Once they turned right from the Lord’s mansion, the red brick road showed up again. People were still glancing at Senia but nothing else stood out. Most people are just busy worrying about their daily chores.
“After we have a new Lord, the city of Serendipirel had a new system called examination. Instead of asking the Lord for anything, we have to take a test of the corresponding difficulty.”
“Yes, we were asked to fight monsters.”
Moz slowed down remembering how that the system was the same as a death wish for an ordinary woman like her.
“The bigger the request, the stronger the monster you have to deal with. My husband, who protested the new system, lost his eyes after being tested by the lord on the condition of abolishing the test system. His wound is getting worse and worse… I went to see the lord to buy special medicine.”
The loud, depressed sigh came out of Moz’s mouth and sensing her slightly trembling shoulder, Senia quietly handed over a handkerchief. Moz quietly took it and dabbed it around her eyes.
“They told me that I need to handle three dwarf monsters if I wanted to get my medicine. I couldn’t have committed suicide for my husband.”
“The dwarf monsters?”
“….maybe goblins. It’s the most common and easy to catch. There’s a similar system like this in the Colosseum in the western city, but I’ve never seen it to be pushed for civilians.”
“You know that? Have you been there?”
“No, I only captured and sold them as a request.”
They did not only request dwarves but also various types of monsters such as werewolf, ogres, also goblin. In Carr’s experience who only worked for a short time because he didn’t get enough money compared to the risk. In his opinion, it was clear that the Lord here had more than one kind goblin.
Senia on the other hand was quietly lost in her thought after listening to Moz’s story. She frowned slightly and her expression clearly stated many worries.
“Is the lord monopolizing some drugs?” Senia asked carefully once the two men finished inquiring.
“Yes, the lord manages all the drugs that are difficult to obtain or those that are magical which is difficult to produce.”
Moz stopped in front of her house, a colourful two-story building painted in bright scarlet colour. With the pretty shiny windows and strong roofs, the house looked quite rich from the outside.
“We have arrived.” She said and told them to wait for a moment as she would organize everything inside to welcome them.
The three travellers just stood calmly in front of the door and waited until she returned. There was silence between them that did not match the bright street. Carr, who was agonizing over what to do, tapped Senia’s shoulder who was in a daze. He wanted to know what made her thinking so deeply.
Senia, who opened her eyes wide in surprise, looked at Carr and quickly able to read his intention.
“I hope it was a mistake, but…”
“Huh? What are you thinking?”
“There have been several similar cases in the past when individuals monopolize medical supplies, but they have always failed. Do you know why?”
“Because of gods’ miracle.”
“That’s right, even a very first lower-ranking priest able to call upon their divinity to give miracle and treat the people. If someone monopolizes medicinal herbs and offers unreasonable prices, it would be cheaper for them to go to a nearby city to donate money to the temple and receive the miracle. The church also treats people who are in need for free of charge.”
However, that wasn’t the case of Serendipirel.
It wasn’t because there were no temples in the city, nor because it was difficult for them to reach another city. It was because they didn’t believe the act of miracles which was instigated by the Lord of the city.
‘You can’t help but question whether it was intended or not.’
“Ha-ha. He pushed the temple afraid that there would be a priest who could use real miracles later. Is Serendipirel going to be turned upside down today? What do you think, Senia?”
After hearing the explanation, Tess already concluded about the Lord’s plot. He wasn’t a good man that he would say that everything was a coincidence. On the other hand, Senia, who was not able to easily talk about it, just smiled at the question.
“I’m just doing what I can.”
‘….Then how come your voice is so cold?’
Carr shook his head, feeling a chill ran through his spine hearing her voice. He knew that Senia had devoted her body to a demon so she could save people. She cherishes life more than anything else, so it wasn’t surprising that she was angry at the Lord’s behaviour for monopolizing the medicine and forcing civilians to take the test which is beyond their capability.
“I’m sorry to have kept you waiting for long.”
The tightly closed front door finally opened and Moz greeted her three guests and welcomed them inside. The house was quiet and clean. They could spot luxurious items such as rugs and gold sculptures scattered around the house and gave harmonized feelings to the house overall.
There was a shiny leather sofa in the living room and a man sitting helplessly on it. Anybody can tell that he was Moz’s husband. The man had his eyes covered with white bandages. He turned his head slowly, feeling the presence of the three.
“Welcome. I’m sorry that I can’t greet you properly or quickly. You must have been waiting for a while, please take it easy and sit down.”
The man had introduced himself as Feber. Although his voice was not cheerful or warm, he didn’t hesitate to welcome the visitors as nicely as possible. He had heard the story from his wife earlier so in a way he knew the gist of the situation.
“Thank you for your hospitality despite our sudden visit.”
“It’s a custom around here that if we don’t welcome travellers, we can’t catch a big fish for a year. There are many empty rooms, so please don’t forget to take a rest.” Feber bowed his head which Senia followed quickly.
Tess didn’t know why she had done so when the man wouldn’t be able to see her anyway, while Carr murmured a thank you, imitating Senia.
Moz stood beside her husband, glancing at the three travellers, and fidget slightly. She brought the group to her house with a small hope that the medicine they had to treat her husband would have a similar effect as the one she wanted to get from the Lord.
Senia took a step forward before stopping not too far from Faber.
“I will take off the bandage for a moment.” She tells Moz.
As Senia slowly undo the bandage carefully, the face underneath was a mess. The wound on both eyes was still clear and deep, the eyelids fester making it difficult to see the original colour.
Moz didn’t even have the stomach to look at the face of her husband but Senia calmly looked at the wound. She had saved people who were considered dead on the battlefield, so she didn’t have to talk about the situation. Rather, she could not talk because she thought of how painful it must be for Feber.
“….How is it?” Feber asked, suppressing his trembling voice.
“Let’s not expect too much from her,” Moz said quietly, not wanting to have high expectations.
However, he was very lucky in this case. He heard the lady in front of him recited something before light flashed in front of him. Shortly afterward he heard his wife screaming and fall backward. Surprised, Feber jumped from the sofa and looked at the source of the sound.
“Moz?! What’s wrong….”
He could see. He could see his wife, who was looking surprised at him. He could see his familiar living room and even the three guests that he saw for the first time today. The face that always hurt now was flawless and he could see again.
“W-What the hell are you….?! Are you a powerful wizard?!”
“No, I am not.” Senia smiled awkwardly before she officially introduced herself.
Feber and Moz were shocked at the reveal as they bowed on the floor. There was nothing more of perfect shock therapy for those who didn’t believe in miracles than to see it happened right in front of them. Senia was embarrassed and tried to stop them but the couple continued to bow and apologize.
It took them almost three hours for the couple to calm down and for Senia to teach the existence of miracles. She explained the type of miracle that could be done, the characteristics of each church and the difference between a priest and a saint. She explained everything in detail that both Carr and Tess ended up learning something new.
After all the explanations, Feber was furious. He was convinced that the lord had instigated the people to enjoy the test. For someone who had participated in the test, he had seen the Lord’s face smiling happily while watching them fight for their life against the monsters.
“Huh…. I don’t know what to do with this information….” Feber sighed to the other men that were still sitting around the table.
Earlier, Moz had gone to prepare the meal and Senia joined to help her in the kitchen. Tess, who was tired with all the sighs, opened his mouth showing a bit of annoyance.
“Why don’t you talk to other people about the matter?”
“It’s far too late for that. The lord’s army of monsters is beyond our reach.”
“….You have to take the test one by one while matching it to the exam or something like that right? Just hire an expert.”
“Oh, that’s a good idea. You happen to be mercenary, right?”
“What? You mean Sir Carr?”
They could see that there was a high expectation in Feber’s voice. Carr scratched his neck, not wanting to bluntly reject the man.
“We need to catch a boat anyway. I don’t care if I help you as much as she allows it.”
“It’s Senia. Why aren’t you calling her by her name? Don’t you feel frustrated?” Tess smiled mischievously at Carr who silently crossed his arms and avoided answering.
“Oh, are you embarrassed? You’re not even a seven-year-old boy.”
“I don’t care. This is what I’m used to and you’re just childish.”
“Really? But Senia likes it this way better.” Tess quickly added which was a low blow to Carr.
Carr just clicked his tongue and avoided eye contact. It would be nice if their conversation just ended here and didn’t continue.
Feber who was watching the two just smiled awkwardly. Fortunately, the meal soon came out of the kitchen.
“Have you been waiting for long?”
Carr widened his eyes when he saw Senia carrying the tray. She was wearing a sky-blue dress lent by Moz and had her silver hair tied in a high ponytail. She looked different from usual. She didn’t look like an elegant saint but like most aristocratic ladies.
Her bashful smile was turned into a full-watt smile that is filled with loveliness and for a moment Carr thinks he forgot to breathe and just stare enchantingly at her look.
“I just need to carry the rest of the meal out. There aren’t many fish dishes in the main church, so it took time for me to cook things.”
“It’s a sin to have the saint prepare a meal. Please don’t mind the trivial things like this in the future.”
“It’s okay. I was the one that insists and because of that I learned a lot from Moz.”
“Oh, I will help you car—.”
However, before Tess could finish his word, Carr already got up and helped Senia. She waved her hand to say that she could handle it, but she could never beat Carr’s power, so the tray was eventually taken away.
Both Fever and Tess grumbled quietly, murmuring how they could have helped too. Although in Tess’s case he just ended up glaring at Carr for no apparent reason.
“There, Senia. Isn’t it better to call each other by name?”
“Hmm? That’s …. I guess so?”
“Huh. By the way, Carr has never called you with your name even when he was alone with me. He didn’t even think of calling your name. Does he hate to say it?”
“Oi, one more useless talk from you and I will drag you out.”
Tess cross both her index fingers making an X shape and put it on his lips. However, he was already smiling after saying everything that he wanted to say.
Carr looked back worriedly to Senia and as expected she had avoided his gaze and stood there like a doll statue.
She wasn’t disappointed about the situation, but she couldn’t help but drown in her thoughts for a while. By the time she opened her mouth to respond, her cheeks were already flushed red.
“T-That’s all right. I think it’s also better to call Sir Carr as it is now and vice versa.”
“….I might run away because I’m embarrassed…” She mumbled quietly while her mind recalled Carr’s thick low voice calling her name.
Just imagining it alone was enough to make her heart beat faster and her face heated up that she couldn’t standstill. Even though it just her silly imagination, she wanted to run away from the room. In the end, she just smiled awkwardly to hide her embarrassment however Carr made a low frustrated sound.
Although he appreciated her words, it was also true that he was not frustrated inside. However, when he looked at Tess’s satisfied expression, he decided to just shrug and returned to his seat.
The dinner was filled with an awkward ambience. The couple, who were worried about the Lord, deliberately talked about the bright things at their place. They praised the cuisine, boasted the city’s attraction, and shared old folk tales of the Pirel River. At the same time, Tess and Carr’s shared their adventures.
Once dinner was done, the couple prepared the rooms for each of their guest on the second floor. Feber went down first, waiting to see Senia. He knew that she would help him with the matter – if she could do more miracles that would be great but if not, he would ask Carr to do the job.