We Started To Search Through The Forest
“Good morning, Mr. Takumi.”
“Good morning, Ms. Claire, and everyone.”
In the morning, I got out of the tent and washed up at the river. Then I returned to the fire to see that Ms. Claire was sitting there.
Johanna sat next to her, and Ms. Lyra was already using the pot and preparing breakfast.
As for Phillip, Sebastian and Nicholas, they were discussing how we would go about exploring the forest.
…So I was the last person to get up…
And so I greeted Ms. Claire and then the others.
Leo had also woken up before me, and was waiting behind Ms. Lyra.
Clearly, she was quite hungry.
“Mr. Takumi. Thank you for the herbs last night. I was able to sleep very well and feel none of the fatigue from yesterday.”
“I’m glad that it was so effective. I tried it myself, and it does seem that I was successful in making them.”
“Lady Claire. What are these herbs you speak of?”
Johanna, who sat next to her, seemed very curious.
“Mr. Takumi gave them to me last night before I went to sleep. He said that they would help to rid me of any tiredness…”
“Well, it’s supposed to help you sleep. And I suppose a good and deep sleep is what helps get rid of the tiredness of the day.”
“You have such a herb…”
After that, since Sebastian and the others also showed an interest, I decided to share it amongst them.
Of course, I did not have much with me, but there was enough for everyone to use for a night.
It hadn’t been decided yet how long we would stay here, but I told them to use it whenever they wanted.
After that, Ms. Lyra was finished cooking.
And so I handed Ms. Lyra her share of the herbs while accepting my breakfast.
It was the same orc meat we had yesterday.
Because we needed to eat it before it went bad.
Once we were finished, we would explore the forest.
While being with Leo meant we wouldn’t have to worry about being attacked by monsters, it also wasn’t efficient for us to explore as one large group.
And so I, Leo, Ms. Claire and Sebastian would explore the forest.
Phillip and Nicholas would explore the area surrounding the camp, drive away any nearby monsters and look for traces of fenrirs.
Ms. Lyra would stay in the camp and watch the fire, and Johanna would keep her safe.
“Well, then. Let’s go, Lady Claire, Mr. Takumi and Leo.”
Sebastian took the lead, Leo and I followed, and Ms. Claire was in the back.
As long as Leo and I cut down the bushes and trees, it would be easier for her to walk.
…Though, this was mainly thanks to Leo’s body being so big.
We moved farther away from the river and continued to walk silently through the forest for some time.
After about an hour had passed, the area grew dense with trees to the point where the sunlight barely got through, and it became quite dark.
“…It’s getting dark.”
“Indeed… At this rate, it will be too dark to see anything that might approach us. Lady Claire, are you all right?”
“I’m still fine. I’m not at all tired like I was yesterday.”
Unlike yesterday, Ms. Claire was having no trouble keeping up with us.
There wasn’t much to carry this time, and it was easier to walk, thanks to Leo using her body to press down or break away any branches and plants that were in our path.
“…Still, it will be quite dangerous when we can barely see our feet. I suppose I have no choice then. Though, I had wanted to save my magic energy for emergencies.”
“Yes. I will use some light magic.”
So saying, Sebastian raised the short sword that he was using to cut down the branches.
“Light Elemental Shine.”
Sebastian chanted, and the raised blade began to glow.
“Now it will be easier to see our surroundings.”
The sword was now emitting a light that was so bright that it hurt to look at it directly.
And so the dark forest brightened up, even though we could barely see our feet a moment ago.
It wasn’t quite as bright as being directly under the sun, but we could now see quite deep into the forest.
“What convenient magic.”
“It’s simple magic. All I did was create some light. You will be able to do it as well with some practice, Mr. Takumi.”
“Magic… Will you teach it to me when we return to the mansion?”
“If you wish.”
“Hmm… I could also teach you a little…”
“Hohoho. However, Lady Claire. Surely you must recall that it was I who taught you the basics of magic? And so you must agree that I am more suited for the job?”
“…But I have studied since then! I can teach him as well!”
“Hohoho. In that case, I shall leave it to you, Lady Claire. You must be very pleased, Mr. Takumi.”
I muttered quietly.
What was this…? It seemed like Sebastian had a habit of trying to match me up with other people.
It seemed rather strange, since he was Ms. Claire’s butler?
And he had done something similar with Ms. Lyra… What was his goal here?
We continued to talk like this as we walked deeper into the forest. However, we did not find anything that day.
We checked our watches to keep track of time so that we would be able to return to the camp before the sun came down.
On our way back, I talked with Sebastian and Ms. Claire about it, and we decided to explore in a different direction tomorrow.
And in spite of the fact that we did nothing but just walk, Leo seemed to have enjoyed it beginning to end.
Perhaps it was because she said that there was something about the forest that felt nostalgic.
And then two days passed. We continued our search, but did not find so much as a trace of the fenrirs being there.
We did not lack for food, as Leo would take down any orcs we happened to encounter, but we were running out of vegetables.
And so after dinner, we talked about the search.
“This will now be the third day of the search and the fourth day since we entered the forest… And yet we have nothing to show for it.”
“Yes. We have also been searching this area, and have found nothing aside from orcs…”
“Maybe there really aren’t any fenrirs in this forest?”
The question had come from Johanna.
It was no surprise, seeing as we had found nothing in spite of searching for so long.
Even Leo looked stumped.
Yesterday, we had even extended the time we spent searching, and went far deeper into the forest. And yet there was nothing.
We could get by on the orc meat.
And there was a river for water. However, people were starting to get tired.
By now, they had all eaten the herbs that I had given them.
That would happen if you had to sleep in a tent for so many nights.
“Tomorrow, if we cannot find anything after searching, then I will give up and we will return to the mansion.”
As we surrounded the fire and talked, Ms. Claire had been looking down the whole time as if deep in thought.
Perhaps Johanna’s question had been the trigger. But Ms. Claire had made the decision to return.