The Undetectable Strongest Job: Rule Breaker Chapter 154

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The Undetectable Strongest Job: Rule Breaker is a Webnovel created by Yasuaki Mikami, 三上康明.
This lightnovel is currently ongoing.

Chapter 154 – Wind of War

A bell rang, signaling the arrival of a visitor.

「Welcome to my workshop, the number one in fashion— Oh, it’s just you.」

「Well, yeah. Got a problem?」

Dodorono the dwarf appeared from within his store, wearing a snug suit. The visitor, on the other hand, was none other than the dashing, elf blacksmith, sleeves rolled up all the way to his shoulders and a towel wrapped around his head.

「What about your shop?」

「I don’t really feel like hammering iron right now.」

It was still early in the morning. There wouldn’t be a lot of customers around this time. But he shouldn’t even have the luxury to leave his store. Yet Leniwood still came to Dodorono’s place where armors and clothes were made.

「My weapons are made to defeat monsters. It just doesn’t feel right for them to be used against men…」

「Are you closing shop?」

「I’m still selling what I have in stock. If I closed now, they might accuse me of being on the Prince’s side.」

「I suppose.」

「You have it better. You sell things that protect people.」

「Yup. Sales are through the roof.」

Ever since the dispute between the Prince and the Princess started, the demand for protective gears had gone up. Dodorono had been very busy creating defensive equipment, but still he was shorthanded. He had bags under his eyes, a result of lack of sleep.

Still Dodorono entertained this eccentric elf because as someone who crafted gear for adventurers, he understood the guy’s despair.

「Did you hear? This place will be smack in the middle of the war.」Leniwood said.

「I did. The residents say they’re moving to the royal capital temporarily.」

「What are you gonna do?」

「I’m staying. If their armors break, someone has to fix them. What about you?」

「I… I’m staying too, I think.」Leniwood usually spoke clearly, but right now he didn’t seem sure what to do.「If the weapons of people I know get chipped while fighting, I gotta be there to repair them. You know what I mean?」

「Yeah…」

Leniwood heaved a sigh.「Wars are a load of s.h.i.t, man. Fighting monsters is much easier.」

Dodorono agreed wholeheartedly.

Things were hectic in Pond’s Adventurer’s Guild. Five days had pa.s.sed since Einbeast declared war on Ponsonia. The royal capital requested the guild to round up as many high-ranked adventurers as possible. Adventurers were specialists in fighting monsters, and during war times, they were recruited to fight humans as well.

That’s why once a war was declared, high-ranked adventurers were restricted from crossing national borders.

「Th-There’s not a lot of them! Is this all we have?!」

Pond’s submaster was furious as he stared at the adventurers list that Gloria handed. One rank A party, 2 rank B parties, and 21 rank C parties.

As for the ranked C adventurers, most of them were only recently promoted for their contribution in the war against Quinbland. In terms of power, however, they were at best rank D.

There wasn’t any official notice in the war against the Empire. Unlike Einbeast’s sudden declaration, the conflict against Quinbland was something that occurred gradually, slowly escalating conflicts that turned into an all-out battle. With Ponsonia’s withdrawal, there was now an implicit ceasefire between the two countries, which made it possible for the Four Stars to leave.

「A lot of the high-ranked adventurers were turned off from the sudden number of promotions lately.」

「I-It had to be done! The guild gets more money from the kingdom if we have more high-ranked adventurers!」

「Try telling that to the adventurers rank B and up.」

「Uh…」

The submaster shrunk under Gloria’s words. He had used his authority to send rank C adventurers for the transport of Count Morgstad’s daughter, a primary witness to her father’s murder, and completely disregarded the client’s request to hire the Four Stars of the East.

As a result, the job ended in failure—courtesy of Hikaru—and the submaster hid himself, saying he’d take a leave of absence.

But then all of a sudden, Unken, Pond’s guildmaster, resigned. The submaster returned, firmly believing he would be the next guildmaster, no matter how unreasonable it sounded. Needless to say, Unken was succeeded by someone else, a person from the royal capital.

Having just returned to work, the submaster couldn’t take another leave. A distant relative of a n.o.ble, he got the position through connections. As such, he wasn’t exactly the earnest type when it came to work. Five days ago, the guildmaster told him he was going on a leave, and put him in charge. The submaster was ecstatic.

「He tricked me!」

The guildmaster knew before anyone else that Einbeast declared war on Ponsonia, and that their army would be joining forces with Austrin’s troops. He knew that Pond would turn into a battlefield.

Being the guildmaster in Pond where the fighting would take place would be grueling. Not wanting to deal with all the trouble, he pushed all the burden to the submaster and went into hiding. He probably felt scared. While a pact prevented the army from harming the Adventurers Guild during wartime, war was still unpredictable.

Tricked? Didn’t you run away after your failure? Our work doubled after the incident. Gloria was all smiles, but dark emotions swirled inside her.

A knock came at the door.「It’s me, Jill!」

She sounded in a hurry. The submaster and Gloria exchanged glances.

「Come in.」

「Thank you.」

Jill was unusually fl.u.s.tered.「About the high-ranked adventurers in Ponsonia…」

「You mean this?」

The submaster flicked the list with his finger. One rank A and two rank Bs. Many for rank C and below. Nothing changed.

Einbeast, on the other hand, had two rank As, four rank Bs, and ten rank Cs. One could tell that their ranks were a.s.signed with great consideration. Overall, Einbeast had double the strength. Of course, not all of them would serve in the war, but the same could be said of the adventurers in Ponsonia.

「I knew it.」Jill said, peering at the list.「They’re not here.」

「Who’s not here?」

「Well, they’re downstairs at the moment.」

「Who?」

「A rank B party, the Four Stars of the East. They’re not on this list.」

The submaster’s mouth gaped open and shut as he rose from his seat. He looks like a fish, Gloria thought. Then he bolted out of the office, screaming “I’ll give them the warmest welcome ever!”

Jill and Gloria quickly followed him. The guild’s lobby was in an uproar. As it should be. The Four Stars of the East were among the best and famous adventurers in Ponsonia.

「Wow, it’s the real Four Stars!」

「How do you know that? Have you even seen them before?」

「Yooo! They’re all so cute!」

「Why are they here in Pond? Is this town really that dangerous?」

The submaster walked up to the ladies, pushing aside the adventurers on the way.

「What a wonderful surprise! I thought you left the kingdom, but now you’re back! Of course. Ponsonia is in the middle of a crisis, after all—」the submaster said, rubbing his hands together.

「So you’re Pond’s submaster.」Selyse said with a smile. 「You’re the one who gave our job to someone else, correct?」

The submaster froze. Serves you right, Jill thought. Not only did he forget what he did, he was shameless enough to approach the ladies. As Jill watched what the Four East were going to do to the submaster, someone called to her.

「So you’re Jill!」

「Wha?!」

Selica Tanoue. Jill knew her, of course. The smallest one in the group, she had long, black hair tied to both sides and wore a white robe of fine quality. Known as a powerful wizard, she emerged in the adventurer world out of the blue and made it all the way up to rank B in no time at all.

「Uh, I… Yes, that’s me.」

「I was told to give this to you!」Selica handed her a bag that smelled somewhat strong.

「It’s garlic! Please give it to the guy at Pasta Magic!」

「To the owner?」

A large, bear-like man popped in Jill’s mind.

「Hikaru said you’d get it. Huh, I guess not!」

Jill’s mind froze. What did she say?

Hikaru, a black-haired adventurer who one day appeared before Jill, and vanished all of a sudden. Not a day pa.s.sed when she didn’t think of the boy. He disappeared after getting promoted to rank E. He mentioned going to the dungeon, and then one day she received word that he cleared the Underground City of the Ancient G.o.ds. What’s more, the one who testified to this was none other than Gafrasti N. Valves, a key figure in Ponsonia’s current internal discord. It was all too absurd.

「Where’s Hikaru right now—」

「Lady Tanoue.」Gloria interjected. 「Are you perhaps a distant relative of Hikaru? You have the same hair color.」

「Please. We’re not relatives! We simply come from the same place!」

「Same place…」Until now, Gloria still suspected Hikaru of hiding some high-level job cla.s.s.

「Uh, Lady Tanoue…」

「Everyone, please lend me your ears.」

Jill wanted to ask a question when Selyse clapped her hands to call everyone’s attention.

「There’s high chance that Pond will be the center of the battlefield. Knights and the army from the capital will come here soon. The town will be in chaos.」

There was a stir among the adventurers. Fear and worry gripped them all. After a moment, Selyse resumed her speech.

「In times like this, the citizens have only you to count on. You should stay close to them. And I want you to guide those who want to flee to the capital.」

「Are you going to escort the citizens too?」

「We will fight the enemy on the frontlines. We won’t allow them to take one step in this town.」Selyse said. 「But at the end of the day, our enemy is on the inside. The doubt and fear in everyone’s heart might cause them to panic. I need you all to take care of the town while we fight. Can you do that?」

No one objected.

「Yeah!」

「d.a.m.n right we can!」

「We’re adventurers of this town! We know this place more than anyone else!」

「Let’s do it!」

Selyse seemed satisfied by their answers.

「The submaster will give you detailed requests. I’m counting on you all.」

She succeeded in negotiating with the submaster—whose face was pale—and handed things over to him. He would use the guild to issue requests to the adventurers, all to keep the peace in town. In exchange, Selyse would forget about how he stole their job before.

「Aurora, Gloria, Jill. Come with me.」

『All according to plan so far. I wonder what Hikaru will do…』Selica muttered under her breath, low enough that only Jill caught what she said.

Jill couldn’t understand a word—only that she mentioned Hikaru’s name.