Chapter 4: Exploration

 


Translator: SFBaka


I started to explore the surrounding area in order to procure food. I’ll start by going around the lake.

In this situation, the first possible food item which comes to mind was fish, but I was not sure if there were any present and I also lack fishing implements for catching them. I could shoot it with the rifle if a big enough specimen appeared, but retrieving it would be a pain. Let’s put that plan on hold first.

Guess I’ll go for plant-life then. But it was difficult to spot the edible ones without the proper knowledge.

I resorted to using Nanom to check them by kneading the leaves between my fingers until fluids came out and having Nanom scan them afterward.

I started to indiscriminately knead the leaves of all the plants I could manage to lay my eyes on.

(Is it really possible to procure consumable nutrients from the local plant-life?)

[It’s possible. But the plant you’re holding isn’t edible.] [Unsuitable for consumption.] [Unsuitable for consumption.]

……

[Possible to take in and digest.]

Alright! But when I tried to put it in my mouth, it turned out tasting really godawful. I immediately spat it out and instructed Nanom to only point out the things which could be considered as food.


[Suitable as food.]

Great, I finally got one! I tried the leaves but they tasted really bad. I tried the stem but it was the same. I pulled it out from the ground and saw a small tuber-like bulb growing from the roots with a size of about three centimeters. When I tried eating it, it tasted like raw potatoes.

It wasn’t exactly delicious, but the taste may change if I baked it a little. Okay, let’s gather these for today.

While I was preoccupied with gathering the potato look-alikes, a rodent resembling both a rabbit and a mouse appeared about 30 meters away. It was frozen on the spot when our eyes met. Was this thing edible?

Okay, wise guy. You’re cute, but I’ll still have you serve as my meal.

I quickly put up my rifle and finished it off with one shot. I estimated the rabbit-like, rat-like creature to be about 5 kilograms after I came closer to have a look. Its ears were too small for a rabbit’s but too big to be those of a rat’s.

When I shoved my finger inside the wound opened by the rifle shot, Nanom judged it to be suitable as food so I decided to bring it back.

I decided to name it ‘mouse-rabbit’. It sounded more edible than ‘rabbit-mouse’ in any case. But well, they’re both rodents so I guess anything’s good.

I managed to gather twenty pieces of mock-potatoes and hunted myself a mouse-rabbit. It’s about time to return to the rocky hill.

I managed to procure food surprisingly easily. If things went like this all the time, then I might just manage to survive somehow.

I decided to dismantle my quarry at the lakeside before I go back to the rocky outcrop to start cooking. I dismembered the creature I hunted while listening to the instructions given out by Nanom.

Hmm, the parts suitable for being eaten were lesser in amount than expected. Just the two front legs and two hind legs to be exact. About a kilo’s worth of meat I guess. If I took away the bones, it would be around 700 grams, give or take. Can I use the fur for something? I couldn’t think of any obvious uses for it at the moment. I don’t even have any idea how to use it in the first place. It’s unfortunate, but I’ll have to dispose of it.

Then I suddenly remembered something.

(Escape pod, please respond.)

I tried to contact the pod once more, but there was still no response. Well, since Iris was now gone, I didn’t really feel that disappointed about this outcome.

I went back to the rocky hill and started prepping the mouse-rabbit meat for cooking. I haven’t tried cooking outdoors since I was in junior officer school. I’m kinda getting fired up about this.

I gathered some firewood and lit them up with my laser gun.

Cooking can be said to be my only hobby. I couldn’t really do it while onboard a ship, but I sometimes borrowed a multipurpose room whenever we were stationed on a base and treated the rest of my squad with my cooking.

At times when I couldn’t cook, I researched various recipes and scoured gourmet sites for useful info.

I might only be roasting some pieces of meat, but it’s definitely no simple task. Guess it’s really hard to cook properly without using kitchen tools huh?… Well, technically, I wasn’t really cooking but just holding the meat over an open fire.

I finally managed to roast a piece of leg skewered on a tree branch.

When I bit into the well-roasted thigh meat, I found its taste to be kinda like chicken. It was slightly gamey, but it was tolerable.

But honestly, it was hard to place the taste. If one asked me if it was delicious or not, I’d probably answer ‘neither’. It wasn’t awful, but I couldn’t exactly call it tasty either.

In the first place, only the natural taste of the meat was present since I didn’t use any spices or condiments like salt. I might have expected a tad too much since it took no small amount of effort to dismantle it, gather firewood and cook the thing.

But I think it’ll definitely taste better if I used some salt.

Salt, huh… Is it possible to secure some rock salt nearby?

It’s already evening now. I’ll go look for some tomorrow morning. Since it was a waste otherwise, I proceeded to wolf down the rest of the meat.

I managed to get full just from eating meat. What should I do with those mock-potatoes I gathered? I placed the mock-potatoes on top of the smoldering remains of the bonfire and lightly covered them with soil on top.

This should bake them quite nicely. Well, I guess it’s fine even if this didn’t work out.

Since it’s already gotten quite dark, I decided to hit the sack.

(Alert Mode on. Wake me up at dawn.)

[Acknowledged.]
[It is now dawn. Please wake up.]

Hah. It looks like I slept well last night. The morning sunlight looks dazzling. Wait, that reminds me…!

(Hey Nanom, exactly how many hours is one full day on this planet?)

[Approximately 24 hours.]

So it’s roughly the same as my home planet.

Let’s take a look at those mock-potatoes which underwent my cooking experiment. Some parts looked burnt and some parts didn’t. I peeled one and tried tasting it.

Hey, these are pretty good! They do taste like regular baked potatoes. This will be my breakfast for today.

“I really wish I had some salt and cooking tools right now,” I thought to myself while in the middle of scarfing down the baked mock-potatoes. One really can’t help but want the things they don’t have.

I plan to explore and search for food items again today. I gotta do my best.

For starters, I’ll continue surveying the areas around the lake. The entire lakeshore area should stretch out to more than fifteen kilometers. There were animal trails present, so I didn’t have much difficulty walking around the place.

Once I find some new plant types, I’ll immediately start pressing them between my fingers.


A [Suitable as food.] response came out soon after. It looks just like normal grass, but it was emitting a subtle aroma, so it might be a type of herb. The taste wasn’t bad as well. I pocketed five bundles of stalks.

When I walked about halfway around the lake, I managed to reach a large river which branched out from it. Well, since it was such a large lake, discovering a river wasn’t really all that surprising.

I gazed at the river intently. If there was a river here, then following it should eventually lead me out to sea. I confirmed the existence of said sea when I checked out the external monitor during the escape pod’s descent.

If I went to the sea, I should probably manage to acquire some salt. This definitely needs to be considered.

I crossed the large river by jumping over it. With nanom-enhanced musculature, jumping over a 5-meter wide river was quite easy, even without doing a run-up.

I’d walked around for a while and kneaded quite a bit of plant matter before finally finding something suitable for eating.

It looked like a type of leafy vegetable. It tasted fine when I tried it. I can probably use it to make a salad or something.

I also pocketed five bundles of them.

After walking a while more, I managed to spot a boar-like creature drinking water from the lakeshore. It was about 400 meters away.

Although I kinda do feel sorry for it, I’ll have it serve as dinner for tonight. I have to secure as much food as possible after all.

I pulled out my rifle and obtained a lock. A distance of 400 meters was nothing before this baby’s zoom-in function.

After sufficient magnification was gained, I immediately pulled the trigger. The boar-like creature had already fallen the moment the sound of a plasma round firing rang out.

When I approached my quarry, I found it to be quite larger than expected. It’s definitely more than a hundred kilograms.

Its tusks were a good bit larger than the wild boar I was familiar with. It wouldn’t be wrong to call this creature a fanged boar due to these tusks measuring more than 30 centimeters. You’d definitely bite the dust if you get stabbed by these things.

Nature really can’t be underestimated. There were dangerous creatures like this running around after all.

Nanom judged it to be suitable as food.

But getting something so large was troublesome for me. Even if I managed to procure lots of meat, I don’t have any means to refrigerate them for preservation. I couldn’t possibly finish them all in one sitting either. And the only cooking method available to me right now was roasting de-boned meat over an open fire.

Since it couldn’t be helped, I settled for cutting off one hind leg with my knife and brought along just that. Even one hind leg could account for 10 kilograms of meat.

After walking some distance away while looking around, I suddenly heard the sound of splashing water. When I turned back, I saw the remains of the wild boar get taken by ‘something’ from within the lake. ‘It’ easily pulled down that huge boar-creature with room to spare.

I got flustered and hurriedly took some distance away from the lake.

There was that huge boar and that mysterious creature as well. The reason I remained safe until now could be said to be all thanks to sheer dumb luck. I renewed my resolve to be even more careful.

I managed to safely return to the rocky hill while remaining alert for possible threats.

When I woke up earlier, I kinda felt like taking a bath in the lake water. But after seeing what happened just now, I won’t do it even if I was offered a huge sum of money to do so.

But as expected, one couldn’t help but feel uncomfortable after missing a bath for two days straight. What should I do…?

For now, I’ll just have a meal first.

The fire wouldn’t be able to wrap around it properly if I just put the whole leg over it as is, so I sliced it into thinner pieces and skewered said pieces with thin tree branches.

The meat was done in a jiffy. I took some of the herbs I got earlier and tore them to little pieces. I mixed them with the meat and the salad-use vegetables and ate them altogether.

This thing’s quite delicious! It was overflowing with meat juices and had a sort of ‘wild’ flavor. There was still no salt, but this was a nice enough delicacy. The herbs and vegetables definitely made the difference.

I ate ravenously and stuffed myself full in no time. I could now barely classify this as a proper dish.

There was still a lot of meat left so I’ll save them for tomorrow. It shouldn’t go bad in just one day.

After satisfying my stomach, I proceeded to think about the things I managed to discover today: the large river, fanged boar and that mysterious creature residing within the lake waters.

After successfully procuring some water and food yesterday, I felt that the area around the lake wasn’t as dangerous as expected. But it seems that was a hasty conclusion.

If I follow the direction of the large river, I’d reach the sea. Salt and seafood were both very tempting prospects.

But I’m still mostly unfamiliar with this planet. If I rushed into things without sufficient info, that might lead to me losing my life.

From the way things were going, the probability of me living and dying while remaining all alone on this planet was quite high.

There was no internet. There were no other people to talk to. There weren’t any forms of entertainment. The only thing to look forward to was probably eating.

When I thought as such, an impulse to go adventuring suddenly came over me.

In order to live enjoyably and have no regrets, I’ll have to take some risks. Yeah, that doesn’t sound too bad.

I’m getting really fired up now.

Alright! I’ll follow the river and go out to sea! I don’t plan to live like a recluse in this kind of place. I’m gonna go on an adventure! I’ve now retired from the military. From this moment on, I’m an adventurer!

Once I’ve decided as such, I proceeded to prep everything for my departure tomorrow. I plan to pack the remaining meat to serve as my meal provisions for the journey.

I couldn’t just shove them directly inside my backpack, so I looked around for something to wrap them with and found a plant with long, wide leaves. I tried pressing on them with my fingers.

[Not suitable as food.]

(Would there be any problems if I just used them as packaging materials?)

[There are no problems.]

I grabbed a whole bunch of the leaves and did some trial and error. I finally managed to make something that could serve as food wrap after a few tries. The key was to weave them together.

I sliced the rest of the meat. I was worried about getting food poisoning, so I decided to properly cook it all tomorrow.

Next, I gathered some more mock-potatoes on the way to the lake. I secured some drinking water from the lake itself.

Hey! That’s right. I can probably take a bath if I simply just fetched some water from the lake to use. I don’t really have to bathe in the lake itself.

I finished all my preparations in no time. It was already quite dark, so I guess it’s time to sleep.


 


One Comment

  1. Time to meet the heroinesssssssss

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