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The next day. The morning of our twelfth day in Usk. We woke up early and went back to the antique store.
“Hmm…Is it open?”
“The elderly tend to get up early.”
“You are probably right.”
I was reminded of an elderly couple who used to come to the store at four in the morning in their small truck. I wondered if they were still doing well.
I said as we opened the door. The old man was sitting in the same spot as yesterday. Our work the previous day had made it so we could see him from the door. I smiled.
“I half suspect you spent more time organizing than searching.”
“I can’t help it.”
Then we went to the center of the room where the gauntlets had been gathered. Yes, it was as we had left them yesterday.
“…Alright, let us begin then. The good gauntlets will be placed in this box over here.”
Obeying her order, I took out the Appraisal glasses from the hollow bag. They were magic tools I had found in an ancient elven ruin near an old building. They were brilliant tools that allowed you to appraise things that you were looking at. I had also found an automata, but that was still in the bag.
And so I tried looking at the closest gauntlet to me.
‘Armor Rabbit Gauntlet – Partially damaged.’
It read. Focusing on the words ‘Armor Rabbit’ resulted in a detailed explanation appearing.
‘Armor Rabbit – C-Rank monster. Has a hard, armored back. Delicious.’
It read. The goal for today was to use these glasses to find something that was made of either a high-ranking monster or very rare ore. In any case, this was clearly neither of those, and so it went into the trash heap.
I would have to repeat this many times today, which promised to be even more tiring than what we did yesterday… Well, I was ready.
…And before I knew it, it was night. Perhaps I had gone about it with too much enthusiasm, because I hardly noticed the passage of time. Daniela was the same. As it was to do with her, she was much more focused than usual.
Still, we had found some rather nice pieces. After a very thorough inspection and a severe selection process, we ended up with four candidates.
‘Wing Snake Gauntlet – Partially damaged.’
‘Whitened Wind Ore Gauntlet – Insufficient magic.’
‘Earth Wolf Gauntlet – Partially damaged.’
‘Chained Ore Gauntlet.’
The above four. The monster ones didn’t need much explanation. Whitened wind ore apparently had to do with a lack of magic energy. And so it would regain its wind ore power if jade-colored magic was sent into it. However, it would eat up quite a lot. The fourth, which was made of chained ore, felt like the most antique of the bunch. It was incredibly rare.
“This ore is rarely circulated out in the world.”
“Because filling it with power can cause people to freeze up, as if they have been chained.”
“That’s a weird ability…”
Apparently, it had been popular a long time ago with a certain trade.
“You fill it with magic and point it at your opponent. Then magic in the shape of a chain will extend out and bind them.”
“And that is how you became a slave.”
Yes, the ore had been used to hunt for slaves. Many demi-human women and children were captured in this way. In fact, Daniela’s tribe had been made up of people who had escaped such a fate. They fled and fled and became people of the fields.
“By the time I was born, there were many people who saw this ore as a threat. Organizations were established in order to destroy them all. As the rumor goes, this organization was built by a Hero.”
Currently, I had been lucky enough to meet someone who had been from modern Japan. It would make sense if this Hero was also from the same age. Because there wouldn’t have been slavery, and so it would only be normal to help those who had fallen into it.
“Many slave businesses were crushed because of it. But you sometimes hear whispers of it continuing in secret, even now.”
“Human trafficking usually involves a lot of money.”
It was sad that a price could be put on people. There was also a price for labor. The slaves at the mines worked as an alternative to death. Because merely being alive meant you were worth something.
“It would be very bad if something like this passed into the hands of such people. And so I will take it. After all, it can be a great weapon as long as you do not misuse it.”
Daniela said that it could be used to bind the movements of monsters. Yeah. Most things could be bad or good depending on how you used it. And so this could be used for good. It would be a kind of redemption for this chained ore.
“So you finally found your purchase then.”
“Aye, I will go and take it to the owner.”
“I’ll clean this stuff up.”
I handed Daniela the money as I gathered the other gauntlets together. There was now a light armor corner, a heavy armor corner and several other corners, including one for gauntlets. It made everything easier. It was hard to believe that the store had looked so different only a day ago. I even decided to leave the magic lamp as a little donation. Yes, he should enjoy an increase in business now.
I thought smugly as Daniela returned.
“How much was it?”
“Eight gold pieces.”
Apparently, the old man wasn’t so senile when it came to money. Damn it. How very nice of him.