It took half a month just to leave the Great Pruha Forest Sea.
Huh, even I did not think it would take this long.
Perhaps it was a bad idea to follow the river just because I wanted to take a bath if I felt like it.
There were many instances where I came across monsters that had come to drink water, and there was a fish that tried to bite me, too.
Good thing that a water spirit warned me of the danger beforehand, but if I was too late, I could have been gnawed off a bite or two.
But setting aside the past, I trudged along the forest, chewing on the fruits from the trees I came across, and finally reached the outside.
My body trembled with emotion whe I saw the plains spread out unobstructed by trees and dyed red by the setting sun.
It reminded me of the word 'horizon', something I haven't seen in a long time.
Right, it was a boundless scenery that endlessly stretched from here to there.
Well it should definitely hit a limit at some point, but that was what I was feeling at the moment.
However, I didn't have any more time to immerse myself.
I can see over there a settlement surrounded by a stone wall…yes, a town.
I hurried towards the town before the sun went down to which I can no longer enter.
It was probably the name of the town as it was written next to the gate.
“…an elf, is it? Something wrong? Is this your first time in a human town?”
I was awed by the imposing stone wall and gate when a soldier equipped with a spear, probably a guard protecting the entrace, spoke to me in concern.
Perhaps because it was this time of the day, but there was no one else wanting to enter the town, so this was the first human I've seen in my 150 years of living in this world.
“I was looking at it because it looked magnificent.
This is my first time in this town.
Is here still time? Did I make it? Can I enter?”
It was just a hunch, but he doesn't seem to be a bad person.
So I smiled too, showing both my palms as a sign of amicability, and asked them to let me in town.
“Ah, so i'ts your first time.
An entrance fee is needed to enter the town, okay? Are you aware of what money is? It costs 20 copper coins to enter if you have some from of identification, and 1 silver coin if you don't…”
The guard then scratched his head in a troubled manner.
Of course, unlike the other Elves, I had my memory of having lived as a human, so I know the concept of money and its significance.
However, I only understood how money worked, and whether or not I have some with me is a different story now.
So when I sadly shook my head…
“Ah, well, you need money to get into town.
Did you know someone inside and came to visit? If so, I can go call them to pay for you.”
The guard made a suggestion.
Like I thought, this guard seems to be a good guy.
Unfortunately, I only chanced upon this town because it happened to be located at the edge of the Great Pruha Forest Sea.
Hmm, I would have to sell the materials from the forest wolf and subtract the entrance fee from it.
Although I was a little reluctant to do so, but I had no choice.
It was because I had wanted to process them and use it myself.
Then at that moment.
“Um, excuse me.
Can I have a moment?”
A voice called from behind.
Looking back, how long had they been there?
There was a young man and two young women as well.
Well, if you look at it from my point of view, all humans are young without exception, but's not what I meant.
I meant young as a human.
…However that, is it?
If you look closely, one of the women is clearly an elf, and there's also the possibility of her being older than me.
And it was that female elf who called out to me.
To I and the guard who were puzzled, she quickly pulled my arm away with a jerk.
“Are you by any chance, a High Elf?”
She asked in a whisper.
It wasn't anything to hide, but my arm was sore from the tugging, so I nodded grumpily.
The women's dubious expression was a mix of half understanding and and half questioning as to why a high elf was here.
The face she made was a bit intriguing, which made me forget about the pain and just forgave her.
I think that it is narrow-minded to be angry at such a trivial thing.
“Um, if you don't mind me asking, why did someone like you come to a human town?”
The woman asked me curiously.
Well, it was natural to ask such a question.
I wouldn't believe my eyes too if I saw High Elves in a human village.
They live with the forest and become part of nature as spirits when they die.
They consider everything in the outside world as trivial, and live to die and become a spirit.
That is the creature known as a High Elf..
Obviously I wasn't talking about me, but other HIgh Elves.
“Yeah, I was tired of the forest and wanted to look around.
Oh, you can call me Acer.
That's what they call me in village in the deep forest.”
When I was a baby, I held the maple leaves that came flowing with the wind, so Acer.
It's more like a name for convenience.
The elders called me the maple child or something.
As most spirits have no name, so do High Elves.
But because it would be inconvenient if so, we decided on a name for the sake of it.
It seemed to me like a mere play on words, but if I pointed that out, other High Elves would get seriously angry.
It was to the point where they wouldn't hesitate to kill you if they got that angry, so it was best not to comment on their names if you don't intend to fight.
When the women heard my words, she made a face that clearly showed what she was thinking, 'Wow, this guy is weird.'
Her expression was really eloquent and amusing.
Maybe she had been in the outside world for a long time.
It makes me a little happy to think that Elves become like this when they live outside.
The change was like if a plant had become an animal.
Not that I'm implying that plants being bad and animals being good or anything.
I meant that it was interesting to see.
“I understand, Acer-sama.
It's not proper to address High Elves in this manner, but Ailena is here to assist you as goodwill among fellow brethren.
Will you leave this matter to me?”
Ailena, the female elf, seemed to think about something for a while when she suddenly said that.
Huh, looks like she's going to help me.
I don't know why, but I don't feel any malicious intentions from Ailena.
There's also the fact that the spirits acted like usual to her, so I don't think she's a bad elf.
I was having trouble getting into town.
But this should be fine for me.”
Was what I said and held out my hand.
But Ailena interpreted differently, as she bent forward and held her hands out to mine, and placed her forehead on it.
…Yeah, I didn't ask for that, but the elf still went with it.
I appreciate your help, but we should part as soon as possible after entering the town.
 Acer is a genus of shrubs and trees commonly known as maples.
TL Note: I will capitalize specific creature names only for emphasis, like High Elf, Forest Wolf, etc.
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