~I Can Hear the Festival Music~
Hi guys. This is a short story I was sent that was released during the mf bunko event. Will be gone for a week on a trip, but when I get back I’ll do short stories with Rem from the art box. Thanks for the support. Happy holidays everyone 🙂
[Rem: …Would you like to go to the festival?]
Rem said this when the heat of the daytime started to cool down and there were faint signs of dusk approaching.
[Subaru: By festival, you mean that festival? The festival exists?]
[Rem: Yes. The event isn’t that big, but it is on the day that’s right in the middle of fire season. Apparently, it has little food stands too.]
[Subaru: So the hot days will continue, but it’s the kind of festival where you’ll need to be fired up to get through the latter half too. And there’ll be food stands…That sure sounds nice.]
Subaru smiled and positively replied to Rem’s invitation.
This goes without saying, but Subaru loves festivals.
Seeing the foods carts that are rather expensive and the tons of people gather at the event even though it’s hot…kind of looks like something that requires toughness.
It’s like, even if they don’t have energy, they force themselves to. And when the fireworks go off in the end, it’s awesome.
I probably shouldn’t expect this world to even have fireworks regarding things that’d remind you of summer, though…
[Subaru: Guess I’ll…go to the festival.]
[Rem: ….! Really?]
[Subaru: It’s weird for you to be surprised when you’re the one who invited me. I just happen to feel it today, and everyone’s out too, so…….Oh, I guess Beako’s here.]
When Subaru mentioned the girl that had said she was staying inside the forbidden archives to escape the summer heart,
[Rem: No, Beatrice-sama isn’t here today. Even if she was, I’d insist her not to be.]
[Subaru: Huh, she’s out too?]
[Rem: … …… …… Yes, she is.]
[Subaru: Oh. Okay.]
It looked like she was really conflicted, but Subaru didn’t say anything to Rem, who looked like she had made a difficult decision.
For now, I’ll think of a suiting present to bring back home to Beatrice and…
[Subaru: …Alright, let’s go. To the festival.]
[Rem: Okay! Let’s do it!]
…And so, things ended up like this.
[Rem: H─How is it? Does it look weird?]
Subaru raised at an eyebrow at Rem in surprise, who said that and cast down her eyes in an embarrassed manner. They were going to go to the festival, but Rem had returned to her room, saying that she needed to get ready, and then they met at the mansion’s entranceway.
And then, when Rem appeared at the entranceway…
[Subaru: …Is that a yukata?]
[Rem: Erm, oh, yes, it’s a yukata. It’s not really popular in Lugnica, but I do recall you being well informed on them.]
[Subaru: Ahh, the dress in the dress code that is essential to the festivals back in my hometown…….I can’t believe it.]
Standing in front of Subaru, who was shocked, was Rem in a white cloth yukata that had morning glory flower patterns designed on it. Upon seeing the large flower ornament on her head, the refreshing sandals on her feet, and the dress that was completely different from her usual maid outfit, Subaru nodded and said “Just as I thought” as if he had been convinced of something.
[Rem: Umm…”Just as I thought”……What do you mean by that?]
[Subaru: No, I just mean that I’ve known it for a long time. That it’s an utter shame that you and Ram only wear and have maid outfits.]
Subaru continued by saying “Because” and,
[Subaru: You’re this cute. It’s a loss for the world to not have you dress up. Beautiful, just beautiful. It looks great on you.]
[Rem: My……For you to say that I’m so cute that you want to have me all to yourself, I’m blushing……]
[Subaru: Having this amazing sight all to myself does seem like a sin.]
Hearing Subaru’s reply as he smiled wryly, Rem blushed. After that, she pouted a little bit and said,
[Rem: ……Subaru-kun, you’re a cruel person.]
[Rem: Don’t worry, it’s nothing. Thank you very much for complimenting me on the yukata.]
[Subaru: But I’m complimenting you in your yukata, not the yukata itself……]
Subaru, who grumbled that with his head tilted, pulled himself together as he said, “Oh well.” After that, Subaru fully enjoyed seeing Rem in her yukata again.
[Subaru: But man, you wear a yukata perfectly. Just what you’d expect from a maid that can do everything.]
[Rem: Well, I’m actually used to wearing yukatas…wearing waso1. At my and Nee-sama’s old home, it was normal to spend time in kimono waso.]
[Subaru: At this point, I wonder if maybe both Japanese and European clothes are acceptable……So many possibilities, huh, Rem?]
[Rem: I’m just honored to receive your praise.]
Rem started to do a curtsy like how she usually would, then shyly said “Ah” upon realizing that she wasn’t wearing a skirt. Seeing that, Subaru shrugged his shoulders awkwardly, and after that, to shrug it off he said,
[Subaru: This means it wouldn’t look right for me to be wearing casual clothing this time.]
[Rem: Actually, I’ve been trying to prepare a yukata like mine for you too, and I was this close to finishing, but I just couldn’t decide on the most important part……]
[Subaru: Decide…on the colors?]
[Rem: No, the patterns. I couldn’t decide between heart patterns and flower patterns. The gravest blunder of my whole life.]
[Subaru: Both of those would be so hard to wear! This is supposed to be my yukata, isn’t it!?]
He wasn’t proud of it, but Subaru didn’t believe in himself enough to think that he could wear Paris Collection and yukatas with heart patterns and flower patterns. Subaru was frightened by how difficult it would be to wear all that, although Rem persisted in saying “Subaru-kun is wonderful in anything.”
[Subaru: If it were Ros-chi, he wouldn’t look weird in a yukata with heart patterns……]
[Rem: I’m sure you’d look cute in it too……]
[Subaru: About that, you see, I’m a passion kind of guy, not cuteness.]
[Rem: Passion, not cuteness……]
Rem tilted her head upon hearing Subaru’s reply. But anyway, this meant that Subaru’s yukata was a no go this time.
[Subaru: Well, let’s save talking about that for next time.]
[Rem: Next time, you say?]
[Subaru: Don’t know if it’ll be happening next week or next year, but this won’t be the only festival, right? This won’t be the last one, so let’s just go have fun today.]
Subaru gave a thumbs-up and nodded at Rem.
And so, he left talking with Rem about whether or not it’d be a yukata with heart patterns as something he’d take care of himself next year.
At Subaru’s words, Rem blinked several times and murmured, “Next time, again…..”
After that, with a full smile as great as the morning glories on her yukata, Rem said,
[Rem: Yeah, you’re right! Let’s go to the festival again next year!]
[Subaru: Well said! Alright then, time to enjoy the festival this year! Let’s go, Rem!]
[Rem: Yes, let’s go together!]
Subaru gave an energetic command to leave, and Rem went with him as she raised her hand.
They could hear the festival music from the path that they were walking on side by side.
Even though this was another world, nobody hesitates to enjoy festivals. So, let’s do our best to go all out and enjoy this hot season as much as we can.
So that next year, we’ll be able to talk about our memories of this day.
[Subaru: Anyway, our first goal is to conquer all of the food stands. Rem, what kind of place would you like to check out?]
[Rem: I don’t know much about festivals, so is it okay if I leave that to you?]
[Subaru: Oh, fine by me. But, don’t say I didn’t offer. Also, I have to get Beako a present……Well, she’ll probably be happy if I buy her a mask or something. Yeah, that’ll do.]
It was a pretty careless conclusion. Still, Rem didn’t say anything to Subaru. Rem was just smiling as if to say that this time they were spending together and the atmosphere were enough for her.
When the festival music was finally near, they started to see the food stands’ paper lanterns lighting up the evening scenery in the distance.
The people who noticed Subaru and Rem in the illuminating festival waved at them.
[Subaru: Hey look, everyone’s full of enthusiasm. When it comes to enthusiasm, there’s probably no one who could hold a candle to you in your yukata, though.]
[Rem: Oh Subaru-kun, you meanie.]
[Subaru: My bad. But, this is a much bigger success than I expected it to be.]
[Rem: Let’s not get lost now. But even if I do get lost, I should be able to find you.]
[Subaru: Oh, looks like I can count on you then. Like with a signal or something?]
[Rem: Nope, you’re just really stinky.]
[Subaru: There you go saying that again with an innocent look on your face!]
Even though it’s not about a specific body odor, it does hurt when you’re told about it over and over. So…
[Rem: …Ah, my hand.]
[Subaru: It’s a solution. Can’t go off getting lost now, after all.]
He took Rem’s free hand and held onto it so she’d never get lost. With this, all preparations were complete.
[Rem: ……You really are a cruel person, Subaru-kun.]
[Subaru: I thought it was a nice idea, though. So we shouldn’t do it after all?]
[Rem: No, let’s stay like this. Alright, the festival! Subaru-kun, we’re going to conquer all the food stands, right?]
[Subaru: Y─Yeah, exactly! Still don’t really get it, but let’s go Rem!]
…After this, Subaru and Rem, being all fired up, went on to conquer the festival food carts one by one. Although, they did end up becoming known as “food cart robbers”.
….And that was a story for another night.
1. [Waso means japanese clothing]↩