LDM 550 – Extra: The New Year

The Christmas present from Wataru was an advanced wind magic scroll called “Tornado.” It was once in Nerune’s hands, but not anymore since she gave it to Soto.

But it was cold of her to give her Christmas gift right away and without hesitation, but at least with this, we could say that she was using (studying) the scroll to her heart’s content using Soto’s duplicate.

(By the way, the same goes for the Christmas present we gave her, a scroll of intermediate space-time magic called the “Scroll of Recovery,” and her reaction is kind of reassuring since it means that Wataru’s favorability is not that low.)

It had been about a week since Christmas… and Wataru was still in Gollen village, which was unusual.

“Oi Wataru, you’ve been here for a long time this time.”

“Fufufu, actually, I’ve been given a winter vacation by Haku-sama! We are planning to spend New Year’s in Gollen Village.”

Wataru stated proudly.

Apparently, the defeat of the 10th Core, with which there had been a major incident, gave Haku’s side much more leeway to take a long vacation.

It seems that the number of reports from the Holy Kingdom has decreased sharply. Presumably, the incident was mostly orchestrated by the 10th Core, who was the Pope.

In addition, there is currently an election underway to determine the next Pope. According to Narikin’s investigation,

It seems that there is no need for the Empire to put so much attention on the Kingdom anymore.

“Let’s make mochi. But…, if we don’t use mochigome (glutenous rice), the dumplings will not turn out well.”

“Mochi, huh…”

I want to eat it after a long time, too, so I’ll make a special drop of glutinous rice for you.

Personally, I want to eat it with anko (red bean paste).

“Last year, the shimenawa (sacred Shinto rope) and kadomatsu (New Year’s decoration) popped up as traps, so let’s collect them and decorate the town with them! It will definitely make it feel more like New Year’s!”

“Forcing culture on others is not a good thing… but if it comes from the hero, people generally accept it… oh well, as long as Wataru takes the initiative, I think it’s okay for you to do what you want.”

The village of Gollen is known for its many adventurers, who are particularly open-minded towards hero-derived cultures. Even Christmas was eventually accepted as a normal holiday here.

“I’ve heard a little bit about it from my parents, but I’m not very familiar with it.”

“I see. Then let me first teach you about traditional New Year’s Eve customs!”

“Can you do that with Nerune and the others? I’m going to sleep.”

And with that, I delegated the work to Wataru and Nellene and went to sleep.


“Happy New Year, master! I heard that there’s a custom of giving otoshidama (new year’s money), is that right?”

“Happy New Year! Give me my otoshidama, please, Papa!”

“Good morning to you both. Did you ask Wataru about that?”

That darn Wataru, he went and did something unnecessary again.

Well, fortunately, we’re not short on money, so we can just think of this as an event allowance.

Let’s see, for someone like Niku, would one silver coin be appropriate for a new year’s gift?

“I want one of those balls that you make by rolling up your socks!”

“Oi, Soto. What’s with that otoshidama? Did Wataru also teach you about that?”

“No, I came up with it myself!”

Of course, she did; I should have expected that.

I wonder how I can teach my daughter to restrain herself.

“Just ask for allowance like normal. Here, I’ll give you one silver coin.”

“Tsk… but I’ll accept it gratefully!”

When I handed Soto the silver coin, she muttered something about buying socks, but well, how she uses her otoshidama is up to her. I won’t interfere.

“I would like some meatballs.”

“I wonder how many meatballs you could get for a silver coin…”

“In that case, I’ll take silver coin.”

Okay, okay, alright, happy new year. Here’s a silver coin for Niku as well.

“Hmm, well then, if it’s New Year’s, I guess I’ll go to sleep. It’s the first sleep of a New Year’s.”

“By the way, papa, Kinue made osechi dishes.”

“Hoo, really?”

Osechi dishes are made by packing a box with preserved food that can last for a few days during the New Year’s period when people often relax and eat at home.

And eating only osechi dishes and sleeping for the first three days of the New Year’s holiday seems to align with the philosophy of the Beddhist religion.

Perhaps even Kinue-san, who is addicted to work, has succumbed to the idea of taking it easy during the New Year’s period.

“I heard there’s ozoni too, dad.”

“That means Wataru managed to get some mochi rice safely. Good, everything is going according to plan. I’ll go take a look then.”

“… It’s a bit shocking that you prioritize food over sleeping, master.”

“Hey, even I get hungry, you know.”


“Hey, Kinue. “I heard you made osechi.”

“Master, happy new year. And that’s right, please have some as well.”

“Thanks… but did you make the same thing multiple times?”

“Yes! I will spend the first three days of the new year making osechi!”

After reproducing the osechi ingredients that Wataru had heard about, it became a big hit when sold as a hero’s lunch box.

…It doesn’t seem like they had the idea to take a break during New Year’s, as for me, this is the most important time of the year.

“You’re not supposed to make osechi for the first three days of the new year, you know?”

“Some of the ingredients that Wataru suggested are things that cannot last too long. They include seafood like shrimp that we got from Pavela.”

It’s no wonder, though; that’s because the ingredients are based on modern Japanese transportation and refrigeration technology. Wataru is quite a modern kid.

But thanks to that, Kinue is lively and working on New Year’s Day.

“Oh, by the way, we also have osechi dishes like ozoni, so please enjoy them.”

“I wanted to try that.”

Well, since we are in the service industry, especially since we are in hotels and inns, it seems normal to work even on New Year’s Day.

That’s our peak season, okay, I decided, I will not tell them to take a break.

“Rei is also keeping the church open for Hatsumode.” {first temple visit of the year.}

“I see. Iguess it can’t be helped for the first shrine visit of the year.”

Shrines and such are also busy during New Year’s. It can’t be helped. There are a lot of hard workers during the new year, huh?

“By the way, what about Nerune?”

“She helped Wataru develop osechi, so she’s taking a break now. She was enthusiastic about adding a mystical element to all the ingredients.

“Ah, I see. It’s like praying for health and longevity in the osechi.”

For example, imagine praying to live long enough to have your back bent like a shrimp.

“Is there any chestnut paste in it? I like that.”

“There’s melon bread in it.”

But why?

“The pray was so that you will live a long life with creases appeared in your face like the netting of the melon bread.”

“That seems like a stretch.”

“True, even with long life, Rokuko -sama won’t have any wrinkles like that.”

I bet she added it because it’s Rococo’s favorite food, so she can eat melon bread anytime.

“Other ingredients include shrimp, clams, and kelp. Hmm. How did they get all this?”

“They were researching Ishidaka [Food God] recipes, so the ingredients were easy to buy.” It could be said that it’s thanks to the Food God. “{more on tl notes}

Hero Ishidaka, that’s indeed formidable. By the way, it seems Wataru is the one who went shopping. It doubles as a date with Nerune.

“I hope he properly paid for the ingredients, though.”

“By the way, was this squid cut in the shape of a sock?” What kind of reasoning did you come up with for that?

“Um, well, when Soto-sama tried to put in a real sock, we begged her not to because we cannot eat it, and we came up with this compromise… it’s something like may we live as long as a sock?”

“I see, but wouldn’t it be better to say, [May you have a body that can always walk well]?”

“I understand; we’ll do that.”

So they changed the meaning after making it. Well, it’s fine.

“Next year, let’s try putting kuri-kinton in the osechi as Master suggested earlier.”

“That’s a good idea. It’s a lucky charm for financial luck, and it has a Beddhist vibe.”

“I’ve decided that it must be included in the menu even more. Master, if you could buy the kuri-kinton from the DP catalog, may I have it for studying?”

“That’s a good idea; I want to try it too.”

Chestnut sweet potatoes are delicious; please do your best.

By the way, the ozoni was just a regular ozoni. It was made by putting mochi in a base with randomly cut leftover vegetables, and it was delicious as usual.

TL notes:

Ishidaka: food god.

Kuri-kinton is a traditional Japanese sweet made from mashed sweet potato and chestnuts that is often eaten during New Year’s celebrations. That’s also a good luck charm for wealth, as “kinton” means “golden quilt” in Japanese.


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