「Ah—I’m tired. 」
「Thank you for your hard work. 」
When Laurent finished today’s interview, he takes a small break. He thanks Lilianne for dispatching the staff.
Not only she helped with funds and worked to set up the guild, but she also sent staff who can assist with routine duties.
「You must be tired. You interviewed 20 people throughout the morning. 」
「Yeah. But I can’t use 『Appraisal』 without my own eyes. It cannot be helped. 」
「But is it necessary for Laurent-san to do that? Why not make them self-report their current skill to narrow them down? 」
「That’s no good. If I do that, I can only understand their current skills, but not their potential growth in the future. In the long run, it’s more beneficial to employ somebody with potential in mind. 」
「Haa. Is that so? 」
「By the way, I’m not going to do the afternoon interview. 」
Laurent looked at the interviewee’s recorded skills.
（ In the end, only Arie’s 『Ore Refining』 skill that goes beyond A-rank. ）
Laurent looked at the note once again; it said Arie 『Ore Refining』: E→A.
The production of 『Earth Craft』 ordered by Lilianne could be done if we had 『Ore Refining A』 skill.
Next week, the 『Earth Craft』 ore that we bought will be brought to the old workshop we purchased as our base.
（By then, Arie’s 『Ore Refining』 skill will be as close to A-rank as possible. ）
Arie comes to her first job in guild 『Arsenal’s Spirit』 with a bittersweet feeling.
（For now, I’m glad I passed the interview. I wonder if I’ll be in charge of 『Ore Refining』. ）
It took her back to the bitter memories of her former workplace.
（I actually want to work doing 『Gold Craftmanship』. I know my 『Gold Craftmanship』 is not great either, but compared to 『Ore Refining』…… ）
In her former work, she was in charge of 『Ore Refining』 but not long afterwards, she was soon dismissed.
（I guess I’m going to get fired from here too. A—ah. ）
When she thought about that, she gets dispirited.
Laurent was cleaning the front door when Arie arrived at the workshop.
「Good morning, Arie-san. 」
「Ah, good morning. 」
Arie said with great enthusiasm.
While in the corner of her mind, it was strange seeing the guild leader doing things like cleaning.
「I’ll get you to do 『Ore Refining』 right away. 」
（Uhh. I know it. ）
She went into the smelting room as she is about to be crushed by anxiety.
「The truth is the materials haven’t arrived yet from 『Guardian of the Magic Tree』. I think it will arrive next week. That is why we are going to start with iron refining as practice. 」
Hearing that there will be a training period, Arie was relieved.
She even believed that she would be paid until next week.
「Well, let’s start right away. This is where you will work. 」
Laurent guided Arie into the iron room.
The room surrounded by brick walls, and it’s prepared ready for refining.
The pot was prepared with coal so that fire could be started at any time, and the iron ore was lined up on the desk.
「You know all the basic refining method, right? Let us start at once. 」
Arie, in one gulp, was nervously putting the iron ore on the pot.
It was her first-time 『Ore Refining』 after a long time.
Can she really do it?
Arie put 10 iron ore lined up on the desk inside the pot and cover it, putting the coal, and cast a fire magic spell.
There’s an opening above the pot, a small window to peek inside.
From this small gap, she must grasp the state of the ore inside, and you must adjust the fire magic.
Arie watched, stunned at the sight of the ore, which was turning red inside the pot.
If the refiner judges that it was the right time, the ore is taken out and beaten with a hammer.
Thus, all the impurities were removed to make pure metal from ore.
Being inexperienced, Arie depends on her hunch to take out the red ore before strikes it with a hammer.
The refined iron, then presented to the guild leader.
Arie’s refining results were terrible.
・9 Iron E
・1 Iron D
Iron E was useless scrap iron.
Iron D is no better. It’s barely useful, but still inferior goods.
（Haa. I told you before. ）
Arie hangs her head, looking crestfallen anticipating being scolded off.
But the reaction she got was unexpected.
「Isn’t that amazing, Arie? You can make 1 Iron D at the first try. 」
Laurent’s eyes were brightly shining as he said this.
「Even though your 『Ore Refining』 skill still E, you can already refine Iron D. After all, you are talented. 」
Arie, who couldn’t keep up with Laurent’s spirit, just made a vague reply.
「Let’s do the next one. 」
「Ha, hai. I’ll do that after smashing this scrap iron… 」
「That’s fine. You simply need to keep doing 『Ore Refining』. I’ll do the cleaning up. 」
「Eh? O-okay. 」
Afterward, Laurent and Arie continued to do 『Ore Refining』.
Laurent’s job was to arrange and cleared the finished ore, and he made her do 『Ore Refining』 as many as possible.
Many of the iron ore on the shelves disappeared, turning into scrap iron.
He keeps setting up for her thus she can go smoothly.
She keeps thinking of doing the miscellaneous work, but Laurent never let her, he did all the trivial job himself instead.
While she was busy with the pot, Laurent prepared the next iron from the warehouse on the desk, cleaning the room and tending the tools while she’s striking the ore. Laurent also cleans the pot and then prepares the next coal.
This is allowing Arie to focus on watching over the pot.
She had been treated as if she was a first-rate craftsman.
（I’ve wasted so much ore here. Is this really okay though? ）
Arie continued working, feeling nervous, thinking whether it’s ok or not.
At the end of the day, from 30 pieces of iron ore, she can only produce 3 iron D.
And the same thing happened the following day.
Finally, she started to see the subtle alterations in the vividness of the burning ore in the pot.
（Step by step… You do understand that, right? ）
She began to pick up the subtle red tint on the iron.
And Laurent has also gotten used to do miscellaneous work.
At first, Arie was confused with the hierarchy relationship because Laurent would naturally treat her like a skilled craftsmanship, and she can’t get it out of her mind.
She gradually started to focus on her task.
When she completed the 5th 『Refining』, she had lost sight of Laurent.
When she finished 『Refining』 the 10thiron, the results were 9 Iron D and 1 Iron C.
（I—I did it. ）
Arie felt like the load has taken off her back.
If it’s Iron C, it will be for sale.
As a new alchemist, she passed the mark.
For the time being, she could work like this.
「I did it, Laurent-san. I was able to make Iron C. 」
She reported to Laurent feeling completely relieved.
But the answer that she got was unexpected.
「This is no good at all. 」
Laurent threw an Iron C into the trash.
「You have to get all the ore into Iron A. 」
「I-iron A…… 」
Arie’s face turns pale again.
She can’t believe it, making everything into Iron A?
I wonder if there’s an alchemist who can do that in this town?
Even after that, Laurent kept giving Arie first-class treatment, while also giving her first-class pressure.
Of course, Arie did nothing but 『Ore Refining』.
She was never allowed to do anything else.
（It’s the first time I’ve worked in such a place. ）
The ore she used was not the amount a newbie alchemist will have the opportunity to work on.
（Spending time and money only for one skill. And I’ve wasted so many ores. Unless he’s convinced that my limit is 『Ore Refining A』… Are you kidding me?? ）
Arie continued to put ore into the pile with all her might, and she must live up to Laurent’s expectations.
And it has been going on for a week.
（I did it. It’s all done now. ）
Arie looked at the iron on the desk in amazement.
The iron appearance is glossy.
You can see it all at a glance.
It was no doubt the best iron.
There were then Iron A on the tray.
「Well done, Arie. 」
「Hai. Thank you. 」
Arie was so relieved when she heard Laurent’s praise that she’s on the verge of tears.
「Well then, now we can handle the request from 『Guardian of the Magic Tree』 little by little. For now, we will produce 100 pieces of 『Earth Craft』 in a month. 」
When she heard that Arie felt faint.
Compared to iron, 『Earth Craft』 was much more difficult metal to refine.