Episode 50: Muscular Monsters

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Cause I didn’t know which series was sponsored I did extra chapters for both of them. This is the only time I will be doing so.


 Now that my training with Amelia was over, I could have a little time to myself. Of course, I’d already done what I could with the management committee, Amelia’s support group, and the vendors.

 There was only one place for me to come.

“……”

“……”

 Evi and I were heading to a place. The Magic Swordsmanship Competition was just three days away.

 It’s also summer vacation, but the academy is bustling as usual, with the cafeteria and purchasing facilities functioning as usual.

 In the midst of all this, of course, Evi and I had to go to that place.

“Ray, and Evi, are you here too?”

“Yes.”

“Thank you for your help.”

 In front of the locker room, the president was leaning against the wall with his arms crossed.

 His overwhelming bulk stood out more than anything else. We walked into the locker room and met up with the rest of the Environmental Research Club.

“……”

 As we all silently and quietly changed into our training uniforms, the president announced.

“Okay, we’re good for today, right?”

“Ooh!”

 We all raised our voices and headed for the sacred ground, shoulders slapping in the wind.

“Hey, this is …….”

“Aah, no way. ……”

“They’re here. ……”

“It’s …… them. ……”

 Entering the room. It is the newest facility in the academy. And it was built just as the summer vacations began.

 It was a …… Gym. It has all kinds of equipment for muscle training. Training with your own body weight has its limitations. If you want to bulk up to a higher level, training with special machines is a must.

 This is why our president asked the student council president for assistance last year.

 He gathered a lot of signatures and built this place for the trainee who loves muscles. We, the members of the environmental research club, call this place ‘the sanctuary’ with respect and awe.

“The bulk is overwhelming. ……”

“The top of this academy is no different. ……”

“Yeah, that’s one hell of a muscle group.”

 We heard these voices as we walked in.

 We seem to be a bit of a celebrity, especially in this place. Apparently, they call the members of the Environmental Research Club the Overwhelming Muscle Group, which …… doesn’t sound so bad.

“Hey, president.”

“Hi. Thank you for your help.”

 The president shook the hand of one of the trainers who run this gym. He seems to be from the former Environmental Research Club and is here because of the president’s connections.

 And he has the same overwhelming bulk, same as the President. His pectoral muscles are bursting at the seams. It looked as if there was a whole melon on his shoulders, and the cuts on his legs were tremendous.

 I gulped …… and swallowed hard.

 There are some who come for a light workout, but there are also serious people like us who come here. In addition, the Magic Chevalier is coming up. So, the participants of the competition are using this space to make adjustments.

“Good. Now, start your training.”

[[Understood!]]

 We scattered like spiders.

 And what Evi and I are aiming for is the bench press. We’ve been working on our legs since yesterday, so today is upper body day for us.

“Okay, how much are you going to do today? Evi.”

“Let’s start with a light 100.”

“Got it.”

 The bench press is an exercise where you lie on a bench and raise a barbell above you. It is mainly used to train the pectoral muscles, triceps, and deltoids. And just in case, I’ll be assisting.

 When the two of us add weights to the barbell, the 100kg barbell is complete.

“……Fuuuh!”

 Evi lifted it without difficulty.

“You can do it! You can do it!”

“Fuuuh!” Fuuh!!”

“Hey! com’on, com’on, com’on! One more!”

“Fuuuh!! Fuuuh!!”

“Okay, Rest!”

“Fuuh!”

 Evi was able to do three sets of ten in no time at all. His upper arms and pectorals seemed to be pumped up as well, and his muscles were bursting at the seams.

“Fuh. …… Now, do you want to do it too, Ray?”

“Yeah.”

“What’s the weight?”

“I’ll go for a hundred too.”

“Okay.”

 Evi quickly wiped off the bench with a towel and I lay down on it. I noticed the other students staring at me. They seem to be talking about something, but I can’t hear all the details. ……

“Hey, that’s the ordinary person, right? There’s no way he’s going to make 100 with that thin body.”

“You idiot!”

“……Eh?”

“He’s not an ordinary person. He’s a member of the overwhelming muscle group that’s at the top of the bulk in this school.”

“Well, the overwhelming muscle group ……? Gulp……”

“That’s right. He’s no longer a withered sorcerer or an ordinary person. But a trainee of the highest order, an overwhelming muscle man.”

“Is……Is that so?”

“You’ll see. Watch and you will see the true value of this.”

 There were two students who seemed to be excited about something, but I was already getting ready, so I didn’t hear them completely.

“Ah, Ray. You’d better take it off.”

“Aah, ……, right. I’m afraid I’m going to rip my clothes if I don’t.”

 I stepped back from the bench and took off the top half of my clothes.

“Hey, ……?”

“Do you get it now? That’s what makes him an overwhelming muscle man.”

“What ……? ……? He was hiding that overwhelming muscle ……?”

“But he’s still very thin. At first glance, he looks slender but he’s a macho………”

“Don’t tell me, there’s more?”

“Otherwise, it would be impossible to become an overwhelmingly muscular person.”

 When I loosened my body lightly, I lay down on the bench again and …… with Evi’s assistance, I lifted the barbell that weighed over 100 kilos at once.

“Fuuh!! Fuuh!!”

“Oh, that’s good. But do it slowly. Ray has a habit of doing things in a hurry.”

“Oops. Sorry. You’re right. Let’s do it slowly so we can put a bigger load on it.”

 Because of Evi’s warning, I slowly lifted this 100kg barbell. …… Hmm. I’m still a little short on weight. I’ll start with something heavier next time.

“Hey ……? What the heck is that ……? It’s huge, it’s huge!”

“That’s right. That’s the Overwhelming Muscle Man. The one that stands out the most is Ray White. Some people wonder why the most slender person is in the overwhelming muscle group ……? Some people doubt it. But once you see him, you’ll understand. He is by far the skinniest type. And he has a peculiar constitution that pumps him up to an extraordinary degree when he starts muscle training. No, according to him, there is also a magical element to it. That magic is called metamorphosis. It is said that he has reached a point where he has mastered the internal code, but the authenticity of …… is a mystery. Having said that, it is possible to change your body at will.”

“Oh, ……scary ……, there was such a monster in this academy …….”

“Ahh….. so just keep on taunting him as a withered sorcerer and ordinary person.”

“…… no way”.

“Ahh. Crushed flat. The famous story of how he compressed a can of juice with one hand when he threw it away. No, he crushed it with his fingertips or something. …… And it looks like he still has potential. ……”

“I see. …… This is one hell of a …… monster. ……”

“Yeah. This is why you shouldn’t refer to him as a withered sorcerer or an ordinary person. That overwhelming bulk surpasses everything. That’s why he’s been given the title of an overwhelming muscle man. ……”

“Ray-White …… is no ordinary person. …… I’m going to change my perception.”

 And then Evi and I alternatively did bench presses to achieve our quota for the day. There were two people on the way who seemed to be talking about something enthusiastically, but their gazes somehow turned into heated ones.

Well, no one who loves muscles is a bad person. They were probably gossiping about our bulk.

 And just as we were both rehydrating with the water bottles we had brought with us, …… Albert came to the scene.

“Can I Bench now?”

“Albert. It’s been a while.”

“Fu, Ray seems to have an overwhelming bulk.”

“Yeah. But should you be pushing yourself before the Magic Chevalier?”

“Because it’s before the competition, I can’t afford to break my routine.”

“I see. Evi, why don’t we both assist him?”

“Oh! Sure!”

“Thanks for the …… help.”

 Albert-Allium.

 Although there was a lot going on in the past, these days we have a rather good relationship. He was at a loss. When he had won the preliminary round of the Competition and was wondering what to do,……, I met him in this place.

 And when I showed him this overwhelming bulk of myself, Albert said. “Well, …… I guess muscle is what I’m missing.”

 I explained it to him. In order to win the magic swordsman competition, the magic factor is important, but you also need to improve your basic physical abilities.

 He nodded his head as he chewed on the words.

 He had learned to listen carefully to the advice of others, and he had gained a good amount of bulk now. Of course, he still can’t reach me and Evi, who have been doing this for a long time, but …… surely he too will one day have enough muscle to rival the overwhelming muscle groups.

“Albert, how many kilos do you want?”

“Right……80, please.”

“Sure!”

 Evi and I quickly readjusted the weights and began to assist Albert with his strength training.

“Fuuh!”

“Nice! Com’on, com’on, com’on!”

“Fuuh!”

“Hey, one more, one more! You got it, you got it, you got it!!”

“Fuuh! Fuuh!”

“Yosh, okay.”

 Albert’s pectoral and upper arm muscles pumped up just in time as he placed the barbell on the safety bar with a crunch.

“Fu …… it was another good workout.”

“Yes, it was. I’m looking forward to it, Albert. Show us the results of your muscle work on the day of the competition.”

“Yeah.”

“I’m looking forward to it too!”

“Ray, Evi. Thanks for everything.”

 The three of us headed over to the rest area next door, each with a drink in our hands.

“Albert, how are you feeling?”

 I ask, and he chuckles as he answers.

“Honestly, I can’t …… stop shaking.”

 We’re sitting on a bench facing each other. And his hands were shaking. Evi and I didn’t know what to say to him. But …… we should say something here. As we were thinking this, Evi opened his mouth.

“I do know. Albert’s been coming here every day since it opened, right?”

“Yeah. And Evi has taken care of me a lot.”

 I didn’t show up to the gym as often as I should have because I had other things to do. …… Apparently, the two of them had already been in touch.

“I’ve come this far for strength. But what haunts me is anxiety and frustration. Knowing Ray’s strength made me …… aware of the narrowness of my own world, and the shallowness of my own bottom line. But what should I do? What can I do to move forward? With this in mind, I began to train hard. Of course, I did muscle training, but I also did not miss any magical training. As a result of this, I only lost to Amelia Rose once in the school tournament but won all the other battles. But …… I still can’t shake this feeling of uneasiness. ……”

 I don’t know how the players who are going to compete, feel. And same is true for Evi. Everyone is going to have their own thoughts and feelings going into this tournament.

It was the same for Albert as it was for Amelia yesterday.

 He, too, has doubts about himself,……, but he is still trying to move forward.

“Albert. I know it sounds trite, but there will come a time when that hesitation will turn into a strength.”

“…… Ray. Was it the same for you?”

“Yeah. There was a time when I too was lost, conflicted, and confused by frustration, but I had no choice but to …… move forward. I’m not saying that I understand everything that Albert is going through right now. But there are places you can get to by accepting them and moving forward.”

“…… I see. No, your words carry a different weight.”

“I have to say, it’s taken me a long way …… to build up these muscles.”

“Evi, is that so?”

Albert leaned forward a little and listened to Evi.

“Yeah. When I saw Albert, I thought you were lost and troubled too, and here we are. I don’t have the same past as Ray. But, I still understand the importance of hard work. That’s why I believe in you. Your muscles will never betray you!”

“Well …… no, I can only …… thank you both. Thank you …… for sticking with me through rant of mine.”

“No, it’s fine. It’s important to talk like this with friends.”

“Yes, it is! Besides, our friendship is packed in these muscles. Am I right?”

“Fu…… Right. Yeah, sure.”

 The next thing he knew, Albert had stopped shaking.

 There is nothing special about it. Each of us has our own problems, our own worries, our own anxieties, and we go on.

 But we can share it. We are not alone. We don’t have to face it alone.

Because we’re friends.

“On the day of the tournament, let’s burn that image. Albert’s victory.”

“Yeah! I’m looking forward to it! We all know how hard you’re working. So go out there and kick some ass! Have some confidence in those muscles!”

“Yeah, ……, right. I’ll see you on the day.”

 He stood up and walked away, raising his hand lightly.

” Albert has changed, too.”

“I guess so~. It’s a big change from when he was snapping at Ray.”

“Yeah. And people can change. It’s not just Albert. As long as you have the will to do so.”

“……Yeah. you’re right.”

 And then Evi and I also left the place.

 I have a lot to learn from my dear friend. And we will grow together in this way. Touching each other’s feelings – and moving forward.


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