27. The Little Girl and Kitten
“Granny, happy birthday.”
“Great grandma, happy birthday!”
Priscilla and I went to grandma’s place and give her our blessings.
“Oh my, thank you for your kind blessings.”
Granny rises from her seat to welcome us and urges that we take a seat beside her. An energetic, long bearded grandpa who sits across from her offers his seat to me. Right after I give my thanks, Priscilla-chan sits on my lap and I squeeze her with a hug.
Why does she cling to me like this?
“Oh my, the two of you are very affectionate with each other.”
After looking at Priscilla-chan, granny gives us a smile.
“I-I wonder about that.”
I reply with a forced smile. Priscilla-chan looks very cozy in my embrace as Granny fondly strokes her hair. This creates a strange scene within the middle of the plaza.
Ahh, the stares from the members of Long Eared Tribe’s really hurt…
“I’ll have you know, she is a very special child.”
Granny starts talking to me gently.
“The Long Eared Tribe is a tribe that coexists with spirits. We grant them our grace, and in turn, they provide us with their aid.”
Granny holds out her right hand while speaking, and a small, aqua colored, girl appears in the air, as if bursting from water.
The small, aqua colored, girl floats in place and smiles at me.
“Nmmto, that is great grandma’s great spirit. Water is her specialty.”
Priscilla-chan explains to me as I look at the small, aqua colored, girl.
“Eh? She has a human appearance?”
I’m surprised. I mean, I didn’t know spirits took human appearance. In the stories, I’m pretty sure they were shiny grainy particles corresponding to their element in forms like reptiles, fishes, and birds.
“If they become great spirits, they will have human appearance!”
“Hou, is that how it goes?”
This is my first time hearing that.
“Then, allow me to explain in more detail.”
After granny confirms my agreement and continues. Being able to learn more about spirits directly from the elder of the Long Eared Tribe is a very precious opportunity. In school, this subject is only lightly touched by the teachers.
“There are several classes of spirits. Those children of low rank will become grains of light. In some cases, there are children whose presences can only be felt. Next are the children with the appearances of insects. More powerful children have the appearance of beasts.”
Granny speaks slowly to me. She has a calm character, I think. All of her words and gestures give me a soothing feeling.
“And finally, the upper most children appear as humans.”
At granny’s beckoning, the small, aqua colored, girl appears by granny’s side.
“In that case, we can distinguish spirits by their appearance?”
Granny only giggles, “Fufufu,” at my reply.
“Nmmtto, not exactly!”
Priscilla-chan reaches out to grab the aqua colored spirit. The small, aqua colored, girl plays with her by gliding out of reach.
“What I’ll say next is the most fundamental piece. Spirits often change their appearance in accordance to their fondness towards the person they are aiding.”
“The water child, is actually an adult!”
Priscilla-chan, I don’t think you’ll be able to catch the small, aqua colored, girl if you stay on my lap.
“That’s correct, in truth this child actually an adult, but currently takes the form young child. Even so, low ranked spirits won’t be able to change their appearance into that of high ranked spirits.”
Fumu fumu, what an informative explanation.
To put it simply, the high ranked spirit with human appearance can freely change into the appearance of animals or grains of light like low ranked spirits, but the low ranked spirits with the appearances of animals and grains of light can’t take human appearance like high ranked spirits.
The small, aqua colored, girl coaxes Priscilla-chan with water tricks. Priscilla-chan giggles in delight at the sight.
“Then, let’s talk about the types of elements.”
If it’s about the spirit’s elements, then the small, aqua colored, girl should be of the water element. It along with fire, wind, and earth is the other most common ones. Thunder and ice are unusual while light and darkness are often heard about in the legends.
While I’m talking with granny about elements, Priscilla-chan points at the wooden sword I wear on my right hip.
“Onii-chan is the spirit of a spirit tree!”
At Priscilla words, the few members of Long Eared Tribe around us straining their ears to listen in our conversation while drinking sake glance towards me in astonishment.
Etto. I am the spirit of the spirit tree?
I tilt my head to the side, while feeling puzzled.
“You’re right. A truly rare spirit.”
Granny looks at me while nodding at Priscilla-chan words.
“W-What do you mean..?”
A nearby middle aged man, unable to suppress his curiosity, voices his question.
“At the beginning, I mentioned that Priscilla is a special child, yes?”
I nod at granny’s words.
“This child is able to see the spirit of the spirit tree and you are possessed by the spirit of a spirit tree.”
The members of the Long Eared Tribe around us are shocked.
The spirit of the tree soul is possessing me? Why? I don’t remember any such thing special happening.
That is when I realize Priscilla-chan is touching my sword.
“Co-could it have something to do with this wooden sword?”
“Nmmto! Spirit-san is from this tree spirit!”
A commotion stirs at Priscilla-chan’s words.
“S-So it’s like that. That wooden sword was created from a spirit tree!?”
The moustached grandpa is shocked and locks his eye on my wooden sword.
Although he said that this was created from a spirit tree, the sword itself is a spirit tree though…
“The spirit dwelling within the spirit tree looks quite pleased with you. Also, Priscilla is a special child able to cooperate with the spirit of a spirit tree.”
Priscilla-chan gives a delighted smile at being called a special child by grandma.
“I am possessed by the spirit of a spirit tree and Priscilla-chan is a special kid that can use that spirit? Does it have any connection with you entrusting her to me?”
“Certainly. Even with the ability to use the spirit of the spirit tree, there are no spirit tree spirits around here to begin with. We don’t even know how many there are this entire forest. Finding it is very troublesome. That’s why, if she stays beside you, she surely be able to make contact with the spirit of a spirit tree.”
“Is making contact with the spirit of a spirit tree important?”
I wonder if it’s so important that she can easily entrust her precious grandchild to a boy of the human she just met today.
“Fufufu, it’s very important. You can say
it is an indispensable ability for the one who will in the future unite the Long Eared Tribe of this forest.
Granny strokes Priscilla-chan’s head while talking to me.
Priscilla-chan closes her eyes. She looks like she’s is very comfortable.
“Eehhh? Then, the future leader of the Long Eared Tribe will be Priscilla-chan!?”
“Correct. Right now, the only ones who can use the spirit of a spirit tree are this child and myself.”
Uwahhh, there’s no way I can take care the future leader-san of the Long Eared Tribe! Even though I’m confused by the unexpected development, it’s too heavy of a responsibility!
While I’m panicking and getting flustered, Priscilla-chan moves her gaze into a completely different direction. Her lop-ear twitches. After that, granny also looks in the same direction as Priscilla-chan.
“I wonder what that is? Even if there are animals in this village, they can’t enter very easily.”
Priscilla-chan hops away from my lap, takes my hand, and tries leads me towards the direction she looked at just now.
I look at granny with troubled face.
“I will watch from this chair. Priscilla is also being protected by the spirits so there won’t be any danger.”
After getting granny’s authorization, Priscilla-chan and I leave the plaza. I thought someone else might come along, but the other members of the Long Eared Tribe gather around granny to discuss something.
Priscilla-chan guides me into the flower field outside the village.
She said something about Nyanko, so maybe it’s a lost cat?
We reach the flower field and listen. It’s true that I can hear a kitten’s mewling.
“Nmmto… Ah, there!”
Priscilla points into a direction. There, a kitten looks like it is sinking within the many flowers.
Priscilla-chan picks up the kitten.
This is… a kitten?
Maybe it’s just my imagination, but the kitten looks kinda different from how I remember them…
It has a fluffy white coat of fur. The tips are a little pinkish, so when you look at it from far away, it looks pale pink instead. Its tail looks twice as long as its body too.
Uh huh, the color and tail are unusual, but a cat like that could exist.
It has long lop-ears, and beside them are cute, rounded, sheep like horns. On its back, its gotta be my imagination, right? I think I see small wings folded up there.
The kitten narrows its eyes in pleasure as it’s hugged by Priscilla-chan.
No no no.
This is definitely not a kitten, right?!
“A-A-A-Anyway, let’s just go back to granny.”
Priscilla-chan stares at me who can’t hide my trembling with wonder. Still, she obediently returns to the village’s plaza for me.
She returns while still hugging the fake Nyanko, of course.
We arrive at the plaza and it is lively as usual. A group surrounding granny while Mistral is having a friendly chat with several girls.
Priscilla-chan holds up the fake Nyanko in the middle of the plaza and speaks with a loud voice. With that, everyone turns their attention to her.
What follows is complete silence.
And what continues after is utter chaos.
“No way, that’s not a cat, right?!”
“What the hell is that?”
So everyone realized it, huh. That’s right, that’s not a cat at all. This is really bad, okay!
The middle of the plaza is in full uproar. The expressions of the adults keep twitching, the younger ones approach for a quick look before running away, and the elders move about in confusion. In the middle of that, granny grabs her cane and comes to us.
“It’s a Nyanko!”
Only granny doesn’t lose her composure and instead stokes the fake kitten’s head.
“Ernea, this is…”
Mistral appears beside me. I wonder if she came to find me since she knows that I’m in the middle of this uproar. Still, she too twists her face upon seeing the fake kitten.
“This is troubling, huh…”
You don’t look troubled at all though, granny.
The fake kitten looks very happy being stroked by granny.
As for Priscilla-chan, the culprit of this uproar, seems to be misunderstanding something since she watches un the folding racket with glee.
“I really want to talk more with both of you, but you should probably quickly return to Sleigstar-sama right now.”
After stroking the fake kitten for a while, granny prompts to Mistral and I.
T-That’s right. We should probably consult to Old Sleigstar about this.
Mistral and I nod to each other.
“Priscilla and Nyanko will also go!”
Priscilla-chan grips the cuff of my trousers.
“That’s right. Please take her along with you. I will inform her mother afterwards.”
Etto, I’m really wondering whether it’s okay for you to entrust this precious child to us, you know.
The fake kitten dones’t look like it will separated from Priscilla-chan, so maybe it’s better to take them with us.
Mistral gives her affirmation with troubled face, but she only says that it can’t be helped anyway.
“T-Then, I will take care of Priscilla-chan. I’m sorry for not being able to congratulate you properly.”
“Elder, please leave Priscilla to me. We will certainly come to play again soon.”
“Great grandma, we will be going!”
“Yes, take care, okay? May all of you be protected by the divine spirit.”
After being seen off by granny, we quickly leave the village of the Long Eared Tribe. Even though everyone should enjoy themselves more, since this is an emergency, it can’t be helped. Next time I come returning Priscilla-chan home, I’ll take my time seeing the village.
With a little reluctance, I hold on Priscilla-chan’s hand, and alongside with Mistral, we enter the forest.
T/N: Priscilla-chan is so cute!!!
E/N: I wonder if Priscilla-chan will living with him at his home?? I mean, it’s not like she can stay with Old Sleigstar. Seeing him explain her to everyone will be interesting~
If you notice any mistakes, let us know~