Kusuriya No Hitorigoto Book 9 Chapter 37
Kusuriya no Hitorigoto | Volume 9, Chapter 37: The Three Letters
Maomao received her letters and opened them in her room. The room had been remodelled into something quintessentially Maomao; simple, with herbs hanging from the ceiling.
There were three letters. They came from Rahan, Yao, and Enen.
(Come to think of it.)
She had a feeling that Yao had told her to write before she left on her journey.
(I didnt write at all.)
Looking at the three letters, she wondered what she should do, then decided to put Rahans letter aside for now. She looked at Yao and Enens letters, thought about it, then selected Yaos letter. It was stiff as it was pasted on a sheet of sturdy oil paper to make it durable for the long journey. Normally, Enen would decorate the paper and scent with floral notes, but it seems they prioritised functionality.
(Since its a distance you dont know if the letter will be delivered decently.)
The contents were as usual; tsun, then dere midway.
Is something up? I didnt get any letters from you at all. I heard that theres a locust plague in the west, so it cant be helped. So, are you okay on your side, etc, etc.
Careful neat characters, which were pressed down in a fit of emotion every now and again. Easily understandable Yaos writing.
(Ill reply, okay.)
The problem was when itll be delivered, but that cant be helped.
Next, she opened Enens letter. Same as Yaos, it was reinforced with oil paper.
Maomao flipped Enens letter over, looked up at the ceiling, and sighed deeply. She pinched the corner of her eyes.
Once again, she looked at the letter. The size of the letter was the same as Yaos. However, Enens writing was the size of rice grains, meticulous and orderly like sutras. The contents were 90 per cent Yao. This didnt look like a letter, but a Yao observation log.
There might be something important Enen wanted to say. But, as far as Maomao could read, she could only read: "Milady is adorable."
Nevertheless, she knew about Enens worries concerning Yao still not giving up on the same job as court physicians. And it seems she has one more worry. But it was hinted at in the letter, then it ended, so it was troubling.
(Sorry, I dont have time to make guesses.)
She thought, putting Enens letter to the side.
(Last is this guy.)
The letter from Rahan was unexpected. She thought it would be better to have it sent to Jinshi. Did he not think that Maomao would throw it out if she were careless?
Anyway, it was delivered safely, so shell open it for the sake of the people who delivered it to her.
"Eh?" She raised her voice inadvertently.
Speaking of why, the letter was pasted onto oil paper. The same way as Yao and Enens were. The two aside, she found it odd that Rahan would be doing the same thing, but it might be paper originally for long distance letter sendings.
For the time being, she opened the letter…
Yao-san and company are still at my place. What should I do?
Bewildering contents came into view. Later he asked if the people in the western capital were fine, but she felt this here was the main topic.
(No, as if Id know.)
Maomao closed the letter. She decided to store the three letters in some container. She got an empty box from the quack doctor that was used to contain steamed buns, so she put it in there. Maomao who doesnt throw away empty containers was utterly a commoner.
There was still a huge amount of documents in Rikusons office. It was in this condition day after day, but being necessary, it is what it is.
Rikuson earnestly checked the contents. There was a lack of civil officials, so it came to him.
It had been a month since the large scale locust plague. Although several locust outbreaks followed since then, it settled down afterwards. However, it was just the locusts that settled. Those detestable insects eat voraciously then leave behind the next generation.
And it was troubling since only human eyes see the aftermath of the damages.
Only fussing about supplementing the damaged agricultural produce, and being negligent of the extermination of the next locust plague, would naturally result in a larger locust plague.
Rikuson had a written report of the headache-inducing damages and a petition for food ration before him. It would be good if he had the power to save every person, but Rikuson was only in middle management. The things he could do were limited.
He had to counterbalance the support for the areas with damage, and the population of the outskirts. He must not misjudge the distribution.
Rikuson wanted to pull his hair out. He had to compare the data, thinking about the food stockpile and its distribution. It wasnt that he couldnt do arithmetics, but there was so much, and it also weighed on a huge responsibility.
"It would be easier if Rahan-dono were here."
This type of work was that mans specialty. While flicking an abacus with one hand, he would calculate in his head. Since he saw it as numbers, he would provide the fairest allocation of resources.
Come to think of it, as of late, he hadnt gotten any letter from Rahan. Rikuson called the civil official who was about to leave to a stop. "Have there been any letters addressed to me?"
"None for Rikuson-sama," the civil official replied curtly. It was the man Rikuson had been meeting ever since he was posted in the western capital. The civil official had brought in many letters, so if he said there were none, then there were none.
Was it only Rikuson who found it odd?
This was Rahan, a man who would have to have known about the locust plague in this western capital this month. And he was curious as much as anyone else. Rikuson expected that Rahan would sound it out through a letter to him.
Was it also busy at the capital?
Could Rahan have sent a letter to someone else?
When he suddenly thought that, the existence of Rahans younger sister came to mind.
He thought if he should ask her if she had any letter from Rahan, but he decided not to.
It would be better for Rikuson to not approach her from now on. And she wont approach him, wont be able to approach him, from now on.
This was for the good of both parties.
Rikuson had proposed marriage jokingly for that reason. The overprotective people around her would react sensitively to even a joke.
For the time being, he decided to submit the documents he finished reviewing. When he was going to call for the civil official who had gone out to the hallway, he saw Gyokuou at the opposite side of the courtyard. There were a large group of military officials around him.
Rikuson, who now found it difficult to leave, headed for his office desk and took out a petition.
It was a petition from a farming village. On the purpose of wishing for food aid since they couldnt harvest crops, and about enlistment. Normally, this wasnt something meant for Rikusons eyes, something to be disposed of. It seems the civil officials had mistakenly slipped it into the large stack of documents.
The petition contained lines of the farmers good faith. There were also mentions of how many times private funds had been used to compensate, even in the past.
The contents of the petition could be read as a foolish wish of ignorant people currying up to a benevolent politician.
The kind lord saved the poor farmers; it sounded like a moving tale. What do the citizens think of it? The ignorant people must think that it would be natural to provide soldiers.
Gyokuou, who was leading military officials. What on earth was he planning to do?
Gyokuou, who was popular among the populace.
The unprecedented locust plague.
The imperial prince and the tactician who came from the capital.
That man was setting up a stage, gathering some kind of factors.
But, Rikuson still wasnt convinced.
It must be because he thought this deep in his heart.
That he wanted Gyokuou to be a good lord.
Synopsis: Somewhere in the universe, there was an altar. On it, laid a bloody eye as big as the sun itself. It burst with light and bathed the entire star system in red.
"The aura of an ancestral artifact!" Someone's voice rose in surprise.
The Great Galactic Era had begun.