Chapter 9: Slime Enjoys Hot Springs to the Fullest

Nikola chose the number one inn in the hot springs village.
The food is delicious, the local sake is prepared, and there’s also a hot spring.
On top of that, the room is wide, it’s the best inn.

Because of that, the cost is high, but you can’t scrimp on a trip.
We won’t come here often, so we should enjoy until we are exhausted, regardless of the expense.
That is my motto, and my daughter, Orphe has inherited that notion.
We unloaded the luggage in the room we’ve been guided to, and changed into this village’s unique garments, yukata.
The nape and the upper part of their breasts are visible, Otou-san’s a little worried.
If my cute Orphe and Nikola wear this, insolent men will become beasts.

「Uwaa, Sla-chan, we can see a waterfall from the window. It’s beautiful, isn’t it」
「Pyui!」

There is a large river near this hot springs village.
And, we can see that from this room.
A little steam is coming out from it. The hot springs probably escapes from that river.

「Orphe-nee, should we get in the hot springs first? Or should we eat?」
「Let’s first get into the hot springs. The food will be more delicious after warming ourselves」
「Mn. I’ll inform the proprietress」

It’s an expensive room, so we won’t go down to the dining hall to eat, but the food will be carried to our room.
On top of that, it’s a full course meal, so there will be a variety of food. I’m looking forward to it.

「Nikola, about the order」
「I know, three portions, since Sla will eat as well」
「Pyuui♪」

Of course, I will eat and drink sake as well.
Thank goodness I still retained my sense of taste even after becoming a slime. Food is the greatest pleasure of life.

「Well then, Sla-chan, Nikola, let’s go to the hot springs」
「Mn」
「Pyu!」

Thus, the two people and one slime exited the room.
As we exited the room, we unexpectedly met an acquaintance.
The other party looked at us…… no, at Orphe, and opened her eyes widely.

「Orphe-sama! It’s been a while. I feel that it is fate that we met in such a place」

As if she was a friendly puppy, the young lady with a sakura-coloured hair rushed over to Orphe.
She is a young lady in her early teens, wearing luxurious clothes. Awfully cute and lovable.

「Oh my, Mikohime-sama. It’s been a while」 (TLN: Miko – Shrine maiden, Hime – Princess. Can’t seem to find a nice-sounding English word, so if there are no good suggestions, this is what I will use from now on.)

Orphe’s expression cramped as she greeted.

「Mikohime-sama is too reserved. You can call me Elesia, just like before」

This kid is this country’s Third Princess.
The royal family inherits a special blood, and possesses a purification power.
Especially Elesia, she inherited extremely thick blood, and has been worshipped as the Mikohime.

However, she has too much talent.
The power is too strong for her to control, and she was injured by her own power.
That is why, she was left in my mansion, and in that time, I taught her the way to completely use her power. She became emotionally attached and clings to Orphe, who had been entrusted with the duty of caretaker at that time.

「I cannot possibly do that. Since others will be watching」

Behind Elesia are six knights tasked with escort.
Because they are the escorts of the Mikohime, all of them are warriors with each a match for a thousand.

「Please don’t say such lonesome things. I want you to call me like in the past」
「I see. Only if there aren’t people watching. Please come to our room today to play. I’ll bake a cake with plenty of eggs which Elesia loved, and wait for you」
「It’s a promise! Orphe-sama’s cake is fluffy and sweet, I wanted to eat it for so, so long!」
「Yes. I’ll put all my skill into making it」

Orphe smiled.
To Orphe, she is like a difficult little sister.
Elesia moved her line of sight from Orphe to Nikola.

「Nikola. Long time no see. You’re not wearing makeup as usual, are you?」
「None of your business」
「It’s such a waste, you’re cute, after all. Please dress up a little」

Saying that, she handed over the ribbon she had fastened on her hair to Nikola.
Nikola tried to refuse, but it was forcibly pushed against her.
As expected of a princess’ item, it’s of fine quality. Moreover, it’s worn by a miko for many years, so it absorbed the holy essence and has become a sacred vestment. This would probably fetch an outrageously high price.

「Thanks anyway」
「Nikola’s as uncute as usual」

Elesia adores Orphe like an elder sister, and loves Nikola like a younger one.
Although Nikola is a year older than her, since Nikola looks like a little girl, Elesia treats her like a younger sister.

「Mikohime-sama, I have a thing to request of you. Please keep the fact that Nikola and I came here a secret. If possible, it would help if you tell that to your escorts as well」
「Understood! I will keep this a secret. Well then, I shall be on my way. I have a big job to do from now on!」

Now that she mentions it, the knights are all heavily armed.
Elesia herself is clad in divine equipment. Her outfit is to establish that she is the Mikohime.
She turned her back on us and started walking, but stopped on the way.

「……I’m sorry for Merlin-oji-sama. Next time, please let me offer some silent prayers」

Orphe was at a loss for words, and made a sorrowful expression.
The mansion does not belong to my daughters anymore.
I see, Elesia doesn’t know about the fatty upstart’s reckless actions, huh.

「Yes, Otou-san will surely be happy」

Thus, we separated with Elesia.
However, I am a little curious.
A job that requires even the Mikohime, the most important person in the country.
Certainly, this village is a sealed land. However, the once a year reinforcement of the seal has been completed, and the reinforcement ended last month.
……They probably came here because there’s something suspicious.

We finally arrived at the hot springs.
The hot springs here are divided into two types, open air bath and the other with a roof.

We went to the open air bath, according to Orphe’s wish.
Fortunately we reserved it. I feel a little lucky.

An elegant bathtub made of stone, and on top of that, a scent peculiar to that of a hot spring.
Orphe and Nikola cleansed their bodies with hot water before entering the bathtub.

Of course, I am being hugged by Orphe.
I then activated 【Presence Sensing】. On the extremely unlikely case that insolent men appear, trying to peek at their soft fair skin, I plan to gift their eyes with Acid Beam.
I have a duty as a father to protect my daughters.

「Hauuuu, this hot spring is good. As expected of the town famous for hot springs」
「Mn. My fatigue is drawn out from me, I feel like I’ll melt」
「It seems that it’s also good for beauty. They say that skin will become smooth」
「Fantastic. We’ll have to use this a lot」
「Pyuーiー」

Both of them made made relaxed expressions as energy is drawn out from their bodies.
In my case, it feels so good, I am enduring the feeling that I am about to literally melt.
I’m enjoying this hot spring even though I am a slime. I feel like my jiggly slime body is becoming smooth.

「Sla-chan, does it feel good for you too?」
「Pyui♪」
「That’s good」

Orphe hugged me tightly and put strength into her arms.
The hot spring feels good, but Orphe feels good as well. As expected, a real hot spring feels different.

I seriously think that coming to the hot springs is a good thing.
I casually looked towards Nikola.
……She’s small.
I don’t mean her childish physique, her small stature with her slender body is like a fairy’s.
However, her chest is small. It doesn’t seem like it’ll feel that good even if she hugs me tightly. It seems like it’ll touch her ribs.

「Sla, are you thinking something weird while looking at me?」
「Pyui, pyui」

I shook my head.
Her breasts have been her complex since the olden days, so I should let sleeping dogs lie.
There was this one time I had to stop her from seriously trying to make a breast enlargement potion.
The affectionate time passes.
In the middle of that, I came upon a good idea.

「Pyui pyui (Gulp gulp)」

I drank the hot spring.
I then analysed the composition. I see, it seems that it’s true that it’s good for health, has the effect of recovering fatigue, and on top of that has the effect for beautiful skin.
Moreover, I can feel some holy essence. I see, the sealed land is on the upper stream. A large amount of holy essence is invested during re-sealing so it probably dissolved. Whether one can bring out holy essence depends on one’s talent during birth, so even I can’t produce it.
I’ll have to preserve this in large quantities. The ingredients are good, and above all, this water carries holy essence. This is a treasure.
Gulp gulp, hot spring’s delicious.

One day, this hot spring’s components might become useful. If this body isn’t a slime, I could make cosmetics by combining the active ingredients and sell them, and it might become popular.

……I then felt a little uncomfortable.

『It’s not just holy essence. Miasma is also mixed in it』

It’s only a minute amount, but miasma is mixed in it. Miasma never appears in the world through normal means.
With this amount, it won’t cause any harm, but that’s only right now. If the density increases, it will become harmful.
Someone is doing something.
There’s a need to conduct a special ritual and pull away the miasma from the other side.
Or is the seal getting undone? If that revives, it’ll be a serious matter for the country.
That’s probably the reason the Mikohime came, huh.

「What’s wrong, Sla-chan?」
「Pyui」

I answered that it’s nothing.
At this stage, the only way for me to respond is the same as the Mikohime.
So that my daughter’s aren’t dragged into this, I decided to carefully supervise, and gulped down the hot spring water.
Hot spring is delicious.

We got out from the hot spring and returned to our room.
I thought again that it’s good that I used 【Presence Sensing】.

There were two idiots who tried to climb over the wooden fence used to cover the bath room.
They were customers of the ryokan who we passed by after separating from Elesia. (TLN: Ryokan – A type of traditional Japanese inn) They were probably tempted after seeing Orphe and Nikola, two outrageous beauties.

Before they could finish climbing the wooden fence, I pictured the path of Acid Beam (Ultra Diluted) and shot it. I bathed their face witha lot of it.
They’ll experience suffering from hell for two or three hours, but they won’t lose their eyesight.
On the unlikely chance that they saw the two’s soft fair skin, I would have used an undiluted one, so those guys were lucky. Orphe who didn’t know anything smiled, thinking that my playing with a squirt gun was cute.
Otou-san’s worried, since both of you are so full of openings.

Then, after returning to our rooms, it was the long-awaited dinner time.

「Uwaaa, there’s so much food from the rivers and mountains」
「I’ve never seen such a big prawn. On top of that, these mushrooms smell really good」
「There’s also a funny shellfish. I wonder how it tastes」

This inn, surrounded by rivers and mountains, offered the products without stint.
Each and every one of them was fresh and delicious, so we ate in ecstasy.

There aren’t many inns which offer such delicious food.
As expected, food produced in their local area’s the best.
As we ate in a trance, the after meal dessert was carried in without realising.

A sherbet made from a fruit called yuzu, with a refreshing sweetness and a peculiar bitter taste. (TLN: Yuzu’s a real fruit.)
This is also delicious as well. After we finished eating, I feel that my stomach’s a little empty. It wasn’t only delicious, it also seem to be a good dessert for the body.

「It was so delicious that I ate too much」
「Mn. I thought that the inn was a little expensive, but with such food, it’s rather cheap」

Both of them seem to be completely satisfied.

「Orphe-nee, it’s almost the promised time. You have to quickly bake the cake」
「Oh, right, I’ll go back to the carriage for a while to make it」

There’s a simple kitchen in the golem carriage.
Orphe hugged me and exited the room. I look forward to sampling.

A while after the cake has finished baking.

「Elesia isn’t coming」
「It’s been quite a while since the appointed time. Elesia-chan has never stood us up. I’m a little worried」

There’s also the miasma I took in in the hot spring, and I’ve also become a uneasy.
Although it was for a short while, I’ve raised and disciplined her just like how I did with my daughters. I am quite pleased with that kid.

「Customers, may I have a minute?」

The proprietress cmae along, bringing after-meal tea and a piece of paper.

「Yes, we don’t mind. The food was delicious」

Orphe responded to the proprietress.

「Thank you. Ahem, a directive arrived from this village, instructing us to have a talk with travellers……, actually, just now, the guild officially issued an emergency quest. The Mikohime was carrying out a task with her guards, but…… she has been kidnapped. The only guard who had escaped rushed into the guild, explained the situation and and issued an emergency quest to rescue Himemiko-sama. The surviving guard was severely wounded, and after finishing conveying the information with the last of his energy, he passed away」 (TLN: For some reason it became Himemiko. I’m assuming it’s a typo, though.)

Orphe read the letter handed over to her.
I who was in her arms also glanced at it.
The details of the request is the recovery of the Mikohime, as well as subjugation of those who attacked the Mikohime.
The reward can be said to be exceptional.

「Of course, a request for reinforcements have been sent to the kingdom, and it is planned that reinforcements will also arrive from the neighbouring villages and towns. However, until the reinforcements arrive, what will the Mikohime go through…… we wish that she can be rescued, even if only a second earlier. If the customers are confident in your skills, please accept this quest. As you can see, the reward is extraordinary」
「Understood. Please let us think for a while」
「I am sorry for taking up your time」

The proprietress went out after bowing.
She probably doesn’t have expectations for Orphe and Nikola. After all, it’s a pair of cute little girls.
Even so, the fact that she called out to us is probably because she was told to briefly inform travellers in the instruction by the village.

This is a village famous for hot springs, there’s a probability that there are first-class adventurers who came to take the baths. It’s natural that they would inform all the customers of the inns for the sake of that probability.

「Orphe-nee, what should we do?」
「Let’s go. We can’t abandon Elesia」
「Mn. In that case, let’s accept it. Honestly speaking, it would be bad to stay in this village longer than we have. I wanted to depart early morning. The more we spend time here, the harder it would be to get through the national border. However, I don’t want to let go of this chance to earn some money. I want to quickly re-buy the mansion, and since Orphe-nee said that you want to save her no matter what, it’s inevitable, so we’ll accept that quest」

She said something coldhearted, but Nikola averted her face as she told Orphe that. She does that whenever she’s lying.

「Nikola-chan’s not honest, huhー. It’s okay for you to say that you’re worried about Elesia-chan, though. ……Once dawn breaks, we’ll immediately go to help Elesia. We can’t see well in the dark. It’s a different story for Shimazu-nee-san, but it’s suicidal to enter a forest at night」
「Mn. Understood. I’ll make preparations」

While listening to the two’s conversation, I rotated my head.
In all probability, the miasma mixed into the hot spring is related to Elesia’s kidnapping.
The Himemiko’s guards are elite knights, thinking about how they were annihilated, there’s an extremely skilled opponent.

Orphe and Nikola are elite masters of 【Magic Arts】 and 【Alchemy】 respectively. However, they aren’t warriors. I’m worried that powerful magic arts and alchemy wouldn’t be a match for their strength.

……No helping it. I will protect them.
No matter what happens, I’ve decided to protect these kids, and started confirming the monster materials inside my body and the medicinal components I absorbed.
If I am going to fight with a strong person with this weak body, I don’t have any room to choose my means.

「Pyui!!」
「Sla-chan’s getting pumped up as well, huh」

Moreover, I’m also worried for Elesia.
My slime dignity will not tolerate abandoning the young lady who said that she will burn me an incense stick.
No matter what it takes, I will save her.

————————————————-
Race: Forbidden Slime
Level: 6
Name: Merlin Enlight
Skill: Absorb | Storage | Presence Sensing | Familiar | Flight Ⅰ | Horn Charge | Language Ⅰ
Belongings: Strong acid potion | Various medicinal plant components | Pyroxene of Evolution | Great Sage’s inheritance | Forest Rat materials | Pidgeotto materials | Horn Bambi materials | Denkul Rat materials | Holy Water
Status:
Physical strength F | Endurance F | Agility E | Magic power F+ | Luck F+ | Uniqueness EX
————————————————-

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