After wiping away his tears, Subaru left with Emilia, and this time, the hallway he walked through had a proper end. He was then led to a familiar-looking garden outside the manor.
The maid twins also had some work to do around the manor, so they slipped away while they were on the way to the garden.
“Wow, it’s huge…! The mansion is big too, but this is more of a field than a garden, huh.”
The garden of a well-off person’s mansion—a place that was often used as the setting for lunch or dinner parties in manga and anime. Subaru let out a sigh of admiration as he looked around the large garden and immediately began doing stretching exercises to get himself back into shape.
“Those are some odd movements. What are you doing?”
“HUH!? Is warming up not a thing here? If you don’t loosen up your muscles before moving your body, you’ll damage your ligaments before you know it! You could tear your Achilles tendon, or something like that!”
“Hmm, I don’t think I’ve seen something like that. But it’s true that you can easily get injured if you move suddenly without warming yourself up.”
“I didn’t know people in this world don’t do warm-up exercises. Oh well…then how about I teach you? The authentic warm-up exercises of my homeland, passed down through the generations!”
Impressed by the confidence of Subaru, Emilia hesitantly replied with a “O-okay, then just for a little bit, then.”
Subaru asked her to stand next to him. After the two of them were lined up side-by-side, facing away from the manor, they took deep breaths with the sun pouring down on them. “Radio Calisthenics Exercise Twooo! Go! One-two one-two one one-two.”
“Uhh, what, no way!?”
“Hold your hands out in front of you and touch the sky! Follow my movements, follow me!” While encouraging the puzzled Emilia, Subaru performed his homelands famous Radio Calisthenics Routine. In the beginning, Emilia seemed perplexed and tried imitating his movements, but she gradually became more motivated and was absorbed in the exercises with a serious look on her face. Once the exercises were over, she took a deep breath, and… “And at the end, hold your hands up high and say, victory!”
“Alright, that’s the spirit! Not bad for your first time. Emilia-tan is awarded the title of “Calisthenics Novice.” Keep up the good work! Fight!”
In another world, Subaru’s life as a radio calisthenics instructor began. Emilia, his memorable first apprentice, exhaled with a blank look on her face at the ever-so-enthusiastic Subaru.
“Despite what you just said, Subaru, it’s true that these exercises were effective, because I can feel my mana circulating in my body.”
“Then I hope you can spread the word! But only on the condition that the song and victory! are spread too.”
The song and victory! had to come in a package. That was non-negotiable for Subaru.
Feeling pressured by Subaru’s uncharacteristically serious attitude, Emilia nodded her head. “Let’s see…wan-to wan-too?”
“No! It’s one-two one-twooo!”
They spent some time saying “one-two one-two” to each other, but Subaru decided to write the lyrics down on paper in the end.
After he reached that decision, Subaru came to the realization that the people in this world might not understand the words he wrote down. At least for now, he couldn’t read the letters of this world.
“Maybe I should check it out later, huh. I can only write in Japanese, a little English, and some gal characters, but…”
Subaru had mastered the Gal alphabet after spending a surprisingly enthusiastic amount of time learning it. Although, never actually being able to use it makes it feel like he just wasted his time.
“Even so, you are pretty fit, Subaru.” Emilia suddenly muttered that to Subaru, who was turning his wrists and ankles and popping his joints.
For Subaru, despite already having been seen naked by her, even if it were for the purpose of being treated, he couldn’t help but feel embarrassed when Emilia looked at him from top to bottom.
Recalling the extreme embarrassment he felt ten minutes ago, Subaru scratched his head. “Well, sort of. Since I’m a shut-in, I should at least exercise a bit.”
“Well, I don’t know what “shut-in” means, but I’m sure Subaru comes from a reaaally good family. Weren’t you taught martial arts?”
“No, I’m seriously from a normal middle-class family, but where did that come from? Do I give off some noble-like elegance?!”
“You must be reaaally curious.”
Subaru said, “Let’s hear it.” and raised his hands up in a playful manner.
Then Emilia quickly grabbed both of Subaru’s raised hands. The girl fiddled with his hands vigorously, and he emitted an “ahh” as his throat froze up. “Like these fingers, it’s because of the way your skin and hair look. These hands look sooo different from the hands of a commoner. And these muscles don’t look like they came from working…” She continued to fiddle with his hands, causing him to blush constantly, but he felt satisfied regardless.
Aspects about his hair and skin, and other things he had never mentioned before, were pointed out to him, and he was greatly reminded of his own foolishness.
Subaru’s mind was spinning at a dizzying pace as she talked about aspects of his appearance that were not usually seen among commoners here. Meanwhile, she continued, “Black hair and black eyes. It’s a common trait among migrants from the south, and it can be seen in Lugunica too. I’ve never seen anyone with these traits, but maybe there were some servants before…? Even that outfit was made with a material I’ve never seen before… Am I right?”
At the silent Subaru, Emilia smiled as if she were proud of herself.
While being captivated by Emilia’s beautiful appearance, Subaru nodded solemnly, and examined the content of her words. “If I were to say whether it’s true or not, it isn’t, but how can I explain it without hurting you?”
“Even if I’m wrong, you need to say it clearly, or I’m reaaally going to feel embarrassed.”
“It’s all good. I don’t mind, I’ve been showing a lot of ignorance for some reason or another. How about we just be friends and be embarrassed together!”
“I don’t remember our relationship being sooo close that we can casually embarrass each other without fear. I’m not making any progress by speculating, so I’m just going to ask you frankly. Where did you come from, Subaru?”
—A question that blew the shame and outrageousness of the situation away, and Subaru could only think, hmm.
Subaru felt like he could honestly say “I was summoned from another world” here, but saying he was summoned from another world would make him sound like a crazy person.
In a world full of opportunities, a crazy person would not be thrown out, but looking at the seriousness of Emilia in front of him, Subaru had a feeling he’d get turned into an ice statue if he gave a poor answer. “So… I guess it’s best to go with Deflection Plan B here.”
“It’s reaaaally disgusting to be muttering like that. You’re not going to answer my question?”
“I do have an answer for that! And it’s super! But unfortunately, I don’t have the answers to these questions… Uhhh, because I have amnesia and don’t know anything about myself!”
“You said your name was Natsuki Subaru.”
“Oh, shit! You’re not letting up! You keep pushing forward without wavering!”
“Soooo, you’re not going to give me a straight answer. —Well, I won’t try to pry if you don’t want to answer.”
Emilia surprisingly let Subaru off the hook without much trouble while he was engrossed in his thoughts about her behavior. She let out a single word, “Now…” and took out a green crystal that was attached to her blouse.
“It’s a crystal for spirits to inhabit. You already know about Puck, right?”
“The gray cat that disappeared when we needed him most, right? And it doesn’t know what I did after that because it was taking a nap, huh?”
It was the crystal that housed the spirit that disappeared during their battle with Elsa. This was the first time Subaru had seen it in this world, but he caught a glimpse of it before in a previous loop.
The green crystal suddenly started glowing as if in response to Subaru’s mean criticisms. And then… “Unfortunately, I heard all about it from Lia after that mess was wrapped up. I don’t sleep all the time, Subaru.”
The light leaking out of the crystal came together and gradually formed a small outline. The head was formed, the torso emerged, and then the limbs appeared, fully equipped with fur. And a few seconds later, a small bipedal cat appeared in Emilia’s palm.
“Hiya. Good morning, Subaru. Nice day today.”
“It was a rather wild night and morning for me, though. I had to deal with looping hallways and the need to pee, and worst of all, my purity was stolen from me, so I can’t marry Emilia-tan anymore…”
“Don’t use such harsh words.”
After being told that, Subaru replied with a vague “Sure!”
Emilia closed her eyes as if resigned to it, then looked at Puck, who was still in in her palm. “Good morning, Puck. I’m sorry I put you through all that last night.”
“Good morning, Lia. But I feel bad about what happened yesterday. I almost lost you. I can’t thank Subaru enough for that.” Puck looked up at Subaru with his round eyes, tilting his little head back. “I should thank you. If there’s something you want me to do for you, just let me know. I can do most things for you.”
“Well, then let me touch that fur of yours whenever I want.” Subaru also responded immediately to Puck.
The speed of the reply was the same, but perhaps the content of the reply was a surprise as well. It wasn’t just Puck who rolled their eyes, but also Emilia, who was listening. She seemed a bit flustered. “Wait, can’t you think about it a little more? I know he looks small and weak, but Puck’s level of power is really quite something.”
“It’s a little awkward, but yes. I’m a pretty powerful spirit, despite my appearance, so I don’t mind if you’re a little greedy.”
“For a top fur lover like me, the right to pet your fur whenever I want to is absolutely priceless. It’s something that can lead a person’s mind to a higher level and purify even the most desolate of souls.”
As he said it, Subaru took advantage of his newfound rights and continued to play with Puck in Emilia’s palm to his heart’s content, starting with his belly, then his chin, and his ears too. “Wow, these ears are amazing! I can’t get enough of this fluffiness!”
“Hmmm, the great thing about Subaru is that he’s serious. I can read your mind vaguely, so I can tell,” Puck said with amusement as he played freely with his fingers.
Emilia gave a distinct sigh of dismay at their playfulness. “It’s soooo tiring trying to understand you, Subaru.”
“You can’t give up. Things in life, like interpersonal relationships, are built on a spirit of mutual understanding. But don’t think it’ll be easy to understand me, alright?”
“What’s that? This is reaaaally frustrating,” Emilia replied.
Subaru folded his arms and turned his face away while looking at Emilia with one eye open. Seeing her attitude, which showed her displeasure, Subaru made his mind up about the future.
And then she saved Puck from Subaru’s barrage of petting attacks. With a light wave of her hand, she turned her feet toward the outskirts of the garden. “Well, I’ll go talk to the spirits now then, and Subaru, ummm, can you go over there and weed quietly?”
“Alright! Weeding is so exciting, so I’ll do my best! But I didn’t come down to the garden to do that, right?!”
“I’m kidding, I’m kidding” he said, laughing as he watched her silver hair disappear into the distance. Then Subaru got on the ground before doing some exercises.
Subaru had already completed his morning exercises, so other than that, he can still do his daily muscle workout regime. After having skipped yesterday, it would make sense for him to do two days’ worth of exercises to make up for it.
A hundred push-ups, a hundred sit-ups, and a hundred squats.
This was the type of workout regime Subaru did every day at home even though he was a shut-in living with his parents. Sometimes he would even swing a sword, or something similar, but he would mostly just do those three sets of exercises.
—In the meantime, Subaru did push-ups, sit-ups, and squats, all while sweating profusely.
After resting for a bit, Subaru did another round of exercises. Doing each set of exercises only took around ten minutes, but he was very serious about his training and would do them every day.
“I feel like I’m missing something. If only I had a wooden sword or something to train with…”
“Please use it, sir.”
The maid sisters had appeared out of nowhere and offered Subaru a wooden sword to train with.
Subaru was stunned by their thoughtfulness, and, after receiving the sword with a respectful “thank you,” they disappeared without a trace. Regardless, he now had a wooden sword to train with, just like he had wished for.
The shape of the sword was in the style of the commonly used two-handed swords in this world, which was slightly different from what he was used to. However, a sword was a sword, and the fundamentals of using it were the same no matter what shape, material, or size it came in.
He swung it lightly to make sure, and decided that the weight was just right.
“Thank God that all-in-one maids exist. Anyways, I haven’t swung a sword in a long time, so let’s go!”
Ready, and swing! Ready, and swing!
Subaru had only been a member of the kendo club when he was in middle school, but he had stayed long enough to get to the first dan, or graded rank, so he was at least proficient in it and could make progress by practicing. After having those thoughts, he continued to swing over and over again, and as far the sharpness of his swings was concerned, it was still as good as it was when he was in the club.
“This is a fantasy world where magic is used along with swords, so I wonder if this will be useful.”
As Subaru continued his training, he could feel sweat running down his forehead like a waterfall and spilling onto the lawn.
Subaru recalled the battle that took place at the Stolen Goods Warehouse. —The sight of Reinhard and Elsa clashing blade against blade with sparks flying.
He then envisioned himself swooping in with his two-handed sword.
“Take this, Elsa! Your evil acts end here!”
He sprang into action and went in for a strike, but then got instantly defeated with a slash to his gut.
He gave it another go, but this time, he imagined being in the line of fire of Reinhard’s powerful sword slash… It didn’t end well either, as he saw himself being turned into ash as if he had been instantly cremated.
Subaru concluded that no matter how hard he tried, it would be impossible for him to beat a cheater—or overpowered character—as a normal person.
“Is it even worth the effort…? Well…”
Carrying the wooden sword on his shoulder, Subaru paused in order to look over at Emilia to check how she was doing.
He could see that she was sitting on the green grass with her feet sprawled out in front of her, and talking about something with Puck, who was on her arm.
Subaru thought that the person she was talking to was Puck, however, “If my eyes aren’t deceiving me, it looks like Emilia-tan is surrounded by dim lights.”
Within the reach of the seated silver-haired girl, Subaru could see that the space was enveloped in a hazy, faint glow. Around her, dim multi-colored lights were floating around and flickering like the light of a firefly.
It was a mysterious and fantastic sight to behold.
It wasn’t a scene that mortals should tread upon. —It was like a sanctuary for the divine where only heavenly beings were allowed entry.
“Wow, this is amazing. So are all these fluffy things spirits then?”
Subaru casually spoke to Emilia while she was talking to the spirits as if it were the most natural thing to do.
Emilia couldn’t help but be surprised by Subaru’s sudden appearance, and her eyes moistened with tears as if they were responding to her astonishment.
—And her sudden change in feeling spread to the spirits around her.
“Uh oh, I’m in trouble now…”
Many dim lights could be seen fluttering from side to side, trying to move behind Emilia in an attempt to escape from Subaru’s view.
Subaru felt as if he had made a flock of pigeons flee from him in a park.
“You are amazing, Subaru. Normally it’d take a lot of courage to even try to touch a spirit,” Puck said.
“So you’re saying, ‘you’re lucky to have me around’, right? I know! I can’t imagine my life without you, tickle, tickle, tickle.”
Subaru ambushed Puck, who was still on Emilia’s arm—which had stiffened in response to his actions—and began his tickle attack. While doing so, he tilted his head towards her, who was still speechless, and enjoyed the feeling of her silver hair with his fingers. “What’s the matter? Your insignia will get stolen again if you aren’t careful.”
“Don’t poke people where it hurts! That’s not what I meant. I was just suuper surprised.” Emilia blamed Subaru for her own shortcomings while wiping away her tears with her fingers. The spirits swayed up and down as if agreeing with her, and Emilia replied with a “Well, aren’t you all in a good mood.” while watching the reaction of the spirits.
“Weeelll, this is the first time seeing a spirit in my life, so it’s a bit exciting for me. They didn’t look dangerous to me, either.”
“I was keeping them under control, so it was okay. If it were an inexperienced spirit arts user, they would cause the spirits to run away and…bam!”
Emilia tried to scare them with her voice, but she only managed get let out a ‘bam’ at the end of her sentence, as if her vocabulary wasn’t broad enough to find a better word to use. Subaru listened intently and ended up shrugging, and then looked over at Puck. “Totally exaggerating, huh.”
“What’s so dangerous about a fluffy-looking light like that?”
“Mhm. For example, I could turn you into dust in a matter of seconds.”
“I’m soo sorry if I offended you!” Subaru dived into a prostrating position and expressed his gratitude.
Puck laughed with a wave of his little hand, and Emilia pouted her lips due to the difference in treatment. “Why don’t you treat me like that…Hey! Puck?”
“Is it the difference in age…?” He replied calmly, stroking his beard. Emilia sighed and gave up on pursuing the issue, perhaps due to how calm and gentle Puck was.