20, October, Year 2021
19:35, No Good Apartment
You are really smart, aren’t you, LittleSnow!?
Looking at her conjecture really makes me think that. Is this really the same Chuunibyou girl who was shouting she wanted to become a mage every day? Are you sure you are not from a detective novel?
I shouldn’t be too hasty to conclude that.
This girl probably gets this idea from some random detective manga that she has read for sure. Yeah… something like manga where a young high school boy solving murders case left and right.
But for her to be able to apply this logic to her real-life also tells something. It means that she is actually very clever. After all, LittleSnow used to be the top of her class, right?
Too bad that her intelligence gets used in a somewhat useless field.
No… I shouldn’t think like that.
Maybe I should use this opportunity to try changing her back after all? Now that her one of the Chuunibyou story gets shattered into pieces by her own logic, her mind should be in a very vulnerable stage.
I should use this opportunity to make her think more scientifically from now on!
[LittleSnow: We will be sure to avoid that part.]
Another message pops up on the screen while I am debating my choice. No. At this rate, she will escape back to her world.
[LittleSnow: Do you have anything to add, great sage?]
The time is ticking indeed.
I should say something to get her attention more. Should I talk more about the case? No. This case is more or less already over.
I should use a topic that she would interest in and at the same time could be linked to science. And what could that be?
Magic, of course.
This girl really loves when I talk nonsense about magic. But talking nonsense wouldn’t cut it anymore. I have to step up my game now.
I think back to things that I have said to her before and conclude with one thing. Maybe I should really use that?
That “unique” physique.
After I have told her she has a unique physique, she starts to become more and more obsessed with magic.
If there is something that could start it, that thing should also be capable of ending it too.
“Before you go, I have to tell you about something..”
20, Month Fall-Amberine, Year Elizabeth 402
06:35, Elizabeth Magic Academy
“It looks like he has seen right through all my plan,” Alice said, shaking her head slightly. She nodded respectfully at the figure in the tablet and sat down on the ground. Her ears perked, waiting at his next words.
“See through your plan…?” Mary asked.
“Yes.” Alice nodded. “He probably knows that I want to go to the courtyard.”
“Y—You what!?” Wilson asked, stunned. “Doesn’t sage Khun advise us to avoid it? Why would you suddenly go against his order? Aren’t you usually the most obedient one toward him?”
“Yes.” Mary nodded. “You even skip classes for his streams, reciting his word randomly sometimes. And now you are saying that you want to disobey him…?”
Seeing her friends were still clueless about what was going on, Alice smiled. But she didn’t explain, at least not yet.
“That is why I said that he had seen right through my plan,” Alice said. “He knows that I don’t intend to follow his instruction and want to go stopping Thomas.”
“So, he knows you intend to take the danger head-on and we are probably not capable of solving it?” Mary asked. “And that is why he is offering help right now?“
“Yes, that’s right,” Alice said.
“Um.” Wilson nodded. He didn’t really understand much, but he tried to blend in anyway. “Wait. He starts!”
The other girls immediately focus on the figure in the tablet. Sage Khun looked as calm as before, with his face covered in the shadow of his hood.
“Let’s start with the name of your physique,” he said. “Do you still remember what it is?”
“Yes, sage.” Alice nodded. “It is the supreme grade water-ice twin head dragon physique.”
“Very good.” sage Khun nodded, his emotion was unfathomable. “Do you still remember that you ask me about this unique physique benefit?”
“Yes,” Alice answered. She thought back to that fateful day. She still remembered how she watched the tablet in the middle of the forest. “Back then, I was just an innocent child who didn’t understand her own body well enough.”
“Ahem.” sage Khun coughed once. “No, Not that part.”
His sudden interruption slightly confused Alice, but she decided to suppress her curiosity for now. “That day, you answered me about some parts of the benefits of this physique, right, sage? I still remember that I asked you that day about the ice part. If I recall correctly, you said that I had to wait a bit more.”
It was only then that sage Khun nodded. He seemed pleased, and a corner of his mouth rose slightly. “Now is the time of that.”
“…!” Alice gasped. Even Mary and Wilson seemed surprised by that. They knew a bit about Alice’s physique, but not the entire story behind it.
“The true meaning behind this unique physique lies within its name.” sage Khun said coolly. “What do you think about when I told you that you couldn’t use the benefit before you unlock your physique more?”
“At first, I think it is very logical. Most of the tyrannical physiques should have some restriction, after all.” Alice answered trustfully. “But at the same time, I am also confused. This physique does still give me an increased affinity for an ice attribute. But why not other benefits?”
Sage Khun nodded at her answer. He closed his golden eyes for a few seconds before opening them again.
“What if what I have said before is a lie?”
“Well, lie is a strong word.” sage Khun said, shaking his head. “I wouldn’t exactly call it a lie. I would rather say that I haven’t said all the truth.”
Alice, while still confused, nodded. She reached out to the tablet in the middle of her friend’s gaze and asked. “But why, sage? And why now?”
Sage Khun sighed. He suddenly turned his eyes toward the side, as if he was looking at something far away.
“Because I want to observe you more,” he said. “I want to know if you are ready for this revelation or not.”
Alice nodded. She then understood the whole thing immediately. While sage Khun did help her back then, he probably didn’t trust her that much. He feared that helping her would cause an unseen consequence in the future. That was why he chose to minimize the risk first.
“So…” Alice said, her voice soft. “Does that mean I am ready now, great sage?”
“Indeed.” he nodded. “I think you are ready for the real secret behind this physique now. Will you hear it now, LittleSnow?”
“Yes!” Alice said. “Please tell me.”
“First, let’s return to the name again,” sage Khun said. “Do you notice anything strange with the name of this physique?”
“…” Alice suddenly became silent after that. She closed her eyes and became lost in her thought. Her friends were also considerate and became quiet down too.
“Is it about the dragon part, sage?” she asked. But sage Khun just shook his head slightly.
“No, it is about the water-ice part. The truth is when I told you that I actually left a little test for you there.”
“The water-ice? What’s wrong with it, sage?” Alice asked. She was genuinely confused. Why is it that this part is wrong? After all, this physique did aid her in her cultivation of water and ice magic. It also provided benefits when she came in contact with water. For example, she was stronger and faster in water.
“What I want to say is…” sage Khun said. “Isn’t it redundant?”
“After all, water and ice are—in the end—the same, right?” he continued. “Their pure essence is just water, H2O.”
“…” sage Khun suddenly became silent. “You haven’t learned that yet?”
“Yes,” Alice answered. She hung her face in shame. “I am sorry, sage. I will try to get more information about this in the future.”
“I... Never mind.” he shook his head. “You don’t have to worry about it too much then. You will learn about it when you study more.”
“Yes…” Alice replied weakly. But her mind suddenly became more preoccupied with the new word she learned. She made up her mind to look for it the moment she became free.
“But, you do know that after ice melts, it becomes water, right?”
“Yes.” she nodded. “I know that, sage. That is just common knowledge.”
“Then, how about this…” sage Khun asked more questions. “Tell me more about the magic system. What elements are in them again?”
“Okay, sage,” Alice said. She gained a bit of her confidence back after the easy question. “The current magic system categorizes the element into three categories.
First is the basic elements which include water, fire, wind, and earth.
The second is the compound elements which include lightning, ice, poison, light, darkness, and physical.
And last is the special elements which include death, soul, space, and time. All in total fourteen elements, sage.”
“F... Fourteen!? That’s… — No. Ahem.” sage Khun coughed a few more times. “...Very good. You recite all of them perfectly. It seems like you have studied very hard indeed.”
“Thank you, sage.”
Facing an unexpected compliment, Alice suddenly became slightly embarrassed. She was slightly thankful that she was in front of her other friends. That was the reason they hadn’t seen her face.
“I am still not there yet,” she added.
“...If you say so.” sage Khun nodded. "Anyway, the problem is even become more prominent after seeing all the elements list, isn't it? If when the ice melts, it becomes water. Then why would there be a need to even make ice into its own separate element? Why not make ice and water the same element when they are the same thing anyway?"
Alice couldn’t help but nod at his response. In the end, when the ice melted, it became water. Ice and water looked like two separate things, but they were actually not. Fundamentally, they should be the same thing.
“Why?” the girl murmured to herself. Even the other kids also went deep into their own thought. In the end, they all shook their head.
“Why is it like that, sage?” she asked the sage in the tablet.
“They could only be one answer to it.” sage Khun said, shaking his head slightly. “It means that the one who made this list of elements up didn’t think it through enough!”
The one who made this list up didn’t think it through enough... What kind of a bold claim that is... This kind of thing, perhaps only sage would be allowed to speak.
Alice, shocked to the core, suddenly looked at the magic system she had learned her entire life in a new light. She felt as if the whole study she had done before was just a facade.
“The one who made up this whole magic and magic elements things didn’t think things through enough!”
“...The one who made up this whole magic and magic elements things didn’t think things through enough...”
“Yes!” Alice didn’t really know why sage Khun had to repeat the same statement so many times, but she answered him anyway.