16 The City of Colten
As Zoey neared the gate she looked up at the looming structure of the gatehouse. The entire thing looked even bigger up close, with the stone walls reaching towards the sky, casting their shadows on the people below. Zoey was able to overhear the name of the city from the commotion around her. The city was called Colten, and judging from the amount of people she could see, it seemed to be a popular place. In the queue waiting to enter the city, Zoey could see farmers, merchants, adventurers with their gear, and even rich looking young masters with their entourage of servants and guards.
Most of the people she saw were dressed in a somewhat modern fashion. Leather and heavy canvas was used for most of the worker garbs she saw, and cotton was the common material for most others. She did see some type of soft looking silk being worn by the richer looking folk though. Most of the clothing was simple in design, not too different than hers aside from her poncho, and she did see many different colors of cloth on display as well.
The bug-like Vekt she saw mostly were only clothed with leather kilts and equipment, with their upper bodies bare. Zoey noticed that the females of the species had more feminine facial features and body structures, but other than the base features, their anatomy was not very distinct at first glance.
Read The Original Here: https://www.webnovel.com/book/12925715505004905/Dark-Star-Survivor
Equipment wise Zoey's engineering senses could determine that most of the gear people carried was well made. Steel seemed to be the most common metal, but she could see iron and brass as well on some of the cheaper gear. She could see a variety of weapons, from spears to greatswords, and bows for ranged weapons, but no guns. She would have to do her best to keep her gun concealed for now. She did not want to cause a commotion due to how different it was from the norm. Maybe she could pass it off as a talent?
While Zoey was lost in thought she had made it through the gate and into the city of Colten. The sight truly was stunning. All around her were huge warehouses and buildings. Hovering carts and trailers laden with merchandise of all sorts could be seen being hauled in and out of them, pulled by huge, furry, centipede creatures. Zoey felt a shiver go down her spine when she saw all the legs moving. The street was wide, and allowed plenty of room for the industry to move around easily, so she kept her distance.
Further down the street, the buildings changed from warehouses to shops and stores. As Zoey walked, she could see all manner of goods being bought and sold, from weapons to furniture. She also saw an alchemy store claiming to sell the best potions of any kind and a magical tools and weapons store that was 4 stories tall by itself, and one of the busiest stores on the street. Each store she saw had colorful, attention-grabbing signs and some of the wealthier ones seemed to possess a magical glow, drawing the eye to their extravagance.
The sheer amount of people and commotion was a bit overwhelming to Zoey, so she found a quieter spot near a fountain to rest and collect herself. The street had a number of alcoves like this with benches to rest on. Looking around she could see the bustling activity of the city teeming with life. The people were loud and animated and the smell was really not bad. Zoey thought there must be a sewer system, and sure enough she could see the grates in the street gutters that led below.
The city as a whole was fairly well built, with most buildings consisting of stone and wood. The roads were paved in large white stones that gave a clean feeling to the roads. From where she was sitting Zoey thought it was about a half kilometer to the gate she had entered from. She didn't know how big the city was, but she guessed it must be about two kilometers or more wide.
Once she was finished resting, Zoey continued on, but something felt odd. She had only noticed when she had stopped to rest, and again when she started moving, but someone was watching her...
Tuning her senses, Zoey realized that every so often, a Vekt passing near her would swivel their eyes towards her, their antenna would twitch, then they would jerk away and hurry down the street. The strange thing was, not every Vekt that passed by would do this. Only one out of every 20 or so that passed. It wasn't much, but it was noticeable. Especially now that Zoey was aware of it. She was not sure what the cause was... Did she smell bad? She didn't think so. The humans near her showed no reaction even when downwind. The only explanation was there was something about her that only certain Vekt could detect.
With this new development, Zoey kept moving down the street, pulling her hood lower over her face, and taking extra care to watch her back.
As she moved on the street went from shops and stores to business offices, taverns and inns. The buildings here had more windows and flair, an obvious display of wealth and prosperity. There were a lot of trading firms, manufacturing guilds, and even adventuring guilds.
Further on down the street Zoey could see another gatehouse set into what looked to be an inner city wall, separating the residential area from the commerce and business area. Zoey was not interested in going there at this time, so she reversed her course and headed back down the street.
One thing she had also noticed, and tried her best to ignore, was the countless food stalls along the street, many of which smelled delicious. As one such stall just happened to be nearby, Zoey could not help that her mouth was watering from the savory smell of roasted meat.
It was at that moment, Zoey realized a horrible thought... She had no money!