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(281) Dwarf banquet
Doxco took out several alcohol barrels from the brewery, including the absinthe that came out in our conversation, and I put them in my item bag before we went to the tavern together.
I have no idea why I had to craft a sword but since I obtained a katana, it was hard to refuse the invitation to drink. I said I wanted to be a Japanese who could say NO but I totally can’t say NO after all.
As such, we headed to the tavern we passed by just now.
I could smell the alcohol before I even entered the shop.
“Oo! Doxco! You came too?”
“All right, let’s kick it off with a cup!”
“You young’un too, have a cup!”
I was served alcohol before I was even introduced.
Was it absinthe? I hope it isn’t hallucinogenic?
“Don’t worry, it’s a given that we will serve lager to people from outside.”
“Lager? Not ale?”
“Try taking a sip.”
Following Doxco’s suggestion, I took an empty mug and poured the drink.
It was exactly like Japan’s ale. And it was even chilled perfectly.
“How is it? Amazing right? Thanks to the magic tool called ‘Refrigerator’ made by Daijiro, we’re able to drink chilled lager.”
” … It’s tasty … It has a fruitier taste compared to Japan’s beer.”
Was the sweetness a little too strong?
“You don’t seem very shocked — Now then, have you ever drank lager before?”
“No, I am surprised.”
Now I wanted to have edamame or fried snacks.
Or the salted seaweed-flavored potato crisps I made the other time.
I guess I wasn’t the only one thinking that.
“Ichinojo. Do you have any dishes that go well with alcohol?”
” … Ah, I have plenty of food that my younger sister brought for me. But if we’re talking about food that goes well with alcohol then it will be this.”
I took out an egg from my item bag.
“Yeah, boiled egg. A duck egg.”
” … It is certainly delicious with salt but as a match for alcohol?”
“Well, take a bite a see for yourself.”
I placed the egg on a plate and cracked the egg with the rounded bottom of a spoon.
The inside wasn’t white but something soup-like.
“Uo, this is …”
“It’s pretty amazing. It’s called balut.”
“It can be eaten?”
It was not surprising that Doxco would be apprehensive.
After all, it was a duck egg that was boiled as it was about to be hatched so the inside had the shape of a chick.
As a grotesque food lover, this was one of the food that Miri liked and we even had a few at home at all times.
“I first ate this five years ago. I struggled for a while to eat it but it was quite delicious once I tried eating it.”
For some reason, I had 5000 of these baluts in my item bag.
I wonder just where did she buy these many — I thought to myself but when I examined them, I realized that the purchase dates were different. That Miri was stockpiling food with Space-time Magic even since she was in Japan. If I remember correctly, Miri’s Space-time magic had something like different dimensional storage which was similar to item bags in which the items inside would not spoil.
In any case, since I had such a large amount of baluts, it wouldn’t be a problem to serve a few here.
“It’s grotesque but it is tasty. Well, give it a try. Here, I have salt and lime as well.”
I purchased the salt from Deijima harbor while the limes were the leftovers from those I purchased in the town of Hanmuno.
” … I don’t have a choice?”
“Doxco said you wanted something savory right? Think of it as humoring me.”
“This is asking quite a lot.”
Doxco replied bitterly as he peeled off the eggshell.
He didn’t seem to have any intention of drinking the juice that leaked onto the plate.
He added some salt but his spoon remained stationary. He couldn’t seem to take the leap so I took out another balut and peeled it.
I have been made to eat quite a few kinds of grotesque food by Miri. A mountain of food that looks terrible. Although this dish can be considered the top five worst to look at, it is also the top five best tasting. In a good way.
In the end, the taste won against the terrible look of it and it became one of my favorite dishes as well.
I added salt to the balut that I removed from the eggshell and ate it.
“Yup, this is the taste. It’s delicious.”
The taste that was different from chicken meat and boiled egg and would become addictive once you tried it.
They were sold at ordinary stalls in Southeast Asia so that proved that it fit the taste of ordinary people.
Without us noticing, there was a gallery of dwarves around us.
It may be a bizarre dish but they were interested in the unknown.
Perhaps he steeled himself after seeing me eat it, Doxco shut his eyes and stuffed the balut into his mouth.
At first, he fearfully chewed but quickly his eyes opened and the speed of his chews quickened too.
Then, he swallowed
” … It’s actually … tasty. Furthermore, it certainly matches with alcohol.”
“See? Want another?”
Doxco replied and accepted another balut.
After seeing that, the other dwarves,
“Gimme one too!”
“Is it that tasty?”
“Where is it, lemme taste it.”
The dwarves joined in and started consuming a large number of baluts in the tavern. Naturally, there were people who couldn’t eat it after seeing the grotesque sight but all the ones who ate it showed contented looks.
“Your item box really has all kinds of things. You don’t have any alcohol?”
“I do. Although they are only wine or refined sake (seishu).”
The grapes needed for wine and rice needed for refined sake were all grown in My World and overlooked by Pionia.
“Seishu? Do you mean rice wine?”
“You know about it?”
“Yeah. I heard about it from Daijiro but I never drank it before.”
“In that case, want to try a cup?”
The refined sake was currently brewing in a large tank in My World so even the dwarves who are said to be bottomless drinkers probably can’t finish it all.
I took out a barrel and poured some into a bowl with a ladle and passed it to Doxco.
“This is the mysterious Seishu huh. Looks like water.”
Unlike before, Doxco drank the refined sake without hesitation.
” — !? What clear alcohol. There’s almost no hint of the coarseness of regular alcohol.”
“Daikinjo would probably be even more amazing.” (TL: It’s a brand)
“There’s even better alcohol?”
“Sorry, I don’t really know in detail but the taste apparently changes depending on how the rice is milled. This is made with regular polished rice so a slight coarse taste remains.”
The portion that gives the umami flavor when cooked as rice was apparently what gives the coarse texture when made into alcohol.
“I see … regardless of blacksmithing or brewing, there’s a lot more to it than meets the eye.”
“That’s true. Everyone can drink too — eh they’re already drinking it.”
Everyone was already in a daze over the refined sake.
“So, Doxco. Isn’t it about time you talked about Daijiro-san?”
“Ah, that. What do you want to know?”
“The most important thing I want to know is her current location. After that, what Daijiro is planning to do at the moment? And finally, about the flying ship.”
“I don’t know Daijiro’s current location but I saw her flying ship traveling east. There’s a high probability that she’s aiming for Mallegory.”
“Mallegory as expected.”
The book Daijiro-san left behind wrote that she was in Mallegory. It’s probably true that she is based there.
“I don’t really know her objectives now but I was involved in the construction of her flying ship.”
If I know the flying ship speed and refueling locations then I can look for clues there if Daijiro isn’t in Mallegory.
“Umu, the flying ship is originally a ship that transcends dimensions which Daijiro created in order to return to her homeland.”
“A ship that transcends dimensions!?”
Was something like that even possible?
Well, that flying ship did enter My World without my permission.
“Ichinojo, do you know how the item bag you use work? The item bags in the market only inflate the space to fit a volume a number of times more than a regular bag. However, the item bags Daijiro create cut into another dimension and is fixed to the bag. That’s why the volume is larger in the order of magnitudes. Well, it is actually a by-product of Daijiro’s research into dimensions.”
“This has such an amazing technology behind it?”
Daijiro-san’s aim — I had the hint even since the beginning.
“Daijiro-san’s aim is to return to her former world — huh.”
Why did she have to kidnap Miri for that goal?
Miri is Famiris‧Raritei — this world’s Demon Lord. She was able to return to Japan through the form of reincarnation. In other words, she is a successful example of returning to her original world.
There’s a high possibility of Daijiro-san being involved in Famiris‧Raritei’s incarnation.
“Eh, why did Doxco cooperate with Daijiro-san for that goal?”
“It’s the dwarf’s desire to pursue unknown technology. And I heard that Japan has even more delicious alcohol when I was told the recipe for absinthe.”
Doxco said lovingly to the now-empty bowl.
In this world, although rare, there is rice.
With Daijiro-san’s knowledge, even if it is incomplete, she should be able to teach them the method to distill refined sake. She didn’t tell him perhaps because she wanted to heighten Doxco’s curiosity and desire for alcohol? Well, that is if I had to make an evil guess.
Perhaps even the doujinshi was introduced by her to increase the people’s interest in Japan?
… Nope, that should just be her hobby. Yup, I’d like to believe so.