Record of a Thousand Lives: Chapter 30

Chapter 30

After four days of walking, they arrived at the city of Riyadh.

The edge of the spiral tower flashed with the reflecting sunlight.

Commerce or trade was not the main industry in Riyadh, but the city was well known for its decision to invest a lot of their resources in excavating.

The two people entered the city after passing through the check point.

Kang Yoonsoo checked on the currently proceeding legendary quest by tapping on his terminal.

Shannette, who was from the continent, was able to look at it through the notification window.

She was buoyed with anticipation.

The quest.

From many ordinary things, like simple errands, to subjugating monsters, there were a variety of quests in the continent.

The quests/errands were requested by the continental people, and the travelers, coming in from the other worlds, did not have such querying authority.

Additionally, once the quest was resolved, one could certainly be compensated for it.

The window by which the quests/queries were initiated was not made available to the continental people, unless one was determined to provide compensation.

The query/quest was an absolute contract between the inquirer and executioner.

Often times, quest would get initiated by finding a special item, and the main assignments were made of unique acts like locating ruins, or hidden treasure chests.

The one that Kang Yoonsoo was currently performing was related to a legend.

The legendary quest.

It was a large scale quest that could determine the continent’s rise and fall.

There haven’t been any clearly verified facts about the legendary quest.

However, it was said that majority of the quests were very dangerous, and time consuming.

Of course, the compensation was also great to match that.

Although the details were not available, it was certain that one will not be disappointed as he could expect to receive precious treasure or expansive territory.

Even today, a countless number of adventurers were exploring the continent in search of strange quests.

The fact that one was currently executing a legendary quest itself would be a sufficient subject of envy.

Shannette was already heating up with excitement.

Kang Yoonsoo initially said it when they set out on their itinerary.

That was, the purpose of the trip was to prevent the coming destruction of the continent.

The legendary quest would certainly be related to the purpose of the trip.

What would be the beginning of that great quest?

Highly treacherous monster hunt?

Or, fighting for a territory?

She was sure that she could diligently execute whatever it was.

  [Legendary Quest – Missing History]

Meet with Henrick, a drunk who used to sleep by the garbage dump behind the Riyadh gymnasium, and ascertain clues for the missing history.

*Henrick usually moves about in the mornings.

 “…..”

Shannette could not hide her disappointment.

 “Let’s go.”

 “Okay.”

As if he had been in the city before, Kang Yoonsoo found his way around the city without any difficulty.

On the lawn of the gymnasium, muscular men were sweating as they were practicing sword skills.

Like the blacksmith workshop, there were also many women.

Walking past the front of the gymnasium, Kang Yoonsoo walked towards the alley in the back.

 “Drrrr-Puuuggh!”

A one middle aged man was snoring as he slept, buried in garbage.

The worn and shabby coat looked like a rag, and his prickly mustache seemed to indicate that he hasn’t had a shave for several days.

Although he was tall, the nasty, wine smell permeated from his body as if he has not had a bath.

His coat pocket appeared full as if something was kept inside of it.

Shannette was dumbfounded.

He was the true personification of a homeless man.

Could the legendary quest really begin with this person?

 “Had something gone wrong with the quest query window?”

 “Nope.”

Kang Yoonsoo spoke quietly.

 “This man is needed for the legendary quest.”

강윤수는 헨릭의 어깨를 흔들어 깨웠다.

Kang Yoonsoo woke Henrick up by shaking his shoulder.

Cringing his face, Henrick moistened his dry lips with his saliva.

 “What is it?”

 “We’ve come to inquire about the missing history.”

 “Huh?  From me?  What are you talking about?  Go get it somewhere else.”

Scratching his neck area, Henrick stood up from the dump.

When he was about to take off, Kang Yoonsoo took out the remaining silver coin and tossed it.

Turning around quickly, Henrick caught the silver coin which Kang Yoonsoo threw.

 “Geez, you folks have nothing else to do, huh.  I tell you again, I know nothing about it.  All I know is just from hearing hearsays from a few people at the drinking establishments.  If you still want to hear about them, I’d wish that you could bring something I want.”

A new quest/errand/request popped up.

 [Not enough money for wine!]

Henrick was showing interest in the treasure of muddjam that lived in the swamp area, in the south.

That sparkling stone would bring a good amount of income for Henrick.  Of course, he will use up the money on his drinks.

* The quest/query/errand will be cancelled in four days.

Compensation – a little information, Henrick’s flimsy compliment.

 “Here it is.”

Kang Yoonsoo immediately handed over the mudjam’s jewel.

He did not go through the mudjam’s habitat for no reason.

Turning lively, Henrick’s eyes sparkled.

 “Oh, oh, thanks!  I did not realize you were going to give one to me right away, like this.  Really good.”

He quickly put the mudjam’s jewel into his shaggy coat pocket.

Then pretentiously coughing, he spoke.

 “LeMax of the Redstone Excavators should have the information that you are after.”

 “What?  Did you not say that you will tell us about the information when we bring you the mudjam’s jewel?”

When Shannette protested, Henrick spoke deceitfully.

 “Did I not say that I just heard a few hearsays at the bars?  LeMax.  I heard that old man saying something when he was drunk.  Wouldn’t it be better to hear directly from the horse’s mouth than someone who heard it, like a beggar?  From what I heard, that old man was able to get paid with strange items in the process of excavating as a member of the excavators.  So, I told you from the get go that I didn’t know much.  Anyway, good luck.”

Having said that, Henrick slowly moved away.

Then Kang Yoonsoo spoke.

 “Craftsmanship is not art.”

Henrick stopped from leaving.

Turning his head, he cringed.

 “What did you just say?”

 “I said that craftsmanship was not art.”

 “Why is that?”

 “Because it is ugly.  It looks shabby, and does not have marketability.  To call it art is a misnomer.”

 “What!”

Henrick angrily approached closer to Kang Yoonsoo.

Shannette was curious.

It was unusual to see Kang Yoonsoo to provoke someone, like this.

However, she was determined to observe what he would do next.

Henrick stared at Kang Yoonsoo with hawkish eyes.

 “You, did you just tell me that the craftsmanship was shabby?”

 “Yes.”

 “Do you really think so?”

 “Yes.”

 “You, son of a bitch, you are determined to drive me mad.”

Henrick snickered, and took out a knife from his sleeve.

Shannette immediately moved to grasp the scythe and stared at him, but soon she found that he was only holding a chisel.

The chisel looked quite old, but the sharp edge flashed with reflecting sun light.

Henrick took out the mudjam’s jewel from his pocket, and quickly swung the chisel.

What used to be a simple shiny stone has instantly turned into a bright gem.

 “That’s great!”

Shannette exclaimed without knowing it.

Even the outstanding sculptors could not demonstrate such great craftsmanship as Henrick.

Rolling the beautiful jewel in his hand, Henrick laughed, ridiculing.

 “So.  Do you still think the craftsmanship is poor?”

Kang Yoonsoo replied nonchalantly.

 “It’s a mess.”

 “What, you bastard?”

Henrick was so upset that he looked as if he was about to swing his chisel.

Kang Yoonsoo spoke.

 “The material is shoddy compared to your workmanship.  Crafting mudjam’s jewels is underneath you.  Henrick Ellikerson.”

At that moment, Henrick’s eyes changed.

 “…..You, you know who I am?”

 “A commoner artisan for the imperial ladies.  Although retired, now.”

 “Is, is that true?”

Shannette’s eyes opened wide.

In order for a commoner to make entry into the imperial family’s circle requires s/he to have their great skills certified.

On top of that, he had to have the ultimate workmanship in order to be the designated craftsman of the imperial ladies.

That meant that he was at the top in his field, among all those who were alive.

How could such a craftsman be killing time drinking and sleeping at the garbage dump?

Henrick put on a bitter smile and spoke.

 “Well, my specialty is in puppeteering, but I did work on jewels as well.”

Shannette was even more shocked.

It was surprising to find that he worked at the imperial palace, but he was also a puppet master?

Although he was middle aged, he couldn’t be easily written off as far as his skills were concerned.

Henrick said as he sighed.

 “However, my hands have become dull.  Although I was praised as being the best in the continent, at one time… It was in ancient times.  I stopped about 15 years ago, so there must have come many who are much better crafters than me, now.”

As soon as she heard Henrick, lamenting, Shannette realized what Kang Yoonsoo’s intention was.

 ‘Of course!’

Come to think of it, it was a very familiar scene.

The retired craftsman of the imperial family.

The legendary quest was certainly in need of his outstanding craftsmanship.

Hence, Kang Yoonsoo provoked Henrick by saying that his skill was useless and no good.

That was, to make him restart his jewel making craft.

 ‘Awesome.  He is truly a great man.’

Now, Kang Yoonsoo would enthusiastically encourage Henrick, so that he would start making jewels, again.

Kang Yoonsoo replied.

 “You’re right.  You’ve lost your touch.  And there are others who are better than you, as well.”

…..Uh?

Shannette was taken aback.

Isn’t this the time to encourage this retired craftsman to start his work again.

Henrick stared at Kang Yoonsoo.

 “You, what is it that you really want to say?”

Kang Yoonsoo said firmly.

 “The Ellikerson family’s heirloom which you are keeping in the capitol.  Hand me the heirloom which can only be passed down on to the one who has the ultimate craftsmanship.”

 “What, why should I?”

 “I can make better jewels than you.”

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