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Chapter 74 – Welcoming the New Year

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Author: Eltria Original Source: Syosetu
Translator: Mui English Source: Re:Library
Editor(s): Robinxen

Just after the New Year had begun, the Dragon Temple was adorned with brightly patterned and colored wrapping paper, covering the sweets arranged everywhere. Heading towards the shrine for the first visit of the year, I closed my eyes once more, fervently praying for the well-being of my family, beside Alfe, who was also praying diligently.


Even amidst the bustling crowd, Alfe’s voice rang clear. Opening my eyes in response to her call, I found her smiling face right beside me.

“What were you wishing for?”
“Following tradition, for the well-being of my family. And you, Alfe?”
“I wished for the same as you… And also, to always be together with you1.”
Alfe smiled innocently as she held my hand. Returning the gesture with a grip, I bowed to the main temple of the Dragon Temple, then turned away and began to descend the stone steps.

In the plaza in front of the Dragon Temple, stalls for New Year’s visitors were lined up tightly. As it was late at night, there weren’t many children around, but adults who had come for the shrine visit formed lines for the sweet sake, a sweet alcoholic drink brewed overnight by mixing rice, koji, and sake.

“Oh, look over there.”

Alfe, who had been glancing around, found the stall she was looking for and pointed. Under a makeshift roof made of orange fabric, illuminated by magic stone lamps with fluffy cloud-like patterns, the stall stood out even from afar.

“I wanna try it with you.”
“Sure. But it might be too sweet for me, so only a little.”

Accommodating Alfe’s wish, we headed towards the stall selling sweets that looked like clouds, which we couldn’t try last year. Since Alfe seemed to like it, I decided to pay attention to the name and how it was made for future reference.

It seemed that the candy, called cotton candy, was made by melting a small amount of sugar with a special magical device, then spinning it out like threads and wrapping it around a wooden stick for shaping. Upon closer observation, I could see the sugar threads scattering around, and the main body of the magical device was covered in burnt sugar, emitting a fragrant smell.

It wouldn’t be a problem to have it at the stall, but if we did it at home, it would get sticky everywhere with sugar threads. Maybe I should refrain from doing it… Oh, but if I pre-flavored and colored the sugar, it could become a brightly colored candy that the Black Dragon God would surely appreciate.

“…Did you want to eat a whole one after all?”

Perhaps because I had been watching the manufacturing process intently while lost in thought, Alfe became suspicious.

“Oh, no, that’s not it. I was just thinking that it would be interesting if we pre-flavored and colored the sugar as there would be more variety..”
“What did you say just now, miss!?”

My response to Alfe seemed to trigger a strong reaction from the shopkeeper, who leaned forward loudly. Did I say something wrong?

“I meant that using pre-flavored and colored sugar would add variety and make it interesting… It’s just an amateur idea—”
“That’s an amazing idea! Can I have it!? Of course, I won’t take it for free!”

Before I could finish, the middle-aged shopkeeper’s eyes sparkled like a child’s, and he burst out loudly. It seemed he really liked the idea I had just thought of.

“So, uncle, does that mean you’re gonna make cotton candy according to Leafa’s idea!?” Before I could answer, Alfe eagerly asked, her body swaying happily.

“Of course! I won’t let such a great idea slip by! And by the way, call me big brother, not uncle!” The shopkeeper responded brightly with a jest, then turned his gaze back to me.

“So, what do you say, miss!?”
“Alfe seems happy about it, so please feel free to use it. In the upcoming season, if you freeze strawberries and then rapidly dry them, you can use the powder to add color, flavor, and aroma.”
“W-Wait a second! My head can’t keep up! Um, note, note…”

It was strange how suddenly an idea popped into my head and connected to form a new idea for flavored cotton candy. As the shopkeeper hurriedly began to take notes, I noticed the presence of the sugar threads left untouched.

“Um, what about that…”
“Sorry, but I can’t focus on that now. Could you do it, miss?”

With one hand occupied by taking notes, the shopkeeper handed me the wooden stick wrapped with cotton candy. Well, this turned out to be quite unexpected.

Thanks to the stall owner’s kindness, my idea was exchanged for two cotton candies2.

“Hmm… Leafa’s cotton candy. …Hehe, I’m the only one in the world who gets to eat this, right?”
“Well, aside from the appearance, I think the taste is the same.”

Looking up at Alfe, who was happily munching on the awkward cotton candy I made, I struggled to eat through my own cotton candy about the size of my face.

“I hope we can have strawberry cotton candy next year.”
“If things go well, I think he’ll make flavors of other fruits too.”

The shopkeeper seemed quite serious, even temporarily closing the stall just to listen to what I had to say. He might follow through and have them ready for some event, not just next year. I was thanked multiple times, but I also felt like I received quite a benefit. Contributing to Alfe’s enjoyment made me happy too.

“…I’m looking forward to it. Oh, by the way, Leafa, if you don’t mind, I’d like to go see the homunculus. Is that okay?”
“Of course.”

By now, on the third day, it should be about the size of a three-year-old human child. At that size, it shouldn’t be too shocking for Alfe to see. A fetus-like form doesn’t resemble humans much, so it would’ve been too stimulating a sight.

However, if Alfe wanted to experience the sensation of it being ‘born,’ then maybe a form resembling a baby from yesterday evening would have been better…



  1. Silva: what is this jkk?
  2. Silva: so cheap!!
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