Chapter 58: I wonder if People who Make Cursed Things Think Like the People who Make Computer Viruses
“… Seimei-san, Friend Chat is completely a cheat.”
[“Fufufu, right? It’s rea~lly handy to have a phone in this world too~.”]
“And exactly what kind of phone from our world can send items through it?”
[“I won’t claim to know how the Skills from the game work in this world, but it was possible to send items to other people through Friend Chat in Mourning Star, so… Anyway, what is this knife you sent over?”]
“… Sorry, its magical properties are just a prototype, but it’s a master-worked knife all the same so there’s some merit to it. It’s a knife that glows when you’re being attacked.”
[“What?! Isn’t this one of the ultimate magic weapons in books and stuff?!”]
Ah, Seimei-san sounds so excited. But…
“But that’s all it does, you know? Just glows when you’re being attacked, without telling you where it’s coming from and without giving you any warning ahead of time. I’m learning a little here and there to figure out how to make it more useful, but for now, that’s all it does.”
[“… Jun-kun. You made this? Master-crafted?”]
[“… … …”]
The stunned silence coming from Seimei-san’s side of the Chat is really heavy.
“… I thought I told you I was doing some smithing?”
[“Master-crafted weapons aren’t just ‘some’ smithing! What the heck! This is something you should get paid for, you know?!”]
“I’m just lending it to you for now. When I make something actually useful, I’ll take it back and you can pay me for that one. That knife is more for skinning than channeling magic, so it’s not like I was wasting my time making it for you specifically, and it would make me feel a lot better if you had it.”
[“It’s true that I’d rather die knowing I’m being attacked rather than dying without knowing.”]
“… Shut up.”
[“By the way, Jun-kun … I hear all sorts of clanging and stuff in the background …”]
“Ah, don’t mind it.”
[“Rather than minding it, I’m pretty curious about it …”]
“Don’t mind it.”
I don’t really like to talk about things I’m experimenting with, since I don’t know if it will actually turn into what I’m hoping it will turn into.
[“…Ok… Anyway, the amount of research you did on Inventory is really impressive~. Because we had a house, we never bothered with trying to consolidate items to make space. Ah, I’ll pass this along to the others too, if you’re ok with that~.”]
“Yeah, that’s fine.”
Not having to figure out Inventory because they have a safe storage place to store things in … how bourgeoisie.
[“It’s kind of sad that getting transported to another world rendered a lot of its other functions useless, ne~.]
“Eh, what do you mean?”
[“Lockbox, Materials, and Wallet. In the game, you had a percentage to drop an item if you were defeated, so for the things you absolutely didn’t want to lose, you would put them in the Lockbox. Items that are marked as crafting materials automatically go in Materials. Wallet … is a shame. It’s full of money we can’t use, and it’s a pity money we receive doesn’t go in it.”]
“Heh? But I’m using all of those actively right now?”
“No, well I’ll admit Lockbox isn’t all that useful since it’s not actually a separate bag, but you can kind of use it like an organizer. I put things that I have to find quickly in there, like my Adventurer’s Card and ID and stuff. Materials is great, because even though raw materials won’t go in it, if you prepare the materials for crafting, they’ll go in. So processed materials are a lot easier to find. And Wallet … why wouldn’t Wallet be convenient? It keeps track of how much money I have and how many coins of each type and everything.”
[“… What? No, wait, ok, so non-processed materials won’t go in Material… But how did you move things into other tabs? Every time we try to transfer items from the main bag to the others, an error pops up.”]
“Eh? Uh … just normally? I drag the items to the tab, and the tab will open, and then you drag it into a slot. Ah, for money, after you register them into the Wallet, the next time you put money away, it will go in there automatically.”
[“No way … <Inventory> … … … … … *slam* Ugh.”]
A sound that sounded suspiciously like he had slammed either his face or his hand onto a table came through the chat.
“Ah… did it, work for you?”
[“… How did none of us figure this out before?”]
“How did it work in the game?
[“Money and Materials would automatically go in the right bags. You tapped the icons if you wanted to move things from bag to bag, and options for what to do with it would pop up. We kept getting type errors every time we tried to move anything, so we gave up.”]
“Ah. Well, remember, only pre-processed crafting materials will go in Materials. A hide won’t go in, but a sheet of leather will. Ores will only go in once they’ve been smelted. Things like that.”
[“Haa… The Wallet even keeps track of what types of coins you have now … I guess that’s to be expected, since it’s not like a game where the numbers just add up and you don’t have to worry about coins.”]
“Yeah, it’s … Oh, Seimei-san, I have to go. The person I was waiting for just came in.”
[“Hm? Oh, ok. See you tomorrow at the Morning Watch.”]
“Ossu, see you.”
With a very digital *Beep*, the Friend Chat connection to Seimei-san cut off.
“Oh, Jun-chan, watcha up to? It’s pretty late, ain’t it? Don’t you have a commission to do tomorrow?”
I look over at the slender dwarf who has just walked out onto the Guild’s forge terrace. His hair is braided tightly back, and his beard is trimmed short to keep it out of the way. He’d kind of look like a dandy if his clothes weren’t so roughed up and sloppy.
“Oh, Kopfton, you came out of the Labyrinth late as usual.”
“Kakaka, yeah, that’s how it goes.”
Kopfton laughs his weird laugh. He now leans over my shoulder, peering at the metalworking I’ve been doing.
“Nn, it’s rare you ain’t at the big forges. Whatcha doing?”
I hold up what I’ve been working on this entire time.
Kopfton’s eyes get very wide. As expected of the man I’m secretly calling my magic circuit teacher in my heart. He immediately understood what I was trying to do.
“Jun-chan. What. Are. You. Doing.”
“Eh… What, you say… making a magic circuit?”
“No, but, I see that, but… Why are you making the circuit part like that?!”
Normally, you crush magic stones into a powder and mix it into silver, or a mostly silver alloy; then you cast the circuit by pouring the molten alloy into a mold you’ve made in the delicate shape of the circuit you designed, and then you cast the sword around it.
In other words, swords with magic circuits are usually cast swords. So of course I haven’t made any magic circuit-type swords.
Well, it’s interesting, and I’ve been thinking about using Mana Forger to try to do something with it, but since I’ve only been “studying” magic circuits in my spare time while being trained at Helward’s forge, there’s no way I’ve had time to experiment.
What Kopfton is now picking up and inspecting closely is a ring. Made delicately out of extremely thin filligree, it looks like a very ornate ring … but the filigree is silver that I’ve used Mana Forger on to draw it into the circuit’s design.
That’s right. The ring itself is the magic circuit.
“This … I’ve never seen someone able to control their magic enough to make such delicate work like this … no, not that, watcha doing?! Ya need to surround it with another metal, you can’t just leave it like this!”
Ah, that’s right. Normally, you need another magic-conductive metal that will help draw in the magic you release into certain parts of the circuit, then in other parts it will help disperse the magic to prevent overload… anyway, to combat that I made those parts of the circuit either thicker or thinner than others, but I understand Kopfton’s main concern.
Without an even conduction of magic into every part of the circuit, the circuit won’t activate.
Normal people can’t pour in magic fast enough for the entire circuit to maintain the same level of magic-saturation, so silver, which holds magic easier, or iron and steel, which disperses magic evenly, surrounds the circuit in order to make it easier to activate.
Well, this ring isn’t for normal people.
I’ve already confirmed that the circuit activates when I put it on, just from the excess magic that’s released as my magic aura.
Just my magic aura is enough to completely saturate the circuit to full saturation, meaning it’s all full everywhere, and thus it successfully triggers the circuit at maximum power.
“It’s fine. If I surround it with other metal, it will disperse some of the magic, right?”
In order to disguise it as a normal ring, I don’t want it to have any magic being emitted around it in an aura. Although surrounding the circuit in silver or iron or steel will help maintain the magic-saturation, a small amount (or big amount depending on how much magic you put in) is released as an aura. It’s just the nature of the materials… but I don’t want the magic aura released anywhere except for the release mechanism I put in the center of the ring.
“… Jun-chan, what are you trying to make? Now that I look at it, this circuit is only for sucking in magic, ain’t it? What else is it supposed to do?”
“What else… just suck in magic greedily?”
“And just why are you making a cursed ring?! No, like, cursed rings are something that you can make so easily?!”
In this world cursed=sucking in magic, though in the game world cursed=can’t remove. I’m beginning to notice a theme. Creatures that suck in magic power that’s not their own are demons or demi-demons, and items that suck in magic power are cursed.
“Aside from that, Kopfton, did you get any Higher Craeftite this time? You haven’t sold any to the Guild yet, right?”
Or like, I know Kopfton hasn’t had a chance to sell the gemstones and metals he’s dug up yet, since he’ll have to wait until the Barter Desk opens up again at the Morning Watch.
“Oh… yeah, I have some as usual, since they ain’t rare, but they’re too strong so they can only be ground up, right? Ah, do you need more Craeftite powder to smelt into the silver?”
“No no… can you cut them for me? Like … nn… as if you would mount them into a Noble’s ring? I’ll pay up to 5,000 ecrue for each.”
“Oh, it wouldn’t be that much, you know, since they’re so common … or like, you can cut them yourself, right? I thought I taught you the basics … or like, you want to actually USE it?! Like a Magic Stone?!”
“I told you it should look like something you can mount into a Noble’s ring, right? No way can I cut it that well. I can only just barely polish them into a shape that can be mounted. Ah, also, if you could cut it for maximum magic absorption, that would be great.”
“Hm… maximum magic absorption, as well as being beautiful, huh … Sounds like fun. I don’t get much of a chance to cut something for ornamental purposes in this town.”
Oh good, I triggered his craftsman’s interest, so he’s not going to ask too many questions.
Kopfton is a Magic Jeweler, specializing in basic magic circuits of silver and gold, as well as gemstone-cutting. To be honest, I think he’d be a Master gemstone cutter, but apparently his cuts are too… original or something? Anyway, my opinion hardly counts for much, since this is out of my area of expertise.
Moving to a workbench close to the small crucible-like forge I’m working at, Kopfton dumps out a bag of rocks. At least, they totally look like rocks to me, but to the trained eye they’re the dangerous Higher Craeftite.
The reason they’re considered dangerous is due to being mistakenly used in place of regular Craeftite as a Magic Stone. Magic Stones store magic, and some types of stones can even store elemental magic. The stones can be tapped into with magic circuits, among other methods.
Higher Craeftite, however, sucks in magic greedily. There have been cases of Higher Craeftite sucking people dry of their magic and mana, killing them.
Maa, it doesn’t seem to be a problem unless it’s set into a magic circuit, and it’s even fine to handle it for long periods of time as long as you’re using gloves, but in general, Higher Craeftite is just ground into powder to act as a smelting additive.
As Kopfton is setting up his equipment and cutting the stones, I make a number of other rings. I’m experimenting with gold and silver parts, trying to make the circuit even more efficient, and making it look even more ornate. I leave the place to mount the stones alone until I see what Kopfton’s cut gems look like.
“… Jun-chan… I know I’m a little late in asking, but are you planning to kill someone with this? It’s a lot easier just to poison them, you know? And why did you ask for 15 stones?”
A beautiful dark-silver filigree ring with a Higher Craeftite stone set in it on an extravagant pedestal lay on the workbench in front of us.
It kind of looks like an ornate engagement ring…
“Don’t worry about it, don’t worry about it.”
“… No, this is totally something to worry about…”
“Don’t worry about it. Anyway, how much do I owe you for the stones?”
The stones are beautifully cut. It looks like there are different types of designs cut in, like starbursts or swirling lines or things like that.
“Ah, it’s only 142,500 ecrue for the lot.”
“What do you expect, Higher Craeftite only goes for 500 ecrue per phila to begin with. Even with the cutting fee being 8,000 ecrue per stone, that’s all it will add up to.”
I mean, it’s not really THAT cheap if we’re talking about the sudden expense, but for 15 gemstones expertly cut, 142,500 ecrue seems low. Although, it’s true that Higher Craeftite is among the cheapest stones you can buy …
“Weell, this was a fun diversion, but it’s pretty late, so I’m going to head back, Jun-chan. Rather than the money, can you smelt me 142,500 ecrue worth of your Craeftite silver? Don’t tell Helward, but your Craeftite silver raises the effectiveness by 40%.”
“Ah, ok, yeah, I can do that. By the way, if you ever see anyone wearing rings with these stones placed in them, please don’t say anything about it.”
“… Jun-chan, you AREN’T trying to kill someone, right?”
Hmph. Of course not.
By the way, I’ve also bought a lot of uncut Higher Craeftite from Kopfton, but I wonder how I’m going to use them…
Before I head off back to The Queen Mary’s (which is flooded with people from the Guild right now guarding the construction site, so I can leave it to them without worries), I finish off 14 more rings of various styles and sizes. For some of them, I add regular gemstones as decorations, though I mount them in a way where they won’t affect or be affected by the magic circuit.
Alright, my preliminary preparations for tomorrow are complete!
<a/n: Thank you JW Michael C, and Estelion for your donations!>