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Chapter 23: A Bath, First Times, and A Lullaby

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Author: Himezaki Shiu Original Source: Syosetu
Translator: PunishedLyly English Source: Re:Library
Editor(s): Fire

「So this is the bathroom that I’ve been frequently reading about, I see.」

Although I was going to try explaining it to her, I don’t really have the vocabulary to do so. As such, I ended my explanation by pointing her to the bathroom. Since in most cases, my vocabulary is only limited to what Ciel actually knows, actually finding the words to explain something new to her would become quite difficult.

In the first place, how people bathe is probably different in this world as well, so there’s no point explaining to her now.

And so about said bathroom, the one in front of us at the moment is a compact room with tiled flooring. Although the bathtub isn’t very large, given Ciel’s height, it’s still roomy enough for her to soak up to her shoulders. The bathtub is not like the traditional Japanese wooden ones, but appears to be made of stone with a special coating. Additionally, there is a pipe attached to it that leads to a switch and a holder for a round-ish object.

『That pedestal, it’s likely where we place the magic stone.』
「Like this?」
『And now, please try pushing the object protruding next to it.』
「You’re right Ain, water… hot water, perhaps? is coming out.」

Both Ciel and I were amazed by the bathtub. It’s the very image of civilization. Warm food, a soft bed, and a bathtub. After experiencing all of this, I can’t help but be moved by the level of civilization here. Still, it doesn’t seem to be the type that automatically stops when the tub is full. So, while watching the water gushing forth, we wait for the tub to be filled up.

「A bathroom is a place for washing the body, right? Is it possible that, since I haven’t used it even once, I’m actually really dirty?」
『In your case, you aren’t that dirty, actually. That cloth played a part of it as well, but since you’re really pretty, I’ve made sure to have the barrier keep dirt off of you as well.』

It’s been 10 years since my meeting with Ciel. Let alone a proper bath, Ciel’s body has never been rinsed clean with water, nor has it ever been wiped clean with a wet cloth, so she’s definitely not clean… is what could’ve been my answer, but it’s not actually so.

First of all, there was the mysterious white cloth that the duke dressed us in. I’ve already confirmed that it has a purifying effect. Thanks to this, everything covered by the cloth is always kept clean. When she was still a baby, it practically covered her whole body. And since he even gave us a new one every time she grew out of it, it always covers a large portion of her body.

In addition to that, we also have my barrier sorcery. The barrier repels dirt coming from the outside. It’s basically the same as having a thin film covering her, so even if she’s splashed with rain and mud, nothing actually stays on Ciel. Still, it’s not as if the barrier blocks everything, so she can still feel the cool blowing breeze. And everything I judge as safe is ignored like the wind. Really handy of you, barrier.

But because of that, it feels like it affected the barrier’s durability; so in the future, I want to find a way to increase the durability while keeping this effect.

Umm, from Ain’s point of view, I’m pretty, is it?」
『You are. If I was as beautiful as you in my past life, it would’ve changed my life.』
「Are you happy about me being pretty, Ain?」
『That’s right. Well, I am looking forward to seeing you become prettier in the future and I do want to try prettying you up as you are right now.』
「I see, I see…」

With her face slightly flushed, Ciel quietly repeated her words. I guess she’s embarrassed about being called pretty. Seeing this relatively rare reaction from her, I feel blessed. Seemingly calmed down after a while, with her cheeks now back to their usual color, Ciel began talking again.

「But then in that case, is there really any meaning in me taking a bath?」
『My barrier can’t do anything about sweat and such, so it’d be better if you still do so. Besides, since taking a hot bath will warm your body up, I hear that it can help prevent sickness and such. Other than that, because it can improve your mood, I guess? When you take a bath, how should I say this, it makes you feel really refreshed.』
「Then in that case, it might be nice to try it after all. But since we’ve already filled the tub with water, it’s practically good as confirmed, though.」

As a former Japanese, knowing that Ciel doesn’t seem to dislike taking a bath honestly makes me happy. Since our situation was how it was, I don’t really feel filthy even if we don’t take baths, rather I always feel clean, but I really want to take a bath. Still, I don’t want to make Ciel do something she doesn’t like just because I want to. So while I might not say the same in the future, if she says that she doesn’t want to take a bath right now, I would likely give in.

Also, since the places that aren’t covered by the said cloth, such as her head and arms, should still have sweat, dead skin and so, I really wanted to wash those off.

Now then, I’m happy that Ciel is going to take a bath, but there’s a problem here. And the problem is that, frankly, I don’t actually know much about hair and skin care. Since it seems like they have soap here, taking a bath by itself shouldn’t be an issue, but I have absolutely no idea where to go from there on.

Rather, it’s exactly because I have some vague information on me, like how water can damage the hair or something, that I end up overthinking about things.

I’m not actually sure if there’s any meaning in paying attention to these kinds of things since Ciel is still 10 years old. However, I also vaguely remember hearing, from the television or something, that it’s important to start early with things like these.

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Yeah. Now I really want Celia’s help. Or maybe I should learn some kind of purification sorcery, like the one used on the cloth. With that, we can just soak in the tub without any problems.

The tub had filled up while I was lost in thought, so Ciel used the switch to stop the flow. I asked her to step out of the bathroom for a moment, undress, and then come back in with a towel and the cloth. Come to think of it, we don’t even have underwear. The cloth is just something roughly sewn into a shape we can wear, so it probably can’t serve much use as ladies’ underwear.

And with that, we’re back in the bathroom but since they don’t have a shower, we filled a bucket with the hot water from the magic stone and poured it over our body. When Ciel poured water over her head —in the end I decided to go all out and guard her hair with the barrier— she ended up inhaling water through her nose, so Ciel passed the baton to me.

I’ve also made the same mistake when I was a kid but I forgot to warn her about it.

As we switched, Ciel said 『My body should remember it when Ain does it once.』 so it doesn’t seem like this mistake made her hate taking a bath.

Now then, I run through my memories in full strength to bathe in a way that’s as feminine as possible. The difficulty is going to be really high.

First, I lather the soap. Since this is something I also did in the past, it’s not really that hard to do. Rather, since I tended to be weirdly obsessed about things like these, I can make the soap really bubbly with just my bare hands. The point here is to be careful with how much water to use and to get air into the lather.

When people saw me do it during the field trips in the past, it was weirdly popular. As I was lathering the soap in full force, Ciel got really excited saying 『Amazing, it’s amazing! It’s super bubbly!』 so I gave her control and instructed her to gently spread it all over her body.

In my past life, I would’ve used a towel to scrub my body but I’ve occasionally heard on television that you don’t need to scrub when washing, or that a woman’s skin is sensitive, and so on.

While Ciel is playing around and blowing bubbles, she also spread it all over her body just as instructed. The sensation of Ciel’s small hands gliding over smooth skin felt really good.

Once her whole body, including her face, was covered in bubbles, I asked for control and washed it all off with hot water. Next, I move on to the head issue. In the first place, I planned on starting from the head but since Ciel showed interest in the bubbles, I decided to go with the body first but well, who cares.

So now, about the hair, I decided to cover her hair strands with a barrier and wash just her scalp. Just as I did earlier, I lather the soap and gently massage it onto her scalp. And after properly washing it off, we’re now done for today. I return the body to Ciel and have her soak in the bathtub.

「Taking a bath is such a hassle, isn’t it?」
『Since we used a barrier, we didn’t wash the hair but if we had, it would have been much more harder.』
「But Ain, you like taking baths, right?」
『I do… Or rather, it was a part of my life. Besides, my hair wasn’t as long as yours, Ciel. With longer hair, drying it is also a problem.』
「We can’t cut my hair, right?」
『Well there’s the issue of the circuits but… You have such beautiful hair, so it would be a real waste to cut it short.』

I’m pretty sure of it since I just touched it earlier but Ciel’s hair really is smooth. It’s the kind of hair that makes you want to keep touching on it. It’s really different from my old frizzy hair. Honestly, I’m a bit jealous. Well it’s also my hair too, though.

And so that same smooth hair is currently soaking in the bathtub. I know full well that it’s bad for the hair but we have a barrier, so yeah. It’s my first time feeling the sensation of wet hair sticking to my skin, so it’s a bit ticklish.

While I’ve been thinking of nothing but her hair, however, Ciel’s line of vision shifted to point directly down to her body. Just when I noticed that I’m staring at her faintly plump mounds, Ciel suddenly placed her hands over them. Since they have a bit of a puff, they’re really soft. And as I was thinking about that nonsense, Ciel began massaging them.

「With this, they’ll grow bigger, right?」
『I told you, it’s a just a myth.』
「And I told you that I want to try it, right Ain?」

Ciel is doing it out of honest curiosity but the stimulus really feels ticklish for me. I know that it’s practically my own hand touching me but unlike Ciel, who’s moving it by her own will, the fact that I don’t know when a strong stimulus is coming makes it even more ticklish. Still, just being ticklish is fine. Just being ticklish is fine but, maybe it’s because I know that this stimulus is linked to pleasure, I’m feeling really hot right now.

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Moreover, it seems like I’m the only one feeling this way, so if I make a sound, she’s going to find it absolutely weird. Anyway, I just need to bear with it until Ciel gets satisfied but, all of a sudden, her hand grazed the tip and I almost feel like my whole body just twitched as a response.

And at the same time, I ended up letting out a weird 『Hyuu!』 sound. However, since Ciel’s body itself didn’t show any particular reaction to that, I was assaulted by a weird illusion that my body wasn’t connected to my mind.

If we switch now, I’m practically sure that I’ll end up doing inappropriate things. And just as I thought about that, since she naturally heard my voice, Ciel asked me 「Ain, what’s wrong?」 in an extremely puzzled tone.

On top of it being embarrassing to explain how I was gasping from a new, unfamiliar stimulus, it might tip her off that I was a man in the past, so I tried to be as calm as possible as I told her 『It’s nothing.』

And as I was wondering why Ciel suddenly blinked three times, she replied 「If that’s the case, forget about it!」 with an awfully cheerful tone for some reason.

「Still, it’s not getting any bigger.」
『At the very least, if it grows just by doing it once, that’s another problem altogether.』
「I see, that’s true. In that case, then perhaps I should try again when I remember it next time.」
『… If you really want to do it, I won’t stop you.』

What a mistake. If I only told her 『It wasn’t effective at all, see?』 I might have prevented this from ever happening again. But now, it’s going to happen irregularly without me even knowing when. I could tell her to stop it, but I don’t really have a clear enough reason I can say to stop her from doing it. So I just threw my hopes into oblivion along with the foolish idea of telling her that doing it regularly might be much more effective.

We stepped out of the bathtub and wiped down her body but, although it’s protected by a barrier, Ciel’s long hair is drenched with water, so drying it up is going to be a hassle. I told her that drying long hair would be a problem, and that’s exactly the problem we’re facing now.

In the meantime, we used the towel to prevent Ciel from getting wet again and had her wear the cloth. After that is the issue of drying. And so what came to my mind was a hair dryer. My fire sorcery isn’t really strong enough to turn into combat sorcery and although it’s said that heat can damage hair, me using it probably can’t actually hurt her hair, so it should turn into a good enough drying sorcery.

「Drying hair really is a problem.」
『About that, there’s something I want to try, but can I try it?』
「Really? In that case, would you mind?」

After borrowing Ciel’s body, I quickly form the chant. Since I only need to choose the words, activating it is a different problem, simply making a chant isn’t that difficult. Purification sorcery might be actually simple enough to make but I don’t really have a clue of what words I can use, so I’ll leave that for another time. Maybe it’s not even sorcery, but actually magic. In that case, it’s going to be much more troublesome.

So with that, I imagined a hair dryer while I simply chanted 「Oh fire, make the wind heat up」 and, as I expected, warm air began to dry Ciel’s hair. And since it’s not an actual hair dryer but a product of sorcery, I can control the wind being blown making it super convenient. However, it still took about 10 minutes to completely dry up her hair.

『How was the bath?』
「It was fun, it was absolutely fun.」
『I’m glad you feel think so.』
「Also, I think I understand what you meant earlier, Ain. Particularly, when you were drying my hair, it felt really relaxing. You made that yourself, right Ain?」
『I don’t really think that it’s difficult to do.』
「I’m not sure about that. If I tried doing it, I would probably end up making it too hot, you know?」
『Not being able to to use combat sorcery is convenient in these situations, you see?』
「I don’t think that… that’s the only rea…son…」

While she was sitting down on the bed, Ciel suddenly starts dozing off. After that, she let out a cute little yawn.

『Shall we sleep now?』
「Right… For some reason, I feel really… sleepy. Ain, would you sing for me?」
『Sure, of course.』

So after turning the lights off and making sure that Ciel is laying down on the bed, I began to sing her a lullaby.

Hiya~! More AinCiel for all of us! *clap, clap, clap!

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Ain being unnecessarily obsessed with making a good lather from soap, lol. I ended up reading about making a good foam for a bit. Nice to have that in mind.
Meanwhile, Ciel playing with bubbles probably for the first time, cute!

Also, Ain just casually covering every single strand of Ciel’s hair with barriers. Every. Single. Strand… Excuse me? Is this another result of your weird obsessions with random stuff? lol

It was fun to read Ciel struggle with taking a bath for the first time as well. Also, Ain struggling with… well, being, ehem, cursed with knowledge… Moreover, Ain just being a bit too much of an airhead these past… Actually, she’s just a mature-ish airhead, she just knows how to sound like she knows everything (Only my opinion). You better hope Ciel doesn’t remember about this.

Anyway, today we are presented the product of modern technology, just as important as food and the almighty bedding, the bathroom! The modern another world bathroom seems to be have a bathtub with a pedestal next to it that displaces hot water from a magic stone. In this context, we have the information that otherworldians of this plane traditionally bath in hot water. Based on the absence of a shower head, it might infer that they tend to take their time bathing and soaking themselves in the bathtub for stress relief and pleasure. As the bathtub is said to be of a different design and material from the traditional Japanese wooden Oh! Fu! Roh! This means that the construction may be much more similar to the western bathtubs and that they have better crafting technology that enables them to use much sturdier materials than wood. In this essay I–

–Wait, we’re done with information gathering? No more mind games? Oh, sorry…

Now then, I hope you enjoyed this chapter. Feel free to comment, stay clean, stay safe, and have a nice day~!

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