How could you sell such a cute doll!
“So what do you want to do? It would be very difficult to bring such a thing with us.”
“It could help us.”
“I can help myself.”
“Take the night watch…”
“It is best to do it yourself and keep your guard up.”
It was no use… Daniela was strictly anti-Automata. Her opinion was a firm NO. I put her opinion and the doll on a scale. Tragically, the scale tipped heavily to Daniela’s favor. I would have to give up…
“Well, if you’re against it…”
“I would rather be with you alone. Even if it is an Automata, it will get in the way.”
“Sorry. Really, I’m sorry for leaving you.”
The distance between us began to shrink. I felt as if I were being pulled into her green eyes. Her eyelashes lowered over them, and I closed my eyes as if to follow her.
□ □ □ □
Now, the place that I had reunited with Daniela was slightly passed the mountain peak where the road began to go downward. It was still very high here, and very cold. However, Daniela and I realized that we would quickly become warm if we exercised, and so we did. We generally kept a rule to avoid exercising while on the move, but Daniela had been away from me for a while, which stirred something within her. Besides, we were so far up that no monsters would appear, and so we exercised a lot.
The next day. We wiped each other’s bodies with a cloth soaked in hot water as we prepared for the day’s journey. We just needed to climb down the mountain. Once that was passed, it was through the southeastern pass. And then we would reach the imperial city of Vellefrost.
“We must go south first. After a while, we turn east.”
“Just like when we went to Replant.”
Would there be a place like Senka Village then? I hoped that Merica was well… I thought as I stroked the strap doll that hung on the hollow bag. Daniela saw this and immediately knew what I was thinking. She smiled.
“We already took down the tent. We should go now.”
“Yes, we’ll eat breakfast as we walk.”
We bit into our meat skewers as we started to move. It would not have been so leisurely if this was not a beaten path, but there were roads and even stairs in some places, which made it easy to walk.
As for the Automata that I’ve been avoiding bringing up until now, it was in the hollow bag. As a nonliving thing, I was able to store it just fine.
We had decided to auction it after reaching Vellefrost. It was an ancient elven artifact. A relic from the age of advanced magic. Surely that would ensure a hefty price for it. And we could sure use the money… Even if I didn’t intend on buying a new set of armor, it would need maintenance. My equipment had seen a lot of use… I’m sure there would be fine craftsmen in the imperial city. It would be nice to go on a new adventure with equipment that had been fully repaired.
“To be honest, Asagi…”
“I do not want that Automata nearby, because of how rare it is.”
According to Daniela, such an Automata had been found in the past. It was over ten years ago, and the single automated doll had resulted in someone’s death.
“It would be for our own safety to let it go.”
“Even I wouldn’t…want to keep it around if it meant danger.”
“I understand the fascination.”
Daniela got it. She was an Adventurer, after all, and there was a sense of romanticism in the discovery. But she was also much more experienced than me, and her sense of reason was stronger. She was reliable because she thought before she acted, unlike me.
“You even took some reactor cores with you. They will definitely sell.”
“How much do think we’ll get for them?”
I asked. Daniela folded her arms while still biting on her skewer.
“Hmm….considering how much it sold for before…”
“Probably about five thousand.”
Five thousand? Gold pieces?
“Of course. You have the reactor cores, after all. The one that sold before was one thousand with one reactor core. Considering the condition it is in and the extra reactors cores and the rarity of it, the price should go way up.”
“Daniela, there was another one in good condition there.”
“Well, it is too late.”
Damn it. With a little more work, we could have made ten thousand in gold…!
I cursed my own foolishness as we descended the mountain. Daniela was just laughing as if with exasperation.
The mist eventually faded, and a soft, warm light shone down on us. It was as if it was blessing us, as we walked down a path that was so close to the clouds. …Yes, it really was great traveling together with Daniela. This was a good reminder.