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Magi Craft Meister Volume 10 Chapter 04
10-04 Side Story 14: Lithia up to Now
Lithia Fahlheit was a new noble.
Her father Nicholas Fahlheit had been a leader of the soldiers of Cline Kingdom and had been bestowed with the title of Ritter due to his achievements during a border dispute.
His eldest daughter Lithia too was doing her best at being a squire.
The female squires were being trained. Right now the training was mock battles with the instructor using wooden swords.
Royalty and high-ranking nobles calling for female guards or knights wasn’t uncommon.
Even here in Cline Kingdom in the past few years the number of female knights had risen.
The instructor doing the training was the vice-captain of the female Imperial Guard knight squad. Her name was Gloria Ohlstat
Her short and bright brown hair coupled with her reddish brown eyes gave a lively impression of her.
Many of the female knights were low-ranking nobles or children of knights. Gloria was from a household that had produced a great number of knights for generations.
Among them Lithia who had a father who was a new noble was slightly out of place.
“That girl’s keeping at it, huh.”
“Well, since her family are new nobles, if she doesn’t work hard then it’ll end with her generation.”
Half of the colleagues who were watching her train were children of nobles. Due to their status they wouldn’t be troubled even if they couldn’t become knights.
“I wish I’d get disqualified and could marry soon.”
There was even someone who didn’t hesitate to say that.
In comparison, the people born to knight households were different.
“There’s no way I who was born to a house that’s had generations upon generations of knights can lose to a rookie like that.”
“Just look at her posture. It doesn’t even resemble like a proper one. There’s not an ounce of elegance in it.”
Whether or not Lithia knew about the ridicule, she kept on facing the instructor no matter how many times her wooden sword was repelled. And in the end.
Her sword was forcefully sent flying and the training came to an end.
“T-thank you very much.”
Lithia thanked the instructor while agonizingly heaving for air,.
“Alright, that’s everyone, correct? Next is swinging against straw posts. Whoever’s on duty, prepare them.”
Bundles of straw attached to poles in the ground were set up. The training wos to cut them using swords.
“Listen, when cutting with a sword take the trajectory in consideration. You must have the edge perpendicular to the thing you’re cutting. If you don’t do that then the sword won’t cut and it might bounce off, bend, or even break.”
The instructor explained.
This was very different from iaido practiced with Japanese swords. In iaido a 45 degree angle cut in often. This was against a straw post made out of a tatami rolled up tight, which was exceedingly hard to cut through.
However, as the practice assigned to Lithia’s group was just for learning the trajectory of the blade and the feel of the increased cutting power, the toughness of the straw posts was very low.
“First, I’ll show you.”
Female knights used what were basically short swords. The instructor unsheathed the short sword hanging from her waist.
Along with her shout, the short sword flashed horizontally in a straight line. The straw post was cleanly cut in two. Gasps came out of the squires watching.
“Instructor Ohlstat is fantastic.”
rmurs like that were heard too.
“Alright, give it a try. Cutting straight horizontally is difficult. Anderson, you’re first.”
“Yes ma’am! Take this!”
“That’s no good. Your trajectory isn’t straight. Hundred practice swings. Next, Bogard.”
“What are you doing! If you don’t put any force in it, there’s no way you can swing in a straight line! Three hundred practice swings! Next, Carter!”
This time the straw post was cut cleanly.
“Alright, that’s adequate. Next…”
Like this all 33 of the squires kept attempting to cut the straw post one after another. People who couldn’t cut it were given an appropriate amount of practice swings.
Finally it was Lithia’s turn.
“Finally, Fahlheit. Alright, do it.”
“Yes. …Take this!”
Lithia cleanly bisected the straw post.
“Mh-hm, alright. …Hmm? Fahlheit, let me take a look at your sword.”
Despite being flustered by the instructor suddenly asking to see her sword, Lithia handed it over.
“Hmm. Mh-hm, you’re actually using a pretty good sword. Where did you get it? I’d also like to get something of this quality.”
“U-umm, y-you see, it’s a sword a-an acquaintance Magi Craftsman repaired for me. It used to be just a normal iron sword, but it got bent and he repaired it for me.”
Because she was flustered the explanation was a little faltering, but the instructor seemed to understand.
“Hmm, is that so. That’s a good acquaintance you’ve got. Take good care of this sword.”
Gloria then turned towards everyone and,
“Ten laps around the training grounds and that’s it for today. Double time!”
She commanded and herself began running ahead of them.
After a day of training ten laps around the training grounds was rather intense. While some dropped out, Lithia stuck it through to the end while wheezing.
Then, on the 3457th year in the history of the continent, soon in the beginning of the year the neighboring Frantz Kingdom’s army violated the border and Lithia too was appointed to the relief knight troops and recruited to the battle.
Was it a shame she couldn’t become an Imperial Guard knight, or was this her calling? For Lithia it was the latter.
On the battlefield Lithia remembered what she had once talked about with Jin.
‘Isn’t it fine to live for the things you can do?, Jin had said.
“Something I can do… It’s healing after all, isn’t it.”
Due to her daily efforts in training, Lithia had mastered healing magic up to the intermediate level, and had become a healer competent even among the relief knight troops.
That year there were three repeated small fights.
The third one was the most violent battle of them all. There were many casualties, Cline Kingdom’s army was forced back, and they met the opposing Frantz Kingdom’s army at Tetrade, 50 kilometers from the border.
And at that time.
A giant golem appeared and made everyone completely unable to fight.
The weapons, armor, even the golems and tableware, any and all metallic objects of Frantz Kingdom’s army had been molten. Cline Kingdom’s army had been inexplicably rendered unconscious, and once they woke up they found their weapons and armor taken..
Frontal battle being of course impossible without weapons and armor, so Frantz Kingdom’s army withdrew. Lithia and the others also stayed inside Tetrada waiting for orders from the headquarters.
“Lithia, I heard you’ve done well.”
At that time, Lithia’s father Nicholas whose working hours were over came to visit her. Nicholas was working as the deputy leader of Cline Kingdom’s third chivalric order.
“Father, I’m glad you’re safe!”
The father and daughter held each other’s hands, both glad the other was safe.
“Lithia, it seems you’ve worked hard.”
“Mmh… Although there were people I couldn’t save.”
Lithia spoke and looked sad. Nicholas then gently tried to reassure his daughter.
“That couldn’t be helped. Everyone who went on the battlefield was prepared for what might happen. Luckily there were no casualties among the commoners. ”
“Isn’t that because Father and the others did their best?”
“That was our job and I’m proud of it.”
On this day a conversation like that went on between the father and the daughter.
“By the way, about that third son of the Rush family…”
Finally Nicholas spoke about the matter he was most concerned about as a father. But Lithia replied,
“Eh? About who?”
And so Nicholas felt relieved from the bottom of his heart.
The next day.
“Ah, Li-Lithia-san, morning.”
“Ah, Pasco-san, good morning.”
The face of Pasco Rush was somewhat red. On top of that he was talking in monotone.
“W-what a fine weather we’re having today, don’t you agree.”
“It’s getting cloudy though…”
“Oh, um, that’s right, uh, ha, hahaha…”
Pasco tried to smooth things over by laughing. Then he faced Lithia and,
“A-anyway, I have to go work as a guard now!”
He gave a salute and left.
“Heh, what an interesting fellow.”
Lithia then looked up at the sky.
Suddenly she placed her hand on her waist, and was surprised when she realized that the familiar thing wasn’t there.
“It got lost, didn’t it…”
Lithia had lost the short sword Jin had repaired for him that had been her favorite ever since.
In addition to that, there may have been another reason why she was feeling down about it.