Chapter 26:

Ch 26 - A Change of Scene

St Chaos Healer

I was still walking through this long hallway that seemed to have no end. Bookmark here

There were no windows or any doors in this long passage that seemed to lead to the 2nd trial room. The only thing in here was the dimly lit lamps hanging on the wall that lit this passage.Bookmark here

I can’t fathom why the two trial rooms are placed so far apart.Bookmark here

I didn’t have any urge to rush to the next trial room anyway. I was walking at my normal pace to conserve all my energy for the next trial that I have to go through.Bookmark here

I started to think back to my experience back in the first trial room.Bookmark here

The strange thing was that I felt some sort of rejection from the crystal ball at first. Even the mana threads were avoiding my hands. I almost thought I was one of the rejects for a second there.Bookmark here

But then I had that strange dream.Bookmark here

What was it again?Bookmark here

“Arrgh!” I screamed, clutching my head.Bookmark here

Just when I tried to remember what I had dreamed, the headache kicked in.Bookmark here

The severe pain was like something that I never experienced before.Bookmark here

It felt like somebody was hitting a nail in my head piercing through my skull.Bookmark here

I almost was about to pass out but I quickly managed to grab onto the wall and kept myself on my feet. I gritted my teeth and started taking deep breaths. If I pass out now, the authorities will definitely fail me.Bookmark here

I still have a lot to do and I can’t just fail here on the very first trial.Bookmark here

It took a few minutes before the pain disappeared like it never even existed.Bookmark here

What the hell is going on?Bookmark here

Why am I starting to get these headaches, all of a sudden?Bookmark here

I never had this problem ever before but after coming in contact with that crystal ball. Bookmark here

Is this some sort of sign of some diseases?Bookmark here

Am I rejected by the mana?Bookmark here

Many more such doubts started to rise in my mind.Bookmark here

But I shook off all the negative thoughts and just focused on what to do next.Bookmark here

“I wasted a lot of time, I should hurry.,” I said to myself while speeding up.Bookmark here

After walking for a few more minutes I finally reached a big double door.Bookmark here

This door looked exactly like the entrance of the first trial room.Bookmark here

Although unlike before, nobody was standing here to welcome the candidates.Bookmark here

I stood in front of the door and gave myself one thorough checkup.Bookmark here

I saw there were no visible injuries or even patches of blood on my full bodysuit. The only thing I did suffer was a bit of headache which didn’t last long. It’s best if I don’t mention it to my supervisors.Bookmark here

I finally grabbed onto the door handles and pushed the door open.Bookmark here

Just as I opened the door, I was greeted by a bright light that almost managed to blind me.Bookmark here

I walked inside the room taking a few steps and waited for my vision to adjust.Bookmark here

A gust of cool wind hit me, surprising me a bit.Bookmark here

After a few seconds, my vision finally started to set in and I could finally see.Bookmark here

“Where the hell am I now?” I asked myself.Bookmark here

Right at this moment, I was standing on a grassy mound on some hill. The grassy field stretched across the horizon to no end. The sun shone brightly in the blue cloudless sky. I had never seen such a clear sky in my village either.Bookmark here

After glancing around I finally saw the group of candidates gathered around a tower. The tower was about 50 meters in height, but small in breadth and length. There were no windows on the tower but on the top of the tower, there was a glowing pinkish aura.Bookmark here

The young candidates were all gathered around the tower in a circular formation and were broken into groups. I also noticed people dress like Miss Thesia and Mr. Hagar in those groups.Bookmark here

There was some activity going on within the groups but I was too far away to see what exactly was going on.Bookmark here

Wasn’t I just onboard the ceremony train?Bookmark here

Did the train halt and I just exit through this door?Bookmark here

That’s when I turned around to glance behind me just to notice the double door standing on the open grassy mound.Bookmark here

There was no train or any carriage, just a double door that someone left here in the middle of nowhere. Taking another look, I finally noticed on the top of the double door was a signboard with a ‘B-7’ title on it.Bookmark here

That was the name of the wagon that I had boarded.Bookmark here

“If that’s the door leading to my wagon then-”Bookmark here

I looked around and saw many more such doors kept at a distance from each other. It all had different wagon numbers on it. I also saw some of the candidates walking out of those doors and they were definitely not from our wagon.Bookmark here

Just when I was midst looking around I heard a voice,Bookmark here

“Boy. Stop standing there like a buffoon and come here to state your name and village.”Bookmark here

That’s when I finally noticed a man dressed like a supervisor was standing a few meters away from me with a notepad and a pen.Bookmark here

He was a middle-aged man with a very mean-looking face. Bookmark here

He looked annoyed as he glared at me furiously.Bookmark here

I without wasting any time I hurried,Bookmark here

“My bad, I didn’t notice you were”Bookmark here

Suddenly I heard a creaking noise and saw the B-7 door opened once again.Bookmark here

Out of the door, another candidate appeared.Bookmark here

The candidate was a boy from our wagon. He had long spiky hair that stood upright like a bunch of thorns. He also was wearing a headband on top of his head, I guess to maintain that hair of his. His head looked like a porcupine’s back. The most surprising thing was his short height.Bookmark here

Now that I took another look at him, I remember this guy. Back then he was the one who took a stance against those girls back in the corridor before. That headband and hairstyle surely stood out. Are we allowed to wear headbands though?Bookmark here

The shorty also was surprised by the sudden change of the scenery. Bookmark here

His reaction was almost similar to mine.Bookmark here

“Hey stop daydreaming and state your name here.” shouted the supervisor.Bookmark here

It almost slipped my mind there was a supervisor here for a second.Bookmark here

The shorty hurried towards the supervisor.Bookmark here

“My name is Benjamin Almond from Merrian town in Velor district,” I replied.Bookmark here

The supervisor didn’t say much and just continued scribbling in his notepad and then glanced at the shorty.Bookmark here

The shorty gave a light cough,Bookmark here

“The name’s Tracker Welch from Hines village in Benia district.”Bookmark here

“Alright, head down to your camp where all the B-7 wagon candidates are gathered.”Bookmark here

He pointed in one direction and went back to his position.Bookmark here

Now I and Tracker walked down from the mound heading to our camp.Bookmark here

Tracker kept his hands behind his head and whistled while walking down. He didn’t seem interested in chatting with me. Not that I was eager to spark any conversation either.Bookmark here

I looked around and saw there were a lot of such double doors placed on this mound. A lot of students like ours were heading down like the rest of us.Bookmark here

The door that I just came out actually managed to teleport us to another place or this dimension exists within the train itself. I wonder which it is.Bookmark here

This ceremony train is indeed a genius work of the architect.Bookmark here

No wonder the other kingdoms wanted to put their hands on the railway’s trade secret of our kingdom. I wonder what else there could be to explore in the ceremony train.Bookmark here

Maybe I could find some valuable artifacts and weapons too here.Bookmark here

Who knows?Bookmark here

Thinking about exploring the train a smile appeared on my face.Bookmark here

“Hey!” said Tracker as he was staring at me, “What are you laughing about?”Bookmark here

I was caught off guard because he suddenly decided to talk.Bookmark here

“Are you talking to me?” I asked.Bookmark here

“Yeah, you. Who else is here? So what got you so smiling all of a sudden.” he said while glaring at me.Bookmark here

Alright, this shorty’s attitude of bossing me around was pissing me off.Bookmark here

But I don’t want to be rude and create bad blood between us.Bookmark here

“Nothing,” I replied politely.Bookmark here

“Speak the truth. Why were you smiling just now?”Bookmark here

Okay, this kid is pissing me off,Bookmark here

“Me, smiling is my business and it has nothing to do with you.”Bookmark here

“Stop trying to lie. I know what you got so smiling.” he then glared at me fiercely, “You were laughing at my height, right?”Bookmark here

“Huh? What?” I exclaimed.Bookmark here

“Nice try hiding but I can see through you. You were just laughing at my height, just admit it.”Bookmark here

“Why would you even jump to that conclusion?”Bookmark here

“My instincts are always right,” he replied smugly.Bookmark here

“Your instincts are faulty.”Bookmark here

“I might be a bit on the short side in the height for now, but I will hit my growth spurt anytime soon. Then we’ll see who’ll have the last laugh,” said Tracker.Bookmark here

This dude is quite sensitive about his height. Bookmark here

As for the matter of the growth spurt, I don’t see much hope for him.Bookmark here

He looked like he was just an 8-year-old kid.Bookmark here

I guess that’s why he has his hair all tall and spiky just to gain a little more height.Bookmark here

“What’s with the sympathetic look all of a sudden?” he asked while glaring at me.Bookmark here

“Nope, nothing. I just wish you good luck with your growth spurt.”Bookmark here

“Oh, so you’re trying to be nice and befriend me now. I see that you noticed I am a genius and a prodigy who is destined to become a mage. The first trial was a piece of cake for me. You noticed my greatness and hence why you want to befriend me~ Oh! I see now, you want to befriend me to gain future benefits after I become a mage. Nice try but I can see through your motives.” replied Tracker with a sneer.Bookmark here

“You are one delusional kid. Could you stop talking to me?” I asked while rolling my eyes.Bookmark here

“Hey! Who the hell are you calling a kid! We are the same age.”Bookmark here

“We are here,” I said, cutting our conversation short.Bookmark here

Before I could waste any more energy arguing with Shorty, we seemed to reach to meet our fellow B-7 group.Bookmark here

At this moment, the B-7 candidates have all gathered around in a circular formation. Everyone’s attention was in the center for some reason.Bookmark here

“What the hell’s going on? Why’s everyone so worked up here?” asked Tracker as we quickly approached.Bookmark here

“It seems the 2nd trial has begun already, let's go!” I said while rushing to join the group.Bookmark here

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