Protagonist Knows Everything - Chapter 46: Work for me
That evening we had a dinner party. It was a big party, we chartered the whole 2nd floor of the adventurer’s bar. Naturally, the reason for the party was the absorption of the Wyvern Guild. Along with my promotion to the vice guild master.
Honestly, it was quite a big deal. The Hagnut guild almost doubled in size.
“Excuse me! Don’t let Elena drink that.”
“Ouch! Elena. If you drink that, I’ll get really mad!”
To my surprise, drinking is possible in this world from the age of thirteen. Kasha was raging at Elena who was sitting right across the table.
Of course, Elena slightly sticks out her tongue and replies, “I am also an adult now. Sister.”
“What are you talking about? I am the adult here!”
‘What are you talking about eh?’
At least for now, Kasha looked really worried. I’ll help her out a bit.
“I think it would be better to refrain from drinking. Ms. Elena.”
“Ugh. If Mr. Tay says so.”
Elena looked very dissapointed but nonetheless, she pushed away the wine glass.
Only after that did Kasha heave a sigh of relief and say to me, “Thanks. Tay.”
“It’s not a big deal.”
“Whew. These days, Elena has been behaving very rebellious; it must be puberty.”
Considering Elena’s age, Kasha’s guess was correct. As Kasha sighs, she picks up the wine glass in front of her.
I snatched it.
“Did you think you could drink it?”
“But I’m an adult…”
As I kept staring at her, Kasha eventually gave up and settled down for water.
I turned around due to the loud laughter coming from behind me.
‘What’s going on?’
Jeriel was just munching on snacks on the corner.
Sain smiled awkwardly and said to Jeriel, “There, Ms. Jeriel, please have a drink……”
“Oh! Really? Oh no. Hmm. Fine, only a little.”
“I know that Parmel’s nuns aren’t prohibited from having alcohol.”
“It’s just that… my friend is a bit strict about alcohol.”
Jeriel couldn’t speak in a composed manner. I knew the reason for that. Jeriel couldn’t concentrate on the conversation due the constant nagging inside her head.
The party was looking really lively. But suddenly I heard an unfamiliar voice.
“Oh, so dirty and noisy.”
I turned around.
The voice belonged to a person who had just climbed up the stairs and was staring at us from a distance. It was Check Demisen.
At that time, Sain spoke up as the Guild master, “We chartered this whole place for ourselves today.”
“I know. I was curious about how you people were doing, so I came up for once.”
“So, how does it feel? You defeated your rival guild and now have a near absolute monopoly over the quests in all of Kelk.”
His stiff tone made me quite uncomfortable
Sain replied to his remark with a harsh voice, “I don’t know what your intentions are, but we’re celebrating right now. Kindly go back.”
“I will. After all, business is running quite low in Kelk city.”
I intervened before Sain lost her cool.
“Everything’s the same as before.”
Check stared at me.
“I heard that you are the one who destroyed the Wyvern Guild. You must be feeling really proud right now. Right?”
“Yeah, something like that.”
He was visibly agitated due to my casual answer. As things were looking quite ugly, Kasha rose up from her seat. Check flinched and took a step back.
‘Only seventeen…… No, is it eighteen now? Children that age shouldn’t be this scary though.’
I said, “Let’s hear what the complaints are, for now.”
“You must’ve heard the rumors. Our guild is absorbing the Wyvern Guild. You must be quite excited as you just barged into our party. Do you want to join us this badly?”
Check replied with his arms tucked together.
“Ha. Did you really think that I’d bow my head to the Hagnut Guild?”
“You won’t need to bow but… whatever.”
“I didn’t like you guys from the very beginning. That’s why I never joined your guild.”
‘Yeah, nothing new.’
I softly replied, “Are you sure you remember the old days correctly?”
At that question his face burned red.
“I heard everything from our Guild Master. You asked for an exclusive contract a long time ago and then you were rejected.”
“As our guild was just a small one at that time, you offered a contract with ridiculous conditions. But unlike your expectations, you were rejected.”
Check exhaled sharply. Of course it would’ve been harsher if Sain was the one saying that. But this should be sufficient for now.
“I can understand your condition, you’re really pissed off. Because of us it’s become quite difficult for you to find work.”
“You’re a person with a poor ability to judge, even though you’re desperate to find work you should’ve considered a bit more before barging into our gathering.”
“If you do things like this then it’ll only prolong your unemployment.”
Check flinched on my remarks. But he soon said, straightening his waist.
“Do you really think that I won’t be able to secure a quest without your help?”
“It’s not just me. Do you think all of the adventurers from the Wyvern Guild will silently follow you? Trust me, you’ll be surprised.”
‘Nothing surprising at all, I know everything already.’
I said in a rather condescending voice, “Rotten apples are rather useful.”
Check’s face hardened up even more. Before he said anything, I said something else first.
“If things are dire then you shouldn’t actually be here right now.”
“Do you think you’re the only talented person around here?”
Cold sweat formed on Check’s face. He turned around.
“Where are you going?”
Then he quietly went down through the stairs without replying to my question. Kasha was sticking out her tongue as he left.
“Don’t do that.”
“It doesn’t suit your age.”
Then Kasha’s face lit up and in a proud tone she said.
“Yes. I am a adult no matter what anyone says.”
“Hehehe. Tay finally admitted it right?”
I decided to ignore that and turned to Sain.
I waited for a few moments and then whispered to her, “I didn’t think that the merger would go that smoothly anyway.”
Sain nodded heavily as if she was thinking the same thing.
“Yeah. In the first place, Hagnut and Wyvern guilds have completely different views, everything was looking so at first.”
“It is easy.”
“If you do only a little bit of work behind the scenes then everything will go smoothly.”
Sain’s eyes became skeptical.
To prevent further doubts I just smiled gently and said, “So don’t worry about it, Guild Master. And just focus on enjoying the party.”
“Again with the Guild Master.”
“Because there are other people here.”
Then she replied with a slightly spiteful smile unlike her normal smiles.
“Huh. I see. Sure, Deputy Guild master.”
The next afternoon I went out of the office.
For reference, when I said that I would go off-site, Sain allowed me to leave without asking anything whatsoever. I always kept a few explanations ready so for me it was a let down.
The place I headed for was a bar. Around 3pm, there was a regular customer who occupied a table at the most leisurely times.
“At least the owner is making money.”
I said so as a form of greeting.
The customer looked up, right into my eyes and said, “Taylor Mason.”
“It’s dangerous for an unemployed person to get this drunk. Dirk.”
“Why are you suddenly worrying about me? And how did you know I was here?”
You were talking with an adventurer here a while ago. It appeared in the personnel register. Of course, I didn’t say that.
“You are in a position where you’d turn to alcohol for relief. And you’ll try to save a penny at the same time as well.”
“And around here, this is the cheapest alcohol place, so it was a natural guess.”
“Don’t try to deceive me.”
Saying that he rose up from his seat as if he was trying to avoid having a conversation with me. But he soon stumbled and sat back on his chair. I wanted to talk about some important topics but the situation was quite difficult.
“It’s funny right?”
“Well it’s quite normal compared to other people.”
Dirk kept staring at me.
I said, leaning my back on the chair, “You are a smart guy. You’d make an excellent employee.”
“What are you trying to say?”
“Because you were dismissed from the Wyvern guild, it became quite difficult to get you a position.”
To be precise, it meant that there wasn’t really any recent update in my personnel log.
“You were unjustly kicked out of the Wyvern Guild weren’t you?”
“I knew that it’d impact you in a huge way but I never thought that you’d become a drunkard like this..”
He looked down at his glass with his gloomy eyes.
I softly asked, “Why are you like this? Was the Wyvern Guild so important to you?”
“A guild like that… is still a guild.”
“Is it about Von?”
Dirk replied with silence. This guy’s behaviour was odd. According to my records Dirk was physically assaulted by Von.
‘Are you worried about the person who humiliates you in front of so many people? ‘I remember seeing people like you.’
Suddenly, an old memory flashed across my mind.
I cleared my throat and said, “For a long time I thought it was weird.”
“I saw how Von treated you in the guild association. I had been treated like that then I would have quit right after that. I was wondering why you still worked for him. But now I think I know.”
I know what you’ll say. No. This time I was sure.
That Dirk was a person similar to the secretary that I had met in my previous life.
One day, ‘raccoon face’ called me in for a business meeting with a big golf entertainment company. There, I had a chance to have a sad talk with one of the secretaries.
“Manager Kim is a bit stiff with the CEO.”
I was shocked, I was very confident about the usual hospitable smile I wore during work.
“Is that so.”
“I didn’t mean it in a bad way. Rather, I am a little bit envious. Our boss is a little bit grotesque.”
At that time, I remembered the way that his boss had treated him during the meeting. I was wondering why he behaved the way he did but the secretary spoke up.
“But the boss isn’t the only obnoxious one.”
After hearing those words I was wondering how he was being treated in the company. But his next words cleared all of my questions.
“But that’s why someone like me is needed. It’s alright for me to be here.”
The moment I heard that, I realized that the conversation with the secretary was no longer needed.
Coming back to reality I told Dirk, “You need a bit of self-esteem.”
“Are you trying to insult me?”
“No. I’m not in the mood of doing that right now..”
Dirk said nothing. Just as I was about to get to the point, he spoke up.
“Self-esteem… not for me.”
‘Do you admit it yourself?’
I said, leaning my back on the chair, “You’ve been pretty secretive about these things until now.”
“At first I was a guild master too. I had my reasons.”
He sighed and then said, “I failed. I failed spectacularly.”
“Did you run a guild?”
Dirk’s eyes pained as he looked at me.
He himself admitted that he had failed.
Not many people have the privilege that allows them to change industries after a failure. At first, they try to change their careers, then give up, and they often hang around, working in similar industries.
Then after a heavy sigh Dirk spoke, “As you said. I originally ran a small guild in a place quite far from here.”
As he spoke, he put both his hands on his face.
“It was a guild I opened up, with few of my adventurer friends who believed in me, relied on me. But after just five years, it was run over by the competition and we had to close it down.”
“Their gazes are still fresh inside my head. The way they looked at me, their once warm and welcoming eyes that looked up to me were now filled with despise.”
“Their cheers of…’We believe in you.’, ‘We’ll make it big.’; they still ring in my head.”
I clicked my tongue. If the Hagnut guild failed like that, would Kasha say something like that too?
I can’t imagine it. I don’t want to imagine it.
“After a loss like that the treatment I got in the Wyvern Guild felt like heaven.”
“In the Wyvern guild, I didn’t need to listen to any of the complaints of the staff. I didn’t need to deal with the resentment of the adventurers. All of the responsibility was taken by Von, the Guild Master.”
“The Guild Master allowed me to continue like that, that’s why I followed him…”
“I’m sorry but…” I interrupted him. “I don’t know why you’re making such a big deal out of what he did.”
Dirk cried out fiercely. But without flinching, I kept my calm and kept talking.
“It is completely natural for the head to take all the responsibility.”
“The responsibility of the fall and rise of a guild or any other company rests with the head. As a guild master, even Von would’ve admitted it.”
‘I sincerely think so.’
Unexpectedly enough, Dirk seemed to agree with me. His hands trembled as I kept speaking.
“Isn’t it the same as when you were a guild master? You suffered so much because of that responsibility.”
He didn’t answer. He seemed to be acting humble.
All of it was getting on my nerves.
I hated arrogant people. But Dirk was the kind of person whom I hated the most. The nobles who take other’s words to their hearts and sometimes even let them dictate their own life. It harms the company a lot more than people might think.
‘I can fix the arrogant one, but…’
You can’t fix someone with low self-esteem, they have to change themselves. But this time I can do just that.
“Well. Let’s get to the point. Dirk.”
I tapped the table with my index finger. Dirk’s pupils were fixated on my fingers.
“To eat and live, you have to work anyway. Is it not the case?”
“Work for me.”