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Volume 1 Chapter 3 – An Enrollment with Many Twists and Turns
Although humans defeated the sacred beings and became rulers of the world, those that were strong only existed in small numbers. To the majority of other human beings, controlling magic was still a difficult and dangerous skill.
At the same time, to avoid the abuse of magic, every country adopted strict laws to control the amount of magicians and the teaching of magic. Raising the requirements of entry was one of such methods.
Therefore, no matter the grade, any school teaching magic had strict requirements and expensive school fees to admit a student. Even a small inconspicuous school, like the one the Ouyang siblings studied in, charged as expensive as fifty thousand bronze coins for one term —— equivalent to two years of income from the Ouyang family.
If it weren’t for Ouyang Tao’s high income from his part time job, Ouyang Xue would never have had the chance to study magic.
However, high investments naturally yielded high returns. Once the studies were complete, a magician could be hired for various jobs, to receive high income. Furthermore, a graduate from a school like Augustus Academy could earn up to several hundred silver coins yearly. ( 1 silver = 1000 bronze )
This was also why Ouyang worked so hard to get into Augustus. With an income like that, her elderly parents would no longer need to go out to sea to fish and could enjoy their retirement. Her brother would also no longer need to continue to work at the shipyard. He could concentrate on studying and train to be a proper magician.
Now however, Ouyang Xue who should be celebrating her dream come true was instead hiding behind a small hill near school, sobbing.
She gripped the admission letter tight. Due to her excess use of strength, the admission letter had already been crumpled. She was eyeing one piece of paper —— Augustus Academy new student admission administrative procedures
The most heart wrenching thing was not because her dreams were shattered, but because her dreams were just in front of her, yet she could not grasp the opportunity. At this point, Ouyang Xue sobbed: ” Why…… Why is it like this…… Sniff sniff…..”
Elemental department new students required a deposit of ten thousand silver coins —— such an amount was astronomical to the people living in seaside village.
According to the explanation of things to take note of, if during the school term, a student dropped out, got expelled, or passed away in an accident, the sum will be fully refunded. However, in the event the student successfully graduates and completes two years of assigned work, five times the original sum would be refunded. If a student is unable to pay the sum on time, it would be taken that the student had given up their qualification.
It was obvious that the struggle to enter Augustus Academy was for money, and she had already been granted entry, but in the end, she was unable to enroll due to money. This was such an irony…..
“Despicable…… I already worked so hard…..” Ouyang Xue became irritated. For the examination, she put in all her effort, spent more than fifteen hours each day to practice magic and learn theory —— that was already all that she could do.
Now however, when she was about to reap her rewards, she was presented with such a difficult situation. She was not only sad, but also felt hatred growing inside of her.
From this rule, it was not difficult to see that Augustus did not actually care about money. It acted as a invisible filter, removing ordinary peasants like her from the school.
Everyone knew that the world was not fair. Similarly, magic wasn’t fair either. The privilege of magic belonged to the wealthy, and it could be said that it was the tool used to protect their benefits.
“Bastard……. Bastard! Bastard! Bastard!” The more Ouyang Xue thought, the more angry she became, the more hatred she felt, eyeing the points of note again. Then she suddenly lost it. She tore the letter in her hand. “What’s the use of keeping this —— !”
The letter of admission that was regarded as treasure just a while ago turned into a pile of scraps;torn away by Ouyang Xue, they slowly scattered away. However, she still felt unsatisfied, and conjured up a fireball in her hands……
“Oi, what are you doing!” A pair of strong hands caught hold of Ouyang Xue’s wrist, stopping her rash behavior.
Ouyang Xue knew this was not a stranger but her brother, Ouyang Tao. Only he knew where she would hide when she felt unhappy.
“Jeez, what are you doing? You still need the letter to report to school.” Ouyang Tao said as he bent down and start picking the pieces of torn paper. Ouyang Xue caught hold of her brother’s arm in an attempt to stop him.
“……” Ouyang Xue did not talk. She merely looked at her brother with tears in her eyes, shaking her head sadly, as if signifying that all this no long had a purpose.
“What’s wrong? What happened? Weren’t you just fine a while ago? Didnt you work so hard just so you could get into Augustus Academy?”
“Bro……. Bro…… I…… I…… Wuwahhhhh —— !” Ouyang Xue suddenly pounced onto her brother, crying even harder. She guess that her brother must not have read the points to note yet.
However, when Ouyang Tao opened his mouth, he startled her. “Don’t cry, don’t cry, let me guess, you were worried about the deposit right?”
“Ehh? Bro…… You read that?”
“Of course I read it. I also gained admission. At the very least, I had to read the rules, hehe.”
“Then……. Then……” Ouyang Xue saw that he was still smiling, smiling like how he normally was —— smiling sillily like how he normally was. See her brother’s smile, Ouyang Xue felt that she also received some of his positivity and stopped crying.
Subsequently, she realised she was hugging her brother initiatively. Although they were siblings, the bore no blood relations. She immediately turned red in embarrassment, pushed him away, and loudly said: “Then how could you still laugh!”
Ouyang Tao still continued to smile, and whipped out a piece of paper from his uniform pocket like magic and placed it in his sister’s hands. “Don’t worry, look what this is.”
“This…… This is……” Ouyang Xue looked at what was in her hands and her expression suddenly turned rigid. It was a cheque from the local bank, valued at ten thousand silver coins.
The money seemed as if it had dropped from heaven and without a doubt, it was very important to Ouyang Xue, but….. “Wait, bro where did you get this money? You couldn’t have….”
“Don’t misunderstand. This isn’t my money.” Seeing his flustered sister, Ouyang Tao immediately explained: “Actually, it’s about time I told you. All this years, our school fees were provided by a benefactor.”
“Benefactor? Wasn’t it the money you got from working at the shipyard?” Ouyang Xue blinked her eyes in confusion.
“Aiya, my small bit of income, at the most could only pay for our daily expenses. Actually, our school fees were paid by an engineer at the shipyard. It was just that he refused to divulge his name. That’s why I kept it from you. This time he specifically prepared the deposit for you…… Aiyo.”
Halfway through hearing this, Ouyang Xue angrily gave her brother a kick. “Bro, how could you be like this? Such a big matter you should have told me. At least let me thank him in person!”
“I already said, he refused to divulge his identity. What’s more, he already left the shipyard for other places.”
“What! You’re so silly bro!” Accepting another’s kindness for so long yet not having the opportunity to thank her benefactor in person, made Ouyang Xue felt very guilty. She was also angry at her brother’s indignant attitude so her small fists repeatedly punched her brother.
“Okay okay, if you want to thank him or repay him, wait until you graduate.” Ouyang Tao was still laughing until a sudden gust of wind blew the pieces of torn paper away. “Oh no, let’s hurry pick it up. If it’s gone we’ll be in trouble!”
“Ahhhh, hurry!” Ouyang Xue immediately reacted, and went to pick up the torn pieces of paper from her surroundings. Her anger also disappeared as quickly as the wind that came.