Chapter 5 – White Porcelain Watch
– The Ardenfeld Kingdom.
This country, which neighbored the undeveloped lands where monsters lived, was known as having the most advanced magic techniques in the whole western continent.
The level of its Magic Education Institution was among the best in the world.
And within that, only a special few who were geniuses and the elite, could pass through that narrow door to become a Royal Magician.
When I was young, I had also dreamed of becoming one.
I still remember writing, ‘I will become a Royal Magician!’ in a year book once.
That brightest star that was so, so far away.
I wanted to get close and touch it.
And so when I looked at my name carved into the pocket watch, I couldn’t help but smile.
“That’s amazing! It’s real! This is real, Luke!”
“Of course, it is. No one would have prepared a fake one.”
“You don’t understand. Hmph. I am moved. Moved!”
The pocket watch that is given to you with your identification was proof that you were a Royal Magician.
“Having this was my dream for so long. But I never thought that this day would come.”
It was an old dream that I felt forced to give up.
But now, it was a reality…!
As I held the watch preciously, which was decorated with porcelain, to my chest, Luke said,
“Aren’t you getting a little too excited over some white porcelain?”
“Some white porcelain… This is why geniuses are so…”
“It’s not a matter of talent, but awareness. You can’t be satisfied just because you’ve become one. This is only the beginning.”
“You may be right, but…”
There were 10 ranks for Royal Magicians.
1st – Magus Rank
2nd – Adamnatite Rank
3rd – Mithril Rank
4th – Gold Rank
5th – Silver Rank
6th – Bronze Rank
7th – Ruby Rank
8th – Emerald Rank
9th – Obsidian Rank
10th – White Porcelain Rank
The higher the rank, the higher your salary and your position within the organization.
Considering that I was at the lowest, perhaps what Luke said was true.
It was because he felt that way that he was able to rise more quickly than anyone else.
“It really is astonishing that you became the youngest Adamantite Rank Magician.”
“I’ll reach the highest rank as well. Of course, at record speed.”
“Where does this confidence come from?”
“It’s more pride than confidence, I think. Besides, I don’t think I am behind them, in terms of ability.”
“You’d go that far, huh…”
There were only seven Magus Rank Magicians in the kingdom.
If you became one, you would be of the highest rank in the magic world, and your name would be written in history books.
And he was seriously trying to reach that level.
Once again, I was astounded at how much my old friend had grown. But then he smiled at me and said,
“And since you are my buddy, you cannot be satisfied with white porcelain. Understand?”
As unbelievable as it was, I was now going to be working with an Adamantite Rank Magician.
“I-I will do my best.”
“Well, I’m sure you will do just fine.”
“I don’t think that I’ll be fine at all.”
“Perhaps I know you better than you know yourself.”
What a brazen thing to say.
No, I don’t think you know anything, Luke.
I was not even able to make it in the countryside as a Magic Artificer. I’m just a bottom of the barrel Magician.
Indeed, when it came to studying and training, I did twice as much as anyone else. So there must be areas that I excel at.
Well, I would like to believe that it’s the case.
“Still, I was quite surprised. The thought of you working at a Magic Artificer Guild. Noelle, weren’t magic enchantments your most hated subject?”
“Yes, I cannot tell you how much I hated it. It was the only exam I ever failed…”
“You would charge them with too much mana and would crush the artifacts into dust. The teachers began to fear you and call you the ‘God of Destruction.’’
“It was a rather powerful-sounding name, and I actually liked being called that.”
“So, why did you end up in such a place then?”
“I thought that I would be able to grow as a Magician if I did something I wasn’t good at. After all, I was rather full of myself after having graduated from such a prestigious magic academy.”
I had a burning passion and felt that if I worked hard in the countryside, they would surely accept me.
And so I would do what I could to contribute to the workplace and suggest improvements, and accept jobs that were falling behind.
I even used some technical terms that made me look smart. Something I’m quite embarrassed about now.
“However, they wouldn’t let me craft the low-ranking magic items, which was my weak spot. Just the smallest distraction and I would break them, which was quite stressful. But I practiced so much and can do it quite well now.”
Upon hearing this, Luke put his hand to his mouth and said quietly,
“I see. So that’s why that Magic Artificer Guild has been so successful recently.”
“Huh? Sorry, I did not hear you.”
“It’s nothing. However, I think I now understand why your skill with magic has improved so much since your student days.”
“Really? I’m quite happy to hear you say that.”
It had been repetitive and tiresome work that I already disliked, and so his words were very encouraging to me.
As for support and healing magic, I had been forced to use them by necessity due to the busy environment, and so I had improved with them as well.
However, people really do change.
The old Luke that I knew was sarcastic and would never have a word of praise for anyone.
But now, he was praising me to a point where it was almost an exaggeration.
And he had high hopes for me as well.
Perhaps it was also because I had been battered by society and lost my confidence.
He was perceptive and wanted me to regain that confidence.
And I was grateful for that thoughtfulness more than anything.
Of course, I couldn’t just be encouraged all of the time.
So much about Royal Magicians was amazing, and I might not be able to live up to it.
Still, I cannot allow myself to feel defeated.
I had to remember my old self, where I felt invincible and could even fly.
If Luke was going to become the greatest Magician in the kingdom, then I had to become just as strong as him.
I can do it!
I clenched my fist slightly so that no one noticed.
“Ah, I’ve been searching for you, Luke. Oh, and is this small one the newcomer that people are talking about?”
A very large man was standing there.
He wore the same uniform as Luke, and a pocket watch adorned with the Magus stone swayed in his hand.
“I thought that I would always be the only person to break that wall during the entrance exam. Hey, why don’t we have a talk, little lady.”