Translator : Kinokura
Editor : Alany
6. For the time being, Tell me
When we reached Tiez, the captured bandits were imprisoned in the barracks’ jail.
Then they invited me to have a celebration party, but I declined them politely.
After I came to this world, I had been lacking of good sleep. No, not even once had I had a well-rested night. The second time when I went back up the mountain wasn’t that tiring because I was being carried most of the time. But still, the last time I slept, the time didn’t even amount to 1 hour, before Illias-san and woke me up.
When I complained about it, one of the grandpa knights said that I could use the bed available in the barracks. So, after I wiped my body clean and borrowed some clothes, I straight went to sleep. And finally, had a pleasant night.
I couldn’t believe that I slept well inside the barracks. For some reason, the bed was quite nice, maybe because they prepared the bed for me?
Anyway, right now, except for my sore muscles, my physical condition was perfect.
And my stomach started to growl.
“I need some food…”
I started heading out of the bedroom.
When I was wandering around, I met one of the grandpa knights.
If I’m not mistaken, he’s one of the spearmen called… What was his name again…?
I remembered that he briefly introduced himself.
If only he has a Japanese name, maybe I can somewhat remember it. My memory isn’t that good that I can remember many names in one go after all.
“Ah, it’s you! Seems like you’ve rested well last night.”
“Yes, Thanks to you. Hmm, what’s your name again?”
“It’s Karagyugjesta Domitrucovcon.” [Tn: in source, it’s written カラギュグジェスタ＝ドミトルコフコン]
Hmm… now I don’t even have the confidence to remember anyone. I’m sure that the rest of the grandpas also have a long name.
“Sorry to say this, but I can’t remember it.”
“Hahaha! I got told that a lot. It’s fine to just call me Grandpa Kara.”
“Thanks… By the way Grandpa Kara, could I get some food to eat? I didn’t have anything except for nuts these past few days.”
“Oh, that’s not good. If you are okay with leftovers, I have some from yesterday’s party.”
To be honest, I’m okay with anything.
Grandpa Kara then guided me to the cafeteria, and there were many meals left.
All of them look bizarre. Perfect for junk food lovers.
“Do you want me to warm up the soup?”
“For now, I don’t mind anything as long as I can eat it.”
Saying so, I ate cold meat together with the soup.
Normally the taste wouldn’t be that good, but since I was so hungry, I could say that it was delicious.
For the first-timer of this world food, it wasn’t that bad.
They used herbs that tasted a bit funny and it had a strong scent, but because of it, the meat didn’t smell that fishy.
The herbs were inside the simple soup too.
However, it seemed that they didn’t use salt in any of the dishes.
Salt which was usually taken from the sea, in a country surrounded by mountains and forests should be a valuable item or perhaps, it wasn’t even in circulation.
For a modern person, food without spices tasted a bit bland, still, it was a lot better than nuts.
While I was eating, Grandpa Kara, who had disappeared, went to get a wooden jug full of water for me.
“I wanted to bring you some alcohol, but Illias seems troubled with something. Could you go see her after this?”
“Okay. But before that, should we clean this place first?”
“Hohoho, Thank you.”
Then we cleaned the dishes.
After chatting with Grandpa Kara for a while, it was decided that I would visit the break room beside the prison where Illias-san was now.
It seemed that this barrack was like a gatekeeper protecting the castle gate and a resting place for the knights who were guarding the area around the castle.
Originally, Grandpa Kara and Illias-san were knights whose job was to patrol the town around the castle. But suddenly Illias-san got the order to subjugate the bandits.
Also, it seemed that this kingdom was called, ‘Tiez’.
“Hey, Illias. I brought the boy with me.”
“Ah, I see…”
Illias-san said while sitting on a chair. She looks like she thinking about something.
“From your look on your face right now, it seems that he hasn’t confessed anything yet huh.”
“I left him to someone who is good at these types of tasks, but still, it’s hopeless, and it looks like he will die if we try harder than this.”
Sounds like they are talking about something dangerous huh…
“Confess? are you interrogating the bandits?”
“Ah, yes. Even though we captured a gang of bandits yesterday, there is still another gang somewhere in Tiez territory. And since there’s no fighting between them, it seems that they have been interacting with each other and exchanging information with some unknown methods…”
I see… Well, from the size of the bandit’s gang that we fought yesterday, it’s not enough to fight one whole kingdom.
“There’s not enough information that I know. So, could you explain more about the current situation?”
It started when the king of Garne Kingdom of the neighboring country changed.
The new King strengthened their national power splendidly and restricted the activities of criminals.
Because of it, the criminals had no choice but to leave Garne and flee to neighboring countries.
One of them was Tiez.
Tiez territory boasted the size of a territory comparable to Garne, but there were a lot of forests and mountains here. It was a perfect place for the bandits to set up a new base.
In recent years many plundering activities had occurred. And the knights started to take action to decrease it. But, the bandits would always run away whenever they saw any knights present, and when they saw any gap in the knights movement, they would start plundering again.
“I see. Have the knights ever tried to capture them using a decoy?”
“The knights did try hiding inside a carriage, they even wore the same clothes as the merchants, but they still failed, because they used detection magic.”
Even if you’re not in their field of view, detection magic seems to be able to perceive the presence of mana in a certain radius.
Indeed, if you have detection magic, then you can find anyone even if they’re hiding. If the knights were disguised, they couldn’t hide their high mana signatures, so the bandit must have considered the situation dangerous.
It’s like a magic version of a thermo-sensor. Seems really convenient to have.
“However, the fact that they are checking the amount of mana on person has means that if you use the detection magic from your side, can’t you find them?”
“There was a time when that method worked. But then they checked us from inside the forest, so the moment they felt our detection magic, they ran towards the deeper parts of the forest.”
Ah, I forgot about it. They told me yesterday when the detection magic is used, the other side will also notice it.
“I think with the knights’ speed, it’s enough to chase them while using detection magic.”
“Of course. However, they ran away while scattering Magic Sealing Stone.”
“Magic Sealing Stone?”
“What? You don’t know about it? Boy, where did you come from?”
Illias-san said while showing a transparent stone with a faint yellow-green color.
The size was about that of a marble, and it didn’t seem to be specially processed.
I got the impression that it was a glass stone rather than a jewel.
“This stone has a certain mana wrapped around it in proportion to its size. When magic touches that, the stone will react and break the magic construction, then disperses it as mana. It’s a stone that literally seals magic.”
What a fantasy killer item.
Since I came to the world of magic, I’ve gotten a strong desire to learn magic.
But, there is an Item that can stop any magic? Huff…
“By the way, is this stone a valuable item?”
“This kind of item… you can buy it with a child’s pocket money.”
Oh, it’s just that much? Really?
“So, are magic user almost powerless in actual battle?”
“You mean Magic-specialized Knights? Hmm, if you’re prominent at using magic, you could blow away the Magic Sealing Stone with your magic. But if the opponent suddenly throws the stone at close range, they would be powerless. In war, by bringing a huge Magic Sealing Stone, magic can’t be used on the entire battlefield.”
“I’m curious about something, wouldn’t it be impossible to use detection magic if you bring this around?”
As a matter of course, I had such a question.
I mean, based on the information, if you use magic that searches for a certain range that is centered on you, the magic stone will be included in the range and makes the magic invalid, right?
“Well, it’s possible if you use it in all directions. That’s why there’s a need to focus on the direction. For example, if there’s your comrade with a Magic Sealing Stone nearby, you need to exclude your comrade’s direction. So, you need a technique, but it’s not a difficult technique. If you’re used to it, you may be able to use magic while equipping a Magic Sealing Stone. Although there are limits.”
“So, the bandits are quite skillful…”
“Yeah, but well, depends on the training they have. Still, it’s hard to know what size and who is carrying it, so it would be difficult to use magic while carrying the stone in battle.”
“By the way, the Magic Sealing Stones were stored in one room in the cave yesterday. If you want to detect the surroundings, avoiding the room’s direction is enough.”
Hmm, so… it’s a stone which the neutralization range depends on its size.
Moreover, because the price is reasonable, it’s disposable.
And if you throw it away while you are on the run, you can effectively interfere with the chase side’s detection magic.
Then what if the merchants bring them?
No, that’s not good.
Having the means to cancel the detection magic will make them look suspicious.
Wait… wouldn’t it be hard for the bandits to attack the merchants who bring the stone?
“What if instead you give the stones to the merchants? Won’t the bandits be more wary and reduced the amount of damage and looting they commit?”
“Certainly, the first detection magic can be neutralized. But they can use detection magic again while avoiding the direction of the one bringing the stone.”
“What if you bring it in large amounts or just one in massive size?”
“Let’s say that it works. Then the bandits have no choice but to take a risk. And if you put a decoy, you might capture them someday, but before that happens, there’ll be a lot of sacrifices. In the end, it’s difficult to get everyone to agree with that suggestion.”
Well, that’s true. There aren’t many merchants who want to take the risk with unavoidable sacrifice.
If the bandits need to decrease their plundering further, they’ll definitely search for new methods and become even more daunting.
While searching for their prey, they’ll be more careful and only attack those that they are sure of.
On the contrary, if we search for them without much planning, they’ll escape using the stones.
Really, what a bunch of troublesome bandits.
Considering this, it seems that it was really a fortune for the knights that a stranger, me, who doesn’t have normal human mana to accidentally discovered the bandit’s base and leaked that information.
No wonder they were so excited.
“In the end, there’s a need to subjugate them once and for all.”
“Yes, and when I finally thought that I can grab their tail… the bandits don’t seem like leaking any information.”
Finally, it’s back to the present problem.
Without any information from the captured bandits, the damage rate could only be slightly reduced.
No, it’s not a time to be happy with just a slightly reduced problem. If the other bandits start to be active again, in the end, the results won’t change at all.
“By the way, isn’t there any brainwashing or manipulation magic?”
“There is. But, there’s a need to cast the magic in the head. And I don’t know how, but they planted a small Magic Sealing Stone inside their head. Forcefully taking it out, may lead them to their death.”
Damn, they’re so thorough.
It might be possible if there’s surgical technology, but, considering the standards of this world, it’s not possible.
Precise extraction with magic might be possible, but, in the first place, it’s not viable since the stone planted in the head is a thing that nullifies magic.
Even so, the fact that the bandits didn’t yield to this gorilla’s interrogation makes me terrified.
Is their sense of fellowship that high? No, that’s not it. The other bandit gang didn’t even help them when we went to capture and destroy them yesterday.
So, is the information of the other bandits more important than their own life?
“I’m curious about something… can you let me interrogate them?”
Illias-san and Grandpa Kara looked at me with strange faces.
Thus, I went to the interview room… no, the interrogation room with one of the bandits.
I didn’t want to do any torture, so I planned to do it in a similar way to those in the detective dramas.
Inside the room, both of us sat on a chair.
“Huh!? Who the fuck are you, kid!?”
“I’m the new interrogator.”
“Hahaha, after the knight, now they sent a bean sprout!? Oi, oi, Tiez’s standards this low!?”
“Well, it’s not like brute strength is needed for interrogation. Besides, I don’t like hurting others.”
“And he’s a coward to boot!? Just kill me already! I don’t have anything to say to the likes of you!”
Damn, he’s scary.
There’s plenty of hate from him.
Looking at the new wounds on his body, he might have already been interrogated and tortured by the knights.
But thanks to seeing those monstrous knights, I’m not that afraid if it’s only this much!
“Then, can you at least tell me why you can’t speak?”
“Right now, I’m trying to get information from you. But if you can’t speak it, I want to know why.”
“Are you stupid? Why do I have to talk to my enemy?”
“You know… I heard from the person in charge, because you’ve killed a lot of people, it seems you won’t be able to avoid the death sentence.”
“Of course! That’s why, just kill me already!”
“I’m curious about one thing. Why do you stubbornly refuse to cooperate even if you know you will die? Even if you spit out information, you’ll eventually die. Moreso, the ones who will get troubled are those of different bandit gangs, your business rival. And normally, isn’t it better to die peacefully after spiting information, than dying by torture?”
“At least for you guys, it looks like selling information about other bandits seems to be scarier than dying. That’s why, I want to know the reason.”
“What’s the point in telling you that?”
“Well, at least I get satisfied.”
“If you could satisfy me with the reason why you can’t spit any information, there’s no need to torture you at all. Don’t you think that it’s benefits both sides?”
“It’s not like I’m asking you to sell your friends. I’m just suggesting that you can die peacefully after you tell me the reason. But, if by chance, there’s also a reason why you can’t even tell me that, it can’t be helped. I’ll just leave the rest of the work to the knights then.”
Now, what will you do?
Well, that last one seems to be a threat and doesn’t sound to good, but my mouth slipped, can’t be helped…. I hope it works.
“… It doesn’t matter even if we die. ‘That Person’ can grant us eternal fear, wherever we are.”
Oh, finally he gives me some information.
“You can’t talk about it in detail, right?”
Well, having some method means that if you tell it to others, it’s the same as selling information.
But he gave me some valuable information, so let’s think of what course of action needs to do done after this.
First, he said, ‘That Person’.
That means, there’s a very threatening person in this whole bandit gang.
Perhaps, it’s good to say that ‘That Person’ is also threatening other bandit gangs.
That means, the bandits’ gangs that made a base in Tiez territory must be revolving around “That Person”.
So, what kind of relationship do they have, is it cooperation? or obedience?
Next, there seems to be a means to make others who dare try to betray regret that decision even after death.
A quick idea about it would be that their family or someone important to them will get killed.
But, this bandit… his family has already been killed in front of him. And it is hard to think that his wife has been taken hostage.
Also, that’s not enough to instill an eternal fear.
Wait… maybe the word I need to worry about is, ‘eternal fear’.
I can imagine what that might be, but that’s just my fantasy delusion. No point in worrying about it now….
Just in case, let’s ask an expert later.
“I see… alright. It’s enough, thanks.”
Then, I decided to stand up and leave.