“Other incidents?!” I was almost shaken off my feet as the guildmaster’s voice became even louder somehow. His eye, which was almost the size of my head, came right next to my face… before retracting as he stood up. The guildmaster reached out for the man who had drawn his sword on me, “Have there been other incidents before this?”
“O-of course not. Your brother is merely being slandered by these two newcomers.”
Before that point, I had thought the guildmaster was angry. That he was shouting… but I realized he had merely been talking in a calm voice. “YOU DARE LIE TO MY FACE?!” I felt the whole building tremble- and watched as the man passed out in the guildmaster’s grip. He tossed him to the ground, then grabbed another person. His arms were so long he didn’t even have to move to pick up someone I wouldn’t have even considered was close. “I’m going to ask this clearly, so there’s no uncertainty. I want you to tell me the truth, and not what you think I want to hear.” His voice still sounded like shouting… but the building wasn’t trembling at least, “What happened here? Have there been other incidents with my brother?”
The latest person to be picked up trembled and spoke, “It’s as those two said. Your brother reached out to grab the young woman, then punched the boy. I don’t… I’ve only heard about other incidents, I don’t know anything!”
The man was set down, and then given a pat on the head- though it nearly knocked him to his knees. “See, was that so hard?” The guildmaster looked around, “I’m disappointed in all of you. How come nobody has brought this to my attention?” Then he turned to me, “Could you get off my brother, please?”
He had asked nicely… and the incident was already huge. I couldn’t do anything to stop him if he wanted to tear me off. I stepped to the side, and the man immediately started to get up, “Brother! You can’t believe what they said! I would never-” Then he couldn’t talk anymore, as the guildmaster pressed a finger down on his back and knocked the wind out of him.
“I will hear your side later, but you are uninjured.” The guildmaster shook his head, then picked me up. His hand fit most of the way around my torso. I was brought right next to his face. It still sounded like someone screaming at the top of their lungs, but I could tell this was his calm voice. “I’m sorry something like this happened just as you arrived. I should have kept better tabs on my brother…” He shook his head. “I will properly investigate this incident.”
Somehow Kantrilla and I found ourselves in the guildmaster’s office, a few hours later. He wasn’t there, however. Instead, there was a much more reasonably sized woman- the vice guildmaster. She introduced herself as Marcia, “I’m so sorry this happened. All of the experienced adventurers know that Timmy is a good and fair guildmaster… but it seems nothing has happened in front of them. Now there are so many reports coming in…”
I couldn’t help but ask, “Timmy?”
“Oh, yes. He’d love to go by Timothy, but he’s just a big softy so it just feels right, you know?” She shook her head, “Anyway, his brother Ralph wasn’t a particularly stellar adventurer, but he at least appeared to be an alright fellow… but if even half of the incoming accusations are true…” She shook her head. “It seems like he’s only picked on new adventurers who are too afraid to do anything, and was careful who he acted in front of. Nobody tried to stand up to him and report him, and thus people believed that he was actually allowed to get away with this.” Marcia pinched the bridge of her nose, “And now it’s a huge incident that looks bad for the guild. I’d love to blame you for that, but really this just means we need to have a system in place to prevent this sort of thing. We’ve been a bit to lax about that… Now we look like some of the corrupt guilds in other countries.”
“Mhm.” I didn’t know what to say. I was still somewhat in shock. My expectations had been thrown every which way, and I had gotten to the point where I expected to be squished. However, I could see that the leaders of the guild were trying to make it better than what my first impression was. Either that, or they were very good at lying. “Can adventurer’s guilds in other countries actually get away with being corrupt?”
“Sadly, yes. They’re pretty much a necessary feature, and they’re powerful. Someone has to organize fighting all of the monsters, but adventurers aren’t willing to be under the direct authority of the government. They’re not like soldiers, and even if they were, other countries wouldn’t approve of basically having large standing armies.”
“Oh. I never really learned about… much of this stuff.” I looked at Kantrilla. I hadn’t told her that I was an otherworlder yet. I knew I needed to, though. The longer I waited, the worse it would be. I didn’t plan to say it here though.
Kantrilla sighed, “Today’s been pretty scary, huh? Lucky thing the guildmaster was listening!” Was it lucky? He was responsible for this place after all. If we’d really been lucky, we could have avoided the incident entirely… except from Kantrilla’s perspective perhaps that wasn’t true. After all, something like it could have happened to someone else who couldn’t have dealt with the situation. From that perspective, she would say it was lucky it happened to us. I wasn’t sure what to believe there… but I felt we’d been lucky enough, even if we weren’t necessarily Lucky. Thinking about such things made my head hurt, so I just stopped.
Kantrilla and I didn’t take on any missions for the next several days, as the guild was in turmoil. We had plans to find a party still, but that had to wait until after the whole incident was resolved. By the end of the week, though, accusations had been gathered an a trial was held for Ralph.