Protagonist Knows Everything - Chapter 28: High Risk, High Return
Kasha woke up exactly 22 hours after collapsing in my arms.
“You slept well it seems.”
At my words, Kasha sprung up from her bed brandishing her bedhead and sheet marks on her face.
“Why is Tay in my room!?” bewildered, she asked.
“Calm down and search your memories.”
“Oh. So I participated in the S-class quest……”
“Do I have to explain after that?”
Kasha rubbed her eyes as she said, “What about Dame?”
“Okay. It seems you remember that far. You dealt with it and then fell asleep right after.”
“Right. Leaning on Tay…”
Her face started burning up.
“Hey, are you okay?”
Kasha coughed and replied, “Hmmm, have did you stayed by my side since then?”
“Uh, No? I just came in to wake you up.”
“Haah. Tay, why are you always like that?”, she said while letting out a sigh of disappointment, which I didn’t quite get the reason for.
It was good to see that Kasha was behaving as usual. Though I was certain that the spell didn’t have any backlash on Kasha, I still got one of the therapists to examine her while she was sleeping, especially her heart. As soon as the therapist told me that she fell asleep due to her sleeplessness for the last few days, I let out a sigh of relief and went out of the room to attend some business.
Another business… In other words, I was having an interview with Celia Von Keijas.
I recalled the conversation we had a while ago.
I knocked her door and the door just flung open with Celia standing there holding the handle.
“It’s Mr. Taylor.”
“Do you open the door without asking who it is?”
“I know right. I must have lost my mind.”
“Or maybe someone wanted to talk. Come in anyway.”
From her voice it seemed as if she was frustrated but at the same time, a bit relieved. I slowly entered her room and sat down with her guide. Celia took a seat and poured some tea.
“So, what is it?”
“I want to ask you something.”
The information I have right now is crucial. I have to use it.
“The name of the person you met, the nobleman. Isn’t it Nortel Rhime?”
‘Sweet’ I thought to myself as I saw her expression change. Celia’s hand holding out her teacup trembled.
“How do you name that?” she asked me with an amazed look on her face.
“Just something here and there.”
“Don’t spew nonsense.”
“Then. I have my sources. But of course I can’t tell you in detail about them.”
Celia put her hands on her knees as she sat crossing her legs. After a while she opened her mouth to the extent that she had calmed down.
“Yes. Nortel Rhime. The person who told me that I have the talent of the great sage.”
“But I didn’t have such a talent. He lied to me or maybe he just made a mistake.”
There was a sense of deep resignation in her voice. I was thinking of getting to the main point immediately, but I composed myself.
‘No matter how much she resigned, she won’t open her mouth just like that. I’ll only get one chance.’
“Dreams sure are nasty.”
“Having dreams is different from having talent. In the end you stay disappointed after realizing that sometimes, talent matters. I have suffered a lot due to that as well”
“Tay-san too? really?”
No. No way. Of course, I have met many people more talented and quick-witted than me. But I have never suffered because of that. I just have to make all the talented people work by my side. Then, all of that talent would be at my disposal. So logically speaking I have to reason to suffer.
Of course, there is no need to answer her like that.
“Yeah. It is true. So I know how Celia-sama is feeling right now.”
“In fact, I am asking you about Nortel for similar reasons. Looking at the situation he seems to have misled you, but still you can’t hold him responsible for it.”
“I hate people who like to play with people’s lives just for amusement. Nortel appears to be just like that.”
Celia shook her head with a sad expression. After a while, her face glowed up. It was a success.
“Yes. His words can’t be accounted for but I just believed in them and invested four years of my life.”
“What a wonderful thing it would be if I, a descendant of the Hero Arsleine, could be a great sage. Compared to that, even the position of the Lord of the Northern Towers appears shabby… I thought so and spent 4 years on it.”
“But now I realize. I was going the wrong way, misled. I shouldn’t have said those things to Kasha.”
Tears started falling from Celia’s eyes as she tried to wipe them off with the arms.
‘No. Don’t cry. I don’t have that much time.’
I hurriedly pulled out a handkerchief and handed it over.
“I know how you feel right now,” I said.
Celia replied, wiping her tears with the handkerchief.
“Don’t feel bad. It was a natural reaction.”
“If I heard praises about being a genius from an actual genius then, I would have felt like that as well.”
Celia cried out in somewhat of a relieved voice.
“Are all the receptionists so well aware?”
“When Kasha was in the Tower of Eternity, I taught her. At that time she was shy and meek.”
“I can’t imagine that.”
“So maybe no one knew about Kasha’s genius.”
“Of course, there were evaluations. A prophet who can look forward into the future, etc. Whenever I heard such a story, I thought I had no talents.”
Celia leaned over her handkerchief and spoke.
“She had no logic, no theoretical basis or context.”
“She didn’t even think about how to get the mana flowing through her body the most efficient way. She always felt that this is the best thing, and she would do it.”
“Sometimes there were cases where she deviated from the existing magic theory or, in severe cases, violated it head-on. I tried it also but always, I realized everything one-step later..”
Celia looked up at her ceiling from there.
“This time again, Kasha was right.”
“I turned my eyes away from that fact because of the arrogance that I would be a great sage.”
There was a moment of silence. I took a sip of tea and slowly opened my mouth.
“You seem to regret what you said last time, but don’t worry too much. Kasha will understand.”
“Surely she will. Because now she is…”
“Because she is a grown-up now.”
Celia stopped tearing and regained her smile. Good. Now is the time.
“I have one last question.”
“I know the name Nortel Rhime, but I don’t know what he really is. What the hell is it that he does?”
“What did he say to you? Why did you just believe that you have the talent of the great sage?”
Celia rubbed her chin several times. But contrary to expectations, she did not return a satisfactory answer.
“I do not know.”
“Huh? You don’t know?”
“It’s strange to hear the word. Why did I believe so, was it magic? No. It can’t be.”
I looked closely at her talking to herself. She didn’t seem to be lying. She was seriously confused.
‘It’s not magic. If you say that then you are not the top-lord of the Tower of Eternity.’
Besides, she is in the Tower of Eternity, a hotbed of all kinds of magic. Even if she didn’t notice, it wouldn’t make any sense if even a single of the mages weren’t able to detect it.
“I really don’t know. How the hell that happened…”
“If you don’t know, it’s okay.”
“Rest. It was a difficult day. In many ways.”
Celia nodded with exhaustion stuck on her face.
“Yeah. Maybe I should.”
“Then I’m leaving.”
Celia saw me off to the door. Then she suddenly spoke up as if she recalled something.
“Oh, he once said this.”
“I am a hero.”
As I tilted my head, Celia uttered her words in a bitter voice, “Yeah. A hero.”
“What did he want to say?”
“I don’t know. Anyway, after he said that he followed up by saying that I had the talent of a great sage.”
“It’s all past now, but.”
She looked depressed and tried to close the door. The moment I saw it, I acted unusually.
I impulsively grabbed the doorknob and said, “Kasha will forgive you.”
“She’s been rambling for days now, that Celia-sama is like her own sister.”
“I’ll call you later when she wakes up. Talk with her face-to-face.”
Celia’s lips were trembling.
‘Why am I doing this?’ I thought to myself.
Still, I should finish this.
“Seeing you, no doubt, Kasha will be happy.”
I turned around and walked away.
“Tay is behaving stupid again.”
I snapped back to reality after hearing Kasha’s voice.
“If you’ve woken up, don’t talk, go wash your face first.”
“Wash my face?”
“We’re meeting with Ms.Celia.”
Kasha’s mouth flung wide open but soon her expression changed, clouded with confusion and sadness.
“Would she like to meet me…”
“She will. Surely.”
“How are you so sure?”
Because it’s on the personnel register. I wanted to say that but I didn’t. I looked at Celia’s recent activities.
[Currently: Hesitating whether to knock in front of Kasha’s room.]
“No. Don’t wash your face. You don’t have time.”
“Then, have a good time.”
I got up and opened a door.
“Ah yes. just……”
“Come in. Kasha’s waiting too. I’m leaving.”
I moved out. Celia squeezed her trembling hands together.
I closed the door and came out.
‘That’s the limit. I need to sleep.’
Two days later, the adventurers began returning to their respective guilds.
Celia was faithful to her job until the end as she was given the role of leading the adventurers.
“Chain Guild’s Lek, Birk, Mr. Toil.”
“Here is the confirmation of quest completion. Go back and report. The rewards will be paid to the guild soon from the imperial family.”
“Don’t you have anything else to say?”
Celia bowed her head not knowing how many times she had repeated the same gesture already.
“This was because I am inexperienced…”
“Inexperienced? That won’t cut it. We almost lost our lives because of you.”
“It was due to my arrogance, I apologize.”
Celia made zero excuses. But she had someone beside her to take them on.
“What do you say? Did you even do anything?!”
“You couldn’t catch the error either. You should be embarrassed of yourself as well.”
“I, I just…”
“If you got the confirmation, go back. Don’t bother her.”
Perhaps because Kasha’s feat was so great, they bowed their heads down as if they were a student being scolded by the teacher.
I was staring at them from a distance.
Celia laughed slightly at Kasha as if she was grateful. Kasha shook her head as if it was nothing.
‘Why is she wasting her energy on useless things like this?’ I thought.
But when you think about it, kids who don’t behave like that aren’t actually kids. In the end Kasha stayed beside Celia’s side until all the adventurers were gone.
Now it was our turn.
“Kasha. I’m really sorry about this.”
Celia hugged her tightly.
Kasha replied while hugging her, “Don’t say that. I didn’t mind any of it.”
“Huh. You’ve grown.”
“Sister. Will you be okay?”
The failure of Tor Ribiere was obviously witnessed by the Imperial Army. Needless to say, Celia, who was in charge of it, will be reprimanded.
But Celia shook her head and replied, “It’s my job to bear.”
“Don’t worry. The Tower of Eternity has quite a bit of influence around the continent. I’m also a top-lord in the northwest region, so I’ll have it easy.”, said Celia playfully.
But Kasha just bowed her head without answering.
Celia rubbed her shoulders and said, “Please say hello to Elena for me.”
“Come visit here again.”
“For sure. I will definitely come. With Elena and Tay.”
‘Why me? Don’t you have to ask my opinion first?’
With that we left the Tower of Eternity. Celia was waving at us from a distance.
After we couldn’t see her anymore, Kasha kept looking outside as I entered the room in the carriage.
After a while, she entered the room as well.
“Your nose is red.”
“Then why are your eyes red?”
She sat next to me without saying anything.
“Why are you sitting here? We have plenty of room in the carriage.”
“Did we really complete an S-class quest?”
“Not us. This was done by Tay” she said while handing me the confirmation with a smile.
“Hey. Tay. I’m not going to ask about it anymore. How you made me use water mana or made me activate Tor Ribiere.”
“It’s not as much water mana, but earth mana was one of my weak points as well. But this time, I felt something open. It’s the same as when we defeated Braum.”
“So I’m not going to ask. Whatever Tay does, it will surely help me.”
“Tch, you shouldn’t just believe in people like that.”
I mumbled to myself and checked the personnel records.
Soon my eyes were wide open.
[Potential: The Great sage (Development degree 19%)]
[Title: A plus]
“You seem to have become an A plus adventurer now.”
Kasha shuddered as if she had heard an interesting joke.
We returned to the Hagnut Guild a few days later.
Kasha got out of the carriage and said, stretching her arms.
After that long journey we came back and she said, “It’s home. This is my home.”
“Then pay the rent” I said and got ignored by her.
I opened the door of the Hagnut Guild and entered. It was still working hours, so Sain, Elena and all the other receptionists greeted us.
It looked pretty grim while leaving but all of them greeted us with bright smiles.
I said, showing the confirmation to Sain, “There are many things to say, but first, hear this. We were successful.”
Sain just covered her mouth with both her hands without saying anything.
And at that moment.
[You have earned 1500 HR evaluation points from Kasha.]
[I got 700 HR evaluation points from Sain.]
[Level: Employee 2nd year / Next level: Employee 3rd year]
[Personnel points required until the next promotion: 2280/3500]
‘What? A total of 2200 points? Really? It was an S-class quest, but this is too much!’
‘Especially thanks to Kasha. Thank you.’
It was then.
Elena fell and embraced Kasha.
Kasha didn’t just go on a stroll, it was a S-class quest. Her sister who had risked her life for her even before this, came back from a life threatening quest. Considering those circumstances it was natural for Elena to act like that.
“Haha, I feel like a older sister again.”
“Huh? What are you talking about?”
“Tay gets it right? Tay?” Kasha said playfully while smiling at me.
Her smile while being embraced by her sister was pretty cute.
‘So this was the power of 1500 points.’