Chapter 213 : Further Beyond
I left Ester’s house with Ester and walked toward Celine’s home while holding hands with her.
While walking, Ester lowered her eyebrows, looking a bit troubled, and held my hand a bit tighter.
「Mark, I’m sorry that my mom made such a strange joke…」(Ester)
「Don’t worry. I don’t mind it. Well, that was indeed a weird joke though. I’m still eight years old and I’m shorter than you. How could she think that we could become a couple?」(Mark)
I think I’m about the average height of an eight-year-old. Ester, on the other hand, is taller and almost double my age.
We are holding hands but I don’t think we look like a couple. I’m sure strangers would think that we were siblings who got along well with each other.
「Umm, I know why she thinks that way. Actually, the elders in this village said that not many half-elves can have children, so they told us to get married early. It’s not strange to have a boyfriend or a girlfriend at the age of eight and get married at the age of ten here, you know?」(Ester)
That’s unusual but I think it’s to take measures against the declining birthrate in this village.
「How about your town?」(Ester)
「Hmm, It’s not much different, actually. You can get married at the age of twelve in my town. However, in reality, not many people get married that early. After all, you normally still play with your friends at the age of twelve. I know many kids who are older than me but let alone getting married, none of them even having a girlfriend or a boyfriend.」(Mark)
「I see. That’s a relief! We’re still children after all, so I think it’s only natural that we’re not ready for such a relationship. This village is weird after all!」(Ester)
Ester said that with a relieved expression.
It seems that she is always told by the elders to get a boyfriend or something.
「I don’t think you have to worry about what people around you say. At least, I don’t think you have to get a boyfriend or get married just because you are told by adults.」(Mark)
「Yeah, you’re right!」(Ester)
Ester smiled brightly at me. Seems like we have the same thoughts.
After walking for a while, we reached the village square.
I didn’t realize that she had walked me this far.
「Ester, I can go back alone from here. You should return to your home.」(Mark)
「Alright then! See you later, Mark!」(Ester)
「See you later.」(Mark)
We waved at each other and parted ways.
After parting with Ester, I continued walking toward Celine’s house by myself.
So… In this village, it’s not weird to have a lover at the age of eight, huh…?
I don’t think I should tell Nicola about this. She would definitely tease me even more often if she found out about this…
While thinking about that, I looked back once and saw Ester still waving her hand at me. I waved at her once again and continued walking through the village square.
「Celine, I’m here.」(Mark)
When I opened the door, I saw Celine sitting in the living room chair.
She is wearing her usual black dress and looks ready to go anytime.
「Ara, Mark, you came earlier than I expected. Nicola-chan told me. You want to join Tori jii-san’s class this afternoon, right? So, are we going to the Portal Crystal now?」(Celine)
「If you’re good to go, then we can go right away. By the way, is Nicola still sleeping?」(Mark)
「Yeah, she’s still sleeping with my mom. She wants to come with us so she told me to wake her up when you come.」(Celine)
「I see. I’ll wake her up then.」(Mark)
When I was about to walk to Eclain’s room, the door opened and Nicola came out of the room while rubbing her eye.
「Good morning, Onii-chan…」(Nicola)
「Good morning. You don’t have to go with us if you’re still sleepy.」(Mark)
「No, I’m going with you…」(Nicola)
「If you say so.」(Mark)
「Alright then. Shall we go when Nicola-chan is ready?」(Celine)
As Nicola started to change from her pajamas into her usual dress, Celine stood up from her chair, took the magic wand that was lying on the table, and put it in her Item Boxー I mean, her cleavage.
「Nicola-chan, is my mom still sleeping?」(Celine)
「Hahh… I feel like she has become lazier than before we came…」(Celine)
Celine put her hand on her forehead and sighed.
「Nicola-chan, no matter how lazy you are, don’t be like her when you grow up, okay?」(Celine)
Nicola raised her hand and replied cheerfully as she put on her dress.
『Celine thinks that her mom is lazy, but in fact, Eclain-mama works from time to time making wine. I don’t want to become an adult like her. I want to become an adult who is totally free from work! My goal is further beyond her level!』(Nicola)
After listening to her telepathic message, I put my hand on my forehead and sighed just like Celine did…