I did my morning training on my own.
I could have done it with Ellen, but I didn’t really have to.
They say one only realizes the importance of someone when they are gone.
Ever since I built up some strength, we were always only working out together without exchanging many words, but when she was gone, the gap she left behind felt quite large.
I realized that Adriana had been a very important person to me.
I planned on taking Redina with me the next time I went to see her.
The members of the club, Grace, and some of the second-years also seemed quite agitated by her suddenly dropping out. I didn’t really care what they would ended up doing.
If they were to go see Adriana, would she even be willing to see them?
Since it was already out of my hands, I decided to not think about it any longer.
I also thought about catching those guys that were spreading malicious rumors about her and making them pay, but I ended up not doing that.
Adriana wouldn’t want me to do something like that, after all.
Not doing anything about it would be the last thing I could do for Adriana.
It seemed like the misunderstanding caused by my visit to the Saint-Owan Duchy somehow got resolved as well.
So, in the end, I returned to my routine of working out, training, and going to class.
I didn’t know how the problem with the Orbis Class was progressing, but it seemed clear that the emergency school shutdown would be extended.
If they were trying to solve the problem at its roots, they would have to pull them out, which would mean that the Orbis Class would get dismantled and restructured.
A lot of students would end up getting expelled, and a lot of teachers would end up getting fired.
“Are you ready, Reinhardt? You know you don’t have to come. I can just do this by myself.”
Olivia seemed a bit more restrained than usual, but I couldn’t just let her go on her own. In the end, I was going there because of my own problems, but I also couldn’t just go by myself.
Still, she kept insisting that she would go alone, and I kept insisting that I would accompany her, which ended in my eventual victory.
I was grateful.
Olivia seemed to worry a lot about Adriana suddenly dropping out, and yet she still cared about my affairs.
“Yeah, I have no idea what I should be prepared for, but I’m ready.”
“My, doesn’t that sound reliable?”
“Oh my, look at you. Am I so pretty that you can’t even hold eye contact with me?”
“That’s right. You’re pretty.”
“O-oh. I didn’t expect you would say that…”
That young lady, who always flirted so aggressively with others, would get incredibly embarrassed if one acted in kind. However, the truth was that Olivia, who was wearing an off-shoulder dress, shone more than she usually did.
My shameless praise following her silly remark made her fan her red face.
While Olivia was all dressed up, I only wore my Royal Class uniform.
The Support Association…
It was an extremely great opportunity to get some donations to bolster the Magic Research Society’s budget.
That was why I was going to the party.
Olivia held her hand out.
“Will you escort me?”
“Just this once.”
I took Olivia’s hand.
“Th-this ain’t how escorting works!”
Of course, Olivia totally freaked out because I just dragged her by her hand and didn’t really escort her.
Originally, only fourth-years and above were allowed to attend the Support Association meeting. It was in the form of a party in which they would talk subtly about sponsorships after chatting about vapid things with the attendees going “hahahoho”.
Since the Support Association meeting was an official event held at Temple, it was held in the banquet hall located in the main building of Temple.
Usually, people couldn’t enter without a Temple-issued pass, but in our case, those who intended to attend the Support Association meeting were allowed to enter without it in a limited manner.
I was thinking of taking the other members of the Magic Research Society, especially Harriet, with me. Since she was the young lady of the Saint-Owan Grand Duchy and was also insanely talented, it would be incredibly easy for her to win a sponsorship for the club.
However, after thinking about it for a bit, I ended up going to the Support Association meeting on my own.
It would have been something I would have to explain to the other club members, and I didn’t want Harriet to be put in that position.
It wasn’t a bad position or anything, but the task still involved whining and begging for money, after all. I didn’t want Harriet to experience something like that.
It seemed like the other attendees were either going to the support meeting separately or in groups. I was on my way to the venue with Ceres and Olivia.
“Originally, this was a support meeting for all special classes, so normally there would also be some students of the Orbis Class present, but because of the current situation…”
“There will only be Royal Class students?”
“Yes, that’s right.”
Normally, the sponsors would compare the two classes, deciding who to sponsor as if investing in the more likely class to succeed. However, because of the problem with the Orbis Class, they were exempted from the event.
While I didn’t know how Temple would solve those problems, the remaining people of interest might not appear again for a whole semester.
Ceres van Owen was also dressed up. Her appearance was quite impressive as well, but Olivia Lanze simply stood out too much.
“D-don’t just stare at me like that…”
When I kept looking at her, she avoided my gaze as if she’d suddenly turned shy, different from her usual, clingy self. Olivia fumbled with her fingers and couldn’t even look at me.
‘What’s with that reaction? What a bold move!’
That was what Ceres seemed to think when she looked at Olivia at the moment.
Originally, she should have been a senior whom she respected quite a lot.
However, after that incident happened, Ceres seemed to look at Olivia with pitying eyes from time to time.
I knew how she felt. I also got dumbfounded from time to time when I saw her. Of course, she was so nice that she would even help rally donations for a club of some lower-year students that had nothing to do with her.
No matter how she acted outwardly, Olivia Lanze was someone I was insanely grateful to.
In fact, Olivia didn’t even need sponsorship, so she wouldn’t have come to the support meeting normally, but she was attending that day, which was unusual.
And, of course, Ceres wouldn’t have to attend just for a sponsorship, but she was a student council president, so she had to.
She glanced at the list she was holding.
“There are many different types of sponsors: noblemen, rich merchants, knights, the Magic Tower, and the Magic Association.”
“Among them, if there was one organization that would sponsor your Magic Research Society, it would be the Magic Tower or the Magic Association, right?”
“I guess so.”
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Translator – KonnoAren
Proofreader – ilafy
* * *
“However, they don’t necessarily have to be connected to magic. There are cases where wizards actually join the knights as well, right?”
Olivia had a different opinion from Ceres, which was also reasonable enough. There was no way that only organizations related to magic would be interested in the Magic Research Society, after all.
“For now, I’ll just pick out the most influential people among the support meeting attendees.”
“Leader of the Knights Templar, Illion Milton.”
“The Magic Association’s vice president, Saintrident.”
“Commander of the Imperial 1st Division, Shanapell, Saviolin Turner.”
“Merchant Guild Master, Owen de Getmorea.”
“There are many others, but these four should be the most important.”
The former leader of the Knights Templar, Reverier Lanze, was dismissed, so his successor attended the meeting instead. I didn’t really know who Illion Milton was. Olivia clearly seemed reluctant after hearing his name.
While Reverier Lanze, her stepfather, had been the more direct problem, Olivia seemed to dislike anyone in the position of being the Knights Templars’ leader. Even though he was just the successor, she would absolutely hate attending the support meeting with someone like that.
“I can go alone.”
I suggested that because I didn’t want Olivia to force herself to go to a place she didn’t want to go to. However, she simply shook her head.
“What are you saying? I’m fine. It’s not like I didn’t know that they’d attend.”
It seemed like she had been prepared for it, perhaps predicting that a huge organization like the Knights Templar would be in a position to attend those events.
Olivia Lanze was kind, almost seeming like a real pushover.
The Commander of the Knights Templar, Vice-President of the Magic Association, Commander of the Imperial Knights’ first Division. and the Master of the Merchant Guild…
It was clear that, if we were to convince even one of those four, we would receive huge amounts of support.
However, I seriously hated the Knights Templar to begin with, and the Merchant Guild seemed quite twisted in my eyes as well.
I wasn’t sure about the Magic Association, but they might’ve been willing to sponsor us, as our activities were magic related.
The first Division of the Imperial Knights had nothing to do with magic, so would they even be willing to sponsor us?
While I didn’t know everyone or everything, I did know one of those names…
Imperial Knights First Division, Knights of Shanapell. Saviolin Turner.
A Swordmaster, of course.
No, they were even more than that.
The Temple students were sent to battle when the Gate Incident took place, however, there were also combat troops that didn’t consist of students of course. Their greatest representative would be the Knight Order, specifically, Shanapell, the greatest Knight Order Division found on the continent. They made great contributions to the battle as well.
As most students didn’t know how to fight properly, some knights took them under their wings and taught them how to fight in real situations.
Saviolin Turner gave Ludwig several lessons in that process.
At that time, Ludwig was in the possession of Alsbrj ger and was deemed a very important figure.
Ludwig and Ellen Artorius…
Those two were transferred to the unit under Saviolin Turner’s direct command.
It was only natural that the best knight of the continent instructed the owner of the Holy Sword’s Alsbringer and Lament, who weren’t yet familiar with those kinds of battles.
She had a cold and unfeeling personality and treated Ludwig very harshly, whipping him while constantly comparing him to Ellen, who was good at everything.
Since the world was at stake, Saviolin Turner had no other choice but to resent Ludwig more than he actually deserved.
It was easier to die than survive, and with a weak body and mindset, only an even worse ending than death would await you.
While Saviolin Turner had nothing to teach Ellen, who excelled in everything, she had a lot to teach Ludwig.
In battle, Saviolin Turner taught him countless things, and, near the last chapter, she actually lost her life protecting Ludwig.
In the end, Ludwig became a Swordmaster in that process.
She was a very important character after the gates appeared.
I never thought I would meet her in a place like that.
“Now, shall we go in?”
And I really didn’t expect that I would end up meeting her with Olivia Lanze, not Ellen and Ludwig.
We arrived at the banquet hall located in the main building.
“There are quite a few people.”
The students present of Royal Class’ fourth year and higher were about 60 in total. However, not all attendees were students.
Other than those that looked like students at first glance, there seemed to be more than 100 people.
“If all of the people that wanted to come actually came, there would be more than 1000 attendees.”
Ceres added that the number of attendees was already greatly reduced.
The best students of Temple, an educational institution the Empire was proud of, were the ones that were the Empire’s future. There were many who wanted to invest in or build connections with them. There might’ve even been some who wanted to scout them before they graduated. Whether they were prospective, promising knights or those with business-related talents.
Every talent had a use in some place.
Some of the students greeted sponsors they already knew for quite some time as well as some they seemed unfamiliar with.
And as we entered, all their eyes turned to us.
To Olivia Lanze, to be exact.
Someone who had renounced her faith but was still famous as the Saint of the Eredian District.
Although she had been a promising prospective paladin, the fact that she had given up on everything and still went to that place where the commander of the Knights Templar was present quickly cooled the atmosphere.
To be honest, it might’ve just been that they found it hard to take their eyes away from Olivia, dressed as she was.
Olivia wore a smile on her lips as if she was already used to these gazes.
What the heck? She isn’t bothered by this at all.
She sure was a strange person.
“Is there anything official we need to do?”
“Hm, not really. You can just go and relax.”
It sure was a relief that there wasn’t anything like a time to promote oneself where I had to go up on the podium and tell those people to give me money.
I was really worried that I’d have to do something like that.
However, if there wasn’t anything like that, how was I supposed to open a conversation with the sponsors? Did I have to go up to those people I had never seen before and randomly pitch them my business plan, asking them to just lend me some money?
Wouldn’t they just think I was a scammer?
However, contrary to my worries, there was someone who approached us first.
“I can’t believe you actually came here. This is a big deal.”
“I didn’t come to a place I shouldn’t be at, now did I?”
I didn’t recognize his face, but I could guess his identity, judging by the robes he was wearing.
The commander of the Knights Templar, Illion Milton.
Olivia grabbed a glass of champagne from the tray of a passing waiter, took a small sip, and smiled.
Olivia was an adult.
“Can’t you change your mind?”
“Of course not.”
The commander of the Knights Templar still seemed to feel that Olivia’s sudden departure was a shame. He left after a short greeting, saying that he knew that Olivia’s will was too firm to be swayed by him.
Olivia Lanze was simply too talented for people to leave alone. Reverier Lanze once said that she was talented in every possible way.
She was a talent hand-picked and selected to be in charge of the Knights Templar in the future.
However, Olivia couldn’t go back to them.
Ceres looked at her with pity. She was someone who lived by her faith in the Five Great Gods, although she didn’t have the talents to become a paladin.
She seemed to think that it was very unfortunate that Olivia had abandoned her faith.
“There are some things that only get firmer with the passage of time.”
Olivia smiled at Ceres.
It wasn’t just that she felt disappointment towards the Knights Templar.
Olivia had learned the reality of faith and the gods after the Tiamata incident: the demon gods didn’t exist and were actually the same beings as the great gods.
The truth that the power one received from a god was simply determined by the direction of one’s faith.
Knowing that the gods actually had no sentience, Olivia could never have faith in them again.
At first, she decided to give up on her faith because she saw what their believers did, however shortly after she even found out that the gods had such flaws.
Olivia definitely would never place her faith or loyalty in the gods again. Therefore, she didn’t even consider joining the Knights Templar.
Most of my unknown seniors of the Royal Class were talking to the sponsors about one thing or another.
Ceres was a student council president, so she went around to see if she could do something, so Olivia was the only one left with me.
“Most of the seniors here must be majoring in magic and need some extra money, right?”
Olivia nodded at my words.
“There are also some students who came here to decide on their career path after graduation.”
“Hmm… Are they trying to see who gives them the better offer or something?”
“That’s right. There are even some cases where commoners are promised titles.”
It was as the Grand Duke had told me.
In order to secure the promising talents of the Royal Class, some places offered them titles. That being said, while there were four major groups present, there would also be some representatives of the Empire among the attendees.
The meeting was basically an opportunity for others to build connections under the pretext of granting sponsorships to students, and at the same time, it was also like a job fair for those that didn’t intend to attend graduate school because their graduation was imminent.
I wasn’t sure just how much a Royal Class graduate was worth, but it had to be an enormous amount.
I wondered what my price would be.
While I didn’t really think so, Mr. Epinhaused once told me that I was the most talented student in Temple.
As soon as I thought about that, a cold-looking man talking with someone entered my view.
It was Mr. Epinhauser.
Of course, it was very much possible for teachers of the Royal Class to attend the meeting, but I still couldn’t believe that I’d met my teacher at a party.
Of course, it was very much like Mr. Epinhauser to just wear his normal formal suit and not some fancy outfit.
I couldn’t hear what he was talking about with the other people, but seeing that they wore quite grim expressions, it didn’t just seem to be a friendly chat. I couldn’t even imagine him talking to someone in a friendly manner.
“Now, shall we go fishing for some money?”
Olivia flashed a bright smile as she said that.
“…Should you really be talking like that?”
If she talked like that, wasn’t she basically blurting out that we were just there for money?
…Although that wasn’t far from the truth.
“Don’t be too disappointed, Reinhardt.”
Olivia seemed to have a pessimistic outlook on this meeting from the get-go.
No, weren’t we supposed to be able to make good money there?
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