“Dad! Hey, Dad!!”
“Hm?” I lifted up my head and saw my beloved daughter who had blonde hair tugging at my sleeve.
“The food’s gonna get cold!” she said.
I must have fallen asleep while eating dinner. Damn, I must be really tired.
“Mm, sorry,” I mumbled an apology to my four children and brought some miso soup to my mouth. The aromas of the fall eggplants tickled my tongue. “Wow, you’ve gotten better.”
The blonde boy wearing a headband had made the food.
“R-really?” he bashfully replied. He normally had a stone face, but his beautiful appearance, so unlike mine, could make any woman fall for him at a single glance.
Though, I’m not a woman so I don’t actually know how they think.
“We’re going flower viewing tomorrow. Don’t forget; that’s why we didn’t go last year,” said the boy with brown hair.
“Y-yeah. Of course,” I replied, placing my hand atop his head.
I’d never forget an event with my children. I was looking forward to it but I had to trudge through some shit last year when a mission suddenly popped up.
“Sounds like you’re just going to forget again!” the brown-haired boy chided with a smile.
Mm, good boy.
“No fair! Me too!” said the girl with a blonde bob cut as she stuck her head towards me.
I shrugged and began patting her head.
“Hurry up and eat. You’re going to be late again,” said the boy with black swept back hair.
And so I resumed eating dinner.
Suddenly, the world twisted.
I desperately tried to reach out and hug my children who were growing hazy in my mind, but that serene scenery flew away.
“I see, it’s a memory……”
It was one of my few irreplaceable memories, but I wouldn’t remember a thing about my beloved children when I awoke.
But I was still happy, in a sense. I couldn’t run away from reality much longer.
Right, I needed to decide.
I opened my eyes to a fuzzy world and looked up at a nostalgic ceiling. I was in my room in Sagami Co.
I clumsily reached out with my right hand and felt like I said something.
“Are you okay, Grey-sama?” Satella pulled me into a hug and I hugged her back to gloss over what I had said.
“Grey-sama……?” she asked with hesitation. I pulled away from her and used my sleeve to wipe off the warm liquid on my face.
“Hm, so what happened afterwards?”
All I remember after casting Invisible Labyrinth onto Lucia was an explosion and then a white haze.
“I have no idea. Nobody will tell me……”
That made sense. Judo would never tell Satella and Carla about pressing matters because they would always go off on their own. Still, my thoughts still felt slow.
I shook my head a few times. “I’m hungry. Let’s go somewhere to eat.”
“Sure!” Satella nodded enthusiastically and followed alongside me.
I exited my room and descended one floor to find everybody staring straight at me. Then, I locked eyes with the white-haired girl.
I sighed as tears began to pool around her eyes and said with a smile, “I’m glad we’re both safe.”
“!!” Lucia shot forward and hugged me, apologizing over and over.
I had no idea how to soothe a young lady. I looked around for help, but Theo just nodded and cried. Judo and the other guys just looked on in amazement. On the other side, the girls stared at me with half-open eyes.
I exhaled and patted her back to soothe her.
After we finished a simple meal, I gathered everyone who knew about Judo and Theo’s situation and began exchanging information.
“So basically, you don’t remember a thing about the castle, Boss?” Judo asked, folding his arms.
“Grey, you—” Aquido began but Sylphy cut him off. “The incident was resolved. I don’t really care.”
She gave an intimidating smile that forced me into silence. Something probably happened when I lost my memories.
Well whatever. She’s right in that the incident was resolved. And besides, her existence in this world is tied to me, so it’d be impossible to think she’d betray me. I’ll ask her in person when the right time comes.
“Anyways, I explained the details to Kai Lodos and the other 283 soldiers who decided to stay as Radols,” Aquido continued.
“Hey, hey. Now we have almost no prisoners left……”
“Nils’s speech was effective, I guess. She had a lot at stake with the mastermind this incident.”
Makes sense. The kingdom was completely in the wrong when you just look at the circumstances, and it had a lot to do with the kingdom’s demonification. Her lover had effectively been killed, so she must hold a lot of hate towards the kingdom’s government.
“And they’ll pledge their allegiance if we guarantee the safety of their family within the kingdom, right?”
“Yeah, I’d like to get started immediately. Is that alright?” Theo asked as he bowed down.
“Personally, I don’t mind, but are you sure? They invaded with the intention of killing your family you know?”
“I’d be lying if I said I didn’t care, but I’m a warrior. Our emotions are secondary, and I’ve even killed many of their own. Besides, it’ll be best for our future if we Radols take on the job.”
True, Theo, a Radol, saving their families would heavily reduce the friction between the two groups.
They’d need to be careful of any rats hiding within the kingdom, but Theo and Calogero have the ability, Human Realm, now. They were quite formidable now, and they could even use my gifts, so it shouldn’t be a problem to leave it to them.
“Sure. But don’t push yourselves too much,” I said. “There’s still plenty of people stronger than you in this world.”
“Yeah, I know.”
“Then that’s all I have to say. Good luck.”
And with that, everyone stood up and bowed once before exiting the room.
Now then, I should go too. I’ve got a mountain of paperwork to sort through.
I whipped my languid body forward and began teleporting to the office in Camelot when Judo said, “Boss, I’ll leave Satella and the others in your care for a few days.”
Come to think of it, they did tell me to rest up.
“I don’t care where we go as long as there’s alcohol,” said the useless dragon number two.
I sighed. “Alright, got it.”
I was no doubt fatigued, and I hadn’t met with the kids in a while. Carla was probably about to explode, so this would be a good opportunity.
Judo stared at my face for a while before nodded to himself several times and disappearing via teleportation. Wow, he’s really grown up.
Now, I finally have some free time on my hands. What should I do?
“Maybe I’ll go for a soak in Tote’s bathhouse.”
You had to go to an onsen during a break. I haven’t seen whether Tote’s newly installed public bathhouses were being managed well either. They were using the boiler I had developed to heat large quantities of water after all.
“Bathhouse? What’s that?” Sylphy asked, tilting her head with a blank look on her face. Right, she hasn’t experienced it yet. The people in this world weren’t used to soaking in hot water. They’d just wash up at best, so Tote’s public bathhouse was probably the world’s first. I didn’t blame her for not knowing.
“It’s a facility where you soak in hot water; it’s been recently installed in Tote,” I replied.
“Soak in hot water? Then won’t your clothes get all wet?”
“You really think you’d enter with your clothes on?”
“Wait a minute! You take off your clothes and then enter?”
Sylphy blushed as red as a tomato.
“So are you coming?”
“…..” Now her entire body was flushed red.
“You don’t have to force yourself.”
I had never heard of a dragon soaking itself in hot water. I didn’t know a thing about dragons, in fact. Beasts in general hated hot water, and dragons might be the same.
“I’ll come,” she squeaked out as she looked this way and that. This dragon……
Well, Sylphy was always weird. This was Sylphy we were talking about—she’d cheer right up once I put a bottle of alcohol in her hands.
“Then let’s go.”
Sylphy could teleport, but she had never been to Tote. I’d have to bring her there first.
I teleported us to Tote.
Tote’s public bathhouse was a conspicuously large building right by its entrance. It was built for a large number of laborers to come and go in after a hard day’s work. One day they planned to implement open air baths as well as smaller personal baths.
Once we entered inside, a fairy employee with blonde hair and clear wings rushed to my side. “Ah! Grey-sama!”
The kimono she was wearing was something I had given her by the way.
“How’s it going?” I asked.
“That’s great to hear, but are there no customers today?”
“Pause-san’s putting in a new boiler so we’re closed to the general public today. Although the nobles and wives of merchants had a lot to say about that,” she said, sighing as a dark expression clouded her face.
“Oh you came, President!” said Pause, emerging from within. He had on white clothes and glasses, and upon sight, gleefully raced towards me.
“Good work. It looks like things are progressing smoothly?”
“Yes sir! The boiler’s combustion efficiency has raised 30% and we’re now able to more finely control the temperature!!”
Pause was Leroy’s direct disciple and a natural-born researcher. He was ever greedy for knowledge and thus proved quite the asset.
“I’d like to hear your thoughts on the new boiler as well, President,” said Pause.
“Sure. I’ve come all the way here so I might as well.”
“I also have this next research!”
I began to rattle on when Pause suddenly straightened up, placed his hand over his chest, and ran out of the estate. Busy as always I see.
“We’ve already troubled our guests, so we can reserve the building for you today. Grey-sama, you can go ahead and warm yourself up.”
“I think I will. Sylphy.”
The employee looked between Sylphy, who had her hands on her face and was moaning something, and me before breaking out into a grin and walking up to me. “What a beautiful person! There’s more to you than meets the eye, Grey-sama. You little devil!”
She elbowed me a few times.
“You know I’m just 13……”
“Love knows no age!”
“N-no! You’re wrong!! I’m, yes, I’m just his attendant!” Sylphy said, waving her arms around in a fluster. However, the employee’s smile only grew larger.
This facility didn’t have mixed bathing and it was quite obvious she was just messing with Sylphy. As someone who didn’t know much about human colonies, Sylphy was quite susceptible to these kinds of jokes.
Well, seeing Sylphy acting so out-of-character is refreshing in and of itself.
“Please guide Sylphy and tell her about this facility,” I said. “And give her some alcohol.”
“Of course.” She bowed once and grabbed Sylphy, who was still saying “That’s not true! I’m a proud dragon! I would never—”
“Oh you’re so cute♪”
And she dragged Sylphy away.
The fairies have grown a lot bolder than when I had last seen them. So bold I feel like she’s a different person altogether.
I, on the other hand, invited Satella and the others and teleported to Straheim’s Sagami Co.
Dressed in kimonos and with their hands on their waists, Carla, Aria, Lucia, Shiina, and Lyase chugged their milk. Drahachi, on the other hand, was drinking Tote’s freshly-squeezed milk straight from the pitcher. They had completely hit it off and were in high spirits the entire time.
Roche had been quite interested in the bathhouse and hadn’t left yet.
“Don’t get so bent out of shape,” I said to Sylphy who was drinking some grape wine out of a sake cup.
She narrowed her eyes but said nothing and only continued to drink. “Did you enjoy watching me fret about?”
“Hm, I can’t deny that.”
It was really funny.
“Oh Grey-sama, don’t say what you don’t really mean. And your dullness has reached new levels.” The fairy employee sighed and then sat down next to Sylphy and began whispering into her ear. As Sylphy gradually turned redder and redder, the fairy nodded to herself, “Seriously, you’re too cute.”
“Grey, this bathhouse is amazing!” said Roche, having just exited the baths.
“It is. It really is.”
It’s an important part of my culture.
“So? What are we doing next?” Roche meekly asked. It sounded like he was asking what my plans for the future were.
“I’m sure it won’t sit well with you but I’ll be living in the capital for a while.”
The empire would definitely want an in-person explanation after the most recent incident. I definitely went off and started a war, so I was expecting some kind of penalty.
“Can we come too?”
“Sure, I don’t mind.”
“Hey, Grey. What’s happening to this world?” asked Roche.
Sylphy put on a poker face. She had already figured pieced together that the monocled monster and Blue Beard both came from the same place that I had come from. I had encountered both of them in a short period of time, so must know that something is up.
“Who knows. I’ve got no idea,” I replied.
Roche stared at me for a while. “One day I’ll become a man that can stand beside you.”
“I’ll be waiting.”
I forced myself up and tapped Roche’s shoulder before beginning to wrap things up. Both my mind and body were exhausted for some reason.
Everyone turned around and began teleporting, but Sylphy fearfully called out, “Master!”
“Are you planning to return to your original world?”
My original world. She must have already figured out a few ideas about that.
“No plans at the moment.”
What could I even do by returning to Earth in this form. Besides, I don’t have any memories of my life on Earth, so it’s pretty much just a distant world now.
“I……see.” Relieved, she let out a sigh.
“So stop asking these stupid questions and get some rest. You were heavily wounded too, you know.”
“Yeah, sure.” She shook her head as if to shake away her doubts, and this time I finished teleporting to my room in Straheim.
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