Recollections and her time resumes again
I knew I didn’t need to sleep anymore when I found out Healing Magic could make up for the lack of sleep’s fatigue.
Sleep is the basis of magic power’s recovery and it is essential for growth too.
However, everyone thinks ‘what if I didn’t need to sleep’ at least once.
Thinking about it, sleep is nothing but a waste of lifetime. If people didn’t sleep and everything inside them wouldn’t fall apart, the sheer number of stuff they could do would increase drastically.
However, I still sleep like everyone else.
I set up my bar and take good care of it every morning, then I buy the ingredients for the day and I instruct my guild members to their duties.
Taking my daily routine aside, I look for requests worth of my guild so that I can quench my curiosity and get very rare rewards.
I’ve tried to do more in the past, but I had to understand my members’ abilities and support them whenever I could since I started my guild.
I had to prepare things in advance and keep in mind how to grow my guild even when I picked dangerous requests.
In the last five years, all I thought was never let my guild members die, not even when they’re alone in the middle of their mission.
That wasn’t new for me, I thought it was obvious for a Guild Master to worry about their comrades like that. I was the one who asked for help and forwarded them requests, so it was my duty to make sure they would make through them safely.
However, my teacher never thought like that.
She believed that people lose their life too easily, so there was no reason to be sad or hurt about it. People’s life was something disposable and too short.
She believed that there’s no need to be afraid of death, as it embraces all of us eventually, and there’s no reason to falter when someone decides to take their own life or kill someone.
I will never forget her arctic expression when she told me all of that.
It was terrifying… but I admired her.
I thought she would be forever out of my reach, but since the day she started teaching me, I noticed something I couldn’t take my eyes off of.
Reaching her wasn’t a dream if I kept studying and learning.
Eventually, I would acquire all the power she wished me to.
I didn’t feel like sleeping.
Watching over my teacher was all I could think about.
In the end, controlling myself had been a short dream I woke up from too suddenly.
Still, a part of me was calm, reassured by Verlaine and my friends who were with me.
They left the room saying they would take care of the bar, and in the silence they left behind, my mind started to wander, tracing back to old memories.
Looking at my teacher’s face, our first meeting flashed in front of my eyes again.
Ten years ago, I didn’t know how to control the huge amount of magic power I had inside me.
I let it flow out, but it usually burst, so the children my age were scared of me and took their distance.
My family had been farmers for generations, and my father had to retire quickly, so he handed down his activities to his eldest son, my older brother… who didn’t want it.
He wanted to drop the farm and have our family become an adventurer’s, then he left the house and started his career. My mother did the same and brought our father with her, so my other brothers tried to teach me how to live by myself, just like our parents wished.
I followed what my three brothers and two sisters said.
I started by helping at home when I was five, and I wasn’t allowed to play around like any other child did since the day our parents had left.
No matter how loved I was by my brothers and sisters, all of them had their friends and relationships, so I couldn’t be someone they had to take care of forever… and I had no friends.
Then, I started going to the mountains.
There, no one had to suffer from my magic outbursts, which led all the others to make me do as little chores as possible. That way I could combine my sense of adventure with learning how to camp and survive on my own, and there had been times where I didn’t come back for days.
I still remember how my sisters caught me and threw me in the tub when I got home dirty or muddy, unlike my brothers who just joked around and said I would surely become a big shot.
Back then I lived in a cramped world, looking up at my elder siblings who were always so handsome and simply out of my reach. I admired these beings called ‘adults’ and I wished to become one quickly.
Sometimes I even thought of going on a journey, meeting our parents again and walking their same path. Sometimes they came back home for short period of times, but none of us had reason to stop them from departing again.
No one thought I was a bad boy, and I didn’t feel anything bad about my parents, but once my elder brothers started their journey, no one came back home anymore.
I believed that was just the other face of blood relationships.
Eventually, I left my house as well to live alone in the mountains. I spent so much time alone that I almost forgot how to talk, but I managed to understand what beasts felt thanks to my magic power’s flow.
Still, beasts were scared of me as well. They never accepted me and kept their distance, since I was human. A few times they even attacked me.
I kept living in the mountains alone, and I sharpened my senses so much I felt like I was about to lose my humanity. I wasn’t very aware of how stronger I was.
Then, one day I was running to get back to my cave to shelter me from heavy rain, and I saw two wyverns on my way.
They were badly wounded, not far from the brink of death… I understood they had been targeted by an adventurer’s expedition and fled for dear life.
I tried to approach them and they looked at me with fear and fire in their eyes, then attacked me.
They acted to defend themselves: they clawed and breathed fire on me, but I never gave up and gathered enough medical herbs to prepare some ointment to heal them.
When they were about to faint due to pain, I applied the ointment on them. Then, something hit me and I couldn’t feel anything anymore.
I didn’t care about what happened to me.
All I knew was that I was surely going to regret letting those wyverns die. Their life was more dear to me than my own until that moment.
Then, I recalled my family.
I recalled how hard I tried not to bother them with my outbursts of magic, and how much distance I had put between us.
So much that I was afraid to forget about them.
I had no reason to die, but now it was too late.
I felt terribly alone, useless… and worthless.
All my dreams, all I wanted to do—everything lost meaning.
No matter how hard I wanted to travel around the world like my parents, no matter how much I wanted to live: that was the end of me.
Even my childhood memories felt like hazy stains. They blurred and flashed intermittently, slowly falling in the darkness that was drowning my consciousness.
I believed that beasts as strong as wyverns could understand what I felt.
Now I’m well aware that I was losing my mind.
Luckily, I was saved by a doctor.
That woman saw two injured wyverns flying above her and decided to look where they were going. She teleported deep in the forest, blowing away the rain where she appeared, and saw me the moment she looked down at her feet.
My body was a burned and gashed mess.
When I felt something in front of me, I tried my best to lift my heavy eyelids, but I couldn’t tell what I was seeing at ground-level, so I looked up.
There was a hand. Its palm faced me and shone with pure light.
That was all I managed to see before fainting.
When I came to, I felt the soft crackling of wood nearby. I was resting my head on something like a warm pillow.
I opened my eyes and noticed a small bonfire, then the woman who was letting me rest on her lap.
She was an otherworldly beauty. Her silver hair looked almost see-through.
The woman was brushing my hair with her hand, then poked me on the cheek and laughed.
“Your name is Dick Silver, right?”
All it took her to steal my heart was simply asking with her soothing voice.
“How… do you know…?”
I spoke for the first time in forever, my voice was hoarse and sounded like it wasn’t mine. She pulled her lips in a smile and placed her hand on my eyes to close them.
“You should sleep some more. Don’t worry, they’re grateful to you. The wyvern was only panicking, he was hurting too much.”
She could understand what the wyverns felt… just like me.
I felt something warm lightning my heart.
It was the first time we met and talked, and yet she was like an angel to me.
I kept her as close as I could until I knew she was immortal, and even then, I didn’t care. I almost revered her.
Resting my head on her lap calmed me so much I’ll never forget that feeling. No matter how many years would pass, I etched that peace of mind in my heart.
I thought I would do anything for her, and yet I was unsure to express what I felt.
Even if I managed to, would that be the right choice?
Whenever I asked her what would make her happy, she always smiled and answered the same way…
A warm light shone down on me. It didn’t feel like fire’s, but it was still warm.
I believed it was the warm sun, but when I opened my eyes, I noticed it was already evening.
Something was stroking my hair.
I understood that I had dozed off and found myself bent over my teacher’s bed.
Her gentle touch probably triggered the dream I just had.
Since the day she saved me, I kept chasing after her and calling her name, and she never failed to answer and turn around to look at me.
She said I was hers and that was true… until I took my distance.
The only one who suffered from it, the one who should’ve ‘waved just another goodbye’, was my teacher, the woman who had to live forever despite wishing to die.
I never found the courage to tell her what I felt.
I was too afraid she would trudge me so hard ‘despair’ wouldn’t express the miserable state she would leave me.
“I want you to live, Teacher…”
My throat hurt as it let out a hoarse voice. It sounded just like the first time I spoke to her.
I felt her hand stopping, and once again I didn’t find the courage to look at her in the eyes.
“Don’t ask me to kill you… it would be like asking me to commit suicide…”
She was silent.
I knew changing her mind was almost an impossible task… and yet, her hand kindly started moving again.
The next moment, she was tousling my hair with all her might, and I finally looked up to her.
She wore a faint smile. I could see myself reflected in her big eyes. The warm light shining on us made her look solemn, as if she was accepting something.
“I’m not the only one you’d give your life to protect. I understood it the moment I stepped in the capital.”
“You should’ve found your place into people a lot of time ago. I only pushed you to do that. I saved you on a whim, and I didn’t feel anything about you at first… but then, I noticed I was relying on you.”
The shadow of madness in her eyes was gone.
She had the kind of face one has when they wake up from a long, terrible nightmare. She was relaxed and ready to listen.
This had been the only way to change her, no matter how hard I wished her to change by herself. I was sure she wouldn’t have listened if I had never left her.
“At first, I was scared to lose you. I believed I would die at peace if you were the one to end me. Loneliness was a feeling I had forgotten long ago… and yet I felt it as strong as never before. Weird, isn’t it?”
“You’ve always borne it… you only never noticed.”
I didn’t want to sound arrogant, but that just slipped through my lips.
I expected her to slap my face and yell ‘what would a brat like you understand how I feel?! You haven’t lived twenty years and yet you speak like you know how an immortal being feels?!’, but she didn’t.
She just faced the other way and looked through the open window.
A gentle breeze rolled in and swayed her hair, letting me take a glimpse at the glitter of the tears she was trying to hide.
“Dick Silver… you’re still the old naughty Dee.”
“Sorry… I tried to grow, but I failed to.”
Teacher didn’t turn her face.
She wasn’t being stubborn, since she was smiling, she was probably thinking about a lot of things.
The smile on her face wasn’t a clown’s. It was a felt one and it filled me with joy.
“Teacher… you have to apologize to a lot of people and I don’t know if they’ll be all ready to forgive you. If you still see me as your pupil, let me share some of that responsibility as well. Let’s settle this in one go.”
“Dee, you want to help me because you don’t want me to die?”
“Well… yes. It’s the least I can do. I’d like to hear your opinion, though.”
As I thought there was no way I was talking to her how I so longed for, she wiped her tears away and faced me.
“I have no rights to ask now, but can you do me a favor?”
“As long as it isn’t ‘kill me’… sure.”
“When you’ll be old and feel at death’s door, let me be with you until the end. I’ll try not to bother you ever again until that moment.”
That was the biggest compromise she could offer me, so… I did the same in a whisper.
“Then… I’ll look for a way to make you grow old and die like everyone else.”
“Do you think it really exists? I never found it so far.”
“Then… should I become immortal too? I bet everyone would snap at me.”
“Maybe knowing that you will be with them forever, they’d accept it and enjoy what you’ve left together.”
If I really tried to tell them, would Mylarka and the others laugh it off or would they become interested in immortal beings?
I wanted to know if I ever had the chance to. Still, it wasn’t an obsession, I could do without that too.
I had many ways to prevent my teacher to be alone forever if she didn’t want to die.
Thinking about what she had done so far brought me to think that her near future wasn’t a bright one, but it was surely better than the one she was going to experience until yesterday.
“Teacher… I have something to ask you. I always kept it to myself so far.”
“My name? I forgot it. I feel like I had one in the past, but no one called me for so long it’s gone now.”
I thought this was a great chance to hear it, but well, that couldn’t be helped.
“I’m called ‘the forgotten guy’, I must have taken it after you.”
“You notice that now? You became a Guild Master like me as well, there are a lot of stuff you’re taking after me. Your information web isn’t that great, though, but overall I’d say you’re doing a good job.”
I couldn’t recall the last time she praised me for something.
“I’ll become part of your household like Beatrice the Wraith. I’ll be the second one with your surname.”
“A-Are you sure? Teacher, you’re quite different from Beatrice…”
“Yes, let’s go with your surname. What interests me is that you pick a name for me, though. I don’t mind when you call me teacher… but you’ve become too strong for being my pupil, so I’ll have you graduate. I have to accept that you’ve grown.”
“That’s an honor… let me have you do something for me, then.”
“You look ready to pull a prank on me… whatever. What do you want me to do?”
She wore a puzzled expression, but looked interested as I readied the rite of passage to let her join my guild.
First, I had her help me in the night shift of our bar along with her two future comrades Verlaine and Mizuha. Mylarka and the others were waiting for us downstairs.