Chapter 54: Before the Flower Festival
Heat left over from the summer still lingered in the air as the calendar showed that fall was fast approaching.
With the coming of fall, the City of Flowtier was bustling with more activities than usual.
I’ve only arrived in this city this year, and even I know that it’s because the date of the famous Flowtier’s Flower Festival is nearing.
The festival lasts a week, and it is one of the most famous festivals in the northern region of the continent, and many tourists gather from all over to attend.
I don’t know about how the festival started, but friends will exchange flowers, there will be theatres and plays with flowers as themes, and there will be masked parades across the city.
Lana: “So because of that, inns will be in high demand, and we apologize for the inconvenience, but we will be raising the price of rent during this time in respect to the other customers.”
This morning, right after I was done eating breakfast, Lana called me over to speak privately and delivered the news to me.
Henry: “Su～re. That’s fine.”
I nod without any complaints.
I tend to not accumulate furniture as a personal policy, but staying this long in one place, stuff has been slowly collecting in my room. It’ll be a hassle to move to a cheaper room now, and the price Lana presented wasn’t that much higher. I’ll just pay up the extra costs.
Henry: “But a Flower Festival, huh. I’m not too into flowers though…”
If it’s all centered around flowers, I think it’s more catered to the female audiences. I’ll just go around the food stands a little and then go home.
Lana: “There will be plenty of different types of alcohol brewed with flowers given out free of charge by the Governor.”
Henry: “I take it back. Nothing compares to an event like the Flower Festival.”
I immediately flip my opinion.
Lana: “Well, it’s more for its looks and for luck, so it’s not exceptionally good or anything. Even the ones they sell are only sold during the festival.”
Henry: “Nothing beats free drinks. If it’s a limited time brew, I’d like to try it regardless.”
Lana: “.........an alcoholic as always～”
Maybe so. Maybe so.
Henry: “Oh, if that’s all, then I need to head to the Grandes Church.”
Lana: “Oh, yes. I’m so sorry to stop you all of a sudden. Is it another expedition?” Henry: “No, we were discussing whether we should accept Quests regarding the festival preparations or not.”
It’s a Quest to give back to the community.
Adventurers inevitably have a rough reputation, so we use these opportunities to help revise our public image. In order to become a Heroic Warrior, you’ll need to consistently keep contributing back to raise your reputation with the Church. No matter how much you are victorious in battles, you will not be given the title of Heroic Warrior which is the public face of the Adventurers organization with just that alone.
And I heard this through the grapevine, but I talked with someone associated with the Church privately, and since Cyril and her group safely came back after running into Giants, brought back intel, and defeated one while doing so, their names are currently on the sub-candidates list for Heroic Warriors. I hope that by the time we leave Flowtier, I can push them up to the main candidates list.
So, like any other day, we will be working hard as ever.
Henry: “Alright, I’ll get going now.” Lana: “Yes, please have a good day!”
I walk down the road to the Church. I’ve gotten so used to this route now.
But now that I look back…..although it’s different from Ligaleo where I’ll be beating down countless Demonic Creatures day in and day out, I feel like I’m working a whole lot more than other normal Adventurers nowadays.
I came to Flowtier to live a more relaxed life but………
Well, it’s been fun so far, so I’m fine with it. I can go back to a more lazier lifestyle once Cyril and the group leave.
I think about these kinds of things as I slowly walk. Flowtier in general likes to decorate their city with flowers, but apparently, there are many types of flowers that bloom during this specific season, and there are more decorations than usual giving the city an extra festive makeover. There are more stands selling flower bouquets as well.
Henry: “Hm?” I stop as something catches my eye. I walk up to a store nearby.
Henry: “.......I see….” This is one of the stores that sells flowers, and outside the store was a poster.
The poster was for tourists and visitors, and it explained in detail the Flowtier culture and the types of flowers you give as gifts to one another.
It’s still about a month before the festival, so I feel like it’s still too early for these kinds of posters, but I read through it anyway.
I see, I see. So basically, you give friends a blue flower, and you give your girlfriend or someone you’re interested in red flowers, and these are the most common exchanges. You would give your coworkers yellow ones…...and that’s about the gist of it.
And confessing your love as you gift the red flower is very common around Flowtier, so a lot of couples are made during this time.
……...and the poster wraps it up by asking if you want to send a red flower to “that” person you have in mind.
“Oh, hello sir. Are you interested?”
And the Store Owner came out as he saw me reading the poster.
Henry: “Hmmmm, yeah, maybe? I just moved here in the spring, so this is my first Flower Festival.”
“Oh, in that case, please send your orders through us. If you need some flowers to decorate your room, you can purchase them now.” Henry: “I live in an inn, and I’m about to head to an expedition so maybe next time.” At the inns of Flowtier, they decorate the rooms with a single flower, and Lana puts one in my room as well. I guess I wouldn’t mind seeing more flowers in my room, but I feel like the responsibility of caring for them is going to inevitably fall on Lana, so I hesitate because of that.
I mean, yeah, sure, I just need to take the initiative and care for them myself, but…….it feels like it’s more work than I want to bother with.
Cyril: “Hey! Good morning, Henry.” Henry: “Hey, Cyril.” Someone tapped me on the back, and Cyril was there with a mischievous smile on her face. This road is actually part of her route to the Church as well.
Cyril: “....huh? You’re not surprised at all? I thought I’d surprise you and came sneaking up quietly.”
Henry: “I knew you were coming around that corner over there, so I thought we’d walk together and stopped here for that reason.”
There was a corner about 20 meters (65 ft) away and Cyril looked from me to the corner with a strained “You really are something else…” look.
Cyril: “I know you did something similar at the Governor’s mansion, but…..there’s a lot more people here, no?” Henry: “Well, I can at least tell the difference between someone I know and others.”
Other than that, if that person is specifically paying attention to me, I can tell that too.
But this skill is something I haphazardly learned, so if someone who knows what they’re doing erases their presence, I can’t do anything about that.
As we walk to the Church together, I explain to Cyril about detecting people’s presence.
Henry: “You’re a Sorceress, so even if you don’t know what a person’s presence is like, you can detect their Magical Power, no?” Cyril: “If I’m being intentional about it, yes, but I wouldn’t think about doing it as I’m walking around town.”
True, I guess between Magic Users and Warriors, we perceive these things differently.
And we arrive at the Church as we continue talking.
Henry: “Oh～ I guess we were still early. Do you want to drink some coffee while we wait?” Cyril: “That sounds great! Oh, but I’m going to have Herb Tea.”
And stuff like that…
We’ve both been arriving early, and having tea with Cyril has been becoming more and more of a tradition.
Since the incident with the Giant, I've been trying to live healthier lifestyle by going to sleep earlier and waking up early. But I’m bored if I just stay in the inn, so I rather be out here talking with Cyril.
…….yup, that’s all, yes.
It was about 30 minutes after we started talking.
Every member arrived about 5 minutes before our meeting time.
We all greeted one another, and we all headed to the receptionist window to take a look at the available Quests.
I checked what kind of Quests there were yesterday before I left, and it was chock full of festival preparation Quests. I don’t think there’s any way they ran out of those.
Do we want to help build and set up a Theatre stage? Apparently, during the festival, they set up a public stage to do live performances of plays and invite popular Bards to sing. I think they mentioned a lottery drawing as well.
Well, we can decide after we see what Quests are available.
Henry: “Hi, Miss Felicia. We came to receive a Quest if possible.”
I go up to the receptionist window and go talk to Miss Felicia. She’s kind of our party’s preferred receptionist, and if her window is open, we usually choose to go talk to her.
……..it’s most definitely not because she’s an incredibly beautiful woman or because she has nice curves.
…...no, I’m telling the truth!
Felicia: “Oh, what good timing.”
Henry: “? What’s going on?”
It’s a rare sight to see Miss Felicia seem a little troubled. She’s exceptional at her job, so in most cases, she would be confident and calm.
Felicia: “Well, we just received a Quest that was designated to you, Mr. Henry.” Henry: “Oh, you mean like someone who wants to hire our Demolitions Expert?” Since our very first Quest, we get occasional requests to help clear our land. Our secret land clearing weapon, Miss Cyril, can do most jobs with just a single Spell so she’s super popular.
Cyril: “Who are you calling a Demolitions Expert?”
She jabs me with an elbow to the ribs.
Henry: “Hey, stop that. It tickles.”
I know she’s just fake pouting to ask for attention but……...how am I supposed to do that right now.
Felicia: “Oh, I’m so sorry. This time, it is not for Miss Cyril, but this Quest was directed to you personally, Mr. Henry.”
Henry: “........wait, did another Upper-Tier Demonic Creature pop up somewhere?” I feel myself gear up for another battle. I’m not exaggerating when I say that I’m probably the only one in this area that can take care of those higher level creatures without causing a single casualty to the city. If it’s that, I understand why the Quest was specifically designated for me….
Felicia: “AーActually, it’s not that either. It’s not a dangerous Quest…….um, excuse me….do you mind if we speak in the back room?”
Henry: “Um….sure?” My shoulders sag a little.
Jend: “Another designated Quest for Henry? What do you think it is, Ferris?” Ferris: “No clue. But Henry has the Heroic Warrior title and is well known so it might be related to that.” Teo: “Maybe some spoiled child of a wealthy family wants to hire a Heroic Warrior to take him out on a Quest?”
Henry: “Teo, that’s just a trope of an Adventurer’s tale.”
And it typically ends up with the Highest-Tier Demonic Creature appearing out of nowhere, and with the death of the Heroic Warrior, there would be a servant who’s actually the reincarnation of an ancient hero and awakens and gets stronger from that point forward.
I don’t mind reading stories like that, but for people like me without a hero’s title but still have some skills, we’re usually used as cannon fodder in the end….
As we head to the back room of the Church, Jend and the others start spouting out their guesses.
But I really wonder what this is about? We all enter one of the Church’s meeting rooms and wait for Miss Felicia to speak.
Felicia: “........this morning, we received this letter.”
And she passes an envelope to me.
It looks like a plain, regular envelope to me.
Felicia: “The letter contains a request to designate a personal Quest for the Heroic Warrior named Henry, and the contents of the Quest is for a tour of Flowtier during the Flower Festival period….”
Is it someone I know from Ligaleo? I heard that Ageha wanted to come……...or wait, is it Yuu?
As I’m wondering, Miss Felicia tells me the name.
Felicia: “So the person is……..one of the bards who will be doing a live performance during the Flower Festival - one of the 8 Heroes of Legend. The Rainbow Singer, Lady Charlotte Fine……”
Henry: “Ms. Lotte?!”
What is she thinking?!
Look, I get it if she wants to go drink at a bar with some private rooms, but if I take her around town, I could get stabbed by one of her fanatic fans! Does she even understand that she’s one of the ultra-popular celebrities on this continent?!
Ferris: “Of course, we accept.” Henry: “HーHEY?! FERRIS?!”
Ferris: “It’s a request from our Little Charu. Of course we’ll have to accept, Mr. Henry.” That’s right! I forgot that she’s one of Ms. Lotte’s fans!!
Jend: “LーLittle Charu? Um...Ferris...who are you talking bout?” Ferris: “Little Charu is our Little Charu, Jend.” Jend: “........................”
Don’t, Jend. Don’t look at me with those desperate eyes asking for an explanation.
Cyril: “Another one of the 8 Heroes of Legend…..and this time, it’s a celebrity that I’ve even heard of…..”
Teo: “She’s super-famous.…….more than Sister Ageha.” ARGH, great…..what am I supposed to do with this?
Semi-retired Adventurer Lives Leisurely
Written by Hisagushien
Translated by: ChonkyTranslator
Book 5: Flowtier Flower Festival