I stared at her jade-colored eyes, and wordlessly reprimanded her actions.
“You probably don’t understand your own feelings right now.” (Keisuke)
“……….I’m not a child!” (Angelica)
“But to me, you are. Grudge towards those who pushed the status of a sacred shrine maiden to you, the curiosity towards men in general, the admiration towards the hero figure, a wish for paternal love, and pity. These emotions mixed up chaotically, and were mistaken as love.” (Keisuke)
“……….th-that’s not true.” (Angelica)
“But you faltered as soon as I pointed it out.” (Keisuke)
Angelica casted her eyes down while biting her lower lip. There was no trace of the ‘little devil’ expression from a while ago. She continued to look down while slightly trembling. Before long, clear drops of water streamed down her cheeks toward her chin.
I wondered if she was hurt or if she felt something in my words.
But I didn’t know. I couldn’t tell. I didn’t know what she would think at such a time. That much, I didn’t know.
“You’re still sixteen….. You should explore the various possibilities ahead of you.” (Keisuke)
To Angelica, who was shaking her head with both hands covering her face, I spoke as gently as possible.
“Let’s wait until you’ve grown up. If you still hold that feeling towards me, I’ll consider it again. Right now it is still too early to decide.” (Keisuke)
“Age doesn’t matter…..” (Angelica)
Angelica murmured in a tearful voice that suited her age.
“Look at the various things in this world, meet a variety of people, and think about it again. Perhaps, you will even meet and fall in love with someone around your age.” (Keisuke)
“Does this mean, that I am being rejected?” (Angelica)
“That’s not the case. I simply don’t want to take advantage of the confusion in your heart.” (Keisuke)
Though the biggest reason was that I couldn’t think about other women besides Elsa.
I had the wisdom to not say it outright.
Because I’m an uncle.
Because I’m a dirty adult.
“Do you hear me? Anyway, I don’t know how to send you back to that world so I don’t mind if you want to live here with me. For the time being, why don’t we start as parent and child? Just think of it as a trial run, for you and for me.” (Keisuke)
“The relationship between a father and daughter may turn out to be unexpectedly good, and you won’t demand any further. It’s not going to be a joke if we start a relationship between a man and a woman but later you realize it’s just a filial love towards a father figure. For a girl who’s going out with an older man, it seems such cases happen a lot.” (Keisuke)
“I’m different!!” (Angelica)
She was acting like a pubescent girl. The feeling to protect her sprung up inside me. It seemed like a lie; I was conscious of her as a woman a while ago.
That’s right….! Although only for a while, I was looking at her as a woman. An undisputed fact. Shit, that’s a crime.
Hiding it or being honest, which one is the right answer? If I keep silent, it’s the same as declaring that she has no charm as a woman. But if I’m being honest, it’s going to turn bad if I don’t follow through completely.
I put my hand on her shoulder and then spoke while pretending to be casual.
“Umm….. Even I was fond of such a cute girl, so I felt happy about it. To be honest, I thought my heart would stop.” (Keisuke)
The sacred shrine maiden raised her face immediately.
“I would have fallen long ago if I was a teenager.” (Keisuke)
“You may fall for me even if you aren’t teenager anymore.” (Angelica)
“That’s not right.” (Keisuke)
I held down Angelica’s forehead which was approaching me. I felt relieved because the atmosphere gradually loosened.
“From now on, I’m your guardian, so listen to what I say.” (Keisuke)
“I will make you want to make me your wife before long…..” (Angelica)
“I got it. I got it already. So, let’s have a nice dinner and call it a day, because I’m really tired.” (Keisuke)
“No way. I want to stay up late here, in this other world.” (Angelica)
“You will not grow taller.” (Keisuke)
She really was behaving like a child.
“Okay, let’s make dinner. I will make fried dumplings (gyoza). It’s delicious, though it will make your mouth smell a bit.” (Keisuke)
“Is this an uncle-like dish?” (Angelica)
“Well, I guess so.” (Keisuke)
I opened the refrigerator and took the frozen dumplings out. I’ll make a meat and vegetable stir-fry side dish as well. Together with miso soup and rice, it would be enough to make your belly swollen.
I served Japanese-style food to someone from another world for a good reason. It was to see whether or not the flavors of this country would fit her taste. If her expression shows rejection, I will make Western-style food from tomorrow on.
(Thinking about it carefully, the cost of meals will be that for two people from now on…..)
I wondered if we could really eat well with my earnings, and suddenly chickened out.
I thought about looking for a proper job soon. I need to feed a girl in her growth period well, so I couldn’t continue to live a poverty-stricken life with the pretext of punishing myself.
Making use of the hero’s specs, I could find a decent job if I properly look for it. Something like a fighter or a stuntman. I don’t want to attract unnecessary attention, but I couldn’t care less anymore.
I dropped my shoulders and started to make dinner.
“But Hero-sama, earlier, you were seriously worrying about me.” (Angelica)
“Of course.” (Keisuke)
“That kind of thing is unfair….. That makes me like Hero-sama even more.” (Angelica)
“So the dense Hero-sama also exists.” (Angelica)
“Was there two of Me here?” (Keisuke)
There was no trace of the sadness from before, and she was laughing cheerfully.
A girl with a good personality who doesn’t let her emotions drag her down after a heavy story.
She’s certainly not a bad girl.
So I want her to be happy.
She should be together with a good young man.
Someone other than me.
“Such a nice smell, is that garlic?” (Angelica)
Angelica, who was sniffing around, was so adorable, just like a cat.
(That’s right. She’s a cat in human shape. I will not make any mistake if I think like that.)
“I’m happy to have a father that’s good at cooking.” (Angelica)
“If you think of me as your father, I will make you help out with the housework from tomorrow on.” (Keisuke)
Angelica who finished her dinner, licked the plate clean. It seemed I was worried for nothing.
Japan has more complex seasoning compared to that world, but it doesn’t seem to be a problem. She has good taste in food.
It was indeed delicious. Eating dinner while talking to someone for the first time in a while, has a different taste.
Both her appearance and her temperament were the opposite of Elsa’s. I wondered if I would be able to become a good father for her.
“Father, let’s make a child while we’re at it.” (Angelica)
“Keep silent and go to sleep!” (Keisuke)
I have no choice but to do it.
Proofreader : Meihua