A Dragon’s Curiosity Chapter 140
Coming to a stop with dust trailing behind her steps, Nisha arrived at the Academy early in the morning. The elf greeted the guard near the entrance and rushed towards the training field, despite being early. With a fine and cold morning mist, the empty field possessed a somewhat desolate air; however, the dragon hardly cared about a barren ground, especially with nowhere for predators to hide inside a well-guarded city. Borrowing a weapon from the shed, which stored all related goods for the warrior class, Nisha assaulted one of the wooden training dummies with her spear.
The blunt tip had enough power to smash apart the targets meant for first-rank warriors easily, and she brimmed with a fiery glow. Without the girl controlling and reigning in her cultivation of a dragon at the middle of the third rank, the second-class dummies might not even be able to handle her strength and blast into splinters as well.
Nisha aimed to increase the accuracy of her swings, hence the strikes and stabs only left white marks on the wood wherever she struck.
Focusing on the eyes, throat, and heart, Nisha managed to contain all her strikes in a narrow area around her target and almost satisfied the bar she set for herself until she grew tired of an unmoving and complacent target.
Since the first classmates arrived around the same time and followed her example without greeting her, the elf stopped training and moved to the side of the field, waiting for the lesson to start and Unico and Lisas arrival.
Good morning, Nisha. Good to see you again.
Missing for some time apparently helped Lisa discard a portion of her shyness as she walked up to the other girl and hugged her in greeting. Although it surprised the elf, she still reciprocated the embrace and gave her a quick peck on the cheek.
I cant miss lessons all the time, or I will become a delinquent. Good to see you, too.
Unico waved behind Lisas back so that the elf could see it while she still hugged her friend.
Thats true. Its manners and principles that make us human. I suppose that does not quite apply to you though. Greetings to you as well, Nisha.
If you do not mind me asking, where were you yesterday? Lisa quite missed you when I had to explain to her the proper striking technique all alone.
At his slightly teasing words, a red hue immediately appeared on the golden-haired girl. The dragon, on the other hand, discerned another, more hidden intention.
I was just making some preparations for the excursion tomorrow. It was nothing major, just some formalities at the [Adventurers Guild].
Nisha gave a vague answer instead of explaining every detail and smiled slightly behind her scarf.
Is that so? How interesting.
Exchanging some small talk, they soon settled into their usual routine and took turns with their training dummy. Unico firmly settled into the role of instructor with the elf giving occasional examples when Lisa did not understand a specific motion.
The instructor, Mr. Oak, praised them for their teamwork and only glanced at their group while making his rounds.
When the clock rang out and signaled the end of the warrior lesson, Nisha wanted to leave for her smithing class just as Unico grabbed hold of her and Lisa.
Do you need something? Whats up?
So far, the three had always split up after the lesson finished. Each of them had their own classes to attend to, and the breaks between each lecture were not long enough to idly chat.
Ah, I heard some news about the excursion and wanted to talk to you guys about it. Since we go as a group made up of all classes, how about we form a group when we arrive at the location? At least we will have trustworthy teammates then.
Smiling brightly, the lilac hue of his skin really brought out his angular features, and Lisa subconsciously nodded to his proposal.
How do you know the teachers will allow us to form groups for the outing? Or that we need them?
To the dragon, there were far more attractive sights such as shiny treasure, challenging prey, or a well-cooked meal, hence she was not as captivated as the other girl.
By coincidence, I heard the second year students talk about their excursion; they will have to travel further than us and complained about it. As it stands, there will be a need to form teams; therefore, I looked for both of you and wanted to make one in advance.
Never breaking his blinding smile, he bowed before the two girls.
Please take care of me.
Nisha had to acknowledge the effort he put into inviting them and was worried for Lisa as well. Without their guidance, she would most likely not make the cut off to go on the excursion, and the elf had a duty to watch over her now.
Fine, if there is a group activity, we will go in our usual setting. Now, excuse me please; there is a crafting class I need to attend, and Im running late.
Apparently, Lisa had a similar lesson to attend; she hastily excused herself as well and left the young man with a purple hue coloring his skin alone on the field.
Did she catch something? No way; thats not even secret information
Stepping into the isolated smithy at the end of the compound, Nisha greeted Conner, who had already started up the forge, heating up the whole space and sending yellow and orange sparks flying through the air.
Hey, how are you? Did you have any troubles with the others?
Clapping his shoulder while he worked the bellows, the sweating youth threw her a glance before returning to his work.
Give me a moment; I need to finish this.
He stoked the coals and gave the molten slag another critical review before pulling the crucible out of the flaming chamber. The red glow escaping breathed life into his red hair, giving his otherwise plump figure a heroic shine as he poured the gleaming metal in a mold, preparing three ingots at the same time.
Conner used his right arm to wipe away the salty droplets from his temples as the ore rapidly cooled in the chilly air. Even with the sun passing its zenith slightly, the temperature still began to turn into the cold breath of Father Winter gradually.
Whew, sorry for the delay. Almost thought you were not coming time around, either. Had enough of the old goat shouting at you?
Tactfully avoiding whether or not the elf wanted to share where she had been the previous day, the young man smiled innocently. If she wanted to share her tale or not, Conner was glad to see her back.
Hah, itd be a sad day if I cowered before a shorty like him. No, I was just out and preparing for the trip for my warrior class; the students who pass the test each week can go out and gather some real experience. What about you; any trouble with the old dwarf either?
Checking his work, Nisha had to admit that the young mans work had improved since the first crude pieces they made together. Instead of slanted sides, the metal had a shine to it and formed a perfect ingot, without any visible impurities or blemishes.
The dragon nodded to herself. She, herself, might not do better unless she took control over the fire and added a breath of dragon flame.
Nah, its fine. I heard some of the others talk; apparently, they think we will give up on our own. Unless we go and bother them, were fine.
Conner waved his hand to dispel her concern, not looking bothered in the least. Breaking apart the molds and picking up his ingots with the tongs, he submerged them in salt water. The billowing smoke cloud spread through the open structure, draining the last bit of fieriness out of the ore.
For the average human, the resulting steam might feel highly uncomfortable or even scorch them. On the other hand, it barely tickled a dragon like Nisha and only made her wish for a pit of fire to relax in. In her mind, she decided to have a boiling bath when she returned home later.
The forge is free now; you can work on something on your own. I need to wait until the ingots completely harden. Do you need any help?
Conners voice brought her out of her reflections.
Pulling her scarf together, the elf politely declined.
Its fine. Do what you need to do first; I can at least manage that much.
She flexed her slender arms to show off her muscles, making Conner laugh in the process. The comical scene quickly turned into astonishment for him, when each blow on the bellows she made fanned the flames at least three times as much as his own. Did she really joke around with him?
Ignoring the youth who threw her suspicious glances from time to time, the girl peered into the forge, looking at the progress of her own smelting.
As she smiled involuntarily, Nisha had to admit that the rumors she read in the [Great Library] held a grain of truth: dragons really loved their shinies.
Roughly hammering out four ingots on the anvil, the elf laid the groundwork to prepare a greater item next time and bid Conner farewell when the lesson ended.
The last order of business on her timetable was the magic class. Approaching the classroom, a peculiar scene played out. A young nobleman glared at her from the line of his followers. Weston hated that spiteful girl to the bone.
Originally, he planned to track her down right away and use the whole influence of his family to crush her and pay her back for embarrassing him, a noble Whitehall, in public.
Unfortunately, the frigid witch of a teacher stripped him of all his merit points. He had to borrow from a subordinate studying at the academy, as well, to pay off his debt. Normally, this did not matter too much as he had the gold to pay the guy off, yet this would undoubtedly alarm his family and inform them of the matter. Instead of borrowing their influence to pursue that hateful girl, he might pick up a stone only to smash his own foot.
For now, he had to gather resources and prepare to deal with her once and for all.
Nisha saw through his hate and resentment with ease and ferociously grinned. Defeated prey had no right to rear its ugly head. In the Wilderness, only death redeemed defeat. The dragon was looking forward to seeing if he dared to go against her again. Not that she condoned this behavior - the elf knew the ending of all those who dared to do that.
She strutted through the hallway, deliberately ignoring their crew and entering the classroom, while Weston only had the chance to grind his teeth.
The burning shame eventually exceeded even his thick hide, and the noble boy stormed away, leaving behind a group of confused and vaguely irritated young men. They still had to attend the lesson; their families did not have the influence or money to allow them to take up office without succeeding in the [Royal Academy].
Alexander lazed in his chair when he heard the door open, swiftly straightening as soon as he saw a familiar face.
Hey, look whos here. I reserved you a seat.
Pulling out the chair beside him, the mischievous expression on his face causing the elf to roll her eyes. This seat was assigned to her, okay? No one would sit in it anyway.
Since she had already experienced the same situation twice, Nisha only glanced over the topic.
I was just handling some business with my contracted monster. Since theres the warrior excursion soon, I had to register my little Lia at the guild.
At her explanation, the brown-haired boy visibly perked up and became excited.
Turning his chair sideways, he started asking her all about her monster.
No one suspected the elf actually concealed the status of her companion, intentionally presenting a beast in a monster disguise. For everyone else, especially the prodigies at the academy, owning a beast was a reason to brag and gossip without end.
Therefore, Alexander never even suspected the fact that Little Lia was a monster.
After the two chatted for a while, a chilling wave spread through the room while the door snapped shut. Carrying herself with silent pride, Miss Anet inspected her class, her gaze enough to silence even the chatterboxes and rumormongers among them.
Slightly satisfied to see no one talking, the petite teacher started the lesson. Talking about the benefits and advantages of meditation and possible dangers and other things to look out for, the lecture took its course.
Time flew by, and Nisha stretched when their practice with the duel board and individual instruction by Miss Anet ended. Personally, she barely benefitted from the current lessons as her spirit had already reached the middle of the third rank in accordance with her aura, but revisiting the fundamentals still held merit since the dragon-self cultivated before and had no systematic schooling.
Take care, Alexander. Will you come to the warrior outing, too?
As the other student attending both warrior classes and mage lessons, Nisha wondered whether she should include him in their group as well, but his shaking head solved this quarry for her.
I did not make it through the test this time; the teacher noticed when I secretly cast a spell since my strikes werent strong enough. He did praise me for the idea; however, he still had to prevent me from going on the trip. Well, next time Ill focus more on my aura rank and attempt to work on my skill to make it. Have fun on the outing.
Nisha waved and took her leave, yet in her mind, she was already on the journey the warriors were going to make the next day.