[Translator – Anwen]
[Proofreader – Enigami]
Shirone was speechless. Nade gave a sheepish smile and explained the situation.
“Sorry. Actually, our research group has a bit of notoriety. It’s a bit difficult to reveal our members.”
Now Shirone understood why Yiruki was close to Nade, but aside from that, his confusion stemmed from the fact that Yiruki was in the Supernatural Psychic Science.
Considering that Yiruki followed and praised logic, him being in an unscientific group was extremely surprising for Shirone.
“You mean Yiruki is interested in stuff like this?”
Nade shook his head.
“No, it’s actually the opposite. He’s approaching it from the opposite side. He believes that there’s nothing illogical in this world. So what better group could there be to join than this one?”
Even amidst Nade’s and Shirone’s conversation, Yiurki murmured something as if he hadn’t noticed anything.
Then after looking Nade’s way, he noticed Shirone. His face brightened.
He approached without even giving Shirone time to say hello and shook his shoulders.
“You came just in time. I just came up with something great! That great thing is… Splitting the smallest matter! You might think how splitting the smallest is possible. That’s exactly what I’m saying. If you split the smallest matter, it’s no longer a substance! So then, what the hell is it? I’ve been doing the math for three days, and to my surprise, my god! It contains tremendous energy! What if this whole thing is possible? Hm? What do you think will happen? Quickly, tell me.”
Yiruki spoke so fast Shirone couldn’t clearly understand, but seeing as how Yiruki’s eyes were burning with passion, he felt like he had to say something.
“U-Um, well? The energy will be released?”
“An enormous explosion! An unimaginable explosion! An explosion that can blow up an entire city! Can you imagine it? Huh? If it’s you, you might be able to imagine it!”
Shirone was dumbfounded.
Of course, he could imagine, but it was terrifying to even think about.
“If that happens, a lot of people will die.”
“What do you mean? I’m telling you, it’s an explosion! An explosion! The city will be completely blown away!”
“That’s what I’m saying! What will happen to the people living in the city if an explosion of that magnitude were to occur?”
“Huh? The people living there?”
Yiruki tilted his head, unable to understand what Shirone was saying. Shirone finally realized something and asked again.
“You… You’ve never thought about that, have you?”
“Of course not. What’s of importance is how big the explosion can be. Do I have to bother thinking about things like that?”
Shirone got goosebumps.
“How could you? Does it make sense that a mage doesn’t even consider the ramifications of his magic?”
“You talk foolishly, Shirone. Leave those things for anthropologists to ponder over. It is the duty of a genius to breakthrough. It’s not that other mages don't do it even though they can. It’s simply because they can’t. The genius-ness given to us only exists so that we do something with it.”
“Genius or not, I don’t care! I’d rather be a fool than be a genius who chooses to harm people.”
Yiruki did not back down either.
“Handful geniuses lead the majority that are fools. History proves it. It’s also the unwanted reality in which we belong, Shirone, you should know how much I hate rubbing idealism in someone’s face.”
“No, your logic is derived from defeatism, not reality. Ideals can come true.”
“An ideal is only that. Something that we WISH could be.”
Considering how heated their debate had gotten, Nade finally decided to break them apart.
“Now, now, stop it. Discussions and debates are all good, but emotional fights are a no-no. Let’s sit down and talk calmly.”
“No, I have nothing to say. Nade, I’m leaving.”
Shirone opened the door and left.
Seeing the benignant Shirone leave so coldly meant he was really angry.
“H-Hey Shirone, wait up! How are you going to find your way out alone?”
“Leave him. It’s not like the structure has changed. He should have at least memorized the way to get here. If he can’t even do that, then he’s really stupid.”
By the time Nade opened the door and left the room, Shirone was already walking out of the building.
Returning back to their hideout, Nade frowned and asked.
“Why did you do that? You could have said it in a more acceptable way.”
“I don’t know why I did that either. I’ll admit, I was a little aggressive. After all, he is my rival.”
It was extremely rare for the word ‘rival’ to leave Yiruki’s mouth. Not because he was arrogant, but more so because Nade knew his friend wasn’t interested in competition.
‘It’s not just a competition to him.’
Relationship with the opposite sex, wealth, fame. Nothing could move him.
The only thing Yiruki was crazy about was the mathematical expression he considered the most beautiful in the world.
“Shirone is your rival? Are you serious about that?”
Yiruki smirked and sat down on the sofa, causing a cloud of dust to fume into the air.
“Shirone’s early promotion exam. Did you see it?”
“I saw it. That’s why he’s our classmate.”
“Do you know how fast a person who first learned teleportation must think to pass level 10? And the Dragon’s Labyrinth at that?”
While Nade kept quiet, Yiruki tapped his head.
“It’s impossible without an enormous division of time. According to my calculations, Shirone must have made his decisions in a ten-thousandth of a second.”
“A ten-thousandth of a second…”
As Nade tried to imagine that, Yiruki let out a shrill laugh and cackled.
“That’s the mystery of insight. Faster than effort while also being more accurate than knowledge. Any conscious calculations will be slower than intuition. But, say, Nade.”
Yiruki’s eyes gleamed.
“What if it was me?”
Shirone’s insight versus Yiruki’s calculation speed, the question was which of the two would be faster.
The question remained unanswered.
Like a showdown between different species of animals from different myths, Nade's blood rushed just thinking about it.
* * *
[Translator – Anwen]
[Proofreader – Enigami]
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* * *
After being called out by Siena, Shirone followed her into the teacher’s lounge.
She spoke as she set down the teacup.
“Now, since I was treated last time, it’s my turn this time.”
“Haha, thank you.”
‘He seems to be faring much better than when he was in Class 7.’
She heard that Shirone had grown a bit bolder and even joked around with his classmates.
“Why did you call me over?”
“I saw your report card and noticed that you’ve been consistently growing. I’m particularly happy that the subject I teach, chemistry, is your highest grade.”
“Hehe. It’s still only by one point.”
In Siena’s point of view, that single point was enough to build up her pride.
‘Honestly, I didn’t expect him to last this long.’
No matter how much of a genius one was, once one reached a certain point, their talents and weaknesses in certain fields would show.
However, Shirone maintained an average of 45 points for all subjects.
‘That means Shirone’s limits are higher than I expected.’
Siena, who came to a conclusion, said.
“If you continue like this, you’ll be able to make it to the upper-middle ranks starting next month. The academy will also start paying attention to your way of studying.”
“Ah, I wasn’t trying to attract attention to myself.”
“Of course, I know. That’s why I called you, to make a proposal.”
“Did you know that there is a practical evaluation every two months? After looking into it, there is a targeting exam at the end of this month. Do you know what that is?”
“Yes, I saw it while Amy was still in Class 4. It’s a test where you hit a target within a certain amount of time. Amy in particular was very fast because she’s a target type. It was amazing.”
Shirone’s eyes were shining.
Siena felt that his strong suit was that he was unconcerned with superiority and inferiority.
“That’s right. Amy seems to have adjusted well to the Advanced class. You must be sad to be separated from your girlfriend.”
The Advanced class and the Intermediate class were far apart, and they also had different curricula, so there were nearly no opportunities to meet.
They could go on a date on the weekends, but they weren’t actually dating, and Shirone didn’t want to disturb her either.
“It’s enough that I know she’s working hard. I have to support her as her boyfriend.
At first, she was concerned, but if their relationship stayed like this, she would rather encourage it.
“It’s rare to see a couple like you guys. Alrighty, let’s get down to business. The reason I called you today is because of the practical evaluation. Besides teleportation, have you learned any other magic?”
“No. As you can see from my grades, I haven’t met the standard yet… Oh! That’s right!”
Shirone realized belatedly.
‘I have to use active magic during the practical evaluation.’
There was no need to insist on attack magic, but the only magic that Shirone could use was teleportation, which was a passive magic. Passive magics were magics that affected the caster.
On the other hand, active magics were magics that affected the world itself. There were various types, such as Fire, Windcutter, Healing, Ice Sword, Lightning Bolt, and Atomic Bomb.
“What should I do? I have to know at least one active magic to be able to attack the targets, but I totally forgot about learning one because I was busy studying.”
“Nothing to worry about. Since you’ve mastered the Rainbow Drop, a simple active magic should be nothing.”
“But my average theory grade is 45 points. You said that the minimum in order to cast active magic is 60.”
“Usually, it is. But you have something going for you… Your knowledge that nearly reaches 100 points.”
Shirone blinked once and shouted.
“AH! The Photonization theory!”
“That’s right. There are also several different types of photons. Since you’ve studied enough theory, you’ll be able to apply that.”
“Right! Thank you, Ms. Siena.”
“As your supervising instructor, it’s something I have to do. If you face any difficulties in the future, consult me anytime.”
“Okay, then I’ll consult you right now. What kind of active magic can I develop from the photonization theory?”
Siena smiled at the key question.
“Have you ever heard of photon output?”
“I read it in a book. Is it the shooting of photons outward?”
It was a phenomenon called ‘photon emission.’
Of course, due to the nature of photons, shooting them outwards didn’t mean something special would occur.
If one were lost in the mountains, it would be easier to cast lighting magic to light up the surroundings than to light the surroundings through photon emission.
Even the theory of photonization, which was called the great discovery, varied in efficiency depending on how it was used.
“I can take the test itself, but is it really efficient to study for it? Wouldn’t it be a waste of time?”
Siena’s thoughts were different.
“In terms of the present, yes. However in the advanced magic society, for example, in the Ivory Tower, some view photon output as the future of mankind.”
Shirone listened carefully.
“It is often overlooked, but the really important thing is that there is no matter faster than light. Besides, collimation is easy to control. It is viewed that way because, due to the way photons work, it can lead to innovations in the field of information and communication in the future.”
“Ah, I see.”
“The future of photon output is bright. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to master it in advance.”
“Yes. It’s fine as long as I don’t waste any time. As you said, I will start practicing today.”
In any case, the only magic he could learn immediately for the exam was photon emission.
After the consultation, Shirone headed to the training grounds.
There was not much time left until the practical evaluation, so he was on a tight schedule.
“Alright, let’s do this!”
Shirone held out his hand and focused.
Magical action referred to a mage taking a special action or posture to strengthen his omnipotence.
…No light shot out.
While his omniscience was perfect, he couldn’t reach the omnipotence required for photon emission.
‘Teleportation was easy though…’
Shirone was more inclined towards defensive and passive magics rather than offensive magics, which was what photon output was mainly used for.
‘Switching to an offensive type means I have to give up a lot of Spirit Zone area. Even so…’
‘Does that mean I can’t cast photon output in its entirety?’
‘No way. Even students with a smaller Spirit Zone than me can use simple active magic.’
Suddenly, Ethella’s words regarding Spirit Zone strengthening came to Shirone’s mind.
‘There must be a special method. What could it be?’
Shirone, who was thinking hard, noticed an inconsistency.
‘Spirit Zone is the most sensitive state of mind. How can I strengthen it?’
On his first day, questions mounted high in heaps.
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