Chapter 131 – Master!
Daichi’s eyes glanced down at them but the indifferent expression he’d been wearing crumbled in that instance as he noticed the name of the author.
‘Three books…? He only wrote one. He only wrote one then… Unless he… He survived…’
Daichi’s entire mind was a mess. The meaning behind the three books felt like proof. Proof his father had survived. That day when the calamity occurred he’d been on his way to Lumea, and the books before Daichi were all but evidence that he’d survived that day. Daichi didn’t realize he was holding his breath but his entire face was covered with surprise and confusion.
Stanislas watched Daichi turn from an indifferent young man to one filled with shock tinged with sadness. During their entire conversation of which Stanislas had revealed shocking secrets involving the current state of the last known remaining human city and himself Daichi had shown virtually no response. He’d been a vault. All of his emotions were tightly sealed behind an indifferent and cautious expression, but suddenly that vault had been thrown wide open. The doubt he’d had as to whether Daichi was related in any way to Seiichi Seishin was almost completely dispersed at that moment and a hint of greed and hope bloomed in its place.
‘Perhaps he’ll be able to read the book after all…’ expectation was growing within Stanislas’s heart as he stared at Daichi.
Daichi was motionless as he sat there dazed and without realizing it his hand had already reached for the book he’d personally seen his father write. It was the same one! It was the book he wrote by hand, whether there were other copies wandering around was another story… But he could recognize that copy any day. He’d watched his father ignore him for days as he was finishing his book. ‘The old man even skipped sleep and barely ate a thing as he was getting close to finishing…’
Stanislas actually looked a little confused. Out of the books Daichi reached for, he was a little confused by his reaction. It wasn’t the book that had the predictions that had made Seiichi famous nor the book he himself was most curious about but rather the least notable historical records novel.
Stanislas saw a look of emotion cross Daichi’s eyes as his fingers traced the cover of the book that made him look… Normal. That feeling quickly sunk in as he realized how unnaturally he’d behaved.
‘He doesn’t possess the demeanor of any child his age. He’s able to mask his emotions fairly well, perhaps second only to those like myself. Despite being in a strange place faced with someone in the position of utmost power, he hasn’t allowed himself to be put in an inferior position, and he’s maintained the same composure as well.’ Noticing a look of normalcy from Daichi was the trigger that made Stanislas realize how exceptional he’d handled matters thus far. It made him take a step back in his own mind to remind himself to be wary.
Stanislas had pushed all three books forward but his hand had remained on the most valuable one. He slightly pushed the book forward an inch more than the others, an action that was immediately noticed by Daichi as his eyes briefly glanced at Stanislas and then back at the book.
“I think you’ll find this book particularly interesting, if you read the first page I think you’ll understand what I mean” he said in a pleasant tone with a serene and well-meaning smile.
Daichi’s brow furrowed but didn’t give much away as he gently lifted the book towards himself. It was leather bound, like all of his father’s books. ‘Everything he’d ever written had to be written as if it were a journal…’ he thought to himself.
Still, he didn’t immediately open the novel. He actually took his time and looked over the cover front-and-back. Not because there was anything particularly noteworthy but rather because he felt something was a little strange. Stanslas’s eyes hadn’t broken contact and even though Daichi wasn’t looking he could tell that he was very interested in something even though he couldn’t tell what.
After taking his time examining every inch of of the outside of the book, Daichi decided to open it. He could feel that there was a greater importance he couldn’t understand but Stanislas while interested, wasn’t giving away anything.
After he opened the cover his heart started accelerating and he had to hold himself back from making a reaction, but even so his eyes widened and he couldn’t help but gripping the book a little tighter.
He’d only opened the book and he’d realized how special it was. Daichi’s mind was reeling not because of what the book said but because he was wondering how his father had managed to write such a thing. He was reading words on the page, but he could tell that just to read the words his eyes were funneling his mana and ignoring the words… He had to clench his teeth as he ran his fingers across the first page. It was clearly written in blood…
“My blood, my time, my life.
This is my final inheritance for those of my bloodline.
I am nearing my end. Near death I find myself with two regrets.”
Daichi read the first three lines and stopped himself from continuing as he had to laugh out loud. He couldn’t help but letting out a small burst of laughter as he realized how little he’d known about his father. A small part of him even grew a little colder at that instant as he momentarily wondered whether his father had truly hated him so much that he’d even kept his own abilities from his son their entire life.
‘Perhaps… Perhaps leaving for Lumea that day, that calamity… Was the greatest moment of relief for him.’
Instead of anger, it was a bitter feeling as he relaxed his body.
Lydia was looking at Daichi as if he’d read something hilarious making her curious as to what was happening and why her father was making such a strange expression. Everything happening was far beyond what she could understand at the moment.
Stanislas had been examining Daichi’s every minute reaction and he could tell the moment Daichi opened the book that he’d found something. He could definitely read the content of the book and just as he was joyfully about to ask he heard Daichi’s laughter and body visibly relax. Stanislas entire body stilled at that moment. Any outsider may have thought that Daichi merely looked pleased or content but there was a coldness about his demeanor that Stanislas had only ever felt from two other people his entire life.
The words he was about to speak were caught in his throat as he couldn’t bring himself to speak and instead carefully reevaluated the situation.
Lydia was the first to ask as she was completely in the dark as to what was happening “What’s so funny? What is that book anyways?” as she stared at Daichi’s quiet demeanor. Stanislas looked over at his daughter as he gave her a grateful smile for being so clueless about the situation.
“Nothing. Nothing funny at all.” Daichi could tell that Stanislas wanted to know more than Lydia. He’d already thought about the words written in blood and the fact that it was likely that only he himself could read the book as he stared at Stanislas and met his gaze.
They carefully assessed each other for a few seconds as Stanislas smiled at him like he was looking at a good friend “Well no matter. Why don’t you keep those three books in your possession for now? They must have some sentimental value, being written by your ancestor after all. Return them after you’ve given them a look-over.”
Daichi paid his words no heed, whatever it was that Stanislas wanted from him it wasn’t something he could figure out from their simple encounter nor did he particularly care. At the moment he just wanted to leave and get some fresh air. This encounter had already been far more of a hassle than he’d have preferred.
Daichi nodded and got out of his chair “I think you for your hospitality. I’ve agreed to your terms and won’t speak to anyone about what we’ve spoken about.”
Daichi picked up the books as if they weren’t particularly important and turned to Lydia.
Stanislas waved at Lydia who went to the door and opened it for Daichi to exit as they walked out together with the door shutting closed behind her. Stanislas interlaced his fingers with his elbows on the desk as he stared at the closed door with an unconcealed expression of desire.
Lydia began complimenting Daichi after they left the office “You handled yourself quite well. I am actually impressed, not a lot of people could have maintained the same composure as you in that situation.”
Daichi nodded his head but wasn’t really paying attention. He had that same checked-out gaze that Lydia had noticed before but now instead of getting angry she wondered whether that was merely the expression he had when he was lost in thought. After a few more seconds it actually started to annoy her even if that was the case because it reminded her of her own father who zoned out on her whenever she spoke to him.
Lydia gritted her teeth but said nothing as she thought about the opportunities to come in the next few days, “I’m going to take you back to wait with the others. I will allow you to train with me and the others that chose to take me as a master.”
“You want me to draw little attention to myself then?” Daichi may have been zoning out but he already figured that Stanislas would want him to remain under the radar to best utilize him as a trump card when he made his move.
“Exactly” Lydia said with a smile.
They quickly returned to the courtyard where the others were waiting for more returnee’s. When Lydia and Daichi returned everyone glanced in their direction but quickly looked away once they realized it wasn’t any newcomers.
Leo’s group quickly noticed them and came to greet them but Lydia cut them off before they could speak. “I just want to hear your answers.”
Damien’s voice was the first heard “I believe taking you as a professor would be wonderful. I know that under your tutelage I can achieve the best results in the academy!”
Haeru looked over at him with unveiled annoyance but said nothing as he spoke “I would also like to become your disciple, master!”
Lydia nodded at both of them turning her head to Leo “I will of course welcome any and all of your teachings master!” Leo was all smiles and Lydia and Daichi both assumed why.
Karina spoke in a neutral voice “I appreciate your offer, but I will decline.”
Lydia’s brows furrowed as she asked “Are you certain?”
“Yes. I’ve made my decision.” Karina’s tone was resolute and so Lydia didn’t try to change her mind.
“Would you like for me to recommend you to one of the other professors?”
“No. I will achieve my position through the upcoming tournament.”
All of them turned to look at her with varying expressions but Lydia merely smiled “Then that is your decision.”
Turning to look at all of them she gave them all a smile “Very well. I need to organize a few things for you all, I will return within a few hours and I will take you all to your new housing.”
Their positions were now different than before, as personal disciples they had far more to do than merely wait around, moreover Lydia had already picked-up that Leo wasn’t going to insist on waiting around much longer.
Daichi turned to look at Leo “So, good news?”
Leo smiled as he nodded “Come! I want you to meet someone!