Black Cat Chapter 34: Goblin’s Nest

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 When I started acting as a hunter, the villagers began to thank me frequently.


 The reason is simple: I have more opportunities to eat delicious meat.



 I have also been catching Forest Mouse, but not in sufficient quantities to supply the entire village.


 However, if I kill a deer or a wild boar, the villagers will be able to eat the meat, little by little.



 The first deer was offered to the village for a feast, but after the second deer, at the suggestion of Mr. Zeol, the villagers began to pay for it together.


 The village is not a wealthy village, so the price is much lower than in town, but it is still quite a lot of money when I put them together.


 In addition, the skins were bought separately, so for each killed, I earned about three large silver coins.



 When Miguel was in the village, his cronies used to look down their noses at me, but now they smile fondly when they see me.


 I am a source of delicious food, and although I am small in stature, it’s probably because they knew that even with all their strength, they wouldn’t be able to defeat me. After all, I can kill deer and wild boars by myself.



“Nyango, Nyango!” (Ines)



 On my way to Mr. Zeol’s place, Ines came running up to me, waving her hands in the air.


 Since I had started coming here to hunt my prey, Ines had been calling me more and more often.



“Nyango, where are you going?” (Ines)


“I’m going to Mr. Zeol’s place to practice staff arts.” (Nyango)


“Hey, hey, aren’t you going hunting?” (Ines)


“I’m going hunting tomorrow or the day after, but I don’t know if I’ll be able to catch anything.” (Nyango)


“I see, that’s right…” (Ines)



 Ines, a sheepkin, has fluffy white hair, a cute face, and a calm personality that makes her popular among men her age, but she still seems to be more interested in eating than sex.


 Whenever she comes to me, the topic of conversation is always about hunting, in other words, when she can eat delicious meat.



“Nyango, you always go hunting alone, right?” (Ines)


“Yes, my way of hunting is a bit special.” (Nyango)


“Be careful you don’t get hurt.” (Ines)


“I know. The tasty meat will have to wait a little longer.” (Nyango)



 We arrived at the chief’s house, so I waved to Ines and separated from her.


 Even with that puffed-up face, I don’t have any meat.



 In my hand-to-hand combat with Mr. Zeol, I still haven’t been able to land a single blow, but I’m gradually getting better at dealing with traps that appear to be openings.


 In fact, since Mr. Zeol would never show an opening to me in the first place, every opening is a trap.



 But even though I know it’s a trap, I can’t avoid exploiting it, so I’m prepared to counter Mr. Zeol’s counterattacks.


 It is not a game of chicken between a fox and a raccoon dog, but it is an interesting game of tactics in the midst of a quick exchange of blows.



“Hmm, it’s a thousand years too early for you to set a trap for me.” (Zeol)


“No way. I don’t have a thousand years to live, so I’m going to set a trap for you right now.” (Nyango)


“Oh, now you’re talking. Take this!” (Zeol)


“Waa, almost… oh wow, that was dangerous…” (Nyango)



 Despite the infuriated words on my lips, Mr. Zeol is smiling.


 It’s a smile, but the movement of his staff is getting faster and sharper, and it’s getting harder to handle.



“Okay, that’s all for today.” (Zeol)


“Haa, haa… Thank you very much.” (Nyango)


“Nyango, I’m heading to Ibouro the day after tomorrow, you’re coming with me.” (Zeol)


“Yes, I understand. Are you accompanying the village chief?” (Nyango)


“No, I’m going to pick up Miguel.” (Zeol)


“Oh… Is it already the autumn break?” (Nyango)



 The school system in this world has a two semester-system, and the holidays are one month before and after the spring equinox and one month before and after the fall equinox.


 Miguel, who had entered a boarding school in Ibouro a year late, was coming home for the first time in six months.



“We will be bringing the grandchild of the village chief of Kidai with him, so we can borrow a replacement horse as we did the last time, but we will be leaving the village a little earlier.” (Zeol)


“Is there a reason?” (Nyango)


“The earlier we leave the village, the sooner we can get to Ibouro. We will pick up Miguel and Olivier the next morning, so we will have some free time.” (Zeol)


“Oh, well, I’m going to do some preparations…” (Nyango)


“Oh, what are you getting ready for? You’re going to bring a girl with you?” (Zeol)


“No, I’m just looking to make a little extra money…” (Nyango)


“That’s right, Nyango. You can also bring the orc magic stones you’ve been keeping. You can also exchange them for cash at the guild.” (Zeol)


“Ah, that’s right. I will.” (Nyango)



 According to Mr. Zeol, the adventurers’ guild is like a bank where you can deposit money.


 The guild invests the deposited money by lending it out, and it also pays interest, he said.



“It’s fine to deposit money, but it’s a hassle to go to Ibouro to withdraw it, isn’t it.” (Zeol)


“I don’t know—however, Nyango, you can go to Ibouro more easily than most people, can’t you?” (Zeol)


“Eh, me?” (Nyango)


“You know, it would be easier if you just drive your cart with your prey there.” (Zeol)


“Well, physically it would be easy, but… well, with a ride and a course…” (Nyango)


“Hmm, it looks like you’ve come up with something interesting again.” (Zeol)


“I just thought of it, and I don’t know if I can make it happen.” (Nyango)




 I’m thinking of a kickboard scooter.


 The structure is not as complicated as a bicycle, and if you omit the folding mechanism, it is even simpler to make.



 The course is made with [Step], I won’t have to worry about uneven surfaces.


 It looks interesting for a transportation device, so I should make time to make a prototype.



 However, if I were to make a kickboard scooter, it would be faster than walking, but not as fast as a horse-drawn carriage.


 The speed of a horse-drawn carriage is slower than I had imagined when I was a high school student in my previous life.



 After all, it is a horse that pulls it, so if the speed is increased too much, the horse will soon get tired.


 Still, it is faster than a human jogger, and the distance from Atsuka village to Ibouro is about 60 kilometers.



 No matter how many steps we can take to make a course, it is not realistic to travel 60 kilometers on a kickboard.


 If that is the case, what is needed is power.



 If some kind of power source can be secured, and if it is possible to travel faster than a horse-drawn carriage, it may be possible to use the guild in Ibouro while staying in the Atsuka Village.



“Hey, Nyango. It’s all right to ponder, but don’t oversleep in the day after tomorrow.” (Zeol)


“Yes, but if we’re going out to Ibouro, that means there’s no one hunting.” (Nyango)


“What, are you being urged to catch some meat?” (Zeol)


“Well, something like that.” (Nyango)


“There has never been anyone in this village who actively hunts beasts. The meat is delicious because Nyango prepares it properly. It is no wonder that they are urging us.” (Zeol)



 I’m sorry Ines, but I’m going to give priority to going to Ibouro this time.


 When we come back, I’ll go hunt something big.



“Oh, yes, that’s right. Mr. Zeol, do you have a big piece of cloth or something?” (Nyango)


“A big piece of cloth… what are you going to do with that?” (Zeol)


“I was thinking of using it as a sunshade for the carriage.” (Nyango)


“Oh, okay. The roof you can make with your magic will keep the rain out, but it will let the sunlight in.” (Zeol)


“Yeah, so I thought I’d put some fabric over it to block out the sun.” (Nyango)


“I know, we can look in the warehouse here for some old cloth. You don’t mind if it has a few holes in it, do you?” (Zeol)


“Yes, it’s not to keep the rain out, so it’s fine.” (Nyango)



 The next day, I went into the mountains to pick prone mushrooms.


 The rocky bottom of the river was cool in summer, warm in winter, but humid, not so good for people, but perfect for mushrooms.



 This time, I picked four large mushrooms that were ready to be sold.


 Tomorrow, I would sell them to a restaurant and leave the money with the guild.



 I put them in a basket lined with a damp cloth and fill the surrounding area with a soft cloth as well.


 I gently covered it with another soft cloth, put the lid on, and set off on my way home.



 In the mornings and evenings in the village, it is beginning to feel like autumn, but in the mountains, the season moves a step ahead.


 As I cruised around the mountain, taking a short detour from the river, I saw a goblin.



“One, two, three… six in all, quite a lot.” (Nyango)



 The goblins seemed to be scavenging at the base of the trees, gathering nuts and berries.


 Some of them are leaving the place with their hands full.


 Perhaps they intend to bring them back to their nest.



 I follow them back to the nest, making a wide turn to avoid being noticed by the goblins.


 As I walked, it dropped a nut towards me, the rolling crunching sound can be heard, but they don’t seem to notice.



 At the end of the slope, there is a place where spring water flows, and the crevice in the rock ahead of it seems to be the goblin nest.


 Holding the half-empty nuts, the goblins went into the crevice.



“Well, what should I do…” (Nyango)



 This place is relatively close to the village even though it is in the mountains.


 When winter comes and there is a shortage of food, there is a possibility that they will come down to the village.



 If it’s me now, I can kill five or six goblins, but it’s difficult to destroy the nest alone.


 It would be troublesome to get involved in a half-hearted attempt and be endangered when it comes time for the real fight, so I’ll stop at just scouting today.



“But this is a cave, so they can be smothered if I smoke them, right?” (Nyango)



 Using [Step], I scouted forward and upward, and a goblin peeked out from the top of the slope.


 There was no place to hide in the air, so I turned around and curled up to stop moving.




 Watching the goblin through the gap in my arm, I saw that it was wary of the mountainside, but not the sky.


 Just like that, I went up along the slope.



 While the goblin’s back is turned, I run up the slope and hide in the trees.



“It is a crevice, not a cave, so there’s a place where smoke can escape. Besides, there’s even another way in and out. …I guess we’ll have to consult Mr. Zeol on this one.” (Nyango)



 Memorizing the location of the goblin’s nest and the terrain, I took the long way down the mountain to avoid being found out.




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