Chapter 2: Good Medicine Tastes Bitter
Everyone returned home to the castle… for a brief moment. Shingen immediately went out to exterminate monsters called “yakuma”.
When she was worried about his body…
[YUZUKI]: (Eh? Where is this…)
[SHINGEN]: “I’m sorry… for calling you out here.”
[YUZUKI]: (Huh? What’s going on? I don’t remember being called by Shingen-san…)
[SHINGEN]: “Don’t… come close to me anymore.”
[SHINGEN]: “If you go on to stay by my side… I’ll definitely make you sad.”
[SHINGEN]: “So… so, please, don’t anymore– *cough cough*…”
[SHINGEN]: “Shit, at a time like this…!”
[SHINGEN]: “DON’T COME! I don’t have any more… *coughs*!”
I ran over to Shingen who collapsed on the spot. But when I called his name and shook him, he didn’t wake.
[YUZUKI]: “Shingen-san? SHINGEN-SAN!?”
Unable to believe what was happening in front of me, my consciousness went away from there–
[YUZUKI]: (Huh? Could that have been… a dream just now?)
When I sat up hurriedly, I was in my familiar room.
[YUZUKI]: (Thank god… it was a dream…)
As I breathed out deeply and calmed my feelings–
[???]: “Hmph… hah! Hragh!”
I heard Shingen-san’s spirited voice from outside.
[YUZUKI]: (Look, Shingen-san is that energetic… wait, hold on!? Are these yells possibly–!)
[SHINGEN]: “HAAAGH! HRAAAAGH!!”
[YUZUKI]: “It really is… Shingen-san! Is your body fine now?”
When I quickly went out to the courtyard, Shingen-san noticed me and stopped his training to turn a dazzling smile at me.
[SHINGEN]: “Yo, morning.”
[YUZUKI]: “Morning… you say… What do you think you’re doing!”
[SHINGEN]: “What, you ask… As you can see, I’m training.”
[SHINGEN]: “It’s a habit from when I was a kid. If I don’t do this then I can’t feel calm.”
[YUZUKI]: “C-Can’t feel calm… but the battle just ended… and you’ve trained until you’re dripping with sweat…!”
[YUZUKI]: “Umm, I believe I have a handkerchief in my pocket… ah, got it. Here, please stay still.”
[SHINGEN]: “H-Hey, stop it. I stink so don’t come close–“
[YUZUKI]: “It doesn’t matter, please stay still. If your sweat cools down then your temperature will drop too. So, we have to wipe off as much as possible…!”
[YUZUKI]: “You coughed out blood, you know?… Shingen-san, please take care of yourself more.”
[YUZUKI]: “H-Huh? What’s wrong…?”
[SHINGEN]: “No, um… how do I say this…”
For some reason Shingen-san was showing an embarrassed smile and scratched his cheek.
[YUZUKI]: (Did I do something weird…)
As I tilted my head Nobuharu-san came from the back of the courtyard while laughing.
[NOBUHARU]: “Fuhahaha, what a great girl.”
[YUZUKI]: “Nobuharu-san, good morning. Ah, Masakage-san too–“
[MASAKAGE]: “Hey, you! Don’t plaster yourself over Shingen-sama this early in the morning!”
[SHINGEN]: “What’s with you guys. Don’t tell me you were watching?”
[NOBUHARU]: “It was quite an interesting exchange. From the very beginning to the very end, we took our time watching.”
[MASAKAGE]: “If Nobuharu-san hadn’t stopped me, I would have broken in right away. You! Shingen-sama is nice, so if you stick yourself all over him any more than this–“
[SHINGEN]: “Hey now.”
[SHINGEN]: “Geez. You’re talking to a girl, you know. Don’t scare her.”
[NOBUHARU]: “Fuhaha, sorry about that. Masakage is wet behind the ears and doesn’t know the soft and fair skin of a woman.”
[NOBUHARU]: “Because he isn’t too used to dealing with women, I’d like to ask you to forgive him somehow.”
[MASAKAGE]: “I-It’s not like I need to know that, er…”
[SHINGEN]: “So? What’s up with you two? That you two were there the entire time means you came to me with business, right?”
[NOBUHARU]: “Aa. It’s about time to depart and preparations should be made… is what I thought.”
[SHINGEN]: “Woah, it’s that time already, huh. I got too passionate about training.”
[YUZUKI]: “… U-Um. Are you possibly going somewhere from here?”
[SHINGEN]: “Yeah. We’re going to exterminate the “yakuma” close to the western highway.”
[NOBUHARU]: “Huh, you don’t know about yakuma!?’
[NOBUHARU]: “Yakuma are monsters with horrifying appearances. Their fangs and claws can tear up everything, and their hellish roars can be heard like distant thunder even from mountains in the distance.”
[YUZUKI]: “Scary monsters like that exist!?”
[SHINGEN]: “Yeah. Lately, on top of their numbers rapidly increasing, reports of injuries have been coming from the people.”
[SHINGEN]: “I know there’s no end to them but… Anyway, we’re going around to beat up the yakuma and find their nest.”
[YUZUKI]: “Then, it can’t be that… Shingen-san, you’re going together with them…?”
[SHINGEN]: “Aa, of course. I have a duty to protect everyone of this territory.”
[SHINGEN]: “Besides, it’s not my nature to order things without going to the spot myself. So I’m going to fight with everyone.”
[YUZUKI]: “B-But, Shingen-san, your…”
[SHINGEN]: “Could it be you’re worried about my body?”
[SHINGEN]: “I’m certainly thankful about that, but do I look like such a weak man?”
[YUZUKI]: “N-No. That’s not… wah!”
Shingen-san laughed while he mussed up my hair.
[SHINGEN]: “Believe in me and wait here. I’ll finish it right away and come home. Alright?”
[YUZUKI]: (It feels like he’s treating me like a child somewhat…)
Despite how I wasn’t exactly convinced, Shingen-san and the others turned their backs and started walking.
[YUZUKI]: (… Am I really going to let him go? Even though he just recovered, if it happens again…)
The sight of the dream I saw this morning crossed my mind and I wasn’t able to stand still.
[YUZUKI]: “Actually, please wait!”
[SHINGEN]: “Hm? What’s wrong?”
[YUZUKI]: “If you’re going to go, Shingen-san… I’m coming along too!!”
[SHINGEN + MASAKAGE]: “What!?”
[MASAKAGE]: “You! You followed us to the battle without permission just before too! Do you not know what self-reflection is.”
[NOBUHARU]: “Calm down, Masakage. It doesn’t seem to be without thought.”
[YUZUKI]: “… If Shingen-san were to look like he was going to collapse again, he can drink my blood and suppress his symptoms. I can be of help in case of an emergency.”
[YUZUKI]: “So, please! Please take me along!”
[SHINGEN]: “… You’re kind. Worrying so much about me. I’m really thankful.”
Although I was overjoyed for an instant, thinking he was going to grant my wish, Shingen-san stroked my head again as if to comfort me.
[SHINGEN]: “But you really don’t need to worry about me… After I drank your blood back there, I’ve never felt better.”
[SHINGEN]: “You saw just now, didn’t you? I was practice swinging energetically.”
[SHINGEN]: “Don’t look so worried.”
[SHINGEN]: “I’ll even buy some sweets on the way home, so even if you’re bored please bear with it and stay at home.”
[YUZUKI]: (Shingen-san was smiling, but… is he really okay?)
[MASATOYO]: “Huh…? Could it be that Shingen-sama and the others have already left?”
[YUZUKI]: “Ah, yes. Erm, if I remember correctly you’re…”
[MASATOYO]: “Naitou Masatoyo.”
[YUZUKI]: “I-I see. Sorry, I…”
[MASATOYO]: “Oh no, it’s fine. I’m used to having a weak presence since I was young. But it would make me happy if you were to remember me little by little.”
[MASATOYO]: “More importantly, Shingen-sama left already, hasn’t he. Hmm, this is troubling. He forgot this…”
[YUZUKI]: “Um, what’s that?”
[MASATOYO]: “Ah, this is called a “pill” and it is medicine rounded into a ball.”
[MASATOYO]: “Shingen-sama always carries these around with him, but… he forgot it only for today.”
[YUZUKI]: (He said he was feeling great, but to head out without medicine…)
[MASATOYO]: “Hmm, what to do… I’d like to deliver it to him but I also have to exterminate yakuma at a different location…”
[YUZUKI]: “–E-Excuse me!”
[YUZUKI]: “In that case, I’ll deliver it! Please give that to me!”
[MASATOYO]: “Huh!? Ah, wait!?”
I thought it was a bit forceful but I took the pills from Masatoyo-san’s hands and ran towards the castle gates.
When I exited the gates, Shingen-san and the others’ backs were already out of sight.
[YUZUKI]: (Not that much time has passed since they left, so I should be able to catch up somewhere…!)
In the end, the sight of the dream I saw today was burned into my mind and wouldn’t leave–
[YUZUKI]: (Maybe I saw that dreams an omen that something might happen to Shingen-san.)
[YUZUKI]: (If that’s the case, then I can’t leave it alone!)
I gripped the pouch containing the pills and ran.