Now, let’s see…
I looked at the pair of underwear Ristina-san was holding, and then looked at the other pair. To someone else, it would have looked like I was trying to pick between them.
「Do you like those pairs?」
「They do have a kind of charm. What, did you find something you like, senpai?」
If I just told her straight up what I wanted her to get, would that be sexual harassment? Maybe not, but… I really wanted to get that one pair.
「Come on, senpai, point it out. You never know, maybe I’ll try it on?」
「I liked that pair.」
I glanced at it, and she followed my gaze. When she saw the thin black underwear on the shelf, she looked back to me with mild shock and embarrassment.
「I-Is that what you recommend!?」
「No, I just said that I liked it.」
「Y-you just liked it, huh!? Is there anyone out there besides you who’d recommend something like this?」
I was really embarrassed, but I needed to endure it for that skill.
「Are you dating anyone right now, Ristina-san?」
「Huh!? N-no―… I mean, y-yeah there is, but what’s that got to do with it!?」
Why did she have to affirm it so forcefully? The way she reacted was like she was actually single, but Ristina-san seems too popular for that to be the case. I wondered why she didn’t just go out with her boyfriend instead of me, if she had one, but there might be some circumstances.
For example, if her boyfriend is a Knight, he might be away from the city on an expedition.
The same goes for adventurers, as they sometimes leave the city for weeks on end.
「You know, if you wear this, he probably won’t be able to think of anyone else.」
「I-I don’t need something like this to accomplish that, I’m charming enough on my own!」
She replied even more forcefully, her face now beet-red. Usually it’s her cornering me like this, but the shoe’s on the other foot now.
I guess even if she’s good at making fun of people, being teased herself might be her weakness. It’s possible I have a similar problem, but here we are.
「Sure, but there are some things you can’t do with just charm, right?」
「Well, maybe so, but…」
「Don’t you think that the effect of your charms will also be increased if you’re wearing something as tempting as this? The atmosphere is important, isn’t it?」
「It doesn’t matter that much, I’ll be fine.」
She looked away. Her ears were bright red, but I wondered whether she was angry or embarrassed.
「…Would you like to buy it?」
「I’m not buying that, you perverted senpai!」
Ristina-san stuck out her tongue, grabbed the underwear she had chosen originally, and headed to the clerk. I looked at the black underwear while she haggled.
…There’s nothing I can do. Will I have to come back here later to buy it?
◆ ◆ ◆
When we left the underwear shop, Ristina-san looked at me with a sullen face.
「Even though you’re my senior… you’re completely making fun of me…」
She was complaining. Honestly, I didn’t mean to make fun of her, but I ended up seriously recommending that underwear, didn’t I? If she bought it, I was going to give her S-rank Body Strengthening as a bonus, instead of Weapon Break, you know? Anyway, let’s change the subject.
「Well, I mean, it was fine, wasn’t it? You seemed uneasy about going into a store like that without me around.」
「I… guess you have a point, it’s not like I know where the stalker is.」
Her cheerful tone died away as she closed her mouth.
Whoops. I should have picked a lighter subject.
「Ristina-san, is there anywhere else you want to go?」
「Hmm… this is enough for now. You had something to do too, didn’t you?」
「Don’t worry about it. I can do that anytime, but you won’t always need an escort, right?」
「…Thank you so much. But this is already enough!」
That’s fine then.
「Well then, shall we head back to the inn?」
Ristina-san nodded with enthusiasm.
We started down the road back to the inn, but then a man blocked our way.
「Ris-Ristina-san! Why are you walking so closely with another man?」
The fat man raised his voice and pointed at me, spraying saliva as he approached.
Is he an adventurer? He’s much older than me.
When I saw the fear in Ristina-san’s face, I knew he was the stalker, not someone she was close to. So I cut in front to block him.
「What do you want? Who are you?」
「I could say the same! Who are you supposed to be?」
The man huffed through his nostrils like an angry bull.
I felt the impact would be a little weak if I just said I was her co-worker. She was saying she had a boyfriend just a while ago. It may cause him some trouble, but it should be fine if I just explain the situation properly later.
「My name is Relius, I’m Ristina-san’s boyfriend. And you are?」
If I put it like that, will this guy give up?
Ristina-san seemed surprised for a second, but she understood my intention immediately.
「I-I’m the one, I’m the one who’s dating her, my name is Gagail.」
「Is that true, Ristina-san?」
I gave her an opening to answer directly.
「N-no, not even a little! I never dated this guy!」
Ristina-san turned to face Gagail with deep-seated disgust. Gagail shook his head.
「W-we’re dating, aren’t we! You’ve always greeted me politely! And I… I-I-I go to see you every day!」
「I’m polite because it’s my job! I’m just treating you the same as everyone else!」
「Y-you’re cheating on me…! I w-won’t… I won’t forgive you!」
Gagail raised his voice and took out the sword hanging from his waist. A Divine Treasure, Izou Blade, huh? He didn’t have any attack skills, but he did have some S-rank skills I was quite familiar with: Body Strengthening and Stamina Enhancement.
It was quite dangerous. Even without attack skills, it was still a Divine Treasure. Seeing him take out his sword, the blood drained from Ristina-san’s face as she retreated. Gagail opened his big mouth, perhaps because of his sense of superiority, and turned his sword on me.
「Hee, heehee! You’re being deceived by this guy, Ristina-san! I’ll help you!」
When Gagail took out his weapon, the surrounding air began to stir. He started swinging his sword around, but… his speed was pathetic. When I dodged, he got even more irritated and swung harder.
「Ristina-san! Go call for a Knight!」
「I’m fine, just hurry up!」
In this kind of situation, it’s better to nominate someone to get help instead of expecting it to come on its own. Well, I was also intending to give Ristina-san an escape route. Teary-eyed, she started running. Gagail saw, but didn’t pursue.
「Hee hee hee, when I look closely… you’re the guy who works at that inn, aren’t you?」
「Yeah, so what?」
「You’re using your position to force Ristina-san to follow you, aren’t you!?」
「We have a healthy relationship, but…」
It occurred to me that I had just recommended her some naughty underwear a few minutes prior.
「First of all, I’m going to kill you! For disturbing my relationship with Ristina-san!」
「Can you even do that?」
「I’m a C-rank adventurer! I can easily twist and crush the likes of you!!」
Gagail swung his sword, so I dodged it. All I had to do was buy time anyway, so Ristina-san could call the Knights over. I dodged behind Gagail, and hit him in the back. He staggered and turned red, glaring at me. When he started to move again―
His movements had dulled, and with good reason. I gave his clothes a Muscle Strength Reduction skill.
He could never have expected that. His sword attacks were child’s play now, possibly due to his mind and body falling greatly out of sync.
Gagail didn’t seem to realize his strength had been reduced. It’s not something one would necessarily notice in an instant.
「What’s the matter? Your attacks are pretty sloppy, aren’t they?」
Gagail looked at me in surprise, right before I drove my knee into his face.
It seems that in this chapter, the author changed a skill name, Kinryoku Kyouka ⇒ Karada Kyouka.
I decided to change it as well: Muscle Strength Enhancement ⇒ Body Strengthening.