Translator: Kell | Editor: Weasalopes
Fellow Travellers to Zubura
Hikaru decided to bring the Dimension Dragon Letter Box on the trip. As for the dragon stone he got from the Earth Dragon, he planned to leave it at home since he had no idea how to use it just yet. He was worried about a burglar breaking into their home and stealing it, but it was much scarier if he brought it along and it got smashed. Looks like it’ll be difficult to find a use for these things… Hikaru thought.
Selica arrived one sunny morning, when the temperature was warmer than usual. It had been a few days since Hikaru last saw her.
「All right! Let’s go see the ruins in Zubura!」she said.
「Wait a minute.」
Selica was standing by the street, while Hikaru pressed his middle finger to his forehead.
「I did say we were going to Zubura.」
「Yeah! So let’s go!」
「What are those three doing here?」
Selica came with Selyse, Sarah, and Sophie. Selyse wore an unreadable, refreshing smile, Sarah was grinning, and Sophie was somewhat frowning.
『I told them I’ll be fine alone, but they wanted to come. They’re overprotective.』Selica said.
『It sure doesn’t feel like that. I’m sure they’re plotting something.』
『What did you tell them?』
『I told them I’m going with you to Zubura and that there might be relics left behind by Japanese people.』
『That’s it. They’re just incredibly curious about Japanese technology.』
Although that didn’t seem to apply to Sophie.
「Good morning, Hikaru-sama!」
「Morning, Paula. Oh, you already brought your stuff.」
Paula was carrying a travelling bag just big enough for both her hands.
「Yes. Selica dropped by the inn and told me.」
「Ah, makes sense.」
「Lady Paula.」Sophie cut in.「Let’s have a nice chat on our long journey, okay?」
「Huh?! S-Sophie Bloomfield?! And the rest of the Four Stars!」
Paula wasn’t aware that the rest of the ladies tagged along. Hikaru realized Sophie wanted to come because she was curious about Paula who possessed similar healing powers as her.
Paula’s healing is much more powerful than hers, though.
Hikaru didn’t plan on telling Sophie that. He already warned Paula not to say anything as well.
「Hikaru, why don’t you invite her in—」Lavia came down, and frowned as soon as she noticed the whole member of the Four Stars were present.
「For the record, this isn’t my fault.」Hikaru said.
「I know, but… I wonder if we’ll fit in the carriage.」
「Do we need a second one?」
「It’s fine! Seven people should fit in a large carriage!」
「Actually, we have one more company.」
Katy arrived a bit later. She was glad that the Four Stars of the East were coming, as it meant a safer journey. Even researchers like Katy knew about the ladies, apparently.
There was one problem, however.
「So what’s the Professor doing here?」Hikaru asked.
Katy brought Mille along.
「I told you I’m going so I’m going!」Mille said.
「You’ll just get in the way.」
「It actually hurts when you say it with a straight face, you know!」
「At this point, seven or eight doesn’t make a difference! We’ll just squeeze everyone into the carriage!」
Selica was being absurd. A trip to Zubura took four days. Crammed inside a carriage that long would be too much.
「No can do.」Hikaru said.
「I’m the only guy around. The rest of you are women. Be more considerate, will you?」
「I didn’t know you were a pervy brat!」
「Don’t call me that. I’ll tell them about the Calorie Mate diet.」
「I thought I heard something interesting just now.」Sarah cut in.
「H-Hey! Go away, Sarah!」Selica protested.
「Anyway, we need two carriages. Your whole party can use one.」Hikaru added.
「I want to ride with Lady Paula.」
「And I want to talk to Hikaru about our home country!」
「No. I’m not giving you Paula.」Hikaru told Sophie. 「And we won’t be talking about that all the time, Selica. You don’t have to be in the same carriage as me.」
Sophie’s eyes narrowed, while Selica pouted.
「I expected something like this, so I prepared a mega carriage.」Katy uttered an unfamiliar word.
「A carriage than carry at least ten people. Kotobi developed it recently. Eight people should be enough. Ah, you don’t have to worry about the money since I’m the one who prepared it. In exchange, please allow Mille to come.」
「That’s Professor Katy for you!」Mille was ecstatic.
「I don’t understand why you’re helping out Professor Mille.」
「I’m a woman, after all. I will support my fellow women.」
「Wha… Please don’t say anything weird!」Mille cried, turning red.
Does Professor Mille like Katy? Ah, I see. That makes sense. That’s why she insisted on coming when Katy said she was going to Zubura.
「I didn’t know, Professor.」Hikaru said, his eyes warm and gentle.「It’s going to be rough, but good luck.」
「Hikaru? Why are you looking at me like that?」
「Anyway, we’ll bring down our stuff.」
Hikaru and Lavia returned to their room to get their luggage.
「Did we forget anything?」Lavia asked.
「Haha. We don’t really have much stuff in the first place.」
「I thought this place didn’t have a lived-in feel to it. It’s because of the lack of personal belongings.」
「We should buy some.」
After a final check, Hikaru locked the door. They might be gone for at least a month, but surprisingly he wasn’t worried. In fact, he felt exhilarated.
「I get it.」Hikaru said.「We’re not running away or trying to survive. It’s my first time feeling like we’re on an actual trip.」
「Same here. I didn’t say anything about it, but I was really looking forward to this trip that I felt like skipping.」
「You? Skipping? Just make sure you don’t trip and fall over.」
Lavia elbowed him. Hikaru realized she was now able to make jokes about her past as a caged bird. Hikaru jumped down the last two steps of stairs, the travelling bag heavy in his hand.