The day after Ark came, the second year students returned from their training.
Some of them were in pretty bad shape.
Well, their faces, anyway.
Not that they were hideous, or anything.
They just looked tired.
The dormitory became very noisy all at once. I could hear voices coming from every direction and the sounds of footsteps down the halls.
Now, all of my roommates were here.
The two new people I would be rooming with were Thane Morton, a thin young man, and Marty Gil, who always looked cheerful.
Apparently, they stayed at an inn near the Shadow Moon Road on their last day, but every other day had been spent camping outdoors.
We would have to do the same next year, after acquiring our dragons.
“I see. So it was your first time training with your dragons.”
Ark nodded as if understood it completely. He was talking to Thane, who seemed to be the less tired of the two.
So, the rooms were used by both first and second-year students after all.
Apparently, we would be organized like this during specific classes as well.
“There are mixed classes? Really?”
“Of course. You will acquire a dragon in the new year. Do you think that you will suddenly be able to ride it after you’ve been sitting on your ass the whole time?”
“No… I see. So we will be practicing dragon-riding then?”
“Unlike horses, dragons do not easily let anyone that is not its master ride it. In fact, it would be nearly impossible to do it without the Dragon Master’s permission.”
“I’ve heard of that. And if you approached one with malicious intentions, they will attack you.”
“I have never seen it happen, but it’s true that people say that. I was too scared to approach my father’s dragon when I was young.”
“Your father was a Dragon Master too, Thane?”
“He was. I come from a long line of military men. And from my father’s generation, we have added Dragon Master to that legacy.”
I had thought there was something stiff about him. So, a family of soldiers.
And two generations of Dragon Masters.
I told him that it was impressive, but learned that it wasn’t actually rare.
As the Dragon Mark appears when you are a child, you would be a good Dragon Master by the time your married and had children.
Perhaps it was their familiarity with dragons, but the mark often appeared on the children or grandchildren of Dragon Masters.
“They say we have a high affinity with dragons.”
“Is that right?”
It was like that in Makoku as well. The descendants of those who used magic tended to be able to use magic as well.
That’s why a lot of people had as many children as possible, so their bloodline would not die.
Perhaps in that way, Ryukoku and Makoku were the same.
On the other hand, Marty came from a family of merchants. And he had no plans of joining the military after graduation.
He was currently laying face down on his bed.
While he was on the plump side, he had apparently slimmed down since coming here.
“As far as I’m concerned, once I fulfill my duty and become a Dragon Master, there is no need to enter the rigid army.”
I see. Marty wanted to live freely. I agreed with him wholeheartedly.
“You call it ‘rigid,’ but considering the security that you’ll have, it’s the much better option. Being free is hard.”
As they had lived together for a year, there was an easiness to the way they talked to each other.
“It’s a difference in opinion. I already made up my mind.”
“Damn it, you are stubborn.”