“They say there is no cure for stupidity. Looks like you just need to go see that archbishop.”
While furrowing his brows, Kabal fiddled with his chin. With a strange look on his face, he nodded.
“Well, I’ll keep that in mind.”
Not liking Kabal’s arrogant attitude, Nara clicked his tongue. Kabal casually turned his head and looked at Riley who was eating a sandwich.
“Who’s that young man? A nobility?”
“Mind your own business. Quit it while I’m still being nice to you.”
Kabal, the giant, looked at Riley. Riley, who was chewing on a sandwich, narrowed his eyes to say ‘what are you glaring at.’
“Ah, oh my… Looks like he has quite an attitude!”
Kabal awkwardly scratched the back of his head and redirected his gaze to Nara.
“I don’t think you and that young master are a good fit. Are you sure you are doing well? Should I help you a little?”
“Don’t mind others business. Just get lost.”
“Ah, all right, commander! Uuuhahahaha!”
Kabal laughed it off. Kabal was moving his hand toward the top of Nara’s head, but his hand was slapped. Kabal took steps back.
“Oh, how cold.”
Nara, with cautious eyes, glared at Kabal. Nara had deadly aura in his eyes. Kabal looked toward Riley once again and noticed the insignia on the carriage. Kabal wiggled his brows.
“That insignia. Is that Iphalleta from Solia?”
“Are you trying to say that you won’t get lost?”
Nara grabbed his spear. Kabal nodded as if he got the memo. Kabal smiled as if he figured something. His eyes met with Riley again.
Kabal lowered his head to show respect to a nobility. Because of Nara’s threats, Kabal could not stay here anymore. He walked to his carriage and got on the driver’s seat.
“Well then, I’ll get going. Basilisk? See you again?”
“Cut the bullcrap. I don’t want to see your puke-inducing face. Just die somewhere in Rainfield’s puddles or something.”
Just like how loud they were when they first showed up, Kabal Mercenary group disappeared to Rainfield while kicking off dust. Nara spat to the ground as if all this was a foul luck.
“What was that? It looks like you know the man.”
Having heard the question from Riley, Nara, who came next to Riley and picked up a sandwich, put down his spear and answered,
“Bad blood. It’s bad blood.”
Riley wanted to hear more. He was about to ask the same question again, but Rorona added,
“Kabal Mercenary group is pretty famous… No. Right now, they are having a monopoly in almost all of the major exploits. They are famous for that.”
Rorona nodded. Holding an empty dish, Rorona continued.
“To explain how famous they are… Some mercenaries think Kabal should be called the Mercenary Hero, following how Mr. Ian was called the Mercenary Hero. There’s even rumors like that.”
Having heard Rorona’s explanation, Nara was infuriated. In anger, he spoke with sandwich still in his mouth. He said as he spewed out spits and pieces of the sandwich.
“Who is spreading bullcrap rumors like that?”
“Ugh, disgusting… Swallow and then speak.”
“It’s just a rumor. A rumor.”
‘He might get a title, following after Ian?’
It was a pretty interesting story. Riley’s gazes were saying they should tell him more. Rorona looked at her commander and continued.
“Well, as our commander said, there is probably exaggerations. However… I have witnessed the monstrous strength of that man named Kabal. I don’t think all of the rumor is a lie.”
“Ah ha ha…”
Displeased, Nara quickly turned his head away. Rorona smiled awkwardly. Isen, who was leaning against the carriage, started to explain Kabal’s monstrous power.
“When I was working as a mercenary with him, one time, he lifted a house with his right hand and threw it. It was… truly overwhelming.”
‘Lifted a house and with one hand and threw it?’
Nainiae, with a look of disbelief, tilted her head side to side.
“By any chance, is he a mage? Did he use something like the telekinesis?”
Isen shook his head and answered no.
“No. He didn’t use magic. It was using his raw physical strength. He is like a monster.”
Isen couldn’t exactly explain Kabal’s monstrous strength, so he decided to move on to the next story. He shrugged his shoulders and continued.
“Well, that’s not the only reason why our commander hates him so much.”
Riley and Nainiae both had question marks on their faces. Rorona said,
“He keeps on pestering.”
“Since a long time ago, he had been trying to hire our commander. It’s because our commander’s skill is well guaranteed.”
Besides the fact that Nara was not a human, certainly, the fact that Nara was as skilled as he was with spear at the age of 15 was an incredible feat.
“That piece of shit. I wouldn’t be this infuriated if that was the end of it all.”
Nara glared at both Rorona and Isen. Nara pouted and made his eyes sharp like snakes.
“His aura is purple!”
“Ah, right. There is that too. He had such an appalling color when our commander saw him with his eyes. So there is the fact that Kabal doesn’t seem like a good man.”
Riley remembered that Nara said Rebethra was ‘purple’ when Nara saw him at Rainfield. Riley narrowed his eyes.
“How should I put it? His inside is different from his outside? It feels like he is scheming something? People like that have purple color.”
“Are people with purple color common?”
“Common? I’m not sure?”
Nara stared at the empty space. He counted all the people he met that had purple color. He answered finally,
“They are not common. So far, I met four of them.”
Nara nodded. He started to explain each of them.
“In a nameless town, there was a homeless that had that color. There was that old fart archbishop that we met in Rainfield. There’s that bastard Kabal… and…”
He paused for a moment and then said,
“That dark mage that you killed in Rainfield.”
“The dark mage?”
“Yes. That dark mage.”
Riley thought about all four people that Nara just mentioned. It looked like he was thinking hard for a moment. However, he picked up a sandwich with an uninterested face.
* * *
Suwaaaaaaaa. [Sound effect for rain.]
At Rainfield, a giant man was talking to an old man in white robe. He looked at a pouch full of ash and tilted his head side to side.
“This is Heurial?”
The old man nodded as he fiddled with his beard.
“Crazy. If he was going to die, he should have died peacefully. He died in a fire? Did he die this way because of his ability?”
“He had been overdoing things… I had a fishy filling about it since he got listed in the bounty. I knew this was going to happen. Damn it.”
The giant scratched his head as if he was getting a headache.
“How long will it take?”
“Considering the condition, a very long time. I can’t be certain when that would be exactly.”
“This is just great. Great.”
He seemed frustrated. He pounded on his chest with his right arm. He pointed at his right arm, cringed and said,
“This rascal lost his qualification to be the left hand.”
“Well, calm down.”
“How could I calm down? I thought I will get to see the faces of the parts after many long years, but only three of them are here, and the rascal called the left hand, who was carrying out an important work, became fertilizer?”
The giant, out of frustration rushing through his head, took out the hammer from his back and destroyed a street light. He was breathing hard.
“We can assume the left leg guy is as good as being absent. However, what about the other two rascals? I, the great Kabal, came all the way here! How come?”
The giant, Kabal, was breathing hard out of anger. The old man in white robe took the pouch back and mumbled,
“I’m not sure?”
“By any chance, did they die somewhere?”
Kabal did a neck slice gesture with his hand and asked the old man. The old man shrugged and said,
“You can hear the news about the head from anywhere, so you know well, right? Given her title, she is taking care of something very important, so she couldn’t come. You need to be understanding of that for her.”
“What about the right hand?”
“I don’t know about that.”
“Shit. What a bunch of ungrateful rascals.”
He ground teeth hard. Kabal crossed his arms and glared at the old man.
“So, Rebethra, what are you going to do now?”
“I’m not sure. For now…”
Rebethra brushed his white beard and mumbled quietly.
“First, we need to decide on the order of things and proceed with the work.”
“Ugh… This means our life wish will be delayed.”
“Our left hand became like this, so it cannot be helped. Still, Heurial was the most hardworking of us all. It’s too bad.”
Rebethra fiddled with the pouch in his arms. He looked up the Rainfield’s clouds and said,
“The right leg will join the head when there’s a chance. They will go find the right hand. The heart will fix the left hand and wait for the ‘moment.’”
Kabal tilted his head side to side for a moment. Soon, he realized what Rebethra was saying. Kabal crossed his arms and asked,
“Ah ah, you are talking about that thing from the holy temple, right? What was it called? The Divine Message?”
“By the way, that lass looked quite pretty. When you get the chance, introduce me to her, all right? What do you think? I think I’m on her league?”
Rebethra glared at Kabal with a deadly look. It couldn’t get any deadlier than this. Kabal clicked his tongue and pushed Rebethra’s shoulder.
“Ugh… It’s fine. Fine.”
“Don’t forget our life’s wish, Kabal.”
“I have not forgotten it. I haven’t.”
Kabal and Rebethra, who were having a conversation, disappeared into the darkness of the Rainfield with the pouch of black ashes.
* * *
“Phew… We are finally here.”
Riley seemed he was exhausted from a long ride on the carriage. He looked like he was sick of it. Looking at the scenery of Iffa village on the side, he seemed like he was feeling better.
“We are almost at home. Home.”
It seemed like Nara heard what Riley was saying because he had the window open on the carriage. Nara, who was enjoying the scenery of Iffa village, was mumbling Ian’s name in pure excitement.
Rorona, noticing the noise coming from the two men, casually turned her head and looked at Nainiae.
“Nainiae, how’s your body?”
“Yes, it’s fine.”
Ever since the summer came, the pain came without warning. It seemed she was fine now. Her face also looked like she was not in pain anymore. Nainiae shrugged her shoulders and responded.
“I’m relieved to hear that.”
Noticing the look on Nainiae’s face, Rorona smiled and continued,
“Anyway, I’m looking forward to it. We will be meeting Mr. Ian.”
“Is he really that amazing?”
Nainiae looked at Nara on top of the carriage who could not hide his excitement. Nainiae asked as she tilted her head side to side.
“Of course! I know I’ve said it so many times, but he is a legend among the mercenaries. This will be my first time seeing him in person as well.”
They went past Iffa village and then the forest. In the distance, Nainiae could see the entrance to the Iphalleta mansion. The tip of her lips tilted up slightly.
‘Ah… We are almost at home.’
Without realizing it, just like Riley was mumbling inside, Nainiae also mumbled.