Side note, if you’re translating something and it has been awhile since you read the story or you like to read while you translate, it is always helpful to read further ahead. That way you don’t do something silly like call a town the ‘city of ceramics’ instead of the ‘city of pottery’ and then have it later revealed that the city’s actual name is ‘Ceramics’. Ceramics City Ceramics is a horrible name although that’s just one me’s opinion. Have a good day everyone!
Pottery City Ceramics
“Hey Gray, are you really sure there’s a dragon here?” Dams was rudely running his mouth off to the Hero.
“That guy’s expected Dragon Maiden must not be me,” Peach was scowling, taking a privileged position and insulting the as-yet-to-have-been-met dragon.
“Hey hey, hurry up and come on out dragon,” Cliff smelled gold in the air so he was unusually animated.
The Brave Party had successfully arrived at Pottery City Ceramics. Ceramics is a three day carriage ride to the east from Wisdom. While the more western cities have a culture predominately centered on ore and blacksmithing, Ceramics was famous for its work with soil and artistic pottery creations.
The Brave Party had received an imperial command from the Skycastle royal family to hunt down and annihilate the Demon Lord. But after a certain incident, the King’s aides gave them a second objective to investigate.
It was the direct result of the kingdom discovering that not only were dragons capable of cognitive thought, they could be bound to an area through a Dragon Maiden. In other words, it was because Warren had somehow managed to gain the protection of the Land Dragon.
The information gained by the Hero Gray about guardian dragons and Dragon Maidens was as follows:
- It’s up to the dragon whether he protects an area or not.
- When paired with a Dragon Maiden, a dragon is capable of showing off power equal to an executive demon.
- As a matter of course, only a woman can form a contract with the dragon.
And then it was here that Gise brought back some additional information. Apparently, “Dragons are weak to Milfs.” It was from this that Peach’s earlier pouting came from.
“Well for now, let’s talk to the lord of Ceramics and visit the Adventurer’s Guild.”
Gise made a suggestion for the party’s next move to Gray while the other three continued to make a fuss behind them.
As for Ellis’s party.
Frau had made a suggestion about their camouflaging. The truth was that it was impossible for all eight of them to act as adventurer’s. An eight person party was too large for a labyrinth exploration team, but it was also to small to act as a mercenary group. So three of them would act as merchants looking to buy pottery while the other five would be their guards. They would have to enter the city through the proper channels and wait in line at the entrance, but it would likewise minimize their presence becoming known to the Brave Party who was all ready inside the city.
Ellis, Frau, and Claire would act out as the merchants while Reeve, Katie, Ellison, Revatein, and Cassius would be their escorts. With the merchants riding inside the carriage and the adventurers keeping watch from the Magical Horses, nobody would give them a second look as they passed through the front gate.
Ellis always kept papers on her person that proved her association to the Warren Council, and Katie was still an official member of the Thieves’ Guild. Between these two, they would have no problem keeping their ruse up and selling their story to the Ceramics Thieves’ and Merchant Guilds. If all goes well, they may even be able to seek an audience with the lord of the town should it become necessary.
So with their plan set, Ellis, Frau, and Claire changed from their normal armor into ordinary clothing, and everyone entered into Pottery City Ceramics.
Ellis decided it would be best to head towards the Merchant Guild first. Their excuse for being in town was ‘to purchase goods for resale’ after all.
When they arrived, an elderly craftsman nervously met them at the door.
“Well well, are you buying for Warren?”
“Yes, Lorenburg tea has recently been making a comeback you know.”
Hoh, the Merchant Guild Master murmured his amazement under his breath while eyeing Ellis up and down. For a little girl to so quickly notice the shift in the market and be making a move to capitalize off that change was something to be admired.
“Just kidding. Big sister Frau, let’s come back again later please.”
Ellis turned the conversation to Frau who was standing silently behind her.
And so the guild master started to think. This blonde-haired girl had an associate’s membership to the council, so she was probably the young daughter to a high noble. Then this crimson haired girl is probably the real merchant in charge of watching over her and handing out advise.
And so, the Merchant Guild was successfully deceived.
Next was the Thieves’ Guild.
Katie showed her certification proving she was a member of Warren’s Thieves’ Guild to the receptionist and told her she was here for work unrelated to the guild. This was a customary procedure done between guilds so that if a member were to get in trouble in a foreign city, they could expect a certain level of aid so long as it didn’t directly threaten the town.
“Yes, I have finished this procedure. Please take this certificate certifying you.”
Katie took the document from the receptionist and stuffed it away in her bag. With this, the girls were successfully hiding in plain sight. The Thieves’ Guild wouldn’t investigate one of their own without reason, and any questions about dragons would easily be written off as the colorful curiosities of a noble girl. The matter of the guardian dragon of Warren had barely spread in Wisdom, and those who heard it largely disregarded them as false. Ceramics was even farther away than that, so Ellis’s group were safe to freely walk the streets of Ceramics.
“We have eight people and request two rooms. The first room should be as nice as you have. The second doesn’t matter, but for escort reasons, we would like them to be adjacent.”
Ra-chin put in a request for rooms at the nicest hotel in town using the exact words Ellis had made him memorize. Frau was standing right next to him carrying her wallet.
To anyone watching, the two of them looked like an extraordinarily handsome blonde-haired heavy fighter escorting a crimson aide. The front desk clerk gave them the keys to the finest suite in the hotel with no questions and would later spread all the right information to their coworkers.
“All right. For now we will collect what information we can while pretending to sight-see.”
The four girls each nodded in turn to Ellis’s words. The dragons in the meanwhile had all ready changed back to their miniature forms and taken their usual places at their masters’ sides.
“Ellis, let’s go have some dinner.”
“That’s right, I smelled something really good when we were walking down the street earlier.”
Now that Ellis thought about it, it had been a while since all five of them had gone out together and just relaxed. Maybe there was no need to ‘pretend’ to sight-see while they were there.
“Ra-chin, everyone else, can I count on you all to hold down the fort?”
The dragons themselves didn’t need food, so when asked Ellis’s question, all three of the dragons and one Metal Eater all shook their tails in response.
“All right then. Where should we have dinner?”
Reeve and Katie had to change into their casual clothes first, but it wasn’t long before the girls were off exploring the city of Ceramics.
Each of the girls enjoyed window shopping the many pottery shops lining the streets, but Reeve and Frau were particularly interested. At one point, the two of them stopped and entered an especially fine looking shop. When Ellis looked in as well, she noticed there were mostly tea cups and trays lined up.
Reeve and Frau entered the store and thoroughly investigated each piece of earthenware–taking them in hand, inspecting their craftsmanship and design, before sighing while putting them back down.
“If I could bring Aiful and Credia here, this stop would have to restock this whole shelf.”
“The teaware being sold in the attached teahouse is also wonderful.”
The cups feel soft and cool to the touch when you bring it up to your lips, and it doesn’t affect the taste of the tea at all. Plus its fleeting beauty adds on to the visual aspect of the tea, meaning each of your five senses is being appealed to while you relax…….
Frau and Reeve continued on like this, wrapped up in their own little world as they continued to rave about tea and tea accessories. Ellis didn’t understand half of what they were saying, but that didn’t stop her from asking the obvious question of, “Then why don’t you sell them at the teahouse?”
“It’s almost impossible for any of these pottery items to be sold in Warren.”
Ellis once again didn’t understand, so she repeated, “Why,” which made Reeve look a little depressed.
“It’s simple really. The pottery can’t endure the shock of the trip,” Reeve replied.
“Unless someone carries them there on foot with the utmost care or is using an Adventurer’s Bag to transport them, they would crack or shatter completely by the time they get there,” Frau continued.
Ellis wanted to say something, but Reeve and Frau had realized it themselves as the words left their mouths. All five of the girls had Bags of Gluttony, which was an upgraded version of Adventurer’s Bags. Forget a small shipment, they could take an entire store’s goods with them if they wanted to.
“What did Frau call these when she first saw them? Merchant killers?”
For the first time, the girls were able to confirm just how fearsome their Bags of Gluttony really were. For now though, they would just buy some souvenir cups to bring home with them.
Next came a promising looking restaurant that was down the street.
Each of the girls decided to choose something off the menu they had never had before with the exception of Ellis who was able to recognize all of the dishes off the menu as something from Eiji’s world.
Reeve received a pot filled with meat and vegetables boiled in bean sauce. Raw egg was placed in an accompanying bowl next to it.
Frau ordered some shrimp and tuna fried in a bed of wheat alongside some fried vegetables as well. An additional dish with bean soup seasoned with salt and other spices was provided separately.
Claire got some finely chopped vegetables and mushrooms added to a cut of chicken that was grilled with a glossy sauce similar to what Frau had made previously.
Katie had immediately chosen fish off the menu, and what she was given was a tray of fish fillet and rice, beautifully rolled together with some type of sliced pickled vegetable placed on top.
Ellis meal looked the simplest among them with not boiled, but cooked rice with shriveled vegetables. There was an accompanying bowl of bean soup as well.
Everyone started digging in, but before anyone could take even their first bite, Ellis was on the move.
“Reeve, give me a bit! Frau, I’m taking one! Claire, give me a bite! Katie, I’m grabbing that crispy looking one!”
Ellis stole from everyone, taking a sample from their ‘Sukiyaki’, ‘Tempura’, ‘Teriyaki’, and ‘Ball sushi with ginger garnishment’ a bit at a time.
A small smile came to Frau’s face as she saw Ellis digging away at it all.
“Then Ellis, I’ll swipe a piece of yours too.”
What Frau took off from Ellis’s plate was one of her ‘pickles’. As the others did the same, everyone remembered back to the tsukemonos they had been served back when they first traveled with the Muscle Brothers to Marsfield. They probably picked up the recipe from here.
Be that as it may, Ceramic was proving to be its own delicious city. The matter of the dragon which was located somewhere around town disappeared from everyone’s minds as they continued to pass, share, and steal food from each other.
Well, it can’t be helped.
In this way, the five girls were able to enjoy their first night in Ceramics, returning to their inn with filled stomachs and mirth in their hearts.