One week had passed since the bandit’s attack.
I had spent everyday looking up at the Aluminare from my bedroom’s window.
Even though I said that, it was because of that incident that Papa sentenced me to a severe punishment.
I’m grounded for 2 weeks.
Dammit, not just from going to hunt in the forest, I was not even allowed to leave the house. I was supposed to be a valuable manpower in the village. But I did something drastic that they are not letting me out of the house. Well, considering that there was no opposition from all the other villagers, it might be a reasonable decision. Anyway, I wanted to enter the forest to go underneath the Aluminare in the first place, but now the Aluminare was left to Don at the village plaza.
I’m gonna polish the armor daily after my work will be done, and I intended to fix all the parts that needed fixing.
Heh, thinking about it again, I haven’t really repented at all.
By the way, the thieves that were unable to escape were restrained and isolated into the village hut. Since even the minimum amount of water and food were not given, they should be at a level were it would be difficult to even stand up. Oh well, they had it coming.
“I have too much free time after all”
Speaking of things I have done while in the house all day long, I prepare the food and do the cleaning. I wasn’t even permitted to do the laundry as I will have to go out to the garden.
I wanted to go out into the garden as a change of pace, but my mother’s smile was scary.
Honestly, it was the first time I ever thought of my mother as scary…
And then, there was a knock on door of my room.
“Eldo-kun, long time no see”
“Oh, long time no see”
It was Anjou that came over. Anjou was grounded for 1 week, but it was lifted today.
“Already done with work?”
“Yeah, I was only harvesting today, I finished everything in the morning”
“I see. Aaaah, I also I want to go outside soon”
“You still have one week left. From this day on I will also come here, aren’t you a little bit distracted?”
“Well yeah. This week was hellish.”
On the day the bandits attacked. I received a preaching right off the bat until sunset and collapsed from fatigue.
I was asleep for the whole day, when I woke up, Mama was crying aloud again and I received another unreasonable preaching from Papa saying that “If you’re in pain just simply tell me you’re in pain”.
To be someone that is able to say to Papa “Just leave it because he is pain” in those circumstances, wouldn’t be bad.
That next day, Mama’s maternal instinct exploded, I was not allowed to get out of my bedroom. While looking at the trees outside the window and thinking “Oh, I wonder if my life will already be exhausted after all the leaves fall” and so forth, I had no choice but to pretend as a sick person. By the way, it’s spring so the trees are lush and full of leaves.
I was killing time by doing meaningless things, by the 3rd day I was already of thinking of going out, that was an ordeal.
As I thought that I could finally touch the Aluminare, I felt the brunt of being grounded. My despair was tremendous.
As I collapsed on my knees in that situation, I gradually ended up crying.
Papa was surely a cold-hearted person since his son’s tears wasn’t effective at all.
“Aaaah, I want to quickly touch the Aluminare. I mean, there might not be an opportunity to touch it anymore”
“What do you mean? It belongs to Eldo-kun and once you’re not grounded anymore, shouldn’t you just use it as much as you like?”
“Well, I can’t really do that. Maybe if they are fast, this country will confiscate that machine in about one week”
It’s been one week from the attack of bandits. Given this much time, the information that a black Aluminare appeared in this village should had arrived in the royal capital. And it shouldn’t take a week if the a military unit had an available machine that had already been maintained. After all, the target was a bandit that owns an Aluminare. This country shall also earnestly come to subdue them. And once they arrived at this village, they’ll only find one broken Aluminare. In addition to that, they’ll see that this was a machine from before the north-south civil war since it had the Fortran Kingdom’s crest. It will certainly be confiscated. When that time comes, I hope there is a chance to say something as the current owner but if I am careless they might only confiscate the machine without arguing about it.
The expected time period the army will come, will be around 2 weeks since last week.
“Really!? But that’s something Eldo-kun worked really hard to repair on!”
“Well, it is indeed true. But, they’ll make it clear that they were the original owner”
I just repaired selfishly an object that fell, as for where the sign of ownership is, it was clear from the emblem drawn on its chest.
“Therefore, If I am careless the opportunity to touch it would soon disappear.”
With that said, due to my fight against Felouche the fuel remaining was almost at the bottom. Just as I got to ride it, I wasn’t able to operate it as much as I want. Various parts and joints have gone back to red. And to fix them, how many years would it take?
“Then will you give up?”
“No way in hell!!”
I looked up at the Aluminare visible from my window, and shook my head.
I finally found a robot after great pains and suffering. I shouldn’t give up.
“I feel bad to my parents but I intend to become an Aluminare pilot. That’s why I will leave the village”
“Eldo kun, you’re gonna leave the village?”
“Yes. That’s why you need to spend some time thinking about your future.”
“What do you mean?”
Anjou anxiously tilted her head to the side. Her eyes were like an abandonned puppy.
I gently patted her head in order to reassure her.
“If I am gone, there won’t be any guy in this village anymore that is in your age group. If that happens, wouldn’t you leave the village too and look for a husband, It’ll turn into a matchmaking trip”
Anjou is a descendant of the village chief. They cannot afford to let her lineage disappear. And, if it’s inevitable reel in her future husband from anywhere. If it is needed.
In fact, Anjou must consider wether she would like to marry the son of a merchant or some young man from a village somewhere.
“No… No way! I mean, because I..!”
As Anjou tried to say something and tears were accumulating in her eyes she jump out of the room.Even I, could roughly guess what Anjou was trying to say. For fifteen years we’ve been showing our affection to one another only as childhood friends. That honest feelings made me happy.
But since I trying to become an Aluminare pilot, it would be very dangerous to tag along.
The Aluminare will be constantly thrown into the frontline and will be the one in charge of the most dangerous spot on the battlefield. For a man that’s trying to become one, shouldn’t be expected to get a wife.
Before going to war, the pilots will erect a magnificent flag to have some important stories to tell when they return. And I’m sure I will feel this way, I didn’t think as someone who lived in Japan would realized this.
Although It will be a valuable experience, It wasn’t something that I’d want to experience.
I look up again at the Aluminare, I was thinking about how to convince the army.
After five days, they came earlier than expected.
As I was eating lunch at the table, the water inside the cup was shaking. I immediately realized that it was not an earthquake, since I clearly remember the fine shaking rhythm.
“Did they come?”
“Eldo-chan, what is coming?”
Probably because she was working in the kitchen, Mama didn’t seem to notice the shaking. But it suddenly became very noisy outside, her behavior was showing that she is paying attention to what is going on there.
“It’s the National Aluminare Corps. I thought it was about time.”
As for mother, I’m pretty sure she remembered about that black guy. Since her gentle facial expression will become stiff. Because it was similar to when the bandits also approached us, disguised as the national army. Well, it’s natural to be vigilant.
“It’s okay. This time they are the real one”
I replied to her after I saw the machines coming in near the village entrance from the window.
That machine was silver coated, and the complete picture of the kingdom’s crest of a double-headed lion can be seem on its chest.
“Is that so?”
“When I heard the news that the black guy appeared, I came here running. Even though I understood that timewise I wouldn’t be able to make it in time, if an Aluminare appeared I couldn’t afford to not do anything”
“I’ll go take a look at the situation. Eldo-chan, don’t get out of the house.”
I was bitterly smiling as I send off Mama. She especially doesn’t need to hurry. As long as there was someone that was open to a discussion, I’ll definitely receive an invitation from them.
I gazed at the kingdom’s Aluminare from the window while eating my lunch.
After all, It really was beautiful. Both arms are maintained properly with few dents was mostly clean too. Probably, it’s a machine that just had maintenance done on it.
That machine was probably just recently maintained.
It’s appearance wasn’t that much different from my machine. Was the aluminare related technology hasn’t advanced much after several decades?
Well, I don’t know what was inside it.
As I observed the Aluminare, Mama came back just like that.
“Welcome back. It is the real thing right?.”
“Yeah, the Village Chief said that it was the real thing. I just talked with him at his house.”
“Oh really? Did he said anything about my machine?”
“There’s a soldier that wants to talk with you about that”
I made a victory pose in my mind.
“Yes. Although you’re still going through your punishment, I’ll make an exception, since you were called by a soldier”
“Okay. See you later”
“Wait, I’m going too”
As I was about to go there alone, Mama also came with me. Well, Dad had left in order to hunt, since she’s the only one remaining, I wonder if she was feeling lonely. Breathing fresh air after a long time sure was delicious. When I felt cramped, I used to open the window to at least clear the air in the room.
But still, only a place without any roof can make you feel comfortable.
As I suddenly started to stretch my body, my mother urged me to hasten. Well, it wouldn’t be too good to let that soldier wait either.
We arrived at the Village Chief’s house with somewhat quick steps.
Come to think of it, was Anjou alright?. We didn’t see each other since I said that I’d leave the village. I was only natural that we haven’t seen each other since I can’t go out of the house and Anjou hasn’t came by to visit. I hated we had something like a lover’s quarrel. Other villagers were also gathered at the Village Chief’s house, peering inside with growing curiosity. Nevertheless, since the door was tightly closed they cannot see what’s going on inside. I wonder if I would hear about the situation since I was invited in.
After knocking, I entered the reception office.
Since Mama wasn’t invited, she waited outside.
Although it was called a reception office, since we are an agricultural community in some remote region, there wasn’t any luxury furniture nor fine sofa. The desperately scraped furnishings, the lined up books. And after the cheap pictures brought by the peddlers were decorating the place, there was just a somewhat large table in the center.
All the people gathered on the table looked at us.
On my right side was the Village Chief. And on my left side, those two might be the soldiers that arrived. Their uniforms looks like a male school uniform with white as its basic tone. There was a large difference compared to the bandit’s armour.
“Village Chief, did you call me?”
“Oh good, you came. Sit over here.”
I sat right next to the village chief like I was told.
“This is Eldo, the child that was piloting that Aluminare”
“Nice to meet you, I am called Eldo”
Along with the Village Chief’s introduction, I also did a quick bow of the head. In such occasion, first impression was the most important thing. If I want to enter the Aluminare Corps referred to as the nation’s honor, I must properly watch my manners.
If I made a bad impression here, my plan will be ruined.
“So you are Eldo-kun? You are indeed a clever boy. I’m Rogvell Bodouin, captain of the 31st Aluminare Corps”
“Similarly I’m O’Reil, the executive officer and chief mechanic”
Both of them looked to be about thirty. I knew they had good quality mascular body just by looking at their uniform. Captain Bodouin was a noble just by the fact he had a last name. With close-cropped blonde hair on his square shaped face, we definitely had a soldier in here. On the contrary, the man who called himself O’Reil had ruffled hair and his face was unshaved, rather than the military he gives a strong impression of a mechanic from a workshop. he claims to be the XO and the chief mechanic, but he’s more likely to be a mechanic. If it was the modern era, his nickname will certainly be “Dwarf”.
“I surmised that you want me to tell the story.”
“Oh, we already roughly heard about the bandits from Village Chief but we would like hear things about that machine. I was surprised to hear from the Village Chief that you are the most knowledgeable one.”
“Whoa, was that machine from the time of the civil war? Where did ya find it? Even though ya found, it woulda been impossible to move it in the first place. Hell, were ya the one to fix it?”
“Well, what should I answer first?”
“Calm down O’Reil. I understand you’re excited as a mechanic, but if we don’t ask in turn he won’t be able to understand anything.”
“Oh… alright… S’rry”
The XO was remonstrated by the captain, he apologised while roughly scratching his head. Aah, his already ruffled hair had became more messy.
“No, it is I who should say so. For the time being, should I tell you in a chronological order starting from where I obtained that machine?”
“Oh, please do so”
Since the captain nodded, I began to talk from that moment eight years ago where I found for the first time the Aluminare.
By the time I finished talking about the last eight years, the sun was already going down. By thouroughly talking about the way I repaired the machine, it might not be a mistake after all.
While the Village Chief showed his usual gentle looking smile, his eyes were squinting with happiness.
Well, The captain and XO should still understand my passion for the Aluminare.
“I see, I was able to understand the gist of it. I wouldn’t expect the machine to be repaired to the point where it could feasably be in working condition. In addition, you thought about it when you’re just an eight year-old child.”
“And with such a machine he was able to drive away a de Liverpool’s machine, you’re quite a boy”
“And, what will happen to that machine?”
It’s time we cut through the chase, after I told them all I knew. The real game starts here.
“Hmm, if it’s possible we would like to bring back that machine”
“That’s a good idea. The generator is a high ranked item that exceeds high-class items. It is equivalent to building a royal castle to make one. We would like to recover it by all means possible”
Although I heard it was a high-class item, Didn’t expect tha it was comparable to building a royal castle. It seems they cannot mass-produce it because of that.
However, the captain did say that he was from the 31st Aluminare Corps, it meant that at least 31 machines had been deployed in this country. And the 32nd machine was right here. They would obviously want to get it.
“But when I heard how much passion you had poured into that machine…”
“At this point, I feel a little bit awkward about recovering it”
Well, my job-hunting interview in a form of self-appeal seems to be rather effective.
“Then, I just have one request.”
“Hmm, as long it is within our ability to grant, we’ll listen”
“I’d like you to recommend me to a pilot training academy”
“Ooh, the Academy? If you could enroll through recommendation, you’d certainly have various preferential treatments”
“Using that Aluminare as a compensation, isn’t it too generous? If it were me, I would at least ask to be let into the order of knights”
I was certainly going to ask them just that af first. But, I changed my mind when I learned about the structure of the SENSE BOARD and some magic concept. There was so much that I don’t know just from the Basic Introduction textbook. As a formal knight that will be assigned to an Aluminare Corps, there are still lots of things I must know and study about. And I do not know any sword skills nor knew any etiquettes. I decided to hope for a recommendation to the Academy in order to know all of it. Besides….
“it’s because I am still immature. And that machine, it might keep its appearance but in its present condition it cannot move ”
“Is that so?”
“On top of the terrible damage from fighting, the remaining High magia Liquid is almost zero. But it will be able to start-up but lauching it is definitely impossible”
Moreover, each of the joints are also tattered. Honestly, except for the generator it will not be able to even walk if you do not replace all the parts with new ones.
“Indeed, when we bring it back we would also have to look into that. There’s need for us to stay in here for awhile. Although, mr mayor, I apologize.”
“No, no, we might have a small house, but please feel free to use it. Let us help you prepare a room for your troop.”
“I’m sorry for the inconvenience . So as I said Eldo-kun”
“We’re the best one you could ask for the aforementioned recommendation. Since the country seeks excellent people such as you. However, do you have your parent’s permission?”
“No, not yet”
“If it’s from receiving permission. Certainly at the age of 15, it may be the time one is thinking of walking alone on the road but it is still a time for receiving one’s parent teaching. While we are staying here, properly get permission from your parents. Once you’ve done that, I’ll try to recommend you to the Academy. ”
“Understood. Thank you.”
I deeply To lowered my head. While my face was full of smiles.