Side story: ????
Without moving, Lefi, who was lying on the tatami mat, suddenly opened her mouth.
“What is it, Lefi?”
I, who was also lazily lying on my bed, reading a manga I had read many times before, replied in a casual manner.
“Since you are bored, let us do something interesting.”
“You know what’s the most annoying thing about you and your bullshit? If you’re not busy, you should do that by yourself.”
“I see not what you mean? You are my contractor, my master, are you not? If that is the case, then you would best do something interesting and entertain me to demonstrate your worthiness.”
“Should it be the other way around? Since you’re my servant, you should be the one entertaining me. Since I’m your master and all that.”
“So, you treat me, a high being, as a mere servant. You’ve got some nerve, Yuki. You’re the only person in all three thousand worlds capable of acting on such a blasphemous thought.”
“Says the familiar.”
I think it’s about time to realize this conversation doesn’t quite reach the useful parts of her brain. Oh well, not like I’ve got better things to do anyways.
It’s not that I don’t have enough money to go out and play.
No, it’s not that we don’t have any money at all, but we don’t have anywhere in particular that we want to go- Oh, wait, that reminds me.
I rummage around for a while and then find what I’m looking for.
“Hmmm. Okay, Lefi.”
“What is it?”
“I found some free tickets for a limited time. Let’s go to the heated pool.”
I’m sure you’ll be happy when we get there.
“I’ve… never been to such a facility before. But I see it is meant to bathe oneself.”
“Yeah, and the water here is warm, so you can bathe all year round.”
“But why bother going to a place with such an expanse? And why are you wearing such odd garments? If you wanted to indulge in a big bath, you could have gone to a public bath.”
“We didn’t come here to bathe.”
“What? Is this not the same as the public bathhouse we visit on occasion?”
“No. A public bath is a facility for washing the body. This is a place where you can move your body and play in the water,” I explained to Lefi, who seemed to have mistaken it for a bath, with a wry smile.
We had come to an indoor swimming pool located near a station two stops away from our house.
It was recently built, and the interior, decorated in a tropical style, was quite spacious, with water slides and a large flowing pool, which looked quite fun, but frankly, there were not many people.
This facility comprised many available activities including the pool. This, along with the high price tag meant customers were rather sparse. I mean, I wouldn’t even have thought of coming here without free tickets.
The entry fee wasn’t as bad as the land of people with the mousy hair, but it’s a somewhat similar place.
I brought my own swimming trunks, and I bought a not-so-expensive bikini for Lefi when arrived. …The bikini looks great on her thanks to her figure, but man is she pretty. And the way her silver hair shines when reflecting the light…
“What is the matter, Yuki? Are you lusting after me?
“I’ll admit that you’d be pretty hot if your breasts weren’t so pathetically tiny.”
“Was that not quite too frank?” Said Lefi, with a stunned look on her face.
No well, her style is good, but her chest almost seems to curve inwards. And with how the suit emphasized her breasts, it did feel somewhat pathetic.
“I am not concave!”
Oops, I said that out loud.
“I knew you were a jerk. Prepare yourself, Yuki!”
“Oh, really? And why should I bother?”
The water in the pool suddenly rose, grabbed my legs and pulled me down.
I then hit the water with a loud noise, and lost sight of my surroundings for a moment, before reaching for the surface again.
“What’s wrong with you? I drank so much of it!”
“That is what you get for talking crap! Do you realize now the difference in our powers?” she said, arm crossed and shit-eating grin plastered on her face. “Behold, for this is the power of the Sanctified!”
It seemed Lefi was still manipulating the water around me, judging from the unnatural waves and the way it was rising and falling.
I drank a lot of water, but I was determined to get revenge on Lefi, and somehow I managed to get closer to the edge of the pool.
“Kahaha, that felt good! If you want me to stop, you would do well to sta-”
Her voice cut off as I grabbed her legs and pulled her into the pool as hard as I could. She then sported a magnificent astonished expression before crashing into the pool just like I had.
A violent column of water erupted.
This is a dangerous thing to do, so don’t try it at home kids!
“What are you doing? I thought I would die!” Said Lefi after breaching.
“Hahahaha! Goodbye partner!”
“Wait, Yuki, do not run away!”
“You idiot, who would wait for you? Do you think you could catch up with me, the best swimmer of my class?
As if the water in the pool was on her side, Lefi was catching up to me like she had topedoes attached to her legs, even though she herself wasn’t even moving.
“Do you think you can escape by swimming? You cretin, you are but a bug in summer that keeps flying after catching fire!
“Nah, pretty sure I’m in a different situation.”
And so Lefi kept chasing me while I was running away with a grin on my face.
“Yuki… Yuki! It is time to awaken. The hour you wished to spend napping has passed.”
I heard a familiar voice call out to me as a gentle shaking cleared the grogginess from my mind. My eyes fluttered open, revealing the ever so familiar scene that was the True Throne Room.
Lefi was the one to shake me awake. She was still right there in front of me, the distance between us near zero. Everyone else was there too, albeit not as close. Nell and Lyuu were playing house with the kids. The former seemed to feel a bit awkward about the whole scenario, given her awkward smile, whereas the latter was totally into it. Typical Lyuu.
Leila seemed to be spending her time on a more intellectual endeavour. She was sitting on a chair with the notebook I’d given her open. She was staring at it with such intensity that I wouldn’t have been surprised if she somehow managed to bore a hole through the thing with her eyes alone.
In other words, it was the usual. It was the same sequence of sights I saw nearly everyday, a sequence that, in and of itself, was typically capable of putting me in a good mood.
Today was different. The disparity between the sights that had filled my mind a moment prior and the sight I saw now left me feeling only empty and frustrated.
“God fucking dammit. I was having so much fun! Damn you, other me! I want to mess around in a pool too!”
“I understand not what you are suddenly complaining about.”
“Fuck it. I’m making a pool. Sound good, Lefi? There’s only one right answer, and it’s yes, by the way, because you’re helping.”
I cursed to myself while ignoring Lefi’s confusion, even in spite of the fact that she had demonstrated it in the exact same way that she had on the other side.
“I-I still do not understand what it is you are saying,” she said. “I require an explanation.”
“Alright, so first, we’re probably going to need to dam up the river. That’ll probably cause some problems because of habitat loss and whatnot, er, actually, no it won’t, seeing as how I’m the one who made the goddamn thing to begin with. It’s literally an artificial construct, so anyone complaining about the desecration of nature can go fuck right off. Anyway, we’re going to need a water slide, I’ll probably make it out of ice, so I’m going to need the ground to be pretty cold and whatnot. Yeah, that’s something I can do with magic. Let’s see, what else…” I rambled on and on without bothering to catch her up. “I can probably just get palm trees with DP, so no worries there. Alright, operation water park, let’s go!”
“I understand now that you have once again entered a state in which you will refuse to abide by anything but another one of your whims,” she said, her voice filled with resignation. “Very well. I shall assist in whatever manner you require, but first, I require an explanation. What is this ‘pool’ of which you speak?”
“Oh, right. You see, a pool is…”
With both fists clenched in excitement, I began explaining the wonders of recreational watersports.