I don’t need that much money. As long as I have enough money so that I don’t bother other people, that’s all I need.
And I probably don’t need a job either. I can paint even if I don’t make painting my job.
I don’t really want to be a “painter” because I can do it without working as a painter.
I don’t mind drawing what Fay asks me to draw, and I’ll do as much as I can if he asks me to. I can draw as many pictures as I can if Fay asks me to. …But that is probably not “work” for me.
Yes, it is not. For me, “drawing” is not “work”.
That’s why I don’t think I can be a “painter”.
I wonder if I am thinking too much about it…
I am simply worried about what lies ahead.
I had the pegasus put me down after a while. And I ate a meal with Laocles. (A piece of bread with cheese. No ham since it was eaten by the black ghost. I was looking forward to it!)
“Hey, Laocles.” (Tougo)
“I’ve been invited by Fay to become the Redgarde family’s painter.” (Tougo)
Laocles looked at me as if to say, “Why are you telling me this?”
“What do you think?” (Tougo)
…Laocles looked at me as if to say, “I don’t care even if you ask me that question.”, but… still, he thought and answered.
“If you don’t think badly of that noble, you should accept it.” (Laocles)
I wanted to hear the reason, so I asked Laocles to speak a little more. He is not a very good speaker either, but I’ll let him do his best.
“Because I thought you might need some protection.” (Laocles)
“As for money… you don’t need that protection. You don’t.” (Laocles)
“But you don’t look like you’re good at talking to people.” (Laocles)
I nodded with the thought, “That’s right.” I don’t think I’m very good at socializing. I’m also not good at talking. I’m also not very good at judging the intent and morals of people who approach me.
“If you’re going to paint in the future, you’re going to have to deal with the trouble. And more than that, I’m sure the ‘other side’ will be coming and drag you into things.” (Laocles)
Drag me into things.
…I hate that thought, but it seems inevitable.
“At times like that, it’s better to have some backing. If you’re on your own, you’re just one naive kid, but with the Redgardes behind you, you’re not so easy to deal with.” (Laocles)
“Is that what this is about?” (Tougo)
“At least it makes it harder to underestimate you as just another naive kid. If you know the connection to a particular nobleman, you can mislead him into believing that you can use your connections to take various countermeasures. Even if you don’t do anything.” (Laocles)
Yeah. I see. Even if I don’t do anything.
Sure, Fay is from the territory lord’s house. No one wants to make enemies with the lords… and even if I just keep on drawing pictures, the Redgarde’s will make those people wary of me and stay out of it.
“I see. Hmm…” (Tougo)
“…On the contrary, what’s there to be confused about?” (Laocles)
While I was looking troubled, Laocles looks at me strangely.
Yes, I guess so. I think that kind of reaction is normal.
I don’t know why I’m so hesitant, either.
The Redgardes are good people. Though, I still feel a little bad.
It’s not that I’m dissatisfied with them… Also, it’s not a bad idea to become a painter because I’ll be able to draw pictures, and even more, they support me and give me monetary assistance… This may not be necessary, but I can get support for my life in this otherworld where I don’t know how to do many things.
Yes. Nothing bad.
Nothing, but when I try to think… A sheet of paper flickers in the back of my head.
A hand reaches out to take me back to the “other side”.
“…Even if you don’t have an answer, they are willing to wait a little longer.” (Laocless)
“of course……” (Tougo)
Laocles tells me that. Yeah. Originally, the offer of being the house painter is not something they want in a hurry. After all, I still haven’t been able to fully control my magical power.
I still need to wear the strongest sealing equipment to be able to draw pictures that don’t materialize. I wouldn’t be able to make it as a painter yet if I didn’t do this…
“It just looks like you need protection.” (Laocles)
But I may need protection right now.
I… I don’t worry that much about myself, but I might cause trouble for Laocles, Fay, the horses and the bird, and I just have to make sure that I don’t get involved in any criminals. At least I should not be about to be killed the moment I enter the store, as I was this time. Also, I would be glad if people like poachers don’t come here.
That’s why I wondered if I should accept the offer of being a painter as soon as possible.
“…make me a shield.” (Laocles)
Suddenly, Laocles says something like that.
I was surprised and stared at his face… Laocles then said.
“If I have a sword and a shield, I can fight for a while. If it’s a little troublesome, I can handle it.” (Laocles)
I was surprised at Laocles’ offer.
Well, he did say that he could… fight.
“Does that mean… you’re going to escort me?” (Tougo)
“Not only will you model for me, but you’ll escort me as well?” (Tougo)
“…Originally, I’m more of an escort than a model.” (Laocles)
I never thought that you would be my escort. I see. You can definitely do it.
“But it might be a hindrance for you to get along with the nobles. It’s not power, it’s force that solves things.” (Laocles)
“Well, that’s—um good. Very good. I’m looking forward to your help.” (Tougo)
I’m so happy, so happy… I’ll bring my art supplies right away.
“I’ll be right back. I’ll create a shield right away.” (Tougo)
And when I was about to put the pencil on the paper, he said,
“Go to bed for today.” (Laocles)
…That’s what he told me.
“Good night.” (Tougo)
I’m going to bed now, because I’ve been told.
It’s morning now, so I’ll get up soon. Good morning.
As soon as I woke up, I went to take a bath.
“Good morning.” (Tougo)
The bird is with me today. As usual, the bird was taking a bath as if it was his own. Come to think of it, I haven’t seen the bird for a while. I’ve been visiting Fay’s house a lot lately, and there have been times when I simply ran out of magic and stayed in bed.
…I also take a bath and leave the spring quickly.
Today is the day to draw the shield of Laocles. I want to get into it.
“Good morning!” (Tougo)
So, I headed to Laocles’ house with all my art supplies. Laocles was waving his sword in front of the house. His figure was imposing and very cool.
“… you’re early today.” (Laocles)
I’m early, because I want to draw the shield. Also, I went to bed early last night.
“I was going to draw a shield…” (Tougo)
Laocles put away his sword and approached me. …and tilted his head as he watched me put the pencil down on the drawing paper, but I didn’t.
“… you’re not going to draw.” (Laocles)
“Yeah. I am going to draw. I want to draw. But…” (Tougo)
For the first time since I came here, I’m facing a serious situation.
“I wonder what a shield looks like. I don’t think I have ever seen a shield.” (Tougo)
Oh my, I don’t understand the structure of a shield.
So, we went to town.
This is the first time to go out to the town without riding Fay’s summoned beasts.
I know the way, because the Pegasus flew me there. …Yes, I had a hard time choosing the right horse this time, too. They all moved very close to me…
“Pegasus is fast…” (Tougo)
Laocles also rides a horse. …Unicorns still do not come near Laocles. However, the Pegasi seems to have gotten used to him. Laocles is more confused, but he is also heading to the town together on a Pegasus that approaches, saying, “I can give you a ride.”
We flew through the forest, above the trees, and over the plains to the town. Since we are not riding on the ground, there is almost no shaking. It was very comfortable.
“… is it okay for me to ride on them?” (Laocles)
It was a little funny because Laocles seemed to be shying away from the pegasus. When I checked with Pegasus, he neighed at me. That’s probably a yes.
…and finally, we arrived at the town.
“Are you finally coming out of the forest on your own?” (Faye)
Anyway, we went to visit Fay. Somehow. I wanted to tell him that I had come this far on my own.
“Well, a Pegasus huh. They’re fast. Did Laocles also ride?” (Fay)
“I’m happy for you. However, I haven’t had a ride yet.” (Fay)
When Fay said so and poked the Pegasus on the nose, the Pegasus made a face like “Well, I don’t mind giving this one a ride.” Though this one seems to like Laocles more than Fay.
“So, what’s going on? Suddenly. Oh, you don’t want to be our painter?” (Fay)
“I’m sorry to talk about it, but I’d like to put my decision on hold for a while longer.” (Tougo)
“That’s fine. What’s going on?” (Fay)
“I came to buy a shield.” (Tougo)
When I said that, Faye said, “Oh,” and looked at Laocles… Then smiled.
“I see. Finally, Laocles is going to be given a sword and a shield and was promoted from a mere house helper and model to an escort knight! Good for you!” (Fay)
Fay said and looked as happy as I was.
“No, the shield I’m buying is for reference.” (Tougo)
I won’t make mistakes with that.
“I decided to draw a shield while looking at the shield I bought.” (Tougo)
I want Laocles to be equipped with the best shield after all.
I will not compromise.