This chapter is updated by Novels.pl
"And here we are! This port's named Port Aqua, and as you can see, there's tons of other ships nearby. This place is used as a stopping area for merchants that travel between continents to trade their products between one another. The islands also produce their own products, such as special fruits that restore Mana named Aqua Drops." Charlotte gave us a small explanation, as we saw the enormous yet rather rustic Port.
It wasn't as beautiful and big as Heaven Port, and most of its structure was made of wood rather than stone, but it was still quite big and filled with people everywhere. There was a large amount of Mermen though, which were human-like in appearance, but with distinct fish-like parts on their bodies.
You could say they're more like fish beast-kin. The variety was big, from shark-headed people to beautiful mermaid-like ladies but with actual legs, while their fish tails were just as big but behind their backs. They were very varied, some being multi-armed, while others were as tall as the few Giants we saw, from Mountain Giants, Fire Giants, and Ice Giants.
Unlike in Heaven Port, I couldn't find anyone with mixed races, so the non-native people probably didn't stayed as long as the natives to make a sizable population of hybrids. In Heaven Port I remember seeing half giants and half humans, and so on, but in here it's quite rare.
However, that didn't really mattered much at the end, as the enormous quantity of people walking everywhere really made the place lively. Not only we saw people carrying large wooden boxes filled with products from all around the world, but we also saw large sea beasts caught by fishermen from the island, large octopus, crabs, fishes, sharks, and more.
It seems that before merchants arrived at this place, the natives mostly survived on what they caught everyday in here. We walked around for a while now, street vendors approached us every second to offer us their products, everyone seemed desperate to sell what they could before setting off into the open seas once more.
"What a beautiful little lady! Wouldn't you be interested in this set of pearl necklaces? Just because you're so pretty I shall give you a discount of ten percent!" A young merman approached us, as he offered accessories to Benladra, whom I was piggy-backing.
Benladra fell to his words very easily as she opened her eyes wide.
"Woow, shinyyy!" She stretched her tiny fingers at the accessory.
"No, thanks, we're busy right now." I told the man, quickly waving my hand.
"But sir she clearly wants them! How about you make your daughter happy?" He insisted.We simply ignored him, as he wasn't the first merchant to approach us offering us their products. They were very tricky, offering stuff to children first, so they would try to make us feel guilty by not buying them something for our kids, a rather scummy strategy.
Once we finally freed ourselves from him, Benladann sighed.
"Seriously there's so many street vendors, each one more desperate to sell us something… He's like the tenth already." Benladann laughed.
"Yeah those guys really don't give up… I was getting tired myself." Miranda sighed.
"This place's a golden spot to sell products, there's so many people coming in and out that if you are not aggressive even if a little bit, you'll be losing money." Charlotte said. "I've come here before, there's like some sort of mafia in here that controls who can sell products here, so most people selling in this place already paid for their spot."
"That sounds harsh…" Pekora added. "So all these people are struggling to sell things so they make a profit? I guess I can get why they're so desperate."
"But what's this mafia you're talking about?" Tisha wondered.
We made a quick stop at a nearby food stall, standing in the line to wait for our turn. They were selling a variety of grilled seafood we wanted to try out. The islanders also sold special sauces made from their own herbs and endemic products.
"It's a group of people that own this place… I don't know if really legally. They extort people and hurt them, but if we align with their rules, they're pretty… alright I guess. I've heard they use some of the money they earn to help the poor. This island country has a big difference between people with money and… those that don't have much. Do you remember how there were so little difference in social status in Heaven Port? Everyone had a house there or was economically fine, but in here it is quite different." Charlotte explained. "And that's as much as I know, if we want to know more we'll need to investigate."
"Huh…" I said, while analyzing the surroundings. The City in here was also named Aqua and was the biggest in the entire of the archipelago, which was also the biggest island within them all. It was considered the capital, and the rest of the population lived spread in small fishing villages.
"Well we are here to explore and grab the shards, right? I don't know if we should get too involved." Kraxka said. "Although it all depends on Lord Drake's merciful heart."
"Indeed, if he desires to aid those in need that might be for the better…" Larzak said. "Though, I would recommend to first try to find the Shards we desperately need. There were two in here, right?"
"Yeah…" I said, looking into the distance, setting my eyes into the city's center, there was a large castle in there and a big temple behind it. That castle was where royalty lived, the family of Aquaias which were all considered "high mermen", holding most of the accumulated riches of the country for themselves.
"I can feel a big shard in that place, or near it… The other's… not here exactly, but very close. Underground?"
I looked underground and stopped myself from recklessly unleashing my Divine Sense, which might alert everyone I was a God, I cannot investigate things in detail without revealing my divine powers in the middle of the streets. But I was sure I could sense something down there.
You can also listen on bestnovel.org