Black Cat Chapter 103: Returning Home

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 In early December, I was sitting on the coachman’s seat on the way to the village of Atsuka.


 No, to be precise, I was sitting on Shure’s lap.



 When I consulted with everyone in Chariot about my going home, they said that it would be fine after the scheduled orc subjugation request was completed, and they also lent me the carriage.


 I asked Gad to teach me how to be a coachman, but when I did, Shure came forward and hijacked the conversation.



“Nyango is warm, and there is even a cushion under my bottom to protect me from the cold.”



 Since I’m going to the coachman, I’m taking care to make the journey as comfortable as possible with void attribute magic, and Shure is in a good mood because she can have me all to herself.


 In the back of the carriage is Grandma Carisa’s, Mr. Zeol’s, and souvenirs for my family, along with my brother’s.



 At first, my brother was reluctant to go to Atsuka, but I convinced him that our mother would be relieved to see him in good health if I brought him along.


 My brother is busy kneading clay on the back of the wagon.



 Seeing the craftsmen in the pottery workshop loading the soil into disks with such skill, he thought that if he too could hone his modeling skills, he would be able to broaden his range of work.


 So, I had him try to see if he could make a magic circle out of clay, but as it turned out, he was quite clumsy.



 Not only was he unable to make a magic circle, but he could not even make a disk, and the outer circumference was wobbly and the thickness was uneven.


 I don’t know if it was because he was clumsy, to begin with, or because he had hardly used magic for more than five years after the Nest Leaving Ceremony was over.



 When I asked Gad, who also has the earth attribute, to make a disk for me, the result was not good, so I feel that familiarity and proficiency with modeling has a large impact.


 So, my brother started practicing modeling in parallel with leveling the ground in the front yard of the base.



 Since all magic circles are based on circles, he started by making beautiful disks, and when he was able to do that, he began to carve concentric circles within the disks.


 I do not know how long it will take until he can make patterns, or even if he forms a magic circle with soil would Engraving Magic activate.



 It seems that the magic element that activates the magic is contained in large quantities in the air, but not so much in the soil.


 If the magic stone is powdered and mixed, perhaps the Engraving Magic could be activated, but it would not be beneficial in terms of cost.



 Another way to utilize it might be to use it as a magical circle with materials that easily allow magic power to pass through, such as fangs, horns, and bones of monsters, that are powdered and mixed with soil and hardened into the shape of a magic circle.


 Currently, commonly used magic tools are generally made by carving a magic circle on a stone tablet, filling it with a powder made of materials that allow magic power to penetrate easily, and hardening it.



 If soil is mixed in, it is likely to lose efficiency as a magical tool, and if it is only powder, it is unknown whether it can be shaped with earth-attribute magic or not.


 Well, for the time being, I will have to let him try various things while working mainly on plugging rat entrances.



 The horse-drawn wagon is moving nimbly along the northern road.


 Normally, the carriage would be loaded with three large men, large shields and armor, and orcs on the way back from the subjugation expedition, but today the carriage itself is light because of the small number of people and the small amount of luggage.



 We passed through the village of Kidai before noon and reached the village of Atsuka by the time the sun began to set.


 My brother said he did not want to go home, but when we came close to the village, he stood behind the coachman’s seat and looked all the way to the end of the road.



 After entering the village, I should have gone to the village chief’s house first to say hello, but I made a detour first.



“Grandma, are you there?” (Nyango)


“Nyango, is it you Nyango?!” (Carisa)



 I called out from the back door, and Grandma Carisa came running out from the back.



“Grandma, I’m home.” (Nyango)


“Oh, Nyango, Nyango…” (Carisa)



 Grandma Carisa, choked with words as she hugged me.



“You’ve grown amazing, you’re really grown up…” (Carisa)


“What are you talking about, Grandma? I’ve only been out of the village for a couple of months, how can I suddenly look amazing?” (Nyango)


“No, it’s true, I know it. I know that you have made a place for yourself in Ibouro and have come back with your head held high.” (Carisa)



 Grandma Carisa is indeed right, and my goal is to bring money so that my family can survive the winter comfortably, but I also want people to see me now.


 The reason why my brother did not want to return to the village is probably because he feels the opposite.



“Nyango, who is that person?” (Carisa)


“Nyango’s wife, Shure…” (Shure)


“Oh, you even find yourself a wife!?” (Carisa)


“Grandma, she is just joking. Shure is also a member of the same party.” (Nyango)


“Well, don’t shock me too much. My short lifespan will be shorter.” (Carisa)


“I wish it were true…” (Shure)


“Okay, okay, enough joking. Help me unload the souvenirs.” (Carisa)


“Muu, Nyango is such a tease…” (Shure)



 I unloaded a lot of souvenirs: fluffy comforters, thick sweaters, flour, salt, sugar, honey, dried sausage, cheese, tea leaves, and the baked goods that are popular in Ibouro… Now, Grandma won’t have anything to worry about until spring.



“I can’t take this many.” (Carisa)


“No, no, I won’t be able to come back until the next time the snow melts.” (Nyango)


“Really, don’t spend your money on this old woman. Spend it on yourself.” (Carisa)


“No, no, no, I’m spending it the way I want to spend it, that’s all right.” (Nyango)



 I told the exasperated Grandma Carisa that I would stay in the village for a couple of days, and I would show up again, and I finally headed for the village chief’s house.


 I greeted the chief, gave him some baked sweets and tea leaves, and asked him to let me leave my wagon and horse for the duration of my stay.



“Oh, you’re back…” (Zeol)


“It’s been a while, Mr. Zeol.” (Nyango)


“Are you also a member of Chariot?” (Zeol)


“I’m Nyango’s wife…” (Shure)


“Wife?!” (Zeol)



 Mr. Zeol’s eyes were bugging out from surprise at Shure’s joke.


 No matter how I try, Shure and I don’t match, but everyone believes it so easily.



“Mr. Zeol, she’s just joking. You’re too shocked.” (Nyango)


“Oh, oh, I see… it seems like you’re quite skilled.” (Zeol)


“A spar…?” (Shure)



 Shure, too, has taken a look at Mr. Zeol’s body language and is looking a bit more motivated.



“I’d love to, but I’m going to hit the goblin nest tomorrow, so another time.” (Zeol)


“Mr. Zeol, I will go too.” (Nyango)


“I am not paying you anything…” (Zeol)


“No need. There are things I want to try.” (Nyango)


“Hoho… Well then, let me watch.” (Zeol)



 I gave Mr. Zeol three kinds of tea and two new travel books.


 Last but not least, we took the carriage to my parents’ house.



 It’s the first time I’ve been home in about two months, and what a shabby place it is.


 Thinking about it, I wonder if Shure will have a place to sleep tonight.



“I’m home.” (Nyango)


“Nyango, why the hell did you come back?” (Father)


“Huh… Father, you don’t need an allowance for the winter?” (Nyango)


“What, you should say it first. Where, where is…” (Father)



 Even though he greets me with a displeased face, as soon as he hears that there’s an allowance, his expression turns flattering.


 Stop acting pathetic even though you’re my own father.



 On top of that, when Shure came in from the front door and looked down on him, he trembled and froze.



“Nya-Nyango… Who is this one?” (Father)


“Nyango’s–” (Shure)


“Shure, a party member. She’s the coachman.” (Nyango)


“I-Is that so… Hi, I’m Nyango’s father.” (Father)



 Basically, my father has a weakness for people who are bigger than he is, and this is only exacerbated when it is the first time they meet.


 Furthermore, he is probably pressured by the atmosphere of a martial artist that Shure has.



 Incidentally, my oldest brother is watching from a corner of the room and has not spoken a word since I entered the house.


 He only glances at me and Shure, and I think he is too shy.



“Oh Nyango, welcome back…” (Mother)



 My mother, who came out of the back room where she was doing some inside work, also froze when she saw Shure.


 Yeah, my family is easily scared.



“I’m back. Shure is a member of the same party and a B-rank adventurer.” (Nyango)


“I’m Shure. I am just new here. Please take care of me…” (Shure)


“Yes… I’m Nyango’s mother. Nice to meet you.” (Mother)



 When Shure said that I would act as the referee, I wondered what to do, if Gad had come here instead, the situation would have become even more chaotic.


 In a way, this might have still been the right decision.



“I-I’m home…” (Fawkes)


“Fawkes, what have you been doing, you never sent me a letter?” (Mother)


“Noisy… Various things happened…” (Fawkes)


“Various things, you…” (Mother)


“Father, I’ve got a lot of stuff I got for you, so help me unload it. There’s flour, salt, sugar, new bedding.” (Nyango)


“Wh-what… Bedding?” (Father)



 He acted so cash-strapped that it made me sick, even if he’s my parent.


 I mean, it’s pathetic that once the futon is offloaded from the wagon, the whole family is engrossed in the futon, leaving me and Shure alone.




 Rolling around on the bedding, looking at my family who are enraptured, Shure’s hands are wiggling erratically, but I’ll just pretend I didn’t see it.





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