New Year Special Project ④ The After of Demon King and Hero (and Lord)
AN: Happy New Year!
This chapter not only unrelated with New Year, it was also like an idle talk without anything happening, but I’ll be happy if you can use it for your accompaniment in the New Year.
It was a certain famous fast food restaurant.
A beautiful girl was sitting on the seat at the counter that was fitted with glass facing the street.
She had a glossy long black hair and eyes with pretty almond shape. She was wearing a jean that fitted her legs tightly and a simple blouse that showed her lack of interest in dressing up herself, but that outfit was instead pushing out the girl’s great figure and charm to the forefront.
The people walking down the street outside――especially the male would reflexively take a second look at her. Such situation had occurred frequently. Anyone would easily get convinced if someone said that girl was a model or an idol.
Even so, they couldn’t easily call out to the beautiful girl because she obviously looked like she was still a middle school student at most. She seemed mature, but not much sexual allure could be felt from her.
She was resting her chin on her hand. She was fiddling with her smartphone while giving out the atmosphere of terrible bad mood. That was also one of the causes why it was hard to call out to her.
「Mitsuki-chan, sorry to make you wait!」
Someone approached her without giving a damn at the girl’s bad mood.
It was a girl wearing glasses and her hair braided loosely. She had an attire that consisted of a vest, a dress, and a beret that made her looked exactly like a girl with literature interest. The two of them seemed to be the same age.
「It’s fine Manami. There is still five minutes before the time we agreed on.」
The two middle school girls――Amanogawa Mitsuki(Soul Sisters’ President) and Endou Manami(Soul Sisters’ Staff Officer) exchanged smile with each other.
Mizuki handed Manami the drink that she had ordered beforehand. It seemed she was treating her friend. Manami happily thanked her and sat beside her.
「And, what is it today? You said that you want to discuss something……」
「It’s about Onii-chan.」
Mitsuki nodded with a grave atmosphere. Manami thought that Mitsuki called her because she wanted to think up another “strategy to make Nagumo-senpai know his place” but……
Because she thought that, she kept thinking up a plan until four in the morning since she received the call but……
It seemed that wasn’t the case.
「Onii-chan, is home right now.」
「Y-yeah, I know about that. I heard from Kou-nii. I don’t know the detail but, it seemed Kouki-san got summoned here and there……a, aa~, so it’s about that? I heard Kouki-san brought home a yandere Amazon queen and a yandere black goddess……」
「W-well, there is that. That explanation is really crude though.」
It was something that happened half a month ago. The case where the returnees’ whereabouts became unknown from their one year return anniversary party. There were many ups and downs again to clean up the situation afterwards, but even that situation had calmed down today.
「The problem isn’t those yanderes who are acting like my sister-in-laws.」
「So they are acting like sister-in-law……」
「They are acting like daughter-in-law to Okaa-san and Otou-san. They couldn’t possibly be more irritating with the way they are competing with each other in every single thing. In addition they are even using supernatural power to try buying our good will and fail in the end, which cause some actual damages.」
「That’s a serious problem isn’t it?」
「It’s just the usual thing.」
Both Mitsuki and Manami were a relative of a returnee. They already accepted the supernatural matters like other world or magic. It wasn’t something that could surprise them anymore.
And so, it seemed for Mitsuki this situation wasn’t any different from how her big brother was so popular and got girls swarming him like before he got summoned to Tortus. What an unpleasant thing to become used to……Manami thought with a bit of sympathy toward Mitsuki.
「Then what is the problem?」
Mitsuki’s face was the very picture of someone who bit a bitter-tasting bug. Manami unconsciously got impressed seeing that.
「Nagumo-senpai is always a big problem for us though……」
「Yes, he is our nemesis who can’t be allowed to live under the same sky with us. But you see, Onii-chan, recently he often……talk about that Nagumo-senpai.」
「……Hou? Give me the detail.」
Oh? Manami’s glasses was glinting from unknown light source? She was also coolly pushing up her glasses at the same time?
「Onii-chan would say things like, that guy is just crazy~, or that guy is lacking consideration to other~, that kind of things.」
「In other words, badmouthing?」
「No, if I have to say it’s more like complaining?」
「Hm~m……isn’t that normal? I mean, it’s a bti hard to say this but, you know, Kouki-san and Nagumo-senpai has bad relationship aren’t they……or more like Kouki-san is one-sidedly hating Nagumo-senpai?」
「I can’t deny that.」
But, Mitsuki said as preface. She frowned while drinking her ice coffee vigorously. And then she slammed down her paper cup roughly.
「Right now, it’s a bit different from before.」
「What do you mean?」
「Certainly, Onii-chan hate Nagumo-senpai. No, he averted his gaze from his hate. Before he left school and went back to Tortus, he would say that it was thanks to Nagumo-senpai he could return home and avoided doing something that cannot be undone, rather he would even talk like he is grateful to him.」
「But now he is doing the reverse?」
「Something like that. To be more precise, before it was more like Onii-chan was trying to persuade himself. In the first place he almost never mentioned anything about Nagumo-senpai. ……He would always look pained, like he was suffering. It felt like he had his hand full just holding himself together.」
「Is that so……」
I see, Manami nodded.
Naturally she had heard about what happened at Tortus from Kousuke. She tried imagining Kouki’s feeling that must be extremely complicated. Certainly, she could understand that he must be in a mental state where he couldn’t talk at all about it.
And yet, recently Kouki would often talk about Hajime. About the man who should be his greatest weakness. Everything that he said was just complaints, but it was a fact that there had been a great change in his mental state. Furthermore the change seemed to be in the positive side.
「Now that you mentioned it, Mitsuki-chan. Kouki-san and Nagumo-senpai were in another world with just each other before Kou-nii joined up with them weren’t they?」
「Eh? Well, I think they were also with the locals there though……」
「There wasn’t any other acquaintance with them at that time!」
Manami’s lips grinned. For some reason, Mitsuki felt like she could hear the sound effect eheee from that expression. It was an expression of someone who was having a very wicked delusion.
「Really you……make it clear already, are you a Soul Sister or are you a fujoshi.」
「I want to become a woman who can be both.」
「Your sinfulness run deep……」
Anyway, Mitsuki wanted her friend to stop imagining her brother with such a rotten thought. Nagumo-senpai? That’s awesome, do it more! Rather she should turn it into a doujin and sold it!
「Nh nh, anyway! Recently Onii-chan sometimes will mention about Nagumo-senpai one way or another――」
「You are saying that their relationship is suspicious. Haa haa」
「Shut up for a bit! Don’t go haa haa like that! ……And then, that Onii-chan, it seems he’s going to meet Nagumo-senpai today――」
「Here it comes , a secret meeting!」
「Shut up already! You’re being a bother to the other customers!」
Mitsuki covered Manami’s mouth physically with her hand and immediately talked about the main topic for today.
「And so, Onii-chan, he prepared a lot of money. It bothered me that his wallet was even more bulging than usual. When I tried checking at Onii-chan’s secret cache……judging from the remaining money there, he might have brought out one hundred twenty or thirty thousand with him!」
「T-that’s a lot of money……(Kouki-san, your secret cache isn’t a secret at all……)」
「He might be getting extorted by Nagumo-senpai……」
「Nagumo-senpai, he is a rich person who can offer part-time wage in a level that Kou-nii will accept you know?」
「I heard Onii-chan anxiously whispered “That guy is real merciless, I wonder if this will be enough”. Perhaps Nagumo-senpai had gotten hold of some kind of weakness and threaten him with it!」
「You said weakness, but from Kouki-san’s perspective, I think it’s like Nagumo-senpai is holding his black history in his grasp already……」
Anyway, seeing Mitsuki muttering 「Gununu……that accursed Nagumo-senpai. Just what kind of extremely malicious scheme he is cooking」 while crushing her paper cup in her grip, Manami chuckled. She smiled not the ehee smile like before.
「Fufu, no matter what you said, Mitsuki-chan really love your big brother aren’t you?」
「Nnguh. How did you get that from what I said. I’m simply have to become the dependable one because Onii-chan is an idiot like that!」
「Right right, whatever you say.」
Mitsuki’s cheeks reddened slightly. She crushed the innocent paper cup in her hand. The plastic straw and lid were compressed with crumpling sound. In the end they were reduced into a marble size.
「Err, so in conclusion, Kouki-san is going to meet Nagumo-senpai after this while bringing a lot of money. It’s suspicious, so you want to confirm just what they are doing. Can I take it that’s what you want to say?」
「Well, something like that.」
「Forward charge or tailing?」
It was truly like a conversation between the president and the staff officer. The male university student who happened to sit beside them looked taken aback hearing that and immediately moved to another seat.
「But, it’s impossible right? This is the demon king-sama and the hero-sama we are talking about. We will get found out right away unless it’s my Kou-nii doing the tailing.」
「I know that much. That’s why I called a helper here.」
「Eh, then why did you call me?」
「……Because, Manami is the only one I can grumble to like this.」
「Aa~, Mitsuki-chan, your charisma is pointlessly high, so you are the one who usually got consulted instead huh.」
「No need to call it pointless.」
It might be the destiny of Amanogawa family. They all were pointlessly sparkling. It seemed that among her friends of the same age, the only one who could be said as her equal in its truest meaning was only Manami who was connected to her with a sense of fellowship due to being a fellow relative of a returnee.
Also, male was out of the question. Those guys, even if they were normal at the beginning, in most cases their eyes would turn into heart mark after she talked with them for ten minutes. Men were all wolf!
「As I thought Onee-sama is the one! Onee-sama is none other than the supreme existence!」
「What are you talking about at this kind of place. You’re being a bother to the other customers.」
The retort came from Manami――not. That supreme voice, it made both Mitsuki and Manami’s heads to rotate like puppet. It was horror. The university student youth from before choked from the cheeseburger that got stuck in his throat.
「Yes yes, sorry to make you two wait, Mitsuki-chan, Manami-chan.」
Standing there was the soul Onee-sama who they had exchanged a pledge of soul (one-sidedly) with――Yaegashi Shizuku.
Her ponytail was like usual. Her attire was a simple jean and blouse……Manami’s gaze snapped toward Mitsuki. This damn gal, she aimed for this! Traitor! Her eyes were saying that.
Also, it was a secret how Mitsuki-chan was able to obtain the information of Onee-sama’s attire today so she could coordinate her attire. Anyway, it was certain with this that she had a subordinate placed inside Yaegashi family.
「And, you mentioned something about the possibility of Kouki being threatened by Hajime didn’t you?」
「Yes Onee-sama-! Let’s caught them in the act today! That guy is the enemy of all that is good-. Please open your eyes after seeing the way he extorted my completely no good Onii-chan!」
「To think you are aiming to hit two birds with one stone! ……No, rather your true aim is to tear apart Onee-sama from Nagumo-senpai by using Kouki-san as a sacrifice-. As expected from president-」
Manami-chan shuddered while thoroughly explaining the inside of Mitsuki-chan’s heart. How amazing, it seemed that the founder and president of Soul Sisters society would always be Soul Sister anytime anywhere.
Shizuku sighed in exasperation.
「Well, certainly I’m also curious why Hajime is taking the trouble to use his holiday just to meet Kouki.」
And so she came to meet this two like this just in case.
「Aa, but even though I’m here, it’s impossible for me to hide myself from the senses of those two to tail them.」
「Eh, even though Onee-sama is the strongest “Yaegashi”!?」
Shizuku thought. She was also shaken at the same time. Mitsuki-chan, you know the true identity of Yaegashi? Could it be, you know about the hidden slightly acrobatic side of my family!? How? She thought.
「Um, Onee-sama, what are we going to do then? Should I call Kou-nii?」
Shizuku shook her head at Manami’s suggestion. And then she went 「Oh?」 while looking around in puzzlement.
「I’m also calling someone to assist though……」
The assistance that she brought with her didn’t seem to be here――just as she thought that,
「……Are you troubled?」
Suddenly a voice called to them from the side. A strong presence also suddenly burst out at the same time. Mitsuki and Manami’s body jumped while Shizuku was looking exasperated.
When they looked to the side,
「……O girls who are in a lost, are you troubled?」
Yue-san was there. For some reason she was making the pose of punishing the evildoer in the name of the moon.
The beautiful girl shouldn’t be there until just a moment ago. Furthermore, she was in the grown up version that looked like sixteen or seventeen years old girl right now. Perhaps it was to match herself with Shizuku. She was dressed roughly with just a skirt and a hoodie, But her presence instantly took captive the people inside the restaurant and on the street outside the glass window.
「I called her here because she said that she was bored to death but……wait, you aren’t listening. Hey, Yue, how about you fix your bad habit of feeling restless unless you make a scene with your entrance?」
「……How can something like this be a bad habit?」
「You see, if a country toppling beauty suddenly appear with such a strange pose, normal people will freeze. That’s a legitimate man-made calamity you know? You stupid prankster.」
「……Pinching the cheeks is forbiddennn」
In fact, Mitsuki and Manami were really frozen dumbfounded. There were completely at a loss for words.
Even though they were calling for the Onee-sama who they held in immense respect and affection but still really close to them, it was the last boss her majesty the queen who popped out. It couldn’t be helped that they got into this state of mind.
And so, Shizuku-oneesama immediately got out of the restaurant while carrying the criminal who froze the time inside the fast-food restaurant and the street outside with her charm like a cat under her arm and pushing the back of her two frozen soul sisters.
「U-umm, the scale of the price is just strange……」
「O-Onii-chan’s wallet is going to……die-」
The location changed. They were in a high class yakiniku restaurant at downtown.
Manami’s body shivered in terror seeing the menu’s price. Mitsuki thought of her big brother’s financial condition and covered her face with both her hands.
「……Nn, you can eat whatever you like.」
「This is a bit out of nowhere though. Hey, Yue. Do you bring money? Will it be fine?」
「……No problem. I have card.」
「I see, then……」
「……But, I’m thinking to completely spend all of my cash today. I had sneaked out the bills from Kaori’s wallet after much effort after all.」
「Just use your card to pay!」
「……Forget about that, don’t make too much ruckus. We will get found out if you do that.」
After saying that, Yue quietly peeked out from the box seat they were in that was covered from view with partitioning screen. Following her, Mitsuki and others also peeked out.
Ahead of their gazes was Kouki who was holding his head looking like his wits’ end sitting in the box diagonally in front of them. His look was inviting sympathy from anyone who saw him. It went without saying that he seemed to be in despair seeing the menu list that was dropped from his hands and spread out in front of him.
「Even so, to think they are having a meeting in this kind of place.」
Mitsuki detected Kouki’s location using his smartphone’s GPS and secretly tailed him to this place.
Kouki was standing in a daze for a while in front of this expensive yakiniku restaurant. From the start he was a handsome man. He was wearing white skinny pants and jacket, and a necklace of thin chain that really suited him. In addition, after he returned home from the getting summoned too muccchh incident, even his classmates evaluated him as having “leveled up as a man”.
Naturally he was gathering attention. Even though all that he was doing was just standing still with a stupid look on his face. It was to a degree that he was going to get hit on by girls instead of the man hitting on girls.
That Kouki was in a daze like that for a while, but then he returned to his senses when his smartphone rang. He picked it up.
And then he froze in shock after the person calling him said something to him. It looked like he was going to protest next. But he then trembled as though he was suppressing the emotion that was overflowing out of him. He turned off the call and then right after that he stamped his feet, toward a nearby ATM.
Accompanied with several additional Yukichi(the person on the 10,000 yen note), he returned to the yakiniku restaurant a bit tearfully and things reached this point――that was the present situation.
He sat down on the seat and went through this and that for around ten minutes. Kouki-kun now stayed unmoving without even any twitch. He looked like a father whose company was going through restructuring even though there was still thirty years left on the loan of his house.
There was also the fact of how he was still young. The eyes of the restaurant employees were gradually turning stricter.
Such time of trial suddenly met its end. The person he was waiting for had arrived.
With a serious face, Yue combined
“Soul’s Concealment” and “Perception Obstruction” using soul magic with barrier using space time magic to create a scene of a normal family. In the first place the atmosphere of this place also didn’t allow people to give their attention to other customer.
Hajime came at that timing. He headed straight toward Kouki’s seat. It didn’t seem like that he noticed Yue and others.
Yue gave a thumb up. Shizuku and others also swiftly returned a thumb up back to her.
「I’ll be in your care today, mister hero.」
「Guh. I was the one who said anywhere is fine, but to think you will choose an expensive restaurant like this! You shitty demon king-」
They had noticed it from the middle but, as expected it seemed they came here to eat high class yakiniku(grilled meat) with the hero’s money.
Mitsuki was dumbfounded seeing the ecstatic demon king-senpai and the Onii-chan hero who was gritting his teeth.
「No way……I completely thought that Onii-chan will be extorted for his money behind a dilapidated shrine……」
「Mitsuki-chan, you are watching too many drama. Making someone treating you in an expensive restaurant like this is also already an extortion.」
「In a dilapidated shrine, secretly? Kouki-san and Nagumo-senpai? Fufufuh」
「……Nn!? What, is this presence. Hey, Shizuku. Endou’s little sister seem like a bad news somehow!」
「Ah, Yue-senpai, please don’t pay her any mind. Manami is just a bit rotten.」
「……A bit rotten!? What do you mean!?」
Yue-san was still pure in that area. Shizuku who understood what Mitsuki meant got a bit faraway look.
While they were having such conversation, Hajime called for a waiter and mercilessly made his order to the female waitress who came. The way he ordered was like a starving sports club member who came to a cheap yakiniku restaurant.
Hajime was seriously a demon king with how he smiled so radiantly. Price? I’m in the faction that isn’t concerned with that kind of thing though? His smile seemed to say that.
「Oi, what’s the matter Amanogawa. Come on, you order what you like too.」
「I’m the one paying here!」
Kouki also ordered half in I don’t give a damn anymore attitude. His eyes were cold. The harsh gaze of the female waitress changed to the eyes of someone looking at a dangerous person.
And then, there,
「Eerr~, I wonder what should I do……it makes me cringe how expensive this restaurant is. It also has meat part that I have never heard before. Ah, this place also has bibimbap. Give me this for starter.」
「Nn? Just now, somehow……」
Before anyone knew it there was Kousuke wearing attire with black base color sitting beside Hajime.
Mitsuki covered Manami’s mouth in panic. As expected from the person in charge of scouting. Kousuke sensed something from across Yue’s barrier that even Hajime was ignoring and looked around restlessly.
At the same time, the female waitress got a scare 「Hiih, who!?」 and Kouki immediately caught her body from falling on the floor. Even though the waitress looked at him with suspicion until just now, when Kouki asked her 「Are you alright?」, the waitress’s cheeks immediately blushed red. This was also as expected from the hero.
「So you are here Endou.」
「You are here huh Endou.」
「I’m here. I was behind the waitress just now. I sat down while you guys ordered.」
It seemed he was sitting.
「……Damn you Endou. How dare you show even greater invisibility than my barrier so nonchalantlyyy」
「So the three of them are having yakiniku together today. Ah, I see.」
Shizuku seemed to guess something. Mitsuki and Manami tilted their head.
「Surely the gathering today is for Kouki’s apology and gratitude to them for coming until the desert world to pick him up and for dragging them into his summoning.」
「Ah, something like that……」
「Hmmmm. Nagumo-senpai came to Onii-chan’s invitation just for that?」
「……Nn~? It seemed that something happened with things like the goddess or the holy sword, or the trip to revive the great trees? Sometimes Hajime would call the hero on his own initiative.」
「Aa, recently the name “chuuni bastard” often showed up in Onii-chan’s call history. So it’s actually referring to Nagumo-senpai.」
Yue and Shizuku and also Manami did their best to intentionally ignore Mitsuki’s statement that was full with things to tsukkomi at. In exchange they also made their order while starting to observe the boys group.
The boys were eating while conversing with Kousuke mainly talking and Kouki asking questions in between.
「I see. Kouki also has the intention of asking about the details of the fantasy that is going on at earth while he was absent.」
「Surely that’s the main reason he called Kou-nii here. Thinking carefully, it must be a spur of the moment that Kouki-san called Nagumo-senpai here to participate to give explanation. After all Nagumo-senpai seem like someone who find it troublesome to give explanation. There is no doubt that was the reason that Kouki-san went to the ATM.」
Manami-chan hit the bull’s eye.
Kouki was also asking questions at Hajime, but sure enough, he was focused with ascertaining the cooking of the meats and enjoying the food. The reply he gave was really sloppy.
Each time that happened, the number of blood veins throbbing on Kouki’s forehead would increase by one.
「Wait a sec. It’ll be done soon. This moment is the most important.」
Hajime-san’s gaze wouldn’t move from the meat that he was in the middle of cooking.
「C-certainly I said that the treat today is for giving apology and gratitude. But it’s also for sharing information just in case for the future right? That’s why, focus on the talk a bit more.」
He was focusing. Hajime-san was focusing on the meat! There was no reply anymore.
And so――”Serene Mind” activated!!
I’d take that perfectly cooked meat! Kouki’s chopstick mowed the cooking net like an iai slash as though to say that. The meat was stolen in the blink of eye.
The demon king was dumbfounded. His gaze saw off his treasured meat that was tossed into the hero’s mouth……
「Mugu muguh. Ah, amazing. To think that the meat will be this different from just the frying timing.」
「Waaahh, don’t bring out Donner in this kind of place-!!」
Kousuke leaped at Hajime’s arm and clung on it.
Kouki shrugged as though to say 「You’re exaggerating」 while his chopstick moved toward his own meat that would finish cooking soon.
「Tsk. This is overcooked. It tasted shitty.」
It was taken away by the demon king. But, the hero was an adult, so he wouldn’t snap from something like this like the demon king.
Besides, as expected he couldn’t bring himself to grill every single meat slowly with great care like the demon king, so he was grilling three or four meats simultaneously each time. In other words, there were still two more meat slices on his net. Furthermore they were diaphragm meat that was his favorite!
「This one is so-so I guess.」
It’s fine, it’s fine. I’m an adult. In the first place the meal today is also for apologizing and thanking him. There is no need to mind someone childish like this demon king. His chopstick reached out toward the last meat――
*Clang* two chopsticks clashed. *Shrk shrk* The chopsticks were creaking. Even though those were metal chopsticks.
「……Nagumo. This is my meat. You understand right?」
「Amanogawa. My meat is my meat, you meat is also mine. You get it right?」
Their gaze crossed. It was like a confrontation between an assassin and a murderer of the Bakumatsu era.
Kousuke looked like he was enduring a stomachache while desperately trying to remonstrate the two 「H-hey, at least eat normally in yakiniku restaurant. Or rather please just eat. I’m begging you twooo-」 but……
Kouki enveloped his chopstick with a blade of light! Because he couldn’t win with physical strength, he aimed to destroy the opponent’s weapon(chopstick). Hajime’s chopstick was cleanly severed in half and rotated in the air!
Kousuke screamed 「You-, wai-, stupidddd-」.
Kouki grinned. Without pause he moved to take the last meat――instantly, *basu-* a stupid sounding sound rang out.
「Hah, you are wide open under the table you know?」
「You are an even bigger idiottt-」
It was the sound of Donner (silencer version) that was aimed under the table firing rubber bullet. The bullet punched Kouki’s defenseless stomach. The meat that he swallowed before this almost got moved in reverse.
During that time Hajime caught the severed chopstick, returned it to normal with “Transmutation”, and got the meat!
Just as he thought that, *hyupah* a tongs was thrust forward and caught Hajime’s chopstick in between its hold. And then the tongs immediately twisted to make the meat slice fall off from the chopstick.
「You shitty hero, you even brought out the tongs――hm, wait a second. That tongs, you!」
Looking closer, it wasn’t tongs at all.
「That’s the holy sword ain’t it!!」
「――Holy Sword “Sword Breaker Mode”.」
It seemed Kouki wanted to assert that it was a fork shaped double-edged knife with a slit at the middle.
「You are forcing it! Look at the holy sword! It’s slightly trembling ain’t it! It’s getting desperate to keep its hold at my chopstick!」
「Or rather, Amanogawa. Where did you carry it?」
「I turned it into a necklace. When I thought that it would be easier to carry it around if it turned small like accessory including its handle, it shrunk into the size of accessory.」
「Holy sword-chan is just too devoteeed」
*Ginn* Hajime deflected the tongs shaped holy sword.
The hero and demon king glared at each other once more. Kousuke-kun who was holding his stomach at the side.
The demon king quietly opened his mouth.
「Oi, shitty hero.」
「What, shitty demon king.」
「Get along a bit you twoooo」
Kousuke casually evacuated the foods on the net to the side so that they wouldn’t be overcooked.
「Listen here, I came here today because you were really insistent asking me to come.」
「I wasn’t that insistent. I was just suggesting that I’ll treat you to something in exchange of taking your time, but that will be secondary to the talk, that was what I said.」
By the way, in regard to the talk, other than information exchange they also planned to talk about the trip to restore the great trees and to test various things after the meal to see if something could be done so the Goddess Ua Alto inside the holy sword could express herself outside a bit clearer.
……But from the show of great devotion just now, it felt like she would be able to turn the impossible into possible with her own effort, so it was uncertain whether they would really need to do anything more.
「Forget the minor details. What’s important is that today, I came here bringing a lot of things for you.」
「……You mean the necessary artifacts for the trip. Like the treasure warehouse or something?」
「That’s right. To be frank, this kind of treat is just like a little chump change for friendly treatment don’t you think?」
「Putting aside the necessity of those artifact for regenerating the great trees, I think that perhaps the biggest factor of why you made those artifacts were also because of your own hobby aren’t they? Even though you are fully motivated to make use of me」
「Our interests aligned in this case. Even more than that I’m telling you this is a bargain pack that is filled with sincerity.」
「What’s with you. You can just say it frankly if that’s the case.」
Hajime flicked something with his finger. Kouki reflexively caught it. It was a ring with jewel attached――a treasure warehouse. Surely it must be filled with a lot of things that would be useful for the trip after this.
They had exchanged information in general, and the things that had to be handed had been handed off. Furthermore those things were high class things. As for the preparatory meeting for the trip, it could be done through phone. As for the holy sword……it felt like there was really nothing more that had to be done for it.
And so there was nothing else to be said here wasn’t it? As though to say that,
「You can go home already. Just leave behind all the money you have on you.」
Hajime-san said a line that sounded like a thug with a wide smile.
Kouki-kun also smiled widely while giving him the middle finger.
「Go sleep talking when you’re asleep.」
*Juu juu* The sound of meat sizzling and the delicious scent wafted in the air. Cheerful voices could be heard from other tables. It was only this spot that had extremely low temperature.
「I have said this too before.」
Kouki added some more choice words of his.
「You are the one person I hate the most in this world!」
As expected he said that with a wide smile on his face. Any girl who saw him would surely fall for him in one second from the sparkling effect around him.
Of course Hajime too,
「What a coincidence! I also can’t stomach you from the bottom of my heart!」
His smile couldn’t be any wider than right now!
A beat later,
「Ahahahahahah, isn’t that right! Of course you hate me!」
「Hahahahahahah, I’m relieved! I was about to kill you if you said you don’t hate me!」
Somehow terrifying voices that were filled with killing intent resounded.
「Haa, even the bibimbap is in another class in expensive restaurant. Ah, the kimchi is tasty.」
A leisurely voice resounded. The two turned their gazes casually and saw Kousuke enjoying the food quietly by himself. And then they noticed. Oh? The diaphragm meat that was contested before this was gone? Or rather, the other meats that were grilled before were also gone?
The laughing voices stopped cold. It was as though in synchronization.
「Oi, Endou. There is no more meat on the grill.」
「Well of course.」
「I don’t want to think this but could it be, Endou」
「Ou, I ate them.」
*Shiin* Silence filled the area.
「No, because, they got scorched while you guys were fighting. I also applied soundproofing so that other guests won’t get bothered. Just consider it payment for that. It’s fine isn’t it?」
「I see……no, I guess so. It was our bad for fighting wasn’t it?」
「Then it can’t be helped. I only wished you would told us first at least.」
「……O-oi. Why are your pupils shrinking? Why are you pointing that chopstick to me? You can just order another again! And someone like you Nagumo always eats this kind of thing anyway right!?」
Hajime and Kouki looked at each other. They nodded. And then their gazes rolled toward Kousuke.
「That’s not the problem.」
「Profiting from the fight of others isn’t a praiseworthy act.」
「S-stop it! That’s a specially made bibimbap that I cooked to perfection by using the restaurant’s provided seasoning too you know! I discovered the optimum equation for my preference while eating half of it! That’s why――ah, dammit, sto-, stoooppp――, don’t lay your hands on this oneee-」
Mitsuki and Shizuku looked at each other after witnessing such scene. Each of them sighed and smiled wryly.
「What’s that? They are just acting like a group of stupid boys. Onii-chan, since when he became like that……」
「Now now, isn’t it fine Mitsuki-chan.」
For some reason Shizuku’s expression was extremely gentle. Motherhood could even be felt from that smile. It made Mitsuki unconsciously turned red.
「I’m happy you know? Hajime and Kouki are able to hate each other. Their relationship become one where they can say it openly without holding back. ……Yes, really, it makes me very happy.」
「……I don’t really get it.」
「Then Mitsuki-chan, which one do you like better, the previous Kouki or the current Kouki?」
In exchange of answering, Mitsuki stuffed her cheeks with meats that had finished getting cooked. She looked really displeased.
But, glancing at Kouki and others who continued eating even while quarreling with each other, a frown was formed on her forehead.
That became the most eloquent answer she could give.
Shizuku was supporting her cheek with her hand while staring at Mitsuki with a kind expression. It made her really embarrassed for some reason and she averted her gaze while thinking that she was also quite childish huh.
And then, the fluffy feeling where there was nothing that had to be said――was blown away.
「Fuhih, fuhihih. Chopstick and chopstick clashed, fuhih. Even though they said they hate each otherrr, aa I can’t anymore-, so precious! It’s so precious I’ll die!!」
Her best friend was writhing with a disgusting smile on her face. She was twisting and writhing and meandering like snake.
Yue kept her eyes fixed on the salad before her while taking great care to never meet the gaze of the girl in question. No wonder she was so quiet from the middle, it seemed she was holding her breath to kill her presence in front of this thing that was the same but subtly different from Tio’s that――with this encounter of the unknown.
And, while such thing was going on,
「U-umm, Onee-sama? My eyes, is there anything strange with them?」
Shizuku whose attention was diverted to Yue saw Mitsuki rubbing her eyes while looking at Hajime’s direction. It attracted her curiosity and she also turned her gaze. There she saw.
There was something behind Hajime, a silver haired beautiful fairy doing an embarrassingly cool pose.
Behind Kouki was a black haired beauty smiling really cheerfully as though she was having fun.
Behind Kousuke was a beautiful oni with alluring aura wearing kimono that was worn slovenly.
Hajime and co didn’t notice. Perhaps it was because they were focusing on the meats and their opponents. Or perhaps because they couldn’t notice those beauties because they were conceptual existences……
They didn’t understand the particular but,
「S-S○and!? All beauty S○and!?」
「……Mu? The other guests can’t see them?」
Manami and Yue definitely also could see them. It seemed that it wasn’t a hallucination.
Anyway, in respond to the heating up quarrel of the boys, somehow even people who seemed to be like guardian spirits were also coming out. It was awfully not good.
Shizuku sighed and stood up.
「Anyway, how about we join their table?」
「……I have waited for those words.」
Yue took the lead to move toward the boys table. Perhaps she wanted to go to Hajime’s side, or perhaps she wanted to take distance from the unknown creature(Manami).
Manami herself also rushed toward Kousuke with the footsteps of someone heading to paradise.
Surprised voices could be heard from the boys table.
Her brother had changed. Perhaps in a good direction. However, the reason her brother changed even though his family couldn’t even change him might be that hateful demon king. She felt really complicated when she thought that……
「You are misunderstanding.」
「Kouki changed because he worked hard. Because this time he really fought till the very end.」
Right? Shizuku said while caressing her head.
Aa, she thought. As I thought, I want to become this person’s actually sister-in-law.
「Onee-sama, what do you think about the current Onii-chan?」
「Onee-sama is relieved you know? My younger brother looks like he can go anywhere he want now.」
「……Muu. Is that so?」
「Yes, that’s so.」
That answer that was given to her with a mischievous smile wasn’t the answer she wished for as expected.
However, it felt like the weight on her shoulders had vanished.
「Now then, how about we go scolding the good-for-nothing men with bad manner?」
「Fufu, yes! Onee-sama!」
Mitsuki smiled naturally.
That smile was exactly the same like the Onee-sama that she loved and respected.
AN: Thank you very much for reading this every time.
Thank you very much too for the thoughts, opinions, and reports about misspelling and omitted words.
One more, happy New Year.
I couldn’t update or give greeting for Christmas, but people of Narou, I had been in your care last year. Please take care of me too this year.
The update has become irregular, but I’ll somehow find time to update, so I’ll be happy if we can have fun together too this year.
※Just in case, the true identity of the three Stands is.
– Hajime fairy Etemp (Demon King & Hero Sequel Arc ⑥)
– Kouki Holy Sword Ua Alto (same arc number ⑤)
– Kousuke Shuten Douji (same arc number ⑧)
– Zero Chapter 28 It was already uploaded since 14 December, but this update happened since my last notification, so allow me to report this one too. Black haired Miledy and a cool Miledy, you can enjoy both there so please take a look!
※It’s also uploaded at Nico Nico Douga a bit before, so please take a look.
※Apart from that, I have to mention this one no matter what.
Aria The Crepuscolo’s release date has been announced! 5 March! The main visual is also published! The electronic New Year card that I applied for has also arrived! All of them are just too lovely……I’m purified by presents that gave me too much happiness already at the beginning of this year! I can’t wait for two months later……