Sera hesitated with her response. She hadn’t had the chance to think about it seriously yet, but in fact, there’s been something on the back of her mind for a while now. There’s something new that she wanted to try.
“I think I’ll try doing something new.”
Not expecting Sera’s answer, Helios repeated the same two words.
“I’m thinking of founding a tutorial center that specializes in teaching young children together.”
For the first time, Sera confessed her aspirations, which she hadn’t told anyone about just yet.
She had been fostering this small wish to teach children in something like a school, just as she did in her previous life. But it was difficult to do without the proper funds, so she never seriously thought about making that dream into reality.
It was an unconventional teaching method in the Adelio Empire, that’s for sure.
Even so, the total salary she received for the six months that she served as an imperial tutor—along with the title that comes with it—was enough to give her a fair chance at that very dream.
Her eventual goal was to establish a school that was much like the academies in this world, but the tutorial center was a good step forward down that path.
“Yes. A tutor usually teaches one on one, but I’m thinking of teaching in a group instead. It’s true that a class that has one teacher and just one or two students has its advantages, but there are also disadvantages. First of all, I don’t believe that education should be focused on just knowledge acquisition in the formal manner. All children will eventually have to go out into society and face many people, and I believe that their education should play a role in helping them experience and nurture their social skills in advance. And most of all, one on one classes can be quite expensive and burdensome on the parents, so with this system, the amount that each family would have to pay would become smaller, and…”
Sera made eye contact with Helios, who was smiling widely as she was talking.
Only then did she realize just how much she was rambling. She hurriedly closed her lips, thinking of how rude she had been, but it was already too late.
“I apologize, Your Majesty. I talked too much all by myself.”
Sera bowed as she apologized, but Helios answered her with a soft voice, just as he usually did.
“I think it’s a good idea. A tutorial center, hm. Just as you said, Miss Popo, with more students, the cost of education will be lower. And it would be more efficient, too. The problem of inequality in education can also be solved to some extent. Particularly with the field of magic, just one household in the Empire is monopolizing its knowledge.”
Helios was serious as he pitched in his insight as well. He tapped one finger on his desk, contemplating deeply. Then, his hand stopped moving.
“I would like to participate in that idea, too, Miss Popo.”
He spoke as if he knew her eventual plans.
Was he also thinking of establishing an academy or school?
It was still just an initial conversation about the idea, but Sera readily agreed because she knew that she’d be able to help out Helios in this regard, too.
“It’s a great honor for me, Your Majesty.”
Sera went on to continue her earlier explanation. Fortunately, Helios continued listening to her without interrupting.
At the end, Helios made an excuse about this not being the last that they’d talk about it, and so he saw Sera off.
Walking side by side with him, Sera’s gaze gravitated towards Helios’ shining silver hair beneath the moonlight.
Feeling her gaze on him, Helios soon turned his head and met her eyes.
“Miss Popo, is there something you’d like to say? You’ve been looking my way since earlier.”
“No, it’s just…”
Sera fixed her gaze forward quickly, but nevertheless felt embarrassed because she was caught peeking at him.
Looking down awkwardly, Sera scrambled for something—anything—to say, then said the first thing that popped into her head.
“I was wondering what brought Your Majesty into wanting to use that idea earlier. If you don’t mind, may I ask why?”
Helios stroked his chin for a moment, seeming troubled. Then, he smiled at Sera, who was trying to tell him that he didn’t have to explain if he’s uncomfortable. He answered.
“I just thought, wouldn’t it be nice to establish an educational institution that trains mages?”
Now that she thought about it, Helios earlier mentioned the monopoly on magical knowledge in the empire.
“At present, House Cross holds the monopoly on magical knowledge. Since many mages are affiliated with the Duchy, it’s no wonder that their power is growing day by day. I’ve been thinking for a long time now just how that power can be more balanced.”
“The training of the Empire’s mages… It’s definitely a way to keep the Duchy in check. It might take some time, but the Imperial Family’s influence will become stronger in this way.”
Catching onto what Helios had in mind, she astutely pointed it out like so.
“That’s why I’ve been under some pressure to marry Duke Cross…”
Surprised by the unexpected words, Sera asked, “…Marry?”
Of course, Helios never seemed to express any feelings for the duke, but Sera somewhat assumed that he had some favor towards her.
Completely blindsided by the mention of a political marriage, Sera was taken aback.
Helios noticed how surprised he was, and he looked at her with concern in his eyes. Perhaps he got too personal.
“Did I bring up an uncomfortable topic?”
Sera shook her head, smiling quietly.
“No, Your Majesty. I just wasn’t aware that such a thing has been troubling you. The two of you… must have good feelings between you two… is what I was thinking.”
Though Sera was grappling with her own unrequited love here, Sera answered cautiously because she was concerned about him. As much as she likes him, it’s a fact that he was holding a very high position, and it must be a difficult matter if he’s been worrying about that until now.
Helios repeated the word to himself, a dark expression painting his features.
After the brief uncomfortable tension that ensued, both Sera and Helios avoided the subject and talked about something else.
When they had finally arrived in front of the carriage, he whispered regretfully.
“It would have been nice if Rosé and Ferre could see you off, too, since it’s the last time, but it’s too bad that they went to bed early. I should have still brought them here. After all, it’s your last time here at the palace as their tutor, Miss Popo.”
“Please don’t be, Your Majesty. We’ll be seeing each other tomorrow anyway, and we’ll be together for a week.”
Helios opened the carriage door for her and helped her up. Sera admired the imperial palace for the final time.
Tomorrow was the start of their trip to the south.
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Comments for chapter "Chapter 180"
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