Chapter 22: Anna, Lute, And Myself Part 1 I open my eyes, at exactly 5:00 AM... Like clockwork.. I roll around to make sure my body is moving properly.. Then, I get up and make my bed.. That's right, I slept at an inn yesterday.. I thought this because my bed and view was different from the cold summer nights in the grasslands.. Well, I should go train.. But where? I can't run in town.. And so, I thought I should go outside the gates and run around the perimeter of the city.. Like it was normal.. I'm not strange, this is just a result of those days of training.. I developed a habit of maintaining my body every single morning.. After I decided what to do and got dressed, I open the door and lock it from the outside.. When I arrived at the corridor, I was greeted by the sight of doors on each side.. I didn't notice it before, but I guess this was a pretty big inn.. Kinda like the 5-star hotels back on Earth.. Currently, my room is at the farthest end of the corridor, the last room, "Room No. 666".. And it is located at the 7th floor, the highest floor on this inn.. I guess they still call it an "inn" because of the fact that there are no precedents of a hotel being built here.. But I wonder if this size was normal in this world? I was thinking idle thoughts while going through the long hallway, towards the stairs.. When I made it to the stairs, I climbed down and repeated the same action, since each of the stairs are on the opposite side of each other on every alternating floor.. I began to wonder how I even made it to my room last night in the first place.. After about a few minutes, I made it to the ground floor and went to the counter.. I'm amazed they are up at this time.. Hardworking adults are really admirable, aren't they? So I deposit my key to him and pay the bill for tonight in advance.. His face turned grim at the sight of my room key for a second, but he instantly reverted back to his business smile after receiving 2 silver coins from me.. I decided not to mind it and went outside walking towards the gates.. I saw a couple of people walking around and merchants preparing their stalls while I was passing through the shopping district and decided to buy some ingredients from them when I came back from training.. When I reached the gates, I noticed that another guy was guarding the post this time, so I showed him my [Guild Card] and he let me pass through.. I guess, they take shifts throughout the day, huh.. I think about the guards' workday for a bit and wished them luck for today in my head.. When I made it to a certain distance away from the city where they wouldn't see me, I started to stretch.. Then finally, I started my daily routine.. After I finished, I noticed I wasn't sweating that much compared to yesterday.. "I guess it's time to increase the load.." I decided to do an extra lap and more training until I felt that it was enough.. I went back to the city gate looking refreshed and invigorated.. I waved to the guards while passing through and they seemed to remember me from earlier and didn't ask for me to show identification again.. Which saves me a bit of time, that I'm thankful for it.. I reached the shopping district and I perused through the various goods and found interesting stuff with the use of my [Aura Eyes], it is really useful at times like these.. So I spent all in all 6 silver coins for the mountain of ingredients I was carrying in different bags.. Which was filled to the brim with vegetables, fruits, wheat, pepper, and various meats.. But I was sad to find out that in this world, salt was scarce and usually only used by aristocrats.. She showed me a little of it, and it looked bluish-white which I remember from the books I used to read, that it wasn't pure refined salt, but rock salt.. I guess that's why the food in this world is mostly bland.. But then, how did Master obtain all that salt, and furthermore, it was white salt, mind you.. And we never seemed to run out.. In fact, I have about 50kg of it in my [Aura Pocket] right now since I brought some of it under "Provisions" I really thought it was normal to use salt in cooking until now.. Who was my Master, really? After carrying it into a narrow alley, I check my surroundings for people.. And when I make sure there are none, I put the bags inside my [Aura Pocket] one by one.. Even if I learned my lesson, it still looks surreal for a large bag to fit in a pocket.. When I was done, I sighed in relief and started walking forward, trying to get a feel for the city pathways.. I didn't notice it myself but I started to walk aimlessly through alleyways and dark roads, this was all happening while I was contemplating how to make new friends.. I was really troubled.. When suddenly, I felt something hit my side.. Two somethings.. *Thud* *Thud* When I turned around to find the culprits.. I saw, A little girl with blonde hair and green eyes.. And right next to her, a little boy who was much shorter, with blond hair with tears gathering around his emerald eyes.. I thought for a second, this pair of kids, they're too cute.. I mean, they have such small faces and pure white skin.. Some fanatics would die just to meet them if they were in Japan.. They seemed to be wearing dirty rags or sack-clothes, is that what they call em? And they were rubbing their foreheads which turned red whilst whining about the pain.. "Ouch... who, what?" Ah, a cute soft voice, in an irritated tone.. Such a gap.. And both of them look up and see me.. This is bad, I have to smile.. Yosh, let's make them feel at ease, since it's not their fault, because I wasn't watching where I was going.. I smile the best grin I can while looking down at them.. *Backs Away* Why?!? Am I that ugly? Or is it that I'm unapproachable now? I can't think of another reason since I made sure my aura was off.. Oh, they're starting to tear up.. "Ann-nee, I'm scared.." "There, there, Lute..there's nothing to be afraid of, I'll protect you.." "Mn.." Ah, this is awkward.. They are both hugging each other while the girl puts her head on the boy's head, while patting him gently.. Am I a bother? Or do I seem to be the villain here? Man, I want to go home.. Just when I was about to leave.. "Oi, you there! Stop those slaves!" A group of men led by a plump middle-aged man shouted here in a gruff voice.. "Huh, me?" I point a finger towards my face.. "Yes, you, please, help us capture those elves!" [Elves]? I look towards the two and find that the girl is now glaring at both me and the men.. But I don't look at that for long and saw long pointy ears at the sides of their faces.. They are [Elves].. They have the elven ears I always read about in novels.. Well, let's just find out about the whole situation since I got involved in this.. They try to run past me, but I block them.. The girl glares even harder at me and tries again and again but to no avail.. After a few minutes, the men reached here and said.. "Thank you, I thought they were going to get away for a moment, who I ask, might you be?" "Isn't it common courtesy to give your name first? And why do you want these guys anyway?" I try to lower my voice so that I won't be taken lightly.. "Ah, yes, forgive me, my name is Gerzar, head slave merchant for the "Slave Trader's Guild" and it is a pleasure.."