Azur Lane: Episode of Belfast Volume 4 Chapter 1 Part 13

If there was such a word that was mentioned in the conversation that they had just a moment ago ——

「…… That would have to be ‘everyday’, huh?」

Newcastle smiled brightly. Apparently Belfast must have hit the proverbial nail to the head.

「Yes, that’s right. For anyone who is familiar with our line of work, it might actually seem plain and uninteresting. And if you want to use such everyday life as a setting in a stage play, the resulting story is not going to be enough to dramatize it just by depicting “the ordinary life that exists in that specific setting. When I saw this memo notepad, I felt that what we should try to depict should be something alongside the lines of: “extraordinary things that happened suddenly.」

「So, perhaps something alongside the lines of: ‘In the midst of a continuous, steady daily life…… an extraordinary event happened completely out of the blue.」

「That’s right. How many extraordinary events have happened to you in the days you have spent in this Home Port, Belfast?」

Newcastle asked Belfast that question while she was cleaning the cups of tea that both Elizabeth and Warspite have drunk from.

「I think that if you were to dig into your memories of those experiences and connect them together into one narrative, you will surely find some kind of episode that will be worthy of adapting it into a stage play for sure.」

「An episode……」

Belfast slowly thought about what she was saying, staring at Newcastle’s back as she fluttered toward the sink.

「…… stemming from some sort of extraordinary event or happening, huh?」

* * *

After that, the interviews conducted by Echo continued, and by the time the small Destroyer was done, it was already around 8:00 p.m.

At last, the day’s work of the members of the Maid Corps, as per usual, was about to come to an end.

「Working in the Maid Corps…… It’s actually really hard, isn’t it?」

Echo slipped a notepad under her arm once again, which had grown thicker as she wrote down even more details of today’s activities. Then, she let out a tired sigh.

「Echo, if you are going to go and visit Her Majesty, I will go with you now.」

Once everyone was about to wrap things up and go back to their rooms Edinburgh addressed Echo like that.

After Belfast finished her last task for the day, which was checking the inventory of spices they had at hand, she let out a short sigh as well.

「Nee-san. It seems that Her Majesty and Warspite-sama were finally able to return to their rooms a while ago, so I think that it would honestly be for the best if you were to do that tomorrow morning.」

「O-Oh, ah, well…… Yeah, I guess you’re right.」

After the two of them left the kitchen, Elizabeth and Warspite seemingly went to the library where they were indulging themselves in various books about fairy tales and legends since ancient times. However, apparently they were still unable to find anything that could be used for a stage play, and they said that they were planning to shut herself in the library until noon tomorrow.

When Belfast returned to her room after the dinner cleanup was over, she was worried that the two of them might be very tired the next day when they would be done with their research.

「Bel. I was thinking you know…… Since Her Majesty is having such a hard time with that script…… How about we lend her a hand with that?」

Belfast nodded her head hearing Edinburgh’s concerned words.

「Yes. I was just about to do that, too.」

Then, she called out to the members of the Maid Corps squad who also had just finished their work.

「Everyone, can I have a moment of your time, please?」

The maids, who were just about to return to their rooms for the day, gathered to see what was going on.

「Right now, Her Majesty and Warspitet-sama are looking for materials for our stage play to be performed at the School Festival. I think everyone knows about that because they were interviewed by Echo today for that very purpose.」

She then remembered what Newcastle said to her at noon.

What is needed here is a story that is not ordinary, but extraordinary instead.

「Since it’s going to take them a long time, we also wanted to find something useful for His Majesty and others here. Why don’t you try looking for something like that? Of course, if you’re tired, I won’t force you to assist me with that. If you are interested, however, I would like you to stay here and tell me about some interesting episodes that happened in the past around you.」

「Well then, Kent will stay here and help!」

Hearing Belfast’s call, Kent came first, holding a chair and sitting down on it.

「If Kent stays, then so do I~.」

In the same way, when Suffolk came to Belfast with a chair in her hand, other maids who were interested also came in droves.

As a result, most of the shipgirls stayed in the kitchen, and Belfast once again thanked everyone.

「Thank you so much, everyone. I do realize that we all need to get up early tomorrow, but even so, you have all chosen to stay here with me. I appreciate that.」

「Of course. Think nothing of it.」

Curlew, who chose to stay here alongside her sister ship Curacoa, answered her curtly.

「We are all serving here as the members of the Maid Corps here. In order to serve the Royal Navy as best as we possibly can, if there is anything we can do to help you, it is our duty to respond in kind to it.」

「I see that you are as stubborn as ever. All that you have to do here is to simply ask for help, and you will receive it from us.」

Seeing her expressionless sister’s attitude, Curacoa puffed her cheeks out in apparent dissatisfaction.

It was also then, at that exact time that Bel-chan noticed that Sheffield was also here, right behind everyone gathered.

「Oh, Sheffi-san! I did not know that you were also staying here right now.」

「No, because I was not staying. I was simply trying to organize the equipment here at the current moment. Just that.」

Saying that, Sheffield opened the cleaning utensils closet and started to rummage through its contents with a loud clutter.

「I-Is that so……?」

Taking a quick glance at Bel-chan, Sheffield put her hand back in the cleaning tools closet and began to speak as if she was talking to o herself, the clattering sound being even louder now.

「I don’t know what those ‘Episodes’ that you are talking about are, but, well…… Let’s see……」

Then, taking out the buckets, bottles of detergents and mops, she inspected them all and started to put them back into the closet one by one.

「I thought it was really interesting when Belfast came to the kitchen on the very first day of her holiday leave, purely out of habit, like it was a normal working day for her.」

Then, all of a sudden, she began to mercilessly expose precious blunders from Belfast’s past.

「S-Sheffi? P-Please, if you are going to speak on the subject, then I would like you to tell us your own stories.」

「Ah! If that’s the case, then there is a certain episode that this here Kent will probably never forget. You see, there was this one time when I tried to carry way too many plates back to the kitchen all at once, I piled them up way too high. And when the plate towers were about to collapse, the Head Maid rushed to my help and saved the day — — 」

「Umm, Kent-san……? We were supposed to talk about our own episodes, mind you……」

「I don’t know if it will be anything worthy of adapting into a stage play, but I surely remember that time when the Head Maid was struck with a fever!」

When Suffolk started saying that, Belfast happened to remember that incident, after which she simply gave up and let out a sigh filled with resignation.

Edinburgh clapped her hands together with an expression as if she just made a great discovery.

「Oh, I see how it is! Normally, Bel is the perfect and impeccable image of a Head Maid, so that’s how everyone tends to remember her.」

「And believe me, it is really something to have such a perfect Head Maid as one’s little sister……」

However, starting from the moment that Belfast arrived at the Home Port for the very first time, and the moment she assumed the position of the Head Maid —— ever since then it was one extraordinary event after another that was happening to her and the entire Maid Corps. And it just so happened that those ‘Episodes’ of theirs have become the subject of various gossip around the factions of the Home Port.

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