Side story 4 – Entering magic school
Born as the daughter of a countryside baron in a border town, this spring, I entered magic school.
Magic school is where people with magic power are gathered once they reach fifteen years of age. I was no exception as I activated my magic powers when I was six, and so I also entered magic school.
However, this school has many high-ranking nobles, as the daughter of a countryside baron, the threshold’s a bit too high for me.
If only, my magic was a little stronger, or if I was better at studying, or if I was a special beauty…… If I was a bit more like that person with light magic, Maria Campbell-san…… I’d be able to have a little more self-confidence……
I have hardly any magic, I can barely keep up in my studies, and people would say that my face is charming, but not that I’m a beauty…… Frankly speaking, I’m not suited for this school.
My parents were very happy sending me off to school because it’s the first time that someone’s been born with magic in our countryside baron family, but…… After enrolling in school here, as the daughter of a poor countryside baron, I was looked down upon by the higher-ranking nobles, and sometimes they would have me run errands as if I was a servant.
A few months after enrolling in school here, I already wanted to go back home as soon as I could.
However, even to me, a turning point arrived.
It happened when I was secretly reading romance novels that I had brought from home in a corner of the classroom. Higher-ranked nobles would say that these romance novels are for commoners, but, I really loved them, and had always loved them back when I was in the countryside as well, so I secretly brought a bunch of them to school.
“Hey, is that, could that be a romance story?”
When I raised my head at hearing a voice, someone with a really high social status that the daughter of a countryside baron shouldn’t be able to speak with was standing there.
Katarina Claes-sama, the daughter of a duke and the fiancee of the third prince, my classmate with the absolute highest social status of them all. Because of that, even though we’re classmates, I can’t approach her so easily, and we’ve never even talked once since school started. For such a person to approach me so suddenly, I was so nervous and confused that I completely froze up, and Katarina-sama just smiled gently.
“Actually, I also read romance novels. If it’s alright, would you like to chat about them some with me?”
I was invited just like that, and before I realized it, I was having tea with Katarina-sama, chatting with her about the story.
Katarina-sama was extremely easy to get along with, she didn’t look down on me like all the other high-ranked nobles, nor did she treat me like a servant for running errands.
Katarina-sama is really such an amazing, wonderful person. As the daughter of a duke, she’s also so dignified. Yet, she wasn’t proud like all the others about her social status, that wouldn’t even see those below themselves. Someone with a lower social status like me, she was nice to me even though I didn’t have any redeeming traits at all.
Before I realized it, my heart had completely been stolen away by Katarina-sama.
Sometimes she would play with a puppy in the schoolyard forest, sometimes she would stop and admire the garden flowers. Katarina-sama’s appearance was exactly like that of a saint out of a romance novel.
And so, just earlier…… While I was busy admiring Katarina-sama’s appearance, I tripped and fell, and because my dress got all dirty, Katarina-sama gave me a handkerchief to clean my dress with.
I refused and said “but I’ll get it dirty,” but she just replied “it’s fine, if it’s okay with you, please use it” and smiled. I clenched the handkerchief to my chest and thought “this will become my treasure.”
Even though I had really wanted to go back home as soon as I possibly could…… Now I want to stay at school longer even if it’s just for a little bit.
I want to spend time by Katarina-sama just a little longer –
“Eh, nee-san? Where’s that work cloth you always wear around your head?”
“Ahh, that work cloth? Just now, I gave it to a friend from class.”
“EH!? It can’t be, nee-san gave something like that away!?”
“It’s not what you’re thinking, it’s because she tripped and fell and got her dress dirty, so I gave it to her to clean herself with.”
“……So that was it…… Thank goodness…… Wait a minute, so you didn’t have a handkerchief?”
“Since I wiped my hands on it after finishing my field work, it’s still dirty.”
“……So that was it…… Hmm? The hem of nee-san’s jacket, isn’t it getting a little frayed?”
“Ahh, this is from that one time, when I was attacked by my natural enemy, a dog, in the school forest. Well, since the enemy that time was small, I was able to defeat it without any problems!”
“……So that was it…… Well, I’m glad then. But, nee-san…… It’s good to be energetic, but, you should settle down a little bit more at school. Recently, you’ve been picking things to eat from the garden and the trees. This isn’t our home anymore, so you really need to stop being so irresponsible and picking up everything you see to eat.”
“……It’s not picking up to eat…… I’m harvesting……”
“……No, they’re the same…… Stop it already, it’s already so hard to hide things from mother about you…… I’m begging you, settle down a little already.”
And so, I reluctantly nodded as my stepbrother just looked at me and sighed deeply.