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Chapter 37: Each Other Thought

While Noah was diligently researching in his territory, Jurgen was scheming in the mage tower of the royal capital.

Jurgen coerced his accomplice to forcefully remove the lock from Noah’s research lab door.

Of course, Jurgen wore a cloak imbued with magic that left no trace of his presence.

With this cloak, there was no risk of detection, no matter what traps were set in the research lab. Ironically, this cloak was born from Noah’s idea. However, since he refused to put it into practice, others created it.

He never imagined that his own idea would backfire on him. Jurgen’s lips twisted into a smirk.

Jurgen approached Noah’s desk triumphantly, opened drawers, and dragged out data. Noah was meticulous about his research, so it was very easy to know where everything was.

According to him, accidents were inevitable in research. He wanted someone to be able to take over, no matter when he died. Jurgen thought he was incredibly conceited and congratulated himself.

(Research worth risking your life for? Ridiculous.)

For Jurgen, research in the mage tower was an honor and a shortcut to promotion.

He skimmed through everything, but Noah was conducting much more advanced research than he did during his student days.

Although he didn’t want to admit it, Jurgen couldn’t understand half of what Noah was researching.

It was infuriatingly hopeless, so Jurgen tampered with the data and discarded whatever he chose.

He didn’t want to acknowledge Noah as a genius. Moreover, it was even more difficult to acknowledge that he had risen through diligent effort.

Among them, there was one research project nearing completion that caught Jurgen’s eye.

“No way? Is he that foolish… This is a legendary potion. Does he think he’s become a god?”

Upon examining the prescription in detail, it seemed that its effectiveness far exceeded that of any existing medicine.

However, there were issues with the materials being used, with many of them being poisonous. Therefore, stabilizing the ingredients was difficult. If he could overcome this, it might be possible to create it.

Jurgen was confident that he could make use of this data himself.

If this potion were completed, obtaining the title of Mage Earl would not be a mere dream. Without hesitation, Jurgen easily seized the fruit of Noah’s painstaking efforts, which seemed to bleed with his blood.

And what had been bothering him since entering this research lab was the locked cabinet. It was protected by advanced magic spells completely beyond Jurgen’s understanding.

If he couldn’t steal it, he wanted to destroy it, but that too proved impossible.

The fact that it was being guarded to such an extent indicated that it contained something incredibly valuable.

However, there was no time for hesitation. If it were discovered that he had sneaked into Noah’s research lab, he wouldn’t just lose his position in the mage tower; it would mean his downfall.

Though he felt some regret, Jurgen left Noah’s research lab behind.

“Hey, you took too long. What if you were caught?”

The man he had guided trembled with a pale face. It was comical.

“Hehehe, it’s okay. I achieved some results.”

He smirked.

“No way, you stole the research data—”

Jurgen covers the man’s mouth.

“Oh my, such impertinence. Is it appropriate for you to speak to me like that?”

“What the hell? I don’t know anything.”

The man ran off. It seemed like there was a hint of disdain in his eyes, but it was probably just imagination. That man was in the same boat after all.

Noah was fortunate to have returned to his fief on the outskirts.

If Jurgen managed to complete and announce his work in the capital early, success in the mage tower was practically guaranteed.

All the data was in Jurgen’s possession. No one would believe Noah Stein’s claims of theft, as the data to be verified was in Jurgen’s hands.

After returning from the capital, Fiene started to spend more days in bed.

Noah had been busy lately, and they hadn’t spent much time together.

When Fiene was sick in bed, Noah would come to deliver potions and check on her condition, then quickly retreat to the research building.

Fiene wished she could spend a little more time with him during her last days.

Even that day, he was about to leave Fiene’s room right away.

Fiene asked him from behind.

“Lord Noah, what exactly have I been using my magic for until I developed magic depletion syndrome? Is my magic used for healing?”

It had been a lingering question.

“I think it’s a bit different, but there hasn’t been a clear conclusion yet.”

“Do you not know the true nature of my magic?”

Research didn’t seem to have progressed much, and Fiene felt disappointed.

Noah cleared his throat as he looked at Fiene.

“Your magic is unique, with many unknown aspects.”

“Lord Noah, would it be possible for me to see that data?”

“you? Do you understand how to interpret the data?”

“I don’t, but I want to know more about myself, even if just a little.”

Noah seemed to ponder for a while before finally speaking.

“Alright. I’ll compile it for you sometime.”

Fiene decided to study magic when she felt well enough to stay awake.

She asked Lloyd, who had some knowledge of magic, about things she didn’t understand and searched through the library for documents.

Otherwise, she spent most of her days in bed. Whenever she had a brief period of stability, her illness would rapidly deteriorate.

The people at the mansion have long heard that when Noah gets absorbed in his research, he sometimes locks himself up in the experimental building for days on end and doesn’t come out.

It was a bit disappointing not to be able to see him at the end, but his research was essential to him. And his research was also essential to this country.

Fiene remembered the enjoyable months she had spent with him little by little.

Eating together, taking walks, having picnics, and playing boat games.

Then there were the extravagant times in the capital and the pleasant memories at the botanical garden.

“Ah, I wish I could have gone boating with Lord Noah one more time before the end.”

A heartfelt wish slipped out of Fiene’s mouth.

“Fiene-sama, please don’t say such things. I’m sure you’ll get to boat again with him.”

Martha, who was by her bedside, offered comforting words.

“Hehehe, yes, that would be nice. I hope I have that dream today. When I first came here, I said, ‘When I realize my time is up, I’ll disappear like a cat.’ But now, I’m lying in bed, snug and cozy, with everyone watching over me. I’m a lucky person.”

Fiene laughed.

“Please, Fiene-sama, don’t say such things.”

“That’s right. Fiene-sama, Lord Noah will surely find a way.”

Fiene widened her eyes as she saw Martha’s tears. Even Lloyd had taken off his glasses to wipe away his tears.

“Oh no, Martha-san, don’t cry. Even Lloyd-san…”

Seeing them like that, Fiene became flustered.

“I am not Martha-san. How many times do I have to tell you? Fiene-sama.”

“Yes, that’s right. Please call me Lloyd. You are the young lady of the count’s family, a very important guest to our master.”

“Thank you. Before coming here, I never imagined there would be someone crying for me before I die…”

A single tear fell from Fiene’s eyes.


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