I land on the bridge. There were many people here, and it was very lively. That alone made it seem quite different from Nicora.
Wooden boxes flooded the place, and numerous laborers carried them. However, this was not slave labor, like at the mines, they all looked cheerful and determined as they worked. Their clothes were not in tatters and they were clean. It was clearly an adequate environment for the workers.
I continued to walk while taking in my surroundings, when a cart passed in front of me. It was stacked with bags full of something.
“Hey, do you know what is inside of those bags?”
I tried calling to the old man who was pulling it.
“Hm? Ah, they are full of spices.”
“Oh, spices! That’s a lot!”
I could enhance my repertoire if I bought these. Though, I didn’t really know how to use them.
“Well, this is the trading town of Usk. You should take a look. There is a great variety of things!”
The man said as he pointed in the opposite direction as the river. Then he pushed his cart and continued on his way. I thanked him and he waved his hand without turning back.
I see… I had heard that it was a trading town, but it seemed like it was doing very well. I was looking forward to seeing more.
“…Oh, wait. We have to get an inn first.”
A town near a river should have a lot of inns. People who traded needed places to stay. And so I decided to go and look for an inn.
Someone tapped me on the shoulder. I turned around to see a guard standing there.
“I was watching you. You came over the river, didn’t you?”
“You do know that there is a proper procedure to entering the town?”
I had forgotten, as there was no gate. You probably needed to get permission after getting off of the boat.
The guard point behind him with his thumb. There were people showing their means of identification.
“Uh, yes, of course.”
“Well, at least you know how to listen. Come with me to the guard house then.”
“You can tell us everything when we get there.”
I shrugged as if I had no idea what he could mean by that. But I had heard that the Usk guards were enemies of Nicora, so it must be related to that. And this was no place to discuss such things.
And perhaps he felt the same, because he began to walk without saying anything. I tightened my grip on Daniela and followed after him until a white building came into view. It was nice and very different from the warehouses in the area. On close inspection, it was made of white bricks.
It was quite nice indeed…
“And here we are.”
“Oh? So this is the guard house?”
“Eh? What did you think it was?”
“Well, I was wondering what rich person might live here…”
Yes, it looked like a mansion you might find in a city. Not that I’d know anything about them. The guard looked puzzled for a moment and then burst into great laughter.
“Ahahaha! You must have seen some horrible houses! But in this town, this is just about average!”
“Hey, could you not laugh so loudly…!”
Daniela will wake up! I pointed at her and he quickly closed his mouth. But it was too late, and Daniela was awake.
She was sleep deprived and sounded very irritated as her eyes opened.
“Uh…? Who the…”
“Ah, I am Yacon, captain of the port division of guards for the trade town of Usk!
The man said with a proper salute.
“Yacon…well…it is good to meet you…I do like bacon…”
“Ha! Thank you! I too am fond of bacon!”
What the hell were they talking about…
And so Daniela returned to her world of dreams. She looked truly happy when she slept. Perhaps she was dreaming about being wrapped up in bacon.
“…Phew. I don’t know about you, but I felt overwhelming power that I couldn’t resist…”
“Sorry about that…”
Bacon was wiping sweat from his forehead now.
“No, it is my fault for speaking so loud… I was not thinking straight. So, what is your name?”
“I am Asagi. And this is Daniela.”
“It’s nice to meet you. And there’s no need to act so formal with me.”
“I see…thanks, Bacon.”
A vein popped on Ba-…Yacon’s forehead as he corrected me. That helped me remember his name.
□ □ □ □
“Now, I’ll have to check your status cards before you can go in.”
I took out the two status cards and handed them to Bacon. Bacon took them and quickly scanned the information before returning them.
“…Ah. Both of you have aliases…”
“I didn’t tell you about that?’
“You didn’t. You must pardon my insolence a moment ago.”