CHAPTER 55: VIVIANA, A CHAT, AND A FAVOR
With the dispute at the Hunter Guild, and since we don’t have anything else we need to do in particular, the choices Ciel has for how we can spend our remaining free day is either to sleep or to practice with sorcery and/or our Jobs.
Between the two, since there’s no telling how many opportunities we’ll have, if any, of sleeping on a bed as fancy as this, Ciel naturally chose to sleep.
I was the one that recommended this though, since we’ve been experiencing one trouble after another in these past days and I thought that Ciel is probably feeling exhausted without being aware of it.
Ciel told me this morning that it’s fine if I use her body while she’s asleep—though from her nuance, she was telling me to proactively use it—so to be honest, we aren’t actually getting the best out of the fancy bed experience right now.
From an outsider’s perspective, it might seem like Ciel sleeps quite a lot.
But the fact is, in my opinion, Ciel is under a lot of stress unbefitting for a 12 year old, so sleeping every moment she can isn’t strange at all.
After all, although I might have been the one in control during these times, people don’t normally pick a fight with a guildmaster and they surely don’t march into the lair of an underground boss as well.
If it was me in the past, I would’ve vomited from anxiety in these situations.
So with that said, after waking up and eating breakfast, Ciel is now back to sleep.
I am… Ciel’s protecting guardian, hehe.
As this stupid thought ran though my mind, I sense someone approaching our room.
Unlike what happened the other day, it’s not coming from the ceiling or from outside the window, so I guess it’s a proper visitor this time.
I tried waking Ciel up for a while, but she showed no signs of waking up at all.
A knock eventually came from our door, and 「Blan-sama, are you in there」 a courteous voice asked for us.
I could just pretend that no one’s in the room, but there might have been some progress from yesterday’s and I feel like ignoring this would only postpone the inevitable trouble.
While I do feel guilty about disturbing Ciel’s rest, I borrowed her body and replied to the one behind the door.
「What is it」
「You have a guest.」
「Did they give you their name」
「The lady called herself Viviana and her attire seemed to be a that of hunter.」
「Could you relay to her that I just woke up and may take a while to prepare
I’ll head to the reception desk once I’m done.」
Viviana-san, she should be a member of the Fools’ Gathering.
If I remember correctly, she was the one who shared that the wolf is a divine messenger.
In this case, meeting with her should be fine.
Ah, I should’ve asked if she said her reason for visiting.
Anyhow, our guest doesn’t seem to be an assassin sent by either Tolt or the guildmaster.
Considering the situation, there was a reasonably high chance of this being the case, but I guess those kinds of people don’t really attack from the front door.
『Ain, did something happen』
『Viviana-san came to visit, so I was considering meeting her.』
『The sorcerer-like lady of the party we meet at the pub.』
『Oh, that person.
Would it be better if I go』
『I’ll leave the decision to you.
I don’t know the reason for her visit though.』
『In that case, it might be better for Ain to go.
I’m not good with long conversations after all.』
『If you put your mind into it, couldn’t you talk for long periods of time like I do』
『Well, I can.
But it’s a hassle, so I don’t want to.
Besides, I’m really sorry Ain but when I speak in long sentences like I’m doing right now, I just can’t help remembering about how I talked with that man.』
『Then in this case, it can’t be helped.』
『Yup, can’t be helped.』
As she went back to her usual tone, for some reason, it felt like Ciel just flashed me a nice smile.
Though since I’m the one in control right now, I can’t actually see Ciel’s facial expression.
Based on her tone, it was likely a teasing smile.
Now then, although it’s commonly said that girls take time to prepare, this doesn’t really apply to us.
We don’t have any fashionable clothes nor do we use any cosmetics and make-up after all.
Sooner or later, make-up might become necessary for us but… I really hope someone could teach me about it.
I could count on Celia-san for this, but she’s currently at the headquarters, huh.
I guess this will be a race between us getting to B-rank first or Ciel reaching the age when we’ll have to learn about cosmetics first then.
After getting ready quickly, I left the room and headed to the reception desk.
I can see Viviana-san from a distance, but I find her really pretty.
While her outfit is really hunter-like, having emphasis on functionality over form, she has reddish black hair and an unyielding look contrasting her polished features.
And concerning her proportions, she absolutely has her curves as her body really goes in and out in places where they should.
Since she’s a sorcerer, she probably has some noble blood in her.
After all, people like Perla, commoners at birth that become sorcerers due to their Job, are the rare exceptions.
「Sorry for making you wait.」
「Don’t worry about it.
I’m the one that suddenly came after all.
Rather, you came earlier than I expected.
I heard that you just woke up.」
「I really don’t have much to do along the lines of preparing, you see.」
「Well, you’re still quite young after all.」
While Viviana-san herself looks quite young in my opinion, when compared to Ciel, it’s hard to call her young.
After all, there are even some 12 year olds that would call high school girls old ladies.
「So, what brings you here today Was it because there’s some progress made」
I came here for personal reasons.
I just wanted to have a chat with you.」
「A chat Sure, I don’t really mind.」
In that case, why don’t we go to a somewhere else」
Viviana-san started walking, so I followed behind her.
Every subtle movement she makes feels considerably refined.
She might not just have some noble blood, she might actually be a noble.
Also, it seems that the fact that I’m a Song Princess hasn’t been spread yet, considering that I’m not being hounded on as I’m walking about in the streets.
Though, this might be because I’m with Viviana-san, and they simply can’t.
『There seems to be somebody following us, so we’ll have to switch places if things go bad.』
Still, is Viviana unrelated to this』
After all, I can think of, like, multiple reasons why someone would mark us.』
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In Ciel’s case, it’s pretty common to have people following her even without any particular reason.
I can’t even keep count of how many times we’ve had near encounters with kidnappers.
It’s also possible that we’re being followed precisely because we’re together with Viviana-san.
After all, she’s also beautiful as well.
「Still, it’s amazing how you actually stay at that inn.
We’re on the more loaded side in terms of money, but that inn is definitely out of reach.
Moreover, the best room, I can’t even imagine.」
「It’s a nice room, you know But since it’s so spacious, I do feel quite lonely by myself.
It isn’t over the top with decorations and while the quality of the furnishings are high, its simplicity is really comfortable.
The bed’s texture is, in my opinion, something that can only be experienced in that inn too.
However, it’s not that I paid for the room.
I immediately got involved in some trouble as soon as I arrived here, so I was given an accommodation as an apology.」
「Immediately got involved in some trouble after arriving here…… With you, I suppose it’s somewhat unavoidable.」
As she stared at me, Viviana-san stated her conclusion.
And since there’s practically nothing I can deny about that, 「I’m used to it now.」 I just replied with so.
For some reason, she has a complicated look on her face.
「Incidentally, you’re speaking in info gathering mode today, huh.」
「Would you… rather hear my usual」
「Nope, I’d rather hear you talk like you did before.」
「Then, let’s go with that.」
Honestly, imitating Ciel is difficult.
To be exact, keeping a smooth conversation while imitating Ciel is what’s actually difficult.
In the first place, if Viviana-san is fine with Ciel’s way of speaking, then it won’t be necessary for me to be the one controlling right now.
With that in consideration, I guess it might have been better if she said that Ciel’s way of speaking was better.
And as we entertained ourselves on the way like so, the place we were brought to was a stylish restaurant.
While it’s still a bit too early for lunch timewise, there is already a considerable number of people in the store, with some having a peasant chant, while others discussing things with serious looks on their faces.
「What an unusual store.」
「Even on times outside of lunch and dinner, this store is kept open as a place for chatting, you see.
They only serve drinks and light meals during their downtime, but since there’s only a few other places people can relax and chat in, they get quite a lot of customers.」
If I had to describe it, the store feels like a prototype cafe.
Then, if the demand increases, stores that primarily offer drinks and light meals, like how cafés do, might even appear in the future.
As Viviana-san sat down on an open seat, she asked me what I’d like to have.
I just answered with saying a cup of black tea.
It’s not like I’m particularly fond of black tea, but I just thought that it would fit the atmosphere.
Incidentally, while there is black tea, there’s no green tea here.
No coffee as well.
The drinks available are water, black tea, fruit water, and alcohol, so there wasn’t much of a choice to begin with.
After Viviana-san finished ordering, we then started talking as our drinks were served.
「Once again, thank you for responding to my sudden invitation.
I can’t honestly thank you enough.」
「You wanted to talk about something personal, right 」
But before that, I’ve wanted to ask about this.
Is it true that you picked a fight with Chasse」
「I didn’t, really.
I was just telling the truth.
Did you perhaps come to challenge what I said」
「Nope, not really.」
Viviana-san delightedly smiled.
It would’ve been awfully weird if she actually came here for a fight after being so polite with me though.
「In all honesty, even if the four of us attacked you at the same time, you probably wouldn’t get as much as a scratch.
As someone with a handle on sorcery, I’m really interested in your sorcery, so I came to meet with you.」
「What about the others」
「They should be busy running around right now.
A certain somebody just gave us a huge assignment after all.」
「That’s… quite the trouble.」
「While you’re not quite at fault here, it would be nice to see a bit more sympathy, you know
Anyhow, I got myself specially exempted to have a personal chat with you as a lone sorcerer.」
The Fool’s Gathering.
If their party is a gathering of people stubbornly focused on a single thing, then I guess what Viviana-san is stubborn about is likely the study of sorcery.
For that reason, seeing Ciel’s, or rather my, barrier had caught her interest.
I can understand her feelings, but the circumstances surrounding the barrier are too unique, and other things like the increasing of magic power via that practically life threatening pill, or the conversion of hair into magic circuits are too irregular that I don’t think these would really serve as good references for her.
「In my opinion, I barely have anything I can teach you, you know」
「That’s just natural.
It’s unthinkable for sorcerers to simply expose their own secrets after all.
For example, that barrier of yours.
Even after discovering its existence, I still can’t perceive it.
I don’t mind if you don’t want to answer, but when did you defeat your first monster」
「I was 10 years old at that time.
So about 2 years ago.」
「In that case, this means that your barrier could already work against a Cyclops at that point, right」
「I can’t deny that.」
For monsters at the level of a Cyclops, every and any attack is meaningless against my barrier.
We already tested this.
I’ve improved the barrier since then, so there’s likely no chance of an attack of that level breaking through at this point.
「As I thought, Chasse and Lucie are still deceived by your appearance.
Just being able to continuously maintain a barrier that can defend against B-class monsters is beyond enough for a sorcerer.
Moreover, you also have the offensive capability to resolve a stampede alone.
I can’t even imagine how much effort you had put in to reach that level at your age.」
If I had to say, it was the Dance Princess’ power that played a large part in resolving the stampede, but since I don’t plan on needlessly giving information, I simply replied with a smile.
In the end, what did Viviana-san really approach us for Did she come to say that they’ll be monitoring me since I’m dangerous or something
Still, for some reason, Viviana-san seems to be red in the cheeks and somewhat embarrassed right now.
「I don’t expect you to tell me about your sorcery.
So, I want to ask you to look at my sorcery.
And if you notice something weird about it, please tell me about it.」
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Hearing her words, my eyes blinked in surprise.
How can I describe this, it’s somewhat like how a young baseball player would ask a professional athlete to look at their play.
Ignoring the fact that Viviana-san should be the pro here, making this comparison a bit weird, it seems that her goal was actually to ask a younger girl to teach her about sorcery even if she had to bear her own shame.
Still, Ciel is better than me in the theoretical parts of sorcery though.
And it’s not like I can just tell her to drink a pill that would make her magic power go berserk and turn her hair into magic circuits and such.
「I don’t really mind, but my way of using sorcery is awfully peculiar, so there’s no assurance that what I’ll say would be worthwhile, alright」
「I don’t mind.」
Considering that she’ll be showing us her sorcery for free, I’m happy to oblige.
Besides, I’m also curious about how our pursuer would act when there’s no people around.
Moreover, I’m interested to see if Viviana-san and our stalker are related to each other, so there’s no reason to decline.
「In that case, shall we go outside」
「By outside, you mean outside the capital, right That would be a bit……」
As Viviana-san hesitated to continue, I shot her a gaze of suspicion.
With my eyes fixed on her, Viviana-san raised her hands in resignation.
「Viviana-san, let me ask you again.
What brought you here today」
「I’m here to guard you.
It is absolutely necessary that we complete our reports and investigations by tomorrow afternoon, but the guildmaster might attempt to harass you in the meantime.
While it seems like this was unnecessary, it’s more relieving on our side if you stayed somewhere we could keep in check.」
「Yet despite that, why did you ask me to see your sorcery then」
The instant Viviana-san showed hesitance in leaving the capital, my suspicions of her were already cleared.
Still, that part didn’t really make much sense.
Asking me to look at her sorcery practically means that we would have to go outside the capital, in other words, to a lawless land.
If I were to die outside the capital, it could be reported that I was unluckily killed by monsters or thieves, and it’s not really unusual for things to end just like that.
「While it’s true that I’m here to guard you, I really meant it when I said that I asked for a chance to have a chat with you.
As a sorcerer, I thought that I should never let this chance slip by.
But due to that, I suppose I got a bit too excited.」
「And because of this, you didn’t notice that it’ll be necessary to go outside to show your sorcery, correct」
Viviana-san didn’t give me an answer, but her averted gaze answered me in her place.
Heya~! Another chapter, another new character interaction~! With: Sorcerer Viviana~!
First of all, the first half with Ciel just sleeping was cute~ Particularly with how Ain actually used Ciel’s body because Ciel insisted that she should.
On one hand, Ain wants Ciel to rest; on the other hand, Ciel wants Ain to be more proactive with what she wants.
And then we have Ca-… Viviana.
Now this was also cute, lol.
Imagine a grown lady blushing in embarrassment as she asks a younger girl to teach her, adorable.
She really serves as a nice contrast to our beloved sorcery nut, Carol.
While Carol had no issues with treating Ciel (Ain) as an equal, or more like she just isn’t good at dealing with children, lol; Viviana has a lot more common sense, but is also not above doing what other people would consider to be shameful for the sake of learning.
Well, in short: Carol doesn’t have any ounce of shame in her being (absolutely no offense intended, this is actually a good thing in this context), while Viviana does but is also stubborn enough to disregard it for the sake of learning.
It’s said that you need to be a fool to become wise, and Viviana truly is not afraid of making a fool of herself for the sake of self-improvement.
As expected of someone from a party named Fools’ Gathering.
Meanwhile, it seems like trouble is a-brewin’ once again as Ain detects *yet* another stalker marking them.