11-4. Reunion (3)
Satou's here. When you meet old friends in a class reunion, I wonder why do things that happened such a long time ago can be so vividly recalled? I usually can't remember them at all, it's strange.
"When did you arrive at the Labyrinth City?"
"Yes, it was late at night yesterday."
I knew about it of course, but I refrained from accidentally going to the Corps where Zena-san was since it would have made me look like a stalker.
These girls were staying inside their base during the parade so I shouldn't know that they were here.
"Excuuse me. Okay, okay, separate now~"
Arisa and Mia push themselves between Zena-san and me who were inadvertently talking while hugging, pulling us apart.
Zena-san who noticed that we were hugging parted away while swinging her hand, saying "wa wa wa."
"I, I'm sorry, I was...."
"No no, I'm happy that you're exalted with our reunion."
Zena-san unexpectedly has a passionate side huh. She also hugged me, tackle-like, when I escaped Seryuu city labyrinth back then.
"You two seem to be quite close don't you? Would you introduce her to me?"
Lady Karina puts her hand on my shoulder and grinds it from behind.
When I looked toward Lady Karina, Princess Mitia and even Lulu stared at us curiously.
Huh? Lulu should be acquainted with her though?
"She is someone whom I'm very indebted with during my stay in Seryuu city, one of the magic soldiers of the territorial army, hailing from Chevalier Marientail house, Zena-san."
I've heard her house name once before, but it's the first time I've said it.
I've always only called her Zena-san after all.
The way I introduced her seemed bad, Zena-san's expression got slightly clouded.
Maybe I should have said that she's my friend?
Behind us, the peanut gallery started to buzz about Seryuu city's rumors, like, "The city was safe even though an upper-class demon attacked it", or, "They're ruthless army whose soldiers even fight wyverns."
It must be quite popular to have many people know about it even though it's a territory located on the opposite side of the kingdom from here.
"Zena-sama. Although you might have forgotten, I am Liza whose life was saved by you in Seryuu city. Owing to that, I am now serve under Master, and have been able to accomplish great feats. I can never thank you enough."
"Thank you, nanodesu."
Liza puts her weapon on the ground, kneels, and respectfully bow to Zena-san.
It seems that Pochi and Tama also remember that their life have been saved by Zena-san, they convey their thanks while looking meek.
『Oy, Black Spear Liza let go of her spear!』
『Rather, she saved those three's life huh, just how incredible is she.』
『So the rumor saying the soldier of Seryuu city treats wyverns like they're small fries is really true after all.』
『That girl looks plain, but don't you think she's unexpectedly cute?』
The peanut gallery are fussy.
Should we move to the guild's business room where only Red Iron holders and nobles can use?
"My ability might be lacking, but please order me if you need me for anything. If Master permits, I will rush over immediately."
"Oh no, your words of gratitude are already enough."
Zena-san is at a loss from Liza's sincere words.
Even though dragons are still impossible for the current Liza, she can easily solo something like a wyvern.
"Hey, introduce her to me."
Lady Karina who was unusually sociable today demanded me so.
Someone intruded when I was opening my mouth to introduce Zena-san to Lady Karina.
"Ah! Arisa-chan, why are you still here!"
"Arisa, and Mia, quickly go to the stage. I've asked the intro guys to stretch their part, but they can't keep doing it forever."
Jenna and Iruna of [Beautiful Wings] who are in charge of the stage have come to call Arisa and the others.
Come to think of it, Arisa and Mia said that they were going on stage.
"Uwaah, I forgot."
"Oh no nanodesu! Karina, let's go together nodesu! I want you to look at the gallant figures of Pochi and her friends closely nodesu!
Lady Karina is pulled by Pochi and Tama from both sides toward the stage.
She was calling my name even while being pulled so she might have some business with me, but I can just listen to her tonight.
She probably came here thoughtlessly without arranging for the lodging.
"You too Master, please don't keep flirting, come look at the stage!"
"Yeah, I'm going of course."
I replied positively to Arisa who asked to make sure of it, and sent her out by waving hands.
Princess Mitia also said, "I certainly have to listen to Mia-dono's performance!", and then she pulled Merian who seemed to still have something to say toward the stage.
"Master, I declare myself to go collect Shiro and Crow."
"They're probably tired of waiting, you should get them quick."
Nana excused herself and left to the orphanage.
I think Lulu said that she would go back to get the kitchen knife.
"Lulu, when you're going back to fetch the kitchen knife, tell the girls who are house-sitting to prepare the detached room. Karina-sama and her companions probably going to stay there."
The preparation for their lodging should be alright with this.
"Sa, Satou-san, umm. She was.... Um--"
"Boy, been awhile~ Were there your mistresses or fiancees among the beauty army just now?"
"There aren't. Incidentally, there is no lover either."
When Zena-san was hesitating over how she should ask, Ms. Lilio asked the question with the crux of the matter like she was sending a life boat.
It was groundless, so I denied it immediately.
Arisa and the others are important to me, but if I have to say, they're more like relatives or family to me.
Lady Karina feels like an annoying junior, or a daughter of my superior. It feels like those demonic breasts would snatch my soul, but I don't intend to yield just yet.
More than anything, Aze-san wasn't present in the group earlier.
Right at then, the rough voice an adult man who can't read the mood cut in.
"Black Spear Liza! I am Kerun the 『Knight of White Spear』! I challenge you to a match!"
"Master. May I?"
"Go for it. Don't kill him okay."
"Hahhaa! Now's the only time you can afford to talk big!"
Since bloodshed is forbidden inside the guild, Liza and him went to the temporary arena space in front of the Labyrinth Army fortress.
This arena space has been built because there are usually a lot of people who start having brawls during the height of a festival, and buildings could collapse if they fought carelessly with their high strength.
"Um, Satou-san, is it alright for you not to follow them?"
"Oh it's alright. Liza can defeat him without sustaining any injury."
There's the level difference too, it's probably going to end up a one-side game.
If I were to go see it, Liza would be in high spirit and her opponent might get injured.
After the four of them have finished registering as explorers, we go out of the guild together.
Zena-san and her colleagues are going to meet with her fellow territorial soldiers in front of the west gate to assault the labyrinth in one hour.
It hasn't even been a day since they arrive in the labyrinth city yet they're already going to enter the labyrinth, quite aggressive.
Although I guess we're not one to talk about challenging the labyrinth in the same day of the arrival.
"Have you purchased the provision?"
"Yes, we've been told to prepare only our own equipments since the engineers will be the ones responsible for the provision."
I see, the engineers have it rough since it seems there are 12 people in all.
"Zena-cchi~, we're going to the stalls to recharge our spirits."
"Zena, remember to get some grub besides the love affair."
"Ruu-san, you don't need to speak unnecessary things. Zena-san, just be careful not to be late for the meeting okay."
The three Zena-san's colleagues slipped into the crowd after saying such nosy things.
"Mou! Everyone is like that!"
"Shall we go, Zena-san."
I take Zena-san's hand so she won't get lost, and go toward the stage where Arisa and co. are performing.
Since now is immediately after the parade, some unfamiliar explorers and townspeople called me [Young Master].
Some brothel onee-sans also called me, but they practiced their tact when they saw Zena-san beside me, they changed the subject very naturally, saying, "Please visit our establishment at least once."
As expected of employees of high class establishments. Truly tactful interactions.
Let's give them generous tip when I go visiting them with [Pendora] guys.
The venue has seats not only for nobles, but also for us as the leading actors today, but only Lady Karina and her companions, and Nana who are with Shiro and Crow on both her sides are there.
I was going toward there too, but since Arisa's stage had begin, I decided to view them from the general audience's seats.
"The music is wonderful isn't it. I wonder if the light orb behind that girl produces the sound?"
"Yes, it seems to be a fairykin magic called 『Instrument Player』. However, the music is wonderful because the skillful players."
"Yes....That's right, I can understand. It's quite wonderful sounds."
Mia who's doing the orchestra alone is certainly amazing, but I can't make light of Arisa who's accompanying her by singing the anime theme song.
While listening to the song, I get myself healed by watching Pochi and Tama who are dancing on the stage by matching to the song. Some shrill voices hang on the venue as the two are flying in the sky in pixie outfit.
When I listen closely, it seems Pochi and Tama are also singing while dancing.
I guess the singing coming from the venue are of the orphanage children?
Arisa who's singing with all her soul doesn't notice me, but it seems Pochi and Tama do, they wave their hands while rotating in the sky.
I wave back at them, which seems to have made them happy, the number of the sky rotations increases.
After Arisa and co. stage is over, I enjoy the festival together with Zena-san by snacking some meat skewers, and potato chips made from Hopping Potato around the stalls. It reminds me of the time when we were going around the stalls in Seryuu city.
Right, since I was introduced to the Seryuu city specialty products by Zena-san back then, let's introduce her to the specialty products here this time.
So I thought, I went to the shopkeeper who was exhibiting dried fruits, but--
"I'm sorry, the date palm is sold out. The load coming from the western part of the continent has been scarce for the last half month."
--unfortunately, it's out of stock.
The shopkeeper-san indiscreetly joked, "The demon lord might have been revived beyond the desert", but I couldn't laugh since it sounded probable.
We watch Lulu's Labyrinth Monstrous Fish Dismantling Show, and enjoy the freshly-made fried fish.
Since the fish was a bit grotesque-looking, Zena-san was hesitating to eat it, but she resolved herself and put it in her mouth after she saw me eating it.
Zena-san opens her eyes wide from the shock.
"....Amazing, the taste is so delicate even though it looked like that. It looks like a croquette from the outside, but it's soft and crunchy inside your mouth, it's really tasty. Moreover, it matches so strangely well with this white sauce."
After she's finished chewing it, a faltering impression comes from Zena-san.
The fried fish that she was holding disappeared into her stomach in a blink of an eye.
"Even though she's that young, she's amazing."
"Lulu is the greatest chef in the labyrinth city after all."
I leave behind my praise, "It was delicious", to Lulu and turn over the place to other guests.
Having staggering queue is only natural for food this delicious.
I encourage the little girl maids who are helping Lulu and then escort Zena-san to the west gate.
Unfortunately, we're running out of time.
"Zena-cchi, it'd been alright if you were a little bit late."
"I can't do that since I'm the squad leader."
"Are you seeing her off boy?"
"Yes, and this is a present."
From my bag, I take out a small bag containing several intermediate healing potions and magic recovery potions, and also some all-purpose antidotes made from dragon white stone. The magic potions have ordinary effect since they were compounded by other people.
Zena-san was declining since they were expensive items, but it didn't continue since Iona-san beside her accepted it.
"Have all members gathered? These people are the explorers who are going to guide us this time, Heliona-dono, the daughter of Baron Ketel, and Gina-dono, the daughter of Chevalier Daryl, both from [Moonlight]."
The young knight who appeared to be the captain of Zena-san and her colleagues introduced miss Gina and miss Heriona who are acquainted with me.
According to AR indication, miss Heliona and Captain-shi seem to be related.
Miss Gina noticed me after she was done greeting Zena-san and her colleagues.
"Ch, Chevalier-sama! Please continue the favo--"
"Calm down, Gina. That's the line for wedding. Chevalier Pendragon! I endeavored to catch up to you who was a Red Iron holder, but I wouldn't have dreamed that you would defeat the floormaster and acquire the Mithril Plate! Allow me to selfishly make you my aim from now on too!"
"It is an honor."
I wonder since when did we became rivals?
If I'm not mistaken, I've only ever talked to Ms. Heliona once.
Zena-san looks dumbfounded at me with wide eyes without light. Her speech was broken for some reason.
Huh? Haven't I said it?
Come to think of it, the townspeople up until we came here all called me [Young Master].
But, is it really something to be that shocked about?
According to Consul Nina, many people got elevated to the lowest ranked honorary knight in any territory every year.
"Did I not say it? Actually, I have been given the rank of honorary knight from Baron Muno, so I am called Chevalier Pendragon now."
"Eh, then, then the leading actor of this festival was you boy?"
"To be exact, one of the leading actors. There were a lot of people who challenged the floormaster."
To be more correct, the leading actress are our girls only, I'm just a bonus.
Captain-shi who can't read the mood shouts "Then, let us depart!" out loud, and the people of Seryuu Earldom Army begin moving toward the labyrinth gate.
"I will guide you to visit recommended shops when you've gone back from the labyrinth. Would you be willing to hear the full story when that happen?"
"Y, yes. Surely, okay?"
I promise Zena-san who's still not recovered from the shock.
I wanted to go together with her, but Zena-san's standing would fall if an outsider tagged along with her on a military exercise to the labyrinth, so I refrained myself.
The guides are the two people from Moonlight, so they shouldn't go that deep.
Let's confirm her safety with [Clairvoyance] magic once in a while.
I've forgotten to ask their scheduled return, but they probably won't go for several days for their first attempt, I guess I'll reserve some restaurants and bring her there everyday until I depart to the Royal Capital in five days.
During the days she can't go out, I can just let acquaintances who have worked hard like Ms. Miteruna to go instead.
What awaited me when I came back to the venue was the complaints of Lady Karina who was in the noble seat and got exposed to the curious eyes of the onlookers.
Even though Lady Karina is a beauty, she's not used to people's gazes strangely enough.