257 – Oi, Oi, Oi!
Editor: Thor’s Stone
In the end, we couldn’t do anything about the matter until morning came. Or rather, it was already the middle of the night, so we just quietly killed time while waiting for the next day. We could do some light workouts, training practice, take a nap, dispose of the stuff we got from the Grado clan’s forest territory, and so on. In short, there was a lot of stuff we could do to kill time.
So I decided to dispose of the stuff we got from the forest after working out a bit, but–
“Uh, we actually ended up bringing this thing back huh.”
Yep. It was the mysterious shining drill-shaped object. It was now sticking out of my backpack. It was flashing excitedly as if expressing its joy in seeing me again.
“Uh, yeah. I thought I’d leave it behind, but it was blinking weakly again so I couldn’t help but pity it a bit and placed it inside your backpack, Hiro-sama.”
Mimi smiled bitterly as she confessed.
“This thing’s really sly for a damn flashing drill…… And we don’t know what it is and where it came from, so we really can’t let our guards down around it. Sheesh.”
I picked up the mysterious object that was leaning against the wall. I wonder why. It feels like I’m really getting accustomed to holding this thing. Judging from its appearance, it really doesn’t look like something easy to wield, but I still feel that way. Hmm. And it also flashes in regular intervals whenever I was holding it, as if it felt really comfy in my hand. This thing isn’t actually sucking stuff out of me, is it? Uh, like that something or other power those elven leaders talked about. They said that stuff was overflowing out of me or something.
“Hmm. It does feel easy to swing this thing around, but I really don’t know how to actually use it.”
“We don’t need it for dowsing anymore now that we’re back on the ship after all.”
Mimi took out our harvest from a backpack and displayed a wry grin. There were kokiri fruits that just rolled out of the bag, millberries stuffed inside a black polycarbonate box, and fresh mokoridake mushrooms.
“So what should we do with this stuff?”
“Shouldn’t we just eat them and finish them all off?”
“Yeah. We do have a container for cold storage inside the ship, right? How about putting this stuff inside to refrigerate them?”
“Mm. Let me consult with our chef as well.”
“Ah, maybe these could be used to cook some tasty stuff, right?”
Yep. Tetsujin V might be able to whip up something delicious by using these. Basic automatic cookers can only make meals by using food cartridges, but high-performance luxury models such as Tetsujin V also have the function of processing raw ingredients to make dishes.
After all, Tetsujin V’s database was chockfull of countless cooking recipes collected from all over the known universe that was installed by its manufacturer, and it seems its penchant for making superb-tasting dishes was due to that dedicated attention to detail. Science really is amazing huh.
“Okay then. We’ll store all the foodstuffs in the container later. Next up is how to deal with this one.”
“Whisker-chan said it was better to bring it with us too, so I brought it back.”
The next thing on the list was the broken rescue signal transmission beacon. This thing was damn useless!
“Well, just make sure it doesn’t get mixed up with the other junk, I guess. If we end up passing by the manufacturer’s factory or a major distributor during our travels, let’s bring it in and show it to them.”
“We’re gonna go that far?”
“Sure. Maybe they’ll end up offering us a better model as compensation after all.”
They might be willing to give us a pretty discount as well. We had a lot of space left inside the cargo hold of the Lotus anyway, and the only other use I could think of was to sell the thing at a junkshop for dirt cheap. Well, if it doesn’t get disposed of quickly, it’s possible we might forget it and leave it gathering dust in a corner of the hold.
“Should we just throw this thing together with the beacon? It would kinda stand out if I just bring it around with me since it keeps shining and all.”
“Um…… It looks like it’s protesting though.”
“This thing’s too bright.”
Mimi and I squinted at the mysterious object that was flashing violently in protest.
“It was just a joke, okay. Anyway, I better just ask the native elves if they know something about you once the representatives arrive later.”
Afterward, the mysterious object began flashing in much calmer intervals, as if it was relieved. Really now. Just what the heck is this thing?
Once dawn broke, Mei immediately contacted the elves and told them we would accept their apology. It was decided that the representatives will come to visit the Lotus early in the morning. I don’t really care about it myself, but Mei really flipped out this time around. Even if I don’t pursue the matter, it looks like Mei wouldn’t stand for it herself. Judging from how she’s acting, it might be necessary to pacify Mei later.
“Mei, keep calm. Keep calm, alright.”
“Yes, I am calm, Master.”
“I’d be fine with just a normal apology you know.”
“I understand. I will make sure to have those people crawl and grovel on the floor in apology.”
“No, no, that’s not it. That’s not a normal apology at all, okay?”
“Just one wrong step might have resulted in Master and the rest not being able to return after all. Moreover, they were so caught up in their internal spats that they ended up delaying rescue efforts. They even tried to prevent me from rescuing Master myself. In the first place, they would not have been able to deal with the pirates in the latest incident without Master lending a hand anyway. It’s beyond outrageous that they would delay their benefactor’s rescue just because of their petty squabbles. I believe they would need to show a sufficient level of regret and apologize accordingly for troubling you.”
“The latest incident?”
I don’t remember doing anything though. We couldn’t really do anything about the pirates while we were stuck on the ground after all. Mei was the one who took care of them, right?
“I belong to Master. The Refill Autonomous Region’s government was so utterly disappointing that I had no choice but to use Black Lotus to get rid of the pirates. That’s why they indirectly caused trouble for Master and need to apologize for it.”
“Isn’t that a bit too arbitrary?”
“I am an AI lifeform, but now, I am part of Master’s properties. In other words, my actions are as good as Master’s actions.”
“Uh, but doesn’t that mean I’d be held responsible if you ever accidentally caused a big incident, Mei?”
“That is correct. But there is almost zero chance of that happening.”
Mei replied with her usual deadpan expression. In other words, Mei’s saying she would never make a mistake huh. Really? She tends to overdo it sometimes though. Well, even if she does overdo it at times, it doesn’t really develop into a big deal, so I guess it’s fine. But I better not tell her what I think about her tendency to overdo things. She might get angry after all.
I continued chatting with Mei as we waited around in the Lotus’ dining hall until the elves who came to offer an apology finally arrived. I had Elma and Mimi guide them inside the ship. I was trying to defuse Mei’s irritation, but it didn’t work out so well. At this rate, I could only see a future where Mei batters the elven representatives with her sharp retorts.
“Anyway, just keep calm. I don’t have any intention of picking a fight with the elves.”
“On the contrary, they are the ones who are picking a fight. Or rather, they might really have been planning for there to be casualties in the first place.”
“I think the main thing to blame for this situation is my incredibly bad luck though……”
It pains me to admit it, but it was probably the case after all. My unusual constitution, which I might have acquired when I got thrown into this dimension, caused the passenger vehicle we were riding in to crash. It would be unreasonable to think that the Grado clan planned the crash when they provided the vehicle and that they actually wanted us dead. Nobody could have predicted that accident unless they’re God or something. And I don’t think the elves have sufficient motives to want me dead anyway. I think Mei’s just overreacting.
And as I was trying one final time to persuade Mei to back down, I heard a commotion outside. What’s wrong? It didn’t seem like a scuffle, but it was noisy nonetheless.
“It’s you, right!? You’re the one who brought dirty technology to our pristine forests and thoughtlessly trampled upon them!”
When Elma appeared at the entrance of the dining hall, she was pushed aside by an unfamiliar elf who immediately came after me. Mei started giving off a dangerous vibe.
Oi, oi, oi, he’s definitely going to die at this rate!
“……Wow, what’s going on here–? Whoah there, Mei. Stay, Mei! Calm down! Be cool!”
I grabbed Mei’s hand and tried to hold her back with all my might, but it was pretty difficult. The difference in strength between my biological flesh and her tough and powerful artificial muscle fibers and composite alloy skeleton was far too great.
Apologize, man! Yes, you! The arrogant elf over there! Hurry up and apologize! If you don’t, you’d get your neck twisted right off y’know!