On our fifth and final day at the Flugel family’s ranch, there was a huge ‘project’ or ‘fun’ we would be doing. You could say that it was the ‘pinnacle’ or ‘peak’ of our fun stayover.
What is that?
You might ask that. And here I would answer…
It was none other than a day ‘babysitting’ or ‘taking care’ of a small monster by ourselves~!
Obviously, the younger ones (namely Leticia, Freyr, and Freyja) had a stricter supervision. We wouldn’t want anything to happen to them. As such, the three of them also would take care of a monster together. They seemed pretty content with that already, as long as they get to take care of one.
In the morning after our breakfast, we gathered to draw a lot to determine who would be taking care of what.
“Let’s count the lot, shall we? Before that, Carbuncle, are you sure you aren’t joining?” Dmitria asked.
“Nope, why would I be taking care of the small fries? That’s boring,” Carbuncle resolutely answered.
“Well, that would be a good experience, though, Kuu-chan…,” Iris responded.
“Nah, I’ll skip,” Carbuncle added.
In the past few days, Carbuncle was really unbridled as usual. She would do whatever she wanted (obviously they weren’t things that could trouble us), for example she would run around the field and fly in her half-dragon half-humanoid form.
There was also a day where she transformed into a dragon and roamed around freely. She looked so free and happy, though, so nobody really stopped her. It was so lucky that the Flugel had wyverns. Though Carbuncle’s appearance was quite different from the usual wyverns…Oh well.
“Fufu~, so here we have nine lots in total. There will be three young Pegasi, three young Raphus, and three young wyverns in the pool. We have selected them, so each lot will be specific and can’t be changed. Are you ready?” Valerie said.
“Nine?” I raised my eyebrows.
“Ah, Aneki, I’m not joining as well~ I will be watching everyone having fun~!” Briar declared.
“Briar has done that many times already with us,” Dmitria added.
“Oh, I see then…,” I nodded in understanding.
“Hehe, shall we start?” Valerie said.
It must be my imagination, but why did it seem like Valerie and Dmitria’s smiles seemed a bit mischievous? Like they were going to watch a fun show…
“Tada, here are the lots! Now, pick your stick~,” Valerie said as she stretched her hands that were holding a bag with nine sticks protruding out of it.
Anyhow, I decided to pay no mind to my weird feeling just now and immediately picked a stick along with everyone else~
“Hold it…Let’s draw the sticks together. On the count of three…,” Dmitria excitedly said, “Two…and one!”
All of us obediently drew our sticks at the same time. I could see there were different numbers written on the other edge of our hands.
As for mine, let see…
We were told in advance that 1 was Raphus, 2 was Pegasi, 3 was wyvern, then repeat the cycle until number 9.
“Oh, it’s number six, a wyvern, huh?” I muttered.
I noticed Dmitria and Valerie trying to hold their laughter back, so I quickly turned to look at them with inquiring look. Meanwhile, the others were excitedly talking about their results.
“Is there something funny?” I tilted my head.
“N-nothing,” Valerie brushed it off.
“Should we tell now, Val?” Dmitria asked.
“Let it be surprise?” Valerie suggested.
“But it’s Aneki!” Briar suddenly chimed in.
“…Alright then, because it’s Aneki, let’s tell her,” Valerie relented.
“What’s going on, guys?” I asked, not knowing what was going on. Did I have something weird on my face? Or my clothes?
I tried to check on my face and clothes, but I found nothing weird.
“So, you see…Amidst all nine of the monsters we would be entrusting to everyone, we included one with…a challenging difficulty to handle. It’s a wyvern, you see, and–,” Valerie explained slowly.
“We put that challenging wyvern on number six,” Dmitria ended Valerie’s sentence.
“Hee…I see, challenging, huh? …Huh wait, number six?” I quickly checked on my stick and saw  written over there.
“Mine?” I asked with an awkward smile.
“Exactly,” Dmitria smiled mischievously.
“Since it’s Aneki, it should be fine!” Briar was so confident at myself, when I wasn’t even that confident in me…Thanks, Briar.
“Hold on, what are you going to do if the young ones were to get it?” I asked.
“Simple, we are going to redraw the lot,” Valerie shrugged.
“Uwawa…handling a challenging one…just how is the wyvern I’m going to handle?” I asked, feeling a bit nervous.
“Well, let’s just go to get your partners of the day rather than wondering~,” Valerie said as she and Dmitria led the way to the ranch.
Incidentally, the Flugel twins had separated the participating monsters in one place, so there was no need for us to go our separate ways. Upon arriving at a small barn, we saw three young Pegasi, Raphus, and wyverns. Since they were quite young, we couldn’t really ride on them, so today was purely devoted to taking care of them.
As per the result, the ones getting wyverns were me, Luca, and Clavis. The ones getting Pegasi were Iris, Ein, and Kiri. The ones getting Raphus were the young ones, Harvey, and Alt-nii.
The Flugel twins introduced us to who would be our partners today.
I waited for my turn as I saw everyone who was being introduced to their respective monster of the day. After a brief introduction, the monsters seemed to be friendly enough with them. I was kind of looking forward to my turn because of it.
“As for Aneki, here is your partner wyvern. His name is Autzag,” Dmitria said.
Before my eyes was a young moss-colored wyvern whose body size was around a large breed dog. His round eyes were looking at me curiously.
“Hi, Autzag, nice to meet you, I’m Lyra,” I said as I patted his head.
However, after my first pat, Autzag dodged my pat and was about to peck my hand. Luckily, I was faster than him, so I managed to dodge his peck.
“He’s asking you to play with him,” Dmitria said as she was almost laughing.
“Uuu…such an energetic one…,” I gulped. Then, I patted his head again and the same cycle happened.
…Actually, this is kind of fun. Look at his neck moving back and up, it’s funny too.
My initial worries were erased because apparently, Autzag’s mischievousness was to my liking. This built up my confidence that I would be fine with him.
Yes, I severely miscalculated and underestimated Autzag.
Simly put, Autzag was a ball of energy as he didn’t let me take a rest. When everyone else was walking around the farm leisurely, I was running to match my pace with Autzag. Luckily, we were provided with leashes that we could hold so that our partners won’t run away.
(Author’s Note: To make you laugh, I initially made a typo from “our partners” to “our parents”)
I looked at how everyone else was doing at this time, wondering if anyone was having a similar problem with me. But when I turned around, I saw such a different scenery from my and Autzag’s walk.
Everyone else was laughing while walking leisurely with their partners.
“Hahaha…,” their happy laughter was coupled with the monsters’ happy expressions as well.
Meanwhile, Autzag already tugged me and half-dragged me to run.
Such a contrast.
To everyone else, it might be jogging. But to me, it was a cardio workout…
What is this? Another training for me? (T⌓T)
As for Carbuncle, it seemed like she was having fun laughing at me and seeing the others taking care of the monsters. She even teased some of the monsters. Even Autzag was teased or intimidated by Carbuncle that he was calm for a few moments while Carbuncle was there. Of course, Carbuncle chuckled looking at my dumbfounded face and Autzag’s widening eyes of fear.
“Carbuncle, you should just go with Autzag. I think only you can subdue him…,” I said as I was catching my breath.
“Mwahaha, this is nothing to me!” Carbuncle stuck out her chest in pride.
“No, no can’t do. I like watching you guys. You’re the funniest, Lyr,” Carbuncle chuckled.
“Eeeeehh,” I hopelessly muttered as Carbuncle didn’t want to help me.
But when I thought about it again, having Autzag intimidated into behaving by Carbuncle would stress Autzag and it would be no good.
Well, this is just for today…!
With that in mind, I gathered my energy again.
During when we fed the monsters, while everyone else was harmoniously feeding their beloved partners of the day, I had another workout. You see…
“Grrawr,” Autzag growled as he turned his face away from me, who was holding out the meat for him to eat.
“What’s the matter? Still full?” I asked.
“Aneki, Autzag won’t eat from your hands easily like that,” Valerie kindly told me.
“Then, what am I supposed to do? Just put the meat on the bowl and let him eat?” I asked.
“Hmm, that is one option, but Autzag won’t eat quickly that way. To make him eat, you should throw the meat and he will leap to eat it. Like a hunter hunting its prey,” Valerie explained.
“Gah…Like this?” I tried to call Autzag and throw the meat when he turned to look at me.
Sure enough, Autzag ran energetically, jumped, and bit the meat before he descended and devoured the meat.
“Rinse and repeat,” Valerie said as she moved from me to see the others.
With that, I had the workout of throwing meat and chasing the wyvern.
Luckily, the humans also gained lunch break!
My energy expenditure was quite a lot today, so I ate a lot for the lunch. I felt like the others were looking at me with pitiful stare…
“Can you keep going, Lyra?” Alt-nii asked in concern.
“Rururu?” Rurune tilted her head as she looked at me.
Hwaa~ Thanks for your concerns!
“Yeah, I’m fine! This is one-in-a-lifetime opportunity, it’s okay!” I said. I didn’t want to give up that easily. I had considered this part of my physical training, too, hahaha…
“After this, we’re going to have a free time. You can do anything during this free time, such as playing with your partners. You are also free to roam around. You can even enter the nearby plains or forests, but be careful not to go too far. Especially the forest to the west of this ranch, the Silent Forest,” Valerie explained.
“Is there something in that forest?” Ein’s interest was piqued.
“It’s a beautiful forest, actually. As its name implies, it’s quite tranquil and you can even relax in the forest. But there’s a forbidden area in that forest, marked with a rope and several bells,” Valerie explained.
“The forbidden area…,” Ein’s eyes sparkled.
“How about–,” Carbuncle smirked.
“Do not go there, though. A very strong and unique monster dwells there. It doesn’t like to be disturbed. You can take a look from a far, but do not enter the area,” Dmitria warned us several times. It seemed like she was able to read Carbuncle’s mind.
“What happened to those who enter the area? They…can return, right?” Freyr asked.
“They returned, but they were quite distraught for some time. To sum it up, they weren’t like their usual self. I happened to see some of the victims and I think that it’s frightening to be like them. So, promise us you’ll be careful if you want to go to the Silent Forest, okay?” Dmitria asked seriously.
Ein and Freyr nodded.
Carbuncle grumbled, but Harvey’s next words diverted her attention from Silent Forest’s forbidden area.
“Silent Forest, huh? Heard that it’s a beautiful and serene forest. Shall we go there?” Harvey casually asked.
“If it’s too scary to go deeper into the forest, I recommend you to go and chill around the Still Water Lake that’s located between the Silent Forest and the Beau Plains,” Valerie recommended.
Other than playing around, Carbuncle also enjoyed chilling in the nature, so this hit Carbuncle’s preference.
“Alright then, shall we go there?” Alt-nii asked.
All of us nodded.
At that time, I should have factored Autzag’s naughtiness before actually agreeing…