Black Cat Chapter 30: A Day in the Rainy Season
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The rainy days are increasing in June.
The villagers simply call it the rainy season, but I secretly call it the Rainy Season. [T/N: 雨季 “uki” means a rainy season or a long period of rain. 梅雨 “tsuyu” means the rainy/cloudy season from May to July in Japan.]
The changing seasons in Atsuka village are similar to the four seasons in Japan.
The wet season is even more depressing for the catkins, who have fur.
Once the rainy season is over, the dry sunny summer arrives, but it is still a difficult season for catkins.
This year again, except for the days of training with Mr. Zeol, I will spend the daytime in a cool place along the stream.
Even though it is still raining, the practice with Mr. Zeol is still taking place.
It does not matter if it is raining, as long as I use void attribute magic to create a roof and floor.
I was able to regain most of the balance that had collapsed due to the magic element rampage, and the area that was solidified with magic had become even wider.
The rapid expansion of my magic vein twice, first with a goblin and second with an orc, seems to be working in the right direction.
My staff arts also began to show signs of improvement, albeit little by little.
The number of times and duration that I can exchange blows with Mr. Zeol, who has taken up a posture, is increasing.
Even when the staff that I had thrust into his hand was popped, I didn’t feel as if it was going to fly away from my hand as it had been before.
After being hit again and again and again, my body has learned how to parry.
The location, direction, and strength of the hit are different each time, so it is not something you can do just by imagining.
It is the result of the frustration I have experienced in the past, as my body reacts on its own before I think about it.
That said, my staff still can’t hit Mr. Zeol.
In addition to the difference in experience, there is also a difference in physique.
It’s a gap that can’t be filled overnight, but I’m still growing.
As long as I continue to grow, the gap should narrow.
When I swung the staff that I hit from the bottom, it seemed that Mr. Zeol’s footwork was slightly disturbed.
I immediately went to swing at his shin, but as if he was waiting for me, I was stopped from above, and the tip of the staff that jumped up stopped right under my chin.
“It was a trap…” (Nyango)
“Yes, I was deliberately creating an opening in order to lure you in.” (Zeol)
“But don’t be discouraged. I’ve made similar attempts to lure you in several times before, but this is the first time I’ve been able to get a clear response.” (Zeol)
“But even if I can react, it’s still a trap…” (Nyango)
“If you see an opening, it’s natural to attack. Even if it’s a trap, you just deal with the trap.” (Zeol)
“Wow, I have a long way to go…” (Nyango)
“That’s the way it is… So, let’s go!” (Zeol)
Sometimes I don’t know if Mr. Zeol is good at teaching or not, but perhaps if I think about it, I will lose.
After practice, I washed off near the well and was treated to cold tea.
Mr. Zeol had purchased a refrigerator brought in by a peddler.
The structure is quite simple, just a wooden box with a metal plate attached to the inside and a magic tool to cool it.
Although the structure is simple, the performance is quite good, and it cools down to chill, though not to freezing temperatures.
The herbal tea that was chilled in the box had a minty, refreshing taste that made it even more refreshing.
“Mr. Zeol, are you planning to open a tea shop?” (Nyango)
“Hahahaha, that sounds good too. When my body is no longer able to move, I will rent a plot of land along the road from the village chief and become the old man living in the tea shop.” (Zeol)
I was about to think that such a way of life might be good… but I can’t imagine Mr. Zeol not being able to move in the first place.
This old man is going to be strong and virile even if he becomes an old man.
After having a cup of tea, I was about to leave when I heard footsteps coming from outside.
“Mr. Zeol, it’s orcs. They appeared in a group of about three right in the middle of the road to Kidai and attacked our carriage.” (Villager)
“How bad is the damage?” (Zeol)
“One horse and one driver, and a few wounded.” (Villager)
“Have you closed the highway?” (Zeol)
“The road from our village to Kidai is blocked, but I don’t know if word has reached Kidai…” (Villager)
“Gather fifteen people. We’ll head out tomorrow morning.” (Zeol)
“I understand.” (Villager)
The village chief’s servant ran back while being beaten by the rain.
“Nyango, you come too.” (Zeol)
“Yes, please leave one to me.” (Nyango)
“That’s after confirming the orcs.” (Zeol)
“Yes, that’s right. If it’s just a young male coming down from the mountains looking for a safe nest, it shouldn’t be too much trouble, but if there’s a general in the mix, it’s a different story.” (Zeol)
Orcs begin to fight for territory from spring to summer.
It is said that young orcs that have been nurtured by the herd until then become independent, and as they move to seek their own territory, they often come down to the villages and streets.
In addition, a leader called a “general” may appear and lead the herd to seek new territory, attacking travelers and villages in the process.
In this case, the orcs are organized and dangerous to defeat.
“If there are special individuals such as generals, kings, or mages in the group, we will consider withdrawing from the fight.” (Zeol)
“Are you going to increase the number of people taking part in the subjugation?” (Nyango)
“Yes, or we can arrange for more skilled adventurers to join us. …but we would have to go to Ibouro, beyond Kidai, in order to do so.” (Zeol)
To request for adventurers to subjugate monsters, you have to go through a dangerous place where the monster is found… which is a sad fact of life in a remote village.
A small village like Atsuka can be devastated if it is attacked by a large pack of monsters.
That is why the village chief has hired a veteran adventurer, Mr. Zeol, to teach the men of the village to fight.
He is prepared to drive back goblins and kobolds, and even large groups of orcs and ogres without being wiped out.
“What is the plan for subjugating them, Mr. Zeol?” (Nyango)
“This time, we will take the fifteen participants on a covered wagon to Kidai. If the orcs see the wagon, they will attack, and we will return fire.” (Zeol)
“What if a general is present?” (Nyango)
“We will fight back and drag them to Kidai.” (Zeol)
“Eh, are you really going to drag them to Kidai?” (Nyango)
“We will not have time to turn the wagons around, but I am going to make sure preparations are being made at Kidai. That is why, Nyango, I’ll have you run to Kidai to let them know we are coming.” (Zeol)
“I’ll go ahead and let Kidai know you are bringing the orcs?” (Nyango)
“That’s right, this is not only Atsuka’s problem but also Kidai’s problem.” (Zeol)
Will the orcs stay around the road or will they attack the village? If they do, will it be Atsuka or Kidai?
“I hope it will be sunny tomorrow.” (Nyango)
“Yes, but… don’t expect much.” (Zeol)
The rain seems to be less heavy than it was when we were practicing, but the western sky seen from the window is dark and covered with clouds.
If the sun would at least peek out, I could hope for better weather tomorrow, but at this point, it seems unlikely.
“What are you going to do if the general isn’t there?” (Nyango)
“Of course, we would surround them, beat them up, and subjugate them.” (Zeol)
“If we can take down all three, we’ll have a feast as we did on the wild boar hunt, won’t we?” (Nyango)
“That’s what I’m saying, but… I am not letting you eat any of the hearts.” (Zeol)
“I know. I’ve learned my lesson.” (Nyango)
The next day’s subjugation will start when it gets light.
If it’s too early, there are times when the orcs aren’t awake.
The wagons that will be used for the hunt are also decoys to attract the orcs, so even if the weather is fine, the wagons will slow down.
“Nyango, you will sit with me in the driver’s seat.” (Zeol)
“I’ll be in charge of the roof.” (Nyango)
“That’s right. On a sunny day, it would be nice to drive the carriage leisurely, but I don’t want to be drenched by this annoying rain.” (Zeol)
He must have gotten caught in the rain on the way to Ibouro with the village chief and Miguel, and he must have liked the roof that I made with void magic to cover the driver seat with.
“I’ve tried shades, raincoats, leather cloaks all kinds of things, but they don’t block the rain perfectly. It’s really weird to get my butt wet, I feel like I just pissed myself while sitting on it.” (Zeol)
“Did something like that happen to Mr. Zeol?” (Nyango)
“You idiot, it’s an analogy, it’s an analogy!” (Zeol)
I can’t imagine Mr. Zeol, who has a strong face, sitting up and pissing himself, but he seemed a little desperate in his denial, or maybe something happened to him when he was younger.
Well, I don’t feel like I can receive an answer, and the truth will be left in the dark.
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