Our family lives in a village where white cold ice falls from the sky.
My work every day is to provide a comfortable environment for the ‘great king’.
My father takes care of the prey the king caught and does the maintenance on the tools, and my mother cooks. I took care of the animals and chopped firewood. We split the household chores between mother and me.
On my holidays, I went out hunting. Father taught me how to use the bow.
Today, I caught a rabbit. It tastes good when it’s skewered and cooked.
Since I had forgot to bring my leather bag, so I carried it by the neck.
I carefully treaded on the frozen path.
The passersby pretended to have not seen me. This was the usual, so I didn’t mind it a single bit.
According to mother, it seems that the people in this village dislike foreigners. My parents’ old homeland was also a closed society, unwelcoming of foreigners. It was probably the same thing.
However, the ‘great king’ and his queen are different. They greet us with a soft smile every day.
Still, there were exceptions in the village.
“Oi, giant woman, only one today!?”
This man, whom I did not even know the name of, talked to me every day.
White hair that glistens like snow, clear blue eyes and a clean white face. From far away, I can’t distinguish him from the other villagers.
However, his scornful expression, his malevolent tone, and his eyes that pointed up as if to show his mean nature told me that it was him.
He was a head shorter than me, so I ended up gazing down at me. He turned red and yelled at me.
“You’re just needless tall because you’re eating bears!! Take a good look, I’ll become much taller than you in the future!!”
Yet again, with a haughty attitude, he shouted something at me and ran off.
I returned home and prepared dinner.
Since freshly hunted meat is tough and hard to eat, I made soup and a skewer dish from the bear meat father hunted.
Bear meat has a strong smell. Therefore, we have to use powdered herbs to get rid of the smell.
After the sun set, my parents returned. The three of us ate together, had baths and then slept.
I led a similar life also on days I had work.
Then, change visited when I met one girl.
A short girl, from my perspective, talked to me. However, she was pretty tall for a girl from the village. She did not have other special traits, and had the usual white hair and blue eyes.
“You’re the person working at the lord’s place, right?”
“Could it be, that you still don’t know the language!?”
The girl said something to me, but I couldn’t understand anything.
I was called over to a small house.
She pulled up a chair and gestured for me to sit.
She pointed to herself and said Aina. ‘Aina’ might be her name.
Likewise, I pointed to myself and said, “Miruporon.”
“Hmm, so you’re called Miruporon.”
“Hey, Miruporon. You’re trying to learn the words here, right?”
From that day, my exchange with ‘Aina’ began.
Aina appeared stealthily and dragged me to her house.
Surprisingly, she was teaching me the language of this village.
“Hey, what are you making for dinner?”
“Hah? Be more specific!”
I learned many words after some time, but I still couldn’t converse well. When Aina chatters away, it becomes impossible to pick up the words.
I didn’t tell the king and the queen that I was learning the language. I wanted to surprise them.
“Miruporon, thank you. You’re a great help.”
Now that I could understand his words, I understood that the ‘great king’ is a warm and kind person just as his appearance suggested.
“Miruporon, it’s late, so you can go back.”
I also understood the kind considerations of the queen
Since I could now understand the language, the number of times I felt touched by the words ‘thank you’ continued to increase.
I want to say ‘thank you’ quickly. However, I’m ashamed of my poor speech so far.
I started visiting the village more to meet Aina.
“Oi, giant woman, what are you happily skipping about for!”
Understanding the language was not all pleasurable.
I now also understood the harsh words that man threw at me.
“Looking forward getting picked up by a man or something? Well, it is the tourist season now.”
“Unfortunately, no one wants such a large woman like you!”
I knew very well that I am inferior in comparison to other women. The women in this village are all small and lovely. They are always smiling, and seeing them heals the hearts. Men are having such women as wives.
I waited for that man to go away while holding on to the edge of my skirt. The vivid blue skirt I was wearing is made by Aina. It probably didn’t fit well on me who did not have white skin. I felt sad and ugly, a level further.
“Oi, are you listening!?”
I flinched from having my shoulders grabbed.
Then, I had noticed.
That my eyes were locked with that man’s.
Because I suddenly let out a loud voice, the man’s eye’s went wide.
Come to think of it, it might be the first time speaking in front of him.
“What was that, you surprised me since you suddenly spoke!”
“You, height, will grow.”
The man took a few steps back.
It had been a few years since I met him. His first reaction was so refreshing.
I also had some frustration pent up from getting shouted at.
“Why, come, me, speak?”
“Reason, tell me.”
“Such a thing, that doesn’t matter!”
“Loud, voice, no.”
“It’s you who has a loud voice!”
“Not, you. Miruporon.”
Then I remembered that I didn’t know the man’s name yet.
“Name, tell me.”
“Who are you to look from above.”
“Look, From, Above, name?”
My counterattack began from that day.
When I found that man, I sneaked up to him.
“What do you mean ‘find’!! It’s ‘found’.”
He angrily corrected my mistakes.
Because of such events, my language skills improved rapidly.
Today, I chopped firewood again.
I liked chopping wood.
The feeling of cleanly splitting wood with an axe gave me an indescribable pleasure.
Someone came up behind me while I was chopping firewood.
“Morning, Miruporon. You’re early again today.”
When I turned around, there was the kind king.
“Good morning,” the morning greeting. Our family lived without knowing that for a long time.
“Here, a reward.”
A warm bread was placed into my hand.
“I baked some because I had some free time. It’s got cheese in it. If you don’t mind, please~.”
His wide blue eyes opened wide.
“Eh, Miruporon, just now, did you say thank you!?”
It seemed that my first “thank you” was delivered properly.
Aina threw the bow on the snow.
“This is impossible!”
“Everyone, starts, like this.”
For the past few days, I helped out with Aina’s archery training.
She probably wants to surprise her family by hunting a small animal by herself.
She first taught me the language because she wanted to learn archery.
“Don’t worry, until, it’s good, I’ll come.”
“Of course you have to! We’re friends, right?”
‘Friend’. Aina was my first friend.
I found out some time later that I was also her first ‘friend’.
On another note, our relationship with the ‘great king’ changed slightly.
“Please accept this offering, a bear.”
“My lord, father says, this bear, is for you.”
“I see. Thank you, Teoporon.”
I could translate for them. Recently, father and mother also started putting in effort to learn the language.
The man who pestered me for many years, Luca, was not as he usually was.
“Luca, found you!”
My counterattack is still continuing.
“D-Don’t surprise me like that!”
According to Aina, he was pestering me because he wanted to get my attention.
Once I knew that, his abusive language felt cute, and I did not mind it at all.
Thanks to Aina and Luca, my life was changing.
Every day is fun now.