266 the taste of miso

"Welcome home.
Welcome home.

 After quickly cleaning up the area, me, Rike, and Krull came out of the hut and greeted everyone. All of us looked fine except Helen, who looked a little tired.

Helen looked a little tired. "Looks like you've been chasing your prey around for quite a while.

 I laughed and called out to Helen. Lucy came running up to me and I patted her on the head. You're a little wolf, but you've been hunting all day, and you're strong.

I'm tired. ....... How come everyone else is fine?

 Helen sat down on the ground, her mouth agape.

I've been here for a while. And she's a bit more tomboyish and strong than she looks.

 As I say this, Liddy, who has been by my side for some time, pokes me lightly in the back. It's nothing compared to Deanna's HP being drained from my shoulder.

"Deanna knows ...... well, doesn't she?

 I'm sure you've heard of it. She was a seishi before she had a bow.

That's right, .......

 Helen said, and lay down on her back.

I wish you could say that I've adapted.

 I hope you'll say you've adapted." Deanna's mouth quirked up in a sultry tone, but she soon erupted. Then the sound of family laughter and the squeals of Krull and Lucy filled the air.

"Come on, let's dust off and have some dinner.

 My words were met with a chorus of approval, and we headed back home.

 The next morning, we all headed for the lake. The next morning, we all headed out to the lake, a light picnic, though I think there was more than enough manpower to do the work.
 On the way, Samija's nose was twitching. Lucy, perhaps curious, is doing the same.

Hmm, it's getting closer.
Yeah. It'll start tomorrow.

 Lucy mewed in response to Samija's answer. Deanna held her, stroked her head, and Lucy's tail wagged.
 So the rainy season starts tomorrow. I guess I should say we're just in time to be prepared, but if we're lacking something, we'll just have to live with the rainy season this year.

"Isn't there a rainy season in the north?
"Yes, we do. No, we do. It's different from our rainy season. It's very wet and lasts a long time here.

 Humidity is one of the characteristics of Asia (in the original world). Even here, the so-called "northern" areas tend to be humid. Since climate has a strong influence on culture, it is natural that the climates of Japanese-style regions are similar.

I've never been to the north either.

 Helen said, her hands folded behind her head. If Helen, the most frequent ex-mercenary in our family, has never been to the North, I doubt any of our family has been there.

"There was a nobleman who came to visit us from the north a long time ago.

 It was Diana who said that. As a Countess, you probably have many visitors from abroad. It would not be surprising if one of them was from the north.

You were wearing something unusual, weren't you?
Yes, I did. It was when I was a little girl, but I remember it well because it was a strange dress.

 He might have been wearing a long or short kimono and a haori (Japanese traditional haori), but not a kamishimo (ceremonial dress) for traveling long distances.
 He would not have worn armor to the place he was visiting.

Did Eizo wear something like that?

 Samija may have asked this question casually, but as a person born in modern Japan, I didn't have many opportunities to wear kimono. I wore a suit for my coming-of-age ceremony.
 However, my grandfather was a kimono-wearer, so when I went to his house, he made me wear a yukata (I think it was a yukata, but it may have been a kimono for children).

Hmm, my grandfather used to dress me in yukata, but my family preferred southern style clothes. ......

 I decided to answer that way. It's not a total lie. Samija looked dubious for a moment, but seemed to be convinced immediately.

If I could go there, I would. To your homeland.

 The voice of whoever said this melted into the sudden breeze and drifted away.

"Wow, that's huge!

 I yelled out when I saw the deer in the lake. I've pulled up a deer about two meters in length before, but this one was even bigger.
 I've heard that a moose in the previous world would be about three meters, but this one looks like it could be four meters.

"Right? That was a lot of work.

 Samija said proudly, her chest heaving with pride.

It took us a long time to kill it because it's so big.

 Deanna said, and Helen, remembering the situation, turned pale and scowled.

You're not the master of the forest, are you?
No way. The deer is not.

 From Samija's words, it sounds like there is a master of the forest if not a deer, but let's leave it at that for now.

 I tied a rope to the big deer and tied it to Krull. Krull snorted loudly to show his motivation and took a strong step forward.

 Even she seemed to be struggling a bit, and it wasn't as easy as usual, but she pulled it up without getting stuck.

 While Krull was pulling it up, we helped him put it on the stand that Rike and the others had made by cutting down trees.
 The deer was heavy, despite the strength of the whole family. The meat itself may be a factor, but the larger the body, the more fur there is, and the more water that soaks into the fur.
 Krull, who had squealed "crew," pulled the cart with the deer on it with great enthusiasm. He really likes to pull.

 When we arrived at the house, we hung it on a tree and peeled its skin. The weight of the tree was too much for us to lift it, and it was so big that we had to split up into four people instead of two, but the work itself went smoothly.
 We stroked Krull and praised him, and he seemed satisfied, but then he got tired and slunk back to his hut.

I'm sure we won't have to worry about this for a while.

 The deer was big, and the meat alone was quite plentiful. If we can catch this kind of meat again and again, we might as well start thinking about building a smokehouse.

 For lunch, I'll just grill and eat as usual. I grilled Lucy without seasoning and let it cool. I gave her a big, thick piece of meat as a reward for her hard work yesterday (she was basically just running around, but just being there was good enough).
 She kept wagging her tail while she was eating.

 And at night. During the day, I marinated the thinly sliced venison in a mixture of soy sauce, miso, and sake (but not sake).
 When I put it into the hot frying pan, I heard a sizzling sound and a savory smell spread around. Well, it smells familiar.

It's a different smell.

 Liddy, who was approaching behind me before I knew it, peered in and said, "Miso and soy sauce.

It's miso and soy sauce. They're both made from soybeans and wheat.
"I see. They look delicious to me.

 She's not a vegetarian because she's an elf, but if anything, she prefers vegetables, so perhaps this is the right seasoning for her.

 It was about time for everyone to join us at the table. Today's menu consisted of grilled deer with miso, unfermented bread and vegetable soup.
 Suddenly, a Japanese-style menu was mixed in. I wondered if I should make the vegetable soup into a miso soup, but decided against it, not knowing if it would suit everyone's palate. I'd like to try it when Kamilo gets hold of some kombu and dried bonito flakes.

 I looked at everyone, but they seemed to be okay with the smell. It must be a fermented food, so it must be unbearable for those who don't like it, but fortunately there is no one in my family who does.
 Everyone but me took a mouthful of miso-yaki and chewed it with a squirming motion.

"Well, how's it going?

 I asked fearfully. I hadn't felt this way in decades, since the announcement of the passing of the qualification exam.

"It's good!

 It was Samija who shouted out. Everyone else was nodding their heads in agreement.

It's a little salty, but it's good.

 Dianna followed, and everyone else seemed to like it as well. I was relieved.
 I took a bite of one myself. I could feel the miso and soy sauce in the flavoring, though it was lacking in some respects. For me, that alone was enough of a treat.
 Oh, I hate that we don't have rice. I'm sure there is rice in the north, but I wonder how much it would cost to transport it here. I'll have to ask Camilo about this sometime soon.

 Later, over dinner, we talked about northern ingredients and seasonings, and the night went on.