After school the three girls talked idly at a corner of the courtyard.
When lunch had ended and they had to return to their classroom, they took the opportunity to get to know each other along the way.
After having gotten to know each other to some extent, Michelle proposed this.
“Hey, do you guys want to group up for training?” [Michelle]
At this school, the students had to form groups of 5 to 6 people for magic and sword training.
But because of personality issues, differences in perspectives, people with no sense of competitiveness, and nobles who did not want to be treated as equals with commoners, the grouping has been left to the students.
Nobles would group up with other nobles. Commoners would group up with other commoners. And even if some students didn’t follow that, they would still only form groups with those they acknowledged. Doing things that way minimized the odds of problems occurring or the group breaking up.
But in the instance where there are still students with no groups left and the time given has already passed, the leftover students will be made to form a group regardless of social standing and/or add them into an existing group that lacks numbers. In those cases, the social standing of the students aren’t taken into consideration. After all, the school has always remained steadfast on their policy not to discriminate students by their social status.
But in that case, it’s not hard to imagine that the students forcefully grouped together might end up with a terrible experience. If two ruffians were to be put in the same group, then the only thing the people within the group could do would be to pray they got along.
Although Elia and Michelle would by no means be treated coldly, if there was someone they got along well, it would of course still be best to form a group with such people. That’s why Michelle suggested to group up, and Elia and Miyabi also agreed.
“But in that case, we’ll need two to three more people. After all, the groups need to be 5 to 6 people each.” [Elia]
“That’s right. If we don’t fill the whole group up, the students without a group will be pushed into ours.” [Michelle]
“Do the two of you know anyone who doesn’t care about status and doesn’t have a bad personality?” [Miyabi]
“I can think of one such person.” [Michelle]
“Riera Clifford. The eldest daughter of Baron Clifford.” [Michelle]
“Baron Clifford… If I recall correctly, he used to be a knight, but was promoted due to his achievements. The Clifford family is known for producing brilliant knights every generation.” [Miyabi]
“Exactly. Although she’s a little proud and fussy about rules, she’s not the sort of person to look down on other people because of their social standing and will acknowledge others if they have the skill. She treats every student equally.” [Michelle]
“She certainly fits the bill. Are you acquainted with her?” [Elia]
“There was a time when we met frequently. But then I became busy with my studies and my hobby research, while Riera was busy with her training, so we were no longer able to meet as frequently.” [Michelle]
It was in this way that the three of them decided to invite Riera Clifford to their group.
The three girls headed to the training area for swordsmen.
When they arrived, Michelle pointed to a corner of the training area.
“She’s over there. Let’s go.” [Michelle]
At the place Michelle pointed at was a girl who’d tied her hair into a bundle behind her and was completely focused on swinging her sword. There was a dignified atmosphere about her.
She was tall for her age and her face stood out from the crowd as she was quite the beauty.
Although there were a lot of male students watching her from a distance, Michelle called out to her.
“Riera, can you spare me a minute?” [Michelle]
“Michelle? What’s the matter? And those girls are…” [Riera]
“W-What’s with that guy?” [Male Student 1]
“He actually has two girls with him…” [Male Student 2]
“And yet he’s still calling out to Clifford-san?” [Male Student 3]
“Such a daring guy despite his frail body.” [Male Student 4]
“He’s like a woman. Ah, wait a moment. When you look at his face… Huh? Is that a guy?” [Male Student 5]
“Could he be a girl… Hmm?” [Male student 6]
“…Anyway, let’s find some place to sit and talk.” [Michelle]
Under the impolite gaze of so many and being the object of misunderstanding, Michelle took Riera and brought her out of the training area. Elia and Miyabi followed them to an unpopular resting area.
They sat themselves on the benches and explained the situation that led them to find her.
“I see. So you came to invite me? Thank you. I would love to join your group of three.” [Riera]
“That’s great!” [Michelle]
Elia and Miyabi were elated, but Miyabi calmly asked Riera.
“Are you sure you’re okay with us? From what I’ve heard, you have the top grades in swordsmanship and have been invited by several groups already.” [Miyabi]
“It’s true that I’ve been invited, but they’re all groups I can’t find myself liking. It’s obvious they just want to use me as a tool to improve their grades. And there were so many that didn’t even bother to hide their lewd stares… And besides, I can’t stand people that look down and act against commoners. I don’t want to be friends with those who mistakenly see their hubris as the pride of the nobles.” [Riera]
Riera wore her youth and her zeal on her chest as she said that. Although still a student, her heart and mind were already that of a brilliant knight.
Like this Riera was able to join them. Unfortunately, they didn’t know who to invite next.