Monday, November 14, 2022 @

Chapter 165 To the Hot Springs!

 Protagonist’s POV
 Kohane is a place of resorts.
 Last time we went to the beach, but there are mountains and hot springs around here.
 I thought about where to go this time, and decided to take everyone to a hot spring.
 By the way, there is a hot spring in the castle where I live now.
 However, I would like to go to a proper hot spring resort.
 That's what I thought.
 At first, everyone was going to go to the hot springs, but for various reasons, the number of participants has been reduced.
 The group consists of Shizuko-san, Haruka-neesan, Misaki-san, and Sayo-san.
 Cecilia, Mariane, Frey, Sharon, and three of my childhood friends will not participate this time.
 First of all, Cecilia said something like this.
 "I'll take care of the church this time, so please take your time."
 Well, I decided to accept her kindness.
 After all, the church is very eager to make friends with me these days.
 Cecilia, who is a former saint and is good friends with both the pope and the pope emeritus, can stop them, which is a great help to me.
 I mean, I would prefer not to be in a hot spring with the Popes.
 Frey and Sharon were not so interested in the hot springs, and they chose to stay behind because they thought Cecilia would be lonely there alone.
 Mariane was quite concerned about it, but in the end, she chose not to come.
 Well, if I may say so, I may have made them feel uncomfortable.
 As for the three childhood friends, they had little interest in the hot springs themselves.
 But it seems that hot springs are not so popular among the young ones in this world.
 Anyway, I feel very relaxed... maybe it's because I'm an old man with a previous life and a little bit of heart.
 Nevertheless, it's been a long time since the last time the five of us were together.
 I'm looking forward to remembering our life in the village.
* * *
 After about an hour's ride, we arrive at our first destination, Hell Valley.
 This time we don't ride a dragon... if we ride a dragon, we can jump all the way to the top, but it would be a bit less elegant, so we take a horse-drawn carriage.
 Still, it's within the same territory, so we'll be there in an hour, no problem.
 "It's amazing, Ceres-kun, it's really hellish!"
 "Yeah, it's a great sight, but it smells like rotten eggs."
 "Great, it's bubbling all over the place. Is it gas?"
 "They say this smell is sulfur, once you get used to it you won't mind it."
 "This is Hell Valley, one of the famous places in Kohane! Rumor has it that black eggs are the specialty here."
 "Black eggs? Ceres-kun, don't the white eggs taste better?"
 "Ceres, are you sure about that?"
 "Well, well, let's see what this place is famous for, shall we? Right, Ceres-san?"
 "I agree, let's wait and see, right, Ceres-chan?"
 "Well... if you don't like it, I'll eat it all! Let's go buy them right away."
 Here in Kohane, I remember from my past life, it's like Hakone or Odawara.
 So I can imagine these black eggs.
 I remember that if an egg is boiled in a hot spring pond, its composition becomes... Well, I don't remember.
 Anyway, it makes the eggshell black.
 But I don't think the actual eggs are black, but rather dark blue or something like that.
 "Old man, black eggs, please!"
 "Here you go, 5 pieces for 5 small copper coins (500 yen)!"
 "Ouch, it's hot even on the bag!"
 "That's of course... it's freshly made!"
 As one would expect from a tourist attraction, there were many other things for sale in Kohane.
 But it's not always good if everything is black...
 Black curry, black ice cream... black food everywhere.
 Well, my curry rice (modoki) was well-received by everyone, so maybe it'll work.
 "Can I have 5 black curries, please!"
 "Okay... This one's pretty spicy and tasty."
 "Yes... I'm looking forward to it!"
 Should we wait until we've had the eggs and curry before we decide whether or not to buy ice cream?
 "Here you go, I got it right away!"
 Shizuko and the others are still amazing...
 They had taken the place well and prepared drinks and other things.
 This kind of attention to detail is what makes a difference.
 "Ceres-kun likes tea, right? I put lemon in it."
 "I saved some space for you, Ceres. Isn't it a nice view?"
 "I thought you might like it while you're out? I brought pickles, Ceres-san, you like them, don't you?"
 "Ceres-chan, I brought simmered vegetables too! I don't know if you like it..."
 "Oh... thank you!"
 I don't mind doing things for people.
 I'm even willing to do things for the people I like.
 I'd still be happy if they return it.
 "What are you talking about? Ceres-kun"
 "Yeah, Ceres! You prepared this for us, didn't you?"
 "That's right, Ceres-san! You are the only one who can bring us on this trip!"
 "Yes, Ceres-chan... it's us who should thank you!"
 "Ah, no... well... anyway... I bought some black eggs and black curry, shall we eat?"
 The black eggs and black curry we had together tasted great to me.
 "Ceres-kun, this egg has a black shell, but it's just a boiled egg inside, isn't it?"
 "This curry is black too, but Ceres' curry tastes better!"
 "Yes, it is! Ceres-san's taste is even better!"
 "This one is good too, but Ceres-chan's curry is better!"
 I'm glad to hear that, but the black eggs and the black curry are starting to seem a little too subtle.

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