Chapter 1-14 : Coming From Afar Ⅱ (part 1)
After we finished the sword training safely without any injuries, we took a bath to wash off our sweat.
And now, we’re having dinner together.
The dishes lined up on the table came from Master’s bag artifact.
They were delicious. Maybe Maria-san made them.
「So, Master, what business do you have here? You didn’t come just to see how I was doing, did you?」(Sarasa)
「That’s my main purpose, you know? I was thinking of bringing you back to the royal capital if you were having difficulty living here. If you didn’t even have money to pay for the travel expenses, I would feel bad since I was the one who sent you here.」(Ophelia)
Saying that, Master laughed a little.
「Mu….! Fortunately, I can make enough money to at least buy food. But since this village is a little far from the nearby town, it’s kinda troublesome to sell materials.」(Sarasa)
「I see. How long did it take you to go to South Strugg from here?」(Ophelia)
「One day. I wanted to return in the same day, but it was still impossible for me.」(Sarasa)
「Hmm. First of all, I think you must build your physical strength. Since you’re good at magic, you might be able to make up for your lack of stamina with your magical power. However, I think you should also train your body. If you do that, I’m sure you’ll be able to make a round trip there in just a few hours.」(Ophelia)
I wanted to say “Impossible!”, but because the one who said that was Master who came here in three days from the royal capital, I had no choice but to believe in her.
In fact, I always depend on body strengthening whenever I want to do something I can’t because I lack strength.
Many alchemists can’t do body strengthening well, but in my case, I can do it really well because I have a lot of magical power.
Therefore, even though I have muscles that are as soft as marshmallow, I can manage to do a lot of things that require physical strength.
「…U, Understood… I’ll try my best to train my body.」(Sarasa)
「Umu. Do you want a potion that can help you build your stamina and strength easier?」(Ophelia)
「Eh? You have such a potion?」(Sarasa)
I never knew such a convenient potion exists!
「Yup~ Well, it’s not cheap enough for common people to buy, but some rich people sometimes use it. However, some knights in the royal capital think that it’s an evil potion. They’re masochists who enjoy the pain of training their bodies after all.」(Ophelia)
「Ma, Masochists, huh…? Isn’t it a little rude to call knights so…?」(Sarasa)
Knights are people who trained really hard every day for the sake of defending the country.
I heard that the position of knights in this country is quite important, so I think calling them like that is rude.
「By the way, does that potion have any side effects?」(Sarasa)
「No, it doesn’t have any. I only brought three bottles, so you have to be able to make them yourself when they run out. How to make them is written in Encyclopedia of Alchemy vol 6, but… How’s your progress on reading the encyclopedia?」(Ophelia)
「I haven’t even finished reading volume 3 yet…」(Sarasa)
「Ahh, I see… Well, it can’t be helped. You’re busy running a new store after all.」(Ophelia)
「Yes! That’s exactly why I don’t have enough time to practice! Well, I like it when customers come, though.」(Sarasa)
「That’s the problem every independent alchemist has. Managing an alchemy store is different from managing a grocery store, after all.」(Ophelia)
「Yes, you’re right.」(Sarasa)
It would be easy if I only had to sell potions, but when it comes to purchasing materials, I have to carefully judge them before buying.
There are a huge variety of materials that can only be appraised by alchemists.
Normal people will find it difficult to determine the price.
「If you hire a clerk, you will have a lot more free time. However, you have to educate them first so they understand alchemy. You know? Since I hired Maria, my workload has decreased greatly.」(Ophelia)
「I see. By the way, how long has Maria been working in your store?」(Sarasa)
「Umm… I hired her as a clerk as soon as I became an independent alchemist.」(Ophelia)
The time when Master, an alchemist with an unknown age, became independent…?
Master might look young on the outside, but since she was a master-class alchemist, she shouldn’t be young.
And of course, Maria-san who was hired by Master as soon as Master became independent shouldn’t be young either.
I thought she was just a little bit older than me!
「Sarasa, I think you should find someone you can trust. Or should I say, a partner? Like Maria in my case.」(Ophelia)
「Maria-san lives with you while taking care of you, right? I bet without her, your daily life would have been messy …」(Sarasa)
「Ahahaha! I can’t deny it!」(Ophelia)
Hahh… This person…
I only saw Maria-san taking care of Master once at my graduation celebration party, but I can already guess that it must be the case.
Besides, Maria-san was the one who prepared breakfast the next morning after the party.
When Maria-san taking care of Master, she looked like a wife who took care of her husband who can do nothing but working.
It reminded me of my parents when they were still alive.
Well, Master is a woman, though.
「Master, please be kind to Maria-san so she doesn’t abandon you.」(Sarasa)
「Don’t worry, I pay her well.」(Ophelia)
「It’s not just about money, but your feelings toward her are also important, you know?」(Sarasa)
「Umu. You’re right.」(Ophelia)
Master nodded solemnly.
Perhaps she was looking back at her relationship with Maria-san.
Well, even if they have problems with each other, I’m sure they will be just fine.
「So… Do you have any other business besides coming to check on my condition?」(Sarasa)
「Yup. I want to set up a transfer device in your store.」(Ophelia)
「Transfer device, huh?」(Sarasa)
「Yeah, you know about it, don’t you?」(Ophelia)
「I do know of it, but…」(Sarasa)
As the name implies, ‘transfer device’ is an artifact that allows you to transfer things between two places.
You might think that it’s a very convenient tool, but it’s not very practical for most people.
First of all, it requires the same alchemist to go to both installation locations.
In this case, Master must have set up a transfer device in her store before coming here.
Moreover, the installation itself is not that simple.
When setting up the second device, you have to ‘connect’ it to the first device that you have previously set up.
The difficulty level of connecting the two devices depends on the distance.
Ordinary alchemists can’t even do it if one of the devices is out of their sight.
Even skillful alchemists find it difficult to connect two devices between places in the same town.
Even if you manage to connect two devices, the next problem is the amount of magical power required to transfer items.
Because the magical power required is proportional to the distance and the number of items to be transferred, it would be very difficult to transfer many items to a distant place.
And by the way, you can’t transfer living things.
Also, once it’s installed, you can’t move the device at all.
Let’s say, you want to move the device a little because it gets in the way.
If you move it even a little, you have to start over the installation from the beginning.
Even though the teachers taught about it at school, finding a transfer device that is actually being used is nearly impossible, because they are very hard to install and have many restrictions.
「Transfer devices are usually being used to help people sending letters, but the ones that actually work are only a few in number.」(Ophelia)
「It’s more convenient than sending letters on foot after all. But… I think sending things from here to the royal capital is impossiー Ah, maybe it’s not impossible for you.」(Sarasa)
It’s my master we’re talking about. There’s no way she can’t do it.
It’s impossible for me, though…
「I think you can do it too. There will be no problem with your tremendous amount of magical power. Besides, I’ve modified this device to reduce the amount of magical power required to send items.」(Ophelia)
「I see. Well, it’s true I have more magical power than normal people, but… In the first place, why did you come to install a transfer device?」(Sarasa)
「I said that I wanna buy materials from you, but it will be hard to send them to the royal capital, right? If you use this device, it’ll be instant. Besides, I can also send you materials from the royal capital.」(Ophelia)
「That will help me a lot, but… Umm…」(Sarasa)
It takes a month to go to the royal capital by carriage and the cost required will be stupidly high.
Besides, if Master sends me materials that are difficult to obtain here, it will be a great help for me to make things listed in the Encyclopedia of Alchemy.
So… yeah, there’s no reason for me to decline Master’s offer.