William scratched his chin. It was itching because a beard was growing in. In his previous life, he had tried a few times to grow a beard, but it never looked good. Since his genetics were completely different here, he thought he’d try again. Though he’d grown hair on his face before, it wasn’t something he would have called a beard. Now that he was technically an adult, again, and mostly done with his physical maturation, he had a good chance to grow a beard. Why would he even think so hard about growing a beard? Obviously, it was because wizards had beards. Well, not all of the wizards, here. However, whenever William thought wizard, he thought of some very particular things, and one of those was a long, grey beard. Obviously his wouldn’t be grey yet, but that would come with time.
A large amount of time, probably. He wasn’t sure what the actual average lifespan was here, since they didn’t keep careful track of such statistics, but it didn’t seem to be too much different, even with less medical knowledge. Of course, that was due to the availability of healing magic. It wasn’t extremely common, but small amount of healing magic combined with the decent medical knowledge still allowed people to live fairly long, healthy lives. Except, unfortunately, poor people. Although they were less likely to be able to afford good healthcare in his first world, there was somewhat of a bigger gap here. William would have liked to help with the healthcare standards here, but just because he came from a world with more advanced medicine didn’t mean he knew how it worked.
Although they didn’t know in detail about bacteria and other microscopic organisms, they knew enough to somewhat prevent the spread of disease. William was glad that this world had pretty good levels of sanitation. He wouldn’t have liked to live in a completely medieval type world, if the only addition was magic. It was fun to think about living in a castle until you realized they were pretty terrible as a home, being drafty and uncomfortable.
Another thing that made William recognize he was now an adult, besides having just a job and being able to grow a beard, was another aspect of his employment he hadn’t been expecting. Sometimes, when he was busy with something important, Professor Farman had William teach a class or two. Although he had always considered the people around him in classes children, being on the teaching side, he really felt it. Even though he was only a few years older than most of them in body, it was a critical few years.
At first, when William came to teach as a replacement for Professor Farman, the students were excited. After all, any classes where the exceedingly strict Professor wasn’t there had to be better. William had recently been in their position, so certainly he would be merciful to them. That was what they thought. However, they soon discovered they were wrong. William not only held them up to the same standards Professor Farman required of them, he even held some of them to the same standards that had been required of himself.
It was not that he was ever unfair. However, those who had talent couldn’t get away with doing just as well as the rest of the class, they had to do better. Though a few of the students were self-motivated, a higher percentage of the students were nobles, who generally did not have to work hard for anything. William, however, wouldn’t let those who could be better, fail to achieve that. After some time, Professor Farman sometimes had William teach even when he wasn’t at a critical point in research. His reasoning… “Well, sometimes I just want students to appreciate that I’m there.”
William was also considering teaching a class on staffwork. However, he realized that he really didn’t know much about it. Sure, he could fight with a staff. He could certainly beat any of the other wizards in a match. Still, his technique was still very sloppy. Training with the knights helped him overcome some of his glaring weaknesses, but they didn’t have any techniques for fighting with a staff. For knights, a sword or spear was much more useful. William asked one of his friends among the knights, Gerald Vaughan, if there was anyone who did train in staff techniques.
“Well, not around here. However, I heard there’s a country off to the west that does. The stories tell of some impressive feats from their warriors. However, they train in many weapons besides the staff. I can’t say if their staff techniques in particular are any good.”
William decided he would check the markets for anyone who traded to the west. The chances that they would have any information with them was very low, but maybe he could find someone who was making a trip that way in the near future. Then, maybe, they could pick up a book or something for him. While he thought about it, he realized that it would be more difficult than he thought. Even if he got a book… well, he couldn’t even determine if it was genuine. Sure, he could test the techniques, and if they were good, he would know. Except, he wouldn’t be able to read it. Learning another language for the sake of a side project… actually appealed to William. However, he was very busy. Maybe he could get something translated.
Even if he didn’t, it wasn’t too important. Though he liked winning duels, it wasn’t like William wanted to spend his entire life fighting. He would rather live peacefully. At least, as much as he could. It wasn’t like magic’s potential was limited to war or fighting. Just that violence was the easiest thing to do with large amounts of power. It was much harder to contain power to levels that were useful in more general situations.
Though he himself might not need to be ready for war, he realized that this world did need to be ready. Not this generation, and maybe not the next, but eventually, the Demon King would come back. That was an inevitable part of this world that William was still trying to get used to. Even though he hadn’t been personally affected by the Demon King at all, William couldn’t help thinking about it from time to time, since it was a part of this world.