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48 48 Rest Stop

 "No, really it is nothing. I would do this for anyone that needed help. You do not need to thank me. I only did as my master agreed to but I am not a slave. If I want to I am free to work elsewhere but why change to another palace when I can serve someone that I enjoy spending time with." Kosuke smiled at the lady.

"Well, then I must also thank your master before we take off." The young lady bowed.

Gabriel walked to the carriage and opened the door placing the two folded bags down then went over to Kosuke. "All done now, Kosuke?"

"Master, I am all done. I was just telling this young lady that the repairs are all done that we should be leaving." Kosuke bowed to Gabriel.

"I am seriously going to take some getting used to. If your carriage repairs are all done we need to be off. I am sorry that I can not stay and share tea with you but I really must leave. My wife is waiting for me at home." Gabriel smiled and went to leave.

"I hope that your wife is happy with you. With it being so dark I can still tell that you are very handsome. Thank you for allowing your attendant to come and help us out. I thought that we would be stuck out here all night." She bowed and went back to her carriage.

Kosuke climbed up top and started the carriage up and left the area. They continued on and stopped in the nearby village. "Sir, I will let the horses rest."

"Alright, let them rest. I believe that now is a good time to have dinner. I will go to the shop in town and see if I can buy some food." He pulled out a few small coins and went into the town.

"I will come with you. It would be good to stretch out." Edward stepped out and followed. "I see that you found some tea leaves. That will be good when you need to make more tea."

"I am always making more tea and since that is not all that far away I will be able to go back to that spot to harvest more. I am glad that I will have a spot that I can go and harvest again. Amelia needs all the tea that I can make her." Gabriel smiled and looked out in the town. "Is there anything that you want to eat?"

The two were walking and came to a shop that sold some food. The two went inside. "I am not picky." Edward looked at the people inside and sighed.

"Welcome to my shop travellers. What can I get for you?" The shop owner rubbed his hands together.

"We need three dinners and some onigiri are well please." Gabriel looked around and saw someone eating dango*. "And can we order three orders of dango?"

"Since you are a traveller you must pay up before I make your food." The man holds out his hand. "Six hundred yen." The man sits there waiting for the coins.

"Sure, no problem." Gabriel opened his hand and counted out the six hundred yen and placed it into the guy's hand.

The owner looks at his hand and then at the boy and man in front of him. "You know it is not wise to pay so much just for food if people hear you paying up they will think that you robbed someone or that you are wealthy. I will throw in some extra food because I feel bad but make sure to bargain in other towns."

"I will heed your words." Gabriel bows to the guy and then sits down. He looked at Edward and smiled.

"I think that the shop owner is correct but at least you are wise to learn. I will teach you more on our journey." Edward sat down and looked at Gabriel.

"If that is what you think, then I will listen to your suggestions or maybe in the next town you will teach me the proper way to do this," Gabriel bowed his head.

Edward smiled and patted Gabriel on the shoulder, "You will learn well. I honestly thought the price was a bit too high and that guy would do it to test you." He looked at the owner who was wrapping onigiri in leaves.

"Hey, you said it not me." The guy turned and blushed a little, "What are you two doing out this way anyway?"

"Boss, are you embarrassed?" One of the patrons asked jokingly.

"Now you listen here Subaru. I will skin ya alive if you say one more thing. Aye, and you can forget about dinner tonight." The boss of the group says.

Subaru looks horrified, "please, Boss, anything but my food." He gets down on his knees begging for forgiveness.

Gabriel holds in his chuckles as he sees that Boss was smirking. 'What a kind guy, I am glad that we ran into these guys first. I already feel like something is missing from my life. I will not be able to bring her with me.'

"Isn't that right boy?" The Boss asked Gabriel a question.

"I am sorry but I missed the question. I had to leave my beloved at home and I am worried about her." Gabriel admits this and scratches the back of his head in embarrassment.

"Oh ho, a beautiful lady? Why would you go on a journey without her? I had asked, should I forgive him?" The Boss restates the question.

"I think since he has repented, you could forgive him but give him a task?" Gabriel thinks for a moment. "She is a gentle, weak, loveable lady. I would not be here if she wasn't sick. I am actually hunting for a specific herb which is not all that common in this area."

The Boss stopped what he was doing and looked at the boy. 'He is travelling all this way to get a herb for his sick partner. That is actually tragic.' He sighs, "I have a task for you, Subaru."

Dango* are chewy Japanese rice dumplings that are ofen served on a stick.