Atelier Tanaka Volume 5 Chapter 1 part1
Dark Continent (1st)
Several days had now passed since I left Kalis and returned to my life as Baron Tanaka in the remote Dragon City.
In all that time I had received no word from the FitzClarence family. Not a single messenger, letter, or any other sign of that family since I left the capital.
If Richard were to take his time dispatching a messenger, that messenger still would’ve reached my city by now. However, Richard is decisive and wouldn’t take his time in dealing with me if he had any plans on doing so. This lack of any response must mean that my threat against him was effective.
Ester-chan hasn’t shown up either which means Richard must be keeping her away. The fact that she isn’t bothering me this moment is proof enough of that. Sophie-chan should also still be in the capital. With Allen there as well, everything should work out nicely. A man who is loved by a good woman is destined to live a long and happy life.
Now is the perfect time for me to reset and toss all the troubles of my past away.
One day after being presented with the unexpected gifts of two blonde lolis, I was quietly enjoying some tea made by my maid while reviewing a few documents in my office of the loligon’s home. By the way, the aforementioned maid was seated across the desk from me and noticeably fidgety.
“Hmm, did you do something different with your tea, Sophia-san?”
She freshly brewed it this morning.
After taking a sip from the steaming cup, I noticed a slight change in flavour from what I had grown used to.
The moment I asked this, her shoulders trembled and she jumped a little in her chair. The pen she was writing with hovered motionless over the desk and a loud bang came from below as her knee hit the underside of the desk.
“Is something wrong?”
“N-No, I haven’t changed anything! It’s the same as usual!”
“I see. I must have just been mistaken.”
“D-D-D-Don’t be absurd!”
She looked a little uneasy and I couldn’t understand why.
Well, it’s not unusual for her to be nervous. I suppose it’s nothing to worry about.
With it being such a beautiful day out, I decided to take my tea over to the couch and enjoy the view out of the nearby window. The rich smell coming from the cup was overwhelming.
My maid was still working nearby. From my position on the couch, I can casually glance over at her and admire her bouncing breasts as she leans over the desk. The further forward she leans, the better view I get of the ample valley between her breasts.
What a great way to spend the day.
This view could motivate me to do anything.
“…this is pure bliss.”
“Eh? D-Did you say something?”
“No, nothing in particular. Just thinking out loud.”
The tea I drank while enjoying the sight of Sophia-chan’s jiggling breasts was quite delicious. I’d be happy if this moment could last forever. The fight with Richard and all the problems that came with it are a thing of the past. Bye-bye, Richard. Bye-bye, Ester-chan.
I could feel the built-up stress leaving my body.
Actually, there’s still a lot that I need to do, but it should be fine if I just relax for a few days. I’ve been so busy recently and I deserve a nice break.
The only sound in the room was the gentle scratching of Sophia-chan’s pen.
We only exchanged a few more words while we sat in the peaceful room.
Gulp gulp, scratch scratch.
Gulp gulp, scratch scratch.
I was just starting to be able to see the bottom of my cup.
The door to my office suddenly burst open with a bang.
“I-It’s finally here!”
A wild Edita Sensei has appeared.
What’s here exactly? Nothing would make me happier than to hear it’s a child of our love, but my son remains woefully untouched. I would only need one chance to shoot my seed out and be the cause of someone’s happiness.
“It’s been a while since we met outside your room, Edita-san. What’s the cause of this rare occurrence?”
“I finished the book! I-I wrote the book we discussed!”
“I can see why you’re so excited.”
Edita Sensei looked especially cute due to her excitement.
She was clutching a bundle of papers to her chest. It reminded me of a student receiving her diploma. That must be her manuscript. I’m a little surprised at its size, but Edita Sensei makes sure to write everything out in great detail so almost anyone can understand it.
Thanks to this, everything I’ve read of hers has been a masterpiece.
“I wanted you to be the first person to read it!”
“Are you sure?”
“Of course! So, p-please take a look.”
She held out the stack of papers with a prominent title at the top of the first page.
It read: My First Joint Research
A title that has nothing to do with the subject matter is best suited to Edita Sensei. It makes the joy she felt about being able to conduct joint research apparent.
“The t-title is just temporary….”
The blonde loli shyly turned her face away.
If it was going to make her so nervous, she could have just left it blank. She must have been up late last night trying to think of a title before finally deciding on this. It’s pretty common for a usually nervous person to panic and make a rash decision they may regret later.
“Don’t you think it would be all right for it to be permanent?”
“Eh…? Is that okay?”
“I think it suits you, Edita-san.”
“But it’s just something I came up with quickly.”
“Which is exactly why it fits you so well and should stay.”
“No, that’s…that isn’t….”
Sensei worked on this book using some of my ideas so I’d be happy to see us united in the title. I’d like it if we could write a sequel someday detailing the first time I came inside of her.
For now, I should receive what she’s written so far.
“I’ll read through it tonight.”
“G-Good, you do that. I’ll be happy to hear what you think needs to be fixed.”
I doubt there will be any mistakes that I can find that she hasn’t already fixed herself.
Rather, as someone that aspires to be an alchemist, I really just want to enjoy the book.
“By the way, Edita-san, there was something I wanted to ask about.”
“What is it?”
“Where exactly in the Dark Continent can I find the Green Sylph you mentioned a while ago? I would be very grateful if you could tell me.”
One of the ingredients I need to make the Elixir of Youth are the wings of a Green Sylph. My position as a noble, building my city, and the matters with the FitzClarence family have all finally been settled. Now is the perfect time to refocus on making the elixir.
“Wh — d-don’t tell me are you planning on going!?”
“I’m not sure when I’ll have the chance to go, but I want to have the information in case the opportunity arises.”
I feel bad for asking this question as Edita Sensei already told me about this before. However, I’m not sure if Edita Sensei’s reaction was different than the last time and she seemed a little hesitant to tell me.
“Is something wrong?”
“No, i-it’s nothing.”
“If you’re against telling me, I won’t force you.”
“Green Sylphs tend to settle in less populated areas and this is no different on the Dark Continent. Just like many creatures that live on the Dark Continent, they are incredibly powerful but they also possess a higher level of intelligence than most other creatures. They’re basically like any other Sylph and aren’t dangerous unless you make them your enemy.”
Green Sylphs are intelligent.
It would be nice if we could negotiate.
“The Green Sylphs live in several places, but I personally encountered them in a dense forest just off the southern coast of the continent. The adventurers I travelled with called it the Schwinn Forest. It’s a large forest that many other creatures aside from the Sylph call home.”
“The Schwinn Forest. Thank you.”
That’s what I needed.
“Even if that forest is near the coast, it’s still on the Dark Continent so….”
Edita Sensei’s words trailed off at the end.
Is she worried about me?
However, a knock on the door kept her from continuing. Knock, knock, knock, the rhythmic tapping on the door followed by a man’s voice.
“Excuse me, I was told the I could find Baron Tanaka here.”
“Yes, come in….”
“Are you sure? I don’t wish to intrude.”
What’s with this overly polite introduction? The person on the other side of the door now had everyone’s attention as the door slowly opened. Then, he appeared. It’s someone whose voice I should’ve recognized.
“It’s been a long time, Neumann-san.”
“Yes, Baron Tanaka, it has been too long.”
Hearing this man in particular refer to me using honorifics made my spine tingle.
That tone of a company slave is all too familiar to me.
“When did you get here?”
“I left the capital shortly after our brief exchange during your audience with the King.”
“I had planned on meeting with you earlier, Baron, but you were always away whenever I previously visited. I apologize for the delay.”
It’s true that I have been flying all over the place in order to complete my important mission. Immediately after arriving back from the capital, I embarked on a sacred quest that involved me clearing a dungeon, defeating a boss, and earning a bag full of gold.
“By the way, Neumann-san, there’s something I’d like to say.”
“Ester-san may have said something about calling me Baron but you don’t need to worry about it. Whenever you refer to me in that way, I just feel like I’m going to be sent to the frontlines again.”
“That’s out of the question. There’s no chance I’d ever be so rude to a member of the nobility….”
“Isn’t it fine? You saw how things went in the castle. I may be a baron now but who knows when Viscount FitzClarence’s opinion of me may change? By this time next year, I could be a commoner again and working under you as an adventurer once more.”
“Just think of it as things returning to how they were before.”
It’s similar to a junior transferring to a new division before eventually being promoted to the boss then his old boss is transferred to his division under him. Right now I’m in the position of boss and it’s making everything awkward.
“…well, if that is what you wish, then I have no reason to refuse.”
“Then I would be grateful if we could speak more casually moving forward.”
Neumann sighed before continuing in a more casual tone.
“What work would you have me do for you? I’ve been working in the capital on my own all this time, but His Majesty has assigned me here to aid you in whatever I can, Tanaka. I will fulfill that duty to the best of my ability, at least until the deadline has been met.”
“In that case, I’d appreciate your help in running the city, Neumann-san. I’m certain someone like you that has held your position for so long would be more capable than someone like me and I’d appreciate you teaching me whatever I may need.”
“Certainly I have been assigned many different responsibilities that could prove useful to operating a city, but the grander view of what is to be made of the city and the overall territory comes down to what you want as its ruler. A recent trend amongst the nobility is handing all of their responsibilities to several different officials and claiming responsibility for the positives while blaming their officials for any difficulties that may arise.”
So the managers of this world are like that.
The type that hides in the office while claiming they’re busy with conferences or meetings.
“I will take responsibility for everything, so you may act with that fact in mind.”
“If that is what you wish….”
Neumann most likely views his new position as a punishment. The King one-sidedly decided to station him here, under the rule of a new baron who has been positioned to fail.
I’m genuinely sorry for this and want to do everything I can to make this a better experience for him.
I was actually hoping for Neumann’s help in investigating whatever the Prime Minister may be planning with the land around Tricklis, but that would be causing him a lot of unnecessary trouble. For now, I think it’s fine for him to stay here and peacefully run the city.
“Feel free to take some time off in order for your mind and body to recover.”
Eh…n-no, I’ve only just arrived. I have no problem getting straight to work….”
“You look tired and I’m sure the work you had to do in the capital was exhausting.”
I’m certain that someone working directly for the King must be exhausted.
But Neumann’s response was not what I expected and I could even detect a hint of desperation.
“I may be tired, but I can still do it. No, I must do it!”
“Really? Are you sure…?”
“I’m sorry if I ever made it seem like I don’t wish to be here, but I have a family to feed….”
Aah, he’s just misunderstanding.
That’s my fault.
“I’m sorry, Neumann-san, there seems to be a small misunderstanding. I really do think you look tired, so I just want you to take around ten days off to recuperate. There are even hot springs here for you to freely use.”
“…are you serious?”
When he finally realized what I was telling him, he seemed to shut down. This is just my own one-sided thoughts, but while I was working as an adventurer, I may have given him the impression that I’m a reckless person that doesn’t think things through.
“You don’t have to worry about us lacking manpower. We have the representative of the city, Christina as well as the Twilight Company led by Gonzalez to help run the city while you recover. Sophia-san also plays a major part in keeping everything running smoothly.”
“Yes, I met with everyone while you were away. I was most surprised to see the Twilight Company working here.”
“That Gonzalez you mentioned, the leader of the Twilight Company. I can’t say for sure, but I believe he is the legitimate heir to the Aufschnaiter family. I never expected the last surviving member of that family to be working for any nobility related to the Penny Empire. At first, I couldn’t believe my eyes.”
“So that’s what you meant.”
I wonder if Gon-chan has any issues working for me.
I never thought about it much because he looked so happy with his loli harem. It would probably be best for me to look into this Aufschnaiter family. Gonzalez may be one of the best men I’ve met in this world. If my entire city was to crumble to dust, I’d still want him to remain by my side.
“And I haven’t met the mayor, Christina I believe. I’d like to introduce myself if possible….”
“I’m sorry, but the mayor is currently away.”
“Is she taking care of some business related to the town?”
“Not exactly. That woman is a bit of a free spirit, but she is more than capable of protecting the town. It’s also important for you to know that she possesses a short temper and it would be best if you act respectfully around her.”
“If things ever seem like they’re getting out of hand with her, come get me straight away.”
“I’m not sure to say until I’ve met this person myself, but I understand.”
It should be fine. Neumann excelled at his position in the capital where every day he had to act overly respectful to everyone he spoke to. However, for now, I think it’s best for him to relax and recover so he can do his best.
“I’m sure everything between you two will go well.”
“The more you say that the more worried I get, Tanaka.”
“I’m sorry, just be careful.”
This type of relationship is nice.
It’s no longer an employee and his boss; it’s more like we’re colleagues.
“I look forward to working together, Neumann-san.”
“As do I, Tanaka.”
It would be nice if we could hold a welcoming party for him.
Yeah, that sounds like a good idea.
We should do it soon.
Damn. That means that the Sophia-chan’s viewing party that’s been happening in the office will end. Once Neumann starts working, he’ll probably need Sophia-chan’s help on a regular basis and these peaceful days of sitting together in my office will come to an end.
I hoped to enjoy them for a while longer.
“All right then, I still have some work of my own to take care of if you all will excuse me.”
He bowed to everyone before leaving the room.