The date changing, it was just about the time people were bustling as much as they would for the day.
A guard standing watch as gatekeeper recognized an approaching caravan.
Although the hustle and bustle of refugees and construction material caravans coming and going through the gate only started several days before, the construction itself helped regain the peace by coming to an end.
The leading carriage coming to a stop, a youth that had been sitting beside the coachman bowed to the guard.
The gate-keeping guard grinned broadly at the charmingly smiling youth with short, red hair.
“So it’s you eh, what brings ya here this time?”
“Long time no see, I’m here with a payload for one of the shops opening in the arena.”
On the back of the registration card he presented was the expected transport commission mark.
“Yeah, looks good here. Let me check it out.”
The red-haired youth had been seen bringing many different loads of goods, so the guards all knew his face well.
Nevertheless, that being the case was no reason for them to disregard the decree the Lord and the Guild Branch Manager put out, so the guard examined the contents of each and every cargo bed.
However, the guard judged that there were so many of them that it would cause a horrid traffic issue if he was too thorough, so he only went to the extent of taking simple glances inside of each.
“I smelled a lot of different things, what kinda shop’s your employer lookin’ to open?”
“I heard something about a sweet confectionery that uses fruit, maybe you have an idea?”
“… No idea. I mean, seriously. We have that guild branch here, man.”
Hearing the wryly-smiling youth’s question, the guard couldn’t help but return the grin.
For better or worse, the cuisine this guild branch offered was beyond extraordinary. Be it in quality, price, or volume served, it was amazing.
There were many people from all sorts of places coming and attempting to open restaurants due to the town’s recent expansion, but it could be said to be a harsh environment to start in.
“I have to stop by the branch, so you’ll have to excuse me.”
“Yeah, go for it.”
In this way, several dozen cargo beds were transported to the arena.
Similar to the gatekeepers, the town’s residents were also accustomed to the rush due to the construction rush that had recently completed.
Although there were people who eyed the covered cargo beds, not one held any misgivings towards their contents, nor anyone who suspected anything amiss.
Most recently, things such as plumbing inspection and illumination stone arrangement was being carried out in the arena’s interior, so things were steadily advancing towards the facility’s grand opening.
Almost exactly opposite the large front gate that faced the main street was a large, transport-use door with three areas set up to be used.
Although there was the transport-use door, there weren’t any merchants going out of their way behind the building when it wasn’t even open yet. Simultaneously, this also served as proof that there weren’t any shops who had gotten to the point of needing heavy machinery installed using those entrances.
However, there were several cargo beds being carried into that delivery entrance.
With his face well known in the area, people didn’t bat an eyelash at the sight of him transporting goods inside as they carried on about their work.
Several contractors, a lack of recognition by craftsmen.
Reliance one gained by masquerading a disguise over a long period of time.
The youth utilized them, neither too much nor too little.
“That went pretty smoothly.”
“Hm? Yeah, it did.”
Hearing the birdkin—one of the coachmen—speak, the red-haired youth affirmed in response with an emotionless voice.
To him, good luck had definitely got them this far, but it wasn’t like that was necessary.
However, since it did advance so smoothly, he felt it would be nice for it to keep up till the end.
“Let’s go. We wouldn’t want to die in a place as dark as this, yeah?”
The birdkin from a moment ago and the other beastkin all lifting the corners of their mouths in grins, the youth left the arena together with the coachmen.
“Hoh, already headin’ out?”
The soldier from earlier that morning was still at the gate, recognizing the youth and looking at him in puzzlement.
It’s true, it was a little strange to think that someone would want to leave town without taking so much as a short break first.
“I need to be heading out for my next job… can’t do much about it.”
Exchanging wry smiles, the youth stopped and turned around.
“I hope you live a healthy life.”
“Huh? Yeah, you too man.”
Leaving behind his usual charming smile, the youth set out.
Unaware of what had happened behind the scenes, the human guard looked away from the youth’s back growing smaller in the distance to help a young girl who’d lost her way.
Just around that time, Ilya was brewing coffee after having a meal with Frank on the branch’s third floor.
She had her receptionist duties in the afternoon, so she could spend her time until then looking over what was happening on their journey to Akradist.
Ilya saw Frank off as he headed to the arena for his patrol group and retired to her private room to take a breather.
When Ilya used [Clairvoyance] to check on the four after wondering how they were doing, they were squaring off against a divine beast.
They didn’t seem to have any problems and had managed to succeed in restraining it, and it didn’t look like there was anything else around them.
(They should be alright…)
Ilya felt relieved.
It was at that moment.
Hearing a hurried knock at her door, Ilya ended her [Clairvoyance] and went to the door.
Rachelle was standing there, her face pale as she gripped on to Ilya’s clothes. She was trembling.
“Monsters, at the arena…!”
Ilya doubted her ears.
The monsters were supposed to have been transported over a little later due to the results of those experiments conducted by other villages being released.
Did monsters accidentally end up being brought here by mistake?
Or even if they were in a rush to speed up its completion, there should have at least been some report about it.
Perhaps there was a report of that happening sent to Frank and Hector?
It wouldn’t be strange for Ilya, a mere receptionist to have not received a report about it. That’s how it ordinarily would have been, after all.
Using reason to hold back her impatience, Ilya was self-aware that her mind was calming down.
“Ilya…! Blair…! Blair, he’s…!”
“It’s alright, don’t worry.”
The sight of the two being intimate at the Construction Completion Festival crossing her mind, Ilya could guess what the girl was thinking.
Her beloved person would face the danger known as a monster. Rachelle, a non-combatant, could only imagine that danger as life-threatening.
When she saw a patrol group member who’d come to report that he was waiting for further orders on the second floor, he seemed to be exhausted and was wounded. Was he in a fight as well?
“I apologize for the rush, but may I ask you to report what is happening?”
When his patrol group, lead by Frank, entered the arena, they were assailed by a monster attack.
Unable to let it spread outside into the refugee-packed town, the patrol group was forced to put the arena on lockdown.
He said that the reason he’d come to Ilya was also to request reinforcements.
“Understood. Rachelle, take him to rest on the second floor. Give him medicine as well, alright?”
Treatment through the use of medicine—that is, non-magic—took a reasonable amount of time, so she was half-forcing Rachelle to take a rest as well.
Changing focus, Ilya immediately began to explain the commission to the guild members that were there.
“I believe that some of you may have overheard, but currently, Lunévraus1 is undergoing a monster subjugation against those that have escaped the competition grounds. I would like to get those who can go as reinforcements to immediately go and get the rest of their comrades to come here. There will be further information given afterwards, but in order to avoid rousing panic, please do not head directly to the arena.”
Several people immediately spoke up, followed by them rushing out of the branch calling their comrades’ names.
Meanwhile, Ilya headed toward the office.
“I suppose emergency fees will be fine for now?”
Although it would normally be necessary to calculate the fees based on the monsters to be subjugated, they didn’t know exactly what monsters they would need to expect, so they could only go with calculating that afterwards.
“Should I go and find the trader?”
“If you don’t mind.”
Smiling indifferently, Claude left the office.
Not knowing the species of monsters to calculate the fees, Claude had nothing he could do at that point. Even though their current situation left them needing as many personnel on duty as possible due to the excessive number of uncertainties, she felt uneasy leaving the task to Claude, a clerk.
Calling out for the woman who was standing a little to the side, she was responded to in a tone that felt as though she were expecting to be called.
“Please help Claude-san. After finding the merchant’s trail, please infer their destination.”
With her running off, it was now Bard’s turn to feel uneasy.
The look in his eyes told Ilya that he was itching to run off and do something.
“Bard-san, please help transport those wind stones we used recently.”
He was obviously disappointed.
“While you’re at it, please make sure to bring them into the arena.”
(Wooow, he looks so happy.)
It was a certainty that he couldn’t maintain his former physique through acceptance and waiting duties alone. Ilya wondered whether or not she should create some sort of opportunity for the staff members to get some exercise, him included.
While thinking about such an irrelevant thing, she left the office and headed toward the guild members who’d gathered in the dining hall
“Thank you for gathering despite the urgent summons.”
“Ya can stop it with the politeness, just hurry up anGEH—”
As soon as a man raised his voice in anger, he got pummeled by those around him before even finishing his sentence. Feeling sorry for the person who must be new to the town, Ilya prayed for his happiness in the next life and decided to ignore it ever happening for the sake of time.
Distributing simplified sketches of the stadium, she explained their strategy.
“First, your top priority is joining up with Lunévraus.”
Taking a wind stone that had been packed into a box placed there, she held it up for everyone to see.
“As soon as you do, please distribute these wind stones to them.”
Even though they had been used in the previous game competition, there were few that knew of them, even among Lunéville’s citizens.
“These stones have been set so that you can communicate with people over a long distance upon injecting them with mana. Please use this to keep coordinated inside the arena, it is rather large.”
The people whose faces Ilya was acquainted with accepted even her outrageous statement with a simple ‘that’s just how it is’. Due to them being the majority in the crowd, even those who weren’t able to accept it so easily just went along with listening to her for now.
“We will be sending you detailed instructions from here. For those who agree to all of the aforementioned commission contents, please allow us to register you.”
Finding it too weird, some of the newcomers wound up passing on participating.
Even so, as the number of people who did sign up was by no means small, there were no problems in being able to reinforce the patrol group.
While completing their registrations with Bard, Ilya decided to give him his own instructions.
“Bard, please go ahead of them and give this stone to Frank-san.”
“Make sure to keep one for yourself, alright? You might just be the one who will be doing the most work, after all.”
Seeing Ilya give him a playful look for an instant, Bard just smiled back noncommittally.
“Whatever you want.”
Not saying anything else, Bard concentrated on registering people.
Ilya had had the impression that Bard was an S, but perhaps he was the opposite?