Nozel was unsure to as why he was forced to come and spectate this monkey fest year after year. There was never anything new, never anything exciting, just a bunch of lowborn insects trying to foolishly prove that they're strong enough to become a Magic Knight. It was nauseating.
Yet he was a Magic Knight Captain, and it was his duty to be here for the examinations. So with a sigh, he held fast and watched with bored, uninterested eyes as each wanna be mage executed and demonstrated their weak little abilities.
It was finally time for the semi-interesting stage, the moment where each insect got to fight the other. At least with this portion of the exam, he got to witness these commoners getting beaten into the floor. It was still painfully boring though.
With two cool blue eyes on the arena, Nozel quickly examined the first two fighters. The first was tall, with an irritating laugh. He was a decent magic user, but not anything special. Nozel hazarded a guess that the only group to accept him would be a lower ranked one such as the Green Mantis.
The other boy was interesting though; in absolutely the worst way possible. He had no magical talent whatsoever, in fact, Nozel could feel even an ounce of mana! What that boy was doing here was anyone's guess…
The two were whispering something to each other, their voices too quiet to understand. Suddenly, they broke apart. A smirk rested on the face of the taller boy, while the shorter one, who was previously full of laughs, looked as though he would enjoy nothing more than to kill his friend on the spot. Huh. That was peculiar.
So then the battle began. The taller mage quickly moved, creating a defensive dome with attacking capabilities. That shrimp of a commoner is going to be flattened. And then something odd happened. A dark aura overtook the short one as he withdrew a long broadsword from his dirty illegible grimoire. The battle was over before it began, the sword ripping through the others magic, completely nullifying it.
Silence descended upon the arena. The winner was declared. More silence.
The rest of the battles concluded fairly quickly, although Nozel would be lying if he said that he actually payed any attention. He was much too busy watching the short non-magic user from earlier. The boy was leaning on a pillar, along with the kid who managed to surpass every other contender today. Perhaps they knew each other.
Nozel chuckled silently at the irony. The only two candidates who had managed to capture his attention were already aquatinted. But they were commoners. Worse actually, they were peasants. He couldn't dare to sully the great Silva name by offering a position to them.
Soon it was time for the choosing. More than 70 candidates went by without a single offer. The crowd looked worried. Good. This was not a laughing matter. Only the very best were accepted into the Magic Knights.
Candidate #164 was soon called. It was the taller one of the peasants, the one who showed great magical capability. To no ones surprise, every single Captain raised their hand. Even Nozel, albeit he did so begrudgingly. Also to no ones surprise, the kid chose Golden Dawn. The short untalented brat near him was nearly deafening with his cheers. It seems the two were closer than Nozel previously expected.
Candidate #165 was called next; the magic erasing kid. Not a single hand was raised.
Nozel's eyebrow twitched. He knew he shouldn't. The kid was a peasant. He was a commoner. HE HAD NO MAGIC.
But he was strong, if lugging around that humongous sword was any indication. And he was fast, as proved by the short skirmish. And he could do what no one else ever could; he could completely negate magical properties. No one would see it coming, hell, no one would see him coming. His lack of mana meant that he couldn't be easily traced or found. He would be useful during missions. Combined with his friendship with the talented boy in the Golden Dawn, Nozel was sure he could inspire a sense of rivalry that would push the kid further into greatness. But he had no magic.
The boy looked to be on the verge of tears, "No, it can't be." He whispered to himself pathetically.
Nozel was a traditional man. Nozel was a predictable man. After today, the latter was rendered moot.
For Nozel raised his hand.
Asta wanted to scream. He wanted to cry for joy. He wanted to yell at the top of his lungs. One look at his new Captain was enough to erase all traces of that.
The leader of the Silver Eagles might have had a stupid haircut, but he certainly seemed strong enough to kill him if it was ever mentioned. He stared down at Asta with an expressionless face, so Asta just beamed up at him in silence.
All around him, people were whispering incredulously. "How could that boy be picked for the Silver Eagles?" "That kid has no magic! How did this happen?" "Prince Nozel Silva must be mistaken."
Asta didn't let any of that bother him. He was used to people looking down on him. But the fact that his new Captain was a Prince was new, he certainly seemed arrogant enough to be a Royal. But Asta had to banish all those thoughts. This man gave him a spot on the Magic Knights. This man is helping him accomplish his dream. He owed him.
"Yuno. I told you we both would make it." Asta said to his adopted brother, a large grin spread across his face.
"I didn't doubt it for a second." Yuno replied.
Solid Silva couldn't believe his brother. The man he looked up to, the man he revered, just allowed a commoner to enter their midst. He was disappointed in Nozel. He had come to the examinations with his brother, excited to see his little sister fail completely. She didn't perform, however, so he was stuck watching all the other insects.
As Solid was leaving the colosseum, he was stopped by his Captain and brother. "Solid. I understand you have reservations about my choice-"
Solid cut him off with a laugh, "More than just reservations."
"You will not interrupt me again."
Solid, substantially subdued, bowed his head in submission, "My apologies Captain."
Nozel continued, "He's young, he's a commoner, and he has absolutely no magic. On the surface, he's a nightmare. However I believe he could be useful to us in the future."
In all his life, Solid has never known his elder brother to be wrong. If Nozel said this insect was worth it, then perhaps he does warrant some interest.
"However, like this, he is of no use." Nozel continued, "The boy needs to be trained. Not in combat, but in everything else. By the time we allow him on his first mission, he will have the grace of a Royal. I bequest this job to you, little brother. I do not want to be disappointed."
Solid barely contained his anger, "Of course, Captain."
Nozel nodded, "Good. The boy can't use magic, meaning he can't ride a broom. See to it that he is transported to the castle. It is up to you to get this boy in proper shape, so that he does not sully our name. It is best you start now."
Solid nodded in understanding, before leaving to look for his newest teammate. With a fist clenched in anger, Solid knew he couldn't go against his Captain. It didn't mean he was going to go easy on the boy.
Asta, finally having left the bathroom, was glad to see that his brother was still around. "Hey Yuno! Isn't it awesome! You're Golden, I'm Silver, it was meant to be."
Yuno shot him a smirk, "It does seem to be an interesting coincidence yes."
The lovely conversation was soon interrupted with the arrival of a Magic Knight. He was tall, his silver hair pulled into a braid and messy bangs slightly covering his eyes. He didn't look happy.
"You. Insect. Stop fraternizing with other kids and come here." The older man growled.
Asta looked around in confusion, before concluding that the weirdo was talking to him, "Me?"
"Tsk. Yes you! Do you see any other Silver Eagles around here? Follow me." He demanded, turning on his heel and walking away.
Asta said a quick goodbye to Yuno, before running to catch up with his new superior. "I'm Asta, from Haga Village. Nice to meet you!"
The elder growled once more, "I don't care who you are. I don't care what remote hick village you crawled out of. You're nothing but a little insect, who was lucky enough to somehow catch brothers attention."
Asta tilted his head, "Your brother?"
"Yes you idiot. I am Prince Solid Silva, the second son of the esteemed Silva household. Captain Nozel is my elder brother."
"Ohhh, that makes sense. My brother is part of the Golden Dawn. Well, we're not really brothers, we-"
Solid quickly cut him off, "Like I said, I don't care. I am here to help transport you to our base. Captain made me in charge of you, much to my misfortune, which means that I'm responsible of you. As much as I despise this, your actions are now a reflection of me as well as my brother, who chose you to be on out squad."
Asta nodded, understanding the boys grievance, "But like you said, I'm a hick. No one would take me seriously anyways."
"That's where I come in. By the time I'm through with you, no one would ever believe that you weren't born into Royalty."