|Author: Sasaki Ichiro||Original Source: Syosetu|
|Translator: Mab||English Source: Re:Library|
Numerous pebbles floated around Ms. Christy, defying gravity as if animated. In a science fiction setting, this would be termed psychokinesis. In the occult world, it might be called a poltergeist phenomenon. However, this was actually the work of a Void Attribute Magic Art, Telekinesis.
(Their movements are erratic, and they move faster than my eyes can track. On top of that, they’re dispersing mana vibrations over a wide area, rendering Search practically unusable. The Void attribute is much more challenging to fight than I anticipated.)
Generally, there are five major attributes of magic: Earth, Water, Fire, Wind, and Sky. Two conflicting attributes are Light and Darkness. Various sub-attributes branch off from these, such as Lightning, Metal, Illusion, and Moon. There’s also one attribute everyone possesses—the Void attribute or the no-attribute—whose strengths and weaknesses heavily depend on the wielder.
Everyone, without exception, possesses the Void attribute. Its magic arts aren’t typically powerful, and its practical applications are often limited—or so it was generally perceived in the magical world. However, here we had Ms. Christy demonstrating that it could indeed be quite versatile.
“Let’s start, then,” she declared flatly, and immediately the pebbles around her shot forward like bullets.
“「Fang of Ice, Pierce with Thy Blade!」” In response, I waved my magic staff. Opting for quantity over size, I created about 20 sharp icicles in front of me and propelled them forward. “「Freeze Arrow!」”
The pebbles and icicles collided head-on. The icicles shattered with a dull thud, and the pebbles ricocheted off to who knows where. At first glance, Ms. Christy seemed to hold the advantage with her abundant ammunition. However, in terms of magic composition speed and basic mana amount, I had the upper hand. This was likely to become a battle of attrition, one I was fairly certain I would win.
“Your mana amount is impressive. —But.”
I felt an oddity from under my feet right then, and the very moment I leaped out of the way, my skirt expanded like a blooming flower; the ground under me split and vomited a swarm of pebbles. They rose high into the air, forming a parabola, then came rushing at me like a cobra.
“You combined it with Earth Magic Art.”
Ms. Christy smiled daringly.
I couldn’t possibly knock that down with Freeze Arrow, I grimaced. How very troublesome. I had no time to form a composite magic art when I was being chased by an attack vertically and horizontally like this.
“If so— 「Dance, Fire, Dance!」”I put quite a lot of mana into this art and unleashed a wall of fire all around me. “「Flame」”
Right then, flames exploded, and their shockwave instantly swept the whole area.
“Hrk…?!” She must’ve defended herself right away; I could see a wall of earth blocking Ms. Christy.
“「Fang of Ice, Spear of Grand, Pierce!」” I generated a giant Freeze Arrow over 1 merte long and shot it forward.
With a thump, the earthen wall shattered—but there was no sign of Ms. Christy.
I looked around frantically, but that was when I heard her languid voice from the shattered earthen wall behind me. At the same time, I felt the sharp edge pressed against my back, right behind my heart.
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I looked over and saw an earth spear pressed against my back, and further, I saw a hole in the ground beyond the broken earth wall, from which Ms. Christy crawled out.
I see now. She made a hole in the ground to escape from the blast, then she built the wall in front of it to give me the illusion as if she had escaped somewhere else.
“Jill, it seems to me that you have the flaw of relying on crude, brute strength. Well, indeed, if you were more serious with that Flame Magic Art, little tricks like the ones I used would have been meaningless, but I think it will do you good to learn a more subtle application of Magic Arts.”
Once she was done giving me her review, the earth spear behind me shattered.
I wouldn’t say that wasn’t frustrating, but I must admit that I had lost. Although, it was also refreshing to experience my senior disciple’s strengths firsthand.
“…thank you for the guidance,” I bowed my head.
“Sure thing,” Ms. Christy nodded. After she brushed off the dirt and leaves from her body, she turned her heels towards the mansion. “That’s it for today’s practice. I will go and take a bath; you come see me in my office once you’re done leveling the ground. I have a little task for you.”
“It’s nothing considerable, but it’s part of my duty as the baroness. I just need a little favor.”
Well, Ms. Christy has been nothing but a great help to me both in private and otherwise, so I have no reason to deny her. Thinking so, I nodded.
“I understand. I will be there.”
“I’ll be waiting.”
Ms. Christy waved to me and left, and after seeing her off, I looked at the devastated state of the training ground—or, strictly speaking, the mansion’s backyard—that looked more like a battleground than anything. A sigh escaped me.
“It will be hard for me to do it all by myself. I guess I will go and ask Eren and Lana to help me…” I groaned, then with heavy footsteps, I walked back to the mansion.
“Visiting the orphanage, is it?”
Well, with the help of the gardener whom Royce the steward arranged, it took a little over an hour for Eren, Lana, and me to tidy up the devastated backyard. After a quick bath and a change of clothes, I went to see Ms. Christy, who was buried in papers in her office.
That was when she told me of this favor of hers.
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“Yup. There’s a private facility in town that takes care of orphans and refugees. They’re having a hard time making ends meet, so we will provide them with some monetary assistance. It’s also been decided that someone from our family should visit them to offer more meaningful support.”
The term ‘refugee,’ by the way, is a general term for non-settled people who have been forced to leave their land of residence and lead a wandering life due to war, disaster, or some form