Blacksmith of the Apocalypse

Chapter 278: The Lords of Minas Mar

”Wow, so this is how demons live? ” the fairy marveled at the sight of the chaotic demon city.

The other day had ended rather abruptly after Seth finished Mina ’s gear. They didn ’t get the chance to talk to Neeco anymore as he had vanished in his apartment and didn ’t respond to phone calls anymore. He might still be asleep even now.

Seth held his promise brought the fairy into the demon district. Like a child in a candy shop, she buzzed around at high speed as if she had to take in all the impressions at once.

Even though she was almost as old as the sorceress, she too had no experience with demons. Normally they were on opposite sides of the battlefield. Being able to see demons up close instead of fighting them or their followers was a completely new experience.

”Calm down, Fin. We have all day to look around, ” he said with a smile at the fairy ’s innocence.

”Fin? ”

Where did the fairy vanish to?

”Fin? ”

The fairy was gone! He had lost sight of her in the light mist of the demon district! He had lost Fin in the demon district. But how?

It couldn ’t be that someone kidnapped her. Fin was way too strong. There was only one possibility!

”Boo! ” the high-pitched shout scared him from behind.

She had pranked him. Seth took a deep breath.

”hahaha, it ’s great to be young. ” an old shopkeeper commented from the side. He looked like an old wrinkly dinosaur with a pair of small round reading glasses on his snout. He wore the regal late medieval robe. His little stall was also a cart and was filled with old books and yellowed scripts.

”Little Fairy Friend, might I be able to interest you in my wares? ” he asked amicably.

”Fin isn ’t interested in reading though… ” the fairy answered bummed. Seth was as shocked as she hoped, so she felt down.

”Don ’t say no so early. I actually have an old fairy magic scroll. At least the man who traded it with me said that it was found in an old fairy tree. ” the reptile said mysteriously.

”An old fairy tree? ” Fin ’s ears perked up.

”Are you sure he said that? Fairies stopped living in trees since hundreds of years ago. ”

”You can take a look and tell me if it ’s real. And if you are interested in it, we can talk about the price, ” he said with an old knowing smile.

Seth just watched as the trader brought out a small glass tube with a miniature scroll inside. Carefully he extracted the slip of paper and put it on the counter of his stall. With the tip of his claw, he signaled for Fin to take a look.

Fin had gotten interested and picked up the scroll to read. Her face went through several funny expressions as she tried to read what was written on the paper.

”Hngh, it ’s really a very old fairy language but I can ’t decipher it really. I think it talks about magic but that is all I can garner, ” she said seriously. Then she noticed Seth ’s gaze on her tiny shoulders.

”Eh? Erm, Fin can ’t really read it. ”

The demon smiled amused.

”Do you wish to purchase it anyway? ”

”How much is it? ” Fin asked unsure. Maybe she could send it home and have a scholar take a look at the scroll. The magic of their ancestors was always worth researching as it came from a time when the fair folk was still much closer to nature than they were today.

”I don ’t take money. I only trade. ” the demon stated his principle with a lifted pointer.

”Uh… ” Fin made a complicated face. She didn ’t have anything to trade. Her inventory had stuff like rations, candy, travel equipment, candy, potions, candy…

”I won ’t give you Fin ’s candy! ” she said resolutely and then looked up to Seth with big puppy eyes. The demon was slightly stunned but followed her gaze and switched his attention to Seth. In the meantime the blacksmith had looked through the books the trader had on display.

”hmm, oh! ” he looked back and forth between Fin who was still holding the scroll, and the demon.

”Something to trade, yes? How about this. ” Seth put a small mithril ring on the counter before the demon. The demon puckered up his lips.

”A mithril ring is definitely worth more than my scroll, but I would prefer something of literary value, ” he said pointing around at all the books and papers.

”Don ’t speak too early. This is not just any ring. It ’s also worth a favor. This is a token that identifies you as a guest of Minas Mar. You can get a discount at the Turquoise Anvil and enter the restaurant. You can also ask for a favor as long as it ’s within certain boundaries. ”

Demons were well connected. Even an old book trader knew what was going on in Delta, especially the exam turned tournament for the Oathguard of Minas Mar was no secret to him. He had also heard about the store and restaurant.

”Can I also enter your magic tower with this? ” the demon suddenly asked. Seth smiled mischievously.

”If you manage to find the main entrance you can walk up to our front door without beeing skewered by our traps. Whether you will be let in or not will depend on your luck. I ’m also taking these two books of poetry, too. ”

”Alright, we have a trade. ” the old demon said and put on the ring triggering it to be bound to him. ” I will pay a visit to your shop in the close future. I heard the food is excellent. ”

They said their farewells with smiles as Fin and Seth went on their way.

~ You should be able to read that scroll with your ~ Al interjected. The sorceress had been quieter lately and less sarcastic. Maybe it was because Seth had kept his word and let her spend her one hour a week freely as she wanted.

Sometimes they would have a meal together and at others, he would release her onto the poor night workers of Delta. Overall, the sorceress had become a lot calmer and more satisfied.

”Yeah, I had the same thought. ” Seth agreed and told Fin their assumption.

They agreed to take a look at the scroll when they returned home. As for the two poetry books, they were collections of poems of fellow demon bards. They could be hit or miss but from what Seth read they were promising.

It wouldn ’t be a big loss, even if they didn ’t hold any overwhelming texts. All it cost him was a guest ring. He had made quite a few t identify the people acknowledged by their organization. Like the rings that were given to the Lords and employees, they could react with the other rings to validate their authenticity.

For the rest of the day, the two explored the demon district. Fin especially liked the parts where everything was overgrown like an ancient ruin. The residents were more like nature spirits than demons.

The streets were narrow paths between fields of flowers and small herbs. Even Seth had only found this place recently after Ember had brought him here. It was also a good place to find exotic alchemy and potion ingredients.

They stared in this part for the longest and had a very exotic but good meal. Later the day they ended up in a pub where Fin got terribly drunk. The fairy brute found a bunch of bulky and dangerous-looking demons playing an otherworldy but fun-looking game.

It involved 6 floating dice, a colorful card game, and a talking frog.

In a matter of minutes, she started gambling like a pro. She was ripping them off in this game she supposedly had ”never ” played before. The demons could not do much more than watching her take their money.

Even if they wanted to stop, the fairy didn ’t allow them. The victi- demons had learned their lesson very fast. They had accused her of cheating after the first few games. When they picked a fight with the intoxicated fairy to get their money back, they had their leader pummeled to the ground and relieved of everything down to his underwear.

The originally red demon was radiating in 50 shades of green and blue. Having asserted her dominance, none of the demons was allowed to leave until she had completely emptied their pockets.

Seth had kept in the background silently drinking his beer. Drunk Fin was scary, like a completely different person. He kept watching the spectacle until the fairy fell asleep from too much alcohol. Only then did he pick her up and got on his way home.

It was simply easier than trying to deal with a drunk Fin. The sleeping fairy on his palm had rolled into a ball and was a lot cuter than her drunk self. Seth saw her lips moving as if she was talking in her sleep.

With a smile, he lifted her up to his ear to understand what she was mumbling.

”Mnam mnam… gimme all your money…nja… Don ’t you try to mess with me! I will *$%§ ’ ’# you and everything you- ”

Not so cute anymore. His face fell and he stopped listening for his own peace of mind.

He hurried back to Minas Mar to drop off the ticking time bomb before the raving drunkard woke up.

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