Translated by: Miss Ruby
Proofread by: ShadowDog
* * *
After I was done with breakfast, I went out as planned. My destination was close to District 7 where the new town was located. The new place was made about half a year ago and it was only a 20-minute walk from my house.
Since it was pretty close, I often walked to meet my fellow teammates who lived there.
Caw! Caw! Caw!
The moment I entered the town, I saw a black crow flying over my head. The town streets were busy with people going back and forth and it didn’t look much different from the roads in the East.
After a while, I arrived at the largest house in the town area. This was the location of Odin’s newly-established information agency.
As soon as I stepped inside, Odin, the owner of the place, greeted me.
“The watchdog and gum-sticker just left to see you. I guess you guys missed each other?”
He seemed like he already knew I was coming through his crow.
“Is that so? When did they leave?”
“About 10 minutes ago.”
“Then they should be back soon.”
Odin looked like he was listening to a report from one of his employees. I turned and greeted the man who was fawning over Odin in front of him.
“Hi, Mr. Flying-Squirrel.”
“Gasp! You, you actually remember my name…here, you can have a seat!”
Initially, Odin did commissions by himself, but after returning to the west this time, he opened a new information agency that was structured like an organization. That said, Odin was still handling the important aspects and leaving the small tasks to his subordinates.
Flying-Squirrel was one of those subordinates.
Of course, that wasn’t his real name but more like a nickname from the underworld.
Odin looked at Flying-Squirrel who was flattering me with displeasure and kicked the man in the shin from his seat.
“Hey, why are you just standing there? Will you go get tea or something already?”
As the saying goes, foxes are Kings in caves without tigers.
Odin was the type to shrink away before Lakis, but he was different in this place, which was practically his kingdom.
Flying-squirrel ran out the door after Odin scolded him.
Flying-squirrel was the second-in-command in the information agency and had been eyeing Odin’s position as first-in-command. Odin didn’t do anything to him because he felt the man’s intentions were insignificant. However, after coming back to the West, they had a few frictions, and Odin’s patience eventually ran out.
As a result, Odin wiped the floor with Flying-squirrel and the man eventually became Odin’s subordinate. Even though Odin scolded the man every day, it was obvious that Odin liked the way that Flying-squirrel handled his work because he continued to keep the man by his side. Apparently, his hatred bred affection.
“It’s suffocating to stay inside all the time. Let’s go out, Arachne.”
Odin stood up first and left the room even though he had just asked Flying-squirrel to bring tea.
“Arachne, you’re not going to do work on this side again, are you?”
“I don’t know. I like the way things are right now, but I might start again later if I get bored.”
“Oh, really? But…”
Odin’s eyes opened wide as if my answer was unexpected. But I don’t know what thought crossed his mind there because he froze and didn’t continue speaking.
“Um…Lakis-nim didn’t say anything?”
“I mean, just, you know. Future plans or something. Like what you want to do from now on…”
Odin still broke out in cold sweat and stumbled over his words when he was talking about Lakis. Somehow, I felt this was especially more prevalent these days. And for some reason, he seemed to be studying my mood too.
Is it because he knew I was living with Lakis, so he felt uncomfortable when dealing with me as well?
“He didn’t tell me anything.”
Odin looked at me like his mouth was itching to say something. Something about this made me suspicious and I narrowed my eyes.
Seeing my gaze, Odin was startled and quickly managed his expression.
Although it was already too late.
However, I didn’t ask Odin for the reason. Whatever it was, it was most likely related to Lakis and if that was the case, I doubt Odin could talk about it that easily.
I decided to question Lakis when I got home today, then I continued speaking.
“The only thing I remember him mentioning to me was about the East. He casually asked if I liked my job in the East and if I’d like to continue it here.”
“The East? You mean that coffee house?”
“Something like that.”
“Uh…I’m sure you can do it if you want”
Odin’s words trailed off vaguely.
It seemed he also couldn’t imagine opening something like a coffee house in Carnot. Of course, there were similar stores here in Carnot but frankly, most of them sold alcohol instead of that one drink.
“Well, I’m still just considering several things right now.”
For now, I didn’t feel like doing anything yet because I was enjoying my life as an unemployed person who didn’t have to lift a hand. But inwardly, I kept thinking that I can’t live this forever.
Of course, if Lakis was here, I’m 100% sure he’ll say that I can keep staying like this as much as I wanted.
Just then, as I was walking down the street while talking with Odin.
A child bumped into me and hurriedly apologized before running away.
“That kid doesn’t live here. It’s my first time seeing them.”
Odin instantly noticed something was off and clicked his tongue.
Meanwhile, I pulled on the thread that extended from my fingertips.
The kid who was running far away was bound by the thread and flew back like a bouncing ball. Then I caught the child’s body mid-flight.
At first, the child looked like he couldn’t understand why he was caught in my hands and his eyes were round.
“Where do you live?”
But right after I asked that question, he seemed to realize that he was caught while trying to pickpocket.
He was probably around 10 years old. And in his hands, was the money that used to be in my pocket.
However, the child only looked at me without saying a word. Instead, he quickly swallowed the big silver coin he had in his hand.
“Hah, would you look at this?”
Odin scoffed when he saw this.
The kid was looking at me with ridicule in his eyes as if asking ‘what are you going to do now?’.
I quietly opened my mouth.
“I’m on it.”
Odin instantly understood what I meant and acted right away.
Within seconds, Odin’s crows gathered around him. The kid’s mouth fell open when he saw this sight.
“Let’s see, he lives in District 2. And his house is located at the very edge of District 12.”
“Parents are still alive, and this kid is the eldest son. He has a younger brother who just turned 6 years old.”
From Odin’s mouth poured background information of the boy which he had gotten through the crows.
“What the, your family looks pretty well-off, why are you doing this? Is picking people’s pockets the hobby of our precious young master here?”
“Right now, your parents are not around, and your younger brother is the only one at home. What do you think? Should I go get him right now?”
Odin spoke creepily and horror spread over the child’s face.
There were other people walking around us, but in reality, this area was tightly controlled by Odin, so they did not get involved and just continued doing what they were doing.
“Please forgive me!”
Only then did the child open his mouth.
“My brother doesn’t know anything! I was wrong!”
A fearful voice rang out amidst the cries of the crows.
According to Odin, the kid’s house didn’t seem to be tight on money, so I couldn’t figure out why he was pickpocketing. I looked at the kid and said.
“I don’t know what reasons you have but if you’re going to steal, you better look at the people you’re stealing from, kid. If you think they look easy based on appearance alone, you will get in big trouble just like now.”
I was also saying this because I recalled what happened to me in the past.
“And thinking you can just swallow the money or jewelry when you’re caught is a very bad judgment.”
The child was startled and hiccupped when he heard me speak in a deliberately low voice.
“In places like District 4, there are people who will readily rip open the stomachs of kids like you.”
This wasn’t a lie I was saying to scare the kid.
District 4 was a place where especially vicious people gathered in the West in great numbers. If this little kid had acted like this in that place today, he would definitely not get off easily.
I shot out a thread from my fingertips.
The child seemed to see something gleam sharply in the sunlight and froze in place. Of course, I wasn’t going to do something as nasty as splitting open the child’s stomach.
I simply opened the child’s mouth and pulled out the silver coin which was previously attached to my thread.
Even though I pulled it out carefully without harming his esophagus, the physiological repulsion was unavoidable, so the child fell to the floor and retched a few times.
I didn’t know if this kid was really stealing money for fun, or if he had some other reason but what happened today would be a lesson either way.
“What should we do with the kid? I don’t think we should deal with him.”
Right when Odin and I were about to discuss how to handle the child, a loud noise suddenly rang out in front of us.
Odin’s gaze and mine turned at the same time.
The child’s face flushed flaming red as he lay on the floor.
I didn’t have to search for the source of that rumbling noise; it obviously came from the child’s stomach.
I thought about it for a moment and then I used my thread to hand over the silver coin which was covered in the child’s saliva.
“I’ll give you this, don’t swallow it again. Go over there and buy some bread to eat.”
Perhaps he felt more embarrassed at my words because his face turned even redder opposite me.
The child hesitated for a moment, then he snatched the silver coin I held out and ran away. He wasn’t going in the direction of the bread store I was talking about.
“That cheeky little brat…should I bring him back?”
“Let him go.”
For a while, I stared at the receding back of the child.
It might just be a pointless feeling but for some reason, I felt like I was going to see that child again sooner or later.
**Damn kid, don’t just swallow stuff randomly, especially money. You don’t know where it has been.
T/N: My Wednesday is looking very busy so I’m posting Wednesday’s chapter, today.