14. To the world of farming!
#1 Their story: A certain daughter’s story.
The fabric covering the windows were cleared away and the bright sunlight attacked my face.
“It’s time to get up.”
And with it came Dad’s voice.
“Five more minutes……”
And I said the same thing I always say whenever I hear that voice.
“How about no?”
Dad decisively steals away my precious blanket.
Blankets are important.
They’re warm. They’re soft.
If you duck underneath them you can block the attack of the sunlight, and defend against Dad’s attacks that threaten to wake me up.
But I couldn’t regain the blankets again.
No matter much I reached out for the blankets, as small as I was there would be no way I could grab the blankets that were in Dad’s hands.
“Five more… five more minutes……”
But just because I lost my blankets that didn’t mean that my sleepiness would be going anywhere.
Five minutes. Just five more minutes and this sleepiness would run away~
“You said five more minutes last time and you didn’t get up.”
I did. The reason that sleepiness can be banished is because I can keep sleeping.
Last time I overslept as well and missed breakfast.
So I was scolded by Dad.
“I won’t do it this time……”
Angry Dad is scary.
He won’t take my hand even if I hold it out for him.
He won’t pat my head.
He won’t wipe me down after we finish bathing either.
He won’t hug me even when I get close to him, and run far away.
He says he doesn’t like me at those times.
That… is really scary.
So really, just five more minutes.
I’ll get up after just five more minutes of lying down.
“I’ll bring in your big sister if you keep lying around like that?”
“I’m up! Ellie’s up! You don’t have to call in big sis!”
Big sis is scary.
Normally she takes care of me really well but when she’s scolding me she’s even scarier than Dad.
Big sis doesn’t get angry like Dad does.
She doesn’t scold me, and she doesn’t ignore me, either.
She just lightly flicks my forehead.
But it hurts.
It really hurts.
It’s not that I can’t endure pain because I’m too young.
It’s just that… big sis’s flicks really hurt.
Not just me, but the other naughty children of the village, and the drunk village mister.
And the wild boars that sneakily ate our hard-reared crops.
And although no one else knew, the orcs that were going to invade our village couldn’t even fight back against big sis’s finger flick, and were all beaten.
The only one that can stand up to big sis’s finger flicks is Dad.
“Are you awake?”
“Mm, I’m awake. I’m awake……”
For a moment I cried a bit. She’s a good big sister… but she’s scary.
“Alright, time for breakfast.”
Dad pulled me into a hug, wiped my tears and stroked my head.
Dad’s hugs are as warm as a blanket so I nearly dozed off again, but since I didn’t know when big sis would running in I shook my head and chased away the sleepiness.
“Wiing? Ya here Ellis? Let’s eat! Soup tastes the best when it’s hot!”
Big sis yelled, having arrived before us, and was sitting on the chair and swinging her legs.
You have to be careful when big sis swings around her arms and legs like that.
It hurts just getting hit by those legs.
“Here you are.”
I got a bowl of warm soup, bread, and vegetables.
Vegetables aren’t tasty, but when you sprinkle Dad’s homemade sauce over them they get unbelievably delicious.
“It’s sho good!”
“It’s sho good!”
“Ellis, I told you not to copy the way Aru talks……”
Dad’s finger flick landed cleanly on my forehead.
It doesn’t hurt like big sis’s does, but my forehead turned a bit red.
Feeling Dad’s hand pat my head, I ate my breakfast.
Dad’s good at cooking, too.
No matter how awful the ingredients taste, the moment the go through Dad’s hands, they change into a tasty meal.
Our Dad’s the best dad ever!
Ellis’ small hand diligently moved her fork as she ate her salad.
Cute. Little children are cute.
-Dint ya say ya didn’t like kids?
-Those weren’t people.
The children I knew weren’t children at all.
The imperial princess who was two years younger than Ellis was already batshit insane, and the kids in the organization that were similar in age to her were also monsters that didn’t deserve to be called people.
But our Ellis is different!
I warmly looked over Ellis who was soon turning twelve.
“Does it taste good?”
Her pure smile pierced my heart.
Ahh, simple and pure children are cute.
To the point that I was proud of the past me that debated whether to abandon her or not but brought her along in the end.
-And who’sa one that stopped owner that was seriously gonna abandon her?
-Thank you, goddess.
-Hmph, if you know then bring me more delicious food!
The metal bat stretched out a hand that held an empty bowl that had once contained soup.
“Ah, me, me too!”
Ellis scarfed down the remnants of her soup and held her empty bowl out to me as well.
“You’re eating especially well today.”
“It’s meat! People havta eat meat!”
No, you’re not a person……
I’ve gotten used to it by now, but I have no idea where food goes in and comes out the other end on that.
“Mm! Everything Dad makes is delicious but it’s even more delicious if there’s meat in it!”
Of course. Meat is the truth.
Seeing as I was getting up anyway, I filled up three bowls of soup, one for myself as well.
I wanted to add a bit of pepper but there was no way that such an expensive spice would be available in this backwater village.
To make up for it as best as I could I sprinkled a bit of a herb I found nearby, tore up the non-hard bread and dipped it into the soup.
Although I couldn’t replicate the bread of my past life, compared to the hard black bread of commoners, my bread is soft and delicious.
“Dad… are you going to go to the fields after breakfast today as well?”
“Yes. Why, do you want to come along?”
“Mm! I want to come, too!”
I looked at my adorable daughter whose sparkling eyes indicated how she’d come to love farming already.
“Uweeeeek! Nyooooo! Ellis shad come play wif meeee!”
Her character concept was supposed to be the big sister, but the way she acted was exactly like a little sister pestering her big sister, and I sighed reflexively.
“I, I can’t…… I finally have my own field! I… I finally have something of my own to protect as well!”
As the metal bat pouted and grumbled, just in case, I warned her.
“You know what happens if you mess with the fields… right?”
If this thing hits the fields, then the crops are done for.
I did hope a bit last time just in case the fields would receive a blessing, but how much did I weep and rage when I saw the crops helplessly dying the next day!
I don’t want to see something like that happening ever again.
“Ehey, go play on your own!”
After she followed me a few times to the fields and caused numerous incidents, I eventually banned her from all farm work.
This place has good soil and water, a perfect place for the retired life I’d dreamed of since my past life, but on the flip side, it’s a boring village with no amusement for the metal bat.
At most the wild beasts that threatened to ruin our crops were her outlet to vent.
But not even the wild animals come down anymore in fear of the metal bat.
Meaning, Ellis is the only one that will play with her.
“Then finish the shed.”
“That’s even more boring……”
As the metal bat drooped face-down on the table, I clicked my teeth in annoyance.
Considering what happened last time, I couldn’t even call for the dwarves, and under the pretense of building a shed, was secretly building an escape tunnel, but it’s hard as hell to do it on my own.
Shovelling aside, I wasn’t used to swinging a pickaxe so every time I struck down my hands hurt a lot.
“Ellis, let’s play~ let’s go up into the mountains and get some tasty meat~”
Ellis’s eyes shook at the mention of meat.
The twelve-year old Ellis still prefers meat over vegetables.
In that case……
“But, Ellis. Tonight’s dinner… was going to be fries?”
At my announcement Ellis’s eyes widened even more than when she heard about meat.
“Ellis… you liked potato fries, right?”
“Mm, potato fries are tasty! Outside is crunchy, inside is soft and moist!”
“And when Dad’s special sauce is added to it?”
As if just imagining it made her happy, I cupped her cheeks that were threatening to loosen entirely.”
“But to make potato fries… we need to dig up potatoes first, and Dad needs to take care of the other crops today… should we just not have fries today?”
Those words caused Ellis’s face to darken.
Due to using a lot of oil, fried foods were an even rarer special treat than meat was.
“Don’t worry! Ellis’ll dig up the potatoes! So potato fries tonight!”
“Fried vegetables are also good.”
“Should we fry some pumpkin tonight as well?”
“P, pumpkin is good!”
“Hm… if we had some chicken we could make fried chicken as well…”
“Th, the almighty fried chicken… too?”
Having come to the greatness of the almighty fried chicken at an early age thanks to my teachings, Ellie was looking up at me like an apostle seeking salvation from her god.
“But in order to make that then Dad needs someone to help out?”
“Me! Me! Me!”
As Ellis jumped up and down, hand high in the air as if she’d come running into my arms at any moment, I smiled like a winner.
-How’s that, this is how you conduct negotiations!
-Cheater! You used fried food! And fried chicken at that!
-Who was the one who brought out meat in the first place?
-Roast rabbit is just about all there is in terms of mountain animals, of course there’s no way I can win if you bring out the chicken!
-Of course, our lord and saviour fried chicken is almighty.
How dare you compare some gamey-stinking rabbit with our lord and saviour fried chicken.
I ignored the metal bat’s sharp glare as I began cleaning up the utensils from breakfast.
“Now, Dad’s going to clean up the table, so go change your clothes and get ready, Ellis.”
“Yep, I got it.”
Her short legs hurried pitter-patter up the stairs to her room.
“Can I come watch too?”
“And kill all the crops again?”
“Haang, it’s not like I meant to do that last time!”
“You just fell over and the almost the entire corn crop was destroyed.”
“The earth’s just too weak to receive this goddess’s blessings. Raise it toughaaaaaaa”
“And whose mouth is it that’s saying such things? Hm? Just how much corn died back then! Apologise! Apologise to all the corn that couldn’t go into our bellies because of you!”
When I started stretching her cheeks apart she started apologising.
Her stretchiness is still as superior as ever.
“As punishment, you are sentenced to dig the tunnel under the basement!”
“Wait, that’s too harsh!”
So it wasn’t enough after all?
“Hmph, owner’s been neglecting me too much lately! Ya need some unnis like th’ imperial princess ta start chasing afta ya again to understand my importance!”
“Don’t say something scary like that.”
Our fields were only just beginning to stabilise properly.
Unlike the potatoes and corn that had been successful since our first year, we’d only just started to grow wheat and other different vegetables thanks to the assistance of the other villagers, and just when we were finally starting on the road to success, the princess appears!
Just what is the reason that we farm even though it is tough and tiring!
Is it not to feel the satisfaction of harvest!
“Hmph, take this goddess’s curse! Owner’s fields’ll burn to th’ ground in the future!”
“Such a horrifying curse……. And if that happens, your meals are also going to burn with them!”
“Uwiik! That’s no good!”
I ignored the metal bat as she was internally debating revenge against Ellis and I for not playing with her vs her meals, and continued to clean the morning dishes, and just as I finished up, Ellis came back downstairs, having transformed into a perfect image of a little farmer.
“I’m ready, Dad!”
A straw hat to ward off the sun and sturdy clothes that would let anyone know from a miles away that the wearer was a farmer.
And for the finishing touch, a white scarf around her neck!
“Yep, completely perfect!”
Our brightly smiling Ellis was no longer an ordinary 12 year old girl, but a perfect aspiring farmer with three years of experience already under her belt!
In her skinny hands was a basket full with all sorts of tools.
“Alright, we are perfectly ready for battle.”
I looked over Ellis’s inexact but adorable salute with a smile.
“Mister sunshine is bright and sunny! Perfect weather for farming!”
“Very good, today’s objective!”
“Potatoes and other assorted vegetables! We’re aiming for ingredients to fry tonight!”
“Yes we are, and if we finish up quickly today then I’ll see about going into town for some chickens.”
“Yessir! I’ll do my best!”
Excellent, she’s full of motivation.
“Then move out!”
With the metal bat’s half-assed farewells, we started heading towards our fields that welcomed the warm sunlight.
Four years since escaping from Yugrasia.
We were now full-fledged farmers.