Our group made its way through the western route to the city of Dumbler, making occasional stops along the way.
Alongside me,who is on Kokuyou, is Lumina, who is also straddled on a horse and leading the way. My gaze unconsciously fell upon her melons, which were bouncing in harmony with every jerk the horse makes…… Who cares about the horse right? Don’t blame me, I’m only a man.
Lumina, who must have noticed me staring at her, started a conversation with me.
「You have a very fine Obsidian Battlehorse. Even though you’re a Recovery Priest, riding one adds to your status as an adventurer. I want one for myself someday 」
「It’s just a coincidence that I got it, you know…..」
I humoured Lumina; the real circumstance that Kokuyou is an item from my Dimensional Storage cannot be said.
During our trip thus far and amidst our conversation, I had Search activated to watch the area. There was nothing out of the ordinary to be found, and we safely arrived at a campsite for our first day.
The merchant and his servants took out tents from their carriages and set them up, and provided us, escorts, with two smaller tents.
I could have taken one out for myself from my Dimensional Storage, but the merchant had provided one, so I indulged him.
Due to the proximity of the forest and the possibility of monsters coming out of it during the night we needed a night watch, so Lumina explained the order in which we will be night watching.
「The night guards will be in pairs, in three shifts. The first will be Dai and Milka, the next— me and Touya, and the last will be Kite and Akina 」
By declaring the formation of the pairs in advance it was to avoid any problems that could arise regarding the job titles. Lumina’s plan was that since I am a Recovery Priest, albeit a C-rank, I will need someone willing to defend me if monsters appear.
Yeah, I can use attack magic very well and wield a two-handed sword with ease but I understand her sentiment. As such there is no need to argue with her.
Everyone was fine with formations and nodded.
It’s quite a drag being on a second night watch, but I’m paired up with a B-rank so that makes up for it.
Escorts are basically supposed to prepare their own meals. However, in some conditions they can also purchase foodstuffs from the merchants.
The meals I have prepared for this mission are in Dimensional Storage so I don’t have to fret. I took out a loaf of bread that I had bought in the city and then a bowl and a skillet of soup that I had made.
The broth was still steaming, owing to the fact that Dimensional Storage freezes time for all the contents stored in it.
I scooped the soup into a bowl, and took a sip of the broth produced by the meat and vegetables that were cooked to perfection.
I nodded my head at the wonderful taste, and a voice from behind me called out to me.
「You’re eating something that looks pretty good huh……….. 」
When I turned around, Lumina was standing there with bread and dried meat in her hand.
The other four escorts’ eyes were on me as well while holding onto their own dried meat, and they were more attentive to my skillet.
「— Shall we share it…..? 」
Lumina’s face beamed at my offer, she nodded quickly and sat down next to me.
The foursome also gathered around me, expectantly.
I gave a small sigh, and took out bowls from Dimensional Storage for each one.
Lumina’s eyes narrowed at that action.
「— Dimensional Storage holder? No wonder you can become a C-rank despite being a Recovery Priest. If you’re C-ranked at your age, you can easily become part of an elite party someday 」
「The capacity is not that great, though…… But it is convenient to have 」
I scoop the soup from the skillet into the bowls and serve them out to everyone. Everyone, well except Dai, smiles and thanks me as they receive them. Dai on the other hand is hesitant to accept his, as if I am trying to poison him. When I persistently offer it to him, through gritted teeth he exclaims「I’ll take it! 」and accepts the bowl.
「This is some really nice broth 」
They sipped on the soup and shared their thoughts on it. I listened to them and finished my bowl of soup with the bread I had.
When we were all done with eating, I washed the bowls with water magic and threw them straight into Dimensional Storage.
「We’ll stand guard in the order mentioned. Make sure to keep the fire alive 」
We nodded at Lumina and everyone went into their gender specific tents for a nap, except for Dai and Milka – the first sentry.
I entered the tent, laid down on the mat I had pulled out of Dimensional Storage secretly, and quickly fell asleep.
「…… Hey, get up. Your turn’s up 」
I was woken up by the raspy voice of Dai. It’s time to switch, it seems, and I got up and left the tent, rubbing my tired eyes.
Lumina was already up, and I joined her around the fire.
「Normally it should be hard to sleep on your first escort mission… 」
I’m sure of it, I mentally agree to what Lumina with a murmur has pointed out. The only reason I can sleep here with ease is because of the mat I lay on.
We distracted ourselves from the drowsiness by continuing to chat. In the meantime, I have Search active. There had not been any indication of a monster, and we continued to feed more wood to the fire.
「It’s about time…….. 」
Time flew by quickly, I note as I look at the hourglass at the mention of time by Lumina. We got up to go to the tents; I woke Kite up because I can’t go into the women’s. And I dove into the tent to get some more sleep.
Morning came with no incident to speak of.
We continued on our way, only camping once more on our second day. On the early afternoon of the third day, the city of Dumbler finally came into view. The city like Fendi is surrounded by a stone wall about three meters tall and Lumina explained to me that the city’s wall was designed to protect against monsters that frequently come out of the nearby forest.
「We’re almost there! Don’t let the distance discourage you now 」
Oddly till now there was still no sign of monsters……..
We arrived at the city about an hour later after we had seen the city in the distance.
At the gate as per custom we presented our guild cards to enter the city. After escorting the merchant to the Chamber of Commerce and being dismissed by him, we headed to the designated inn.
Together with Lumina, we left Kokuyou and her horse at the beast house and checked into the inn.
The cost of accommodation was part of the escort reward, and it only paid for one room per party. Due to the obvious reason I chose to rent my own private room.
After changing out of the dusty clothes, I took a deep breath feeling a little tired and checked the contents of the Dimensional Storage.
「…….I’m glad they gave me a tent. I can’t take this one out, can I? 」
There is a label on Dimensional Storage of『house 』. If I pull this thing out, I’m sure it will raise questions from people about the capacity of my Dimensional Storage. Deciding to seal it up and only take it out when I really have to, I leave my room and head to the dining room.