The feudal lord came back and I asked him to check the job we did.
“Oh my!! To think that old bath could become this clean!” [Porco]
“It’s almost like we’ve taken a trip to the past.” [Piguu]
Piguu-san and the feudal lord, who both knew what the bath was like before, were happy from the bottom of their hearts. Looks like it was worth cleaning all those hardened clumps.
“Thank you, Ryouma-kun.” [Porco]
“With this I can finally afford to show my face to the previous head.” [Piguu]
“I’m glad you like it.” [Ryouma]
They mentioned that there was one place I wasn’t allowed to clean. Curious, I asked about it.
“By the way, are you sure it’s really alright to leave the sluice gate as is?” [Ryouma]
The exit of the hot spring drawn hasn’t been cleaned. It also has clumps of calcium carbonate in it, which impedes the flow of hot water.
“If you were to take care of that too, you wouldn’t be able to finish cleaning the bath in a day. That thing is connected to the hot spring, after all. And… I know it’s a little strange to say this after asking you to clean this place, but I actually don’t use this bath all that much. It’s like my dad’s heritage, so I just wanted to restore it as much as possible. It’s fine like this.
If I had to ask for more, I suppose it would be great if the view outside could be cleaned up. As you can see, the bamboos have grown tall enough to block the view…” [Porco]
“We left the bamboos unchecked too, after all.” [Piguu]
“Were these not like this before?” [Ryouma]
“That’s right. My dad planted them some ways away from the bath. He even fed me some bamboo shoots he dug up. But as you can see, these bamboos have also been left alone, and now they’re like this.” [Porco]
“In the past, you could see the view below really well from here…” [Piguu]
Apparently, after being left unchecked for many years, the bamboo grove has expanded below the bath, blocking the view.
“…” [Members of the Wharf of Shikumu]
The members of the Wharf of Shikumu looked at me from the entrance of the dressing room.
That look they’re giving me is ‘that’, right? Are you sure? In that case…
“We’ll go and cut and the bamboos then. That way you’ll be able to see the view from here. After that we’ll consider this job complete.” [Ryouma]
“Ah, I wasn’t actually asking you to do that. Are you sure?” [Porco]
“You did promise to pay us 10 gold coins. But even without that, something on this level could still fall under ‘service’. The five guys behind me are also very eager to do it.” [Ryouma]
When we turned to the members of the Wharf of Shikumu, they visibly panicked.
Seriously, you guys. You don’t have to sneak around. If you panic like that, you’ll— Ah, the feudal lord went to call them. Alright. I think I’ll go and prepare while they’re relishing in their embarrassment.
I opened my Dimension Home and got my Wire Slime and some rods. I also got a sturdy rope so we can safely get down— Woah!?
“Ryouma-kun, that was so cruel of you~” [Kei]
“We’re not used to nobles like you…” [Kai]
Kei-san and Kai-san walked up to me while holding each others shoulders. Looks like they’re done talking with the feudal lord.
“Well, the feudal lord seems like a good guy. You’ll be fine if you just act normally around him.” [Ryouma]
“You sure have big balls despite how you look…” [Shin]
“I thought it was because we’re from the countryside, but I guess that’s not it, huh.” [Sein]
How rude. I’ll have you know that I’m also bad with people in lofty positions. I was really nervous when I met a noble for the first time.
But enough of that, let’s talk business. Not that this is a complicated job or anything.
“First, my slimes and I will do a quick cut of the bamboos. It won’t be the cleanest cut and some parts will be left from time to time, but it’ll be efficient. I’ll leave the parts left over to you guys. It’s a steep slope down, so use these ropes to be safe.” [Ryouma]
With those few words, everyone knew what the plan was. We’ve been working for a while now, so they already trusted my slimes.
As everyone quickly started preparing, I went ahead and walked over to the edge of the open bath, and then I climbed over the fence and went down the mountain.
“I’m counting on you.” [Ryouma]
“!” [Wire Slime]
The wire slime was brimming with motivation as it turned itself into a coping saw and stretched itself.
The wire slime could stretch itself as far as 40m. This time I had it stretch itself 20m between my two rods.
When I saw that it had stretched itself long enough, I connected the wire slime to the ends of the two rods and formed a hoop.
As for the nucleus that couldn’t transform, I had it cling to the tip of the rod with the excess thread.
Finally, I sent my ki into the wire slime through the rod, strengthening its coping saw form.
“We need to cut the bamboos from the roots and as parallel to the ground as possible. Alright. Let’s do this!” [Ryouma]
At my signal, the wire slime pulled the hoop tight.
As the slightly loose thread tightened to its limits, the saw blade ate into the bamboos standing between it.
The wire slime then began expanding and contracting as it moved the tightened threads sideways.
The ki-reinforced saw blade was sharp, and the hoop that instantly cut the bamboos contracted and moved on to the next bamboos.
It only took about 10 seconds for the bamboos and other plants and vegetation within the hoop to be completely cut.
“This whole process reminds me of a chainsaw. I sure come up with some scary stuff… Ah.” [Ryouma]
Noticing an odd shadow, I abruptly looked up, and there I saw the shocked expression of the feudal lord.
“Were slimes always like that?” [Porco]
“Umm, Ryouma-kun’s slimes are probably special.” [Kai]
“Just recently he cut down a lot of trees around the village under the pretense of an experiment.” [Kei]
“The grandmas and grandpas that saw Ryouma-kun’s slime cutting wood mentioned they wanted one themselves. They said it would make getting fire wood so much easier.” [Shin]
Sigh, you guys too? Well, I guess it is true that the slime makes for a great lumberjack. In fact it’s so good at cutting that I’m using these rods because I don’t want to accidentally touch the wire while it’s in the process of cutting these bamboos, but…
“I’m going to keep cutting like this, so after a little while, please take care of the ones that weren’t cut properly!” [Ryouma]
The members of the Wharf of Shikumu had completely gone into spectator mode, so I called out to them before starting to cut another 20m of bamboos in the opposite direction. After that I took a step down the slope and cut another 20m. Repeating that, I cut 40m of bamboos around me while going down the slope.
The countless bamboo that have been cut fell down toward the base of the mountain. They were stopped by the other bamboos and vegetation that have yet to be cut, but those eventually couldn’t support them and broke themselves. The number of bamboos on the ground increased. I have to be careful not to get crushed.
Speaking of which, people that use wires or threads for their weapon are fairly common in manga and light novels. I wonder if I can do something similar if I use the wire slime. Although I feel like I’m using it a bit differently now, it is still able to cut the bamboos really quickly.
If I use it well, maybe I can use it to help with transportation too…
As I was thinking that to myself, what appeared in my mind was the image of a pulley on top of a wire dangling and sliding from the rope its attached.
No, that’s a bit wrong… If it’s like that, then it’ll just be an obstacle course for children. Though I don’t think it’ll affect me with my current body. Moreover, it does take quite a bit of time to get to the foot of the mountain from the top of the abandoned mine, so it might be a good idea even if it’s just for a one-way trip. I’ll try making it when I get back.
…Huh? What was I thinking again before the whole obstacle course thing came up? Oh, right. The uses of the wire slime.
And from there, the thread users often found in manga and light novels came to mind… Be it ally or foe, those guys are usually strong, aren’t they? Not that that’s related or anything. Still, I do feel like characters that use only normal threads or can’t fight are rare. In fact, I can’t recall ever coming across such a character. Why is that? Even though in stories like battle-type mangas there are plenty of non-combatant characters whose role is to explain things…
There I go again thinking of unnecessary things. As I roused myself up from that, I noticed that I had already reached the end of the bamboo grove.
Since I can already see a little further than before, the view from the open bath should have already cleared up. I think I can wrap up the bamboo cutting here.
While I was looking at the view from the slope, I remembered that strange feeling from before.
It was then that it dawned on me.
“Oh, I see.”
And I found out what that strange feeling I had earlier was about. It was probably the direction.
Open air baths are often made so that a beautiful view can be viewed from them. This open air bath was also made like that, as can be seen from how it has no wall facing this slope. That’s probably why I unconsciously thought that I should be able to get a sweeping view of the Ratoin Lake from it.
But in truth, the open air bath turned out to be facing the ‘opposite direction’ from the lake. The only sweeping view that you can get on this side are the marshes and the trees. My sense of direction got all messed up because of the bad road and the complicated road we had to climb to get here. That’s probably why I felt something was off when I saw that map.
Piguu-san was around to show us the way, so I never thought about getting lost, and even if we did get lost, I could just rely on my Rimel Birds to get the direction of the town. Because of that I didn’t pay much attention to the direction we were facing. I should probably be more careful of this in the future…
The question now is why build the open air bath facing this direction? The view here isn’t particularly bad, but it’s a rather common view to this region. Is it an issue with the source of the water?
When I got back to the open air bath, the feudal lord gave his approval. I took that opportunity to ask where the water came from, and it turns out that it was apparently close to the lake, so the previous head had actually gone out of his way to bring the water here. If that’s the case, then there must be a ‘reason’ why.
Curious about the ‘reason’, I left the cleanup to the Wharf of Shikumu and used the time to look at the view and think.
Why did the previous head go out of his way to build the hot spring here?
“…? Come to think of it, the materials and construction method…” [Ryouma]
The personality of the previous feudal lord…
It was just a gut feeling, but with that as the key point, I considered many different possibilities.
In the end, all I could get was just a conjecture, but…
“Yes, what is it?” [Piguu]
“Earlier, you mentioned that the grave of the feudal lord was at the top of this mountain, right?” [Ryouma]
“Yes, I did. Is something the matter?” [Piguu]
“Could that place be…” [Ryouma]
I asked a question based on my conjectures, and it looks like I hit it right on the money.
Piguu-san was shocked.
“Why do you know that? It is exactly as you say, there is nothing at all around the grave of the previous head. We felt bad about it, but everything – from the location of the burial to how to cut the trees – was written. So we did just as the will said.” [Porco]
I’m probably correct.
“Thank you very much, Piguu-san. Thanks to you, I think I’ve found another hint to the other request of the feudal lord.” [Ryouma]
“I’m happy to be of service.” [Piguu]
Despite saying that, however, his face was full of confusion.
That’s only natural. After all, I didn’t really explain anything. But now the question is how to make use of this unexpected hint. I focused my attention on that.
Chapter title is blank because syosetsu is currently under maintenance. I’ll update it later when syosetsu comes back online. Chapter title has now been updated.