……Sparks can really be found anywhere. A confrontation over a trivial matter is a common occurrence, even among friends.
Yes, it happened just as we were finishing our lunch.
With the guidebook in hand, the three of us talked with each other and decided to eat at a restaurant that served a dish that used wyvern meat. Wyvern meat isn't very expensive, but they're high-quality meat and they're relatively pricey.
However, since it is still within reach for the commoners who put in some effort in earning money, it seems to be quite popular. If the Red Dragon meat I ate before is like the highest grade A5 beef, the Wyvern meat wouldn't be a branded beef, but more like those domestic beef.
Bell and Lynn are also eating with us…… so since Bell especially eats a lot, we went with this restaurant based on quantity over quality.
As usual, I finished my meal at the VIP table that had been prepared for me. As I was about to leave my seat to pay for my meal, feeling awkward asking for a free meal, it happened.
[Ahh, Miyama-kun. I'll pay for this.]
[Eh No, it's alright. Please let me treat you.]
At that moment, I felt like I heard the sound of a gong ringing out somewhere, signaling the start of a battle. Perhaps, Dr. Vier, who is the same type of person as me, also heard the same gong.
And thus, the fierce battle between Dr. Vier and I began.
[……I'm a man after all. I would like it if you could at least let me act cool in situations like this. It's a matter of pride for a man.]
I first sent my preemptive strike…… a jab telling her about my pride as a man. This is a typical phrase that has been used for a long time, but that is why it had a solid track record.
In response to my words, Dr. Vier had a calm smile on her lips as she spoke.
[……No, no, you see, in this kind situation, elders should be the one treating the youngsters.]
Dr. Vier countered my jab with a very typical statement like mine. I guess I should say that it's to be expected from Dr. Vier huh…… She knows what cards she has available, using her most suitable card to cut down mine. She would really be a tough opponent……
[No, you see, Bell was the one who ate the most…… So, it's inexcusable to ask Dr. Vier to pay for that. I'll pay for this.]
This is where I changed the target of my attack. The person who ate the largest amount of food for our lunch was Bell. In other words, Bell's portion of the food bill is the largest. Therefore, by using my position as Bell's owner, I can send an effective attack that makes it hard for her to block.
In other words, it's the straight punch right after the diversionary jab…… Now, what will you do, Dr. Vier
[……Miyama-kun had helped me a lot with the previous case. It's a shame that I can only repay you in this way, but I want to repay the favor in any way I can.]
T- That's the card she'll use here huh…… Returning the favor certainly are very powerful words. It's probably the most powerful strike that Dr. Vier could have.
No half-hearted counterattack would work against this. Even if I replied with "It's not like I was looking for anything in return", she would just cut me off and say "Even if that's the case, it's still a fact that you saved me".
If I tried to appeal how I'm more financially superior than her, she would just cut me off with the words "I still want to thank you", which would force me to fight in a defensive battle.
D*mn it…… she's really tough!
[……If you're going to say it like that, I'm the one who's always being helped by Dr. Vier. I learned a lot from you, and I was also grateful for giving me the opportunity to travel with Lilia-san.]
I'll just have to counterattack with the same counterattack she used, returning the favor I received from her…… It's not as powerful as Dr. Vier's words earlier though. It's more like a counter-defense.
It's safe to say that the direction of this battle has now been decided. If I can survive Dr. Vier's attack, I have a chance to win. However, if she pushes me back here, it will be my loss……
[I'm very happy that you feel that way, Miyama-kun. However, the fact that I was able to reconcile with Kuromu-sama…… makes the emotion of gratitude I had greater than yours.]
[I was just the one who opened the opportunity for that to happen. It was Dr. Vier's own efforts that helped you reconcile with Kuro. What I did was just something small.]
[That might be the case. But because I was unable to create that small opportunity….. That's why I can't express in words how grateful I am to Miyama-kun for doing that for me.]
[I was just doing what I wanted. I was just acting on my selfishness, and I wasn't looking for anything in return.]
[……But that doesn't change the fact that your selfishness saved me.]
It was a close battle, as if I was walking on thin ice…… However, I was clearly at a disadvantage. I was completely pushed back, and I was even forced to use a response that I had just dismissed as useless.
As if she had read my thoughts, a grin appears on Dr. Vier's lips…… This won't do. I don't have any cards to get out of this situation! I'm being pushed back……
[Yes, I received just the exact amount. Thank you for your patronage!]
[ [ ……Ehh ] ]
[……You two, how long are you going to mess around I've already paid the bill, so let's go.]
[ [ Eh ] ]
……an ambush comes from the shadows. We never expected that a third party would attack from the shadows.
While Dr. Vier and I were fighting for the bill, Neun-san, who had quickly paid the bill, called out to us, looking astounded.
[It's my treat.]
[ [ ……Ah, yes. T- Thank you for the food.] ]
Since she has already paid for it, it's considered a defeat for Dr. Vier and I. No matter how hard I struggle to fight back here, I can't overturn it anymore…… Thanking Neun-san, Dr. Vier and I could only slump our shoulders in disappointment.
After staring at the back of Neun-san's head as she walked out of the store, I moved my gaze…… and met eyes with Dr. Vier.
[……I guess…… this is a draw huh.]
[Yes…… Next time, I won't lose.]
Before I knew it, Dr. Vier and I were firmly shaking hands. Recognizing each other as worthy rivals, respect and admiration could be seen on the smiles on our faces.
There are things that only those who have crossed blades against each other can understand…… and there are also bonds that were firmly built after a good fight.
Dear Mom, Dad————— Just as I had thought before, Dr. Vier and I were the same type of person…… And she was also a very powerful person. The battle was going against my favor, but in the end, the first confrontation between Dr. Vier and I————- ended in a draw.
Serious-senpai ZERO : [Wyverns are usually pretty strong monsters, right I can understand if it can't reach last boss-tier, but they should have potential to be considered as mid boss, right ……How the heck are they being treated as something that can be eaten by commoners at a reasonable price……]
Wyvern-senpai : [That's right!]
Serious-senpai ZERO : [It seems like……. you also had your fair share of hardships huh.]
Wyvern-senpai : [……I mean, it kinda feels like I'm only appearing as edible meat…… However, even though I'm being treated as bad as usual…… Seeing the word wyver appear in the novel…… Even though I feel a bit sad, I could still feel some happiness.]
Serious-senpai ZERO : [……I get what you mean.]