Chapter 4: Academy Life (2)
—–Translated by daydrop. Please read on the original site at daydrop.nowaki.net.
Mahoro’s imagination ran wild through his head, wondering what Siegfried could have done. He went to the Library during his free time and searched the cadet matriculation records, but the names of withdrawn cadets were all erased and Mahoro could not confirm anything. He wanted to ask Noah or Oscar for more information, but they would not appear when he most needed them.
“Mahoro! You’re dropping your elbows!”
During Swordsmanship tutorial, Professor Andre, the instructor, was constantly warning Mahoro about how he handled the sword. Tutorials were generally held outside on the grounds of the Main Building. Mahoro was weak to the sunlight and would suffer dizzy spells if he spent long periods of time outside in the sun. He had notified the Academy faculty beforehand of his condition, but he could not sit out for every single lesson. Mahoro had changed into his Academy-issued training kit and clutched a borrowed practice sword in his hand. The practice sword had no bladed edge, but it weighed the same as a real sword.
Professor Andre would teach a basic movement, and the cadets, in a single file, would practise the swing. They spent an hour practising sword stances, thrusts, and swings. Mahoro was exhausted just swinging the sword through the air, and he wondered what would happen of him in a real battle.
“Who uses swords nowadays?” Jack, a cadet in Mahoro’s class, complained as he wiped away his sweat.
Mahoro also doubted the usefulness of swordsmanship as part of their training. They had firearms, so what was the necessity in learning swordsmanship?
“You don’t understand the true value of the Sword, do you?”
Professor Andre gathered everyone around, unable to just watch the spiritless cadets.
“One of these days you will use magic stones in your Magic tutorial. You can unlock incredible power if you insert them into your sword, exceeding even the power from any firearms. The sorcerers in the Magic Corps all value their swords more than their guns.”
Mahoro had never heard this information before, and he was amazed. The Magic Corps was an elite force in the military, and they played an active role in suppressing invasions from other nations and insurrections from within the kingdom, protecting the citizens with the miraculous power of magic. Sorcerers who joined the Magic Corps were the elites of the elite; they were the chosen ones who could wield the highest levels of magic in the kingdom.
“Wow, that actually sounds pretty amazing.”
The explanation became a motivation for Jack, who started putting effort into his swings. Mahoro was also inspired to practise his swings, but compared to everyone else, he was much slower at lifting his sword. Not only was Mahoro small in stature, but he had very little muscle, and out of the entire class, he had the poorest physical strength. Not only were his scores poor, but he had no strength, and Mahoro lamented at his failings as a cadet.
“Today’s going to be rough with Physical Combat after Swordsmanship tutorial.”
Physical Combat tutorial was waiting for them after Swordsmanship. And just like Zach had commented, Mahoro was already worn out by the previous tutorial, and the instructor scolded him the entire time.
“The basics start with self-defence! We shall repeat these movements hundreds of times!”
The cadets were grouped into pairs to learn the basic movements. They alternated to perform each technique as taught, tumbling to the mat and grappling each other.
After Physical Combat tutorial was over, it was finally time for lunch.
Mahoro went with Zach to the mess hall to fill his empty stomach. They were both so tired that they even lacked the energy to hold a conversation. Even though they had taken the same courses, the cadets from Class A were happily eating their lunches. Were gifted people just good at everything?
Zach picked at his salad with avocado and murmured, “It’s only been a fortnight since we came here, but we’re both completely knackered, huh? And I was all excited about Magic Arts, but we’re still stuck on history lectures.”
Zach looked unhappy. The course on Magic Arts was currently lecturing on topics such as when the kingdom first learned to use magic and how they had first discovered magic stones, and Zach was bored.
“Oh, yeah, so the Magic Society is reopening next month? Then I’m definitely going to join! Come join the club with me~!” Zach spun his fork around, and it was like he had only just remembered the news.
“Yeah, but it doesn’t seem like they’ll let just anyone join.”
“That’s right~ The Platinum Three are in the Magic Society, so that makes it harder to join. I hear they’ll only accept five new members from the new cadets. I wonder if they’ll accept me.” Zach gave a long weary sigh.
“It makes it harder to join if the Platinum Three are there…? Is the club really that fun?” Mahoro tilted his head in confusion. Why would the younger cadets want to join if Noah and the others were there?
“Silly, if you can get to know the top cadets, you’ll be set for life~! Plus, if I can gaze upon the beauty that is Lord Noah every day, nothing would make me happier. And if things go well—at least, there are blokes out there who think like that.” Zach chuckled to himself like he had recovered his spirit.
Mahoro was struck dumb. So there were many people who would gather around such beauty even of the same sex.
“Oh~” Zach rocked his chair excitedly.
Noah and his group had cleared their dishes and were coming their way. Oscar and Theo were with him. Apparently Noah and Oscar really got on well.
Mahoro was sorely tempted to ask them about Siegfried, but their attitudes from the other day wouldn’t leave his head. He had to investigate what had happened to Siegfried, but he sensed that it was a bad idea to irritate them by bringing it up. If he could join the Magic Society, he would have plenty of opportunities to ask around. That was if they accepted him, of course…
Mahoro lowered his head so that they wouldn’t see him and focused on eating his ham sandwich, but then Zach started nudging him with his elbow.
“Noah’s looking over here,” Zach whispered to him, and Mahoro quietly raised his head.
Noah was looking at Mahoro from the entrance of the mess hall. Mahoro was scared that Noah was still in a bad mood, but from the look on his face, it didn’t appear that way. When their eyes met, Noah turned around and left as Theo and Oscar followed after him. Theo turned back to stare at Mahoro, like he needed to confirm who he was.
“Oh, there’s the other member of the Platinum Three,” Zach said, shaking Mahoro’s shoulder.
There was a young man a distance away from them eating lunch by himself. He had masculine features with blond hair and blue eyes. A few young men who appeared to be friends went up and started talking to him.
“Who is that…?” Mahoro tilted his head at Zach.
“He’s Leon Ainsworth. He has the best marks at the Academy in Swordsmanship. I hear that he’s a serious person who has no mercy for anyone who breaks the rules. By the way, Lord Oscar Rutherford is really popular because he’s so fit. Apparently he moves fast, so be careful around him. I hear that Lord Noah and Lord Leon don’t get along. Lord Noah is always breaking the rules, but Lord Leon strictly abides by them. And since they hail from the Houses that control fire and water, they have never really meshed. Lord Noah has had the highest overall scores at the Academy since he was a First Year. He’s seriously a genius.”
Zach was well-informed and knew a lot about the Platinum Three. Noah was rude and arrogant, but his scores were outstanding, and so apparently the faculty tolerated his behaviour.
How do I ask him for information about Lord Sieg?
Mahoro became dejected. Every last Sunday of the month, the mail carrier would come to the Academy, and the cadets were allowed to send letters outside. Mahoro would have to report to Samuel about what he had learned. He had been here for a fortnight, but he had learned nothing about Siegfried.
Mahoro left the mess hall and sighed. Then he headed to his room to retrieve his textbooks.
—–Translated by daydrop. Please read on the original site at daydrop.nowaki.net.