The developments afterwards were being performed silently.
The other lairs were wiped out without issues. It wasn’t possible to confirm the amount of bandits that managed to escape.
The seized bandits have all died or been captured.
The outbreak of undead in the base of Dokora were incapacitated by the priests and sisters led by Maya-san to assist them.
There were many injured, but the casualties of the knights led by Lord Leano were zero.
He looked like someone seized by a desire for promotion, but he apparently took command and prioritized the lives of his subordinates.
If only he directed that consideration to Ilias-san.
After cleaning up the lair of Dokora, we regrouped with Maya-san, and began the purification clean up at the place where we settled matters with Dokora.
The mana of the necromancy has already dispersed and apparently won’t be causing any harm. There were a number of corpses remaining, but the battle ended after purifying them.
The corpse of Dokora was carried and will apparently be made a gibbeted head.
I look at the jute bag where Dokora is stuffed in while on the carriage on our way back.
“Are you not going to say anything?” (Ilias)
Ilias-san asked me this at the opposite side with the corpse in between.
“Dokora had information about your world. Didn’t you want to learn about it?” (Ilias)
“He was prepared to die there. That’s why he left parting words. He probably didn’t have any more information regarding that. I did want to hear more about it if possible though, but it can’t be helped.”
“Can’t be helped? Why did you think that?” (Ilias)
“You cut Dokora down right then and there because you thought you had to, right? There’s no assurance he wouldn’t have escaped or resisted otherwise.”
“There’s no way I would let an enemy with both legs gone escape. If it is just stopping resistance, we can just cut off his remaining arm.” (Ilias)
“Well, that’s true, but I am not in a position where I can criticize. I set up a sneak attack without telling anyone. Even though the chances were plenty enough that the Ragudo unit could catch up to him even if he were to escape.”
“Rather than saying that plan was because you couldn’t believe in us, it is more like you believed his actions were above that. And so, you chose the more certain one and acted upon it. I have my grievances, but the logic is there. There’s no way I can criticize you for it.” (Ilias)
“It is a similar situation to mine. I don’t feel like criticizing you.”
Sighs leak out. She is going out of her way to bring out this topic, so it must mean that.
“If you can’t answer unless asked, I will ask then, if that will make you feel better. Why did you cut down Dokora despite all that?”
“…Sorry, I got scared.” (Ilias)
“Even after showing that much difference in power?”
“What I got scared of wasn’t his power, but that sight of you guys.” (Ilias)
“Calling it fear would be an excuse, huh. I should say I got disgusted. I told you that you are like a warped mirror before the raid, right?” (Ilias)
“Speaking of which, you did say that.”
“When you obtained the information about that guy from Maya, I felt as if you were slowly getting the same aura as that guy…and I felt like that was getting even denser when you began talking to him.” (Ilias)
“Unconsciously imitating the other party when thinking about them isn’t that rare of a thing.”
“Even if so. When I heard that last conversation you had, you began having an even closer atmosphere to that of him… As if you would become a resident of that same world as Dokora, as if you would change into him…and so I couldn’t not swing my sword there.” (Ilias)
I can’t deny it. I personally understood Dokora at that time, and Dokora also understood me.
We didn’t feel disgust towards each other, but sympathy.
When he said we could have gotten along, I even felt a bit happy.
Despite that guy not thinking anything of others as he killed them and even defiled their souls.
“That’s how it should be. You couldn’t ignore the sight of a person that might take the path of evil. You felt disgust about it and took action, unable to stand by. Isn’t that praiseworthy?”
“As if it is praiseworthy! It would be one thing if it is to act courageously and face evil, but to point my blade through disgust and denial is just…!” (Ilias)
“It is praiseworthy. You managed to move, Ilias-san. You also managed to look back on it. The result is exemplary.”
“There’s a variety of people in society. Even if there’s people who thought the same thing in the same spot, there would be those who wouldn’t be able to move. There’s even those who would avert their gaze and isolate themselves in their own work. Within those people, you were one of the people that managed to move for the sake of denial. You didn’t push those ideals of yours to me and instead are reflecting on it. That’s extremely praiseworthy, Ilias-san.”
“…Fuh, you are talking as if you are persuading a child.” (Ilias)
Ilias-san’s expression softened.
The strength of my shoulders left matching this.
“I am older after all.”
Eh, you are making that face here? That’s a really cute face.
“This may be rude, but how old are you, Ilias-san?”
“18. I am older than you.” (Ilias)
“No, you are younger.”
I tell the frozen Ilias-san my real age.
She froze even further.
Because of this being a fantasy world, there’s few who have a japanese face. And then, I remember. The custom of Japanese people being seen as younger by foreigners.
We are called child-faced and even mistaken as children at times; short in stature and young, that’s my race.
Aah, she thought I was younger, huh. That’s why she carried me like a sack of potatoes like it was nothing…no, that would still be questionable.
“D-Do you have elven blood or something?!” (Ilias)
“No no, my parents and my far far ancestors were all human.”
“L-Lies. You were calling me with -san, so I thought for sure you were around 16… I-I am truly sorry!” (Ilias)
“No, it is okay. It would trouble me if you were to go all formal on me now.”
“N-No, but…” (Ilias)
“Got it, got it. You won’t have any issues as long as I act a bit older, right? That fine with you, Ilias?”
“I see, the knights use Lord and Lady as a title of honor, so you are not too used to it, huh. On Earth, adults would use -san between each other. The difference in age isn’t that big of a deal once you are an adult. No matter if you are of higher standing or lower, I have been taught that I should show the bare minimum courtesy in order to respect them.”
“No, that’s somewhat similar here as well, but…using -san for a person younger than you is…” (Ilias)
“You can’t tell the exact age of someone else, so you should treat them as another human being, right?”
“I-I see. That’s true.” (Ilias)
Well, modern society tends to forget this when the standings change which is a bad part of society though.
“And so, what do you plan to do from here on?” (Ilias)
Ilias pulls out the topic we were delaying.
Right, I was borrowing a sleeping quarter at the barracks because I was helping them out with the bandit subjugation, but it is not like I can stay there forever.
“First, I would like to get permission to stay in the country.”
“I don’t think there will be any issues with that…” (Ilias)
“Then, the first thing I should do is to survive the winds and rain. I should find a corner I can sleep in or an alley. Tell me if you know a good place like that.”
“Next would be to learn the language. I don’t know how long this possession spell is going to last. It would be troubling for Maya-san to look after me constantly. I would like to learn to read and write quickly, and be able to have basic conversations. After that, I will go around stores that I don’t need to worry about my attire in, and earn some small change even if it is daily employment. Once I get enough to not worry about food, I will buy a single change of clothes, and then increase my wages by working at a place where my clothing is required to be a bit more presentable. By the time I save up to a certain degree, I will have some acquaintances, so I will negotiate with them to see whether I can stay in a horse shed and—”
“Wait wait wait! Think of us who will have to be shown such sights in our patrols! There’s no way we can let the benefactor of our country live such a life, right?!” (Ilias)
“No way! Are you telling me to get out?! I don’t mind living in a cell, so just spare me from sleeping outdoors! Right, that’s an option! Put me in prison!”
“That’s even worse!” (Ilias)
No, I don’t think living in a prison is bad.
It is far better than being bitten by bugs in the mountain and having my life targeted by animals sleeping outdoors.
The time I have for my daily life actions will be limited too, but I wouldn’t die of hunger due to not having a single cent.
Well, as long as it is being provided by the taxes of the people, unnecessary amounts must be avoided though.
That said, the harshness of modern society really shines when you begin yearning to live in prison.
But security is invaluable.
“What can I do to get put in prison?”
“Please cease that thought, I beg of you. I can’t do that!” (Ilias)
“Leave it to me.”
“What does that mean?! Which side of the coin are you referring to when you are saying that with such confidence?!” (Ilias)
It seems like a safe life in prison won’t be possible, seeing how panicked she is here.
I should seriously consider beginning with the course of crawling out from the homeless life.
“Haah…if you don’t have a place to stay, come to my house.” (Ilias)
“Is that okay?”
“I have vacated the house I was in and moved to a small house, but it is still too big for just one person, you see. I have extra rooms. If you can look after yourself, I won’t complain.” (Ilias)
I was imagining the buildings of Japan in my mind, but thinking about it calmly, this is a world where there’s a lot of unclaimed land.
Even if you are leading a simple lifestyle alone, the residences must be decently spacious.
The issue would be to have a man and woman under the same roof, but…well, there’s no worries of Ilias assaulting me here.
Eh, the chances of me being the assailant? She is a superhuman gorilla and I don’t have the courage to crawl in her bed at night.
This woman would be able to crush the head of a person with her grip if she wanted to, you know?
“What about rent?”
“No need. As long as you don’t forget to clean and keep silent, I won’t complain.” (Ilias)
“…Could it be that you were aiming for me to propose this?” (Ilias)
“No way. This is me showing my happiness for saving me a lot of hassle.”
“Hassle, you say…” (Ilias)
“Considering the process between living below a bridge all the way to being looked after in the house of someone, I would say you really have saved me a lot of hassle though.”
“So you were serious about all that…” (Ilias)
And in this way, the pitiful man that was thrown into an isekai without a single cent managed to secure a dwelling with a roof.
Even if I helped them out subjugating the bandits, I honestly have barely any potential for manual labor.
Speaking of which, I walked quite a lot, but there’s no muscle pain. Has my body adapted?
I feel like things will get busy with clearing the aftermath once we return.
The treatment of the injured, maintenance of their equipment, confirming the money and goods retrieved, dealing with the imprisonment of the captured bandits.
Once that’s over, there will be a meeting regarding the celebration party with the citizens included, a conferral of honors from the king, and then arrangements for a buffet.
If you include the schedule adjustment for the events in between those, a whole ton of work would be created.
According to Ilias, it is blissful work, so it is not harsh.
I was guided to the house before she heads to work.
A building close to the marketplace, and it is not only plenty big but also has 2 floors.
Of course it would be hard to manage something like that when living alone. Or more like, just how big was her previous house then?
The first floor has daily life spaces like the kitchen, living room, and the bathroom. On the second floor there’s 4 spacious rooms of the same size.
“My room is the first one on the right, the first one on the left is used as a storage room. Please use the deep one at the right as your room. It hasn’t been opened in a while, so it might be better to clean it.” (Ilias)
“What about the deep one on the left?”
“It is made as a guest room, but it is not being used either.” (Ilias)
“In other words, those 2 rooms are the ones not being used.”
I nervously open my room.
There’s a wooden desk and chair at the right corner of the room, a window at the middle of the wall, and a simple bed at the left corner.
There’s a shelf at the left just as you enter.
Yup, simple is best.
I would like to make my own rack and a shelf, but I am satisfied with what I currently have for now.
I entered and smacked the mattress on the bed as I looked around.
A whole ton of dust flew around.
I open the window to exchange the dusty air with clean air.
“Alright, cleaning comes first.”
“The tools are in the storeroom of the first floor, so use them. The water is…” (Ilias)
I confirm the location of the house facilities and tools.
And then, she gave me a small pouch with coins inside and a spare key to the house at the end.
“I will be away for a while. That should be enough for food and other necessities as long as there’s no pointless expenses.” (Ilias)
“I am starting as a sponger…?”
“Nothing, I am grateful. I will do my best to return it as soon as possible.”
“You don’t really…well, right, please do.” (Ilias)
Ilias-san nodded and left the house.
The new resident left there rolled up his sleeves and began to clean up the house.
After the king of Taizu, Marito Taizu, heard about the subjugation of the bandits, he sighed in relief.
The attack of the undead was sudden, but there were no casualties, and it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say it was a perfect victory.
Lord Ragudo by his side received the same report and narrowed his eyes in happiness.
“It looks like Lady Ratzel did well.” (Marito)
“So it seems. When I heard about Lord Leano getting the rights of command and them being moved to the backlines, I couldn’t stop sighing.” (Ragudo)
Ilias managed to obtain the head of the bandit alliance leader, Dokora, with flying colors.
Moreover, after Lord Leano had cornered him and let him escape.
“If they were aiming for the escape of the bandits from the very beginning, I can only praise them for their foresight. Lord Leano must be grinding his teeth in frustration right now.” (Marito)
“Yeah, she apparently obtained a good helper.” (Ragudo)
“Hmm, a helper?” (Marito)
“Yes, a member of my unit said that Lady Ratzel was flourishing as if she were a fish that had obtained water once she obtained the help of that young man.” (Ragudo)
“Someone who can make the best of her battle prowess, huh. That’s quite interesting. I would like to meet him.” (Marito)
“I will tell her to call that young man over to the conferral of honors where medals will be awarded to Lady Ratzel.” (Ragudo)
“I see, but it would be difficult to have a long talk in a ceremony. Invite him to the banquet later too.” (Marito)
“Of course, that’s my intention.” (Ragudo)
“Not only am I hearing good news, but also getting future entertainment, huh. I feel like I will finally be able to relive the tastiness of alcohol after a while.” (Marito)
“You are still young, so keep it in moderation.” (Ragudo)
Marito was thinking about the young man he doesn’t know and hasn’t met yet.
The person that managed to catch the tail of the bandits that made the knights suffer so much, and cornered them until extinction.
He wants to talk with this man, learn what kind of person he is.
Meeting new people colors your life and shapes it.
Just what kind of tints will this man leave in his life?
He was relishing on that anticipation as he worked hard on his duties.
Finished the cleaning. I have also finished cleaning up the rooms on the opposite side too.
I am done with all rooms in the 2nd floor aside from the room of Ilias-san, and the 1st floor has also been completely cleaned.
I worked while using cleaning tools I wasn’t used to and was missing the convenience of the modern ones, but I fortunately managed to complete my mission in around 5 hours.
Yeah, it is not because I suck at cleaning.
There’s a dust cloth but I had to refill the water from a water well nearby constantly.
I am grateful that there was a pump, but the result of wondering whether I could use a whole lot of it was that I decided to economize it by wiping everything out without using water first, and then switching to a damp cloth.
When I was sweeping with a broom, I used a damp cloth afterwards. I was reminded of my student days.
I would like a mop, a mop. I am going to injure my waist like this.
There were also stuff like weapons, armor, and other things in the storeroom, and I didn’t know what to do with them.
I can’t give them maintenance, so I carried them carefully and placed them on the bed.
I then cleaned that storeroom and returned them to where they were.
That was the most intense manual labor out of them all. Armor is heavy.
My stomach was rumbling. I am sure anything I eat will be tasty now.
But where is there an eatery? I feel like asking this at night will make people suspect me of something.
And so, I have come to the church.
“Maya-san, are you here?”
“Oh my, isn’t that the boy? Don’t ask for a woman this late in the night.” (Maya)
I told her about how I am currently living at the house of Ilias, how time disappeared with me doing nothing but cleaning, and I didn’t know where to go eat, so I came here to ask her.
“That girl… Don’t do something like taking in a man so carefreely.” (Maya)
“She will need to learn about her carelessness in the future, but is there any place I can eat?”
“At these hours, just taverns. It would be too soon for you, boy.” (Maya)
When I told her my age, she had the same reaction as Ilias.
“Could it be that I am also barely on target?” (Maya)
“I will place you as a candidate. Can you tell me the location of the tavern?”
“I feel like they will say a variety of things to you with that appearance.” (Maya)
True. It is not like Ilias-san and Maya-san are special.
For the people in this world, a Japanese person looks young.
“At what age can you drink alcohol in this world?”
“At 18. Alcohol will hamper your condition when your body isn’t used to your own mana after all.” (Maya)
“As for us, you could only drink and smoke at 20 years old. You would be seen as an adult at 20 and, from there on, it is basically your own responsibility.”
“So 2 years of difference in when you treat someone an adult, huh. The time your flames die out must be long.” (Maya)
“But it would be troubling if I can’t even go alone to a tavern.”
“I will bring you some other time. Eat at my place for today.” (Maya)
“That would help me out.”
And this is how I safely secured my meal of the day.
The cooking of Maya-san was more healthy compared to the food I ate at the barracks, and it was slightly lacking as someone who likes meat, but it is a tastiness I can tell was made with a lot of care.
“By the way, about the possession spell…”
What’s with that weird reaction?
“W-Was there an issue?” (Maya)
“I was just wondering how long it will last.”
That’s right, I am extremely grateful for this possession spell.
Communicating with words being the obvious one, but I can even read.
I unfortunately can’t write though.
Because of that, I had Cara-jiisan help me out when creating the documents at the barracks.
But it won’t last forever. Once the effect is over, I will return to being unable to communicate.
“I infused it with my mana, so it is until that runs out. It lasts for 1 week, so 4 days left, I guess. I will cast it on you again if it runs out.” (Maya)
“I am grateful for that. I wanted to learn about the language of this world while I could still read, but it doesn’t seem like I have to hurry that much.”
“Oh, that’s admirable. I will lend you a few great books if you want to learn the letters. Do you need parchments and a writing brush?” (Maya)
“I will write on the sand or something first. It won’t cost money after all.”
“Oh my, that’s a good idea.” (Maya)
The blue sky classroom is almighty.
“And so, bringing the topic back, is there an issue with the possession spell?”
“O-Oh? What may you be talking about?” (Maya)
“Fumu, I should tell the people that there’s a sister in the church that hides the truth.”
“It is a joke, a joke! Actually, it has been a while since I have used it, so I might have made a mistake.” (Maya)
“What in specific?”
“I don’t know. When I used magic, I felt ‘ah, I messed up’, you know! It seems like you can talk, so…well, I thought it should be fine.” (Maya)
“It is not fine. Not fine at all.”
I didn’t want to know that behind that convenience, there was such a dangerous episode!
No, even if I didn’t know, it is still a scary thing though!
“Let’s investigate since there’s the opportunity.” (Maya)
“Would you be able to tell at once?”
“It would take a bit of time. I was prioritizing hearing you out at that time after all.” (Maya)
Maya-san placed a hand on my forehead and closed her eyes.
Her hand shone faintly and my forehead felt warmer.
“Hmm, this here goes like this, and…oh my, I have done it now.” (Maya)
Can you please not mumble scary stuff and check it quickly?
“Got it. There really was a side effect from messing up.” (Maya)
“Can you fix it?”
“Hmm, the body has gotten used to the incorrect magic formula, so there’s the possibility side effects could happen from the next ones too.” (Maya)
“…And what’s the side effect?”
“Sorry, it seems to be even more serious than I thought…” (Maya)
Tension permeates the air. It is not a high risk side effect like my lifespan being shaved off, right…?
I would need around half a year to learn, but the price would be way too hefty.
“It seems like…it will take a long time for you to get muscle pain.” (Maya)
“…Can you repeat that?”
“Muscle pain comes to you at a more delayed time than normal. The pain will also increase a bit.” (Maya)
How can this be? Muscle pain would come the next day of exercising when I hit 20, and it would come after 2 days as of late, and yet…you are saying it will now take even longer than that?!
In that case, could it be that the fortune of nothing happening when I thought I would definitely get muscle pain after going down the mountain was simply because it has been delayed?! Moreover, she casually said the pain will increase?! Don’t just add side effects as if they were an afterthought!
Ah, it hurts. My legs suddenly hurt…no wait, my whole body agagagaga?!
“Oh my, speaking of muscle pain, it is here.” (Maya)
Wait a moment, this is no joke! I went to the mountains once more after that, then the forest, and I carried heavy stuff and cleaned up for 5 hours, you know?!
“C-Can you heal muscle pain with magic?!”
“Muscle pain is pain that comes from healing after all. Mitigating damage from symptoms coming from healing is outside my expertise.” (Maya)
After that, I borrowed a cane from Maya-san, and I returned home with trembling legs like a newborn foal.
I pledged from the bottom of my heart to master the language of this world as soon as possible while reflecting upon the pain coursing through my whole body.