It was a sunny morning, and Anima and I were walking outside the royal capital. The purpose of our outing was to go fishing, which we had talked about going together before. This would be our first outing together since we became lovers…… long story short, we're on a date.
Anima seemed very eager and ready to go…… as she had apparently prepared most of the things, including fishing rods, and put them in her magic box.
Incidentally, I might be digressing, but the magic box that Anima has is my hand-me-down…… After switching to that magic box Kuro made with an incomprehensibly large capacity, I didn't want to leave it unused, so I passed it on to Anima.
[It's a beautiful day for fishing…… I guess]
[Yes. I think the scenery is beautiful. However, the temperature might not be that high, but I think you still need to hydrate yourself properly.]
As I asked her while we walked, Anima nodded with a smile. Today, Anima wasn't dressed in her usual military uniform. She was wearing black jeans that looked easy to move in, a slightly casual white shirt and a thin jacket.
This is the outfit that I bought for Anima before. Perhaps, because her usual military uniform has become her image in her mind, but I think Anima looks better in pants. Even though it might sound like I'm tooting my own horn, the clothes she is wearing now are very suitable for Anima, making her look both cool and cute.
[By the way, do you and Caraway often go to that river we're going to today]
Since she had mentioned that she usually went fishing with Caraway, I asked Anima if they often visit our destination today.
Incidentally, following Anima's consultation, I asked Caraway's permission and decided to stop adding "-san" to her name. It seemed like it really was just as Anima said, she was secretly worried about it…… When I made that suggestion, she looked really happy and her tail turned into a "heart shape".
It's rather common to see that heart shape. Considering previous circumstances, it seems that Caraway's tail turns into a heart shape when she's happy.
[Ah, no, when I hang out with Cara, we tend to go to different places. Me and Cara…… It might sound like I'm tooting my own horn, but since we possess strength, we often aim for the big fish. However, the places with big fishes are also often littered with monsters, so today, I chose a safe place with a good view. Of course, even if there were monsters out there, I would protect Master.]
[I see, I appreciate that but…… do you mind if I ask something Those "tooting my own horn" words, where did you learn that]
I was glad that Anima had chosen the place with me in mind, but what I'm more surprised about was to hear her say the words "tooting her own horn".
[Ahh, Epsilon-dono was apparently quite well informed in regards to the culture of the otherworld…… the world Master was in, and I learned a lot of things from her.]
[Heehhh…… I can certainly imagine Epsilon-san being knowledgeable about that.]
Epsilon-san's weapon is a naginata after all. She was also sitting in a seiza when we first met…… so I could somehow imagine her as a Japanese soldier.
[How often do you visit Epsilon-san]
[I don't visit that often, but she does come by from time to time to give me combat advice. I've learned a lot from her, and I'm really grateful to her for that but……]
[Ummm, after I learned martial arts under Kuromueina-dono's guidance…… Her mutters along the lines of "A thousand years is too long huh……" or "Isn't it about time for us to have a bout already No, but I can't just take back my own words….." have been increasing.]
[Ahaha, hearing that kinda makes me realize that Epsilon-san really is Megiddo-san's subordinate.]
Epsilon-san has the strong image of being a cool person, but as expected of a subordinate of the War King, she also likes to fight. Even so, she seems to be relatively calm and is trying to keep her promise of having their fight after a thousand years.
[Speaking of which, you mentioned Kuro teaching you martial arts…… What's it like I'm kinda interested.]
[It's a martial arts based on making use of one's claws and fists, which Kuromueina-dono named "Claw Brawl Art".]
[Eh Named, you say…… It's an original martial art]
[Yes, it seems that she thought of it in accordance with my own characteristics being a former Black Bear. In fact, when I learned it, I felt surprisingly comfortable with it, and even though I'm not very skilled, I was able to use it to a practical level in a short period of time.]
[Yes. As to be expected from someone who has trained so many powerful people, she knew exactly where I was going to fall short and she precisely guided me.]
I knew that Kuro was a top-notch instructor, because Alice has told me about it, but hearing her capabilities again, she's really quite outrageous.
As I walked along, chatting with Anima, we soon came to a large river. I don't know if I should say that it was a river in a meadow or not, but the surrounding area was open, so we had a good view.
[……Ohh, is it here]
[Yes, this is the river. However, this is close to the main road, so I think there would be more fish upstream.]
[Fumufumu, it's a beautiful river…… What kind of fish can we find here]
[As far as edible fishes go, there's a lot of River Fishes around.]
If I remember correctly, River Fish should be fishes resembling sweetfishes. If that's the case, they would be delicious grilled…… I've actually been kinda wanting to grill fish stabbed by a stick over a bonfire, so I'd be happy if we could do that.
[They're non-edible, but there's also Crystal Fishes in the river. However, they are rare, so you may not see them very often……]
[Ahh~~ Wasn't it a high-priced fish whose scales could be used to make special lenses]
[It is as Master says. As expected of Master, you have extensive knowledge!]
Anima said that with a big smile on her face. She looked really happy, that even though she's supposed to be a bear Beastman, I feel like I'm looking at a puppy with a vigorously wagging tail.
She had a lot of parts that have grown up and become more mature, but I guess there are still some parts that haven't changed…… She really is just peak cuteness.
[……Ah, that's right. I'm changing the topic, but since we're lovers, you can just call me by my name when it's just us two, you know]
[Hwooehh! Ahh, c- calling…… by the n- name]
[Unnn. I know you're normally conscious of your position as my retainer, but now that we're dating as lovers, you can just call me Kaito.]
[Ahh, i- i- i- is that so…… I- I see.]
It was a proposal I thought about, but Anima looked flustered and her face was blushing red. Her eyes are swimming around, so I guess she's quite shaken.
Anima, who had been moving her gaze around for a few seconds, seemed to have made up her mind, looked at me and with a blushing red face, she spoke.
[……K- K- K- Kai, Ka…… M- My apologies! I- It's a little too difficult for me!]
[Too difficult, you say……]
[O- Once we return home and I thoroughly practice, I- I'll try again!]
The outrageously flustered…… or rather, the outrageously embarrassed Anima looked really cute. Seeing her like that, I couldn't help but chuckle as I reached out and lightly patted Anima's head.
[Well, you don't have to be in a hurry. We'll get there in time.]
[Y- Yes! This unworthy Anima will do my best!!!]
[No, it's not something you should really get fired up about……]
How should I say this…… Even though some parts of her have changed, I guess Anima would still be the same Anima I know…… and thinking about that just makes me smile.
Anima. Shy about romance-related stuff, but will still challenge herself (She doesn't faint like a certain ojou-sama)
~ ~ Extra : Expressing Emotions through Caraway's Tail ~ ~
Worried = shape
Thought of something = Light bulb shape
Troubled = Whirling shape
Pleased, happy = Musical note shape
Lots of love = Heart shape (However, it appears only around Kaito, and whenever she's around Kaito, even her expressions of joy, that should have turned her tail into a musical note shape, turns her tail into a heart shape, so Kaito thinks that this shows that she's happy)
Serious-senpai : [……They're on a date huh…… I'm going to sleep for a bit. Wake me when there's serious development, okay]
: [Serious-senpai, are you going to get some eternal sleep]
Serious-senpai : [……Wake me up when Makina arc starts.]-