(219) Desert aristocrat
I shifted the angle of the parasol to follow the movement of the sun. The surrounding temperature had fallen considerably thanks to the fragments of frozen Sand Wyrm. If allowed to continue to melt, it would probably turn into a grotesque scene from a splatter movie so I decided to bury them in the sand before the young girl woke up.
In addition, I’ll be able to prevent the danger of heatstroke as long as I let her drink water but forcibly making the unconscious girl drink water comes with the danger of pulmonary aspiration and judging from her complexion, her condition was not that severe so I decided to wait for her to wake up.
“Hn … where …”
The young girl said the template opening line. It seemed like she had regained her consciousness.
She slowly got up and slapped my face twice.
” …… It doesn’t hurt, I guess this is a dream.”
“No, my cheek is the one hurting.”
“It isn’t a dream then if it hurts.”
The girl placed both her hands on my cheeks as she stared at me with a vacant expression.
The atmosphere felt like she was about to kiss me but her eyes gradually regained life.
At that moment, she finally realized what she had done.
She removed her hands in panic,
“S-sorry. Erm … where am I?”
“This is the center of the desert. You were being chased by bandits … do you remember that?”
“Th-that’s right … Eh? Then, where are the bandits? What about the Sand Wyrms?”
She tilted her head and asked.
It seemed like she was missing her memories from before she lost consciousness.
“Rather, sorry for the delay. I am Yu‧Hariel. I was in the midst of my journey to the town of Gagarian to the northwest when I was attacked by the tribe that calls the desert ruins their home.”
“Wow so polite. My name is Ichinojo — well, you can say that I am a traveling Swordsman.”
Since the opposite party was nobility, I answered slightly more politely. I called myself a Swordsman because I had set my job as Swordsman for others to see.
That was also thanks to Miri’s souvenir. My Jobless job was forged to become Swordsman Lv23 and it even deposited the job certificate in my item bag.
I wondered just how did she prepare such fake identities?
“Please, you don’t have to use honorifics. Ichinojo-sama seems to be older than me and furthermore, you are my life savior. Moreover, I do not come from a family that necessitates the use of honorifics.”
Hariel said with a slight smile. But her job was Noble though?
Hn — it seemed like she wished to hide her identity.
Seeing how she wasn’t acting almighty showed that she was different from the only other noble I knew — Oregeru.
I said and extended my hand to her. She glanced at my hand and shook it with a smile.
“Coincidentally, I am also on my way to Gagarian Town so perhaps we could travel together?”
“Are you sure?”
I whistled and the Desert Runner raced over. I saw the ice fragment of the Sand Wyrm I defeated inside its mouth.
(Hurry up and swallow it.)
I whispered to the Desert Runner and it quickly ate it.
Seriously, this glutton.
“Ichinojo-sama, what’s the matter?”
“No, it’s nothing. Let’s get moving.”
If we don’t leave anytime soon, the Sand Wyrm would begin melting. Even if they have been buried under sand, the smell would still seep through.
I wiped the mouth of the Desert Runner that finally finished its food and stored the parasol and deckchair in my item bag.
I then jumped onto the Desert Runner and extended my hand to Hariel.
Hariel grabbed onto my hand and sat behind me.
“This Desert Runner is quite strong.”
“Yeah, it is a big eater though. Nobody was willing to buy it so I ended up buying it at a cheap price.”
“What kind of business do you have at Gagarian Town?”
“There is a dungeon in Gagarian Town. I heard that by defeating the legendary monster called the Sand Scorpion in it, I could acquire a convenient job that would make it easier to cross the desert.”
Crossing the desert was difficult.
Firstly, it was hot. In general, the South Continent had higher temperatures but that was further elevated in the desert.
Moreover, carriages were unusable. The sand would drag the wheels and increase the burden on the horses.
For that sake, Desert Runners were needed to cross the desert but even that had disadvantages. They were voracious eaters. The carnivorous Desert Runners could smell monsters 10 kilometers away. And once they get to a certain degree of hunger, they would ignore their owner’s orders and head toward monsters.
I had an item bag so I could carry meat with me but ordinary people were unable to travel with large amounts of meat. That was because it might actually attract other monsters to them.
In the end, Desert Runners became mounts for adventurers hunting for monsters. Incidentally, the tamer uncle who sold me the Desert Runner laughed as he commented that the bandits also used Desert Runners — but those Desert Runners ate human meat more often than monster meat. Although I failed to find it funny.
The desert was that troublesome but crossing the desert would instantly become a breeze once I get the Sand Drifter job.
And so I heard the condition was found in Gagarian Town’s labyrinth.
Furthermore, the Gagarian Town Labyrinth was under the jurisdiction of Libra-sama. I wanted to talk to her if it was possible.
“Er … erm. Ichinojo-sama, I wish to ask. Was Ichinojo-sama the one who defeated the bandits and Sand Wyrms — ”
“Ah … erm, about that — ”
“Or was it your companion?”
Why did it turn into a situation where my companion was the one who defeated the Sand Wyrms?
“I feel that I kind of remember what happened just now but I recall that the Sand Wyrms were defeated by ice magic — but Ichinojo-sama is a Swordsman-sama right? In that case —”
Ah, I see.
It was because I defeated the Sand Wyrms with magic but introduced myself as a Swordsman. That would certainly be unnatural.
“Furthermore, the scales of a Sand Wyrm is extremely tough and I feel that defeating it with that sword is exceedingly difficult —”
“No, it was not my companion. A passing Magician-san defeated them. Amazing right?”
I said with a smile.
Could something so convenient actually happen? I thought to myself even as I said it but Hariel seemed to have been convinced.
“I see …”
For some reason, Hariel sounded a little disappointed.
Perhaps she was feeling uneasy about leaving her safety to me?
“Well, don’t worry. It is not to the extent of that Magician but I have confidence in my sword skill.”
“Yes, I will look forward to it.”
Hariel said with a lively voice.
She seemed to have special circumstances but I was in the same boat too so we both did not speak about it.
I would be able to enter Gagarian Town with her identity so she was also helping me.
(Moreover, I’m taking separate actions from Haru and the others so I was feeling lonely traveling on my own.)
As I urged the Desert Runner forward, I thought about Haru, Carol, and Malina who should still be in the Western Continent as of now.