Chapter 1:

Ascending to Wizardhood

Just as I Became a Wizard a Girl Asked Me Out, and She's My Student!

1Bookmark here

I, Shibata Kenzo, am a 2nd year biology and homeroom teacher at Sakurai High. Recently, I’ve been assigned to this school and today is the first day back after Spring Break.Bookmark here

It also happens to be my birthday.Bookmark here

My 30th birthday.Bookmark here

In my 30 years of life, I can regretfully admit that I have lived a sorry life. Career wise, I’m doing ok. Sure I’m not an extremely wealthy CEO, but being a teacher isn’t bad - at least it’s better than working at a convenience store. Bookmark here

The reason my life is so sorry is because not once in my life have I ever had a girlfriend.Bookmark here

In primary school I thought girls were icky, in middle school I was going through my awkward phase, and in high school I went to an all-boys school. By the time I was an adult I still had no idea how to obtain a girlfriend, let alone get a girl to notice me.Bookmark here

I’m sorry mother, your son is a total disgrace - you will likely never see grandchildren in this life.Bookmark here

“Hmm, I wonder if my wizard powers have come in yet?”Bookmark here

I pondered this out loud as I stared at my reflection in the mirror as I was getting ready for work. Rumor has it that if you remain a virgin until you are 30 then you’ll become a wizard.Bookmark here

Not that I believe the rumor is true, but you never know. If there’s even a slight possibility that I could get some badass powers for being a virgin this long, then I would at least like to find out if it’s true or not.Bookmark here

I better be getting some damn powers for paying a price this steep!Bookmark here

Not sure how wizard powers work, I just started out by trying out some magic commands - calling out cheesy magician catch phrases like Alakazam, repeating lines I’ve heard in fantasy anime, and I even tried a Kame**meha - to no avail.Bookmark here

Oh well, I’m not sure what I was expecting, this isn’t some web novel after all - I’m not suddenly going to be gaining powers just for being a virgin for 30 years.Bookmark here

“Shit!”Bookmark here

Catching a glimpse at my watch made me finally notice what time it was. I was too distracted with trying to figure out how to use my powers to realize that at this rate I was going to be late on the first day if I didn’t hurry.Bookmark here

With no time to bother brushing my hair or shaving, I sloppily put my suit on, grabbed a piece of toast, and was out my apartment door, running full speed to school.Bookmark here

2Bookmark here

You would think that running late with toast in my mouth would cause me to turn a corner and run into the woman who would be the love of my life.Bookmark here

Yeah right, who would ever think that could happen? Bookmark here

This isn’t some shoujo manga!Bookmark here

As realistically expected, attempting to eat while running proved to be too difficult, and I had only managed to eat one bite before I accidentally dropped my meager breakfast. Bookmark here

I also didn't bump into any women.Bookmark here

By some saving grace I arrived at school with a minute to spare before the opening ceremony began. The principal gave me a nasty glare as I took my seat.Bookmark here

Can’t you cut me some slack, it’s the first day, not to mention my birthday.Bookmark here

The opening ceremony was just like any other opening ceremony at any other school. Like usual it felt far more drawn out than it needed to be. There were a lot of boring speeches, us teachers were introduced, sung the school song, yada yada yada.Bookmark here

Honestly, I think the opening ceremonies can easily be shortened down to something along the lines of, “Welcome to Hell, where you need to study your butts off for the next three years so that your parents and society won’t look down on you.”Bookmark here

Of course if I ever voiced this idea to the school I would be out of a job. Better just to keep that thought to myself.Bookmark here

After the opening ceremony students began making their way to their respective classes, as a teacher I should also be heading with them to my homeroom class, but the principal held me up.Bookmark here

He berated me for being late and for my disheveled appearance, arguing that I need to set an example for the students. I politely nodded and agreed wholeheartedly with the older man, apologizing profusely.Bookmark here

This day just keeps getting better and better, and the day has barely started.Bookmark here

He finally let me go after I swore up and down that it would never happen again. I hurried to my classroom where I knew my students were probably waiting impatiently, wanting to hurry things along.Bookmark here

Even though it was the first day, I wasn’t nervous or anything. This isn’t the first time I ever taught a class before after all - the only things really different from my last school are the faces and the building, but otherwise the exact same.Bookmark here

The door to class 2-2 was left open and the students were mingling about inside. I slid the door behind me, “Alright everyone, take your seats!”Bookmark here

The students quieted down and hurried to find their seats - all except one girl who seemed to be arguing with a very uncomfortable looking boy in the back row. I cleared my throat loudly to get her attention.Bookmark here

The girl turned my way and her eyes went wide behind her thick glasses, “You look just like Kawai Dai from Rozu Ketsueki!”Bookmark here

“Excuse me?”Bookmark here

The girl began rummaging in her bag and pulled out a newly purchased manga magazine and flipped through it until she found what she was looking for. She held it up for me to see, pointing excitedly at the character, “See, you look just like him!”Bookmark here

The character in question looked to be a middle aged man with a scruffy stuble, messy hair, and an ill-fitting suit. He was slumped at a bar, gripping his drink in his hand looking utterly tired of life.Bookmark here

“He’s this really lame character, and in the most recent character popularity contest he placed dead last with only 1 vote,” she continued without pause.Bookmark here

As much as I hate to admit it, especially after her telling me what a lame character he is, I do share a strong resemblance to him. Bookmark here

I can’t let her get away with making fun of me in front of the entire class; I’m the teacher here, I need to take command.Bookmark here

I took the magazine from her hands, “This is not permitted at school, I’ll be confiscating this for now. Come see me after school to get it back. Now, I’m not going to say it a third time, please take your seat.”Bookmark here

“Actually, about that, Sensei, I have really bad eyesight and was wondering if I could trade seats with him,” she asked, pointing to the boy she was arguing with earlier.Bookmark here

“Yes, that’s fine, go ahead and -” wait, what? “If you have bad eyesight then you should move to the front of the class, not to the very back row!”Bookmark here

She pouted, having been caught in her lie, “Please, that’s the protagonist’s seat.”Bookmark here

I was confused for a second before I realized what she meant. Anime that takes place in a school setting usually has the protagonist sit at the back row window seat.Bookmark here

This girl is a huge otaku.Bookmark here

I sighed, “What’s your name?”Bookmark here

“Tachibana Arisu.”Bookmark here

“Tachibana-san, take your seat.”Bookmark here

She slumped her shoulders in defeat and took her seat in the middle of the second row.Bookmark here

I had a gut feeling that this girl was going to be causing a lot of trouble for me this coming year.Bookmark here

3Bookmark here

After that episode there were no more incidents - something I was extremely thankful for as this day had already been bad enough. Bookmark here

Today was only a half day, meaning students were free to go home, however teachers didn’t have that luxury. Bookmark here

I sat at my desk in the Staff Room trying to get some work done while I waited for a certain trouble-making otaku to come by. I had expected her to linger about the classroom for a while to chat with her new classmates before slowly making her way here, yet I had barely gotten started on any work when she came up to my desk.Bookmark here

“You’re here fast, you must really want your magazine back.”Bookmark here

When I pulled the magazine out from the desk drawer her eyes lit up and she reached for the book, but I held it out of her reach.Bookmark here

“Tachibana-san do you understand why I confiscated this from you in the first place?”Bookmark here

“Because it’s contraband.”Bookmark here

“So you knew it was contraband and still decided to bring it to school?”Bookmark here

“Yes,” she answered sullenly, “But I can only get that magazine in the mornings on the way to school, they always end up being sold out by the time school gets out! I had no other choice but to bring it to school.”Bookmark here

I understood her situation, I really do, but as a teacher I can’t just let this slide. It’s part of my job to enforce the rules.Bookmark here

“You’re a second year high school student, you should know better than to bring this to school. I’m going to give this back to you today, but if I catch you with another manga magazine you will not be getting back, understand?”Bookmark here

She nodded sullenly, looking so down. Bookmark here

Urg, maybe it was because I was too much of softy, but I couldn’t stand seeing that sad look on her face, “Ok, how about this, if you do happen to buy any more magazines before school then just hand them over to me immediately and I’ll give them back to you at the end of the day?”Bookmark here

“Really?!” Her eyes lit up.Bookmark here

“Yes, but no more outbursts in class, you got it?” I might as well get something out of this if I was going to be this lenient with her.Bookmark here

“No more outbursts from here on out, got it! Thank you so much, Sensei!”Bookmark here

She took her magazine and left happily. Bookmark here

As I watched her go the feeling in my gut that she was trouble didn’t go away. Did I just make that deal for naught? Knowing my luck today I probably did. Fantastic.Bookmark here

4Bookmark here

Today might be the only day for a long time that I’ll be able to leave work before it gets dark. Such is the life of a teacher.Bookmark here

Taking it slow on my way home I stopped alongside the canal and took a seat on the grass to eat some snacks. What a day. Bookmark here

Something caught my eye from the shadows under the bridge. A cardboard box?Bookmark here

Curiosity got the better of me so I went to investigate.Bookmark here

“Nya.”Bookmark here

That sounded like…Bookmark here

Yep, unmistakingly, inside the box was a small black kitten with white paws. It looked barely old enough to be away from its mother. Bookmark here

Did someone really abandon it here? Bookmark here

The kitten took notice of me, “Nya, nya, nya.”Bookmark here

“Hey, did someone leave you here,” I asked the kitten, kneeling down by the box.Bookmark here

“Nya.”Bookmark here

Really who just abandons such a young kitten like this, especially here under a bridge where few people would even see it? If I hadn’t found it then it would have probably been a goner.Bookmark here

I reached out to pet it, it didn’t seem to be scared of me. I can’t just leave it here, but it’s not like I know how to take care of a cat. Bookmark here

Maybe there’s an animal shelter I can take it to, or maybe I can find someone who could take it in.Bookmark here

As I contemplated what to do, the kitten nuzzled its cheek against my hand. I don’t know anything about caring for a pet, yet it was making me push that reasoning to the side as it won my heart.Bookmark here

“Well I am a wizard now, I guess I do need a familiar,” I said a loud, “How does that sound little guy? Want to be my familiar?”Bookmark here

“Nya!”Bookmark here

I’ll take that as a yes.Bookmark here

I lifted the kitten from the box, “Alright, from now on you are not some ordinary cat, you are the familiar of the great (?) wizard, Shibata Kenzo. Henceforth you shall be known as, um… Kuro!”Bookmark here

“Nya!”Bookmark here

Pfft!Bookmark here

I spun around at the sound of that snort; I’m not alone. Bookmark here

My heart sank when I recognized who was standing not a short distance away. It was the worst person imaginable to have witnessed that.Bookmark here

“Sensei is a chuunbiyou.”Bookmark here

Of course it had to be her - that trouble-making otaku student.Bookmark here

“I am not.”Bookmark here

What kind of defense was that? I sounded like a defiant toddler.Bookmark here

“You called yourself a wizard, that seems pretty chuunbiyou to me.”Bookmark here

“Shouldn’t you have already gone home? Good students go straight home and don’t dilly dally.”Bookmark here

Pfft, dilly dally? That’s a pretty outdated phrase.”Bookmark here

Outdated? Really? I’m starting to feel a little old. Bookmark here

“Outdated or not, you still didn’t answer my question - why haven’t you gone home yet, school ended hours ago?”Bookmark here

There was no way she could lie about it, she was still wearing her school uniform so it was obvious that she didn’t run home before coming here. Bookmark here

Actually, I suddenly noticed there was something odd about her appearance. Her uniform was quite wet, not to mention she was missing her shoes and bag.Bookmark here

“What happened?” Is she being bullied?Bookmark here

She chuckled embarrassed, “Wouldn’t you believe it? I’m such a klutz that I somehow dropped both my bag and my shoes in the canal.”Bookmark here

I didn’t believe it. I could believe it if it was just her bag that she dropped into the water, but losing both her bag and shoes by accident was far more unbelievable. Any competent person could tell that this was the result of bullying.Bookmark here

As a teacher it’s my duty to handle this matter, but honestly it would be so much easier to pretend to believe her story and let things be. I can’t imagine most teachers would want to deal with this and since she’s not complaining it would be easy to sweep under the rug.Bookmark here

I should just let things be.Bookmark here

Argh! No, I can’t!Bookmark here

“Here, take Kuro,” I demanded, thrusting the kitten into her arms.Bookmark here

“Sensei?”Bookmark here

“Nya?”Bookmark here

I threw off my socks and shoes, and rolled up my pants legs before wading into the water to find her things.Bookmark here

Minutes later I had found her things and was sitting on the concrete siding, my own clothes now, just as wet as her’s.Bookmark here

“Thanks,” she bowed.Bookmark here

“Think nothing of it.”Bookmark here

She sat down next to me, holding little Kuro close to her chest. We sat in silence to the point that it started to feel awkward.Bookmark here

“...”Bookmark here

“...”Bookmark here

I know I need to bring up the subject of the bullying, I need to figure out who’s responsible for this, but I wasn’t sure how to go about it. This is the first time in my career that I’ve had to deal with a student being bullied.Bookmark here

“Kuro is a really dumb name,” she said out of the blue, finally being the first to break the awkward silence.Bookmark here

“How so? I think it fits nicely.”Bookmark here

“Naming a black cat Kuro is so unoriginal. You wouldn’t name a person for their appearances after all.”Bookmark here

“Naming a cat and naming a person are two very different things though.”Bookmark here

“They’re not much different, either way you are giving a living being a name that they will be known by for the rest of their lives. You wouldn’t like it if I gave you a name based on your looks so you shouldn’t do the same thing to a cat.”Bookmark here

“Ok, then if you were going to name me for my appearances then what would my name be?”Bookmark here

“...Kawai Dai.”Bookmark here

I smacked her.Bookmark here

Not hard though, in a playful manner. I don’t want to lose my job for hitting a student.Bookmark here

“Don’t compare me to some lame character. I’m a cool sensei.”Bookmark here

“I think you lost all ability to proclaim that you’re cool when you loudly proclaimed that you are a great wizard right in front of your student.”Bookmark here

“Urk!” That comment felt like a stab to my heart. Bookmark here

“I think you should be nicer to the kind and cool sensei who went out of his way to help you twice today.”Bookmark here

“I’ll be kinder if you let me move to the protagonist seat.”Bookmark here

“Not happening, if anyone is the protagonist then it would be me.”Bookmark here

“Only a lame story would have such a sorry excuse for a teacher as the protagonist. The story would be way more interesting if the protagonist is a high school student who must overcome many struggles.”Bookmark here

“The story wouldn’t be lame, have you forgotten - I’m not just a teacher, I’m also a wizard.”Bookmark here

“Oh so you’re saying that it will be a lame and sad story?”Bookmark here

“I’m half-tempted to throw your things back into the water.”Bookmark here

“I’m sorry I didn’t mean it,” she apologized, quickly changing her tune.Bookmark here

“That’s more like it.”Bookmark here

The conversation died off after that, which was a perfect opportunity for me to finally take my leave and spend the rest of the day curled up in the fetal position, ashamed of myself for embarrassing myself so badly in front of a student.Bookmark here

I took the cat from her arms as I got up, “I need to be heading home, and you should do the same, it’s not safe for a high school girl to be out too late.”Bookmark here

I walked a piece away before the nagging voice in my head made me call back to her, “If you don’t want to talk about what happened that’s fine, but I am your teacher and lame as I might be I’m here for you. Come talk to me any time, even if you just want to talk about anime.”Bookmark here

She got up and came over to me, “You know lame characters like Kawai Dai are actually my favorite types of characters because when they finally do something cool it’s way more impressive than a cool character who is always doing cool things.”Bookmark here

When I offered to talk about anime with her I didn’t think she would take me up on it let alone this soon. Bookmark here

“Lame characters like you are my type. Want to go out with me?”Bookmark here

I also didn't think that would ever happen.Bookmark here

Taylor Victoria
Joe Gold
You can resume reading from this paragraph.