“T-This is it! This is definitely! Undoubtedly! Tea!”
O-Oh, right. Sorry. How could I just eat by myself. Here, have some,” Shinichi said.
When he realized that he’d forgotten her, he gave her one of the breads.
She still wasn’t sure what was going on, but she nevertheless accepted Shinichi’s offer.
“Hu— K-Kyuu, Kyui!?
The moment she put the bread in her mouth, the softness and the taste shocked her so much that she almost spoke out loud in the human tongue. It was just too different from anything she’d eaten until now.
“You like it, yeah? I thought you’d like the tuna sandwich. Want more?”
Shinichi and Rinko couldn’t help but smile upon seeing how captivated she was with the food.
Meanwhile, ‘she’ could come to terms with why Shinichi cried upon eating the food. She thought to herself, “With food like these, no wonder master cried!
“You two sure are close. I hear they normally don’t get close to humans,” Rinko remarked.
“Ha ha ha… Thank you. You even did her papers,” Shinichi replied.
He couldn’t exactly tell Rinko why he was so close with ‘her’, so he tried to brush it off with a laugh and a bow.
Still… He was surprised that she was able to get the papers done so quickly. He didn’t want to be separated from her, of course, but he thought for sure it would’ve taken longer than that considering how widely feared her kind was.
“Huh? P-please raise your head. I really didn’t do anything special! After all, such a highly intelligent creature from the reserve deserves to have its wishes respected…
Although it’s also true that it’s because some people didn’t want to antagonize it.”
Shinichi nodded with a wry smile.
He didn’t know how similar the Tenkorius and the Amaryllis were, but he did know that ‘she’ was a powerful warrior. After all, he was the one who trained her. There was literally no one better informed when it came to her strength.
The decision to form a friendly relationship was also correct.
After all, antagonizing a creature said to be able to wipe out a country alone was simply a fool’s errand.
Although it’s also true that that fear went down the drain the moment she happily finished one sandwich and asked for another.
“…Eat as much as you want,” Shinichi said.
“Kyui!” She replied.
‘Then I won’t hold back’ she seemed to say as she struggled to open the package like Shinichi did with her forelimbs, after which, she was in a trance once more.
Shinichi smiled as he watched her eat, and Rinko too made a gentle expression when she saw his gaze. After all, she was well acquainted with that warm and gentle gaze of his.
“You look just like Nobuhiko-san when you do that.
Ah, I know. Shinichi-kun, could you turn around for a bit?”
Rinko intentionally ignored the momentary reaction Shinichi when she mentioned his father and urged him to turn around.
Shinichi didn’t know what was going on, but he did as asked, and when he did, he felt someone touching his long hair.
“U-Umm… What are you doing?” Shinichi asked.
“Just a little… Cutting your hair here probably wouldn’t be a good idea, so I went and got a hair clip along with the food. There we go!” Rinko said.
Although she wore her hair short, she was still a woman, in the end, so she was naturally able to tie Shinichi’s long hair.
“Yep. It was hard to tell with your hair like that, but with your face showing like this, everyone should recognize you immediately,” Rinko said.
The reason he let his grow so much was actually simply because he was too lazy to bother. Although, incidentally it was also a good way to make it harder to remember his facial features, making it a kind of camouflage.
After all, it’s surprisingly easy to fool people just by covering the eyes and changing one’s hairstyle.
“O-Oh, thank you,” Shinichi said.
That camouflage was so good that apparently even his own family couldn’t recognize him anymore.
To make things worse, there was the issue of the time difference. Only 2 years have passed for him, but for them it’s already been 8 years.
It was best to keep things simple to avoid confusion, and Shinichi was glad that she was willing to help him in that regard.
“You’re welcome,” Rinko replied with a smile.
It was such a warm and dazzling smile that Shinichi inadvertently felt like turning away.
Of course, that wouldn’t be a good idea, so he looked at her and started speaking a bit more seriously.
“………There’s something,” Shinichi paused for a moment before finishing, “I want to ask.”
“Go ahead. I’ll answer if i can,” Rinko said.
Seeing Shinichi so serious, Rinko corrected her sitting posture.
She’d actually been restless herself all this time, wondering when he was going to ask, but despite that, she couldn’t bring the topic up herself, as she thought it was wrong to do so.
“A lot of things have happened, and a lot has shocked me, but what shocked me the most was… Umm…”
He had to ask.
He had to know.
Why did she marry his father? Why did his mother divorce his father?
What was his mother doing now?
He had to know. He had to know at least that much.
His mind made up, Shinichi spoke.
“………When did this world start interacting with another world?”
“………………………Ah………Of course. Yes. I’m sure, you’re dying, to know that.”
Although they’d both steeled themselves for what was to come, in the end, Shinichi was a bigger coward than expected.
Rinko’s understanding expression as she let it pass – since it was after all a difficult topic to broach – was unbearably painful.
Even ‘she’, who was in a trance eating sandwiches just moments ago, froze up when she heard Shinichi’s question.
Tl Note: It seems using the older translations as reference won’t speed things up much since I still need to check the raws, so yeah… We’re going to be continuing with this pace for a while.