“That’s not what I wanted to hear. …By the way, we have a long break from school starting today.”
“Aye, I know.”
“So, can I stay here all morning?”
“Aye, I don’t mind… But you only just got back. You really are a strange one.”
Am I? I thought I was pretty normal.
I looked at him with a puzzled expression and he patted me on the shoulder.
For some reason, he was looking at me warmly.
“Well, we should get started then.”
I followed him to the kitchen.
It had been a long time since I was last here.
Oh, how I longed for this day. After all, the military exercise had been nothing but incredibly stressful.
Having to ride dragons for so many days and watch them fight Moon Beasts.
We had to stay up and patrol at night and then move the next morning. This lifestyle had gone on and one.
The stress was just building up.
While it had been a while since I last kneaded dough, my body remembered how to do it perfectly.
Eventually, I shut out all the noise around me.
From today, we would have a whole thirty days of rest.
Well, the Second-Years would still be quite busy taking care of their dragons, but most First-Years would go home.
In my case, I had made a promise to my sister, so I would have to go back at some point. But considering that a round trip would take ten days, I felt less enthusiastic about it. Do you know how much bread I could bake if I had ten days?
“Maybe I should just ask the queen to send me on a dragon…”
No. Even if I had complete absolution, that was asking too much.
I had no choice. I would make as much bread as I could until I was satisfied and then rush back home.
…Satisfied? How much was that?
I suddenly heard Mister Rob say.
Before I knew it, I had finished all my work. But no time had passed at all?!
“Well, the military exercise was just a lot of bloody work. When I am kneading dough, I can forget everything, including my negative thoughts.”
“What? You sound like some tired old man.”
Mister Rob said with a chuckle.
But it was true. The military exercise was more mentally exhausting than physical.
The fact that some of the Right Hands had not returned caused a disturbance at the lodging facility.
They had been hired as servants, and so they were treated as civilian casualties.
As the Dragon Master Society managed the facility, someone from the higher ranks had to come and make arrangements.
I still remember the somber looks of the students as they watched.
“With so many deaths, we won’t be able to hire any new people next year.”
As this decision was now made, it was clear the military exercise would be very different next year.
Up until now, I had never really had comrades. So this was the first time I saw people die who fought alongside me.
Perhaps that was the reason I had fallen into a dark mood, just like the other students.
As I helped arrange the freshly baked bread, Mira got up.
She saw me and came running.
“You! You should have told us that you were alright!”
She grabbed my collar with both hands and launched her overblown complaints at me. I didn’t see how I was in the wrong.
It’s not like we were allowed to send letters… But I just swallowed back those words.