Chapter 4-12 : Homunculus Ⅰ (part 1)
「By the way, Store Owner-dono, Kate and I will be free tomorrow. If there’s anything we can do to help, you can let us know.」(Iris)
「So you’re done with your preparation for the expedition?」(Sarasa)
「Yup. We have the Floating Tent we borrowed from you, we have prepared all the necessary tools including the Heatproof Coats, and we have ordered preserved foods from the general store. All we need to do now is wait for the expedition.」(Iris)
「I see. But don’t you have to work?」(Sarasa)
「Well, I was thinking of collecting materials from the nearby forest but Kate doesn’t seem to want to work tomorrow, so…」(Iris)
While saying that, Iris-san glanced at Kate-san.
Kate-san then frowned, looking a bit troubled.
「It seems that Nord-san has been wandering around the forest these days.」(Kate)
「Hee… He’s such an enthusiastic researcher. So, what about it?」(Sarasa)
「If we go to the forest, we will most likely run into him.」(Kate)
「You don’t want to meet him in the forest? But you will be going on an expedition with him in a few days anyway.」(Sarasa)
「Yeah, but… For some reason, my instinct told me I shouldn’t get involved with him too much.」(Kate)
「Ahh, I can understand your feelings. He’s likely the type of person who sometimes unknowingly causes trouble to others even though he has no malicious intent. He’s not a bad person though.」(Sarasa)
I remember there were some people like that in the Alchemist Training School. They were capable people but they sometimes caused problems for the school.
Luckily for them, they were not expelled from the school because of their grades.
「Of course, I will do my job as best as I can to escort him during the expedition since he will pay us well. However, I don’t want to get involved with him unnecessarily.」(Kate)
「I see. Alright, then. I’ll be quite busy tomorrow, so I may need your help. I’ll let both of you know if that’s the case.」(Sarasa)
「Great! You can tell us what we need to do, and we’ll come to your aid! Ah, but I can’t do things that require precision such as sewing, so you can ask Kate to do that kind of work.」(Iris)
「Iris, sewing leather needs powerful hands, so I think it’s your job.」(Kate)
「Huh? You know I can’t sew things, don’t you?」(Iris)
「Hahh… You’re a lady of an aristocratic family. When will you learn how to do women’s work such as sewing?」(Kate)
Kate-san sighed and shook her head.
「Fufu. We indeed will make a Floating Tent for Nord-san, but don’t worry, I won’t ask you to sew leather because I’m going to use a “secret weapon” tomorrow.」(Sarasa)
「A secret weapon?」(Iris)
「You will see~」(Sarasa)
◇ ◇ ◇
The next morning, I supplied my magical power to the pink, glowing liquid in the culture vessel that will turn into a Homunculus.
After that, I started making a Floating Tent for Nord-san.
I wasn’t alone because Iris-san and Kate-san were helping me. Like I said the other day, I didn’t ask them to sew leather because I used Kawak, an adhesive potion that can stick two things together without a gap like they had merged into one.
I rarely use this adhesive because it’s very expensive. However, Nord-san paid me extra so that I could finish his Floating Tent and he could go to the volcano as soon as possible.
After Iris-san and Kate-san cut the leather along the line I drew into several sheets, we applied Kawak on the edge of the leather sheets and carefully put them together as neatly as possible. After that, we slowly hit the edges with wooden sticks so that the leather sheets stick together firmly and wait for a few minutes until they completely merge together.
Thanks to the convenient yet expensive adhesive, we were able to finish the Floating Tent in less than a day.
After completing the Floating Tent, I made the Resonance Stones and necessary potions for Iris-san and Kate-san while supplying my magical power to the pink liquid from time to time.
A few days later, a day before the expedition to be exact, the Homunculus was finally born.
「I was so nervous, thinking that it might fail because the progress was slower than I expected, but it’s finally born!」(Sarasa)
I don’t know if it’s because I’ve never made a living artifact, or because there was a problem with the materials I used, or simply because I’m not good at predicting but it took four days for the Homunculus to be born.
It’s a day longer than I expected but I’m glad that it’s born before Iris-san and Kate-san leave for the expedition tomorrow.
I took out the Homunculus from the culture vessel and wrapped it in a towel to dry its body that was drenched in pink liquid.
After that, I brought it along with the towel to the shop floor and put it on the table to show it to everyone.
「Everyone, look. Our little Homunculus has been born!」(Sarasa)
The towel started moving, and then a small yellow bear came out of it, showing its little cute face.
「It’s… It’s sooo cuuute~!!!」(Lorea)
「I, I didn’t know that a Homunculus can be this cute!」(Iris)
Seeing the little bear, Lorea-chan covered her mouth with both hands and cheered while Iris-san leaned forward and stared at the bear closely.
The little bear shook away the towel that wrapped its body and sat cutely while looking at everyone’s faces.
The fur was actually light brown but because it was glowing, it looked more like yellow.
The bear was so small that it fits in an adult’s palm.
「I didn’t expect it would be a cute little bear either… Store Owner-san, are all Homunculi cute creatures like this?」(Kate)
「Of course not. You can make a Homunculus with whatever appearance you want. I chose a small bear because I thought it would be easy to make.」(Sarasa)
Actually, that’s not the only reason why I chose this appearance. The other reason is that I thought a small bear would be cute, and I was right! It turned out to be cuter than I expected!
This Homunculus is a masterpiece, if I do say so myself.
「You can decide the appearance by picturing it while injecting your magical power into the liquid that will become the Homunculus.」(Sarasa)
「I see. So you can choose how you want it to be. That’s cool.」(Kate)
「Yup. However, making Homunculus that resemble humans is prohibited by this country.」(Sarasa)
「Well, that’s kind of obvious.」(Kate)
「Yeah. One more thing. If you use materials from living creatures, it’s recommended that you make a Homunculus that resembles those creatures because it’s easier.」(Sarasa)
「I see. You said you used Salamander scales and Hellfire Grizzly eyeballs. Does that mean it will be easier if you make a Homunculus that resembles either a lizard or a bear?」(Kate)
「Exactly. And of course, I chose a bear over a lizard.」(Sarasa)
Some people may think that lizards are cuter than bears, but for me, bears are obviously cuter.
Iris-san, Lorea-chan, and Kate-san nodded. They seemed to agree with my choice.
「That’s obvious. Well, I’ve never seen a bear this small though.」(Iris)
「This is not a combat-type Homunculus, so a big body is unnecessary. Besides, it will live with us here. If I made a big one, it would only get in the way. This house is not that big after all.」(Sarasa)
「Sarasa-san, so this little bear will live with us from now on? That’s wonderful!」(Lorea)
「Of course. Did you think I would dispose of it after it finished its mission? It can accompany you while you’re working at the counter.」(Sarasa)
「Yayy~! I have a new friend! Thank you, Sarasa-san!」(Lorea)
「Fufu. I originally made it for Iris-san and Kate-san, but you’re welcome.」(Sarasa)
「Store Owner-dono, did you forget that you used our hair to make it? So, technically, this little bear is the child of the four of us!」(Iris)
Now that she mentions it.
Our child, huh…?
That’s kinda embarrassing. I don’t know what to say about that…