“I worked at a general goods store in that country.”
I decided to start with the convenience store, as the night shift was my thing.
“Hmm, so you were the son of a merchant?”
“No, not at all. Everyone worked at what they wanted. They lived freely too. Of course, while following the laws of the land.”
“Ho…very interesting. So you are saying there are no merchant families?”
“I guess. No nobles either. Well, there used to be. Just not during my time.”
I don’t know the details and have never claimed to be a historian.
“But, I’m not exactly an expert. That was what was normal there, I never thought about how it was different from here.”
“You could not have, as this was not a place you had planned to visit. Have you struggled much since arriving here?”
“Yes…I would say the monsters. We didn’t have any where I’m from. I never had to kill anything by myself. While animals were killed for food, any other kind of killing was against the rules.”
“Even insects and fish?”
“We’d hardly be able to live if things were that strict.”
I couldn’t help but chuckle.
“But the senseless killing of even bugs and fish would be frowned upon, ethically speaking. And it is a crime to kill animals owned by others. And so killing is forbidden in my country. But it isn’t so different here, is it? Even you told me, Daniela, that ‘unnecessary killing is wrong.'”
With that said, we continued to kill others… I had no answer for that.
“I see… Then it must have been hard for you when you killed your first monster?”
“…Yeah, it was.”
I remember even now. That moment that my makeshift spear slid into the goblin’s stomach. The sensation of it piercing through the neck after that, the last shudder before death. But I thought it then too. I didn’t want to be killed anymore. And so I had no choice but to kill. Though, I was crushed by the weight of it once, in the mines… What would I have become without Daniela? The thought alone is horrifying.
“You did seem pained back in the mines. What about now?”
“I’m fine. It’s because of you.”
Daniela’s cheeks reddened a little as she smiled gently.
Ahh, usually this was where we would enter a certain mood, but I’m not an idiot. This was a place to enjoy the food. A place to taste the blessings of the forest.
“Hehe. We were supposed to be talking about my country, and yet we’ve moved the subject to worrying over me.”
“But I am always worried about you. Unlike me, you were not born here. Your sensibilities, the way you act, it is different.”
“But we can understand each other, can’t we? Then it will be fine.”
“You are right…it is not good to be too protective.”
Daniela said with an uncertain smile. I knew that I would be trouble for her…
“Being too protective won’t do, but I don’t mind being coddled a little once in a while.”
“Of course, any time. But only when we are alone, alright?”
Usually, this was where I got red in the face and say, ‘if you insist,’ but Daniela rested her cheek on her hand and her expression changed from the uncertain smile to the most charming and assured grin.
Ahh, I will follow you for the rest of my life, my lady.