Episode 24: New Inhabitants.
After taking care of the bandits at the windmill cabin, everyone returned to Urd Village.
“Alright, I’ll begin with the report.”
The morning after coming back from the subjugation, Yamato gathered all the elderly people in the village along with those who hadn’t accompanied them, at the open plaza and started speaking.
The report was made until this morning since it was already evening when everyone returned.
So, Yamato started to inform everyone about what had happened.
“The bandits using the windmill as a hideout were eradicated. I checked the surroundings, but there were no others nearby. So, I think it will be safe for a while now.”
“Oh, you have our deepest thanks! Yamato-dono.”
“As expected of the ‘Sage’ Yamato-dono! “
“It’s not that big of a deal. If you want to show your appreciation, thank Liscia and the children.”
After all, the children were the ones who played the most active part. Without their overwhelming firepower, it wouldn’t have been such a one-sided victory.
“Also, you and the village chief, even if you didn’t take part in the fight. In a way, you had the most merits.”
The village chief and other old people able to move were actively following the group.
From a safe distance behind Yamato and the children, they were pulling the cart carrying supplies.
And because everyone had that sense of security, they were able to properly concentrate on fighting on the front line. Also, the experienced old people helped with the post-battle ‘cleaning’ and withdrawal work.
“The loot secured consists of the goods owned by the bandit group, two horses and a wagon.”
“Oh! Those are really priceless.”
“The horses and wagon will really be of help, Yamato-dono.”
After finishing cleaning up, they collected the goods owned by the bandits. Of course, Yamato consulted with the village chief and obtained his approval.
Bandits and thieves had basically no human rights in this continent.
So, it was a common story that those who had exterminated the bandits were granted ownership of their belongings, and it was the same case this time.
These bandits had gathered a considerable number of valuables.
They made a fortune by attacking the widespread frontier villages and selling of the children as slaves, along with the loot they plundered.
The goods collected now were to be used to assist in the managing of Urd Village.
Moreover, two splendid and valuable horses were secured too.
Horses which could be used as means of transportation or for assistance in farming would be extremely useful in a remote village such as Urd.
“In addition to that, the windmill cabin was destroyed. That way, other bandits won’t be able to use it in the future.”
“That’s a relief.”
“That should be fine. It was a wise decision, Yamato-dono.”
With the windmill destroyed, even if bandits came again, they wouldn’t be able to use it as a hideout.
The windmill hut had been made uninhabitable by burning it using animal tallow. The only remaining structures were a couple of badly damaged stone walls, so it was basically impossible to reuse.
The surviving bandits were dumbfounded and frightened by the one-sided slaughter and the spectacle of watching their former hideout, the windmill, fiercely burning.
In those dead and hollow eyes, one couldn’t see the hope of getting back on their feet, let alone trying to take revenge.
“Also, it was decided that we will welcome the orphans of the Han clan here in Urd Village.”
“What a… so that happened to the Han clan of the grasslands…”
“Urd would never abandon those in need.”
“Truly a merciful person, Yamato-dono.”
As for this matter, it was welcomed more than Yamato had thought.
The Han clan orphans were caught by the windmill bandits. And were just one step away of being sold as slaves after their parents were slaughtered.
Yamato had made the selfish decision of bringing them to the village of Urd. And while the consent of the village chief and the children themselves was obtained, it was still unknown how would the rest of the villagers react.
“Right now, the young Liscia and some of the women are having the Han clan children eat breakfast…”
“We should let them use some of the empty houses…”
“Let’s have the women take care of them until they get used to the life in the village…”
To Yamato’s surprise, the old villagers were instead talking about how to approach the situation, and future course of action. The people of Urd were seemingly very tolerant to immigrants.
After all, historically they too migrated to this mountain basin after being wanderers for a while. That made them have a generous heart.
And Yamato hoped this would be the same for the children, since he himself was warmly welcomed before.
“Well, this would be all. I hope we can keep working together, everyone.”
And so, with those words from the village chief, the curtain closed on the morning meeting.
“Liscia-san, how are the Han children doing?”
“Good morning, Yamato-sama! Right now, they are doing fine, they are finishing eating breakfast.”
After the meeting ended, Yamato decided to visit Liscia.
She, along with the old women of the village, were currently taking care of the Han orphans.
Yamato came to check on the children and see how they were doing.
“There’s still a lot of food left. Don’t worry and eat slowly.”
“Ahh…. Its Yamato-onii-sama. Once again, thank you very much for what you did.”
“Don’t worry about it. Just keep eating.”
After seeing Yamato, a girl from the Han clan stood up and went to dutifully greet him.
She was the late Han clan leader’s only daughter and had apparently become the leader figure among the orphans.
The way she called him, ‘Yamato-onii-sama’, was picked up from hearing the way the children and Liscia were calling Yamato. Although, it made Yamato feel embarrassed at such politeness.
“Seems like everyone is looking better today.”
“Yes! Yamato-onii-sama… Such a delicious meal, this is the first time everyone has had something like this. “
“That is ‘rice’ porridge. It is good for the digestion.”
“Rice porridge… it’s my first time eating it! ”
“Its good you like it.”
The state of the orphans while they were inside the windmill was terrible. Especially, since no meals were given to them, they had eyes like a dead fish and were sunk in despair.
Yesterday, after returning to the village, they were given a warm meal and took a bath.
It was at that point that they finally started to truly feel relieved. And after a good night of sleep, their physical and mental strength were somewhat restored.
Now this morning, the children were cheerfully eating with gleaming eyes.
“Like I said yesterday, if you want, you can live here in Urd Village. But in exchange for that, you’ll have to help with the work after you feel better.”
“Truly thank you very much… and of course, we will help in every way we can and serve with sincerity so to not soil the name of the Han clan, Yamato-onii-sama! ”
“No need to be so stiff. Being informal is fine.”
Apparently, the Han clan children had a very serious personality. ‘Serve with sincerity’ wasn’t something a child would normally say.
But those who would work seriously were very welcomed.
After all, there was still a long way to get the village back on track with the food production, and anyone who wouldn’t work had no right to complain about meals.
“By the way… sorry if it is too much to ask but… Yamato-onii-sama, I need a favor.”
“What is it?”
After putting down her spoon, the Han clan chief’s daughter spoke with a serious look on her face.
She had an important request. And obviously, Yamato was willing to listen to it.
“Actually, there’s something of a ‘memento’ of our clan… I would like to have Yamato-onii-sama take us retrieve them! ”
“A ‘memento’ huh? Yeah, I see no problem.”
And so was the request of the Han clan girl.
It was a ‘memento’ valuable as the same as their lives among the Han clan, and was left behind after having their families slaughtered.
A few days after the children’s physical condition was fully restored, they decided to leave once again Urd Village.