Chapter 4 Part 1
Regarding Alma’s true identity and the conversation they had, Reid was frank with Elria and told her everything.
Elria nodded and simply replied, “I see”, which surprised Reid a little, but he realized that Elria’s apprentice had also inherited the name of Caldwen and left a name for future generations, so it was similar in a way.
As for the mysterious points, they concluded that, “There is not enough information to speculate on past events”, so they decided to maintain the current situation and gather more information. After all, they are still students of the academy, and there are limits to what they can investigate. Therefore, it was safer to leave it to Alma, who held the position of a special rank mage.
Thus, Reid and Elria continued their peaceful academy life. Wiesel and Millis were given daily challenges, and they would say, “I want to have another safe day tomorrow”, but they seemed to have become much more relaxed when compared to the first day.
And just as the day after tomorrow approached, which was the day of the examination ――
“―― Hey, everyone, do you have any plans for the day off?”
Millis brought up a topic after finishing their meal in the dormitory’s dining hall.
“I’m planning to go back home and adjust my magic tools. There’s a lot of them, so it’s going to take a while.”
“Yeah, that sounds like a lot of work for you, Wiesel-san…”
Over the past month, they had come to understand each other’s strengths and weaknesses. Wiesel did not excel in any particular magic, but he is able to use multiple magic tools based on the situation and is specialized in support rather than combat.
“Well, I plan to spend it completely focused on the examination.”
“What…? But I was thinking we could all go out together on our day off…”
“Didn’t they explain that the day off before the examination is meant for adjusting magic tools and recuperation? You’re the only one who wants to go out.”
In two days, the ‘Conditional Examination’, which would determine their individual evaluations, would be held.
The students were given a day off before the examination, not only to ensure that they could take the examination in perfect condition, but also to allow the academy to prepare for it as well.
“You were praised by Elria for your magic control, but she probably told you to work harder on your combat skills. So, you should be doing that.”
“But… but I’m already receiving Alma’s absurd training every day!! And to top it off, the royal capital, which is the envy of the countryside, is nearby!! Isn’t it okay to have a little fun as a reward for working hard every dayyyyyyyyyyyy!!”
However, Millis could not give up and slumped over the table, pouting her lips.
“I understand how you feel, but give it up.”
“Are you a demon, Reid-san!? Girls are the kind of people who can’t live without those kinds of rewards for themselves!! Elria-sama is the same, isn’t she!?”
Millis turned to Elria as she puffed up her cheeks, but ――
There was no response from Elria.
On the contrary, she nodded her head, as if she was tired.
“Oh my… she seems quite exhausted.”
“Lately, she hasn’t been feeling too well. She’s doing some magic research and staying up late, so sometimes I go to bed before her. It’s tough because she also wakes up late.”
“Speaking of which, you two often come to the classroom at the last minute, like on the first day.”
In reality, the mornings for Reid were very busy.
He would soothe Elria, who had entered a lethargic state, help her take a bath, and even help her change clothes while he was blindfolded, sometimes even carrying her halfway.
“If it’s Elria, she probably doesn’t have to study for examinations, and she probably wouldn’t be exhausted from training with Alma… I’m starting to get a little worried.”
“Oh… I-I’m sure it’ll be okay! Elria-sama is someone who everyone at the academy is paying attention to, so she’s probably just working hard to achieve results that are worthy of that attention!”
“…Do you know something?”
asked Reid, narrowing his eyes. Millis jumped and started sweating from her forehead.
Recently, the two of them had made it a daily routine to go to the large bath together, and there were also times when Elria would stop by Millis’s room, saying, “I’m going to teach Millis some magic”.
Elria considered Millis to be a close friend of the same gender, so there might be conversations that she did not want to be heard by Reid, who is a guy. Elria did not say anything, but seeing Millis’s behavior, his assumption seemed incorrect.
“A-Anyway, what about you, Reid-san!? You’re also getting just as much attention as Elria-sama now, so you can’t afford to mess up, you know!?”
Millis tried to change the topic, feeling the situation was worsening. However, it is true that Reid himself was also receiving attention from others.
Not only did Alma, a renowned special rank mage, become their homeroom teacher, but in addition to that, Elria was able to keep up with the special rank mage, Alma. Furthermore, Reid had caught and mowed down the tenth tier magic unleashed by Alma with his bare hands.
The topic quickly spread among the students. And perhaps because of such circumstances, talks about Reid have also gradually been spreading.
“And you’ve been talking with Alma-sensei lately, too, right?”
“Come to think of it. You were called ‘Your Excellency’ before. What was that about?”
“Oh… it’s just a nickname. Alma-sensei is the granddaughter of someone I know, and that person used to call me ‘Your Excellency’, so she knew about it.”
“…No, but how did you get that nickname in the first place?”
“I guess it’s because I kept winning at chess against the old man. Something like that.”
After that incident, Reid and Alma exchanged information several times after school, but when Alma talked to him, she started calling him ‘Your Excellency’, and it became a habit. There was a time when they passed by each other in the hallway, and she greeted him with an “Oh, it’s Your Excellency. Good morning”.
At the time, Reid told her to be careful about it, but she just laughed it off. It was an attitude that did not seem to befit a descendant of Lyatt.
“Well, in my case, it depends on the content of the examination. There’s a possibility that the content may be something that I, who cannot use magic, can’t do anything about. I won’t know until the day of the examination.”
“Certainly, being unable to use magic is a big handicap, but Reid’s power is beyond common sense. If it’s used properly, there shouldn’t be any problems.”
“That’s right! At the very least, you have the strength to stop Alma-sensei’s magic!!”
Encouraged by the two, Reid made a wry smile, but at that moment ――
“―― Tch… annoying commoners are making a racket.”
Such audible words were directed at them.
When Reid turned his face in the direction of the voice, he saw the figure of Faregh. While his expression had less fatigue compared to the other students, it was clearly unpleasant.
“Not only are the people around us irritated by the unpleasant commoners, but we are also bothered by those who forget that this is a place to dine in and are making a fuss. Truly is the worst place to be at right now.”
“Ah… I-I’m sorry.”
Perhaps realizing that they had made too much noise, Millis bowed her head frankly. However, Faregh sneered at her actions.
“Hah…! Do commoners even know how to apologize? When bowing your head to someone in a higher position, you should prostrate yourself and rub your forehead against the ground.”
“…I apologize for causing a disturbance. However, there’s no need to say something like that.”
Millis could not bear Faregh’s words and returned them by starring daggers.
“…What? Are you saying that to me?”
Looking at Millis’s rebellious attitude, Faregh smiled sadistically.
“The difference between you and me isn’t just our positions. Even our talents for handling the great magic created by the Sage are different!!”
And then ―― he drew his magic equipment from his waist.
A small sword unfolded in Faregh’s hand.
Seeing the shocked expression on Millis’s face, Faregh laughed.
“Commoners!! ―― Don’t you dare oppose me!!”
A dazzling light was born from the tip of the small sword, creating a bright red flame.
Just as the flame was about to explode in front of the standing Millis ――
It was crushed by Reid’s left arm, which extended instinctively.
Without turning back, Reid waved his hand lightly and spoke,
“K-Kid…!? How dare you call me that, a proud member of the Welminan family ――”
“What’s wrong with calling a brat like you a kid?”
Reid turned his head and directed a sharp gaze at Faregh.
“Do you understand what you did?”
“Huh…? I just tried to educate the commoners ――”
Faregh’s words were cut off, unable to continue.
“I’ll teach you if you don’t understand.”
Reid stood up and grabbed Faregh by the head, causing him to scream briefly.
“Magic is something that has taken the lives of many people. Using it on others means that you must be prepared to receive the same fate.”
Faregh was completely overwhelmed by Reid’s gaze and intimidation.
“You said it was a ‘great magic created by the Sage’. Unlike you, that ‘Sage’ didn’t use magic for fun. She risked her life and everything to create it. It’s not something a kid like you can just play with like a toy.”
As Reid tightened his grip on Faregh’s head, a pained scream escaped from his mouth.
“If you want to talk about yourself, talk about your own actions and accomplishments, not just the prestige of your family. Instead of sulking and complaining about things you don’t like, why don’t you show others something to be proud of? If you can’t do that… then you ought to know your place.”
Reid threw Faregh to the ground and left him there.
“Kuh… damn brute with stupid strength…!!”
“After commoners, now it’s brute. Well… I should give punishment to those who don’t listen.”
After exhaling lightly, Reid reached out to the small sword that was rolling on the floor and broke Faregh’s magic equipment with a loud sound.
“MY MAGIC EQUIPMENTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!!”
“Here, take this and get lost.”
Looking at his broken magic equipment, Faregh shook his shoulder and folded his knees, feeling devastated.
“My magic equipment… the precious magic equipment bestowed upon me by my father…!!”
“Faregh-sama! Please be strong!!”
“Let’s just tape it up or something so that your father won’t notice!!”
The two followers who had been watching the situation dragged the dejected Faregh out of the dining hall.
After watching them leave, Reid returned to his seat.
“Millis, are you hurt or anything?”
“Ah, no… thank you very much…”
Millis nodded in a daze. However, she suddenly raised her head.
“What are you doing trying to act cool like that!? You can’t do that without Elria-sama watching!!”
“Don’t suddenly start talking nonsense.”
“By the way, did Lady Elria not wake up in the midst of all the commotion just now?”
Turning to Wiesel’s words, Elria was closing her eyes and rocking her body.
“Hey, Elria-sama? You can’t sleep here, you know.”
As her body was shaken, Elria opened her eyes slightly. Then, rubbing her eyes, she stood up and sat on Reid’s knee. She then squirmed to adjust her position slightly and leaned back onto Reid’s body.
And so, as if nothing had happened, Elria began to sleep.
“…Hey, it’s just her changing her sleeping place, that’s all.”
“Eh? What’s this? Isn’t this cute creature dangerous?”
“It seems that Elria’s homing instinct is registered to ‘Reid’ as her home base.”
As they watched Elria sleep peacefully on Reid’s body, each of them gave their thoughts.
“Hey, Elria, wake up. If you’re going to sleep, do it after going back to our room.”
Shaking her body again ――
She twisted her body and buried her face in Reid’s chest while pushing her head against it.
“Hey, wait, wait! You can enter your dozy lethargic state just like that!?”
“What do you mean by that, Reid-san?”
“Well, even if you ask me, it’s hard to explain…!!”
But judging from her reaction, Elria is clearly in a lethargic state.
“Simply put, it’s a state of being very sleepy.”
“Heh… So when Elria-sama is drowsy, she becomes even more childlike than usual.”
Seeing Elria in a lethargic state, Millis pokes her cheeks, and Wiesel strokes his chin with interest.
“Hmm. It’s possible that consciousness is not completely aware when prematurely awakening from a deep sleep, but it’s rare for it to happen in a light sleep.”
“You’re unusually calm about it…”
“I’ve spent enough time with you guys that I’m not surprised by most things. Anyway, if we stay here in the dining hall, we’ll attract attention.”
Upon being pointed out by Wiesel, they notice that the students in the dining hall are looking at them due to the commotion earlier.
Considering Elria’s behavior when she’s in a lethargic state, it is not good to stay in a place where people can see them for too long.
“Sorry, but we’ll go back to our room first. Can we leave the cleaning and such to you?”
“Understood. Millis and I will take care of it.”
“Yes, yes. See you again the day after tomorrow.”
Carrying Elria on his back and drawing the attention of the students, Reid left the dining hall. During this time, Elria clung tightly to his neck, pressing her head against him.
“Seriously, I don’t know what you’re doing, but don’t push yourself too hard.”
“But… I want to make Reid happy…”
“Yes… I’ll do my best to make you smile like you used to in the olden days ――”
Suddenly, Elria’s words stopped.
Thinking something was wrong, Reid turned around and saw Elria with a bright red face.
“Eh…? Why am I… on your back…!?”
Moving her mouth shakily, Elria confirmed her situation with words.
Maybe because she had taken a nap, her lethargic state only lasted a short time.
Covering her reddened face with both hands, Elria swung her legs back and forth.
“I-I… I’ll get o-off!”
“Don’t struggle in that state. You’ll bite your tongue.”
“B-But… I’m heavy…!”
“Far from being heavy, you’re so light that I’m worried.”
“Eh… bu-… but…”
“Just stay still until we get back to our room.”
With a faint response, Elria’s presence seemed to shrink on his back.
As they began to walk again, Elria spoke to Reid over his shoulder.
“…That said, I might still do something reckless.”
“Okay, just don’t overdo it.”
“…Don’t you want to know why?”
“Millis seems to know what’s going on, and she’s not the kind of person who would hide something dangerous from me. So, I think there must be a reason why you’re not telling me.”
“…Being too perceptive like that is not good either.”
With a dissatisfied voice, Elria lightly tapped his back. It’s unreasonable of her to complain when he was trying to be considerate by not asking.
“Well, if something happens, you can rely on me. Do whatever you want.”
“Okay… thank you.”
Burying her face in his back, she murmurs with a tired voice.
“Right now… I feel really safe because Reid is with me.”
After saying that, the sound of her quiet breathing could once again be heard from his back.