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SeraphWedd

Endless Memoir
Chapter 1: Magic Circles

Nina and Mary busied themselves with preparing breakfast. Nina went out again to fetch a replacement for the water she wasted while Mary was diligently preparing to cook.
I offered to help but got scolded instead.
As I was told to just lie down the bed, I reluctantly accepted their offer. However, being idle sure is inconvenient and an inefficient way of using time.
To effectively pass time, I used it to ask several, or rather, countless questions to them.
After about an hour, I generally got the gist of things.
I’m currently in a world way different from Earth. A world where magic is possible. But the two of them don’t know the name of this world.
I am in a village where both Nina and Mary are indebted to. They said that the name of this village is Mujyara and that it is a small village near the border of Kabir Kingdom.
Most of the populace of this world relied on magic rather than science. As proof, there is no standard units for many forms of measurement. Like weight, pressure, density and others.
At least, they have measurement for volume, length and time. If not, I would surely cry.
After half an hour more, the preparation for breakfast was finished.
Mary helped me eat something that looks like a soup despite my telling her that I can eat by myself.
Luckily, it looks like the food traditions in here was about similar to that of Earth. Looks like I won’t have problems regarding food.
After eating, they started tidying up the table and washed the dishes.
Then, Mary started to take out tools from the drawer on the lower side of the shelf.
What she took out was an extremely large and thick book, several large sheets of paper and a small white box.
“… What’s that for?”
I asked. She quickly answered while arranging all of it above the table.
“Practicing.”
“You mean for your job?”
“Yeah. I am an apprentice Magic Artificer so I need to do this to contribute to the village.”
She continued answering with a smile.
She gently opened the book to where a blue bookmark was placed. I sat on the edge of the bed to watch out of curiosity.
“If you want to observe, you can sit here beside me you know? Just don’t strain yourself.”
She quickly told me. She probably noticed my intent to watch.
I did as told and sat on the chair to her left. There, I could clearly see what she was doing. What caught my attention was the content of the book.
“… Magic Circles?”
I was quite surprised. Based on what Mary explained, it looks like magic circles are required to activate magic.
Also, it can be drawn on any sort of surfaces but it needs to be drawn using special materials.
“The most accessible medium is this. Manadite Chalk. The efficiency of conversion is lower compared to other chalks but it is good for every day magic.”
She said while pointing to the contents of the white box. I peeked inside and saw several chunks of white rocks. Manadite Chalk seemed to be an ore.
“Is that so… By the way, what’s the best medium to use?”
“… Blood. It has the best mana conversion rate and the circles drawn using it can be preserved for long duration.”
There are several terms that didn’t exist in Earth normally but when I thought of this world as a game world, everything she said made perfect sense.
Though this world wasn’t a game. I confirmed it already and made sure of it.
Her swift hands moved fast while drawing a circle with precise actions. She was copying the circle from the book into the large sheet of paper.
After roughly 3 minutes, her hands stopped. The drawing of the circle seems to be done.
To check, she placed her hand on a corner of the magic circle and it gave off a faint light. She then nodded her head with satisfaction.
“Looks like it was a success this time.”
“This time? You mean there are times it ends up as failure?”
“Yes. The drawing of the circle needs to be precise and should be in the same proportions as the one in the book.”
“Are there no drawing tools here? It will surely make your job easier…”
I blurted out what came to my mind. If she had even just a compass and a ruler, then her life would be a hell lot easier. Drawing everything with just your hands alone is unreasonable.
However, she just gave a wry smile in response to my words.
“Drawing tools are expensive. Only master Magic Artificers can afford those.”
Expensive? If you just cut out from a thin piece of wood and shaved the sides, it is a good ruler already.
I suddenly thought of an idea.
“… I’ll make drawing tools for you. In return, please teach me about magic.”
Her eyes turned wide with surprise.
“You can make tools? Are you a craftsman?”
“No. I’m a researcher. My classmates often call me ‘Mad Scientist’ though.”
I said with a wry smile. I also noticed that despite remembering about them, I can’t recall their names.
“Classmates? Scientist?”
“Aah, don’t mind it. Just me talking to myself. So? What do you say?”
I prevented the conversation from derailing and asked directly. She pondered for a while before she answered.
“If passing my knowledge to you is enough to pay for the tools, then I would gladly do so.”
She answered with a refreshing smile.
“However, that is after the village doctor have checked you. Before then, you must behave yourself properly. Is that fine?”
I wanted to say that I’m fine already but thinking that she would not permit me that easily, I just nodded.
“Then in return, I can explain Magic circles to you. Would you be fine with that? You just need to listen.”
“It’s fine. I don’t have anything to do anyway.”
Hearing my answer, she began her explanation.
The one she drew just now was the Magic Circle for «Luminescence». It would give off light when mana was supplied.
Looking closely, it was composed of simple geometric patterns.
A circle that encompassed all other elements. A square inside the big circle and a small circle on the top of the square.
The word light written in lowercase cursive on the middle was conspicuous.
Then, a straight vertical line ran from the top of the big circle to the top of the small circle and from the bottom of the square to the bottom of the big circle.
I noticed some notions and patterns but kept quiet about it. This is the first magic circle I saw (in this world) so drawing conclusions early wasn’t admirable.
When I asked about the word light written in the middle, she once again answered with doubt.
“What are you saying? That line is the core of this magic. Don’t tell me you can read it? You can read?!”
She spoke while pressing closer to me. Honestly, I was slightly taken aback by her pressure.
“N-No, I was just wondering…”
I tried to smooth the conversation but it seems that I failed miserably.
Luckily, Mary noticed how rude her actions were and she quickly sat down with an embarrassed face. She was red up to her ears.
“S-Sorry. I was surprised that you can read the ancient letters. My master told me the meaning of the lines in the middle of the circles but I don’t know how to read them.”
“I-Is that so…”
Then her master can read it too? Or maybe he/she was just taught the meaning by his/her master too...
Honestly, I didn’t have the grasp of the level of literacy in this world. As I haven’t spent that much time here.
“If you want, I can teach you. Do you wish to?”
I tried asking her with a lighthearted tone. Without even a split second passing, her answer came.
“Please teach me how to read it!!!”
I felt a faint headache coming. I shouldn’t have mentioned that.
I shouldn’t have muttered that thing halfheartedly.

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