Chapter 4: Megane-kun, From the Inn in the Royal Capital Nastiara to the Castle
“——mega, ne? Eh? Megane?”
It is the second day after my arrival at the royal capital.
Having arrived in the late evening, I was bundled off into an inn first thing.
I spent the night there, and now it is the morning of the next day.
Before I was even able to eat breakfast, the soldier bro who said he’d propose after getting home came to pick me up, then promptly escorted me to the castle.
Due to the early hour, the streets still seem a bit empty.
But I’m just amazed at the quantity and size of the buildings everywhere.
Last night, I was tired from the journey, I was brought directly to the inn, and I was even told expressly not to go walking about, so I had just eaten dinner then bathed then went straight to bed.
That is why this is my first time taking a good look at the townscape.
This is so different from my village.
The city is amazing.
By going down the wide road that connects directly with the highway outside the walls, we eventually arrive before a splendid-looking castle paved entirely with stone.
I’ve only ever heard of a place like this from children’s tales and fairy tales.
It feels so overwhelming to see it in person.
The soldier bro shows some kind of identification to the guards who are already standing in front of the gate this early in the morning, then he is allowed to pass through.
I follow along behind him.
With the guard scrutinizing me from head to toe.
I really am bad with people looking at me.
Almost immediately after passing through the gate, there are two people standing in our way.
One is a bearded ossan wearing top-quality clothes who looks to be in his forties, while the other is a pretty girl who looks to be two or three years older than me.
Ah, the girl is wearing glasses.
She’s my first megane person in the royal capital.
“Welcome to Nastiara Castle, oh child of a sublime Talent.”
So says the girl in welcome.
The ossan looks neither moved nor welcoming, and just stands there with an unreadable face.
Being welcomed with a smile is well and all, but the very fact of being welcomed out here means that I’m not allowed to step foot into the castle, right? Since we’re technically not inside the castle yet.
This place is literally just the other side of the gate.
In other words, this place isn’t indulgent enough to allow bumpkins inside willy-nilly.
Not that I particularly want to go in, though.
There’s probably a ton of people inside, after all.
Soldier bro tells the girl and bearded ossan my Talent.
Which brings us to——
“——mega, ne? Eh? Megane?”
Let alone a second look, both the girl and the ossan take even a third look.
“…… Eh, ‘megane’? By ‘megane,’ you mean glasses? Like those? Like these?”
The girl points towards the glasses that I’m wearing (‘those’ glasses) and the glasses that she’s wearing (‘these’ glasses) repeatedly for confirmation.
The soldier nods again and again upon being asked, confirming that their bewilderment is not misplaced.
So I’m going to get those faces even here, huh.
The girl and ossan, both of whom are surely people with great authority, are making the exact same faces as the villagers who watched my Ceremony of Determination.
This awkward air is also exactly the same.
“Wha-, what does that mean?”
Who am I to ask if you ask me?
I’m the one who is the most desperate to know what a ‘Talent for Megane’ is all about.
I’ve already made my peace with it ages ago, but the mystery behind it is only growing deeper by the day.
At any rate, it’s probably best to just show them directly.
The ‘Talent for Megane.’
I directly stick out a hand——then create a pair of glasses on top.
These are glasses.
The bearded ossan opens his mouth for the first time.
Unlike the girl, he seems calm, but I suspect that he’s even more bewildered than she is.
It is ‘megane’ after all.
“Eh? Eh? Are you giving them to me?”
…… I had no intention of giving them away, but if she wants them then I might as well.
She’s a megane comrade, after all.
Despite it having been only a few days, now I am also a splendid megane-user.
You may even call me a megane-man.
I nod, then the girl accepts the glasses.
She puts them on in exchange for hers.
“Uwah…… th-, the clarity is totally different! These are lenses of the highest quality……!”
I don’t quite get it, but the girl seems quite moved.
Now that she’s brought my attention to it, the lens of the glasses that she had been wearing do look slightly clouded.
Is that what’s normal?
“U~wah…… I can even clearly see Leoud-san’s pores.
These are amazing!”
The ossan looks annoyed at the girl’s delight.
Seemingly bothered by having it brought up, he’s covering his nose and mouth with a hand.
I myself don’t really want to look directly, but it seems that being able to clearly and vividly and distinctively see a middle-aged man does not bother this girl much.
I don’t know if this is true only for this girl, or if this is true for all females in the world.
“‘Megane’…… what a difficult Talent to make use of……”
Placing his other hand on his forehead, the ossan sighs heavily.
I personally love it, but I suppose this is the normal reaction from everyone else.
“——kun, stay in the royal capital for a while.”
I want to go back to the village soon, but have just heard something unbelievable.
“If my memory serves me correctly, I have never even heard of a Talent called ‘Megane.’ It is surely a very rare Talent, one that even this country with its long history has never come upon.
However, I can’t discern right now whether it is important to us or not.”
Which reminds me, if it’s honestly accepted as ‘a magical Talent,’ then the country would personally employ me, right? This is the interview to decide that, right? That, and ‘rare Talents.’
In other words, he cannot determine on the spot whether or not my Talent is one that is worthy of direct employment by the country.
That’s why he needs some time to discuss it with other people in power before making the final decision, is the general meaning.
I get it.
Judging by this super awkward atmosphere.
The bewilderment of whether to welcome me or to chase me away on his own judgment is so palpable as to almost stab my skin.
“I don’t mind staying for a while, but working at the castle——”
“That talk will be at a later date.
For today, just go back.
You, hand him funds for several days of stay.”
‘Working at the castle is something I have no interest in’…… is what I wanted to say though.
But without properly listening to me, the ossan just says what he wants to say, then drags the girl back into the castle with him.
Left alone with me, the soldier bro tells me ‘from today onwards, continue staying at last night’s inn.’ He hands me some money, then drives me out.
Ummm…… after being jostled by the carriage and coming all this way, this is my treatment? It seems that people in power treating country bumpkins unceremoniously really is true.
I have things I want to do in the royal capital anyways, so I actually don’t mind having to wait for a few days.
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