|Author: Bankuru||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 3410 characters|
|Translator: PunishedLyly||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1661 words|
「Ugh, so cold.」
We were on the way home from work. Probably because we’re in the middle of winter now, the capital after sundown is really chilly.
As I let out a breath, the air around it instantly turned white.
「Mist Breath…… just kidding.」
And when I was messing around and puffed out one more time, my white breath started sparkling midair.
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「You almost turned it into a real Breath, didn’t you? That’s dangerous.」
「Still, it really is cold.」
We’re wearing not just cloaks, but mufflers and mittens too. Even then, we’re still feeling chilly.
Moreover, since my tail is just out in the open, it feels super cold. I never thought that my tail would get this cold, so I didn’t buy the fluffy tail-use tights I saw back at Putieviel… But I guess I should’ve bought them at that time. It looked really warm too……
In these times, I’m a bit envious of Ruti for not having a tail. Ah, so this is how Firu and Chris felt the other day, huh. That feeling of wanting something that you can’t get.
And even though Firu also has a tail, unlike Ruti-
「Firu’s tail has fur covering it, so it’s probably really warm.」
That’s what I think, heck I even said it out loud. After all, even though we’re both tail pals, Firu is looking warm by herself.
「That’s not actually the case, you know? The cold air still feels really cold.」
Oh? I really thought that having fur would feel warm, but it seems like I’m wrong. If that’s the case, then Firu should’ve bought herself some tail tights too, or so I thought, but she says that since her fur gets stuck when putting the tights on, she didn’t buy one. Because of that, her tail’s out too. Well, Firu is a cat-type in the first place, so maybe she’s just generally bad with the cold anyway? In some ways, she might have it worse compared to me.
「Moreover, it never got this cold back in Zanbul. I guess it just gets really chilly here since we’re in the northern parts.」
Even though you say that, they’re just about a week away even on foot. It shouldn’t be that diff-…… No, even following the standards of Japan, it’s not actually that improbable, huh. Besides, the weather is based on the region or rather it’s a part of nature, and I can’t be sure that everything would be the same as it was on earth, so maybe that’s just how things work here.
「Say, can we hurry to the inn for now so we can take a bath? I might not feel as cold as you two, but I’m also feeling chilly here.」(Ruti)
Oops, we’ve stopped on our tracks while talking. We obviously don’t have any issue with hurrying to the inn, so we quickly continued walking.
As we walked while complaining about how cold it was, Firu suddenly scowled as she began twitching her ears.
Seeing Firu in an alert state, I knit my brows and asked her in a quiet voice.
「No…… It’s nothing.」
Although I’m not convinced by that answer, we began heading back to the inn once again.
And since Firu still looks the same even after we walked some distance, I asked her one more time and-
「…… It might be just me but…… someone is following us.」
That can’t be, there’s no way that would happen. That’s what I thought at first but seeing how serious Firu looked, I changed my mind.
「Still, I wonder why we’re being followed……」(Ruti)
「Maybe it’s a snatcher?」
Though I said so, I don’t really think that’s it. After all, Ruti doesn’t have anything on hand and all I have is a smallish pouch. Firu is carrying a shoulder bag too but it’s not really that much different to what I have.
If my pouch was the not-yet finalized magic pouch granted by the Order of Mages, then it would make sense if they’re targeting my pouch, but since it’s just a normal one, yeah.
「Maybe, they’re following us for us?…… or something.」
Eh……? So it’s the so-called stalker then?
Since we do have our own fan clubs, I guess having someone stalking us shouldn’t be that strange but…… It just doesn’t feel real, you know?
「So what do we do for now?」
「Let’s see…… Since we’re already here, let’s lure them into the back alley and catch them ourselves.」
It’s a pretty bold plan considering it was coming from Firu. Well, Ruti and I have been training regularly with the Order of Mages, and Firu, although she hasn’t been doing it much these days, is capable of doing subjugation requests and stuff like that herself. So as long as nothing happens, we probably won’t fall behind whoever’s following us.
「Then in that case, let’s go to that alley we use as a shortcut.」
We decided to head to the alleyway we often use during the day but ignore during the dark of night. We keep the same pace so that they don’t get suspicious and……
『Firu, give a signal once the person stalking us enters the alley, alright? I’ll teleport to the main street and drive them towards you two.』
Hearing Ruti’s telepathy, Firu silently nodded. We probably should’ve taught her telepathy too. We’ve told her about telepathy but since both she and Cain aren’t really that good with magic, we haven’t taught them how to use it yet.
As I was pondering about the topic of telepathy, it seems like we’ve gotten pretty far into the alleyway. With Firu’s signal, Ruti disappears.
Turning around, I see a silhouette of someone running towards us as they are being chased by Ruti.
Yup, they’re definitely an amateur. Well, yeah, it’ll be a problem if it was a professional and all. But still, how do I explain this, the guy looks much too normal…… It’s just a bit depressing that I didn’t notice someone like that following us……
I grab their arm, sweep their legs, and hold them down. Now then, time to see the guy’s face.
「Let’s see…… Hmm?」
I’ve seen him before. I’m absolutely sure that this guy visits the café. But who is he?
「Ah, he’s one of my fans.」
I see. I remember all of my, and most of Ruti’s, fans but it’s not like I memorized Firu’s fans. So that’s why I don’t remember him that much.
「Now then, why don’t you tell us why you were stalking us?」
As Ruti caught up with us, I slightly twisted his arm to match the timing of Ruti’s question.
After groaning from pain, he slowly began speaking, so I listened closely.
「Haa…… Haa…… P-please…… Harder!」
……Eh? He’s that kind of guy? I really want to let go of him now.
「Hey, Firu, could you hold him down for me? I mean, it’s your fan after all.」
「Absolutely not!? Even I didn’t expect him to be that sort of person, you know!?」
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No choice then, I asked Ruti for a suitable rope and started tying him up. Using the ice cuffs on this cold midwinter night might give him frostbite after all.
He was puffing while I was tying his arms too, really gross.
While Ruti went to get the guard, I thought of interrogating him again but he just had a blissful look on his face and wouldn’t even talk. It annoyed me, so I yanked on the rope tight and then he suddenly started twitching.
Having a bad feeling about that, I looked at his face and… ecstasy……1 Please, no more……
As Firu and I just had an indescribable look on our faces, Ruti returned.
The culprit was now calm, as though he has just achieved enlightenment2, so together with the guard, we interrogated him on the spot.
Listening to his story, it looks like he’s definitely a fan of Firu. According to him, he wanted Firu to step on him with her slender legs or so…… Well, thinking about it normally, there’s no way that Firu would agree on doing that, so as he was anguished by that, it seems like he started stalking her before he realized it.
And so, since Firu watched him being tied up in the middle of this disaster…… Actually, I don’t want to hear any more of this…… He’s not even my fan and this is already giving me a headache……
「From tomorrow on, I don’t feel like I can look at my fans the same way ever again……」
「Don’t worry about it. That guy was just unique…… I think.」
After handing the stalker over to the guard, I got worried about Chris, so we all went to her place to see if she’s safe.
I was relieved to see that she’s safe at home but when I told her why we were there, Chris turned white as a sheet. We decided on going home with her together in the meantime to make her feel at ease, but maybe I should’ve kept it a little vaguer……3
The next day, I told Ryzna-san and the old man, who’s actually the vice-chairman, about what had transpired, and well, it got really big after that. They were going to have an emergency meeting to plan for countermeasures or something, so we closed the café for today.
The three of us aside, since Chris can’t really do anything if ever she gets targeted, I’m really glad that they’re doing that. I hope that these sorts of stuff don’t happen again in the future.
- Lyly: Oh lordy
Fire: This M…
- Lyly: Kek, it’s not just the thoughts that’s rid of him, if you know what I mean
Fire: Oh my lord Lyly, stop
- Lyly: You probably should, poor Chris