Latifa Side Story 4
My life in the Seirei no Tami village began a few days ago.
Onii-chan seems to be studying Spirit Arts or something from the Obaa-chan called Arthura.
Meanwhile, I’m stuck being taught about the Seirei no Tami by Sara-Onee-chan and the other Onee-chans.
Although the amount of time I can be with Onii-chan has decreased, it’s apparently for my sake.
I will obey if it’s Onii-chan’s wish.
I’ve obeyed all of Onii-chan’s instructions thus far and he’s never been wrong.
Still, studying from dawn to dusk every day is quite boring.
Aah, I want to spend more time with Onii-chan.
「Nee~ Sara-Onee-chan. Can I go see Onii-chan?」
My thoughts unintentionally leak out from my mouth.
「You cannot-desu. We’re going to teach Latifa our language now.」
Sara-Onee-chan cuts down my request in a single stroke.
Muu~ so mean.
While kind, Sara-Onee-chan is also quite strict.
The way she scolded me just now was like a Spartan instructor.
Since it can’t be helped, I’ll endure it a little longer.
I’ll get to sleep with Onii-chan tonight anyway.
Currently, I sleep together with Onii-chan in his room.
Sara-Onee-chan and the other Onee-chans were hesitant to allow Onii-chan and I, who are of opposing sexes and of the same age group, to sleep together, but they relented after I stubbornly refused to sleep in a different room.
I managed to obtain permission from Arthura-san. Thanks to her influence within the village, it put a stop to the objections.
「First off, spirits are—」
It’s currently Alma-Onee-chan’s turn to teach me.
Alma-Onee-chan’s lessons are about spirits.
Her explanations are incredibly easy to understand-desu.
If I had to point out a fault, I guess that the content is too trivial?
Listening to her lectures makes me sleepy.
Too bad Sara-Onee-chan will get angry if I sleep.
As expected of the Seirei no Tami, they regard spirits as special existences.
Spirits are an existence who govern nature. To the Seirei no Tami, spirits are revered as Gods.
However, unlike the Gods back on Earth, spirits actually exist.
Although most spirits stay in their spiritual forms and don’t appear in front of others, a few do materialize themselves before the public. Moreover, some spirits even lend their powers to us.
In particular, spirits that come into contact with individuals and offer to lend them their power are referred to as contracted spirits. Those who have spirit contracts are few in number and are highly regarded within the Seirei no Tami.
Spirits have the ability to read an individual’s heart and will only form a contract with one who possesses a pure heart and soul.
Sara-Onee-chan and the two other Onee-chans all have contracted spirits.
For the most part, they stay asleep within the Onee-chans’ bodies in their spiritual forms but will show themselves on special occasions.
Although the spirits take the form of common animals, I was fascinated and unintentionally stood there admiring them for a while when I saw them.
Sara-Onee-chan’s spirit takes the form of a wolf, Oufia-Onee-chan’s an eagle, and Alma-Onee-chan’s a raccoon.
Each were medium-ranked spirits but even then, they’re considered to reside at the pinnacle of contracted spirits.
Spirits are divided into ranks from low to high with the highest currently confirmed spirit being a Quasi-high ranked spirit; high-ranked spirits assume a role akin to overseers.
The Onee-chans’ spirits aren’t able to speak but spirits ranked quasi-high and above can.
Yet, even if they can’t speak, they can still perceive my heart right…?
In other words, the spirits are fully aware of the feelings I harbour towards Onii-chan.
When I think about, spirits are actually quite fearsome.
Un, perhaps I should also familiarize myself with the Seirei no Tami.
Respect the spirits, cherish your peers, exercise restraint, and show modesty.
The Seirei no Tami is made up of a gathering of such people.
In particular, failing to exercise restraint and succumbing to avarice is the most heinous crime among the Seirei no Tami.
As such, Sara-Onee-chan taught me to practice restraint as I am also part of the Seirei no Tami.
However, I just can’t control myself when it comes to Onii-chan.
I wonder if my feelings as Latifa are different than my feelings as Suzune.
My outward appearance is of a beastman but my heart is that of a human and a beastman.
This is a secret I carry that nobody is aware of.
I’ve never told anybody about it.
That’s right, not even Onii-chan knows that I was once a Japanese person.
I mean, anyone would think I’m touched in the head if they heard my story right?
While it’s true that I want Onii-chan to know everything about me, I’m afraid of whether or not he’ll accept my story.
Still, one day, one day I want to tell Onii-chan.
Must I restrain this uneasiness too?
I no longer understand.
So, I decide to ask Oufia-Onee-chan about exercising restraint.
「Certainly we, the Seirei no Tami, highly value self-restraint, but it doesn’t mean we’re completely selfless.」
Exercising restraint does not mean that one must endure every kind of desire, it’s just to the point of regulating one’s self to avoid unnecessary conflict with others.
We eat when hungry.
Sleep when sleepy.
Such desires are normal because we’re alive.
However, one must not bring about conflict in pursuit of one’s desires.
Rather than profit, both parties will only suffer as a result.
For that reason, there is never be a good reason to create conflict since it is useless.
Therefore to oppose one’s desires, one must exercise restraint.
The adults allow children in the village to act in accordance with their desires in the beginning.
However, sooner or later, a quarrel will break out among the children.
At that time, the adults will teach the children the meaning of restraint.
Those who are unable to show restraint and consistently gets into fights with others are treated like children and will never be given a meaningful role in the village.
When one is able to grasp the importance of restraint, they will come to respect their peers. It is at this point that they will finally be acknowledged as a full-fledged member of the Seirei no Tami.
Lacking self-restraint, the human race had caused irreparable in the past.
As a result, there are many anecdotes circulating the village about the human race succumbing to desire.
But I wonder how true that is.
I mean, I certainly believe that humans lack restraint.
The humans who treated me as a slave don’t have any sort of restraint.
However, I believe there are humans who exercise restraint.
I mean, just look at Onii-chan, he’s practically a lump of self-restraint.
I can’t even imagine Onii-chan losing himself to self-interest and harming someone.
「Of course it can’t be applied to the human race as a whole. Even I think that Rio-sama is an amazing person.」
I stare hard at Oufia-Onee-chan.
Could it be that she has also fallen for Onii-chan?
No, it doesn’t seem like that for the moment.
The Seirei no Tami deeply respect those who display a great amount of restraint.
Oufia-Onee-chan was only praising Onii-chan on those grounds.
How should I say it? Oufia-Onee-chan seems to be a natural airhead, though I may be wrong.
I feel like that allows her to carry a tolerant and gentle atmosphere similar to mother.
Of course that doesn’t mean Sara-Onee-chan and Alma-Onee-chan aren’t kind to me. It’s just that there’s a gap between them and the warm and fuzzy Oufia-Onee-chan.
Apart from that, I think to myself that if it comes to my love for Onii-chan, I don’t have the patience to exert self-restraint.
That’s right, at this time, I still don’t take Onii-chan’s feelings into account.
It’s thanks to Onii-chan’s assistance that I’m able to become slightly more aware of this from the talk earlier. However, Onii-chan is Onii-chan, that is something I’m sure I have not mistaken.
While continuing to learn various things from the Onee-chans, over half a year passes in the blink of an eye.
Onii-chan studied a wide variety of things under the village Elders. Although we seldom meet during the day, we have plenty of time to share our stories come nighttime.
We’re currently living in Arthura-san’s house.
Arthura-san lives with her daughter and son-in-law. Apparently her granddaughter has passed away.
I wonder if it’s because I’m also part of the fox tribe that Arthura-san showers me with so much affectionate.
Recently, I’ve even slept with Arthura-san instead of Onii-chan.
I’m reminded of the time I stayed over at Ojii-san and Obaa-san’s house in my previous life. It makes me feel a little nervous.
Aah, I’m truly glad I came to this village.
It’s exactly like what Onii-chan said.
One day, I received a day off since all the Onee-chans were busy.
「Ah, Latifa-chan nano-desu!」
I didn’t mean to but when I was wandering around the village trying to find Onii-chan, a girl around my age called out to me.
She was a girl from the wolf tribe and Sara-Onee-chan’s little sister, Bella-chan.
「Hey, Latifa, come play.」
And then, a boy from the lion tribe called Arslan came and spoke to me too.
They’re friends I made in this village as well as classmates.
That’s right, I’m not the only one taking classes in the village.
The responsibility of teaching children in the village falls upon other children who excel at their studies and are slightly older than those being taught.
By having a teacher close in age, lessons can be absorbed easier.
The Onee-chans who teach many of the village’s children are the village elders’ children and are incredibly smart.
Although I’ve been studying alone in the past, I’ve finally been allowed to partake in normal classes not too long ago and seamlessly mixed in with the class.
Thus I successfully made a lot of friends.
Arslan-kun is something like the leader of the class.
Unlike her somewhat straight-laced older sister Sara-Onee-chan, Bella-chan has a much more innocent and childlike personality.
Both of them are very proactive towards me and we get along very well; they’re good kids.
「I’m sorry but I’m going to see Onii-chan now.」
I want to go play with them but today is a rare chance for me to meet Onii-chan during the day.
That’s why I had to turn down Arslan-kun’s invitation.
「Eeh… Onii-chan’s that human guy right…?」
Arslan-kun has an annoyed expression as he spoke.
「That’s right. Is there a problem?」
My tone may have come out a little harsh.
Infighting among the human race as well as repeated aggression against us has resulted in a strong sense of distrust against humans among the Seirei no Tami.
Even the older generation who are more open-minded still harbour distrust much less the younger generation who are easily influenced.
Sara-Onee-chan and the two other Onee-chans don’t seem to be prejudiced towards Onii-chan but they’re the rare exception.
That’s why, although the majority of the villages knows about Onii-chan living in the village, everybody goes out of their way to avoid contact with him.
I have also been subjected to slavery by the hands of humans and similar incidents have been reported in the past, so I can understand why they carry suspicions.
But I really wish they’d stop directing such suspicions at Onii-chan.
「No, then come play with us afterwards. Today’s our long-awaited day off after all.」
Arslan’s words seem to carry a hint of concern.
「U~n. Then, I’ll go see Onii-chan now. If he’s busy then I’ll return right away and then we can play, okay?」
I decide to propose a compromise.
「U~n, that’s good! Come back quickly, we’ll be in the plaza.」
Arslan-kun agrees to my proposal.
He runs towards the plaza together with Bella-chan.
This is acceptable for now but I hope one day, Onii-chan will be accepted by the people of the Seirei no Tami.
I’m confident that once they get to know Onii-chan, everybody will understand that he’s not a bad person.
If that happens, then Onii-chan can stay in the village forever.
Will Onii-chan eventually leave the village?
My chest tightens whenever I think about it.
So that Onii-chan can stay in the village forever, is there a way to get Onii-chan accepted by everyone?
Maybe everybody will change their minds once they have a taste of Onii-chan’s cooking.
Every single dish created by Onii-chan is delicious after all.
The food in the village is good too, but Onii-chan’s cooking is completely foreign.
After we started living in Arthura-san’s house, Onii-chan’s cooking became extremely popular within the household.
Now, why don’t I have everyone try Onii-chan’s cooking?
Isn’t that a great idea?
I’ve hit upon a really good idea. First, I’ll have those close to me eat Onii-chan’s cooking.
After that, with Arthura-san’s permission, I’ll invite the Onee-chans over to Arthura’s house.
Let’s call over Uzuma-san too.
Uzuma-san seemed to be wary of Onii-chan but ever since sparring against him the other day, she suddenly came to respect Onii-chan.
Despite still quite young, Uzuma-san is a brilliant warrior leading one of the warrior groups in the village.
She’s an honest and gentle person, though a little clumsy at times.
If it’s Uzuma-san, I think she’ll become a strong supporter for Onii-chan.
To get Onii-chan to cook one of his dishes, I’ll make a selfish request to make it seem like I want to eat his cooking.
In accordance with my plan, the Onee-chans come over by “chance” when Onii-chan is still cooking.
We’re sitting down on the sofa and chatting when Onii-chan comes and fills the table with various dishes.
Everyone’s eyes are glued to the dishes.
Fufufu, it’s still too early to be surprised.
Onii-chan’s cooking doesn’t only look appetizing, it also tastes absolutely amazing.
Sure enough, when the Onee-chans eat Onii-chan’s cooking, they all give high praises.
That’s only natural.
Onii-chan heeded my request as in front of me are a wide variety of enticing dishes reproduced from my previous life.
The flavour of these dishes have been developed over the course of human history so there’s no way they can’t be delicious.
Besides, these are all made by Onii-chan-desu.
Afterwards, I keep inviting everyone back on a weekly basis to have them enraptured by Onii-chan’s cooking. Slowly but surely, I’m dragging all of them into my “Onii-chan faction1”.
When the time is right, I’ll propose to have Onii-chan hold a cooking class.
I’ve already laid the groundwork to have the village elders’ daughters attend.
After I tell Onii-chan about it, the cooking class can be held immediately.
Thus, Onii-chan easily consented to holding a cooking class.
Before anybody could react, Arthura-san quickly made the necessary preparations and Onii-chan’s cooking class was ready to be held.
Although the first class is limited to only the wives and daughters of the village elders, the number of people in attendance is overwhelming.
It seems the first recipe to be unveiled will be omelette rice-desu.
Onii-chan’s omelette rice uses half-fried eggs like those served in Western style restaurants.
I’m sure it’ll suit everyone’s taste.
When the class begins, everybody listens attentively to Onii-chan’s explanation.
At first, the women are impressed at how skillful Onii-chan handles a knife.
Afterwards, they are drawn in by the sweet fragrance of the unknown recipe.
Finally, “Mission Complete2” as they eat the completed omelette rice.
Although each person is only allowed one spoonful, it seems to be a success since everyone is reminiscing on the taste.
As we start making the dish ourselves, Onii-chan is bombarded with questions on how to accurately replicate the outstanding flavour.
The figure of Onii-chan politely answering everyone’s questions will hopefully leave a good impression.
「Latifa-chan’s Onii-sama is amazing-nodesu!」
Sitting beside me, Bella-chan is admiring Onii-chan with sparkling eyes.
After we finish making our omelette rice, I quickly catch the fleeing Onii-chan and drag him over to our table.
「Ehehe, Bella-chan also says that Onii-chan’s cooking is delicious right?」
When I say that to Bella-chan who’s happily eating the omelette rice, she responds with a beaming smile on her face.
Looking around, I see that the other girls are also interested in Onii-chan. There also seems to be a considerable amount of talk about how Onii-chan may have a spirit contract.
It’s big news because having a spirit contract is proof that a person possesses a pure heart.
It was also interesting when Anya-san told us what kind of impression Sara-Onee-chan and the other Onee-chans had towards Onii-chan.
「Mother made a dish taught by Latifa’s Nii-chan and it was absolutely delicious! Your Nii-chan is amazing!」
Later, Arslan-kun also told me so.
Now, I’m, really, happy-desu3.