It looked like I wasn’t going to be able to get more information out of them, so I gave up and went back outside to Satoru. As I was leaving, Kiroumaru was giving out orders on how to move the queen’s corpse. I wanted to know why they needed the corpse, but was afraid of what the answer would be. Suddenly I was so tired that I was about to keel over. I didn’t care about the queerats anymore. They could go kill each other for all I cared.
Before long, we were shown to the Giant Hornet camp. Even as two queerats carried Satoru around, he didn’t wake up.
I threw myself onto a bed of soft hay and fell asleep instantly.
Since yesterday, we had been thrown into one dangerous situation after another. But we were safe now. We were going home. Kiroumaru would guard us until we got to where the canoes were hidden, and then we would row down the river ourselves. I looked at Satoru sleeping soundly next to me. I wasn’t worried anymore. Even if he didn’t wake up, I would bring him home.
Thinking of Shun, Maria, and Mamoru gave me a leaden feeling in my chest. I wanted to believe that they were okay, but in light of all the disasters the two of us had gone through, it was hard to be optimistic. If their canoes were still there, I’d have to ask Kiroumaru to go search for them.
But that could wait until I woke up. The Ground Spider threat had been dealt with. If the three of them were still okay, they probably wouldn’t run into any more danger.
With that thought, I felt myself finally relax.
I can’t stay awake any longer. Let me sleep for a moment.
Slowly, I slipped into darkness.
Right before I fell asleep, Satoru’s voice echoed in my head.
“Look, ever since last night, we’ve walking the line between life and death, right?”
“But I’d wager that this is actually the most dangerous situation we’ve been in so far.”
What exactly was the danger? Wasn’t Satoru just being overanxious?
Now I was worried, but I couldn’t fight the drowsiness anymore.
I fell into a deep sleep.