Owen Liddell knew that he came from a prestigious family. Both of his grandparents had been members in the party of the Hero back in the days. His grandfather was a formidable Assassin and his grandmother an outstanding High Mage in their own right. There was his father who was a dedicated Alchemist, focused on restoring lost potions, and his mother was a studious Mage-Historian.
But it all changed on the day that his parents died.
"What's in the bottle?" A young boy looked at the empty vial with squinted eyes. "I can't see anything."
"It's an invisibility potion."
"...the invisibility potion is invisible too? Really?" he asked. "You're tricking me again aren't you, father?"
The man chuckled. "No, it's true."
"Is it really true, mother?" He turned to his mother seated across from them. Somehow she was able to read despite being in a moving carriage. "Did father really make the invisibility potion?"
"One can hope that he did or the half year of being cooped in his laboratory was just an excuse to hide from his wife and son." His mother turned to the next page, not even looking up from the history book she was reading.
Albeit the boy knew that behind the pages, his mother smiled secretly. It still managed to make his father make a strangled sound.
"You understand don't you dear?"
"Yes, if I hadn't reminded you that Owen's birthday is coming up, you wouldn't have left—"
The memory of that day cut short on that, but now at sixteen years of age. The young man could be called a disappointment. A voice in his head spoke—or rather, a thought appeared in his mind.
[ Drinker Class Obtained! ]
[ Drinker Level 1! ]
The young man held the empty bottle in his hand and sighed.
"Should have seen that coming."
He threw it down amongst the other shattered pile of bottles and rubbed the back of his neck. This wasn't his first Class, far from it. But this was perhaps the type of Class that would get people looking at him and thinking he was a good for nothing man.
He got up and walked over to the end of his room towards the small ice box, the magical cold wind of air blew and caressed his face while he procured another bottle of alcohol. He popped open the cork and took a heavy swig before returning to his bed.
There were little things that he had trouble with in this world of his—his grandparents provided for him and he was content to live in it? He didn't know what to think or say and drained the bottle.
He was positive that behind his back others were whispering the same and it was already far too long for him to grieve. If anything, it was all a pithy excuse used by his grandmother when someone ever voiced their concerns over what could have been a golden child.
It wasn't like his parents only died yesterday.
Far from it.
It had been… Seven? Eight? Nine? Exactly nine years since he lost them. But these were all excuses—he sighed and eyed the room he was in. The well-furnished cabinets and the bookshelves, the wooden table that contained dusty scrolls still left untouched since that day. His gaze finally dropped to something else on the table.
A child's starting alchemical set.
Of a young child that once dreamed to be like his father.
He looked at the near empty bottle in his hand and stood up, walking towards the table and plopping down the chair. He looked at the empty and dusty containers, vials of all shapes and sizes before he used his shirt to remove all of the dust, soot and other cobwebs inside of it.
"What did he used to say? You needed a base first, something like a magical component to start it all off when you're making a potion."
The man looked underneath his drawer and found a mixture of tools, but nothing to be used as his base. He looked at his bottle and poured down the leftover drink into the beaker.
"That's magical now, ain't it?"
He chuckled at the thought, but still reluctantly got up. His decisions now were simply brought on by nostalgia, boredom or something along those lines—and so the young man finally decided to leave his room after a month.
It was strange to step out and actually be met with the glaring brightness of the sun for once, he squinted his eyes and quickly walked away. The young man's windows were always permanently shut in his rooms that one might have thought it was a witch's den.
But whoever left these windows open were just mad.
Maybe it was his grandmother that left these exact windows open to burn him alive.
And he wouldn't have exactly minded that, except he actually had a goal for once.
Just a temporary sense of direction: Acquire materials for potions
Nothing too fancy, but… he soon realized that he was lost. Now the reasons for it was obvious, he was living in what was probably a castle-size structure. Several groups of young men and women his age sauntered past him, only throwing him quick looks and exchanging silent conversation.
Owen Liddell now remembered why he didn't like to go out.
He was in a freaking Academy.
"Um, are you lost?"
He looked up to see a young woman with blonde hair and eyes looking at him with a kind smile. She was beautiful, but he didn't care about that. "Do you know where High Mage Ylena Pierce is right now?"
She blinked at him.
"Are you a Student here?" he asked. "Because if you aren't, I don't think you'd be much of a help."
"Well, I'm not exactly a Mage… but I'll help you out, um…?"
He sighed slightly. "Owen."
He hadn't exactly asked for her name, but if she was going out of her way to be friendly then the least he could was be a decent person. "Alright, Jeanne, let's go look for my grandmother then."
"Wait, she's your grandma?"
He immediately regretted speaking about it now.