Vol. 8 Chapter 1 – Part 3

“Hmh…”

The two women woke up roughly 2 hours later.

Karin woke up first, then Kanade a little later.

Perhaps because their bodies had rested, or because of the equipment’s effects, their conditions had improved greatly.

“I offer you my most heartfelt thanks for saving my mistress’ life.”

“I do too. If you weren’t there, we would be sleeping among fish and seaweed.”

“It would have felt bad to just abandon you, that’s all. Rather than that, it’s almost time for dinner.”

Both had lowered their heads in thanks, but Shin replied that such excessive politeness was not needed, and handed them a large bowl instead.

He had made some stew while they were sleeping. It was simple – he just cut the ingredients and let them boil in the roux he materialized from a card.

“Allow me to thank you again..”

“And this is quite the delicacy too. I feel my whole body getting warmer.”

“It’s a simple dish, I just cut the ingredients, boiled them, and put in some seasonings.”

While saying so, Shin poured himself another bowlful. Yuzuha, of course, had her share too.

The two women were surprised at first by Yuzuha’s presence, but understood when Shin explained that he could call her because they were bound by a contract. Apparently, users of a similar technique were also in Hinomoto.

After the meal, they decided to talk a while before sleeping.

“First, tomorrow shall we see if we can find a dwelling or some sort around here?”

“That’s right. Without knowing where we are, we can’t decide where to go.”

“Ah, at the very least I know in which country we are.”

Shin interrupted the women’s conversation. He had seen a particular mountain when he had exited the cave.

“Is that so. Tell us then, where are we now?”

“Hinomoto, your homeland.”

“Sir Shin. May I ask how you know?”

“When I went outside, I saw the sacred Mount Fuji. Is it not Hinomoto’s symbol?”

Shin, who had heard this piece of information in Balmel, had understood right away where they were.

Sacred Mount Fuji was a map added in the 5th update, “Banquet of Blades”. It had been reproduced with such precision that it was almost identical to the real Mt. Fuji, so Shin understood at a glance that what he saw was Mt. Fuji.

“Indeed it is. In such a case, we can have a rough idea of our current location?”

“Yes. If we are in Hinomoto, we can find a way back.”

Shin thought of heading to a certain port town and meeting with Schnee and the others.

Kanade and Karin’s equipment had not been lost, so they did not need to be accompanied.

“Now that we have a destination, there is something I need to ask, Lady Kanade.”

Also thinking of Yuzuha, Shin decided to ask the question right away.

“What is it?”

“Why did you jump down from the ship? I am sure you knew it would put you in mortal danger.”

Shin had a few theories about the reason, but nothing more.

Kanade appeared to hesitate, but maybe thought that she couldn’t keep silent either, so she nervously started to speak.

“In truth, the medicine we had obtained for my elder sister had been blown away by the wind. I always kept it with me in order to not lose it, but that proved to be my undoing…I owe you both an apology.”

Saying so, Kanade lowered her head towards Shin and Karin. She knew it was dangerous, but moved without thinking.

“Even so, in the end only this much remained.”

What Kanade was holding were green colored leaves with a hint of red.

The name of the plant was “Mimic Dead Snake Grass”. As the name suggests, it was a plant that looked very much like  “Dead Snake Grass”, but was a completely different species.

Shin had seen the plant name displayed via【Appraisal】and felt something was off, but couldn’t quite put his finger on it, so he urged Kanade to continue.

“My sister has contracted quite a unique disease you see. She doesn’t have much time left anymore. This medicinal herb can specifically cure it, but it cannot be found in our country, nor did any merchant have it. We had finally managed to obtain some.”

A unique illness, a specific medicine, Dead Snake Grass…Shin tried comparing the pieces of information found in the conversation with his own knowledge.

“However, this much can only prolong her life a little longer…”

“Milady…”

Karin tried to console the downhearted Kanade. The country’s merchants had done everything they could too.

(I think I’ve already heard about this…a quest, maybe?)

Shin took a thinking pose and opened the menu via mental control. Inside the menu, he picked the “Event History” option.

This mode allowed Shin to browse, in detail, the past events he participated in during the game era: the contents, the item rewards, and other information.

Among them, Shin looked for events that required Dead Snake Grass.

(There’s just one…did I hit the jackpot?)

Among the events that required Dead Snake Grass, only one was related to a sickness.

In the events guilds could participate in during the game era, there was one that involved concocting medicine for a villager.

It was mainly aimed at players with alchemist jobs, but Shin took it for the rewards.

(Now I’m not sure if I should say it or not though.)

Shin looked at the event details and grimaced, careful not to be noticed by the two women.

If the illness was the same as the one he looked up, Kanade’s Mimic Dead Snake Grass would have no effect at all.

Not knowing the sister’s symptoms, though, he could not talk lightly. Even if he talked now, he would just dash their hopes of prolonging Kanade’s sister’s life.

“I apologize for the depressing story. We should go to sleep to be ready for tomorrow. We will watch the fire tonight, so please go ahead and sleep sir Shin.”

“My mistress and I will take turns standing guard. Please rest well sir Shin.”

“No, I can’t let you…”

“It must have not been easy to pull us up from the sea. You must be weary too. I assure you, we are better trained than the average person, we shall not succumb to mere monsters.”

Kanade smiled, full of confidence.

Shin was not excessively tired, but realized that even if he insisted he was fine, they would not be convinced, so he decided to rest.

Around 20 minutes after Shin went to rest, Kanade and Karin headed towards the entrance of the cave.

Shin, who stayed awake in case of an emergency, noticed it and checked the surroundings just in case, but did not perceive signals of monsters or the like.

(…someone’s crying?)

In the silent night, except for the sound of bonfire, the sound of someone crying reached his ears.

“…but why…!!…..a little….more and….help….my sist…..this can’t….”

It was Kanade.

She must have kept it all inside while she was talking to Shin.

She had left her house, her country, to save a person…and just when she thought she had achieved her goal, the Gale Serpents attacked.

Without enough medicine left to save her sister, it was natural to feel like crying.

Furthermore, Kanade was still a child. It wouldn’t be weird for her to feel heartbroken.

“(Kanade, crying…sad?)”

“(Well, who wouldn’t…)”

Yuzuha had heard too. Shin patted her head lightly, telling her not to mind and go to sleep.

(If I could….leave her alone, I wouldn’t be concerned like this…)

Sighing at himself for not being able to cut her off as someone he had no relation to, Shin decided to help the two Hinomoto women.

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