──Then, after parting with Logas and taking a bath, Ain had a lot of free time until dinner, so he spent it alone in the library.
The bookshelves on the wall were impressive; taking one book, Ain sat on a chair and opened it on the desk.
Speaking of Ain, he was a hardworking person with a diligent character.
For example, his appearance as he always worked hard in his training with Logas, the look on his face as he read many books──Him going in and out of the library had left a very good impression on the servants.
For this reason, many people looked forward to his future, despite him sometimes overdoing it.
Today too, Ain finally noticed that many hours had probably passed.
Before he knew it, the paper he used for transcribing had depleted.
“──I’ve done it again.”
Stacks of paper piled up on the desk.
When asking why it became like this, the answer would be that because, in the middle of studying, he suddenly started to have fun.
It was weird that he could understand everything so fast, that he attributed to being a perk of being reincarnated.
That’s why there was a bundle of who knows how many transcribed papers piled up, an amount no five-years-old could make.
“Bocchan (Young master) ──It’s time for dinner……Ohh, were you transcribing again? ”
The house’s steward came looking for him.
Looking at Ain’s hard work, he smiled with warm eyes.
“Y-Yeah. I just finished.”
Looking at all the manuscripts, one couldn’t think of this as simply studying.
“How wonderful. Not only your training, but you’re also making a great effort in your studies……”
Ain floated a bitter smile.
He certainly had put some effort into it, but he felt embarrassed because this all was thanks to the perks of being reincarnated.
“In the future, you could become a scholar……no, with such daily effort you put to it, you could even become a General……”
Unlike Logas and Camila, the butler had high hopes for Ain.
The biggest virtue of Ain was his hard-working personality.
This made it easy to understand his popularity with the servants.
“It’d be good if I could……”
He wanted to somehow show his value.
Feeling happy for the steward’s words, he took them at face value.
“I’m feeling hungry, so I’ll leave it at this for today.”
Finally answering with those words, he left the library and went to eat dinner.
“……Fumu, let’s tell the other servants. About the ‘mountain’ that Bocchan made in the library.”
With a satisfied smile, the steward looked at the mountain of papers on the desk for a little while.
◇ ◇ ◇
When the following day’s training came, priority was given to his little brother Grint.
Logas only gave some spoken instructions to Ain, then went to watch the rest of Grint’s training by his side.
Starting from then, in the first week, the number of instructions decreased, by the second week he was only told to swing the sword, and by the third week, Logas had completely stopped showing at Ain’s training altogether.
(──I wonder what can I do to be acknowledged by Chichiue and Camila-okaa-sama?)
One evening, Ain was thinking about this while he carved a piece of wood into a wooden sword.
The reason why he carved this piece of wood was that he had already broken many wooden swords.
Even today, by dusk, the wooden sword he trained with had broken at the base.
……I don’t understand why this keeps happening.
Certainly, Ain lost himself in his training, so the burden on the wooden sword was considerable.
Still, can it be broken this easily by the strength of a child? With those thoughts, he struggled day by day.
“……How weird. I feel as if my carving skills are improving.”
The eldest son of an Earl’s family carved a sword by himself.
He wanted to think of this as something silly, yet he was fascinated by the finish.
Probably because he had now made who knows how many swords that he now could decently carve a sword.
Taking the remaining scraps, he tried to carve a small bear.
“……A small bear. I’m not doing too bad.”
Feeling he was doing something silly, he still found it surprisingly fun.
Then, placing the small sculpture in his pocket, he stood up with the carved sword in hand.
“Hmm……I think I’ll take a bath.”
I had a good sweat today──Although I had no teacher and was alone.
As a testament to his progress, the sound of swinging the sword had gradually changed and had now become a sharp wind-cutting sound.
After feeling a sense of accomplishment, Ain headed straight into the mansion.
──In this world, there existed a tool used for boiling water.
It was called a magic tool, and it used a magic stone from a monster’s body as material.
They were said to be powered by the magical power that resided inside the magic stones, in a way similar to a boiler.
After taking a hot bath, he went out to the hallway and basked in the fresh breeze that came from the windows while watching the sun moving through the sky.
Immediately after, while cooling his body, Ain was approached by an elderly servant.
“Bocchan. Did you enjoy your bath? ”
“Yes. The hot water felt nice today.”
After answering with a carefree smile, the servant also smiled as she took out something.
“That’s good. Well then, please enjoy these later. Keep it a secret from Master.”
What the waiter handed over to him were several cookies sandwiched between a piece of paper.
Logas prohibited snacking. Therefore, they were handed in secret.
“……Among the servants, many are looking forward to your future, Bocchan. That’s why──”
She cares about me. Ain thanked her in his heart, then.
“Thank you very much──Ahh, in that case, please accept this in return.”
Ain gave the small bear he carved to the servant.
“I carved it in my spare time, but I’ll be happy if you accept it.”
It had come out good.
Even if one were to place it next to a souvenir from a gift shop, it wouldn’t look strange at all.
“Arara……How cute! I’ll happily accept it……! ”
She answered with a happy smile, saying she would cherish it.
Immediately after saying so……Almost as if she remembered something, she continued.
“If you have some free time, why don’t you visit the madam’s room? When I brought her tea earlier, I heard she was about to finish.”
I see, that’s great. Like so, Ain decided on the place he was going next.
“Alright, well then, I’ll be going.”
“Understood──If there’s something you need, please call for me.”
And thus, the servant separated from Ain.
(Well……She’s my mother. But it’s still a bit hard.)
In the end, when he thought about it, she felt more like a long-separated older sister──Or at least that’s how he felt about her.
Well, not like it mattered much. So, he decided to take it slowly.
“Alright, let’s go to Okaa-sama’s room.”
Walking up eagerly, he headed for her room in high spirits.
Her room was very close to Ain’s.
It was just around the corner, in the same cool hallway.
“──Okaa-sama, are you here? ”
Knocking on the door, he spoke standing at the door.
He knew she was inside but still wondered if it was okay for him to enter right away.
“Welcome. Come on in.”
Saying so, she showed up, Ain’s mother──A woman named Olivia.
Directing eyes filled with love to Ain, she urged him to come inside.
“I heard you were working, are you finished? ”
“It’s okay. Even if I had work, my time with you is more important, Ain.”
After spending five years together, he had noticed the bottomless affection she had for him.
Unconditional acknowledgment of Ain, and also love. It was obvious for him to also love her.
I want to prove myself to everyone──This idea sprouted from the feeling of wanting to keep the woman named Olivia from feeling sad.
“……Yes. I love the warm smell after you take a bath.”
She hugged him, placing her hands on his back.
This vividly reminded him if how she held him in her arms five years ago.
Afterward, Ain was led by Olivia and they both sat down on a sofa in the middle of the room.
“You’re doing your best every day. Fufu……You’re such a good boy.”
He felt quite embarrassed by being complimented while also being hugged.
She looked at him with a big smile on her face while next to him.
“O-Okaa-sama, what kind of work were you doing……!? ”
Trying to escape from his embarrassment, he tried to change the topic.
“I was thinking about what to do next……I’ve compiled a report on the work I’ve asked some merchants and adventurers.”
I see, I don’t get any of it. He tilted his head.
Ain probably thought this was some work related to those who stood at the top, like nobility.
“What kind of work did you ask them for? ”
“To look for something. It’s quite the hard ordeal, and it’s something I can’t do on my own.”
──I wonder what sort of thing that is?
He felt a bit interested but decided not to pry too deep since it was work talk.
“This work, you see, is something I’ve been doing slowly for some time now since there’s a lot to do.”
“Huh? ……So Chichiue didn’t help you with it?”
Simply by interacting with merchants and adventurers should lead to many negotiations.
(She’s like a talented CEO. As expected of the daughter of the owner of a large company.)
He believed she was able to complete such work because of her lineage.
Her appearance while doing a lot of work on her own also looked cool to him.
These things made Ain strongly aware of how hardworking a woman Olivia was.
Since she became the first wife of an Earl’s family, it was obvious she was also reasonably competent.
◇ ◇ ◇
“By the way, was the book I gave you yesterday interesting? ”
“It truly was! Hmm, especially the part with the huge dragon……! ”
His words reflected his excitement.
She looked at him with eyes filled with love, looking at his cutely every move.
(Seriously, he’s such a cute kid.)
Murmuring in her mind, Olivia smiled and went along with him.
“Monsters grow by eating magic stones. That’s why huge dragons like the one you saw exist, Ain.”
Monsters grew stronger in a way that was impossible for people.
Looking at the eyes of the boy by her side, it was obvious he was enjoying Olivia’s talk.
“I wonder if I could become stronger by eating magic stones……?”
Hearing Ain’s words, a small smile appeared in Olivia’s face, and the next moment, she spoke gently to comfort him.
“……It’s alright. I know you’re doing your best, Ain. I’m sure, no, I’m certain you will definitely grow strong, so you don’t have to worry about it.”
Speaking with a voice full of confidence, Olivia looked straight into Ain’s eyes.
Ain glanced back, feeling attracted to those powerful and beautiful eyes.
“A, haha……I-Isn’t that a bit too much?”
Olivia immediately shook his head and smiled while answering
“Not at all. That isn’t too much. Because, for me, you’re more important than anyone else.”
However, it wasn’t too good to focus on that subject. So, Olivia ended there by saying those words.
No matter how Ain was, she would love him. It was a beautiful expression filled with such desire.
“You can become strong enough to even win against your father, Ain.”
She reached out and patted Ain’s head.
“Uhmm, that is……I wonder? ”
“Fufu……You’re such a cute and hardworking boy Ain, I know that better than anyone else.”
Why do you say that? When he looked at her with that question in his eyes, she continued.
“I know you’re doing your best training by yourself, and that you study a lot of books. That’s why I know there isn’t such a good child as you anywhere else.”
Was that an overstatement?
His embarrassment already passed and he now had started to believe in those words.
“──And for such a wonderful child, I have one gift for you.”
Suddenly saying so, she stood up and walked to her desk.
She then picked up a card that could fit in the palm of a hand and returned to Ain’s side.
Holding out the card, she placed it in Ain’s hands.
“You were looking forward to this, didn’t you? In truth, it just arrived.”
When she said so, Ain looked at the card and noticed what it was.
“──Okaa-sama, this is! ”
Raising his voice, he turned to Olivia with a surprised expression.
Olivia nodded in satisfaction to his happy and joyful voice.
“Now, since it now arrived, why don’t we look at it.”
In response, Ain looked at the words on the card with eager eyes.
【Job】 Roundhart family eldest son
【Skills】 Toxin DecompositionＥＸ／Gift of Training
In this world, you used special magic tools to appraise skills and stats.
However, when you were born, only the skill you were born with was known, so when growing up you’d need to have a card made.
“This is a status card, right……!? ”
“Fufu, it was worth it for me to hurry with this. I’m glad you’re happy.”
Olivia gently patted Ain’s head. To which Ain smiled back with a shy expression.
“Thank you very much! H-Huh? By the way, how much are these numbers……?”
How much were these compared to someone his age? ……Wondering about this question, Olivia answered.
“If you’re speaking about someone your age, then……about 10 would be the average, Ain.”
He was surprised at the unexpectedly low average number, but that was fine.
“You’ve worked hard Ain, that’s why you’ve grown stronger.”
Being praised by Olivia, everything seemed to be okay.
It may be one of the perks of being reincarnated, but it was also true that he was making an effort.
“Huh? What’s this……Gift of Training?”
While he was celebrating inside, he noticed those strange words.
“That’s proof that you’ve worked hard, Ain. God has acknowledged it too.”
“It’s a skill that makes your body stronger, more resistant to illness and pain, and harder to become tired.”
It was hard to notice; however, Ain was still five years old. He showed a flat expression.
“……You’ve worked hard all on your own, me too, so I know it well, okay? ”
She expressed, with a tinge of sadness in her voice.
Not for years and years. However, Ain properly continued his training.
Maybe God gave me preferential treatment──Ain thought to himself.
(That’s why, for you Ain, I will……)
Olivia, on the other hand, steeled her determination in her mind and then shook her head to change her expression completely.
She didn’t want to show him a face with negative emotions.
“You’ve been working hard Ain, that’s why I can also do my best. So, let’s do our best together, okay? ”
Immediately after that──Knock, knock.
When Olivia answered the knocking on the door, it was the same servant that just gave a cookie to Ain.
“Excuse me. I got a message from Madam Roundhart.”
She somehow had a complicated face when she said there was a message.
“A message from mother in law? ”
What would she need at this time? She looked at the servant with that question in her eyes.
“……A moment ago, a merchant came to the mansion and I want you to select the tea……She said.”
“Haa……I see, so she wants not the servants but me to do it?”
Shock. She was shocked from the bottom of her heart.
“Indeed……because rather than the servants, you’re a connoisseur……This was her reason.”
“Okaa-sama, this is my fault, right? ……I’m sorry.”
His grandmother always said that he was a failure as the eldest son and he didn’t deserve to be in their house, so she was extremely cold to Ain.
And perhaps as an influence, this was a glimpse of the insidious attitude she now had towards Olivia.
“──This is perfect. I actually wanted to go out with Ain. So, why don’t we go chose Mother-in-law’s tea before that?”
Olivia couldn’t stand seeing Ain’s heartbreaking face.
“Will you come with me? My lovely knight.”
Speaking these words with a smile, it was obvious she was concerned about Ain.
However, it was easy to see from her face that she was really looking forward to going out with Ain.
“Of course! Let me go with you! ”
“Fufu……Then, let’s go to the drawing-room first and look at the tea.”
Olivia and Ain stood up from the sofa while the servant was looking at them with an expression of feeling sorry for bothering them.
After passing in front of the servant who kept her head bowed, Olivia told her “Don’t worry”, and left.
Going out into the hallway, one could see the wide and grand structure that was typical in an Earl’s house.
While holding hands, the pair walked down the hallway and then down the stairs.
“Shall we hurry and choose? If not, my time going out with you will be shorter.”
“All she asked you was to choose tea……So I think it’s alright.”
Before long, the pair arrived at the drawing-room, a place used for when merchants came.
Following Olivia’s knocking on the door, Ain too entered the drawing-room.
“I’ve been waiting for you. These are the items I bring this time……L-Lady Roundhart……!? ”
Inside was only one merchant, a well-dressed, wide-bodied, bearded man.
When he noticed Olivia, he immediately stood up and bowed.
“I came to choose Mother in law’s tea. Can I have a look at what you have?”
“Y……YES! I’ll show you right away! ”
Despite the panic, he was careful enough no to lose his composure as he opened the bags.
From inside came out several bottles with tea.
Being pulled by Olivia’s hand, Ain and her sat in front of the merchant.
After sitting down, the items spreading out on the desk caught Ain’s eye.
Especially a fist-sized, slightly yellowish crystal.
“This is a magic stone…… right? ”
“It’s exactly as you say. It’s a cheap item used for magic tools, so it’s okay if you pick it up.”
The merchant spoke in a voice that suppressed his business nature, then Ain picked up the magic stone.
For some reason, there was a sweet smell coming from the magic stone.
“An expensive magic stone contains magic power that will adversely affect the human body, but this is a cheap magic stone of about 500g, so there’s no problem even if you hold it in your hand.”
Heeー…… Convinced by his words, Ain held up the magic stone against the light.
It was translucent and sparkling like a jewel.
Next to him, Olivia was checking the tea, so Ain decided to ask about magic stones in the meantime.
“How many magic stones do you need in a month to boil water? ”
“If it’s a commoner’s family, I think 3,000g would be enough.”
I see, so like a gas bill, he thought. It surprised him that it was cheaper than he expected.
“Are you interested in magic stones? If it’s alright with you, I’ll give you one.”
Perhaps because of its low value, the merchant was generous.
He thought he should refrain, but in the end, he decided to accept it.
“A high-class magic stone can also be used as an ornament. Since they can be used for ceremonies and magic, they can become national treasures.”
Ohh……Ain answered to Olivia’s words, whom until now was silent.
“──Well then, this time I think we’ll get these three.”
Afterward, after having checked the tea and chosen the products, Olivia pointed to some bottles.
“Understood. Then, I’ll pass them on to the servants.”
Upon hearing that reply, Olivia stood up.
Her footsteps felt light, probably because she now could go out with Ain.
“Ain, then shall we go?”
“Ahh, yes……Coming! ”
Ain answered, then picked up the magic stone which drifted a sweet smell, and bowed to the merchant.
The merchant also kept his head bowed until after he could no longer see Olivia and Ain.
“I’m looking forward to our outing, Ain.”
“Me too, Okaa-sama.”
Putting their sincere enjoyment into words, the two left the drawing-room.
At that time, Ain tried to put the magic stone he received in his pocket.
“……Nevertheless, this magic stone has a sweet scent.”
It was almost like honey from bees, but richer.
And then, he took it from the tip of his nose to his mouth and licked it.
He felt surprised by the deep sweetness in his mouth, almost as if honey and sugar were carefully boiled.
“Yeah? What’s wrong Ain? ”
Noticing Ain’s voice, Olivia looked back in wonder.
Ain, not wanting to be seen doing something dirty like licking a stone, answered with a smile.
“N-No, it’s nothing! Nothing at all! ”
When he noticed, the magic stone had lost its color.
Ain wondered why but decided to put it in his pocket to hide it.
“Fufu……you’re weird sometimes. Now, let’s go outside.”
“Y-Yes! Coming! ”
And thus, he enjoyed going out with Olivia on that day.
And it goes without saying that today was a very enjoyable and precious time for both of them.
【Job】 Roundhart family eldest son
【Stamina】 57 （２ＵＰ）
【Agility】 26 （１ＵＰ）
【Skills】 Toxin DecompositionＥＸ／Gift of Training