༺ Realm of an Archwizard ༻
In the morning, I finished the orientation for [Introduction to Basic Magic]. The content itself was easy to understand, thanks to having played <Magic Knight of Märchen>. It didn’t tell me much, though.
After class, I headed to the student cafeteria for lunch.
“Hey, that person…”
“Is he that Grade E guy from yesterday? Really, how did he get in here?”
“He’s not good enough…”
While sitting alone and eating my 50 gel lunch, I could hear the mocking remarks directed at me from another table.
Considering their lack of subtlety, they clearly meant for me to hear everything they were saying.
I felt it before, but it seems the fact that I was a Grade E in mana was spreading among the students.
The academy advocated for a system where the weak were oppressed by the strong, so naturally, students openly looked down on those ranked lower than them.
As a Grade E who scored even lower than Ian Fairytale, who also had the same Grade E mana, this fate was inevitable seeing as how I was the weakest student.
In other words, I can’t beat anyone here.
‘Let’s just ignore it for now.’
Today was the fourth day since I came to this game world and as expected, I couldn’t go back to reality even if I fell asleep regularly.
Seeing as how I have to stay here, I shouldn’t go and antagonize other students since it would make my academic life difficult. It was best to just ignore them.
I didn’t have time to worry about such trivial stuff anyway, I instead had to devote all of my time to training from now on, meaning I had no time to worry about anything else.
This morning, I had some time before my classes for the day started, so I decided to jot down my plans for the future on a piece of parchment paper, recalling my previous memories of playing the game while doing so.
As for my first priority, I was thinking of aiming for the top of this department.
Grades were not only the easiest, but also the most indicative way to measure how strong an individual is, and seeing as how I needed to be the strongest in order to survive, it was imperative that I increased my grades. My ultimate goal was to eventually surpass the top seat, Luce, and I would do what needed to be done in order to achieve said goal.
As a side note, getting low grades wasn’t an option since if I failed repeatedly, I would be expelled, kicked out of the academy, and then this world would receive a bad ending.
With that in mind, I planned to go find the legendary weapon, ‘Hilde’s Frostscythe.’
Hilde’s Frostscythe is the final ice attribute weapon, and in the original game, it could be obtained after the second year’s second semester. But since I wasn’t bound by the story of the game like Ian Fairytale, it didn’t matter.
‘I want to get it before the end of the first year if possible…’
To obtain Hilde’s Frostscythe, I needed to complete the trial given by ‘Ice Dragon Hilde’, but in order to even think of receiving said trial, I had to first raise my [Ice Attribute Resistance} to 60 at the very least.
I needed to become strong enough to get Hilde’s Frostscythe as soon as possible.
According to the setting in the original game, one person could only use up to two kinds of elemental attribute magic, depending on whether or not they were compatible with it and the only exception to this was the power of fairies.
I didn’t know what elemental attribute Ian, who currently only used light attribute magic, would choose from among fire, water, ice, lightning, rock, and wind in the future. That was because, in the game, the second attribute of Ian was decided by the player, but now that wasn’t the case.
If he chooses the ice attribute, Hilde’s Frostscythe will be his final target… Sorry, that’s mine now, I have nothing to give to a fucking newbie.
So I could only hope that he wouldn’t choose the ice attribute.
‘I have to clear the game no matter what.’
I’m going to get as strong as I can in order to win this game.
It was my specialty to achieve my goals through grit and hard work. It was an asset that I had acquired throughout my life studying for exams.
I played <Magic Knight of Märchen> as both a break and a reward after a long day of studying.
Although, on my day off I would play it all day long and this only continued after I passed the exam.
I could’ve never imagined that I would be transported into <Magic Knight of Märchen> as an extra, and I could tell it would be a long and arduous battle before my final goal was achieved.
I’ll commit evil deeds without hesitation.
“Hey, is that kid laughing?”
Oh, I burst out laughing without realizing it. I seem to have been too engrossed in myself.
I could hear someone comment when I laughed, but I didn’t care.
After the meal, I was walking toward the classroom…
“How are you?”
…When suddenly someone greeted me from behind.
I came to a halt and looked back. I saw a familiar female student with light green pigtails tied with black hairbands and two eyes that were a beautiful jade color, shining like emeralds.
Kaya Astrean, the second seat freshman in the Department of Magic, was dressed in her school uniform.
Attributes: Wind, Ice
But… Why is Kaya talking to me?
Is it to give advice like an old man, to work hard because I’m an unimportant Grade E?
If it’s Kaya, that could be the case since she’s nosy.
“No. 25 of Provisional 3rd Class, right?”
Was it because of the impression that a Grade E gave? She managed to remember my number.
“Ah yes, you remember my number?”
I just answered out of curiosity, but suddenly Kaya’s shoulders trembled.
“Uhh, I didn’t remember it because I was interested in you…!”
She turned her head sideways and answered in a timid tone.
Her face grew red with embarrassment. Kaya had a shy personality, so she reacted to even a hint of embarrassment like this, one could even call it a defense mechanism.
Wow, she’s really familiar. Is it because I saw her in the game?
I almost flashed her a smile that could only be described as fatherly. I had no reason to show such a smile, so I kept my mouth shut and looked at Kaya, waiting for her to speak.
Kaya cleared her throat and looked back at me.
“Do you remember me? From the same Provisional 3rd Class… Kaya Astrean.”
“Yes, because you’re the second seat.”
Suddenly, there was an awkward air.
What is this feeling? Was there anything strange about what I just said?
Kaya Astrean was the second daughter of the Duke of Astrean, who was responsible for managing the western part of this country, Zelvere.
She was, in other words, a high-ranking aristocrat, whose name was known by all.
On the other hand, I was a commoner without a surname.
Her status was too high for me to just say, ‘I remember you because you’re the second seat.’
It would have been natural if I had added something like ‘I remember you because you are from the Astrean family’.
Do I have to be polite now?
‘It’s an honor to talk to you…?’ No, it’s a bit too much.
“What is your name, by any chance?”
Kaya immediately blew away my worries by asking a single question.
Kaya repeated my name twice as if to clearly engrave it into her mind.
I was both flattered and thankful for her reaction.
I felt like I had made a huge mistake by forgetting to add the ‘Daughter of the Duke’s family’ part, but it seems like my worries were needless since Kaya was too kind to bully me.
The real problem was the students who occasionally stole glances at me and Kaya as they passed.
They tried to infer the contents of the conversation by reading our lips.
‘Did Kaya just talk to a Grade E commoner…?’
‘Is she here to call him pathetic because he’s Grade E?’
‘It’s Lady Kaya, she probably came to say something ‘because he was so pitiful’.’
It seemed that their conversation was roughly going this way.
The situation where the second seat freshman of the Magic Department, and the daughter of the Astrean family with Grade B+ mana spoke to the weakest freshman with Grade E mana, and was a commoner, was simply absurd.
What should I do…?
It was unnatural, but would it be better to bow down at a right angle and say, ‘Nice to meet you, Lady of the dignified Duke Family!’
“Isaac, I’ll ask you straightforwardly… Why are you hiding your identity?”
…What does she mean by that?
“What are you talking about?”
“You can’t hide it from me. You’re hiding your identity, aren’t you?”
Kaya looked nervous.
What kind of bullshit is this.
…No way? Wait a minute.
‘…I get it.’
Kaya must have witnessed me defeat ‘Trevion the Evil.’
‘Could it be that, then…?’
The next memory that came to my mind was yesterday’s mana evaluation.
When Professor Fernando said something about an ‘Archwizard’ being able to deceive the maximum amount of mana, I remembered the look Kaya had on her face.
If it was true that she witnessed the scene of me defeating Trevion, then the expression on her face was quite convincing.
I showed overwhelming power in front of Kaya, yet according to the mana meter, my mana was only Grade E… Anyone would look at the two events and think it was ridiculous.
…Wait, could it be that? Does she think I am a genius among geniuses who has reached the level of an Archwizard?
“The realm of an Archwizard… You can hide your own mana, right?”
Kaya ask quietly on purpose so that no one could hear.
My head was throbbing…
Kaya felt inferior to Luce, but she had a tendency to harbor admiration for people whom she found out of her reach. Perhaps I was seen as the latter.
She was someone who blindly followed such people.
Yes, this girl who appeared flawless, was in reality a fool among fools.
First of all, Kaya’s misunderstanding was troublesome for me since I needed to be regarded as a ‘weak commoner’ by people unconditionally in the beginning, but if she suddenly started saying things like ‘Isaac is actually strong’ people’s perception of me might change.
As Isaac, I need a reason to be Mateo’s subordinate for a while.
‘The most dangerous problem is…’
Whether or not the fact that ‘I’ defeated the demon was reported to the school.
If reported, it would be a very serious issue.
‘…I guess not.’
But I concluded immediately that it wasn’t the case.
If my contribution in defeating the demon had been reported, the academy would have made a big deal out of it and rewarded me.
In particular, ‘Alice’, one of the most powerful people in the academy and the president of the student council, wouldn’t have stayed still. If she had heard the news, she would have tried to approach me in any way possible.
If you looked at the story of ❰Magic Knight of Märchen❱, Alice couldn’t touch Ian, the main character, rashly because he came from the Fairytale Viscount family.
But, it wouldn’t matter even if she killed an insignificant commoner like me at any time.
In other words, Alice was unaware of the fact that I had defeated the demon.
‘You didn’t say anything?’
Why is that?
…Even if it would cause me a headache later, it seems I needed to go along with this fool’s misunderstanding.
A momentary silence descended upon us as I carefully thought of my next words.
After closing my eyes and opening them, I sighed quietly and spoke with a serious expression.
“Did you tell anyone about me?”
An age-old cliché, a nerd that hides their power. In short, someone who pretends to be powerless. I decided to imitate that role.
“No, that… I reported it to the academy the same day the demon appeared at the entrance ceremony, but I said I didn’t know who killed the demon, on purpose.”
I tried to endure the tingling of my hands and limbs and looked at Kaya.
Perhaps understanding the flow of the atmosphere, Kaya was clearly nervous. She seemed to think that her guess was correct.
“Because you seem to want to hide your power…”
‘Anyway, thank god she noticed.’
It was a relief that Kaya was very perceptive in matters like these.
She almost caused a game over without even knowing it.
I could roughly guess how the academy must have reacted to Kaya’s report.
In the setting of ❰Magic Knight of Märchen❱, demons were regarded as natural disasters. If it had already been dealt with, there was nothing more to look at.
The most important thing was ‘student safety’ and since everyone was safe beside the sole victim Ian, the only thing they would do is mark him for a few days and be done with it.
The academy’s staff members got in a lot of trouble because so many demons appeared in ❰Magic Knight of Märchen❱ thus holding the chairman accountable for the potential dangers of the situation and the inevitable commotion a demon brought.
Nevertheless, the academy’s staff members somehow manage to solve every problem so that it doesn’t interfere with the academy’s curriculum. They don’t get much attention despite the amount of important and troublesome tasks they have to take care of.
Alice must have been looking for the person who defeated the demon by now.
She was unaware of how demons were created, so she didn’t know when and where a demon would appear, however, she knew to an extent, that it was Nephid’s will that demons arose.
Nephid had a simple goal in mind when creating demons, and that was eliminating any potential threats to them.
So Alice had no choice but to look for the one who defeated the demon.
‘Let’s maintain this atmosphere for now.’
I closed my eyes and let out a deep sigh on purpose as I pretended to be annoyed.
“You said your name was Kaya, right?”
I opened my eyes and glared at her with a gaze that was even colder than death’s embrace.
“Don’t tell anyone about me.”
She resembled a cornered deer, trembling before a beast trying to devour her.
She was weak in front of someone who showed overwhelming skill that she wasn’t even close to matching.
…Let’s stop here.
If the player took Kaya’s lover route, she was imaginative enough to guess every word that would come from Ian’s mouth, which naturally caused her to think badly of herself.
I quietly left the place.
I had to run away before Kaya regained her senses and said anything else, and now that it was like this, I shouldn’t reveal my true identity.
Luckily, she still had a frightened expression on her face.
We spoke quietly, so the students watching us shouldn’t have heard what we were talking about.
‘But can I just leave it like this?’
Well, it’ll probably be fine.
“I was right…”
Kaya trembled like an aspen tree as she recalled her interaction with Isaac.
She shuddered like a lamb that felt the fear of death in front of a wolf.
The strength in her legs was giving out, and it seemed like even the slightest touch would cause her to collapse.
Her beating heart continued to race faster and faster as an intense fear rushed in like a tidal wave, gripping her entire body, and preventing her from moving.
A warning… That was a warning.
Isaac’s red eyes were the vibrant colour of blood.
When the image of him crushing a powerful demon merged with the hostility she had seen earlier today, it became a source of fear for her.
Isaac was definitely hiding his true identity and judging from their earlier conversation, he must have been pretending to be weak for whatever reason.
“What should I do…?”
Kaya blamed herself for trying to find out more about Isaac.
To him… She had gotten on his bad side…