Time flies when you're having fun.

I'll be almost five in a couple months.

Life's been good, the threat that is Hitogami still exists, but I'm no longer working myself into an early grave because of it. Nor am I worrying about my own existence. I have fully come to terms with what my lifes is, and making it my own.

Training with father on the yard during mornings, practicing with Roxy in the afternoons, ending with some night lessons, and ending the day with a slightly, and only slightly, fatigue body, having a good night's rest.

I can even take days off when things become too much, in fact I'm encouraged to do so, but overall life has been quite carefree that I have no need to do so

Swing. Clash.

…mostly…

Right now I'm sparring with Paul.

Lately our sparring sessions have gotten… 'intense.'

Intersecting blades, me and Paul are going through the motions as we strike wood on wood. Practice sword vs practice sword.

…I only wish he wasn't so competitive.

Strike.

"Ow," I'm struck on the shoulder.

"That's six deaths, four more and we'll call it a day," Paul voiced.

Yeah… Like a video game, Paul gives me '10 lives' while we're sparring and after leaving the '10th deathblow,' can I rest.

Consequently I can also rest after giving him one deathblow, but… that's a work in progress for the time being…

Can't I hit you? Please let me hit you! It would do wonders for my self confidence I mean. Don't you know… a father should let themselves get hit to boost their sons confidence. Right? Right?! Now just let me give you one!

How did I get stuck in this situation?

Thinking back to a few minutes ago, I was showing off to Roxy, my improvements on reinforcement magic(fake toki), and how I'll be surpassing swordsmen soon.

How I'll be a real powerhouse as a mage with some sword ability.

I did not notice Paul behind me.

He disagreed, and I'm not known for backing down. Sooo… here I am.

Clash. Clash. We struck swords once more again, and again, once from the left, another from the right.

It's heavy. Alright, time to up the difficulty.

"Trace on," I cast reinforcement. A green glimmering effect washes over my body, as the spell and toki interact. The reinforcement technique I developed has come along the way, rather than the Fate version I was going for, I got something closer along the lines of a forcefield, similar to that of Rwby.

It can only last around five minutes for now, but that's more than enough.

The glow dissipates, but its effects linger.

Oh yeah, I have Toki now.

I made all the effort to make a magical equivalent, because Toki was so hard to bring out, but I inexplicably ended up doing it anyway.

How? Uh-huh…

One day I just got hit by Paul over the shoulder, swung my stick in frustration, and in a moment of frustration, my vision went white my body felt like I was on fire, and in one powerful thrust…

Bam… it came out.

A 'that,' feeling came over me, similar to my reinforcement, but different, and I've been trying to replicate it since. I can more or less do it. I can activate my toki, a small piece of it, but… it's thin. It might as well be non-existent. It is an instinctual thing, so I have very little control over it, except for activating it.

In any case, it's a nice defense buff, when using it in combination with my reinforcement spell I actually have some semblance of a defense, so I'm not gonna say no to it.

That, and I grow green when hit.

Paul smirked at my invocation.

RIght… that…

Paul being the competitive pops he is, the moment he sees the green glow on me, decides to take it up a notch. All of a sudden the strikes get heavier, and his movements become faster.

That or he just likes showing off. Either way these spars get considerably more difficult.

Don't know if he's trying to strengthen my Toki skill or what not, but I need to give my body a little boost here and there to keep up.

His body starts zooming about.

Clash. Our swords collide, he hits my blade and my hand is forced upwards. I make some distance stepping backwards, reinforcing the step to get as much distance as possible.

Swoosh. Seconds later a swing comes at me, and I dodge. Can't afford to clash blades, I'll lose my balance, and 'die.'

Swing. Dodge. Swing. Dodge. Swing. Dodge. He's literally running circles around me. I can only see his figure for a moment, before I almost lose sight of it.

Clash. Dammit, we crossed blades. My sword arm is swung to the left, he comes from the right. He swings horizontally. I try to step off, only to get hit at the leg. I hobbled of into a retreat, and-

Strike. Strike. Strike. Strike. Break.

I didn't see the swings, but I sure felt them.

Four strikes land on my body as well as three glows, as well as what sounds like glass breaking. That is the sound of my reinforcement spell shattering.

I've been mercilessly beaten. Once in the head, two over the heart, and one in the stomach. My body shimmering green under the last strike, means the spell is over, as well as my stamina.

"My win again Rudy. I think you're lasting longer," he complimented? With a shit eating smirk on his face.

Please let me hit you.

"God dammit. Maybe if I-no that wouldn't work, sigh, couldn't you take it easy on me?" I asked

"I am taking it easy on you~"

"Riiight… that's why you were running circles around me?"

"That's why you were casting magic?"

"...I'm just leveling the playing field," I contended.

I'm four dammit! Almost five!

"Heh~ Rudy's so serious," he throws his arm over my shoulder. "Don't worry there's always next time."

That's true.

"But I doubt it." He stated. A grin on his face.

Honesty just explode…

Manipulating my use of mana, I freeze the moisture over Paul's back, and condense it, making an ice cube. Before letting it fall down his shirt.

"Eeep!" he yelled, a feminine scream coming out of him.

How cute. Now bye.

Releasing myself from his grip, I dashed my way to Roxy's sweet embrace.

Who the hell wants to smell like sweat anyway?!

/

"My muscles are sore," I'm groaning in an open field.

The ban might have been lifted, but I'm still not allowed to use healing magic on myself. Something about a relapse.

I can perform it on others, just not myself. If necessary I am to look for Zenith, or ask Roxy to help me out, but I'm not allowed to spam it like in the past.

No more magic therapy.

"Sure you don't want me to heal you?" Roxy asked.

"Yep, have to build up a pain tolerance somehow."

That and after my sickness fiasco, I have to take into account that magic isn't just an extra ingredient, but something imperative to the human body. Unnecessary healing might do more harm than good. The endorphins alone…

I was lucky my body didn't go through withdrawals. It's just a theory, but not worth finding out.

I am now messing around with Roxy(read: playing), one of life's few pleasures, along with a few other things such as helping Lilia out , helping out villagers, with grape stomping.

It is surprisingly fun.

Oh! And of course god-damned magic!

Have I ever told you how amazing magic is?

You're a wizard Rudy!

It's the best, and so comes my favorite weekend activity before I was so Rudy-ly interrupted earlier. I snap my fingers.

Magic practice, not study, practice, a.k.a: Let's see if we can make that fictional technique real.

After recovering from a mana exhaustion fever, my control has been skyrocketing. Earth, water, fire, wind, I can control the elements with ease. Well… within reason, I'm not summoning a typhoon anytime soon.

Wait a minute…

I stand up, and walk a few steps away from Roxy, earning some space.

"Earth," I stomped the ground. Rock burst from the ground.

"Water," I whipped my hands out, and water whips flow out.

"Fire," I turned them into fist and thrust to the sides, fire balls going in those directions.

"Wind," I performed a jumping roundhouse kick, and let the winds spin and carry me on the way down.

"I'm the avatar…"

"What are you doing Rudy?" A sweet voice called from behind me.

"Studying?" Playing.

"Is that so," says a floating Roxy, with her hands at the side. Doing her best Iron man impression, she has her hands at the side, creating a perpetual wind, keeping her up.

She's working on some flight magic we developed.

It took me a while to remember the concepts of lift, and drag, but we've developed an early draft for flight magic. Well we say that, but it's basically just gliding, lift-offs, and floating.

We're basically just jumping really high at this point.

There is another problem though.

I can see them.

She's wearing a skirt… I can totally see the underneath.

I don't know how I'll breach the topic, but I gotta tell her about it before she leaves and starts flashing the rest of the continent.

Alright, time for a magical experiment to revive a weeaboos dream, a.k.a: Rasengan!

Why?

Because it's the goddamn Rasengan. If you are reborn in a magical universe, and you're not trying to recreate the Rasengan, you surely aren't living!

I mean… come on… Rasengan.

If you come from the real world, and then find yourself in a world of fantasy, well why not fulfill a fantasy?

"Trace on," taking out my hand I imagine the winds swirling around, and then start, "Wind blast," I need some momentum to get it going and, then…

"Rasengan!"

"Nice wind blast," Roxy complimented. As she floated back to the ground.

Thank god she's not in the air anymore. Do you have any idea how distracting you are?

Ignoring flashing sensei, my control has really gone up and beyond what is normal.

The time before my sickness I was training every day, but was unable to see the results as whatever process my body was going through while exhausted, left me unable to see the results. I was always working with half a tank.

Thanks to it though, my dream to perform a Rasengan is still a possibility.

At the moment it's just advanced air compression. I've essentially made an air cannon, the low tech ones that throw t-shirts.

Hurray, I can now start my dream of lifting skirts in another world! As if!

"Well, at least it's visible now, so that's something."

The fact that I can see it means that I am gathering quite a bit of mana into that wind, so that's a plus. It's not the pure concentration of mana I want it to be, but I'll get there.

"Wouldn't that just make it easier for your enemies to judge?"

Oy, shut up sensei! Who told you to bring logic into this.

I glared at my teacher. "...can't you let me have one victory. Trust me, it will be great once I figured out all the kinks."

"Speaking of fixing kinks. Good job on the reinforcement, it's come a long way," she praised. "Although…" she puts a finger to her bottom lip. "Whatever happened to that other spell? Analysis, I believe. I felt that one had potential."

"Ah, I still practice it, just not around sensei."

She gives me a frown. "You're not sneaking in extra training are you."

"Don't look at me like that. I'm sure you would have noticed if I was pushing myself to my limits."

"That's true. Wait, so you have made progress?"

"Kind of, here," I reach out for her hand. "May I?"

She gives me her hand understanding my intent.

I put a finger on her palm releasing my energy into it. "Sensei's a mage so she can feel it right? My energy going through your hand. I can see sensei closely, her bones, her muscles. For example… here." I trace my finger up to her shoulder, and push a bit.

I say see, but it's more like echo location, or maybe it's an x-ray?

Regardless, I've gotten quite good at seeing someone's insides.

Sounds more gruesome than it is. It is completely safe, not dark magic, nope not at all. Definitely falls under healing. Probably.

"Mmh," a moan escaped her lips.

"Your muscles are a bit in a knot under the armpits. You've been pushing yourself flying sensei," I say with closed eyes, concentrating on the feel of my mana.

"I-I see," she says. "This will be very useful for healing-wait a minute! How exactly have you been training this magic if you haven't practiced it around me?"

Ah… oops?

An awkward silence came between us, as she gave me a cold look. I could feel the atmosphere literally cooling. I noticed her staff glowing as well.

Oy! What are you doing? I'm innocent, stop that.

"Like I said… if I were doing something like working myself to the bone you would know."

"But you weren't telling me you were still practicing it," she reiterated.

"..."

"I'll tell your mom."

"...massages…" I confess.

"...who?" she questioned.

"Lilia…"

"You're still at it," she puts a hand to her forehead as she shakes her head in disbelief. "I thought you'd have given up. Didn't she say, and I quote; 'Master Rudeus should pursue woman closer his age.'"

"She said I would be happier pursuing someone my age, not that I should pursue someone else. Besides, it's strictly medical. It's for medical reasons."

"Yes, yes. I remember, you showed me once. Didn't know you were still at it."

"Well, you can't argue with the results. Besides, I'm not the only one that's having romance troubles, am I."

"What do you mean?" She questioned.

"You know what I mean. I've been wanting to ask for a while, but who's the kid that's been stalking you lately?"

That's right, lately sensei has had a hoodie wearing kid following her around.

In fact…

"I can see them off in the distance right now," I peer into the distance.

Right now, I can very easily see the kid. Well at least I don't have to worry about them being a peeping tom if they're that far away. I doubt they could have seen Sensei's panties.

Probably.

"So, who is it?"

"I don't know," she said.

"You haven't asked?"

"Everytime I go to them they start running away."

So… definitely a child…

"...good luck?" I offered.

She gave me an impassive look, "why do I feel you're thinking something unnecessary?"

"Just your imagination. The magic is affecting your head, sooo… wanna catch them? We both know you can catch them if you want to," not difficult.

Sensei has flight magic afterall.

Hop magic?

"What do you want me to do, kidnap them, and ask them?" she retorted. "If he has something to say he'll say it. If not, then not. I have no time to entertain children."

"Hello there!" I waved at her.

"You don't count."

"I'm hurt!"

"You know what I mean!" She huffed, getting to her feet, and bending slightly at her break in character. "You're as much a child as I am."

"So I'm childish."

Her staff starts glowing, as she looks at me silently.

"I'll quit now," I sat down contently.

I'm playful, not evil.

"Good," she said, lowering her staff, and going back to watch me quietly. "What even is a rasengan supposed to be in any case?"

"Plot armor!"

She looks at me with dead eyes.

"I'm kidding… Please don't look at me like that. That hurts. Anyway, it's supposed to be my trump card. My…" I put a hand on my chin as I thought about how to explain it to her "...no chant, immediate use, advanced level magic, the size of my hand, and to be used for direct contact."

"...you're going to be a scary mage aren't you Rudeus?"

"I prefer eccentric~" I said, a small smile on my face. "Now then," I turned my side to her, as I steady my breathing and concentrated on the feeling of 'feeling' mana in my hands. "Rasengan, Rasengan, Rasenga…" I repeated my attempts at building that spiraling ball.

I will succeed, believe it!

Rather than a spherical ball of doom, it's more of a silvery wisp that blasts wind.

"...rasengan…"

Hmm, sensei's also giving it a shot.

"Harder than it looks right?" I said, not bothering to glance at her to check if I was right.

"Indeed, I still don't see the application for this. A conventional wind blast uses up less energy. Why would you even want to fight in the forefront anyway? Long range attacks are safer."

"Just trust me on this."

"I trust that you are too stubborn to change your mind now," she says, before redoubling her own efforts, and hovering once more.

Who's the stubborn one?

I'll have you eating your words soon enough sensei. Well, at least I have her here. Two heads are better than one.

Wait a minute… two heads?

"Hmm, why not?" I said to myself. "Hey sensei, can I have some help please?"

Walking off to her side, I pulled on her skirt gently, and brought her down to earth. I then went off on an explanation on what I wanted done. I wanted to cheat.

Swimming in my chuunibyou tendencies, I forgot that a certain character that I am mimicking technically cheated to bring it out.

Two people really are better than one.

"So, all I have to do is put in my magical energy?"

"Yep," I answered.

I gave her a short, but specific explanation of what I needed. She has more magical energy than me, so she's gonna be the tank, and I'm gonna be the driver, and 'steer,' this wheel. Putting our energies togethers, she is my shadow clone, the wind beneath my wings, and I'm the storm.

"Alright… if you say so, let's go…" closing her eyes, I can feel a cool feeling between my hands, as the illusory feeling of mana is felt between my hands.

I mimic her efforts.

"..."

Breath in… breath out… try to get in sync with each other as much as possible, and…

""Rasengan,"" we yell out simultaneously.

Roxy's energy rushes out of her like a dam hitting its release, and I struggle to give it form, concentrating on molding it.

Burst! It explodes on us.

An air bubble pops between us, and sends us flying.

"Well… success?" she questioned.

It definitely had more oomph.

"Yeah… probably…" I turned to look at my sensei for a moment. "Ha ha ha…" Before bursting into a fit of laughter.

Can't say what's particularly funny… I just felt like laughing at this moment.

"...ha ha…" a small chuckle comes from Roxy as well.

Success?

Well… who cares…

/

That was yesterday.

As fun as a method would be to spam the Rasengan together. I still have to find time to practice it alone.

It's not like she's always going to be around, so I have to see what I can do by myself.

"Rasengan," I threw a whispery wind to a tree by my lonesome. It scabs some of the wood's surface, but overall the tree is just fine.

Still have to keep it a secret though.

My family is still paranoid about me overworking myself.

Technically this might count as pushing myself a bit, buuuuut… come on… Rasengan!

I gotta hit while the iron is hot! Having a little better feel of what the Rasengan is supposed to be after partnering up with Roxy, I'm doing some private practice out in the forest.

As long as you don't stray too deep into it you don't need to worry about any monsters, and I have plenty of privacy. So everything is good, no soul around, and can practice in peace.

"Gasp-"

…Is what I would like to say.

"He's here…"

I didn't notice him because he was hiding behind a tree in the distance.

But I see him now. Roxy's little stalker.

"Well, this is new. I wonder what he wants."

Usually he sticks to just following Roxy, but it seems he's following me today. This is a change of pace. Normally when she and I split off, like yesterday, he usually follows her before going home, or wherever it is he does.

This would be the first time he's followed me.

"So this is what it feels like to be famous," I say to myself. "Hmmm… I should buy a hat. Now then," I look at Roxy's fan. "I guess I'll ignore it… I have better things to do. Rasengan," I chant. The winds gather, and silvery specks appear within the ball, giving it an appearance, if only barely. A hollow oppaloid shape takes shape.

Pop. It breaks. Like a bubble.

It's hard to concentrate, when I know I have an audience.

"You know what, screw it. I can have some fun after I've done some work, sooo~" I peek back at the hooded figure hiding in the trees, "let's have some fun~"

Well, since he's gonna screw around with me, let's screw back.

/

"Hey there, fancy running into you here," I pop right next to them.

"Eep!" he yelled?

Oy, that was a pretty feminine scream. Are you a girl?

Taking a look at our little guest, I look over their appearance closely for the first time. They are wearing a hoodie jacket, a size or two too big for them, shorts, and a plain white cotton shirt, common for this era. They're around my height, that would make them around my age, 4-6, seven if they're short, and… kind of feminine.

A… girl?

Always looking at us from afar this is the first time I'm seeing them this close.

It's standard for girls of this era to wear skirts, so the possibility that they were a girl escaped me.

sooo… not a pervert? Unless… Yuri?

Whoosh.

Regardless she dashed away from me. Most likely a she.

Now, now, you be like that, we're barely getting to know each other. Operation cat and mouse is a go!

Pervert, or awkward fan, whatever, I'm still going to chase you.

I jumped, and used some wind magic to carry me over the trees, easily over her head, and land in front of her once again.

"Hello again~ Did you meet my twin brother, he's about yay high-"

"Eee!"

She screams again and starts dashing away from me.

"..."

Okay… once more.

"Wow, we really gotta stop meeting like-" I repeat my game of hopscotch.

Only for her to run past me again.

…am I being ignored?

Kudos to her.

"…"

"Alright," I drop down before her again. "I get there's being shy, but at least," she runs off.

Really?! You stalk me and my sensei, get in between my magic training, and you're just going to ignore me?

"...at least banter with me dammit," I grumbled.

My witty banter means nothing if you don't banter back. We do speak the same language, don't we?

We continue our little game of tag for a bit. Her running around in the forest, and me hoping up and around again and again. At this point it's just a matter of principle. I will not be ignored.

Still though… the girl has a set of lungs on her.

Ironically, if she had built the courage to run past me, rather than turning tail and running away from me, we'd probably be out of this forest by now. Instead we've been running in circles.

Back and forth, back and forth, back…

It repeats until…

"Hah… hah…" She hits her limit. Breathing hard leaning against a tree, her hands resting against it, she's gathering her breath.

"You're done. Alright, let's talk I just-" I reach my hand towards her while I was talking, and grab her collar, before having my hand slap away.

She/he is trembling a little.

I'm annoyed…

"Alright, fanboy," I rub the back of my hand.

She slapped me. Roxy's little stalker actually slapped me.

"Mind telling me why you've been following me and Roxy for so long? You're an admirer? Wannabe student? Disgruntled lover?" I quipped, "Devil from her homeland? Or-"

They flinched.

"...well… that's something. Who are you?"

A little nervous, but standing firm, their leaning against the tree not saying anything. They don't look like they want to talk.

"Why have you been following sensei? What are your intentions?"

"..."

"Alright, I lift them up by the collar, "here's how we're going to do things little pervert, you are going to talk, or…" I will a wind beneath us, "you're going to fly. Choose."

They kick their legs in mid-air.

Don't underestimate my kid physique. You're light as a feather.

"...I… ed… alk to…" she mumbled something. I couldn't make it out.

"Well, speak up. I can't hear you!" I brought them down to the ground.

"...I just wanted to talk to her…" she said.

"And you're following me, because…"

"...I was hoping you could introduce me to her."

Ah… wait… talk? Sooo… not a pervert?

I let go.

"Talk?"

She nods her head.

"Really?"

"...really…" she whispered.

"...and that's it?"

She nods her head vehemently.

"Well… if that's it… I guess she wouldn't mind, but you gotta show me your face," I cross my hands in contemplation.

"No!" She grabs her hood holding it down.

Really?! You want me to do you a favor and you're not going to show me your face?! This is why kids are sooo-

"Ok, you're really starting to piss me off, when you ask for favors. The least you could do is show someone your face," I reach for her hood once more.

Slap.

Only for my hand to be slapped away again…

Why is slapping me a thing?!

"What's the big deal you're going to have to show your face eventually," I reach for her once more, and tug angrily at her hood, she struggles against my grip, but I'm being quite forceful, and won't be denied at the moment. A moment later her hood is flipped, revealing her face.

…her face… the face of a young girl… a young girl… with green hair.

She is…

I stare at her intently, lost in her features for a moment.

Looking at me nervously, her face is clear as day as I see her clearly for the first time. She has green hair, clear red eyes, elfish ears, and a very young face… a face that is looking at me with a little bit of fear.

Oh…

Seeing me staring at the top of her head in particular, she puts her hands to the top of her hair, pushing it down, and turning to leave, "I-I-I'm sorry for bothering you."

She runs past me with tears in her eyes.

Because of my bewilderment she escapes my grasp easily, leaving only her coat behind, still in my hand.

"I promise to stay away from you from now on!" Her voice carries in the distance.

I think about taking chase… but I'm not sure if I should…

After all… that was the heroine.

"That was Slyphy," I muttered.

It seems I just met one of the main heroines, and… proceeded to bully her. That leaves a bitter taste in my mouth.

I am what I should do.

"She left her coat." Still in a daze I look at the coat in my hand.

"…"

"I think I played enough…"

I could use a warm bath.