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Published at 15th of September 2016 08:10:42 PM

Chapter 1

She Professed Herself the Pupil of the Wise Man – Volume 2, Chapter 1

Everything was a success! I can now resume the translations without worrying about work deadlines at home . Chapters should steadily come out every week (hopefully), depending on their size . Anyway . enjoy the start of a new volume!

Completely devoid of clouds, the clear sky was dyed in a single, oppressive color of blue; the only things that freely ventured through that azure heaven were its unseen gusts of wind and the flying birds . Then, on the ground, the greenery that covered the earth seemed to be spreading its buds and flourishing all at once—a vision intensified by the sunlight as it shone upon the land .

Overlooked by both the sun and that sky, the very elements that made possible the existence of such a fine and beautiful day, was an extensive forest . Within there, right from the main road that cut across the woods, if one were to look up at the heavens they would see another spectacle: with every sway of the treetops, the sunlight that escaped through them appeared as if there were countless shootings stars dancing around, forming a sparkling, starry sky . The wind that escaped from each of the gaps in the trees harbored a breath of the fresh verdure, quickly filling the air of the entire area with hints of spring .

Truly, anyone would easily point that it was the perfect weather for an afternoon outing in the wild .

And coincidentally, parked right in the middle of the main road was a single carriage . However, the two individuals that were there—a young man clad in military garb and a younger girl dressed in a lovely gothic outfit—had been standing stock still by the vehicle’s side, looking completely dumbfounded .

The girl’s long, silver hair gently fluttered around as a swaying breeze caressed her cheeks . Yet, not only she wore a stiff expression on her face, but also the girl’s—or rather, Mira’s—countenance looked somewhat pale while she stared at a certain location . The young man by her side, Garrett, also seemed to be at a complete loss for words as he gazed at the thing lying down on the ground .

Built over leveled and compacted soil, the main road in that forest had a width that allowed carriages to pass by each other without any problem . Moreover, since the sunlight was still able to reach it, as shown by the flickering spectacle, the visibility there wasn’t that bad, even when considering that it was a place surrounded by trees .

In spite of that, an accident actually happened, thought Mira as she turned her head and glanced at the carriage . With the dark red stains that were now splattered on the vehicle’s frame, anyone could guess that it had violently collided into something . Then, while feeling an unspeakable sense of irritation, Mira returned her sight to what was in front of her .

A person dressed in old rags .

Lying face down on the ground, their body stood completely still, as if frozen in time .

Head, torso and legs, it still had them . But all of its joints were bent in absolutely unnatural ways . To make matters even worse, that person’s right arm had been completely torn off and thrown far away, exactly in the direction the carriage was facing . Truly, no matter how one looked at it, that was scene where someone had “died after being run over by a vehicle . ”

“Well, I guess you finally went and did it, huh…”

While regretting that her pleas to send Garrett to a driving school had been too soft, the girl managed to squeeze out that statement, sounding very serious .

“P-Please wait a moment Mira-sama . That person suddenly jumped out from the side of the road! I had no time to stop!”

Granted, the main road was dimly illuminated at that time . It did not mean, however, that it was so dark one would fail to notice the figure of a person being there . Instead, the problem came from the deep, dense forest that spread right by the sides of that road: a place that could easily conceal a person, a demon or a monster . Although he had seen everything from the coachman’s seat, the military man seemed unable to completely understand what had just happened there . As a result, without hiding his unrest, he did his best to voice out an excuse .

Instead of delivering a cold, icy gaze towards that Garrett, Mira simply stared at him with hints of pity in her eyes . Then, as if indicating that she had understood him, the young girl slightly nodded and calmly began to walk, following the path directly in front of her . Noticing that she had believed in his story, Garrett returned the nod, feeling relieved; he had secured a very powerful supporter for his defense . Immediately, the intense emotions that had been pressing on the military man’s heart began to dissipate .

Nonetheless, an accident was still an accident . There was the need to report it to the kingdom and also handle that corpse . With such a thought in her mind, Mira sighed, her gaze moving from the body in front of her to the torn off arm in the distance—or, more precisely, to something that was a few steps away from the limb .

“Mira-sama . How far are you going to keep walking!?”

From what Garrett saw, Mira had calmly walked past the arm lying on the ground and steadily advanced through the road . Since he had thought that the girl’s objective was to just pick up that limb, Garrett spontaneously raised his voice in a concern .

“I am leaving this place to you . Did I not tell you that already?”

“No no, wait a moment, that’s the first time I’ve heard anything like that . ”

“But just a while ago I nodded that I was going to count on you, no?”

“What!? So that was what you meant!?”

Apparently, they didn’t grow close enough to the point of understanding one another’s thoughts through simple eye contact .

“Is there anything wrong here?”

While the two were exchanging a back-and-forth, an unfamiliar voice interrupted them . Turning around, they noticed a huge man standing there, his body clad in metallic, light armor . And parked in a place further behind him—about ten-odd meters away—was a peddler-like carriage .

One way or another, that man seemed to be an escort for those traveling sellers . When he quickly noticed that, Garrett looked up at the sky, a bitter smile appearing on his face; it was obvious that, because of the information network formed by the peddlers, news about the accident would end up spreading in the blink of an eye .

As for Mira, she already looked stupefied . With a drawn smile on her lips, the young girl gazed at the bodyguard that had appeared . Frowning at such a weird behavior coming from both Mira and Garrett, the moment the escort noticed a body lying on the ground, right by the military man’s feet, he finally grasped everything . Returning his gaze to look straight at Garrett, he bluntly declared:

“I see, what a disaster, huh . ”

After expressing his sympathies, the bodyguard let out a mean-spirited laugh .

The “person” they thought they had run over and killed was actually a zombie . Furthermore, it wasn’t any ordinary zombie . Below the robes that seemed to be made of the bark of a rotten tree, its body revealed bones so withered they had the reddish appearance of something covered in rust . And instead of flesh, what covered those very bones was a combination of soil and wilted plants .

Considering that thing’s true identity, there was no need to be fretful anymore . In the first place, since it didn’t shed a single drop of blood, with a closer look it was possible to confirm that, indeed, it had not been a living person . Even though it was too late for that now, Mira regained her composure and revealed a strained smile, as if trying to gloss over the issue .

“Well, not only its appearance looks weird, but it’s pretty strange for a zombie to appear at this time of the day . ”

Garrett, now released from the guilt that had been assaulting his chest, returned to his everyday mood and directed a dubious glance at the zombie on the ground . Admittedly, the highway they were in was surrounded by a dimly illuminated forest, but it was still possible to see the sunlight making its way through the foliage covering the sky .

“Indeed, you are right . ”

Placing a finger on her chin, Mira nodded as she looked towards the tiny spots in the road that managed to get illuminated by the sun .

“Looks like you lot haven’t been around here for too long, right? Then I can understand it . ”

From Mira and Garrett, then to their carriage, the bulky man shifted his gaze back and forth .

“If I’m not mistaken, it’s been around one month since those kinds of weird zombies started appearing . Well, it’s just a mere zombie, but you better keep your guard up since we don’t know its origins . ”

Stating that, the escort continued He briefly told the other two about certain abnormal events that, recently, had been occurring in the neighborhood . According to him, zombies would wander around at night . However, that kind of talk wouldn’t really strike someone as being “weird” .

Nevertheless, they still caused harm, with things like crop fields receiving the brunt of it and getting trampled down by the zombies . Occasionally, there were cases like the one that had just occurred, with zombies that were, somehow, active during the day; they would hide within places such as that forest, where the sunlight was weak, and end up causing accidents .

When he reached that point, the bodyguard stopped and sighed . Afterwards, with a complaining look on his face, he spoke .

“Anyway, that’s why just the other day a suppression party has been created . I even took part in it myself, since they were offering a pretty hefty reward… but those zombies didn’t resist at all! You can imagine how much it gave me the creeps . ”

As he mentioned that, the man shifted his attention to the zombie lying on the roadside .

“So they don’t assault anyone—even when being attacked themselves? Just what is their real intention…?”

“This is clearly novel to me . ”

Both Mira and Garrett muttered their thoughts after looking at the corpse on the ground .

That zombie was indeed something new to Mira, and she had a very solid reason to make that statement .

First of all, not just zombies, but all monsters of the Undead class were only supposed to appear in two different occasions: inside the dungeons, where there was no sunlight, and in the open world during the night . That was something known as one of the fundamental laws of the world, explained during a tutorial quest in the game era .

Exactly . The world she was currently in had been a game world in the past . However, somehow, that world became real . As a member of the Nine Sages, a group comprised of the strongest Experts in the game, Dunbalf had been requested to search for his old comrades in that new world; but due to a twist of fate, he had become a young girl: Mira . And right now, she was in the middle of her journey .

As a result, Mira’s knowledge about the basics of the world was very profound .

It was that very knowledge, then, that told her the zombie before her very eyes was something “novel” . Just the fact that it had been lurking between the shadows in the forest, trying to avoid the light, was weird enough . It wasn’t like the zombies had been simply hiding themselves during the day, in the past—unless it was night time, they would never appear anywhere, at all .

To make matters worse, even the bodyguard didn’t know much about such a mysterious kind of zombie .

Afterwards, Mira and Garrett were helped by that man and took care of the corpse . With that out of the way, they drove the memories of that eerie encounter to the corner of their minds and finally resumed their journey .

Three days had passed since they had left Lunatic Lake, the capital of the Kingdom of Arkite . While banqueting on food made with wild plants—a cuisine from a village they had stopped by—the girl had already started getting used to traveling in a carriage . And now, the vehicle that was transporting Mira crossed the gates to a certain city, entering its main street .

Located next to the C-Rank Dungeon 『Archaic Temple Nebulapolis』, it was the Requiem City of Coronach[1] . That town was centered around a specific stone monument, used by the people to pray for the peace of the war deceased: those who died long ago, while participating in the Great War . It was, indeed, a city with history . Additionally, since there were many dungeons nearby, it also served as a gathering point for a great number of adventurers .

Probably because of the approaching night, signaled by the crimson color spreading through the skies, the city seemed pretty quiet—and in some respects, even melancholic .

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Casually following with her gaze some of the sparse citizens in the streets, Mira abruptly slid down and fell from her seat as the vehicle was brought to a sudden stop .

“Good grief, what is it now?”

Complained the girl with a pout, her face appearing near the coachman’s seat . As soon as she did that, what entered her field of view were Garrett’s head, the carriage’s horses and, finally, the figure of an old person lying on the ground, right in front of them .

(Hey, without a doubt this is an accident scene!)

Opening her eyes wide while observing that situation, her cheeks twitched when she wondered if Garrett had really done it that time .

“I’m terribly sorry . Are you alright?”

However, ignoring the worrying girl, Garrett came down from his seat and, while extending a hand towards the older individual, expressed his apologies and concern . Immediately, the body lying on the ground steadily began to move .

“Dear me! I should be the one apologizing! It was my fault for suddenly jumping in front of you…”

Said the old person after raising their face . Following that, they grabbed the hand that had been stretched before them and used it to stand up . Considering his splendidly forged physique, if one were to disregard his almost non-existent hair, he didn’t look like an old man at all .

“You seemed to be in a great hurry . Did anything happen?”

“It’s my grandchild, the poor kid still hasn’t returned home, so I’ve been looking everywhere . You see, these days the nighttime’s getting pretty dangerous . ”

Apparently, the old man had been looking out for his grandchild and, just as he had absentmindedly entered the main street, he found himself in front of the carriage . Caught by surprise, he fell down on his own . After scanning that old man with her eyes and confirming he was in perfectly good health, without any injuries, Mira felt awfully relieved . Still, with how well built that man was, if he were to actually get hit by the carriage there wouldn’t really be any need for worry .

“The nighttime, huh…? By any chance, are you talking about the zombie problem that has been occurring lately?”

“Yes, exactly . That’s why I’ve told my grandkid to come back before dusk… but it seems the little rascal can’t settle down at all . ”

His voice blurred with sadness, the old man confirmed Garrett’s suspicions .

“Although I’ve heard they weren’t attacking humans… yeah, it still makes you worry . ”

The rumored zombies did not attack people . Yet, it didn’t mean that a parent wouldn’t feel anxious about the safety of their kid .

Afterwards, when the two men exchanged a few more words, the older one apologized for the trouble he had caused and bowed . He then resumed his search for his grandchild, moving towards the places a kid would probably like to go .

“I felt a certain air of melancholy in this city, but to think it was because there were no children around here…”

Pointed the girl as she briefly surveyed the town, a deep, dead silence ruling that placemore than she would have liked .

“I’m sure they’ve also been told to return home before dusk, just like the case with the grandfather from earlier . ”

Returning to the coachman’s seat, Garrett repeated Mira’s gesture and looked around before giving his opinion . During that time, when the young girl’s figure entered his line of sight, certain doubts surfaced within his heart . She was far too cute and lovely: ten out of ten people would easily consider Mira a very beautiful girl . And yet, he wondered why the thought of that little girl walking all alone during the night didn’t bring even the slightest hint of anxiety to him .

Amidst the sound of hooves rhythmically hitting the ground, Mira’s vehicle entered the premises of a large, three-story building . Garrett then directed the carriage a bit further ahead, to the wooden stables of the place, and stopped it in one of the stalls . At the same time, an employee of the inn—who worked as the manager of the stables—walked towards the military man .

“Good evening . Are you going to stay at our inn?”

“Yes, indeed . ”

“Understood, sir . I shall ask you later about the handling of the carriage and the horses, so please take that into consideration . ”

“Alright . ”

When he handed a receipt to Garrett, the manager took a step back and bowed .

“Now then, Mira-sama, we’ll have to check-in first . ”

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“Sure . ”

Sticking out his head from the coachman’s place, Garrett called out to Mira, inside the carriage . Then, with flowing movements, he jumped out of the vehicle . His next actions were also swift, and when Mira was still stretching her body on her seat, the military man had already opened the vehicle’s door .

Having finally disembarked, the girl was guided by her driver towards the reception of the inn . Next to the entrance of the place was a large sign made of marble, with the name of the establishment carved on it: The Summer Lantern[2] .

As Garrett opened the door and entered, the interior of something akin to a first-class hotel greeted their view . There was a front desk, and it was possible to see many uniformed employees coming and going, their calm demeanor contrasting with how quickly they moved . By the windows, an adventurer clad in an elegant armor and robe was sitting together with their colleagues, on what appeared to be resting chairs; that sight only emphasized the feeling of being in a different world . The mix of the modernistic, western-styled interior of the hotel and the medieval fantasy setting[3] brought about an indescribable atmosphere to the place .

The view outside of the windows was also something worthy of mention . Within the garden that spread there, neatly pruned trees and shrubs danced to the tune of the wind, their movements also followed by an entire flower bed . In addition, it was even possible to see children running around the place .

“Hey hey, this is simply amazing . ”

Obviously, it couldn’t be compared with the royal castle, but the inn was thoroughly clean, its employees’ conduct impeccable and the interior design had been casually personalized . Even Mira, who had spent a few nights at the castle, wouldn’t dare to say that such an establishment was inferior to the King’s stronghold, in regards to its splendor .

“As expected of a Coronach inn . ”

“Would it not be too expensive, then? I do not have that much money with me…”

If one were to consider cities bigger than Coronach, there would be only one that existed nearby: the very capital of the Kingdom of Arkite, Lunatic Lake . Consequently, it could be said that Coronach was one of the top cities of the kingdom . Filled with unease, Mira frowned as she touched the dark belt pack that was tied around her waist . Found inside the bag given to Mira by the castle’s maid, that accessory matched her black-and-white clothes pretty well . The girl had thrown within that pack the small pouch that contained all of her money—the one awarded by King Solomon .

“Naturally, you won’t have to worry about that, Mira-sama . This time all of your travel expenses will be paid by Solomon-sama . ”

Said Garrett with a radiant smile, followed by,

“Just once, I wanted to try spending a night here . ”

In a playful murmur .

“Good grief, you need to show some restraint . ”

Although Mira was astonished by that, she was also pulled in by Garrett’s mood and smiled back at him .

While the man was taking care of the check-in procedure, Mira, who didn’t have anything to do, killed time by observing the objects in the entrance hall, such as its furnishings and paintings . However, the girl herself didn’t realize that, just like those pieces of art, she was also being observed—albeit in secret . As expected of a high class inn, it was used by high-ranking adventurers, individuals who could easily make their gazes go unnoticed .

After Garrett concluded the formalities with the front desk, they were guided to a room by an employee . Apparently, all the highest-grade ones had already been occupied, so they were given a room in the “second-best” ranking; it would still easily beat even the finest rooms offered by the common inn . But incidentally, it was completely out of the question to compare it with Dunbalf’s private room, in his Silver Linked Tower .

Since he was going to stay in one of the standard rooms, the military man left for the lower floor, his job done for the day .

As soon as Mira entered her room, she noticed a note that had been left on top a table . Written there were a set of reminders and information about the service given at the inn . It covered a lot of topics, such as the instructions to leave the key at the front desk when going out, how to call for the room service by ringing the bell near the doorway, how they handled the breakfast, lunch and dinner, etc .

Having roughly scanned the contents of the note, Mira then looked at the huge wall clock in the room .

It was almost six o’clock in the afternoon . Outside of the window, the sky was almost completely dyed in black, with the last tinges of crimson only appearing far away in the distance .

(Okay, I already did too much today . It should be fine to start my mission tomorrow . )

Mira decided in an instant . She then then sat down on the sofa after taking a drink with her—one of the goods that had been arranged for those using the room .

The girl’s carriage journey, which lasted for several days, had taken its toll on her, but nevertheless she still had the desire to fully enjoy a first-class inn . She immediately opened the room service menu and rang the bell, without even looking at the prices there .

In the following day, just when the young girl was walking towards the dining hall to have breakfast, she ran into Garrett, who had finished enjoying a cup of coffee after his meal .

“Ah, Mira-sama . Good morning . ”

“Yeah, morning . ”

Mira answered after a small yawn, quickly taking one of the nearby seats .

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“If I’m not mistaken, Mira-sama is going to the Experts’ Union and register there, right?”

“Indeed . ”

She nodded while looking over the contents of the breakfast menu—and then raised her face, as if suddenly remembering something . Mira had left a firmly locked box inside of the carriage so, one way or another, it was worrying her .

“Come to think of it, what are you going to do now? I doubt your only mission was to bring me here . ”

“Yes, you’re right, Mira-sama . In regards to a different matter, I’m going to the Coronach Fort . ”

As he confirmed the girl’s suspicions, Garrett casually waved a letter in his hand . It seemed like his mission was to deliver it .

“Oho, is that what was inside the box?”

“Exactly . It’s related to the mission you undertook yesterday . Let’s call it an ‘Official Letter’ of sorts . I heard it contains a warning and guidance, so that they would know how to deal with the problem the next time it happens . ”

“Hmm, I see . ”

Related to the mission she had undertaken . In other words, about the Lesser Demon’s shady actions . Those developments had, somehow, bothered the girl, but it was a matter that had been left completely on the care of Solomon . Mira herself was entrusted with a very important mission .

“Oh, right . Do you know where I could find the Experts’ Union?”

However, in order to proceed with that “very important mission”, the first step was to know its location, and Mira had absolutely no idea where it was .

“For the Experts’ Union… after you leave this inn, turn to the left and follow the path straight ahead . In almost no time you will be able to find it, Mira-sama . ”

“Hm, straight ahead to the left, okay . ”

With the letter that was in his hand, Garrett pointed at the direction towards the Union . Mira then followed it with her eyes while repeating to herself those instructions .

“If by any chance you get lost, you can ask the patrolling knights… ask the nice people in white-and-blue armor about the city’s best inn . They will gladly teach you how to return here . ”

“Do not worry about it . ”

After saying that with a pout, the young girl used the menu she held and turned it towards Garrett, her fingers pointing at an entry labeled “Croque-monsieur Set . ”

“I see, you want the Croque-monsieur Set, right? Would you like anything to drink?”

“A Banana au Lait please . ”

“Understood . ”

He replied as a—somewhat cheerful—smile took place on his face . Immediately, the military man walked towards the restaurant counter and repassed Mira’s order .

“Well then, Mira-sama . See you at dinner . ”

“Sure, take care on your way there . ”

“I will . Be careful so you don’t get lost, Mira-sama . ”

And not even a second later, he was already hurrying out of the dining hall .

“Come on, as if I would ever get lost . ”

Muttered the girl while scowling at the direction Garrett had run away .

Twenty minutes later . Having had her fill of food during breakfast, Mira, with light steps, strolled towards the Experts’ Union .

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