Chapter 20 – I Am a Cat
Tanaka Shokatsu Koumei
My name is long, so I am called only Koumei.
From when I was just born and still couldn’t open my eyes, my mother told me something.
Our ancestors have a great debt of gratitude towards the Tanaka family.
To protect the peace of the Sanchoume neighborhood centered on the Tanaka family’s house, we have made it our territory for generations.
Occasionally, when a cat with strong spiritual power is born, it will make use of its power as the Tanaka family’s pet.
When I could open my eyes and move with my own feet, my mother brought ‘Koumei’ to the Tanaka family’s garden.
It’s to get me a name.
It seems that even stray cats will be able to get food easier by getting a name, and the survival rate will also increase.
But my mother said to be careful of the father, Kazushi.
My mother is already the cat boss in Sanchoume.
Her plump white body climbs the fence with unimaginable agile movements.
If we are caught by the unrivaled cat lover Kazushi, he will hold us back for a long time.
Also, more than anything, Kazushi doesn’t have any naming sense.
If the one who gives you the name is Kazushi, then give up…
My mother’s name that is given by Kazushi is “Shiratama Mochiko”.
(T/N: Her name is from shiratamako and mochiko, which are types of glutinous rice flour for making mochi)
It’s a name that hurts her dignity as a cat boss.
Lucky for Koumei, the first Tanaka family member he met in the garden is the mother.
And so I got this slightly long but a strangely dignified name.
Just like that, I, who have extraordinary spiritual power, became the Tanaka family’s pet, and no need to worry about food.
I lived peacefully every day, but a problem occurred when I became an adult.
Because of my high spiritual power, my children don’t grow well.
In my stomach, they died from the power inside my body.
The kitten itself couldn’t even take shape without some spiritual power.
After several stillbirths, a kitten that was finally born was taken by a crow in a moment.
At that time, I felt so miserable, regretful, sad, angry, and stormy that make me feel like going crazy.
At that kind of time, Minato was born.
One day, the Tanaka family’s baby, who was suddenly born, cried a lot.
The baby felt something, got scared, and cried abnormally often.
I had come to protect her from harm whenever the mother Yoriko was absent.
Most things can be deflected if I release a sound with spiritual power.
When she slept next to me, she always stopped crying as if she feels safe.
Sleeping together on the warm balcony became our daily routine.
Not long after that, Peita was born, and the family became lively.
Peita had asthma.
I was forbidden to enter the house because of the scattering fur, and we slept together less.
Kazushi skillfully made a DIY bed for Koumei’s personal use in the garden.
But I liked the cardboard box that contained the materials, so I made it my bed.
Kazushi looked at me begrudgingly, but what’s important to me is comfort.
When Minato was old enough to go to the garden herself, we could spend time together again.
At the time I inherited our territory from my mother Mochiko, and my spiritual power had also improved, I started to protect Minato from things she’s afraid of in our territory.
If Minato had gone out of our territory, I would come to protect her, but since she’d entered kindergarten and elementary, the time Minato spent outside increased.
Sleeping at the house gate while watching the time Minato would come back was my next routine.
Sometimes she came back home with strange things attached to her, so I couldn’t let my guard down.
There’s a time when Minato came home late.
It seemed that Yoriko said something like, ‘Isn’t she playing with her friends today?’, but I think there’s no way when it came to Minato.
I had a bad feeling.
I called all our clan cats in Sanchoume and told them to search for Minato.
The bicolor cat, Batman (the name given by Wataru), who I told to search Minato’s elementary school outside the territory, came to report.
“Boss, it seems that b̲a̲s̲t̲a̲r̲d̲ Love is chasing after Mina-chan!”
The dog who was always leashed slipped out.
Being too excited, it entangled itself with Minato… or so Batman said.
Minato always said to Koumei, who is sleeping in the garden.
‘The Labrador retriever Love on my way home is scary.’
Minato will desperately run away so pitifully right.
Why do dogs want attention and love? Can’t they suppress their desire in such a big body?
I have to give it some educational guidance.
I found Love fast.
He is loitering in front of the forest and restlessly going back and forth.
“Are you the dog who chases around our Minato?”
*hiss* I talk while threatening him.
The threatened dog is already stepping back, wanting to run away.
The dog looked at the forest anxiously.
Blood rushes into my head.
Not letting the scared dog run away, I give him a few cat punches with my claws sticking out.
That forest is dangerous.
You can enter anywhere except that forest.
The dog chased after Minato without thinking and returned to his sense only after seeing Minato escaped into the forest.
If he were an animal that lives naturally, he should have been able to sense that that forest is strange.
The dog didn’t enter the forest because you know it’s dangerous.
While chasing after Minato until the forest…
“If something happens to Minato, it will not just end here!”
I jump at the dog and bite him behind his ears.
“Awoo! Awoo!” *whines*
After seeing the dog running away while barking, Koumei entered the forest without hesitation.
Aaoo (Minato-, where are you-)
Aaoo (Minato-, answer me-)
I have entered this forest twice.
The first one is when I chased after the crow who kidnapped my baby kitten.
That crow, that demon is living in this forest.
That time… I couldn’t find my child.
Minato… Minato… I must at least find Minato.
Aaoo (Answer me-)
Aaoo (I beg you-)
Aaoo (Please be safe!)
The forest got darker every moment.
We have to get out of this forest before dark.
It’s dangerous to walk in the woods with Minato who can’t see at night.
At least, if I had a bigger body, if I were big enough to carry Minato.
I won’t let my precious children to be done by the forest again.
I will definitely bring back Minato.
I occasionally call Minato while repelling the forest’s miasma with spiritual power.
…then, if you take a closer look at the forest’s miasma, it is flowing in one direction.
While following the miasma, I advance through the forest and look carefully over the place with the densest miasma.
My view got distorted from the miasma, but I could faintly hear Minato’s crying.
If the field of vision had been distorted this bad, humans might not have been able to find her.
The pitiful Minato is crying inside the miasma.
I’m sure you can’t even move if it’s this dense.
I let out a single sound to clear the miasma with spiritual power.
Minato lifts her head at that sound.
I finally found you.
I respond while blowing the miasma further away.
“Did you come to get me?”
I blow all the miasma around Minato, get closer, and jump to her lap.
When I licked her crying face, Minato laughs softly.
“Thank you, Koumei-san!”
I want to comfort her until she calms down, but it will be dark soon.
We have to get out of the forest quickly.
I meow to say, ‘Follow me,’ to Minato.
I got her back this time, my precious child.
The world immediately tries to snatch away what’s important to me.
I need more power.
The power to protect Minato.
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