Magical Device Craftsman Dahlia Won’t Hang Her Head Down Anymore - Chapter 23
Dahlia and Wolf take a little longer route and head to the south of the central district.
The place Wolf recommend was a restaurant that aims for commoner which offered a wide variety of alcohol and dishes with heavy taste.
Upon entering the restaurant with a red roof, Wolf asked the waiter for a private room in the innermost part of the place.
Even if it is called a private room, only three sides of the room are walls and the remaining one is a partitioning screen.
“Now, let’s have a nice and slow meal this time. What do you want for alcohol? There are many kinds of red wine here you know. I want to refrain from drinking a whole barrel though.”
The menu we got is terribly thick. I was surprised when Wolf told me that half of them are alcohol.
“So they serve wine in a barrel here……”
On the final page of the menu were three types of wine barrels: red, white, and rose.
“They are for a big celebration party.”
In this world, there is no custom for ordinary people to wear a dress to attend a wedding ceremony. Most people here would gather their relatives and friends for a drinking party at home or restaurants after they filed the marriage registration to have such a celebration.
Well, mine ended without the opportunity to do that.
“Then, white ale please.”
“Alright, I will go with a black ale. What about the food? We can order several dishes if you like?”
“Yes, we can try a lot of things that way.”
The waiter came to take the order, so we laid out the menu and start ordering.
“One of both white, and black ales, two sets of grilled seafood skewered, a fritter set of pork and vegetables, and steamed chicken. How about you Dahlia-san?”
“I’d like fried black pepper with potatoes and roasted beans please.”
Black pepper fried potatoes
When the waiter left, Wolf leaned back in his chair.
“Sorry, can I use this to prevent eavesdropping?”
What was taken out of his pocket was a small silver prism.
It was an eavesdropping prevention magic tool used by nobles and upper-class merchants.
“Yes, but I don’t think that we have anything to hide though.”
“In my case, I don’t usually use it for a secret talk, I often use this when I want to have a casual talk with my friends in the unit.”
Wolf touched it with his hand and the prism glowed with a pale blue light.
“I have a request. If by any chance I got drunk I want you to ask the carriage to send me back to the castle’s barrack. The people at the barrack will pay the fee for me.”
“Okay. If I can’t go home by myself then please ask the carriage to send me to the green tower in the west district.”
It’s a normal thing people say before they get drunk but since we are not that close, this is necessary.
If we don’t know where each other lives, we won’t know where to send each other home in case one of us got too drunk to go home after all.
Since there’s a [Carriage service] that works like a taxi near the shopping district and downtown area, we can ask for one and let them send us home.
“I haven’t had any experience of collapsing from being drunk yet, what about you Dahlia-san?”
“I’ve never collapsed either but I’ve never been a heavy drinker myself.”
“How much did you usually drink?”
“I was able to work normally after four glasses of red wine.”
“That’s, aren’t you already on the kingsnake level yourself?”
Kingsnake is a parable word of python (TLN: Heavy drinker).
Kingsnake is a kind of monster that lives in the desert. It can be lured out using alcohol and it seems that it is quite a heavy drinker itself. I heard that you can catch one dead drunk just by pouring some alcohol in a jar and let them drink it.
“I don’t usually drink much more than that. How about you Wolf-san?”
“For the time being, I was fine with white wine until I reach the second digit I think.”
“The second digit…..that’s completely on a sea serpent level you know.”
The second digit here means 10 or more drinks.
The sea serpent is above the python. It refers to people who are [Basically don’t get drunk].
I don’t know whether it is because of magic or it is just how this world works but there are a lot of people who are strong with alcohol in this world.
Dahlia herself has much stronger alcohol tolerance than she was in her previous life but since the upper limit was also set a lot higher, it is hard to say that she is a heavy drinker in this world.
“The knights are mostly a sea serpent after all.”
“Then it would cost a lot to treat them right? Should we split the bill after all?”
“It looks like I invited some unnecessary worry but please allow me to decline. Ah, if you open a barrel then I won’t mind splitting the bill though.”
It seems he is really determined on treating me today. Dahlia sincerely accepted his goodwill.
“Well then, let’s celebrate our reunion once again.”
“To our reunion.”
Alcohol and food have begun to arrive so we firstly make a toast with the ale.
The cooled white ale has a light taste. Still, the scent of the hops is very good. With a slightly bitter taste, it refreshingly passing through my throat. The carbonation is low but it feels just right for the taste of this kind of alcohol.
The one Wolf is drinking is black ale. Since he already emptied his first cup, he probably will empty the bottle soon.
“Well, now you don’t have to be reserved when you are talking with me. Since we already have the eavesdropping prevention in place, the surrounding people wouldn’t be able to hear us after all.”
“Wouldn’t it be bad to do that when I am talking to someone from an Earl house……..”
“I do have Scarfalloto as my surname but since I’m the youngest child, I don’t have any escort or anyone who tail me from the house. My mother is the third wife without any status and I grew up in a detached house and right now I am living in the barracks. That’s why I am not good with that formal stuff. Is that no good?”
He is looking at me with his golden eyes which are looking slightly moistened.
Facing such a beautiful young man, I wonder why he reminds me of the medium-sized dog that I owned in my previous life.
“…..I see. I don’t know any etiquette to interact with the nobles myself so this will really make it easier to talk. So, how did they make this eavesdropping prevention magic tools?”
“The mages at the castle said that it added another sound on top of the sound we make normally to let it cancel each other out. It won’t be able to cancel out the whole conversation but to others, the sound would disappear irregularly so they won’t be able to hear the conversation if they are far away. As expected, people wouldn’t normally use this thing when there are others sitting next to you.”
“I see. So it can’t protect you against people who can read your lips right.”
It is not perfect eavesdropping prevention, it just makes your conversation harder to be overheard.
“Eh, Dahlia-san, you have done that kind of work before?”
“I don’t know what kind of work you are talking about but, my job is only creating magic tools used in daily life for the commerce guild. The blow dryer or the waterproof clothes for example. An eavesdropping prevention magic tool would be the mages’ specialty rather than a magic tools craftsman after all.”
“So it was like that. I thought that these kinds of magic tools were mostly the work of magic tools craftsmen.”
I divided a roasted bean in two and eat it while sipping on the ale. It takes a little time to split the hot bean but it has a savory smell and leaves behind a soft and sweet aftertaste. The taste of the brown and salted roasted beans was the same as the one I had in my previous life.
“Wolf-san, your atmosphere earlier changed so much that it gave me a surprise”
“I thought that it would be able to use to easier end that conversation that way. I was acting like a noble at that time. Maybe it’s better for me to talk with you that way?”
“Please stop that. Talking with you like that….I will end up wanting to run away from you.”
“I’m glad. Since my house is like that, I’m tired of keeping up that act all the time. My appearance as well, I want to be rougher like this because it suits my personality more.”
If an ordinary man hears this, he must really want to object him with all he got.
However, it’s true that beautiful people have their own troubles as well.
The people who were often together with Dahlia at the academy also had similar problems because of their beautiful appearance.
“It seems like you are often being called out aren’t you?”
“I got caught three times today on my way from the barracks to that store.”
“It must be hard walking around like that…..”
“When I walk alone I’m usually wearing a hooded cloak or glasses. Today was, Umm…..I thought that If I made myself stand out, you would be able to spot me.”
“I’m sorry….I should have at least told you that you can get in touch with me through the commerce guild.”
“I am sorry for telling you such a pathetic story as well. I didn’t try to put a blame on you or anything, I just wanted to talk with you again……”
Wolf scratched his head.
“It’s a reunion after all, let’s eat and change our mood.”
“Yes, you are right.”
Since he handed me half of the seafood skewers, I decided to eat them in order.
A large shrimp, small fish, scallop, and Kraken. All of them were grilled with salt.
The curly and round shrimp were crispy grilled, its size is around my fist, it is quite chewy as well.
The fish slightly resemble a shishamo fish (TLN: Willow leaf fish) but the color is bright red. The sweetness from its white flesh and the bitterness from its internal organs are indescribable. Perhaps, it is a kind of monster as well.
The scallop is of a reasonable size but when baked, it is sweet and soft.
The strange one was the Kraken.
Kraken is a monster that is being hunted at a fixed interval by a large fleet of fishermen and mercenaries. That’s why kraken is widely available as a food ingredient and materials that can be purchased at a low price.
They cut and select only the easy to eat parts but it still has a little reddish-brown color on one side like that of an octopus. However, when I took a bite, I can taste the fragrance of a squid.
Kraken is said to be smelly, I don’t know whether they process it well, or it was due to the cook’s skill but its smell is alright with me.
“Have you ever wonder whether a Kraken is closer to an octopus or squid?”
“Yeah, it looks like an octopus but it tastes like a squid right. You won’t know by eating this amount but it’s amazing when you imagine how many dishes a single Kraken can provide isn’t it.”
“Yes. it’s Kraken hunting season too, I want to cheer on all the working ice mages out there.”
Depending on the size of a Kraken, you would need several warehouses to store it. It will be dismantled at the sea to some extent but it will need to be refined further before it can be sold at the market.
Other than midwinter, mages who can use ice magic will maintain a refrigerator-like condition inside the warehouse for the Kraken to be dismantled.
When I was in my senior year at the academy, there were a lot of students who can use ice magic who took that as their part-time job.
Next, we try eating the fritter set and fried black pepper with potatoes then proceed to order another drink. This time we both ordered red ales.
“…..it’s really red.”
“They made that using red barley you know.”
The ruby-like hue is so beautiful so I ended up tilting the glass to see more of it.
When I tried it, it tasted quite fruity and carbonic. This should go well with oily foods.
The combination with fried potatoes seasoned with plenty of salt and black pepper is especially delicious, I can’t stop eating it.
It might be better to start worrying about the holes on my belt.
“Usually, does a magic tool only contain one spell?”
“Yes. usually, each magic tool is only endowed with one magic. If you want to stack it up then it would be better to ask a skilled mage or alchemist to do that.”
“I wonder how the mages created their magic tools. Have Dahlia-san ever heard what it’s like?”
Wolf said that while slicing the headless whole steamed chicken vertically into two pieces with his knife and set it aside on his plate. Although the internal organs were removed, it is still quite a hearty dish.
“I think that each mage or alchemist has their own secret way to apply their magic but I think that after they endowed magic on it once, they would use a processing method that doesn’t involve casting magic to apply another effect on top of the original one. I don’t know whether that process is magical or chemical though.”
“I see. I guess it won’t be easy. When we talked about the kitchen knife back then, I thought that the swords of the subjugation unit could be enchanted with hardening or auto-cleaning effect. Weight reduction would make them easier to carry around too.”
Dahlia stared at the knife he used to cut the steamed chicken.
She put her hand on her forehead while thinking about the sword’s shape and post a question to Wolf.
“Wolf-san, are the swords used by your unit have replaceable sword guard and scabbard?”
“Yeah, we regularly replace them. It will break if we don’t do that after all.”
“This is just a thought but if they are replaceable that means you can treat them as separate parts from your sword? I don’t know if it’s possible or if someone already tried and failed but….isn’t it possible to disassemble them and add hardening magic on the blade while applying a cleaning function on the sword guard with water or wind magic then assemble it back together after enchanting the scabbard with weight reduction?”
After his golden eyes opened wide, his mouth neatly formed a [U] shape.
“It would be terribly great if that could be done. It will make my unit’s a lot easier and that’s completely an artificial magic sword right!”
Apparently, the last part of his sentence is his true feeling. Since he suddenly shouted with a loud voice, he hurriedly covers his mouth.
Sometimes when we talk about a magic sword, his expression would turn to that of a child. His eyes show brimming with curiosity and a sense of adventure, it is funny to look at.
“Sorry about that, I got excited by myself…..”
“Wolf-san, you really love magic sword aren’t you.”
“Yeah, I have a dream of owning a magic sword or other magical weapons after all. I can’t enchant one myself but just thinking about one is already exciting…..”
“I understand, I also like magic tools and it’s fun to think about how to create new things……”
This is the only thing he and I have in common—-Dahlia realized that.
And perhaps the man in front of her also understands that as well. His golden eyes looking so happy as he smiles.
“Do you still have time today?”
“Yes. I do.”
“It seems we can thoroughly enjoy the alcohol then.”
Wolf emptied the rest of ale inside his glass.
“For the time being, let’s talk while enjoying this steamed chicken.”
We start eating the steamed chicken and chat with each other.
Although it has cooled down, it is still soft and easily melts in my mouth. It wasn’t smelly at all, you can enjoy its deliciousness whether you plainly eat it or eat it together with the sauce that was made from onions and spices.
“Ket’s order more alcohol. I will have an iced Akvavit, what about you?”
“Akvavit? What kind of drink is it?”
“It’s an alcohol made from distilled potato. It smells a little like caraway and it’s easy to drink too.”
“If that’s the case then I will have one too.”
Wolf went to order the drink and the waiter immediately gave him a bottle, glasses, and a bucket full of ice.
“Alright, let’s make a toast with this. It’s a little cliche but, to tomorrow’s good fortune.”
“To tomorrow’s good fortune.”
Using the common words people used to make a toast, we have our third toast for today.
The iced akvavit was mild and easy to drink. The taste is also good but the moment it flows into my throat, the green scent of the caraway also makes it irresistible.
However, it is very strong so if I drink too much I will get drunk in no time.”
“…..I know this might be rude but can I call you with just Dahlia? I also want to be called with Wolf without any honorific as well.”
“I don’t mind being called like that but it would be hard for me to do the same. I’m just a commoner after all.”
“Alright. I will write a document titled, [Agreement on treating my friend as equal], the content will be that no matter what you say, it will not be taken as disrespect and have a notary approve of it.”
What a terrifying joke.
Don’t use a notary’s valuable time for something like that, and that’s not the problem here either.
I’m scared to think about how it will affect women, the nobles like those at the Earl house and my work.
“I’m the youngest of four sons and my mother was from a baron family. My mother was already passed away and her parents already have become commoners with no backer. Even if I’m one of the Scarfallotos, I can’t use water magic or any of the other five-element. Eventually, I will be stripped of my noble title and have to leave the town as well. That’s why I have been preparing for that.”
Five-element magic consists of fire, water, wind, earth, and healing magic.
They are basically magics that are considered important by nobles and are easy to use by them.
“Aren’t you going to marry into another noble house as a groom?”
“It’s very bad if you can’t use five-element magic if you are a member of a viscount house or higher. The marriage itself is all good but you would need to adopt a child to be your successor or have another man to make said successor for you. There are a lot of people who can’t succeed their house because they don’t have the magic power of the five-element after all. Even if you married into their family as a groom, you would just become a figurehead. Ah, some of them even aim to have a daughter as well, you know. Something like having their daughter marry into money in the next generation for example.”
“That’s an unknown world to me……”
I heard more from Wolf after that. It seems that there are a lot of cases that people are stripped of their noble titles.
In a noble family, you only keep your eldest son and another excellent one as a spare. Anyone beside that will basically get married off or become a commoner.
In the case of a girl, you can marry her into money too but most of them will be married off to another noble, wealthy merchant, or a commoner that has an important post.
This is fundamentally the case to prevent the number of nobles to increase.
My father was also an honorary baron but that peerage only applied to one generation. Dahlia the commoner, knows nothing about that.
“Being a noble is hard too isn’t it.:
“There are people that become a mistress because they want to live a comfortable life too. Our country has both polygamy and polyandry but unlike a man with several wives, a woman who has two or three husbands is rare after all. Gigolos are much more common though.”
Incidentally, one of the surprising things I found in this world is marriage. In my case, I was about to normally submit my marriage registration but there are different ways to do it as well.
In this country, polygamy, polyandry, same-sex marriage, and the likes are generally accepted when you submit the marriage registration at a government office.
However, the most common one is still monogamy. The second most common is the polygamy of the wealthy merchants.
For nobles, the reason why they have multiple husbands or wives is that they want to pass down their rare magic power or to create a successor. In some cases, it seems they also did that to protect their territory or fortune as well.
At first glance, the noble’s life appear to be gorgeous but their circumstance seems to be quite difficult.
“Sorry for leading our conversation into a strange direction…..”
Wolf poured the contents of his glass down his throat and smiled.
“Hey, Dahlia. If I bring you the sword used by my unit, can you try applying the magic you talked about on it? Of course, I will cover the expenses and your labor cost at your asking price.”
Before I know it, he already naturally dropped the honorifics but there were no strange or uncomfortable feeling when he did that.
“About the how we call each other…..for the time being, I’m fine with calling you that when we are alone but in case I failed to apply the magic, you will not have anything else to use so how about we start with something simple like a dagger first, Wolf?”
Reacting to Dahlia’s reply, the young man opened his golden eyes let out a bright smile.
“Yeah, I will be in your care, Magic tools craftsman, Dahlia.