The endurance training group finally returned once the sun was about to set under the horizon.
Each of them looked fairly exhausted.
「Welcome back, good work today. Did you safely get the knife from the tree?」
「Yeah, here’s your knife back Chief.」
Roleau was standing at the front and handed back my knife. As expected, even he was tired.
No, actually it seemed he was more mentally exhausted than he was physically. Among the members he had taken today, there were quite a few who did not have high stamina. It must have been hard for him to care for them while they were climbing up the snowy mountain.
I glanced over at Lucy and she gave me a tired looking smile.
「Hurry and enter the house. I’ve warmed up the room and gotten some cloth and hot water for you. Split up by gender and wipe down your bodies.」
「That’s great, thanks.」
「Un, I’m glad there’s hot water. We got dirty.」
Roleau and Lucy said sounding relieved.
We had been trying to save up on fuel so making a room very warm and heating up enough water to bathe was considered luxurious at this time of year.
This time I had requested the three fire fox girls to boil the water. Plus just having them play around in the room would warm it up so there was no cost.
I had Yukino and Kemin do this in exchange for their portion of the cream stew. The three of them were happily eating the stew and I had them test a toy that I had created to help increase the literacy rate of our country, this too was an important task.
「Roleau, you think it’s possible?」
「Yeah I do. There are some worrisome ones in the bunch, but even if they don’t have enough physical strength, they are all spirited and well-behaved so I’m not too worried.」
I let out a sigh of relief.
The purpose of the mountain climbing exercise was not only to train their bodies, but also to strengthen their teamwork.
During the several hour climb they would talk even if they didn’t want to and would need to help each other.
Every Elf could utilize the 『Windbreak』 spell, but if they didn’t take turns using it while climbing they would run out of magic power before long. Furthermore, it would be almost impossible to climb the mountain while it was snowing if they didn’t use that spell.
It was forceful, but deepening their bonds in tough situations was very effective.
「Once you guys finish wiping yourselves down go into the next room and wait for the next thing. There’s dinner as well…」
「Yeah there is, but it’s not training so don’t worry.」
I smiled and split up with the group.
I knocked twice on the door.
I had finished my business with the guys in the other room, so now I headed over to the girls’ room.
「You can come in」
I heard Lucy call out, so I went in.
There I saw the four female members of Nettle.
The room was warm and they had just finished cleaning themselves so they were only wearing light cloth outfits. Aside from the one I had trained in magic today, the others were all exhausted.
「Everyone, thank you for all your hard work today. It might be hard, but I’d like you to do your best from today onwards.」
「O-okay I’ll do my bes—」
Kona tried to show her energy and raise up her arms, but halfway through she cried out from the muscle pains and fell back down.
They all seemed to be in much the same condition so it was very doubtful they could go through with the training tomorrow.
「You don’t have to push yourselves. I came here to help fix your tired bodies. I thought I’d give you all a massage. However, I will need to touch your bodies, so if you don’t like the idea after seeing me massage Lucy, then you can turn it down.」
「You can even do massages Cyril?」
「It’d be harder to find something I can’t do.」
「…..in your case…I don’t think it’s a joke.」
「Okay, just lie face down.」
「Un, got it.」
Lucy headed over to the blanket I’d prepared beforehand and lay down.
She had just wiped herself down with hot water so seeing her pure white skin flushed red was captivating. I couldn’t help but feel like stripping her clothes and seducing her.
「Alright, here goes.」
I moved my hand down to touch her thigh. As I expected, it was tight from fatigue.
I began to massage as well as send a small electric signal into her muscles to help loosen them.
「What…this feels…ah, but it’s nice. It feels like I’m softening up…」
Lucy trembled lightly as she relaxed and let out a comforted voice.
I switched from her calves to her arms. I began to massage all her major muscle groups.
In the past I had been able to utilize great amounts of electric energy to strengthen my body, but after 『I』 analyzed the Hero’s power I became able to use it with much greater precision. At this moment I was utilizing that hero’s power.
「You were very stiff. If we let it be then you definitely wouldn’t have been able to continue training tomorrow.」
It probably didn’t stop at simple soreness. It was most likely quite painful.
I wanted to make her just a bit more comfortable so I carefully massaged her. Lucy’s face relaxed as I did so.
「But just massaging won’t fix everything, so let’s put on the finishing touches.」
I used my usual magic, 『Self Recovery Enhancement』 and healed her of two days worth of muscle pain.
By now her body would have converted the cream stew she ate in the morning into nutrients. This meant there was plenty of material for repairing her muscles within her body at the moment.
「Amazing…it feels so nice I might fall asleep…」
「Okay, we’re done. Move your arm and see Lucy.」
Lucy made a sour face since she probably didn’t want to move because she was afraid the muscle pain would assault her as soon as she moved.
Despite that, she listened to me and moved her arm before a shocked expression emerged on her face.
「Huh? My arm is so light…it doesn’t hurt? Ah, it’s like we usually do.」
In order to strengthen Lucy’s body I utilized magic to break down her muscles slightly and repair them almost every day.
Since today she had gotten muscular pain through normal means she probably didn’t understand that it was what we usually did at first.
If the only purpose was to strengthen their bodies then it wouldn’t make sense to have them climb the mountain, it would be easier just to use magic. However, that would not improve their teamwork, will-power, or stamina. It was for these reasons I had them climb the mountain.
「So just like this I can get rid of your exhaustion and pain okay? I finished doing it for all the guys, but since you’re all girls I’ll leave the decision whether to do it or not up to you.」
I said and the other three immediately answered.
「Please do it.」
「It’s more than welcome if it’s by Cyril-sama. Should we get undressed?」
「Cyril-sama my whole body hurts. Please do it quickly and as long as you can.」
The girl who I taught magic shouldn’t be physically exhausted…so I wondered why she asked for a massage, but as requested I did it for all of them.
This was how I would reset their exhaustion every day so they could increase the efficiency of training. Since they’d be able to train themselves every day while in their best conditions the rate of training would increase by three times.
Their job was to do their best to train and my job was to create the proper environment for them to put forth their best efforts. There’s no way I would cut corners.
I planned to have their basic stamina training and magic training finished within a month.
Once that was over I would proceed to more specialized training. It was only a question of how firm a foundation the members of Nettle could build between now and then.
Massaging the members of Nettle, considering their meal balance and making it, consulting with the more worrisome members of the troop, and making plans for the next day took me deep into the night.
The recoil from using 『Samsara Recursion』 and doing actions that I was unaccustomed to in this body caused my consciousness to become hazy. Unexpectedly the tiredness from this morning’s hunt also washed over me.
I had to give up on heading back to the house where Lucy waited for me. Tonight I’d sleep here.
I started to get up from my chair when I lost all my strength and collapsed.
I remained lying face down on the desk in front of me.
I was more tired than I had thought. Whatever…I’ll just sleep like this. Man it’s cold in here….oh wait…those girls headed back home a long time ago…
It’s fine…I won’t die.
With my fading consciousness I heard a voice.
「As I thought Cyril was tired.」
It was Lucy’s voice. I had sent her back early and told her she didn’t need to wait up.
「Cyril…even if you’re tired you never show it huh? You just stubbornly pretend you’re fine. They all think you’re a super man…but you get tired just like normal people. It’s hard if you just spoil me one-sidedly.」
I felt a warm blanket cover me.
「Thank you and good work today. Let’s work hard together tomorrow. No, we’ll all do our best.」
I felt something warm and soft touch my cheek. That small warmth made me fall deep asleep with comfort deep in my heart.