'...... I'm sorry. I got a little carried away. I'm sorry, can I stop sitting on the bricks?'
I'm lecturing Loretta, who says she got a little carried away.
Sitting on a brick.
What's a little? You unrestricted runaway.
'But it's a pity to see the brickworks go under. And we won't be able to have a stall at the festival. My brother will be in trouble.
'But that doesn't mean you can get involved in family disputes!
'I hope you can do something about it.
'Don't be absurd. It's not a matter for others to say.
'If we lose the bricks, we won't be able to make the manager's flower bed!
'............Mr. Manager, I was looking forward to it so much.'
'You said with a sparkling face that you wanted the customers to be happy with all the flowers!
'Aaah!I get it, you're annoying!
'I'm only going to listen to you!
'That's my big brother!I know what you're talking about!
...... This guy didn't do it on purpose, did he?
It's not fair of him to use Jeannette.
It's not fair that he says he's fine when he's really sad.
If not, there are a few more ...... ways to comfort her, but she acts like she doesn't need to be comforted at all, which makes it hard for us to deal with her. ......... ...
Anyway, it's not fair to use Jeannette.
...... This is the only time it will work for me.
'Well, let's hear what each of you has to say first.
'So, brother, you listen to the master first. I'll listen to the younger one first.'
'Are you going to talk to him one-on-one?
'Yes, we do. After that, we take turns to examine each other's stories.'
'...... Alone with a handsome man. .................. That's dangerous.'
When alone with a handsome man, a girl can be strangely poisoned and develop the handsome man supremacy disease.
No matter how biased their thoughts are, they can be made to think, 'If the handsome guy says so, it must be so! No matter how biased the thought is, it is a horrible disease that can make us think short-sightedly.
'Are you worried about me?
'No, I'm not worried about you. ......'
I don't know what I was thinking, but Loretta suddenly hugged me.
It's the first time she's ever been this blatantly sweet to me. I thought he was a guy with a lot of body touches, but ......
'What's wrong with you all of a sudden?
I'm not sure what to say.You're so cute, big brother!
'Don't worry, I like you the best out of all the guys.
'Huh?What are you talking about, ......?
'I'm not going to be taken!
'Who cares about that?
I just think it would be annoying if Loretta got a serious disease or something like that. ...... Even though Loretta has a nasty disease that makes her want to poke her head in when she feels like it... ...I'm worried about that because it's getting out of my control!
'Oh, ...... I know how you feel, Magdacho. ......'
How do you feel?
'Mwah!I'm feeling motivated!
'...... I'm a little tired, though.'
'Then, I'll interview him cheerfully!Take care of the old man, big brother!
Loretta says with a glowing face, feeling strangely motivated.
Well then, let's hear what the old man has to say.
'Hey, big brother.
'What is it?'
'............ I don't want to be taken by an old man, do you?'
'Who's going to be taken!Just go ahead and do it!
'Yes, sir!I'll see you later!
With a neat salute, Loretta ran to the workshop.
'Then I'll go to the kitchen.
The old man and the handsome man are waiting at the workshop and the hearth respectively.
The workshop with the handsome man is a place where clay is kneaded and bricks are formed, and the hearth with the old man is a place where the formed bricks are fired.
I stepped into the hearth.
The size of the hearth is about the size of a meeting room at a community center. ...... It seemed smaller than I had expected.
Around the hearth are bricks that have been burned and tools that I don't understand that are used to burn the bricks.
'Oh, you've come a long way. Please, have a seat.
He points to a low brick wall in front of the kiln.
It was as low as my shin, and if I sat down on it, I could easily look into the kiln.
On such a low brick wall, the old man and I sat opposite each other.
...... What a scene. Surreal.
'I'm Bojek Euler. I'm a bricklayer, as you can see.'
Bojek's name is Bojek, and he smiles, the wrinkles deepening in his face.
He's a simple but good-natured man.
He must have been in some kind of trouble to yell at me like that.
I told him my name and briefly told him why I was here today.
'Oh, a festival to thank the spirit gods.
'So I was wondering if you could display and sell some of the bricks from your workshop.
'That's great!Sounds like fun!But I wonder if our bricks will sell well. ......'
'No, we're not expecting any sales this time. We're just hoping that people will try to raise our profile. You will be asked to pay a certain percentage of your sales to the lord, but we will not be charging you for the space this time.
If you charge a fee for a stall, stores that don't expect to make any sales will be reluctant to participate. We don't want that. The first event should be lively.
Therefore, we will not charge a fee.
Instead, they will be asked to pay a set percentage of their sales as tax.
In this way, there will be no more ...... stores that only take money but make no profit. If a store can't make a profit because it can't sell at all, it means the store didn't make enough effort.
'No, no, no. ...... I know it sounds mean to talk like this, but if you're going to open a store, you want to sell. We don't have a lot of room in our workshop either.
The brick studio is said to be a craftsman who is a member of the Ceramic Guild.
From the looks of it, it doesn't seem to be doing very well.
Well, it's the 42nd district. The streets are bare of earth, and the buildings are mostly wooden. Even the occasional stone buildings are not made of bricks.
The demand for bricks in the 42nd district is extremely low.
'How are you doing?
'Haha ......, you're very clear.'
'Well, it would be strange to mend and flatter you.
'Honestly, it's tough. I mean, I've reached my limit. At this rate, we'll have no choice but to close this brickworks.
'I heard there's a demand for flower beds?
Estella was raving about the bricks here.
'Well, only a few times a year. My lord's flowerbeds are huge, so when I get a request from there, I feel relieved that I can hold out for another year.'
I don't know if you're in a business situation where you can rely on a single customer like that. ......
'But I don't have more than a handful of houses with brick flower beds.
That's true. I've never seen one.
Even the most lucrative taverns like Cantalcica don't have a single flower in their storefront.
What about the clothing store in Uclines, ......?That sheep lady likes pretty things. ...... Maybe she does.
Mumm seems to like flowers, but she probably doesn't have the money to buy a flower bed.
I don't know many people who would have a flower bed, not even the fingers of one hand.
I don't think I could make it in such a situation.
The brickworks is walking a tightrope, isn't it?
'But!A miracle happened when I came here!
'A miracle: ......?
Suddenly, Bojek stands up and begins to flex his fists on his hips.
......What, am I going to get hit?
'It's a reverse jade palace!
Bojek raises his fist and howls high in the sky.
...... Reverse osmosis?
'Some rich guy has taken a fancy to your son?
'That's right!No, it was my son's skills that were discovered.Well, he's a very discerning man!When he saw the bricks we delivered, he asked, 'Who made these bricks? I said. And I said, honestly?"Oh, that's a brick made by my late son. Aren't they pretty good? I said!And then!
Poof!--He claps his hands and makes a loud noise.
My eardrums were so startled that I thought they were going to convulse for a moment. That's how loud it was.
'Would you please make this bricklayer our exclusive bricklayer? That's right!In fact, the bricks made by my late son are different from those of other bricks!I've been making bricks for 30 years, so I'm sure of it!There's no parental favoritism here, okay?It's not parental favoritism.
'Wouldn't the sales of bricks have been a little different if you'd sent out that evaluation to the customers?
'You're an idiot, you know that? How can my father praise his late son in front of other people?I told him because it's you.
Thank you for the special treatment. Why don't I just say thank you?
'So, this lady is a noblewoman who lives in the 29th district. She's a beautiful lady at heart who's been living surrounded by flowers since she was born. There has never been a single rumor about her, and she has never met any of the many men who have courted her. She herself had planned to remain a bachelor for the rest of her life, but when she saw her late son's bricks, she even said, "I'd give all my wealth to someone who can make such wonderful bricks!To my late son?My mother died early, and I raised him by myself with my own hands, and now a nobleman is picking up a kid with no education and a status like a stone. Isn't this the luckiest thing?Don't you think so?
'Well, well, ...... is not a rare thing, isn't it?
You're right.You think so, don't you?
Frankly, it's too hot.
You're the only one who doesn't have any education, while your son seems to have some sense.
And can you stop using your back voice when you say the lady's lines?It's creepy. And don't make her wriggle.
'But that stupid son of a b*tc*!'I don't want to make any bricks except the ones I want to make. If you want to be associated with the nobility, you should remarry,' he said!I punched him in the face!
I can feel the malice in her son's imitation.
Maybe it's because my subjectivity is closer to the son's generation than the father's. ...... The father's argument sounds like a mess.
I think the son has the better argument.
I think it's hard to ...... accept that you're suddenly asked to marry someone you don't even know and it's for money.
'Hey, Bojek. Do you have any other sons?'
'He's an only child. My mom ...... passed away early, so... ......'
'Then, if you give away your only son to a nobleman's son-in-law, won't this brickworks cease to exist in your generation?'
'Hahahaha!Don't worry!I won't retire until my late son has a baby!
'My late son will be the child of a nobleman, so there's no way he'll be allowed to take over the brickworks, right?
'Then just have more babies!If you have five or six, at least one of them will be sent to us!
...... No, this guy.
It's amazingly short sighted.
'Really ...... can't you remarry?'
I'm not sure what to do, but I've made up my mind that I'm only going to marry my mother.
...... You're the most selfish person I know.
You can't help it if you don't want to make one, right?
''Don't worry!She's a daughter of a noble family.I'm sure she'll fall in love with you!
Who decided that?
'Besides, my late son's objection isn't about the bricks or the job or anything like that.
'...... What do you mean?You don't like it because you don't want to make any other bricks than the ones you've agreed to make?'
'No!No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no.
You're not calling me that all of a sudden. This is the reason why the craftsmen of the 'once accepted' type ...... have not yet accepted me even if you have accepted me!
'My late son!He's being played by that shady woman!
'I've seen it!She sneaks out of the workshop in the daytime and walks around without being seen, so I was curious and followed her.
What kind of stalker is this father? You're disgusting.
'Then, you know that abandoned building down the road?That's where he was having a secret meeting with a gloomy woman dressed all in black!
Bojek shakes his fist. The fire of resentment was burning in his eyes.
If they were meeting in seclusion, it would not be so strange if the woman wore black clothes to keep a low profile, and if they were meeting in a deserted place lined with ruins.
But to Bojek, who believed his son was being played by the woman, she must have seemed suspicious.
...... Honestly, I don't want to get involved in this kind of story.
......!Ignore it, ignore it!It's none of my business.
'That's why!As long as that suspicious woman is gone, my late son will gladly become a nobleman's son-in-law!Right?Don't you think so?
'Ah~...... well, what can I say. Love is largely a matter of what the two parties think. I can't interfere with that. Well, I'll leave you to it. ......'
'Hey, master!Tell me more about it!
As I stood up, Loretta suddenly appeared from behind me and confronted Bojek.
...... When did she appear behind me?
'The love of a handsome craftsman and a nobleman: ...... A mysterious and suspicious woman appeared there: ............ It's very interesting!
'You're talking out of both sides of your ass!I'm sorry, Bojek. You can just ignore this idiot. ......'
'Then let me ask you something, little girl!I followed my late son and made a 267-page top-secret investigation report!
'Yes!Slowly, painstakingly, painstakingly!
............ Oh, no.
This thing won't stop.
I'm going to leave and go to my son.
I've got a rough idea of why he's doing it, and if I hear what he has to say, I'll be able to figure it out.
'Well, you guys go and have a love story or something.
Loretta and Bojek didn't pay any attention to my words.
The two were already in love-birds mode, and Bojek began to explain in detail when he noticed something wrong with his son.
...... Yeah, that's enough. Let's leave it at that.
I left the kitchen stove and headed for the workshop.
'Welcome. Please take the appropriate chair. I'm afraid I can't help you.
As soon as I entered the workshop, my son gave me a refreshing smile.
The workshop is much larger than the kitchen, about the size of a dance hall.
A large work table is placed in the center of the room, and shelves for drying the molded bricks are placed all over the walls. And there were piles of red clay and clay piled up like a mountain.
I could smell the earth. It was a relaxing space.
In the workshop, a handsome man kneaded the clay and offered me a chair.
'I'm sorry I'm working,' he said.
Yeah. At this stage, I knew this son was more educated than Bojek.
'I'd like to introduce myself. I'm Theron Euler. I'm a bricklayer. My father only gave me my license at the end of last year, so I'm still a novice.
'I hear the bricks you make are very popular.
I've been doing research all my life. I've been working with clay since I was a child, playing with it and experimenting with it. It's part of my life, you know.
'It's good to do research. It's good to do research. It's important to keep the tradition and explore new things. That's what's important.
I'm going to sit down on a chair and give a lecture to the young people.
...... Well, I guess I look younger than I am. I'm not sure if I'm going to be able to do it.
I thought I had said something a little on the nose, but ...... Theron stared at me, and his eyes began to sparkle.
I'm not sure what to say.That's what I'm talking about!That's innovation!That's what's important, innovation!
It's a word that makes me sweat all over my back.
............ Was this guy on the main street at that time?
'My childhood friend told me that a hero appeared on the main street the other day. Did you know about it?'
'No, I don't know anything about a ...... 'hero'. ......'
I know the story of a smooth-talking con man who made a big play for it.
'When I heard the words of the hero, I was shocked as if my whole body had been struck by lightning!
You're looking pretty good for a guy like that. People who are struck by lightning don't get off scot-free, you know.That means it wasn't such an exaggerated shock. At best, you were lying in a strange position and thought, "I'm going to fall! I was lying in a strange position, and I thought I was going to fall, and my body went 'jerk! It is common. It happens all the time, you know.
'Well, I've heard it all before, so it may not be very convincing. ......'
Theron's cheeks flushed with embarrassment as he plucked at his bangs and toyed with them.
What, you want me to think, 'Hey, is this guy cute? You want to make me think, 'Hey, this guy's cute?
I'm not going to let you think that so easily, okay?
However, I felt that the vague feelings I had been holding in the back of my mind were cleared up. Of course, making traditional bricks is important, but more than that, I want to make bricks that are new, new ......, and that will surprise the world!
I don't think the world is looking for that kind of surprise in a brick. ......
'That's why I can't be a nobleman's son-in-law. I can't stand the idea of spending the rest of my life in a mansion baking bricks for a flower bed. ......
'Isn't that nobleman's daughter not your type, so you're running away for some random reason?'
'No, sir!Whether she's my type or not ...... doesn't matter to me from the start!
'Because there's a woman I like.'
You got the point.
Well, I guess so.
'Did you hear anything from my father at ......?
'No, it's nothing important. More importantly, that 'childhood friend' ...... you mentioned earlier is your first love and your current love interest. ............ isn't it?'
When I pointed this out, Theron's eyes widened and his mouth dropped open.
...... Watch out, watch out. What was I thinking just now?
What was I thinking just now? Hang on, I'm ............ d*mn, the power of the handsome man is amazing ......!
It's amazing. You're right. Are you a spellcaster?'
'No. I'm just a diner worker.'
'The cafeteria ......?
You seem truly surprised to have your secret revealed to you.
I mean, it was written plainly on his face.
It's not because the person who said the words was a 'hero' that this guy was impressed, although he was talking about the words of a hero while saying 'I heard it from my childhood friend. He was impressed not because the person who said the words was a hero, but because it was someone that his childhood friend recognized as a hero.
In the end, Theron only recognized the person that his childhood friend recognized.
So why can you accept a stranger so honestly? ...... It's simple. It's because the woman you love is the one you're infatuated with.
Let's say that your crazy girlfriend's favorite food is "doner kebab". In such a case, most people have a good impression of the doner kebab, which they have never eaten before. And a doner kebab eaten for the first time with a good impression is certainly more delicious than one eaten with a bad impression. Humans are creatures of preconceptions, you know.
Well, that's why. I'm guessing that the girl he likes is his childhood friend who taught him the words of the hero he was so happy to hear.
'She is much more amazing than me,...... and has been pursuing innovation ever since she was a child,...... and when I was wavering between tradition and innovation, she never wavered. I admire her. ............ It's not only as a woman, but as a human being.
If that's the case, just tell your father that. I'm not going to marry you because there's a woman I love.
'If I say such a thing, he's the one who might ...... harm her.
He doesn't trust me, that old man.
'...... Just between you and me, ............ my father is a bit of a stalker... ...'
'Yes, I know.
If there's any discrepancy between my perception and yours, it's that it's not 'a little'.
'You ...... know everything, Yashiro. ............ are a great person.'
No, it's just that you and your son are too easy to understand, okay?
'So, what kind of innovation is she pursuing?
'A flower. She's been researching for more than ten years to create a flower that doesn't exist in this world yet.
The eyes of Theron were like those of an innocent girl looking up at a rainbow in the sky. ...... They were convincing enough to make me think that anything I said would be useless.
He doesn't look at any other women except his childhood friend.
What's a convincing brick?
After all, he's just a do-gooder who wants to spend his whole life for the woman he loves.
And I don't mind such stupid men ............ much.
You'll be able to get a lot more than that.
'I understand your feelings, Theron. I'll help you in any way I can.
'Are you sure?
'Yeah. ...... for now.'
I picked up a nearby mallet to break the bricks.
'...... Your dad, where do we bury him?'
'No, no, no, no!Can you give me a break on that!
Why, when it's the quickest way?
'We know that our workshop is in dire straits financially. If we don't do something about it, we may lose our workshop. ......'
'So, your childhood friend is the kind of woman who thinks it's her fault, right?
'...... You really do know everything, don't you?
It's called theory.
If not, I'll quit this workshop!Theron is the type of person who would not mind doing such a thing. But he hasn't. Why not?
Because she doesn't think that's a good idea.
'In other words, it would be better if you could keep the workshop alive without the support of the nobles, wouldn't it?
'Yes, sir. I will go to the aristocrat to decline if I can find a way to make it work. I'll get down on my knees or whatever and sincerely tell them how I feel so that they can understand me.'
I'm sure they'll understand if you have that much of a heart. If the ............ aristocrat is not rotten at heart.
'Well, I'll see what I can do.
'Are you sure!It's reassuring to have someone like you on our side!
'No, no, no. Don't get your hopes up too high.
'Yes, sir!I won't!
You're a straightforward guy. ......
'If you help me, I'll do whatever you want!Please tell me anything!So, please, I'm counting on you!
Bending at the waist 90 degrees, Theron bows his head.
I'm not sure if this ...... gymnastic flirtation comes from his father or not.It's a little hard to get involved.
'Well, I'm going to ask you to make a product that will sell by the time of the festival, and I may also ask you to do some crazy things in the future, so if that happens, please do me a favor.
'Yes!I'd be happy to!
I can't believe it. ...... A handsome man is coming close to my face. ...... It's annoying that he smells so good. ......
'Oh, and I'd like to set up a flower bed in our cafeteria. ......'
'I'll take care of it!Any amount!No matter how many square meters!
It's hot. ...... It's hot, the enthusiasm. It's so hot, it's making me lose my mind. ......
And as I was fending off Theron's pestering, I spotted something unusual on a shelf on the wall.
No, I don't mean strange, I mean ...... can you make something like this out of bricks?That's what it is.
'Hey, that's a ...... vase, right?
'Huh?Oh, yes. I've had planters and pots for a long time, but I finally finished one the other day after a lot of trial and error to make it easier to enjoy flowers.
'Does it leak water?
'Yes!It was hard work!
'How much does it weigh?
'We made it as light as possible!
...... Vases, huh.
'Hey, can you sell me that?
'I'll give it to you!
'No, ...... sell it to me.'
'............ Why, sir?
'I've got a lot of stuff.
'So ....... Yes, I understand!Then I'll give it to you at a reasonable price!
You've made a good purchase.
'It's late, so I'll come back another time.
'Yes!I'll be waiting for you!
'...... Next time, please lower your voice a bit.'
'Yes, sir. Yes, sir.
He is a very straightforward man.
The handsome man gave me a refreshing smile, and I didn't feel bad at all.
'Theron!Is Theron there?
'Dad!...... What?What do you want from me?'
Suddenly, Bojek bursts into the workshop.
Theron's expression instantly turns cold. ...... This is getting pretty complicated. ......
'I have something I really need to tell you.
'Can we talk about this later? I have a very important customer right now.'
'No!It's got to be now!It'll only take a second, just listen!'
Under Bojek's pressure, Theron glanced at me.
He nodded at me, though I thought, 'Don't ask me ......,' and Theron said, 'Go ahead.
''Actually, ............ dad, ............ I'm thinking of getting married again to Loretta!
What are you talking about, this guy?
'Well, Loretta, you're so cute!It's been sixteen years since Mom died, but Dad, I think I may have finally found a new spring. ......'
'Yes, sir!Big brother!
He jumped out from behind Bojek and grabbed Loretta by the neck, forcing her into a corner of the room.
'You, what did you do to that old man?
'Well, I was lifting him up to get him to talk, and he kind of misunderstood me. ...... I'm in trouble.'
'I'll make your cheek pouches swell up with water!
'Da, no!No water!It's a little uncomfortable to have a fat stomach!
'Celoone!She's the new mom!Go ahead, call her mom!
'What are you thinking about, Dad?
Oh, God!They're all idiots!
I sat Loretta upright on a brick, threatened a runaway Bojek with a mallet, quieted an apologetic Theron, bought a vase, and left the brickworks.
...... I'm exhausted at the end of the day. ............ I can't wait to go home and sleep.
'Big brother. Mr. Bojek has told me a lot about the shady woman who's been messing with Mr. Theron!Do you want to hear about it?
'If anything, I don't want to hear it. You can tell me tomorrow.'
'As a matter of fact, the suspicious woman was first spotted more than ten years ago .......'
'You want me to do it tomorrow?
I had to stop Loretta's mouth from talking. I'm going to strangle her and shut her up completely.
'I'm crying!Your brother's so naughty!
'Shut up!I'm tired!Just go home and go to bed!'
The sky was dark from eating too much time in the workshop. It's completely night.
I've reached my physical and mental limits.
I don't have any more energy left in me.
All that was left was to go home and sleep.
That's what I was thinking. ............
In a deserted, narrow alleyway lined with abandoned buildings, ...... I was suddenly approached.
A faint ............ woman's voice came from behind me.
It's a great way to make sure you're getting the most out of your vacation.
My heart beat fast as if it were about to burst, and disgusting sweat broke out all over my body.
Then, looking back fearfully, I saw ............
There stood a woman who looked like a pale, dimly glowing ...... pitch-black shadow. ............... ...
'.............................. I'm not sure what to do.
Me, I met ............