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A/N: It is a story from the perspectives of Zack’s grandfather Govan, mother Tanya, father Matt, and older brother Rod.
I was so shocked to hear the story of my grandson, Zacharias, that I almost fall from my seat.
(Another world! Chosen by the gods! It’s too ridiculous even for a child’s imagination… I knew there was something different, but I didn’t expect it to be this ridiculous…) (Govan)
I was surprised but listened to his story until the end.
When he finished, I tried to keep my face as calm as possible.
“We knew something was amiss with you. We knew there was something you were hiding, but we didn’t think it was this outrageous.” (Govan)
My grandson looked devastated, but his eyes widened in surprise at my next words.
“Well, that’s all right. If you were called by the gods from another world, we have no choice but to accept it.” (Govan)
“You believe me? Even with such an outrageous story…” (Zack)
We noticed a sudden change in my grandson a year ago. Mathias and his wife, Tanya, had asked me for advice, and I was surprised when he suddenly asked me to lend him a book last fall.
At first, I ordered my son to lend him simple books, but he soon got tired of them and asked for all kinds of books.
I jokingly lent him a technical book, “Geopolitical Problems of the Turia Continent and Its Historical Background.”
My former boss, the Earl of Roswell, told me that I should read this book if I wanted to be a knight, but to tell the truth, I did not understand it very well.
I once lent it to Nicholas for his study, but it took him several months to understand it.
Zack only came to ask about the difficult words, but he understood most of the contents.
When I asked him about the relationship between the Empire of Caelum and the City-States Union, he answered that the City-States Union feigns submission to the Empire, but is trying to acquire an actual advantage.
On the surface, the City-States Union appears to be an independent nation with full autonomy. At first glance, it does not appear to be a sovereign-subordinate relationship.
In reality, however, the reality is that they fear the military power of the empire and are thinking about how to maintain their independence without spending money, and are decisively struggling to maintain their relationship with the empire by not claiming territorial rights outside of their cities.
If rumors are to be believed, it is said that Aurella – the commercial city at the center of the City-State Union – is supporting the Holy Kingdom of Lux, which has achieved independence from the empire, in the shadows. The prevailing story is that they are supporting the Empire in order to turn the Empire’s focus against Lux. It is also said that they are also struggling to gain practical benefits, such as eliminating tariffs on the Aurella Highway, which the Empire tried to impose on them.
The book I lent to him says something to that effect, but the author is a scholar in an academic city, and the wording was delicately obscured.
Other things that surprised me were the tales that Zack created and told Mel and his friends.
The tale of the North Wind and the Sun explained the importance of diplomacy, combining the hard and soft elements of force and subterfuge, while the tale of the sly fox suggested a conflict between those who are close to each other can give others a false sense of security.
Claire—Claire Jakes. Dan and Sharon’s mother, Zack’s caretaker… told me the story so well that I had to check with all the squires to see who had told it to them.
And when I found out that Zack had made up the story, I was even more surprised than when he read the book I had lent him.
I wondered what was in his mind.
And when he started telling the story himself, I have to admit I was relieved.
Sure, at first I thought it was absurd, but he had received an education comparable to that of a scholar in another world and had worked in a metropolis with hundreds of thousands of inhabitants until he was about my age. I began to take it for granted.
But I also felt a sense of danger.
Surely he had the knowledge and divine predisposition to be chosen by God. However, if he associates with people who put up walls against him and if he lives his life in such a way that no one believes in him, he will surely go down the wrong path.
When magic was mentioned, I thought.
He needs a friend he can trust in the future. So, I decided to call Lydiane. She could guide him and understand him.
I must call Lydiane no matter what. And I will tell her honestly what I think.
I think she will understand.
After the talk was over, I was surprised.
When sword training was mentioned, I was going to make him experience failure today.
Zack would be able to do it, but he would not be strong without suffering through a failure. I wanted him to experience that today, so I ordered him to go through the monotonous training that even his older brother, Rod, had been so frustrated by.
Sure enough, Guy—Guy Jakes, squire of the Lockhart family, and Dan and Sharon’s father—His son, Dan immediately began to cry out loud.
However, Zack, and just like Hector—Hector Marlon another Lockhart’s squire, and Mel’s father—his daughter, also made it to the end.
And they both have talent. They have the potential to be better swordsmen than I am if they train hard enough.
And they showed such perseverance.
My purpose in life is to train them and to brighten the future of my grandson Zack.
It was really a good day.
When my son wanted to talk to me, I looked at my husband, Matt, and shuddered that the time had finally come.
When our son turned three, I noticed a sudden change in his behavior. He was a child who had always gotten a tummy ache, and it is normal for a mother to notice even the slightest things.
First of all, he became awfully tidy. He would clean his hands and body, and sometimes I found him cleaning up.
Then he started begging me to read him books, and he learned to read at an amazing rate.
As soon as he learned the letters, he started reading books by himself, and I guess I felt lonely missing him quite a bit.
I was surprised that he learned to read, but what surprised me the most was that he started taking care of Mel and the others. Until then, he had always been the one being taken care of, but if Sharon looked lonely, he would call out to her, and if Dan looked bored, he would put down his book and play with him. When Mel was hanging around him, he didn’t treat her like a nuisance like he used to, and he didn’t bother Rod and the others.
Yes, it was like a grown man looking after a child.
And when Zack said, “I’m a forty-plus-year-old adult from another world.”, we were surprised, but also convinced. I thought, “Oh, I knew it.”
My father-in-law seemed a little worried, but I wasn’t worried at all.
I was not worried at all, because I knew that Mel, Dan, and Sharon were pure little kids who were unquestioningly associating with my son. It may be common for adults to cheat on their children, but there was no way Zack could be a bad person since he spends every day with them with nothing to gain in return.
I looked at my son’s worried face and hugged him.
“Zack is my child. If he was chosen by the gods, then I must rejoice.” (Tanya)
Then I hugged him tightly and said,
“And I didn’t get any sinister intentions from you. So we’ve been waiting for you to tell us.” (Tanya)
Yes, you are my son. My precious son.
Sure, your soul is much older than mine, but that doesn’t matter.
I will continue to love you. And I will protect you. No matter what…
My son was chosen by the gods.
My wife Tanya looks at me like it’s a given, but I still can’t believe it.
It is possible that my son is talking nonsense, but a child of only four years old could not have spoken with such clarity and told such a bold lie.
But is this a cause for rejoicing?
He was born into a poor family in a remote area like the Lockhart family.
If he had been born into a wealthier family, he would have been given more freedom to study.
In fact, he read and studied alone but still achieved so much. If he had been sent to school in the imperial capital, he would have…
But it doesn’t look like he wants to do that.
He seems truly at peace with being in our home.
Then all I can do is give my son a chance.
He won’t need to learn general knowledge. He’s probably the most knowledgeable person in this village, or even the town around here, for that matter.
Then again, it is magic. Father said he would call Lydiane, but I think it is best to learn specialized knowledge at school.
The nearest school of magic from Rathmore is the Tyria Academy of Magic in the academic city of Doctus.
Admission is open to students from the age of 12 or so.
Zack would definitely be accepted, but he would need funds to study abroad.
The admission fee and the tuition fee. I have heard that the entrance fee is not so high, but that is what wealthy noble families say. Plus tuition and living expenses all the way through.
But my family does not have the funds for that.
From now, it will be eight years until I enter the school. As a father, it is my mission to save up enough money to pay for the entrance fee.
My younger brother is amazing.
He can study better than me without realizing it, and sometimes he comes up with interesting stories to tell me.
Finally, Zack became Grandfather’s apprentice.
He is five years younger than I am at nine, but he has been wielding a wooden sword for an hour.
I started training when I was five.
Even so, at first, when I showed a flicker of weakness, my grandfather would scold me and make me cry.
Sim’s sister, Melissa, was also doing her best, but Zack made it through without a single whimper or stumbling to his knees.
I hate to remind myself, but I think I was probably the first six-year-old to finish Grandfather’s rigorous training.
I couldn’t do it for more than a year. My brother, on the other hand, was four years old and had done it from day one.
I thought he was cute, but I didn’t really care.
But today I found out.
I am Zack’s big brother. I have to do my best not to lose.
From today on, I will not be weak.
As the eldest son of the Lockhart family and grandson of our revered grandfather, I will work hard not to be defeated by my brother.
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