Chapter 89: That time when the queen came to rely on me + the heroes
I decided to visit the honey bees today.
「We request of you to make us a new hive degozaru. Due to the birth of a new queen, the old queen has to move out degozaru」1
「You, are you different from the last one I met?」
「That’s correct degozaru. That previous individual had already reached the end of their lifespan. That’s the reason why I came degozaru」2
「Well, never mind. Anyway, do you mind if it’s just a simple hive?」
The way it’s mixed up is making my head hurt.
「Got it. I’ll make arrangements as soon as possible.」
「We would be eternally grateful」
After that, I immediately went to the carpenter Goburg-san’s place. I drew a simple plan on the ground which he then used to make a hive using scraps of wood.
「You’re really good at this, aren’t you」
Having said that, he just built something that carpenters should be able to finish easily.
After that, I went to the hive behind my house. I opened up the hive then took out the frame with the old queen on it along with one that was full of honey and another with eggs and larvae then moved it to a new hive a couple of kilometers away according to Degozaru’s instructions.
They would be closed off there and left alone for a couple of days. It seems they have to do this because of their homing instinct.
「Is this good?」
「It is fine degozaru. It would be better if there was a nearby watering hole and an area with plenty of flowers degozaru. We would like you to keep that in mind degozaru」
「Yeah yeah, I got it. I’ll try looking for a place like that」
「We would like to request for one more thing degozaru」
「What is it?」
「Now that she has been born, the new queen requests to leave the island degozaru」
「Haa? This island’s no good?」
「Since Caam-dono is able to move around the place with his magic, the new queen wanted to extend her influence to your hometown. We won’t make it if we try to cross the sea by ourselves after all degozaru」
「How did your ancestors get to this island then?」
「On driftwood degozaru. I heard that it was a very perilous journey degozaru」
「Ahー…… Well, when should we do that?」
「It should be after my compatriots get used to the new hive degozaru. That reminds me, we would also like to bring this box with us degozaru」
「How about we leave in three days?」
「That would be great degozaru. I shall inform the princess degozaru」
Oh, they call both queens princess? What a confusing bunch.
During the next few days, while the bees were still getting used to their place, I showed the women how to extract the oil from the cacao mass. I also started teaching them how to make chocolate.
While we were busy with that, we saw something black hovering above the forest and was heading in our direction.
「Woah, what’s that? Looks unsettling」
As a few humans started making a fuss, a lone figure who was flying ahead of the rest of the cluster approached me. It was a honey bee.
「Caam-dono. the princess wishes to give her greetings degozaru」
I told the others to continue what they were doing as I left for the beach to reach the transfer magic circle.
「Are you the one they call Caam?」
A pretty huge honey bee who I assumed was the queen spoke to me.
「I think you have already heard about the situation from my subordinate. Hence, I request that you take us to your hometown using that magic of yours that allows you to travel all over the island」
「I did hear about it. Do you mind waiting here while I go and get your hive?」
After saying that, I picked up the hive that I left in a cool area then went back to the beach.
「Well then, it’s time to depart. Please make sure that you don’t go beyond where both my hands reach. It’s the same for above me」
As I said that, the queen positioned herself on my chest. I felt something kinda soft but I didn’t have the time to enjoy it because my hand and feet as well as my face were swarmed by the rest of the bees making my entire body tingle.
I definitely would have been traumatized if this happened when I was younger. Never mind that though. It’s hot. I can now understand how a hornet feels when it’s killed by bees.
I activated the magic and we appeared in front of my house. The moment the scenery changed, the honey bees that were all around me immediately separated.
Ughー, that gave me the creeps!
「So this is Caam’s hometown」
「It snows during winter here. Are you guys going to be alright?」
「From the remaining memories I inherited, we have experienced winters long before we arrived on the island. Therefore, we should be alright. However, we are weak with heat hence why it would be a great help if you would offer us a cool place」
「Got it. I already have a place in mind so I’ll take you there. It’s in that forest」
I pointed at the forest where I frequently entered as a child.
「Very well. I shall go on ahead and wait by the entrance. Please release my subjects in that new hive then show me around」
The queen flew away after saying that.
There was nobody home so I just entered my house, took a paper, then wrote 『Bee’s nest! Don’t touch!』 on it. I attached that note to the hive then left it in a shaded place nearby.
「Oi Caam. What was that black thing flying in the air earlier?」
「It was a swarm of honey bees. I don’t really get what it’s about but they came to me for help so I just did what they asked」
「Ohhー. That means there’s now a source of honey in the village. Much appreciated Caam」
「We can even do this thing called apiculture where you keep bees then sell their honey to town you know?」
「Now I can freely put honey on my toast without having to go to town」
This old man seems to have a sweet tooth. Does he cover everything with honey since he’s a bear-type demonkin? I’m also curious if it’s true that bears’ right paws are really tasty. I think it’ll have the same effect if you pour honey over the bear meat before cooking it but I shouldn’t say that out loud. 4
「You can put honey on sweets too you know?」
For me, I prefer using it that way. Anyway, beastman types were fine with chocolate and coffee but I wonder if it’s also fine to give demonkin infants honey? I’m too scared to try it though.
Well then, I should go to the forest.
「Alright. There’s this cave a short walk from the entrance of the forest that I found when I was a child. I will be taking you there. It’s cool during the summer and the entrance closes up during the winter so I think you’ll do fine there」
「That is greatly appreciated」
After walking for a while, we arrived at the place. What I didn’t expect though was to meet the children there.
「Oh heyー. It’s Lily-chan’s dadー」
「……I’m sorry. The place seems to be occupied」
「It happens all the time, children’s energy sometimes goes far beyond what adults can imagine」
「This place is no good then」
While I was talking with the queen bee, Lily came over and said.
「Father. Who is that bee?」
「She’s called Queen Bee, the queen of the honey bees. And there are her subordinates」
Are they? Their eyes look like honeycomb scope filters you know? They protect from glare but it blurs the image so it’s not my cup of tea.
「Are you looking for Queen Bee-san’s home?」
The one who asked that was Speck’s daughter Reika.
「That’s right. They can’t use this place since it’s your base so I’ll have to look for another one」
「How about they live inside a big tree? We saw one with a hole in it you know」
I glanced at the queen bee and she gave me a tiny nod.
「I’m impressed that you guys know of such a placeー. Queen Bee-san and the rest want to check if they can use that as their house so could you show us the way?」
They gave me a cheerful reply and then they all ran. Kids should definitely be lively like this.
After a fifteen-minute light jog inside the forest, we arrived at a place with a large tree.
Isn’t this pretty much the center of the forest? I was afraid of the wildlife when I was little so I didn’t make it this far you know? It must be safe thanks to Speck and Arc-san as well as the other workers in the charcoal factory.
「It’s this tree~」
「Iyaー, it’s pretty huge, isn’t it? I don’t feel like going up there since uncle is afraid of heights」
「I’m fine with it~」
「Haha. It’s good if you’re that lively」
Although it would be best for this girl to act a bit more lady-like, I can’t really say anything since I have Lily who always keeps on asking me for training.
I would have been able to tell her off if Lily and Miel’s personalities were reversed. Well, whatever. They both have their mother’s blood in them after all.
「How is it?」
「My subordinates have informed me that there is enough space in that large tree for us to reside in. It should be adequate. We can easily come and go with the entrance located in a high place, we’re protected from the rain and wind, and the leaves and branches provide us with shade. We might even be safe during winter with this. You have my thanks. If anything happens, I will be sending my men to the hive they vacated earlier」
「You say that but I’m almost always at the island you know?」
「Can’t we just contact you via Fleur-san? I was able to spot her potted plant earlier」
So she saw it, huh? Compound eyes are kinda scary.
「Then I’ll let my family know so that they won’t be surprised. Well, two of them are here though」
I presented my children to her.
「I understand. it would be proper for us to give an introduction」
As she said that, one honey bee approached my kids and gave its greeting.
「We do not have a name nor an individual conscience. Therefore, you may call all of us Honey Bee. We are grateful to your father for all the assistance we have received degozaru. It’s a pleasure to make your acquaintance」
「Nice to meet you」「Nice to meet you~」
This one also has that degozaru syndrome huh?
「Will we get to eat honey~?」
「We have brought the hive that Caam-dono made for us so once we have increased our numbers, we might be able to share some with you」
「Honest children are the best degozaru」
You stole my line degozaru.
「So this is Corundum. This is the first time I’ve seen the ocean since I came here」
「Me too. The water is clear and blue so there definitely are no traces of man-made garbage here」
「This reminds me of the past. When I was a kid, we were so poor that we had to catch small fish and shellfish at the beach to fill our stomachs」
「Nothing you could do about that Enomoto-san. That was just after the second world war after all」5
「As for me, my family was just poor. I was born more than a decade after Enomoto-san after all」
「The economic boom made up for it though」
「As for me, I only got to experience the economic bubble so I’m jealous of you two old men」
「Let’s stop talking about Japan since we can’t even go back. Oh? Oi, look at that. It says “coffee”」
「What? Is this the shop that the Demon Lord opened? Iwamoto-kun said the Demon Lord let him drink coffee after all」
「It’s been a while so I really want to drink one black」
「Me too. It’s been almost thirty years since I last had one」
「Enomoto-san, you drink coffee? I was sure you were in the tea group」
「You idiot. Back in my day, I would take women out to a cafe whether or not they drank the stuff」
「You’re surprisingly trendy, huh?」
「I also drank a lot of the stuff before I came here. I don’t even remember when I started to drink it」
「Hmmー. I can’t resist this smell. I’m going in by myself」
「I’m going as well」
With that said, the three of them entered the shop.
「Welcome. Go ahead and take one of the vacant seats」
Hearing that, the three of them got seated.
「I didn’t expect it to actually have a coffee shop vibe to it. Their outfits even look similar to baristas. There was a doorbell as well」
「It’s a nice place. Now, there’s almost no doubt that this guy’s Japanese」
「How nostalgic. This place makes me feel like ladies wearing furisode or hakama would come out」
「The menu only consists of coffee and the daily set though. There’s also an option to add this Beryl Sake but that’s pretty much it」
「Coffee is good enough for me」
「Excuse me. We’ll have two coffee and one set with the Beryl Sake」
「Certainly. Coming right up」
The barista replied right away after receiving their order.
「Look. They don’t have a grinder so he’s using a stone mill」
「Coarse ground huh?」
「I see that they scoop up the powder with a spoon to a container, add water, then heat it」
「Turkish coffee? Was there a Turkish hero?」
「There’s no one like that right」
「Thank you for waiting」
A woman wearing the same clothes as the barista served them their coffee.
「Ahh, it’s the long-awaited black coffee」
「I’m excited about this as well. I only drank the instant ones though」
「Now that I think about it, I don’t know how I managed to stand drinking such bitter stuff」
「That’s true. Still, this liquor…… It must be really strong if you’re going to put it in coffee so this must have come from a distiller」
「Yeah. Aida, why don’t you try it out?」
The man called Aida dipped his pinky on the container then put it on his tongue to try the taste.
「It’s pretty strong. It has the scent of the barrel so it must have been stored without being diluted. Also, since it already has the barrel’s scent, it was probably aged for at least 1 to 3 years」
「It’s definitely too strong. It could have been prevented if he had a mixologist but he must have produced this with just half-baked knowledge. He’s probably just an amateur when it comes to liquor. I’m not saying I’m an expert though」
「It’s fine as long as it can get you drunk. Anyway, it’s starting to get crowded here. It’s going to be a pain so let’s go」
「I agree. Let’s go look for a merchant ship that we can ask to take us to that island」
「I’m going to keep coming back here until we find one. Oh coffee, my coffeeー」
「You’re definitely at the level of a caffeine addict」
「He’s the same as a guy who just can’t stop drinking or smoking. If it weren’t for coffee, you’d be cured, you pathetic bastard」
While saying that, the three of them exited the shop.
「You see those black-haired men? Those guys are heroes right?」
「I think so. They look like adventurers but the only one that has anything resembling a weapon is that old guy with gray hair」
「I wonder if we should let Caam-san know」
「We should. Let’s tell him next time he comes」
Opening up shop
「A cup of coffee please」
「A cup of coffee please」
Just past noon
「A cup of coffee, please. I’ll pass on sugar and milk」
「Give me the same as earlier」
「I’ll have the usual. I’ll also get a bag of beans to go」
「That old hero drank a lot today. Was he just scouting the place or did he just like the drink that much? He even drank it without sugar and milk」
「I think he just loved it」
Again after several days during opening time
「I’ll have the usual」
「He probably just likes coffee」
If you ask this author what things he can’t live without, milk and alcohol would be the answer.
Alcohol to a lesser extent since I just like to indulge in a small amount of it whenever I have some.
Milk, however, is a different story. Even my normally mild-mannered self becomes very very irritable.
The most difficult times were during school trips where they didn’t serve any milk. I had to stock up during free time.
I had to get the milk set from a certain burger place and was annoyed when I could get the milk for takeout from the donut shop. Well, I would also just buy milk from a convenience store and drink it on the way home on the bus.