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Vol 5: Chapter 7

** Lev Magic Empire Tent Street **

The only person who knew El – and only through her mother’s exchange of letters – was Lulusha. However, even Lulusha has never met El, and she certainly did not imagine him to be a giant rabbit.

The Levs, who usually turn away sudden visitors, were looking in awe. Taking advantage of that silence, El continued his explanation.

The information about the origins of the two worlds and the red crack in the sky was outlandish, but it was treated as confidential information in the Kruvan Holy Kingdom. Furthermore, the Emperor, whom they deeply respect, accepted it as the truth, so the Levs had no choice but to listen silently.

**

However, the information about the Red Gate and the handling of Heroic Gears are two different matters. There were many Levs who understood that lending a Heroic Gear would be payment for El’s information, but even so, they couldn’t accept giving away their country’s technology to a foreign country.

「I was undecided because of that rabbit, but the Heroic Gears must not be lent out to a foreign country.」

The chief of Labyrinth Capture Division 1 and the head clerk of “Rororo Company”, one of the largest trading companies dealing with magic tools, had a secret meeting after the conference.

「That’s right. In the first place, we have yet to even confirm if the Magi Gear discovered by Division 4 are worthy of being called Heroic Gears. Most of the time, somebody finds a good-looking Magic Gear and brags that it is a Heroic Gear. After all, the company backing them is the “Shabby Company”.」

The head clerk referred to “Muge Company” as “Shabby Company” with hostility.

This clerk almost died in the Labyrinth of Fear due to the “emotional attack” used by an unknown automaton. He learned firsthand the greatness of the “emotional attack” employed by the automaton. As a result, he bought the automaton obtained by “Muge Company” for 1,000 Imperial gold coins–however, the “emotion trap” was part of the dungeon itself, and there was not any such mechanism within the automaton.

In other words, he wanted a gun, but what he bought was only the trigger of a gun.

He didn’t intend to pay as promised, but rather accused the other party of fraud and filed a lawsuit. But for whatever reason, the head of the company and his cousin, Abba, abandoned the lawsuit and paid the promised amount in full.

——This is your responsibility.

The clerk still remembers the pain in his left cheek when the head of the company slapped him.

At the moment, he is just the head clerk who bought junk and caused great loss to the company. “Rororo Company” employs young people on a large scale, so he could be relieved of his position as head clerk at any time.

The head clerk is similar to a non-executive CEO who manages all the work and personnel of the company.

“Head Clerk of the Rororo Company” holds great prestige in the Lev Magic Empire. The head clerk wanted to recover his honor at all costs.

「Head clerk, your company has hired some capable people to fight in the front lines, right?」

「What are you planning?」

Getting a bad feeling, the head clerk’s voice became lower.

「You don’t have to be so wary. We will make effective use of the Heroic Gears that Division 4 has obtained.」

「Do you mean to steal it? We can do that, but we can’t hide it in any of the tents here. It will be found out in no time.」

Many tents were now crowded in the square in front of the checking station. And troops from other countries were stationed all the way up to the surrounding hills. Every morning, to pass through the narrow passage of the checking station, a queue goes through the Lev’s tent street.

If you want to temporarily hide the Heroic Gear, you still need some equipment to research it, and the places where you can find such equipment are limited. And carrying out equipment from those places would only draw suspicion.

「I have an idea about that. So, will “Rororo Company” cooperate?」the Division 1 chief asked.

Only 20 Heroic Gears have been discovered thus far. The public would be overjoyed if these two protected new Heroic Gears from flowing to foreign nations. They thought themselves to be the heroes. It is possible that an investor would appear due to their heroic actions and the head clerk could start his own company – the head clerk’s voice trembled, as he imagined so in his head.

「Of course, we will cooperate. What should I do?」

The secret meeting continued with the grinning Division 1 chief and the head clerk.

**

A few days later, Abba rushed to Lulusha’s tent, who was taking a short nap after exhausting work.

「Wake up, Lulusha!」

Abba, who had become completely thin after giving up on the syrup stick – though he was now biting on a toothpick out of habit – called out to Lulusha from outside the tent in a disordered state.

「…What’s wrong? It’s still early in the morning.」

The sun was just starting to rise. It was a little too early to get a fire going to cook breakfast.

There were only a few people who were up and walking outside.

Lulusha exited her tent while rubbing her eyes.

「Please try to remain calm after hearing what I am about to tell you… It seems that the Heroic Gears stored in the “Muge Company” tent have been stolen.」

「…………」

The words were so shocking that it did not easily register in Lulusha’s mind who was half-asleep.

「You know that the guards were scheduled with particular care, but it seems that the rotation of the guards was misaligned due to a mistake, leaving the tent unguarded for about 30 minutes. It must have happened during that time.」

「W-Wait a minute. Muge-san. Muge-san must have been inside. Is he…」

「He was hit in the head and was bleeding. But don’t worry, he is being treated right now.」

Although she was relieved to hear that Muge was safe, she felt dizzy and almost collapsed.

「Are you okay?」

Abba hurriedly grabbed Lulusha’s shoulder. Even if he has lost weight, his physical strength has not weakened. Lulusha found support in those unexpectedly strong arms.

「All of the Heroic Gears?」

「Yes… all three.」

「The culprit–」

「An investigation will be carried out soon.」

「—It’s the Division 1 chief!」

Abba frowned at her assertive tone.

「Lulsha. I don’t think you should say that easily.」

「It has to be him. You think so too, right? He was the one who strongly opposed lending the Heroic Gears to other countries, and he was the one who tried to steal the results of Division 4. In the first place, even if the rotation of the guards was off, only people with inside information can carry out such a plan.」

Even Abba knew that the suspicions would naturally fall on division chief 1. That is why he thought that the chief wouldn’t dare tread on such thin ice.

「The search will start immediately.」

And Abba’s intuition was correct.

Division 1 chief allowed all the tents belonging to Capture Division 1 to be searched, and nothing of suspicion was found in any of them. Division 2, Division 3, and each of the large companies also allowed for their tents to be searched—but the Heroic Gears were nowhere to be found.

Items to be shipped abroad were checked rigorously, yet there was no trace that the Heroic Gears have been transported out. Information was widely collected from the Lev people, but nothing of suspicion arose.

The Heroic Gears disappeared without any trace.