While beaming with joy, tears continued to overflow from the girl named Calcedonia who once again leapt to embrace Tatsumi.
Reflexively catching the girl claiming to be Chiiko, Tatsumi once again collapsed on the bed.
And again, a very soft body filled his arms, and he was confused at how to deal with it. Though not proud of it, Tatsumi has never hugged nor been hugged by a girl before.
Of course, there was the time when he was held by his mother as an infant, but Tatsumi has no memory of that so it doesn’t count.
Incidentally, he had no clue where to place his hands. On her shoulders? Or her hips? He was completely lost as his hands moved awkwardly in the air.
Without noticing Tatsumi’s troubles in the slightest, Calcedonia rubbed her head joyfully on Tatsumi’s chest.
At the same time, the two softest parts of her body pressed against Tatsumi’s, but Tatsumi pretended not to notice this.
While Calcedonia continued endlessly rubbing her face on his chest, the ahoge sticking out on top of her head swayed unsteadily in unison.
Seeing this, certain memories rose in his mind.
Back when Chiiko was still well, she had fawned on him by rubbing her forehead against his hands a cheeks.
There were also times when she would tilt her head as if demanding to be petted. During those times, Tatsumi would naturally pet her small head with his fingertip.
Recalling those memories, Tatsumi unconsciously petted the head of the girl hugging him. It was a conditioned reflex.
Probably having been surprised by the touch of Tatsumi’s palm on her head, Calcedonia raised her head taken aback.
“Ah…. So—sorry! My pet cockatiel did the same kind of thing, so I reflexively…”
Tatsumi quickly withdrew his hand and apologised profusely. Most folks would dislike suddenly being touched on the head like that. While he was thinking about that, the feel of her soft hair lingered on his hand and he secretly wanted to touch it a little more.
But Calcedonia was not angry in the least. In fact, she seemed even happier as her smile broadened.
“Yes… Yes!! That’s right!! Master often petted my head like that!! I remember!! Master’s hand…though it was your fingertip at the time, was very warm!”
With her lovely face filled with tears of great joy, Calcedonia tightly embraced Tatsumi.
“Master… my… my master!”
Calcedonia continued to repeat herself deliriously.
Tatsumi could only stare at all of this.
Of course, since the appearances of the woman embracing him and Chiiko the cockatiel are far too different.
Still, he wasn’t able to deny her story completely.
This was because her atmosphere and small gestures were too similar to his Chiiko.
Sometimes intuition will surpass reason. And it was that very intuition that was telling him that she was not lying to him.
“Are you… are you really… Chiiko?”
“Yes!! I’m really Chiiko. I was reincarnated as a human in this world, but the memories of when I was a cockatiel remained. I was raised by Master… and took my last breath while being watched over by Master… I am really your Chiiko!”
“Th-this world? Reincarnated?”
Words such as ‘other world,’ ‘summoning,’ and ‘reincarnation’ that are often seen in novels popped up one after another in Tatsumi’s mind.
In the meantime, Calcedonia continued pressing her soft body against him. Furthermore, in that dim, basement-like room the two were on Tatsumi’s bed. Tatsumi’s body involuntarily reacting as a man1 was something that couldn’t be helped.
Just what should he do?
While instinct and reason continued to fight with each other violently as he worried in the depths of his mind, a third voice rang out in the room that should have been occupied by just the two of them.
“Now now Calsey, let’s leave it at that for now. I think you may be troubling son-in-law.”
It was the soft gentle voice of an elderly man that had a definite depth at its core.
Reflexively, Tatsumi turned towards the direction the voice came from.
Standing there was an old man.
His height seems to be about the same as Tatsumi. Tatsumi’s height is 168 cm, so the old man might be fairly tall.
An old man with white hair and long white beard that gave a gentle impression. He appears to be around 70 years old. Tatsumi didn’t know what the average life span of this world he was called to, (he no longer doubted he was summoned) but the old man must be considered quite old.
In comparison, the old man’s back was straight and didn’t give much of an impression of being very old. To put it another way, he gave the impression of a very energetic gramps.
Looking closely, a door that was left open could be seen behind the old man. It seems Tatsumi hadn’t noticed it before because he was too focused on the girl who claimed she was the reincarnation of Chiiko.
The old man slowly walked over to Tatsumi and Calcedonia with a gentle smile on his face.
As he did so, the white, loose robe the old man wore quietly fluttered.
From observing it, he could see that they were expensive looking clothes that used high quality, pure white cloth. From how gold and silver threads were used abundantly in various places of the clothes and the delicate, detailed embroidery, the old man might be someone in a high position or very wealthy. Perhaps even both.
Seeing the attire of the old man, Tatsumi got the impression of a Christian priest that he had once seen on television.
“I was a little worried and came to check on Calsey but… Ho ho ho, is it safe to assume that son-in-law’s summoning was a success?”
“Yes, Grandfather. I was able to succeed in safely calling Master over to this world.”
“Ho ho ho, I see, I see. Splendid. Well now, son-in-law.”
“Eh? By…son-in-law, do you mean…me?”
“Why, of course! Other than myself and Calsey, is there anyone else here but you?”
The old man continued his words with the same gentle smile.
“How about we go somewhere else before explaining everything? This isn’t the kind of place to have a long conversation. Also…”
The old man’s eyes were directed at Calcedonia who was even now in a position of riding on top of Tatsumi.
“Hurry up and change Calsey. Your current appearance may be a little too tempting for a young man such as son-in-law after all.”
Being told that by the old man, Calcedonia leaped away from Tatsumi, and having remembered her current appearance, hurriedly embraced her abundant breasts with both arms to hide them.
“H-how inappropriate for me…to have such an improper appearance before Master…”
With her face having dyed bright red in an instant, Calcedonia hurried off Tatsumi’s bed and rushed out through the open door in a straight line.
At that time, her shapely bottom was clearly visible between the gaps of the thin cloth she wore and Tatsumi’s involuntarily stared at it.
Seeing Tatsumi like so, the old man smiled in a good mood.
Noticing the old man watching, Tatsumi turned just as red as Calcedonia had.
“Hohoho, son-in-law seems to be a man alright. No need to worry, that reaction just now is a matter of course for a man. Rather, that makes me relieved you know? Son-in-law reacted as a man to my granddaughter after all.”
The old man’s gentle laugh resounded in the basement room.
“I suppose let’s start with introductions. My name is Giuseppe Chrysoprase. This country…the Saviav Church of the Largofiely Kingdom’s patriarch.”
Tatsumi began to blink in surprise and stared fixedly at the old man named Giuseppe who was sitting down in front of him.
Tatsumi and Giuseppe were currently in a reception room-like place after having moved from the basement room.
With a soft and comfortable sofa, an expensive-looking table with detailed carvings, an expensive-looking flower vase with beautiful flowers arranged to give a calming impression, and various other high quality furniture decorating the interior of the room, it could be seen at a glance that the room was for the sake of entertaining those of high class.
Tatsumi had quietly followed after Giuseppe from the basement room to this reception room. He hardly remembered the path at all, but judging from how long they walked to reach here, the building they were in right now was most likely considerably large.
What’s more, all the corridors along the way were covered in thick carpeting and not a single bit of trash could be seen. Cleaning seemed to be done quite thoroughly.
There were no windows along the way, so he wasn’t able to get a look outside, but from the bright light shining in from the window in the reception room he was in right now, at the very least it shouldn’t be night. Of course, that’s if the seemingly other world place had a night. After all, it’s an unknown other world. In which case, a world without a night and was eternally daytime would not be strange.
While he was thinking about that, what looked to be a ceramic cup with freshly brewed tea was placed on the table in front of Tatsumi.
“Help yourself. The contents are hot, so please be careful.”
The one who served him the tea was a tall, young man in his mid-twenties, who introduced himself as Baldio. He moved away from the table while smiling, and then bowed once before exiting the room.
The clothes he was wearing had a very similar design to Giuseppe’s. However, the embroidery and ornamentation was scarce compared to Giuseppe’s, so while of considerable status, he probably didn’t compare to Giuseppe.
He was likely in a position similar to Giuseppe’s secretary. It seems he left after finishing his business having decided not to listen in on Giuseppe and Tatsumi’s conversation.
Since they had gone out of the way to offer him tea, Tatsumi decided to drink it. The taste and aroma that filled his mouth somewhat resembled jasmine tea.
It was probably a common tea in this world, or perhaps this country. And yet it was also the tea that a person such as the patriarch who is likely of high status would serve to guests. There was no doubt high grade tea leaves were used.
Tatsumi who had judged that on his own drank the tea while at ease as he savored the taste. And Giuseppe enjoyably watched Tatsumi’s appearance.
“Now then, I’d like to give son-in-law a detailed explanation now but…just what’s taking Calsey? She’s strangely taking a long time.”
Giuseppe glanced at the door leading out of the room while stroking his long beard.
As he said, quite a bit of time had passed since arriving to this reception room. Tatsumi reflexively looked down at his wristwatch.
This wristwatch was something he put on after waking up out of habit. Because of that, it was brought along in the summoning.
The things summoned along with him were his bed, the acoustic guitar that’s his father’s memento which he had in his hands at the time, and and the old style Galapagos cell phone 2 that was in his pants pocket. Anything else was simply the sweatshirt and jeans he was wearing right now.
Seeing Tatsumi looking at the watch on his left hand, Giuseppe raised an eyebrow and leaned forward with great interest.
“Say, son-in-law. Just what is that object?”
Giuseppe looked at the wristwatch with strangely sparkly eyes as if he were a child presented with a new toy.
Tatsumi smiled at Giuseppe’s behavior and removed the watch from his arm before holding it out to him.
“This is called a watch and is a tool to measure time. In my world, it’s a very common tool used in daily life..”
“Oh, this is a clock? It sure has been made small and in an unusual shape.”
Giuseppe stared at the watch with great interest after having received it. This world also had things that classify as clocks, but only hourglasses or sundials at best. Of course, there was no way there was an elaborate mechanical clock such as Tatsumi’s wristwatch.
Tatsumi’s wristwatch was a quartz chronograph3 type that did not need a battery and was a gift from his little sister for passing into high school. 4
It was also on his arm during the time of the traffic accident, but while it had a few small scratches, it miraculously didn’t break and even now still works.
“Hmm, looks like there are multiple needle-like things… From what I can tell, they’re used to measure time, but it looks like only the smallest needle is moving…” 5
“In my world, a day is divided into 24 parts, then those parts are further divided into 60, and even further…”
Tatsumi explained how time was measured in his world and Giuseppe listened with widened eyes.
“Oh…in son-in-law’s world, why do you go so far to attentively denote time? There must be some kind of reason to make it necessary right?”
“Why you ask…”
Tatsumi was troubled in how to answer.
He had normally accepted a day being 24 hours and an hour being 60 minutes as common sense. Even if was asked why so, he was unable to answer.
Tatsumi didn’t know when and where Earth’s concept of time was established. However, he had accepted that as simple common knowledge up until now regardless. But of course, that common sense would not apply to this world.
Without a doubt this was another world.
Tatsumi once again sensed that the common sense he had up until now would not apply in this world.
- ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) ↩
- What the Japanese call flip-phones. Using them is like living on the Galapagos. ↩
- Editor note, Quartz chronograph that doesn’t need a battery doesn’t really make sense when a quartz watch needs a battery to run… The first part, Quartz, or mechanical, dictates how it’s powered, where mechanical is the type that is either hand wound or wields the power of your hand movements to power itself, and thus doesn’t need a battery. Quartz on the other hand needs a battery, which is why it’s called quartz to begin with. See http://www.wixonjewelers.com/education/swiss-watches/watch-movements/ for a full explanation if you’re interested. ↩
- Note, chronograph means the watch has the ability to measure time like a stopwatch using the needles in the middle. So it makes sense that they wouldn’t move right now ↩