Sorry for the long break. Got sick a few days after the last chapter was posted and had been getting sick until recently. Not a 100% yet but it’s way better and good news is I didn’t get a different illness a few days after recovering from the last one lol.
Chapter 101: That time when the end of the year festival changed from the one a few years back
When I was still a child, we just stayed at home and had a slightly more luxurious meal than usual during the end of the year festival. After I started going to school, we started joining the festivities held in the village’s assembly hall. Nowadays though, it’s a bit different than before I became a Demon Lord.
The number of villagers increased and the village has become wealthier than before.
They increased the number of gathering halls, added a few more drinking establishments, and moved the brewery to a wider area so that they can expand. The number of vacant houses has also increased due to the number of people moving in, so you no longer need to be concerned about a lot of things like before. Because of that, they stopped being mindful of their pubescent children and held the end of the year festival together with the entire family and it became a grand celebration where families can gather together.
Once the children grow up, they form groups with their peers where they’re free to make merry. With the current state of the village, most of the villagers are able to gather in gathering halls nearby to hold a grand celebration of the end of the year festival. Of course, it also serves as a way for them to socialize with their neighbors.
Incidentally, the usual vacant house that people use is still vacant and will probably remain so for the foreseeable future.
「I heard from the kids. Seems like you went to the humans’ royal capital」
Wurst suddenly said that and I almost spat out my drink but I managed to hold on to it.
I glanced at my wives who were beside me. Suzuran was expressionlessly eating meat as usual but Latte averted her gaze.
「Latte-san…… Was it you perhapsー?」
I gently pinched her cheeks as I asked.
「You’re wrong~! It was Miel-kun and the others!」
Just like back during the harvest festival, the children were seated with their circle of friends. They seemed to be having fun talking so I just let it go since I didn’t want to get in the way of that.
「So, what did you go there for?」
「I participated in a festivity. Don’t ask for further details」
I bowed on the table as I pleaded. I think the rumor had already spread throughout the village so I was a bit flustered and was making weird noises when Suzuran shoved a piece of meat with bone into my mouth to force me to keep quiet. I’d like to think of this as her worrying for me.
Once I finished chewing on the meat that was already in my mouth, I asked.
「How many people actually know about this? If Wurst knows then it’s probably quite a lot」
「Well, I guess……」
The fact that Wurst, who often deals with children and gets along with a lot of people in the village, was hesitant to reply meant that almost everyone knows. They don’t seem to know the full details though so I’m just going to continue dodging the question.
「Well, that’s fine. You guys have fun here while I go around and greet the dragonkin who came to celebrate with us」
As I said that, I headed towards the table where the chief, the principal, and a man I didn’t know were seated.
「Hello. It’s been a while. How have you been since last time?」
「It has. Liquor making has become quite popular in my birthplace. Even other towns and villages come in order to purchase it」
「Ho ho ho. Whenever I go back to my hometown, I always stop by towns to promote it」
「Umu. The jobs for our women increased and even the men started working harder for the sake of obtaining strong liquor, I’m thankful, Caam-dono. Thanks to you, I was finally able to have a child that I’d been hesitating about. I mean, I also have two wives after all」
「We heard that dwarves are coming, so a large brewing facility was built. There’s a new place built to store the liquor as well」
The three women who came to the village for training joined in. Since it creates jobs and is profitable, the dragonkin are probably overjoyed that they were able to increase their facilities and storehouses.
「That’s right. He seems to be called a principal in this village but we’re thankful that he taught us an interesting way to drink the liquor. The fire-breathing tribes enjoyed it and it also serves as a way for their children to practice」
「……hahaha. I see」
I could only let out a forced laugh.
「Umu. It’s not every day you can find a drink you can drink while it’s on fire so why not take advantage of it?」
Hmmー. I still have no idea how dragons breathe out fire. I wonder if they just create a flammable gas in their body and ignite it as they expel it out of their body as fast as they can. Well, I guess it doesn’t matter since there’s no way for me to find out. Also, they use it as a training tool for their children but I wonder how old those children have to be before they can start practicing.
「Caam-kun, can I have a moment?」
While I was thinking, the chief called out to me.
「Yeah. What is it?」
「It’s about my son. I was thinking of having him replace me soon」
After saying that, the man I didn’t know who was sitting beside him introduced himself.
「Nice to meet you. Thank you for your efforts in developing this village. Before I reached the center of the village, I thought I made a mistake on my way home since the number of houses and fields increased. I was relieved when I saw familiar buildings. I am still inexperienced but please treat me well」
He grabbed my hand and shook it with both hands as he said that.
「I look forward to working with you as well. I just started doing those things because I thought it would make my life more comfortable. Besides, the village should be more lively so I just went ahead with it」
「The same thing happened to our village. The ones who left for work came back because they heard of the rumors and they all reacted the same way. When my husband and his good friend came back, they went out for drinks and he came home completely drunk. We had a very rough and passionate night at that time and I fell in love with him again」
「Haha. That’s great」
The dragonkin sure are bold, huh? Unless it’s over drinks, it’s not something I wish to know about though. The other two women also started talking about their husbands too. Well, they’re probably just sharing something good that happened.
「Also, I didn’t expect that a Demon Lord would come from this village. It’s unfortunate that your territory isn’t near this area though」
「That’s right. I was surprised when I heard that a man who I thought was weak at that time became a Demon Lord you know?」
「I didn’t want to become one though. They suddenly showed up at my house and took me to a Demon Lord’s castle. I didn’t really have a choice」
After I said that, they took a large swig of their liquor then pat me on the back. It really hurt, to be honest, and I wanted them to stop.
「Well then, I need to greet the dwarves and the humans who came to visit so I’ll be taking my leave」
「Our villages and hometowns developed because of Caam kun. Let’s drink to that!」
I drank up the rest of my drink then went to the next table.
「Oh, it’s you, Caam. A village festival with good booze is great!」
After saying that, Van-san filled my cup to the brim with liquor.
「Stop! It’s going to spill!」
「What are you talking about? If it’s not filled to the brim and is spilling out, you haven’t poured enough!」
That’s already too much!
「There you go. Let’s have a toast」
As he said that, we hit our cups together.
Van-san heartily drank up his cup full of liquor.
「Haaー. Strong liquor is definitely the best」
「It’s free as well so it’s even better for you, isn’t it?」
「You really do know me, don’t you?」
As he said that, he patted my shoulder.
「Oh right. I’ve almost got the process down so I think I’m going back home soon. Once I’m there, I’ll teach them about how to use the equipment, the types of liquor, and how to make charcoal from wood. We can just get coal from the mountain though. Anyway, I’ll come back to this village once we’ve made two stills. When that time comes, I’ll go to the island just like we agreed upon」
「Alright. We can go to buy copper in town together. I don’t know how much copper is needed though」
「Yeah. I’ll probably be back by the time it’s starting to get hot so look forward to it」
「Thanks. I will」
「Oi oi. I should be the one thanking you. Gahaha!」
He laughed loudly as he hit my shoulder. It didn’t hurt as much as with the dragonkin women but it still hurt so I wish they would stop it.
This time, I headed towards the former pirates who used to be in charge of the minor repairs on their ship.
「Good work. How is the construction work going?」
「Ah, thank you. Recently we’ve been able to build a few houses just by ourselves. We’ve been able to do woodworking and write up simple blueprints as well. The boss even said that we’ll be at the same level as his subordinates after two season cycles so it seems like we’ll be able to build houses on the island after gaining a bit more experience」
「Sorry for being so rough back then」
「You don’t have to apologize. You kept us alive, gave us jobs and you’re even helping us be self-reliant so we should be the ones thanking you. And we’re going to. Thank you very much」
「「「Thank you very much」」」
As they said that, they slowly poured a bit of liquor into a cup then filled another one with beer. After we did our toasts for both cups, we started talking about the island.
I told them that since they left, craftsmen were invited in, new houses were built in the previously planned Demon Lord castle construction site, and we’ve started selling the island’s specialty products. We’ve also gotten along with the other demonkin tribes nearby.
「Oohー. It’s amazing how much you’ve been able to develop while we’re away」
「We should also do our best here」
「This guy, did you know that he’s been getting along well with a lady from this village? Who knows, by the time we go back, that lady’s belly would have grown bigger and he’ll ask her to come with him」
While we were talking, one of them suddenly revealed that information about their friend.
「Oi, stop it」
「Oohー, that’s good. It’s really great news. It means that the barriers separating our races are starting to crumble. I’m looking forward to how it develops」
I grinned as I finished my cup of beer then I left for the table I was looking forward to the most.
「Let’s drink together」
As I said that, I sat at my parents’ and in-laws’ table. My heart was racing but I prepared myself since I had something to talk about.
「I think the rumor has probably already reached you guys but you might have heard it directly from Wurst」
「Yeah, we have」
「Ou, go ahead. Explain」
Father and Ichii-san gave me a slight glare as they said that.
And so, I began recounting the series of events.
I told them about how I fought with a hero that came to the island and how we managed to settle our differences. Then I told them about the other heroes and how they desperately needed my presence hence why I went with them.
「Sorry that I didn’t tell you. I just didn’t want you guys to worry」
「Seems like there are a lot of good guys among those heroes, huh?」
「Also, I actually hate conflict. I’m working to prevent any more heroes from being summoned」
「Oh my, now that I’m hearing that, I’m starting to think that there are pretty good people among the heroes but I wonder…」
「I’m not too sure as well but wasn’t my son able to return home safely despite being with a lot of heroes? They’re completely different from the rumors, aren’t they?」
「If anything, I only got hurt when children threw stones at me on our way to the capital. Knowing that they’re even teaching the children to think that the demonkin are evil breaks my heart the most. All of the heroes there were protecting me. And sorry to bring this up over drinks but in reality, it’s only those unsightly nobles who want to expand their territory that start the wars. The ones who only think about money, or the big shots within the church who think humans are better than the demonkin. Demonkin and humans get along in the port town closest to our island after all. Even the church there is nice. Of course, everyone on our islands also gets along well. Some have even found love despite their differences. There’s already an example of that in the villager right?」
「Well, that’s true」
「Y-yeah. I guess you’re right」
「Ahー, that nice girl right?」
「From what I’ve heard, she was afraid of the human at first but he kept at it and was treating her kindly so she finally opened her heart to him. It’s a wonderful story that you only hear in fairy tales. Right, dear?」
「That’s why you guys don’t need to worry」
「I’m not too worried. Just don’t do anything rash」
「I know. I’ll probably go back there a few more times but I’ll definitely inform Suzuran and the others before I do. I won’t just leave without saying anything」
「Naturally! I’ll chase you to the ends of the world if you make Suzuran cry!」
I also received a warning from my father-in-law.
「Don’t make Latte-chan cry either. You have your children as well so you shouldn’t do anything risky okay?」
「You may have beaten Hail and become a Demon Lord but you shouldn’t push yourself」
「I got it already. You already know that I’m not good with scary and painful things right? That hasn’t changed even though I became a Demon Lord. That’s why, please don’t worry」
「Oh my, it seems like Caam-kun was also aware of it」
「Truly makes you wonder why this child became a Demon Lord. Seems like he’s still getting dominated by Suzuran-chan and Latte-chan though」
「Mother, stop. Where did you even hear that from?」
The mothers said that in sync.
「Haa. Well, I can’t really deny it I guess. But I’m thankful that we get along well at least. I just wish they don’t make me train with the kids whenever I come back just so they can show me all the things they taught them. They’ve been getting stronger and they’ve gotten better at working together lately……」
「But you’re still winning while using dirty tricks as usual, right?」
「……I don’t want to make excuses but I want them to live so I’m teaching them to use those dirty tricks. That’s why I use it every time we train. It’s already showing results as Lily has started to be cautious of surprise attacks and added more feints when attacking while Miel has learned some weaker magic in order to disrupt me. To be honest, I’m worried that I might hurt them one day……」
「If you’re asking me, I think losing an arm is to be expected when doing hand-to-hand combat so there’s nothing to worry about」
「Lily is still a girl while Miel takes after his mother and has grown up to be a kind boy so I don’t have the heart to do that to them」
With the first report complete, I spent the rest of the time telling them about recent developments. Once we ran out of things to talk about, I went back to our table where I saw that they’d already finished all the drinks.
「Oh yeah. I tried covering myself with mud like what Caam did the other day but Mir just got mad at me for getting my clothes dirty」
「Me too. Tryapka was really mad you know?」
「I even told her that it could help out in hunting……」
「What are you talking about? You’re already good enough with a bow even without doing that」1
「I agree. You can already erase your presence to catch up to a fast-moving target to stab them with your dagger」[TL: This is probably Wurst speaking to Speck]
「But it’s still better if we could make it easier for usー」
「Yep yepー. I need to concentrate when erasing my presence so it tires me out you knowー.」
These two were speaking in a different way than usual while they were plopped down on the desk complaining to me so they’re probably drunk.
「You two should go to town and buy green-colored clothes that will specifically be used for that」
「But you were just in your normal clothes when you did it, right?」
「Yeahー. I wonder why you were so desperate to run away」
「I can’t explain but I’m begging you. Please don’t ask anymore. All you need to know is that I was just desperate to run away at that time」2
With that said, I also plopped down on the table and sulked together with Schinken and Speck.