30 minutes since departure. The carriages lined up alongside each other and traveled through the mountain road surrounded by trees. It was dim due to all of the trees and while the cold was a little unpleasant, the winds were refreshing.
While I was enjoying the atmosphere like that, Roche-san called out to me.
“Say, Ryouma. Don’t you have any plans of getting monsters other than slimes?” [Roche]
His gaze was pointed at the heal slime on my head that was helping us keep watch.
“Actually, I have rimel birds too.” [Ryouma]
“Really? And here I thought you had nothing but slimes with you.” [Roche]
“Well, most of my monsters are slimes.” [Ryouma]
“How about getting other types too?” [Roche]
“Ah… It’s not like I’m obsessed with slimes or anything, but the slimes have a lot of variants, so they’re interesting. I’m in no particular trouble, so I don’t really feel the need to proactively go out and look for other monsters.” [Ryouma]
“I see… The thing is if you’re no good with people, I was thinking you could also supplement your strength with monsters.” [Roche]
Use monsters in place of a party? Wait a sec. What does he mean by ‘no good with people’?
“Roche, I know you’re worried about Ryouma-kun, but you don’t have to rush him so much.” [Lucy]
“Hmm… Well, yeah. It’s just when I start thinking about it I can’t help but worry…” [Roche]
“Good grief. If you’re like this too, then you’re not in any place to be making fun of the guild master, are you? Ryouma-kun, sorry about this. I know he’s annoying.” [Lucy]
“It’s alright. I’m happy he’s concerned about me.” [Ryouma]
When I told her I was grateful for his concern, Lucy-san laughed and said ‘What a nice kid you are.”
“There might be a lot of people trying to poke their nose into your business, but you don’t have to listen to all of them, okay? Although I do share their sentiments that you shouldn’t do anything dangerous or reckless, but I also think that you shouldn’t hold back if there’s something that you really want to do.” [Lucy]
“Thank you very much.” [Ryouma]
“It’s fine. Ah, but let me say this, it might be a waste if you just keep slimes as your monsters. It’s fine to gather slimes, but since you can use Monster Taming, don’t you think it would be a waste if you don’t check the other monsters out too?
For example, if you had a horse-type like a red horse or a battle horse, then you could ride them and get around much easier. I think it’s really convenient to have a monster that could substitute for your pair of legs.” [Lucy]
“That’s true.” [Ryouma]
Presently, I’m able to get around through my dimension magic. That’s not really a problem, but if I had a monster that could help me move about, then I would be able to conserve my mana and my stamina.
It’s impossible for the slimes and the rimel birds to carry me, and even if they could, it would still be faster for me to move by myself, so if I’m to carry out her suggestion, I would have to catch a new monster.
“If you’re worried, why not consult the tamer guild once? If I recall correctly, they should have a reception window for dealing with that sort of stuff. Actually, didn’t they recommend you to do just that?” [Lucy]
“Actually… I have registered, but I only had slimes at the start, so I couldn’t get any work. Ever since I opened my store and had to turn in the people from the guild that were pestering me, I’ve rarely visited the place. I don’t particularly have an issue with the guild or anything, it’s just that I find it difficult to go if I don’t have any business there.” [Ryouma]
“Then why don’t you use this as an opportunity to drop by? From the looks of things it seems you haven’t taken the ‘Monster Tamer Affinity Diagonsis’ either, have you?” [Lucy]
“I haven’t. Is that a thing?” [Ryouma]
First I’m hearing of it.
“The tamer guild provides various monsters, so you can try forming a contract with them. They take the results and compare it with your previous results to try and find out which monsters you’re good with and which you’re bad with.” [Lucy]
“Isn’t it free for first timers?” [Roche]
“It is. If I’m remembering correctly, anyway. That’s why you should drop by and give it a shot.” [Lucy]
Indeed. It’s not inconvenient for me right now, so it does seem like a good idea to take it. I’ll go once before I forget.
“What kind of monsters are useful to adventurers?” [Ryouma]
“For me it’s the ones you can ride on. I’ve always looked up to those guys who can ride on their wyverns and soar the skies.” [Roche]
“For me it’s the fairy types. I can use magic and supposedly these fairies can heighten the effects of my spells. Unfortunately, monster taming is difficult and finding the fairies is also a problem.” [Lucy]
These two veterans really talk about some interesting stuff.
But while talking to them like this for a while, we eventually ran out of topics and became silent.
The atmosphere in the carriage is really heavy when it’s quiet like this.
When I turned my eyes to the students, they all froze up. Ever since the match there’s been a portion of the students who have been avoiding me, but these guys are part of the group that acknowledged me. It’s just that they ended up adopting the ‘anyway, he’s amazing’ mindset when it comes to me, and now they have no idea how to approach me.
They can talk to Roche-san and the others just fine, but when I join the conversation, they stop talking. And in the end, we ended up like this. The way they look at me almost reeks of envy, and unfortunately, that’s also a problem in its own way. Still, this is better than the atmosphere you’d see when the boss of a disliked person enters the bus for a company outing.