“What are you talking about?” Zich tilted his head.
There was nothing he wanted from Leona. Even though his personality was genuinely terrible, and his behavior strongly resembled that of a swindler, he had helped Leona out of goodwill.
“There’s nothing I am aiming for. My actions are solely based on pure intentions. Ah, have you opened your eyes to helping others too? Then I think I can help you.”
“Don’t make me laugh. If someone like me says that I will help people out of goodwill, would you believe me?”
“Since I don’t know you well, I won’t be able to reach a definite answer. But if I judge you only in the short time I see you, I won’t be able to believe you at all.”
“That’s my answer to your question.”
“Idiot, what do you mean by that’s your answer? I am different. I really am doing a kind act right now.”
“Is the kind act you are doing looking for a treasure?”
“Of course. Do you want to join me?”
Midas glared at Zich. “I thought you were planning to trick a gullible elf and sell her somewhere for a hefty price. That’s what other people thought too, but it’s incomprehensible why you would bide so much time to do that.”
Midas stared at the place where Leona had left. “It makes me wonder, what is the point of wasting more time after having built up so much of her trust already? You should have dragged her right away before something unexpected happened, but you didn’t do that.”
Zich didn’t open his mouth. He just bobbed his chin as if he was telling Midas to continue.
“So, I thought you had something more to extort from the elf.”
“There’s nothing. She had some money, but I didn't want something like gold coins.”
“It must be the Lake’s Tear.” Midas’ eyes shone. “Or you must have thought that she had an item of similar value in her possession.”
“Sorry to disappoint, but I don’t even know what the Lake’s Tear really is.”
“Even when you coaxed the elf to let you help her?”
“Yes. All I wanted to do was help her find her clan’s treasure. There’s no reason for me to know what that item exactly is.”
He knew that it was a blue gem, but Zich didn’t know why it was important, its uses, or what kind of powers it had. However, as expected, Midas couldn’t believe him.
“…I suppose you have no intention to cooperate.”
“I didn’t lie about anything, but it’s also true that I have no thoughts of cooperating with you. How could I believe a swindler like you?”
“It’s not a good feeling to hear that I am a swindler from a swindler bastard.” Midas got up from his chair. Then, he looked down at Zich with displeasure and added, “Especially from a low-class, dirty one.”
“I don't know who you are talking about, but you should behave more properly to not hear such insults. If you keep hearing that you are a swindler from honest people like me and even from swindlers, there’s obviously a problem with you.”
Zich pushed the gold bar that Midas had thrown at Leona towards him again and said, “If you understand me, act more properly. Also, this is yours, right? It’s because you go around and throw things like this that you look like a scammer.”
“I don’t need it. I gave that to the elf for the price of making me laugh. Give it to her.”
“Is that so? I won’t refuse then.”
Zich got up from his seat.
“Since you gave me something as valuable as a gold bar, I will pay for us.” Then, Zich marched towards the store’s counter and dropped the gold bar there.
“I will pay with this. I don’t need any change.” After striking the counter with his palms once, Zich left the store.
Hans and Snoc quietly followed Zich from behind. The cashier stared back and forth between Zich and his companions and Midas with stunned eyes. Meanwhile, Midas glared at Zich’s back silently.
* * *
“Were you waiting for me?”
Zich approached Lyla and Leona who were conversing outside the auction hall.
“Did you settle it well?” Lyla asked Zich.
“It’s not about settling or doing well. I just taught some sense to a guy who was spewing out his wishful thinking after making a wrong guess.” Zich answered Lyla’s question and then looked towards a corner.
Zich said, “By the way, there’s someone really fancy.”
“We were also looking at that.”
They were all looking at a carriage that had four wheels, walls, a roof, and two horses pulling it just like every other carriage. However, there was one thing that made the carriage unique.
“It’s just all plated in gold.”
The walls, roof, and even the wheels of the vehicle shone in a golden light. If they spent that much effort on the exterior, Zich thought the interior of the carriage would be the same.
“How is it? Isn’t it beautiful?” With the voice that came from his back, Zich was able to find out who the owner of this insane carriage was.
Zich asked Midas, “That’s yours?”
Zich knew that Midas held great wealth from the way he easily handed out gold bars, but Zich didn’t think Midas was crazy enough to plate his whole carriage in gold.
“It’s something a guy like you wouldn’t even be able to dream of having.”
“I will admit that. I will probably not even be able to dream of it.”
Even in the days where he was feared by many as the Demon Lord, Zich thought he wouldn’t be brave enough to pull off Midas’ gold carriage. Zich humbly admitted his defeat.
‘No, wait a minute. Wasn’t there someone who went around doing crazy things like this?’
Although Midas’ scale was lower than the guy Zich was thinking of, it was difficult to think of another person who would do something as insane.
Zich asked, “Hey, what is your name again?”
Midas expanded his chest, thinking that Zich had finally seen him in a new, admirable light.
“I’m Wips Midas.”
“…I got it,” Zich replied with an incomprehensible expression.
“Think carefully about it again. My offer is not bad.”
“No, I don’t need to think more about it.” Zich firmly rejected Midas’ offer. “I don’t want to.”
Midas’ expression stiffened. He didn’t say anything for a while and glared at Zich. “…Fine. If that’s your final decision, I guess it can’t be helped.”
Without hiding his displeasure, Midas turned around. As he walked towards his carriage, the coachman who was waiting for him opened the door. As Zich expected, the inside of the carriage was also completely gold. Midas got into the carriage and looked down at Zich from the window.
“You will regret this.”
“Regret? Hmm, that’s something I want to try experiencing.” Zich smirked. “Why don’t you try making me regret rejecting your offer?”
The carriage door slammed shut. The coachman pulled down his reins hard, and the carriage began moving forward. The shiny gold carriage attracted everyone’s attention.
“I can’t believe there’s a person who plated his whole wagon gold. Really, there are all sorts of crazy people in this world.” Lyla added her comments at the end, and Hans and Snoc looked at the back of the wagon as they thought it was also ridiculous as well.
Zich said, “It’s not plated with gold.”
“It’s not plated with gold? No way. If that’s not gold, what is it?”
“It is gold. It’s just not plated with gold.”
“…Are you seriously saying that the whole carriage is made out of gold?”
Gold was flexible and heavy. It was not an ideal ingredient to make a carriage out of. Even if a carriage was made out of gold, the horses wouldn't be able to pull it for long, and there was a high chance that it would get destroyed with a bit of a push.
“The whole thing really is gold.”
“But it moves so well.”
“It’s because a person who can make it move well is riding on it.”
Wips Midas—it was a name that Zich remembered before his regression.
‘Demon Person Golden Castle. I guess he was here during this time.’
Zich stared intently at the golden carriage as it moved farther away.
* * *
The next day, Zich and his companions went to find the treasure. Apart from her goal to retrieve the Lake’s Tear back, Leona, Hans, and Snoc were filled with anticipation of finding treasures. Lyla also looked as if she was full of excitement. They went out of Tungel and walked on the street for a while. It was at that moment when they were walking down the deserted street and turning towards a small hill when—
At Lyla’s warning, Zich took out Windur. Hans and Snoc also prepared for battle. Leona also took out her weapon. She took out an arrow from her back and after placing the arrow on the bow, she looked around her surroundings.
“Don’t waste your time and come out,” Zich said with a low voice. However, he infused mana into his voice and spread it to his surroundings.
Something came out of the surrounding shrubs.
“Wow, these guys really have their own sense of style.”
True to Zich’s words, the people who came out of the shrubs were not ordinary robbers or bandits. All of them wore tough and heavy armor from head to toe. Their faces were covered by thick helmets, so it was difficult to see their faces.
From the way they dressed, they looked like knights. On the other hand, even if they were still walking on a path, it was definitely not an easy task to move around a mountainside wearing thick armor from head to toe, but the armored beings did this difficult task with ease.
As if they were not even interested in a conversation, the armored beings immediately began to attack Zich and his companions. There were about twelve of them. However, Zich and his companions were not easy opponents at all. Zich lifted Windur up to his sides, and Hans tightly grabbed onto Estellade. Snoc raised his hands and Lyla began murmuring spells. However, the first individual who attacked was Leona.
An arrow shot from her hand. Even though arrows were fast in the first place, Leona’s arrow was so fast that it was hard to even track them with eyes infused with mana.
The arrow hit one of the armored beings exactly on the head. The force of the shot made the ‘armored being’ go down in a large motion. Since the ‘armored being’ was hit in the head, they most definitely died. However, surprisingly, the ‘armored being’ got up the next second and began running towards them again.
Lyla said, “They don’t seem like ordinary humans.”
“Do you sense any magic?”
“No.” If Lyla said this, there was a very high chance that there was no magic involved.
‘It’s those guys.'
The more he thought about it, the more certain he was. Seeing that her arrow didn’t kill the armored being, Leona raised her eyebrow. She took one more arrow out of her quiver and shot it. However, this arrow was different from before.
The sound of an explosion rang out in the air. The arrow that Leona shot the second time hit the nearest armored being in the stomach.
The spinning arrow ripped apart the armor, and its enormous force completely destroyed the side of the armored being's armor. It was another attack that should have definitely taken the life of a human being, but the ‘armored beings’ continued to move.
“Are they golems?”
Lyla squinted her eyes to peer closely at their enemies. There was no one inside the armor; nothing even remotely resembled a human was inside it. Did Leona’s powerful arrows completely extinguish even their bodies? Even if this was true, then at least there should be some blood spilled.
“Huh? Huh?” Leona, who had been launching powerful attacks one after another, was now surprised. It was her first time meeting opponents unaffected by her arrows.
“Um, what do we do?”
Leona clearly lacked experience, and Zich said some words to comfort her. “Don’t worry about it. Instead, we should enjoy the moment.”
Zich stepped forward and swung Windur.
Although one armored being was cut into two, it kept on moving. The upper half of the body was crawling on the floor and the lower body was still running towards them. Yet, Zich was not shaken up.
Zich kicked the lower body and pierced Windur into the upper half. While looking at the armor pieces that were still moving around, Zich said, “Well, let’s find out how to kill these guys together.”Previous Chapter Next Chapter