“Work… Tabuchi-kun, the report is underway…” [Ryouma]
Ryouma woke up under the shade of the trees, deep inside the forest. Just as the gods told him, his body had returned to his tens. When he woke up, he was leaning on a tree with a set of hemp clothes on.
Ryouma woke up muttering. As he did, he looked around him, still half-dazed.
“A forest? It wasn’t a dream, I see…” [Ryouma]
As the scent of the earth and the wind wafted to Ryouma’s nose, he gradually remembered why he was here.
“Oh, right… I’m in another world. Hmm?” [Ryouma]
Ryouma noticed a leather bag and a book the size of a notebook placed in front of him. When he looked at the cover of the book, on it were words from a language clearly not Japanese. It read: Letter. The sender seemed to be the three gods who invited him to this world.
“Gayn, Kufo, Rurutia…” [Ryouma]
As Ryouma read out the names written down, he recalled the gods he met.
(They already explained things to me before sending me off. They even gave me knowledge and power. Yet they still went the extra mile and left me this letter. I guess it’s a lot closer to a manual than a letter, though…”)
Turning the book, he saw three things written on the first page.
The first thing written was about the world.
This world is known as Seiruforu. There is a place known as Gana Forest in the Riforu Kingdom. Monsters are relatively rare here, making it a safer place compared to other forests.
The second thing written was about Ryouma’s current situation. Though the forest was safe, it wasn’t perfectly safe, so the gods suggested that Ryouma go to a livable place as soon as possible. The gods included a small map.
The last page was bound tight, and on it read: “Read the next page only once you’ve arrived at the designated area.”
Ryouma smiled at the gods’ graciousness, then Ryouma stood up. When he did, he felt an odd sensation attack him.
“My body really has turned into that of a kid’s… Ryouma Takebayashi, 39-years-old, single, occupation: systems engineer. The only thing I have left is my memory. Reminds me of a certain detective.”
Ryouma might have heard the gods inform him of what will happen beforehand, but he still couldn’t help be shocked when he actually saw his body back to that of a kid’s. When he was sure nothing was off, he started moving his body.
Ryouma slowly moved his body, starting with the simple opening and closing of his hands and the bending of his legs, then he started stretching. Gradually, he made more complex movements. When he was finally able to perform the martial feats his father had taught him in his past life, he stopped.
Ryouma turned toward a nearby tree, then as his eyes narrowed, he sent a sharp kick toward its trunk.
An explosive sound resounded throughout the forest as the tree Ryouma kicked easily broke, causing the birds resting on the nearby trees to flee. In the ensuing panic, some of the birds even fell. Meanwhile, Ryouma calmly pondered on what had just happened.
(Strange… My current strength is either equal or greater than it once was. It doesn’t make any sense, but for some reason my body moves a lot easier. Of course, the reach has significantly been reduced, but… In any case, it seems the only thing I’ll have to get used to is the reach problem. Walking or running doesn’t seem like it’ll be any trouble, but as for the rest, I’ll have to catch up with my new body first.)
With that, Ryouma went back to the tree beneath which he had been sleeping and took a good look at the map. On the map were two locations pinned. One indicated where he currently was, while the other indicated his destination. After gauging the distance, he stored the map into the bag. At the same time, he noticed there was a knife left for him, so he placed it by his waist for easy access, then he walked to the place the gods told him to go.
2 hours later.
Along the way, Ryouma came across some “monsters”, living organisms that didn’t exist on Earth, but they were all weak and ran away on their own, so Ryouma just ignored them.
With his small legs, it would take him a considerable amount of time to traverse the distance he needed, but thanks to the knowledge the gods had given him, he was able to identify the herbal and edible plants along the way, making things that much more convenient for him.
After walking through the dimly lit forest, Ryouma finally arrived at its depths. As the trees opened up and bare rocks were revealed, Ryouma was greeted by a cliff. When he was certain that he was safe, he put down his belongings and did as the letter instructed him.
“Oh? There’s a river nearby? This should be a good place to settle down.”
Ryouma would mutter to himself from time to time as he read his letter. He wasn’t even thinking of going out of the forest, as he was intending to live in the forest first just as he had discussed with the gods.
“There seems to be a tent provided, but I think a cave would be better considering there are monsters and all.”
With a tent, even a big animal would be enough to cause Ryouma trouble, so he approached the cliff and placed his index finger on the surface of the rock while he read the letter. On the page of the letter were instructions regarding the usage of “magic”.
“The first step is to calm down, then one is to gather inside his body… Like this? …My body fills like it’s being filled with water like a balloon or something, ugh…”
Though Ryouma complained with his mouth, he was still somewhat happy and excited, so he couldn’t help but smile.
However, while he might have indulged himself with otaku hobbies like light novels and games, and while he might have imagined himself using magic countless times during break, Ryouma has never actually used magic.
“Umm… After sensing magic in the body, I am to… move it by imagining it moving, and I am supposed to direct it outside. There.”
Ryouma read the instructions aloud as he tried to follow them, giving off an atmosphere akin to that of an old man struggling with technology. As he imagined magic flowing out of his fingertips, magic power began to flow out.
Magic has 12 elements. They are:
Neutral, Fire, Water, Wind, Earth.
Ice, Electricity, Wood, Poison.
Light, Darkness, Space.
Mages are able to change the element of their magic power according to the image within their mind, and then invocate a spell with a chant.
When Ryouma read that part, he chose the earth spell out of the many spells listed in the letter.
“Magic power shall flow into the cliff and the crumbling rocks shall… ‘Break Rock’.”
With a clear image, Ryouma chanted those last two words, and suddenly, though only a little, a small hole was hollowed in the part of the cliff he was touching. It was only small enough for about three index fingers to fit in, making it more like a dent than an actual hole, but when Ryouma saw the spell take effect, he couldn’t help but laugh to himself.
(How long has it been since I last enjoyed myself? I was always pulling all-nighters and overtimes and accompanying my boss to drink… It’s not like I never had any time for leisure, but… Yeah, it’s been awhile, hasn’t it? Since I last felt like this.)
Though Ryouma kept a tight watch on his surroundings, he casted Break Rock after Break Rock with a foolish expression on his face.
Tl Note: I’ll release the next part tomorrow. There’ll still be another chapter after both parts have been released.