123-New Quests

 I'm not sure what to do with it.
 After I said no, he put the egg away instantly and his round eyes got even bigger.
 He hurriedly starts checking me out by flipping the hem of my clothes and slapping me on the top.

"Kupa! Kupa! ....... Kupakpa!

 I couldn't find the egg anywhere, and he looked at a loss, so I took it out again, and he jumped up, his dull eyes glittering.
 It was a very fresh reaction.
 These days, people just go through the motions without a care in the world.


 With a delighted look on his face, my brother kappa starts spinning around me.
 My brother kappa starts spinning around me with a happy face.
 Kacchan is still pretending to be dead.

 After a while, the little ones settled down, and we followed the path we had taken to get out of the forest.
 Apparently, the kappa's destination was farther north.

 But the forest, with its unpredictable footing, is a tough place for an ordinary person like me.
 So I decided to ask Fuki-chan, a fire-breathing bird who had just joined the group, to give me a ride on the way back.

 Unfortunately, I didn't bring a saddle, but I had already experienced it with the assault bird.
 I could manage without falling off.

 Kacchan was still not moving, so I took her along with me, and for some reason she raised her body and put her back to me.
 When I looked into her eyes, she opened her eyes and was secretly enjoying the view from a high place.
 I wondered if he had learned that pretending to be dead would get him on the bird's back. .......

 We passed through the thick trees and headed north, parallel to the side mountains.
 The only thing we had to do was to keep a certain distance from the forest and follow the grass.

The forest looked like it had a lot going on. I'd like to bring a few more people next time.
"Meow. Nyaa. There's all kinds of strong-looking things here and there. I don't want to die yet!
That's why we need more men, Tinya, to be sure.
"I see. That's good.
And I'm sure you'll have a reliable guide with you.

 A kappa that can disappear and not be noticed would be a good companion for a dangerous walk in the woods.
 Perhaps he had walked around the forest many times before, but his guidance was accurate and dependable.

Gee whiz!
"Nya! Did you find any mushrooms? I'd love to go back there again.

 Yoo and Gobbler had also spotted something.

 He is also a reliable friend.

 As we talked amicably, we walked through the spacious underground space.
 The mountains, not majestic but high, rose up on either side of our view, and a rich forest covered them.
 The river on your left is flowing gently and sometimes violently into the depths.
 The end of the river cannot be seen from here because it is sometimes hidden by the looming mountains and the mist that flows from the forest.
 It was like an ink painting.

 The air, fresh from the rain, was thick with moisture and gradually dissipated by the wind blowing down from the mountains.
 The tall grasses swayed in the breeze and spread out endlessly in waves.
 The backs of the firebirds swayed in a steady rhythm, their feathers so soft that they seemed to sink into the ground.

 As I surrendered myself to the not-so-good feeling, Tinya and the others in front of me suddenly stopped in their tracks.
 The older brother kappa, who was leading the way, turned around and seemed to be telling us something.
 However, the grass was so high that they could only hear his voice.

"Hey, I heard that it's dangerous to stand out from here.
How far is our destination?
They say it's just around the corner, my lord.
So we walk from here?

 Butterbur, the fire-breathing bird, would have to stay here for now, since his upper body would be sticking out of the grass.
 Kacchan grabbed her feathers secretly and didn't want to come down, so I decided to leave her with him.

 We crouched down in the grass and walked carefully.
 It must have been about five minutes later.

 The brother kappa in front of us let out a small cry.
 He had finally arrived.

 Still hiding in the grass, we raised our heads to see where we were going.
 It was a place where a meandering river flowed from west to east.

 In the middle of the river there was a large sandbar with some grass growing on it.
 And one more thing.
 What jumped out at me were the familiar shells of kappa.
 They were lined up in a row.

 I widened my eyes at the sight of so many kappa.
 But that wasn't the only surprise.

 The surface of the river around the sandbar.
 There was a huge, long black shadow that was stumbling around.