༺ Victory Celebration Day ༻
In the end, I promised to participate in the arena again next week at Sylvia’s request.
After all, it was necessary to continue hiring the Dark Guild’s informants for any significant information about Ella.
There could have been a risk that someone else would deliberately hide the information and try to take advantage of the arena, but knowing Sylvia’s character, I didn’t worry about that.
I left the dark Guild and returned to the dormitory before curfew.
I told them in advance that I would be late, but spending time at the arena made me miss both dinner and my duel with Gwyn.
As I will be coming in late every Monday from now on, it would be best to either quickly wrap up this matter or think of another solution to avoid the students’ curiosity.
As I entered the lobby with these thoughts, I could feel a lot of activity coming from the lounge.
Curfew was approaching, so what were they doing gathered at this hour?
I could have just returned to my room, but my curiosity led me to the lounge.
As soon as I entered the lounge, Titania was the first to react.
“Instructor! You’re back?”
Titania saw me enter, took the teacup from her lips, and waved her hand in greeting.
I nodded my head in response to her greeting.
In the lounge were six students, excluding Elizabeth and Batar.
As soon as I entered, I could see what they were doing.
-Continuing with the news, the royal family is planning a massive military parade and street march on the central road of the empire in celebration of the upcoming 5th anniversary of the victory…
A rectangular box was placed in the middle of the lounge table.
Centered around a magical radio made with magic engineering, the students were sitting around, drinking tea, chatting, and listening to the radio.
Magical engineering items are quite expensive and hard to find. I remember that there was no radio in the lounge just a few days ago.
Schultz answered my question.
“I brought it from home over the weekend. We used to listen to it every day at home, but it was a bit disappointing that we didn’t have one here. Newspapers are good, but the news is definitely faster for urgent information.”
As the son of a Prime minister, it was natural for there to be one or two radios at home.
I sat down in an empty chair and blended in with the group.
“Here you go.”
Marian immediately poured tea into a cup and handed it to me. I didn’t really intend to drink it, but there was no reason to refuse since she had already prepared it, so I took the teacup.
It was black tea.
“Um… Thank you.”
I nodded, and Marian smiled in response.
It must have been quite a hassle for the young noble lady to make tea herself, but to Marian and the other students, it seemed to have become an everyday sight.
The automatic magic golem, Shabti, only takes care of basic tasks such as cleaning, laundry, and cooking at designated times, and does not help with such trivial matters.
So, this rare sight of a noble lady personally making tea and serving it to the students would be a unique spectacle only seen at the academy.
I took a sip of the lukewarm black tea.
Unlike the tea Charlotte made on the battlefield, both the aroma and the taste were excellent. Was it because good quality tea leaves were used, or was it simply that Charlotte was not skilled in making tea? I couldn’t know now.
“Instructor, does the tea suit your taste?”
While I took a sip of the tea, Marian looked at me with a somewhat tense expression for some reason.
I didn’t know the reason, but I just shared my honest impression.
“Yes, it’s delicious.”
“…Really? I’m glad.”
Marian smiled contentedly and returned to her seat. She muttered “one point…!” to herself, but I couldn’t understand the meaning.
The radio was still broadcasting the news.
-Also, in light of the upcoming massive military parade, the top-secret project ‘Airship,’ which has concentrated the empire’s technology, is finally expected to conduct a demonstration flight, raising people’s anticipation. On the day of the parade, it is expected that we will be able to see the airships covering the sky of the empire with our own eyes…
Marian spoke in a surprised voice.
“Wow, it’s finally taking off? Did they finally complete it?”
Schultz continued her words.
“The design of the airship itself is already complete. After dozens of tests, it’s finally entering a stabilization phase. The administration is expecting mass production to start next year.”
“Huh… Well, I hope it goes well. So far, I’ve only heard a lot about them exploding. Of course, that news wasn’t in the newspapers.”
Gwyn, who had been sipping green tea instead of black tea, opened her mouth as if curious.
“Airship? What is that?”
Schultz looked baffled.
“You don’t know what an airship is? Hmm, well… I guess it’s possible if you’ve been living in the mountains for years. Simply put, think of it as a ship that flies in the sky.”
“What!? How can a ship fly in the sky!?”
At Gwyn’s astonished question, Schultz pushed up his glasses and showed a proud smile.
“That’s the amazing part of the empire’s technology that no other country on the continent can follow. Have you heard of the empire’s three major industries?”
“Three major industries?”
“Manufacturing, steel, and shipbuilding… the major industries that the empire has been focusing on since the war. Based on the advanced technology of the empire, items needed in factories are mass-produced, and with the parts created, railways are laid throughout the empire, and airships are launched into the sky. Isn’t it amazing just to imagine it?”
Gwyn showed a puzzled expression, seemingly not understanding at all. Titania and Oznia, who were listening nearby, also seemed to have similar thoughts, although not as much as Gwyn.
Seeing the lukewarm reaction, Schultz coughed briefly and lowered his voice.
“If trains and airships can travel across the entire continent, it means we could reach the distant eastern countries in just a few days.”
“What!? Just a few days to the east? It takes months to walk that distance…!”
“Maybe not now, but eventually it will. If people and all kinds of goods can be transported by trains and airships, not only the empire but the entire continent will become a much better place to live. Then, countries devastated by war can recover quickly.”
“…Isn’t that a bit of an empire-centric view?”
Saladin, who had been quietly listening, suddenly spoke up.
“The magical stones used to power the factories, the minerals used to build ships and lay railways, they’re not all self-sufficient in the empire, right? It’s not right to say such things while relying on colonies for everything we need.”
“Colonies? The empire never has anything like colonies-“
“Yes, yes. You maintain friendly relations with weaker neighboring countries. You might say that, but can a colony really refuse the empire’s requests?”
“It’s a mutually beneficial relationship. If the empire provides infrastructure, there are definitely benefits for underdeveloped countries.”
“The empire isn’t building it for free, is it? In the end, they’ll take everything they want.”
“Where is there free stuff in international relations? Even if they were to build it for free, the empire has no reason to-“
The two suddenly began arguing, ignoring their surroundings.
I was considering whether to intervene in their increasingly heated conversation, but Marian grabbed my sleeve and stopped me.
“Leave them be. They’re not fighting seriously.”
“They do that sometimes. Actually, it seems Schultz enjoys it, and they’ll stop soon. Also, Saladin doesn’t say such things in front of Elizabeth.”
Upon closer inspection, both of them were indeed focused on the argument, but it wasn’t a truly malicious situation.
Considering Saladin’s previous behavior of exchanging insults and being dismissive, this bickering while continuing the conversation seemed rather friendly.
There’s definitely no need to worry.
It’s almost curfew time. Oznia was the first to yawn, perhaps getting sleepy late at night, and Titania took care of her and returned to their room together.
Gwyn, unable to understand the difficult words Schultz and Saladin continued to argue with, left the lounge with an expression of complete confusion.
As the students left one by one, I eventually left the lounge with Marian as well.
Schultz and Saladin were still arguing until the end. Saladin’s intentions were unclear, but Schultz was a sensible person. They would probably return before curfew on their own.
Walking down the dark hallway, Marian suddenly spoke.
“It’s a shame.”
“What Schultz said… If it had happened sooner, so many people wouldn’t have died during the war.”
It was true.
When I first rode the magical tram, I thought that if it had extended to the entire northern region, the supplies would have been smoother.
Trains and airships. If we could have used them during the war, there would have been no need to rest like horses or turn back when the road was blocked, provided it was safe.
“Magic radio, magic tram, magic airship… All made by one person, right? It would have been nice if that person had made them sooner. Um, that engineer’s name is definitely… Ge… Geo…”
“George Von Brown.”
“Ah, right! That’s the name. You know it surprisingly well?”
It’s impossible not to know.
He was one of the few people who almost killed me for real after I gained the nickname ‘Malevolent Star’.
Speaking of airships…
Even if airships were truly commercialized, I would never ride one again.
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