Chapter 466: Reappearance
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Translator: TransN Editor: TransN
"Summer, right? Don't worry." Wendy walked up to the young woman and held her hand. "The Witch Union isn't what your family thinks, nor do you have to stay in the castle all the time."
"Really?" Summer asked softly.
"Of course." Wendy smiled. "We stay in the castle because we have nowhere else to go... before His Highness took us in, we lived vagrant lives. Our families were either broken or perceived us as strangers. You're considered fortunate to have a family." She paused briefly. "Let's go inside, the wind is strong here."
"... OK." The young woman lowered her head and followed Wendy into the castle.
"This's the new awakened witch?" Scroll was already waiting at the door. "What's her name?"
"Summer," Wendy replied, and then look towards the guard. "Can you help me inform Lady Agatha to return to the castle? Tell her that there's a new witch. She should be in the riverside chemical lab right now."
"My pleasure to serve you, Lady Wendy." The guard bowed before he turned and exited.
"Indeed, when Nightingale and Sylvie aren't around, only Agatha is able to distinguish magic power by type and capacity." Scroll nodded in agreement. "What's her ability?"
"We don't know yet." Wendy then caressed the young girl's head and asked, "How old are you?"
"18." Summer became nervous again in front of so many strangers.
"18?" Spear seemed surprised. "Isn't that the age of adulthood?"
"When did you realize that you were awakened as a witch?" Scroll asked. "Tell us your story in detail."
"Just... three days ago, when I turned 18," Summer replied meekly. "That day, my elder brother caught a fish for me as a gift, but it was taken away by my second sister, and only half of the tail was left for me in the end. At night, I hugged my quilt and cried. I then dreamt that the fish returned to my bowl. When I woke up, I discovered that the fish was indeed there, and I also had a new elder sister."
"A new elder sister... what does that mean?" Wendy asked in astonishment.
"One was sitting at the table and eating fish, while the other one was paralyzed with fear on the floor. However, the former soon disappeared together with the fish..." Summer recalled what happened. "At that time, I could feel that... those things that appeared had something to do with me. However, when I told my family about it, I was beaten up by my father and told not to scare my second sister. I really didn't scare her on purpose. Who would think that a dream could become real?"
"That wasn't a dream." Wendy confirmed what the girl said. "It was an awakening call."
Magic power would gather inside a witch's body on the aforementioned Day of Awakening. During this process, a witch would not only be able to feel the weird changes inside her body, but also, for a majority of witches, they would be unable to restrain the strange magic power, causing them to use their newly-gained ability involuntarily. Hence, apart from the extremely unbearable Day of Adulthood, the second highest cause of loss of witches was the Day of Awakening—the consequence of performing magical effects in front of normal people was obvious.
However, Wendy had never heard of a case whereby the Day of Adulthood and Day of Awakening fell on the same day. Albeit this was no doubt possible—the Day of Adulthood was just a more special Day of Awakening.
"After that, my second sister called me a witch and said that I had to leave home. My elder brother retorted that there was no issue with me being a witch as there were many witches in the town. My family quarreled over this..." Summer's voice became even softer as she spoke. "In the end, they decided to send me here."
It thus seemed that even people who had recently arrived from the Southern Territory were already being influenced by the town's propaganda. Fortunately for Summer, she was not tied up and handed over to the church, like many witches were. The unfortunate thing was that her family was ultimately unable to accept a witch. However, Wendy was confident that this kind of situation would be improved over time... the original inhabitants of Border Town were a good example.
After Wendy enquired about a few more details from Summer, Agatha walked into the hall, looking worn out.
"Is this the newly discovered witch?"
Wendy nodded and recounted Summer's identity and awakening experience. "How does the Union test a witch's ability?"
Agatha took a magic stone out of her waist pocket after she was done listening. "It's usually divided into two sections. One is to observe a thorough performance of the ability, and the other is to use the Stone of Measuring to measure the aggregate level of the magic power." Then, she looked at Summer and instructed. "Close your eyes and feel the magic power revolve inside your body."
"Does she need a partner to assist her?" Wendy appeared anxious. "She became a witch only three days ago. I'm afraid that she knows nothing about her magic power."
"No need." Agatha chuckled. "I'm only worried that she's scared."
As they spoke, the magic-filled stone emitted a ray of pale green light that enveloped Summer. A mist gradually appeared around her chest. Its center was pale yellow in color and it seemed like it could dissipate at any time.
"She wasn't lying." After observing briefly, Agatha stopped the operation of the Stone of Measuring. "It's indeed a feature that only occurs when the Day of Awakening and the Day of Adulthood are on the same day. The type of ability is... the summoning type which you're all familiar with. The level of magic power is... extremely low."
"Extremely low?" Wendy winced. "Did such a coincidence also occur in Taquila?"
"The Union had witnessed the awakening of thousands of witches. Something like this was rather common." Agatha replied proudly. "As for witches who awakened only near the end of adulthood, it was as if they never had a Day of Adulthood."
"Their magic powers were never able to develop and thus remained in the pre-adulthood form forever. Naturally, they didn't have the derivative skills and steady growth that were unique to adulthood. I don't know if such witches were able to have High Awakenings, but if they were unable to develop, the problems with their magic power would bug them for the rest of their lives. She paused briefly. "We should have a look at Summer's ability first. After all, magic capacity is only one aspect. The ability itself is the best way to gauge a witch's value."
"Agatha!" Wendy exclaimed while frowning. Every witch should be treated as a fellow sister, instead of being valued based on her ability.
"This is how it's done in the Holy City." Agatha was unmoved. "Sure... I believe His Highness' saying that every ability has its own special use, but they're still distinguishable by their quality."
"What are you... arguing about?" Summer opened her eyes, looking confused.
"Nothing much." Wendy forcibly smiled and said in a comforting voice, "Try to demonstrate your ability to everyone."
"Yes..." The young woman held her breath and slowly reached out her hands. Soon, the four people present were able to see the effects—they saw figures of themselves positioned on the other side of the hall. Two of them seemed to be discussing something, but not a sound was heard. Suddenly, Paper, who had left the hall a long while ago, reappeared beside Wendy and slowly crawled into Wendy's arms, revealing a sweet smile on her face.
Wendy subconsciously reached out a hand to the figure of herself, but her fingertips passed through the figure as if there was nothing there.