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Once our talks were all settled, Cliff massaged the corners of his eyes.
「Cliff, you seem really tired.」
He had been doing the same thing for a while now.
He must be even more tired than he looked.
「Thanks to a certain someone, the amount of traffic around Crimonia has increased, so I have a lot more work to do.」
Oh right, Mylene-san had mentioned that a lot of merchants from other towns had been coming to Crimonia these days to do business, and things were getting out of hand.
Since it had nothing to do with me, I didn’t look into it to much. I did wonder who the certain someone was, however.
「Being a feudal lord sure is tough, huh.」
「Yes, thanks to a certain someone.」
「You keep saying a certain someone, but who are you talking about?」
「Are you seriously asking me that?」
Cliff looked at me in shock.
Why would he look at me like that? I turned to Noa for an answer.
Noa had the same expression as Cliff.
Did something big happen and I was the only one left in the dark?
Until recently, I had been at the Elf Village, so it couldn’t be helped that I wasn’t up to date on the happenings at home.
「Did something happen while I was out?」
「While you were out? No, it was before that! Have you somehow forgotten that you dug a tunnel to Mireera?! Thanks to that, Crimonia had a huge increase in traffic.」
Cliff said in a higher pitch.
「Oh right, that.」
Yup, I had completely forgotten that happened. Lately, I always used the Bear Gate to travel around, so the tunnel never came to my mind.
Well, that should also be thanks to the fact I had been forced to make stone statues of my Bear-self at both ends of the tunnel and wiped out all the memories connected to it.
「Of course, the tunnel is very beneficial to us as there are now more people passing through Crimonia. More and more people want to see the ocean, and the sea trade has also hit a big rise. Yet, thanks to that, we don’t have nearly enough lodging available. Crime is also on the rise due to the influx of people. We need more people for security, but we don’t have enough personnel. This is happening in Mireera as well. We have expected this, of course, but it’s happening faster than we anticipated.」
「It increased that much?」
It sounded like a big problem just hearing about it.
His job didn’t sound glamorous at all. I was glad I hadn’t reincarnated into a royal or noble family when I came to this world. If that had happened, I wouldn’t have had much freedom, would I?
「Yes, most people have never seen the ocean before, so a lot of them come through just for sightseeing, escorted by adventures of course. Merchants from everywhere are going in and out to do trading with Mireera. The sea of people is endless.」
I had had no idea that was going on.
I wasn’t staying at the inn anymore, and I hadn’t been to the Commerce Guild or the Adventurer’s Guild recently, so I hadn’t been informed at all.
Now I understood why Cliff was so busy and tired. And, I had learned so without getting in trouble for asking.
「So, is this still someone else’s problem?」
「Yeah, it should be, why?」
While I had been the one to make the tunnel, what happened after wasn’t my fault.
It was Cliff’s job to manage the traffic. I didn’t have anything to do with it, as I was just a commoner.
「While it isn’t your problem directly, this did only happen because you made that tunnel. How about being a little more apologetic? Thanks to you, I now have less time to spend with my daughter.」
Basically, he was mad at me for taking away his time with Noa.
「Okay, do you want me to seal the tunnel shut, then?」
I tried joking with him. I had no intention of doing that, of course. If I did, we wouldn’t be able to get any more seafood, and Anzu would surely be troubled.
「No. If you do that, I will be ruined for good.」
He clearly didn’t catch my joke, responding like that. I almost felt bad.
「Yuna-san, you can’t close it. If you do that, we won’t be able go to the ocean anymore.」
Even Noa missed my joke…
「I was just kidding, you know? I wouldn’t actually seal it shut.」
I tried to calm them down.
「Well, the only thing we can do is to hold on until we have the personnel. Once I have more people I can rely on, my workload will decrease. Mylene is doing her best as well, so the situation should improve soon. Well, as long as a certain someone doesn’t bring in even more trouble for us.」
He was referring to me again, wasn’t he. I would prefer if he didn’t talk about me like I was some anime or manga protagonist who only brought trouble with them.
In detective dramas for instance, even more murders would trail in the footsteps of the detective or police protagonists. Or, in action movies, strong enemies would always appear to cause problems with the heroes. Just by being the protagonist of any genre, trouble would always happen nearby. So, I really didn’t appreciate him putting me into that group.
I was just a regular fifteen-year-old, costume-wearing girl, who had been dragged into this world by God. I was most certainly not a trouble bringing protagonist.
The only problems I had bothered Cliff with were the tunnel to Mireera and the ten thousand monster army incident. Oh, and the punch-out that had happened during Misa’s kidnapping.
Actually, considering the number of days I had been here so far, maybe that was actually a lot?
「Umm. Is there anything I can do to help?」
I asked, just in case if I could do something. I couldn’t help but feel a slight tinge of guilt, after all.
「No, it’s fine. Things just happened faster than we expected. I’m sorry, I’ve said too much; it’s really not your problem.」
「Okay, good. Still, if you find anything I can help you with I will do my best to help.」
「You bringing Noa to the school festival while I can’t is more than enough. Please let Noa have some much needed fun and company.」
「Of course. No problem.」
It looked like there was nothing I could do for him, as I had expected.
Seeing Cliff massage the corners of his eyes, he really seemed exhausted. I could maybe use some healing magic, but that might cause even more trouble for him in the long run.
Was there anything else I could do… Oh! I just thought of something good.
「Cliff, here, I’ll give this to you.」
I said and took out some ground up tea leaves from the Sacred Tree and passed them to Cliff.
I didn’t have much of them, so I couldn’t spare too much. Once I picked up a new batch, I could bring him some more.
「It’s tea that helps with fatigue. Get Lala-san to brew some for you.」
「This isn’t something weird, is it?」
He held the tea leaves in his hands and looked at them suspiciously.
「Have I ever given you anything weird?」
How rude of him for doubting me.
I didn’t recall ever giving him something weird to eat.
…I’m pretty sure I hadn’t.
…I hadn’t, right?
「Yes, you’re right. You may bring trouble with you everywhere you go, but your food is always delicious no matter what. Sorry for doubting you; I will gladly accept this.」
He answered after considering for a while and then put the leaves away.
Had he acted badly, I would have regretted giving it to him.
It was hard to give something out of goodwill if they didn’t appreciate it, after all.
「Oh, and can you please tell me your opinion after you drink it?」
「Wait, you haven’t had this before?」
「I did, and it’s good. But, I still don’t know how well it actually works against fatigue so I would like to get your opinion on it.」
I was almost always wearing the Bear Outfit, so even if I ran around all day, I never got tired, and my White Bear side would alleviate all of my weariness by the following morning.
Because of that, I hadn’t been able to confirm the effects of the tea, especially since I would never go as far as to try exercising without the costume just to test some tea.
「Yuna-san, I want to try some, too.」
「You can have some as well, of course. It tastes pretty good.」
「Yay, thank you.」
「 I’ll get Lala to us brew some later, then. I’m going back to work now. Please take care of Noa for me.」
Cliff then left the room, taking the tea leaves with him.
「Noa, you can go to the school festival as well now.」
「Yes! And, it’s all thanks to you, Yuna-san. By the way, when are we leaving?」
That was something I couldn’t decide…
「You see…. I want to discuss that with you, so can you come over to my house tomorrow?」
「Your house? I don’t mind, but why the trouble?」
「I told you how we’re going with Fina and Shuri, right?」
「It’s something I want to speak with all three of you about.」
I didn’t want to talk about the Bear Gate here, where someone might eavesdrop on our conversation.
「Is that so? Okay, then. I’ll come visit your house tomorrow, Yuna-san.」
「Thank you. Then, let’s eat dinner together and talk after that.」
With all said and done, I left Noa’s place and returned to the Bear House for a few hours. When it was about time for Gentz-san to be off from work, I headed to Fina’s house.
I was going to explain to him that I was planning on bringing his two daughters to the capital. Of course, I had prepared various phrases to convince Gentz-san and Tirumina-san.
Things like: 「I will protect them, so please feel reassured.」or「I’m a C rank adventurer, so don’t worry.」and「I defeated a Black Viper before, so we’ll be fine even if strong monsters attack.」or even「If monsters do attack us, my Bears will be able to bring them to safety.」
I readied myself and entered Fina’s house.
「If you’re with them, that’s fine.」
「I’m not worried if you’re going with them, Yuna-chan.」
My jaws dropped.
I didn’t think they were going to give us permission that easily.
Shuri and Fina both looked ecstatic, though.
「Is it really okay?」
「Yeah, it’s fine. When Fina went to the Capital, Shuri did her best to hold back. If both of them say they want to go, then who am I to stop them. Still, knowing that you will be with them fills me with ease.」
She really trusted me that much, huh. I was very grateful for that.
「Also, there’s no way they could refuse Eleanora-sama’s invitation.」
「Even if they did reject her invitation, Eleanora-san shouldn’t…」
She wouldn’t get mad, but maybe sad?
「We met her the other day; she is indeed a nice person. I also heard from you and Fina that she is nice and doesn’t hold grudges, but even so, it is not good to refuse a noble’s invitation. Of course, if it was something bad, then I would at least consider refusing. However, Eleanora-sama is inviting them out of good will, and the girls want to go, so there is no reason for me to stop them.」
「That’s right! Eleanora-sama is very kind… She can be a bit of a force of nature sometimes, though.」
Fina was right. When I had been subjugating the Mithril Golem, Eleanora-san dragged Fina around and turned her into a dress-up doll. While I would love to see Fina in dresses more often, I shivered at the thought of Eleanora-san trying to do that to me.
「Well, it would be hard for me to take my daughters to see the capital myself. It will be a good experience for both of them. I’m just worried they might cause trouble for Eleanora-sama.」
「I won’t be a bother.」
Shuri pouted while Fina also followed up.
I missed the times when Fina would freak out over nobles. As her Onee-chan, I felt a bit sad seeing her grow up like that.
「Huhu, I know that you two are both good girls. I’m just worried as your parent.」
Tirumina-san said patted Shuri’s head..
「Still, Yuna-chan, will you be fine taking care of all three of them? They won’t be a bother, will they?」
「They won’t wander off by themselves, and they’re not selfish, so it should be fine.」
I wouldn’t take them if they were children who liked to wander off or acted selfishly. Actually, I wouldn’t even consider being friends with such children, let alone taking them on a trip with me.
Fina, Shuri and Noa all listened to me, so I could travel with them with ease. Not to mention the fact that all three were good girls who didn’t make fun of my Bear Outfit. If any of them teased me about it, I didn’t think I would ever even consider bringing them to the capital.
Anyway, just like that, we easily received permission for Fina and Shuri to go to the capital as well. When I was about to head home, Tirumina-san invited me for dinner, and I gladly accepted her offer.
Before I left, I made sure to ask Fina and Shuri to come to my house tomorrow, of course.
Cliff will be our taste-tester for the Sacred Tree tea leaves. lol
I wrote a post about the differences between Volume 3 and the web novel.
There aren’t any big changes, but I will continue to write based on the changes made in the publication.
I hope you can understand that.
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