Bang! Honda, a burly man, smashed a rock three times as big as him instantly. Hideyoshi, hiding in a corner, was stunned as he witnessed Honda’s unusual strength.
“What a monster.” Hideyoshi gave up ambushing him. As he ran away to a forest, he accidentally entered the territory of mad men. They immediately charged at him; Hideyoshi dodged their attacks clumsily and escaped to the other side.
“Darn it! Bad luck today.” Hideyoshi ran to the middle of the forest. The three mad men were approaching. He looked up at a tree top. Although it would make his clothes dirty, he had no choice but to climb up. However, the mad men were already underneath the tree in the middle of his climb. Hideyoshi held his breath nervously. As he almost suffocated to death, the mad men left finally.
“Phew…” Releasing from his tension, Hideyoshi felt exhausted and fell down from the tree. He patted his clothes, but still could not remove the dirt on it.
“There is a river nearby. Maybe I should take a rest there.” Hideyoshi arrived at the river and washed his clothes. While he was fanning himself with a paper fan, he saw a bonfire on the opposite of the river.
“Let me take a look.” Hideyoshi walked close to the bonfire and peeped around hiding in a grove. There was a robust young man sleeping like a log and snoring beside the bonfire.
“It’s a good chance.” Hideyoshi took out his golden paper fan and sneaked up on the young man.
“Just a little closer.” Close to his success, Hideyoshi showed a victorious smile. While approaching, he had kicked something hard. Suddenly, his right foot was roped and pulled up, hanging in the tree. Nohime jumped off the tree and stared at Hideyoshi. “Please, have mercy. I’m so hungry.” He immediately explained as he felt her hostility. “If you’re really that hungry, you would have taken the fruit, instead of sneaking behind him.” Nohime pointed at the fruit beside Nobunaga.
“Um...I’m afraid he would hurt me, so I’m planning to subdue him first. I beg you for mercy.” Nohime was not shaken and took out her dagger. On the verge of death, Hideyoshi broke into a sweat and said, “Hold on! I’m the son of a noble. If you let me leave, I’ll give you gold in exchange!” “I’m not interested.” “If it’s not enough, I can give you farms, or even an official position in the court——” “Yawn...what are you quarrelling about?” Nobunaga yawned and stretched as he woke up.
“He sneaked up on you, but fell into our trap.”
“Please, show mercy. I don’t want to hurt you, but I have no choice.”
Nobunaga kept staring at Hideyoshi. “Poor man. Just spare his life. It seems like a misunderstanding, and I guess he won’t do this again, right?” he laughed. Hideyoshi nodded promptly, so Nohime had no choice but to cut off the rope. As Hideyoshi was set free, he smiled at Nobunaga and asked, “Can I join you if you don’t mind?” “Okay…” “No way.” Nohime interrupted.
“Many hands make light work, right? We have nothing to lose,” Nobunaga smiled at Nohime. “Suit yourself,” she sighed.