This chapter’s format is being wonky and I resorted to delete everything, paste the old version, and edit it from the scratch. Seriously, I really don’t like the new wp editor -,- but enjoy Harold’s POV!
ED: eristol, xtostos
Long time no see, how are you?
This place is doing great.
Everything is sailing smoothly.
At the workshop, we are also working on training craftsmen, and there are also prospects for mass production.
Before long, the pottery traders around us got an inkling of what we were making and some of them tried to imitate it.
And yet, nobody seems to have been able to reach anything resembling the whetstone or cobalt oxide.
A decade worth of knowledge accumulation is not just for show.
Since stealing the technique or material is not that easy, we can feel relieved for the moment.
Gilbert-aniki is being taken along by his father/my Master to form connections with various people.
The person himself is troubled, but as the business grows bigger, he can no longer stay inside the workshop.
Oh yeah, I made a prototype of what you asked me for, so I will enclose it with this letter.
I had a hard time with your unreasonable orders this time.
It goes without saying, but be careful in handling them.
Especially the lens, if it’s equipped by a person other than you, there is a risk of blindness, so you must not lend them to anyone.
I wonder if you can wait for the boots a little longer.
It takes time to arrange the materials, balance the spells and so on.
It will still take a couple of months before I have something to show you.
It’s getting cold, so take care of your health.
If you catch a cold, I’ll send you the unpleasant nutritional supplement from Sergei-ossan.
Well then, this report ends here.
Aurelia Ducal Family’s Autumn Palace.
Three months had passed since the series of incidents occurred at Knot Reed.
A letter from Harold Nibelheim to Erica Aurelia had arrived.
This was the 20th letter in total.
The contents of those letters ranged from status report, work progress situation, explanation of the enclosed magic tools, etc.
Every time there was some changes or a new discovery, letters were sent one by one.
Harold was a hard-working boy.
Several prototypes arrived this time as well.
First of all, a porcelain tea set made at Gilbert’s workshop.
And then, Harold’s custom-made wand and magic tool.
Erica spread those items on the desk and checked each one.
First, the blue and white porcelain tea set with flowers drawn on it.
Erica traced the edge of the teacup with her fingertips.
The ideal thinness and smoothness.
A stunning design that harmonized the traditional patterns with modern shapes.
Erica’s lips naturally curved into a smile.
In this way, they would surely be able to create a porcelain craze.
Next, she opened the small box with a wand in it.
The charged magic was Crystal Cluster.
After confirming the label, she stored the wand inside her wand-holder at once.
On the center of the talc wand head was hawthorn and the core material was kraken’s soft shell bone.
It was an especially simple wand which was not decorated.
Harold gave the answer to her request of ‘an offensive wand which can be mass-produced at a relatively low cost’.
Finally, she opened the smallest box.
Wrapped in a cushioning material, there was a small glass bottle.
In the transparent liquid packed inside the bottle, a green round fragment was floating.
Tirnanog in his small golem state and Palug in her golden cat form peered in curiously.
『What is it~?』
“It’s a lens to be used by attaching it directly to the eyes instead of glasses.”
『Hou, directly to the eyes?』
Erica was trying to reproduce the contact lenses of her previous life.
It was not necessarily for correcting visual acuity, it had another use.
『It is quite a strange item. I also feel magical power from it.』
“Instead of charging it into a wand, the magic of demonic eye1 was charged into the lens.”
Erica asked Harold for a lens charged with demonic eye magic.
The charged magic was Glam Sight.
Building Glam Sight spell directly on the lens cut out of emerald was a difficult work.
However, Harold was a skillful craftsman, even though it was difficult, he was able to finish it in just three months.
“Actually, I’d like to stock Urd Sight too, but it seems to be impossible.”
『It should be fine if you request for it. If it is that redheaded brat, he will be able to do it without difficulty.』
“That’s not it, there are mainly financial problems……”
Erica washed her hands and tried wearing the lens of Glam Sight on her left eye.
When she mildly closed her eyelids with the spell in mind, the magic circle would be deployed on her eyeball.
In the normal view, the outline of magical structure seemed to float, making it seem like a double image.
She felt a light dizziness, but Erica judged that it would be no problem for her.
“I have to report the results of using these two items.
I will try it at once. Be careful, you two.”
She took out the prototype wand from her wand-holder and waved it while maintaining caution.
Following the path of the wand, a huge crystal cluster was created on the carpet.
She tried the same thing while using Wand Alteration.
Harold seemed to have raised his skills in making wands, so it became possible for her to withdraw the spells without burden, a smooth magical silk-like thread formed.
She released the rebuilt magic towards the ceiling.
Small pieces of crystal fell from the deployed magic circle of about two meters radius like snow.
『Oh my, how beautiful.』
『No matter how I look at it, it’s an excellent wand.』
Crystal Cluster was a versatile magic.
She could use this instead of a barrier or a fortress, and shoot this instead of a spear or a shell.
A variety of usage methods could be considered if it was combined with the expansion effect.
In this case, it would be possible to penetrate vampires instead of using stakes.
Through the eyes, information on the creator of the wand was displayed.
At this point there were only few information which could be analyzed with the lens of Glam Sight.
However, after six years, a more complete Glam Sight could probably be built on the lens.
“Both of these items can do more than I thought. As expected of Harold.”
She had also asked Harold for the creation of several kinds of magic tools.
They were all special items, but he would always answer her expectations.
For Erica who needed immediate measures against vampires, Harold was a reassuring ally.
Erica went back to her desk and wrote a letter of appreciation to Harold.
Trade City Knot Reed.
Inside the Wunderkammer of Turm Wand Store, Harold spread a letter on his working desk.
That was the reply to the contact he sent to Aurelia last weekend.
Compliments and further requests for wands and lenses were meticulously written with neat handwriting.
The prototypes did better than his assumption, Harold grinned.
He tried to return his expression to a serious one many times, but his mouth became loose without permission contrary to his will.
He was in good spirits.
“Ooh– is that a letter from the princess? Haa~ what a neat handwriting.”
Harold was startled by the voice coming from behind him and jerked forward.
When he recovered his posture and turned around, standing there was Gilbert who seemed to be in high spirits.
Harold drew Erica’s letter into his bosom.
Gilbert looked at him who was in such state with a grin.
“Eeh~ why are you hiding it? I want to read it too.”
“No way, Aniki. This letter is for me!”
“Eh~ ……but it’s the valuable connection with the princess of Aurelia.
As a person in charge of the porcelain business, I’d like to take care of such valuable people, but what about you?”
“Well, if you handle it in that manner……”
Erica, the daughter of Duke Aurelia, would probably be in an important position in the Federal Kingdom.
Despite her young age she was widely known, gorgeous and eye-catching, so she made for an excellent advertisement platform.
However, as for Harold, he didn’t want to involve Erica too much in business.
Although she was capable, she was too competent and it would be difficult for him to repay her back.
Right now, he had a debt of gratitude that he would unlikely be able to return in his lifetime.
Without noticing Harold’s annoyance, Gilbert was smirking as if he was having fun.
“Hmm. As expected~ As a boy, you would like to protect the girl of your first love, right~?”
“Hah?! What are you talking about suddenly, Aniki!”
Harold turned bright red hearing Gilbert’s words which was thrown from the direction he never thought about.
However, his response made Gilbert misunderstand further.
“Right, right, I wanted to see a reaction like that!”
“What do you mean by that.”
“Something like this, you want to keep her away from the dirty nature of the world like gold or connection and you want to cherish her, right?”
“That’s not it. Erica and I are……how do I say it, we are not like that!”
“Eh~ is that so?”
“What is it, Aniki. You’re being nosy.”
Gilbert felt a certain air as if Harold was fed up with him from his attitude.
Being glared at, Gilbert gave in quickly.
Correcting his posture, he donned a serious look and sat down opposite of him.
He just wanted to play with the young people, he didn’t want to fight.
“I’m sorry. I went too far.”
“Aniki, why do you have such a wild idea like a smelly old man?”
“Smelly old man……”
Hearing Harold’s casual phrase, Gilbert suffered deep damage.
Recovering his spirit, Gilbert replied.
“It’s like this, I am your older brother.
I want to give love advice to Botchan who is disheartened because the princess of your first love already has a prince.”
“Eh, I don’t understand what you mean at all.”
“See, you have a fleeting first love on Erica-jou who you had a fateful encounter with, right?”
In Harold’s mind, for some reason, the sadistic and high-grade aristocratic features of Erica rose to the surface.
The seemingly quiet girl, when in fact she was nonchalantly aggressive, was like a hammer or a vise if he compared her to a tool.
It was a hard and difficult choice as a first love partner.
Harold’s cheeks twitched, if he likes someone like that, he will live a hard life.
“But next to the princess there is the perfect His Highness Auguste, isn’t there?
It’s regrettable, but he’s a good match for her. Aah, it’s painful when first love doesn’t come true, isn’t it?”
Auguste with a carefree smile, who was beautiful like a girl, came to his mind.
The royalty’s bad habit of being defenseless thoughtlessly and his innocent speech and conduct, made him feel disconcerted.
However, if one peeled off the angel-like surface, one would see a devil lurking underneath, Harold had witnessed a glimpse of such a thing.
What absolute perfection, Harold thought.
“If it’s His Highness Auguste and Erica-ojousama, aren’t they a couple who suit each other?”
“Ah~ sure, they do suit each other.”
Both of them had fake, lovely-looking outward appearance.
When they dressed up and lined side-by-side, they painted a beautiful picture.
Harold trembled with fear that they were also well-matched in a certain meaning internally and, if possible, he didn’t want to get close.
“Such painful and bittersweet things are unacceptable.”
“Is this still about your wild idea?”
“What a shame, Aniki. Your conjecture is utterly wrong.”
Gilbert hung his head dejectedly.
“Ah– well, that’s right. I’m sorry for making fun of you, Botchan.”
“……I mean, you are different from usual, Aniki. Rather, aren’t you in high spirits?”
“Eh, I’m always like this though.”
When Harold pointed it out, Gilbert avoided meeting his eyes directly.
Aah, as expected there is something, Harold became suspicious.
Suddenly, Harold realized that there was a sweet fragrance different from usual.
“This is weird. Are you wearing perfume, Aniki?”
“Uh, no, this is……nowadays I meet many big shots, so I groom myself.
Since I’m staying over at the workshop, the days I can’t return home continue.”
“On the contrary, your shirt is clean.”
“Uuh, well, I have many similar shirts.”
“But it’s crisp from ironing. Then, Aniki……you got a girlfriend?”
Harold concentrated his consciousness on Gilbert’s perfume.
It was a fragrance he had recently smelled.
“Southern flowers, rose, bergamot, lime, and a little cloves……this is the new perfume of the store at the Barker Street.”
“Uuh, how did you know it!?”
The perfume store handles mainly perfume for women, but this new product was a rare one for men.
There was only one woman of age in that store.
The perfumer Bell.
A woman with bright green eyes with the temperament of a craftsman, who had long red hair in braids.
“Your girlfriend is the perfumer Bell-anechan? Speaking of which, she has been in high spirits these days.
Her new product is being given a somewhat embarrassing name like 『Sweet Melody of Lovers』, which is unlike her.”
“Geh, that woman, she gave it a name like that!?”
“I see– Aniki and Ane-chan are childhood friends?”
“W-why do you—”
“Because you guys are of the same age.”
“O-ou……you got me……I can’t hide anything from Botchan, huh.”
Gilbert, who was being toyed with by Harold, learned the feeling of impatience while he was standing on the side of the one being toyed with.
“Bell-anechan, when I think about it, she doesn’t have any male presence near her, so she has been waiting for Aniki for ten years, huh.
And, your business also got on track, turning down major companies—”
“See, see you later, Botchan. I’ll end it here.
Do your best and don’t push yourself too hard!”
Gilbert left the room to escape from the awkwardness, cutting off Harold’s words with a loud voice.
Only the sweet fragrance of his perfume was left in the Wunderkammer.
“Good grief, that Aniki……love or anything like that is something that I cannot afford.”
Harold sighed lightly.
Right now he is having fun with assembling wands and learning.
Falling in love and the like would add too much to his plate, so it should be enough if he worries about it in ten years or so, he thought.
Moreover, it wasn’t likely for him to see Erica as a subject of romance at the moment.
For Harold, Erica was his benefactor.
At that time, if there was no Erica.
If Auguste had not come looking for Erica.
That was why he had a lifetime of gratitude for her.
Of course Harold was also indebted to Auguste, but in any case, it would suffice to say that it was a national interest to him as the one who would become the King.
“Now then……I wonder if there will be any progress today.”
Harold sat on the chair and started working on a prototype for Erica.
Many of her proposals were interesting.
It was a fun task which Harold could also satisfy his intellectual curiosity with.
‘A wand charged with effective magic at a low cost’, he came up with ideas gradually and sent the prototypes one by one.
The prototype was completed at last just before he finished with the lens charged with demonic eye.
The current challenge was boots spelled with magic.
“But, I wonder what they will be used for.”
Harold didn’t hear about the details in the end.
He had postponed asking about it, thinking it would be better if she told him about it when she wanted to, once it became easier for her.
However, what he did know was that there were only deadly dangerous and hard-to-comprehend circumstances surrounding her.
Harold wanted to be a man who could save Erica if she fell into desperate circumstances.
Like how he was saved by her when he fell into despair.
If a predicament where Erica alone can’t do anything comes up, he thought that would be the time for him to help Erica.
Once he does that, he could finally be her equal in the real sense.
“Oh well. I need but move my hands for the demanding you for the time being.”
Harold stopped worrying and started working.
‘If you have time to be worried, move your hands even just a little’, that was his creed.
1 Demonic eye magic referred to the visual system magic, like Glam Sight, Urd Sight, and Raptor Sight.
R.I.P HaroldxErica shippers