Chapter 4-24 : Sleep Over After A While (part 1)
「It would be bad if that Salamander released its fire breath in this narrow passage. You guys are well-equipped so you won’t get hurt, but your luggage will turn into charcoal for sure.」(Nord)
Hearing Nord’s words, Iris and Kate grinned.
「Leaving aside this man, we would be very troubled if we lost our luggage.」(Iris)
「You’re right. Even though we have this man, we won’t be able to survive without our luggage.」(Kate)
「Umm, guys? You’re talking as if you’re prioritizing your luggage over me. You two are my escorts, right? Right?」(Nord)
「I’m sorry, but we can no longer take care of a client who behaves recklessly.」(Iris)
「Oh? Are you sure about that? Looks like there are two ladies who don’t wanna get paid here~」(Nord)
This time, Nord grinned at Iris and Kate.
「He’s right, Iris! If he doesn’t wanna pay us, that means we worked so far for nothing!」(Kate)
Iris’ face turned pale when she realized that.
On the other hand, Nord was relieved.
「But, Nord-san, we have been working hard for you these few days, so I think you should at least pay us fifty percent of the agreed amount now.」(Iris)
「She’s right. We worked so hard, so it’s only natural if we demand payment now, right?」(Kate)
「No, no. We agreed that I would pay you when we returned to the village. Besides, you’re planning to abandon me once you get paid, aren’t you?」(Nord)
Saying that, Nord glared at Iris and Kate with a sharp gaze.
「Abandon you? N-No, of course not. We were just joking, you know? Well, at least twenty percent was a joke.」(Iris)
「So that means eighty percent was serious!?」(Nord)
「It will be a hundred percent if you don’t stop doing something that can endanger us.」(Iris)
「Alright, alright. I promise I won’t do anything reckless again. I need to bring the results of my research to the government, so I still need you guys to escort me safely back to the village.」(Nord)
Iris nodded to Nord who sighed sluggishly.
She then turned her gaze to Kate.
「Kate, let’s reduce our luggage so that we can run faster. Nord-san, you should do the same if you don’t want us to leave you behind.」(Iris)
「I have so many expensive artifacts in my backpack but it can’t be helped, I guess. I’m going to bring my notebooks with me, that’s for sure.」(Nord)
In terms of physical strength, Nord was stronger than Iris and Kate, but his backpack was overloaded. The amount of luggage he was carrying was just too much. He wouldn’t be able to run as fast as Iris and Kate while carrying all of his stuff.
While Iris and Kate were sorting their luggage, Nord took out notebooks and some papers from his backpack and put them in a small leather bag he could carry on his shoulder.
「I think we should leave heavy things behind, including the Floating Tent.」(Kate)
「Ugh… My debt will increase drastically, but it can’t be helped… I think we should dump some of the water in these water bottles as well. It’s quite heavy. We can refill the bottles once we get to the pool at the foot of this volcano.」(Iris)
「Alright. How about the food? We only need a couple of days to get to the village, so I don’t think we need this much.」(Kate)
「Umm, I’m not sure. Our lives depend on this food after all.」(Iris)
「You can leave some of it behind. I can tell the difference between poisonous and non-poisonous plants, so if we run out of food, we can just eat plants in the forest. Well, I can’t guarantee the taste though.」(Nord)
「Alright, it’s better than dying.」(Kate)
After they were finished sorting things which ones they would leave behind and which ones they would bring, they got up and were ready to continue running toward the entrance.
Brr Brr Brr Brr Brr Brrrrrー!!!!
The ground started shaking along with the loud sound of earth rumbling that echoed throughout the cave.
「What is happening!?」(Iris)
「Guys, be carefuー Uwaah!!」(Kate)
Suddenly, the ceiling started crumbling and their surroundings were covered by a thick cloud of dust before they realized it.
◇ ◇ ◇
*/TL : The story will progress in Sarasa’s perspective for a while until we get back to Iris and the others later.
ーA few days earlier in Sarasa’s store in Yok Villageー
「Good luck, both of you.」(Sarasa)
「Thank you, Store Owner-dono.」(Iris)
Lorea-chan and I waved at the two as they headed for the entrance to the forest where Nord-san was waiting for them.
「I hope they will be fine.」(Lorea)
「Yeah… Let’s open the store.」(Sarasa)
After seeing Iris-san and the others off, Lorea-chan and I started preparing to open the store.
Iris-san and Kate-san usually help us open the store before they go to work, but starting today, we will do it with only the two of us for a while.
Thanks to the Cleaning Seal installed in this house, the store area wasn’t that dusty. We only needed to lightly wipe the counter and the shelves a little bit, and then place the products on the shelves.
It didn’t take long for the two of us to finish the preparations even without Iris-san and Kate-san’s help.
While looking around the store, Lorea-chan rested her chin on her hand on the counter and took a breather.
「Hahh… We won’t see Iris-san and Kate-san for a while, huh…?」(Lorea)
Without those two around, the store feels a little empty.
Well, when I was alone, there were not much furniture and products in the store, so it was physically more empty than now though.
Perhaps I think that the store feels empty because I have gotten used to living together with those two.
「Sarasa-san, you will be alone at night for a while. Won’t you be lonely?」(Lorea)
It’s not the first time Iris-san and Kate-san have left for a while, but because the three of us have been living together for a long time, I would be lying if I said I won’t be lonely.
「Maybe just a little bit.」(Sarasa)
「T, Then… Can I sleep in this house for a while?」(Lorea)
「Ah, you want to sleep here? Of course, you can.」(Sarasa)
「Yaay~! Thank you, Sarasa-san!」(Lorea)
She looks so happy.
If she wanted to sleep over that badly, she could just ask me anytime. After all, there’s an empty room for a guest in case Leonora-san or Master comes to visit, so she can use that room.
Is she too shy to ask me to let her sleep here?
Well, that’s Lorea-chan for you.
However, Lorea-chan usually comes here in the morning and goes home after having dinner with us. She also takes a bath at night sometimes, so she basically lives here.
The only difference between her and those two is that she sleeps in her house while Iris-san and Kate-san sleep here in my house.
「Can I tell my mom now?」(Lorea)
「Well, we have finished the preparations, so yeah. You may go but please be quick, okay?」(Sarasa)
「Okay~! I will return as soon as possible!」(Lorea)
After replying cheerfully, Lorea-chan rushed to her house.
She doesn’t need to be in such a hurry though… What an energetic girl.
After seeing Lorea-chan off, I turned over the sign hanging on the door from [CLOSED] to [OPEN], and then went back into the store.