It’s Ko-Fi’s Supporters’ chapter (84/110), enjoy~
Chapter 149 – Rear Base
“I’ve never heard big sis Shumel make a voice like that before.”
“I wonder if that’s her real voice.”
A few hours after departing from Erichburg, we arrived at the rear base ― the base that used to be called the main base ― and went outside the gondola to enjoy the fresh air. This base has inexhaustible vein holes that can pump out magic power and wards to keep out monsters, and it is a base that makes the most of its inexhaustible supply of magic power and uses various magic tools powered by magic power in its daily life.
Waterwheel-powered and magic-powered processing machines run all over the base, processing ore collected from the surrounding wilderness and wood brought in from the Black Forest. There are also machines that extract and refine the overflowing magical power and extract it as magic crystals, as well as machines that artificially create magic metals by transforming iron, steel, copper, silver, and other metals with magical power. However, the magic metals did not seem to be going well.
So, what’s up with the topic about Shumel?
“Okay, okay. That was scary.
“Somehow, I feel sorry for you.”
She was crying while holding her knees at some distance. Isla and Grande are consoling her, and the height of their heads is almost the same: Shumel sitting on her knees, and the two standing patting her head and rubbing her back. The difference in physique is amazing. Or rather, is it okay to use Grande’s hands to rub her back? Wouldn’t she get scratches or something?
“You’re afraid of heights, aren’t you, Shumel?”
“Yeah, I guess I am.”
“I never noticed that before.”
The two members of the trio had no idea about Shumel’s fear of heights.
“Hmm… I’ll leave Shumel to you.”
Leaving the stunned Tozume and Bella behind, I dashed into the rear base. I’m sure Isla and Grande will be fine. The Harpies have entered the rear base to gather information ahead of time, so I’m thinking of joining them there.
“I can’t have you running off like that.”
“To be honest, I’m sorry.”
Ms. Zamir, my escort who was following behind me as I dashed, was angry with me. Because I didn’t want to just sit there and watch Shumel lying on the ground, I didn’t feel comfortable.
“So, what are you going to do after this?”
“We’re going to stay here for the night. There is nothing we can do with Shumel in that condition. We’ll gather information and finish preparations today and tomorrow, set a destination tomorrow night, and leave the day after tomorrow morning.”
While roughly discussing the future plan with Ms. Zamir, I headed for the gate of the base.
“Hey, I’m coming through!”
“Thank you for your hard work!”
The people living in the rear base were freed. Most of the people living in the rear base were sheltered here in the very early stages of the Liberation Army. I remembered almost all of them, so I could basically pass by the gate or anywhere else. Well, the only people who come here in the first place are the Liberation Army transport troops with escorts, us, or the elves of the Black Forest, so the gatekeepers are mostly a formality.
But from a security standpoint, we can’t afford not to have them. There’s also the possibility that an unidentified traveler might wander in.
I passed through the gate and headed straight for the center of the base. Pirna and the other three Harpies should have entered the base first to gather information, but I’m unsure where they are. The only places I can think of are the large cafeteria in the center of the base, or maybe a meeting place. If they’re gathering information, they’ll be in a place where people gather.
“Danna-san, you came here, huh?”
When I walked into the cafeteria, I found Ygrett, the white Harpy of the large bird species, and Capri, the brown Harpy of the small bird species, chatting with the base’s inhabitants. The people they talked to seemed to have finished their morning work in the fields early and were taking a break. From the sun’s position, it’s still a little early for lunch, so they’re probably just resting here until lunch.
“Yeah. Did you get any useful information?”
The purpose of this expedition is to search for old Adelian scriptures that contain the teachings of Adelian before they were altered, in order for one of the Adelian sects that are relatively friendly to the Liberation Army, the Nostalgic sect to which the Saint of Truth Eleonora belongs, to compete with the mainstream Adelian sect.
I asked the four Harpies, Pirna, Ygrett, Eyja, and Capri, to go into the rear base before us and gather information on whether they had seen any such items and whether they had any information on ruins where such items were lying.
“It seems that a good number of ruins have been found, but they have not been excavated.”
“It’s hard to dig up the ground. There are still a lot of Gizma around here.”
“I see. Well, then, can you make sure to get the exact location of the ruins?”
“I’ll check out the meeting place as well.”
I’ll leave this to them and move to the meeting place. It’s easy to understand the role of the grand cafeteria from its name, but a meeting place is a gathering place for people who are in charge of various jobs within the base, such as a group of craftsmen, a group of farmers, leaders of explorers who search for various things outside the base, a group of people who take care of children, and the manager of the warehouse who manages food and other supplies. It’s a place where people who are in charge of various tasks in the base gather to coordinate each other’s work, supplies, and allocation of personnel. It may sound like a stuffy place, but it’s a place where people with positions gather to have well-informed discussions.
“I’m sorry for interrupting. And Pirna’s here too, huh?”
When I entered the meeting place, I saw Pirna, the blue Harpy, talking to the sheep beastman who was organizing this rear base. Eyja, the brown Harpy, is a very quiet person, so she’s not very good at talking. That’s why she’s working with Pirna, the leader.
“You are here too, Danna-sama? Have you been to the grand cafeteria?”
“Yeah, I came by.”
“Oh, I see. We’re going to get a copy of the map of the area here.”
“That’s good. Just knowing the surrounding terrain will make our search much easier.”
It’s kind of hard to keep searching for something you have no idea where it is without a map. I’m very grateful to have a map.
“Have there been any books or other artifacts found in the excavation?”
“No excavations are going on except for the underground ruins of this base. Even though there are crossbows that are effective against Gizma, when it comes to excavating ruins, you have to sit and dig for days or even weeks…”
The man with the fluffy white hair looked apologetic as he said this.
“I see. We don’t have that much room yet, do we? The remaining personnel is mainly craftsmen, researchers, and farmers.”
“Yes, that’s what it is… In the meantime, former adventurer residents are gathering and digging, making maps of the area, mining various materials, and escorting miners, but we haven’t gotten around to excavating the ruins…”
“No, no, you don’t need to apologize so much. I’ve seen people walking around in the grand cafeteria and in the streets, and they all look peaceful and happy. I don’t think there’s been any mistake in the policy so far.”
“I see… Thank you for your generous words.”
The sheep beastman wiped away his tears; his eyes were moist. He’s a tearful man!
“Well… that’s right, I’d like to stay here for two days today and tomorrow, and then go exploring. Can you arrange a couple of vacant houses for me?”
“Leave it to me. As for Kosuke-sama’s accommodations, the ones you used when you built this base are still there. It’s been cleaned properly, so you can use it as it is.”
“In that case, I’ll take advantage of it. Can you assign Isla, Grande, and the Harpies to my side, and Shumel and Ms. Zamir to the rented house?”
“That’s fine, I guess.”
Ms. Zamir and Pirna agreed with me. Eyja nodded her head, so she was fine with it.
“That’s it then. Can you arrange for bedding and such?”
“Leave it to me. It will soon be time for lunch. What do you want to do, Kosuke-sama?”
“What am I going to do? Since it’s almost time for lunch, how about we have lunch in the grand cafeteria?”
“Yes, I’m interested to see what kind of food they serve.”
“I think it’s important to see what life is like in this base.”
Pirna, out of curiosity, and Ms. Zamir, as if they were advising royalty or something, agreed to have lunch at the grand cafeteria.
“I’m supposed to be a commoner myself.”
“Hahaha, you’re kidding.”
“You’re not a civilian, are you, Kosuke-dono?”
“I don’t think Danna-sama is a civilian either.”
The three of them, the sheep beastman, Ms. Zamir, and Pirna, quickly denied it. Why?
“Oh, and I’ve got some supplies and materials from Erichburg. I’d like to put them in the warehouse after we finish eating. Also, I’d like to get an idea of the location of the ruins, so can you gather as much information as you can?”
“Yes, sir. I’ll contact the person in charge of the supply warehouse. I will tell him to provide the information about the ruins to the person in charge of the outer area.”
“Please do. Well then, I guess we’ll go to the grand cafeteria.”
“Yes, sir. I’ll have the map ready by tomorrow.”
“Thank you again. See you.”
I left the meeting place after parting ways with the sheep beastman leader. I looked up at the sky and saw that the sun was almost directly overhead. It’s nearly noon, isn’t it?
“Pirna, I’m sorry, but can you go tell Isla and the others at the landing site to come to the grand cafeteria?”
“Yes! I’ll be going.”
Pirna smiled and flew away, probably happy that she was asked to do so. Eyja looked at Pirna as she flew away and me and seemed unsure of what to do.
“Eyja, I think you should come with me to the grand cafeteria.”
Eyja nodded her head and smiled happily. U-umu, but she is really taciturn, isn’t she?
When I returned to the grand cafeteria, I took Eyja, who was in a good mood, and Ms. Zamir, who had the usual sullen expression (to be honest, I can’t discern the expression of Ms. Zamir, who is a lizard woman), and found Ygrett and Capri waiting near the entrance.
“Welcome back. Did you finish your conversation at the meeting place?”
“Yes, we’ve been given a copy of the map. We will get it tomorrow, so we can compare it with the information they gave us and decide on our destination. I’ve just asked Pirna to call the other five, so we can write down the information they’ve given us while we’re at it.”
“That’s a good idea. You might forget it as time goes by.”
I put a log or a wooden box as a chair near the cafeteria entrance, where it wouldn’t interfere with the flow of people, and asked Ygrett and Capri for information on where the ruins might be.
“I see, in the middle of the northeastern wilderness is what looks like some kind of historical site, at the foot of the eastern hill are many unnaturally shaped rocks that look like they are made of stone, and to the west is a large dry pit that looks like the remains of a lake, and around it are the remains of what looks like some kind of historic structure.”
“Where should we look?”
Capri tilted her head. The others also seemed to be pondering where to start looking.
“It would be nice if we could discover the remains of a library or church. A map of the time would be helpful.”
“If it’s a library, it can’t be near a lake, can it? Humidity is not good for storing books and scrolls. If it’s near a lake, there will be fog, and if it gets flooded, it will be a disaster.”
Ms. Zamir gives us a highly convincing opinion. Yeah, I guess that might be true.
“I think it’s a good idea. Let’s look at the northeast and east first, then. There may be other information gathered, so we’ll make a final decision tomorrow night.”
Ms. Zamir nodded in satisfaction. She is calm and intelligent. I thought she was more of a musclehead because I had a strong image of her happily jumping into hand-to-hand combat with a spear during the battle for the fort, but she doesn’t seem to be that way.
“I’ve brought everyone here!”
As we were discussing this, Pirna came back with Isla and the others. Shumel is… yeah, she seems to have recovered a bit, though not as she normally does.
I guess we’ll have to try the lunch in the grand cafeteria then.