In A Different World With A Smartphone - Chapter 124
Arc 17: Everyday Life #4
Chapter 124: Selection meeting, and passed candidates.
On the day of screening, the applicants with the badge numbers reported by the town's people, Tsubaki-san's underlings and the cats were not allowed to pass the castle's gate. Naturally, some protested, but they went back dejectedly when they were told in detail about what they did in this country. Approximately 50 people got disqualified with this, and around 950 people were left. Were they only decreased by 1/20? I guess it's still not enough.
After entering the castle, the candidates gather at the training ground. I went up the hastily built stage together with the trio of Commander Rain-san and Vice-Commanders Norun-san and Nicola-san, as well as Baba-jiisan and Yamagata-ossan. I am having Yumina, Rue and Tsubaki-san wait together with Elsie, Lindsey and Yae next to the stage.
I operate my smartphone and increase the volume for its speaker function.
[First of All, Welcome to Brunhild Dukedom. I am the king of this country, Mochizuki Touya. We will be conducting selection for our Order of Knights now. But frankly speaking, our household's wages are not high. Speaking of the Knight Order, there are also plenty of odd jobs to be done addition to defending the country. As you can see from the beastmen behind me, there is no favoritism in regards to race or social standing. Only those who consider that ’’this is still fine’’ are welcome to stay]
After I declare that, the recruits get noisy and start talking among themselves. Eventually, several people go back towards the castle gate. Well, it is not like I was thinking that everyone would stay. It is better to have them leave now if they are dissatisfied with that.
[Well then... first, I am asking everyone to show their endurance. Please go out at the castle gate and run a single lap along the perimeter of the castle's moat]
Everyone made a delicate expression similar to showing their disappointment to what I said. The castle's circumference is roughly two kilometers. They are probably thinking that no matter what, the distance is too short to measure their endurance.
[By the way, your resulting position doesn't matter. It is fine if you can make the round at your own pace. In regards to retiring... If it becomes too hard and you want to abstain, you can remove your badge, and you will be transported back here. Now then...]
The moment they finish hearing my words, I place a magic spell on everyone who began to run.
Suddenly, everyone groveled on the ground.
[I have placed a weight magic on everyone. Please run a lap in this state. If you think you cannot continue, remove your badge and you will be transferred here as I have said a moment ago]
The groveling people begin to stand one after another and slowly leave through the castle gate. I am not saying it is to the extent of a turtle march, but it is far slower than the standard walking speed.
They should be able to move since the applied weight is not to the extent where they can no longer do that. Though they will still require tremendous strength just to do so. I am sending shinobis to watch them just in case so that they don't fall into the moat by mistake or cheat.
[Is something like an order really irrelevant?]
[Mmmm... Well, we will use it as a reference to some extent, but we won't judge their endurance with this, don't you see?]
I promptly answer Rain-san question. I certainly can understand the order of who has excellent endurance with this, but that's not what I want to know.
[If it is not a test to judge the endurance, what exactly does this test measure?]
Or should I say, I am gauging how serious they are. The ones who easily retire are no good. They are probably the types that give up immediately the moment it gets hard. It will be troublesome when that time comes.
To some extent, we made a rule to send rescue just in case they don't make it back even after time passes by. The ones who give up before that will truly get disqualified. If one doesn't give up and aim for the goal, that person will pass.
Even while I was talking about this with Rain-san, the people that are retiring had been returning one after another. That was fast. You can do at least a little better than that.
After I release [Gravity], and recover their stamina using [Refresh], I promptly ask them to leave. Now then, I wonder how many people will be left.
The number of candidates reduced from 950 candidates to 480 in one go. That means almost half of them retired.
Many beastmen and demonkins who excel in physical strength came on top, but it doesn't really matter because a person will pass as long as that person doesn't abandon the given task. Whether they came to look around or realized their lack of ability, their reasons may be numerous, but it won't change the fact that they have given up. Thanks for your troubles.
I restore back to normal the stamina of all the people who reached the goal and those who haven't given up yet with recovery magic.
Now, for the next exam...
[The following test will be a practical skill exam. I don't mind you guys using your favorite weapons. Assume that you pass if you land a single blow on me within 30 minutes. I will be your opponent with this wooden sword. Then, let's start]
I hold a wooden sword in my hand and tell them to start, but no one is charging at me. Ha? While I am wondering about that, someone among them nervously raises his hand.
[ano, who should go first?]
Ah, so that's the reason.
[There is no order. Please come at me all at the same time. Of course, I don't mind if you do it with your full power]
Is it because they think I am making fun of them with what i said? Everyone takes a hold of their specialized weapons and come attacking me at the same time.
I use acceleration magic and deliver a blow to anyone who is full of openings as I slip through them. As expected, they advance one after another due to how many of them there are, but I earnestly avoid them. And if someone shows an opening, I land a hit on him.
I won't strike them not unless they show a large opening. During this exam, Baba-jiisan, Yamagata-ossan, Elise and Yae examine the applicant's abilities, and I ask them to absolutely write the applicant's badge number when they judge that applicant's ability reaches a certain level. To those whom I judge that their skills didn't reach a certain level yet, I give them a single blow and make sure they are eliminated even if I feel sorry for them.
Some sharp blows do occasionally come, but there's no problem on dodging them since I applied [Accel] as well. More than half have already collapsed by the time I noticed it, and those remaining could only barely manage to stand up.
[That's enough. It is time]
Rain-san announces the end of the exam. And after the announcement, everyone simultaneously sits down on the ground. That reminds me, I was a little bit surprised since there were some acquaintances participating in the test.
I glance to where a certain pair collapsed. Ah, they really are Rebecca-san and Logan-san, aren't they? Both of them are the adventures whom we have saved in the Rabbi desert. I am sure I also had them guard my reading cafe in Belfast, but why are they here?
When they notice my gaze to them, they both slightly raise their hands. I want to ask them, but since there are many eyes around, it would probably get troublesome if people realize they are my acquaintances. And it won't end with just those who would start talking about favoritism.
For now, I receive the memo from Baba-jiisan's group after I cast recovery magic to everyone who have fallen.
[Well then, I will announce the results. The participants whose numbers are called come this way, and the ones that don't - are unfortunately disqualified. Please go back from the castle gate. Then, I will start. Badge numbers: 3, 14, 21.......]
In the end, nearly 100 applicants remain. It is expected for those whom I hit hard due to them having full of openings to leave, but those who did not continue to proactively attack me are also disqualified. There is no way to evaluate those who fail to make an appeal with their abilities in this place.
By the way, both Rebecca-san and Logan-san passed. There is no favoritism since I wasn't the one who decided it.
The numbers are narrowed down quite considerably, aren't they. The rest will be determined by an interview afterwards.
While taking along the selected candidates, we go towards the castle's knight hall. I have them wait in a separate room, while we prepare the neighboring room for the interview. The ones in charge of the interview are Me, Commander Rain-san, Yumina, and one more person. We have already invited that person to give us a hand in this matter.
[I am sorry for calling you all the way here. Thank you for your troubles.]
[No, this much is nothing since I owe you so much debt that I can't possibly pay back]
Her Eminence the Pope answers while laughing. I have contacted Ramisshu Holy Kingdom beforehand and asked for their cooperation. There are also several guard Templars waiting in the back of the room. With her magic eye that perceives lies and Yumina's magic eye that can see through the true nature of the person, they will be conducting the final interview.
I change the appearance of Her Eminence with [Mirage] since she is tentatively a celebrity. While doing this, I received an order to make her look young. I don't think it would matter since she would become an entirely different person, but...... The female mentality surely is complicated.
[Well then, call them five people at a time.]
Nicola-san leaves the room and returns with five people. Two beastmen, three humans. I encourage them to sit on the arranged chairs in the center of the room.
[Now then, starting from the left, please tell us your name, age and birthplace]
In the meantime, while Rain-san and I are asking simple questions, Yumina next to me checks the true nature of the applicants with her magic eye. And each time one of them answers the question, the Pope to my right closes or opens her left hand. That is a signal we have arranged beforehand. If what they say is [true] then she keeps her hand open as it is. And if it is a [Lie] then she closes it. I keep asking questions while watching her hand.
I don't particularly plan to disqualify them because they lie. For humans, there are things we don't want to talk about, and there will be various troubles when those matters are exposed. However, there is no way I can trust someone who keeps lying about anything and everything.
Well, if they say that they value themselves more than the citizens, do anything if they can get money out of it, and are okay with betrayal, I won't allow to them to pass even if they answer honestly.
The interview for the first five applicants ends, and after they exit the room, Yumina starts to speak first.
[It is better not to be quick to appoint the third one from the left and the fifth one. I believe they are thinking about some dangerous things]
[Those two have definitely told many lies. Though they had splendid poker faces]
[Poker face ......? Ah~, It is a technique that prevents others from reading one's facial expressions in poker]
For now, I put an X mark on those two and ask Nicola-san to call in the next five people. Will we have to do this about 20 more times? It surely is tiresome.
[Ah~ I am tired......]
I drop my head down on the desk after we finish interviewing everyone. Fighting against a lot of people is much easier.
Though trying to outsmart your opponent was not a goal, I feel fed up when I see someone that lies so naturally while smiling with a composed face. The ability to see through lies is also troublesome.
[I usually make sure not to invoke it too often. Sometimes, there are things you don't need to know]
It is as Her Eminence the Pope has said. You will end up distrusting humans if you go and see through everything and everyone. I wonder, did I make her overdo it? I should hold a dinner party later to thank her.
For now, the number of candidates that passed is 64 when we remove the disqualified ones. It is a little more than the quota, but we can somehow manage with this many.
37 males, and 27 females. There are more women than I expected. As for why, I think the main reason is that the knights' order in other countries doesn't allow women to join. But here, prominent persons also came because the recruitment flyer had a phrase [Regardless of se*, race, and social status] written in it.
By the way, Rebecca-san had that reason too. Logan-san also seems to be looking for a stable job. When I asked him ’’Are you going to marry or something? To Rebecca-san?’’, both said ’’why would I do it with him/her?’’ in harmony. Somehow it seems to be another woman in question. I'm sorry.
22 out of the 64 candidates who passed are beastmen and demonkin. I could understand beastmen coming since the Commanders are beastmen same as them, but the demonkin are slightly unexpected, I guess.
Demonkins are a race that closely resembles humans in appearance. Even if they are a race referred to typically as demi-humans (The beastmen are also demi-humans), they are close to demon beasts. Their race includes Vampires, Lamias, Ogres, and Alraunes. They also are capable of proper communication. And while they are not hostile to humans, they try not to get deeply attached to humans.
As expected, there are still a lot of prejudice against racial appearances and the characteristics of their species to the point of being subjugation targets of other countries (like the old Ramisshu).
The demonkin interviews were especially strict, but the five demokins that passed were checked without problems by Yumina's magic eye. Her Eminence's magic eye had also confirmed that they told the truth. Because all of them wished to live in human society, those five (Vampire, Ogre, Alraune, and two Lamia) passed.
By the way, speaking of the vampire, he has the vampire image, but it doesn't seem like he had any particular problem living without sucking blood. It is similar to Tobacco and Alcohol. If some people like them, there are also people that seem to hate them. The vampire who came to our household said he is weak with blood. What a weird guy.
In any case. I wonder if the initial image is being put in order with this? There are still other small details to go through, but it seems our Knight Order will be a diverse one. Well, it will be more amusing this way.