Translator: “Pink Tea” Editor: ”Ryunakama”
One week has passed since Nin came to Avancier.
Around that time a hectic everyday life began regaining its usual calmness.
Nin possesses a skill called『Saintess’ Healing』.
As such, I thought that she might be able to determine the cause of Manicia’s illness, but it was no good.
And it was the same for Luna’s Appraisal.
In the first place, there aren’t many children who are sickly from birth like Manicia, but there is still a significant number.
An impairment since birth…… Is how society sees it.
The town was still in a bit of disorder. Returning to the raiding labyrinths right away is impossible, but after things calm down a little I have to find a new party and get back to raiding.
Cooking made by Luna is arranged on the table. Using a hand to hide my yawn I get to my seat.
「Good morning, Manicia.」
「……It’s good weather today.」
「That is so.」
I greeted Manicia who was sitting on the opposite side from me.
After Nin and Luna came here I bought a bigger table.
We now can eat with four people at the same table, but my physical distance from Manicia became larger, and I also rarely get a chance to talk with her.
Though we were much closer before…… Even this distance feels lonely.
To begin with, I’m not good at talking. Quite the opposite, pretty bad.
Since I’m bad at dealing with people, I have to make efforts not to worsen my relationships with Manicia even further.
No other choice but to desperately try to butter her up.
Lately, Manicia’s cold glare began feeling pleasant to me.
This might not be a good thing.
「Luna, Nin is doing the usual thing?」
「Yes. She is teaching children magic at the schoolhouse.」
She is so diligent from the very morning.
Without her, the dining table is even more silent than usual.
「Manicia-sama, won’t you talk with Master?」
Luna brought up.
Today, her eyes had a bit of energy to them.
「I am talking with him.」
「……Manicia-sama. I’m saying this because of Manicia-sama……」
「Luna-san. Thank you for doing the laundry today. And you also wiped my body with a wet towel. Can I ask you to do the same tomorrow?」
Manicia said, forcibly closing the topic.
While being envious of wiping Manicia’s body, I was happy that Luna tried to do something about this situation.
Close to one month has passed since she came to this house.
It’s not surprising that Luna would find this house uncomfortable to stay in.
Until now, she made a number of attempts to improve our relationships.
But all of them ended in failure.
……Our relationship is not that simple.
As we began eating, Luna looked my way.
Her expression was similar to the one with which she looked at Manicia moments ago.
Is she going to say something to me this time?
「When I was preparing breakfast I confirmed that we don’t have a lot of supplies remaining in the magical cold storage. It’s about time to restock.」
That’s not what I expected to hear at all.
I froze for a moment and then agreed with a vague 「Ye-yeah.」.
「Then, let’s go shopping today?」
「Acknowledged. Master, you will be coming as well?」
It would be tough for Luna to buy everything in one go.
After showing a smile Luna began her meal.
Manicia kept eating pieces of bread one by one.
It goes well with the stew that Luna made.
But, Manicia’s expression remained unchanged.
……Okay, it’s my chance.
It’s for Luna’s sake as well. And your onii-chan also wants to talk.
「Isn’t it tasty?」
「It is. Luna-san, it’s delicious.」
「Yes, thank you very much. I made it as you taught me earlier.」
「I see… Learning all sorts of stuff so easily, Luna is amazing. It took me a long while to learn how to cook.」
「I already had the basics, while you had to learn from zero. I think this is where the difference lies, Manicia-sama.」
「No, if only it was like that. I’m bad at learning in general.」
Hm, Manicia avoided talking with me in quite a natural fashion and began talking with Luna.
My poor communication skills were fully exposed.
Forcing my way into someone else’s conversation is impossible for me.
After this exchange ended a silence once again fell upon the table and just like that the breakfast ended.
But I’m satisfied.
Today I managed to talk with Manicia twice.
It’s been a while since we talked so much. Good, good.
Luna left her seat and carried now empty plates to the kitchen.
Using water magic she then proceeds to wash the plates.
「Luna-san, I will help as well.」
「No need. Manicia-sama, please rest in the room.」
「You don’t have to treat me like a sick person. This much is nothing.」
「It’s fine, please rest. Wasn’t your condition not that good since the morning.」
Luna forced Manicia, who tried to help, back into the room.
Her condition wasn’t good? She looks fine right now, but I’m a bit worried.
As Manicia looked at Luna with a slightly sullen face, I felt a little nostalgic.
In the olden days, she often gave me the same look.
Manicia was bad at rock, paper, scissors. She kept using the same moves so I kept repeatedly winning.
At such times she would puff her cheeks out and glare at me with tears at the corners of her eyes.
Doing that she looked really cute, and after a few rounds, I would lose on purpose.
Then, Manicia’s face would brighten up and bloom into a smile. She was like an angel, no, a goddess.
To regain that smiling Manicia I became an adventurer.
It wasn’t time for reminiscence about the past.
I approach Luna to help her with the dishes.
「Master, do you think you are on good terms with Manicia-sama?」
「……I think I’m not? At least not in terms of how relationships between siblings go in general. 」
Is what I think.
Not sure if they can be used as a reference, but the twins from my previous party were super close.
Appearing deep in thought, Luna put away the dishes.
Once she was done with that, the time for shopping came which we agreed to do earlier.
Taking only money we leave the house.
With a gust of a wind coming through a smile appeared on Luna’s face as she held down her hair.
The weather today is just right for a walk.
It’s springtime at the moment. This continent is an unusual region, with seasons being properly split into four.
It’s quite comfortable, so I like it.
「Luna, did you see everything in the town already?」
「Manicia-sama gave me a tour through it.」
They went out together.
Since I was busy helping the militia all the time, I had no idea what was going on at home.
As I kept working every day, they actually told me 『To Rest』and forcibly gave me a day off, which happens to be today.
I’m glad that Manicia is doing well.
As I stretched, as if trying to get as much sunlight as possible, Nin came back.
She is teaching magic at the school, but judging by her smile she seems to be having a lot of fun there.
「What are you guys doing here? Shopping together?」
「How did you know?」
We just left the house. Well, since I had no weapon and shield it’s an easy guess.
「Eh? ……Ah, well, just a guess. So, when are planning to come back?」
「I don’t know how long it will take. Shopping is such a thing.」
「The estimated time of return is 12 o’clock. 」
Homunculi are good with that stuff, so if she is saying so, then it’s probably true.
「…Well, yeah. We can’t eat outside after purchasing what we need.」
Keeping fresh vegetables exposed to the sun will ruin them.
And I also don’t like staying under the sunlight for long.
「I see. Got it. Good luck then.」
「Ah, wait a moment. Nin, how is school? I thought about going there for sword practice in the afternoon.」
「Isn’t today your day off? Give your body occasional rest. And everyone also thinks that your practice is too difficult so they don’t want to do it.」
「……Is that so?」
Well, I might have been a bit strict at times, but……
So they actually disliked me.
「Half of that is a joke. They didn’t put it in such terms, but it actually was difficult. Though they also said that it was informative.」
I did it for their own good, but teaching is difficult.
「Well then, see you later..」
「Yeah, roger that.」
Looking at Nin go inside the house I suddenly thought
The house might need some improvement as well.
Nin will go back sooner or later, however, it’s small even for three people.
I still have money.
If Luna is going to remain then I should seriously consider this.
As we walk through the town many call out to us.
Something about chasing off a monster or saving a child a while ago, everyone kept giving us so many freebies that it became difficult to carry gifts even in both hands.
Purchasing foodstuff took only a short while. We’ve got so much that I even felt a tad bit bad about this.
……Maybe I shouldn’t have come.
Thinking so I keep walking.
As we finished sooner than expected, Luna pulled on my shirttail.
「I’d like to look around town a bit, can we?」
This stuff is pretty heavy though……
Even so, Luna is asking.
I’d like to somehow thank her for always taking care of Manicia.
If I consider this to be training, then it’s not so bad.
「Well, let’s see. Let’s walk for a bit?」
We walk without any destination in mind.
That’s a way one would kill time on their day off. Not so bad.
「There aren’t many people in this town.」
「Yes. That’s because this place is considered to be the countryside. ……Eventually, the town itself might disappear.」
Luna looked at me in surprise. Her eyes were slightly closed, giving her a somewhat saddened appearance.
「Hardly any young folk migrate to this town. There is nothing here after all. No places to have fun, and no labyrinth nearby. But it’s calm here.」
That’s why I like this town.
Raiding labyrinths I often end up staying in big cities.
For me, who is not very good with huge crowds, the countryside is more relaxing.
「What about you?」
「I…… Like it here.」
Having said that, Luna turned her head to me.
Her expression startled me a bit.
「Master. I have something I want to ask you.」
「What’s is it?」
Her eyes look serious.
Just what is it, I can’t even imagine.
「Master and Manicia-sama. Why do you think you are on such bad terms?」
……I can’t answer that question.
It’s not that I don’t want to.
「I don’t know.」
As I said, looking down, she let out a small sigh.
What might that expression be?
It’s sad…… But even more, it’s angry, that’s how it seems to me.
「Yeah…… Well, let me tell you a bit of an old story.」
Luna doesn’t know much about us.
「Manicia already told you?」
Luna put a hand to her chin, as if in thought, then, made a small nod.
「I heard a bit. When you two were small…… You, well, were abandoned.」
As she struggled with a reply, I smiled.