The Peerless Kobold - Chapter 138
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The next morning, in the Kobold settlement in the central part of Easteria forest, the little girl was enveloped in fluffy fur. She seemed quite warm and comfortable.
Even though they did not speak the same language, the 6-month-old Kobold pups and the little girl were both brimming with curiosity and got along almost immediately. They played in the village square and slept huddled together in the pavilion that Smith and his team built.
However, looking at the charming spectacle before him, the tall, skinny Kobold boorishly grumbled,
“Gau, gaoaawouru kuooruauuoou, guruua kuorufa.” (Tsk, they’re sleeping comfortably with the human cub, those kids aren’t wary enough.)
“Varuvo woaou…” (There you go again, this early in the morning…)
Amazed by the usual rudeness of her childhood friend, Lancer, who was standing next to Blazer, gently reached out and plucked out the little girl from the sea of fluff without waking any of the pups.
“Au? Doggy…nnn… zzz”
The sun had just started to rise and the little girl was still sleepy, so Lancer held the little girl tightly against her chest and lulled her back to sleep…
“Gau, wooan.” (We should get going.)
“Gaoua kuan oufauu kuruuaauu.” (The Humans must be worried about the disappearance of this cub.)
After their short exchange, Blazer and Lancer turned on their heels and were accompanied by two other young Kobolds as they left the settlement. Since Viel village was a few hours away from their settlement, the little girl’s adventure would come to an end by the time they arrived in the morning.
Meanwhile, a few hours before the Kobolds in the sanctuary left their settlement, people had gathered at the plaza in Viel village.
Three hunters were carrying an arrow on their back and a quiver and a sword hatchet on their belts, while the rest of the 5 other people present were roughly equipped with leather armor and Short Swords. This is the village’s vigilante unit that is tasked with keeping peace and order within the village.
While most cities are protected by soldiers employed by the feudal lord, it is economically difficult for small towns and villages to ask for the same treatment, so security is usually maintained by the volunteers that live there.
Furthermore, in exchange for allowing the residents of Viel village to freely enter and leave the forest that was designated as a sanctuary, the Lord of Ferias also imposed an order for them to capture those who would violate the ban.
But this time, their goal was not to apprehend an outsider who entered the forest despite the restriction but to search for Sophie, the young girl from their village…
Maril, the village chief’s daughter who took over as the acting chief while her father Sergio was still ill, headed the search operation. Stepping forward, she speaks to the village’s vigilante unit who had responded to her early morning call.
“Good morning. I’m sorry for calling you this early in the morning.”
“Please forgive us…”
Following Maril’s brief bow, Sophie’s parents who had become haggard from worrying also bowed their heads low.
“It’s alright. It’s times like these that the vigilante unit is most needed after all.”
The vigilante who was injured during the last scuffle with the bandits, Reebus, softly responded, and the awkward-looking hunters behind him also muttered out responses while scratching their heads.
“…I was scared and hid when the bandits came at that time, so I’ll do my best this time.”
“I was hunting in the forest at that time, but… well, I was in the same situation.”
The hunters have a big role in this operation since the search range includes the Easteria forest. Maril looks at them expectantly as she once again explains the situation to them.
“As I’ve told you yesterday, there are multiple testimonies that little Sophie entered the Easteria forest alone. That’s why the Adventurers will be in charge of searching the grasslands on the eastern part of the village, while we will be going inside the forest sanctuary to search for her there.”
As she talked, she turned to the 4 “Black Iron” Adventurers who were standing just outside the village square.
“I’ll be counting on you, Mr. Ares, and Ms. Muriel.”
“Don’t worry, it’s all in a day’s work.”
“Just leave it to us, we can cover for each other when the situation gets tricky.”
While thanking them for accepting the urgent request based on personal trust and not through the Adventurers Guild, Maril worked out the details of the search…
Meanwhile, Natalie, Maril’s mother, unconsciously let out a sigh as she watched her daughter’s figure from behind.
“She has always been such a tomboy since she was younger, but… like this, no one will take her in as a bride.”
Maril’s upper body was protected by a leather breastplate, while a machete blade hung from her waist, and on her feet were leather boots.
Perhaps Maril was uncomfortable with the fact that everyone would step into such a dangerous place and leave her in the safety of the village, so she was determined to step into the forest herself even though she could not yet handle a sword. Of course, her mother also tried to stop her, but she would not listen.
(While it’s nice that she is hands-on as the acting village chief, it’s also a problem that her sense of responsibility is too strong…)
As she sighed once again, Natalie glanced at Zeno who led the local vigilante group, and gave him a meaningful look that asked him to “take care of her daughter.” The man himself had no intentions of stepping deeper into the autumn forest, so he was the only one she could rely on to admonish her daughter to not overestimate her capabilities.
Although she was reluctant, Natalie put on a smile as she watched her daughter go. Maril’s parents had dedicated their lives to Viel village, so she also cared for the village and was working as hard as she could as the acting village chief.
Viel village’s vigilante’s headed into the depths of the forest sanctuary while the Adventurers headed to the eastern plains after the sun rose, and the mother and daughter pair parted ways without understanding how the other truly felt.
A few hours later, when the sun had already appeared in the morning sky, the Adventurers who had already finished searching the grasslands sat by the entrance of Easteria forest and seemed to be preparing an early lunch.
“Is it really alright to just sit around and have lunch in this kind of situation?”
“Surely… this isn’t the only thing we can do. What do you think, Muriel?”
While using a dagger to prepare the prairie rat they had hunted earlier, Mirea, the hunter who acted as their scout, asked Muriel who was sitting opposite her. However, since her question was exactly what the others were thinking, Muriel had nothing to say about it.
“At any rate, we can’t enter the forest sanctuary anyway, so I guess that’s that… Muriel, fire please.”
In response to the request of Riberto who was in charge of preparing the campfire, Muriel placed her hand over the hole that was lined with firewood and kindling and uttered a short spell to produce fire.
From there, Mirea placed the prepared meat into skewers and grilled them. Not long after, a nice smell surrounded the area.
“Oooh, that looks delicious!”
“Hey, Ares, you didn’t do anything, go help around with something!”
“Oh come on, I’ll take care of the clean-up later, let’s dig in first!”
The meals that they could prepare while camping is usually sparse, but since they have been staying at Viel village, they were able to procure some soft bread and walnuts, so their lunch was rather lavish than usual.
“Nnngh, I know I’m supposed to be worrying about the lost child, but is it wrong that I still have an appetite? … Anyway, I’m digging in. Thank you for the food!”
After saying her graces, Muriel cunningly secured a few pieces of skewered meat as her companions would eat all of the food if she hesitated. The meat was grilled nicely, and the light sprinkling of salt had made it tastier.
(What a delicious scent)
(I wonder why food looks tastier when you see someone else eat it?)
Hidden between the trees in the boundary of the forest and the plains, the beasts twitched their noses as they observed the Adventurers nearby. However, they were no longer looking at anything else since they were so focused on their sense of smell…
“Oh, you’re drooling, Mr. Doggy— mmppph!?”
Pressing a paw against the mouth of the little girl who began to speak, Blazer squinted his eyes and gazed steadily at the red-haired Mage who sat among the Adventurers.
This translation is hosted by Nocturne Translations.
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