「Haah… Haah… Haah…」

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「In the meantime, I’m going to show up at the church here in town! Alfie, get your stuff and head to the inn.」

Sister Anorn ran off quickly as she could.
It was vague to guess what kind of physical strength she has, but even Alfiris, who is physically strong enough to run around three mountains, is quite exhausted.

Incidentally, this is the west gate of the town of Mysia.
It had been three hours ago, but after Alfiris had told her about the Curse Marks, she came back to do her own business and found Anorn standing there, screaming something and turning pale.
When Alfiris called out to her, a bloodshot-eyed sister dragged her onto a horse, and they rode along the road at an absurd pace until now.
It felt like a miracle that they didn’t run over anyone on the way.

On the way, she felt most sorry for them because they were flying so fast that the horses looked at her as if it wanted help, but it wasn’t in the mood to say anything like a break in front of Anorn’s demon-like form.

「(I’m sorry, Mr.
Horse… after this I’ll give you lots of tasty fodder later…)」

And in her mind, Alfiris excused herself and said,「I have come this far.」The horses, too, thought that if they stopped, Sister might kill them, so they struggled to keep running despite the reckless pace.

This seemed to have finally pushed the horse beyond its limits, and it lied down and refused to move, despite the traffic in this place.
Alfiris was dying out of embarrassment, but she managed to wake up her horse, gave it some water, and then looked for the innkeeper that Bis, the gate guard, had introduced him to.

「This city is huge…」

Alfiris finally calmed down and looked around, but the walls for entering this city were high and the number of guards the city employed was on par to a small army.
Despite what people may have heard, the city of Mysia is one of the ten largest cities on the continent where Alfiris is currently located.
The main roads to the north don’t meet, but the main roads to the east and south connect to this city, and there are many people passing through.
The population is over 800,000, is what Alfiris had heard.
No wonder it is said to be the largest and safest of the three roads leading from the eastern group of states.

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If the Kingdom of Fulgund, the nation to which Mysia belongs, were a more active trading nation, it would be no surprise if it were even more prosperous.
Unfortunately, Fulgund is not focused on commerce, and the development of Mysia is not as good as it could be.
Still, Mysia was the largest city that Alfiris had ever seen.
Alfiris can’t help but let out a cheer appropriate to her age at the goods lined up in the street stalls of the city.

「Whoa, so pretty.」

Gems, food, and fiber products brought in from the Southern group of nations.
The colorful foods are captivating Alfiris.
It would take her three days just to look around the stores on this street.
There are at least four more streets like this one, and Mysia is definitely a big city.

「Ahh, not good.
I’ll have to slow the horse down for now.」

Alfiris was left reeling, but decided to leave the stalls for later.
As she was walking around looking for an inn, she was suddenly approached from behind.

「Are you looking for a place to stay, young lady? I’ll give you a discount.
Fifty pents a night with a stable! What do you say?」

It was a cheerful young beastman who approached her.
Beastmen were thought to be creatures somewhere between man and beast, but now they are considered to be a completely independent species.
Their appearance is close to that of humans, but they have deep fur, and many of them have tails or wings, depending on their race.
They mainly form states in the South, but she guessed beastmen are not so uncommon here in Mysia, where the roads from the South converge.

Alfiris also saw very few beastmen in her travels.
In some places, discrimination was deeply rooted.
Alfiris was not particularly discriminating, but it was difficult to say whether she could trust that person.
There was no need to go out of one’s way to follow a beastman.

「I’m sorry, but I already got a place to stay.
What’s more, you’re a beastman, right?」

「Oh? Are beastman rare to you, young lady? I am half-breed by the way.」

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「I see.」 It seems that Alfiris’ impression that he look even more like a human than a beast was correct.
Without the ears and tail, he would be more like a slightly hairy human.

「They don’t look very beastly, do they? I’ve seen a few in my travels but I’ve never seen one in the streets.
I’m from the countryside.」

「Oh, well.
These big cities are great but the less developed commercial areas are very prejudiced and dangerous for us.
We’ve only been in here and Beetim in the South.」

「I’m sorry if I offended you, I didn’t mean it in a deep way.
I was just a little surprised that the first person I’ve talked to in this city was a beastman.」

「Well, if you’re looking around so much, it sure looks like you’ve just arrived here.
But you’re a kind person who can honestly apologize to us beastmen.
I’ll tell you the location of the inn you’re looking for.」

The young beastman, was kind enough to show her where the inn was.
Normally, Alfiris would have not accepted such an offer, but she had a feeling that she could trust this young beastman, so she decided to discuss it with him.
Alfiris’ lack of confidence in her sense of direction made it impossible for her to find an inn on her own, even after dark.
She showed him the map she had received from Bis, the gate guard.

「This is the place, if you know what I mean?」

「If you’re looking for a place to stay, I’m your man there.
Let’s see… Yeah, it’s two streets down on the right, and the third street on the left.
It’s a quiet street, but there are a lot of innkeepers.
I believe that place had a red sign with a shovel mark.」

「I understand now.
Thank you very much.」

「You’re more than welcome to come to my place for dinner, by the way! We’ve got all kinds of Southern food, so come on by if you’re in the mood! Look for the green bubbly sign!”」

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「Yeah, I’ll talk to my friend about it.」

Alfiris reciprocate with a smile and left the place.
The young beastman was still smiling and waving at Alfiris.
It was a very friendly beastman.
Alfiris was glad that the first person she met in this city was someone like that, because of it, she was in a good mood.

In this era, beastmen are still an object of discrimination.
This is because for a long time, there has been no unified state among beastmen, and because there are many races that determine hierarchy by power, there are many beastmen who sided with the archfiend rather than with humans.
In addition, due to the high fighting power of the beastmen, the human side had been often burned by them on the battlefield, and rather than deepening their friendship, they had become an object of hostility.
As a result, they were regarded purely as non-negotiable fiends, such as orcs and goblins, and became a target of persecution as demihumans.

However, about 100 years ago, a unified nation appeared on the beast side.
Strictly speaking, there were several of them, but the largest of them, Gruzald, suddenly declared that it would not turn against humans.
I response to this, there were those on human side who wanted to deepen their relationship with Gruzald, and that is how the current exchange came about.
However, the old prejudice against beastmen still remains in the rural areas, not to mention in the big cities.
But, such prejudice is irrelevant to Alfiris, who can interact with pure fiends.


And so, Alfiris arrived safely to her destination.
She told Bis’ son what had happened and he thanked Alfiris thickly and indeed arranged for her to stay for free.
They also serve meals except for lunch.
That was very thoughtful of them.

Sister Anorn told her to wait for her at the inn, but it would be cruel to ask her to wait if it was her first time to see such a prosperous metropolis in front of her; so she decided to go out, leaving a word in case Anorn should be mistaken for the innkeeper’s receptionist.
And then…

「Wow, this sword is good!」

Your eyes were like an expert, young miss!」

So, the first thing that Alfiris did is to go to the weapon shop, which is not very appealing story.

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But as expected, looking only at swords is boring, so Alfiris goes outside to check out the beautiful jewelry store she just saw.


At that moment, a pair of people walking down the street caught her eye.
It was strange to see many people on the street.

The little sister was dressed the same as Sister Anorn, and probably belonged to the same church.
Like Anorn, she has shoulder-length golden hair and large, round green eyes.
She was probably ten years old.
But she can only guess.
Alfiris couldn’t express it well, but the aura she wore was different from that of a normal person.
There was something about the way she looked that left her feeling uncomfortable, she thought.

The knight, on the other hand, has the same golden and green eyes.
He’s not a big guy, but he’s probably one of the tallest boys in the world.
He wears no armor and is dressed for travel, but he carries a large sword on his back that is tall as the sister, clearly giving off an extraordinary atmosphere.

「He looks very capable… I wonder if he’s stronger than me?」

There is big contrast between the neat, graceful, and kind face of a man and the sharp atmosphere he wears as a warrior.
He was not that big of a man, but his body must have been covered with well-trained muscles.
This man also looked strange from the first impression.

「(They’re coming straight at me?)」

The strange yet atmospheric duo walked straight towards Alfiris as if there were no crowd.
Rather than weaving through the crowd, it was as if people were giving way to them.
When they came right in front of Alfiris, the little sister gave her a very loving smile.

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