It wasn't an unnatural question to ask someone who had a suspiciously lacking sense of general knowledge. For a race such as the human, learning from the mistakes of history was the most basic form of survival as a whole. As such, at the very least, every child was taught about the monsters that would populate the surrounding areas. From there, a young person's education was generally monster knowledge, so that they would have a chance of survival if they happened to encounter one.
In a world where a weak race, such as the human, could lose their lives in so many ways, in such a short time, it was abnormal for someone as old as Jun Long to not even know so much.
James Tarker felt that Jun Long was a pretty good guy, and didn't want to doubt him at all. It was common for adventurers to sustain a head injury, in their travels, and have a temporary loss of memory. At least, in his line of work, Jun Long was not the first to behave in such a way.
"I mean," James Tarker began. "It's not that rare for people to get knocked in the head and just forget things, haha!"
Jun Long could only fake a smile.
It was still half-way into the afternoon, so the inn's main hall wasn't as busy as it would be during the evening. Jun Long and James Tarker had finally made their way to their destination.
James Tarker handed Jun Long a few pieces of silver and suggested that he go book a room for the night.
"I'll go grab us some food and drink," James Tarker told Jun Long. "Meet me at… that table!"
"How much is a room, normally?"
"Should be 20 pieces!"
Jun Long's face showed a bit of despair. He was feeling very lucky that he had met such a magnanimous character like James Tarker.
The two ended up meeting at the aforementioned table at the same time. It would seem that there were waitresses that would bring their food and drinks to them. Service!
"So," James Tarker said, as he slumped into his chair. "Today I've gone and lost quite a bit of money because of you."
"Oh!" Jun Long panicked a little. "I don't quite know what I could do to make the money to pay you back with, but I'll definitely pay you back for everything you've done for me, today!"
"Haha! You're so serious!"
"I'm just joking, Jun! I'm more than happy to help someone who's in need of it. In fact, I'm actually glad I bumped into you before that horned rabbit killed you!"
"Heh.. yeah. I'm glad, too."
"Haha! You're quite the good guy, Jun!"
James Tarker was all smiles and laughter, while Jun Long was feeling quite guilty for having made someone spend money on him. He didn't even know just how much money was spent on him. Was there a way to convert it to Earth's money?
At this moment, Jun Long noticed a young girl wearing a brown dress, with white frills at the ends, approaching their table. She was holding two platters of food and two mugs of … juice?
"Maybe they don't serve ale or beer in inns at this time?" Jun Long thought to himself.
As the young girl waitress neared, and put the food and drinks onto the table, Jun Long's eyes widened. This young girl had cat ears!! And a tail!! The waitress blushed a little as she noticed Jun Long staring at her backside. She hurriedly finished up setting the table and returned back to the kitchen.
"You like that kinda thing?" James Tarker asked him. It seems even he noticed where Jun Long was staring at.
"Uh… It's not that I like it, more that I haven't seen anything like it in r- a while…"
"Haha! You're a funny one, Jun! Demihumans like that catgirl are quite common in these trade route towns. Wait… it can't be that you don't know about them either?"
James Tarker's laughing face turned into a more serious one as he asked this question. Surely Jun Long must have at least seen a demihuman before, right? Just how disconnected could one person be from the world?
"Actually," Jun Long started. "You're right. I don't know about … them either."
James Tarker sat up, staring at Jun Long in shock. He was starting to believe that maybe this young man in white clothing and black hair could actually have lost most of his memory!
"Hey Jun, just how unfamiliar with this world's commonsense are you?"
"Um…" Jun Long couldn't really answer, so he scratched the back his head in shame.
"Do you know what a slime is?!"
"A … monster?" Jun Long made an educated guess based on his experience with games back on Earth.
"Okay… that's good! At least you haven't lost ALL of your memory!"
"Ah.. haha…" Jun Long could only fake a laugh in self-pity.
"What does this word make you think of: 'Adventurer's Guild'?"
"Um… a gathering place for adventurers, where they can take on job requests that pay based on how difficult the job listing is?"
"Yeah! That's quite right! I suppose you can at least recall the more basic or important pieces of information. That's a relief."
Jun Long could only feel helpless, as he actually didn't know these things. They were all just guessed based off of his video gaming experiences!
The two young men, one wearing a full garb of adventurer's clothing, the other wearing a white school uniform from another world, had started eating. Jun Long hadn't eaten this world's food, before, but he had no qualms about it, as it tasted good.
James Tarker had asked him a few more questions, at times, just to keep it from going silent between them. It seemed that James Tarker was quite the orator.
When the two had finished their meals, Jun Long was asked if he wanted another platter or two. James Tarker was quite considerate, especially so, as he was the one paying for everything today. Jun Long had refused, though, as the one platter was more than enough to fill him up. The juice was also very delicious!
Their stay at the inn had already lasted until just before dusk, and it was said that people should avoid going out during the night.
During their talks, Jun Long was able to come to a basic understanding of how this world worked. The most prominent race of people were the demihumans, but that didn't mean they held the most power. In fact, because of there being quite a few different kinds of demihumans, there was no real sense of unity between them.
The race with the most power were the humans. Humans monopolised the majority of farmable and mineable lands, so resources gathered from the land were controlled by them. Other than the governments, such as the Royalty and their officials, the nobles were the ones that usually owned the farms and mines.
Other than the demihumans, there existed the stumpy dwarves, the tall and proud elves, the rough and savage giants, and the seafolk, who only ever stayed under the waters. These were the main races that inhabited and managed towns and villages across the land.
Jun Long learned that, amongst the monsters, there were a lot of familiar names that he could recall from the children's stories from his Earth. Dragons, imps, goblins, ogres, orcs. There were plenty more, and James Tarker had stressed that, because of the level of danger in some parts of the world, even in their continent, it wasn't for certain that the monster races that he listed were the only monsters that existed.
With so many different, and strong, kinds of monsters living in the wilds, Jun Long raised the question of how the human race, along with the other civilized races, survived. It turned out that this world had a system in place for every living being called the 'Job Level' system.
The Job Level system was one that allowed for all the civilized races to become stronger as they defeated more and more hostile monsters. After having defeating enough monsters, the person - who was most likely an adventurer - would feel a change in their body, and they would be stronger!
Jun Long, being someone who was very interested in video gaming and the like, tried to ask James Tarker to elaborate on just how all of this worked, however James Tarker could only reply with:
"It's all the work of the Gods."
Gods… The mention of Gods reminded Jun Long of his encounter within that bright white limbo. He had so many questions to ask, but he just couldn't get them out!
In the end, after the sun had already set, James Tarker bid Jun Long farewell, and left the inn to go back to his own home on the other side of the town. Jun Long made his way to his room, and went to sleep in a bed that somehow felt more comfortable than any other bed that he had ever had the pleasure of sleeping in.
"Today has been a very long day." Jun Long thought to himself. "I'm so glad that the first person that I met was someone like James. I'll have to find some way to pay him back for all the money that I made him spend on me."
With his mind made up, and a determined look in his eyes, Jun Long went to sleep, looking forward to the day to come.
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