Magi Craft Meister 521
15 Showdown With The Demons Arc
15-34 Gossip 29 – Summer Festival in Kaina Village
The day was August 15th.
Jin (‘s Substitute Doll) was heading towards the land of the demons.
Meanwhile, Kaina Village was in high spirits. A festival was being prepared..
“A festival, huh? Sounds fun.”
“Yeah, they seem to do these from time to time in the royal capital.”
“I can’t wait! You have to be the one who overlooks its preparations, Jin, no matter what!”
As the Lord of Kaina Village, Jin said that he would hold a festival in the middle of August –which is the leisure season for farmers–, for the comfort of the villagers.
And so, Jin arrived at Kaina Village, without being joined by Reiko, since she was part of the caravan that was taking relief supplies to the land of the demons.
“Well, I guess I have no other choice. Covert Units, you’ll be in charge of my safety.”
Reiko had given Jin permission to go there –despite not being there to protect him– with that as a condition. Was she being overprotective or just too worried?
Either choice would make Jin feel that Reiko was treating him as a child she must protect by any means necessary.
There were no customs like the Obon in this world, but there were other kinds of festivals, such as harvest festivals, and whenever a large amount of mountain deer was hunted and brought to a village, the whole village would revel in the haul and make an impromptu festival out of it.
However, this time around, the villagers were looking forward for what Jin would have planned for them.
“A summer festival, huh? So they can afford to hold one, huh…”
Lithia Farheight, the Lady of the neighboring Toka Village, was also invited along with its mayor Brak.
“We do celebrate the time of harvest, but this…”
“Oh, Lithia, welcome!”
“Ah, good morning, Jin. Everything is so lively around here.”
The place was the square in front of Nidou Castle.
Golem Maids brought from Hourai Island were preparing the stalls. Everything looked perfect.
This brought the Bon-Odori, a traditional lantern festival in Japan, back to Jin’s memory. But it wouldn’t make sense to wish for something he couldn’t have, so he ultimately settled for just the night stands.
“Oh, look at how many Golems you have working here, Jin! This is really something…”
Golems actually weren’t as cost-effective as humans, given their initial costs and maintenance costs.
This is more noticeable for poor quality Golems, as it is costly and time-consuming to replenish Mana and keep each of their parts in good shape.
However, the Golems created by Jin were maintenance-free. They could operate continuously for entire years, for up to 100 years.
With that in consideration, humans couldn’t compete with Jin’s Golems.
That’s how efficient they were.
“Yeah… That’s because Brother Jin is the Magi Craft Meister…”
Elsa, who was walking next to them, said so with pride. A hint of a superiority complex could also be barely seen in her face.
“Well then, I’ll go take another look around. See you later, Lithia.”
With that, Jin and Elsa walked away together.
By mid-August, anyone would feel that the days were getting shorter. And the wind would start feeling cooler with each day.
At 6 PM, once the sun had started to hide behind the horizon, Jin announced the beginning of the Summer Festival in the public square across Nidou Castle.
“Everyone, welcome to this ‘Summer Festival’ we’re holding here tonight. I’ve prepared various things as tokens of my appreciation towards you all. I hope all of you can enjoy some well-deserved rest from your everyday activities, and have some good fun here tonight.”
As soon as Jin finished speaking, Magi Lamps were lit all at once in the public square. The villagers that had gathered there began to cheer.
“Whoa, it’s so pretty!”
As dusk began to fall over the public square, the light emitted by the Magi Lamps began to shift color between red, yellow, blue, and green. Lithia was fascinated by that sight.
She was wearing a yukata prepared by Jin. Since there was no cotton available, it was made of hemp. And due to the short supply of fabrics, they were only available to women.
The one Lithia was wearing was dark blue with a Japanese morning glory pattern. She had never actually seen a Japanese morning glory, but assumed that it was a flower from Jin’s hometown.
Jin went back to Lithia, joined by Elsa and Hanna.
Hanna’s yukata had a sunflower pattern, while Elsa’s had a dianthus pattern.
“Lithia and everyone, I hope you all have lots of fun tonight.”
“Will you come with us too?”
Hanna, who was holding hands with Jin, invited Lithia with her free hand. Lithia decided to gratefully accept her offer.
“Then the rest of us will go off on our own.”
In a display of tact, Brak, the mayor of Toka Village, said that.
“Then, take this, Lithia.”
Jin handed Lithia some square tickets.
“What is this?”
“Think of it as money you can only use at the night stalls.”
They were gold-colored tickets made by cutting a thinly tanned piece of leather. Every villager was given ten tickets, and enjoying each of the night stalls’ attractions cost one ticket each.
“Thank you very much. Oh, this is great!”
Lithia cheerfully accepted the tickets Jin gave her.
“What’s that, Big Brother?”
Hanna pointed at a “bouncy ball scoop”.
It was a game where one had to scoop rubber balls from a bowl filled with water using a ladle made out of wafer.
The wafer used to make the ladle was made with a mixture of wheat flour, rice flour, cornstarch, and baking soda, and was made by the Peridot after painstaking efforts. They had originally made it to cover sweets with it, but they ended up using it to make wafer ladles for this attraction instead.
The game seemed to be very popular with boys. Kurt and Jim were energetically competing against each other.
“Huh? What’s that, Jin? It looks like a cloud…”
The thing Lithia was pointing at was cotton candy. Also known as “candy floss”, it was made by melting sugar and then using centrifugal force to blow it out of a small hole, causing it to form thin threads, which would wrap around itself into a cloud-looking shape.
“It’s cotton candy. Want to try some? Hanna, Elsa, you have some too.”
As the one running the festival, Jin handed one more ticket to each of them, which they exchanged for some cotton candy.
“Waah, it’s so yummy!”
“This is really delicious, Jin!”
All three of them seemed to like it. Jin himself had eaten a little bit too much of it in the process of creating the cotton candy maker for the festival, so he was a little sick of it by now.
But Hanna didn’t know that.
“Have a bite, Big Brother!”
And so she offered Jin some cotton candy.
Jin couldn’t help but gladly accept Hanna’s offer, and took a single bite of her cotton candy.
“Is it good, Big Brother?”
“Mmm, it’s really good!”
Hanna was delighted to hear that.
Next was the shooting game. Since there were no rifles, they used a small bow to fire arrows at the target. Five arrows cost one ticket.
The prizes one could get there were mainly accessories and toys made by Jin and the Smiths. Jin explained that even if they didn’t get a single target to fall, they would still get an uchiwa, which was a traditional Japanese handheld fan.
“Ah, I want to give it a try!”
Lithia jumped in, and Elsa joined her without being too sure as to why she was doing so. Jin and Hanna watched them play.
Lithia’s first shot missed. Her second one hit the target, but wasn’t enough to make it fall. And her third shot was the same as the second one.
Without a single word, Elsa tried her hand at the bow. Her first shot missed. Her second shot… missed. And the third shot… missed as well.
Lithia’s fourth shot missed. And the fifth one…
“I got it! It fell!”
Lithia was able to win a crystal necklace made by Jin, which made her jump with joy.
Meanwhile, Elsa tried her fourth shot, which missed. And her fifth shot… also missed.
“Aw, too bad. But that uchiwa goes really well with your yukata.”
Jin comforted Elsa, who received an uchiwa with a picture of a goldfish as a consolation prize.
Elsa’s disappointed-looking face seemed to have regained some of its spirit.
“Ah, that looks delicious, too!”
Eric and Barbara had just arrived and were enjoying something that looked like a snow cone. The two of them were sharing a single serving.
Elsa pointed to a serving of yakisoba, fried noodles made with wheat flour, eggs, and baking soda, and served with sauce.
“It smells really good.”
Elsa used one of her golden tickets to purchase a serving of yakisoba, while Lithia enjoyed a Pelsika-flavored snow cone.
“Can you eat that?”
Jin noticed that Hanna had a single corn on the cob in her tiny hand. Her front teeth had come out already, so she should be able to eat them just fine.
“Yes, I can.”
Since it seemed to be too much for her to eat by herself, she offered half of it to Jin.
“Ehehe, let’s eat it together, Big Brother.”
Hanna seemed to be in a very good mood after sharing half of her corn on the cob with Jin.
Looking at the two of them, an envious expression seemed to appear on both Elsa and Lithia’s faces.
“Ah, Jin! This festival and these night stands are quite nice!”
It was Sally Milleshan, who had come together with Giebeck, the head of Kaina Village. She was wearing a beautiful yukata with a lattice pattern.
“It’s nice to have you here, doctor. Are you enjoying yourself”
“Yes. That cotton candy I just had was delicious. Though it was a little sticky on the mouth.”
After saying that, Sally laughed. Giebeck just stood there beside her, smiling.
“Ah, we can all play that one together.”
Jin pointed at a ring toss game. A single golden ticket gets players five rings, which they could then try tossing at small stakes stuck on the ground.
Each stake had a different grade, like 1st, 2nd, and so on. Prizes were awarded depending on the grade of the stakes they successfully tossed their rings at.
“Okay, let’s all give it a shot.”
The four of them took turns to throw their rings.
On the first turn, Jin missed, Elsa missed, Lithia missed, and Hanna got a 3rd grade stake.
On the second turn, Jin missed, Elsa missed, Lithia missed ,and Hanna got another 3rd grade.
Third turn, Jin missed again, Elsa got a 4th, Lithia a 3rd, and Hanna a 2nd.
“I did it!””
Fourth turn, Jin missed, Elsa missed, Lithia got a 4th, and Hanna got a 3rd.
And on the last turn, Jin got a 4th, Elsa missed, Lithia missed, and Hanna got another 3rd.
The final result was that both Jin and Elsa hit a single 4th grade stake each, Lithia got a 3rd and a 4th, and Hanna got an outstanding four hits on 3rd grades and a single hit on a 2nd grade.
As for prizes, those who got 4th grade stakes got an uchiwa. 3rd grades awarded a water balloon, and 2nd grades awarded a wind chime.
“Here, Hanna, you can have this.”
Elsa already had an uchiwa, so she gave the one she got in this game to Hanna.
“Thank you, Sis Elsa! Then I’ll give you this! And to Big Brother and Sis Lithia too!”
Hanna shared her four water balloons with the other three.
“Ehehe, we all match now!”
Each of them had an uchiwa slid into their yukata’s sash, and a water balloon on their left hand. And Hanna had her wind chime in her right hand.
Lithia smiled after hearing the wind chime ring with a clear sound.
“It has a nice ring. A “wind chime”, you said it was called? It’s refreshing to look at…”
The night sky was full of stars.
And the Summer Festival of Kaina Village had been a great success.
＊ ＊ ＊
Saki: “I came here without anyone knowing I would, but it was really fun!”
Stearleana: “I love this yakisoba.”
Vivian: “These snow cones are delicious.”
Toa: “I’ve failed miserably at both the shooting game and the ring toss…”
Mine: “I wish Elsa showed a little more initiative…”
Reinhardt: “I want to hold a festival like this one in my territory!”
Berthie: “Cotton candy is so delicious!”