Konjiki No Moji Tsukai - Chapter 13
The battle ended and Hiiro reverted the length of his sword by writing ’’original’’ on it. At any rate, the sharpness of the piercing could only be called first-rate. It easily went through the opponent like a hot knife through butter.
(Nothing less from a sword specializing in piercing)
’’Y- You... what did you do?’’
’’Shouldn't you be worrying about the shorty instead?’’
He had no intention to explain it, so he quickly changed the topic. Then Arnold quickly shouted Muir's name. She slowly appeared from a behind a rock, where she had been hiding.
’’A- Are you hurt?’’
As he was relieved from the bottom of his heart, he sunk down on the ground. After a glance at him, Hiiro sheathed his sword. At that moment, his stomach growled and he headed towards Arnold.
’’Hey, old man. Keep your promise.’’
’’......What are you talking about?’’
Hiiro drew his sword from the sheath a bit with a clink.
’’J- Just kidding! Put that away!’’
The man shouted in a panic. Hiiro sighed in a bad mood.
’’Just give me that addicting meat. My stomach is totally empty.’’
’’........Hah. Sorry, Muir. I never imagined we would eat it here...’’
He dropped his shoulders with a boo-hoo-hoo, but Muir shook her head shortly.
’’N- No. He helped us after all. B- Besides, food tastes better with more people.’’
’’Uohhh! What a good child you are, Muir!’’
He embraced Muir while shouting emotionally. Normally this would be a heart-warming scene, but Hiiro said while pressing onto his stomach.
’’Just get on with it. I'm starving here.’’
A vein stood out on Arnold's forehead due to his attitude, but he realized that it was no use saying anything to Hiiro, so he lead the two with a sigh.
’’Come here. I'll prepare it.’’
The two of them followed after Arnold to the earlier fireplace.
’’Ehm~ I think it was... Ah, here it is.’’
He rummaged about behind some rock and got out some large bag. Opening that bag, he took out yet another bag. Something thick and heavy seemed to be inside that bag.
’’Is that it?’’
’’Yeah, inside is.... this!’’
What he pulled out was meat tied up with a string so that it wouldn't fall apart.
’’This is ≪Aqua Hound Meat≫. Moreover, it's the shanks, the most delicious part!’’
He thrust it before him as if to ask for his opinion.
’’Whatever, let me eat already.’’
’’You sure are a self-important brat. Eat some fruits until it's done. But leave some for me.’’
’’...I'll try my best.’’
’’No, no. Leave some for me!’’
Hiiro ate two out of the six red fruits with the size of a fist, which Arnold took out of the bag. It was a ≪Gorin Fruit≫ that he had often eaten before.
’’Already! I gotta prepare the meat too, so show some patience.’’
Saying so, the man took out a big stone from the fire place. By the looks of it, the bright red stone was insanely hot.
The meat was placed on top of it. Then it sizzled appetizing and gradually changed colour brilliantly, releasing meat juice and an aromatic smell.
All three couldn't help but gulp down their saliva. The young Muir was unable to take her eyes off the meat too.
’’Hey, isn't it good already?’’
At the end of his patience, Hiiro asked, but Arnold shook his head.
’’No, not yet. A certain procedure is needed to bring out the best taste of this meat.’’
The juice temporarily stopped oozing out of the meat, so the string holding it together was cut. By doing so, the meat gradually swelled up.
’’O- Oh, what's this!?’’
’’That's meat swelling, unique to ≪Aqua Hound Meat≫! Letting out the excess fat from the meat, it swells up. It approximately becomes thrice as big.’’
Amazing. Its original size was already around the size of a volleyball. Three times of that was rather big.
When the swelling hit its peak, it was similar to jelly, not like meat at all. He questioned if it was really meat, but the smell answered it for him. Before he knew it, his drool overflowed.
’’Okay, Muir, get the containers!’’
Arnold was pretty excited too. Muir took out three containers from the bag while nodding happily.
Arnold quickly cut the meat in a straight horizontal line with the knife hanging from his waist. Surprisingly enough, the knife cut through it without any resistance as if it was pudding. After splitting it into three portions, he put it into the three containers.
’’H- Here you go! Ah, don't eat yet, brat!’’
Hiiro tried to dig in without delay, but Arnold stopped him.
’’What? Do you want to torture me?’’
His stomach was giving the alarm for a while now. If left alone any longer, something might happen.
’’Don't be stupid. It'll only be perfect with this!’’
Saying so, he pulled out a long container with a sauce from the bag.
’’And that is?’’
’’A special sauce made from the ≪Orczy Fruit≫!’’
’’Whatever. It'll taste even better with that?’’
’’Yeah, forget about getting addicted, it'll send you straight to heaven.’’
’’Heh, interesting. Count me in!’’
The sauce had a colour like ketchup, but was more fluid than solid. It had a faint sweet and fruity smell.
’’Okay! Now it's perfect!’’
Each of them responded.
’’’’’’Time to eat!’’’’’’
Hiiro used the received fork in place of a knife and cut into the meat very easily. It was incredible tender. He cut an appropriate mouthful and ate it.
A tingling ran through his head.
(It- It's gone!?)
Yes, the piece in his mouth had melted and disappeared. Still, he was by no means unsatisfied. The meat had disappeared, but its strong flavour intensely stimulated his taste buds.
(Th- This is...!)
He took another mouthful. And yet another.
(I can't stop!)
It was like his body was moving on its own. His whole body was craving for more meat. Each mouthful of the tender and juicy meat felt like his mouth was stuffed, but he didn't become stuffed at all. He could still go for more. And it was emphasised by...
This sweet, yet somewhat sour sauce gave the meat a refreshing flavour, stimulating your appetite even more. He could really eat this with no end. The other two were devouring it in a frenzy too.
Then the quite large piece of meat was gone in no time. All three had an entranced expression. Hiiro never expected such an effect from it.
’’....Fuh, so what do you say about this meat, brat?’’
Hiiro closed his eyes and immersed himself in the aftertaste. Then he opened his eyes a bit and leaked a tepid sigh.
’’Well done, my servant.’’
’’I know, right. After all, this meat, wait, who are you calling your servant!’’
’’Just a joke. Don't make a fuss, you'll just ruin the mood.’’
’’It's your damn fault!’’
Seeing their exchange, Muir was bewildered.
’’Hmpf, whatever. So, brat, what's your name?’’
’’Name yourself first.’’
’’You're really so damn self-important! Geez, I'm Arnold Ocean. An adventurer and cook!’’
’’A cook? I see, that explains your cooking method.’’
’’Yeah, I travelled all around the world for cooking receipts. Consider yourself lucky.’’
’’And this shorty is?’’
’’Hey, listen to me!’’
Arnold retorted, then continued with a sigh.
’’She's Muir Castreia. I picked her up during my travel.’’
’’Oh, so in this world children are lying around.’’
’’As if! They aren't treasure chests!’’
’’Of course not! Some stuff happened in her village.’’
It indicated that he didn't want to tell more about it. Muir also cast down her eyes somewhat sorrowful.
(Got their reasons, huh. Well, I ain't interested anyway)
A rather pragmatic protagonist.