Translator: Kurehashi Aiko
CHAPTER 32: Dragon-san Becomes a Little Girl ~Epilogue~
While working through the paperwork at Signos Magic Academy Principal’s Office, Seram, whose eyes got tired from all the work, raised his head and looked around the already dim room.
When he looked out the window, the usually blue sky already began to be dyed in a vivid shade of orange.
Seram smiled at his tired condition, and while rubbing his eyebrows with his wrinkled finger he carefully looked out the window, gazing at the orange-colored sky outside.
You could even hardly hear the lively voices of children playing in the yard, a clear sign of the late hour. Everyone either went home already, or got back to the dormitories.
Every time he saw that sunset, that girl’s image would come to his mind.
It was a long time ago that Seram Slagart had realized that this girl was his first love.
Even after he realized that the girl’s identity was in fact his gentle Onee-san and who was also the Black Flame Dragon, the memories of the time they spent together, albeit shorter than one day, were still as clear as day to him. They would never fade from his heart, and he cherished them dearly.
When he told that to his dear wife once, she only laughed as if amazed and said: ‘Both first loves and broken hearts are something special, indeed.’
When he noticed ‘her’ identity, lots of things suddenly started to make sense.
Not only the fact that his parents didn’t dismiss his stories about her as mere fantasies, but also the fact that from time to time residents of the town would come and approach her, thanking her for the things she had done.
Those people must have also recognized her by the color of her hair.
Even when Chrome got old enough to enroll in a military academy, she would always devote some of her time to them, and so he always thought of her as ‘gentle Onee-san’ or simply ‘Dragon-san.’
Seram was not really all that surprised by this, taking into account the fact that anytime she came to play with them, his parents would have that look of relief on their faces.
To be perfectly honest, he preferred to discover this on his own, rather than being told by someone else. Otherwise, he would probably felt deeply betrayed.
Understanding this also helped him to come to terms with many things.
He was also told that ‘she’ adopted this ‘Onee-san’ attitude because she didn’t like to see him or Chrome sad.
A few years later Chrome enrolled in the military academy so that he could become a soldier, and then when he was old enough, Seram also entered the Magic Academy so that he could become a proper magician.
It was for the first time in his life that he was living in the dorm, away from his parents. There were hardships at first, but eventually he managed to make friends and things gradually started to turn out for the better.
At home he was surrounded by magicians as well: his father was overseeing the affairs of all domestic magicians, his mother was a former military magician herself and Nectar-san who was said to be a magical genius, one that is born every thousand years.
Thanks to that, he could answer even the hardest of questions in class. It was then that he realized just how blessed he was for growing up in such an environment.
The only class Seram sometimes struggled was the subject to adapt the ancient language into the modern tongue. But aside from that, where other boys and girls were struggling with the grammar and new words of ancient language, Seram was able to speak it fluently and manipulate the words freely thanks to all of the lessons that his ‘Onee-san’ gave him.
In fact, ‘Onee-san’ was such an adept speaker of the ancient language that even Nectar-san, the one who was called sage by the people, looked up to her in this regard. She was also the one who was teaching the local magicians about magic during the famous ‘Black Flame Dragon Open-Air Magic Seminar’. It was something she did to share her enormous knowledge and so that she could share it with her friends.
Thanks to that they had time to conduct their own research and train the usage of new spells, or even seeking out part time jobs from the Adventurer’s Guild.
It was something that Seram would never expect, not even knowing how much help he received from both ‘Onee-san’ and his parents, which was enough for him to finish the academy while making friends and enabling him to pick up a job at the royal castle as the court magician.
Every day at the castle was filled with excitement and new challenges, as he and other people conducted various research under Nectar Prominent, who was the head of the castle’s laboratory at the time. All this time he could feel that their gradual goal was slowly changing from ‘developing new magical tools’ to ‘teaching magic to everyone’.
That shift in priority was also an accomplishment of Nectar-san, the Great Sage.
However, rather than discussing about ancient language and magic with his co-workers, he would often go back in his memories to his own time at school, learning new things and playing football together with his friends. Those memories made Seram realize just how much pleasure teaching someone could give you.
So when he came back to the academy with a goal of becoming the teacher there, he was quickly accepted thanks to the fact that the headmaster at the time was none other than his father, Kyle.
Despite having to struggle quite a lot in his early days – there was no manual on how to prepare and conduct classes – his time was passing in a rather fulfilling way, so much that at some point of time he was chosen to become the next headmaster of the academy, so that he could continue the work his father had been doing.
Now his father and mother have already passed away, he took a wife of his own and had children with her, and watched as his grandchildren went to school.
His wife and children held a special place in Seram’s heart.
There was not a day where he wouldn’t think about them.
His brother, Chrome, also tried to follow in their father’s footsteps, only to realize that it was not what he wanted to do and ended up joining the military, where he climbed the ranks until he received the title of the general.
He thought it would be great if Chrome’s family would also go to the academy, but for him it was enough that his children would be happy and grow up healthy and strong.
This academy was full of precious memories to him.
Recently, Seram realized that his health was not as good as it used to be, and so he was thinking that it may very well be time for him to step down from his position and choose a new headmaster.
If his grandchildren choose to enroll in the academy, he wanted to wait until they graduate from it, but he also had to make preparations in case they chose to do otherwise.
While thinking like that, the communication device situated at the corner of his desk began to emit sound and light, letting him know that there was an incoming call.
This device was far better than telepathy, allowing for a conversation of the utmost quality, with no time-lag to speak of, making it feel as though you were holding a real conversation with the other party face-to-face.
Originally it was thought to be able to connect to pretty much every other device as long as you knew their location or designated number, but since that even the test device was pretty expensive, for now it could only be installed in very limited places, like mansions of important people or important national facilities.
But in the end, Seram could talk through this device to anyone, even if the other party was not a magician or wasn’t able to read the magical waves.
He activated the device, and as soon as he did that he heard a glossy woman voice from the other side of the line.
“Oh my, took you some time to pick up. Are you having your hands full with work, Mr. Academy Headmaster?”
[I could ask you the very same question, Miss Head Magician.]
When he responded lightly to the girl he knew back from his school days, he heard her laughter coming from the other side.
“It seems like you’re doing just fine, Seram. Good to know. It’s a shame that the synchronization will be lost once you retire. Even though there is lots of children there, not many can fully appreciate such a ‘magical demon’ like myself.”
[Now, why is the first female Court Magician saying things like that? Isha. As the ‘Sage of Water Flowers’ your beauty and ability still stands at the top. That fact will never change.]
“…… This, this ability of yours to unconsciously throw complements like that really doesn’t change.”
The Court Magician, Isha Somnis laughed bitterly at her end, and Seram laughed as well, smiling bitterly as the sense of nostalgia took a hold of him.
[Yeah, but since my wife passed away, I can’t say I was able to focus on pretty much anything at all.]
“Oh my, oh my, so it was terminal after all.”
Isha was his underclassmen, but thanks to his privilege as the Headmaster he allowed her to skip a few grades without having her to go through the normal classes like the rest of the student body.
Since she skipped a few grades despite being younger than the rest of the students, she brought a lot of antipathy towards herself at the Academy, and lots of noble children were looking down at her, but despite all that she still managed to hold her ground against those who didn’t like her.
One time, when she came to him for help, she even confined in him that she was one of the victims of the kidnapping case back in the day, the very same that Nectar-san, his father and the ‘girl’ helped to resolve. Sharing a secret like that created a sort of link between them, a sense of comradery of sorts, bringing them close to each other.
Because of that they would often be mistaken as lovers, which would often serve as the cause of concern and fights with his wife. But even now, she manage to hold her ground, and they are still in good terms with each other.
[By the way, Isha. For you to use this device to contact me, did something happen at the royal palace?]
It was the first real conversation he had with her in like a month or so, but since they were using the communication device, Seram rushed her to skip to the main point, so as to avoid the unnecessary consumption of magical power.
“Yes, it is something very important. Actually, I was visited by someone very nostalgic just earlier.”
Seram was quite shook, hearing something like that from Isha, who was normally so cool and composed.
“Aaah, time sure flies by so fast. For something as wonderful as this to happen.”
[Isha, who came to visit?]
“Ufufu, I thought I would tell you, but now I decided to not do that. You will find out eventually. Actually, I really wanted to come and see you, but oh well, I made a certain promise, so just this once I will have to pass. Just wait there and prepare some tea in advance. Oh, yeah, right, madeleines are the best sweets ever, wouldn’t you agree?”
[Isha, what are you……]
“See you, and have a good time.”
Isha laughed like a little girl and ended the connection, leaving Seram stunned and wondering what was it that she was talking about.
Isha had an exceptional talent for digging out information, and amongst many of them, she was really sensitive to any bits and pieces concerning ‘her’.
He knew she was really good at what she does, but to know that ‘she’ would even come to visit her would mean that she really did her homework quite thoroughly.
After all, ‘she’ was her absolute favorite.
No way, he thought, and at that exact time he heard someone knocking onto his office’s door.
[Excuse me, Headmaster. It is almost closing time.]
He saw the figure of his secretary at the door, and couldn’t help but to smile in bitter disappointment.
What on earth was he thinking?
[Aah, this might work.]
Seram turned towards his secretary, having come across what he thought to be a good idea.
[We do have some madeleines, correct?]
[Ah, yeas, that’s right, if you mean those confectionaries from the store in town, we do have them here.]
[I would like to have a bite before heading home.]
[As you wish.]
The secretary bowed her head and then left, leaving Seram alone in his office. Seram then stood up and walked to a kettle hanging on the wall in the corner of the room, wanting to boil some water.
Since it was something he remembered doing all the way back during his school years, it was one of those thing he would always do himself, instead of leaving it to his secretary.
And although he would normally consider this to be stupid, just now he wanted to get lost in the memories of the past while sipping on the delicious tea.
Applying some magic to the kettle, it immiediately began to boil the water, thanks to which in the meantime he could prepare the leaves in the teapot.
[Oh my, are you in the middle of preparing tea?]
She spoke naturally, to which Seram stroked his hair.
There was no way he could ever forget that voice.
Seram took a couple of deep breaths, before he eventually turned around to face the source of the voice.
There, basked in the light, stood one of his most precious memories, but in a shape that would not stand out too much.
She looked quite adorable with blonde hair coupled with red and black strands here and there, and the facial features of a foreigner.
Even though he knew that this golden-haired beauty was but a temporary shape that gazed at him with that cheerful, familiar look, he just couldn’t help it but to remember those vivid memories from all that time long ago.
[It’s been a while ––––…… ‘Nee-san’.]
While the nostalgic feelings kept on spreading throughout his chest, Seram responded in the same way that he used to during those days long time ago. The girl was watching him closely, but then she smiled like a little child caught in the middle of one of its many mischiefs.
[Haah, and here I was, hoping that you would be surprised, even by a little bit.]
[Really now, you were never all that good at hiding your identity, but I must say, it is quite nice to be able to see you in that form once more.]
He spoke sincerely from the bottom of his heart, then smiled at the girl.
As the water in the kettle boiled, Seram transported it over the teapot containing tea leaves and poured the water in, before it would boil too much.
[My secretary is going to bring some madeleines here in a second. Would you like some?]
As soon as she heard that, the girl’s face turned all bright.
[Uwah, that’s so awfully nice of you, little one! Does that mean you knew I might come pay you a visit?]
[That, is a secret.]
Seram smiled mysteriously at the puzzled girl.
He lived so long and he finally managed to surprise her.
But , she soon shrugged her shoulders and her little frame became disappointingly ambiguous, shifting and changing.
In the next moment, the one standing before him was the ‘Nee-san’ he knew so well from his childhood.
For him, it was the first time he actually saw someone using transformation magic, and even though it was so difficult and complex to pull off he was surprised just how quickly and quietly she managed to accomplish it.
[You see, little one, I…… I gave birth to a child.]
When she told him that, Seram was surprised yet again.
[Oh, this is, umm, congratulations.]
[Thank you. But, truth to be told, it was a few years ago.]
Hearing Seram’s congratulations she laughed gently, and then continued.
[You see, there is a certain request I have for you.]
[And I’ll be more than happy to accept.]
That clearly shocked and surprised him, but nevertheless, Seram answered reflexively.
Hearing him accept right of the bat, his ‘Nee-san’ looked at him carefully, and then asked like she wanted to be sure about something.
[Are you sure you want to accept a request without hearing about it in more detail?]
[It’s fine. After all, it is my Nee-san’s request.]
[Yeah, but, I mean…]
[I have always dreamed of being able to help you someday.]
She blinked for a few seconds, and then her eyes narrowed, as if just witnessed the growth of her own child.
[Geez, you’ve grown into such a fine man, Seram. Think you could lend me a hand?]
There was no need for Seram to ask, He already understood the reason why she didn’t come to anyone else with this matter but him. His heart was overjoyed, as if he went back to the time of his youth in a single moment.
While thinking it was nice to be impressed even at this age, Seram escorted his Nee-san onto the sofa and presented her with a really late afternoon tea.
Thank you for reading! Next arc is coming soon. Please stay with us.