Chapter 49:

Ch 49 - Unexpected Farewell

St Chaos Healer

“The blessing ritual has ended and I am very pleased to see that we have gained more candidates than the previous year. Your growth is tantamount to the growth of this nation itself. As the head mage of the ascension ceremony, I want to give my thanks to everyone present here.”

The old head mage, Sigurd was standing on the central broken stage amidst the debris. There was dead silence as all listened attentively to his speech.

He continued,

“Now that the blessing ritual is over we should move on to the next phase. The candidates who already managed to reach the tier 1 stage, congratulations, you guys will be allotted a seat in one of the government-funded mage schools after the end of the ascension ceremony. You guys have a bright future ahead, just keep on working hard like this as ever.” He then turned his eyes toward the rest of the candidates.

“As for those who failed to reach the 1st tier,” he gave out a sigh, “Well you did a good job surviving until now. But don’t lose hope, keep working hard and one day you might reach the 1st tier stage as well. When you do, the door for mage schools will always be open to you. Until then, I wish you luck in your future endeavors.”

What the-

They just dropped the bombshell here. That’s it?

Suddenly there was a gust of gloomy air surrounding the amphitheater candidates.
Everyone had their eyes wide open as if they just can’t believe the words that they just heard.

The 0-tier candidates were in between a state of shock and surprise.

They still can’t believe what the head mage just announced.

“Oi, Oi, what the hell did he just say”

“Good~ Good luck? What does that even mean?”

“Huh? This must be some kind of a joke. I thought we were done with the elimination rounds back on the ceremony train.”

“Hey! You can’t do this to us! If you train a little we might be able to produce mana orbs in no time.”

“This isn’t fair, I should deserve this mage seat as well.”

The 0-tier candidates were definitely unsatisfied with these sudden verdicts laid by the head mage. They all started complaining, each of them voicing their complaints.

The amphitheater soon turned into a noisy flea market in an instant. Only the 1st tier and 2nd tier mages remained silent watching the chaos.

The frustrations of 0-tier mages were valid as we were not notified that there will be yet another elimination process. I mean there's no written rule but almost everyone that had cleared the ceremony train trials would get a seat in mage school. This has been happening for a long time even if you were to be a 0-tier mage, you would still be allotted a seat.

This rule must have been added quite recently.

If there was such a rule my mother would have warned of it beforehand.

“I guess this is it for me,” said Tracker as he let out a sigh, “Well this sucks,”

I felt a little bad for Tracker.

I pondered some thoughtful words to console him but I then just decided to shut up.

I am not very good at this sentimental bullshit.

The head mage Sigurd stood silently on the stage bearing the full grunt of the displeased candidates. He was standing there with an emotionless face like a parent watching their little kids throwing a tantrum for not buying them candy.

After a few minutes, Sigurd raised his staff and tapped it on the floor,

“Stop whining, this won’t resolve anything. The number of candidates with mana core has been rising a lot compared to the 100 years before. We hardly have seats and work power to allot each of you seats and to every one of you. Hence the ceremony organizers have rejected the entry of 0-tier mages. This was the rule in effect for the last 5 years.”

The 0-tier candidates all sucked in cold air.
They were all shocked beyond belief. Their dreams were all crumbling as each candidate started breaking down, and crying.

Some were furious, while others balled out their eyes in sorrow.

Sigurd suddenly coughed,

“But there’s still hope. There will be an ascension ceremony and even the zero-tier mages can participate. So what if you haven’t reached tier-1 mage stage, the ceremony will scan your potential, and if you are lucky you might still get a seat in mage school.”

The old man Sigurd was a sly bastard.

Finally, in the dead eyes of the candidates, a glimmer of hope reappeared.

“Damn it! I guess I just have to get selected during the ascension ceremony.”

“Well it can’t be helped, I guess. Another trial it seems.”

“If only I had not fallen asleep during the blessing ritual. I must have been a 1-tier mage already,”

“But I still can’t believe that I have to give yet another trial.”

The zero-tier candidates finally started accepting their reality.

The old mage Sigurd purposely threw this message in a curveball manner.

He started with the worst news first and then lured these candidates by promising seats if they performed well in the ascension ceremony.

If he had just directly talked about the ascension ceremony condition first, the candidates would continue to revolt even more. These red cape mages knew how to manipulate the candidates.

Even if the candidates had continued to revolt, being purple and black candidates would hardly impact their decision. The red cape mages had the final say, after all.

“Benjamin! That was a nice little display of your skills back there. You certainly taught me a lot. You were quite cool back then until that red cap mage jumped in. I certainly hope that won’t affect your ranking.” said Tracker with a gentle smile.

I was taken aback,

“You~ You knew about the ranking?”

“Of course, I did~ What?~ Did you take me for an idiot?”

“As a matter of fact, I did.”

“Ouch! That really hurt my feelings. And here I thought we might say farewell on a good note.”

“Eh? Oi, there is still the ascension ceremony. Don’t start quitting already.”

Tracker suddenly had a sad smile,

“I don’t think there is a high chance of that happening. My dad… He has psychic mage ability but it is a meager skill that couldn’t even help him complete his graduation from a mage school. I am his son and I’ll definitely be going to inherit low psychic skills at best. Now that I failed to reach tier-1, I can’t even go to mage school let alone awaken my mage ability.”

Tracker had a very glum look and his eyes were moist.

“Oi, what's up with self-deprecating talk? What happened to your usual optimistic way of living life? Now, you are the one who's breaking the character and moping around.”

Tracker wiped the teary eye with his sleeves,

“Haha. Look at me acting all pathetic like some loser. I never thought you would be the one giving me the pep talk. Forget what I just said.”

I smiled as well.

Most mages inherit skills from their blood relatives, most of the time from their parents. If your parents are powerful mages, their kids are more likely to become even more powerful mages. If your parents have weak abilities, so will their kids.

Hence, the kingdom decides to segregate people into classes.
So it's customary for high-class people to marry other people of the same class or possibly higher. Even the government encourages this system creating a hierarchy of people.

In this way the kingdom tries to keep the mage blood pure to a certain extent, resulting in more powerful mages serving the kingdom.

Tracker’s father is an adventurer despite having a weak mage ability. It's highly likely that Tracker will have a similar ability as his dad. This just shows that having just magic ability isn’t enough to become a mage.

“Enough about me,” he then lightly jabbed his elbow on my abdomen, “What about you!~ I am pretty sure you will be invited by big mage academies after putting on that show of yours. Although by doing so, you did make an enemy of all the other candidates.”

“Well, that is the risk I must take if I want to get stand out and to get recruited by big mage academies”

“Well, if it's you, I am sure you can manage somehow. Just don’t get yourself killed.”

“Haha, I will try not to.”

The doors of the amphitheater opened.
All the 0-tier candidates were instructed to head outside the amphitheater where the ascension ceremony will be taking place. With a heavy heart, all the 0-tier candidates left. Even Tracker waved one last goodbye before going out with the rest of the other candidates.

After a few minutes of waiting all the 0-tier candidates left.

The big amphitheater which housed near about 100k candidates now only had about 10k candidates, I guess.

That is about a 90% sharp drop in the total candidates who couldn’t make the cut.

The big amphitheater now felt empty and desolate.

We, the remaining candidates, were still waiting for the mages to give us further instructions. The ascension ceremony should begin now and I wonder how it's going to happen.

The red cape mages now we're standing before the stage pillars. These pillars did maintain the barriers which protected us from the flames of the phoenix. There was one red cape mage standing in front of each pillar.

The head mage stood at the side and then signaled them with a nod.

The red cape mages then began making inscriptions on the stone simultaneously.

The small stone pillars started reacting and weird inscriptions popped on the pillar.


In the next instant, a big chunk of the central stage cracked like chalk and turned into fine dust. One by one, all the remaining rubbles also started to crumble into fine dust one by one.

After a minute, there was nothing left of the central stage, only a big pile of white sand remained.

Sigurd the old head mage then entered the white sandpit walking with the help of his staff. The shuffling sound of the sand and the tapping of his walking staff all echoed in the amphitheater.

Everyone watched it quietly and attentively as if the old man was about to announce something big.

Sigurd walked all the way to the center of the circular sand pit.

There he stood, closing his eyes shut and his lips were moving as if he was muttering something.

The 1st tier candidates were quite confused about the old man’s behavior,

“What is the old man doing?”

“Has he finally gone senile?!”

“You moron keep it down, you don’t wanna join your 0-tier friends, do you?”

The white sand finally started moving as if it had come alive.
In the next second, the sands started drifting and moving in a whirlpool shape, and the old man was in the center of it. Soon a sand whirlpool had formed in the central area.

Right now the head mage was chanting a powerful incantation.

There was a powerful aura around the head mage and even the sands under his feet started rising to lift the head mage up in the air. His chanting started becoming even louder, although I could hardly make any sense.

The circling whirlpool of the sands became faster and there was a strong breeze in the amphitheater almost knocking us down from our feet. The next instant the head mage opened his eyes and then waved his staff towards the earth.

All the drifting sands quickly stopped and a bright spark of light appeared.

In the next instant, the sand suddenly reverted back to its original shape.

The central stage had reappeared.

The circular stage with big white tiles covering the whole area was the same as before. There was not even a hint of crack left from the previous battle. It was as if time had reverted back.

“Wow! The head mage is surely strong.”

“No wonder he’s the head mage.”

The 1st tier candidates praised the head mage as they looked at him with awe. Basically, all the 1st tier mages awed and showered praises in abundance to Sigurd as if he was the shit.

The head mage then looked at the candidates while holding his chest high proudly.

What? Are we supposed to clap or what?

“What's so great about fixing the stage,” I muttered unconsciously.

Soon the nearby 1st tier candidates started giving me the looks.

I just ignored their gazes.
To be honest, I am a bit disappointed, being the head mage I thought he had something cool but only to see that he is just an earth mage. He could be more productive as a construction worker than being the head mage, tch.

The head mage is an earth mage which is kinda lackluster compared to other elemental mages.

If I were to be an elemental mage, the earth element would be the last thing I would choose.

The earth element is the only element where you can’t create this element from thin air like the rest of the elements. You need to be in contact with the earth to use it and manipulate the earth around it. That is a very big restriction which is why earth elemental mages always need to be on the ground.

If you are on water or air, you are screwed.

Hence why I consider earth mages to be lame.
Hey, no hate for earth mages, it's just personal opinion don’t mind.

In fact, I am going to be a flame elemental mage. I am 80% sure of this fact.

Unlike earth, flame mages are the most revered and considered to be the most powerful mages in the world. Even the top elemental mages of the world possess the flame attribute. So if an elemental mage has the flame attribute, they are destined for greatness.

You must be wondering how I am so sure of this.

Mages inherit abilities from their parents.

My mother used to be a flame mage as well so being her son I am more likely to inherit her traits.

Also, elemental mages sometimes inherit hair color depending on their element. I also possess crimson red hair which clearly is the attribute of flame. Even my mother had red hair and she was also a flame mage which was more than just a coincidence. That just goes to show that I am going to be a flame elemental mage.

If only I had reached tier 2 mage, I would have proved it myself.

Anyway, my element will be clear to everyone during the ascension ceremony.

A grin appeared on my face and I started giggling unconsciously.

“That guy is kinda being creepy.”

“Don’t look at him.”

I just forgot where I was.

I quickly stopped grinning and looked sternly ahead.

But on the inside, I was laughing evilly.

“Well before we begin the ascension ceremony, I’ll be calling out the names of the candidates who are selected for their exemplary talent and skills they gained from the blessing ritual. These candidates' ascension ceremonies will be held alongside the inner district candidates.”

Everyone was shocked by this another shocking announcement.

“These guys will be performing under the presence of grandmasters of prestigious who will directly invite you to their academies.” he then turns towards a nearby red cape mage, “Please bring me the list.”


Suddenly the 1st tier mages all exclaimed in an excited tone.

“Holy shit! I am sure I will be selected as well.”
“Your mana orb was pathetic. I created a mana orb this big. I am pretty sure I could make the cut.”

“Mine was even bigger and brighter, I must have a chance to be selected as well.”

“Please choose me! Please choose me! Please choose me…”

The 1st tier candidates were losing their shit.

Meanwhile, the 2nd tier mages were just smiling as if they knew it beforehand.

Well if anyone deserves to be selected it should be me.

But soon I noticed my hands were trembling for some reason.
Is this some ominous sign? Or excitement for the results?

We will know for sure, soon enough.