Chapter 43: Let’s take a bath after hard work
Five days after the incident.
“Not yet? Not yet?”
“Hn, yeah just a while longer.”
I placed my hand into the bathtub to check the temperature.
It was still a little tepid.
We were in the bathroom which Gonz had just informed us of its completion.
Lit and I immediately started pouring hot water into the bath so that we could enter.
In the bathroom were one large bathtub which could fit about three people and another small pot-shaped bathtub.
There was a stove installed in a small room separated from the bathroom by a door and a pipe from that stove heated the bath water.
In addition, it was an ingenious design whereby leaving the door open and opening the stove pipe would turn the bathroom into a sauna.
Baths were meant to ward off sickness and there were different kinds of baths built in different lands in the Avalon Continent but I felt that the Zoltan-style of the bathroom made using a stove and pipe was pretty convenient.
In the Imperial Capital, the common setup was to have the fire outside and channel the heating below the flooring. That setup could quickly heat the place up but the downside was that adjustment of the fire could not be done from within the bathroom.
Well, Lit was capable of warming the water herself using magic but temperature control was difficult and most of the time it would result in boiling water instead. Furthermore, the plan was to relax in a bath so having to use magic which required concentration would be too tiresome.
“Great, it should be just nice soon!”
When I looked over, I saw that Lit had already taken off all her clothes and she was not even trying to hide herself using the bath towel.
“Wha, you … !”
“Red too, hurry up and get out of your clothes.”
“Wasn’t the plan to wear swimwear?”
There was no helping it if she said it that way. In any case, there was no reason why I should refuse if Lit was okay with it.
Although it was a little embarrassing.
It was nothing much but please forgive me if my eyes were to be a little restless.
Buck-naked, we entered the bathtub facing each other.
Both our sighs of relaxation echoed within the bathroom.
“I’m tired too, it’s been a long time since I fought seriously so I’m still having muscle pains.”
Lit playfully poked my flank with the tip of her feet.
Dull muscle ache ran through my stomach.
I also poked Lit’s stomach in response and she also cried out ‘Ugeh’.
It’s been a long time since Lit fought seriously too so she was having muscle aches as well.
“I guess it’s still a must to exercise the body once in a while.”
“I wonder about that~ Incidents like this rarely happens after all.”
We both sighed together.
Floating in the bathtub was very comfortable so I closed my eyes and entrusted my body to the hot water.
“I’m glad we had a bath made.”
We added a bathroom extension using the reward we received from the recent incident.
Well, the construction fee for the bathroom was only 130 Peryl so it wasn’t that expensive.
In addition, as we were the ones who solved the incident, the carpenters from Downtown all gathered for ‘Our town’s Hero Lit and Apothecary Red’ and ended up finishing eight days worth of construction in just five days.
The carpenters were excessively happy whenever I passed them the lunch I made for them every day and told us to feel free to call them whenever we want another room constructed.
We still have the reward money we received so maybe we could consider making a greenhouse in the garden or a brewing room to try my hand in making herbal liquor.
A soft sensation touched my chest.
Opening my eyes, I saw Lit directly in front of me with a mischievous smile.
That sensation just now … was the feeling of Lit’s breast touching me huh?
It seemed that she actually used a concealment skill to not cause a single ripple in the bathtub as she approached me.
She was using her full power even when fooling around.
I was pretending to be cool but in actual fact, I was completely flustered.
Lit was laughing too but her face was beet red too. It probably wasn’t because of the heat.
Every time, even though Lit was actually embarrassed, she still appealed to me like that.
I grabbed Lit’s shoulder. Then, I spun her around and placed my chest on her back.
Then, I embraced her in that position.
She was pretending to be calm but Lit’s body was stiff.
But she quickly relaxed and leaned her body weight onto me.
Lit’s body was warm.
“What is it?”
“Was it really all right? If you went with Albert, you might have been able to return to the Hero party. Ares might even have reevaluated you too.”
“That’s out of the question. It might have been different if it was when I just came here but … now it’s not an option at all.”
“But the heroes might be struggling. They might be hoping that you would return.”
Lit sounded worried judging by her tone.
I guess I should make her understand properly after all.
I hugged Lit tightly.
I buried my nose in her golden hair. It smelled good.
“Even if that was true, I will not return. Leaving aside contributing to the heroes’ combat strength, Albert might have been able to do so and there are plenty of other hero candidates in other towns … but Lit is only present in this town.”
No, that’s wrong.
“That’s not it. All right, I’ll say it clearly.”
“I love Lit. I love you very much. Probably a hundred times more than how much you think I love you.”
“Wh, eh, ah … !?”
“That’s why I will remain here. No matter what anybody says. I wish to remain by Lit’s side more than being a hero.”
Lit didn’t have her usual bandana to cover her mouth so she submerged half her face in the bath to conceal her grin.
I felt that Lit had been feeling uneasy lately but I believe her unease should disappear from this day onward.
Once again, we could return to our ordinary days.
Albert and Big Hawk were arrested without any resistance.
Although the surviving demons defeated the Guards and fled.
Just today, the last Stalker Demons that had escaped was finally subdued.
It was Byuui who subjugated them.
As he still did not belong to any Adventurers Guild, he was a mysterious swordsman with an unknown history.
“For the time being, he has declared that he was a touring aristocrat. But he is the fourth son so he does not have inheritance rights.”
“The Maudesta family? An aristocrat from the Kingdom of Flamberg? But that country fell to ruin after the war with the Demon Lord army.”
“Just because the country fell to ruin doesn’t mean that the aristocrat family would disappear. Maudesta family’s legal wife is the daughter of an aristocrat from the Veronia Kingdom. Apparently, they are currently taking refuge in their territory.”
“I see. By the way, where did you get that information from?”
“Byuui told it to me himself.”
“I wonder just how much of it is true.”
The ones present were the Adventurers Guild’s executives. As well as Mayor Tornado who was stroking his prided beard.
“But such issues don’t matter. Take it to the extreme, it doesn’t matter even if Byuui is a fugitive murderer from somewhere.”
There were a few Adventurers Guild executives who frowned but they did not object.
“Byuui will be a special case and shall be recognized as a C-rank adventurer. Furthermore, he will be made to form a party and once they subjugate the blade sharks terrorizing the southern fishing ground, it will be recognized as a B-rank adventurers party and after that, he will back-up the entire Zoltan. I take it there are no objections.”
They had tried to ask Lit to return but she did not agree in the end. There was no room for negotiation.
However, there was no way they could ask the elderly ex-mayor Mistome-shi, the Archmage, to become an adventurer once again. Guard Captain Moen was also busy as the Devil’s Divine Protection issue was still ongoing.
There was no choice other than to have Byuui replace Albert as the B-rank adventurer.
“Moreover, Byuui is a disciple of that companion of the Hero, the Martial Artist Danan, right?”
“Yes, Hero Lit said so. We have not confirmed it though.”
“There’s no way to find out any background or anything about him in a remote border like here. Lit should know that too. The way she mentioned it was ambiguous as well, right? In short, it is still a status that makes it convenient for us to entrust the B-rank position to him.”
Tornado knew that that young swordswoman Lit was actually a shrewd individual excellent in political bargaining as well.
Tornado’s successor as mayor, the Adventurers Guild executive, Goran, was a somewhat unreliable individual so Tornado had decided that he must solidify the foundation in Zoltan during his term of office.
Mistome-shi was an excellent magic-user but he was a mediocre mayor.
Terrible measures that were worse than bad such as settling situations by directly fighting in the frontlines. Then what would happen once Mistome-shi retired?
The mayor’s role was to construct a system which could smoothly resolve any problem even without the mayor present. That was Tornado’s take on the job.
“So, we’ll proceed as planned?”
“Yes, there should not be a one in a million chance that he would lose to enemies the level of blade sharks. Release the authorization for B-rank as soon as he returns. On my side, while holding a memorial ceremony for the victims of this incident, I plan to appeal to the citizens with the birth of a new Hero.”
In the end, this meeting was just to confirm the plan they had initially decided upon.
B-rank adventurer Byuui. If he continued to remain in Zoltan, he might one day become the mayor.
He was the young hero who would bring Zoltan to new heights.