54 – Party
Tatsumi and company had somehow managed to defeat the giant snow lizard, which was possessed by a〈Devil.〉
As proof of defeating the giant snow lizard, the group collected the head and headed back to the royal capital after taking a short rest to recover their stamina.
Though it was not quite a triumphant return with Jadokh carrying Tatsumi who was still unconscious from exhaustion.
The party, which arrived at the capital safely and without much problems happening, went straight towards Tatsumi and Calcedonia’s house. Then, after Tatsumi was laid down on the bedroom’s bed, Calcedonia decided to go to Savaiv Temple to report.
Incidentally, Eru separated with the party on the way back, and returned to〔The Elf’s Resthouse.〕
“Thank you for everything you have done until now, Jadokh-san.”
“Oh my, you’re welcome. But—”
While giving a meaningful smile, he gazed on the bed that Tatsumi was laid down in.
“—Ain’t this a really big bed? Maybe, with Tatsumi-chan…at night, is it intense?”
To Jadokh, who asked while winking, Calcedonia’s face was dyed red in a moment.
For some reason, Miloulle, who was behind Jadokh, also turned red, and she countlessly flickered her eyes between Calcedonia, the bed, and Tatsumi.
“Hyo-Hyoee!!? I-I have a little bit of a bad sleeping posture, so I received this from grandpa, and certainly Husband and I sleep together, but there’s no way it means that the nights are intense, though I’ll also welcome it if it’s very intense, but Husband worries and is very gentle to me…wait, what am I sayyyyiingg!?”
“My, my, if you scream so loudly, Tatsumi’ll wake up, ya know?”
“Quiet, okay?” continued Jadokh. Calcedonia hurriedly covered her mouth with her hands, and checked the sleeping Tatsumi’s state.
It appeared that his exhaustion was too much, so even with Calcedonia screaming in panic, he showed no signs of getting up.
Calcedonia realized that Tatsumi didn’t wake up, so she put her hand on her chest and sighed in relief.
Seeing her in such a state, Jadokh gave a gentle smile.
“I’ll tell the truth, okay? At first, I thought that Calsey-chan was a《Holy Maiden》, so you’d surely be a stiff woman with a serious face, but… the real Calsey-chan is really cute. One can tell that you love Tatsumi-chan. Oh, saying “cute” isn’t just for appearance, you know?”
Jadokh winked again, and when he did, he turned back towards Miloulle.
“Now, why don’t we take our leave? It would be bad if we intruded on Tatsumi-chan and Calsey-chan’s love nest forever.
“Oh? What is it that you’re so nervous about? Maybe, Miloulle-chan to this room…the stimulation of Tatsumi-chan and Miloulle-chan being intimate to each other every night in this bedroom is too strong, perhaps?”
When Jadokh, a little sadistically, asked, the Miloulle in question had her face redden again.
“I-It’s not that!!! L-Look, I’ll leave, I’ll quickly leave!!?”
After Miloulle replied to Jadokh in a way that sounded like she was barking, she stormed out of the house.
“Jadokh-san, you can’t tease Miloulle-san anymore, okay?”
“Ufufu. That girl was showing everything on her face, so I unintentionally teased her. But, isn’t around that much okay? If we be too silent, she might think about her dead comrades, so…”
Calcedonia felt admiration. At first glance, Jadokh, with his burly and large body, doesn’t appear to stick his nose into other people’s business.
However, the real Jadokh is a person that can give truly detailed attention to people. He angered Miloulle on purpose to make her not feel sad.
“Then, I’ll also go. Make Tatsumi happy, okay?”
“Understood. Oh, as for this time’s reward, I’ll divide what I get from the temple with everyone.”
“Got it. I’ll tell the landlady and Miloulle-chan.”
He winked for one last time, and Jadokh also left Tatsumi and Calcedonia’s house.
With Jadokh and the rest gone, the house returned to silence.
After Calcedonia took off her equipment and put on normal clothes, she loosened Tatsumi’s clothing.
The armor that he wore was taken off after the giant snow lizard was subjugated. For that reason, he was currently wearing the tough leather clothes under his armor, and it probably was quite hard to sleep comfortably.
When Calcedonia went on the bed and was loosening his clothing, Tatsumi slowly opened his eyelids.
“Husband? Have you awoken?”
“H-Huh? This place is… our house…?”
Still lying on the bed, Tatsumi slowly moved his head. It seemed like he understood where he was.
“Jadokh carried you back here for you. Next time you meet, you should thank him, okay?”
“I see… Jadokh was looking after me, wasn’t he…”
While Tatsumi was muttering, Calcedonia continued moving her hands to make his clothes feel more comfortable.
“No… Perhaps, did I wake you?”
“Nah, it wasn’t like that. About me waking up, it was because I smelled something good nearby… yep, it was Calsey’s scent.”
Tatsumi stretched out his hand, and when he picked up a strand of Calcedonia’s hair, he put the tip of his nose to it and sniffed to make sure.
“…No mistake. It’s this scent. Yep, when I feel this scent, I somehow calm down.”
Tatsumi, while lying down, wholeheartedly smiled at Calcedonia.
“Hey, Calsey. Is it okay if I’m a little selfish?”
Without waiting for Calcedonia’s reply, he pulled her arm and hugged her.
“Calcey… no, Chiiko, your scent is also good, certainly, but feeling your warmth and softness, like this, is… for me, the number one happiness.”
Tatsumi called Calcedonia “Chiiko.”
Calcedonia called Tatsumi “Master.”
When the two of them call each other by these names, it’s a sweet and beautiful time that’s precious only for the two of them.
“Thanks for today, Chiiko. Thanks to Chiiko, I was able to fight against the magic beast.”
“It’s nothing like that. I think you did a lot; it’d be impossible without Master… But, Master has become a lot stronger. Besides… When Master fought against the magic beast… Master looked really cool.”
While blushing and giving a happy smile, she buried her head with the back of his neck, and pecked there with her lips many times.
That was completely like a small bird play-biting its owner.
Tatsumi, in return, caressed Calcedonia’s face many times over to show love.
It was uncertain as to which person started it, but the their lips touched each other.
“Miloulle-chan… what will you do from now on?”
Along the way from Tatsumi’s house to〔The Elf’s Resthouse,〕Jadokh asked his neighbor-in-walking, Miloulle.
“…I think I’ll return to the village.”
Miloulle looked downward as she replied, which, to Jadokh, looked lonely.
“Those guys’… my comrades’ families, I’ll tell them that those guys died and give them their loved ones’ possessions… because that, I think, is my duty as the person that survived.”
“……Isn’t that unreasonable?”
Jadokh used one of this big hands to pat Miloulle’s head.
“I’m fine. Because it’s not unreasonable.”
To Jadokh’s question, Milloule gave a short reply.
While being petted by Jadokh, she gave a fleeting displeased expression, but, in the end, Jadokh didn’t stop.
Though, the warmth of Jadokh’s palm was actually comforting.
“But then? …When I return those guys’ things to each’s family… I’ll come back to the capital again. And then… Could I join up with you all again?”
“Yeah, that’ll be fine. I’ll tell Tatsumi, okay? He’ll also gladly welcome you back, surely.”
When Jadokh made that promise, Miloulle made a happy-looking smile.
“Now! It’s decided, so I have to do by best! Cause I’m in debt to Calsey.”
The money for getting a complete set of magic beast-hunting equipment is never cheap.
There wasn’t a time limit to repay the money, but there definitely was a debt, which gave a bad feeling. From there, to rid herself of that weight, it’d be best to pay back the money as quickly as possible.
“You shouldn’t have to pay back immediately? Soon, the Early-Moon Months will end and the ice spirits of the Daihyouzan Range will leave. When the snows melt, magic beast-hunting jobs will multiply. Especially during the snow’s melting, many hungry magic beasts appear often, so it’s when magic beast-hunting work is the most numerous.”
While the snow piles up, there’s a lot of magic beasts that stay in nests, holes, and other things throughout the winter, and, naturally, they wouldn’t have eaten anything in that time. So, they’ll be vigorous, active, and do whatever it takes to try to fill their stomachs when the snow melts.
At that time, magic beasts appear near human settlements, so even if it’s said to be the busiest time for magic beast-hunting, it’s the best.
However, there are a lot of magic beasts that become more fierce with the hunger, so it’s also a time when the danger increases.
“I won’t go back to the village if the snows haven’t melted.”
Stretching from the Royal Capital to Miloulle’s home village, is a thin but reliable road. But, the road completely would be covered with snow in this season. So, even if she wanted to go back, she couldn’t in this snow-covered season.
“Huh? What did you say? You’re going to go magic beast-hunting by yourself until the snow melts?”
For some time, Miloulle was thinking, “After I come back from my hometown, I want to be together with Jadokh, Eru, Tatsumi, and Calsey.”
In short, if she didn’t go back to her hometown, Jadokh and Tatsumi wouldn’t let her become their comrades.
Realizing that what she said was a mistake, Miloulle laughed with a “ehehe,” gave a forced smile, and shifted her gaze constantly.
“Th-That—… From now on, please accept me as your comrade…!!!”
In the middle of the street, Miloulle, who stopped, bowed very deeply to Jadokh while her face was turning red from embarrassment.