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Talking about Sanya-san’s work took a long time, so I ended up being treated to lunch after it. I was served some mushroom soup and vegetable dishes, which were all delicious. The same dishes were sold in Crimonia, but they weren’t nearly as tasty as these. I wondered if they would sell me the ingredients if I asked them. Then, I could make things like mushroom pizza, plus all sorts of different dishes. Still, I didn’t know if the Elf Village would accept my money. Since they mentioned merchants were coming here from time to time, I figured it should be possible, but I should probably look into it a bit more first. If they wouldn’t take my money, then I could probably just trade other stuff I had for their ingredients, but to do that I would need the Bear Gate set up.
As for the other thing I thought about during the lunch: I really hadn’t thought my Language Of The Other World skill would be able to translate the elven language. Did this mean I would be able to understand the languages of all other races as well? I didn’t know how many foreign languages there were in this world, but the skill sure was useful. On the other hand, I was rather glad it at least didn’t work on monsters and animals. If I understood what they were saying, I wouldn’t be able to subjugate them. If they begged me for mercy, I would surely have buckled and let them live.
After we ate lunch, Sanya-san kept chatting for a while, and then we finally left the house. Sanya-san said that she needed to greet some of her acquaintances, and left me on my own soon after. Well, since she hadn’t returned home in ten years, that much seemed necessary.
「I’m worried about leaving you alone, so try not to disturb anyone, okay?」
Hadn’t she just told the Village Elder earlier that she believed in me? Also, I never tried to intentionally cause a commotion. It was always somebody else that brought the trouble to me, and I couldn’t prevent that from happening, so it wasn’t really my fault. On the other hand, she could at least warn them not to come after me.
After Sanya-san left me on my own, I simply wandered around the village for a while. It didn’t look like there were any shops around, so I couldn’t even buy any elven products. Well, the people living here looked like they were completely self-sufficient, and would only trade items if necessary, so it appeared that shops were quite unnecessary. I decided to head back to Sanya-san’s house while thinking of a place to put the Bear House. Once I got there, Ruimin and Luca were standing outside, surrounded by some elf children. I had a very bad feeling about this. Once the children noticed me, their expressions seemed to light up, but it could also just be my imagination.
Ruimin looked at me with a troubled expression.
「Um, Ruimin, what’s going on?」
「Yuna-san, I’m sorry.」
Ruimin took a deep bow before explaining the situation.
Ruimin had been boasting about Swaying Bear and Hugging Bear to Luca (something about how nice their fur felt and how cute and kind they were).
Luca had then passed that on to the other children (and somehow the explanation had got blown even more out of proportion).
That left the children desperately wanting to meet the Bears, so they had gathered here.
What were these siblings even doing…? Well, while it was indeed better than giving the children a negative image of the bears (like they were dangerous and scary), overpraising them was troublesome, too. Of course the children would want to meet my Bears after hearing that, and in no way could I send them away when they were looking at me like that. Well, it was probably good to leave a good impression of me and my Bears, so I pushed aside the Bear House problem for now and summoned Swaying Bear and Hugging Bear. I would prefer to have the impressions of adult elves improve, but having the children on my side couldn’t hurt. With them on my side, the adults should be less cautious of me and could maybe even teach me how to make the bracelet or let me set up a Bear House here permanently. They may even tell me more about the Sacred Tree… Well, that much might be impossible even if they all liked me.
As I was summoning the Bears, I gave the children a warning.
「You can’t tease or mess with them. If even one of you does so, I will never summon them for any of you ever again.」
I had no idea how elven children behaved. They could pull on the bears’ fur or maybe even hit them. I would feel bad for Swaying Bear and Hugging Bear if any of that were to happen.
「I’ll keep an eye on them.」
Ruimin offered to look after them, but was interrupted by screams of joy and some of the children hiding behind her as I had just completed summoning my Bears. I wanted to leave Ruimin to deal with supervising the children while they played with my Bears, but for some reason, a few of them came over to me instead.
「Big Sis, why are you dressed like a bear?」
They asked with a childish innocence. Unlike adults, they had no hidden motives behind the question.
「You see, I receive the protection of Bear-san while wearing this outfit.」
I wasn’t really lying.
The Bear Suit was so great that it in a way actually ended up being more like a curse.
「Can I get Bear-san’s protection, too?」
「Hmm, that’s going to be hard. You elves already have the protection of the wind, don’t you?」
「I’d rather have Bear-san’s protection than the wind’s.」
That wasn’t good. If this girl went home and told her parents, 「I don’t need the wind’s protection, I want the Bear-san’s protection instead,」 I would surely get in a lot of trouble. Their impressions of me might even worsen because of that. I hadn’t even accomplished anything in this area yet, and I didn’t want the parents to hate me. I had to convince this elf girl to change her mind.
「That’s no good. You see, for elves, it’s very important that the wind protects them. You wouldn’t want to be the only one not protected by the wind when everybody else is, right? Also, if you want to get the protection of Bear-san, you will have to wear an outfit like mine. What would your mother and father think if you came home wearing this, huh? Not to mention you would be the only one in the village wearing it.」
I tried my hardest to convince her, but for some reason, it felt like my HP decreased as I did. I started to feel depressed, having made all those comments that kind of degraded me. Finally, the elf girl said, 「Okay, I’ll do my best to get the wind’s protection, then,」 which really relieved me. I really hoped this was worth it, and that the villagers wouldn’t hate me for showing my Bears to the children.
In the end, I didn’t decide on a place to put the Bear House, so I stayed over in Sanya-san’s room again.
The next morning, Sanya-san and Arthur-san left the house early in the morning to head to the Sacred Tree.
Obviously, I couldn’t tell them I wanted to go with them, so I simply sent them off. I left the house soon after to look for a place for the Bear House. Ruimin and Luca wanted to join me, but I politely declined.
I was planning of heading outside the village to find a place for the house. As long as I was within the barrier, it should be safe, and it would be better because the house wouldn’t stand out too much there. If it was just a regular looking house, then I would have been fine having it in the village, but with it having the shape of a bear…
Also, Village Elder Mumuroot-san allowed me to build it wherever I wanted as long as I didn’t bother the neighbours, and didn’t specify that it had to be within the village. That was why I ended up deciding to find a place outside the village bounds. As I walked, I did so as stealthily and quickly as I could since I didn’t want any children to notice or I might cause another scene like yesterday. Once I managed to get out of the village unseen, I started to stroll around leisurely. Maybe there were good spots nearby. For now, I simply walked back to where the bridge was and headed upstream. Only then did I notice that I was leaving my Bear Footprints everywhere, which could prove to be problematic. With monsters breaking through the barrier, I decided to use detection magic and immediately noticed somebody was tailing me. Wasn’t the misunderstanding already cleared up? Or, was I being followed for the sake of protection? I could easily outrun the person, but if I did, it would make me look suspicious. Hmm, I really didn’t know what to do here.
Since I couldn’t think of an answer, I simply continued my way up the riverside. Along the way, I found a waterfall and jumped up on the cliffside like some sort of a ninja. At the top, I was met by beautiful flowers blooming all around. Oh, I just found a very nice spot. It was a good distance from the village, and being on top of a cliff also made it hard to see. The only problem was the elf who was still following me.
I used detection magic again to confirm their exact location. They had also climbed up the cliff and were hiding near a tree, further in. Hmm, what should I do with them? After some worrying, I decided to simply call out to them. If I suddenly took out the Bear House now, the elf might freak out and report something weird back to the village.
「Hey, the elf that’s hiding behind that tree over there, can you come out?」
I called out in the direction of the tree, but got no response. Didn’t just calling out like that make me look stupid? A person, dressed as a bear, talking to what appeared to be thin air. It was an embarrassing sight, no matter how you looked at it.
I tried to call out to them again. I really wanted them to come out.
After a few seconds, the elf finally came out from behind the tree.
It seemed to be the elf from yesterday, Labilata. Well, all the male elves looked similarly handsome to me, so I wasn’t sure. Heck, the entire race was just full of pretty people. I hadn’t really seen Labilata clearly, so his face did seem familiar as he slowly walked towards me. His eyebrows were indeed slightly angled as he looked at me, so was he maybe mad at me? Labilata had been quite angry yesterday, so this was probably him.
「When did you notice me?」
When, huh? The moment I used detection magic the first time, but I couldn’t tell him that. Previously I had told him that my summoned Bears noticed him, but this time I couldn’t use that excuse. Ugh, I made a mistake. Lately, I had been making a lot of mistakes.
「Just who are you?」
He questioned me with suspicion. To such a question, I only had one response.
「I’m an adventurer.」
Not much more I could say.
「Okay, and what exactly are you doing here?」
I must have looked suspicious, wandering around the forest by myself.
「Mumuroot-san gave me permission to build a house, so I was looking for a good place.」
「The chief did?」
「Yes. My house is kind of special and would stand out if I built it in the village. That’s why I’m looking for a place out here.」
I answered honestly. I could have lied, but the Village Elder had indeed given me permission, so there shouldn’t be any problem. Besides, Labilata-san and the other elves would notice it eventually and would report to Mumuroot-san.
「I want to build my house here. Would that be okay?」
I asked him just in case. It could be that this place was actually some very important location for the elves. There were beautiful flowers blooming here, after all, making for a beautiful scenery.
「Yeah, there shouldn’t be any problem with that, but do you really want to build it here?」
「Are we still within the barrier?」
「Then it doesn’t matter whether I build it here or in the village, right?」
「That’s true, but haven’t you heard about what’s happened to the barrier?」
「I know that it’s gotten weaker.」
「That’s right, so monsters have been appearing inside the barrier. I don’t want our guest getting in danger because of it. If you stay in the village, my comrades will be there, so you’ll be safe.」
It turned out he was actually worried about me. I felt bad for thinking he doubted my intentions.
「My house has special properties, so I’ll be fine.」
I took out the Bear House from the Bear Box, and placed it right in front of where Labilata was standing.
「W-what is this?」
「It’s my house. The reason I was looking for a place to put it is because it would stand out too much in the village.」
Right now, my image of the Bear House is a house in the shape of a bear sitting down with both legs out, with doors in its soles. The right side is where the rooms are and the left side is taken up by the storage.. I revised it when editing the chapters for volume three, so that it would be easier to understand.
I also added more about the Bear House in the glossary.
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