Part 3 – Chapter 16: A Quest You Wouldn’t Want To Accept
A week had now passed since the attack on the magitec beast nest, and things had settled down considerably.
An investigation that combined a review of the safety of overparts and finding the cause of control loss. Verification and experiments with the magic stone recharging method. The outlook for a magic stone price crash and a reevaluation of various magic machines, now that fuel efficiency issues had been resolved. Golem development for city defense.
The Fangaro council was in turmoil, and the magitec masters’ workshops were incredibly busy. Companies refrained from purchasing magic stones, as prices were expected to crash and put surplus funds into the magitec cars, which would be used as transport vehicles. And Adventurers who could no longer sell magic stones, formed new clans and started to flow out of Fangaro.
Now that a week had passed, it was noisier outside of Fangaro than inside.
After completing his magitec car driving training, Tor showed up at Coen’s workshop.
“I see you’re doing it.”
Coen and the twins were making a Golem.
A light Golem made from an aluminum alloy. It was not much bigger than a human, and even though it could not hide the fact that it was mechanical, it had a strikingly humanoid face.
Tor was reminded of a mannequin, but according to Coen, it was the ultimate Golem and lover. She then installed the conversation BOT feature, and independence drive.
“We just finished. Isn’t it amazing?”
Euphie said as she rushed to him with excitement and pointed to the Golem.
Apparently, it contained various conversation patterns that Coen had prepared over time, allowing it to speak quite naturally.
Tor didn’t know much about such things, and so he had no idea where the data was. But it was clear that this was impressive technology.
Coen hummed as she started to clean up her tools, and then she noticed Tor.
“The interior parts that I ordered for the magitec car have arrived, and so I should be able to install them tomorrow or the day after that. Have you gotten used to driving?”
“Well, for the most part.”
As this was a world without proper driving rules, there was no such thing as a driver’s license. You didn’t even need to train if it was just driving, but Tor also had to learn how to attach the tire chains.
Tor then sat down in a nearby chair, and took out some sandwiches that he had bought for everyone’s lunch.
“So, what did you hear from the Fangaro Magitec Master Guild?”
While Coen was one of the best in Fangaro, she hated people, and did not involve herself in the guild.
Up until now, overparts had been considered a necessity for the city’s defenses, and so research of the dangerous Golems was more obscure.
However, now that it was revealed that overparts had the same problem as Golems, things had changed. As Golems weren’t real people, the risk was not as high.
And since Coen was an authority on Golem research, she would often get visitors from the Magitec Master Association.
“They asked me to join their advisory group. Of course, I declined. After all, I have him now. I won’t need any other Golems!”
Coen said as she rubbed her cheek against the aluminum alloy Golem.
Tor did not say anything. If he wanted to argue with Coen about treating a Golem like an ordinary lover, then they might be here for another hour.
Euphie reached out for a sandwich and changed the subject.
“Ms. Coen. She just said, ‘As if I care!’ and threw the people out! I felt bad for them.”
“I hate humans that change their minds like that. Golems are wonderful because they are consistent.”
“See? They had no hope at all. And yet, it seemed like they hadn’t given up completely either.”
“Well, if they want to show consistency, then they would have to visit at least three times.”
“Like in the Records of the Three Kingdoms? We don’t have much resources when it comes to old literature, so I cannot keep up with you.”
Euphie said apologetically.
Tor waved it away. It was just idle chatter and not important.
“Hey! Are you in there, Tor?”
A voice rang from outside of the workshop. Coen immediately looked annoyed.
That’s your guest, so go. Coen seemed to say as she gestured to Tor. And so he got up from his seat.
When he opened the door of the workshop, he saw that Rokuk was standing there while folding his iron arms.
“Oh, so you were here after all.”
“Want to come in?”
“…Hey, don’t invite so many people into my workshop.”
Coen warned. And so Tor chuckled. He then stepped outside and leaned against the wall.
Euphie and Mailey also came out to see what it was about.
Rokuku bowed to Euphie and Mailey.
“Ladies. Thank you so much!”
Euphie and Mailey looked taken aback. Tor folded his arms in front of him like a shield.
And with a chuckle, he spoke to Rokuk.
“I know that you’re grateful to them for saving your life. But you don’t need to bow to them every time we meet.”
“You may say that, but they are now great women who have accomplished a historic feat. I have to show them some respect.”
“Well, nevermind. So, why are you here? Did you fail the staff employment exam at the guild?”
“Don’t say that. Of course, I passed. And I got my first job.”
Mailey poked her head out from behind Tor, as if she was interested. Euphie looked out from the other side.
“Is there a request for Mr. Tor? Or is it for us?”
“All three of you, my ladies.”
Rokuk then showed them the request sheet.
It read, ‘Requesting an investigation on the Crambarrow Vampire Incident.’
Tor read it from top to bottom and then looked at Rokuk.
“And you think we’re going to accept that?”
“I think everyone thought that you wouldn’t, and so they hoped sending an old friend might help.”
They both laughed at that. Euphie and Mailey were at a loss, and started to read it over again. However, they could find no reason to refuse, and so they looked up at Tor.
“Why don’t you want to accept it?”
“The client isn’t the Crambarrow Council or Adventurers Guild branch.”
“It is from a group of livestock raisers. What about it?”
“If the damage was bad enough that multiple people would sign this request, then the council or guild should have acted already. And if they haven’t, it suggests that opinions on the matter are split. In other words, taking on this request could mean making enemies of one side of the city. And they will hold a grudge.”
“So that is why…”
While there were other points of concern, Tor did not go into detail, as the biggest issue was the client.
Rokuk looked like he had given up already, and he started to roll up the sheet again.
“I will tell the guild then. Though, I doubt anyone else will accept it. Besides, if there really are vampires, then this would be work for an A-Rank party. But, I would really appreciate it if you could just go and take a look?”
“Take a look…”
While Tor was not enthusiastic about it, the twins were very interested.
“I heard that vampires are intelligent enough to speak, in spite of being classified as monsters.”
“And they were nearly at a state of war with humans during the age of the ancient civilization.”
The twins looked up at Tor as if they had just discovered some treasure.
“It sounds terribly fascinating!”
“…Fine, if we are only going to take a look. But do not expect us to solve any problems.”
“Tor, you really are soft when it comes to them, eh?”
Tor ignored Rokuk’s remark.
Rokuk then left, saying he had office work to do, and Tor turned back to the twins.
“You two really helped with the overparts matter. Thank you.”
“No, no. We are comrades, after all. We help each other.”
“Besides, it’s not like there was no self-interest involved.”
Euphie and Mailey let go of Tor and smiled mischievously.
“The more friends you have here…”
“The deeper your roots will be in this world. That’s what we thought.”
Tor laughed and pulled them close by the shoulders.
“I have you two already. That’s deep enough.”
Euhpie and Mailey blushed.
“It sounds rather embarrassing when you say it like that.”
“Well, with all of that said, we’ll be more like rootless trees with the new magitec car.”
“Like tumbleweed then. Those things that are always rolling around in westerns.”
“Is that what they are called?”
“Apparently, that’s how they sow their seeds. We should also sow seeds of trouble.”
“We aren’t exactly troublemakers… Well, maybe we are.”
In most cases, there had already been a problem, but Tor had to admit that they tended to cause quite a scene in the process of solving it.
“We-well, we are not going to be solving this vampire problem. And I doubt that our presence will lead to anything bigger.”
“That’s a flag.”
Euphie and Mailey said teasingly.