Brother inhaled and Mifuyu blinked.

”As long as you
e alright… ” Mifuyu said.

I was out for three days. Thankfully, I woke on the fourth and we were able to resume our journey. But since Brother and Cousin had to go back to school, I was dropped back off at our family residence.

They must have come to visit me on their off days. The journey mustve been especially long for Mifuyu who lived far north. Ahhh, I really do feel sorry.

The Moto family was a new clan, with few ties to the long-standing clans of Black Apple. Every couple or so years, a new clan would find its way to Black Apple and every year those small clans would fall trying to defend themselves from the demons on the day of the blood moon.

(In the game and this world still, Demons tended to invade on days of the blood moon, thats when the barrier protecting Black Apple would shut down to recharge. They occurred frequently, once every three months and sometimes more depending on the interference of demons and witches.)

The Moto family was no exception.

The only difference was that our family was enormous so we had more of a fighting chance, the groups that fled to Black apple, were simply rag-tag remnants of fallen villages with no proper teamwork established. So, naturally, they wouldn last.

And, naturally, it would become natural for remnants of small clans to eventually seek refuge from the bigger clans like our family. Other long-standing powerful families were extremely wary of strangers unless they deemed you a competent warrior forget about becoming a resident.

And thats how our Moto family came to be recognized over time as a ”nice ” fief by the new stragglers and the other long-standing houses, with Father as our Lord and brother as heir.

It wasn anything new… Since originally Fathers Great-Grandfather was originally a Lord pushed out by his siblings…

There was so much information to go over in my brain. Which was throbbing by the second.

”How about we go for a walk? ” Mifuyu suggested.

”But she doesn look well. ”

”Yes, she looks like she needs air. ”

How long has it been since Ive last been outside? The air really made me feel relieved. And the guards- I had no idea they were outside my tower. They bowed when they saw us. I nearly forgot myself and bowed back.

”T-thank you for…being…here. ” My overthinking and overheating mustve taken a toll on me. My voice was so low, I couldn even thank them properly.

I don think they heard me.

Dark green pillars decorated the estate, holding up the rooves and connecting courtyards… it felt more like a capital city than a home. Unfamiliar and familiar faces walked about. Some guards, some heads of the small clans. It was that time of the year again probably.

New Clans would seek refuge in our territory by autumn to get through winter.

As we approached the doors to the main estate we passed by some red-haired people, it was a rare sight for three reasons. 1. Their age, they were all youth. 2. Obviously their hair. 3. Compared to the usual tribal clan, they were either dressed in rags or like plebs, but these guys…they were dressed in animal fur cloaks and skin clothes. Hunters? I think Ive seen people with red hair before last year…

”More vagabonds from the Nomura Clan? ” I guessed aloud. People with red hair that shade had been here before…but they were too proud and rowdy to rely on our family, they challenged Father to duel and left after losing. Later their demise would reach our ears. I had assumed they all did.

Their heads turned.

”…Himiko. ” Brothers shot me a pointed look. He didn yell at me but his silence screamed at me instead.

Huh? What was his problem? Wait, don tell me! I said that aloud didn I?

I turned around and dipped my head.

”Please, forgive my rudeness! ”

Really don know what got into me, it was easy to say I wouldn act like the old Himiko but… well, at the end of the day we are still the same person, just with different maturity levels.

Brother turned around and did the same.

”I apologize for my sisters rudeness, ”

The redheads all glared but there was a youth who simply seemed to study me. When he walked away, the group tore their gazes away from me and followed him.

Was he the leader? So young! It made me curious and I made a mental note to ask about them later. Once brother stopped glaring at me of course.

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