I’m a D-Rank Adventurer Volume 3 Chapter 2 Part 10

After that, Eve and Letty safely joined up too (Letty was eating his way through stalls again. Forcibly brought her back) and we headed to the guild.
 
“Umm…I’m pretty sure the guild was this way but…”
 
Simply walking a few minutes. No sign of it relying on hazy memories from visiting long ago. Rather, we’ve come to a deserted area away from the city.
 
…Oh crap, did we get lost? No no, surely I didn’t get lost. Surely not.
 
“Ray, are you lost?”
 
“What are you saying! There’s no way Sir Jirei would get lost!”
 
“Yeah! Shisho would never get lost!”
 
“Oh, uh, right. I’m not lost or anything. No waaaay.”
 
Rafine and Letty’s followup. I don’t need that followup.
 
I should have searched in advance with detection magic. Why did I think I could get by with vague memories?
 
As I stand there lost in thought—
 
“Woah!? Letty, I wasn’t thinking of doing anything so why—?”
 
Thud! Something collides with my hips with impact, making me think Letty is messing around. I look to see…not Letty, but a young girl. A girl no older than five.
 
Of course I don’t know her. I have no young girl acquaintances…Well, the only one, Luna, but it’s not her.
 
In other words, an unknown young girl is clinging to my hips.
 
…Yup, a young girl I see. Well, it’s common for young girls to naturally spring up in areas like this so this kinda thing happens—as if that’s acceptable!
 
“Hey mister!”
 
“Mister?”
 
The energetic young girl points at me, lively relegating me to the dead. That’s way too harsh!
 
“Mister!”
 
“Mister?”
 
“Um, my daddy…he was here but…now he’s gone so…help me look?”
 
“Uh-huh, uh-huh…come again?”
 
Come again?
 
“So, um, help me…look for daddy…”
 
The young girl, not understanding the sudden happening, grabs my clothes hem with her tiny hands and starts pulling me somewhere. Wait a sec—abduction! Abducted by a young girl!
 
As I’m pulled along—
 
“Hina! I told you not to leave Papa! Come back here…Huh?”
 
I hear that voice from behind and turn around.
 
“Jirei…?”
 
There stands the adventurer I previously took a request with, the large man with a gorilla-like face—Wed, eyes wide open.
 


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Led by Wed, we arrive at the guild and sit at a five-person table in the attached bar to talk.
 
“Long time man! You just up and vanished without even taking the reward…Well, don’t mean to be petty ’bout it, but drinks are on me bro!”
 
“Hey daddy, who’sh thish pershon? Ish he your friend?”
 
“Oh um…mind getting her off me first?”
 
I point at the young girl who hopped on my shoulders without permission, clinging to my head happily pulling out strands of hair, and say that.
 
Wed goes “Oops, my bad” and tries taking her off, but she refuses saying “No!” so he gives up saying “Not gonna work huh.” Don’t just give up there!
 
“Wed, let me ask again just to confirm—”
 
“Whaddya want? Look at these perfectly round eyes! Spittin’ image right?”
 
“Hmm…?”
 
From his story, this seems to be Wed’s daughter but…they look nothing alike.
 
Looking at this cute little girl with her pretty face, you’d never guess she was born from the gorilla in front of us. I had heard he had a beautiful wife, but still I can’t believe it. She’s probably only like 1% gorilla.
 
Well anyway, I should report this back to the guild later.
 
“Hey…do something about her, will you?”
 
I asked for help getting this little girl off of me who was patting and covering my head and face. It doesn’t hurt but she’s been in the way for a while now.
 
Anyway, how does this kid even know me? She’s been calling me [Iei] from the start. That’s not my funky name though, right?
 
When I asked her about it, she said:
 
“Hmm…probably because I was telling Jirei stories about you when I was putting Hina to sleep. I gave you the name ‘Iei’ when we were playing house.”
 
So it’s your fault huh.
 
Realizing the culprit was the gorilla in front of me, I tried to grab the little girl and put her down but she had a firm grip on my hair. If I forced her off she’d rip out my follicles.
 
Seeing this, Rafine came bursting out proudly and said “Leave her to me! I’ll play with her over there!” then leaped right at my face. The little girl turned her face away from Rafine and clung tightly to me instead.
 
Rafine gave a big smile, moved to the corner of the guild hall and started sulking hard…uh, I mean, she went over there for unrelated reasons.
 
“Geez. Rafine’s no good. I’ll…” Yaa!
 
Eve tried reaching out but got slapped away in a split second. She quietly joined Rafine in the corner. Ah damn, more victims.
 
“Yeah! Shisho’s so awesome!”
 
And for some reason Letty started praising me with a bright, genuine smile.
 
“So…why’s Wed here in a place like this? Didn’t he say he lived in Universalia before?”
 
To start, I decided to just ignore the situation and stop thinking about it.
 
“Oh right, about that. After that last job my thinking changed a bit…I decided I should try to spend as much time with family as I can. I had today off and never expected I’d run into my brother here…crazy stuff.”
 
“Uh huh. Also stop saying I’m your brother.”
 
“Whaaat! We’re close enough to be brothers ain’t we? Let’s toast over some mugs to celebrate our bond! Yo, barkeep, two cold ales here an…oh right, can Jirei actually drink?”
 
“I can drink just fine but I don’t day drink.” Also stop trying to day drink with a kid around.
 
“Aww c’mooon, I was joking about the drinks. I ain’t drinking in the middle of the day with a kid obviously.”
 
Wed laughed it off. “But really, after that job I realized I should treasure the time with my family more. Never know when this risky adventuring life could end y’know? Wanted to spend even a little more time together.”
 
“I see. Well whatever.”
 
I looked away awkwardly but Wed just laughed loudly again and slapped my back saying “Why even listen if you’re gonna be like that!” Oww, that hurt.
 
As I was getting annoyed, Eve came over after recovering and said “Jirei’s so good with kids. All the students at the magic academy adored him too.”
 
“Hmm…now that you mention it, that’s true.”
 
Come to think of it, little kids and animals have always bugged me a bunch for some reason. Not that I’m saying they like me, but they tend to latch on. Well, I don’t like kids so it’s just annoying to me.
 
“You’re right…even little Yuma took a liking to him before. Jirei must have a kind heart they recognize.”
 
Rafine nodded in agreement. I think there’s a limit to looking too deeply into things though.
 
“If that’s true, then does that mean if I became a child, Jirei would return my love…?”
 
“That’s a great idea.”
 
“I won’t, okay?”
 
What the heck are these people even talking about? Seriously.
 
“Jirei, you…”
 
“Hey, don’t look at me with that “maybe he goes for little girls” face. It’s not like that.”
 
“Yes, you’re right. It must have started that night after all. Jirei and I spent a passionate honeymoon night alone together and…”
 
“Can you not? That didn’t happen.”
 
It’s true we were alone that night but nothing happened, don’t make it sound suggestive. Look, even Eve is like “Please, tell me more” with that deadpan stare.
 
After chatting for a bit longer, Wed who had been warmly watching the whole time spoke up to the little girl.
 
“Hina, Jirei and I need to talk about some grown up stuff. Can you go play over there for a bit?”
 
“Okay!”
 
“I’ll give you some candy if you do. How’s that?”
 
“Yay candy! Hey Leti, come play!”
 
“Huh? Um, sure! Let’s play!”
 
The little girl got off me and went with the girls to the guild toy area that I just now noticed existed…wait, we have something like that here?
 
Wed turned to me with a gentle look on his face.
 
“So yeah, I’ve been meaning to say something,” he started seriously.
 
I straightened up in my chair too, bracing myself for what he was about to say.
 
“I just wanted to say…thank you. For real. I never properly thanked you for saving me back then. Wanted to do it when we met again so you wouldn’t think I’m ungrateful.”
 
“You don’t have to do that…”
 
I awkwardly avoided his gaze.
 
It’s not like I intended to save him that time. He just happened to be there and it was coincidence. No need for thanks.
 
“Back then, I seriously thought I was gonna die there bro. All that “I can’t run away when my family’s in Universalia” crap was just big talk y’know. Honestly, I was scared as hell. No different from that B-rank monk who ran away.”
 
“…I don’t think that’s true. You were brave back then, in my opinion.”
 
“Haha, thanks. But the truth is, after that job ended I was gonna retire from being an adventurer.
 
“Huh? Then why are you still doing it?”
 
You showed no sign of that at all.
 
“Yeah just listen. There’s more. After that monster showed up and even the great Hero-sama was frozen in fear…you stood up, didn’t you?”
 
“…Ah.”
 
“And then, and then! You were unbelievably strong. You played with that monster like it was nothing. In the end…without a single wound, you came out victorious!”
 
Wed recounted it dramatically, gesturing wildly as he continued.
 
“Seeing that, I thought “Damn, he’s so cool.” I wanted to become a hero like you bro.”
 
Wed laughed “Well of course there’s no way I could but still.”
 
“My adventuring days are numbered at my age. It’s too risky sticking with this job when I could die any day.”
 
“…But watching you that day, it reignited some youthful passion in this old man. Made me remember the dreams I had when I first started adventuring, about wanting to travel and see the world.”
 
“Seems pointless to start that again at my age huh?”
 
“There’s no age limit on following your dreams, right?”
 
“Exactly! That’s the spirit! You’re so damn cool Jirei!”
 
Wed laughed loudly again and clenched his arm around me in the sweltering heat.
 
His face looked genuinely happy, smiling at me without a shred of doubt, gulping down the cold ale he ordered. Hey you said you wouldn’t drink! Oh wait, it’s non-alcoholic.
 
“I’m…not the guy you think I am.”
 
“Hm? You say something?”
 
I got up without responding and headed to the request board, intent on taking a job for my original purpose here.
 
Seriously, why do the people around me always get the wrong idea? I keep saying I’m not that great of a guy.
 
“Oh, one more thing Jirei! Rumor is all the Heroes are gathering in this town soon.”
 
“Oh, I see…”
 
That would explain why the Genius Hero Lucas was here. I had wondered what he was doing in a place like this.
 
“Sounds like they’re searching for someone or something…details are fuzzy. I’m just a C-rank bum but if you wanna join the Heroes’ party you could probably swing it, being Jirei and all.”
 
“If I was in it, I’d be getting punched around like a sandbag.”
 
Other Heroes huh. Come to think of it, the Tough Hero Lord mentioned some other Heroes when I talked to him before…?
 
Well, Heroes have nothing to do with a D-rank like me. Letty alone is enough to handle that stuff. Yeah, doesn’t concern me.
 
…It doesn’t, right?


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