In the end, their third day did not consist of any fruitful discussion of future plans, and the two went off to bed exhausted.
Chiharu had always hated noisy alarm clocks, and in Japan, she had always used an alarm clock that sounded like the song of a little bird. She had used this for 10 years. On the other hand, Maki was good with getting up in the morning, and so she had never needed an alarm clock. And so Chiharu had always dreamed of waking up to the real sounds of a bird’s voice.
It had happened when she was in university. She had gone on a trip with her friends. They walked a dark path in the night, the rich natural scenery around them, as they headed towards the place they would be staying at. Chiharu had been excited about the morning. The result was…
She woke up in a rage. It was probably the sparrows in the city who were the most relaxing to listen to after all. She realized that the chirping of the many birds in the wild had an almost violent volume.
Chiharu told Maki of this story in the morning.
“Yeah, I get it. I totally get it. I mean, I just got it. Small birds can be annoying as it is. And now we have these big ones.”
The two were still sharing the same bed. They lay on their backs and stared at the ceiling. A gentle morning light was leaking from the curtains, but there was a large shadow from behind. The shadow flew, it’s wings beating loudly and several voices could be heard from near the balcony. What happened to security? There were angry voices of what were probably the guards that could be heard from under the balcony.
“It’s them, isn’t it?”
“Maki-chan, are you still curious about other types of beastfolk?”
“Well, as for that…”
Maki grew a little silent.
“So if this is what the bird people are like, then if there are cat people too, would they also be two meters tall and like to get cozy with humans?”
Chiharu shivered a little. Being surrounded by lots of cats was happiness itself. But not if they were two meters tall.
“Zynis was fine, but what if the other dog people were really interested in humans?”
Chiharu imagined a dozen dog people pouncing onto her. I wonder if ‘wait’ would work on them?
“Le-let’s save the beast lands for the last.”
“We can go once we get more accustomed to this world.”
Knock-knock. The sound echoed from the door.
“It is Sera.”
It was unusual for her to come without being called. Sera opened the door and came inside. Then she smiled with a troubled expression.
“I am terribly sorry. The chief’s son did return yesterday, but apparently, he has bragged to the others about having spoken to the current Saintesses.”
That bastard! They had barely exchanged a proper word.
“Furthermore, the sister also told the others that the two Saintesses were very cute. This information has spread throughout the birdfolk network and to the whole country. And so many have flown here by night to see you.”
“Weren’t they told to give us some time to adjust?”
“I do not know if the importance of that was understood by them…”
Sera said with some embarrassment. Night Flight!
“In any case, the people here will have this all sorted out. So if you could please just stay here in this room. Your breakfast will be brought to you immediately.”
Sera said and then left the room. Maki opened her mouth.
“Do you think they have this under control?”
“No way. Those bird people don’t listen to what you say!”
“Yeah. Poor Arthur.”
Well, they weren’t really sure how their relationship was in terms of power. It seemed that there was no actual fighting, but it did not seem that Arthur had much authority either.
“What do you think needs to be done?”
“It’s best to let them do what they want. But I just don’t want them to be forceful like they were yesterday.”
“Sorry about that, Chiharu.”
Maki said a little dejectedly. Chiharu replied:
“And so I will go myself.”
“To the beast lands?”
“No. At first, they were talking about the miasma and acting all serious, but they clearly just want to see a Saintess and carry her away. Saying no won’t do anything. They will wait for their chance and try to kidnap you. I think it’s considered very funny for them.”
“It did seem that way.”
“I will show my face to prove that there really is a Saintess here. And I will let them see me being carried at least once.”
“I see. You are going to appeal that this Saintess is fine with birdfolk, but that you are not ready to travel long distance yet, but will very soon.”
Today they also wore the one-piece and layered oriental dresses. There were many combinations of color that made dressing very fun. Maki and Chiharu quickly washed up and faced each other.
“Let’s go then.”
And then they opened the window to the balcony, where all of the noises were coming from.