C71: The Witches’ Pajama Party

I, Puffer, Witch of the Bitter Cold, have just finished my first day on the job.

The job itself was done relatively early that it wasn’t even worth calling a job for us, but the princess let us go, saying there’s nothing else to do for the day.

We had free time to ourselves until we were called to eat with the rest of the people who have come back from their fieldwork. Then, we ate supper, which was once again delicious to the point of tears. After that, we cleaned ourselves and headed to bed.

I share a room with Lampeye and Garra Rufa in the main house where the Saint lives. He said that he would renovate the house one of these days and provide each one of us with our own rooms, but…

“Hey…”

I talked to Lampeye and Garra Rufa who were going to be my roommates for a while.

“Isn’t all of this too good to be true?”

The moment I brought this up, the two of them responded with a sour look on their faces.

“I was just thinking of the same thing,” said Lampeye as she pinched the hem of her pajamas.

“This sleepwear made by Miss Batemy is so high-class! I can feel that it’s completely different starting from the material it’s made of.”

“Really?”

“None of the merfolk nobles I’ve witnessed during my time as an Imperial guard wore such smooth and shiny fabric.”

Garra Rufa said it’s called silk.

“The fabric aside, even the design is amazing. It’s so cute, frilly, and…”

“…And?”

“It doesn’t suit Lampeye when she wears it!”

“I could say the same thing to you!”

Don’t even say it. You’re not the only one who feels weird in frilly pajamas.

“All right, all right. But even this bedroom has an air of luxury to it. This so-called tatami is fine as well.”

It seems tatami is a special kind of flooring made of woven grass, and stroking it gave me a peculiar, but addicting feeling.

“This bedding is also very clean and fluffy, we truly are blessed. I’ve never felt this blessed ever since I became an Imperial guard.”

“Maybe this settlement is even more amazing than we thought.”

“…I suppose it’s all thanks to the power of the Saint who first started his cultivation here.”

“We all mistook him for a mere manservant and treated him roughly at first, huh?”

Yeah.

We first met him behind our workplace, the brewery. He had no aura at all, so we never expected him to be the “Saint.”

It’s hard to visualize a mere human being the leader of a settlement full of demons and monsters.

Nonetheless, all of us apologized as much we could after regaining consciousness.

“After gathering information from Lady Platy and the others, I have confirmed that Lord Saint’s true identity is a summons.”

“Summons? What’s that?”

“You really are the type that’s ignorant about everything else not related to your field of interest, huh? That’s commendable as a researcher, though.”

According to Lampeye’s explanation, the word “summons” refers to a person summoned from a different world using Zeus’s magic that lets you distort space and connect worlds. It seems they were summoned by the human race to win the war against the demons.

“That’s cruel. Even those from another world have their own lives to deal with!”

“This is not the first time the human race did something sleazy. In any case, Lord Saint possesses both abilities and knowledge that differ from ours. It’s wholly due to his power that this land has developed this much.”

“LORD SAINT IS AMAZING!!!”

Garra Rufa surprised me with her sudden remark after she kept silent this entire time.

Ah, I think she’s been waiting for the right timing to join in on the conversation.

“Lord Saint knew about the truth behind the “tiny creatures” I’ve been advocating! He says they’re called bacteria! Living organisms are made up of hundreds of thousands of tiny cells, and bacteria are one of those! Muhahaha!!!”

“Calm down, calm down!!!”

“It feels great to have your theories proven correct by someone, huh?”

This place must feel like a utopian frontier for Garra Rufa where she can prove her theory correct.

Supposing she was asked to leave this place, she would certainly refuse with all her might.

“…But what does everyone really think?”

“What do you mean?”

“Life here.”

To be frank, we were sent here as punishment for our crimes in the Mermaid Kingdom.

It would have taken over a hundred years in prison, but they shortened it by making us serve our sentence here instead.

When I was told that, I was afraid of what kind of hell we would be transferred to. But when I got here, as it turns out, it’s heaven.

The food is good and so is the bed we sleep on.

Even the job here is fun and worthwhile.

Everything feels so cozy that it doesn’t feel like I’m being punished at all.

I’m sure Garra Rufa would agree with me, but as for Lampeye…

“I’m prepared to work here for the rest of my life.”

Thought so.

Her beloved princess stays here, after all.

“If there’s one person I’m worried about, it’s you, Puffer.”

“Me?”

I easily get bored, so if things come to that, I can just run away from here.

“Well, I’ve got some tempting news for you.”

“Hm?”

“I heard that Prince Arowana comes here at least once a week.”

“Whaaaaaaaaaaaat?!”

That often?!

No way!

“Why are you even telling me that? It has nothing to do with me!”

“You’re still saying that? Everyone knows about it already. Save for the prince himself, though.”

That’s just sad!

“There is no place in the Mermaid Kingdom where you can meet the prince weekly. I, as a former Imperial guard, can attest to this.

“Like I said…”

“Even Princess Platy approves of it, so why don’t you give it a try? Did you know that if a witch gets married to the mermaid king, they get called “Dark Queen”? As in Puffer, Dark Queen of the Bitter Cold. Although people might confuse it with the actual queen from the Demon Kingdom.”

“Stop it!!!”

Puffer, Dark Queen of the Bitter Cold!

Puffer, Dark Queen of the Bitter Cold!

Puffer, Dark Queen of the Bitter Cold!!!

I can’t help but ponder over it.

I covered my beet-red face as I rolled around the futon!

“Good thing the futon is directly on top of the tatami. Had it been a bed, you would’ve fallen off by now.”

“No, just no!”

“What do you mean?”

“I’ve done nothing but reckless things throughout my life, and all sorts of people hate me. I’ll only bring trouble to Prince Arowana if I become his wife.”

“That’s so unlike you. So, are you giving up on being his legal wife and become his concubine instead?”

“Concubine?!”

“The queen is the official partner of the king, so it’s only natural that she gets a lot of flak. If Lord Arowana is the one who will bear responsibility for the Mermaid Kingdom’s future, then having four to five concubines by his side shouldn’t be a problem.”

“No!”

“Why not? I think it’s a good idea.”

“That doesn’t sound romantic at all!!!”

“Are you some maiden?”

It’s all right. I’m more than satisfied getting to see Lord Arowana’s face once a week here!

Let’s not bring up this topic ever again!

I’ll be working harder at the brewery starting tomorrow!

“…”

“Huh? What’s wrong, Garra Rufa?”

You’ve been staring at me silently for some time now.

“To think our chat ended with a love story…This makes it look like we’re having an actual pajama party!!!”

Hell if I care.

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