The Master and The Slave
Nesto stops walking when he reached a clearing in the forest with a small river at the edge of the clearing. He then turns his body to look at the city wall, it still visible from where he stands. He also notices that he got a full view of the royal castle from here. Nesto then took a fresh breath of relieved and determine that this is a good spot to build his house.
He drops his bag and Axe on the ground. Taking off his butler jacket first, then he places it on top of the bag. Then he pulls up his both of his sleeves and grabs the Axe off the ground. He heads to the nearest tree and began chopping them down.
Several hours went by, the sun begins to set. Nesto has been working non-stop without rest with only one goal pinned in his mind; that is building a house. After building the wall and the roof, Nesto went inside and start filling the floor with wood planks. He then makes a simple window that can be open and close like a door.
A few more hours went by, Nesto looks around the empty room of his house. He then goes outside and starts chopping more wood to make simple furniture for his house. He makes a small table, two chairs, and a bed frame. He then looks at the bed frame, thinking whether he should hunt an animal. To use its fur to make a mattress or buy some at the market.
Nesto then notices then the sun is setting, hunting for an animal in the dark is a bad idea. He instead grabs a chair and brings it to the porch where he took a seat.
"After the bed, the house is finished. Then what?" Nesto ask aloud as he gazes at the majestic castle far away.
Nesto let out a tired sigh as he rests his chin on his hand.
"Even if I finish the house, what am I going to do tomorrow and the next day and the day after that, and so on," Nesto groan.
Nesto hasn't felt like this for a long time, the feeling of being purposeless. A life with goal or meaning.
"How do normal people handle through this? Doing pointless things without goals or purpose," Nesto asks the emptiness around him.
"Eilna..." Nesto mutters under his breath as he closes his eyes.
Nesto can remember that few moments of happiness he had with Eilna. For example, the day when we prevent an attack from Weyshers army on a small village name Tinevic. Eilna was so tired after the battle that she could move. Nesto carries her to a single tree on a hill and seats her under the tree while her back leans on it.
Nesto took a seat right next to her, Eilna suddenly falls asleep because of the fatigue. Suddenly, her body falls to the side, bumping into Nesto shoulder. Eilna rests her head on Nesto shoulders while Nesto places his arms behind her back. Then he playfully massages her earlobes. Eilna had this quite snore that she makes when she is sleeping. It always soothes Nesto soul when he hears its, but she also had this quite small snort in between her snore. That just put a smile on Nesto face.
Nesto dreams were interrupted when a firework explodes above the city. Another small explosion snaps Nesto back to reality. Then Nesto, remembers Aymon offers. Maybe he could get something to drink since he got nothing left to do. Maybe he can drown his sorrow with a good Mead. Nesto head inside his house, grabbing his jacket and some gold coins. Then he heads to the City gate after locking his house door.
Arriving at the city gate, he was able to easily pass the elf guards without any trouble. Nesto also notices the elf inspector from earlier glaring dagger at him and spit his saliva at the ground while Nesto passes the checkpoint. Nesto just looks away and try not get involve or get riled up by him.
The street is alive with street performers doing a trick like juggling ball that is lit on fire and many others. The elves gather toward the central plaza, to watch the main performer. The smell of delicious food permeates the street air. The smell of food not just come from the vendor, the smell even comes from the restaurant and tavern nearby. The parade makes it much harder for Nesto to find a tavern without too many people in it.
Nesto walks away from the parade to find a tavern that far away from it. Surely further the tavern is from the parade, the fewer people are in it. Nesto realized something dark that when he moves away from the parade. As the elf celebrated, the free human without a house or coin is more likely to be homeless.
When Nesto passes a dark alley, his theory is confirmed. When he saw the humans in raggedy cloth in the dark dirty alley. The humans are snuggled up to each other to find warmth in the cold nights. Nesto walks closer to the alley and all the human back away, afraid of him. Nesto reassures them that everything is fine by smiling at them and showing his hands is empty. Nesto then took a couple gold coins from his pockets and place it in front of the human girl.
Nesto notices a fresh bruise on one of the humans. Even if they are free, the discrimination still continues. The human girl takes the coins and back away after nodding in thank toward Nesto. Nesto smile and back away from them to leave them alone.
A few blocks from the alley, Nesto finally find a quiet tavern that he can enjoy. He opens the door and the bell ring, Nesto looks around the tavern, seeing only a few customers is in the tavern. A male elf in the back of the room sleeping, after too many drinks. A group of elves sitting in the middle of the room, melancholy showing on their face while they gulp down their mead.
A male elf with short light red hair resting his head on the table while still holding on to his mead. Nesto walks to the table next to the elf with short light red hair and took a seat on the stool. The male elf with an apron walks to Nesto table, he must be the owner.
"Mead?" The male elf ask.
"Yes," Nesto answer.
The male elf walks away from Nesto table. The male elf with a short light red hair groan and stirred while he rests his head on the table.
Then the male elf suddenly speaks, "Ne-Nesto?"
The elf raises his head and immediately Nesto recognizes him.
"Yinlar?" Nesto mutter.
"It's you!" Yinlar said as he was about to cry.
"Are you okay, Yinlar?" Nesto ask.
"I'm not okay, my company is about to be ruin and I still can't sleep at night after what I had done," Yinlar burst out.
"It's going to be okay," Nesto said while changing his seat next to Yinlar and pat his back to comfort him.
"What the problem, tell me?" Nesto ask.
"Because of the new law, I had to release all my slave. My construction company has no worker left. How am I going to run a company without any worker?" Yinlar said.
"It's going to be okay, you will get through this," Nesto comfort.
"Nesto, how do you do it? How do you sleep at night after killing those men?" Yinlar asks desperately while holding on to my collar.
The Weyshers knight? Yinlar still hasn't moved on from the battle six years ago, it must be traumatizing to him.
"I'm a healer, Nesto. I don't kill people but I had to do it that day!" Yinlar said.
"Yinlar, listen to me, I'm not like you. I think they deserved to die," Nesto said.
Yinlar looks at Nesto cold empty eyes as Nesto said those words, he couldn't find any guilt or pity in his eyes. Yinlar lets go of his collar, fearing for his life when he saw those eyes. It's like looking into the deepest part of someone rage and seeing your end on the other side.
Nesto closes his eyes and opens it back up, those cold eyes replaced by a gentle kinder one.
"Look, I don't have any advice for you on handling that matter, but times can heal any wound if you gave it chance. I know someday you will move from this," Nesto said, cheering him on.
Yinlar let out a smile, "Thank you."
Nesto returns a smile, suddenly an idea pop into his mind, "Did you said, you need workers?"
"Yes?" Yinlar queried.
"I know people including me that want some work right now. If you be willing to pay us," Nesto said.
"You want to work for me?" Yinlar ask.
"Yes, besides I have nothing going on right now and the free time is killing me slowly," Nesto said.
"Thank you. I willing to pay, if you can find me some workers," Yinlar said gratefully to Nesto offers.
"Tell me where we should meet tomorrow and I will bring the workers," Nesto said.
"Here is good," Yinlar said.
"Okay, I will meet you here tomorrow. I got something to take care first" Nesto said.
"Wait, you're leaving?" Yinlar ask.
"Yes, take care of my mead, will you?" Nesto said after taking two silver coins out from his pocket and place it on the table.
Nesto then leaves Yinlar table and head outside of the tavern. When Nesto reaches outside of the tavern, he notices a couple young elf, kicking something. Nesto looks closer and saw the human girl under those two elf kids feet. The little girl face contorts in pain as she tries to defend something in her hands.
A human woman on her knees and with both hands grabbing the elf kid leg pleads to those two elf kids.
"Please leave us alone," The woman said.
One of the elf kid spit on the woman face then kick the woman face causing her to fall to her side. Those two kids didn't notice Nesto already behind them. Nesto taps his fingers on both of their shoulders. Those two kids turn around and immediately Nesto grab one those kids face with one hand. Then he lifts the elf kid up in the air, causing the kid leg to dangle in the airs.
The other kid is terrified when he saw his friend tangle in the air. He was so scared that he pissed his pants before running away and leaving his friend behind. The other kid in Nesto hand struggle to escape his grip but fail.
"If I ever see you here again, I will break every bone in your face. Do you understand?" Nesto ask.
"Ye-yes, please let me go!" The elf kid plead, Nesto let him go and the kid falls to the ground.
The elf kid quickly gets up and ran away while crying. Nesto squat down and help the human girl sit up. He examines the bruise on the human girl and looks for any serious damage that those kids might have caused.
"Thank you, kind sir," The woman said.
"Call me, Nesto. What happens?" Nesto ask.
"They saw the gold coin that you gave to my daughter earlier, and they accused my daughter of being a thief. Then they demanded the coin from my daughter but my daughter refused. So they try to beat the coin out of my daughter," the woman said.
Nesto looks at the little girl hands as she reveals the two gold coins in her clasp. Nesto felt guilty, the reason why the accident happens is from Nesto carelessness. He shouldn't give gold coins in open place.
"I'm sorry, it's my fault," Nesto apologize.
"No sir, it wasn't your fault. It was ours, we should have hidden it better," The woman said.
Nesto let out a kind smile and said, "No, it was my fault, I should have known better. As compensation, how about I offer you a job that can pay. This offer extends to all of you."
Nesto offers pique a couple interest from the human in the alley.
"This job can offer you money to buy food, cloth and someday a house," Nesto continue.
"What kind of job, sir?" The human male in the back asks while he peeks his head out.
"It a tough job but an honest one, laborers for a construction company and don't worry about the owner. He is a close friend of mine if you still wary of about this job. Don't be, I will take care of you if anything bad happens," Nesto said.
The human turn their head and look at each other.
"I want the job," said one the human male that asks earlier.
"So do I," another human said.
Then a few more human joins, even the woman beside Nesto and the little girl. Suddenly, All of the humans in the alley, want the jobs. Nesto let out a small smile, then he felt a growing joy in his heart. He shakes the feeling away and focuses on them.
"For those who want the job gather here, early morning," Nesto said and the humans in the alley nod their head in response.