Ryuuji VS Garonte
After all, I couldn't hear what the boy had to say, shortly after meeting him, his energy dropped to 5 and he became unconscious. I remember that in TLO when your energy dropped below 5 it was red, although I don't think that has to do with this world. He simply fell asleep from fatigue. While you sleep your energy will fall much slower, so you are not in danger. I left him in the captain's care, he will surely wake up hungry.
Now I have to take care of the matter of Garonte, everything that happens from now on may depend on this, so I must do everything in my hands so that this meeting benefits me. That's why I only take Ryuuji and Ren with me, they can't understand the human language from here.
The meeting place is familiar to me, it is the red-walled building that we used as a reference as soon as we arrived. At that time I did not think much about the place, it just struck me that it was the only completely painted building. I guess not everyone can afford to spend money just to paint, and since I think about it, this building is a floor taller than the rest on the street, it's as big as the justice headquarters.
As soon as I approached the door, a guard met me, then guided me inside, to the second floor. Before climbing the stairs a couple of guards were placed behind us, watching over Ryuuji and Ren.
The strange thing is that after arriving which I believe is the room in which I will meet Garonte, the guards returned to the stairs. Do they intend to monitor the exit?
The room is quite simple, it has a table and a pair of sofas with space for three people each. A candlestick with glass tubes that contain that luminous substance. It should not surprise me that they use those outside of Galia, surely it's common, at least they are brighter than candles. Although I don't know their duration, I can assume they have a much longer lifespan as well.
There is a glass window, a luxury in this place as far as I have been able to see, at least I have not seen others in this city. The window surely doesn't worry the guards since the frame is made of metal and we are on the third floor.
Before there was time to take a seat, the interior door opened and a man dressed in elegant clothes and a cape was present, accompanied by someone wearing a metal armor that covers his entire two-meter large body. So this is Garonte ... I see why the guards left us, with such a guy no more security is needed.
"You must be Argent, the man I've heard about. I'm Garonte and this is my faithful guard, Barbatus".
Barbatus, uh ... Where did I heard that name before?
"As you said, I am Argent. They are my protégé Ryuuji and my confidant Ren. I hope it doesn't bother you if them accompany us. I can assure you that they will not intervene in the conversation, neither one speaks the local language, so we can speak with confidence".
"Well, that's very detailed of you. Barbatus speaks the language of the East, but he has all my confidence, I assure you he won't divulge anything".
It's interesting how the guy's aura is red since he started talking. It is the clear effect of << Scammer's Terror >> telling me that he lies ... Not as if I needed it to know, but confirmation is not bad. Well, it's obvious that he do not believe that they don't speak the language, but it doesn't matter.
"Well, leaving the companions aside, I must say that you wear clothes of a fascinating quality, I don't think I've seen anything like it before".
"I've traveled a lot, and I have a taste for buying things that get my attention. I hope I can find good use for my money here, I feel like there must be many treasures in a city like this".
"Direct to the point then ... Exactly, what do you want to buy?"
"Well, there are many things that could get my attention. In particular I heard there would be an important auction in a couple of days".
"Are you interested in slaves? It's not that I want to undermine the merchants of my city, but as far as I know, this time most of the slaves are peasants from the region. I don't think they can meet the demands of someone like you" .
"I will judge that with my own eyes. You never know where you will find the next wonder".
"I'll take your word, after all who would say that someone of your bearing would arrive in the city without prior notice. I have been told that you has spent huge amounts of money on frivolities".
"Speaking of frivolities, don't you think they were too many already?"
For an instant the man in armor seemed to want to step forward, but was stopped by the following words.
"Indeed, I think it's time to be serious. Who are you really?"
"... Do you mean it ... An Aristoi? Do you really want me to believe that an Aristoi entered the city without me knowing !?"
Once again the big man in armor moved slightly, reacting to the words of anger.
"Excuse me ... it was a moment of weakness. I hope we can continue".
"No problem, but apparently it would be better if we had our conversation directly, face to face ... Sir Garonte".
I said as I completely ignored the reaction of the cloak man and focused my gaze on the man in armor, on Garonte.
Suddenly, Garonte removed his helmet and revealed his face. It was the face of a man in his thirties, and despite having features that invited to think of a rough and tough man, they still had a certain air of elegance, enough to conquer more than one lady. It's the looks of a strong noble who commands his men himself.
"Tell me, how did you know?"
"Well, the fact that this man was so easily disturbed showed that he wasn't used to dealing with unexpected events, which isn't normal for someone who is at the head of a city where people from the underworld gather. Also the fact that on two occasions his answers came only after you moved, which implies that you was giving him a signal. Finally, it is inconceivable that he couldn't know the regularity with which people bribe the guards to pass discreetly through the city".
"Wow, said that way, it sounds as if all your reasoning is based on me being a capable man".
"I'm not flattering you, but not everyone acts with your speed upon learning that someone like me is walking through its streets. Besides, that's not all".
"And what else is there?"
"Your name, the name <Barbatus>. It is the name of a warrior who lived long ago, the type of man who stars in fantasy stories one tell to children. Obviously it had to be a made up name".
Finally, but not least, I can see his name along with his stats thanks to my monocle, I didn't have to deduce anything, not even for a second he tricked me.
Suddenly, Garonte began to clap. A more raucous sound than normal, due to the clash of metal with metal, inevitable if clapping using gauntlets.
"Brilliant. Simply brilliant. I have no doubt that you has an intellect worthy of an Aristoi, not an ordinary man ... The rumors about you seem real after hearing you speak".
Rumors? I do not think that the merchants of the city have been able to discover more of me than I allowed them.
"Now I need to know, if you really are powerful enough to fight one of those red-dressed monsters".
What are he talking about? What he says sounds as if he knew what happened in Galia.
Did he have any other source of information that I didn't consider?
"What rumors are you talking about?"
"Oh, don't be surprised. It's something Iren soldiers said".
Soldiers of Iren !?
"You see, there is a group of soldiers from Iren looking for something in the city ... But that you already knew. What you might not know, is that they are regular soldiers. I know it is hard to believe for someone who has seen the monsters in red, but Iren's regular soldiers are, within all, relatively normal men. And as humans they are, they sometimes loosen their tongues while they are having fun in a bar".
Who would have thought that again I would see a bar be a source of information. Moreover, who would think that the filtering of my enemy's information would affect me?
... Naturally, me.
"And what did you hear from them?"
"Something that left me dumbfounded. They talked about something that seemed to be the top topic of conversation. About a man who beat an Acme commander, as if it were nothing".
For a brief moment, the expression on Garonte's face changed. Anyone else would not have noticed, but I can know what kind of shock those words caused him by seeing that it affects him just to repeat them.
Time to reap the sown.
"What makes you think that I could be that man?"
"It was the description they gave of the man. A young man with shiny and immaculate hair. Wearing ocher clothes with bright red and gold embroidery. A monocle with engravings, highlighting his intellectual appearance. And most importantly, such an amazing presence that nothing compares to him, generating admiration at every moment of seeing him".
"You flatter me. Although I certainly fit the initial profile, I don't know if my presence ..."
"I have no doubt, it is you. Seeing you reminds me of the Demon, although it doesn't provoke in me fear, only admiration".
"Have you seen him? The two-horned demon general".
"I will never forget him. His figure will appear in my nightmares until the end of my days".
"I would like you to tell me about him".
"I will, but in return ... I want a duel with you".
"I have seen with my eyes how intelligent you are, Lord Argent Makoto. I can believe you're an Aristoi, but I cannot believe that you are able to defeat one of those red monsters without seeing your strength myself".
"... Very well. But I can't just accept your challenge without knowing if you're worthy".
Suddenly, the man in a suit and cape who had been silent since Garonte took off his helmet began to scream.
"How do you dare!?"
"Quiet, remember that you are in the presence of an Aristoi. He is a person far above me. Just the fact that he allows me to challenge him is an honor ... What should I do to prove himself worthy?"
"You will face my protégé Ryuuji. I have supervised his training myself, I attest that he will not be an easy opponent".
"So I must defeat the disciple before I can face the master?"
"I didn't say he was my disciple ... But if you can't beat my subordinate, much less me. So, if you wants me to accept your challenge, you must beat Ryuuji first".
"So be it".
Inside the justice barracks, in an arena prepared for the training of the justice officers, Ryuuji and Garonte observe each other. Around them were Argent, Ren and several subordinates of Garonte, including a dozen justice officers.
After receiving the signal, both advanced towards the other willing to collide swords. Of course, these were not the swords they normally carried, but the training swords used by justice officers. Under no circumstances would they let a difference in the quality of their weapons decide the fight.
Then, before everyone's eyes, their swords collided.