“A partnership, you say?” I asked, eyebrows raised in curiosity. What type of deal would he want with a nameless monkey like me?
“You see, the emblem that my sir Luke here,” he gestured towards Luke with his hand, standing attentively at his side, “is a recognizable one.”
I listened closely, trying to grasp even the tiniest information I can gleam from his words, intentional or not.
“This emblem,” accepting the emblem that Luke had tucked within his pocket, Bentley had me take a closer look by shoving it near my face, “is from an organization that is extremely underground, even its name is unknown. The only known object that connects to said organization is this ring you see here.”
My eyes stared at the emblem, my brain memorizing every detail. So, people who has this emblem is bad, if possible, kill on sight… Okay, got it.
“All of them dangerous?” I asked, trying to confirm my suspicions. He nodded gravely as he withdrew his hand with the emblem still in his grasp.
“Extremely so. The man you killed was probably a new member,” he replied with a frown. “Also, their modus operandi is more along the lines of mercenary work, but dirtier and nastier.”
“So, human trafficking, drug dealing, assassinations, those correct?” I responded with a straight face. Bentley had his eyes wide open as he stared at me, the same could be said for Luke.
“Why… Yes… Tell me, how do you know these things?” he asked completely baffled. “I’m surprised as how you know these things despite being… well, er…”
“A gorilla?” I said with a smirk.
“Gorilla? What is that? Is that your race?” he asked in response and it was my turn to be completely perplexed.
“You don’t know what a gorilla is?” I asked and the both of them shook their heads.
“I’m afraid not. You are the first one I have ever seen, and as a Viscount, I have seen my fair share of strange creatures, and you are not one of them.”
“I see…” I contemplated about this new information. This literally just placed me higher on the value meter. If I and monkeys are the only ones in this entire country, continent, or worse, world, then I can imagine a future where tons of people would be hunting my head for either trophies, enslavement, materials, or experiments.
Yes, I’m pessimistic and realistic enough to know that I won’t be treated like an endangered animal here where monsters roam the earth. That would be stupid beyond all doubt.
“Okay, let’s just forget about that race thing for the moment, I’ll explain it when I have the time,” I stood up on all fours and stared at Bentley, who then got up as well.
“First of all, the reason why I know this is because I have been observing humans and your kind for quite some time now,” I gave off a disgusted look towards the horizon. “What I observed was anything but pleasant.”
Letting my words hang like that, the two of them tensed up and prepared to run or fight. Yes, I look intimidating, but I like peace more than violence.
“Second, I also observed how chaotic you humans and your kinds are, some of them good, some of them bad, others in the middle. All of you have different goals in life, different beliefs, and different attitudes.” I glanced back at them then smiled, baring my teeth for them to see. “But you two, I can feel you two are on the good side of the spectrum.”
Because you care for your kids and pay your respects to a stranger who saved your kids as something you don’t know whether dangerous or not, no less.
“And last,” I made my voice tone lower than usual, my booming voice now a rumble, “because humans will always find a reason to do these things, whether out of necessity, or out of pure boredom.”
My last words must have hit a nerve, seeing that both of them winced slightly. Yep, that wince is enough to tell me that there are horrible people here that will literally want my head up on a pedestal for them to brag about.
Also, I hope they believe my bullshit about observing humans. I pulled that one out of my ass at the heat of the moment! Although, I can’t deny that humans have those kinds of flaws within them.
“Anyway, you were talking about a deal earlier, what was that about?” I quickly changed the topic, hoping for them to catch up on it. They did, and they immediately relaxed.
“Ah, right, continuing where we left off earlier, I wanted to make a deal with you in exchange for some things you may desire.” Bentley said with a calming smile on his face, his previously shaken one now gone.
“What kind of deal?”
“Culling, subjugation, hunting, whatever you want to call it,” he made a gesture for Luke to give him something, who then took out a neatly folded paper from within his pocket and gave it to him. “You see, monsters are at an all time high currently, and our Hunters aren’t currently available due to some circumstances.”
“Oh? And why is that?”
“I’m afraid that’s classified,” he shut down that line of questioning before I even got to pressure him. “Anyway, to briefly summarize, I want you to hunt monsters within the forest where sir Luke found you in, and in return, I’ll give you some things you may want.”
He’s leaving it at an awful vague and broad reward there…
“What’s the catch?” I responded with a raised eyebrow.
“The catch is, a Hunter team will follow you on your mission.”
… Say what now? A Hunter team… Like those trespassers from before…? Is he serious? Yep, I think he’s serious.
“Are you serious?” I asked once more, wanting confirmation about his decision.
“Yes, I am serious.”
I fell silent at the deal. There’re all sorts of things that could go haywire with that demand, and the one thing that I wanted to keep secret from his was my Dungeon Master role, when I have no idea how Dungeon Masters are seen in this world…but the rewards are tempting, as well as free EXP for leveling up… Should I risk it…?
After a few moments of thinking, contemplating, as well as kicking my mind for being indecisive, I came to a conclusion.
“All right, deal made.”
~ Third Person POV ~
“Was that really a wise decision, Lord Bentley?”
Bentley looked over the window from his office as he stared at the sun setting, papers shuffling in his hand. He sighed, then stood up, walking towards the door.
“That monster… No, that gorilla has more humanity in him than other humans I have seen. He saved my children, and for that, he has my eternal thanks.”
“I’m still surprised he accepted that deal you had with him. You left out too much informati-”
“That I have,” Bentley quickly cut him off with a quick burst of his words. “He accepted because even he has a goal. Tell me, have you ever heard of monsters having a goal in their life other than eat, sleep, and kill?”
Luke remained silent at the question his lord made.
“As far as I have seen or heard, none. So how can Jionni be different from us? He’s hiding something, and I already have my guesses as to what he really is.”
“… It was from that Hunter party, wasn’t it?”
“Yes, it was…” Bentley went silent as they exited the room, the maids greeting them before continuing on with their duties.
“… You had that same party travel with him, didn’t you?”
“You know me too well, sir Luke,” Bentley replied with sly smile as he headed towards the dining room.