Published at 15th of May 2019 08:55:10 PM
Chapter 115

The morning air was clean and fresh . There was smoke billowing from some houses in the distance if one looked towards the clear sky . A cool breeze blew through the streets, as if it tried to wash away any memories of what happened the night before . Even this early in the morning, there were people walking about doing whatever they had to do for the day .

Altair squared her shoulders and felt some stiffness in her back . She burned some Mana to heal it away as she made her way through the streets . She didn't know where the market was, but she figured it would be pretty easy to find . A town this size should have a very sizeable market . It would probably be incredibly loud to, as hawkers would be shouting about their wares to try and get any attention they could .

As she made her way out of the center of town she noticed the guards where looking around with erratically, as if they were alarmed by something . Altair could guess what that something was but, just in case, she walked over to one of them . The guard saw her approach and looked at her suspiciously for a brief moment before he returned to looked around .

When Altair got close she asked, "Did something happen?"

The guard turned his gaze back upon her before he continued to look around and said, "Some people were killed last night . You should be stick to the main roads today, young lady . You are easy pickings for someone who's cold enough to murder for money . "

Altair nodded in a frightful way and she looked around with a worried expression . She didn't feel any of it though as she walked away from the guard .

'Well that's good news,' she thought to herself as she stopped looking around like a person looking for trouble the moment she rounded the next corner . 'Well, at least it wasn't something to actually be worried about . '

It took longer than Altair expected to find the market . She had gone around to the wrong side of town before she realized caught sight of people walking from the opposite direction while carrying groceries .

After cursing her luck mentally, Altair made her way to the west side of town that the person had come from . Thirty minutes later, she could hear the hustle and bustle of hundreds of people . As soon as she rounded the next corner she saw dozens of people walking on a vast street . She could also see two people sitting on a carpet with their wares before them .

Altair walked up past them, glancing only to see what they were selling, before moving into the crowd .

It was easier said than done . The throngs of people were like multiple waves crashing into each other . Altair was still a child compared to all of the adults walking around . Most people didn't even see her . Even though she was wearing obviously expensive and rich clothing, most people didn't even notice she was there .

In such a situation, Altair clung her satchel to her chest tightly . In such a chaotic environment, pickpockets could be anywhere . Altair herself had used such areas to acquire funds . She was no stranger to how they operated .

Because Altair was wearing such finery and had a large bag, if she wasn't keeping it close she would be a target for them . She had no desire to lose her supplies, especially because of the invaluable sweets that she carried .

She walked through the crowd, pushing and shoving with slightly enhanced power through her Body Reinforcement Magic . She could hear the hawkers shouting about shoes, clothes, and assortments of food . Those weren't what Altair was looking for so she ignored them .

Altair tried to move on the outskirts of the crowd so she could see the stalls for herself . It didn't work out as well as she would have liked . She was able to see some people selling their goods occasionally but, for the most part, her vision was crowded by people .

Eventually, Altair found an alchemist shop and quickly darted in through the drapery that covered the entranceway . As she dashed through the cloth, her nose was assaulted by an assortment of strong smells that amounted to her frowning visually under its stench . However, this was good news to her . The more mixed and strong the smells inside an alchemist shop, the more skilled they were . The more skilled they were, the higher chance they would have a wide assortment of remedies, which included the antidote for the Mana Sealing Poison .

After all, the Mana Sealing Poison wasn't hard to make . The problem was that there weren't a whole lot of people who sought it . It was pretty rare for normal people to get inflicted with it . Nobles would often inflict it on their children as they grew up so that they could feel what it felt like to live without Mana for a time . And, of course, it was used in espionage and assassinations .

So there was always a demand for the cure . But the cure was easy to make so most people would just make it themselves .

As a result, it wasn't carried very often by alchemists .

Altair looked around the dusky and dark room that she entered . The smell that permeated the air could only be described as insultingly pungent . Light came in threw some drapes that were tossed over the windows to keep the light out, as was often the case with alchemists . Even light could affect the tonics they brewed, or so they believed .

Altair didn't have any skill in alchemy to speak of so she didn't know otherwise .

There was an old man with a long and grimy beard sitting at the back of the room with his head mostly down . The surrounding walls were lined with shelves of unidentifiable liquids on them . Some of the liquids had odd solid objects in them of various shapes . The sights of them, in the darkness, caused the onlooker to think they were organs or some other slimy object due to the way they looked in the liquids .

The old man looked up when Altair entered and fixed a steely gaze on Altair . He had no hair other than the beard on his face . His expression turned foul as he quickly spoke in an annoyed dry tone, "Get out of here you little shit! This isn't a place to play around!"

Altair's brow twitched slightly . She then glanced down at her clothing, which was obviously spoke of a wealthy person outside, and noticed that in here it just looked like a shabby gray shirt . Her pants had also taken on a dirty-brown look . She must have looked like a street urchin to the man .

She sighed mentally before she looked up at the man and asked tonelessly, "This is an alchemy, right?" Without letting the old man answer, she continued, "I am looking to purchase a tonic . "

The old man scoffed loudly . He then complained, "A shabby miscreant like you? I bet you don't even have any money to buy them!" He stood to his feet and grabbed a cane that was sitting next to him, hidden from view . He then shouted, "I've seen your kind! You won't trick me into letting you steal things!" He brandished his cane menacingly, as if to dare Altair to step forward and challenge him .

Altair frowned . If she knew what the antidote to the Mana Sealing Poison looked like, she wouldn't mind knocking him out or straight killing him and taking it . But she didn't know .

If she attempted to grab a tonic at random, there was a very real chance that it would be a poison that wound up killing her . There were hundreds of different tonics on the shelves in this small room . It was impossible to tell what was bad for her and what wasn't with just a glance .

She needed to clear up his misconception, which was easy enough .

As the old man approached with a threatening posture, Altair pushed aside the drapery that covered the door, letting the light shine into the room . It revealed the true color of her outfit and she put on a smug look and did her best to imitate how Joshua acted while saying, "As I said, I am here to purchase a tonic . " She then gave the old man a meaningful look as she asked, "Are you going to do business with me or…?"

The old man's expression paled instantly as he hurriedly spoke with a shaky voice, "O-Of course! I-I am sorry . My old eyes must be growing weak on me to not notice your excellence, young lady . "

Altair let the drapery drop behind her and entered the small room proper . She made a big show of looking at the tonics that were lined up on the shelves while the old man quickly brought his cane down to the ground and spoke humbly, "What are you looking for, young lady?"

Altair didn't reply immediately . She finished looking around the room before her gaze rested on the old man . She then replied, "I'm looking for the Mana Sealing Poison antidote . You have one, don't you?"

The old man's brows scrunched up before he quickly bowed several times while saying, "Of course I have those . Of course, just give me a moment to fetch one from the back . " He then bowed while moving away in a strange manner and ducked behind the curtains leading further into his home, leaving Altair alone in the front room .

Altair stretched lazily while she waited . She could hear the old man moving something around in the back but had no idea what he was really doing . After a few moments she decided to occupy his seat . Since he was taking his time, she might as well use his stuff .

After a while, the old man came back into the room carrying a crystal flask with a deep red liquid in it . He bowed immediately upon entering the room and spouted, "F-Forgive me for taking so long . It has been a while since someone wanted one of these . " He wasn't bowing to where Altair was . He was bowing towards the door, where she had been .

She was currently right next to him .

She emotionlessly replied, "Will you let me smell it?"

The old man nearly jumped when she spoke from where his blind spot . He turned his head and saw Altair sitting next to him and quickly replied, "O-Of course you can!" He then handed the crystal flask to her while continuing, "I may be old but I am an expert alchemist . You will be able to easily tell the quality if you are skilled with alchemy . "

Altair wasn't skilled at all . But she did know one thing about the antidote that she planned to use to her advantage here .

Altair took the flask in her hands and found it to be bigger than her hands and surprisingly heavy . She pulled the cork out of the top and inhaled its scent deeply . Her body shuddered involuntarily when the grassy scent invaded her lungs . She felt the seal on her Mana quiver inside her and knew it was really the antidote she was looking for . It was like the Mana that had been locked away all this time had sensed that its freedom was soon to come and it struggled within the seal .

That was the only way Altair could verify that it was what she was after . She knew that there would be a reaction from the seal from what other Demi-Humans had told her . They had suffered the effects of the Mana Sealing Poison before and it was her only reference point .

A satisfied smile crossed her lips as she asked, "How much?"