Chapter 221: Seed of Trouble (2)
Editor: Hungry Panda
The story that he heard from Seraphim was quite long, but if it was summarized briefly, it would be like this.'Dice', a Noblesse-rank Devil that was the owner of the slave marketplace of the City of Rage, was urgently looking for a slave contract, and to the person that brought him a slave contract, he declared that he would open up the lowest floor of the slave marketplace just once. Normally, there was a rule that the lowest floor of the slave marketplace was only open to Devil Kings, and was only opened to devils that were Noblesse-rank or higher once a year for just a quarter of a day. The lowest floor of the slave marketplace was a place where a lot of slaves were sold that were so rare to the point that even Seraphim, who was a Noblesse-rank Devil, wanted them.
After hearing Seraphim's explanation, Ian felt that this was some sort of amazing opportunity, but at the same time, had a question.
"No, but… What is a slave contract for someone who is the owner of the slave marketplace to let out such a great bonus? On top of that, a Noblesse-rank Devil, who is also the owner of the slave marketplace, doesn't even have one slave contract?"
At Ian's question, Seraphim smirked as he replied.
"You know much less about the worth of the slave contract than I expected."
"The ability itself that the slave contract item has certainly isn't that valuable."
Originally, the usefulness of the slave contract was an item that was only valuable to devils that were Common Devils or lower as they were unable to employ slaves.
There was also a merit for devils that were High-rank Devils or higher, where it could reduce the price of the slave that they wanted to employ by half, but it wasn't to the point that it could be considered amazing.
To be honest, for Ian to find this puzzling was obvious.
"However, the slave contract is incredibly rare."
"Because it is an item where only three of them are issued every year in all of the Devildom, its rarity is beyond our imagination."
From time to time, there were items like that.
There were items that couldn't be considered amazing, yet just by their rarity alone, their value went up incredibly.
Despite that, as his questions were not all resolved yet, Ian's mouth opened up again.
"Hmm… Even if that is the case, why exactly would the owner of the slave marketplace, who is supposed to be a Noblesse-rank, need the slave contract? Isn't it an item that is completely useless to him?"
Seraphim laughed as he replied.
"That is because he is a dullard father with a pretty daughter."
At the unexpected response, Ian wore a flustered expression.
"Dice is a Noblesse, but 'Sasha', his daughter, is still a Common Devil. And for her twentieth birthday present, she said that she wanted a slave."
It was then that the current situation started to settle into shape clearly in Ian's head.
'So… He needed the slave contract because of his daughter's birthday present?'
Either way, in accordance with Seraphim's explanation, the 'lowest floor of the slave marketplace' was definitely a place that was greatly worthy enough to the point it was fine to call it a hidden piece.
'And an opportunity to go into such a place has formed.'
Ian's gaze turned towards Seraphim again.
"Then, do I just need to go find Dice with this?"
As Ian spoke while shaking the slave contract, Seraphim nodded his head.
Ian, who had a lot of things he had to do including his quests, had a lot on his mind.
'Well, it should be fine as long as I go through everything gradually one by one.'
However, despite that, he didn't even have the least bit intention to do them sloppily.
Ian opened his mouth towards Seraphim again.
"Anyhow, Seraphim, you've gone in the lowest floor of the slave marketplace before, right?"
"Of course. I always visit the slave marketplace every year on the one day that the lowest floor is open to the public without failure."
Ian curled up the corner of his mouth as he spoke.
"Then give me some information."
At first, Seraphim found it incredibly bothersome, but as Ian continuously asked earnestly, he slowly began to open his mouth.
And different from the beginning, when he found it bothersome, he explained the information that he knew in quite a lot of detail.
"Firstly, I'll tell you the most important point in order to pick a good slave."
"As this is high-quality information that not everyone knows about, don't miss even one word and remember it."
The first piece of information that Seraphim told him about was that fundamentally, the lower the floor, the higher the chance for there to be higher-ranking slaves.
There were not a lot of people that knew about this because aside from the lowest floor, that difference wasn't big, but this was quite important information.
"The 'lowest floor', which is where you will be going, is tied together with the name lowest floor, but is a multi-level space that is made up of 3 floors, and naturally, there is a higher chance that the slaves on the lowest floor of the three are higher-ranking slaves."
"I see, this is certainly useful information for me. However, is this that high-quality of information? It is information that I think most would know if you are a devil that has used the slave marketplace before…"
"That's not true. This is because there are a ton of cases where they don't know how to distinguish good slaves despite even having employed slaves before."
The information that Seraphim told him next was how to distinguish the information of the slave.
According to what he said, there was no way of finding out the rank of the slave before purchasing it in the slave marketplace.
"If you are a High-ranking Devil or higher, anybody can check the information of the slave. However, almost half of the information will be hidden from you. And it may be obvious, but you will not be able to check the 'rank' of the slave, which is the most important information, until you stamp the contract."
The reason for that was because there was a capped price and a bottom price set for the fixed price of the slave.
This was because if the price of the slave was freely priced depending on its rank and stats, the slave marketplace would follow the principles of the market economy and move on its own accord.
However, if there was not a big difference in the prices of high-ranking slaves and low-ranking slaves, no one would try to purchase low-ranking slaves.
"So, when checking the information of the slave, the thing that the purchaser must definitely check is the species of the slave."
"I see. It seems the slaves are not devils?"
"No, there are devils amongst the slaves as well. There are even devils that are High-ranking Devils or greater. However, such cases are extremely rare, so mostly other various species from another dimension come in as slaves."
"It seems like a similar concept to war slaves due to an invasive war of the Devildom."
"You could say that is the case. More precisely, they could be considered war slaves of the past."
"War slaves of the past?"
"Right now, the Devildom is not participating in any invasive wars, but in the past, they invaded tons of dimensions. And the species and dimensions that had completely surrendered to the Devildom at the time have become colonies of ours. You could say that the ones that are coming in as slaves right now are species of the dimensions that have become colonies of ours a long time ago."
"I see. So in the case that the human world completely surrendered in a war between the Devildom and the human world, humans would become slaves and appear in the slave marketplace."
"That's right. Right now, I may be enjoying my authority as a devil, but fundamentally, I was human. And as that is the case, I am trying to prevent a dimensional war with the human world right now at all costs."
"Our conversation has suddenly gone off in a different direction. Going back to the root of our conversation again…"
Seraphim told Ian a couple of species that had the highest chance of being high-ranking slaves.
"If you discover a Moon Elf or a Dark Phantom, or even a Kargon, you shouldn't have a case where you will be at a loss if you contract them."
While looking at Ian, who jotting this down diligently, Seraphim added on.
"Moon Elves have an appearance of an elf with a bright purple skin tone, and you can think of Dark Phantoms as ghosts that have an almost opaque, hazy body. Lastly, also called half-dragon, a Kargon is a human that looks like a dragon."
"A human that looks like a dragon…? What exactly do they look like?"
"You will know when you go and see one for yourself."
And the information that Seraphim told him lastly was on the skills of the slaves.
"When people that don't really know much about slaves contract a slave, they unnecessarily compare the combat stats of a slave and pick the one that has the strongest Offensive Power, but please don't do that."
For a moment, Ian felt a sting.
This was because if it wasn't for Seraphim's words, he felt like he would have done that.
'I might have even compared the combat stats of all of the slaves that are in the lowest floor and picked the one with the highest stats…'
Ian scratched the back of his head as he asked why.
"This is because using a slave as a normal fighting power in a battle is truly the worst choice. Could you say that the effectiveness is close to zero?"
"This is because, fundamentally, no matter how exceptional the combat stats of a slave, there won't be any one that is strong enough to beat a High-ranking Devil, and even in the case that there is one, the inherent abilities of the slaves that only slaves can have are much more charming."
Ian felt himself grow even more interested.
'What the hell? Is it some sort of new content again?'
Of course, it was important to add powerful fighting power, but there were also many other ways of satisfying that by selecting retainers, capturing Familiars, etc.
Because of that, Ian was even more interested with the fact that there was something special for just the slave content.
"Oh-ho, could you give me an example?"
Seraphim's words continued.
"Firstly, in the case of Moon Elves, there are a lot of cases where they have conditional AoE passive skills that are related to 'night' or the 'moon'."
As soon as he heard the ability of the Moon Elves, there was someone he immediately thought of.
'Oh, will I be able to obtain something like the passive ability that Ly has as an AoE?'
If that was the case, it was for certain that it would be an incredible help.
'Especially in this Devildom, where there are three moons, it would be even more of a help.'
Seraphim opened his mouth again.
"In the case of Dark Phantoms, their combat abilities are truly convergent to 0, but they have a hiding ability that puts me at a loss for words."
Ian asked back with a quizzical expression.
"What meaning does a hiding ability have when they don't have combat abilities?"
"There is almost no place that a Dark Phantom cannot go to, and aside from Devil Energy and Holy abilities, they do not receive damage from any attack. On top of that, as they can make their bodies transparent for a fixed amount of time, they are incredibly specialized in scouting dangerous areas."
Ian, who heard up to this point, tilted his head.
'It certainly is a good ability, but they seem like they are somewhat lacking in comparison to Moon Elves…'
However, Seraphim's words weren't over.
"And amongst Dark Phantoms, occasionally there are ones that have an inherent ability called 'The Realm of Darkness', and that is what is truly amazing."
"'The Realm of Darkness'… It seems like it is cool somehow."
"It's not just cool. If the Realm of Darkness is cast, for a fixed amount of time, the vision of all enemies within range disappears. At most it's just about 15 seconds, but in a large-scale battleground, this ability has a powerful effect that can flip the tables around. On top of that, it ignores all status condition immunity."
For a moment, Ian's expression changed.
As Ian knew more about large-scale battles than anybody else, he figured out the real worth of that ability immediately.
'It's a truly horrific ability. If the ability to see disappeared as an AoE during a scuffle, 15 seconds will probably feel like 15 years.'
Lastly, an explanation on the inherent abilities of the Kargon continued.
"Kargon, this is a species that even I have yet to use as a slave, but they are ones that you must contract as soon as you discover them."
At those words, Ian's expectations increased even more.
"What kind of abilities do they have?"
"The ability to distort space."
"They are ones that can fold and open up space as they wish. If you have one of them, you can think of it as being able to contract space by magic as a group."
"Of course, there will probably be something like a cooldown time or consumption value… But still, I saw them use their abilities continuously to the point you can't really notice such things. Although I don't know exactly since I didn't use it personally, that is."
In the mind of Ian, who had been diligently organizing the information on the inherent abilities of the recommended species up until now, had turned white like a sheet of paper for a moment.
And within that space, there were just the seven letters that spelt Kargon.
'Alright, Kargon. I've decided on you!'
However, up until then, Ian had no idea.
Of the disaster that would approach him a quarter of a day later…
Normally, life did not flow as one wished.