“Yo, Seiren.”[1. Seiren is written with kanji: 青蓮.]
I turned around as I heard my name being called. Over there, the orphanage director was standing while wearing his usual old clothes.
Eh, but this place is the house’s entranceway, right? Why would the orphanage director be at this place?
“Director, didn’t you return to the other world?”
“Yes, I did. But well, I’m still worried about you guys.”
The way he scatches his head like that, yup, it’s certainly the orphanage director. Or rather, I wonder for what reason did this person come here?
I wonder if I’m still causing him to worry or any trouble even at this age? So I thought while staring fixedly at the director.
Adter that, the orphanage director turned to face me as if he just remembered something.
“Ah-, be careful of the Shikino’s shinobi, okay? It’s basically fine here, but there should be some who were Touka’s confidants.”
“Eh? Ah, yes.”
By shinobi, did he mean ninja? And they really existed here, huh? Or rather, Touka-san’s confidants, eh… In other words, they’re his close subordinates, right? Isn’t that bad, then?
A-anyway, I need to be more careful. Yup.
“Well then, until later. It’s morning already-.”
Perhaps feeling satisfied from having said everything that he wanted to tell me, the orphanage director smiled and then… *Thump!* I was pushed away and my falling down was stopped by the soft futon.[2. Futon is a Japanese-styled mattress laid on the floor.]
When I jumped up in my surprise, I was inside the bed. It isn’t the bed that I usually sleep in… oh right, I’m at Taiga-san’s place. Yosh, it’s a great thing that I inadvertently forgot to scream just now.
Ha-, as I breathed out, my eyes matched with Oriza-san’s eyes as she peeked her face from the other side of the partitioning screen. Ah-, the louver door has been opened already, it seems. I slept like a log, huh? I wonder if I was tired.
“Ah. Seiren-sama, good morning-. Did you not have any dream last night?”
As Oriza-san’s voice can be distinguished easily, it clearly told me that I have returned back to reality.
Or rather, the orphanage director, so it was all a dream, huh? I have seen him in a dream before, too, but could he be very worried about me?[3. I think there’s this myth that if someone appears in your dream, then you’re on that person’s mind.] Or am I bothering his mind?
When I scratched my hair, Alica-san made an appearance as well. Because the bedroom isn’t separated by a wall to the living room, her figure can be seen immediately. Well, that’s fine, though.
“Good morning, Seiren-sama. I will be bringing the hot water immediately.”
“Morning. Thank you-.”
It has become quite a habit to bring hot water into the bed room to wash my face. When I was still at the institution, I brought a towel and a toothbrush all the way to the bathroom, and I washed my face with cold water, though.
The institution, huh. Which reminds me, the orphanage director mentioned something in my dream, right? I wonder if the thing that he told me in my dream is actually real?
“Yes, what is it-?”
“You see, is it possible to convey a message via a dream?”
Among my maids, the one who is the most well-informed in terms of magic, the one who is completely having fun while studying it would be Oriza-san. Therefore, I thought that it was the best to try and ask her about it.
And just like that, she immediately answered. She only stopped to think for an instant.
“Ah, such magic, it exists. However, there are lots of difficulties such as not being able to convey the message well, so it seems that it hasn’t been put to much practical use.”
“I see. Thank you.”
“Don’t mention it-.”
…However, the only magician that we have is Jigen-san. It isn’t weird for him to make a prank while laughing, “Hohoho!” I understand as much that he has an amazing ability that seems like a cheat. After all, he managed to find me who had been living in the different world as a man for about 18 years and he also managed to bring me back here.
Now then, as expected, Oriza-san also understood of the pattern that I used when I asked a strange thing. She tilted her head and asked me.
“Did you have that kind of a dream?”
“Perhaps. The orphanage director showed up in my dream.”
When I nodded and answered like that, Oriza-san only answered with a word. No, well, what else could she say in such a situation?
Anyway, just as our conversation stopped, Alica-san returned with a bucked of hot water and towel. Ah, I feel slightly relieved.
“I have brought the hot water. What’s wrong, Oriza?”
“Ah, Alica. You see, Seiren-sama said that she had a dream. Uhm, of Touya-sama.”
At Alica-san’s question that brought about a mysterious atmosphere to the air, Oriza-san lightly explained in plain words. When Oriza-san mentioned Touya-sama, she did it whisperingly.
Well, as expected, it’s a conversation that you wouldn’t want someone else other than Taiga-san to overhear in this Shikino residence. In the first place, Touka-san took over Touya-san’s place in public, so I’d be very troubled if someone considered me having dreams of that person. Yes, I’d be very troubled.
That’s why, I inched closer to Alica-san and told her in a small, small voice.
“In my dream, I was told to be careful since there might be Touka-san’s subordinates among the Shikino’s shinobi.”
I know, right?
Putting aside whether it’s really a message conveyed via a dream, it isn’t weird to know that there still remained Touka-san’s people among the servants and employees that are currently working at the Shikino. Let’s leave aside about how there are still ninja at the current year. Or rather, since Alica-san didn’t bat an eye on my words, they seem to really exist, I mean, the shinobi.
“Seiren-sama, we’ve told you repeatedly, but be careful, okay?”
“I understand. Everyone too, I’m relying on you.”
“Yes. I will also tell Minoa.”
“Yup. Speaking of which, where did Minoa go to?”
“Ah-, she’s currently taking out the laundry-.”
“…Thanks for your hard work.”
Obviously, it’s necessary to do laundry. Just like summer, I only brought the minimum necessary luggage here.
Really, I’ve been greatly indebted to everyone.
At the same time as Minoa-san returned, the morning preparation was also completed, so we headed towards the dining room to have a breakfast. Fubuki-san also came here today, and she led us the way.
In front of the dining room, we met with Taiga-san who came along with Saya-san. Ah, thank goodness. We can have our breakfast together.
“Good morning, Taiga-san.”
“Good morning, Seiren-sama. You look adorable this morning as well.”
“Please don’t say such things so early in the morning. Good grief.”
Eei, what the heck is this person saying so early in the morning like this? Each and every time, he’s like this.
‘My goodness,’ as I was thinking of it, I noticed that there were other footsteps.
“Ane-sama, Nii-sama, good morning. It isn’t too late for you to start professing your love to Ane-sama after you’re married, right, Nii-sama?”
Ou, I’d definitely be surprised if you suddenly raised your voice from behind like that, Saryuu.
When I turned around in a fluster, there was my little brother with a sullen face along with his maids in their imposing stances. There were Maki-san and Kanna-san, and then one more person with a large build and fluffy hair in pigtails—Tokino-san. These three people are Saryuu’s exclusive maids.
Here, I have Minoa-san, Alica-san, and Oriza-san, so I wonder if it’s decided to have three maids with a large, medium, and small build each?
“Ah, m-morning, Saryuu.”
“Morning, Saryuu. What are you saying? It isn’t too early to start from now on, right?”
“It’s embarrassing for me to even look at it. To put things bluntly, please don’t flirt around in public, if you’re a good adult!”
Aah-. Well, that’s right, no matter even if he’s your relative, it’s quite embarrassing to look at people flirting around in public. No, well, I’m also embarrassed, though.
But Taiga-san seems to not understand that, as he answered Saryuu with a composed expression.
“I see. Saryuu, are you jealous?”
“W-who?! The one who’s said to have no luck with women until he met Ane-sama is you, Nii-sama!”
Oi, you two, what kind of conversation are you having? Just when did you leave me out of the conversation? But, oh well, whatever.
Now then, what should I do? I sought rescue from Fubiki-san… wait, she’s not there. She is not Ayato-san and Maito-san, but she can also erase her presence, huh?
When I turned my sight to Saya-san in my trouble, she greatly nodded before stepping forward with a thud.
“Taiga-sama, Saryuu-sama. Seiren-sama is astonished here. In addition, please save your siblings conversation for after the meal.”
In response to Saya-san’s words—though she didn’t yell at them, the two brothers turned timid. Seeing Taiga-san looking like this, it seems that he has been indebted to Saya-san for various reasons, too.
Saya-san heaved a sigh as she looked at my direction and said.
“…It’s my first time seeing Taiga-sama praising a woman so boldly like that.”
So, he hadn’t praised someone else other than me from the very beginning?
Whoa, this is so unexpected! Seriously?
“Eh, wasn’t he originally like that?”
“It seemed that there weren’t really any women that he was interested in.”
“Is that so…”
…Well, that’s quite obvious, since he’s still unmarried at this age. I guess he wasn’t interested in any woman even when he frequently went around the town, let alone to think of picking up a woman on the street. He should have had several matchmaking, though.
And then, the one who won Taiga-san’s favor turned out to be me, was it? I don’t really understand whether he has good eyes to see women or not.
“Saya… what do you think of me?”
“You’re unmistakably someone who would be the Shikino family’s successor.”
Saya-san expresionlessly answered Taiga-san’s question as he asked it with a troubled face. Ah-, not good, Taiga-san can’t absolutely win against Saya-san.
No well, that’s good that there are people like that by his side. After all, they can become someone who’d be able to stop him if he were to behave recklessly.