Chapter 113 – Bear-san Goes And Digs Up Bamboo Shoots
There was a very gentle knock on the door, as if the person knocking was hesitating.
I woke up and opened my eyes. I opened the window even though the sun had not risen yet.
I wasn’t sleepy since I went to sleep early yesterday.
The door slowly opened, and a certain someone entered the room.
「Big Sis Yuna, are you awake?」
Fina called out to me softly.
「Good morning, Fina.」
「What about Shuri?」
「She’s awake, since we slept early.」
Oh right, she normally woke up early with Terumi-san to help her at the orphanage; the one who had trouble waking up early was me.
I asked Fina to leave first and followed her after I changed to the Black Bear Suit.
「Sorry for making you wait.」
The two were already ready to head out.
It was still dark when we left the Bear House.
「Are you two cold?」
「I’m okay too.」
They had coats on, so it should be okay?
When I was wearing the Bear Clothes, I couldn’t really tell what the temperature was like.
「Tell me if you’re cold, okay?」
When we arrived at the city, Deiga-san was already waiting for us, holding a big hoe in his hand.
「Good morning, Deiga-san.」
After I greeted him, Fina and Shuri did the same.
「Well then, shall we head out?」
Deiga-san put the hoe on his shoulder and started walking.
The four of us headed towards the place where the bamboos were.
「Is the inn okay?」
「Yeah, I have been making preparations since last night, after all. The only thing that remains is the cooking, and Anzu should be able to do that on her own. If she can’t, I won’t let her to go to your place, Missy, and will make her re-do her training.」
I prayed that Anzu could do it on her own.
We arrived at the bamboo thicket soon after. There were a lot of splendid bamboos.
「Can you really eat something like this?」
Deiga-san knocked on the hard bamboo.
「You can eat the ones that haven’t come out of the ground yet.」
I looked around for places where the earth was bulging out. Was it here? I dug up the ground using earth magic. I uncovered a big bamboo shoot. It seemed that I had picked the right spot. I skillfully harvested the bamboo shoot.
「So, that’s a bamboo shoot?」
Deiga-san took the bamboo shoot and examined it.
「If you peel it and remove the poison, you can eat it.」
「Yosh, I understand. I just have to dig them up, right?」
Deiga-san went further inside the bamboo thicket with his hoe.
Did he know where to dig them up?
「Big Sis Yuna, will we dig this up?」
Fina asked while looking at the bamboo shoot.
「That’s right. My plan was to come here and dig up the bamboo shoots with the two of you.」
「I understand. I’ll do my best. I don’t have any tools for digging, though.」
「No problem. I will lend Swaying Bear and Hugging Bear to you.」
I summoned Hugging Bear and Swaying Bear.
「Can you two go with them and look for bamboo shoots?」
When I asked the two, they nodded.
As expected from animals?
「These children will dig up the bamboo shoots, so could you carry them?」
Swaying Bear was paired with Fina, and Hugging Bear with Shuri.
「Swaying Bear, I’m in your care.」
Fina petted Swaying Bear.
「Hugging Bear, we should do our best so we don’t lose to Sis, okay?」
「I won’t lose either.」
They headed in different directions.
Then, should I dig around here?
While walking around the area, I dug up all the slightly bulging places.
I didn’t find any shoots sometimes, but I was successful more often than not.
Meanwhile, Fina and Shuri were bringing bamboo shoots to me with their small bodies.
The shoots were all sorts of sizes, big and small.
They brought them over many times, but Deiga-san didn’t bring even one.
You just had to dig and you could find them, but he left during my explanation, so I wasn’t able to tell him the trick to finding them. I became worried.
I continued to dig while worrying about Deiga-san.
It wasn’t good to take too much, so I stopped after taking a moderate amount.
The next time Fina and Shuri came back, I told them that we would stop.
「I lost to Sis…」
Shuri seemed sad.
「Shuri, you lost because you went too far.」
「I thought I would find more if I went farther, though…」
「The next time we do this, think about how far you have to carry them, okay?」
Shuri puffed up her cheeks and clung to her partner, Hugging Bear.
「Hugging Bear, I’m sorry. We lost because of me.」
Hugging Bear lightly patted her head. Was he saying she shouldn’t mind it?
Deiga-san was really late though. How far did he go?
I used detection magic to find him. He didn’t go too far.
「I will go to Deiga-san, so please wait here for a minute, okay?」
I left them there and headed towards Deiga-san.
When I reached him, I saw a lot of holes. Even now, Deiga-san was digging a hole.
「Deiga-san, what are you doing?」
「What are you saying? I am digging up bamboo shoots. I’m having trouble finding them though…」
I knew it. He really was digging randomly!
「Deiga-san, there’s a trick to finding bamboo shoots, you know?」
「Is that so? You should have told me that earlier!」
「You went off on your own before I could tell you, right?」
「Was it so?」
「Yes, it was. You find bamboo shoots by carefully looking at the ground for places where the earth is bulging up a bit.」
I looked around and found a place that was bulging up.
「Deiga-san, that place over there bulges up, right?」
「Ah, you’re right.」
「Please go and dig over there.」
Deiga-san went to dig where I told him to.
「Oh! It’s really here!」
「It was about to sprout soon. If it did, it would have become a bamboo.」
Deiga-san swung the hoe carefully not to break the bamboo shoot.
As he continued to dig, the bamboo shoot was slowly being uncovered. A surprisingly big bamboo shoot was buried here.
「It’s big, huh.」
Deiga-san successfully dug up the bamboo shoot using his muscles.
I then told him we would go back since the sun was rising.
「I only dug up one, you know!」
「Time has run out already. If you continued to dig more, their taste would get worse, and that wouldn’t be good, right?」
Deiga-san looked sad when I told him that, but he obediently agreed to come back with us.
I was sure that he, as a chef, thought that he couldn’t serve something that didn’t have the best taste to his customers.
I put the bamboo shoots inside the Bear Box, and we headed back to the inn.
When we arrived at the inn, Anzu was collapsed on the table, exhausted.
「Ah, Yuna-san. Welcome back.」
Anzu woke up.
「Oh, it seems that you managed on your own, huh.」
「Somehow. I don’t want to do it again, though.」
「Right, right? Still, if you can’t do this, you won’t be become a full-fledged chef, you know!」
「I’ll do my best!」
Anzu stood up from her chair.
「So, did you find the bamboo shoots?」
I brought out a bamboo shoot from the Bear Box.
「So, this is a bamboo shoot?」
「Should I prepare it, so we can eat it for lunch?」
I showed them how to remove the poison, and prepared the rice.
「I heard it from Anzu, but it seems that the people from the country of Harmony and Peace haven’t come yet?」
「Yeah. We’re troubled, since we can’t procure rice and other commodities. Still, thanks to the feudal lord of Crimonia, wheat is being transported here, and bread has become our main food.」
Fish and bread, huh. For me, who was born in Japan, it was an impossible combination.
Fish went best with rice.
Wait, there were fish burgers too. Should I make some next time?
「The tunnel isn’t finished yet, right? They brought it anyway?」
The tunnel’s interior was dark; the installation of magic lines wasn’t finished yet.
「Missy, even though you subjugated the bandits and the Kraken, we still have a food shortage. We used to transport the flour by boat, but it’s now quicker to just get it from Crimonia, so we asked them to bring us food.」
Well, that was true. Even though they had fish now, with just seafood it was still…
It wasn’t my place to talk here, so I kept quiet.
I decided to make the bamboo shoots in front of me as delicious as I possibly could.
First, preparing the bamboo shoot rice, then frying what had to be fried, and finally seasoning what had to be boiled. I made lots of different dishes using the bamboo shoots.
「Sis Yuna, I’m hungry.」
Now that I thought about it, we did work without eating breakfast, huh.
I placed the finished dishes in front of the two children.
「It looks delicious.」
「It isn’t white today?」
Shuri asked while looking at the rice.
「That’s because the shoots that you dug up are mixed in. It’s delicious, so try it.」
Shuri nodded and brought the bamboo shoot to her mouth.
「Yes, it’s delicious!」
Shuri and Fina were eating it happily.
Seeing them eat it like that made me happy too.
「Can I also have some?」
「I prepared enough for all of us.」
I placed all of our portions on the table.
「It’s delicious and really tender. So the bamboo is soft like this, huh?」
「Well, you can’t eat it after it sprouts; it becomes too hard.」
「Big Sis Yuna, it’s delicious.」
Shuri was eating silently.
「Somehow, Yuna-san looks more like a chef than me.」
「I can’t prepare fish, so Anzu is more of a chef than me.」
「Is that so?」
I had never prepared any, after all.
I knew a bit about them, but I had never prepared a fish.
「Yuna-san, you seem like you can do everything.」
「I only know how to cook it, so I am counting on you, Anzu.」
Anzu seemed happy.
「If we had rice, I would sell bamboo shoot rice in the shop, but…」
Deiga-san said while eating.
「Bamboo shoots are delicious even when you don’t eat rice with it, you know.」
「You’re right. It’s delicious enough to eat it with other ingredients. Although, is giving us these bamboo shoots really okay? Well, it would help us a lot if you gave some to us.」
Deiga-san managed to dig up only one.
We were able to harvest a lot of them since I used magic while Fina and Shuri got help from the bears.
「No problem. I harvested a lot thanks to these two. We could also go and harvest some more later if you want. It’s difficult to dig them up, right?」
「You’re right, there’s a trick to finding them. I will be okay next time though. You taught me a lot, after all.」
A little while later, after we finished eating our meals, people started coming in to eat lunch.
Deiga-san and Anzu would be busy soon, so we left the inn to avoid bothering them.
There were a lot of questions about the web novel after the book release, so I will answer them here.
The web version won’t get erased, so please be relieved.