Magi Craft Meister 423
13 Stronghold Enhancement Arc
The following day, June 27th…
After a slightly late breakfast for the Marquis, Jin and the others were chatting over a cup of tea in the reception room.
“Jin, Elsa, thanks.”
Saki spoke out all of a sudden, and both Jin and Elsa tilted their heads to the side, completely puzzled.
“Hmm? What are you talking about?”
“Ohoho, I’m talking about ‘Lisa’. My grandfather seems to like her very much. Besides, her ability to do housework is amazing. All of our maids are impressed with her. She doesn’t take second place from Ehr, I tell you!”
She may have said that, but both Lisa is exactly the same as Ehr. Both of them have been carefully produced using materials from Hourai Island, and the quality of their Control Cores are similar.
Their only difference was their tactile sensors. While Ehr had sensors deployed across its entire body, Lisa used the malleability of her magical exodermis. The difference between them was the amount of burden when it came to processing the information received.
Jin thought he could eventually change Ehr’s artificial sense of touch to resemble Lisa’s.
“I’m sorry to have kept you waiting.”
The Marquis arrived, supported by Lisa.
Jin thought of making a wheelchair, but walking was also necessary for the Marquis’ rehabilitation, so he reconsidered.
“Well, what are we going to talk about today?”
Sinking in his armchair, the Marquis looked at everyone’s faces so as to listen to what they had to say.
“I’d like to talk a bit about education.”
When Jin said that, the Marquis’ eyes sparkled.
“Oh, education? What kind of education are we talking about here?”
Jin began to speak without reservation.
“Yes. About Magi Craft, alchemy, ordinary engineering, and science. I want to create something akin to a research facility that is not bound by a nation’s borders.”
“Hmm. Since it won’t be limited by national borders, wouldn’t that include the demons’ arts? It would also be based on the premise that humanity would not be able to compete with them without joining forces with one another.”
The Marquis had shown his keen insight even though Jin has not said anything of the sort.
Jin replied reflexively.
The Marquis seemed to have a habit of closing his eyes while he thought. Eventually, he opened his eyes, and…
“It would be ideal. Sounds elegant, but it cannot happen.”
His criticism was bitter.
“Lord Jin Nidou, you are young. You know the ugliness of people, but you don’t understand it. Don’t you know how easy people allow themselves to get corrupted by political power? It looks like you haven’t realized how much like shackles the things we call countries can be.”
With a sigh, the Marquis went on.
“Human beings will consider it acceptable to flock for a short time, for they know that they cannot survive otherwise. However, with larger flocks, factions and conflict are sure to arise. They will scheme against and take others down in order to get more profits for themselves. And then… They will go on their own.”
Not only Jin, but nobody else was able to say anything.
“300 years ago, during the Magic War, the Kingdom of Dinard was able to unite the surrounding nations and consolidate mankind, but that was because they feared the demons. The proof of that is that, in fact, after the threat of the demons disappeared, they divided into several small countries.”
Unfortunately, there was no choice but to concede that what the Marquis was saying was correct.
“This research institute you speak of can’t compete with a nation. There will be people who will choose themselves over a country, and state over research. That’s what I can say.”
Jin was at a loss for words. He was essentially being told that his plans for a “Holy Land of Magi Engineering” were impossible. At least in the way Jin had envisioned it.
Because people are individuals, there will always be disagreements when they get together. The only thing that can unify them are strict laws, and an iron fist. That’s how the military holds its shape.”
Jin dropped his shoulders. He had excitedly dashed forward, but had tangled his legs along the way and ended up falling.
He had been so absorbed in fulfilling that which his predecessor couldn’t do, that he had overlooked a great deal of details.
But he could at least say that he was glad he could hear the opinion of a senior figure such as the Marquis.
Elsa, Reinhardt, Berthie and Mine were silent as well. They had instinctively thought that what the Marquis said was probably correct.
Ideals are beautiful, but often naive. Therefore, they tend to overlook certain things. Reinhardt, who looked around the small countries as part of his duties as a diplomat, should have known this. Ideals are beautiful, but he hadn’t dared to look at their ugly side.
“I think this came out because I said I wanted to build a school before. But what I want to make is a military school. It will be run by senior officers at its core. I’ve been devoting half of my life to the country as a soldier, and I wanted to create a place so I could keep devoting to it with what little life I have left in me.”
Having shown himself as a man of the military, The Marquis, Gehren Theoderic von Eisen, brought the conversation to an end with that last statement.
＊ ＊ ＊
Before noon, Jin and his friends left the Marquis’ residence and headed for Reinhardt’s house. Saki, however, stayed behind. It seemed that the Marquis wouldn’t let her go.
Jin seemed to be a bit depressed while inside the carriage.
Reinhardt tried to cheer him up.
“Come on, Jin, cheer up. This doesn’t mean that the preparations for Fusou Island have gone to waste…”
“No, that’s okay.”
Jin replied with his eyes cast downwards.
“How should I put it? I guess I’m still too naive…”
“I think you’re just fine the way you are, brother Jin.”
It was Elsa who replied to Jin’s muttering.
“I’m here because you are you.”
Jin raised his head.
“Yeah, and it’s not just me. Brother Rein, Mother, and Berthie too. And she’s not here, but I’m sure Saki likes you just the way you are.”
“You’re as positive as ever, Elsa.”
“Being all sulky doesn’t really suit you, brother Jin. You seem to be at your best when you’re creating something.”
“Is that so…?”
“Yeah. I think that’s exactly why you are the Magi Craft Meister.”
“The Magi Craft Meister…”
Jin looked up at the sky from the carriage’s window. A long stream of clouds flowed through the sky.
“I may have been a bit impatient. I should take it easier from now on.”
At that moment, Reiko pulled on Jin’s cuff.
“Father, an emergency call from Laojun. According to Hanna, something happened in Kaina Village. It seems they ask you to return there immediately.”
“What!? Did something happen to Hanna?”
What could have happened in Kaina Village, where he hadn’t been for around ten days?
Jin decided that he’d use the carriage’s Warp Gate to go to Kaina Village at once. When he told that to Reinhardt…
“Got it. I’ll let my father and the others know what happened. I might go there myself as well later.”
Reinhardt meant that he would follow after Jin later.
“What should I do, brother Jin?”
“Well, I think it’d be great if you and Mine were to tag along.”
“Okay, got it.”
Once the carriage stopped, Jin instructed Steward to keep driving back to Reinhardt’s house and to manage the carriage.
“Please take care, Jin.”
“Thanks, Berthie. Well then, I’ll be off now.”
Jin, Reiko, Elsa, Mine, and Edgar headed for Kaina Village via the Warp Gate.
Since it was an urgent matter, they emerged out of the Warp Gate in the workshop’s basement.
Jin hurriedly ran up the stairs. Hanna was waiting for him there.
Hanna seemed to be safe. Jin was a little relieved.
“Hanna, what happened?”
Still, he was worried something bad had happened in the village.
“Sera is in pain!”
Sera… Jin remembered about Linus’ wife, who should be about 9 months pregnant at the moment.
“Don’t tell me something happened to her baby?”
Mine asked worriedly.
“Anyway, let’s go.”
Linus and Sera’s house was the one behind the house of Giebeck, the village’s mayor.
Jin and the others started to run.