Tuesday, June 11, 2024 @

Chapter 101 Extra - Celebration (Lukas Edition)

Chapter 101 Extra - Celebration (Lukas Edition)

 This is an extra episode to commemorate the 100th chapter (Lukas edition).

 It's an interlude that takes place after Chapter 60.

 As I gazed at my sleeping childhood friend's face on the bed, I let out a soft sigh.

 ――It's been about ten days since we arrived in the city of Flaria, searching for new synthesis materials. I'm accompanying Laura, a Royal Alchemist assistant, as her escort.

 To be honest, finding those materials has been tough. Laura seems to be getting more and more frustrated, and it's painful to see her expression darken day by day.

 I discussed this with the lady of the mansion where we're staying, and with the help of Laura's colleagues and seniors, we finally managed to get her to rest. Now, I'm sitting beside her bed, watching over her as she sleeps peacefully.

 (Laura, you're overdoing it...)

 The hand I held before she fell asleep still feels a bit connected, even though the grip has loosened slightly.

 It feels so small compared to before. I miss the old days when we were the same size.

 Back then, I never thought Laura would pass the Royal Alchemist exam, and I certainly didn't imagine I'd be accompanying her on this expedition as her escort. While I'm happy to see her growth and changes, I also feel a pang of sadness as our paths start to diverge.

 I glance at Laura's sleeping face again. Her ash-gold hair is slightly damaged from exhaustion, and it pains me to see it. Compared to before, Laura has become more reliant on me, but she still has a tendency to bear everything alone.

 To get her to rely on me more, I need to change Laura's mindset, and I also need to become a more dependable person myself――

 Unexpectedly, a quiet knock shook my eardrums. I let go of Laura's hand, trying not to wake her, and headed towards the door. As I opened it,


 Laura's co-worker, Chelsea-san, was standing there, looking apologetic. She had a tea tray with a teapot and 2 cups on it.

 Chelsea-san was also worried about Laura. She might have come to check on her.


 "About Laura, did she sleep?"

 "Yes, like a log."

 Chelsea-san looked relieved at my words.

 This was the first time I had met Chelsea-san, and she seemed to get along well with Laura. It was natural for them to grow close living in the same room away from home. But even without that environment, they seemed to get along well. I had seen them chatting together many times in the short time I had been here.

 "If you'd like... I tried making the tea Luisa-san taught me again. It might be a bit much for 2 people..."

 Chelsea-san handed me the tea tray and said, "Good night," and closed the door quietly, not giving me a chance to reply, "I want Chelsea-san and your senior, Lina-san, to enjoy the tea together."

 But then, I decided to be polite and not return the visit to their room, so I decided to drink both cups of tea by myself. I placed the tea tray on the bedside table and poured the tea into the cups. The sweet, fragrant smell was probably the specialty honey of Flaria's city, Mephirie.


 Whether it was the stuffiness or the smell, Laura rolled over in bed. I felt a moment of unease at the furrow in her brow, but her expression quickly softened into a smile. I let out a sigh of relief and held Laura's hand again.


 The work of an alchemist is not quite as close to death as I am, lurking much closer to Laura than I am. Thinking about that, I felt a terrifying fear.

 That day when I saw Laura being attacked by a monster. It happened when I was 8 years old, but I still remember it vividly. When the monster's fangs were about to reach Laura, I didn't know what was happening, but I was determined not to lose my childhood friend ―― and before I knew it, a strange power had awakened within me.

 Even now, I still don't know what this power is. At first, I felt scared, but lately, I've stopped worrying about it. Whatever power it is, as long as I can protect the important people in my life, it doesn't matter.


 I whispered softly. Of course, she didn't respond because she was asleep ―― but I felt a little bit of strength in the hand I was holding.

 It might just be my imagination. I want it to be that way, a delusion created by my wish. But it felt like Laura responded, and I was happy.

 "Laura, have sweet dreams."

 The tea I drank while holding hands with my childhood friend tasted like happiness.

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