31 Chapter 31 Training
Joseph started on missile emission immediately after breakfast. The day went by fast. Stella was in and out pretty much all day, doing some series of exercises that he had thought would be very distracting at first, but his single minded kicked in and he wasn't bothered at all.
"We will be swapping out the guards in the convoy at the next town," his father informed him at supper that night.
"Why?" asked Joseph.
"It allows all of my married slaves an opportunity to spend time with their families. And all of my slaves need an opportunity to train, even if they don't have families," William explained.
"I reached basic proficiency with area emissions," he reported happily.
"Really? That's awesome!" His father was as excited about it as he was. "That's almost more impressive than gaze! Just be careful not to let anyone see you! Even my mages don't train like that. Honestly, I don't remember hearing about any mage training like that."
"I can't wait to get back to Selena. I want to show her how to do this to see if it helps her get her eyesight back."
"I wonder how I'm going to keep her gaining her eyesight back from the local nobles. They will want to snatch her from me if they find out. And I won't be able to stop them since I don't have a noble title."
"I'm just excited to see what she can do if she figured it out. I wasn't practicing this stuff when I first met her."
"Well, I'm working on keeping things calm with the war tensions rising. It's almost like someone is egging the kings on, like they want the war to start. It's been very frustrating with all of the messengers constantly coming, requesting some kind of resolution to a problem I never had anything to do with."
"Does someone want you in trouble?" asked Joseph, a little worried.
"Oh, there's plenty of people who don't like my success, but I'm not sure who is causing this. It doesn't really matter, anyway, I have several favors I can call in if it gets too hot."
"You had said earlier that the war would hold off for several more years."
"I still hope it will, but I'm not sure."
"I'll still get to see mom on time, right?"
"I would never allow you to be late. Your mother would kill me. Even if they closed all of the borders, I should still be able to get us through."
Knowing that his mother would indeed never let his father live it down, he calmed down. With the system, his father had the ability to keep his word far better than anyone else.
They both turned towards Stella at the same time, and she jumped in surprise. Joseph thought it was cute. He was so glad he had his dad in this life. It was way easier to appreciate him knowing that in his previous lives, his childhood had been so crappy. Fortunately, not as strong as the Sylva memory.
She cleared her throat, confused.
"So, how was your day, Stella?" Joseph asked her. "What progress have you made?
"I've merely been exercising more," she murmured, shyly.
"Really?" said William, surprised. "I tend to recall news of someone practicing their balance on the back of a moving horse, pulling a carriage."
She opened her mouth, then shut it again.
Joseph looked at her in surprise. "What?"
"I want to make sure that if anyone tries to attack me or Master Joseph, I can fight them off. My body isn't strong enough, so I'm trying to get it stronger."
William nodded. "That makes more sense. I suppose that's why you've been running alongside the wagons and doing the other things that have been reported?"
She turned pink, nodding.
Joseph raised his eyebrows in surprise.
"Well, I have to admit, I am a little disappointed. I was hoping to hear all sorts of exciting things from you, since you just got the system, but I suppose it can't be expected of you to be super cool so quickly."
Joseph was a little surprised by his father's reaction, but then he realized that what Stella had said earlier, about his father really not having any use for her, was true. This gave him something to think about as they finished the meal and returned to their carriage.
The next day was pretty uneventful. He put in 12 hours of practice. When he was returning from using the bathroom, he noticed that the dumb latch on the carriage was loose again so he had to tell Richard, the slave in charge of making carriage repairs. He also thought it was strange. The lock was still fine because it's on the inside but Stella and Joseph were both checking the latch every morning after "the incident." They were definitely changing out this carriage at the next chance.
The next day was boring for Joseph. He hoped Stella was doing something fun and exciting. It was the first time, since he had started training magic, that his interest wavered a little. Worried that it might become a common thing, he started intentionally thinking of fun things he could do to make it more fun. Besides, he really enjoyed showing her something cool when she came back in.
By lunch he had figured out how to juggle little marble sized balls of mana. He was able to control them just enough to make Stella laugh. Thankfully they didn't hurt when they hit him in the head, but went back inside of him.
"You know your eyes flash when you did that?"
"Did what?" asked Joseph, confused. He hadn't been using gaze.
"When the balls of mana fell into your head, your eyes flashed."
Joseph laughed, but no matter how hard he tried, he couldn't get it to do it again.
"Oh, well, I guess I better be a king now, I could probably never get a job as a street performer."
Joseph laughed when the system informed him of its opinion, which made Stella roll her eyes. It looked like he thought his joke was really funny.
Joseph needed twelve more hours of practice to finish the current sub-skill, but they would arrive at the guard town that night. He knew that he was going to have to follow his dad around for much of the day, and since he couldn't show off his ability in front of anyone, he probably wasn't going to get in the necessary hours. As exciting as it would be to learn more about what his father did, his obsession with getting his magic learned made him a little anxious about the whole thing. Trying to calm himself down, after lunch, he assured himself that he would finish it before they left the town, hopefully.
Stella was horrified to find that William had learned of some of her training from the other slaves. She would have to work harder, to get better, if she was going to be any good. Currently she was only training at the first level of all of the exercises that she remembered from her previous life. When she was Sylva, she had been one of the best hunters of her people. She was human, instead of fey, and she was starting at a later age than she had as Sylva, but she was determined.
Never again would anyone take advantage of her, or hurt her Master Joseph.