How many months and days had it been since my departure from Beilanea?
Right, I’ve been counting… exactly 700 days. Almost two years now.
Royal Capital Regalia… had eluded me, for I had instead followed Melchi east, to where the one called the Philosopher of the Far East resided.
And so we met him.
-Ah, yes, the Philosopher of the Far East.
“Orah!! Ten thousand squats to go!”
“WHAT THE HELL! SQUATS AIN’T GONNA DO JACK TO MY MAGIC!!”
The almost Ogre-like bodybuilder bastard, who was sitting on a rock in the middle of the wasteland and issuing me endless orders to do squats, was the great and powerful dark elf Philosopher.
All he wore was a white loincloth. A stern ‘middle-aged’ man with black hair, an impressive beard and ghastly pale skin, somewhat similar to Charlie of the Six Braves. The information on his kind was not wrong in that the Dark Elves’ ears were long and sharp, but this old bodybuilder’s ears were not sharp at all, seeming to have been mutilated.
The first time we’d met, I’d mistaken him for an Ogre and fired a spell at him, and so did Pochi with her Zenith Breath attack. So I’m sure anyone else would understand how we’d felt.
“Oh? Thinkin’ about some cheeky nonsense, ain’tcha? Now ya gotta do ten thousand more squats!”
“Y-you’re kidding, right!?”
“Yeah, ‘cos I’mma add ‘nother rack! Now you’ve got thirty thousand! GAHAHAHAHAHA!”
Philosopher of the Far East… more like Bomber Head of the Far East. Today was another day for Tūs the High-Order Muscle to act as my demon instructor.
All the manual labor I had to do here made me wish I’d gone to the Magic Guardians instead. From cooking and laundry to weeding and working the fields, and on top of those, keeping tabs on monster nests – then after all those labor with questionable usefulness, I had to trudge through a warrior training regimen straight from hell.
Now I know how Melchi got so abnormally strong. Heh!
In the first year, we’d started off with a bomber course on magic and magecraft. Of course, the program had included ones that I’d already been familiar with, too.
I needed quite a lot of time to learn new magic and magecraft, so this muscle bomber had given me a light-speed-paced course, as if to fully soak up a dry sponge gourd in one go.
That’s right – those were the times when the hierarchical relationship between this musclehead and I had been established.
“It-it’s over… hoo… ho… oof… I think I’m gonna puke…”
“GAHAHAHAHA! And you wanna go ‘gainst the Devil King? Very funny! Can’t even get on the Holy Warriors’ level in your dreams!”
“S-shut up, old man! Why’d the Divine Messenger even come to me, anyway!? He should’ve gone to you instead!”
“I don’t believe in anyone but myself, that’s why! I mean, He might’ve come, but I got my mems erased ‘cos I didn’t believe! And so the wheels of fate turned ’round and ’round and dumped the bad luck on ya, Asley!”
“What’d you mean, bad luck!? And I mean, you believe in the Devil King’s resurrection now, right!? At least you can help!”
“Then give me a reason why!”
“…What’s the Devil King’s goal? Start by explainin’ that.”
His goal… Huh? Yeah, what’s the Devil King’s goal?
“And there ya go, damned fool! What did the Devil King do in the past of our history? And then look at why the Holy Warriors opposed him!”
“…Well, that’s… to prevent him from ruling the world, right?”
“That’s right – the Devil King aims to rule. Same thing as humans. Whoever becomes King ain’t got no effect on me. Now, if t’s gonna physically destroy the world – then maybe I’ll move.”
“And what about God!? He’s protected the humans for so long, and now He might be gone for good!”
“That’s why I said I don’t believe in anyone but myself, yeah? If the Devil King’s conquerin’ the world just to destroy it, then he ought to be put on suicide watch. What he’s gonna want is control – which means he’s gonna either destroy or enslave the humans! If he wants to kill himself, he can just spend lots’a arcane energy and shoot into the ground, and ‘poof’ – the planet’s gone! But none of the Devil Kings ever did that! So you think I’ll help when I can just chill here in the wasteland!? Bloody ‘ell no! It’s like a mole not having to care about whatever goes up on the surface, ya half-boiled eggplant.”
Ngh… I mean, he’s right…
I had spoken with the logic of a civilized individual, who wished for intelligence and prosperity.
I suppose this Philosopher wouldn’t understand, what with him having always lived the lifestyle of monsters.
Still, even moles come above ground once in a while. Bah, this is why I don’t like dealing with old-timers…
“Oh? What, ya wanna get in the Muscle Training Theater of Love?”
“What the – if I do that again, my legs-“
“To our honored guest Asley, we introduce the 20K Pushups Special Course! Don’t worry, your legs will be fine!”
“AHHHHH!! WHAT THE HELL, BRING IT ON!!”
Although the sand and the old man’s stink of sweat have been awful to me throughout the seasons, I suppose I am doing well enough?
I have heard rumors of Bruce and Blazer’s promotions to Rank S. I’m sure Betty is doing her best, too, so that she doesn’t get left behind for long.
And word has it that they had an addition to The Silver’s ranks? A beautiful black-haired lady, I have heard, so if I had to guess, I would say it was Haruhana.
Above all else, it is nice to hear that Natsu and Fuyu were growing up nicely, and that thanks to Miss Irene, the children of the Colourful Food District were under good care.
Also, I have heard that you just became the Student Council President? Congratulations. I hope you do not get an infamous nickname like a certain Black Emperor.
She is the same as ever. I do not feel like she has grown up at all.
I also am the same as ever. I do not feel like I have grown at all.
Well, aside from the feeling that we have become more or less stronger, that is.
Though I still need to work on how to act like a human, I suppose.
I do think it was childish of me to put hot sauce in Pochi’s snacks.
As for Pochi, I think it was childish of her that she was snacking when she was not supposed to, and that it was mature of her that she has forgiven my prank. Yes, so mature indeed.
I suppose it also is in her nature as a beast that she forgets her grievances easily.
How are you faring in the University?
Are you still on good terms with Hornel, Midors, and Idéa?
Which reminds me, both Anri and Claris are affiliated to the Black Faction, are they not? I think Miss Irene has also lamented how weak the White Faction was during the Friendly Match this past year? It would be nice if there are excellent mages in the making to be found, but if they do not exist, then they do not exist, so I think it would be perfectly fine to have a total domination from your side.
I’m sure Baladd has grown up big and strong, too. I would assume no one would intend to steal her away now. By the way, has her pronunciation been completely fixed now?
Hornel has become a Student Council Public Morals Enforcer, if I remember correctly. I wonder who the Vice President is?
Since the President is affiliated to the Black Faction, the Vice President would be selected among the White Faction for the sake of balance… I think that is how it goes, anyway. From where you stand now, I am sure you will be looked at with envy from some underclassmen, so please keep your wits about you. If the Vice President makes light of you, please feel free to crush them.
I have been able to do over 10,000 pushups in a row during three separate occasions now.
My diet is well-balanced. However, having to do so many iterations of physical training, I was worried that I will become too muscular, so I have attempted to imitate Miss Irene’s magic. I have attained quite a physically fit look now, but further physical change has been suppressed with a prototype that I have come up with. I think it is about time I pay a visit to you and the people back there, too.
My arcane power has grown quite strong, and I have attained an unbelievable level of physical strength, so I assure you that there is no need for you to worry.
Lina, I look forward to seeing how much you have improved yourself.
P.S. Up to 10,159 times now.
“It-it’s over… hoo… ho… oof… gonna puke… it’s… bff-!?”
“Good job today, Master!”
A gigantified Pochi jumped on my belly, causing the lunch I had eaten earlier today to spew out of my mouth.
“What are you doing!? How can you be this helpless, sir!?”
“Y-you… you’ve become so violent lately, you know that…?”
“Uh – Sir Tūs told me that him sitting on you makes your pushups more effective, though?”
“Even if we’re going over the top, there’s a limit for everything. I swear, he’s like a Muscle King and Ogre King hybrid… speaking of which, where’d he go?”
“He’s with Melchi right now.”
“Oh, noes! He’s not even supervising me!”
“I think not, sir…”
Pochi stopped being on my tracks, pulling my tattered vestment that had been reduced to not much more than a skirt.
“Eh – what now?”
“He’s left a message for you, sir.”
“‘GAHAHAHAHA! Twenty thousand pushups!’ – was what he said.”
Oh, thou must awaken… my push-up power!