Chapter 11: Characters
“Is this interesting to you?”
It’s been three days since I officially became William-sama’s knight.
He suddenly said this in the room where the sound of a pen scratching on paper could be heard.
I was unsure of the intention behind the voice that was spoken without looking up from the paper he was writing on, and after a while, I replied,
“…What do you mean by ‘interesting’?”
At that, he finally turned his face towards me.
“I thought you were looking at what I was doing.”
I was slightly flustered by William-sama’s words, who slightly tilted his head and looked this way.
“I’m sorry for disturbing you. I’ll try not to look this way as much as possible from now on.”
As I said that and bowed, William-sama shook his head to the side.
“Ah, I’m not blaming you. I was just wondering if you were interested. I’m currently summarizing the characteristics of each region… Do you like that kind of study?”
In front of him, who asked in a voice that seemed to expect something, I was at a loss for words.
(Is he… expecting me to have a conversation about study? I don’t have any knowledge about that, and in the first place, what I was looking at…)
William-sama tilted his head at my appearance.
I was silent for a while, but unable to bear the curious gaze from my lord, I opened my mouth.
“I wasn’t reading the content… I was looking at the characters.”
“Yes. I can read and write simple things, but I can’t read difficult words. The characters that His Grace was writing were all unfamiliar words, so it was unusual.”
Upon hearing this, he slightly opened his eyes.
“I see, so it was the characters…”
William-sama muttered in a faint voice, and then asked,
“You said you can read and write simple things, but where did you learn?”
“There were a few picture books at the orphanage where I was, so I learned a little from that. During my time as a knight apprentice, I also learned just enough to not be inconvenient when writing reports in classroom lessons.”
As I answered, he placed his hand on his chin and began to think.
Then, he turned his gaze towards me again and asked,
“Do you want to be able to write characters?”
Although I didn’t understand the intention behind the question, I replied,
“Yes, there is no harm in being able to handle characters.”
With a smile, I said,
“I see… If you don’t mind, would you like to study characters with me?”
Upon hearing this, I was speechless for a while.
“Your Grace and… study characters together?”
I finally managed to repeat the question.
“Yeah. If you don’t mind.”
“Well, I don’t mind, but… Specifically, how do you plan on doing this? My proficiency in characters is not very high. I’m not at a level where I can study with Your Grace…”
As I timidly asked, William-sama deepened his smile even more.
“Flores, do you know about the output study method?”
“…? No, I don’t know.”
“It’s a study method based on the theory that when reviewing something you’ve learned once, you’ll understand it better by teaching it to someone else than studying it on your own.”
“Oh… I see…”
“So in other words, the answer to your question is that I’ll teach you characters.”
Upon hearing this, I stiffened.
“That’s… just convenient for me, isn’t it…?”
When I say this, he smiles, as pure as an angel’s smile and said,
“Oh come on! By teaching you characters, I’ll gain a deeper understanding of them myself. Just by learning characters from me, I’ll be very helped.”
“Flores… won’t you indulge me a little…?”
As he said that and looked up at me, his eyes were so pure that I, who was conflicted about whether it was okay for me to use William-sama’s time, collapsed without hesitation.
“If it’s okay with you!”
As I answered in an upright posture, William-sama happily smiled and laughed from the bottom of his heart.
William-sama was very good at teaching, and he often praised me, saying things like,
“Flores, you can do it so well now. Amazing.”
“Your handwriting has become beautiful again.”
“As expected of Flores. At this rate, you’ll catch up to me soon.”
In addition to characters, he also ended up teaching me various subjects and manners, but at that time, I didn’t know that yet.