Berkton is a small town that deals in wines. I was told this by Baynard while we were walking towards the town. I’m not really sure how it’s small if it deals with wines, but I guess it could be small if those wines are expensive.
Though that would just lead to higher paying clients coming from else where to buy them, which in turn would bring people who follow in the footsteps of those higher paying clients that possibly, and probably, deal in other types of merchandise. This would lead to an economic boom for the town, increasing the amount of people traveling to the town.
Thus, I have concluded that this town is probably just getting started in dealing with wines and was just founded fairly recently. It seems that wine trading is pretty profitable right now, as the world is in a time of general peace, aside from the monsters that roam the world.
“Wait, then why are you bringing fine wines to a town that specializes in wine?” I asked.
“Because, even if a town specializes in wine, people like wine. I can use it as a bartering chip to get other items that I can sell for a higher price.” Baynard says with a smile.
Makes sense to me.
As we draw closer to the town, I see a small line in front of a gate. Getting closer, the line turns from small, to very long.
“How long do you think it will take to get into the town this time?” Aelesia asks.
“Probably 2-3 hours.” Phil answers.
Standing in line for 2-3 hours?! It’s hard enough to imagine standing in line doing nothing for an hour, but double, or triple that? This is going to be a long day, isn’t it?
“Hey Baynard.” One of the guards says after we pull up to the gate. “Hope your wait wasn’t too long.”
“Nah, it wasn’t that long. Just had to wait a couple hours.” Baynard replies.
A couple of hours isn’t that long? I would disagree, good sir. It felt like half a day had passed, and no one really wanted to talk to me.
“So, what are you bringing this time?” The other guard asks.
“Oh, just some wine.” Baynard says, leaning in. “Just between you and me, I got it for a really good price. I can give you a bit later, if you want.”
“No, no. You know I don’t drink. Not after that last drinking session I was at.”
“Oh, that’s right. Oh well.” Baynard says, faking a frown on his face.
“Well, carry on. Go on through.”
We begin walking through the gate, when suddenly one of the guards stops me.
“Hey, wait. Hold the carriage. I don’t think I’ve seen you before. Your clothes don’t look like their from Zoral either.” The guard walks closer to me, leaning in to get a closer look at my face.
The first thought that runs through my mind is bad breath. I don’t know how I didn’t notice it before, but this man’s breath is putrid.
“What’s the matter?” Baynard asks, walking over to me.
“Is this guy with you?”
“Yes. I hired him to carry some of my things.”
“I don’t see him carrying anything. Are you lying to me?”
“No, no.” Baynard says, hushing his tone. “He’s got [Storage Box], so you can’t see where the items are.”
“I see. Well, if he’s with you then he’s alright. Sorry for the delay.”
“It’s no problem.” I say, continuing to walk into town.
The town’s entrance is lined with business. I can count at least three food stalls selling food to the people who just entered. Several people who were in front of us in that long line are there buying food, entering buildings, or continuing on several different roads.
“Where do we need to go now?” I ask Baynard as we approach the food stalls.
“You and I are going to meet my business associate, while Phil and Aelesia are going back to the Adventurer’s Guild. I can take you there after this as well, if you’d like. I’ll take one, please.” He says while buying some food from a stall. He takes out a few copper coins from his coin purse and gives it to the person working the stall. The person joyfully receives it, and rushes to get what looks to be a meat kabob.
“I’ll take you up on that offer.” I say.
After taking a short break to eat what was an un-spiced meat kabob that had very little flavor, we walked to Baynard’s business associate. The building we had to come to is a large building that’s gated off from the rest of the town. The gate is protected by a couple more guards. The guards notice us coming closer, along with the wagon, and quickly open the gate.
“I take it you’re a regular with this guy?” I say to Baynard.
“You could say that. I’ve known the guy since I was 8 years old, and he’s my longest business partner.”
As we pass through the gate, a young teenage girl runs out of the building.
“Uncle!” The girl says, jumping with her arms open to greet Baynard.
“Hey!” Baynard says, catching her in his arms. “How’re you doing, Isobelle?”
“I’ve been good! I’ll be going to school next year, and my tutor has been teaching me more advanced magic!” The girl says.
She must be about 14 or 15 years old, wearing a long blue dress. She has long, brown hair going down to her hips. Her eyes are a beautiful sky blue. Sh-She’s beautiful. Possibly the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen. Ah, no good. I’ve got to stop staring. I need to make a good first impression.
“So,” the girl says, looking at me. “Who’s this?”
Ah, her tone is a bit harsh. I need to answer quickly.
“I am Byron. Byron Darius. I am helping Baynard carry some things.” I say, making a formal bow.
“What’s with this guy? His clothes are weird, too.” Isobelle says to Baynard. “He’s not even carrying anything. Is this guy just following you, Uncle? I can get rid of him if you want.”
“No, no. This guy really is helping me carry things. He’s using [Storage Box], so you just can’t see it.”
“Is that so?” Isobelle says, turning to look at me. Her gaze turns from suspicious into expectant.
“Yes, it’s true. I’ll prove it to you right now.” So much for keeping this a secret. “[Storage Box]”
I pull out a [Bronze Short Sword] that I got from the goblins not too long ago using a fake chant. Isobelle’s eyes light up and a smile appears on her face. Then quickly, the smile disappears.
“That wasn’t [Storage Box]. That was a skill more powerful than [Storage Box].” She says, her body now shaking.
“Are you sure?” Baynard asks. “Have you even seen [Storage Box] used before?” Baynard quickly walks over to me, and grabs my shoulders. “What skill are you using, son?”
“I… I can’t tell you that.” I say, darting my eyes away.
“Why not?” Baynard says.
“I don’t want to get dragged into things I don’t want to do, or get involved with troublesome people.” I say, looking back at Baynard’s eyes.
“I see.” He says, letting go of my shoulders. Suddenly, he turns around. “So, Isobelle, what skill is he using?”
I quickly attempt to run over to Isobelle, but he puts his arm out in front of me, knocking me to the ground.
“H-He’s using [Inventory],” Isobelle says, her body trembling even more.
“What?!” Baynard says, picking me up off the ground. “You, you have [Inventory]?”
I slowly nod my head, looking away once again.
“Th-This is big news! We have to tell the king!” Baynard says, rushing around in circles.
“N-No!” I say, “You can’t! This is exactly what I don’t want!”
“B-But,” Isobelle says, “There’s a law saying that we have to tell the king if someone able to use the skills [Inventory], [Analyze], or [Language Translation] shows up.”
“Wh-Why is that?” I say, a cold sweat running down my cheek.
“The hero who founded this country hailed from what he claimed to be another world. He is the only person in history to have these skills. The third king in our nations history founded this law, thinking that if someone had even one of these skills, they must be a hero.” Isobelle explains.
“Hahaha.” I say, darting my eyes away.
“You have all of those skills, don’t you?” Baynard says, grabbing my shoulders.
“N-No. There’s no way I could have those skills, right?” I wave my hand in front of my face.
“It would explain those weird clothes. And besides, what’s wrong with being called a hero?” Isobelle asks. “I mean, you get a high ranking nobility title, and can ask for just about anything you want. It’s basically free stuff in this time of peace.”
“Except,” Baynard says, “if there’s a hero that was brought to this world, then there must be a time of strife coming.”
“Look, I don’t know if there is a time of strife coming or not. What I do know is that I wasn’t meant to be brought here.” I say, looking down towards the ground.
“What do you mean?” Isobelle says.
“My coming here was an accident. I can’t really explain more than that because you wouldn’t believe me. But it’s the truth,” I say. “Anyways, can we please just get on with what we came here to do originally, okay?”
“We can’t really just ignore what was said here.” Baynard says.
“Well then, how about we just tell my father about this, and see what he says to do.” Isobelle says.
“Fine,” I say walking forward a bit. “Lets do that. If he agrees that I should be sent to the king, I’ll begrudgingly do it. But if he says not to, then I won’t go for now. We still have the business deal to go through with anyways.”
“Hmm. Fine, I guess we can do that. I still think that you should go to the king anyways.” A sigh leaks out from his mouth. “The guild will find out almost immediately anyways.” Baynard mutters under his breath.