With the trusted backing of the capital owned by Sherwood firm, having been able to purchase those swift horses quite easily, the middle-aged monocle, Zaido, was finally heading back to the firm’s branch office after making the payment for it.
It’s already night time.
Thanks to the fact that he had to run around the duchy, his body felt rather heavy.
When he thought that he had finally finished the work for that day and breathed a sigh, in one go all of his fatigue caught up with him.
Since it would be troublesome going all the way to his office, he headed towards the long reception desk near the entrance of the firm, sat down on it and heaved another sigh.
At that time, a strange sound entered Zaido’s ears.
At first, it sound like something was scraping against the walls of the basement, a very small sound. However, gradually, very gradually, it started becoming louder.
What ended up being conclusive evidence was hearing sounds like *Gan* or *Gashan*. Sounds which were reminiscent of something being broken apart.
He immediately went on guard, wondering what was down there. Maybe it was a thief or something like that.
No no, that would definitely not be it. As the manager of the office, he placed locking up as a task that was more important than anything else. There was no way that he would commit such a 『blunder』 after all this time.
In that case, Zaido’s thoughts veered in a different direction.
At that moment, Zaido had a bad feeling.
Around noon, there had been a 『serious incident』.
『It’s probably fine now』
That man with the otherworldly looks and snow-white hair had said those words. It’s fine. ――What is?
That, land dragon is.
As soon as Shaw and the others left, Zaido immediately went to the basement and checked up on the land dragon. It seemed to have been sleeping.
It was not the precarious sleeping figure from earlier where it was hard to tell if it was still alive or dead.
It was sleeping calmly, as if it had already recovered its stamina.
If this was sold, it would definitely lead to a ginormous profit.
Zaido also agreed to those words of Shaw’s as if it was only natural.
Feeling satisfied that, if it was sleeping this well then it was fine. With those thoughts he went out to town to make the payments for the horses as he was running out of time.
――That was a failure.
Zaido finally realised his own mistake.
Trying to keep a 『healthy land dragon』 in that kind of a cage was his own foolishness.
The reason he had kept the land dragon in that kind of a cage was because he knew that it was down with the fatal draconic disease. Since that was a disease that had no cure, he felt that kind of a cage was enough.
However, that white haired 『monster』 had cured the land dragon’s fatal draconic disease.
Seriously, I really do lack many things.
Recovering its stamina and recovering its original strength as a land dragon, that kind of a cage…
Suddenly Zaido heard an explosive sound. It was right behind him. From right behind his back, he heard that sound. The entrance to the basement should be in that direction.
Zaido fearfully turned his head back.
The land dragon with black scales had stuck its head out of the basement’s entrance. Zaido felt like his heart would stop.
――Hasn’t it become even bigger now?
What did that monster, Merea, do to this land dragon anyway?, thought Zaido as he looked at the land dragon that had stuck its head out of the basement entrance.
When they carried it down to the basement, they somehow managed to carry it through the entrance while it was in the cage. However, that land dragon could hardly manage to fit its neck through that entrance.
The *baki* sound earlier was the sound of something cracking when the land dragon’s body got stuck in the entryway.
Of course, it was the ground which had cracked.
「Wa, wa, wa, wait up! ――Okay, calm down. Don’t move from there」
They say that children who sleep well grow up well but this is definitely a different dragon. Even a sleeping child has a limit. This is no longer in the same dimension as a growth spurt.
Firstly, he waved both his hands and urged it to calm down. Zaido could no longer care for appearances.
He had to completely neglect the composure of an adult and in an as easy to understand as possible way, he used his body language and gestures to get his meaning across.
As a decent adult who was nowhere near being old, his way of hopping over may have seemed rather pathetic but, the man in question, Zaido, was way too terrified to care about it.
If any human came across a wild land dragon, he knew exactly how easily that person would lose their lives.
Even though the other party right now is a child but if it swung its tail even once, he would without a doubt, die. That was how dangerous it was.
「There there, I get it, I get it. ――Is this it, you want something to eat?」
While saying that, he noticed that the land dragon had small pieces of the trade goods in the basement flying out of its mouth.
「...a, ahh, is that so, you already ate huh…」
So it had already eaten its fill.
Zaido felt like crouching down and holding his head.
It was a loss. Without fail, it was a loss.
It seemed to be speaking something but even if it did speak to him, there was no way for him to know what was being said.
He of course could not speak dragon language. He seriously wished that it had spoken while that white monster was around.
Compared to the time it couldn’t even speak because of how weak it was from the fatal draconic disease, it was rather lively right now. It might be possible that the fatal draconic disease was suppressing even the growth of this land dragon.
――Give me a break.
Zaido prayed to the god of money who he believed in.
Once more, with a *baki baki* sound, the floor of the office creaked.
The land dragon was trying to force its way out of the basement.
――How exactly am I supposed to stop it?
He realised that he had absolutely no way to stop it. At that moment, the land dragon which had managed to get half of its body out, suddenly noticed something and turned its neck towards it.
With its nose twitching, it started smelling a certain item. Zaido immediately realised what that item was.
They were Merea’s clothes. After duking it out with the land dragon, he had changed out of it because they had become ragged.
There weren’t any huge rips but, it would have been strange to go outside in those ragged clothes so Shaw had him change out of it.
In exchange, the clothes he had been wearing were still lying on the long table in the firm. The land dragon was smelling those clothes.
It raised its head in a rather happy mood. It probably said something on the lines of, 「This is it!」 or, 「That person’s!」. Zaido somehow guessed that this was what was being said.
As soon as he guessed that, at the same time, he came up with a prospect.
「Do, don’t tell me, you…」
The worse the premonition, the easier it becomes reality was a saying that Zaido now held a firm belief for.
*Meki* With a loud sound, the land dragon managed to free itself from the basement entryway and make its way outside.
――It, it’s huge…
Seriously, when did it turn out like this.
It still can’t be called an adult dragon but it looks nothing like it did as a young dragon.
Of course, the entrance of the firm would never be able to fit this large a body.
Also, there was one more bad premonition he had.
――it plans on 『chasing』 after him. There was no longer any room for doubt. The land dragon looked even more pumped up the moment it smelled Merea’s clothes.
The direction its nose was pointed at was the east.
Without a doubt, it is the direction in which Merea and the others are headed.
He had no idea what kind of sensory organ it used to find out their direction but the dragon species were not known for complying to a human’s common sense.
「O, oi! Wa, wait? Don’t make a sound okay? Woah… it’s that, break it down without making a single sound」
He no longer had an idea as to what he, himself, was saying anymore.
Zaido understood that he was completely incapable of stopping that land dragon now. It was to the point where he was just glad to not have been eaten.
That was why, although it was fine for the land dragon to leave but it would be a problem if it stood out too much.
If by any chance it was seen by the Mūzeg army giving chase, then that may lead to the worst case scenario of them realising where Merea and the rest were.
――No, well, just because a dragon was running through a town, you wouldn’t normally think that there are any Demon Lords involved.
However, it would definitely be an odd situation. When they scouted to find out about the situation, they may end up butting heads.
「Quietly. ――Understand? Quietly now?」
As if to say, 「What are you saying?」 the land dragon tilted its head to the side. For a moment he felt that it was rather cute but in the next moment, a feeling of despair took over.
Zaido decided to make some useless efforts.
He opened the front door and with his hands gestured for the land dragon to leave through it.
It was night time after all.
It was a deep dark night and since it was the back of an alleyway, their figures could not be seen.
To the custom of only having social meetings indoors was something that he was thankful for, for the first time.
It was much better than it being done outside.
After that, it would be best if the land dragon could get out of the duchy without making a single sound. ...Probably.
As if it understood what Zaido had said, the land dragon quietly and slowly stuck its head out of the entryway.
In the next moment,
As if to say that it is too troublesome, the land dragon, very flashily, destroyed the entryway and went outside.
For a moment the repair costs flashed through Zaido’s mind.
「Just do whatever you want now…」
Now that it had come to this situation, there was absolutely nothing he could do.
As soon as it got outside, the land dragon spun its neck around and rushed over the ground with its tail bent.
It barely managed not to destroy the buildings in the way but well, the firm was already in a sad state.
Zaido who gave up on controlling that situation, seriously watched over the land dragon’s movements.
He saw the land dragon get into the posture to jump. It braced its limbs and while flapping its wings...it flew.
No, it jumped.
A land dragon cannot fly. However, it shot up into the air with such force that it unconsciously made him think that it flew.
The ground that took the brunt of the dragon’s leap, caved in and the aftermath of that jump blew Zaido away.
The walls of the firm once again creaked and another building, further away had its lamp pop with a loud sound.
There were voices wondering what was going on but, they would probably not understand what was going on anymore.
Zaido who crashed into the long table, stood up while rubbing his bruised spots and quickly ran outside and looked at the land dragon which was getting smaller and smaller.
「It’s oddly bad at jumping isn’t it...? That part is still young huh… Haa…, I beg of you, please don’t land in a strange place」
There was nothing else Zaido could do but to wish for that.