379 No End in Sight
We spent an uneventful night of repose. The three ladies shared a tent, it might get a bit cramped in there. I had another tent all to myself in peace.
Linda ordered the underling to sleep in the cave.
(Haa~, who could've thought things gonna turn this complicated. When am I ever gonna reach the federation?)
I chose the old road from the kingdom cause I thought the journey would be a smooth one.
Events always crop up whenever I come across other people, hence why I picked a road less traveled, yet this was the result.
I drowsily got out of my sleeping bag and groomed myself.
I poured all the waste from the portable toilet into a hole along with the hardened waste sand before burying it.
Apparently this sand will naturally dissolve into nature. What a handy stuff. Good for Ecology and etiquette.
In the meantime, Linda woke up.
"Good morning. We will be in your care today."
I replied back curtly at her bowing, 'Morning'.
The two ladies were still sleeping so I started preparing our breakfast.
"Now then, this early in the morning, it might be hard to find a game. Hunting would take too long. So y'know? Mind if we settle with a wild plant soup?"
This is a rich forest. It's easy to make a healthy soup from all the readily available plants.
I'd have liked to make something more filling to get us prepped up for our forest trek, but there's only so much I can do about this.
Linda didn't object.
"We wouldn't even know how to provide for ourselves if it were only us. We're thankful we can even eat. We won't dare complaining."
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With that said, I headed for the forest right away. Going around all over the place looking for fruits as well, sweet ones if possible.
We can replace protein with sugary content instead. Good for energy.
The gathering was done in an instant. Well, the time I spent under Acceleration was about an hour.
But the world itself experienced it all in a literal flash.
"...I will not question anything anymore. You won't give me the time of the day anyway."
It must have looked like I produced all the wild plants and fruits out of thin air from Linda's perspective.
But I'm not explaining stuff. No point fussing over it. Waste of time. Nothing to be gained mulling over this 'power'.
The other two ladies got up while I was making breakfast.
I gave them their soup and explained our plan.
Of course I gave underling his portion as well. We need him to guide us to the highway, would be a problem if he passed out along the way.
"Our goal today is to reach the highway. From there, we will be traveling to the commercial city. I know someone I could ask to safeguard you ladies."
"...Okay. Going back to the federation now doesn't seem like a good idea. But I would like to send my father a letter informing him of my well being. Do you perhaps have a paper and a pen?"
"We'd be better off keeping this to ourselves. The important part is having both your fathers and Kanedor in the dark. Do you wanna live on? If the answer is yes then a third party is your best bet. All the better if it's somewhere far away and nobody's the wiser. Write your letters once you know you're safe. I'll deliver them personally."
The goal was supposed to be delivering these ladies to the safety of their houses, yet that goalpost is gradually shifting.
I'd like to course correct, but I just know that there's no way out of this.
(I'm probably stuck on this ride to the very end... But once I've reached that goal, is it really the end? Can't see it...)
Seemingly catching on what I was going for, the ladies looked at each other with serious expressions before nodding once.