It was the second day after coming home. And I already had too much time.
“Surely I’m not that much of a workaholic.”
This was strange. Back in my past life, I just moved between the dojo and my house.
I had no hobbies to speak of.
And even after I was reborn as an Ogre, I lived a plain existence.
So there was no reason for me to feel this restless after just two days.
“Is it because my days have been so eventful recently?”
That was the only reason that I could think of.
Perhaps the battlefield was in my blood now.
“Come to think of it, I heard something about soldiers returning from the Vietnam war experiencing similar things.”
It wasn’t just soldiers suffering from PTSD, but there were a lot of suicides as well. I saw a special about it on TV.
While some became reclusive, there were others who could not stand their boring, everyday life, and went out searching for new thrills.
I did believe that peace was a good thing.
However, in my case, it seemed that stimulation was something I needed. Who would have thought?
“Perhaps I could check the other villages.”
I could have stayed idle for a little while longer, but I was bound to find it unbearable soon enough. Tomorrow. Or the day after that.
Unlike my days as a human, my body was now tough, and I could be a little reckless.
“Resting is important, but moving a little is good for getting rid of the fatigue.”
It sounded like a dumb excuse, but I was sticking to it.
And so I prepared for my journey and left early the next morning.
“Now this is a quiet village.”
It was the fourth day since I departed, and I had arrived at my second village.
The first was only half a day’s walk away and I finished my business there quickly.
But as for the second village, it was quite deep into the mountains. Like the midslope of the mountain had been cut open.
As it was inconveniently located, they had little contact with the other villages.
And just a short scan of the place made me think that time had stopped here even more so than in my own village.
The houses looked like they were made of fallen trees. I suppose there was a kind of charm to it, but I wondered if I should tell them to make something more substantial.
“Is there anything you need? I could have it delivered.”
I said to the representative. ‘It’s fine’ was the reply. Was it really?
They lived off the land, entirely independent.
As they had everything they needed, no merchants visited them.
It was a very primitive lifestyle, but Ogres were tough when it came to injury and disease, so this was nothing to them.
“I’ll stay for two to three days, so let me know if you think of something later.”
As they appeared to be satisfied with the present situation, I thought it best not to try and sell them on anything.
I had now seen different parts of the Demon World, and the living standards were always quite low when it came to meatheads.
Larger towns tended to have more intelligent races living in them, and the difference was staggering.
Some towns were similar to western medieval towns in terms of development.
On the other hand, Ogres and other meathead races were like farmers from the Heian era.
Not that I’ve ever seen any Heian era farmers, but that was my imagination.
Clothes? As long as the important parts were covered.
Food? As long as it’s edible.
Something like that.
There was no grace, only roughness in the way that they lived.
As someone who knew what modern Japan was like, I sometimes thought, ‘wish I could do something’ or ‘that could be improved.’
But I knew that even if I did, they would just change it back later. So I kept my mouth shut.
Since there was someone in the second village who challenged me, I lightly made him roll.
It wasn’t Gekokujyo, but just training, and so I didn’t injure him. Besides, it was also good training for me. I needed to learn how to hold back.
I realized then just how ridiculously strong Saifo and Beka were from the beginning.
Sometimes when we trained, I would think, ‘Ah, did I accidentally kill them?’ but they would always get right back up.
Because of this, I started to forget how to hold back.
“It’s a good thing I moved the Ogre standard away from the idiot siblings.”
Otherwise, skulls would be crushed in one hit, and great holes would open in torsos.
“Alright, I’ll visit again if I’m in the area.”
I left the second village and headed towards the next one.
As I was taking a different route this time, it felt a little bit fresh.
I started to think that this really wasn’t a bad idea. I should go visit other villages whenever I feel bored.
“…But this means I can’t live in a town.”
I finally realized it.
If I lived in a town, I might die from boredom.
Besides, there was something more calming about villages.
In truth, I found the battlefield to be the most calming these days, but I didn’t want to admit it.
If I did, I felt that something important in me would break.
“Ah, Sir Golan. It’s an honor to have you come to our village.”
An old Ogre came out to greet me.
“You seem to be doing well, Guinida.”
“Yes. The others are starting to complain and ask me how long I intend on living.”
“Well, it’s rare to see an Ogre living for so long. You should tell them to try and beat your record if they don’t like it.”
“I see. Indeed. I will do just as you suggest.”
Guinida was over seventy years old.
I had never seen an Ogre so old.
But that’s because most of us fell in battle, or died from wounds inflicted during hunts.
And while Ogres were tough, that only made them more reckless.
“Anything happen in the village?”
“No, things are as quiet as usual. …But now that I think about it…”
“Huh? What is it?”
“We’ve recently started to trade with Lamias from the cave. Is that alright?”
“Oh. I don’t really mind. But what are you trading?”
The Lamias lived in the underground lakes.
They hunted animals that came to drink and caught fish.
They also made clothes by weaving sea plants and their own hair.
In a way, they were similar to Ogres in that they were self-sufficient.
“We’ve mostly been giving them ironware. And also some wood crafts.”
Every Ogre village had a furnace, and they used primitive techniques to make iron.
“I see. The Lamias do live in swamplands.”
“It is so. And in return, they give us medicine.”
“I realized it during the plague with the red rats, but they are quite intelligent. I won’t interfere with your trading. You should do as you like.”
“Yes, thank you.”
Medicine, eh? I knew that there were plants in the water with beneficial effects.
Because the Lamias were so big, I generally thought of them as warriors, but they were actually more suited to delicate work.
“Maybe I should go and visit them too.”
Now that I thought about it, it had been a while since I last saw them.