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- Chapter 22: Capricious Cachalot -


  The three baleen whales who escaped by the skin of their teeth from being chewed by the triangular fangs monster swam to the side of the rescuer who were away from them.
  Cherokee was attracted by the courageous fight of the benefactor, and gazed at him with awesome.
  On the other fin, Douglas whispered in a small voice to Claire and Cherokee, "Be careful, it is not yet sure that he is a friend".
  Certainly, the cachalot whale's eyes looking at them were not violent, but were not necessarily favorable. On behalf of Cherokee who has admired the opponent without words, and Douglas who has not solved the alarm, Claire proceeded forward timidly and spoke him with "Interlanguage for Blowers".
"Errr... Thank you for helping us out of danger."
"I didn't intend to help you particularly. I just don't like that such a fellow prowling about with big face. Nevertheless, there is no one who can match us cachalot whales by the size of the face."
  The unidentified cachalot whale popped his narrow chin in proportion to the big head up towards the opponent's monster sank. After seeing the disappeared depth of the huge great white shark, Claire turned her eyes back to the cachalot whale.
  Blood was blurred in the scar on his sticky forehead that he received in the previous battle. There was an atmosphere in this cachalot male that could not bring off other whales, but Claire gently stretched the pectoral fin to touch the wound daringly.
"Oops, I'm not willing to be treated like a child."
  As she thought, the cachalot whale avoided Claire's tin with stirring, and glared at her with small eyes.
"But you are injured."
"That's what I call an extra nuisance. This degree can not be said an injury."
"That's not true. It can be said an injury enough!"
  Claire insisted becoming serious surprisingly for herself. The tension that came out in front of the big tooth whale who brought down the monster shark easily may have caused her to say such a bullish sentence. However, the cachalot male told her with an amazed look rather than angry.
"Well, quite a stubborn female. Leader females of my race are a bit bigger than you, but they will not let male follow what to say. I heard that baleen whale's society is petticoat government, but I did not think so much."
  Douglas who had quite a fright thinking when Claire was knocked down, felt relieved knowing that this cachalot whale is not just rough. He opened his mouth this time to divert the subject.
"Aren't you a master male?"
"Unfortunately, I hate swarming. I never had a harem. But I had kicked a master many times."
"Do you pick a quarrel with somebody without taking over harem? With no reason?"
  Claire who do not agreed yet, became even more bold and asked him.
"There is a proper reason. In a word, if I don't like that guy, I would give him a punch."
"That's not the reason... Oh no, it's nothing."
  Cherokee put a word there, but he soon made the words turbid as the cachalot whale glared at him.
By the way, I have swam in the ocean for thirty-five years, but I've never met a potty pod like this, such as blue graybeard, humpback youngster and minke bitch. Who is the boss of this herd?"
  The cachalot whale scowled again at the three whales with his eyes attached to the middle of his big head occupying nearly one-third of the body length. Douglas and Cherokee watched Claire nervously. Only Claire accepted the gaze of the cachalot whale from the front.
"Wow, are you a female master? Would you like to have a battle with me?"
illustration   The rugged cachalot male got close to the female baleen whale whose size is not half of him, and looked into her eyes with upturned eyes.
"I don't intend to contend with other whale without reason! Besides, there is no boss among us. These two whales are my friends who keep me company."
  Since not to be afraid, Claire spread her pectoral fins with all her might and raised her voice. By doing so, it looked like a boss instead.
"It is a good reason whether you like someone or not. It may be said the only reason. Well, I don't want to fight without 'reason', and I don't fight known to win from the beginning yet."
  The cachalot whale perceived that Claire had hardly hid her inner fear and kept bracing, so he grinned with the edge of the deep mouth distorted. Claire thought it would be not surely, but relaxed knowing that his words of going to a bout were a joke.
  Cherokee, who had been listening to the exchange of Claire and the cachalot whale aside, began to speak between their talking as though a dam inside him had broken.
"I thought that I wanted to get closer to the cachalot whale from before, but I'm honored to be able to bring my face like this soon. Well, even then, you have a wonderful body; Sharp eyes, tightened lower jaw, skin like armor not dangerous on shark teeth, strong and beautiful tail, and moreover, wonderful forehead which broke through that bad shark with a blow. I'm really charmed. The brilliant fight of the time ago still burned to the back of my eyelids. Actually I am trying to aim at the top of "Vocalist" of the humpback whale race, if you only allow your permission, I would like to leave it in songs in honor of your vigilance. Or, in this case, I'll sing your battle to a long epic poem..."
  Cherokee kept moving his mouth while listing flattery like the first time with Claire and Douglas.
  Oh, it started again. That way does not necessarily to accept by anyone; Claire thought.
  Sure enough, the cachalot whale glared at the humpback whale who only say good things, while gathering wrinkles on the brow.
"It's a fussy shrimp. I dislike a guy who have just numerous mouths."
  Cherokee instantly silenced. In addition to being told what he mind everyday, he did not mean to give a bad impression to someone who declare that I hit the guy I do not like. It may have been a good medicine for him in the sense that he taught me that Chatting without choosing the opponent is prohibited thing.
"Well then, I will be disrespected around here."
  Saying so, the lone wolf cachalot whale toppled the triangular caudal fin, as if it was no longer necessary to stay longer, tried to swim leaving three whales.
"Please wait, Cachalot!"
  The cachalot male came stationary and looked back to Claire who stopped him.
"Errr... It's a sudden and frightful request, but can you become a guardian of us? Of course, if that's your feeling."
  That word came out quickly with Claire's mouth, but it seemed to be an ideal solution when she thought carefully. It was obviously a reckless attempt to confront killer whales with only three baleen whales who do not have the power to fight, and she felt undependable deeply. But a reliable great whale who defeated the monster great white shark sharply without showing a piece of fear appeared here. Although Claire did not think until robbing Joey by force, if he would accept a bouncer, he would surely become a powerful bid when confronted with the rogue killer whales.
"As a bouncer?"
  The cachalot whale gazed at Claire with his eye rising.
"What about reward?"
  Claire got stuck in the words to return, listening to the lines that she did not expect. Cachalot whale's favorite food was squid, but it is better to take to the deep sea by himself rather than let baleen whales who eat almost tiny krill do the squid hunting. Also, from what he said earlier, he will not be delighted if she submit to bring him a harem.
  After all it was a selfish idea; Claire thought.
"There are rewards!!"
  It was Douglas surprisingly that he shouted.
"You can understand that the monster fish just before is not an ordinary great white shark. That is not a living creature that genuine nature produced obviously. And then, we have not been attacked by the monster shark accidentally. That monster artificially tried to assassinate Claire, rather than us, receiving someone's instruction. Every whale who lives in modern day is alive while being torn by a rapid stream of time fiercer than this equatorial current. Now we are at the turning point of serious history. Claire leads us into the vortex of the destiny! As I can imagine, you are not a kind of male who wishes to send a peaceful life as an ordinary cachalot whale. I Douglas, who has pouring the whole spirit into the work to record history more than sixty years, guarantee surely to meet a major event involving all whales if you act together with us. How is it?"
"Oh yeah. Besides, I Cherokee, who is young 'Holy Singer' candidate, also guaranteed to be able to taste the thrill and suspense enough to say hatefully."
  Following Douglas Cherokee also supported Claire's invitation. Both two whales were dumbfounded when the accompanying request to this cachalot whale came out of Claire's mouth, but they immediately agreed that she needed this brave tooth whale's help to rescue Joey.
"If you get too excited your blood pressure will rise, Old male."
  The cachalot whale looked interestingly the three whales who were seriously appealing to him.
"Sorry, but I'm not interested in history. Besides, I'm not paralyzed with fear to one or two sharks like the humpback kid there."
"I'm eleven years old still."
  Cherokee muttered so in disagreement, but he was downhearted as said by the cachalot whale; "Those who is taken care by fellows and escapes only himself is still an kid".
"But I approve you, vigorous minke sister."
  Saying so to the cachalot whale, Claire blushed at noticing that she had requested abruptness irrespective of the opponent's position.
"I can take a bouncer. I don't mean to ask for reward. But don't ask me too much. I don't do what I have no inclination to do. Anyhow, I'm familiar with whims among my fellows and I don't know even myself when I will change my mind. So, I can not guarantee until the future. Besides, even if you are my employer I don't want to obey the order. I don't like to be directed one by one by everyone else. I decide how to move by myself. Is this okay?"
  Claire nodded brightening her countenance.
"My name is Claire. I'm a minke whale from the Ross Sea 'Large District'. These two whales are now called by themselves, but I will introduce them again. This is Douglas, a blue whale 'History compiler' traveling on a provincial tour. And this is Cherokee, a humpback whale candidate of 'Holy Singer' from the Great Barrier Reef 'Large District'."
  Although she hesitated a little to introduce Cherokee's occupation, she decided to respect his intention in outline.
"What's your name?"
"Jansen."
  The tone of the cachalot whale was as unfriending as ever, but there was no more hostility against the three whales.
"So, we welcome a mighty guy to companies of travel. Could you please allow me to study with you, Master?"
  Jansen looked at Cherokee who do not reflect at all, but murmured only as "Do it selfishly".
  Hilarious snob humpback whale Cherokee, intelligent tenderÔÇÉhearted blue whale Douglas, and blunt but reliable cachalot whale Jansen; Surrounded by three companions, Claire felt the courage to come ever more than ever.
  I will surely rescue you, so please wait until then, Joey...
  Right now, the unexplored ocean was lying extensively beyond the equator in front of Claire's eyes.


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