When I was still a child.
“Hey, mom, how did you and father become lovers?”
I ask a question to my mother that wanders the whole world and can only meet about once a year.
I heard that my father is somewhere really far, and that he is a high class demon noble. He is apparently a strong demon.
Why did my elf mother mage marry a demon?
I wanted to know.
Mother laughed and answered.
“Fufu, that brings back memories. I had a fateful encounter with your father in the middle of my journey.”
She tells me with eyes as if she were absorbed in her own story.
“Hair that looked as if it were burning, a steel-like tempered body; he was a handsome man. The moment I met him, I thought instantly that this was the person. That’s why I attacked him instantly!”
“Mother, so passionate!” (Lucy)
“Right?! But your father was a wonderful person, and he was a demon of high standing, so I had a lot of rivals.”
It seems like my father was a demon popular with the ladies.
“The love of demons was simple. The stronger one wins!”
The story flew in a weird direction.
“See, mother is a strong mage, right?”
It is true that there’s no mage stronger than mother in Spring Log.
My mother is stronger than the Hero of the Wood Country and the Wood Oracle.
But is that something necessary in love?
“I defeated all the rivals. But the last remaining high demon woman was strong.”
“W-What happened?” (Lucy)
“Hm? We fought, obviously. But even when we dueled a hundred times, we couldn’t decide on a victor.”
“…A-A hundred?” (Lucy)
“I turned that woman into cinders 2-3 times, but high demons have several lives, so she ends up reviving, you know~. Well, I was also killed several times though. I can revive with automatic revival magic.”
I was shocked.
It was on the degree that I regretted asking.
Is marrying such a harsh thing?!
“And then, that woman demon and I noticed. If we can’t reach a conclusion, maybe both of us can marry him.”
“As I said, we both joined forces and approached him —by force.”
My mother was saying this all cute and gave me a wink, but the story wasn’t cute at all.
“B-By the way, what kind of demon was the other wife?” (Lucy)
“Hmm, if I remember correctly, she was the Queen of the Succubus. Even in my eyes, she was sensual.”
“I-I see…” (Lucy)
The Queen of succubus?
Does that mean she is the female Demon Lord, Lilith?
No no, there’s no way…
Mother normally exaggerates what she says after all.
“By the way, where is father?” (Lucy)
This is a question I have made a lot of times already.
“Hmm, your father is currently in a really far away place that’s very dangerous. Once you get stronger, I will bring you there, okay?”
The answer was always that.
Geez, treating me like a child!
“I know! He is in the north continent, at the demonic continent, right?!” (Lucy)
Demons are on the demonic continent.
I learned that at school.
“Lucy, the demons in the demonic continent are all mostly barbaric people. There’s no way your father would be at a place like that.”
Mother said this as if truly displeased by that.
But she soon returned to her glittery expression.
“Fufu, you will most likely become a splendid mage after 10 years, I think. When that happens, let’s go meet your father.”
After 10 years, huh.
“Maybe I will have someone I love by that time.” (Lucy)
“I am sure you will meet a splendid man. You are my daughter after all.”
Mother placed a hand on my head and said this powerfully.
“Love is war! When you fall in love, attack with your all! To be specific, bring him to an unpopulated place, and stick your body to his. If possible, wear something with high exposure at that time, and…”
Mother was speaking as if having fun.
…I was remembering that talk I had with my mother a long time ago.
(…After that, my grandpa scolded my mother saying ‘what are you teaching my granddaughter?!’.) (Lucy)
It makes me feel nostalgic.
I didn’t understand at that time, but now I do.
My mother was crazy.
But there were things she was right about.
When you fall in love with someone, take action yourself.
You must not wait.
“A lot of girls come talk to him in the Adventurer Guild lately…” (Lucy)
Just a while ago, Makoto slouched on the sofa and complained about how much of a pain it was.
He apparently isn’t good at dealing with strangers, so he couldn’t make conversation.
(You are totally being targeted! Do you understand that?) (Lucy)
I feel like he doesn’t understand at all…
One time, I heard a conversation like this at the guild.
“Hey hey, I heard Makoto-san doesn’t have a girlfriend.”
“Eh? What about Lucy and Aya from the same party?”
“It seems they are not his girlfriends.”
“Heeh, then, does that mean we have a chance?”
What are you saying?!
Aren’t you the people who were making fun of him calling him the Goblin Cleaner?!
“Let’s have a drinking party sometime, and let’s invite Makoto-san to it!”
“I heard he is a weak drinker.”
“Then, after we weaken him with alcohol…”
This is bad.
The female adventurers are abnormally aggressive.
Girls don’t intend to continue being adventurers their whole life, and there’s a lot of cases where they would find a husband with a bright future and retire immediately.
Makoto is a new Hero and doesn’t have a girlfriend, so he must be a coveted target.
There’s a word that Aya taught me that fits that description: a golddigger.
That’s why I spoke to Makoto who is playing with a cat in the garden of the house.
◇Takatsuki Makoto POV◇
“Here here.” (Lucy)
The place we arrived at after being invited by Lucy is the familiar Great Forest.
We go deeper and deeper.
“Ooi, it is dangerous to go too deep.” (Makoto)
“It is okay. I have [Eavesdrop], so I can tell if there’s enemies in a 1 km distance.” (Lucy)
Lucy answers without looking back.
Then there should be no problems, huh.
But the place she wanted to go to with just the two of us is the Great Forest?
Well, it is practically her garden though.
(Oh, there’s something.) (Makoto)
My Detection reacts.
Lucy must have noticed as well.
She stopped and took a stance with her staff.
Heavy footsteps were making the ground shake.
What appeared were 3 Ogres.
I took out my dagger and prepared to shoot Spirit Magic, but…
“It is okay, Makoto. Leave it to me.” (Lucy)
Lucy raises her staff.
“Fire Magic: [Firestorm].” (Lucy)
She casted a High Rank Spell chantless onto the three Ogres.
The ogres raised a death cry.
I-It ended so easily.
I looked at the tragic sight of the ogres burned to a crisp.
I had no chance to shine this time either.
I sighed in my heart and sheathed my dagger.
“Good work, Lucy”, is what I said and looked back, but Lucy was looking at me unexpectedly seriously.
“Hey, Makoto, do you remember? This is the place where I was attacked by a Big Ogre.” (Lucy)
“Yeah, this is the place you saved me. I wouldn’t forget.” (Lucy)
The Great Forest has a lot of similar looking places, so it is hard for me to tell.
Lucy is an elf raised in the forest, so she must be able to tell differences I can’t.
“At that time, I honestly just wasn’t fitting in my previous party, so I simply spoke out to you who seemed to be a good person…” (Lucy)
“Well, we didn’t know each other for long back then.” (Makoto)
Can’t be helped.
“After that, we adventured as a party, but it didn’t go well at all. Even so, you didn’t abandon me and stuck along with me.” (Lucy)
I didn’t have anyone else after all.
“After that, you defeated a Griffon with fire magic and ended up getting heavily burned. At that time, you told me, ‘I need you’, right?” (Lucy)
“Aah, yeah…” (Makoto)
I think I said that when I was trying to comfort Lucy who was feeling down.
(Eeh, you don’t remember?) (Noah)
(Noah-sama…I remember. Faintly.) (Makoto)
(What a bad man~.) (Noah)
Even if you say that…
“But, you know, I actually noticed. You are kind, so you simply said it to make me feel better. In reality, you could have managed on your own, right?” (Lucy)
“It would have been dangerous without your magic, you know?” (Makoto)
“No. Even at the time when the Taboo Dragons were defeated at Laberintos, at the time when the Taboo Giant was defeated in Horun, even at Symphonia; I am sure you could have managed something yourself, Makoto. Even without me, I feel like you could have become a Hero.” (Lucy)
“…I’m not sure about that.” (Makoto)
Between having and not having crazy firepower, there’s a lot of difference.
I wouldn’t want to go back to being solo.
“I wanted to catch up to you, Makoto. I trained at the place of the Great Sage-sama, so that you could tell me for real that you need me.” (Lucy)
As a result, I am the one that’s having the least to do in the party now though…
While I was thinking that, Lucy closed the distance to me, her face was really close to mine.
“Y-Yes, what is it?” (Makoto)
“I have gotten stronger. I don’t know if I can proudly say that I am the comrade of a Hero, but I don’t pull your leg anymore like I did in the past.” (Lucy)
“Yeah, you did beat those ogres really easily.” (Makoto)
In comparison to that, it would be impossible for me.
I would have to lure them into a water source, or use Spirit Magic while taking care of not going out of control.
It is not efficient or has bad consumption.
…I am honestly jealous of Lucy and Sa-san who are just plain strong.
“Makoto, you have been in low spirits lately.” (Lucy)
I am using Clear Mind, so I should be as usual though.
“Yeah, I can tell just by looking.” (Lucy)
She can tell?
I am indeed feeling a bit blue lately.
My classmates and adventurers of the same age are all becoming normies after all!
“Hey, I may be unreliable, but I want to become part of your strength.” (Lucy)
“You…are not unreliable though?” (Makoto)
Lucy closes the distance even more.
The tip of our toes touch slightly.
“My mother taught that I should do this when the person I love is feeling down.” (Lucy)
The moment Lucy said this, she raised her feet and…
Pushed her lips against mine.
I could feel a soft sensation and her hot breath on my face.
My thoughts stopped for an instant.
I forgot to breathe, and my body froze as if I had been paralyzed.
(Lucy is kissing me…?) (Makoto)
Right before my eyes, I could see Lucy with her eyes closed.
(…At these moments, I should be closing my eyes?) (Makoto)
It is a first for me, so my eyes were wandering.
At the corner of my eye, a red something passed by.
(What was that just now?) (Makoto)
Lucy’s lips part.
The red something disappeared.
“M-Makoto…you feeling better now?” (Lucy)
Lucy was red like a tomato as she looked at me with damp eyes.
“Hey, Lucy…” (Makoto)
“Sorry, one more time.” (Makoto)
This time, I was the one who kissed her.
I use RPG Player’s Perspective Change to have a 360° view.
(There it is! As I thought, a Fire Spirit!) (Makoto)
A red light different from the familiar blue Spirits.
There’s only a few, but they are floating around.
(Can I control them?) (Makoto)
I thought about speaking Spirit Language, but I noticed…my mouth is sealed.
Can’t be helped. Chantless, it is.
(Fire Magic: [Fireball].) (Makoto)
…Could it be that I managed to sync with Lucy?
Ah, it disappeared.
“…Hey, what in the world are you doing?” (Lucy)
Lucy glares at me with an icy stare.
“Uhm…no, it is not what you think.” (Makoto)
“Makoto! That was my first kiss, you know!” (Lucy)
“It is okay, that was my first too.” (Makoto)
“I-Is that so… I see.” (Lucy)
‘He hasn’t done it with Aya yet, huh…’, is the mutter I heard from her.
What is she suspecting here?
“Wait, that’s not it! Why are you using magic while kissing me?! Or more like, you can use fire magic? You don’t have the Skill, though?” (Lucy)
“Yeah, when you were kissing me, I saw a Fire Spirit.” (Makoto)
“Fire Spirit?” (Lucy)
“Yeah, and when I tried using fire magic, I managed to.” (Makoto)
This is crazy. I am getting excited!
It is different from water magic that has low firepower.
Fire magic is simple and powerful.
Finally, I can also…
I was stabbed by the direct stare of Lucy.
“…You look like you are having fun there.” (Lucy)
(Huh? I am a real piece of shit, aren’t I…?) (Makoto)
I was pretty pumped up because I managed to see a Fire Spirit, but…Lucy brought out her courage and did all of this, and yet, I completely ignored it.
“It is fine already. Aah, why did I fall in love with a man like this?” (Lucy)
Lucy said in an exasperated tone.
“Makoto, I love you.” (Lucy)
“Let’s go back, Makoto. It looks like you are feeling better now after all.” (Lucy)
She grinned, and then, after turning her back towards me, she said:
“Tell me your answer later, okay?” (Lucy)
Without saying anymore than that, we returned to Makkaren.
(…What in the world did I do…) (Makoto)
I returned to my house, went to my room, and thought back on what I did.
I want to die.
(That was totally terrible…) (Makoto)
I was confessed to by a girl for the first time in my life.
It was my first kiss.
And yet, I…
(Was so excited about being able to see Fire Spirits…) (Makoto)
What am I doing?
You idiot, idiot, idiot. You gigantic retard.
I flailed and kicked the bed.
I didn’t have an appetite, so I passed dinner.
(What…should I do about my answer?) (Makoto)
I like Lucy.
She is my first comrade, and she has saved me several times.
Even in the past adventures, she helped me as moral support too.
(But what about Sa-san…and Princess Sofia…) (Makoto)
Am I just being too self-conscious here?
But once my mind is concentrated on something, my thoughts don’t stop.
This merry feeling, this uplifting sensation, and at the same time, it was as if a weight had been placed on me, as if my emotions were a complete sloppy mess.
(When Lucy kissed me, I could see Fire Spirits…) (Makoto)
What’s the logic there?
I should ask Noah-sama later.
But using that as a reason to go out with her would feel like I am aiming for a Skill, and it just feels wrong…
But I can’t ignore it either.
I pondered and pondered, but I couldn’t reach a decision.
I didn’t even train, and by the time I noticed, I was already asleep.
Something touched my face.
I slightly opened my eyes to see if I could ward it off.
Within the moonlight and the faint light of the lamp…there were two eyes looking at me from up-close.
Sa-san was right on top of me.
Her hair was tickling my cheek.
I look around.
It is my room that has absolutely no luggage.
And I am on top of the bed.
“U-Uhm…Sa-san, what are you doing?” (Makoto)
“I have come to play, Takatsuki-kun.” (Aya)
That mischievous expression of hers is the smile of my friend that I have seen a lot of times since my middle school days.
It is the face of when she is thinking about something evil!
Wait a moment, Sa-san?