We had a Dungeon Battle waiting for us, but we still had some time.
To be specific, we had a month to prepare. What shape the dungeon would take is something I’d think about only after meeting the core themselves…
For now, I decided to join back up with Wataru and the others.
I heard from a maid that they were all at Shikina’s family—that is, Count Kukkoro’s estate… It was in an aristocratic city, so it was basically a castle.
Due to that, I headed to the Kukkoro estate on a wooden carriage with Rokuko. The carriage was prepared by Haku-san, who said we shouldn’t go around on foot.
It barely shook at all, did it have some kind of suspension system? As expected of a royal favorite.
Still though… that Shikina’s family, huh… Haaah… It won’t be some rapid-fire jargon when we meet will it?
Oh, what’s that? Their daughter has a defect? I’m at fault for that, so I don’t really want to meet him, but I don’t think I could avoid it. That said, I heard that it’ll fix itself over time and I even obtained medicine that would take care of it if needed, so I fulfilled my responsibility as her supervisor. Worst case scenario I can just use the medicine on Shikina right then and there.
Once we arrived at the Kukkoro estate, we were let into the garden.
Shikina, Roppu, Meat, and Ichika were there were practicing in matches in groups of two, with Wataru, Gozoh, and some old elf guy with swept-back hair watching them. He was wearing some expensive clothing, so he was probably Count Dyno Kukkoro… Shikina’s father.
Seeing us approach, Wataru raised his hand and called out to me.
“Good work, Kehma-san. How was the tea party with Haku-sama?”
“She had a bit of a request for me and somehow wound up approving of my relationship with Rokuko up to the point of hugging. So, Wataru, who is this?”
“Oh, I should manage the introductions. This is—”
“Dyne Kukkoro. My daughter is indebted to you, Kehma-dono. Rokuko-dono.”
“Oh, yeah. Thanks.”
“Yeah, we’ve been helping her!”
Mr. Dyne smiled at Rokuko’s upfront and honest statement.
The most important takeaway is that it looked like Shikina being a problem child that didn’t quite get common sense was the case. No, I still don’t get why he’d entrust her to someone he didn’t know like me though.
By the way, there was the Dyne Firm in our village as well, but the merchant Dyne in our village just had the same name as Mr. Dyne. Commoners don’t have surnames though.
“Oh, Master Kehma! Good work!”
“Yeah. Just do what you’ve been doing.”
Still though, between Roppu and Shikina, Shikina looked to have the upper hand.
She had a good foundation to start with, she just needed to overcome how predictable she was and she’d be plenty strong. Didn’t Ichika say something about her being tough even when she won against her?
“Oh yeah, Haku-san will be sending us back through [Teleport] to make her request easier, so we’re here to say goodbye.”
“I see, alright. It is Haku-sama, after all.”
“Seriously? [Teleport]’s somethin’ that takes several people to use. And for goin’ all the way to Golen… it wouldn’t be off to see the people goin’ through die.”
Eh, [Teleport]’s that dangerous? Wait, I could die? Haku-san promised to teach me [Teleport], but like… I better not try and go too far at once.
“W-Well, Haku-san said she could send us alone. As expected of White Goddess-sama.”
“Hooh, that’s amazin’. As expected of White Goddess-sama… way, no no, that’s crazy though? White Goddess-sama doing it herself? Wooow.”
“Think about it though. She’s Wataru’s boss.”
“I guess so… but that’s still crazy. Rather, Wataru is for servin’ her.”
“He’s got something wrong with him alright. I want to hurry up and head to bed for the day though.”
Oh, what should I do about the coach we borrowed from the Tsuia family?
“I’ll have Gozoh-san and the others bring the coach back to Tsuia.”
Just as I thought that, Wataru spoke up.
Hm? Gozoh and the others…? He spoke like he wasn’t planning on going with them.
“Oh, I have another job, so I’m planning to go through the empire on another route. Haku-sama has me doing something else.”
“That so? Haku-san’s jobs must be pretty hard on you.”
“I have to pay back my debt to you somehow, right? Though I would’ve went to Wakoku so long ago if I didn’t have to…! Kuh!”
Come to think of it, he’s already repaid about half of his debt by now, huh? … Well, Wataru will probably let me know when he’s finally done.
“Alright, I’ll leave the coach to Gozoh. So Gozoh, Roppu, and Shikina will be heading back on it I guess? The coachman, too… The road’s unexpectedly dangerous, maybe I should hire some escorts?”
“Nah, Wataru cleaned ’em all up. It’ll be alright… … but well, maybe we could find some people wanting to head all the way to Golen anyway? Maybe even in Corky.”
Come to think of it, Uzoh and Muzoh said something about coming to our village if their work let them, wonder what happened with that? Is them not doing that yet due to work, or because… well, they’re adventurers. It wouldn’t be strange if something happened to them, I guess.
Just then, I noticed Mr. Dyne looking at us.
“… I was just thinking that it was amazing that you managed to get a job directly from White Goddess-sama.”
“Hahaha, we’re just maids, Dyne-san.”
“It’s as you say, Wataru-dono, but you know, the way you are treated is much better than what an ordinary aristocrat. The most we can do is offer her wine during festival season. I’m merely a commoner who was elevated into aristocracy after achieving a meritorious deed in wartime.”
What festival, a festival of gifting Haku-san alcohol?
“By the way, Kehma-dono, have you decided on your accommodations for the night? Gozoh-dono and the others were talking about staying at my residence here for the duration of their stay here in the capital, but if it is alright with you, Kehma-dono, could I speak with you for a while?”
“Haaah, well, I don’t think I could talk with you about it, but…”
“Oh, I don’t mind that. I would like to talk to you concerning Shikina herself.”
Ah—he found out. Rather, there’s a good chance she was the one to spill the beans. She probably said something along the lines of [I have returned WITH A PENIS!].
“What, her condition should take no more than a year to work itself out, right? Elves have longer lifespans than humans and beastkin, so it’s no problem.”
“… I have prepared a cure for her if you want.”
“I’d expect no less from you, Kehma-dono. Just as Wataru-dono told me, you are quite the man.”
Alright. He pardoned me!
“However, there is a problem. That is, the problem of who will take my daughter’s hand in marriage.”
“… That shouldn’t have anything to do with me though?”
“I am aware… however, my girl was raised in a somewhat rough environment around many common knights, so she’s a little… very… vulgar, you see. And most importantly, she isn’t too aware of what she’s doing… I would feel much more at ease if you could improve that aspect of her, could I ask you for that as well?”
“It’d depend on her own effort…”
Well. At least the way she talks doesn’t run in the family. So that’s nice.