Chapter 190 : The Parent And The Guardian
After parting ways with Ester, I returned to Celine’s house.
When I arrived, Celine and Nicola had already woken up. They were sitting at the table in the living room.
Celine, who was brushing Nicola’s hair, looked at me with an apologetic expression for some reason.
「Welcome back, Mark. I’m sorry I slept too much. It’s almost time for lunch, but I haven’t prepared anything to eat…」(Celine)
「It’s alright. I still have a lot of food in my Item Box.」(Mark)
After putting plates on the table, I took out some white bread and some skewers of fried Rockworm meat I bought in the Town of Sadola.
「Mark-chan, good morning~ What kind of meat is this?」(Eclain)
Eclain, who just came out of her room, looked at the food on the table curiously.
「It’s a deep-fried meat of monsters called Rockworms. It’s very popular in the town of Sadola.」(Mark)
「Rockworms? Hee… I’ve never heard of them. Let me try one.」(Eclain)
Eclain picked up one skewer and took a bite.
「Mmm~! It’s crispy and juicy at the same time! As expected, monster meat has a unique taste compared to ordinary animal meat. It’s too bad that there’s not a lot of monsters that can be eaten around here. Aa-ahh~ It would be nice if more monsters spawned around this village.」(Eclain)
No. I don’t think you should wish for that…
「Actually, I met Ester earlier, and she told me that there were monsters called Green Foxes and Forest Fungi in the forest around here. Can’t you eat them?」(Mark)
「Green fox meat is very hard and isn’t meant to be eaten. Some people eat Forest Fungi, but… I’ll pass. I don’t wanna eat meat from those disgusting creatures.」(Eclain)
Umm… I think Rockworms are as disgusting as those fungus monsters though…
『Onii-chan, so you had a secret meeting with Ester this morning!? You’re aware that you’re not good at dealing with girls but why don’t you stop flirting with them?』(Nicola)
『I don’t! I wasn’t flirting with Ester, okay?』(Mark)
While eating the Rockworm meat, Nicola started talking nonsense as usual.
After finishing our lunch and having tea for a while, I took out the Resonance Stone from my Item Box and put it on the center of the table.
If nothing happened on the way, Delica should have arrived at my house by now.
I stretched my arms toward the Resonance Stone and began to pour my wind-attributed mana into it. When the stone began to shine faintly green, I brought my face closer to it and called out to Delica.
「Delica, can you hear me? ーMom? Dad?」(Mark)
「Maa! I can really hear Mark’s voice from this stone! Delica-chan, is this stone a magic tool? It’s amazing!」(Mom)
「Y, Yeah. Kind of…」(Delica)
I can hear Mom and Delica’s voices. I can also hear other people’s voices in the background, so it seems that Nei, Weikel and his party members are there too.
「Ah, I’m sorry! I’m just surprised! Mark, it’s been about a week since the last time I heard your voice. Is Nicola with you?」(Mom)
As soon as Mom mentioned her name, Nicola leaned forward toward the Resonance Stone and replied with her usual cheerful voice.
「I’m glad you two are doing well~ I heard from Delica that you had some trouble.」(Mom)
「Yeah, a lot happened, but as you can tell, we’re fine. Celine has been taking good care of us, so you don’t have to worry.」(Mark)
「Fufu. I’m not worrying. You both are my brilliant children after all~」(Mom)
At that moment, Mom’s smiling face popped in my head.
I’m glad she trusts us so much.
「Mark, can I talk to your mom?」(Celine)
Celine put her arms on the table and leaned forward.
「Leona-san, it’s me, Celine」(Celine)
「Ara, Celine-san~ Thank you for taking care of my children.」(Mom)
「You don’t need to thank me. It’s my duty as their guardian. But… I need to apologize to you. They will be home a bit late because of me.」(Celine)
「It’s fine, it’s fine~ In the first place, it was Mark who wanted to go with you, so I’m grateful to you for taking him and Nicola along. They are now in your hometown, right? I heard that not many people can go there, so I bet Mark is very happy to be in such a place.」(Mom)
Yup. I am.
There’s nothing but trees around here but I’m glad I came here because I could learn dark magic and got many useful magic tools.
「Leona-san, I knew you would say that. But… Not only that. Because of me, you need to wait a bit longer to enjoy your potion bath… I’m really sorry for that…」(Celine)
Saying that, Celine put her hands together and bowed in front of the Resonance Stone even though Mom cannot see her.
「Ah, you’re worrying about that? Fufu. It’s okay, you don’t need to mind it. Let’s take a bath together when you return~」(Leona)
「Leona-san… I will take Mark back home as soon as possible. I promise!」(Celine)
Oh, no. This is bad…
If this conversation goes on, it’ll be harder for me to ask Mom to allow me to stay here longer.
「M, Mom. Actually… There’s something I need to tell you.」(Mark)
「Umm… I want to stay in this village a bit longer. To be more specific, I want to stay for the next three months, so…」(Mark)
After I said that, I heard Mom sighing. It wasn’t loud but I could also hear Delica’s “Eh?” voice.
I knew they would be shocked…
「Can you tell me the reason?」(Mom)
Mom’s voice sounds stiff and serious now.
Alright, I will give the excuse I came up with.
「There are so many people who can use magic in this village, so I want to learn from them to use magic better.」(Mark)
「Hmm… But you can always learn it from Celine, right? I’m pretty sure that Celine, who works as an adventurer, is stronger than anyone in that village. Am I right?」(Mom)
「Mark, I’m your mother. I know you’re lying. Just tell me your real reason.」(Mom)
Ahh… Seems like I really can’t lie to her…
Well, at least I tried.
I don’t want Celine to know the real reason why I want to stay longer in this village because she will definitely blame herself, but I guess I have no choice but to tell the truth.
「I’m sorry… Alright, I will tell you. When we were trapped in the Stone Lizard nest, Celine used her Portal Stone to teleport us to her hometown.」(Mark)
「Ah, Delica told me that already. Celine-san really is amazing~!」(Mom)
「Yeah, but because of that, she lost her Portal Stone. It’s very important for her if she wants to continue working as an adventurer. To make another one, she needs to spend three years in this village, but I want to do something to help her.」(Mark)
「But it’s Celine we’re talking about. I bet she told you not to worry about it.」(Mom)
「She did, but still… She lost her Portal Stone to save me and Nicola. That’s why I want to help her as best as I can. Fortunately, I found something I could do for her, and with my help, she will only need three months to complete her Portal Stone. So, Mom, can you please let me stay here for a while longer?」(Mark)
「Me too! I want to help Celine too!」(Nicola)
「Hmm, I see… If that’s the case, then you have my permission~! Mark, Nicola, you really are kind children. I’m very proud of you~!」(Mom)
Phew… I should have told her honestly from the beginning.
I was relieved that Mom gave us permission. Howeverー
「Ho, Hold on, Leona-san! …Mark, you want to stay here for my sake? No, no, no! It’s all on me. You don’t need to feel responsible about it! Anyway, I’m going to take you home tomorrow no matter what!」(Celine)
I knew it…
Hahh… Now I wonder what I should say to convince her…