It’s in 2 parts
Chapter 4: Rookie Rank Examination – Ability and Evaluation
The first day of exams.
The newcomer’s exam finally started, and the written exam started at ten in the morning as scheduled.
Hiroto opened the question paper while thinking fluently that this reminded him of the time of the high school entrance exam. The number of examinees was surprisingly small at thirty-eight.
(Gee, I don’t understand it at all. The characteristics and weaknesses……..I don’t know any demon with this name./
There are about 30 questions in the book, but Hiroto is concentrating on filling in all of them.
The written test was completed on time, and lunch will be served at twelve o’clock. I heard that lunch will be served in the same way as breakfast, in the form of a buffet. In addition, the results of all the exams will be announced at a later time, and this written exam will also be posted in the hall by 2:00 pm.
” No good…….. why was it mostly about those guys? That was such an outsider thing. Also, all the principles and rules of the World Ability Agency are all appropriate….”
Hiroto is alone at the table, flopped down on the table.
After finishing lunch, Hiroto glanced around, but everyone was enjoying their tea time in an elegant manner. They were all looking very content, and there was already a lot of interaction between the candidates.
However, the table he was currently at had just one person, Hiroto.
It’s the only table where there was only one person, but no one else came to this table.
(Well, there’s no benefit in making friends with me, right? And……..wow, he’ s here again)
“Hey, you! I was kind enough to suggest that you leave before I embarrassed myself, and now you’re still here. Are you really so low on brain power?”
Hideo, the Hwang family’s heir apparent, persistently hurled insidious verbal abuse at Hiroto every time he met him.
Apparently, he didn’t like the incident with Mizuho very much.
(I don’t even feel like talking back to him anymore……..to this guy. Why does he get so involved with me?)
“You know what? Go home now. An unpleasant person with inferior ability.”
He gave his usual sarcastic smile and took the cronies he had made before he knew it.
Hiroto let out a deep breath and turned to sit up to get a coffee to get rid of his disgusting mood.
“‘How did it go? The test?”
A beautiful, clear voice spoke to him, and with a ” Huh?” Hiroto looked up.
Then there was a blonde girl holding two coffee cups.
“Ah……..Marion-san. Haha, I tried my best, though. A little unsure of myself? Marion-san taught me a lot of things, but……..”
The only girl from a foreign country who spoke to him at the party the night before makes a figure eight of her shapely eyebrows.
“Well but this isn’t the only test, and it’s the final overall rank. Here, coffee.”
“Oh, thank you. Well … okay! I mean, we’re just getting started, let’s go for it!”
Regaining his composure, he smiled at Marion and his expression softened as well.
(Ah, that’s soothing. (Even more so after that bastard.)
“Come to think of it……..Marion-san is very good at Japanese, isn’t she?”
” Well, I have a quarter of Japanese blood in my veins. My father’s nationality was American, but he was half Japanese and half German, so.. . My mother was French, though.”
“No wonder………. It’s kind of international…………..Ah……….”
Hiroto noticed that it was the current conversation. ” was”……….
“I’m sorry…….for asking you something unnecessary……..”
Marion became surprised when Hiroto gave her an apologetic look.
” Eh!? Not at all! I didn’t mean it that way…….. Well … it’s true that my father was six years ago and my mother last year ….”
Hiroto’s face clouded over. He himself lost his mother a year ago. Although it’s impossible to do everything, one can imagine some of her feelings. Marion stared at Hiroto, who looked down with a serious face.
”You’re a strange person, Hiroto-san…….. Even with this, I’m still very shy. But you are easy to talk to, Hiroto-san. And then suddenly, you’re very perceptive. I’m surprised.”
“No, not that kind of thing! I also lost my mother last year, so… But I’ve already gotten over it. Though I’m sure I’ll be failing the written exam.”
Marion listened intently to Hiroto’s story, but seeing Hiroto’s flushed face, she naturally burst out laughing. Hiroto, caught by Marion, smiled as well.
After that, the two of them got into a lively conversation and this time, Hiroto brought two cups of coffee for the second time.
The other examiners also talked about each other’s topics, and the overall atmosphere of the buffet hall was friendly.
At that time…….as if to break that atmosphere, the door of the hall was violently opened.
And from the door, a group of black-clothed people unceremoniously enter with a look of their own accord.
” “What? What is it? Out of nowhere.”
” And what’s that… those people…”
All eyes were on the examiners as they wondered what was going on with the abrupt and ill-disciplined intruders. In the center of the group, surrounded by adults dressed in black, was a blond boy of about their own age, who looked around the quiet lunch room as if searching for something, and his eyes stopped at the table where Hiroto and Marion were.
Then, one of the black-clad men gave this boy an earful of something.
The blonde boy, who was obviously looking at them, wore a thin smile, which made Hiroto feel lightly disgusted and bad. They seemed to be the kind of people that you would not want to be involved with if you could.
However, the boy betrayed the wishes of Hiroto, and with both hands in his slacks pockets and a grin on one side of his face, he walked over to the table in front of them.
Both Hiroto and Marion tried to avoid eye contact, but when he stood in front of them, they had no choice but to turn to the group that looked out of place. Up close, the blond boy had noticeable freckles, but in normal circumstances, he looked quite tidy. However, the expression on his face was distorted and you could see that his inner self was on the outside.
The boy stood right next to Marion and looked down at her, folding his hips so that only his face was close to her.
“─ Are you Marion Mia Shurian? Heh, you’re cuter and cuter than I thought you’d be.”
“…who are you?”
Marion’s face turned stiff and the boy put his hand to his forehead in an exaggerated manner.
“Hey, hey! You don’t even know what the main family line looks like? My name is Jean-Pierre de Orleans. You’ve heard of me, right? I’m in a position to give you orders on certain occasions, you know?”
“I’m not related to the House of Orleans.”
“Huh? You’re a funny one!”
As soon as he said it, Jean-Pierre pulled one hand out of his pocket and roughly grabbed Marion’s chest muffler.
Marion raised her eyebrows and shifted her stance at the pain in her neck.
“If only! Give me back Rafael’s Cloak! That’s the artifact your mother took from the Orleans family! Don’t tell me you have nothing to do with the House of Orleans with that! A young girl from a branch of our family came all the way from France to take the test for new recruits. Hey! What happened to the gratitude! huh?”
The buffet hall was in a state of turmoil. Marion held her tongue as she hung from her chest.
” Oh … is it true, the House of Orleans?
“Yeah. You mean those back Orleans? I have never seen them before.”
“Apparently, the agency also has considerable power in the shadows……..”
The other candidates changed their faces at the name of Orleans. Hiroto, who couldn’t possibly understand what they were talking about because of the suddenness of the situation, could only watch.
Then………Marion bites her lip with a resigned expression on her face and closes her eyes.
“I’m sorry……. sorry, Jean-Pierre-sama. Thank you for coming all the way for me……..thank you.”
When Jean-Pierre heard that, a smile appeared on his lips alone.
“Ha! You’re all pompous and arrogant because you’ve been told you’re superior to everyone around you… when you’ re just a branch family member!”
Marion’s words made him feel a little better, and when he saw that the candidates around him were paying attention to him, Jean-Pierre, who was getting more and more excited, tried to continue with more words.
And then, clang! Continue with the slamming. A loud sound came from right beside him.
” Ooooohhhh, Hot! There, there!”
Jean-Pierre and his black-clad followers are surprised when Hiroto suddenly starts to ramp up. Continued, the large round table tilts heavily as it hits Hiroto, who was holding a cup of coffee in one hand. Jeanpierre quickly removed his hand from Marion to avoid the table, and his body, which had lost its stance, was supported by the squires.
“Oh, I’m sorry! I’m sorry! Hey, I have to take off my jacket… I’ll get burned!”
“Oh, I’m sorry! Excuse me! Wait, I have to take my jacket off … or I’ll get burned!”
In a hurry, Hiroto apologized, taking off his shirt with the sleeves of his jacket in a hurry.
Jean-Pierre came to his senses and interrupted his conversation, which was interrupted by the laughter of the people around him for his pathetic staggering.
“You! What is it? Are you going to challenge the House of Orleans on this?”
“No! There’s no way I’m going to challenge you or anything like that!”
When he found out that his opponent was inept, Jean-Pierre gave him a lethargic look and lifted his hands up to his chest. Hiroto’s body bent over with one hand on the long-sleeved shirt of his jacket that he had taken off, and when the grabbed t-shirt extended above his face, Hiroto did as he was made to do.
A small scream goes up from the surrounding students taking the exam.
“Hiroto-san! No, please don’t! Jean Pierre-sama!”
Jean-Pierre looked at the pitiful faces of Marion, who was desperately pleading for help, and Hiroto.
” Well I don’t like it. You should apologize to me. I almost fell down.Even dirty dogs need to be disciplined, don’t they? Well you should get down on your knees and ask for forgiveness.”
From the side, Marion lets out a screaming voice.
“Shut up! Well, then, Marion. You wanna … get down on your knees for him? Kukuku.”
Marion’s expression hardened at Jean-Pierre’s suggestion of an alternative…….and the entire hall fell silent.
And then, after a very brief moment of silence…….Marion half closed her eyes and her expression disappeared.
All the candidates are there. Before everyone’s eyes were focused on her, Marion bent over with her hands simultaneously forward without effort, trying to get her knees on the floor.
Jean-Pierre was happy to see Marion’s body trembling slightly, and yet he was intoxicated by the illusion that he was now in control of the entire hall.
But the pleasant drunkenness was awakened by Hiroto’s loud voice that broke the silence of the hall.
”Ah! Sorry! Pardon me! It’s my fault!”
From the outside, Hiroto flails his arms and legs in an unseemly manner and makes a fuss.
“Kuh! Damn it! Then you better get down on your knees. Right now!”
Jean-Pierre was offended by Hiroto’s high spirits again, and angrily tugged on Hiroto’s T-shirt with force and threw it to the side. At the same time, a sound of the clothing being ripped open could be heard and Hiroto fell down miserably.
Looking at it, Hiroto’s t-shirt was torn from his chest to the bottom hemline.
Marion, who was surprised to see Hiroto rolling with a loud bang, rushed over and put her hand on Hiroto’s shoulder.
” Ouch……… Ha-ha, Marion-san, it’s okay.”
Saying that, Hiroto slowly stood up. However, he didn’t have the shameful appearance he had earlier. His expression was also natural and straightened his back, and Hiroto faced Jean-Pierre.
“Hey! Quickly kneel down…………………uu!”
Jean-Pierre breathed a gasp.
The reason for this is that the torn t-shirt of Hiroto fell to the floor, revealing Hiroto’s upper body.
Even to the untrained eye, you could see that he had been trained in exactly the right way. Moreover, countless scars, which would never be light, could be seen on Hiroto’s body, which even felt amazing and stunning.
The black-clad men following Jean-Pierre also positioned themselves in front of their master in a conditioned reflex.
His body and scars, which did not resemble the plain and unreliable-looking Hiroto’s face, gave off an odd atmosphere, and Jean-Pierre unconsciously took a step back. The examiners in the hall were quiet, and Marion, who was right behind him, was also surprised by the scars on Hiroto’s body.
The gazes of the people around him gathered on Hiroto, and the tension grew more intense. Two of Jean-Pierre’s followers stood in the way of protecting their master. Seeing that, Hiroto stops his steps.
“I’m sorry to have startled you! You”re totally mistaken if you think that I”m trying to challenge you! Please forgive me!”
All of a sudden, without hesitation, Hiroto put both knees on the floor and got down on his hands. His face was also teary-eyed as he frantically bowed his head several times in a loud and taut voice and apologized.
The sight of it made everyone there stop thinking.
Jean-Pierre’s body also stiffened……..but he quickly let out a vulgar smile.
“Ha … ha ha ha ha! You lowlife! Next time, watch your back! Hey, Marion. You know, you should know your place, too, don’t you? And we’re busy. I’m going to greet the organizers now and return to France as soon as I can. You should come say hello to the head family after the exams. You understand.”
When he said that, Jean-Pierre smiled broadly and motioned to his attendants. Then, with a single glance at Hiroto, who was still deeply down on his knees, he left the lunchroom with a pleasant look on his face.
Marion stared at the figure and put her hand on the shoulder of Hiroto, who had his head down.
“Phew. Thank God.”
After confirming that Jean-Pierre and the others had disappeared, Hiroto looked up and felt a heartfelt relief.
The examinees, who were watching the whole thing, were breathing a sigh of relief as if a storm had passed.
“I don’t know how that guy got down on his knees.”
“Yeah, I could never do that. My pride would never allow it.”
“Oh dear, it’s pathetic. I feel sorry for Marion, who’s taking care of that thing…”
“I’m sure he’s a house without a trace of honor to protect.”
And gave a stern assessment of Hiroto. Of all of them, the one who seems to be enjoying himself the most was Hideo.
As the voices of those examinees entered her ears, Marion stood up with an expression that she couldn’t imagine from her mild face. She stared at her surroundings with teary eyes, her lips trembled and was about to say something when………………………………………………………………Hiroto stood up in front of her.
“Ah! I can’t take the next test in this state! I have to go get dressed and go! I’m sorry for a minute, Marion-san.”
Saying that, he put his hand on Marion’s shoulder and smiled at her and turned to leave the lunch hall.
Marion, who was distracted by the sight of him, huffed.
“Ah, Hiroto-san! I’m sorry, I’m sorry. It’s my fault!”
“EH? No, it was my fault. I got nervous about these weird guys and I tried to get a cup of coffee to calm down, and I slipped up and…”
“I’ll wash that for you! Let me wash it!”
“Haha, you’re exaggerating. Don’t worry about it so much. Marion-san isn’t at fault at all. Besides, I’m pretty good at washing and rinsing.”
Hiroto’s lack of nervousness, plus his voice is loud and he doesn’t seem to be reading the air around him at all.
“Oh god, it’s disgraceful, hurry up and go change!”
“This whole mess is your fault! You lost your way with Marion-san!”
The people around him shouted accusations against him. In response to that, Hiroto just bowed his head repeatedly and walked out. When he left, the original atmosphere was revived and everyone took their original seats.
“There’s a hell of a lot of people here. Hey, Shitenji-san. ……..Huh?”
The candidates who were enjoying tea with Mizuho were sitting at the table farthest away from Hiroto and the others. However, Mizuho, who should have been there, had disappeared before they knew it.
The examinee girls there looked at each other as if they were taken aback.
“There are a lot of nasty people out there. The French and those Chinese guys….. What do they do with my precious t-shirt? I have to do whatever I can to get my rank. I’ll need to change this shirt I took off. It would be a pain in the ass if they found out…….”
Hiroto was walking to his room at the hotel while complaining to himself.
Then, he saw a girl in front of him who he had seen before.
(Huh? She’ s…)
It’s not clear how long she had been there, but she was sitting cross-legged on the sofa set up in the corridor that you must pass through when you go to the hotel’s lodging floor, where Mizuho Shitenji sat cross-legged.
Hiroto was a little nervous, and with his bare upper body naked, he tried to walk through the doorway beside her while holding a torn t-shirt and the long-sleeved shirt he had taken off to his chest.
“You … wait. What kind of end result do you intend to achieve by passing by and not making eye contact with me?”
“What? No, Shitenji-san, I was in a hurry and I don’t want to look like this.”
“Hmm. We’re in a hotel, it can’t be that cold.”
“No, it’s not that I’m cold or anything, it’s just that I don’t think it would be very nice to be naked…”
“You’ve got something to wear. That clean, neat shirt in your hand!”
“Nah! I need to change my clothes because they are stained with coffee.”
“Don’t think you can fool my eyes. So let me see it, then. That shirt you hid behind, the one that says it’s dirty!”
“What? Why? Wow! Hey, what are you doing!”
As soon as she got up, Mizuho attacked furiously. And then she tries to hold onto the long-sleeved shirt held by Hiroto. Surprised, Hiroto hurriedly avoided handing his shirt over, and they rubbed each other like two children jostling each other. Hiroto had no idea what Mizuho’s purpose was.
“Already! Please don’t do that! What do you want, Shitenji-san!”
“I don’t like it! That piece of shit back there, I was about to put him down! You crashed into him and interrupted me. A guy like that, you know, it would have been best to smash his nose and his guts in half! And for that girl Marion! You even got down on your knees and embarrassed yourself so badly because of that scum!”
Hearing Mizuho’s angry words, Hiroto understood what Mizuho was trying to say.
Hiroto stopped moving and stared at Mizuho in front of him, and Mizuho stared back at him as well.
While receiving that stare, Hiroto liked this girl’s straightforward and honest sense of justice.
“Shitenji-san…….that’s not good enough.”
” What happens after that guy is beaten up by Shitenji-san…? The behavior of a guy like that… in the end, the only person who will suffer is Marion-san.”
The strength in Mizuho’s hands loosened. She could understand what Hiroto meant.
Mizuho could not help but think that that could be true enough. Moreover, the other party was the Orleans family. Even the prestigious Shitenji family, without any reason, could not touch them easily. Even more so if Marion was affiliated with the Orleans branch of the family. Therefore, it’s easy to imagine that the boy would take his stress out on Marion.
However, Mizuho got frustrated that she was reminded of this by Hiroto.
“But that”s not why! Are you suggesting that a total stranger would have liked to see you embarrassed in a big way? Who are you? Do you think you’re a self-sacrificing hero with your own personal style? Huh! You’re crazy, you know that! You can”t even handle spiritual power very well!”
Hiroto listened with a mysterious look on his face.
“And so! I know you’re a pompous prude, but has things changed in any way? Is the situation with that Marion girl turning around? By your self-sacrifice!”
At this moment, Mizuho understood that she was clearly saying too much to this boy. But it didn’t stop.
“I’m asking if things have changed in any way thanks to you!”
“It hasn’t changed…. I can’t change it. I don’t have the power to do that….”
Mizuho felt her own heart ache a little. Although it was slight, she could see a relative color in Hiroto’s eyes.
But right after that, for a moment, the power in Hiroto’s eyes grew stronger.
“The only way to change the situation is by yourself. That’s why I wasn’t trying to make her situation better. I did it that time because I wanted to. It’s just that. I wouldn’t dream of self-sacrifice.”
Hiroto looked up and smiled brightly.
“Besides, something about that situation and the atmosphere was just unbearable, wasn’t it?”
Mizuho’s thought that smile was not appropriate……she was about to say something but she stopped.
“………. Ah, you………”
“Mizuho-sama! Are you there?”
At that moment, a voice came from the area in front of the elevator that was in the blind spot from Hiroto and the others. As Hiroto turned his head in that direction, Mizuho looked back as if caught in the act.
“Ah, Mizuho-sama! You’re in a place like this? I’ve been looking for you, you’re not at the buffet and you’re not in the exam room…. What are you doing here? Alone.”
Akira and the others, who were apparently looking for Mizuho, came by at a fast pace.
“Akira……..eh? Alon? Ah! He got away.”
Mizuho grinded her teeth as she realized that before she knew it, Hiroto was gone.
(What the hell, that guy! You don’t talk to me like that! Even though I… He’ s making a huge mess of himself and everyone else is making a fool of him!)
Akira looked at Mizuho in wonderment.
It was the first time Akira saw Mizuho’s expression since he became a squire.
On this day, the test from the evening was the measurement of basic spiritual power and magic power.
The measurements were to be carried out by two women, Ira and Dora, who were exclusive to the gifted institution.
Ira specialized in spiritual power and Dora specialized in magic power. Normally, their main duties would be to conduct research and studies, but it seems that their special abilities allow them to measure the strength of spiritual and magical power.
Once the candidates were gathered, they were divided into two categories, spiritual and magical, and after being briefed on the test, they waited in their hotel rooms to be taken to the test room.
Hiroto, who had been waiting for a long time, lying in his room, finally received a phone call and headed to the venue as he was told.
There were two agency employees standing in front of the venue, and after confirming Hiroto, they led him inside.
When he entered the venue, there was nothing special inside, and it was surprisingly small and dimly lit.
In a suspicious atmosphere, Hiroto slowly walked forward and dimly saw a white-haired woman sitting in an armchair in front of him. That’s when he noticed that the woman was a young girl who looked younger than her mid-teens, even though she had white hair.
The white haired girl looked listlessly at Hiroto who was a bit surprised by the unexpected person.
”Yes, you must be Hiroto Domori. My name is Ira, I am the one who measures basic spiritual power. Haa, this is finally the last one…….. Let’s go ahead and take the measurement as soon as possible, please stand on that mark on the floor and release your spiritual power as long as it lasts. Oh, I’ve set up the boundaries properly, so please don’t worry about it.”
”Ah, yes. Um………this spiritual power of mine, actually I…….”
Hiroto tried to honestly explain his peculiar constitution, but he was interrupted.
“Yes, please hurry. Every year, there are so many people in the spiritual power department, and the magic department is long over. They’ve definitely already gone for a drink, plus that Dora fellow! Plus, there are so many talented newbies this time around that it’s already over time. I can’t wait to go for a drink too!”
Halfway through, her voice is too quiet for Hiroto to hear, but he can tell she’s in a bad mood. Hiroto had no choice but to stand on the magic circle-like markings on the floor that he had never seen before.
(I can’t control my spiritual power, and my abilities don’t use my spiritual power either, but is it okay?)
”Okay then, I’m about to release my magic power, but don’t be surprised. It’s true that spiritual power and magic power repel each other, so it’s dangerous if they clash, but I will use that characteristic to measure your spiritual power. Oh, please don’t leave the mark without permission. If you do, your spiritual power and my magic power will come into direct contact with each other and the entire room will be blown up!”
As he said this, Yehra made sure that Hiroto was standing on the mark on the floor, and Ira closed her eyes. As Ela’s hair swayed in the windless room, the mark on the floor began to emit a pale light in response.
“Oh, this is amazing. It’s tingly. These newcomers this year are truly amazing. But among them, this one…….the quality is different. What an intensity. And for such a spiritual power, it has a very small area of spread. It’s a wonderful control.”
(Haha I’m just standing there…)
Thirty minutes later………
“Hahaha. Hey, are you still going to be able to do it? Ugh, …..I think it’s going to make me come.”
Hiroto though it’s meaningless isn’t it? He started to be confused by Ela’s reaction to what he thought and something oddly sexy.
(Well, let’s go home, that sounds better. Okay, let’s put some Senki around the spirit power so it doesn’t repel…)
Hiroto looked at Ira writhing lustily on the chair and removed himself from the top of the mark. Immediately Ira was breathless with her upper body on one armrest of the chair.
Then Ela’s tronic eyes met with Hiroto’s.
“Ah, um, well then! I’ll go back to my room! Thank you!”
When he said that, Ira looked at Hiroto as he left the room to escape with a face full of exhaustion.
When Hiroto ran out of the venue and returned to his room at the hotel, the time was already past eight o’clock in the evening.
(Hmm, it’s disheartening to measure an unusable spiritual power and get a rank… but at this point, there’s no way around it! As long as I can get the job done right after I get the rank.)
When Hiroto told himself forcibly, he became very hungry. He didn’t know when he would be called up, so of course he hadn’t eaten.
The exam does not include dinner, so he had to prepare his own dinner.
However, it is too expensive for him to eat in the hotel, so he decided to walk to the station and buy some onigiri and tea at a convenience store, and then he went back to his hotel room with a somewhat heavy step.
Entering the rather large, park-like grounds of the hotel, Hiroto headed for the main entrance.
“I wonder if I can get a rank at this rate? Well, even if I think about it… hmm?”
It was then. Hiroto, talking to himself, stopped dead in his tracks. And his expression was stiff.
Hiroto slowly looked around. A faint sense of discomfort…….. not so much.
But Hiroto believes in this sensation……..or rather, he had come to believe in it through a lot of experience. Without changing his expression, Hiroto placed the convenience store bag on the bench that was set up on the way to the main entrance of the hotel that was nearby.
“What? I’m pretty sure that boy is the candidate’s… what? He’ s gone?”
The balcony of the restaurant on the second floor of the hotel. Hisae had just finished her meal and came out to the restaurant’s private balcony to catch the breeze outside.
There, she spotted a boy who was a rank examinee walking over from the other side…….but she lost him.
“What’s wrong? Hisae.”
Alfred Arkwright who came from behind – a man who is also known as the Sword Saint in the world – spontaneously put his hand around Hisae’s waist.
”If I recall… his name is Hiroto Domori, right? You know, now that kid was walking around that area… and he’s gone.”
Sword Saint’s eyes narrowed. Hisae asked, “Do you mind?” And look at him.
“No, I guess I’m more concerned about your mood right now?
“Hm! You won’t get anything out of me by saying that. Al, as tomorrow’s body art examiner, you should be well rested today!”
Hisae walked back into the restaurant to shake off his hand around her waist.
After cowering his shoulders in a motion, he quietly turned his dark brown eyes toward the garden where the boy was said to be.
There were many trees on the grounds of the hotel, and there was a walkway to go around the hotel. In addition, there were several pavilions set up at equal intervals along the walkway as resting places.
Right now, Hiroto was in one of those pavilions.
Hiroto silently looked at the corpses of the two men who seemed to be foreigners there.
After that, as Hiroto headed towards the uncomfortable direction, he heard the man’s decapitated screams from ahead. And by the time he sped up and arrived at the scene, he was already in the same situation he was in now.
(What’s going on? Do I tell the police, or … err … mayb).
Normally, it would be best to report to the police immediately, but the reason why Hiroto was thinking about such a thing is because this corpse……. was not human.
Also, Hiroto was concerned about the person who escaped from this site, carrying a mysterious weapon. There were bloodstains on the ground as if they were going to the outside of the hotel. Judging from the amount of blood, one could imagine that the owner who left the bloodstains was not lightly injured.
(This criminal or………)
The plants and trees swayed as a warm spring breeze blew through the area.
With a casual movement, Hiroto picked up a leaf from a tree that had fallen to the ground, still fresh and green. Then he threw it in the direction of the darkness where the trees were growing as if he were handling a throwing knife.
The leaf disappeared among the trees with a speed that was unimaginable for its mass.
“Was it my imagination…?”
The wind blew stronger than before in the area, and the two bodies underneath Hiroto’s feet turned to ashes and disappeared, leaving behind their clothes. From the clothes, one could tell that one of them was small and the other belonged to a rather large man.
“Hmm, it’s still bothering me……..let’s talk to this person called Omine. I guess it’s not in my range…….. Oh! My tea and rice balls! I’d be in trouble if they dumped it. I have to get back soon!”
Hiroto suddenly became worried about the dinner he had purchased, and by the way, he wondered if he should tell the examination office about this, and hurriedly ran away from the place.
And there………only the clothes of the man, who would have been a big man and a small man, were left behind.
A few seconds later……..deep in the darkness of the bushes of the pavilion where Hiroto disappeared…….
An even darker space appeared in the darkness in the very direction where Hiroto had released the leaves from the tree.
“Who the hell is this guy? He’s… Kukku, rookie…? I didn’t think anyone could sense my presence. Thanks to you, I’ve missed one assassin……..”
In the back space of the darkness, someone wiped a strand of blood from his cheek with his long fingertips.
After confirming that dinner was safe, Hiroto went to the room where the examination office is located and explained what was going on. As soon as the person in charge, Hisae, arrived and listened to him, she quickly gave instructions.
“Omine-sama. It is true that the clothing was found at the location indicated. I immediately investigated the area, but so far nothing was found. We are also continuing to search for the injured who we believe may have been at the scene.”
“Well….. Please report back to me after you’ve gone through his clothes and checked his belongings. And, just to be sure, could you get some people to come out and stand guard? You are also allowed to carry up to B equipment.”
After watching the agency’s staff leave the room, Hisae turned to Hiroto and thanked him.
“Thank you, Domori-kun. But … you’ve noticed it well. We’ll take care of the rest here, so take a good rest today, the exams will continue tomorrow.”
As she said that, while working on Hiroto, Hisae saw the convenience store bag Hiroto was holding.
“And that’s dinner? You need to eat more proper food. You’re growing up, aren’t you?”
“I’d like to…. Hahaha.”
Hiroto laughed dryly, but quickly turned serious and asked Hisae.
“What does this…….this one have to do with the rookie test?”
“I don’t know. It’s just that it’s hard to imagine an outsider like them setting up a group of people with abilities. Not only would it be of no benefit to them, but in some cases, it would be dangerous to themselves. Well, just in case, we’ll investigate and protect the place, so leave this matter to us and rest now, Domori-kun.”
“Certainly … yes. Then I’ll take my leave.”
Hiroto bows to Hisae and puts his hand on the door to leave.
” Ah, Domori-kun. In the meantime, I want you to keep this matter to yourself. It would be a shame if the students got stressed out and couldn’t perform to their full potential. There are a lot of kids who are taking this test. I’m sorry to say that you’re the only one who knows about this case, but I feel like only you are drawing the poor end of the bargain.”
“Oh, don’t worry about it. I’m used to this kind of thing……I mean, I don’t mind it.”
Hisae’s cheeks also relaxed as Hiroto gave a carefree smile. Then Hiroto bowed lightly and left the room.
“Such a good boy. If there were only children like that, it would be less of a hardship for us too~”
Hisae said and sighed as she processed the paperwork for the complaints from the Huang family.
“…I’m the worst.”
By the time Hiroto returned to his room at the hotel and munched on a rice ball from the convenience store, Mari had refused to eat dinner to her mother, saying she wasn’t feeling well, and was lying on her bed in her room.
Right now, Mari was remembering the day before spring break a year ago when she received a confession from Hiroto.
On that day, when she was about to leave the school after finishing her club activities, Hiroto was standing near the school gate.
At that time, Hiroto’s face was hard and tense, and Mari wondered if something was wrong? She remembered that she was concerned. However, when Hiroto told her that he wanted to talk to her, Mari immediately felt a jolt. No way……..Mari’s heart began to beat extremely fast.
Until now, there have been times when she was called out to talk to the boys like this.
But at such times, Mari was calm herself, and on her way to the place where she was called, she was putting together in her head what kind of phrases she should use to avoid hurting the other party.
However, this time was different.
Mari’s face was red and flaming, and Mari herself had never thought it would be so hard to walk straight before.
Then they arrived at the back of the middle school building at dusk. What is it that everyone chooses this place to confess their feelings? Mari thinks nervously.
Mari looked at Hiroto, who didn’t look back at her for a while. Watching the situation, Mari’s nervousness begins to dissolve.
Rather than that, I honestly wondered if she couldn’t be more imposing.
(Why are you so nervous? Can’t you be a little more manly? As always.)
Mari became more and more annoyed with Hiroto’s unwillingness to turn around, and the sense of romance and surprise faded from Mari’s mind, and the usual relationship between Hiroto and Mari became more and more vivid.
Then, with a determined expression on his face, Hiroto finally looked back.
But………beyond that is Mari with a dissatisfied face.
Hiroto was pressured by Mari’s expression, but he had come this far, and he gathered all the courage he could muster.
“Mari! The story is that…”
Hiroto’s confession begins and Mari listens to Hiroto’s mouthing of his confession. As Mari stared at Hiroto’s face, her annoyance grew. She wondered why he seemed so unsure of himself.
Mari’s vision of a boyfriend is someone who is confident and will pull Mari along with him in a way that makes her feel comfortable. She would like to go out with such a man, and she even thinks she can’t go out with him otherwise.
She seems to have a very good and solid way of thinking for a young girl of her age, but in fact, this is a theory of love that Mari, who is extremely inexperienced in the field of romance and is very quick-witted, has come up with.
Surprisingly, Mari, a young girl, has the dangerous side of offering infinite love to the person she loves. In other words, once she fell in love with someone, she could only see that person and give priority to that person alone.
Then the excellent Mari subconsciously sensed this and began to need a reason for the man she fell in love with. By doing so, she protected herself from the strong winds of love.
Then Mari met Hiroto. Even though Hiroto is a boy who is far removed from this “reasoning”, he becomes a big part of Mari’s life.
This is the reason why she is so hard on only Hiroto, which even Mari herself doesn’t realize, but devastatingly clumsy in love, Mari refuses to admit that it’s because Hiroto was the only boy of her own age close to her.
Mari’s eyebrows gradually crease at Hiroto’s faltering confession, which is now going on, and she finally starts to glare.
(Why are you so unsure of yourself, Hiroto? If you told me to go out with him, I’d have no choice but to sweeten it up a bit, and for once, I wouldn’t have to think about it specially.)
Mari’s frustration, which she had never felt before with any confessor, reached its peak.
Then a nasty feeling that never came up in others came up.
Mari opens her mouth to Hiroto, who is still drawing back and searching for words as she speaks.
When Mari interrupted his confession, Hiroto’s eyes widened as he listened silently to what Mari was saying.
“Huh! Mari, who is that?”
‘I don’t know you! His name is … uh … well, yeah! Katayama-kun.
“Then Mari-chan will be with that person……..”
“Well, I haven’t decided yet. It’s just that it’s not without potential.”
“But … for me, there’s not even a chance…”
Hiroto looks down sadly.
Mari’s heart aches violently when she sees Hiroto’s state of mind, and she quickly lets out a loud voice.
“That’s not true!”
“Oh, no … how do I put it … it’s just saying that it’s more than likely that it’s not without some unknowns yet.”
Hiroto was puzzled by Mari’s unintelligible and desperate way of saying things, but gradually, Hiroto’s face became one of understanding. Mari felt a strong uneasiness in the change in Hiroto’s expression.
”……..I understand. Mari-chan.”
“No, I’m sorry to keep you busy today. I have a lot on my mind and I’m going to go home.”
(What? What did you understand?)
“Thank you, Mari-chan. You are very kind to me.”
“What? Huh? Wha………Hiroto.”
“I’ll see you later. Mari-chan.”
Saying that, Hiroto ran off and returned.
Mari could not help but stare at Hiroto’s running figure in a daze.
For a long time, Mari couldn’t move from the spot, and with a sunken expression and heavy steps, she turned to go home alone.
On the bed, Mari recalled the expression on Hiroto’s face when she dumped him by creating a fictional character named Katayama at that moment… and every time she remembered his face, she got tired of her own stupidity.
(It’s true that I couldn’t accept his confession at that time…….. But why did I lie like that…)
What is it about me that makes me so hard on Hiroto, unlike the other confessors? Her thoughts were going in circles and her head and heart remained unclear. Shizuka told her that it would be easier if she realized it, but she couldn’t figure it out for herself in any way. As she thinks about it, Mari once again recalls the situation on the day she was confessed to by Hiroto, once again, with great clarity.
(No! I have to tell Hiroto. First I have to apologize for lying and then I also haven’t told him why I rejected his confession. If possible, I’d like to tell him that…….. I need to talk to him directly!)
Mari got up from the bed with great vigor as she made up her mind.
The second day of the exam. The morning session of the physical arts exam had already begun.
The examiners and the examinees were gathered in the center of the hotel’s largest hall, which could hold nearly a thousand people if the chairs were lined up, and they were performing martial arts in a specially built martial arts arena that the agency had brought in materials and set up as if it were a real battle.
The martial arts hall is very sturdy and special in that it is impossible to destroy even with heavy machinery. Candidates who were waiting their turn around the martial arts hall were sitting in rows of chairs or standing up to stare at the other candidates’ body art tests.
The body arts don’t seem to have much of a correlation with abilities, but they are very important to rank-holders who mostly fight with non-humans.
Even if a person’s magic is excellent, one of the foundations that give rise to it is still the physical body.
In fact, there are many famous people who have developed their own system of body arts, even among the families of gifted people.
So why is the current allocation of body art only five percent? There is a reason for it.
The technique of physical strengthening is also included in the art though the art has been developed by the ability person of every lineage as the time goes by. Therefore, there are many people who have dramatically strengthened their bodies through their spiritual and magical powers without much training. In the families of historical abilities, body skills themselves are still important, but the tendency to focus on such skills is gradually fading.
Against this backdrop, the importance of these skills in the rank exams had dropped, and their allocation was only 5%. But an exam is an exam. Even if it was only 5%, the candidates were serious and prepared for the body art exams.
One of those examiners, Hiroto, was currently getting very impatient. It was only this morning that the announcement of the results of the exams until yesterday, which had been delayed, had been disclosed and pasted out for all of them.
Hiroto got the lowest score on the written test with 32 points.
And when it came to the measurement of spiritual power, Hiroto’s name was not on the test. He couldn’t believe his eyes and checked the list of names carefully, saying it couldn’t be, and finally found his name further down, separate from the bottom of it.
Hiroto Domori —- unmeasurable
Since the examiners were being conducted by that swordsman in person, the students were getting as close as possible and concentrating on the exam, trying to get this valuable experience for their benefit.
However, Hiroto, who was away from others, looked lifeless with a distant gaze.
“Oh, I guess I won’t be able to get a rank if things continue as they are now. I don’t think there’s anything I can do about the written exam, right? Because I really didn’t know. More importantly, what the hell is this thing about spiritual power being unmeasurable……. No way! Have they found out that it”s just coming out? If that’s the case, I suppose it’s no use…”‘
Hiroto sighed heavily and shook his head to shake off his bad imagination.
Being born into a family called Domori, it certainly might be a bit different from a normal person’s life, but even Hiroto wants to protect his high school life.
“No, I shouldn’t give up! I need to get a rank and acquire a better life in the future as a human being!”
As soon as Hiroto regained his composure and concentrated on the exam, the students suddenly cheered loudly.
The one facing the examiner, the Sword Saint, right now was a girl with glossy black hair tied back and glaring at her opponent victoriously, wearing a Shitenji style robe. The two of them separated, once after the clash.
“No, I’m surprised. The princess of Shitennji seems to be a genius at physical arts as well. Her supple movements almost fooled me. A truly rigid fist. For a spirit user with such close quarters combat skills…….this is truly terrifying. But I don’t think the martial arts hall can withstand any more impact. I understand completely. Okay, next candidate.”
This was how the test progressed from start to finish. It’s a few minutes, but it’s an actual fist fight with the Sword Saint, and their abilities are measured by the Sword Saint himself. Even though they were all allowed to strengthen their bodies with the art, even Hiroto rolled his eyes and looked at the girl who had just completed the test.
(Shitenji-san, that’s awesome! Just amazing!)
After finishing the exam, Mizuho got out of the special martial arts hall and wiped sweat off with a towel. Without a moment’s pause, Hideo approaches and talks to her about something, but Mizuho blatantly ignores him.
Hiroto watched the situation from afar and smiled bitterly, and then Mizuho turned her head towards him.
Hiroto felt as if their eyes met, but he also remembered the incident in the hallway yesterday and thought it was a misunderstanding, so he didn’t care.
The organizer, Omine Hisae, and the other examiners of the test were here to observe, and they were looking at that Sword Saint’s bodily arts test just as intently as the candidates. Even if that body technique that the Sword Saint shows is from the rookie exam, it is still that valuable.
Then Mizuho, who felt as if she and Hiroto’s eyes met for a moment earlier, walks towards him.
Nobody is near Hiroto, of course. Since the incident with Jean-Pierre, no one has come even closer to Hiroto. Still, Hiroto didn’t think that anyone was coming towards him, so he turned his consciousness completely to the martial arts hall…….when Mizuho stood in front of Hiroto.
“Huh? Hiroto Domori right? You must work hard, or else there won’t be any more to go after?”
Hiroto makes an expression as if he is looking at a strange creature.
“No, I figured that you remembered my name…. Oh … well, I’m not giving up. I just want to get my rank.”
“Hmm. It’s okay. I’d feel bad about letting someone else drop out on my behalf, too. Oh, and one more thing. The name just happens to be something Akira said! I just remembered.”
“Haha, thanks. Shitenji-san. I’ll do my best.”
The first thing that comes to mind is that Mizuho’s kindness and courage are almost touching. It must take a lot of courage to talk to someone who is avoided by everyone. Mizuho did that openly and unapologetically, and although the way she said it was clumsy in itself, she came to encourage him. That’s why Hiroto naturally smiles too.
“Yes, do your best.”
When Mizuho saw Hiroto’s smile, her cheeks loosened for a moment before she left and sat down on the chairs that were lined up by the wall of the hall. It’s a good thing that you’re able to have a good time with them.
The only thing was that the Hideo’s gaze was extremely grim. The piercing eyes were solely directed at Hiroto.
On the other hand, Mizuho in fact was in a state of mind that she had never felt before.
She doesn’t know why she went out of her way to talk to that boy. And to her surprise, she found herself smiling, albeit slightly. This is hard to believe, even for herself.
But she felt that it was not a bad feeling….
—Part I end—
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check https://www.mtlreader.com/novels/26 for Web Novel version in MTL(it’s readable so you should check it out)