“Is that… you, Herm?”
“? Yes, it’s me, Herm. You called for me just a short moment ago, right?”
Katia saw something unbelievable.
With that very disbelief written all over her face, Katia asked Hermes a question. However, he responded with a puzzled expression of his own.
Just as he mentioned earlier, Hermes had absolutely no clue what was going on.
He merely sensed two familiar manas loudly colliding with each other in the far distance right when he arrived at the capital.
He instinctively rushed to the scene, and just as he sensed, he witnessed his childhood friend Katia and older brother Chris fighting it out for some reason.
He came to a momentary stop in confusion, but moments after, Chris fired his Bloodline Magic—The Archer of Magic Bullets, Mistle Tina—in Katia’s direction.
He judged the situation was taking a turn for the worse. Katia also must’ve realized he was there as she asked for his help, so he joined the brawl and ended up saving Katia.
By the way, Hermes started speaking differently simply because he knew he was a commoner now.
Then, Katia, having realized it was really Hermes after double-checking—
—blushed a very deep red and looked downwards as if she were holding back her emotions.
Naturally, Hermes was also bewildered by this.
I know it’s been over 5 years since we last met, but… Did I take our reunion too lightly? At any rate, I’ll try calling out to her.
“…Hey. I don’t think it’s actually possible, but… are you really Hermes?”
An impudent voice wedged its way in between Katia and Hermes.
When Hermes turned his gaze, he saw Chris, his face reflecting his rapidly fouling mood.
“Yes, it’s me, Hermes… Shall I temporarily refer to you as brother?
“No thanks. You aren’t a part of the Flembreed household anymore… So you were alive, how vexing.”
He laid his hostility bare and glared at Hermes, but he snorted immediately after, acting as if it didn’t matter.
“Well, it doesn’t matter to me anymore… Hey, you there. Hand over that young lady next to you.”
“Would you tell me why if I asked?”
“DON’T FUCK WITH ME! This has nothing to do with some mere peasant who doesn’t even have Bloodline Magic. Cut the hero act and obediently hand that criminal over!”
Hermes briefly took his eyes off Chris, who was making a huge fuss, and shifted his attention to the girl next to him.
“Miss Katia. Is what my broth-… Former brother says true?”
“It’s a misunderstanding, a false accusation. I haven’t done anything to put my household’s pride on the line and go against my moral principles.”
She responded to Hermes, her pupils unwavering.
Soon after, her eyes wandered, as if hesitating over something.
“…But what Chris said was correct, too. You aren’t nobility anymore; This has nothing to do with you. You don’t have to get mixed up into this… unsightly, helpless dispute…”
On the surface, it seemed like she was agreeing with Chris, but in actuality, she was trying to keep Hermes away out of kindness.
That’s why Hermes—
“Miss Katia. I have an immense debt of gratitude to you.”
—told her one of the reasons he came to the capital.
“If you didn’t cheer me on when I was deemed as inapt and locked up in that dungeon, my spirit would’ve broke long ago. I doubt I’d be standing here, either.”
“I would like to repay the debts from back then, when I was still nobility. You’re… in a pinch, are you not?”
Katia’s and Chris’ arguments were contradicting each other. Hermes currently didn’t have a way to confirm which one of them was correct.
With that being the case, Hermes decided to follow what he wanted to do.
Ever since it was discovered that he was inapt, Chris treated him excessively cruelly, even considering his inferiority complex.
Compared to Katia, who believed in him even after he was deemed inapt, it was obvious who to ally with.
Hermes spread his arms with a smile.
“Fortunately, I happened to meet a wonderful master after I was exiled. I’ve become quite strong, you know? I believe I can manage a few things on my own. For example—”
His lips curved into the same fearless smile that he inherited from his master as he looked at Chris for the second time.
“—If you want, I can defeat that noble boy right over there.”
Angered by Hermes’ provocation, Chris gave him a death stare.
“…You’re so unfair.”
She smiled somewhat wistfully. It was filled with a different kind of resignation from before, and… an uncontainable hope for the future.
“You heroically show up at this timing, then say all that to me… I’ll end up wanting to depend on you.”
“…Save me, Herm.”
—This time formally, she asked Hermes for help.
“It’s… probably not the best idea to defeat him, so I want you to safely take me away from here.”
“A simple request… Your wish is my command.”
Chris finally exploded.
“ALL YOU HAD TO DO WAS SHUT UP AND LISTEN TO ME! THERE’S A LIMIT TO HOW FULL OF SHIT YOU CAN BE!!”
He unleashed his mana in a rage.
“I don’t know how you did it, but don’t get carried away just because you blocked my attack earlier! This isn’t my full power!”
In unison with his spike in mana, four spheres of light the same size as the last one materialized behind him. Just as he said, the last light sphere was probably far from his true power.
No matter what Hermes wanted to do, he needed to cut past this magic before he could do anything.
Hermes took a short breath.
…In reality, Hermes didn’t have the self-confidence to back up his boasting.
He was facing a user of duke-class Bloodline Magic who was displaying his current full power. Hermes still wasn’t convinced that he was powerful enough to take on an opponent at that level and decisively overpower him.
However, his master, Rose, said so herself: “The less confident you are, the more you shit talk. Playing it safe and preparing excuses for when you lose is foolish. Be pretentious, cut off your own escape route, and take on any challenge with everything you got. Only then can you truly grow as a magician and gain solid experience.”
In that case, let’s challenge him. Right here, right now—
“I’ll be deploying my magic as well.”
Besides, Hermes thought this was a good chance.
One of his goals was to encounter a lot of Bloodline Magics in the capital.
This was the best he could ask for. A powerful Bloodline Magic was right before his eyes. To top it off, it was The Archer of Magic Bullets, Mistle Tina, which he had a deep connection with.
This situation was a godsend, a good omen for the future to come. His win conditions were lined up perfectly for him, so much so that he could confidently call this the best situation possible.
Hermes had been constantly thinking: I want this magic to be the first one I see.
Why, you ask?
My magic is perfectly suited to these kinds of situations.
With that in mind, he lightly inhaled.
“Thus was the world created by the hands of the inerrant truth herein; Heaven and earth are two of the same in the face of the one true miracle.”
Everyone except Hermes forgot to breathe.
The reason being that Hermes was unmistakably casting a chant, the means necessary to activate the magic sleeping within him.
The same person who didn’t possess Bloodline Magic was now giving mouth to the one thing he shouldn’t be able to chant.
Their reaction was justified. Hermes didn’t have Bloodline Magic inside of him, nor would he ever manifest it from here on out.
As a result, what he was about to display was not Bloodline Magic.
Rather than a gift of natural talent bestowed by the gods, it was the hard work he spent acquiring the knowledge passed down by his master, the very crystallization of his efforts.
Strangely enough, the very magic that would become synonymous with his very being shared the same emerald glow as his pupils. It’s name was—
“Creation Magic: The Inscription of Genesis, The Emerald Tablet!”
He returned to the capital, and the story of his legend began to unfold.
This was the moment when his magic, the beginning of it all, stepped into the light of the outside world for the first time.
Was supposed to post this yesterday, but something came up and I was gone for most of the day, my apologies. I’ll try speedrunning the next two magic arrow chaps, but not sure if I can get two out, but I can probably get 1 out. That’s all, see you guys later today.