May 28, 2022
The alchemy club I visited after a long time was quiet as always.
Still, I used to see some students except for the president, Cass Lyle, but today I really didn't see a single student except him.
Whether it was due to the absence of the advisor, Alice Blesbuck, or just simply the timing of the visit, no one knows.
“Oh, it’s you.”
Cass Lyle, who was watching something carefully from his seat, spotted me and greeted me weakly.
And immediately he lowered his head and began doing what he was doing.
“Senior, have you heard anything from the professor”
“The same as always.”
Touching the inside of the strange device with a thin iron needle, he added with a sigh.
"Still, well, I'm sure she's doing fine wherever she is.
She's always had a few quirks...she's traveled and explored a lot by herself, and she's not weak enough to get into a bad situation anywhere, so she'll be fine."
“It sounds like there really wasn't any talk.”
“Even the academy says they can't tell because it's an internal matter… .”
Cass Lyle, who was muttering like that, suddenly turned his head and looked at me.
“By the way, why do you think I would know for sure Wouldn't you rather know better than I do, Ji-Hyuk You said she was your professor.”
“Well, yes, but… .”
I answered, speaking roughly like that.
The reason I thought he knew for sure was that I was well aware of how deep their relationship was.
Alice Blesbuck and Cass Lyle, the relationship between the two was not an easy one to describe.
For Alice Blesbuck, Cass Lyle was born of her own mistakes, and she believed she had taken away his entire life.
Therefore, she is described as a person who must atone for him for life, and is always prepared to give her life if he wants to.
Cass Lyle was no different from her.
As a homunculus, he was originally born in a flask and should have died without living even a year.
Alice Blesbuck risked her life to save such a self, taught him the meaning and reason for living, and literally gave her blood and kept her life so that he could continue to live.
To him, she was a savior who he had to repay for the rest of his life.
… Of course, it was not possible to reveal this relationship to others, so on the surface, the two were just advisors and students.
If Cass Lyle didn't know what she was doing, no one would know what she was doing.
“Still, just to make sure.
We haven't heard anything about her either, and they just told us to go on as usual...
“Yes, well… it must be very frustrating for you, too.
Things like this don't happen very often."
He nodded his head slightly.
As I put down the bag I was carrying, I saw a letter lying on the table.
"Huh Ah, this”
It was a request letter of some sort, sent by Urea.
The letter read, would you like to come to Urea as an exchange student, so that we could interact with each other
“It came to me, too.
I thought they would only send it to wizards, but I really didn’t expect they would send it to an alchemist like me.”
He glanced over the letter, as if he had no intention of hiding it, and held it out to me.
“If you're curious, do you want to see it”
“No, I'm fine.
It probably won't come to me even if I die, well."
“You never know, who knows if you'll awaken your magic talents at the last minute.”
“I'm not so smart.”
While laughing and talking with him, I asked him surreptitiously.
“So, do you want to go I'm sure it'll be a good experience."
He was probably well aware of the fact that Alice Blesbuck had lived as a professor at Urea in the past.
Normally, he wouldn't do that, but Professor Blesbuck's disappearance had been so long that he might wander off to look for even the slightest clue about her.
It was a situation I wanted to avoid.
But Cass Lyle shook his head as if to dismiss my concerns.
“If Professor Blesbuck goes there, I will go with her, but I have no intention of going alone.
The reason I came to this educational facility in the first place was because she brought it up to me… .”
After speaking to that point, he looked at me with an oppsie expression on his face.
Shortly thereafter, he began to gibberish and make excuses.
What I mean is… Actually that, Alice.
So Professor Alice Blesbuck is my teacher.
I originally wanted to go to another school, but she suggested that I attend here at Orhe.”
“Yeah, I kind of expected that.”
At my words, he stopped talking and looked at me.
He stared at me for a moment and licked his dry lips.
“… was it too obvious"
“Even though I can't read the air, I have some experience in that kind of thing… I wasn't sure until now.
I just guessed that you two wouldn't be just a professor and a student.”
He nodded and gave me an awkward smile.
“Um, can you keep this a secret… If word gets out that the professor is personally close to a student, it'll be a little… .”
"Why would I talk about this to others"
“Yes, thank you.
If for some reason it becomes a strange rumor because of me...
He looked horrified just at the thought.
Shivering, he glanced at the letter in his hand, then folded it roughly as if he wasn't interested, and threw it to the side.
“But even though they originally sent letters like this and exchanged students, this time they're being so aggressive that it's rude."
"Is that so"
“Yes, I think they've sent them all to the decently top-ranked people and special standouts.
So this time, higher-ups are a bit more displeased.
They originally had sent it to only a few people.
But this time it's as if they're telling, we're going to take away all the students."
There was no problem in consultation, but...
it's too aggressive.
While muttering like that, he flicked his finger slightly.
“Oh yeah, I heard that within a few days, professors from there will also visit in the form of an exchange.
They said they have decided to expand a bit more on what was originally a student-to-student exchange."
"Oh… That's really the first time I've heard of it."
“Well, Urea is overwhelming when it comes to magic.
There'll be nothing to lose by taking their class.”
And so I began to have a light conversation with him.
He continued talking to me, carefully arranging what he was going to do next.
In the meantime, I decided to ask him, who is like an expert in this field, what suddenly came to mind.
Can I ask you something”
“You know Mandragora, about that.”
Then he looked at me curiously.
“You're very interested.
Well… it's fascinating, right It's an herb that heals everything."
“Well, when I hear Mandragora, the first thing that comes to my mind is the cry of instant death that even kills a Wyvern…Well, anyway.”
He coughed a little.
“Mandragora is a legendary medicinal herb that has been mentioned a lot in both the East and the West since ancient times.
There are only a few cases where it has actually been discovered…and there are also some cases where stories about it were roughly put together.
Maybe that's why there are so many different names.
Mandrake, Alraune, Mandarake, Circe's grass… .”
I was listening carefully to his explanation.
A call signal came from the watch tied to my wrist.
I heard that it only rings when there was something important for students at the academy, but this was the first time I had actually heard it ring.
“It’s a call signal.”
Cass Lyle looked at it curiously and said.
“It is very rare.
Maybe it says where to go”
“Yes, I’ll get up first then.”
I got up from my seat and headed straight to the place where I was called.
What in the world was I being called for
I had no idea at all.
The place where I was called to come was not the faculty office or the professors' labs, but the visiting room when an outside guest came.
When I opened the door wondering if it was Lee Myung-Joon or Lydia, I saw someone I did not expect at all.
"Long time no see."
A man with bandages all over his body bowed politely as soon as he saw me.
He was Lee Ye-Eun's henchman.
“I would like to ask for your understanding for the fact that I visited you without a word and even dared to call you, young master.”
“Who is the young master again”
This man probably has taken care of everything from manipulating the genealogy and cleaning up to creating my identity.
When I asked him with the meaning of, why on earth are you calling me that way even though you know everything he gently lifted his head and looked at me with serious eyes.
“You are a relative of the clan head, a member of the clan, and younger brother of the clan head, so it is right that I call you young master.”
As I continued to stare at him, not knowing what to say back, he quietly opened his mouth.
“I am very glad that you are in good health.
To get to the point, the reason I have come to visit you is because of the order of the clan head."
“Senior Ye-Eun What happened all of a sudden”
But Shin Woo-Seok didn't say anything.
And he bowed his head as if he was really sorry to me.
“… I'm sorry, young master.
The clan head asked me that if the young master calls herself senior, I should never say anything and wait until you call her differently.”
I let out a gasp of absurdity, but he still spoke in a quiet, respectful tone.
“And she threatened me, saying, if you don’t fully carry out your orders there, don’t even think about coming back alive.”
“… Sister, what on earth did she send you for”
Hearing my words, he bowed once more and pointed at the iron case on the table.
It was a very large iron case.
“The clan head commanded me to airlift it in a hurry.
In addition, she earnestly asked that you accept and use it without any burden, as it is a sign of the sincerity she is giving to her family, brother, and the new clan."
With a click, click sound, the lock on the iron case was released at his hand gesture.
And what was inside was revealed.
“Young master, I am very sorry to hand you this, but please, use it temporarily until the proper ones are prepared… .”
Inside were a spear, a sword, a bow, a pair of daggers, and even a protective suit that could be worn on the inside.
When I secretly appraised them, I found that they were better than Yado's daggers that Jin Ye-Seul had given me as a gift before.
“… No, why this all of a sudden, without a word.”
“She said that it was heartbreaking to think that you would use the supply weapons at the academy."
This was when I was about to say that I couldn't accept it because it was a burden.
He immediately realized what I was about to say, and opened his mouth a step ahead of me.
“The young lady said, please accept it, even thinking about what's to come.
She also said that sometimes the smallest difference can have the biggest consequences.
And also told me to remind you of the phrase, prevention is better than cure.”
I shut my mouth at his words.
She was certainly right.
An excellent weapon was something that created a huge gap just by its existence.
And all I had was Nidhogg's fang.
Seeing me like that, Shin Woo-Seok said quietly.
“… And this is something I'm personally saying, albeit cheeky, but now the young master is one of the representatives of our clan.
That means you need to have the suitable things for that."
Because young master's actions will soon become the steps of our clan.
Having said that, he carefully closed the case.
“I will send it to your room.”
“… Please tell her that I will repay this debt later.”
Upon hearing my words, Shin Woo-Seok smiled a little.
“I will deliver the words to her, but there seems to be a slight misuse of words.
As I looked at him as if asking, what are you talking about, he looked at me.
“Why on earth are you saying that it is a debt when you are using things a little in advance that will all be yours later anyway, young master"
For a moment, I wondered what he was talking about.
He quickly bowed his head and said bye to me.
“Then I'll be going.
Please feel free to contact me if you ever need me, or if there is any trouble or hassle.
I'll take care of it.”
He paused for a moment and added.
“I am looking forward to the day when I will call you Master, not Young master.”
Saying that, Shin Woo-Seok grabbed the case and disappeared as if running away, as if he feared I might reject it.
Standing there for a moment, I grabbed my throbbing head and silently vowed.
If possible, I should not use those weapons.
However, as if overshadowing this vow, the use of the weapons she had given me soon came.
The date of the match with Ahn Do-Hoon was set.
It was two days after Professor Grossman said she would adjust the date of the match.
* * *
Shortly after Shin Woo-Seok broke up with Yoo Ji-Hyuk, a text message arrived on Lee Ye-Eun's cell phone.
She checked the attached file along with her henchman's report that it was a success.
Lee Ye-Eun, who looked at it with her hawk-like eyes, took out her earphones and carefully connected them.
After a while, she muttered as if it was a shame.
“I still have a long way to go to be an older sister.”
But thinking she'd come this far, she carefully saved the voice file and continued to do the paperwork that had been stopped for a while.