The temporary prosthetic leg that was made fit me quite well.
Thankfully, since I still had my knee, I was able to walk in it, even if it was awkward.
And so I was able to trade in my crutch for a walking stick.
As I had stayed up all night, I slept in the morning and then headed to the church in the afternoon.
I stopped right in front of the church, which I was now so familiar with. Well, it was time to go in.
The doors felt heavier than usual.
“Ah, welcome, Mr. Ajifu.”
Said the nun who greeted me.
“Is the priest inside?”
“Yes, please just wait one moment.”
She ran to the back, and after some time, returned with the priest.
“Mr. Ajifu, what happened to your leg?”
The priest said in a concerned voice upon seeing that I was using a cane.
“In fact, that’s what I came here to talk to you about.”
I said, and then sat down on a bench and removed the prosthetic leg. I heard the priest and the nun gasp.
“As you can see, I lost my leg during a quest.”
“…That is quite unfortunate.”
“The first thing that I want to ask is, how much do I need to donate to the church in order to request the Regenerate miracle?”
“The Regenerate miracle can only be used by the most high-ranking bishops. Unfortunately, there is no one of that rank in the city of Razsita. You would have to go to the great cathedral in Holia, and would need to bring at least three platinum coins with you.”
Three platinum… That would be around thirty million yen in Japan. I suppose it was the same in every world. You needed money in order to receive the best medical treatment.
“That is not something I can afford. Father, I will not pursue that avenue.”
“It cannot be helped.”
“Still, it would be very difficult to continue to swing my sword as an Adventurer in this body. But perhaps I can help others with light magic. What do you think?”
“Are you saying that you want to train so you can chant the holy verses of light?”
“That would be difficult with your circumstances.”
But I would not give up so easily.
“Why is that?”
“Only those who belong to the church or who have entered the holy school are allowed to learn it. And I am not allowed to just let anyone join the church.”
“What must I do then?”
“New personnel are decided by the order or permission of the great church. Currently, there are already too many candidates from people raised in the orphanage, who have family connections, or graduated from the holy school.”
It sounded very difficult indeed.
“Ho-however, surely there are a lot of students who graduate and become Adventurers?”
“Yes, that is the problem. A priest in training is someone who belongs to the church. However, due to there being too many people, many students end up leaving the church and freely work as Adventurers. And that is seen as a problem.”
“Why is that a problem?”
“In general, there are no tuition fees. Both the church and state pay management fees in order to support the faith. And so they are not happy by the idea that someone would become an Adventurer without training.”
It was an issue of sponsors then!?
And now that was a barrier for me…
Having lost all hope, my hands dropped to the bench and I groaned.
“Mr. Ajifu, it is not over yet. I only said that it would be ‘difficult.’ But it is not impossible.”
I quickly raised my head and looked at the priest.
“So there is a way!?”
“Yes. Even in this situation, I can think of just one church that is always lacking in personnel.”
“Please tell me!”
“But this church is located very far from here, and in a dangerous land. But the priest there is an old acquaintance of mine, and can be rather odd. Any new priests or apprentices who are sent there do not last long, which has troubled him. So I think that he would accept you, Mr. Ajifu.”
“I don’t care where it is if I am accepted! I will go!”
“Are you certain? It is in Megidos, the country of sand, you know? It will be a terrible trial for you, now that you lost a leg, Mr. Ajifu.”
The sand country of Megidos. I had heard of there being a great desert that stops people from coming and going. The severe nature torments people while strengthening the monsters. However, that was not enough to stop me!
“Of course, I am aware of the risk.”
I declared firmly.
“I can see your resolve, Mr. Ajifu. I will write to him then. It should take…one or two months to receive a reply, so please wait until then.”
“Thank you, father! I will never forget this debt I owe you.”
“It is all under Lord Memrikia’s guidance. And I do not see this as a debt. In fact, you may come to hate me for this.”
Indeed, it would not be an easy road. However, I had hope once again!
There were two ways to go to the sand country of Megidos.
One was a road going through Razsita, and four other countries.
The other was to go over the mountains and go through the dwarven kingdom, and the great desert before reaching Megidos. There was no actual road, and since it was not a route that anyone took, there was no map, and I didn’t know the exact distance. All I knew was a general direction. I would easily die.
Of course, I had to choose the direction that would take me through four countries.
I won’t deny that the dwarven kingdom sounded appealing to me, but it was much too reckless.
Well…it all depended on the notification of appointment, I mean, the reply to the letter. However, since it would be a very long journey, I had to start getting ready now.
That being said, the life of an Adventurer was already full of traveling, so all I really needed to do was:
Get my prosthetic leg.
Train to fight while wearing it.
Get stirrups that can be used with a prosthetic leg.
Train to fight while on horseback.
Something like that.
In any case, it all depended on the finished product, so I would go to Rones’s workshop.
I hadn’t been there since morning, but there was now a blazing fire, and he was in the process of bending a plank.
“Rones. Will it be strong enough if it’s made of wood?”
“Mr. Ajifu! You’re finally here! I can’t make an order at the blacksmith’s unless the shape is finalized. And so I’m going to make a prototype with the leg mold we made yesterday.”
“I didn’t promise that I’d come earlier. Also, it was this morning, not yesterday.”
“Nevermind the small details! Now, hurry up and help me!”
After that, I spent the day feeling like I was an apprentice to a prosthetics craftsman. I suppose it was because I had the carpentry and leather working skills. And so he put me to good use and I ended up staying there for a few days.
‘I want to focus on crafting it,’ he would say as he made me do all his other work. However, I felt quite emotional whenever I made something that a client liked. But I quickly returned to myself.
At least the direction when it came to crafting was decided immediately. After all, the shape of the metal plate that would be a spring, and the thickness that would be the repulsion meant there were already so many things to test.
However, we had limited time and funds. It was a matter of compromising and crafting with just the essential points. Rones did not look happy about it, but it could not be helped.
We even made a sandbox in the workshop so I could experiment with walking in the sand. And after two weeks, we finally had something. Well, it was due to that being the limit of how long I could pay for a single craftsman’s time.
The completed leg looked like boots from the knee down. And from the foot, it used a metal plank as a spring that curved upwards around where the toes would be, into a dummy shoe. I could make the rest with wood and leather, and maintain it myself. It was very well-made, and I could now walk without a cane.
“This is very impressive. Thank you, Rones.”
“No, I should be thanking you. This is without a doubt, my finest work.”
“If someone else comes and needs a prosthetic leg, I hope you will make this for them.”
“Yes. One day, I shall help many people regain their freedom.”
He said, and we shook hands.
The first step I took with this leg, was the first step to a new tomorrow!
Some images from Vol.2 of the light novel.