Part 4 – Chapter 1: Magitec Car Ride
A single, large magitec car drove down the road that had been hardened under the feet of travelers and horses.
Even though there was no one else on the road, Tor made sure that he did not drive too fast, and kept his eyes on the scenery while gripping the wheel.
As for Euphie and Mailey, they leisurely read books in the back of the car.
“It really doesn’t shake.”
“It is incredibly comfortable.”
“Mr. Tor, would you like a drink?”
“I don’t need a drink, but I’m becoming bored, so talk to me about something.”
Tor said. He would have been able to listen to the radio if he was on earth, but not here.
The twins flipped through the pages of the books, and muttered ‘indeed,’ as they chose a subject.
“Our destination is Crambarrow, it has long been considered the capital of art and culture.”
“Ah, I have heard of that. There are quite a few famous masters that came from there. Painters, architects, composers, playwrights…”
A center of culture that has produced artists in various departments. It was surrounded in vast and rich lands, where many monsters lived.
The profits from the exported craft products and artwork were used for buying materials and food. And there were always contests being held, where hopeful artists could find patrons to support them. It was that kind of city.
As they made a profit from such trade, they actively worked to keep the roads safe. But though they had many Adventurers in the city, for some reason, the types and number of monsters in the area was very unstable, which meant that the Adventurers were quick to leave and be replaced by others.
“I’ve never visited. What about you two?”
“We went there once, because our parents had to attend a party. It was about five years ago.”
“It was very fancy. But not a place I would like to stay for too long, as I would pick up some wasteful habits. It is a fun place to be as a tourist.”
The two added that the food was also very good.
As Tor never meant to stay there long anyway, his expectations grew.
“Yes, yes. There is something that we have to tell you, Mr. Tor.”
“What is it?”
Tor asked as he slowed down. They were nearing a curve.
He looked at the twins through the rear mirror. But they looked away as if embarrassed.
“If you intend to make purchases of any erotic pieces, let us know so that we can give you some privacy.”
“I wouldn’t buy that!”
“Why are you surprised!?”
Tor let out a sigh.
“No, I wouldn’t buy such things. I don’t really understand the worth of art. I would rather eat something good if I’m going to spend money.”
Tor insisted that he had an appetite for food more than the lewd, and Mailey nodded understandingly.
“I was under the impression that all men owned something of that nature. And so I was puzzled that you had nothing like that in your belongings, Mr. Tor.”
“Wait a minute, you looked through my belongings?”
“There will be surprise inspections every now and then.”
Mailey said with an adorable smile as she held her index fingers together. Tor looked at her admonishingly.
“How about not at all? Postponed. Indefinitely.”
“Do you have something you wish to hide?”
“You’re not even hiding your curiosity. Even possessive girlfriends would do it in secret.”
“Don’t worry, I am quite understanding.”
“Don’t worry, it will be fun.”
“Euphie, what do you mean by that?”
“I shall prepare some paper and make a flip book.”
Tor was impressed that they possessed such skills, though he had no interest in lewd animations.
“Crambarrow has these animation techniques?”
“No, and not anywhere in this world. Besides, pigments are so expensive that you would be forced to work with black and white in order to make enough pictures for an animation. And on top of that, it would be even more expensive to hire a skilled artist. Animation would take an incredible amount of time and money.”
In this world, you have to be decently wealthy to even be able to study art. And so gathering enough people to make an animation would be very expensive.
“You are not considered a first rate artist until you are familiar with working with expensive pigments and have created enough art with them. It would be very hard to hire such a person.”
Tor realized how privileged his situation had been, as Japan was flooded with animation.
“Pigements, huh? I never really thought about it, but I suppose they are expensive here. I rarely buy any clothes that are dyed.”
“Yes, purple and blue are especially expensive. There are cases of painters in this world who went bankrupt due to ultramarine extracted from the blue raw material lapis lazuli.”
“So purple is considered to be a lucky color here as well.”
It was very difficult to make purple. And so it had always been expensive and a sign of luxury.
The twins nodded back, and then took out some herb tea from the refrigerator.
“A lot of the trade in Crambarrow is related to importing pigments. It is causing great stress to their finances.”
“The city has always been run by the Barrow family. Apparently, when status restrictions were applied to the import of purple, which is a precious color, the residents backed it which led to the rise of the house.”
“So art even affects the politics of the city. Interesting.”
It was a city where art put food on the table.
“And yet, they are being troubled by vampires now. I heard that the incident has already inspired paintings and plays.”
“Plays, huh? That sounds entertaining.”
“You really do sound like a tourist…”
While Tor had no intention of solving this supposed vampire incident, they were still going to Crambarrow in order to investigate.
And while he chuckled at the twins, who seemed to have forgotten their purpose, he stepped harder on the accelerator so that they would have more time to sightsee.