“We are going on a picnic~”
Mei and Alea were both in front of us, holding hands and skipping together.
The leaves that were beginning to grow in preparation for the summer rustled with the wind.
“Mei, Alea, it is fine for you two to skip, but please try to pay attention to what is in front of you or else you may trip.”
Claire-sama, who was wearing her outdoor clothes, warned the two of them.
“We will be fine.”
“It’s fine, it’s fine! …. Ah!”
Right as Mei said that, she tripped.
Alea, who was holding onto her hand, fell over as well.
Relaire, who was bouncing next to them, tried to get underneath to break their fall, but couldn’t make it in time.
“See, I told you so. Are you both alright?”
I ran up to them to check for any injuries.
As I mentioned before, these two had a curse running through their blood.
Although they can be nullified now thanks to Relaire, it was best if they didn’t sustain any injuries.
In general, I think it would be a shame if any scars were to be left behind on a girl’s skin though.
“Alea appears to be uninjured. You did a great job at breaking your fall. Mei only appears to be lightly scratched as well. You two did well for not crying either.”
I praised them as I healed them with my water magic.
As if they had already forgotten about their fall, the two of them went back to skipping and holding hands.
“Geez, those kids…”
“Fufu, you really are getting used to being a mother, aren’t you, Rei?”
Said Claire-sama, who was walking along slowly while holding onto the picnic basket.
“Not really. Those two have me at their mercy. More importantly, Claire-sama…”
“What is it?”
“In the end, I think I should be carrying the basket.”
Today, we were going on a picnic with our bentos.
We packed a picnic blanket, bentos, and a few water bottles, so it was a lot to carry.
Relaire was carrying the heaviest basket, while Claire-sama held onto everything else.
“No way. You got up early today to make four people’s worth of bentos. I cannot let you hold onto the basket.”
Claire-sama replied with a grin.
My wife is too precious, it’s almost troublesome.
“Rei-okaasama, what are we eating today?”
“I am also curious.”
The twins asked me after overhearing our conversation.
“I packed sandwiches today.”
“Sandwiches! Did you put Mei’s favorite ham in?”
“Did you put in the green peppers that I dislike?”
“Yeah, I did.”
Alea’s distaste for green peppers seems to have been inherited from Claire-sama.
That was one thing Alea didn’t have to pick up from her.
“Why did you add green peppers?”
“Because they’re nutritious.”
“But aren’t there many other foods that are also nutritious?”
“I mean, I suppose.”
“In that case, how come I have to eat green peppers?”
“It’s not like we will always have every ingredient available to us, right?”
“Even I would eat green peppers if that was my only option, but in this case, is there a good reason why I must eat it today?”
What should I do.
It feels like I’m about to lose an argument to a six year old.
“Alea, that is not the point. It is not good to be picky about your food.”
“Why is that?”
“All of the food we have is a result of blessings that we receive from the Spirit God. It is not good if you choose whether or not to eat it simply because you like or dislike it.”
“That does not sound good.”
“It is important to appreciate the food that we have. Even green peppers are living things, you know?”
“Green peppers are living things, just like me?”
Alea gave it a little more thought.
Just as I thought Claire-sama had closed the case on the argument,
“In that case, I will not eat green peppers because I feel sorry for them.”
“…. I didn’t see that one coming.”
It was easy to impose things like rules and simply just force them to listen, but we like to explain our reasoning to them to their best of our abilities.
However, children were surprisingly difficult to deal with.
They can also end up being unexpectedly thoughtful.
Even if you try to explain things to them from an adult’s point of view, children will understand it differently, and then hit you back with a perspective that would make even adults second guess themselves.
It’s been a lot of fun learning new things this way.
“Does that mean you will not eat meat then, Alea?”
“Why would I not? I want to eat meat though?”
“Meat comes from chickens, pigs, and cows. Everything that we consume comes from living things.”
“Chickens, pigs, cows and even green peppers were all precious lives that have been made into food for your sake. Because of that, you need to be grateful for them.”
Alea pondered over it once again.
Just as I thought we were successful,
“In that case, Claire-okaasama, how come you make such a disgusted face whenever you have to eat green peppers?”
Children were tough opponents.
While we were going on about this and that, we arrived at a hill that was not too far away from our house.
The area wasn’t all that surrounded by trees, and was covered with short green grass.
“Mei, Alea, be sure to watch your step.”
“You can really see a lot from here!”
The hill we were on overlooked the Bauer Royal Capital.
We could see the tall royal castle and the cathedral from here, as well as the people going about their days within the market district, and the residential areas too.
“Where’s our house?”
“I think I found it. It is over there, isn’t it?”
“Ah, you’re right! It’s tiny!”
The two of them were visibly excited over having spotted our home.
“Let us set up around here. Relaire, thank you for your hard work. Please leave the basket over here.”
At Claire-sama’s request, Relaire put the basket down.
I helped Claire-sama out with placing the picnic blanket.
“Mei, Alea, come here. It’s time to eat.”
“Let us eat~”
Although the two of them were in the middle of admiring the view, they came flying over the moment they heard it was time to eat.
They took their shoes off and took a seat on the blanket.
Both of them eyed the basket with anticipation.
“Rei-okaasama, are you gonna open it?”
“I cannot wait any longer.”
“Alright, alright. I’m opening it now, okay? Ta-da~”
I said with a bit of a grandiose attitude as I removed the cloth from the picnic basket.
“Wow, it looks great, doesn’t it, Alea?”
“You are right, Mei.”
The two of them happily nodded with each other in agreement. It seems that their expectations were met.
Today’s menu consisted of――
Egg sandwiches with onion and mayonnaise.
Ham sandwiches with lettuce and basil.
Grilled chicken sandwiches with green pepper and sweet and sour sauce.
A smoothie made of fruits and vegetables.
That was the lineup for today.
Because I brought fried chicken, I supplemented it by including plenty of vegetables in the sandwiches.
I even went out of the way to arrange the sandwiches by color so that it would look nicer.
“Hey hey, let’s hurry up and eat!”
“Let us get to eating!”
“Alright then, let’s put our palms together.”
After that was said, the twins reached for the food.
Mei went straight for a ham sandwich, while Alea took a piece of fried chicken.
“This is delicious.”
“I’m glad to hear that.”
Seeing the twins with their extremely delighted smiles made me think that getting up extra early was well worth it.
Claire-sama went ahead and took one of the chicken and green pepper sandwiches.
“Oh my, did I hear you mention that this sandwich has green peppers in it?”
“Yeah, it does.”
“I can barely taste the bitterness of the peppers in this.”
“It’s because I minced them into small pieces and then seasoned it with sweet and sour sauce.”
“You put a lot of effort into it, didn’t you? Thank you very much. Alea, you should give this a try.”
Alea, who has only been eating fried chicken so far, eyed the sandwich Claire-sama was holding.
“Are there green peppers in it…?”
Alea made a repulsed face.
“I think this is fine. It is delicious.”
Alea reluctantly took a bite out of the sandwich.
She chewed it slowly and carefully…. And eventually, her face lit up.
“Ah, it is delicious~”
That one word made me feel triumphant.
“You can hardly taste the green peppers. The sauce is particularly delicious.”
“Fufu, be sure to eat lots, okay?”
“Mei wants some too!”
Since the two of them walked so much, they must’ve been hungry. As a result, the sandwiches were disappearing in a flash.
Just a moment later, the entire basket was empty.
“That was delicious!”
“It was delicious.”
“Really, you have outdone yourself again, Rei.”
“It was nothing.”
Just the sight of everything that I made being eaten and enjoyed thoroughly was enough to make me happy.
For the sake of exchanging information, sometimes I’d get roped into some idle gossip with the other wives within our neighborhood. It seems that there were a lot of husbands out there who couldn’t be bothered to give their impressions of their wives’ homemade croquettes.
Even though croquettes were such a pain to make.
“Let us relax for a little bit and then head home.”
“Is it okay if we go and play?”
“I want to pick some flowers.”
“Sure. However, do not wander too far off. Take Relaire with you wherever you go, okay?”
The twins took Relaire and went over to an area where there were more flowers.
“It’s been a while since we’ve been able to go out like this as a family.”
The gentle breeze brushed over my cheeks as I spoke to myself.
“That’s true. Usually, we take turns being out of the house, and we spend a lot of our days off catching up on shopping and finishing the chores.”
“And it’s a bit tougher since we also need to take care of the kids.”
“I am glad that we were able to come out today. Thank you, Rei.”
Claire-sama gave me a gentle kiss.
To be honest, I was the one who proposed the idea of going on a picnic today.
“I’ve been feeling really worried ever since the aptitude assessment, so being here feels like a much needed change of pace.”
“You are right. I am sure Mei and Alea are also happy.”
Nothing was certain yet, but the results from the aptitude assessment will most likely be tumultuous.
So in order to prepare ourselves for it, I thought it was necessary to relax ourselves a bit.
If anything, this was more for us adults than for the kids.
“I hope it’s nothing terrible…”
“Even if you worry, there is nothing we can do about it. We have to wait for the results, so let us just enjoy ourselves to the fullest for today.”
“…… Yeah, you’re right.”
Claire-sama shook her head and gave me a smile. She tried to change the mood.
“We were able to overcome the events of the revolution, after all. As long as the two of us are together, I am certain we will be able to overcome anything.”
“No, Claire-sama. You are mistaken.”
Upon hearing my objection, Claire-sama made a perplexed face.
I laughed teasingly.
“There are four of us now.”
“……. Fufu, that’s right.”
Claire-sama gave me a face that looked like it had “you got me” written all over it. She was so adorable that I couldn’t help but give her a kiss.
I gave Claire-sama a hug as we basked in the peacefulness of a calm spring.