Chapter 0256 April is the Season of Beginnings
In the Rondo Duchy, rice planting was over, leading to a peaceful countryside.
The size of the paddy fields is about five tan.
Five thousand square meters.
In tsubo, that would be 1,500 tsubo.
About…one-tenth of the size of Tokyo Dome….
Well, it certainly isn’t that large, but it can yield enough rice for one person for one year, enough to distribute to neighbors, and enough to give as souvenirs to close friends.
“Phew, looks like it’s going to be another hot day.”
Ryo, the Duke of Rondo, was already up and working early in the morning.
Every morning, he goes around pulling up the weeds in the paddy fields.
This practice is inevitable when growing rice without herbicides.
If this were Earth, he would have to go into the paddy fields and remove the weeds by hand or by pushing a rice field wheel…which is quite hard work.
In the Rondo Duchy, naturally, a golem with an automatic weed-removal function has been completed …but Ryo deliberately chose to take out the weeds personally.
Nonetheless, it’s quite a hassle to enter every paddy field.
He stretched out only the thumb and forefinger of his right hand to form the shape of a gun.
Then, he aimed at the roots of the grass protruding out of the water and shot.
The mud at the base split open and the weed floated to the surface.
Paddy fields have a passive flow of water, so even if left alone, the weeds would flow into the river on their own….
Based on the same plasma…or cavitation…from the large snapping shrimp that had once stunned Ryo.
Ryo named the magic <Bang>.
…It seems that Ryo is severely lacking when it comes to naming things after all.
There are several pillars erected around the paddy fields.
These pillars are called ‘Warding Pillars’ in the Kingdom, and they are erected along large roads to ward off monsters.
Although they’re not as powerful as the ‘barrier’ that Michael (pseudonym) erected at Ryo’s house, they have been quite useful so far, and no monster has been able to intrude on the paddy fields and land.
But of course, he’s very much aware that even barriers made by Michael are practically useless against his enormous and mighty neighbors….
They must never, ever, be offended.
In the morning, he patrols the paddy fields, and spends the rest of the morning practicing magic while running through the forest, and spends the afternoon reading alchemy-related books that he had smuggled…or rather, borrowed from various libraries.
And this peaceful life was broken one evening.
The alchemy tool, which had never been activated before, started to go off.
A stone tablet-like alchemy tool that Ryo calls the ‘communication tablet’ on the shelf in the living room.
Like a fax machine…or an e-mail…that delivers text….
Moreover, it runs out of energy after one use.
However, the effective distance is several thousand kilometers….
A straight line distance from Ryo’s residence in the Rondo Forest to the royal capital is more than two thousand kilometers, but it can be reached without any problem.
As it was the first time communication was made on it, Ryo was indeed surprised and picked up the tablet to read it.
“Proceed to the castle in formal attire as soon as possible…? I understand going to the castle, but…in formal attire?”
He had a feeling that it wasn’t going to lead to anything good….
Ryo was getting ready to head to the royal capital…but he didn’t, of course.
First of all, he needed to inform someone.
Ryo headed to the northern marshland.
There he met the Water Fairy King, Ryo’s sword master…in the form of the headless knight Dullahan.
Without exchanging a word, the two drew their swords and began a sword fight.
Two hours later, the mock battle ended with two wins and three losses for Ryo.
He still faced difficulty getting ahead of him.
Every time Ryo gets stronger, so does Dullahan … which begs the question of what is his limit?
“I’m sorry, Master. I will be away from the forest for a while again, starting tonight.”
Ryo bowed deeply as he said that.
That scene had played out several times in the past…and of course, the headless Dullahan didn’t say anything.
As usual, he just gave off a slightly lonely vibe.
At least, that’s what Ryo perceived.
Usually, after the sword fight, Dullahan would turn on his heel and leave, but today was different.
Something emerged in both hands.
Then, he extended his hands out toward Ryo.
Ryo took it.
“Are these…shoes? Boots?”
They weren’t spectacular.
They looked like ordinary boots…but when he looked closely, he could see that they had been designed in some way.
You could call them lace-up boots.
Looking at them, Ryo suddenly glanced at the shoes he was wearing.
They were quite battered.
It would be typical of Ryo not to care at all about what he wore.
Thus, Ryo took off his shoes and tried on the pair of lace-up boots.
They fit quite perfectly.
He tried prancing and bouncing around, but they were extremely easy to move around in!
“It’s amazing. They fit perfectly. Thank you, Master!”
Ryo bowed happily and deeply again.
When Dullahan saw that, he turned on his heel and left.
When Ryo returned home, he thought for a moment.
“The last time master gave me something was…when he gave me this robe. Back then, I couldn’t come back here for a while…could it be that I won’t be back here for a while this time as well?”
It’s unknown whether Fairy Kings have the power of precognition or the ability to see the future.
But there is no doubt that these non-humans have sharper senses than humans.
If they act ‘differently from the usual’, it is best to assume that ‘something unusual will happen’.
After all, it is fine if everything stays the same as usual.
Ryo headed for the backyard.
And two golems about the size of a person were there.
That’s right, at last, Ryo had succeeded in building golems. At the very least, in shape.
However, he was far from satisfied with their performances…
Their functions are rice planting, weeding, harvesting, drying, and threshing…they are specialized golems for paddy field management.
And they cannot speak….
They lack the ability to learn by themselves like an artificial intelligence….
They really were still just ‘machines’….
They were far from Ryo’s ideal.
Nonetheless, there was no problem in letting them manage the paddy fields while Ryo was away.
Ryo started them up, took a bath, washed off his sweat, and prepared meat.
He put on comfortable clothes, Murasame and its sheath, Michael’s knife, a shoulder bag, his usual robe, and the boots he had just been given.
Then he stepped out of the house and recited a chant.
“<Ice Create: The Champion’s Flute>.”
A small flute was generated in his right hand.
He brought it to his mouth and blew it.
Ryo couldn’t tell because it was out of the audible range of humans, but it was sounding.
After waiting for a while, something came down in front of him.
It was a Griffon…the champion of the skies.
Without a word, Ryo held a piece of meat covered with salt and pepper in his right hand and threw it to the griffon.
The griffon deftly received the flying meat in its beak, took one look at it, opened its beak, and slid it down into its mouth.
Then it looked at Ryo.
“Gri-gri, I need you to give me a ride to the royal capital. The reward is, as usual, two pieces of the meat you had just now. How about it?”
The Griffon called Gri-gri thought for a moment, then sank its body down to make it easier for Ryo to ride, and moved its head to indicate ‘get on’.
Ryo did not succeed in ‘taming’, or subduing, the griffon.
No one can do that in the first place.
He was only asking for cooperation from the griffon as a human and as a meat provider.
He had never been turned down before, but even if it did, it’s only natural…because originally, a griffon doesn’t carry anyone on its back.
The fact that Ryo was allowed to ride on it was the result of diligent negotiations.
But thanks to this, Ryo had gained unrivaled mobility from the Rondo Forest.
Ryo straddled Gri-gri’s back.
When Gri-gri confirmed this, it flapped its wings and rose into the sky.
After soaring, it entered horizontal flight.
It quickly exceeded the speed of sound.
If it went faster than the speed of sound, it would be hotter due to adiabatic compression, right?
Spacecraft returning from space get super~ hot, that kind of thing.
When gases are compressed, they heat up.
But…Gri-gri, as well as Ryo, who is being given a ride, weren’t feeling hot.
Since Gri-gri is a griffon, it may be doing something with wind-attribute magic….
It seemed that there were still many ways to use magic in ‘Phi’ that people do not understand.
Apart from that, however, there was one thing that Ryo was able to help with when flying at supersonic speeds on Gri-gri.
That was to suppress the generation of sonic booms.
For example, when an aircraft flies at supersonic speeds, shock waves generated from various parts of the aircraft may merge during their long propagation through the atmosphere, causing a sudden increase in pressure on the ground and causing damage.
That is what is known as a sonic boom.
However, in the 21st century, research to reduce the strength of these sonic booms by half was already underway in many countries on Earth, and test and experimental aircraft were being built.
JAXA’s S3CM, NASA’s X-59, etc…..
All of them have in common ‘terribly long nose’ and ‘delta wings’.
So, Ryo had negotiated with Gri-gri to be allowed to install an invisible long nose made of ice in front of Gri-gri if it would fly at supersonic speeds.
At first Gri-gri was reluctant, but when it actually tried it on, it found it easier to fly, and it is now its favorite gear.
Incidentally, it seems that the delta wings are apparently not necessary in the case of the griffon’s wings….
Thus, the ground was spared from the threat of sonic booms.
With no one on the ground the wiser.
It’s a little over two thousand kilometers from the Rondo Forest to the royal capital.
Even a griffon would take an hour and a half.
Even Ryo would feel some fatigue from maintaining the long cone of ice for an hour and a half…on the back of a griffon.
Whenever Ryo rides on Gri-gri to the royal capital, he doesn’t ride into the royal capital directly, of course.
If he did, the whole city would be in a panic.
Basically, Ryo felt that the griffon should not be shown to people, nor should people see it…and Gri-gri seemed to understand that.
As they approached the sky above the royal capital, Ryo fed the reward meat to Gri-gri by hand.
Then he jumped off Gri-gri’s back!
Gri-gri turned around and returned to the Rondo Forest…Ryo was skydiving without a parachute.
Not to worry, he’s not going to crash into the ground.
“<Water Jet Thruster>.”
He spewed water jets from the frontal part of his body to slow down, and when he got really close to the ground, he also spewed water jets from various parts of his body to control his posture and landed completely unharmed.
Through hundreds of experiences, he had now fully mastered the technique of skydiving without a parachute.
The Duke of Rondo’s residence in the Royal Capital. Three o’clock in the morning.
The Duke of Rondo’s mansion in the royal capital was located close to the royal castle…but in fact, Ryo has hardly ever used it.
When the king gave it to him, he entered and used it for a few days, but since then, he had rarely used it.
He was often in the royal capital itself, and also went in and out of the Alchemy Workshop and the Royal Castle as well…unofficially.
The king’s office in particular, had a hidden passageway, which Ryo often used…see, boys like that kind of thing, don’t they?
So, as a result, he had never officially visited the castle….
Since he had the key to the duke’s mansion, of course, Ryo unlocked the door and went inside.
The mansion and garden were taken care of by a contractor, and both outside and inside were very clean.
Ryo remembered that he had not slept all night, so he went upstairs to his bedroom and got into bed.
Nothing good can come from a lack of sleep….
Seven o’clock the next morning.
The front door of the Duke of Rondo’s mansion was opened and a boy entered.
He must have been about sixteen years old.
He greeted at the door, though not too loudly.
He was very polite.
It’s not like anyone was watching, yet he did it properly…that one gesture could open up one’s future.
The boy literally jumped up when he heard the voice from within.
He had not expected anyone to be there.
It had been a year since the boy was in charge of cleaning the mansion.
He would come once a week to clean like this and had never seen anyone, yet…this morning he got a reply from inside….
The boy remained frozen for a while, but then he made up his mind and decided to advance further than the entrance.
The trading company to which the boy belonged was contracted to provide not only cleaning services but also general administrative services.
He knew that there were no valuables in the residence, only a dozen or so pieces of clothing, but the furnishings, including sofas and beds, were first-class.
Rumor has it that they were ordered by the king himself, and it would be a serious matter if they were to be stolen.
Then again, It’s very unlikely that a thief would reply and say, “come in”.
The boy opened the door to the living room.
In the living room, he found a young man…with dark hair, who looked not much older than he was, sitting on the sofa drinking coffee.
He looked very relaxed, probably just got out of the bath.
“Oh, hello. You’re the cleaner of this house, right?”
The dark-haired young man asked in a polite tone.
It was a question, but a rhetorical one.
“Yes. I am Bob from the Schmidhausen Management and Trading Company in the royal capital. I am in charge of cleaning the Duke of Rondo’s residence.”
“Oh, just as I thought. It’s in very clean condition, so I can tell you take such great care of it. Thank you very much.”
After saying this, the dark-haired young man bowed his head.
“Oh, not at all…”
From his words, it seems that the black-haired young man is related to the Duke of Rondo’s residence….
However, Bob didn’t hear from the company that such a person was coming.
“I had to use the mansion for some urgent business…. I came in last night, or rather at dawn, and used the bed and bath.”
As he said this, the dark-haired young man showed him a golden key.
It appeared to Bob to be the official key to this ducal residence.
“So listen Bob, I have a favor to ask of you. You don’t need to do any cleaning today, instead I’d like to ask you to run some errands for me.”
Bob also does the cleaning of nobles’ residences.
So he understands that nobles and the people around them sometimes make reckless demands.
It is the policy of the trading company to refuse any request that would undermine human dignity, but to be willing to accept any other request.
“Well, it depends on the request, in terms of the company’s policy…”
“Sure…. Don’t worry, it’s nothing difficult.”
The dark-haired young man smiled as he said this.
And even though they were both men, and perhaps a little older, his smile seemed endearing to Bob.
“I just need you to deliver this letter, that’s all.”
With that, the dark-haired young man held out a letter in an envelope to Bob.
Bob took it and looked at the address and sender.
“T-This is addressed to His Majesty the King…from the Duke of Rondo…. Um, excuse me, but are you…”
“Oh, sorry for the late introduction. My name is Ryo Mihara, Duke of Rondo.”
Ryo stood up and bowed.
It took exactly one minute for Bob’s thoughts to return to normal from the sudden shock.
“Is it really him?”
“How could I possibly know that? He hasn’t been to the castle since three years ago, when he became a duke.”
“Obviously, he’s here because he’s been identified by his ‘plate’, right?”
“And the queen knows what he looks like, too.”
“Makes sense, since they were both Rune adventurers.”
“Still, it’s all too sudden…the Premier Duke, who hasn’t been seen in three years, is here all of a sudden and seeking an audience…”
“Perhaps, the rumors are true…”
“Shush! Lower your voice.”
Before the Duke of Rondo’s first audience, various conversations were taking place among the courtiers in the audience chamber.
Everything was already prepared, all that remained was for the Duke of Rondo to enter the audience chamber.
“Lord Ryo Mihara, Duke of Rondo!”
The door to the audience chamber was opened as the court officer shouted that.
A dark-haired young man wearing the formal attire of a duke walked in, his cloak fluttering and flapping.
His steps were not too fast, but not too slow either.
None was the wiser that he was walking while remembering what he had learned from King Abel…three years ago.
With each step Ryo took, there were those who were whispering out in low voices.
“He’s so young…”
“So he’s the one they say surpasses even the Explosive Blaze Magician…”
“Some call him the ‘Silver Duke’ or ‘Ice fall’…”
As Ryo approached the throne, he noticed something odd.
(Two thrones side by side?)
Normally, there is only one throne. Naturally.
But there were two…moreover, the person sitting on one of the thrones seemed awfully small.
(Did Abel shrink…nah not quite)
The figure sitting on the other throne looked familiar.
Priest Rihya, the rightful wife of King Abel and a member of the ‘Crimson Sword’.
Then, the other little one would be.
(The first prince Noah…should be less than three years old. Sitting there without so much as a whimper.)
Ryo reached the base of the throne, got down on one knee, and took a bow.
“I, Ryo Mihara, Duke of Rondo, hereby report my arrival to the castle after receiving your summon.”
“Raise your head, Duke Rondo.”
A woman’s voice echoed. It was Rihya’s voice.
But there was no emotion in her voice.
And the expression on Rihya’s face, as Ryo looked up, was also completely devoid of emotion.
“Duke, thank you very much for making the trip on such short notice.”
“It’s my honor.”
This part of the conversation was just as usual.
However, there was still one question on his mind.
(Where the hell is Abel?)
Thank you for waiting!
Water Magician, Second volume, Western Countries arc begins.
Three years had passed since the first volume.
I plan to write side stories and intermissions on what happened during these three years but … we’ll see.
Well, three years may have passed but many things did not change.
Abel is still in his twenties!
Ryo is forever 19!
(I hesitate to reveal that I originally planned there to be a 20 year gap between the first and second volume but … once I began writing, for Ryo and Abel’s chemistry, I shortened it to 5 years and finally decided on 3 years.)
Support me and read the next chapters in advance on Ko-fi and Patreon!
A 20 year gap would have been amazing. Still. Excited!
And Ryo is not married to Sera?! Having a heir is also a noble obligation Ryo, don’t skip out on your duties!
For a long living race elf like Sera and the eternally youthful mc, time is the last thing on their mind.
I’m so hyped for a new volume. More Ryo antics please! I can’t wait for him to realize that he’s immortal. Thank you so much for the chapter!
Good call author-kun,20 years is too much afterall. Abel would be a wise old king at that point with a bunch of heir, Oscar the explosive magician would be married to that princess too. Room 101 would be an A rank or even S rank then. Guild Master would probably retire etc…20 years might be a blink of an eye for our eternally youthful mc but for other people, it’s a huge chunk of their lifetime.
I need to know will ever be anything with Seras and Ryo will happen in a romance way?
Thank you for the chapter!!! I am hyped!
Thanks for the chapter.
So many questions to be answered! Thanks for the chapter
Nice , Ryo getting new equipment. I wonder what their effects are ?