Before I knew it, 9 years had passed, the reality of the situation had settled in. Katou Yuuto, 20 years of living that life. Though it felt like I was still living that life, as if I was just transported to another world in a different body. But the fact that I died right before waking up as a child, has proven that I was not merely transported but reincarnated. In addition, I also have the memories of being the hero who once saved the world I’m reincarnated in right now.
It’s really unbelievable but it’s not like I could come up with any other explanation.
The life of two different people combined as one single memory.
Sometimes, I wondered to myself, who was I in those memories? Such questions still lingered and bothered me.
But the fact that I died—two times to say—and living a completely new life right now is what matters. Though for some reason, most of the time, my awareness as Katou Yuuto is stronger than my awareness as the hero.
Anyway, during the span of those years, I had been listening to my parents' conversation. I had learned that the language that was used when I was a hero in this world 300 years ago remained the same.
So much time has passed since the war between demons and humans ended. Though, I’m truly grateful that I could at least understand the language in this world and save the time and effort of studying it.
Learning how to read and write has been easy thanks to that. Though for some time after my reincarnation, I couldn’t completely move my body nor able to utter proper conversation, thus I spent that time just listening and watching my parents. My rate of learning was abnormal for a child.
As a result, my parents were in shock at my progress. I must be a prodigy in their eyes but in truth, I was just using my past memories of this world together with the things that I learned as Katou Yuuto—20 years worth of experience on earth that was more advanced in terms of technology and the amount of information. The only difference is that magic exists here.
I did make sure to minimize my development or at least make them seem natural for a child but seeing my parents delighted, it also made me happy. It was a new experience for me. I didn’t remember much when I was a child back from my past so watching my parents happy like that made me want to cherish it. That was what I truly felt.
By the time I could finally move around and talk, I started actually learning knowledge and information about this world. I looked up what happened after the war and it turns out that the long-sought peace had finally been achieved after the death of the demon lord. Stories of that past had turned into history and been passed on from generations to generations in the form of literature.
“Hiroooo, tell me how you do it. I think I’m losing my confidence everytime I eat your cooking....” My mother has a complex expression like she was both pleased and somehow dissatisfied as she stuffed her mouth with food.
Mai Laurent—my mother. Her translucent long silver hair together with her pale white skin define her refined beauty. My similar silver hair is proof that I inherited it from her.
“Uhm it was all thanks to your teachings that I’m able to do this much. I still have a long way to go before I can match your cooking.”
“Looks like Hiro is also good at flattering women, just like me back in the days!” My father said heartily.
Shaun Laurent—my father. He has a slim body build but he is actually an ex-adventurer. Well, looks aren't everything as they say.
“Be quiet, Shaun!” My mother snapped.
“E-ehh.” Father was disheartened.
“Hiro, as your mother I am proud that your cooking is extremely delicious but it puts me to shame. So starting now, I forbid you from the kitchen and in exchange, I will be the one who cooks again.” She declared with a puff.
All I could do was laugh it off at the sight of my mother who was acting like she was 10 years younger. Though, she does look younger. If I were to compare her... She's like a university student the same age as I was. Do they develop some kind of anti-aging stuff here in this world? Perhaps magic?
Wait, how old was she again actually? No, no, no. I probably shouldn’t think about that...
I also helped myself with the food. It was a simple stew with mushrooms, meat, and an assortment of vegetables to even out its nutritional value. It was all I could make considering the limited ingredients I could get in this world compared to when I was in university.
All I really did was put together some stuff I could find and make something based on my memories.
Though, Iroha is still at a different level compared to mine. I wonder how she is doing?
Shaking off my thoughts, I continued eating my food. Hmm. It’s not that bad.
During the night, my parents were sleeping soundly in their room so I sneaked out of the house.
My parents’ room was just across from mine so I was careful enough not to make a sound when I opened the window in my room.
Cold wind caresses my cheeks as I leap off from the window and land outside. Our house sits upon a hill almost surrounded by a forest. Isolated from the city, all I could hear was the tranquil sound of nature at night.
Moonlight illuminates the area. I ran deep through the forest further away from the house. If my parents were to find out how I sneak out like this, I’ll surely get a painful scolding.
Throughout my years of living here, I often went out like this for different purposes. Like hunting for food or sometimes for training. I was familiar enough with the forest that I could go around it easily. That said, to my parents, I was just a 9-years-old kid and of course, they wouldn’t let me venture out into the forest especially at night.
“This should be far enough.”
I find myself passing the forest and before me was just a vast plain that stretches across the horizon. On the far south, you could see the sight of the city. It was far enough that it only looked so small, however.
“Let’s see if this will work.” I held out my palm.
After a few seconds of concentrating, a small fire bursts out from my palm. It wasn’t necessarily touching my skin, it was hovering from my palm but still close enough that I could feel a faint warmth from it.
“So magic still works the same way.”
Magic in this world works the same way as how magic is normally perceived—that is, an energy that influences reality which causes a phenomenon. That said, it is not a power anyone can just use.
Magic is the manifestation of one’s imagination but before that, one must learn how to feel their essence—an intrinsic nature that exists in all living beings. It is essentially what determines the quality of your being.
Furthermore, the quality of essence will depend on the possessor’s growth itself. Those that are able to control and manifest their essence could, therefore, produce magic. On the other hand, those that cannot wouldn’t be able to use magic.
More than half the population of this world couldn’t control their essence, or at least that‘s what I remember. In the first place, essence is something innate and being able to perceive it is nigh impossible. The only way of perceiving it is by training yourself in various ways until your essence is strong enough to the point that you could actually feel it.
“I thought it would take me some time before I could use magic but I guess it’s thanks to my memories of my past lives that I could already feel my essence.”
It's faint but I could feel an aura-like something that’s coming out of my body whenever I try to use my essence.
This is also the reason why I sneak out to the forest often to train. Being able to use magic in this world is convenient in many ways after all.
Let’s see... I held out both of my hands.
Focusing, I picture in my mind what I could do with magic.
Using essence as a source for magic is just like imagining things with your mind then making them come to life. It's easy enough when said but in order to actually manifest something into reality, you’ll need to imagine its form, shape, matter, concept, and purpose.
For example, if you want to make a fireball, you’ll have to visualize what makes a fire first. The amount of oxygen and the heat around. It’s a step-by-step process that one should follow thoroughly.
The fire I produced earlier enlarged enough that it covered both of my hands. After a few seconds, its flames burst out and gradually took shape. A bird-like form manifested and flapped its wings.
The bird made of fire was slightly bigger than one of my hands. It immediately flew up towards the night sky and as it did, like it was about to pierce through the heavens, its body burst, raining down sparks all over. The sight was like a fleeting firework. Despite its size and appearance, it's actually impressive how it burst like that.
I was like a child sightseeing with sparkling eyes. Though, I am a child technically.
I saw the city across the land.
It cast light upon the night sky making it look like it's still bustling. It looks so peaceful from here.
If I recall correctly, this country is called Galdia kingdom. And that is one of its cities.
Galdia kingdom, it was a small kingdom on the verge of falling when the demons started their invasion 300 years ago. But now, it is the biggest kingdom in the continent of Urania. With their contributions in the war, the kingdom managed to rise and regain glory. It was one of the few kingdoms that survived despite how small it was. Even now, they have managed to protect its name.
Galdia Kingdom, also known as “The Brave Kingdom”. With the kingdom’s successful achievements and the war that had pushed them through, they wanted to engrave that moment and pass it on through generations so that the people of its kingdom would never forget. Thus, the Galdia Academy was formed.
It’s not just the kingdom. People, animals, creatures, different races, environment. Everything has changed. Long ago, the world ended and started once more. Was this the result of me doing my part as a hero back then? I want to see. I want to see this new world for myself.
“Maybe I should go to the academy.”
With my plans set for the future, I retreated from the night and headed back to the house.
6 years have passed, I’m now 15 years old which is by the way considered—well, not quite an adult but not a child either.
“Mother, I’m going to enroll in the academy.”
With a crash, the plate that she was wiping just now fell on the ground and shattered.
Her face was pale as white like she was about to faint.
I went to her side to check if she was fine but when I did, a soft sensation fell on my face. She squeezed me with her arms and... chest.
“Are you going to leave your mother? Rebellious phase? Is it because I forbid you from cooking? Maybe when I got angry when I found out you were sneaking out of the house? Don’t leave meeee!!”
“What are you talking about mother...” Her eyes were like a child about to get left behind, tears on the verge of falling.
Oh, yes. My parents found out at some point that I was sneaking out of the house which, of course, I was scolded for. But that’s not the reason I’m leaving!
The door to the front opened.
“...What’s wrong?” My father just came back. Perfect timing, please... help.
“Galdia Academy huh.”
“Yes, I plan to go to the city and live there as a student.”
“First of all…” He glanced at mother sitting beside him, pouting. “Mai, how about you calm down a little.”
“Buuuu.” My mother was now acting like a child, literally.
With a dry smile, my father spoke. “You’re at that age now, after all. Do you have a particular reason as to why you want to study there?”
“I want to learn more about the outside world.” I answered honestly.
As someone who had memories of that time, I atleast wanted to learn and know more about this new world. If I’m going to redo my life anyway, then it would be best to do it properly and at fullest. Gaining knowledge would be my first step and the closest one for that would be the Galdia academy.
My father thought for a moment then spoke. “Well, we already knew this was coming a long time ago.”
“...Meaning?” I urged him to continue.
“Ever since you were born we often sense something off.”
Did they perhaps figure it out?
“You never really cried and obediently listened like you already understood us. By the time you could walk around, you always read different kinds of books. Also, when you were sneaking out of the house, you were practicing magic weren’t you?”
I’m honestly surprised that they knew that when I was specially taking care not to be caught. Do they already know that I...
“I’m really shocked when you asked if you could help with the cooking, you know? You were just six at that time!” My mother voiced.
“So, we thought that someday you would say something like this. We talked about it some time ago and we decided that when you ask us about going off on your own, we would support it.”
I was happy. I never imagined that they have thought about it like that.
“Honestly, I thought that it would be earlier so I’m surprised you asked at a perfect timing. Though, I bet you planned that and waited.” My father guffawed.
“It’s still early though, hmph.” My mother yet again pouted her cheeks.
I put on a smile.
“Mother, Father, Thank you.” I said.
They looked at each other and beamed with warmful smile.
“So, when will you go?” Father asked.
“Maybe in the next few weeks.”
I wanted to spend my time with them just a little longer before leaving.