Chapter 24.1: I Mean No Harm
Kailisys was a large city. Considering how big the palace was, it wasn’t surprising for the capital city to be proportionally bigger. Therefore, trying to find Kyrie in this city was like trying to find a needle in a haystack. Thankfully, Calian knew what Kyrie was up to around this time, but it was difficult to pinpoint the location.
On top of that, Calian needed something that couldn’t be bought in just any old store.
That’s why he had come up with this insane plan of buying what he needed as well as some information about Kailis from the Secretian spies.
The spies were much more than simply sellers of information. They were real swordsmen who were thoroughly trained to spy on the affairs of a foreign land. That’s how dangerous this place was.
Moreover, Calian’s appearance was very easily recognisable, even just by people who were passing by. If these spies ever took a glimpse of his crimson eyes, the situation would blow up out of his control.
That’s why this whole thing was insane.
“I’ll take you to where the birdfeed is,” said White Eagle—the owner of the shop and the guardian of the spies’ foothold. Since he had confirmed that Calian was not an enemy, he didn’t show any further malice or murderous intent.
I guess I still have my days to live. Even while thinking so, Calian did not lower his guard. He followed White Eagle to the back of the shop while trying to stay out of the range of the man’s possible attack.
The spies didn’t know each other’s identities. The number and identities of the spies were never disclosed as a safety measure for when one got caught spying. That way, the other spies wouldn’t be involved in a chain of arrests. For the same reason, the spies never showed each other their faces.
On top of that, the Secretian spies during this time were selected without discrimination of age and gender. Therefore, it wasn’t strange for there to be a spy who was as young as Calian.
Calian placed all his trust on such circumstances and had succeeded in making White Eagle believe that he was a young, newly dispatched spy from Secretia.
“Just give me a second,” said White Eagle.
Calian was surrounded by stacks of miscellaneous junk: empty birdcages, feeders, perches of various shapes, and cleaning supplies, just to name a few. Even in thick clouds of dust, White Eagle avoided everything with ease. Then, he pulled a wooden stick that was leaned diagonally against the wall, blending into its surroundings.
When Calian heard something that sounded like a metal chain being wound, the whole room started rotating slowly. After a string of soft rumbles and sharp creaks, the room connected to the storehouse of a different property. White Eagle opened the storehouse door that led to a small backyard. They crossed the yard and entered the house.
Calian followed White Eagle past the living room and headed upstairs. After passing another secret passage, they finally reached a large study. A big table was placed in the middle of the room, and the walls were lined with bookshelves and racks.
“Take a seat,” said White Eagle as he offered Calian a cup of water.
Since Calian was already being severely harmed by the things that he drank, he placed the cup on the table without taking a sip.
White Eagle grumbled, “That’s right. I used to offer tea, but nobody would drinking. It was such a waste to throw out all those expensive tea leaves, so I’m just offering water now. But since nobody drinks the water, either, I could just stop offering at all.”
Calian didn’t seem to be the only one refusing drinks. White Eagle must have been annoyed about his efforts always going to waste.
“I was told not to eat or drink any old thing that is offered to me,” replied Calian, smiling a little. It was Alan who had told him that.
White Eagle nodded. “I mean, you’re not wrong. You seem like a newbie. We’ll be seeing each other from time to time, so I’ll introduce myself. I go by White Eagle.”
Although Calian already knew his code name, he nodded without letting it show. He had already come up with a name for himself before coming here, and had made sure that nobody in Secretia used it.
When Calian had first met Rumein, he couldn’t help but feeling like a swan. Since Calian was different inside than what seemed on the outside, there was no nickname more suitable.
“Yes, it’s nice to meet you. So, what kind of birdfeed are you looking for?”
The headquarters sold basic information and items needed for various incidents that one might encounter while acting as a spy. They were the “birdfeed”.
Calian glanced at the bookshelf, and then at the wall rack. “One information, one item.”
White Eagle opened his hand. “Five florens for the information, and three florens for the item. You gotta pay upfront.”
Calian found it strange that White Eagle told him the price before even asking what information and item he wanted. Since the shop was run solely at the freedom of White Eagle, its policies were not reported to Secretia.
“It’s fixed price,” added White Eagle, noticing Calian’s confusion.
Calian wondered if he would be able to get a gold bar for three florens if he asked. Of course, he didn’t actually ask the man about it. He wasn’t about to be treated like an idiot. Instead, Calian took out 8 gold coins from his pouch and handed them to White Eagle. It was more costly than he had expected, but it couldn’t be helped.
White Eagle took the coins and dragged his chair forward. “So, go ahead and tell me.”
Calian explained his needs. White Eagle silently stood up and scurried around the room. Soon, he sat back down across Calian with a map and a small object wrapped in paper in his hands.
“First, there’s your item.” White Eagle pushed the small object towards Calian. Then, he handed him the map. “And here’s your information.”
It was a detailed map of Kailisys. There was a single dot marking a location.
“So it only exists in Kailisys?” asked Calian.
White Eagle nodded and jabbed his fists in the air. “Fighters tend to gather where there are lots of people. This is the only place that’s big enough to have all the features that you described to me.”
In other words, there was a very low chance that Kyrie was in someplace other than Kailisys. Calian was even more certain now that the boy that he had seen on the way to the showground was indeed Kyrie.