This chapter is the edited version of another translation. You can find the original chapter post here.
Please notice that this chapter has NOT been re-translated but only edited in order to improve the readability.
Please be sure to thank the translator in the link provided above, if you wish to express your gratitude.
This chapter was merely moved to this blog as the original blog has been inactive for quite a while.
By no rights Infinite Novel Translations claims ownership of the translation.
Editor: Garit, Loxy, Shasu
“Yes, magic.” (Wendelin)
Lunchtime came just as I was about to start reading. I walked to the dining room in anguish. Lunch was just brown bread with vegetable soup and minced meat seasoned with salt. Just like breakfast.
“I’m happy to be able to eat at all,” I thought to myself.
As I finished up, I decided to ask Erich, who was sitting next to me, what he knew about magic. My parents and older brothers were engrossed in their discussion of how to best cultivate the newly expanded farmland and paid me no mind.
“Most of the important texts on magic can be found in father’s study. We even have a crystal ball that can determine whether you have any aptitude for magic training.” (Erich)
It seems this world doesn’t treat its knowledge of magic as a secret. There were apparently detailed books on the subject in the study despite the fact that Father couldn’t use magic.
“The crystal ball is one thing, but magic books are cheaper than most other books.” (Erich)
It makes sense in light of the fact that very few people have innate magical talent. Apparently, magical talent is not hereditary, so the chances that a farmer’s child will become a prodigy are the same as those of a noble’s child. In order to ensure that anyone with aptitude was able to learn magic, it was decreed that books on magic should be easily accessible to people of all classes, even commoners. Anyway, I won’t have to go my entire life not knowing whether I have a talent for it.
Further, because it is in the state’s interest to identify people with the potential to become great magicians, the state bears the expense of publishing the books.
“Actually, most humans have a small amount of mana, but not enough to cast spells on any meaningful scale. They say that only one in a thousand has enough magic to use magic.” (Erich)
Moreover, of that number, only half are able to produce a spark or fill a cup with water at least once a day. That’s all they can do.
“A magician who can produce a fireball capable of burning monsters is extremely rare. Because of that, such magicians command high salaries and usually end up in the employ of the royal family or one of the higher ranking nobles.” (Erich)
Of course the royals and nobles would go to great lengths to secure a magician of that caliber—such a person must be one in several thousand. I doubt that they come along every day.
The kingdom has a population of about fifty million (based on a book I read). If we assume that figure is correct, I calculated that there should only be about 10 to 20 thousand people capable of using magic. And that’s a generous estimate.
“Next is…” (Erich)
Erich explained that magicians seem to have specific aptitudes.
There are the classical magicians that use attack spells such as fireballs, ice arrows, rock missiles, and wind blades.Then there are some that use magic to fortify their bodies and enhance their muscles, combining magic with hand-to-hand combat techniques to increase their attack power, agility, and defensive ability.
There are also people who specialize in non-combat magic such as communications or transportation.
Finally, there are those who purify metal ores, create magic crystals to store mana, or specialize in crafting magical items, tools, or weapons.
The relative strength of magicians can be thought of as a pyramid. On the bottom there are many people that have a relatively small reserve of mana. As you move up, there are fewer and fewer people, but each of them has a larger reserve of mana than those below. At the top of the pyramid, there are very few people, but each of them has a huge amount of mana. Another way of saying this is that there is an inverse correlation between the size of a magician’s mana reserve and the number of magicians with a larger (or equal) mana reserve.
It follows that the few magicians at the top are able to use many types of magic, and therefore command high salaries.
“Magic is the stuff of dreams…” (Wendelin)
“Well, yeah…” (Erich)
Erich let out a complicated smile. It sounds just like a child’s dream, but I am 25 years old on the inside, so I no longer have such fanciful dreams. However, I find that when I adopt a child’s whimsical attitude around adults they always look at me with a certain nostalgia.
“I remember when I used to practice magic every day, just like you, Wend.” (Erich)
I guess Wend is my nickname.
“I’m going to get started on magic practice right away!” (Wendelin)
“Do your best!” (Erich)
After chatting with Erich, I quickly finished my meal and rushed to the study.
Absorbed in their discussions about the newly reclaimed land, the rest of the family took no notice of me slipping away. Because I am a useless child they never did more than the bare minimum for me. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I was forced to do hard labor—it’s not a cruel family. Still, I really want to become independent.