I Love You (2)
Translator: Aura / Editor: Tiny Zebra
When Liza entered puberty, her physical appearance changed dramatically.
Her dull gray hair turned silver and silky, and her childish features became more feminine.
Every day she grew taller and her skin became smoother.
Her cheekbones became more pronounced, and her chin slimmed down.
Meetings between Liza and the High Priest became more frequent.
It was related to Liza’s bloodline.
“The mana spring in my dantian has opened.”
“It’s a special ability I inherited through my family’s bloodline.
All members of the Pascal Family have their mana spring opened around this age.”
Liza ran a hand through her silver hair and said,
Yes, it greatly increases mana.
But my hair color changed because of it.
I liked it like I had it before.”
“It’s still pretty.”
My family members also don’t age much thanks to the mana spring.”
“When you’re a middle-aged man, I’ll look just a little older than I do right now.”
“I wouldn’t want to be treated like a teenager at that age.”
Anyway, the High Priest will teach me basic magic.”
“When will you start?”
“I start tomorrow.”
“So… starting tomorrow, my friend will be a mage?”
Don’t cry while I’m not by your side or get into trouble starting tomorrow.”
“Why? Where are you going?”
“I’m not going anywhere, I’ll just take private lessons for an hour or two in the evening.”
“What will I do while you study?”
“Don’t do anything.
No, even better: think about me.
Think about what we can do together after my lessons.”
As we grew up, I realized that Liza and I came from totally different worlds.
As time went on, the gap between our backgrounds, innate talents and physical appearance became more pronounced.
If an Acates Priest had not taken me in, it is likely that we would never have met.
But we became best friends and confidantes.
We shared everything, including our secrets and dreams.
As the years went by, we became an important part of each other’s lives.
We were so emotionally attached that we couldn’t imagine our lives apart.
Liza wanted time to stand still.
She feared her uncle would come for her when she was older.
After Liza’s mana spring opened, members of the Pascal Family visited the Temple every six months to check on Liza.
On days when she met with them, Liza’s expression became very sad.
After these visits, Liza talked about how we should stay together even when we grew up.
“Let’s live together when we’re older.”
Sometimes, she went as far as suggesting that we get married.
I took it as a joke, but I still pretended to accept her proposal.
We were fully aware of the difficulties of staying together when we grew up.
Realistically, it would even be difficult to see each other again.
The more Liza’s talent blossomed and she improved as a mage, the more I could feel it.
But when we made these promises to each other, we could forget about the difficulties of the future for a while.
Orphans in the Temple of Acates were not allowed to stay in the Lorail Pavilion once they turned seventeen.
So we were expected to find out in advance what to do to fend for ourselves.
Liza had the qualities to become a great mage.
At seventeen, she would no doubt enter the Academy.
Her future was bright.
I decided to start learning metalworking at the age of fourteen.
Time flew by and we turned fifteen.
I slowly acquired the skills of the trade as I performed small tasks in a large workshop.
During this time, Liza’s nerves were on edge and she became sad easily.
Members of the Pascal Family visited Liza more often, and therefore Liza sought me out to comfort her more often.
After they left, she would run into my arms, trembling like a lost puppy.
When I asked what was going on, she didn’t answer.
I collected discarded bits of iron and steel while I worked in the workshop.
I selected the ones that were in good condition, melted them down and welded them together.
I spent a sleepless night making a ring.
When I gave Liza my first creation, she jumped with joy.
She put the ring on her left ring finger and admired it like it was a diamond ring as she moved her hand from side to side.
“I’ll give you a prettier one in the future.”
“I like this one.”
It was always pleasant to see Liza smile.
How long would I continue to see her smile like this?
The desire to be with Liza always continued to grow inside of me.
One summer day, at the age of fifteen, I was told for the second time in my life, “I love you.”
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