Protagonist Knows Everything - Chapter 31: Cutting the Thorns
The man who was fired, Curin Pevel, was the doctor appointed to Somel Von Kelk, the viscount’s firstborn. As the doctor, he must’ve frequented this estate and then both of them fell in love; it was as romantic as it can get.
When I mentioned all that Beloa was surprised but Sain who was standing next to me was even more surprised.
“Mr. Tay. You’ve been here just twice..No, no.”
My wise boss noticed my intentions and bit her lips. Fortunately, Beloa didn’t understand her words.
She must’ve been quite surprised.
“Well did he talk about me?”
“As a matter of fact, he boasted about you, at first I thought he was exaggerating, but after meeting you it seems that I was mistaken.”
The hardness on Beloa’s face faded away.
Seeing the opportunity I spoke, “He said, ‘It’s hard to see her face these days due to work. Is she doing well these days?’”
At those words Beloa’s face turned grim and she said with a sigh, “No. I’m not doing well.”
“Young master So’s condition was getting better… but the butler dismissed him saying that he was incompetent as he couldn’t heal him faster. It’s really so…”
Beloa’s words bore frustration, but as Zen was second in command right after the Viscount’s family, the maids couldn’t really say anything about him.
Feigning sympathy I said, “No way! I can vouch for his skills. He has helped me a lot. There’s no questioning his skills.”
“You might be his lover and must’ve comforted him through these hard times, but sometimes a man also needs comfort from his best friend.”
A smile hung on Beloa’s face with droplets of tears forming on her eyes. She took the bait.
I took that chance and asked her, “By the way, earlier he kept changing residences. Where is he staying right now?”
Sain was glancing at me with sharp eyes and her arms crossed.
“Do you have anything to say?”
“I should be the one saying that Mr. Tay.”
“It’s your second visit today. How did you know Ms. Beloa?”
“As I stated previously, Curin is a friend, I got to know about Beloa through him.”
Sain shook her head boldly and said in a blunt voice almost as if she was stating a fact, “Tay has no friends.”
That was pretty painful.
Sain quickly changed her words after that. “Oh. No no, I mean… because I haven’t seen Tay meet anyone other than guild members…”
“Yeah. Let me correct it. Actually, we aren’t friends. We just met a few times in the bar. I have no friends.”
I replied deliberately in a gloomy tone while slightly slumping my shoulders. Sain seemed confused and kept glancing back and forth not knowing what to do. I wondered if it was the first time I saw my boss so embarrassed and confused.
“There, there Mr. Tay. Mr. Tay is a really nice person…”
I just kept my silence and let out an exhausted sigh.
She looked at me and asked in a soft voice, “Are you mad at me?”
“……Are you kidding me right now?”
“No. Why would I be mad? I was thinking about something interesting that’s all.”
Sain’s expression was mysterious. She herself seemed to not know the reason for her restlessness.
“Ah, anyway… what were you thinking about?”, Sain asked while touching her forehead.
“If you want to close Zen’s cheeky mouth then you’d need to drop him from power.”
“In other words, we’ll have to make Zen lose credibility with the Viscount. We’ll act according to that.”
“I’ll tell you when everything’s done.”
Was it because of what I had been doing so far? Even though I didn’t tell her the details, Sain trusted me 100 percent. If I had been in Sain’s position, I would’ve become restless if my colleagues didn’t explain their plans to me beforehand.
‘I’m so lucky I have a boss like her.’
Then Sain said, “I’ll help you with anything you want as long as it’s within my powers. Just ask.”
“And be careful Mr. Tay you’re always doing reckless things for the guild.”
With that, she gave a warm smile. My lips were slowly turning into an awkward grin so I hurriedly turned to the window. I wasn’t used to anything like this after all.
I got off the wagon and midway and headed straight to the place Beloa had told me about. Curin had a small establishment there.
Even though he was quite young, just having an establishment of his own, even a small one, was proof of his skills.
He looked at me with an exhausted face. “I’m sorry, but we’re closed today.”
“I came on behalf of Ms. Beloa.”
I reassured him just like I did with Beloa. It was easy. I just needed to change the gender according to the target and speak the same words that I spoke to Beloa.
It felt like I was watching the remake of the same script. It was quite boring so I went straight to the point.
“But when I heard the story, it was strange.”
“What are the symptoms of Master Somel? And what kind of medicine did you make?”
“All of that information is confidential. I’m sorry.”
Curin stubbornly shook his head and refused to reveal the details.
Well, I didn’t expect it to be that easy anyway. I called up the records and meticulously went through his information.
‘Let’s see. Which of these should I use to open this guy’s mouth?’
30 minutes after the ordeal.
After a satisfactory meeting, I left his office.
Curin asked from behind me with his dead lifeless eyes, now even more lifeless, “What are you gonna do?”
“No no.Wait, don’t tell me. I don’t want to get involved with you anymore.”
“I’ll do what you asked for, so let’s never meet again.”
He hurried back and slammed the door behind him.
I smiled and muttered, “Okay. This is something I’m used to.”
A few days later in the evening.
As I was preparing to leave the guild I heard a clatter behind me. Wondering what it was I turned around to the counter.
She was standing there with crossed arms and looking up at me after making that weird sound.
“What’s with you now?”
“Hmm. Mr. Taylor Mason. Are you busy?”
“What now Kasha?”
“Tch. Not funny.”
“Huh? What kind of response did you expect?”
Kasha shook her hand as if it was no big deal and quickly changed the topic.
“Tay. Let’s go for dinner.”
“I have an appointment with a friend.”
“Ah. Huh, heh?”
Kasha looks very surprised.
“Appointment with a friend? Tay doesn’t have any friends.”
‘What? Déjà vu?’
“Okay. I have no friends.”
“Ah. Ugh, Oh no. It’s not like that Tay just has a terrible personality. That’s all.”
“Anyway, let’s eat dinner together next time. I have to go now.”
“Huh… what are you? A woman?”
I didn’t know what I had done for her to ask a question like that, but clueless, I gave the most suitable reply.
“No, I am a man.”
“Well. Then that’s it. Come on.”
“No, go home and rest.”
Unlike Kasha, who was in an uproar, Sain, composed, asked me in a rather serious tone.
“Mr. Tay. Are you being polite?”
“I don’t know what you mean.”
“Please visit carefully. I’ll wait.”
“No. No need to wait…”
Then Kasha intervened. “I’ll wait too!”
Both seem to have noticed. They didn’t get the details but they were certain that I was going out to attend some guild business.
“Then I should finish it quickly.”
I think I had some problems because I just inadvertently told them that I’d come back.
The place I arrived at was a creepy restaurant at the end of Kelk, where I and Ron had our last meeting. Ron was seated there ahead of time as usual.
“Hi there, Manager Ron”
“Hi… This feels stupid.”
“This certainly won’t be the last time you feel like that.”
Ron was tapping his leg on the floor. But soon he became aware of himself and grabbed it with one of his arms.
I said, while wearing a big smile, “Are you nervous?
“Mr. Tay is really asking that?”
“For the last three days I’ve been thinking whether I should come to this place or not.”
“In the end you did come.”
He did not deny that. Even though he wasn’t completely in agreement either.
“I am a person who only crosses a safe bridge.”
“Don’t lie. You couldn’t have become a branch manager like that.”
“It’ll work. Just relax.”
Still, seeing uneasiness in his eyes, I added a few words.
“Aren’t you gonna say that luck comes to those who are prepared for it?”
(T/N: Referring to his motto from earlier chapters.)
As I recited his motto, his face finally lightened up. We sat there without ordering anything.
After a while, the restaurant door opened and the person we had been waiting for appeared.
The man was wearing a hood over his head. Thanks to it, his face was not visible, and the personnel records didn’t register his information.
But I could still recognize him.
This person was Hessen Von Kelk, the one who governs Kelk, the Viscount.
The man swung his hand at several of the attendants who had come together. As if I had already told them, they each sat down at different tables.
This secluded gloomy restaurant was crowded all of a sudden.
Ron jumped up from his seat without knowing it and tried to be polite. But Viscount Kelk just washed his hands and sat across from us.
“Not good, Manager Ron.”
It was a deep old authoritative voice. However, it was also a tone difficult to imitate because it had a sort of dignity behind it.
“Well, how can I…”
“I have been invited to an exchange meeting from a neighboring estate and went out. I’m loading myself on a late-night carriage.”
I fully understood what it meant, and replied with a smile.
“It means that the person in front of me is not Viscount Kelk.”
“Of course. I don’t know why the name comes up because it’s owned by Kelk. What is the reason for him to visit such a creepy restaurant?”
‘If the owner hears you, they’ll be sad.’ I think I said the same thing when I met Ron before.
The owner of the restaurant, who couldn’t understand the atmosphere, tried to approach him to take an order. However, one of the attendants grabbed his hand preventing him from proceeding any further.
He must have said in advance to let no one interfere.
“There was this letter under the door of my office.”
Kelk took a letter out of pocket. This was a letter I asked Curin to pass over to the Viscount through Beloa. It seemed that he arrived safely without going to his hands.
“This letter has a poorly written report of medicines stating them to be a cure for Somel’s disease. But even I can tell that it’s false.”
“I wrote it down. I don’t have enough experience with medicinal reports.”
“Who are you?”
“Taylor Mason. I am a receptionist of the Hagnut Guild.”
Viscount put his hand into his hood and stroked his chin.
“It’s a name I’ve heard of. Are you the one who succeeded in the S-class quest?”
It seemed that even some nobles knew about me.
“Yes. Our adventurer did it.”
“Can I continue?
Kelk nodded his head.
“Recently, Master Somel’s doctor was fired. The reason being that he tried to administer medicine other than the one on that report.”
“If that’s true, it’s a miracle that he’s still alive. However, I thought it was weird to end it by simply dismissing him. So I did my own research.”
I was slowly talking.
“The doctor obviously made a medicine that was suited for that Master Somel’s condition. And it almost completely deviated from the medicine on that report. In fact he medicine on that report has nothing to do with Master Somel’s disease”
“So in other words…”
Kelk quietly interrupted and said, “So you want to say that there is someone who wants Somel dead?”
The atmosphere became tense along with his voice.
Ron, who was next to him, looked at me and Kelk alternately, not knowing what to do. I hoped that he would calm down; my boss was way better than this guy.
“To be precise, there is someone who wants Master Somel to stay sick without recovering or dying.”