Rumours of the City of Art
Also, the first part, according to the author, finished with the previous chapter.
So this is now a new part.
Let’s see how the story goes from now on~
In the northern edge of the eastern continent, that city was located after going further east, past Mūzeg, which held hegemony of the eastern continent and even past the three kingdoms.
At first, since it was next to the ocean, it developed as a trade city with a well developed maritime passage but, over time, as the age changed, it’s characteristics changed as various types of 『art』 flowed into the city from all over the continent.
The town was so radiant that words alone were unable to describe it.
It was colourful and overflowing with lights, with people dressed up in beautiful clothes. It was the very definition of a city that never sleeps.
「Hey, did you hear the rumours about the〈Enchanting Queen〉?」
In a corner of that city, two men could be seen, wearing large silk hats and standing under an orange gem-like streetlamp, having a conversation.
Sounds of beautiful songs could be heard from the numerous operas built, not only above ground but also under it.
「〈The Enchanting Queen〉?」
「Yeah, the enchanting queen」
One of the two people――the one who started the conversation, spun the cane he had in hand around while he continued to speak.
The way he tried to hold a conversation in a slightly restless manner was, rather than calling him gentlemanly, seemed more like a young man who looked up to gentlemen instead. He seemed like a youth who was still rather sensitive to changing trends.
「Nope, haven’t heard of her」
The one who answered that young man, also seemed to be dressed quite well and he raised a well maintained eyebrow up in doubt.
Although he seemed a lot calmer than the man who started the conversation but when compared to the other gentlemen with well groomed mustaches walking around town, he still seemed rather youthful.
「What the, you’re so behind the times. Don’t worry, allow me to give you all the newest information」
The man who started the conversation, raised his nose up high in a very narcissistic gesture as he clapped the other man on the shoulders in a comforting manner.
「――Anyhow, it seems that a new actress has started working in the old-fashioned opera in the eastern end of the opera district. Not to mention, that actress seems to be quite the beauty」
「Seems like it. …Well, whatever. Even so, when you say the old fashioned opera in the eastern end――」
「The Rev Opera」
「Ahh right, it was Rev. …However, if it’s beauties then there are quite a few around that place right? There’s really no need to kick up a fuss. Where exactly do you think you are right now? It’s the City of Art, Virgilia you know?」
The young man who had been explained to, had a, 「what, that’s it?」 expression on his face.
「No no no, even I understand that much. Even so, I’ll still say it. In other words, she’s incredibly more beautiful than those slightly pretty girls around here」
「Hmmm…, by the way, what about her singing?」
「Of course, she’s first class」
「Well, Rev Opera has been concentrating on the quality of their music quite a bit recently after all. That’s also the reason they seem kind of old lately. In any case, if she managed to get the leader of that theatre to acknowledge her skill then there’s no need to doubt her skill, I suppose」
The youth who had been talked to, as if to appeal that he was quite knowledgeable about the workings of the theatres in the City of Art, added such information.
「That’s right. So, that actress had her first performance yesterday and it was a huge success even outside the opera. Unfortunately I couldn’t see the first show but since I happened to walk past it at that time, I couldn’t help but have my expectations soar」
「So in other words, someone other than you――someone who saw that actress in the flesh was the one who gave that exaggerated name〈Enchanting Queen〉to her?」
「In just one day. ――If it’s like this, she’ll be a star in no time. If we don’t go see her now, we’ll never end up getting a ticket to her shows」
「Hmm, I see. Your anticipations are only ever half on the mark though」
While saying that, he had already started making the calculations of the money needed to go see the next show.
He remembered the contents of his wallet and while considering food expenses and other art related expenses, he could put a decent amount aside for the ticket.
「By the way, when is the next show?」
「One week later, it seems」
「One week, is it? Assuming there’s another man like you who was extremely moved by the〈Enchanting Queen’s〉 performance yesterday and went around telling everyone about it――」
「Is there any other type of person in this city of art?」
「――That’s true, huh. In that case, If a week passes, then the rumours would have spread quite a bit more I suppose」
「Over and above that, since winter is fast approaching, if there are any ways to pass their time indoors then they would flock to it like crazy so competition would go up even more. Not to mention, there would be nobles with overflowing pockets showing up from all over the continent and even from other continents so there will be a lot of people who show up」
Due to its nature, Virgilia was also known as a city of entertainment.
The cities themselves were far from the war and more recently, trade goods also had quite a lot of arts and crafts items making them useless for war so they weren’t regarded with much importance.
Of course, it is possible to find products that would be have some value and have some use in war but even if that is said, Mūzeg, which held hegemony of the eastern continent, had yet to stretch their hands till Virgilia.
One reason for Mūzeg’s loss of interest in them was the fact that Virgilia was on the other side of the three kingdoms but there was also the point that there were quite a few influential people who frequented the city in order to 『enjoy the entertainment』.
Virgilia was slightly troublesome to conquer with war.
It was a useful place to get connections with influential people but since they visited the city in order to enjoy the entertainment, bringing in such talks might end up giving an 『undue stimulation』.
「Especially recently, since it seems like Mūzeg, the three kingdoms and also Lemuse, those five kingdoms had some sort of battle right? So the countries in the surroundings that had their heads down because of Mūzeg would be able to raise their heads a little and move around a bit. At the very least, they might be able to make their way to our city.
――Being happy is the best isn’t it? If you’re happy, then you’ll spend more on entertainment. Tyranny and restrictions are the enemies of entertainment」
「Although you seem to be trying to hide it with fancy words but every single thing you said just smells completely of money. …Well, I don’t have any plans to deny that fact though」
「In any case, Virgilia might get much more crowded this year」
「I wonder if Mūzeg itself might not infiltrate as well」
「They might have already done that long ago though? ――Now of all times. If they tried to take over Virgilia in a 『Mūzeg-like manner』 then it would be extremely troublesome but if they tried to use a 『Virgilia-like manner』 to get a connection with this city then it would instead be very beneficial for us. If Mūzeg has plans to expand even to other continents as well then, they probably already have something or the other prepared under the table. Well, it has nothing to do with us though」
「You’ve really devoted yourself to art to a refreshing degree haven’t you?」
「It’s most probably much better than people who just go around cutting down people who might have a lot of potential for various arts」
「I wonder about that」
Both youths looked at each other and laughed, they then straightened themselves up.
「Well then, since that’s the case, save your money up till next week」
「I get it, I’ll do something about the money」
「When you’re in this city, you somehow end up spending way more than usual」
They joked around for a bit before they parted ways while swinging their walking sticks around.
The orange lights of the city illuminated the backs of those youths and gave a bright sheen to the slightly worn out tuxedos they wore.