In the mines north of Gimuru, we are once again hard at training. However, the master of the mine, Ryouma-kun isn’t around. He had work today, so we borrowed the place, and are training hard by ourselves.
He did suggest to take a break for the day, but we wanted to learn as much as we can while we’re here, so we rejected the offer. Because of that, we’re working hard, training by ourselves. Oh, but it’s currently break time though. All work and no rest wouldn’t do us any good, so we have to make sure to take ample rest.
I drank the tea before me, then I rested for a breath or two.
“You seem to be doing well today, Michelle.” [Elia]
“It took me a week, but I think I’ve finally gotten the hang of it. I’m still failing once every five times though.” [Michelle]
The magic called ‘Heat’ is really efficient. It can quickly heat up an object with just a small amount of magic power. But that’s also the reason why it’s easy to use too much magic power… Ryouma-kun said it’s convenient since he no longer needs to go to the kitchen just to make tea, but because it’s so efficient, it’s actually quite difficult to use. It’s a lot faster than boiling water normally, so if I could get used to it, it could be really useful. Unfortunately, I’m still ways off… Still, it’s undoubtedly interesting.
Ever since a young age, I’ve always been more knowledgeable at magic compared to other noble children. My grades in theory and practical ability are all exceptional. At the very least, I’m top 1 in class. It might be because of my father’s influence, but somehow someway, I naturally turned out like this. So when I see a magic I’ve never heard of before, I can’t help but be interested.
But at the same time… that begs a question. Just who in the world is Ryouma-kun?
He is Elia’s friend and a year younger than me. He is a master magician and martial artist, and at the same time, there is also the possibility that he knows Alchemy. He is also a slime researcher, and a skilled merchant. He’s good at inventing things… These are the first things that comes to mind when I think of him. I guess it can’t be helped. The more I try to think of a way to ask him about Alchemy, more and more questions pop out.
“Michelle? Is something the matter?” [Miyabi]
“Are you thinking about something again?” [Elia]
“Right… I just can’t help but wonder, just who exactly is Ryouma? I know he’s not a bad person, but there’s no doubting that he’s really mysterious…” [Michelle]
“Well, that’s true. Although, it is a bit late to be saying that.” [Elia]
There is one thing that comes to mind though… And that’s that Ryouma is actually a “Child of God,” just like those from the legends. (?) If Ryouma-kun is actually a Child of God, then his abilities and strength could be attributed to his power as a Child of God. While that doesn’t really explain anything, I could at least come to terms with it. Also, from what I’ve been told, Elia first met him in a forest where he’s been living all alone by himself. That matches the description spoken of when the Children of God appears before humans.
But the Children of God only appear once every few hundred years. Moreover, only one. Though in some extremely rare cases, two. Regardless, the chance of meeting one in this world is absurdly low. The nobles once put up an orphanage after finding out the Children of God appear as orphans, but in the end, they couldn’t find any, and they suffered great losses. Some say that they even went bankrupt.
But from that, is it even realistic to think that there could be someone with talent comparable to that of a Child of God? The Sage, Melia-sama, and the Martial God, Teagle-sama… Those two exceptional people were born, so it’s certainly not impossible for people rivalling the power of a Child of God to appear. I don’t know how accurate the legends regarding the Children of God are, but…
“It doesn’t really matter who Ryouma-kun is though.” [Riera]
“Like hell it doesn’t matter!!” [Michelle]
“Bringing up a topic, then going silent, while your brain catches fire as you start thinking a lot.” [Riera]
“Ah, sorry, it’s my bad habit again. Still, you sure understand me well, Riera. As expected, I guess.” [Michelle]
“Well, there were plenty of instances before, so… Anyway, what has you thinking so much?” [Riera]
“Hmm… Well, I am curious who Ryouma-kun is, but I think it also doesn’t matter after all. More than that, I’m more curious about his magic.” [Michelle]
“You’re the same as ever, huh? Being concerned about Ryouma-kun’s magic.” [Kanan]
“If I were to put it simply, it’s the way he conceptualizes things. He’s only a bit different from normal magicians, but that’s also what makes him interesting.” [Michelle]
For example, when he first thought us ‘Heat’, he did not heat the target with a fire made of magic, but simply focused on increasing the temperature itself. Normally, a person would immediately think of fire when he wants to heat something – which, by the way, I would find perfectly reasonable.
He also showed us several different magic yesterday, but each and every one of them were intriguing.
Aside from heat, he also had various other magic, such as ‘Crack’, which applied the earth magic, Break Rock, to create a fissure inside stone walls, allowing him to dismantle buildings. He also had the magic, ‘Stone Cutting’, a magic that allows one to cut out stone useable for construction from boulders. Or the magic, “Ridge’, which controls the earth in the fields, allowing one to create a ridge.
Those were all magic meant for either farm work or quarry work… It’s true that there are certainly people who use magic in that industry, but even a magician wouldn’t bother to create everything with magic. Besides, farm work and quarry work can both be done even without magic. There’re rarely anyone who would purposely go out of his way to create a new magic just to do those things.
And that’s exactly why I can’t help but see him as an eccentric man.
“You know I could actually listen to you guys forever.” [???]
As I was speaking my thoughts to the others, I heard a voice from the entrance.
“I’m home~” [Ryouma]
“Huh? Ryouma-kun?” [Michelle]
“Are you in the middle of your break? You must’ve been training hard. (?) I finished my work earlier than expected, so I took a stroll around town, then I went back home.” [Ryouma]
As Ryouma said that, a trace of fatigue could be seen on his face.
“Is there something the matter?” [Elia]
“A little. I dropped by the Adventurer’s Guild, and somehow, I ended up being scheduled for my B Rank promotion exam.” [Ryouma]
“Oh! Congratulations!” [Elia]
“So you’ll be a B Rank adventurer soon. Congratulations, Ryouma-dono. It seems you’ll also be joining the ranks of the first-class adventurers.” [Riera]
“You’re all going too fast, I’m still a C Rank, you know.” [Ryouma]
“Since it’s you, Ryouma-sama, I’m sure you’ll past the test just fine. Here, have some tea.” [Sebasu]
“Thank you very much.” [Ryouma]
The reason behind his fatigue didn’t seem to only be because of the promotion exam, but Ryouma-kun didn’t look like he wanted to talk about it, so no one pursued, and Sebasu-san offered him tea.
“Are you done for the day?” [Kanan]
“Ah… I’ll be resting for a while, but I’ll be making food for the goblins later. So I’ll have to gather some ingredients.” [Ryouma]
“Then in that case, let me help.” [Elia]
“If there’s anything I can do, let me help too.” [Michelle]
The other three also said the same thing as they offered their help.
“Is it really alright?” [Ryouma]
“You’ve helped us a lot, after all.” [Riera]
“Thank you.” [Ryouma]
And after Ryouma finished drinking tea, the first job he left to us was to gather the mutated crops.
“Mutated Crops? That doesn’t sound very good. Surely, you’re not talking about the claymore corns, right?” [Kanan]
“Don’t worry, I’ll gather the Claymore Corns myself. You five will be handling the weaker ones. They’ll only be running away when you try to gather them, so at most, it’ll just be a bit annoying.” [Ryouma]
Crops that can run!? What in the world’s that supposed to be!?
“Sebasu-san knows the place, he’ll take you there.” [Ryouma]
As Ryouma-kun said that, he used dimension magic, and vanished.
“Let us be on our way then.” [Sebasu]
Sebasu-san used his dimension magic as well, and he took us to Ryouma-kun’s laboratory. The room was wide, and there was no ceiling. Wind would blow in freely as the sun’s rays lit the place bright… In fact, with the surrounding walls, the place looked a lot closer to a courtyard. On the soft earth could be seen verdant flowery vines extending a meter forward and backward. There were too many vines to count, but they were clearly over a thousand of them.
“Are these the crops that Ryouma-san was talking about?” [Elia]
“Yes, this is one of the crops Ryouma-sama mutated. He calls it, the Snake Gobo. (?) If this magical beast were to be ranked, it would be F Rank. It’s always extending vines out of the ground, so it’s easy to fight. It’s fighting power is also virtually nil.” [Sebasu]
“Do we just pull it out?” [Elia]
“Yes. It’ll try to come back under the ground once you do, but as long as you cut at the boundaries of the vines and the roots, then it’ll stop moving.” [Sebasu]
As Sebasu-san said that, he nimbly caught a vine, and pulled it out. At the end of the vine was a snake-like wriggling object that resembled a tree’s roots. No, actually, those ARE roots. As soon as Sebasu-san took that vine, the surrounding vines all ran at the speed of an adult human.
“They can really run…” [Miyabi]
“Ladies, please use these baskets.” [Sebasu]
Who knows where he pulled it out from, but Sebasu-san brought out some baskets. We carried those on our backs, and we started chasing after the vines. When we caught one, we would put them in the basket. Time passed, and we continued to work, but…
“Haa… Haa…” [Elia]
“This job is really simple, but… It’s actually quite difficult…” [Miyabi]
Elia and Miyabi didn’t have much strength, so they’re having a hard time. We can’t surround the vines with the six of us, so even I’m starting to get tired… On the other hand, Riera and Kanan are treating this like exercise as they caught vine after vine. Sebasu-san’s also having an easy time with his dimension magic.
We naturally split the work of processing and catching. Then after continuing this process as we took turns–––
“Well done. It seems you’ve caught quite a bit.” [Ryouma]
“Ryouma-kun!? Since when did you–––“ [Michelle]
“Oh, sorry. Did I surprise you? I used dimension magic.” [Ryouma]
It looks like he wasn’t trying to scare me, but if you call out to me from behind, of course, I’ll be scared… I couldn’t even hear your footsteps too… As I said that, he lightly bowed his head to me. Then after taking a look at the Snake Gobos we’ve caught, he called out to the others.
“This is enough! Thank you very much for your help!” [Ryouma]
I tried counting the total number of Snake Gobo, and it turned out to total to about 400. Ryouma-kun took all those into his Dimension Home, then he teleported to the tunnel he uses as a wine cellar. Apparently, Ryouma’s been buying an amazing amount of liquor.
He took barrel after barrel from his Dimension Home. It came to a point when he went past 20 barrels.
“Ryouma-kun, just how many did you buy?” [Michelle]
“I bought about 50 barrels today. The owner of the liquor shop needs some help maintaining his storehouse, so he sells these to me for cheap.” [Ryouma]
Even then, I think you’re still buying too much… Around this time, a bottle made out of rock that was sitting in a corner of the wine cellar on a shelf caught my eye. This is also probably wine, but is there a store that sells wine in rock bottles?
“That’s the wine Ryouma-sama makes as a hobby.” [Sebasu]
Sebasu-san said that when he noticed me looking toward the rock bottle on the shelf.
“Ryouma-kun, you can even make wine?” [Michelle]
“I make them with a mixture of the slime’s alcohol and fruit juices or medical liquor. I also sometimes make them with magic, but then the taste is a bit unpredictable.” [Ryouma]
Making wine with magic!? I’ve heard of people making wine as their family business, but I’ve never heard of anyone making wine with magic!
“What kind of magic is that?” [Michelle]
My voice clearly resounded in the tunnel, and Ryouma, having finally finished unloading all of his baskets, answered.
“It all started a few years ago when I fought against a magical beast that could use a kind of dark magic that would cause metal to rust. I tried recreating its magic, and from that, I found a way to spur the reaction to occur.” [Ryouma]
Magic that makes metal rust can make alcohol?
“…In other words?” [Michelle]
“Hmm… How should I explain it… Even if I don’t use magic, as long as I leave metal around it’ll rust. But with the magic, ‘Reaction’, I can make it rust faster. But the only thing that’ll rust is metal. Meat and vegetables on the other hand will–––“
If you leave meat and vegetable lying around… I know! They’ll rot! So in their case, they’ll rot faster. And spoilage and fermentation – just like medicine and poison – is only a question of how the person uses it.
“So in other words, you’re using that magic to ferment the ingredients and brew alcohol.” [Michelle]
When I said that, Ryouma replied with a ‘Correct’ as he clapped his hands.
“The taste changes with the extent of the fermentation. Sometimes, a bad odor would be left too. I’ve tried out different ingredients, but the results were all a matter of luck. I can’t make a lot, so I only work on it when I feel like it. I’ve also tried making liquor with ingredients other than grapes…
There’re also products I was able to make well once, but couldn’t make again.
…Even though if I included that in in the ingredients when I made it, I could’ve made more.” [Ryouma]
Ryouma seemed frustrated as he remembered something, but after that, he snapped himself back, and he talked about his magic. Apparently, there’s another magic opposite of ‘Reaction’. A light magic known as ‘Preservation’ which fights against deterioration. Miyabi’s curiosity was also piqued when she caught wind of the topic, so she also joined in the conversation.
Meanwhile, the three girls, Riera, Kanan, and Elia, were quietly waiting on the side while Ryouma was explaining. When Ryouma finished explaining, he remembered them, and he quickly apologized, but the three didn’t really mind.
…Ah, come to think of it, I’m also a culprit. Looks like I also lost myself when the topic turned to magic. But I still have a lot I want to talk about. I wonder if we’ll have enough time during our stay…