5 Chapter 4
Today, I looked at myself in the mirror for the very first time. I was finally tall and strong enough to climb up my mother's chair in front of her mahogany vanity.
I have a small nose, light, silky brown hair and purple eyes. I know it is very unusual, but I swear that my eyes are purple. I had my doubts at first, but my father in this world also has purple irises. Mines are a lighter shade of purple, though.
Perhaps the eye colors are different in this world since none of my parents' friends reacted to my eye color. However, they had fairly normal irises, even by my original world's standards. I hope I don't stand out too much because of my eyes when comes the time to meet other children.
Five years have already passed since I was born in this world. I dare to believe that these years I have spent here weren't wasted since I managed to learn the complete known history and geography of the continent we live on. I also have a general idea of my family's affiliation and origins.
At five years old, I am still not allowed outside the premises, which is becoming increasingly frustrating. Other children might just sneak out of the house alone in order to explore the city and all, but I have done no such stupidity. In fact, I am very well aware that I have no means whatsoever to defend myself if danger arises and that I am directionally challenged. I have absolutely no sense of direction, especially in this world where Google Maps isn't here to save me. Exposing myself to such risks is not my type of things to do. Some people say that being daring is an admirable thing, but in my situation, it is plain recklessness that would bring me no good. Because of that, I will not go outside without permission.
That also means that I am trying my best to convince my parents to bring me outside.
"Mom? Can you bring me outside?" I would ask while trying to make a cute face.
"Of course, but only in the garden, okay?" She would reply while smirking.
This dialog has happened not once, not twice, but thrice. On top of that, I made sure to ask her that question once every three months, which is enough for me to grow a few centimeters and for her to change opinion. Alas! It seems that all hope is lost.
The same could be said of my father when I ask him the same question. Judging from how submissive he is with my mother, I thought that I could, perhaps, convince him:
"Dad, can you bring me outside?" I would ask. " I wanna see you training sword but you might break things in the house."
"I can show you in the garden if you want, Grasshopper," he would answer.
"But if you go to the garden," I would try to threaten him. "You would destroy Mom's flowers and she will get really mad!"
"Good try, kiddo," He would laugh. "We actually have a training room in the house so your Mom and I could train together when it's raining. Wanna come?"
That made me give up on the idea of going out. Maybe in two more years, they would allow me. The fact stays that I am very bored these days. I have already learned how to read and write. I have already learned how to recognize countries and I have even learned all the important historical figures, dates and events by heart.
I have to admit, Chronus really made life easy for me. I remember everything. Every single thing that happened in my life. That includes every book I have read and every conversation I had in my former life. That also means that every word of the military treatises I have read are all stocked somewhere inside my memories. Obviously, that also includes the horrible experiences I had back in Prep college with Calculus and Organic Chemistry. I am trying to accept these bad memories as those of someone who has lived in another life completely independent from this one. Somehow, I managed to stop thinking about it.
I, a 5 years old child, will now go plead my parents to teach me how to fight. At some point in my former life, I have read that some knights in the Middle Ages have started training and toning their bodies at a very young age. If they can, I shall also do it. After all, I used to be in the fencing club back when I was in High School. Unfortunately, I never managed to win anything, but I have developed muscle memory of all my moves. What's more, I can just recall in my mind what my fencing teacher used to teach us. That means that even if my parents refuse to train me, I can still train myself using my fencing routine. Ideally, I hope that my parents accept to train me.
"Mom? Can you teach me how to fight?" I asked, hopeful that she would accept.
"Why do you want to fight?" She seemed surprised. "Who do you want to fight?"
"Maybe bad guys if they come to attack us?"
"Oh my cutie pie," she said with a weird voice. "You don't need to worry about that. Nobody will even dare attack us."
Those words carried some strange power. She was confident alright.
After that, when I asked my father, he wanted to know what my mother thought of it. Once again, I have failed.
Of course, that won't stop me from training on my own, but it is still very depressing. Thus, I started to jog along the garden walls every morning and swing a wooden sword during the afternoon. The wooden sword was shaped like a medieval cross-shaped sword, which made it really hard so swing using the saber techniques I have learned. At least I was able to comfortably train my footing and everything else that doesn't require a sword.
All this time, I am pretty sure that my mother was aware of what I was doing. I mean, she would see me sweating while exiting the training room even during winter. Curiously enough, she didn't ask me anything nor has she made any comment on it.
One day, she asked me if I wanted to go to military school and I answered positively. I also pretended not to know what a military school is in order to have her explain everything to me.
The military academy in the capital city of Grandall is called the "Königliche Kriegsschule" or the "Royal School of War." A child was admitted at the age of 12 and would be taught at the academy for the next 6 years to become an officer at 18. As the arguably best military school in the Eastern Region, the admission process is very selective. It was an examination divided into three rounds. The first was a physical test to see if the child is fit enough for military services. The child would then be submitted to a psychological test to see if he or she is psychologically able to become an officer. The final test was a General Staff simulation, where the children were divided into teams of three people and they were required to conceive an effective plan when exposed to a specific situation. According to my mother, this test was the easiest to pass, since they just wanted to know if there would be potential military prodigies joining in the upcoming cohort. Basically, most people passed the last round. After two years of general strategic studies, the students were offered the choice of joining five programs depending on their grades. The first one was the infantry, which was a sector that anyone could join regardless of their grades. The second one, the cavalry, required to have a minimum of B in horsemanship and passing grades for every other subject. The third was the artillery. One must have at least a B+ in math and passing grades for every other subject. Finally, the fourth was the Navy, which required above C average and a B in swimming. Finally, the last curriculum was for training non-combat officers, which required above-average grades in everything. After two years in their specific programs, those with the best performances can choose to join the Elite forces classes, which were the Grenadier battalion (infantry), the Cuirassiers battalion (cavalry), the Elite artillery battalion, the Marines Corps (navy) and the Engineer Corps (NCO). During their formation in the Elite classes, the students will be subjected to in-the-field training including but not limited to community work in faraway regions, rebel-suppression and mock battles with paint bullets (the paint bullets were essentially animal blood recycled from the cafeteria kitchens). After graduation, the cadets would join the Armed forces as Leutnant (2nd lieutenant) or Oberleutnant (1st Lieutenant). In very rare cases (1 in a thousand), a brilliant cadet would be given the rank of Hauptmann (Captain) or Rittmeister (for the cavalry). She ended her explanation by telling me that even my Dad has graduated as Oberleutnant and that he was superbly handsome in his uniform.
It was very weird how my mother knew this much about the Lacrimosian military school. I mean, she was definitely not trained there and should therefore not know as much about the academy. In fact, she explicitly told me she was trained on the battlefield since age 8 under the wings of top generals of the Laurelian General Staff.
"Mom?" I asked. "How do you know so much about the academy if you haven't even gone there?"
"Well," she said with an evil smile. "I have once sneaked in there as a spy and collected classified documents of the Lacrimosian Armed Forces. There was the curriculum stuck in there. By the way, don't tell anyone about this, okay?"
Obviously, I agreed to shut my mouth. I'm smart enough to know my place.
Even if the academy seemed to have a very diverse program, it lacked many important army units such as the Signal Corps or the Mountain battalions. The worst thing is that it did not form intelligence officers! Paired with what I have heard from Lady "Betty" and co., it was clear that training intelligence officers was the least of their concerns. Anyway, I still have many years before I will have to do the placement test and choose the branch I want to enroll in.
There is no hurry.
Let's do everything one step at a time.