Chapter 57: That time when I went back to the village for a bit
•7th day since I came to the island
First thing I did today was to give the children their beddings. As for the rest, I decided to divide it evenly between the men and women groups, so they can just take turns using them. It’s a bit unsanitary but I can’t be helped. It’ll have the benefit of helping them relieve their fatigue though.
Next, I spread out the net I obtained yesterday in order to make some more dried meat. After cutting the meat into thin slices and soaking it in brine from the salt production area, I laid it out on the net to dry. Once that was done I assigned some people to monitor the meat, then I left to once again explore the island. We’ve been using the smoking room for a while now as an experiment but it doesn’t look like it’ll be able to dry a large chunk of meat any time soon.
Upon reaching the wetlands, I decided to head even further upstream to find out where the source of this water actually is. I already have a theory about it though. I’m sure this would lead me to the mountain at the center and there should be several of these that can be found all throughout the island. If I don’t find any animal corpses on the way then it would mean that there shouldn’t be too many harmful microorganisms, so the water would probably be safe.
Having to take a day to get to the center of the island is too much though. Because of that, I just checked the last place I could reach before it got dark. I didn’t see any particular areas where bacteria had gathered nor did I see any animal bones and carcasses, so it’s probably relatively safe. I don’t have a testing kit with me so I just have to believe that that’s the case.
•8th day after coming to the island
Our reclamation project has led us to a tree that looked to be several hundreds of years old. Just as we were about to start cutting it down, Palma-san interrupted us while saying.
「Don’t! Not this child!」
Because of that, although it would be a hindrance to the fields, we just decided to leave it be and let it act as a shade or a rest area for the farmers. We also started planting the potatoes we procured in the land that we have reclaimed until now.
•9th day after coming to the island
The water that I pulled from the wetlands was already clear so I boiled some of it and tried to drink it. There wasn’t anything particularly off about the taste and the smell, and it didn’t seem to have any salt content, so there should be no problems. I was still afraid of dangerous microorganisms that were left in the water, so I told the others to boil it first before they drink it. I really wanted to go to the source in order to confirm whether it was actually safe or not though.
With that said, I decided to make another trip there. Since the water was now clear, I also decided to make another water channel on the way there. To make it a bit deeper, I sunk the ground by forming stair-like shapes on the sides. I also used branches from trees and large leaves to make some kind of curtain so there will be an area that can be used for bathing.
I told the hunting group about the wetlands and instructed them to check it from time to time in order to make sure there are no animal corpses contaminating it. If they ever do find one and the circumstances around its death seem weird, they should report it to me. If that ever happens, then we should avoid drinking the water until it becomes clean again.
We also saw a ship today but since it couldn’t approach the island, we just watched it as it went by. Everything still isn’t going as well as I thought it would, but fortunately, we were able to trade with that merchant the last time, so we were able to procure additional food and a few beddings for the meantime. We’ll be fine for a while because of that.
Another thing that happened was the leader of the herb gathering group approaching me while saying.
「Maou-sama! It’s ginger! Ginger! We’ll be able to treat colds with this you know!? Let’s cultivate it in the fields! Once we get more of it, we can also cut it into thin slices and seep it in honey!」
She had a really cheerful smile while presenting the ginger they found. Looking at their basket, it seems like they found a large amount. I was questioning whether these actually grow in the wild but since we already have them, might as well put them to use.
I don’t know if she used her dirty hands to wipe off her sweat but there was a light brown line on her face. Well, aside from that, her smile was really dazzling and child-like. Iyaー, that’s kinda cute, isn’t it? I’m absolutely not going to commit an affair though!
Would it make it in time for the harvest if we plant it now? Well, we should just plant it on one of the corners of the fields anyway, and just dig it up whenever someone catches a cold. I guess I can also make some ginger cake if we have managed to get extra ingredients. I wonder what I should use for a mold? Should I bring the one at home?
Tomorrow marks the 4th day since the first time we traded with somebody. It should also be about the 10th day since I came here. I guess I should take a day off soon. I might catch a cold due to the fatigue accumulating from working non-stop after all.
「Alright, I’ve decided. Tomorrow will be my day off」
I acted immediately upon that thought.
「I know you’re currently eating your dinner but please listen. Tomorrow will be the 10th day since I came to this island. Because of that, I’m thinking of taking a break from work. I think that everyone has also been working tirelessly these past few days so you should all take a break tomorrow as well. Actually, I think it would be better if members of each group were able to alternately take breaks but it can’t be helped since we don’t have enough people. That’s why I just decided that we should all rest」
「Rest? Is that really okay?」
「I don’t mind it. However, please continue to prepare the meals and drying the meat. People from the hunting and fishing groups, we still have enough food right?」
「Yes. We have some stored up so I think we’re going to have enough until breakfast the day after tomorrow」
One of the women answered instead.
「Then that’s good. Tomorrow will be a day off so please rest your bodies. We don’t have anything for amusement here though. Also, I’m sorry about this everyone but I’ll be going to go back to my home town for a short while. My wives and children might forget about me if I’m away for too long」
But still, amusements, huh? Should I make board games I wonder? Making something like a Reversi board is really simple after all, since I just have to carve up some of the already chopped wood. I guess I should make one after this. I don’t really want them to gamble while they play but, well, I guess it can’t be helped. It would be nice if it doesn’t cause a fight though.
There’s also the thing about our currency……We still have a small population so having money isn’t necessary but I should start planning for that or it would end badly.
「Okay, I’ll leave things over here to you. Well then, I’m off」
After saying that, I activated the magic formation and in an instant, I was standing in front of our front door. I also brought Wulf along with me.
「Welcome home」「Ahー. Welcome back~」「Otou-san, welcome backー」「Papa, welcome~」
「Is that… a wolf? It’s really attached to you, isn’t it~?」
「Ah, well, I saved it from the brink of death back on the island after all. There were two more female wolves back there, but since I left the kids on the island in their care, I just brought this one with me」
As Suzuran stretched out her hand to pat his head, Wulf, who was sitting on alert immediately lied down and showed her his belly. It’s what you would call a pose of submission.
While stiffening from seeing Wulf’s reaction, Suzuran looked at me as if asking for help.
「Wulf. This person is my wife so don’t be afraid okay?」
He continued showing his belly and didn’t indicate any signs of standing up. It couldn’t be helped, so she just squatted down and patted his head while he was lying down.
「It’s alright. You don’t have to be afraid, okay?」
After hearing that, he slowly started getting up. However, now he was trembling as if he was inside a cold room. Is it just the stress or is he really afraid of her? Well, it’s most likely because he’s afraid of her though.
「Suzuran, try to pat him as gently as you possibly can」
She proceeded to carefully pat his head. She also patted the sides of his body to the base of his tail but he was still shaking and his ears were drooping down. I guess he just needs to get used to it.
Up next was Latte, but this time, he wasn’t shaking but was lightly wagging his tail instead. It doesn’t look like he’s afraid of her.
「How cute~ You’re called Wulf right? Nice to meet you~」
Suzuran was looking at them enviously.
「W-well, I just came back so you can just take your time getting closer」
As she said that, she continued to jealously look at Wulf who seemed really happy being patted by Latte.
「Wulf, these are my children. I hope you get along with them the same way as the children on the island.」
「Try not to be too rough with him or he’ll get angry. That’s why don’t forcibly get on him or pull on his tail okay?」
Hmmー, they’re being educated separately by their mothers so their way of talking is quite different as expected. While I was thinking of that, they surrounded Wulf and started gently pat him from both sides.
If one of the dogs gives birth to puppies, then we could probably keep a few of them here since it wouldn’t hurt letting them have a few more companions. Also, though I’m not expecting to do it every day, I’m thinking of bringing them with me once our situation on the island is finally stable. I wonder if they would like to come? Well, I guess I’ll just ask about it during that time. While I was thinking about that, I saw Lily wrap her hands around Wulf’s neck as she hugged him. I wonder if she’s starting to get attached to him? Well, it’s a good thing if they like animals I guess.
「Hey Suzuran, we don’t have any livestock on the island, so is it okay if I take some of the chickens and ducks there?」
「I don’t mind. However, is there someone who will take care of them there?」
「Hmmー. I can think of someone. For the time being, I should make their pen and prepare their beds so they won’t just wander around and get attacked. As for how many I’ll take, how about 6 pairs?」
「That’s fine. Be careful not to let them get attacked by the wolves okay?」
「Got it. Thanks」
Looking at the kids after that, I noticed the Latte has already mixed in with them in patting Wulf. Meanwhile, Wulf himself was just lying down and letting himself be harassed all over by cuddles.
I don’t know if Suzuran’s being considerate, but she’s holding herself back even though it looks like she wants to pat him as well.
「Want to try feeding him a bit?」
With that said, she immediately brought out a piece of uncooked chicken meat but I stopped her.
「Wait. We have to show him we’re the masters in this relationship so we shouldn’t give him anything before we eat」
「I see. Then I’ll just set this aside for now and just give it to him after we have lunch」
「It would be nice if you get to hug him, wouldn’t it?」
After that, I returned the meat back on the cupboard then decided to roam around the village while trying to spend as little money as possible on things that aren’t necessary.
I took out the mint, lavender, and chamomile plants that I planted in front of my parents’ house so that I can make some tea on the island. The honeybees can also use the flowers to make honey. Anyway, the mint sure has grown wildly. It’s kinda like weeds now that I think about it.
I was thinking about talking to my parents for a bit, but since both of them weren’t home I’ll just come back tonight.
Next, I went and bought corn seeds and beans that I wasn’t able to procure during last time’s trade. If it’s just this much then it’s still within the limits of my own set rules. After that, I also brought needles and threads, several sheets of cloth, and more distilled liquor to sterilize wounds. Although they are clean now, they still only have their clothes from before, when they were slaves, so it would be nice if I could get some clothes as well.
I have to put the poultries into cages, so I should go pick them up at Suzuran’s parents’ house later. I’d feel bad for them if I just carry them by their bound feet after all. I should also meet with Ichii-san and Licorice-san while I’m there.
After I finished eating lunch with my family, Suzuran gave the chicken meat to Wulf. Then, once he was done with it, she patted his head.
He wasn’t shaking anymore so I guess he got used to her. Well, with that said, he still wasn’t completely used to her though.