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Happy Friday! This is the last part of the chapter. The next release will be the side story.– Rinkage
Chapter 09: I tried to save the mermaid (part 5)
“How is it? You’re deeply moved, right? Never look down on us, mermaids.” [Misaki]
“Misaki, that’s too much!! S-So, how is it?” [Shike]
“Well, it’s hard to express it in words.” [Youki]
Raven and I were in the same state; our bodies might still be here, but our minds had flown off elsewhere. Could this be the power of a mermaid’s song?
Happiness, on the other hand, seemed to be grunting for some reason. I wonder what’s up with her.
“Hm? Young lady, why are you knitting your brows? Something troubling you?” [Misaki]
“D-Did I make you uncomfortable in any way?” [Shike]
Shike-chan began to wonder if she was the cause of it, however, there was definitely no problem with her song.
“…Won’t lose.” [Happiness]
That was the only word that Raven and I could say before Happiness started singing. It was a beautiful voice, comparable to those of Shike-chan and Misaki-chan. It was only then that it dawned on me that listening to their song had lit up a burning sense of rivalry within her.
“You’re good.” [Misaki]
“Awawa, what’s going on now?” [Shike]
Misaki-chan whistled, seeming impressed with Happiness’s song while Shike-chan was at a loss as to what to do. But the one who looked most perplexed was probably Raven, who was next to me.
“Alright. Let’s go, Shike. It’s time for stage two. This is one song that I definitely have to sing.” [Misaki]
“Eh? Eeeeeh!?” [Shike]
Misaki-chan dragged Shike-chan, who was still dumbfounded, into the water. The former then started to sing in high spirits while the latter also joined in despite her confusion. Happiness, similarly, refused to back down. The current situation had totally thrown me for a loop. At any rate, I suppose I’ll just let it be since these songs seem to make me feel healed somehow.
“Raven, are you okay? Are you still awake?” [Youki]
“Ah, I’m fine. No worries.” [Raven]
Even as he listened to the songs, his attention was only directed to a single point. What he was staring at was… I decided to put a stop to that thought. There was no point thinking about it so, I closed my eyes and continued listening to the songs.
Once it was over, and Happiness was also satisfied, we decided to send the mermaids back to the sea.
Upon arriving at the beach, Happiness looked around to confirm that no one was around. After that, Raven and I were then asked to turn around and give them some space, to which we complied obediently. Well, I didn’t want Happiness to punch me in my ribs again as well.
“Phew, so this marks the end of our mission.” [Youki]
“…Yeah. This mission feels really lengthy, or is that just my imagination?” [Raven]
“No, I don’t think it’s just your imagination.” [Youki]
All I had in my mind was to get this mission over and done with as soon as I could so I could work on my schedule. Come to think of it, why was I so dead set in completing this mission soon?
“…What’s wrong? Why are you yelling all of a sudden?” [Raven]
“Raven, when will we be returning home?” [Youki]
“Are you serious?!” [Youki]
I clutched my head and sank to my knees in shock. It was now impossible to carry out the plan I had for Raven and Happiness’s date. We would have to tie up some loose ends in the afternoon and then go back tomorrow. There isn’t much time left. I’m doomed.
“…I think the mission this time has broadened my horizons. I realize now that whatever that I believe is true, isn’t necessarily the truth. From now on, I should not only improve my swordsmanship, but also my ability to access a situation.” [Raven]
Raven seemed to have reflected on himself after experiencing this mission. However, how should I go about this?
Speaking of which, how long should we keep this up? Can we turn around now? I can hear their voices slightly, so they are probably in a middle of a conversation. Should I enhance my sense of hearing and eavesdrop on them? No, better not. Listening in to their ‘girl talk’ feels like a crime.
After some time, Happiness finally came back. Apparently, it was time to bid them farewell.
“Happiness, you were discussing about something with them, right? What were you all talking about?” [Youki]
“Thought so.” [Youki]
It would seem that it was correct not to eavesdrop on them. If I did, I would probably not end up with merely a punch in my ribs.
As we approached the sea, the two mermaids could be seen floating on top of the water. The thought of saying farewell to them somehow made me feel slightly sad.
“It’s really the sea! This is seriously the best! Long live the sea!” [Misaki]
“Misaki, can we do this properly? This is the last time…” [Shike]
The sadness welling up inside me disappeared instantly. Misaki-chan was just way too easy-going. Shike-chan was probably at the mercy of her whim most of the time.
After Shike-chan apologized to us numerous times, the two of them turned towards us.
“Let me express my gratitude once again. Thank you very much. To be honest, I thought I was a goner when I was caught by humans. I also never expect to be able to return to the sea, to my home once again… Thank you.” [Misaki]
“Me too. I thought I’ll never be able to see Misaki again. I was in complete despair, merely waiting for death. I was waiting for that one day when the humans kill me. I never thought I’ll be able to return home with Misaki… Thank you, thank you so much.” [Shike]
They each bowed deeply as they expressed their gratitude to us. Although, they had already expressed their appreciation with their song earlier, so they didn’t need to be concerned about it anymore. At least, that was what I thought.
“There’s no need for this. We are also grateful to be able to listen to your songs earlier. Thank you as well for treating Happiness as a friend.” [Youki]
“…I’m sorry for what I did, in the beginning. See you, next time… Also, it was a great song.” [Raven]
“…Hmm, bye-bye.” [Happiness]
Since we had bid each other farewell, it was time to see them off.
“U-Umm, memo swordsman, could you come over for a while?” [Shike]
Memo swordsman? Did Misaki-chan teach her that?
Even though Raven was puzzled by his new nickname, he approached Shike-chan when she beckoned to him.
“Umm, can you please bend over? I can’t reach…” [Shike]
“What are yo–!?” [Raven]
The moment he leaned over, Shike-chan boldly grabbed his face and kissed him on his right cheek. Blushing, she then shyly released him, while the person in question seemed stunned, looking completely immobilised.
“See you again.” [Misaki]
Misaki snickered, and the two of them bade us farewell once again before diving into the sea, disappearing completely from our sight. The only ones remained on the beach were the three of us: Me, who was analyzing the situation in a calm demeanour, Raven, who was touching the spot where he was kissed as he stood up, and Happiness, whose face looked anything but happy now.
…At any rate, who should I speak to first? I tried to come up with something, but to my surprise, Happiness was the one who took the initiative. She stood in front of me and… Huh? Why did she approach me? Shouldn’t she head towards Raven?
“…Sorry. Beforehand.” [Happiness]
“What are you talk… guh–!?” [Youki]
She gave me a splendid maid-like bow, but I was totally caught by surprise when, all of a sudden, she mercilessly threw me a punch. As a result of the perfect hit on my jaw, my neck bent nearly 90 degrees as I flew backwards and landed face-down on the sandy beach behind me.
Disoriented by the blow, I couldn’t gather my thoughts. The only thing in my mind was, “What the fuck, Happiness?” As I stood up, I spat out the sand and shook my head. So what excuse is she going to give me? I thought as I turned around, but what lay before me was an unexpected sight. Happiness, whose face was flushed scarlet, turned away from me, while Raven’s face was also bright red, redder even than earlier.
“Eh? Hold i–eh? Eeeehh??!”
From that point onwards, how should I put it? The remaining task was completed without any issue. However, Raven seemed dazed the entire time and despite being warned by Masa, the former ended up worrying the rest of the crew members as well. Happiness, on the other hand, was trying to be herself, but she was clearly restless. There would be no point playing any tricks on me when we return later by the carriage. At any rate, I guess time will resolve everything…
“Captain, what on earth did you do?!” [Duke]
“I know nothing, I don’t know anything.” [Youki]
“There’s no way that’s the case. After returning from the trip planned by Captain, Raven looked dazed, staring into the sky most of the time. He could work as usual, but whenever Happiness’s name was mentioned, he suddenly stiffened. What is up with that? And it’s the same case with Happiness, too! Whenever she heard the word ‘trip’, she would run away… Could you explain this, Captain?!” [Duke]
“That’s what I’m telling you! I really don’t know what happened–!!” [Youki]
I missed that important scene at that time. No, it was more accurate to say that I was forced to look away from that scene. The only ones who knew were the two people involved: Happiness and Raven.