Necromancer Academy's Genius Summoner
[Translator - Ramen]
[Proofreader - Artethrax]
"Thank you for your hard work!"
It took the three artisans four hours, but they finally succeeded in carving the magic circle into the deimos skeleton.
They congratulated each other without a trace of fatigue.
"Good work, everyone."
Benya, who had been waiting for them, came over to encourage them.
"Of course, young lady. It was fun for us too."
"It's not every day you get to touch a deimos."
Diego looked back at Simon with a soft smile.
"Now, don't you think it's time for the owner to start it up?"
Simon closed his eyes and connected to the deimos's mind. The skeleton, reformed and reinforced with jet-black, shifted for a moment before returning to the stillness of the dead.
'As expected, high-level monsters are different. It's resisting my control more than even the Overlord did…'
But Simon was confident in his control of undead and through repetition, he forced his strong will into the skeleton.
The deimos's bones, as dormant as fossils, began to pulse with dark-blue energy. Then, it began to twitch.
Within a matter of seconds, the bones were moving with the fluidity of flesh—the ribs were even expanding and contracting as if the corpse was breathing—and the deimos was pushing forward with the power and vigor of a large fish just pulled from the sea.
Exclaimed Benya and the artisans, as well as the numerous warehouse workers who were watching on.
'I really did it!!!'
No one's excitement could match Simon's. He had been involved in everything, from sourcing the materials to carving the final magic circle. This was the first undead he had put so much effort into from the very beginning.
"Watch out, it'll knock everything over!"
However, it was a bit too powerful at this stage.
There was no water in the room, but the deimos was flicking its way off the ground and around the room, knocking things off shelves and spilling buckets of dangerous chemicals.
It was causing a mess. Simon, sweating profusely from exhaustion and panic, approached the wild beast.
Just as he went to touch it physically in an attempt to solidify the mental connection, it leaped up and smacked Simon across the cheek with its tail.
As Simon collapsed, Benya and the artisans burst into raucous laughter.
"The first time you wake up an undead, it's usually quite startled and moves rather different to how you'd expect. We tend to call it necrofever."
Now that Deigo mentioned it, Simon recalled the first time he'd built a skeleton archer, and more specifically when its skull bit his arm.
"…Maybe you could've told me a little sooner?"
"Sorry, we didn't even think to mention it."
At this rate, it seemed like the deimos would spend the rest of the day wandering around and making a mess of the warehouse. When Simon approached again, the artisans stopped him.
"Let it be so it loses its strength."
"It'll calm down in a few hours."
He couldn't wait for that, and he couldn't let himself be more of a nuisance to the people of Vanilla.
Simon mentally gave the deimos an absolute order.
Immediately, the uncontrollable flopping around ceased.
But Simon couldn't let his guard down yet. He opened his arms in a gesture of peace and began to inch closer.
As he got within arm's reach of the skeleton, he slowly moved his right hand across and placed it on the boney forehead.
Then, Simon stroked it gently as if caressing a baby, and the deimos gradually calmed down.
The instinctual expanding and contracting of its ribs ceased as it realized it no longer had to breathe, and instead of resisting its new master's touch, it let Simon connect deeper into its thoughts.
Gathering his courage, Simon moved closer. He knelt down, embraced the deimos, and stroked its torso.
Exclamations of admiration came from the entire factory.
"Kids from Kizen are just built different."
When the deimos had visibly calmed down, Diego approached.
"While we're at it, let's try 'that' skill as well. You remember how to do it, right?"
"Yes, I'll try it right away."
Simon sat up and closed his eyes.
He could clearly feel the deimos's thoughts and the presence of the circle, powered by jet-black.
He activated one of the circle's runes, then gave another absolute order.
The skeleton's mouth dropped open as Simon spoke. Within it, the jet-black gathered into a circle, sucking in everything around it like a vortex.
Simon pointed to an empty space.
Wind shot out of its mouth with the force of a ship's cannon, and just from standing near it Simon found it difficult to stop his coat from blasting away.
However, the wind dispersed halfway before hitting the wall and the air returned to normal.
The staff let out a gasp as they watched.
"When a monster dies and becomes an undead, it loses any skills or powers it had in life."
"But, Simon, you did a good job restoring as many of its skills as possible. You even managed to retrieve the most important one, the Tidal Cannon. I'm sure you'll feel its power when you use it in the water."
Picturing how that'd work underwater, Simon imagined the diemos cutting through the water, blasting away his opponents with the force of an artillery barrage. The thought alone was exhilarating.
'I'm not afraid of underwater combat anymore!'
Of course, although he hadn't even tested it underwater yet, Simon felt a surge of confidence.
He looked back and said,
"It's all thanks to you, seniors! Thank you so much!"
The artisans beamed with satisfaction.
"We had a lot to learn, too."
"You made it easy for us, Sir Simon."
That's when Diego coughed loudly, glanced sideways, and whispered under his breath,
"I'm sorry about before."
"You know, for being too sensitive."
The two juniors next to him burst out laughing.
"A-Ah! It's fine! I really don't mind!"
Diego walked over and put his arm around Simon's shoulders.
"If you ever need a job, you can always come here. You're always welcome."
"Oh, come on, man, just quit being a Kizen and come here! We make a lot of money!"
"If it's Sir Simon, we'll welcome you with open arms."
Suddenly, the group of bearded men were almost surrounding him, inviting him to work with them.
Frozen in the moment, Simon urgently glanced at Benya for her to save him.
"What's gotten into you lot? That's no way to treat a kid!"
Interrupted Benya as she pulled Simon out.
"You were so mean after I gave you some bonus work and a helping hand."
Diego laughed cheerfully.
"That's one thing, and this is another. You're already taking care of your henchman?"
"If you take Sir Simon into management, I'll resign. His talents as an engineer would be wasted behind a desk!"
Simon looked at the three in confusion. They were already talking as if Simon was going to work in Vanilla.
"Well, I personally think…"
Benya put a hand on Simon's shoulder.
"…he's too big a fish for us to conquer and keep."
"Hah! If he's too big for the Vanilla to keep, then what? Is he going to Kizen HQ or the Ivory Tower or something?"
Simon merely scratched the side of his head.
* * *
Translator - Ramen
Proofreader - Artethrax
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* * *
After returning to Kizen from the fish market, Simon wrote a letter.
He began by asking how Anna and Richard were doing and then wrote about what he had been doing before adding a small note at the bottom.
Is there any way I can write to Rete, too? There's something I want to tell her.
And right below that, he wrote what he wanted to say to Rete.
He cut to the chase with a simple hello, leaving out the rest of the story just in case the letter gets intercepted.
Remember the evidence we got from the train? I want you to check for the name 'Judas' on it.
When he had rummaged through his memory, wondering why the name 'Judas' stuck out to him, he realized that he had seen something similar on the holy train.
To be more precise, he seemed to remember it on the documents they found after taking down the bishop of Heavenly Blood who came to hijack the holy train.
Putting down his quill, Simon stretched his arms and looked up at the ceiling.
'I wonder how Rete is doing in Efnel. Is she still a top student? Has Ran, her baby dragon, grown lots?'
He wanted to ask a million things, but he held back.
Simon stuffed the letter into an envelope, sealed it with practiced perfection, and dropped it in his dorm's mailbox.
He spent the rest of the weekend practicing to control the deimos, going alone to a deserted beach so he could avoid standing out and exposing his tactic to the rest of the competition.
The next morning.
A new week had begun, and it was the first class. Jane's announcement jolted the students out of their weekend slumber.
"The third BDMAT exam is scheduled for the end of this week."
Everyone knew it was coming up soon, but now it had become a reality. And a rather difficult one at that…
By now, the whole class knew that the theme was the sea, but fighting in the sea itself was quite a challenge.
'I have to wait all the way until the end of the week…?'
On the other hand, Simon, who had successfully obtained a new summon from the Balot fish market, was confident.
Of course, he wasn't looking forward to the test, but rather being able to put the deimos skeleton to work.
"And one more important announcement."
Said Jane, flipping to the next page of her document.
"There will be a Duel Evaluation prior to the BDMAT test."
There were sighs from all over the room. The BDMAT was bad enough, but a Duel Evaluation, too?
"Wow, I know Kizen is known for their rigorous schedule, but this is too much."
"Just training to get used to the sea is tough enough…"
Everyone seemed to be at a loss, but Meilyn simply scoffed.
"Just use what you've already practiced. You guys are overreacting."
Simon nodded in agreement.
"Yeah. Let's just do our usual."
"As expected from the upper squad! Your level of confidence is just different."
Said Rick, playfully. Simon and Meilyn were currently on the upper squad, and they were both undefeated.
Rick and Camibarez, on the other hand, had slipped a few times and were in the middle of the pack.
"Cami will move up this time, right? Since you improved so much over the vacation."
Said Meilyn, a twinkle in her eye.
Camibarez laughed and gave an uncertain smile.
"I'm not sure yet, but… actually, the middle squad is fine by me! I don't really want to fight Simon and Meilyn!"
"Wait! What's that supposed to mean? The middle squad includes me, grandmaster Rick Hayward, you know?"
"I'd fight ridiculous Rick any day of the week!"
"Fufufu… You know I'm not the type to go easy on girls, right?"
Declared Rick, playfully throwing a jab that ended half-way to Cami's face. Cami returned the favor with a clumsy but adorable fist bump.
Immediately, Meilyn's face lit up and she exclaimed, "Awww…" before bringing Camibarez into a tight hug, causing the poor girl to squeal in surprise.
Jane, who had been letting the students chatter away as she took the next set of papers, spoke up again.
A hush instantly fell over the room.
"This evening, you will see your opponents on the bulletin board outside your dormitories. I want those in the lowest squads to focus more on their Duel Evaluations, and I want the rest of you to go all in on your BDMATs and do well. That would be all."
Jane dismissed the class early today. Everyone was laughing and gathering their things, when…
"Hey, guys, do you have a minute?"
Claudia Menzies and her friends came up to the stage.
"Y'all are sick bastards…"
Muttered Meilyn in pity. Claudia and Meilyn made eye contact, but they looked away before either one could say anything.
"We've been boycotting classes all week, but as you all know, Professor Belya insisted on keeping her insane and barbaric classes going."
The moment the word 'boycotting' left Claudia's mouth, Hector and his faction stood up and left the room.
Once she finished her sentence, Claudia remained silent for a moment as she watched to see if Hector would do anything else, but she spoke up with doubled confidence as soon as he was gone.
"This is not only a disregard of student opinion, but a declaration of war on human rights. If you get to your next class, Professor Belya will poison you again. She quite likely will poison you throughout the whole semester. What makes it worse is that the poison we're eating isn't even properly sourced. Who knows what side effects there could be? Choosing to let her abuse your bodies could lead to life-long issues that make all of your struggles at Kizen useless. I swear, that class is insane…"
As she continued her speech, the door to the lecture room opened, and students from other classes burst in.
They were all part of the movement boycotting Belya's class.
"I'll beg you again, and again, and again."
"For the sake of our student rights, we need you to join us in boycotting Professor Belya's class."
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