Chapter 1 – Father's Arrival

 

 

I ran outside as soon as I heard Father. He was finally back after 6 months away from home. I’ve heard from Mother that he had received a promotion and was now working at the capital. When I saw him, a big smile appeared on my face as I ran to him.

 

“Father !”

“Ah, Zwölf ! You’ve grown quite a bit since I last saw you.”

“Of course. I’m almost 15 after all.”

“15 ? Haha that’s right. Is your Mother home too ?”

We came back inside of our house together. Mother was waiting inside of her laboratory, preparing a potion. When she saw Father, she made a surprised face and embraced him.

 

Mother is an Alchemist. We live in a small town called Aldenaf, at the limits of the Porcephone Empire. In this small town, we lack of a lot of things and a healer is one of them. In most towns, there is at least one Elf that works as healer using the Elf’s Healing Magic but our village probably doesn’t have enough inhabitants to attract an Elf. Therefore, whenever a villager gets an injury, they go to Mother’s shop to get treated or buy a potion. I heard from the other villagers that she’s quite skilled in alchemy so she’s quite relied on and respected. It makes me proud to be her son.

Father on the other side is a regular soldier who was placed in this town to protect it against monsters. And when I say “regular”, I should rather say very clumsy. He fell in love with Mother after getting treated by her multiple times after his patrols, or so I heard. He isn’t too skilled which is why he often gets injured by medium level monsters that most guards can defeat rather easily.

Nevertheless, I was sent on an errand in a nearby town by Mother to collect some ingredients 6 months ago and it was at that time that Father was summoned to the capital by the Emperor to be appointed as the new Patrol Leader. Don’t ask me why he is the one who got chosen, I’ve got no idea either. I wasn’t there when he was summoned; I heard that from Mother late that day.

I was happy that he had come back for my birthday. 2 days left and I would finally be 15. 15 is the age at which one can get married in the Porcephone Empire and is also the age at which one is officially considered as an adult. Needless to say, I was overjoyed with the fact that Father had at least been able to come back to celebrate my birthday.

 

“How long are you staying, dear ?

“Only 4 days. I’ve had a lot more work now that I’m the Patrol Leader so 4 days is as long as I can stay away from the capital.”

“Oh what a shame. Well at least we’ll be able to celebrate Zwölf’s birthday as a family.”

“Yeah ! Is Hell here too ?”

“Yes, he was training in the garden.”

 

Hell is my little brother. We’re 2 years apart. When I was born, Father tried to teach me sword techniques but be it because of my inability to properly handle a sword or his clumsy teaching… it didn’t go well. Hell on the other side has been showing great success in handling the sword and even though he is only 13, he already defeats Father in mock battles. Despite this, he doesn’t get cocky and keeps training hard.

 

Since I couldn’t see any future in me being an imperial guard or anything military-related, I started studying in our library. After having read all the books at home, I started spending time in the town’s library. Although most books at home were about Alchemy, one was about history of Magic. This book talked about how an Elf called Arcadeus taught the world how to use magic. Even though he was said to have lived 500 years ago, there is apparently no record of his death. According to the book, he is still living in Dorua.

After learning that much, I became quite intrigued by “Magic”. I could somehow feel the flow of Mana inside of me although up until now, I had never considered manipulating it. Although the book talked about the basic concept behind creating a fireball, it lacked actual explanation on how to create one. I learnt later that fireballs are actually an advanced level spell, not something a total beginner like me could handle.

All this was 6 months ago, when Father left home. I came to realise that I wouldn’t stay at home all my life either and I needed to devote myself to something in order to make a living out of it, as children are expected to have left home when they reach 16 years old. 1 year and a half was all I had left to find something to live on.

 

5 months ago, I started visiting the town’s library regularly and one day I borrowed a book and practiced in the garden at the spot where Hell usually hits a scarecrow. The book taught me that wind Magic was the easiest to use and recommended that I made use of the Cindril contained in the air to launch a spell called 『Wind Cut』.

First I needed to calm myself up to a point where I was able to grasp the fact that I was surrounded by Cindril. Then I focused myself on the Wind Cindril contained in the air before me. Once I was able to do that, it was a piece of cake. All I had left to do was to let some of my Mana flow towards the Wind Cindril, shape it into a Moon Crescent and throw it towards the Scarecrow. At first, I thought I had failed as nothing happened. After a few seconds though, I finally realised the extent of the power of 『Wind Cut』 as the upper half of the scarecrow fell on the ground.

Apparently, no one bothered firing spells without making use of Cindril because it cost too much Mana. One would have to replicate the elemental Cindril using their own Mana which was the most expensive part. If one’s Mana was exhausted, one would faint and wake up when the Mana would have replenished to a safe level. This could only be done by drinking Mana potions or sleeping. It is however impossible to know exactly how much Mana one has, or at least a mean to do that is yet unknown. Although it is widely recognised that the order for Mana amount goes like this :

 

Elf  >  Monster  >  Half  > Human  >  Dwarf  >  Orc

 

To be truthful, Orcs have such a weak perception of Magic that they can barely use any, even when using Cindril. On the other hand, Elves have a very large quantity of Mana that allows them to use spells on an almost continuous level although even they depend on Cindril for their spells.

When I tried to test how it felt to not use Cindril, I tried to launch another 『Wind Cut』 using only my Mana. It took me half an hour to realise that from the very beginning, I was only molding raw Magic and therefore it was all wasted efforts. Since it was considered useless, none of the books at the Town’s library taught me how to create elemental Magic using my Mana. Maybe they didn’t know ? I’d have to find out on my own or else find someone who knew (although the chances were very small).

 

 

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