As of yesterday, the last civil servant probationary training day had ended.
A shocking incident occurred where the Saintess was attacked by a black magician, but fortunately, the damage was almost nonexistent and the incident was quickly settled.
Of course, senior civil servants, the imperial family, the temple, and the upper echelon of the imperial army would have begun to get busy with yesterday's incident, but it didn't affect junior trainees like me.
And so, it was none of my business.
After the end of the martial arts competition which marked the first day of the New Year’s Festival, there was a completion ceremony for the trainees late at night followed by a small banquet along with professors at the training center. However, due to the aftermath of the attack, the size of the banquet had been significantly reduced. I liked it because I was very tired and could go back to the boarding house early, but most of the trainees felt regretful.
It was natural to feel regret for not being properly congratulated, considering all the hardships they had gone through. However, if I didn't participate at the time, the ceremony would have been delayed and we would have been hectic taking care of the aftermath. So, let’s just be thankful for even these small congratulations.
Well, honestly, what can I do anyway! Now the only important thing was that I had a long vacation before getting my appointment and that I was buried under my blanket even though it was late in the morning.
The heat in the fireplace overnight had dissipated and the temperature difference from under the blanket, which was still warm because of my body temperature, was very pleasant.
All right, I’m going to stay in my blanket all day today.
Physiological phenomena could be controlled by superhuman physical abilities. If it’s urgent, let's take care of it with magic.
In my mind, no magic seemed as difficult compared to getting out of the blanket. If I get hungry, let's just eat cookies still in the pocket space that were enough for tens of people.
Mmm, I'll have to fill up on this kind of emergency food in the pocket space later. I think I'll need some snacks to eat when I don't want to leave the blanket. Now, let's go back to sleep.
I drew the curtains with magic and enjoyed the darkened room again and wiggled to get comfortable on the bed. Then, suddenly someone knocked on my door.
Knock, knock, knock!
"Den, what are you doing? It's already ten o'clock. You promised to hang out today!”
Is this Alice?
I wondered if I had made such a promise, but thinking about it, I did seem to have told Alice something like that to cheer her up when she was exhausted from preparing for the final exams and assignments.
"Den! Are you still sleeping?"
When I didn't answer, Alice knocked on the door hard this time.
Kwang, kwang, kwang!
"Den! Get up! We're supposed to go out!"
I don't want to get up. It's a hassle.
"I'm not here right now, so please leave a message after the beep. Beep-!”
"Hey! You're in there! You better come out right now!" Alice knocked harder on the door.
Tsk, I guess I can’t fool her. Too bad, Alphonso or Lisbon would have been fooled.
Despite it being a hassle, I was thinking that I had to go out, but my body crawled deeper into the blanket. The cozy blanket was really nice. My current blanket was not as easy to get out of as the luxurious latex blanket of my previous life.
I rubbed my face against the pillow, declaring surrender.
At some point, the presence outside had disappeared. It seems Alice had also given up.
All right. Let's stay this way for the day.
That was what I was thinking, but not long after, I suddenly felt a mana reaction outside.
Wait, no way!
"Den! I said, `Get up!’"
Opening the window, Alice and Yuria flew into my room with magic from outside the boarding house.
Wait, this isn't right!
"Get up! We're supposed to go hang out!"
Alice and Yuria pulled my lovely blanket and tried to take it away at the same time.
No! I tried to prevent it from being taken away, but it ended up being taken away.
Yuria was also a battle race, so there was a chance that the blanket would be torn if something were to go wrong.
Ah, was this how the mother felt about giving up her child when Solomon called for splitting the child in half?
It was very tragic!
What was more tragic was that in that scenario, the child was returned to its original mother, but these two had no intention of returning the blanket to me. It was an extremely unreasonable tragedy. Sure I did promise to hang out together, but I never agreed to have my blanket taken from me! It was like offering to give a pound of breast meat to a loan shark in Venice, but not agreeing to see the blood. It was clear that the court would side with me. But that this was not a court was another tragedy.
Ahhh, the issue is, do I sleep with or without the blanket?!
My poor body, deprived of the blanket, had been tossed out in the cold like a wrecked ship caught in a raging sea.
"Wait, aren’t you being too dramatic for just having a blanket taken away?”
Alice looked at me absurdly.
Ahh, look at that cruel thief's eyes. Look at those greedy, barbaric eyes.
It would be natural for someone who covets another’s belongings to not know how it feels to be robbed.
Alice pinched and pulled my cheek up.
"Just who is a greedy, barbaric thief?"
Shoot, it seems I accidentally let out my inner thoughts!
"Nuo, that's nuat... Ahhh, it hurts!"
Alice hmmphed and let go of my cheeks. Her hands were quite vicious.
"Hmmph, hurry on out. We are all ready except for you."
Alice opened the locked door and went out. Yuria gave a small wave and followed her out of the room.
"Come out, quick please."
Left alone in the room, I grumbled to myself.
"At least leave the blanket."
Phew, I had no choice but to change out of my pajamas and get ready to go out.
Cross-legged, Arcanta sat at the head of the cabinet meeting and looked out the window. The cold blue winter sky caught his eye, but it did not relieve his pent-up frustration.
Due to yesterday's attempted assassination of Saintess Hillis, the negotiation efforts by Crown Prince Zantes to have the Saintess offer blessings to the imperial family had disappeared.
Originally, the schedule was set to have the Saintess directly bless the imperial family at the plaza during the peak of the New Year's Festival at midnight of December 31 just as it became January 1. However, the Saintess’s activities for the remainder of the New Year's Festival were canceled. In addition to the political advantages from having the Saintess simply bless the imperial family, all the plans to use her during the New Year's Festival had been disrupted.
As everything related to the Saintess disappeared, Arcanta got a headache. However, the director of the Department of Ceremonies had life return to his face as he had much less work to do.
If Lupin had not appeared at the award ceremony of the martial arts competition and prevented the assassination of the Saintess and other damage, the guy who was being jubilant right now would have been having the hardest time. He hated the sight of that guy being so cheery. To be exact, he didn't want to see that face full of life when he was struggling to do his best.
However, at the same time, if there had been numerous casualties, Arcanta himself would also have struggled quite a bit from the aftermath.
Arcanta sighed and shook off the thoughts of the enormous political gains he could have gained. While feeling regretful, he thought that feeling sorry about something that was already lost was not fitting of a prime minister.
As Arcanta undid his crossed legs and sat down properly, the voices of ministers and chiefs of each department filling the cabinet conference room suddenly stopped.
"Now, let’s stop with the battle of nerves. Does anyone like any of the new recruits?" Arcanta asked while picking up the personal information document of the top civil servant trainees.
However, the ministers and chiefs could not carelessly open their mouths. It was because the prime minister was holding tightly onto their lifelines- budgets. Of course, next year's budget plan was already in place, but until the prime minister and the emperor put their stamp of approval on it, the budget could be cut at any time.
Arcanta knew no one would open their mouths. At this time of year, it was customary for the prime minister to choose a new civil servant first.
Arcanta smiled coyly and said as if he was helpless to do anything else, "No opinions. All right. Then ‘this time,' let's start by picking out new recruits for the treasury department.
The treasury department always said, "this time," despite always being the first to select the best recruits. Considering the rank of cabinet members, it was natural. However, saying it like that was an act of formality, a mark of respect for each minister, and an indication there was no superiority or inferiority.
In a bureaucracy, such formalities were more important than one would think. It was because each act of formality could become a shield in an unexpected situation, and prevent potential criticisms.
Arcanta had picked out the personal information documents of the trainees he had thought of first and was trying to put them on the desk so that everyone could see. But then a tackle came in.
Arcanta stopped what he was doing and looked at the man who had stopped him.
"What can I do for you? Adventurers’ Guild Director Glont."
It was Glont, the director of Adventurers’ Guild who stopped Arcanta.
"This time, our Adventurers’ Guild headquarters would like to pick first. Hohoho!” Glont laughed, covering his mouth with his left hand with only his pinky sticking out.
The cabinet ministers in the conference room admired him for daring to block the prime minister, but they also thought it might be possible if it was him and looked on.
Arcanta became a little nervous at Glont's sudden tackle. Glont was a man even he could not treat recklessly despite being at the peak of bureaucratic society. He was currently discharged from the military, but in the past, he was one of the three most powerful men in the empire, aside from the battle race. For reference, it was Bloody who filled the vacancy created by Glont's departure.
When Bloody had just been dispatched to the empire, he was the head of the Black Water Buffalo Knight’s Division working as a deputy directly under Glont. As such, he still had a close relationship with Bloody.
Glont currently still held great influence in the imperial army. It was hard to find anyone who did not admire him among the active generals and officers.
There were even funny rumors that said that if he were to request soldiers to immediately retire from the military and become an adventurer under him, he would be able to gather enough knights to be able to form a few knight divisions. Of course, it was a joke that couldn’t be laughed at from Arcanta's point of view.
In reality, it was clear that not only high-ranking knights directly under the imperial family but also the heads of knight divisions would request to leave immediately. If knight divisions were to actually be formed like that, they probably wouldn’t even lose out to the imperial knight division.
"Is that so?"
Even Arcanta owed Glont a lot, such as asking help in catching the Twelve Zodiacs.
As the prime minister forced himself to smile, Glont smiled and took out the personal information documents of two trainees.
"We would like to take these two."
Previous Chapter Next Chapter