Final Volume — [Story of the People who Live with Nature]
The most delicious season for meat would be winter. Animals fatten up in autumn, the season of harvest, and also put on more fat to prepare for the cold. The meat becomes firm and tasty.
In contrast, meat in summer is thin, and the quality is bad.
Well, hunting is prohibited in summer so we don’t eat game then though.
Though we can’t hunt meat, we have fish from the rivers and lakes as the main source of food.
In ‘The Crimson Eagle’, we change the menu depending on the season.
Meatball pasta is not sold until autumn, and instead we have smoked meat and tomato pasta. The fish dishes consist of steamed, fried, or braised dishes. I thought them up with Aina every day.
Still, there are days in summer when I want to have some meat.
When I really want meat, I butcher one of my reindeer or buy meat from the store.
In the year that Sieg came, I butchered one reindeer, but I’d like to keep them all this year.
The merchants that visit the village bring chickens or pigs, all whole.
If possible, I want try various kinds of meat.
Thus, I decided to go to the market in the port.
“Thus, Sieg, let’s go to the port to buy some meat!”
I asked while holding Sieg’s hand.
“Ah, of course, with Arno and mother.”
Sieg looked troubled. Maybe I shouldn’t have suddenly sprung this on her, I was reflecting, but……
“Ritchan, go with Linde-chan, just the two of you.”
I got surprised at the sudden voice from behind.
Right behind me, there was mother holding Arno in her arms. I didn’t realise it at all.
I don’t hold Sieg’s hands when I’m around my family, so it’s very embarrassing.
Sieg could see mother. So that’s why she looked troubled……
Mother delivered a finishing blow.
“Isn’t your mummy and daddy very nice to each other?”
——Mother, it’s embarrassing, so please stop!! Don’t say that to Arno!!
My face felt hot. I had been completely off guard.
“Mum will be watching the house with Arno-chan, so you two can go.”
The sun’s strong today, so it’s hard for Arno anyway, mother added.
“Ah, right, that is true, come to think of it. What about you Sieg?”
“I can’t leave Arno……”
Mother told Sieg to leave the lullabies to her.
“Linde-chan, I’d be happy if you let yourself get spoiled sometimes.”
“Eh, yes…… then,”
“It’s decided! Let’s go Sieg.”
Mother told us that we should have some good food and spend a relaxing time.
Promptly, I dressed up and headed for the port city.
In front of the door, mother and Arno saw us off.
“Arno, is there anything you wish?”
“Ah, yeah, if there is.”
Arno’s passion for bears did not know when to stop.
Mother told him that they should read bear picture books.
A few days ago, many picture books with bears in them arrived from grandfather.
“Then, mother, Arno, I’ll be off.”
“Ye~s, have a safe trip.”
In mother’s arms, Arno also waved at us.
Sieg and I also waved back as we headed off.
There was only Sieg and me in the carriage headed for the port city.
“This kind of reminds me of the ‘Sausage and Beer Festival’, doesn’t it~”
Today, Sieg wore women’s traditional clothing.
Iyaa, this is beautiful, this is a sight for sore eyes. It’s a feast for my eyes. Though, the usual Sieg is extremely beautiful as well!
“It’s Arno’s birthday next month, so it’d be nice if we could get a nice present.”
After Arno was born, a year passed in a blink.
Watching my son grow healthily was very enjoyable.
“Ah, this is bliss~”
Leaning against Sieg’s shoulder, I ended up muttering that.
She smiled at me and stroked my hair.
When we arrived at the port, we looked around the market.
Vegetables, fruits, bread, snacks, flowers, etc. We also visited places other than food stores, such as hat shops and clothes shops.
“Ah, bear found!”
In a toy store, there were teddy bears.
“Sieg, what do you think?”
It’s neither too big nor too small, just perfect. It was a bear with cute eyes.
Looks like something handmade by an artisan. It was rather pricey as it was an imported good, but since it looked good I decided to buy it as a present for Arno.
So that the smell of food won’t permeate it, I put it in a leather bag.
When we passed the general stores and strolled in front of the bottled goods stores, we came across food vendors.
The stalls gave off the fragrance of grilling meat, the purpose of this visit.
I did have breakfast, but maybe because I moved a lot in the market my stomach was already appealing that it was hungry.
“What should we do. Would a restaurant be better?”
“I’m fine with anything.”
“Then, I want to see Sieg’s face while eating, so let’s go to a restaurant.”
While holding Sieg’s hand, we decided to go to the on board restaurant I visited before with mother.
Because it was not time for lunch yet, it was empty inside the store. We were led to a seat by a window looking out into the sea.
The figure of Sieg staring out the window, that is. I only thought such things today. Because, the two of us are alone.
“Ritz, did you decide yet?”
I was looking at you, I couldn’t say that, so I hastily chose a dish.
“It might be nice having beef for a change.”
Sieg’s country has quite a lot of pork dishes. When I had been saying at the Wattins’ place, beef came came out only once a week, or less that that.
For some reason, I felt like eating plenty of meat, so I chose that meat that is only just roasted.
Sieg ordered beef cheeks braised in wine. I chose thickly sliced charcoal roast beef.
As we discussed what we should do for Arno’s birthday party, the dishes came.
The smell of meat roused my appetite.
After praying to the Spirit, I immediately started eating.
Into the thick slice of beef, I plunged my knife.
The beef, being from a domesticated animal, was astonishingly soft. Even without putting in much strength, the meat was cut easily.
The juice from the meat came out as well.
I sliced it into a bite size and had it with some orange sauce.
“Ooh, what a light taste.”
It was light taste different from that of berry sauce. I think I could have it when I’m tired in summer. It also went well with the meat juice.
Anyhow, the beef did not taste strong at all, and was tender and delicious.
“Sieg, how’s yours?”
“Aa, I think it’s the best wine braised dish I had.”
Sieg scooped some up with a spoon and offered it to me.
Could she be telling me to say ‘ah~’!?
I gladly received her goodwill and had the wine braised meat she shared with me.
“Ah it’s delicious!”
Because Sieg fed me, it was too delicious.
“Then, in return, I too——“
While I was carving some meat, fishermen sat down at the table next to ours.
Flustered from surrounding eyes, I decided to just place the meat on a small dish.
After our meal, we headed for the market to get some meat.
“What should we do about the meat?”
“Why don’t we buy a little bit of each?”
“Right. However, even beef has a lot of parts. I don’t which is good……”
“How the cheek meat, like the one we had before?”
“That might be nice.”
At a small butchery, I bought beef cheeks, chicken, and pork shoulders.
Since the flavour of wine braised meat would be too strong for Arno, I headed for the vegetable store to buy things for making braised vegetables.
The ride back was filled full with people, but I was stuck close to Sieg so it was a nice situation.
Like so, our shopping trip for meat ended.
“Ah, the doll, what should we do?”
“Come to think of it, we promised that we’ll buy a bear as a gift.”
“I was thinking of giving that on his birthday, but it should be fine if we gave it to him today.”
In the end, we gave the teddy bear to him immediately.
I started planning to make a carved wooden bear for his birthday, or something.
Arno seemed to have taken a liking to the teddy bear on first sight, and hugged it.
That figure is so cute!!
——Like so, our holiday passed pleasantly and delightfully.