Ascendance of a Bookworm - Volume 7 Chapter 3.1: Plans For Dirk
Volume 7 Chapter 3.1: Plans For Dirk
This chapter is updated by Unboxbee.com
Dirk was at risk of dying anytime if his Devouring was severe, he would need a mana tool to absorb his mana. I wanted to do the most I could for him to survive.
“Lutz, can you help me with something? I need you to get some tauw fruits from the forest. They can be stored in the soil area of the workshop’s basement, right?”
I asked for Lutz, who was in the workshop, to come to the second floor of my chambers. I whispered my request to him because I didn’t think it would be wise for a noble like Damuel to learn about tauw fruits.
I gestured towards Dirk with my gaze, Lutz gave a slight nod to my request and quickly left for the forest. He sort of understood the circumstances from my expression. We could prevent Dirk from dying from a mana outburst if Lutz returned with them.
“Sister Myne, the High Priest has approved the meeting.”
Fran rushed back panting. Apparently Arno and the High Priest didn’t seem pleased at having to have two sudden meetings on consecutive days, but they couldn’t turn a blind eye to it. I needed the High Priest to determine if Dirk really had the Devouring and his current state so we could take premeditated action.
“I don’t think we can hand Dirk over to Wilma today. We have to bring him to the High Priest’s chambers. Fran, please carry him.”
I wanted to bring Dirk along since he was the subject of concern, but Delia clinged onto him protectively and Fran shook his head at what I said.
“Sister Myne, we are not allowed to take a orphan who has not been baptized outside the orphanage.”
My chambers were still considered a part of the orphanage because it was still in the same building, but it differed for the High Priest’s chambers. It had completely slipped my mind that bringing the children to the forest was supposed to be kept confidential. It had only occurred to me that the children had been kept in the orphanage so that the blue priests did not have to see them.
“…I intended to bring Dirk along because I thought it would be better, but I guess that is not a good idea.”
Like always, Fran and Damuel accompanied me to the High Priest’s chambers. When we entered, we were greeted by the High Priest’s annoyed questioning, “What’s going on now?”
“I would like to discuss a very important matter. Will it be fine to discuss it here?”
I muttered out the last part and gestured towards the hidden room with my eyes. The High Priest gave a perplexed look before taking out the sound-blocking tool. I took it into my hand.
“Is this matter that serious that you have to be this cautious of your surroundings?”
“…Yes, that’s right. It’s Dirk, the baby from the other day, he might have the Devouring.”
I recounted what I saw that morning, and the High Priest responded with a troubled sigh,
“The severity of the situation would depend on the amount of mana he possesses. But based on the symptoms you have described, he likely has quite an amount.”
“So he really has the Devouring?”
The High Priest nodded with a grim face and tapped against his temple with his finger.
“He will need to enter a contractual relationship with a noble, the earlier the better.”
“He won’t live long if he doesn’t do so.”
I clenched onto the mana tool. Signing a contract with a noble meant that your life would be in their hands. Your life depended on their mana tools, and in return, you had to work for them like a slave. You would basically become a living mana generator for the noble for the rest of your life. The very thought of Dirk, who was close in age to my baby brother, having to go through that, sent a shiver down my spine.
“High Priest, is it possible to make him into a blue robe priest and offer mana like me? Or perhaps find him a noble adoptive parent?”
“Raising a blue priest from infancy to adulthood will require a hefty sum. Who will be willing to do that?”
As a fellow blue shrine maiden, I was more than clear on how expensive it was to live like one. Even with the income from the Myne workshop, I was near bankruptcy having to prepare my things for the winter. Everything from clothes, shoes, etcetera was exorbitant.
“You could get by as a blue shrine maiden because you have a workshop on the side, but would that be possible for a baby orphan?” the High Priest lectured.
“Or are you intending to raise him alongside yourself? Would you spend that much for a baby with no blood ties with you? Will your family accept that? Even if you could, wouldn’t others accuse you, the orphanage director, for being biased towards an orphan?”
I didn’t tarry at that. Forget about being in trouble for showing favoritism to an orphan, I didn’t think it was even possible for me to cover both our expenses for life. I wanted to help him, but I was helpless and weak. I sat in dismal silence. The High Priest saw my dejected spirit and took an edge of his voice.
“To have a noble adopt him will require the archduke’s direct approval. I cannot churn up an adoptive parent for him this sudden. You were a special case because of your sheer mana, exceptional sense for business and knowledge from another world. You were adopted by an archnoble because of your assets to the city,” he explained.
He basically told me that strings were pulled behind the scenes for me to get adopted by Karstedt. The High Priest had put himself in a risky position for me.
“Myne, the baby is a boy, right?”
Oh yes, we didn’t know the baby’s gender when I last spoke to the High Priest. He figured out his gender because I addressed him with ‘he’.
“That makes the situation much more tricky…” he shook his head slowly.
“I have told you before that a child’s mana potential is dependent on the maternal side of the family. A female baby is more likely to be adopted, the noble will try to label them as their real child and marry them into a political marriage as a pawn.”
I nibbled on my lower lip. Most of my memories were that of Urano, so I didn’t look favourably upon things like being forced into a political marriage and slave-like contracts.
“Given the mana shortage, a noble might choose to adopt him, but I cannot determine his chances until I know exactly how much mana he possesses. Well then… How about tomorrow’s third bell? I will visit your chambers with a mana measuring tool. Would that be fine?”
“Yes, please.” I gave my reply and returned the sound-blocking tool back. But the High Priest pushed it back into my hand.
I was confused why he did that, perhaps he wanted to speak about something else.
“Myne, does anyone else know about this baby’s Devouring?”
I dug through my memories. I was sure that none of my attendants were well-versed about the Devouring. Even Fran could not recognise that Dirk’s symptoms were that of the Devouring. Lutz probably made a wild guess since I had asked for some tauw fruits while looking towards Dirk. Anyways, I was confident that my attendants were unaware of it.
“I believe that I am the only one who has fully realised that Dirk keeps burning up because of his Devouring.”
“Well then, keep this to yourself. Take extra caution to hide this from the High Bishop.”
That would mean I couldn’t tell Delia that Dirk had the Devouring (she couldn’t inform the High Bishop if she remains in the dark). I didn’t feel comfortable hiding things from Delia, especially since she cared for him so much and truly wanted to be the best sister for him.