Read at Watashi wa Sugoi Desu!
Chapter 52: The Saint’s Birth Festival
It had been a week since Turtle came to the academy.
As I breathed a chilling breath, I looked out the window.
Outside, there was a silver landscape as far as I could see. As it was now winter, white snow fell from the sky and piled across the land, forming a white snowscape.
Turtle might end up hibernating if it was too cold, so I had no choice but to make a barrier surrounding the lake to block the cold temperatures.
The Theory of Barrier was almighty. I thought that such a thing already existed.
It was just a haphazard barrier that prevented cold temperatures, so it was quite cost-efficient and lasted about one whole day.
The need to recast it every single day was quite annoying, though.
Speaking of winter, the season was not welcomed in this world.
It was because, unlike the modern world where heating was generally available, winter cold could kill you in this world’s civilization.
You couldn’t harvest crops during winter, so if you didn’t stockpile properly, you could die of starvation.
During winter, people gathered near the fireplace, conversed, and did handicrafts while enduring the cold.
Yet for some reason, even during this cold winter, there was festival-like noise outside.
Children had a snowball fight while adults held their shoulders with hands that were also full of potato skewers.
“Elrise-sama, it’s about time for the parade.”
As Leila said that to me, I looked out the window once more.
My current location was not the Knight Academy, but Billberry’s capital castle town.
Rather, I was inside the castle.
The distance between the academy and the capital was about 10 km, which could be covered by horse carriage within an hour.
Why did they put the academy there? Wasn’t it better to have it inside the town?
You sometimes saw it in Medieval fantasy games, but I didn’t understand why they had to build the academy on a corner of the map separated from town.
If we said it in the modern way, you could have put the academy in the city, yet they built it above, on the mountain for some reason.
Even so, it was actually not that rare for a school to be built in a weird location, even on earth.
In the past, I saw a documentary about a school abroad where one student needed to cross a high pass on a wooden board without a handrail, carefully cross a broken bridge, cross a river, and walk along a cliff for hours just to get there… It seems there were children who bet their lives just to go to school1.
If it was compared to that … well. The Knight Academy was still built in a much better place, it seemed.
Well, if we needed to think of a reason… it was because they raised demons within the academy for the sake of student practice, or something like that.
Even though they sealed it properly so none could escape, there was no guarantee they would never escape at all, and people who lived in the city didn’t wish to have demons roaming the city.
Also, there was a chance that they might get targeted by the Witch’s followers… I guessed.
Knights were considered a hindrance by the Witch, so it was obvious they would be attacked.
They might have considered that when they chose not to locate such a facility inside the city.
The fact that the academy had been built in an isolated location also helped me.
If it had been built within the capital city, the Witch would have had an easier time hiding…
Exactly because it was so isolated, the Witch’s scope of action was limited to the academy’s underground areas.
Oops, I got derailed.
Anyway, I was currently not at the academy that had been cited in a weird place, but in the castle town of Billberry instead.
I was there because I had been invited to be a guest at the current event.
The event went by the name “Saint’s birth festival”… well, it also happened to be my birthday. I guessed.
Originally, the Saint’s birthday would be the same day the Witch appeared, so there was nothing to celebrate, but my birthday alone was considered worthy of celebration, for some reason.
No, you didn’t have to go that far… I was a fake to begin with, you know?
You guys were currently celebrating the birthday of a fraud, you know. Were you okay with that?
Rather than mine, you should celebrate the first Saint Alfrea’s birthday instead.
Well, during Alfrea’s generation, the movement to support the Saint had not taken root yet, so no one knew her birthday.
I was escorted by Leila out of the castle and I got exhausted as I looked at the portable shrine that had been prepared for me.
A luxurious chair had been attached to that portable shrine, and I had to sit on that totally lame portable shrine while being carried around by Knights as they went around the city with it.
What kind of punishment game was this?
It was embarrassing; even though I hadn’t ridden on it yet, did I want to get off already?
“Well, go ahead. Everyone has already gathered to look at Saint-sama.”
One of the Knights said that as I was led to the seat.
No, you didn’t have to gather… seriously…
Why must I do all these embarrassing things on my own birthday?
Don’t tell me I’m actually hated by the citizens?
And I needed to do this every year. Who thought of this stupid event?
I gave up and sat on the seat while the Knights carried the portable shrine and walked around the castle town.
On the road, many people had gathered, and as usual, they carried potatoes in one hand while being noisy.
By the way, among the Knights who carried the portable shrine, one of them looked exactly like Perverted Glasses Bastard but… no, there was no way, right? It must have been an identical stranger.
Even that Perverted Glasses Bastard wouldn’t attack a Knight to take over his spot, so he wouldn’t have done such an idiotic thing.
… He wouldn’t, right?
Leaving the Perverted Glasses Bastard look-alike Knight aside, as for why people had potatoes in their hands… It was because of me.
There was nothing to harvest during winter in this world, which caused people who hadn’t stockpiled food to die.
I thought that was too much for them, so I looked for something that could be stockpiled to brave it through the winter and I somehow found potatoes among the plants as I searched.
But the potato was treated as a decorative plant by nobles.
No, eat it! Wasn’t it right there… The food needed to survive the winter…
As I thought that, I flew to a southern mountain and searched for potatoes then brought them back. I borrowed some land, used earth and water magic, nurtured the growing potatoes, and taught people they could be eaten if one removed the eyes then heated them for a bit.
Then potatoes spread as a food. After a short time, you could see them everywhere.
With that, the number of people who died of starvation was reduced a lot but, thanks to that, my birthday somehow became something like a potato thanksgiving festival.
As a result, people gave their thanks for potatoes on my birthday and hoped-for blessings at the end of the year. It ended up turning into the current chaotic event.
What was this, Germany’s Sachsen region potato festival mixed with Christmas, New Years, and a year-end party combined into a chaotic event?
They also made something using snow so it was also mixed with a snow festival on top of everything else.
This would end up as a joke for future generations.
“Saint-sama, please bless us!”
For some reason, citizens started asking as they liked.
Okay, okay… there.
I randomly spread out healing magic, curing people of their injuries and diseases.
Citizens here were quite stupid so they were very thankful for just this.
“Ooh! My eyes that I thought would never again see light!!!”
“Ah! My child that was never able to stand now stands on their own two feet!”
“My head that I thought would never grow hair is now covered with it!!!”
“How exalted she is!”
They looked happy for some reason, so I guessed this was enough.
Ah — this was troublesome.
I wished the parade would end soon…
I was finally released.
Ah — this was exhausting. This was seriously exhausting.
To stay seated on a shaky portable shrine was more tiring than standing without moving.
Since people were watching me, I couldn’t do things as I liked. Instead, I needed to keep my expression fixed in a smile.
Even if my back under my dress was itchy, I need to maintain a smile and hold on to it. It was such a trial.
That event which akin to torture finally ended and I walked around town to get a true sense of freedom.
I did put on a wimple as a disguise. It hid me up to eye level so I didn’t think being recognized would be a problem.
Leila came along as a guard as usual but it couldn’t be helped.
By the way, as the parade ended, it was revealed that one of the Knights who was supposed to carry the portable shrine had had their armor stolen and was confined inside the warehouse and that the Glasses Pervert, who was believed to be the culprit, was currently being pursued.
The city was full of life and children were throwing snowballs.
On the roadside, people roasted potatoes, buttered them, and ate them.
I didn’t remember teaching people about that; it seemed they figured it out themselves.
The people in this other world… it seemed they shouldn’t be underestimated.
By the way, within the kingdom of Billberry, butter and cheese were quite popular with commoners.
Cows were raised as livestock in the kingdom, not for their milk or meat, but to create butter and cheese.
It seemed they hadn’t thought of drinking cow’s milk yet.
That was the reason for Leila’s strange expression when I asked her to bring milk as an ingredient for making snacks.
By the way, in this nation butter and cheese were accepted for tax payments in a territory where little currency circulated.
Cheese as tax payments sure felt new.
Recently, it also became possible to pay taxes with potatoes according to Leila but — was that supposed to be a gag?
Then what? They were currently eating their tax money? That was amazing.
But, how to put it… it felt like something was lacking for a festival.
To be exact, there were no food stalls.
It might’ve felt wrong to say this in a world that suffered food shortages until recently but, festivals were supposed to be lined with food stalls, after all.
The only group doing something like that was the church. They were currently giving out the vegetable broth I’d taught them earlier.
“Ah, Elrise-sama. Also, Leila-san.”
As we walked around town, we encountered Vernell’s party.
It seemed that they were enjoying themselves at the festival.
It sure seemed like you people got along well, so to speak.
It was a good thing that he had a group to do these kinds of things with.
It was also better to see Perverted Glasses Bastard not among them.
Whatever was said, Vernell was still the protagonist, after all.
I thought he had gone for the Loner route initially, yet he made friends before I noticed it.
Meanwhile I — regarding friends, I didn’t have one in this world…
I was totally a loner, wasn’t I?
…No, no, no, wait. After all, Vernell could be considered a friend. Yup.
“Vernell-kun and the others participated in snowball throwing?”
It made me feel more miserable the more I thought about it, so I just randomly brought up this topic.
Snowball throwing, needless to say, was what happened when they started throwing around snowballs.
It was totally a snowball fight.
It wasn’t like there were specific conditions for victory. Everyone just foolishly threw snowballs at each other. I didn’t hate such things.
But if I were to participate, everyone would be reserved toward me and the atmosphere would turn cold, so I could only watch.
“Ah, yes. I…”
“Only we will participate. Right, everyone?”
Vernell was about to say something before he was cut off by Fiora.
Then she looked around for the others: Mob A, Mary, and Aina all nodded their heads.
Ah, this was the pattern of someone being rejected.
I thought I could hear the voices of Eterna and others’ hearts.
Their heart-voices went like this:
Fiora: “It will be boring if she participates. Just match our words and send them away!”
Eterna: “You’re right, that’s better.”
Mob A: “No objection!”
Aina: “Nice Idea!”
Perhaps it went like that. Yep, great deduction.
But you people, how could you have left Vernell out?
While it was okay for me to be excluded, why did you push off all responsibility to Vernell? Were you guys brutes?
The only person who looked dissatisfied about it was Eterna. As expected of the Saint.
But Eterna was unable to win against the majority, so she reluctantly agreed.
And thus Eterna and the others left Vernell behind. The only ones left were me and Vernell… and Leila who wore an angry expression for some reason.
Why did Leila have such an expression? Was it from actually, patiently enduring the cold?
“A, Ahaha… they got me. To think they did this to me on purpose…”
Vernell laughed lightly but, was it really for his sake that we had been left alone together?
No, wait — this world was supposed to follow the “Elrise Route” according to the game.
Currently, I didn’t have the slightest intention of pursuing him (as expected, I couldn’t see a man as a romantic target) but if Vernell tried to romance me… If I went with this assumption, then Eterna’s group did try to leave the two of us alone for his sake.
… No, I guessed not. Leila was still here, after all.
If my assumptions were right, Leila, who still insisted on staying, would be a person who couldn’t read the atmosphere.
Even Stocco-chan won’t be such a KY person2.
Fuh, I guess it was just me being overly conscious.
I was disgusted with myself for thinking so little of a guy who might fall for me.
Well, it couldn’t be helped since he was left alone.
Since it came to this, we could at least enjoy ourselves.
“I don’t understand what happened but… would Vernell-kun like to come along? We will just be walking around the festival, though.”
“Ah, ye- yes! Please!”
Since we were both excluded from the group, we could enjoy ourselves, Vell Boy.
As soon as I invited Vernell, he accepted, since he was a good guy.
Stocco, that’s why you shouldn’t wear that Oni-like expression. Let’s enjoy ourselves some more.
And so Vernell came along with us and looked around but — yep, nothing had changed!
No matter where we went, it was all about playing around with snowballs and people eating potatoes.
There were people who made snowman-like thingies, but none of them looked great.
If it was earth, there would be something amazing that made people think, “Is this seriously made out of snow?” But I didn’t see any of those here.
Well, after all, the people of this world had no leisure to play with snow until recently.
That’s why such entertainment was unpolished. We could look forward to it.
But among those activities, there was one spot where people gathered.
As I looked, it seemed someone had made a big statue out of snow.
Hou hou, someone had skills. It seemed there were geniuses everywhere.
— It was me
As I approached, the statue could only be seen as a gigantic me.
Oi, who was the fool who made this monstrosity.
“Ah, no good — I’m unable to reproduce the beauty of Saint no matter how I do it! This is not what I seek! I’m terribly sorry, oh my Saint!”
Yup, I had found the fool.
There was Perverted Glasses Bastard, kneeling down on one leg of the statue for some reason.
So you were still not arrested, huh.
Knight brigade, do your job.
“Hou — This is quite something…”
“It would be a shame if it were melted… Is there any way to preserve it?”
So I thought, but the people of the Knights brigade were also gathered near the statue. Hey, you guys.
Was this world filled with only this type of people?
Rather, could I destroy this statue? It felt weird to have myself being displayed in such a big size…
“It sure is quite a feat of workmanship… to think Instructor Supple was capable of that,” Leila shared.
“That’s amazing. But the real Elrise-sama is way prettier.”
Vernell breathed out a trashy sentence in response.
It must be his Galge Protagonist factor that let him say such a thing naturally.
Vernell seemed to notice how cheap his line was, and had a “No good” expression on his face.
If it were a common heroine, they would say something like “it’s a foul to say such a thing so suddenly” while blushing but… well, it would be troublesome if he tried to get a similar reaction from me.
“Thank you, Vernell-kun. I’m happy even if it’s merely a compliment.”
So I just replied to it blandly and let it flow.
Vernell said something like, “It’s not a compliment though…” in a small voice but I pretended to not have heard of it.
Whatever; I just wanted him to hurry and change his route to attack Eterna already. Okay?
“Ah, right… I heard today is your birthday so I made this for you.”
As he said that, Vernell took something like a necklace out from his bosom.
It was a simple thing made from greenish stone that looked like emeralds attached to a chain but it looked like a beginner’s work in various places.
Are you a maiden since you gave a handmade thing as a birthday gift?
Or rather, to think, you were capable of buying such a stone.
“This… Did you make it yourself?”
“Yes, I did… I intended to make it better though.”
You could get money by working part-time during your free time with the “Kuon no Sanka” setting.
The part-time work was about pulling up grass around the academy, transporting goods, repelling wild dogs and bears, and things like that.
It was like a mini-game where if you did well, you would get bonus money.
The money you got this way could be used to buy presents for the heroines or to buy equipment.
Also, these part-time jobs also increased your stats, though not as much as self-training. If you managed to clear them perfectly, it wouldn’t be much different from self-training.
Well, there were no bad consequences for doing it.
Vernell had been doing this part-time as a substitute for training and gathering money.
Uhm… this present was hard to refuse.
This student made money themself to buy an expensive gemstone and turned it into a homemade necklace as a present. I would be totally KY if I refused it.
Well… it wasn’t like I wasn’t happy about it.
The last time I got a birthday present from a friend was when I was an elementary school student in my past life.
I got many things since I became Elrise, but it had been a while since I got something like this.
Since it was a gift anyway, I would honestly accept it.
“Thank you Vernell-kun. I will cherish it.”
Well… I didn’t feel bad about this.
Elrise: Thank you Vernell-kun. I will cherish it.
Piron♪ (Favorability Greatly+)
Elrise: How is it? Do I look good?
(Sprite changed. The necklace is worn from that point onward.)
Niito” ( ﾟдﾟ) 」
Niito “ ( ﾟдﾟ ) ”
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