Chapter 3 Part 2
After getting out of the bath, Elria finally regained full consciousness.
“…Reid, are you feeling tired?”
“Well, no… don’t worry about it.”
As they were on their way to the classroom, Elria peered at Reid with a worried expression.
After all, it had been tough even after getting out of the bath.
Elria had fully awakened only after being instructed to wipe off the water from her body, dry her hair with a warm-air magic tool, and put on her underwear and school uniform.
During that time, she coaxed Reid to wipe her body dry, held the warm-air magic tool backward saying that the wind wasn’t blowing, and complained that her skirt’s zipper wouldn’t stay up, so he had to do it all for her… It was quite a lot of work.
Since all of this was done while blindfolded, it was also exhausting.
“Did I really… act like a child?”
“Yeah… you were in a pretty weird state.”
“I-It only happens when I’m really tired or nervous…! It’s not something that usually happens!”
After hearing Reid’s impression, Elria desperately tried to justify herself.
Incidentally, Elria had no memory of what had happened during that time. She probably felt like she was just half asleep. But if Reid were to tell her about what happened in detail, she might faint, so he decided to keep quiet about it.
With that decision in mind, Reid entered the classroom with Elria.
When they approached Wiesel and Millis, who were sitting in the same seats as yesterday, they raised their hands lightly in greeting.
“Good morning, you two!”
“You’re pretty late. It’s almost time for class to start.”
“Well, there were a lot of things going on…”
“Y-Yeah… a lot of things happened.”
As they sat down and said that, Millis smirked.
“Oh my, what were the engaged couple doing last night?”
“What do you mean… we just went to bed normally.”
“Is that so? Then, let’s have Elria-sama answer that!”
Millis approaches Elria with sparkling eyes.
“Tell me straight up, how was last night!?”
“Well… yesterday, Reid and I made dinner together and stroked each other’s head.”
“Wow… you guys seem really close!”
“And then, we slept in the same bed.”
“W-Wow! So, how did it end up!?”
“We slept soundly, and when we woke up, it was morning.”
Hearing this response, Millis turns her face toward Reid.
“Wait, nothing else happened?”
“What are you expecting?”
“Well, you know… I’m also at that age, so I thought I could use it as a reference for my own sexual experiences in the future.”
“Are you stupid? We’re just ‘engaged’!”
Reid and Elria had only promised each other a future marriage, as in being ‘engaged’, and they were not yet in a relationship where they had exchanged vows.
In other words ――
“It’s impossible to have premarital sexual relations with someone you’re engaged to.”
“Oh… I’m from the countryside, so I didn’t know. Is that true?”
“Depending on the situation, it could result in the death penalty.”
“Is it that serious!?”
However, Wiesel, who was listening to the conversation, interjects.
“I have heard of that as an old tradition. During engagements, physical relationships were forbidden until the marriage was officially solemnized because engagements could be broken for various reasons. It’s a story you don’t hear much nowadays, but it could be possible for a family as distinguished as the Caldwens.”
“What, it was an old story…? So, people could get the death penalty for that? The people back then who were in love must have had a hard time…”
Millis nodded solemnly as if she had understood, but the parties involved tilted their heads in confusion upon hearing it.
“What? Is that really how it is now?”
“…I thought so too, but we won’t know unless we ask Mother.”
“Well, even if we ask, I still have the same old mindset, so it doesn’t really matter.”
“I’ve never been interested in anything but magic, so I don’t really know either.”
“For now, we should just carry on as usual.”
“Yeah, I think that’s a good idea.”
“Well, I think your way of spending time together is more than just being an ‘engaged’ couple, isn’t it!?”
Millis interjected as if she had been eavesdropping on their conversation. It seemed that even the concept of chastity had changed after a millennium had passed.
Reid was somewhat aware of it, but for now, there are plenty of other priorities, such as graduating from the academy and uncovering the cause of their reincarnation. He could think about those things after everything else is settled.
“Come to think of it. The homeroom teacher should be coming today, right?”
Looking at the clock in the classroom, the homeroom teacher had already missed the start of class.
The new students had been carefully allocated into classes based on their examination scores, origin, and family background. And they remember being briefed the day before that a homeroom teacher would be assigned to each of those classes. However, the homeroom teacher had yet to appear.
“It’s already past the start time. Could there be some kind of problem?”
“Could the homeroom teacher be lost or something?”
“It can’t be that since Millis came without getting lost.”
“Don’t say it like I’m some idiot!!”
“It’s alright. Millis is a clever child.”
As they exchanged such banter, Elria patted Millis on the head, but then ――
The classroom wall was blown away with great force.
The sudden sound of crumbling debris and the cloud of dust caused several screams to arise from within the classroom.
Amidst it all… a figure emerged from the cloud of dust.
“―― That was close! I almost got here late. Elise would be angry.”
The figure paid no attention to the surrounding screams and made their way to the podium with the sound of their footsteps.
It was a woman with flowing black hair, probably in her mid-twenties. Her movements were impeccable and refined, a testament to her vast experience.
The woman with black hair turned her golden eyes toward the students and said in a light tone ――
“―― I will be in charge of this class. Nice to meet you all.”
As soon as she spoke, the students looked at each other in surprise and started to make a commotion.
“Isn’t that Lady Alma Kanos of the <<Black Flag>>…?”
“But… didn’t Alma-sama just receive orders from the king to go on a large-scale operation to the east and take down the dragon’s nest…?”
“I’ve never heard of a special rank mage becoming a homeroom teacher.”
The students’ words were filled with respect and awe. Mages are classified according to their level of ability. They started at fifth rank upon receiving their qualification and were assigned to handle the magical beasts or Kaijus based on their rank. Their promotions are based on their achievements and skills.
Among them, special rank mages numbered less than ten. This is an honorary rank given to those who use tenth tier magic and carry out the subjugation of super-sized magical beasts alone. They were not assigned by the Mage’s Association but rather by the decree of the king of Vegalta. Their main duty is to deal with large to super-sized, or unidentified magical beasts that are difficult to subjugate.
Most of them guarded designated danger zones determined by the country or traveled around various places to handle magical beasts. Even if it was a national matter, they rarely appeared publicly.
If the ‘Sage’ was a legendary figure who laid the foundation for magic, then special rank mages are living legends of modern times. Therefore, it was unimaginable for someone like that to become a homeroom teacher.
Perhaps anticipating the students’ words, the black-haired woman… Alma, clapped her hands.
“Alright, alright, stop making a commotion. I’ll answer. I was requested by both the king of Vegalta and the academy’s headmaster to be the homeroom teacher because there are two students who are outside the norm, and they needed someone who can handle things when something happens.”
“Um… what happened to the dragon’s nest that was recently ordered to be subjugated?”
“Oh! I exterminated it a while ago and came back.”
Although she said it casually, the dragon’s nest is classified as a large magical beast.
The fact that they built a nest meant they had entered breeding season and become more aggressive. And the fact that it was a large-scale operation meant multiple dragons were involved. Usually, this would be the case that the country would have to devote a considerable number of resources such as money, time, and thousands of personnel to handle.
“I delegated all the cleanup work to the other guys, so it will be a little while before it’s officially announced. And when I reported it to the king of Vegalta, he asked me if I would be interested in becoming a homeroom teacher to take a break from all the heavy lifting I have been doing lately. Therefore, I accepted.”
After explaining the situation, Alma turns to the students again.
“Well, I’m also a graduate of this academy, so I know a thing or two, and as you know, I have confidence in my magic combat ability. So, you can count on me for some guidance.”
Seeing the confident smile, the students also showed excitement and expectations on their faces.
After looking at them with satisfaction, Alma nodded greatly.
“Well then, let’s finish the tedious explanations of what we would be doing and get on with the flow of things first.”
Taking the chalk, she wrote large letters on the blackboard.
“First of all, the new students are divided into five classes of thirty students each. Then, the individual and class evaluations are added up, and a certain number is calculated every year. Those who exceed that number are qualified to graduate as a mage.”
After emphatically writing out the bold characters, Alma turned to face the students.
“What’s important here is the class evaluation. Even if you get the highest individual evaluation, you cannot become a mage if your class evaluation is low. This is because, as a mage, the emphasis is placed on group performance rather than individual performance.”
The duties of a mage mainly involve dealing with crimes related to magic and subjugating the magical beasts or Kaijus. However, it is not just a matter of simply dealing with criminals or subjugating magical beasts. It also involves evacuating nearby residents, securing safe zones and evacuation routes, and rescuing individuals stranded in dangerous areas.
Very few individuals are capable of handling all of these tasks alone. For example, individuals like Elria or those known as special rank mages may be able to do that. However, not all mages are of exceptional talent.
That is why mages usually operate in teams composed of several individuals, or units of several dozen people for large-scale operations, in order to respond to various situations and circumstances. Class evaluation is done to determine if they can function properly as a group, not just as individuals, and to see if any problems may arise when they act as a team.
“Individual evaluation is conducted once a month through practical and simulated ‘conditional examination’ that assumes various real-life combat situations. And class evaluations are conducted four times a year through a ‘comprehensive examination’ that imposes various conditions, which may include other classes and other academies. Remember that these two evaluations are directly linked to all evaluations.”
As she finished explaining, Alma suddenly furrowed her brow.
“And, uh… please wait a minute. As I recall, Elise gave me some kind of teacher’s manual, so I’ll go over it and explain it briefly.”
After saying that, Alma reached into her pocket and took out a notebook-like object, flipping through its pages.
“Let’s see… In the classroom, we teach the theory and knowledge of the six magic systems, the habits, and characteristics of the magical beasts to be subdued, the importance of basic abilities such as physical strength and magic power required to operate as a mage, efficient techniques for using magic, and ――”
Muttering the contents written in a small voice, Alma closed the notebook with a snap.
“Screw it! It’s a pain to explain all this stuff. You’ll learn by doing it yourself during practical training!!”
Throwing the notebook aside, Alma reached into her pocket once again. From there, she took out a silver handbell with engravings.
“―― First, let’s move to a place where we can rampage.”
With a smile, Alma lightly shook the bell, and in that instant, Reid and the others’ vision distorted. The scenery before them changed drastically.
Endless blue skies and grassland stretched out before them. They not only felt the wind brushing their hair and skin, but also the smell of grass, trees, and soil wafting around them. In other words, this was not simple illusion magic that only obfuscated their vision.
“This is a different space generated by a magic tool created by Headmaster Elise. You can’t get out until I release it, and anything you do inside won’t have any effect on the outside.”
Alma explained while carrying her own magic equipment on her shoulder.
It was a battle axe with wide blades resembling wings. Its tip was adorned with a long black cloth, fluttering like a banner.
“Well, if it’s an explanation, I guess seeing it for yourself is better. Is there anyone who wants to volunteer as my sparring partner?”
asked Alma lightly, but the students looked at each other with confusion.
After all, the opponent is a special rank mage, and while the students had some knowledge of magic, few had actual combat experience.
“Come on, don’t worry. I’ll make sure to go easy on you and not hurt anyone, so even beginners and inexperienced students are welcome!”
Alma smiled and said, but her persuasive power was not helped by the sight of her swinging the deadly battle axe in her hand.
“―― Then, let me be your opponent.”
With those words, Faregh stepped forward from among the students.
“I can handle up to seventh tier magic. I’ve trained my mind and body to become a mage since I was young, and I’ve also been trained in magic combat.”
“Wow, that’s amazing!”
“Not at all. As a son of the Welminan family, it’s only natural.”
Faregh proudly puffed out his chest in response to Alma’s honest praise.
“I know three types of magic and am above average in all of them.”
“Well then, can I get a little serious, too?”
But getting carried away was a mistake.
“Um… about that, I thought you said you would go easy on us?”
“Yes, that’s right. But if you’ve been training for magic combat since childhood, you should be fine, right?”
“S-Specifically, how serious are we talking here…?”
“Let’s start with breaking a few bones, shall we?”
“Wait a minute! What do you mean by breaking bones!?”
Hearing Alma’s words, Faregh paled and recoiled slightly.
At that moment ―― Alma’s gaze shifted. It was to the raised hand of the person standing next to Reid.
“I want to try it.”
“Oh? So, you’re volunteering too, little lady?”
“Yeah, I want to fight with Sensei.”
“Heh, you’re more confident than that boy. What’s your name?”
“I see… You are the exceptional child the headmaster talked about. I heard you are only allowed to use up to fifth tier magic, so I’ll match your level ――”
“Mm… It’s okay. You don’t have to hold back.”
While deploying her own magic equipment, Elria calmly replied.
“More importantly… will you be fine, Sensei?”
“…What do you mean by that?”
Alma squinted slightly, and Elria nodded softly before asking ――
“―― Should I go easy on you?”
In that instant, a jet-black wind blew fiercely in front of Elria.
The shockwave caused Faregh, who was standing nearby, to roll on the ground, and the other students screamed while covering their faces.
“I see ―― You really have confidence, don’t you?”
Alma grinned, wielding her black-winged battle axe.
Emerging from Alma’s shadow are massive skeletal arms dyed in black ink. The skeletal arms created by Alma’s magic were draped in the black wind, producing an eerie noise similar to malicious laughter.
It was a surprise attack using magic before the opponent could recognize it. If it were a fight under predetermined rules, such as a match, Alma’s attack would have been criticized as a dirty attack by others. However, there are no rules in actual combat.
Elria understands this more than anyone else.
“You easily blocked my pretty strong punch.”
said Alma, looking at the shining light silver shield before Elria.
Elria stood behind the shield with a calm expression.
“Wow… What’s that? It not only withstands physical impact but also deflects magic attacks by diffusing the magic power. You’re really good at doing such fine work.”
“Yeah, this kind of thing is my speciality.”
“It’s interesting. Can you do other things, too?”
“…Do you have any requests?”
“Anything is fine. Just make sure you’re trying to knock me down.”
said Alma while pointing her battle axe at Elria with a daring smile.
“Same here. Let’s see how many bones you can break.”
Immediately after those words, Alma’s shadow began to stir. High-pitched, grating sounds of bones rubbing against each other echoed throughout the grassland as innumerable black ink-colored skeletal arms emerged from the shadow, resembling those of a giant serpent.
However, even with such a sight before her, Elria did not even flinch. She rotated her staff and fixed her gaze on the group of massive skeletal arms.
“Well then, I’ll use everything I got as well.”
As the two of them entered their fighting stances, Reid called out to the students nearby.
“Now, those of you who can move, help the ones who are unconscious or unable to move because of their injuries. They might get hurt by the aftermath.”
Upon hearing Reid’s words, the students returned to their senses and called out to those who had been blown away and unconscious, such as Faregh, and helped them move away from the area.
After confirming this, Reid calls out to Wiesel and Millis, who are nearby.
“What about you guys? This is getting interesting, so I’m going to watch it from here. But if you don’t want to get hurt, you should step back with the others.”
“No… I want to watch it, too. Not only do I get to see the magic of a special rank mage up close, but I’m also interested in Elria’s skills in countering it.”
“Hahaha… I don’t think I can run away with both of my legs trembling like this, you know…!?”
“Hide behind me. If anything happens, I’ll take care of it.”
Millis nodded at Reid’s words with her trembling legs.
“Nonetheless… that’s a special rank mage’s magic. It’s truly incredible.”
said Wiesel as he put his hand on his magic tool glasses and carefully observed the two.
“The system… is mainly dominated by ‘black’, huh?”
“Yeah, that’s right. It’s also mixed with ‘blue’, I guess.”
The original system of magic is classified into six ‘colors’.
‘Red’ uses magic power to cause and emit objects or events.
‘Blue’ uses magic power to transform objects or events into different properties.
‘Green’ uses magic power to manipulate objects or living beings.
‘Yellow’ uses magic power to rewrite concepts or laws.
‘White’ uses magic power to enhance inherent properties.
‘Black’ uses magic power to grant non-inherent properties.
By primarily choosing a system that matches their own magic power quality and stacking the magic of the six colors according to their intended purpose, a magic formula is created.
Thus, what is commonly referred to as summoning magic, strengthening magic, spatial magic, teleportation magic, and other types of magic are created through this process. In the case of mages who specialize in studying magic, they first make a rough classification based on the original six colors system.
The choice of which of the original six colors system to use as the primary one is influenced by the individual’s magic power quality, and most people have the aptitude for only one color, at most, two or three colors in most cases.
“―― Ugh, come on! Are you really going to use everything? That’s cheating, isn’t it!?”
“Yeah. I said I’d do that.”
―― This does not apply to the founder of magic, the ‘Sage’, Elria.
Her style of fighting is best described as constantly changing and unpredictable.
Trapping the approaching skeletal arms with the roots of a large tree, and while dodging the strike that was aimed at her with a wall of air, she pushed forward the front line with a wall of light, and then taking advantage of the gap created, attacked Alma with a flame in the shape of a beast.
This is a highly versatile magic that could only be performed by someone who could master all the original six colors system, as the caster herself had declared that she would.
“Amazing… Elria-sama is keeping up with a special rank mage…”
“Yeah… It’s not just the fact that she can activate and handle all that magic simultaneously, but the precision at which she does so is nothing short of astounding.”
As the two of them murmured their thoughts, Wiesel furrowed his brow.
“However, according to what we heard earlier, Lady Elria’s ability to use magic is supposed to be limited, right? What Alma-sensei is using is clearly magic that goes beyond that limit, so it should be impossible for her to fight back properly.”
“But… she’s pushing back normally and even destroying Alma-sensei’s magic, isn’t she?”
In response to their question, Reid calmly asked them.
“Do you know how many magic Elria is using right now?”
“The number of magic… you mean?”
“It’s hard to believe, but based on my magic tool alone, she’s definitely using dozens of magic simultaneously…”
Addressing the two people who were observing Elria, Reid calmly spoke up.
“She’s using over a thousand magic.”
“That’s how many magic she’s using. To be precise, it’s even more than that.”
“What, hold on… over a thousand…?”
“The magic you’re seeing right now is made up of countless delicate magic that would normally be undetectable by most people. What Wiesel observed with his magic tool was only the number of completed magic.”
“Wait, does that mean ――”
Each of those magic is no more than fifth tier magic.
However ―― if there are as many of them as there are stars, then the situation changes dramatically.
“She isn’t using magic power, but forming magic with magic,”
However, by deploying those countless magic and adding, stacking, and combining them all together, they turn into ‘magic formed by magic’ rather than just magic power. This overwhelms the expected cancellation of magic by using an overwhelming amount of magic.
It is a feat that ordinary people cannot achieve.
“I think it was called ―― ‘Weighted Multiplication Deployment’. It’s kind of nostalgic.”
While watching Elria waving her staff as if dancing, Reid recalls the heroic figure he saw on the battlefield in the past.
When he muttered such words, Wiesel asked with a slightly trembling voice.
“…Reid, can you see all of that magic?”
“Of course. Isn’t it obvious?”
While answering so, Reid did not take his eyes off Elria.
Her beautifully refined techniques.
“I’ve been so focused on her all this time.”
The exhilaration he felt was like when he looked up at the night sky and saw the twinkling stars.
The man who was called a ‘Hero’ was captivated by her existence as a young boy would ――
“―― She’s so straightforward and much more dazzling than anyone else to the point that I get lost in her.”
Reid declares with a gleaming and happy smile.
At that moment, there was a change in the back-and-forth battle between the two.
“Haa, this isn’t working either?”
“To be able to hold against everything, I really think Sensei is amazing.”
“I’m not sure how to feel about being praised by a student of mine…”
“That said ―― you’re still not serious, right?”
As soon as she heard those words, Alma’s expression changed.
“Well… based on this situation, it would be rude not to take you seriously, right?”
With a smile on her face, Alma stuck the pommel of her battle axe into the ground.
The black cloth attached to its tip fluttered like a black flag warning that there was no turning back.
“―― Now, it’s time to ‘march’.”
As if in response to Alma’s words, the skeletal arms that had crawled out from the shadows began to tremble.
They wriggled and jostled, pushing aside other skeletal arms as they reached out towards the outside world, eager to be the first to head towards the battlefield.
“―― Let’s begin the battle, <<Undead Brigade>>.”
What appeared from Alma’s shadow were not just skeletal arms, but also towering giant skeletons made up of massive bones.
Using their own skeletal arms, which lacked any flesh, they crawled out one by one from the narrow shadow.
Not only the giant skeletons but also numerous armed skeletal soldiers appear.
Combat engineers riding in bone-built tanks, dragon knights riding on the back of dragons with decayed wings, cavalry riding on headless skeletal horses, beast hunters commanding their beasts to capture those who are running away with their sharp fangs and swift feet, and field musicians playing military music that would make the listeners tremble ――
The army of the dead crawling out from the literal depths of hell started filling the grasslands.
Alma raised her battle axe, adorned with a black flag, to lead the army of the dead.
“Now… with me going all out, you’d better be ready, little lady.”
said Alma gazing at the enemy before her with her golden eyes and a fearless smile.
“―― If you dare to cross this ‘Black Flag’, come at me prepared to lay down your life.”
Her heavy, crushing words were directed at Elria, who, for the first time, showed a change in expression.
With a small murmur, Elria’s eyes flashed with agitation.
“Why do you… know those words?”
As Elria constructed her magic, she directed apparent hostility toward Alma.
“Oh my, does what I said bother you?”
“Yeah… because there’s only one person in this world who can say that.”
Using her magic tool, Elria deployed numerous formations around her, surveying the army of skeletons.
“I want to ask you a lot of things, so I’ll take this seriously.”
“Yeah ―― I’m planning on doing the same!”
Alma set the giant skeletons into motion with her battle axe that swung like a massive conductor’s baton.
A single flash of light was then emitted with a swing of the massive sword held by the giant skeleton. It was a devastating blow that would not spare even the allied army, obliterating everything in its path.
Elria tried to cast more magic to stop that blow, but then ――
The giant skeleton’s sword stopped without a sound.
The next one to show surprise was Alma.
A massive swing that could mow down everything. Yet it was being caught by the hand of a human.
“―― I’m sorry for spoiling the game.”
Perhaps sensing the abnormality that the gripped sword did not budge, the giant skeleton began to struggle.
However, the sword shows no sign of moving. It was held by Reid, who restrained it with pure force.
“But… I can’t just stay put when someone uses ‘my words’.”
At the moment Reid put strength into his right hand, the giant skeleton was knocked down along with its sword.
With a thunderous crash, its massive body was slammed onto the ground.
But that was not all.
With great force, he swung the giant skeleton around, crushing and scattering the surrounding skeletal soldiers with the sound of breaking bones. With that, a part of the ‘Army’ deployed by Alma’s magic was crushed.
A cloud of dust spread in the vast grasslands, covering the surroundings.
Witnessing this sight, Alma’s eyes narrowed in alarm.
“You must be… the other abnormal one, huh?”
“I’m Reid Frieden. Nice to meet you, Sensei.”
“Well, this is another bothersome or rather incomprehensible child… You clearly didn’t seem to have used magic, so how could you have stopped my magic?”
“I have a question for you, too. If you answer it, I’ll tell you.”
The black cloth attached to that battle axe. Because the crest was scraped and almost gone, Reid noticed it late.
However, Reid was convinced by Alma’s earlier statement. It was something Reid had mentioned on the battlefield.
A dead country that once existed but perished in modern times.
A country where a man called a ‘Hero’ once lived ――
“―― Why are you waving the ‘Military Flag of Altein’?”
Reid calmly asked while glaring at Alma.
However, Alma did not show any change in expression even after hearing those words. She was brimming with fighting spirit in her golden eyes.
“Well… I don’t know what you’re talking about, but if you’re not going to answer first, then I don’t have any obligation to answer either ――”
said Alma as she returned to a fighting stance.
But at that moment, a thunderous voice echoed throughout the space ――
‘―― WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU GUYS DOINGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG!!’
The two confronting each other instinctively covered their ears at the deafening noise.
“Oh no… could it be that Elise can see us, too?”
‘I CAN SEE YOU AND HEAR YOU!!’
Elise’s booming voice reverberated throughout the entire space.
‘I was curious about the two of them, so I peeked to see what was going on, but what’s this? Alma-chan is trying to use tenth tier magic on a student!?’
“Ah… I thought it would be rude if I didn’t take it seriously, too.”
‘That’s out of the question!! In the first place, it was the academy that placed magic restrictions on Elria-chan!! Isn’t it shameful for you as a teacher to use tenth tier magic!?’
“Well. Anyway, can we resume the battle now?”
‘Of course not!! Tenth tier magic wasn’t designed to be used here, so if it’s used, my magic tool will be destroyed, too!! If that happens, I’ll be really mad!!’
“Okay, okay, I get it…”
Alma sighed and stored her giant skeletons back into her shadow.
“Well then, Elria-chan, we’ll have to postpone our match for now, okay?”
“Mm… that’s too bad.”
“Well, with your skills, you’ll definitely be able to become a special rank mage in the future, and we can have a rematch then without Elise finding out.”
“Yeah, I’ll be looking forward to it.”
‘I hope you can refrain from making a duel declaration in front of me!!’
Upon hearing Elise’s voice, Elria and Alma exchanged wry smiles with each other.
“Is it okay if we settle this matter later, Reid-kun?”
“…Well, there’s nothing we can do about it.”
“Don’t worry. I’ll make sure to take the time to talk to you later. But as a teacher, I can’t just leave the other students alone.”
Turning to where the students are retreating, Alma claps her hands and raises her voice.
“Alright, the mock battle is over! Come back, everyone! And if someone’s unconscious, splash them with water and wake them up!”
Upon hearing the call, the students who had evacuated began to gather gradually.
“Now, if you continue to train hard as a mage, you’ll also be able to have intense battles like us, so do your best to become a mage, okay!?”
Alma thumped her chest with a hearty smile, but the students, having caught a glimpse of the pinnacle of a mage’s battle just now, had dark expressions as if they had lost confidence.
“That was a battle of a special rank mage… It’s just too different from us…”
“I was a little excited because my grades were good on the entrance examination, but… I’m losing confidence that I can become a mage…”
“Yeah… we were just a little capable of using magic…”
Upon hearing the students’ words, Alma pouted like a child.
“What’s with that line of thought? You all worked so hard to get into this academy, right? Don’t give up before you even try. If you don’t have confidence, you won’t achieve anything, you know?”
“Well… that may be true…”
“Besides, you guys will be learning from me for the next year, remember? You should understand the significance of learning directly from someone who showed you a battle like the one earlier.”
Saying so, Alma smiles with a smirk while carrying her battle axe.
“You can become stronger than anyone else, so believe that and stick with me.”
It was the smile of an overwhelmingly strong person, and the words of a strong person who walks ahead of everyone else, cuts through the path, and leads the way.
With that reassuring smile and words that give confidence ――
The students raised their voices in response.
Seeing that, Alma nodded with satisfaction.
“Alright, that’s a good answer! Then, from now on, you all will undergo training to solidify the most important foundation for a mage!!”
Upon hearing that, the students straightened their posture and waited for the next words.
And then ――
“―― Now, you all keep running until you collapse!!”
With a beaming smile, Alma gave them such a crazy training regimen.