chapter 2
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After leaving the director's office, the guard started laughing as if he could not hold back anymore.

 “I've never seen the Director so flustered."

 He laughed for a moment, then suddenly turned his head and stared at Almark's fearless face.

"You're a great guy,"

he said.

"My name is Ziad. director of the academy asked me to take you to the dormitory. Once again, nice to meet you."

"My name is Almark. Nice to meet you."

"Oh, you can have your sword back. It's too heavy."

"Thank you."

 Ziad held out the sword with both hands, and Almark accepted it with one hand.

After completing the transfer formalities at the campus , the two went outside.

"The dormitory is over there."

Ziad pointed to a stone-paved street that led to the south side of the building.

"But before you go there, there's something you need to do."

"What is it?"

 Almark looked at Ziad with puzzled look as he asked in surprise.

I feel bad for you," he said. "You've had a tough journey, and even you, who are so smart, don't know what you're going to do anymore. You smell like a fish that has been in the shadow of the sun for two days."

After washing his body clean with water from a nearby well, Almark put on his ragged clothes again.

‘When we get to the dormitory, I'll bring you your school uniform," he said. "You can't attend class dressed like that."

"Excuse me."

 When Almark bowed his head, Ziad scratched his head in annoyance.

“I've heard stories that everyone in the north is a bunch of wild and crude people... but I guess that's not true."

'......I don't think it's only exceptional people who kill each other,...... I think...."

Almark said in a quiet voice, so Ziad couldn't hear him.

'Well, it's a long walk to the dorms,' "

 Ziad put his own cloak over Almark's shoulders.

'It's a pretty nice cloak. Put it on for now and keep walking."

"Thank you."

 Almark smiled. It was a gentle smile, but it looked like a prey bird.

'...... you used to be a mercenary, didn't you?"

 Almark nodded at Ziad's question. Ziad twisted his head.

"But I sense something more... noble atmosphere about you."

But Almark just shrugged his shoulders in a trivial way at those words.

 They walked in silence for a while.

'...... we' ll walk a little further to the dormitory. Want to take a break?"

Ziad called out in worry for the eleven-year-old boy walking next to him, but he remembered when he saw Almark shake his head with a look that asked why he asked such a question.

'Oh, I see. You walked all the way here from the far north continent on that foot, didn't you?"

 The sun was setting. Eventually, the dorm came into view. Almark, who had been walking with a blank expression on his face, turned his head to look at him.

"Are you surprised? This dormitory was built based on the blueprints of the villa of a great noble in the Kingdom of Garai."

Indeed. About 150 students from the academy's elementary grades live in the luxurious four-story building.

However, even with that many people living in the building, it does not seem crowded at all. In fact, it even seems as if more room should be available for students.

"I'm going to live here, too?"

"Of course you are . All students of the elementary class live here."

 Almark looked up at the building once more.

"I'm going to go say hello to the caretaker first," he said. "He's a little noisy, but he's a nice guy."

"Oh, okay."

Almark followed Ziad through the front door.

 The exterior of the building was luxurious, but the interior was surprisingly simple. It was evident that this was a student dormitory.

 At the far end of the corridor, there was a room called the "caretaker's room.

"Oh, here we are."

 Ziad knocked lightly on the door.

“Maia, are you there?”

A low voice came quickly from the other side of the door.

“The door is open all the time, without you having to knock. Don't waste your time, just come in."

Ziad made a gesture to Almark to stand beside him, and then opened the door.

"......?"

 Almark looked at him for a moment.

 There was no one in the room.

On a table in the middle of the room, there is a piece of knitting on the table, and an armchair in the back of the room is swaying.

 The chair in the back of the room is swaying.

That's what the Nork Academy of Magic is all about. Even the dorm caretaker can use the magic of invisibility,.......

Almark was so amazed.

"Where are you looking? I'm right here."

 A voice came from right below him.

"What?"

The tiny old woman stood bent at the waist, her body just touching the ground even more. She was at least two heads smaller than the young Almark.

Hello, Ms. Maia. This is Almark, who will be joining our academy”.

"Nice to meet you."

 Almark bowed his head.

Maia took a glance at Almark from head to toe, walked over to the comfortable chair, sat down, and resumed knitting.

"I've heard the news," she said. "You'll be living here until you graduate from the elementary class," she said. Don't cry just because you are missing your mom's milk," she said. You will eat twice a day, once in the morning and once at night. If you don't come down to the cafeteria on time, I'll make you eat. Lunch will be served in the school cafeteria. If you have any problems with the food, please talk to Guin, the head chef. You look like a nice little guy who could wear a cloak like that, but don't complain about small rooms, hard beds, and other such stupid things. There are 150 students living here, so please take that into consideration and live well. Your room is on the third floor, in the corner, room 314.”

"I thought you said it was 341."

 Ziad interrupted. Maia shook her head in annoyance.

If that' s what you said, then that must be it," Maia said, shaking her head. "Look, there's the key to the room right there. ...... do you want to ask me anything else ......?"

"......No, not now."

When Almark said this, Maia gave a small nod and began to engage in her knitting as if they were not there anymore.

“Come on, let's go, Almark. ......exuse us , Maia."

Ziad walked out of the room, pushing Almark towards him.

......”He is good boy”, ...... said Maia.

 Almark said with a laugh. "What a winding up that person would be if he looked under this cloak."

"I told you, it's a pretty nice cloak. The room is on the third floor. Let's go."

Ziad led the way up the stairs, which had an intricately engraved handrail. The room at the far end on the east side was Almark's.

The room he led Almark to was for one person, and while it was not large, it was not small either. There was a large bed under the window on the east side , and a study desk by the north side .

 It was already dark outside. Ziad turned on the lamp hanging from the ceiling.

“The room is for two, but ...... you'll be staying in a single room for the rest of your year at the elementary class ," he said.

"The other room is for two people. ......It's a nice room."

Almark said, putting what little luggage he had on the floor and leaning his long sword against the wall.

"Your luggage is mostly that one sword.. , even a poor farm boy would bring a little more luggage."

 Ziad chuckled.

"That's all I needed."

 With that, Almark took off cloak and handed it back to Ziad.

"Thank you."

"Oh ......."

As he accepted it, Ziad took another long glance at his clothes.

"I'll bring you some more clothes for tomorrow," he said. "For now, you should probably take those clothes off now. The smell will be transferred to the bed."

"I guess so. I'll sleep in my underwear today."

Nodding his head , Almark took off his jacket.

 His muscular naked body was exposed.

Ziad looked at his childlike and bold body.

He had not seen it when he had made him wash himself at the well during the day, but seeing it like this, even under the light of the lamp, he was amazed by the muscles.

And his body is marked with scars that tell the painful journey he has been on.

Once again, Ziad realized that this child had been on an incredible journey. It was too hard a journey for an eleven-year-old to make.

"Mr. Zied?"

Almark's voice brought him back to reality.

I'm sorry," he said. "I'm going to bring you some dinner, and then you can get some rest. I'll bring you a change of clothes as well."

"Sure."

 Almark nodded.

At that moment, he heard a lot of noise coming from below the residence hall. He looked down through the window and saw that the students from the elementary class were coming back to the dorm. They were all wearing uniforms, probably with matching robes.

“ Starting tomorrow, we'll be going to school together.”

"Together... right."

He nodded for the time being, but Almark didn't really feel it.

 Many children came back from school joking and bustling with each other. It was one of those scenes that he had seen several times during the trip and had just passed by.

But tomorrow, he would be one of those children. It was a strange feeling.

That's because I've reached ......,"

 

Almark muttered to himself.

After a long, long hardship.

The end of a long, long hardship and despair.

After many hours of sorrow and despair, And strange experiences.

At last he had arrived.

A new starting point, this Academy of Magic.

 

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