riff was walking along with Limainu.
"Limainu, why the sullen face?"
"Are you that depressed about the slave market?"
Riff held his head. His friend had a strange sense of righteousness. His friend must've felt sympathetic toward those slaves. If he didn't do something, his friend would surely to try to something to set them free like buying them, so he decided to warn him.
"Focus on our mission. We have a job to do."
"…Master Dekaduin said we can use whatever amount we need, so it should be okay."
It was as expected. He would've agreed if there was some talented individual or a beautiful woman among the slaves, but to free hundreds of dumb people who could not save themselves from poverty? Still, that would not hurt his friend. In fact, he was treasured by the Magical Council. The feats he had achieved in the short amount of time was great.
Riff wasn't the same as him though. He would be punished for not looking after his friend. So Riff decided to persuade him.
"Good, let's say you bought them. But what then?"
"Send them home…?"
"They don't have a home. That's why they're here."
"Take them with us? Then what?"
"If we free them, they'll get captured before leaving the city wall. So, if you buy them, you have to take care of them for life."
"If they get sold, they at least solve their problem of having a home. Go buy them if you can take care of them until the end. If not, give it up."
'I hope he will give up now.'
Limainu always emphasized morals or righteousness. However, this seemed like enough for even him to understand.
Riff was relieved.
"Good. We need to find something here, remember?"
Limainu smiled bitterly. He came here right away when he heard that the object was found at the Black Market. He gave up hope after losing it, but he still clung to the hope of finding it. After using the power of the Magical Council to investigate, he heard a similar object was being sold at the Black Market.
He needed the object as it was essential for his next step. He needed the information in it to change the world. Only he could recognize the object, so he had to come all the way here.
"Good thinking. But this place is really huge."
They came right after they heard the information, but they didn't expect the market to be this big.
"We'll just take it slow for a few days and…"
"Riff. I found it."
Limainu began walking faster.
"Hey! Where're you going?!"
"So, you don't know what it does, but you still bought it?"
Stiel was examining the box that Sian bought.
"Yeah. It was cheap, and I have a good feeling about it. Haha."
Stiel thought that Sian's feeling wasn't all that accurate, but she too was curious about what the object was, so she decided to stay quiet.
"It doesn't seem to work with Exar… or Bander…"
It didn't seem like an ordinary box. An ordinary box would not require expensive glass as a material. And if glass was used to create the box, then it should've shown what was inside. In contrast, there was only blackness, and it was also too thin to store something in it.
"It might be an artifact from the Old Empire."
"Then it should react to Exar, but it doesn't."
Stiel quickly lost interest as she had no idea how to determine the purpose of the box. Sian also wasn't interested in its purpose as he just bought it on a whim, so he was about to put it back into <nitzmatan> when someone stopped him.
'Huh? This scent…'
Sian turned and found a man standing behind them, followed by a few others who had barely caught up to him.
"Hmm… do I know you?" Sian asked as he did not recognize him. It was their first meeting, but he had a similar scent to the box, so Sian was interested.
"I am Limainu. Uhh… the box you are holding…"
The man looked like he was in a hurry, so he could not carefully explain.
"Yeah, this box."
"That is mine."
Riff was dumbfounded by Limainu's words. It was as if he was trying to start a fight. However, he was lucky that he talked to Sian, not Stiel. If it was Stiel, his spine would've been broken in half already. Sian was a self-proclaimed gentleman who wished to sort things out by talking.
Sian thought there must be something behind it and decided to listen.
"Hmm. Can you explain what is going on?"
"Oh, I'm sorry. I must have gotten ahead of myself."
Sian thought that he was right; there was something to it.
"The box you have… it's something I lost a while ago. Can you please sell it back to me?"
"Oh, I see."
Sian smiled, and Limainu's face brightened.
"Yes. I can pay whatever the amount…"
"Huh? Do you not need to be paid?"
Sian realized the man did not understand him, so he continued, "No. I mean I'm not going to sell it."
"I mean, I don't need money, and I bought it because I wanted it. I'm not selling it."
Limainu was troubled. He needed the object for himself and the project. Even if he was a genius, he couldn't memorize all the details. He needed the information inside the box. Yet, the man in front of him just declared that he did not want to sell it.
'Does he know what the box holds?'
Limainu couldn't believe that to be true, but he asked anyway.
"Do you… know what the box is?"
"No. Haha, I would be using it if I did."
"…then why aren't you selling it?"
"Because I want to keep it?"
Limainu couldn't do much. It was the man's property now, and he didn't want to sell it. There was nothing else he can do.
"But… but… I really need that…"
"Limainu, let me handle it."
Riff, after becoming frustrated, stepped out. It looked like these guys were trying to rip them off and Limainu was falling for it. It was time to show them the power of the group. Riff decided to show Limainu how to solve the problem.</nitzmatan>