「You’re acting in front of everybody in Erucy and then when you get home you start acting in front of Lucy-chan too? Don’t you find it tiring?」
「Somewhat I guess. But I’m used to it. In fact my goal is to become the person I’m pretending to be.」
「I’m a bit jealous that you think so much of Lucy-chan to do that. But someday I’d like to see the bare plain Cyril-kun. For me any kind of Cyril-kun is fine.」
「If you’re saying that seriously then you’ll need to climb your way up to an equal standing with me. As long as I’m not the only one shouldering the future of Erucy on my back and you’re able to act together with me as the representative of Fire Foxes and help guide Erucy down the proper path, I won’t mind relying on you and acting spoiled.」
The Fire Foxes were being harbored by me. However, no matter how hard I worked or how much they adored or respected me, deep in their hearts I wouldn’t be their center. In truth the one who guided them and anchored them could only be Kuu.
「I think I’ve answered before, but I’m the Chief of the Fire Foxes now. But thanks to those words I’ve gained some courage. If I want to stand equally with you then I can’t be flinching back at something like this…….but would it be alright if we held hands for a little bit?」
Kuu reached out and softly gripped my hand.
Even though Fire Foxes had naturally high temperatures I could feel her hand was cold and shaking. I gripped her hand back tightly enough that it might hurt a bit.
Kuu felt that and smiled a bit as her shaking subsided.
「Alright then let’s go. For the future of Erucy.」
「A good phrase.」
I smiled at that, Kuu hadn’t said ‘for the Fire Foxes future’ she had said ‘for the future of Erucy’. They were words that told me she had firmly decided to guide the Fire Foxes to truly join together with Erucy.
We climbed up onto the stage. The Elves had already taken their seats and gotten ready.
The Fire Fox cooking squads were all ready to put on the finishing touches as soon as the time was right.
I took a deep breath and opened my mouth.
「People of Erucy! Thank you for taking time out of your busy lives to attend. This is a party to meet the new allies that have just joined us…the Fire Foxes!」
I spoke with a bright voice and put on an expression of true happiness.
If I didn’t start the merrymaking then who would?
「Though I say a ‘party’ it isn’t anything too formal. Just eat good food, drink good alcohol, and laugh together. That’s all. By the way all the food today was prepared by the Fire Foxes. They worked hard to prepare this since the morning so that everyone could have a good time. I was a bit sly and stole a few bites here and there and I can tell you that all the food is truly delicious. Especially the soup with their traditional dish, sausage. It was so delicious I thought about apprenticing myself to the people who created it.」
I said and there was some laughter in response.
The heavy mood was somewhat lifted after my short speech. Good, this should be the right time.
「Alright then, the Fire Fox representative Chief Kuu will now give you her greetings.」
I passed the baton to Kuu. I took a quick sidelong glance to check on her and she seemed alright.
「Good day to all of you good Elven people. I am the Fire Fox Chief, Kuu. Thank you for allowing us into your homes and into your country Erucy. As the representative I sincerely give you our thanks.」
Kuu said and bowed politely.
I could hear quite a few deep breaths coming from the audience. It was no wonder. Kuu’s actions and appearance were incredibly elegant and beautiful. She must have trained these actions since she was young until all of them became flowing and graceful.
On top of all that she was a top-class beauty. Even without her polite words her appearance would gain her some points. When standing in front of an audience your face and figure were important parameters. Just by being beautiful you could leave a better impression.
「And so today in order to demonstrate our deep gratitude for being given such a place to live, we Fire Foxes have done our absolute best in preparing this meal for all of you today. As Cyril-sama said we created this for all of you to enjoy, we did our best.」
Kuu said and clapped her hands after which Fire Foxes carrying trays laden with soup began walking around. The seats were divided up so there would be at least one Fire Fox per table. The steaming hot soup had plenty of well prepared sausage and bean sprouts inside of it.
The weather was getting colder and the chill of fall had set in making the hot soup seem even more appealing.
The first group of girls who came out were the young children. This would be the first close contact between Fire Foxes and Elves. I wanted to leave a good impression so I had the kids come out first since it would allow the elves to let their guards down.
「It’s hot so be careful.」
「It’s really yummy~」
Having these sweet young Fire Foxes set the table for them seemed to lift the mood of the Elven men. The women mostly looked at them with a maternal look in their eyes, but sometimes looked at the smirking Elven men with displeasure……although a bit unpleasant this was a necessary evil.
The Fire Foxes were acting sociably. I’m sure they were following Kuu’s orders when doing so, but I had worried if they’d be able to accomplish it well. However, it seems that was a needless fear.
If there weren’t these kind of emotions then no matter the intentions of this gathering then this would all come to nothing.
After serving the soup, the Fire Foxes poured alcohol in to the Elves’ cups before then pouring themselves a cup.
There weren’t any errors in the execution of this part of the party. I had been a bit worried about how things would go, but I see things had been properly communicated beforehand.
「I’d like to say that today’s cooking is not the limit of what we are able to provide. As citizens of Erucy we would all like to contribute what we can. I can’t speak for too long or the soup will get cold, I’ll end it with this….a toast to the meeting of Elves and Fire Foxes and for the future development of Erucy Cyril-sama.」
Kuu and I were handed cups of alcohol from off-stage as Kuu brought up the idea of a toast.
The beginning of today’s festivities was not only Kuu’s responsibility. As the Elven Representative I had to show my support as well.
「Everyone raise your glasses! To new friends and allies! Cheers!」
There were sounds of cups hitting each other from all corners. Then everyone took a drink.