It was 1 month before Joon-young was discharged from the hospital. It was time well spent for him, as he managed to absorb most if not all of Isaac’s memories. Thanks to that, he was able to blend into the society of the new world without a problem.
According to the rumours, Baron Rondart’s family was in a troublesome spot when Isaac’s identity was uncovered in the hospital. A serious investigation was put in place to find out why the heir of the family was travelling without any escorts. The family responded that their intent was for him to experience the outside world without any shackles, since he had a late start.
Isaac couldn’t stop himself from laughing when that excuse reached his ears.
They labelled him ‘dim-witted’ and locked him in the mansion for his entire life. Yet, they didn’t find any problem with allowing him to travel alone to experience the outside world? Anyone with a shred of intelligence would find the fallacy in that logic, but the Rondart Family called on the Viscount’s influence to pass through the questioning with minimal difficulty. It would have been much worse if Isaac had died, but since he survived, they could still use that excuse.
“This is a really strange place.”
Isaac looked around the city like a small child seeing the world for the first time. The view of the world was quite limited in the hospital, but it became harder and harder to explain this world the more he found out. The road was clean, and small blocks were lined at the side, separating the pedestrians from the set of trams that ran in opposite directions.
In this continent of Lorasia, the Empire was the only nation. Its denizens were not just humans but consisted of many other races such as elves, dwarves and even the almighty dragons.
The Empire was untouchable, with no opposition in sight. The Emperor and his royal court were at the top of the hierarchy, nobles and rich merchants below them, and at the bottom were the commoners that made up the majority of the population.
What confused Joon-young first was the caste system. At a glance, it had the social structure of feudal Europe, but inheritance had little value because the Empire worked like a meritocracy. The five ranks of nobility, Duke, Marquess, Earl, Viscount and Baron, were given to those who managed the Empire. Executives of the Empire, so they were called, received a title of nobility, and anyone who served under them, whether they were wizards or warriors, were given the title of a Knight. Basically, Knights were the Empire’s officials.
What’s even funnier was that there are hereditary nobles as well. Those who made great achievements or served the Empire for an exceptional amount of time were given some land to rule when they retired.
As it wasn’t a rigid system, anyone could rise through the ranks with enough effort. Commoners could become nobles if they become one of the Empire’s Executives, and nobles could lose their nobility if they commit a crime. Although it was much more common to see someone lose their nobility than to see someone climb the steps of the hierarchy, the fact was that there was the possibility. This world that ruled through a caste system had created the perfect social infrastructure where even Joon-young did not not feel any discomfort.
‘This world took a completely different turn…’
The history of humanity was a history of wars. Civilizations developed by surviving the wars it fought. But strangely, this world, which boasted such amazing social infrastructure comparable to modern times, had the military strength of a mediaeval kingdom. Simply put, they had infantry armed with swords and spears, archers with bows and arrows, wizards who were considered strategic weapons and healers. It was a weird world where civilization was highly developed, while their military was akin to mediaeval fantasy.
“Was it the delicate balance of social structure? Or was it just a miracle?”
The people of this world had educational opportunities aplenty. The rulers of the old world didn’t limit education to the public without reason. As the saying went, ‘the pen is mightier than the sword.’ The expansion of education leads to reflection and dissatisfaction within the populace.
Allowing equal access to education in a strict caste system was like openly allowing rebellions to happen. It’s just that the social and political structures were holding it down.
Although difficult, it was possible to climb the hierarchy. It may as well have been impossible unless you put extraordinary effort, but if you searched for an example, there were plenty to be seen in the Empire.
There was also an organisation called “Freedom,” whose activity focused on making a world ruled by the commoners, but it had very little support from the populace.
But at the end of the day, he was free now. Freed from the prison of his family’s estate. His new home was a school, which was a great opportunity for him to gain more information. His grades meant little to him; information was his priority. Inheritance of the Baron title was just a hassle. To go through life and death for the lowest ranking nobility title was laughable to him, and even if he did become the baron, more problems would be coming for him after his inheritance. He was not one to walk into more work. His aim was to find a cosy yet well-paying work and live the rest of his life in leisure.
He also had another goal in mind. This was a fantasy world and in fantasy, there was the dream of magic. If he were to become a wizard, he wouldn’t run into any financial problems, and if he happened to become powerful enough, he might even be able to take revenge on his family. If magic wasn’t possible, maybe he could become a sword master instead.
However, it only took a few days for his dreams to be shattered.