Ex Strongest Swordsman 239 (Self Edited) – Elf and Growth – Part 1

 

Elf and Growth – Part 1

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Sheila swallowed her saliva involuntarily. She held her fist and stared into those eyes, wondering what kind of words would return. She swallowed again and looked over.

Strangely, she had a feeling that the flow of time was slow. Although she was worried to be told something strange, that shouldn’t be the case. She knew that she shouldn’t be impatient, but it would be unavoidable to want an early reply.

However, the time had finally come to an end for her to be impatient. A mouth slowly lifted up on the edge at her line of sight. She looked at it with half joy and half anxiety, and waited.

Then…

“…Hmmph. I was wondering what that was. What a fool.” (??)

Sheila was stunned by the words told. Not only was he snorted. Wasn’t too much to say that even when she was prepared her mind to the point of dying?

No matter how much her brother, Joseph, said, there were good things and bad things he would say. She, then, glared at him.

“Hmmph, what’s with that face. Isn’t it a face that seems to be dissatisfied?” (Joseph)

“…It’s not entirely a dissatisfaction, but yes, I’m dissatisfied.” (Sheila)

However, no matter how much Sheila glared at him, Joseph didn’t take her words. The sound of a snorted nose rang again.

“Hmmph. It’s a fact that you’re doing something foolish. No matter how I say it, and no matter how many times I ask you to change, you don’t change.” (Joseph)

“…That’s not true.” (Sheila)

No matter how much he said it, Sheila wouldn’t withdraw her previous statement. It was a matter of course.

There was no way it was foolish. It wasn’t foolish because…

“…My growth is very important.” (Sheila)

“Maybe, that’s the case for you, but at least for the majority, including me, it’s something foolish.” (Joseph)

In the end, Sheila pouted her cheeks a little after being told something that made her astounded. That was why she whispered it wasn’t foolish.

She was sure that Joseph, who was a grown up, didn’t understand well. About how impatient she was…

“No, there was a time when I was about the same age as you, right? On top of that, it’s only normal that a child is a child. Of course you would object when it comes to something obvious. It’s only normal to laugh when you’re being a fool.” (Joseph)

What Joseph was saying wasn’t a mistake. No, it was as a matter of course when it was about the Elves. That was because the Elves’ children never said that they wanted to be adults.

The Elves were a race that had a long lifespan compared to the human race. And probably because of that, their values were unique compared to the human race.

The Elves didn’t like extreme changes. If it was a sudden change of a gradual decline, they preferred to remain natural enough to choose to be declining.

However, that didn’t mean they wanted to perish, of course. The previous example was too extreme, but if they could live, of course, they would choose that.

If not, the matter of the Forest God wouldn’t have happened. They would destroy it as it was without the need to seal it.

Just because they disliked extreme things, that didn’t mean that they didn’t accept the change itself. If everyday life became convenient, they could make magic tools and improve magic.

However, they stopped there. They didn’t think of something better or more convenient. When it got better or more convenient, they would be satisfied there. It was clear from the fact that they were still living in an inconvenient forest.

However, they liked it, and surely, that wouldn’t change in the future. Even if machines or something similar appeared in human civilization, they would still be living in the forest.

Anyhow, the characteristics of such Elves hadn’t changed since childhood. In other words, they would accept things as they were, and didn’t want sudden changes. It was normal that a child was a child, and even if they longed for an adult, it was unlikely to feel envious, and to think that they wanted it so soon.

Therefore, it was normal for Joseph to stop her words and ignore it. Rather, it could be said that this was very strange to the Elves.

“Hmm… were you influenced by that guy?” (Joseph)

Joseph brilliantly found the reason. There was no way he couldn’t get it…

“…That’s not it.” (Sheila)

“What is it for now?” (Joseph)

Joseph was staring at Sheila, and she gently looked away. However, that wasn’t a mistake. The word ‘influenced’ wasn’t correct.

It was just that Sheila thought about it a little. With the passage of time, everyone around her was growing steadily. Aina, Lina… and Soma. Even those people who attended the Academy like herself.

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It had been almost five years since Sheila met Soma and his friends. Sheila hadn’t changed at all from five years ago compared to those who were surely approaching adults. It made her feel like a remnant of the old days. The line of sight which used to be about the same height, had to look upward when she noticed it.  Sheila remembered the feeling of impatience there.

Still, or if it wasn’t just her, it might not have been so much. Perhaps, it was because of the Elf’s blood, Felicia was still a child even though she was older than them. Then, there was also Hildegard, who wasn’t a student. She hadn’t heard the details, but Hildegard didn’t seem to be a human race either. Her appearance didn’t change, and Sheila remembered something similar to relief.

However, that was it. Hildegard had begun to grow taller about a year ago. At first, Sheila thought it was just her imagination, but after a month, it was obvious. The height of the line of sight was different.

If she pointed that out, wouldn’t it be the case? Hildegard told her something like it was due to her slow growth, but there was no doubt that Sheila understood that expression. Hildegard feigned ignorance while understanding what Sheila meant, but… Sheila couldn’t point that out.

It would be different if Hildegard had shown a sense of superiority or a sign of bragging. On the contrary, Hildegard looked really happy there, and the rest looked a bit embarrassed.

Perhaps, it was because she could go with them without being left behind… and to do such a thing wasn’t inelegant. At least, Sheila couldn’t let that go.

And that wasn’t the end. Felicia’s height began to grow little by little, as if influenced by Hildegard.

Felicia looked really surprised when Sheila pointed it out. It seemed that girl didn’t even seems to be aware of it. Nevertheless, the face Felicia showed immediately after that was similar to Hildegard… Sheila thought that she was left behind.

It was just a matter of appearance. Like Camilla, it wasn’t uncommon for a short person to be short, and above all, Sheila was an Elf. Surely, no one would care about it. It was just that Sheila cared even when no one else cared.

It was a thought that didn’t seem like an Elf, but it would be true if she was told that there was an influence of Soma and others. On the other hand, Sheila didn’t hate herself now. Even if that didn’t look like an Elf… she wanted to grow with everyone and Soma.

If there was a way to do it, she would ask for it, and if there wasn’t, she would find it. When she stared at Joseph with such a determination, he let out a sigh as if he was amazed.

“…You’ve really changed.” (Joseph)

“…? Really?” (Sheila)

“Yes. I thought you had changed a little before, but not as much as this time. And that change shouldn’t be something that an Elf should be pleased with…” (Joseph)

A bitter smile was floating in his face when he let out a sigh again. It seemed that he was saying such a thing as if it couldn’t be helped.

“When I think about it, it was you who left this place, saying that you wanted to learn magic. At that point, I could say that you were weird enough… More importantly, you are the child of those people. I guess it is time?” (Joseph)

With a slight smile on his face, he immediately withdrew. Then…

“Well, in reality, there are ways in which Elves can grow. Moreover, it would be a problem if you are unreasonable and give me more headache. I’ll tell you. So, be quiet and listen.” (Joseph)

With a sigh, he continued talking.

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