(261) The secret behind Home Return
Checking the time on my smartphone, I returned to My World at two o’clock in the middle of the night.
I was quite tired but I believe I ran 200 km in three hours.
If I ever returned to Japan, I would garner world attention as a marathon runner — well, before that, there’s a possibility that I might be abducted by certain countries to be experimented on.
“I guess I’ll enter the bath first.”
I said to myself and went to the hot spring facility.
It was split into the male and female sections and naturally, I entered the male bath.
I placed my clothes in the basket and entered.
” ……… Eh?”
” ……… Ah.”
Our eyes met.
With the naked Shumei.
To put it mildly, the places where it was meant to protrude, protruded slightly while the places where it was meant to curve in were properly curved in so I could clearly see her proportions.
“Why is Shumei in the male bath!?”
After taking a good look, I turned around and covered my rear with a towel.
“I-I-I-I-Ichinojo-sama, sorry, was this the gentlemen’s bath?”
“It was written so.”
“So-sorry. Er-erm —”
“Ah, never mind, I could hardly see after all.”
I actually saw everything perfectly but some things are better left unsaid.
There was a time when I thought it was a man’s romance to enter a mixed bath but actually putting both genders together would cause anxiety.
“Sorry, take your time. I will enter later.”
I was about to leave but Shumei grabbed my finger.
“Er-erm. You back, I’ll wash it for you.”
… Shumei? You were poisoned by Neete in such a short time?
Of course, the natural flow would be to refuse her offer but — I thought of the reason behind her trembling voice.
If her voice was trembling because she didn’t like being seen naked, I should leave immediately but — that didn’t seem to be the case.
I sat on the chair at the washing area at the hot spring and obliged.
Incidentally, there were mirrors installed at the washing area but obviously covered myself with the towel I used to cover my rear.
“Then, pardon me.”
“Ou … !?”
The touch on my back wasn’t from a towel.
That Shumei was washing my back directly with her hands. How brazen.
Normally Pionia would massage my back for me but how direct of her to wash my back with her bare hands.
“Em, Ichinojo-sama, this is my first time washing the back of a gentleman — I am not doing it wrong, right?”
“I don’t think you are.”
“I see, that’s a relief to hear.”
Shumei replied as she stretched her hand to my neck and washed it.
Thankfully, she did not extend her hand below.
“I asked Pionia-sama. And heard that Ichinojo-sama ran in the direction of the Great Forest.”
“Hn? Ah, my body would dull if I only ride the desert runner. In fact, my dream is to be the best marathon runner in the world.”
“I see. I believe Ichinojo-sama will be able to do it.”
That was a joke though.
I actually wanted her to laugh at it.
“Shumei, why did you think I am the Magician who helped you with Ice Magic? I only used the Home Return skill though?”
“So it was truly Ichinojo-sama!?”
“Well, yeah. I wanted to hide that fact but since you already know about My World, I don’t think there’s any need to hide it anymore.”
“I see — erm, it was love at first sight.”
“Love at first sight?”
“Yes, the Magician who helped me when I was about to be kidnapped by villains — when I saw Ichinojo-sama, I felt like I was looking at a Prince from the stories so I fell in love at first sight.”
“That … thank you.”
I was feeling both happy and embarrassed at the same time.
“I see, Home Return allows me to transfer to the home of a friend of the opposite gender as long as the friendship favorability was above a certain value but Shumei found it strange that your name would be listed in my Home Return if I was just a bodyguard.”
“No, at that time I considered Ichinojo-sama to be a very kind as well but, erm, do you know the condition to be listed in Home Return?”
” … Like I mentioned, people with high friendship favorability —”
“Yes, but not friendship. It was favorability in terms of love. Specifically, I heard that people you think of at least ki-kissing would be listed.”
Wa-wait a minute.
The list when I used Home Return was,
Transfer Impossible (Miryuu)
Florence Margaret clothes store (Margaret)
My World (Haurvatat)
Florence Margaret clothes store (Norn)
My World (Carol)
My World (Malina)
Capital City Koron (Shumei)
Isn’t it strange? I felt that Norn-san and Malina didn’t show that kind of behavior toward me at all. No, perhaps, eh? Eh?
Ah, also. It was a huge problem that Miri was the first entry.
As for Margaret-san … I don’t want to think about it anymore.
“That can’t be. After all, the first transfer point is my younger sister’s name you know?”
“If that is the case, your sister loves you too.”
“That can’t be. She always makes fun of me. If anything —”
She killed herself in order to chase after me … eh?
Would an ordinary younger sister kill herself in order to chase after her brother? Even if she was certain that she would be transferred to the Otherworld, would a younger sister discard billions of dollars in assets to transfer to the inconvenient Otherworld?
Perhaps Miri actually loves me quite excessively?
A person in love normally won’t go to this extent.
” … Serious?”
“I guess you didn’t notice?”
Shumei smiled wryly as she poured hot water down my back.
It was refreshing like when I use Clean.
“Where is your younger sister now?”
“She’s at a slightly distant place now.”
“I see. Next time you see her, please treat her kindly. An unattainable love is extremely painful.”
Shumei said and leaned against my back.
She seemed to know the feeling.
I could not answer Shumei’s feelings.
“Ah .. you’re right.”
Now then, I should soak in the bath soon otherwise my body would get cold.
Shumei could go to the female bath — just as I had that thought.
“Master! You’re in the bath, right! As promised, I will wash your back with my breast — Ah, Master brought a girl into the male bathhh!!”
I slapped Neete decisively as she was making a big fuss all on her own after barging into the male bath.