42 Greenwood Town (2)

For a moment, the man was stunned, but he laughed as he read the card over again, "An impressive fake, kiddo. You know fake cards are illegal, right?" He held the card like a parent keeping a toy away from their child.

Seran's face was blank as he stayed silent, but Mary immediately went off, "How dare you insinuate that Seran would make a fake guild card! He's just a boy!" If Mary was a Mage, her hair would probably start fluttering like living flames from her anger.

"Never too early to be a criminal, you know," said the man as he continued to laugh about Seran's 'fake' card. He seemed to be completely sure of his card being fake, which was why he didn't return the card. "You'd have to prove to me that it's real before I'd believe it."

The young demigod's expression remained blank as he deadpanned, "Why would I need to prove anything to you? Causing trouble in my aunt's store is already toeing my bottom line. Keep my card, I'll be getting in back soon."

The man still couldn't stop laughing, "An F-rank brat like you? You wouldn't be able to scratch my itch."

Seran continued with an apathetic look, "In one minute, there will be an announcement for the entire town to gather in the main square. If you want to know the truth, go to the square." He turned to Mary with a smile, "No worries, Auntie, I'll handle this later." With a calm smile on his face, Seran headed out of the store, Gordon following behind him awkwardly.

Mary had to watch Seran leave the store while feeling like she failed to help. Irritable, she glared at the man, headed back behind the counter and said, loud enough for everyone to hear, "From this moment forward, this man will be banned from this store permanently. Should he step foot in this store again, I will have him escorted from the premises and sued in court."

As all eyes turned to the man, he exclaimed, "Oi, you can't do that! I didn't do anything wrong! I just spoke the truth!"

Mary's glare deepened, "According to the laws of this town, and this kingdom, the owner of a property may ban whoever they want for whatever reason from their property. As I have announced it in front of you, you cannot say you were unaware of your banning, and attempting to step foot in here again, you can be sentenced for trespassing. If you want to know the reason, you can find out at the town announcement soon. Now, get out of my store before I call for the police."

The man's face turned red with awkward anger, but he couldn't do anything in full view of so many witnesses. "You..! I'll get you back for this!"

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Slamming her fist on the counter, she said, "Is that a threat, sir? I will call the police if you don't get out of my store right now. It'll be far worse than trespassing if you're threatening me too." The full-blown aura of a pissed off mother and store-owner radiated from her, making it look like she was more than ready to throw down with the man.

Knowing he was in a losing battle, the man clicked his tongue and began leaving the store when a policeman stepped into the store to proclaim, "The city lord has called for everyone to gather at the town square for an announcement. Please make your way there at once, as he said that it was very important." The policeman also took a look at the man who was causing trouble and said, "I heard everything just now, and I will be reporting this to my superiors. This is the third time you've gotten yourself into trouble in the last week, so we're already aware of your identity. This time, you might be brought to court and exiled from the kingdom." He then left without another word or a second glance to continue passing the announcement.

The man received numerous silent glares as everyone in the store began to leave, with Mary being the last one. She glared at him and darkly said to get out, which he did awkwardly, so she could lock the store up. The man shivered as he felt yet more glares everywhere he went as rumors already began to travel. Gossip is a cruel mistress, indeed.

---

About twenty minutes passed as several thousand residents came to the massive town square, which could easily hold four times their number, and gathered before an amphitheater-like platform with a small podium on the right side. Children rode on shoulders and some people had to strain to see from a distance, but most could see just fine. Seven men came onto the stage, five of which were high-ranking policemen, the sixth being the Chief of Police, Shaun, and the seventh being Etienne Greenwood, the city lord, who stood behind the podium as the six officers of the law took positions at the edge of the semi-circular stage. Shaun, and his officers, shouted loud enough for everyone to hear, "Please be silent for the city lord's announcement!" It was much easier thanks to recent inventions, the amplifier and microphone. With Seran's old world's knowledge and William's data power, they created several blueprints and inventions and left it to the people to create, and within the last month, the amplifier had made its debut, just after the microphone. They had yet to achieve the radio, but it seemed that they were very close to figuring it out.

Clearing his throat, Etienne spoke into the podium's microphone, "Hello, everyone. My apologies for calling this on such short notice, but this announcement requires swiftness, so it had to be done. There are a few things I must bring to your attention. The first topic of the announcement is related to our well-known resident Golden Crows." Etienne gestured to Storm, who had perched atop a tree behind the stage, along with several other crows. "They are our protectors and friends, as many of us have learned. We have given them the collective title of guardian beasts, so that everyone may understand that they are protectors of the town and its people. It should be known that the oldest of them, Storm, is an S-rank Divine Beast. Today, I am very pleased to announce that we will be gaining three more guardian beasts, each of which is also of the S-rank. Please, welcome our new guardian beasts." He turned to face the rear of the stage, and all eyes followed.

Behind the stage, the Chimera trio became very self-conscious and nervous about so many people. When they were in combat, they forgot about such things, but crowds were not their forte. It took a minute or two before Storm said, "Go on, you three. There's no need to fear. Don't forget that Lady Khloe and Seran are both here for you." The few words that the big crow spoke managed to convince the trio to climb up onto the stage to stand beside each other, looking visibly nervous, which was rather cute despite each of them being the size of a car. Even with their tremendously powerful auras and their imposing physical appearances, their demeanor didn't match up at all, making it hard for some to take them seriously... sort of.

"Now, let me introduce them to you all," said Etienne with a grin.

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