Well now that the source has come to us, let’s get to the interrogation.
「Hey. I have a question.」
「What is it? Now that it has come to this, I’ll answer anything you ask.」
「I want info on the black market slavers or the blue cats involved with them.」
「Black market slavers? What do you want to know about them?」
「Anything. Any info you have.」
「Hmm…… We don’t have much connection to the slave trader, even the ones operating legally.」
Gazzol explained that the dragonkin don’t use slaves.
I had the preconceived connotation that many of them looked down on other races with disdain, and were all like “Let’s enslave all the inferior beings!” or something. In actuality, it seems to be the complete opposite.
Their line of thinking was more like “The inferior races are dumb and weak. They would be useless as slaves!”
And when they see someone lower themselves by using a slave, they’re like “Haha, is that guy seriously using a slave? What a loser!”
Moreover, the pure-blooded dragonkin were not allowed to leave Gordicia, so they had no way to export slaves even if they managed to caught any on the continent.
As a result, few dragonkin ever involved themselves in the slave trade.
「What about any rumors of slaves being captured by the Beastmen Union?」
「Hmm, I have not heard any. But I’m usually out hunting antidemons, so I’m not familiar with the rumors in town.」
「Oh! But there’s a rumor that one of the Beastmen Union’s helpers is a blue cat.」
「The girl’s race has yet to be determined, but the guy she’s with is apparently confirmed to be a blue cat.」
So there’s a strong blue cat working with the Beastmen Union? That’s worth checking out.
We asked him about any other possibilities, but Gazzol really didn’t seem to know anything else. He didn’t seem like a guy that cared much for rumors in the first place, so I doubt he knows much else.
So what are we going to do with this guy now?
I guess we should clear up the misunderstanding first.
「I’ve never even met anyone from the Beastmen Union.」
「Yes, that does appear to be the case……」
Gazzol’s shoulders slumped downwards in shame. After Fran asked him about the inner workings of the Beastmen Union, he certainly knew by now that she was unfamiliar with them.
He had attacked the wrong girl by mistake, and even got himself beaten up and captured. Anyone would be in shambles.
Even Fran stared down at Gazzol with a look of pity.
Gazzol sensed the pity in her eyes and muttered to himself in self-mockery.
「Heh. I’m so pathetic.」
Even I have to admit that I kinda felt sorry for Gazzol. Poor guy.
Gazzol then shouted with his eyes a little teary.
Come on! That’s not something anyone wants to hear from a middle-aged dragonkin dude! Replace yourself with a hot female knight!
（Master, what do we do?）
I’m glad that Fran asked for my opinion instead of just offing him. I could tell she was putting more effort into thinking these things through.
『It’s not a good idea to kill him.』
Gazzol was a decently powerful man, so there’s no way he’s just one of the Dragon King Syndicate’s grunts. If they found out that we murdered one of their high-ranking members, they will certainly retaliate.
Besides, Fran and I already had no reason to kill him.
『Not much we can do. Just leave him here.』
（Nn. Got it.）
Judging by his behavior, he was unlikely to attack us again, but we should restrain him just in case.
I used land magic on the ground to entangle Gazzol’s torso. Then, Fran used restoration magic to reattach Gazzol’s leg.
「Wha-? W-What in the world?」
「What are you doing to my leg……!?」
「Stop moving already.」
「T-This is healing magic? No, the advanced Restoration Magic!?」
Gazzol stopped struggling and suddenly quieted down. I thought that was because he realized we were healing him, but apparently that wasn’t the only reason.
「I will not ask you to let everything go after what happened today. Just please keep in mind that not all dragonkin are your enemies. Today’s events can be blamed solely on the Dragon King Syndicate.」
「What do you mean?」
「Wielders of healing are particularly rare on this continent, especially here in this city…… That is why the Sanatorium holds so much power.」
He was apparently incredibly shocked to learn that he had accidentally attacked a valuable wielder of restoration magic. Then, he feared that Fran would consider all dragonkin as enemies, and refuse to heal any of them in the future.
「I will tell the Dragon King Syndicate to leave you alone. If you want, you can even take my life here.」
「……It’s not like I go around healing people for free.」
「I know, but I cannot allow myself to be the cause of my brethren losing their lives somewhere down the line.」
「……I don’t care.」
「That is fine too.」
Fran, not knowing how to answer him any more, simply turned from Gazzol and walked away.
「If you ever need my help, give me a call! I shall do whatever you ask for!」
「I am deeply sorry!」
After listening to Gazzol’s shouts and walking a little distance away, Fran suddenly glanced over her surroundings.
She seemed to have sensed something slightly strange, but she couldn’t put it into words.
I looked around too and couldn’t find anything either. Fran has sharper senses than me though, so something might be up.
『We better get out of here quickly.』
What was that strange feeling that Fran sensed? A sign of the antidemons approaching? Someone watching us? Did the Dragon King Syndicate do something else?
Either way, I hope it’s not something bad for us……