"What did you say? Can you please repeat that again, Herr?" asked the lady behind the window hesitantly.
Locke glanced at the lady behind the window strangely. Did she not know about this potion?
Yoshk was confused. He didn't remember that there was such a potion in the division headquarters.
"Strengthening potion, thank you!" repeated Locke.
The lady got it this time. She shook the bell that was in her left hand in panic and told Locke, "Please wait for a moment, Herr."
Locke looked at her curiously, he wondered what was going on. After a moment, he understood.
A group of heavily armed soldiers surrounded Locke and Yoshk. The leader of the group was wearing a full suit of armour and it'd stressed Locke out.
He was a mid-rank Knecht, who could also serve as the company jarl of the second division, just like Baron Cardoj.
Locke and Yoshk were facing someone who was two ranks higher than themselves, so they had no choice but to surrender and wait for instructions. As this was the supply department of Falcon's 2nd Division, Locke figured that there might be a misunderstanding.
He didn't expect that he'd caused such a big commotion just by mentioning the name of a potion.
Locke was brought into a dark and secluded hut, with his hands cuffed to a stone chair. There was a knight with red hair wearing a full suit of armour and a secretary officer who was holding a book in front of him.
Yoshk wasn't with him. He'd been brought to another room.
"Tell me! Where'd you hear about strengthening potion from?" roared the red-haired man as he slapped the scabbard of his blade on the table. He was the mid-level Knecht who had arrested Locke.
"Someone told me about it," replied Locke.
"Who was it?" The red-haired man widened his eyes and glared at Locke. He reminded Locke of a beast who wanted to eat him alive.
Locke fell silent. He didn't know whether he should reveal it was Angelina or not. He'd been ordered by the baron and Prince Kenzir to keep it as a secret. Should he tell the truth in this situation? Locke was caught in a dilemma.
"I found it!" blurted the secretary officer. He flipped through the file and read aloud, "Locke, born as a commoner, and currently serves as a deputy jarl of 4th Platoon of 2nd Company of 2nd Division of the Faustian Falcon corps.
The red-haired man glanced at Locke and said casually, "He can't come here to exchange potions if he isn't a platoon jarl.'
The secretary officer continued, "He had disappeared in the Bering Mountains a month ago. Here's their captain, Baron Cardoj's handwritten confirmation."
"Oh?" The red-haired man showed a hint of interest. It seemed like he'd caught a big fish this time.
They were the enforcers of the division's logistic department, and they were specially sent here to deal with emergencies. While Kashir was on duty in camp today, someone suddenly reported to him that a soldier had come to ask for a strengthening potion. It was absurd. The logistics department of 2nd Division only supplied potions that could stimulate one's potential or to restore one's health temporarily. Strengthening potion was a valuable potion exclusively for nobles, so how could there be such potion here?
Kashir was a noble knight, but even if he'd worked for his whole life, he could only get a bottle of strengthening potion. Money wasn't the issue, but military merit and achievements were. This precious potion which could help overcome bottlenecks could only be found in the hands of certain powerful nobles. No one even knew the formula of the potion.
Perhaps it was Locke's identity that had made this whole thing more unbelievable. There was no way someone who was only a beginner-level Knecht and a commoner like Locke could've heard about this medicine.
"Tell me! Who sent you here? You traitor!" Kashir pulled his sabre out of the sheath and pointed the tip of the sabre on Locke's chin, causing blood to flow from a prick.
Locke felt that his life was at risk. He wouldn't be able to win a fight against this red-haired mid-level Knecht even if his hands and legs were free, let alone handcuffed. By the looks of the man's calloused hands and bloodshot eyes, he must've had killed a lot of people.
The warning signs intensified. Just as Locke was about to confess and tell the truth, "Stop it!", a man who was the size of two fat pigs yelled with his deep voice. He barged into the small dark room and suddenly, an impetus blast was launched towards the red-haired man.
The red-haired man was caught off guard and had been forced back by the blast. Even the sword in his hand fell onto the ground.
Locke let out a sigh of relief the moment he saw someone at the door. He was finally safe. He saw two other people behind the fat man. Surprisingly, one of them was Cardoj.
It was all a misunderstanding. The news of Locke rescuing the princess had only been circulated among the high-ranked officers, not among the lower-ranked non-commissioned officers. Even the situation of Locke's return had also just been reported by Cardoj to the ministry of defence.
A platoon jarl who'd been taught impetus could be qualified to have a file in the Faustian military.
Strengthening potions were extremely precious among the nobles. It was even likely that some nobles who were non-combatants didn't know about the existence of the potion. Since Locke was just a commoner, it was even more conspicuous. Besides, Locke was still recorded as a 'missing person'.
The fat man uncuffed Locke and brought him out. Locked recognised this harmless-looking man as the division jarl. Locke had seen him from a distance before when he was just a rookie soldier.
This fatty didn't throw his weight around as one would expect from a division jarl. He was smiling the whole time while talking to Locke, which really made him feel flattered. Who could've imagined that a division jarl and count would be so modest and polite towards a commoner like Locke?
Cardoj, on the other hand, had interrupted their conversation from time to time. It was all thanks to Cardoj that he'd realised something was wrong. Otherwise, the division jarl wouldn't be there in time to save him. As Locke and Yoshk had been out for such a long time and past dinnertime, Cardoj figured that something might've happened to them.
This was the advantage of having dinner with the platoon jarls, Cardoj could keep track of each platoon jarl's movements.
After Locke and Yoshk walked out of the dark room, the division jarl then began asking Locke about his reasons for coming here.
Actually, he'd already figured out why Locke was here and why he'd been locked up. He'd asked again only because he wanted to compensate Locke. For someone to climb up to such a high rank, everything he'd done had to be carefully comtemplated.
He figured that it'd be a good deal to gain Locke's favour just by giving him some potions. After all, Locke had saved the princess and was favoured by the prince and Margrave Marmen.
"Well… I want strengthening potion," said Locke.
The fat division jarl furrowed his brow. Oh, Locke wanted that potion. No wonder he was arrested, he would've also done the same if he was the person in charge of the logistics department. This potion was only circulated among the upper-class nobles. It was sought after by a large number of noble knights as the side effects were relatively weak.
"How much do you want?" asked the fat division jarl pleasantly.
"Um…" Angelina hadn't told Locke how much he should consume at a time, she'd only told him that this potion was suitable for him.
"The more the better," Locke gave an ambiguous answer. He wanted the division jarl to make the decision.
Since he'd decided to befriend Locke, the division jarl wouldn't fuss about the price he'd needed to pay. He turned and asked his aide who was behind him, "How many are there in the logistics office now?"
This aide should be the division jarl's adjutant; he was there with the division jarl and Cardoj when they rescued Locke.
The adjutant took out a small notebook and flipped through the pages. He was responsible for registering the access valuable potions like this, so he'd always carry a notebook with him.
He replied, "There're five left!"
"Give this knight three!" said the division jarl.
Locke felt as if he'd gotten a great deal. There were only five potions of this kind in the entire 2nd Division. The potions were indeed really valuable and precious, and he couldn't believe he now had three of them!
"Thank you, Division Jarl!" Locke didn't know what his name was, so he'd called him by his post.
"You can call me George," The man waved and said, "You don't have to thank me, you deserve it." Locke wasn't sure whether he meant that was because he had saved the princess or because of the misunderstanding.
"Thank you, George!" said Locke.
Cardoj, who was standing at the side, gave Locke a strange look of envy. It seemed like Locke had struck the jackpot.
While waiting for the soldiers to get the potions for Locke, George began chatting with Locke and Cardoj. He then asked Locke jokingly what else he wanted. Locke thought of another potion that Angelina had recommended to him.
"How about the will-condensing potion?" asked Locke.
He didn't ask for it directly this time. By the looks of the division jarl's and Cardoj's faces, he knew that he'd already gotten more than he shuold. He would be rude to ask for more. He still knew his place.
"Uh…" The question made the division jarl went weak at the knees.
It was fortunate that Locke didn't ask for this potion first, if not he would have caused bigger chaos. The people in the logistics department had never heard of this potion before, even only the division jarl knew that there was such a thing.
The fat division jarl pulled out a handkerchief from his pocket and wiped the sweat off his forehead; it made for an amusing sight.