Prologue: Kurt’s Daily Life
Vol. 1: A Vow and Golden Madeleine Arnold
I want to be the best pastry chef in the world. That is my dream. Even if I die, this wish will never change. Or so I thought… but I could never guess that my dream would still be the same even after being reborn. I died, then I was reborn as the son of a poor family in another world. However, even now, I’m still aiming to become a pastry chef. ☘ Under the showering morning sunshine, I wield a spear in an open space. Stab, stab, I put precise intention in each move. With my flowing strength and breath, I polish myself, scraping off the useless elements from each stab. I’m always training like sharpening blades. It was simply nothing but polishing myself continuously to become sharper, more flexible. Spear-training is the destiny of those who were born in the Arnold family. “Kurt-sama! I brought you some breakfast.” Around the time when I settled down, a lone girl came approaching. She’s my personal servant, a girl with distinctive silver hair and fox ears in the same color. I’ve always unconsciously thought of her as a child, but recently, she has gradually grown up to become a woman, which startled me. “Thank you. You’re a great help, Tina.” I take out a sandwich from the picnic basket that she brought with her. The sandwich is a simple dish made from rye oat bread and cheese inside, but I can taste the attentiveness to details. It’s delicious. Giving the finishing touches of a casual dish to become a delicacy is the hardest thing to do. Exactly when I felt thirsty, Tina already took out a water container, pouring tea into a wooden cup. The cool tea eased up my warmed up body comfortably. “Yes, today’s food is just as pleasant as usual. Thanks to Tina’s meal, I can always do my best.” I rustle her hair. The sensation from her silky hair and fox ears is truly pleasant. “Hmph, Kurt-sama! You’re treating me like a child again!” “But you’re still a child, right?” “A beastkin becomes an adult really fast!” I’m 15 years old, Tina is 13. Just as she said, beastkin grow up really fast. That’s why even though she’s just 13, her charms have become apparent already. “Because I’ve known you since you were so small, I can’t help but to always treat you like a child.” She wasn’t even 10 when I met her, merely a child at that time. Things happened, and now it has already been three years since I picked her up and brought her to my house. The thought of her growing up into this beautiful girl never passed my mind back then. “Well then, shall we go? Everyone is waiting.” “Ah, Kurt-sama, please wait for me!” As I walk away in quick steps, Tina follows me in a hurry. Let’s work hard today as well. ☘ I’m Kurt Arnold, the eldest son in the Baronetcy of Arnold. The Arnold family serves as a vassal to the Federal Empire. The territory of the Arnold Baronetcy encompasses a vast land in the northernmost border of the Federal Empire, but there’s a wide mountain range of backwoods region beyond. While the Arnold family protects the Federal Empire from monsters and enemies from the north, this fief’s livelihood comes from land reclamation and increasing harvest quantity. The population amounts to approximately 500 people, spread out in five villages. Being entrusted with the newest pioneering village, I’m leading around 50 settlers to advance in land reclamation. Last year, the first stage of the reclamation was finally done, as we crossed a field which could yield agricultural products. Growing wheat is the duty allocated to women and children. Right now, I’ve arrived at my destination. This land is still a mess. Weeds are popping up everywhere, while rocks are rolling about. We’ve cut down the trees, but there are tree stumps all over the place. We’re turning this into a farming field. Muscular men have already gathered to start working. These are the people of my fief of whom I’m really fond. “Oh, Young Master. You’ve arrived!” “Young Master, we’re saved! There’s an annoying stump that we can’t pull out at all!” “No, an injured person is more urgent! Please excuse me, Kurt-sama. That Abel has his arm nearly done over, would you please take a look at it?” These people rushed over in ragged breath as soon as my figure is visible to them. This is the front line of our reclamation duty. In the already reclaimed land, the women and children are growing provisions, while the men work to clear up more plots of land. I listen to each and every one of them, then sort the tasks in a priority list. “That tree stump is impossible for anyone else, so can you tie a rope around it? I’ll be aiding the injured person for the time being.” “Young Master, I’ll leave it to you!” “As expected, Young Master is really dependable.” The men who are proud of their strength are praising me one by one, leaving the stubborn tree stump to me. This slender, 15 year old me. There’s a secret to that. “So, where’s the injured person?” “He’s resting in the shade of a tree over there.” “Let’s hurry.” I follow one of the workers approaching a youth who leans on the trunk of a big tree. He’s pressing down a piece of cloth, which is stained by blood. “Are you alright, Abel?” “Kurt-sama, forgive me for being a burden. I think there’s hematoma.” “It’s alright. Injuries will always be a part of the job. Show me the wound.” Abel pulls off the cloth he pressed on his arm before, confirming the wound. It’s deeper than I imagined. “It seems like it must be stitched. I’ll stitch the wound.” “I’m really sorry to trouble you…” I open the first aid box that I’ve prepared before. First, I let him chew on a hygienic piece of cloth so he won’t bite his tongue. Then, I wash over the wound’s surface with a strong alcohol. I stitch the wound with a needle, then roll the bandage around it until it’s completely wrapped. “Abel, it’s alright to go home today. Until the wound is closed, take a three day rest. Don’t do any physical job or your wound will reopen. After about a week, I’ll remove the thread and re-examine it.” “I’m indebted to you, Kurt-sama.” Abel bows his head down. I was aware that people around me were staring at my hands in deep interest, as stitching wounds was something truly rare. As I finish the deed, everyone opens their mouths simultaneously. “That’s really skillful. The wound is deep, but he can stop the bleeding in a short time.” “Young Master is amazing. He gives appropriate instructions on the reclamation project and shows deep knowledge in medical treatment!” “From the tax gathered from everyone, we can eat proper meals. Doing my job to this extent is a natural thing to do.” With blushing cheeks, I speak modestly. Since it’s considerably dangerous, doctors won’t come to this kind of remote region. Even so, there are many people who are wounded on-site or due to their work. I’m doing self-studies so that I can become everyone’s strength, even if it’s just a little. If I can be useful, I’ll proudly do it. “Young Master, you are the only one who can say that, you know? The others, they can only squeeze and squeeze us to give them taxes without doing anything.” “Yet Young Master cannot inherit the title of the next Feudal Lord, huh?” “Hey, you!” The words that some people murmured in passing are being rebuked by the others. And the people who said they wanted me to succeed closed their mouths as soon as they said it. I laughed bitterly. …Most likely, my younger brother will succeed the Arnold Baronetcy instead of me. I have a crucial flaw and I can’t reach it with my own power. The reason why the last worker warned the other one must be about this. However, I haven’t given up. “Don’t mind it. I’m the one who understands it the most.” “But, Young Master.” “Speak no further. More importantly, let’s continue our job.” They’ve showed a bad attitude, then on the other hand, they feel bad about it. The air is tense. To neutralize the situation, we head over to the problematic tree stump. A rope is properly tied all over it. I slowly close my eyes, circulating my mana. …Mana, the magic power of the chosen ones. By simply letting it circulate, a man can strengthen his physical abilities or increase his self-healing power. Among the chosen ones, it seems a few of them will come out in the open about their ability to use magic. However, regretfully, I couldn’t reach that mental state yet. Confirming that the mana has reached the necessary level, I take the rope in my hand, then pull it forcefully. I can feel a strong resistance, but my strength can still increase as well. Finally, the tree gives out. There are loud echoing rounds of applause around me. I laugh proudly, and they respond to it. Today’s reclamation is doing fine as well.
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Translator’s Note: Yes, the name of the empire is Federal. (lol) Talk about confusing. Edit: Kitsune will be translated as fox from now on. ? The author only gave one term: “ryoumin”. It is literally “fief’s people”. To be politically(?) correct, I think it should be “serfs”. But it’s just unnatural to have in casual sentences, so I’ve been using “serfs”, “people”, “villagers”, and “worker” interchangeably. I’ll also do so in the future chapters. Another suggestion would be “settler”, so I’ll use that when it fits. Feedbacks are certainly appreciated, especially if you give a rating in NU~