“It’s near here.”
At the ranger’s gesture, the priest of the Flame Church slowly bowed his head to express his gratitude.
“Thank you for your guidance.
Could you step back for a moment?”
As the ranger slowly stepped back, the Flame priest stepped forward and gestured.
A blue flame from his fingertips gently enveloped the earth.
The flames crawled across the ground like a living being, melting only the snow.
The ranger admired the marvelous sight.
“It’s a great power however you look at it.”
The priest of the Flame, having melted all the surrounding snow, didn’t answer.
The blue flames swept through the cold to reveal the traces underneath.
“Since it’s been a while, I think a monster or beast devoured the body.”
“Is that so? That’s understandable.”
The priest of the Flame examined the now dry earth.
“Can you tell me the names of the cities around here?”
“Priest, thank you very much.
I would have died that evening if it weren’t for you.”
A week had passed since the demon ran wild.
Pierre’s body was still bandaged, but I smiled and patted his shoulder.
“I was just doing what I was supposed to as a human.
Don’t worry about it.”
Pierre’s eyes trembled with emotion.
He struggled to speak.
“I hope you take care of yourself when you return to your hometown.
I’ll see you when I get a chance.”
It must have been quite a shock that the bandits killed all of his comrades, so Pierre told me yesterday that he had decided to stop working as a mercenary and return to his hometown.
Now he was lying in the corner of a carriage headed to his old village.
Pierre looked at me with eyes big like a cow’s.
“If you really come, I’ll treat you well no matter how difficult it might be!”
“I won’t forget.
I’ll visit you sometime.”
A shout sounded from the front of the carriage, and it would depart soon.
“It’s time to part ways.
Go in peace.”
“Stay healthy, Priest!”
Pierre wished me goodbye, swinging his injured arm.
After bowing my head and seeing him off, I headed for the mercenary guild through the west gate.
“I’m not sure what to do today, Mother.”
“I’ve heard you, Mother.
I should stop playing around and do something, but I still don’t have enough money in my pocket to warm my heart every time I see it.
Doesn’t Mother know it as well? I have to hide and stay quiet right now.”
Mother scolded me for saving the demon, and she knew too well that we had to stay hidden.
“That’s true, too, but what could I do with the two gold coins he paid in advance?”
I patted my pocket.
“Haah, this isn’t going to work.
In this case, I will use the secret funds that I saved once again.”
“I heard it on the way, but a good medicine for skincare arrived.
I’ll buy it on the way home and apply it carefully to your hand.
How about that?”
I walked through the town with a light step and a big smile while Mother’s hand nagged joyfully.
Closing both eyes, the divinity I absorbed during the demon incident emerged in my mind.
After saving the demon, I harvested most of the corpses that could be harvested.
Thanks to this, I could obtain a fairly large amount of divinity.
The senseless deaths were truly sad, but the living must continue.
In addition, Obs was a three-fingers-worth human.
When I harvested his crushed body, I gained a whopping one thousand divinity.
Erin shouted loudly as I entered the mercenary guild house after buying the skincare beauty medicine for Mother’s hand.
“Demon Slayer Marnak!”
“How many times have I told you not to call me by that nickname? Every time you do, I’m seriously embarrassed.”
Yes, by the time the incident settled down, lord Thredon publicly announced that I had rescued him and taken the last breath of the giant demon.
Thanks to this, I was granted the great nickname of Demon Slayer even though it didn’t suit me.
Erin liked the nickname, though; whenever she called me that, it always got the attention of people around her.
Like this time.
“Is that priest the famous Demon Slayer?”
“Contrary to how he looks, he’s very strong; he cut down seven bandits by himself a while ago.”
“He killed a demon and seven bandits by himself.
I’m still afraid that giant monster will pop out again.”
I asked Erin, with one ear listening to the rumors about me.
“How did the recovery of the relics go?”
The opaque mirror and the pure white sword.
I obtained the divinity of corruption sealed in the mirror.
At the same time, the pure white sword was just an ordinary relic, so no divinity was obtainable.
Erin replied with a smile, playfully flashing her white teeth.
“I left it in storage.
Are you sure you don’t want to reveal your name?”
There was no need to become more entangled with those fanatics of the Reformation church.
Anyway, the mirror that revealed a demon’s identity and the sword that killed demons were things I didn’t really need.
If I had them for no reason, I might run into the religious priests who came to retrieve their holy relics.
Erin loudly clapped her hands, then leaned closer to me with a quiet voice.
“When you were away for a while, the lord’s soldiers came looking for you.
They said to visit the lord’s residence as soon as you have time.”
Erin glanced around and whispered again.
“Perhaps the lord wants to entrust a job to Priest Marnak.
These secret jobs are well-paid but also very risky, so consider it carefully before deciding.”
“How do you know that?”
It’s very rude to keep the lord waiting.”
I came out of the mercenary guild, pushed out by Erin’s hands.
Mother, who was looking forward to the skincare medicine, grumbled.
I patted my pocket and headed out.
“Why are you angry when something you wanted so much happened?”
What do you mean, ‘Why don’t we just rest for today?’ Even if you have a different attitude than before, isn’t it too different?”
“I know you’re angry because you’re embarrassed.
I’ll quickly go back and apply it to every nook and cranny after hearing what the lord has to say, so please bear with me for a moment.”
After a dramatic compromise was established, I headed for the lord’s residence.
“Welcome, Priest! I was waiting for your arrival! How come your face looks brighter every time, I see it!? Hahaha!”
A demon with exquisitely carved wooden prosthetic legs, prosthetic arms, and transparent eyes greeted me.
“How can I exaggerate in praising our Demon Slaying Priest Marnak!”
The lord poured a cup of hot tea and offered it to me.
The wooden hand moved gently as if alive.
It was fascinating every time I saw it.
I took a sip and laughed.
“Isn’t the demon known to have been slain by the Demon Slayer alive right here?”
“Demons have a right to live, too.
No life was born just to die, right?”
The demon grinned and buried himself in his chair, kicking out his wooden legs.
“It’s always amazing that wooden prosthetics can move naturally.”
“I do this only in front of the priest, but in front of other people, I limp around.
In addition, I had to pay a huge price for such natural movement.”
“What’s the price?”
Taking a sip, the devil laughed playfully.
“Soon, the hair roots in this body will lose their strength and fall like leaves in mid-autumn.
Perhaps if you see me in a few months, you will be greeted by a sparkling, bare mountain monk.”
It was a terrible price indeed.
But as a demon able to easily accept such a price? While I was admiring his resolve, the demon brought out his business.
“Priest, do you have a week or so to spare?”
“The time is no problem.”
The money problem was serious enough to stop rolling around for that long.
“That’s really good! There’s one good job request, and you were directly nominated.”
Nominated? Me? As I looked at him with suspicion, the devil quickly continued explaining.
“I think that after hearing the name of Demon Slayer, they thought the priest was the right person for this job.
It’s probably related to the ruins of the ancient empire.”
I was genuinely surprised.
“Were there any ruins of the ancient empire around here?”
“They said that they came to explore the ruins anyway.
Since the person leading the party is a nobleman from the capital, it’s probably not groundless.”
The ancient empire unified the continent after ending the era of lawless wizards a long time ago.
The relics of the ancient empire were said to be precious treasures with powerful abilities for the scholars of the present age.
They still searched for the empire’s lost technologies.
Most of the high-grade items in this game had the trait Relic of the Ancient Empire.
The ruins that held them were similar to dungeons in other games.
As Mother mentioned, I decided that I should take this job.
“We haven’t even talked about compensation yet, but you’re accepting it already?”
“What’s the pay?”
“It’s a whopping five gold coins, and he’ll pay them all in advance.
Besides, he said that he would also hand over one of the excavated artifacts if you contributed to their expedition into the ruins.”
I answered quickly.
“I will definitely do it!”
The group had a total of three people.
One person was presumed to be a wizard wearing thick robes, a one-horned man armed with a large shield and an ax, and the last man wore leather armor with a bow strapped to his back.
“May unwavering happiness be maintained in your life.
I am Marnak, a priest serving the maintenance goddess who protects our daily life.”
As I bowed and said hello, the handsome man with a bow walked toward me with a cheerful smile.
At first glance, he gave off a weak impression, but judging from his thick limbs, he must constantly be training.
“Nice to meet you, priest! My name is Carmen Baltas; I commissioned this work.
I’ve heard so many things from Lord Thredon.
He’s a very wise man, so I’m really happy to be able to work with you.”
I replied with a quiet smile.
“Please take good care of me.”
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