The Extra’s Academy Survival Guide Chapter 29

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Yenika Faelover (2)

It smells of gold coins.

Lortelle’s sense of smell unerringly captures the scent of money.

The place is Triss Hall, where key academic personnel reside… essentially, the heart of the staff district.

The meticulously stacked blackish-red bricks and the marble embellishments at intervals give the exterior an antique charm.

The glass windows always gleam, no matter the time of day, and the entrance is so magnificent that two people are stationed for duty at both the main and rear doors.

It’s where the heads wielding the ultimate decision-making authority in the Sylvania administrative system gather—handling financial management of the academia, educational scheduling, student complaints review, and final policy direction decisions. The offices of the principal, Obel, and the vice-principal, Rachel, are also located here.

Students rarely enter this place. Most of the people milling around are typically regular staff, professors, or external contractors. Students, preoccupied with their studies, have no reason to frequent this administrative building on the outskirts of the academic quarter.

Lortelle advances towards the lobby with a faint smile to the staff guarding the entrance.

The intoxicating smell of gold coins. Finally, its source is revealed.

In the center of Triss Hall’s main lobby, encased in a glass display, the academy’s foundation and treasure shines in all its glory.

At a glance, it doesn’t look particularly ornate. It’s just an old grimoire, battered and stained here and there.

However, upon hearing the name ‘The Sage’s Envelope,’ anyone would swallow hard.

It contains the research and discussions of Sylvania’s founding great sage, Lobester, on ‘Sovereign Magic.’

The study of Astralism, predicting stellar flows and twisting the very providence of the world with that power, is known to be one of the most arcane and profound areas of magic.

Many researchers have tried to interpret and replicate the records within that envelope, but their studies have never ended. It remains the ultimate challenge in academia.

Apart from its scholarly value, that book is a symbol of the Sylvania Academy.

It’s only removed from the glass display on certain occasions: when needed for Astralism research and during public ceremonies representing the school, such as freshman orientation, student council or principal inauguration, and end-of-year graduation.

“Hmm~.”

Lortelle takes a deep breath, standing before the display case, gazing at The Sage’s Envelope.

“Indeed, it smells like money.”

With a natural smile, Lortelle lightly mutters.

That book was the trigger signaling the start of all events, the heart of Sylvania Academy, and the number one acquisition target for the Elte Trading Company.

* [ Living Skills Detailed ]

Grade: Novice Craftsman Specialization: Woodworking Dexterity Lv 10 Design Lv 4 Gathering Ability Lv 8 Woodworking Lv 10 Hunting Lv 7 Fishing Lv 6 Cooking Lv 5 Repairing Lv 5

A box filled with a saw, a well-sharpened axe, a shovel, a machete that can double as a bladed weapon, and plenty of nails was carelessly thrown onto the ground. It cost a little less than a gold coin.

Sylvania is an educational facility. Worried whether such woodworking tools would sell in a school’s living quarters, it was a relief to find that Elte Trading Company’s inventory had plenty of high-quality items.

So, sitting on the camp’s log bench, I twisted and turned my body.

The first act’s final chapter was over, and for a while, there weren’t any significant events in the scenario.

There’s ample time now until next semester to improve my physical condition and effort to enhance my living standards since tuition for the time being wasn’t a concern.

The real start of the second act is from the second semester. Before that, there are end-of-semester evaluation episodes, but nothing too eventful occurs.

This is just a passing episode where Taely starts to get substantial grades and learns skills like Wind Slice and Elemental Cut. This should have happened even before the Glascan Subjugation.

Then, after the end-of-year ceremony, comes the break. Once the first semester ends, there will be no more time taken by classes, and I can fully devote myself to improving my camp—a golden opportunity I cannot waste.

Most importantly, I must first secure stable living accommodations.

Nodding, I reviewed the design structure of the cabin I envisioned in my mind. It would have been nice to draw an actual blueprint, but no plan ensures direct realization. I must tackle the immediate problems improvisationally and manage to build something close to the design.

Since I’m not selling it to anyone, it doesn’t matter if it’s a bit crude. My body seems to be naturally talented on the production side, so I have to think it will work out somehow.

The near future promises to be much harder than when I first started this wild living. But it’s comforting to know that every bit of hard work will become the foundation for growth; there’s no need to suffer mindlessly.

It’s not the greatest consolation, but skill proficiency should be built up when there’s a chance…

With that thought, I picked up my bladed weapon and stood up.

I approached a big oak and drew a horizontal swipe across its trunk, creating a long mark resembling the character ‘一’.

Day one: the construction of the cabin begins.

Day 1.

I chose a place to build the cabin.

I kept my distance from the river—it would be disastrous if the river swelled. I started flattening work in a comfortably shady, spacious, and inconspicuous area.

I cleared away miscellaneous small trees and removed large stones. Where the ground sloped, I dug with a shovel to make it even.

After leveling the ground, it was already time to sleep. I checked how much food was left. It was time to restock. Determining to focus more on hunting the next day, I memorized key events in magical history for a written test and fell asleep.

Day 3.

I started gathering wood. My skill with the Wind Blade made the process easier. However, using too much mana took its toll on my stamina, so I moderated my efforts.

More challenging than felling trees was processing them. It was impossible to mass-produce standardized timber or planks, so I crudely stripped bark and cut timber.

It took over two hours just to trim the branches and skin one tree for usable wood. It looked like I would be continuing this task for a while.

Other notable events… I met Yenika in the class building, and she ignored me. I watched her flee as if she hadn’t seen me, while her friends Klara and Anis looked delighted. They smiled malevolently as if to say, “don’t even think about coming near Yenika again.” I had no such intention in the first place.

Day 6.

Muscle aches started after a long break since the north forest days.

I thought I was used to the daily physical routine, but once cabin construction had been added, my body cried out in protest. It’s all part of growth, so I decided to endure it.

Day 11.

Wood began to pile up, but it seemed like a long way off.

Wandering the woods with a saw in hand, I encountered a small wind spirit resembling a sparrow. Worried that it might be disturbed by my recent mass tree-felling, I asked if it was uncomfortable. To my surprise, it shook its head briskly. The spirit seemed more forgiving than I thought.

I considered forming a pact with the spirit but decided against wasting a spirit slot on a whim.

Day 14.

End-of-semester evaluations approached, so I temporarily halted the lumber work.

Most of my nightly hours were dedicated to studying. While I was confident in the written parts, I felt I still needed more practice for the practical exams.

Even so, I’d made significant progress since the days when I lacked magical abilities—to the point of being well above average for freshmen.

While awaiting exams outside the testing hall, I ran into Yenika again; and again, I was ignored. Klara and Anis were clearly pleased to see me utterly disregarded.

Day 18.

The woodwork neared completion. Though I might be short, I figured I could always cut more if necessary.

Academic schedules were winding down in anticipation of the closing ceremony. My grades turned out quite well—I wasn’t receiving a scholarship, but if I continued to progress at this pace, I could aim for one next semester.

My Wind Blade proficiency improved another level. I expected the necessary skill level to be high by now, but the daily work of felling trees and debranching had indeed contributed to my growth.

Since I lacked means to transport the lumber, I borrowed a wheeled cart from the student union hall where repairs were underway. Of course, it wasn’t free. After handing over a bit of money, they let me use it at my leisure when construction wasn’t happening.

He readily agreed, and so I began to transport logs one by one near the camp.

Day 20.

The vacation had started, and for the time being, I could devote all day solely to the camp.

Most students had returned home for the holidays. I had no hometown to return to; I had plans to build one here. The first task was to split the logs with the wind blade, creating a flat surface to make beams. Working all day, I completed about half of the task.

It was time to secure more food. I checked the snare traps I had set earlier, but its catch was Lucy, fast asleep. Using jerky as bait had been a mistake.

I tossed Lucy inside the wooden shelter and continued crafting the beams.

Day 23.

Zix came to the forest. He was running around for training, even during the holidays.

I asked if he wasn’t going to go home, and he said he didn’t because Elka had stayed for a conference, so he stayed as well. He’s consistent, I’ll give him that.

He saw me building a shabby house and asked if I needed help.

I was hesitant to accept help since this was also training, but for tasks I couldn’t manage alone, it seemed better to get some assistance.

With his help, we erected one central pillar and four peripheral ones and fixed them in place. We finished the task of laying the crossbeams as well.

Exhausted after all the work, we both collapsed on the floor, drenched in sweat. As dusk approached, Zix said to call him if I needed help again before heading back to Ophelius Hall.

Day 27.

The rain came. The logs got so soaked they became too heavy to work with. With it not drying in a day or two, it looked like I’d need to focus on survival activities for a while.

In the evening, Senior Maid Belle Mayar brought over some herbs and mushrooms. She inquired coyly about how things were with Yenika, and I honestly replied that she seems to dislike me.

Belle tilted her head and went back to Ophelius Hall. It turns out that Yenika and her close friends stayed at school for the vacation, too.

Day 30.

With the beam and pillar work complete, the structure began to take shape. The next step was to stack logs for the outer walls.

This wasn’t simple; I had to carve out spaces at the end of each log to serve as joints.

It was a nightmarish task, using a saw, chisel, and hammer to create the joints so that the logs fit together, but I managed a decent finish.

Day 32.

The outer wall collapsed around one pillar. I realized that making good joints wasn’t enough to ensure sturdiness.

Damn it.

Day 34.

I used a hand-cranked auger to drill holes in the wood and came up with the idea of inserting sturdy iron rods into the joints for reinforcement. I headed to the general store run by Elte Commerce for supplies.

Near Baker Hall, I ran into Yenika’s group again. Yenika fled at the sight of me, as expected. Her two friends used to laugh, but now only Anis did.

Claire glanced back and forth between me and Yenika, then for no apparent reason, started sweating profusely. It seemed she had a stomach ache.

Day 37.

“Senior was right; that Taely guy turned out to be decent,” a comrade commented.

I called Zix, who was jogging around, to help with lifting high logs for the roof. It’s important not to get too entangled with key scenario characters, but staying too distant can prevent me from understanding if the story is progressing correctly. I mustn’t repeat the blunders from the Glascan subjugation. While putting him to work, I decided to fish for stories about the first-year students from Zix.

We sat on the partially completed cabin roof, nailing the joints together.

“I sparred with him during the end-of-term evaluations. He never gave up, just kept getting stronger. He’s not my match yet, but could become a decent swordsman soon.”

“Is that so?”

I was reassured that Act 1, Chapter 9 had progressed without issues.

“Will you nail all this as well?”

“Leave that; it’s the space for the chimney.”

Though crude, I planned for a fireplace, essential for indoor heating. Of course, I’d need materials other than logs for that, but I’ll cross that bridge when I get there.

Day 40.

Halfway through the vacation, it was so hot I feared heatstroke and took a day off.

Day 42.

The heat became unbearable, so I worked shirtless. The slight muscles built from my labor could now simply be called muscles. To keep cool, I doused myself in river water and filled the gaps between the logs with mud.

For the rooftop which might leak, I covered it with wide leaves like those used for the wooden shelter and secured it with nets left from making the fish preserve, tied properly with ropes.

I used spare nets to make a makeshift hammock by tying them to nearby trees. It could be repurposed later if needed.

Day 45.

.

.

.

Nine “正” characters were now marked on the tree I had scored with my sword at the start.

I looked ahead at the log cabin, which had turned out quite well.

[ New Accomplishment ]

Log Cabin: A cabin created from evenly trimmed logs, stacked upon pillars and beams. It only has walls and a roof, with nothing inside.

Creation Difficulty: ●●●●○ [ Your crafting proficiency has increased. ]

[ Your crafting proficiency has increased. ]

[ Your crafting proficiency has increased. ]

[ Your crafting proficiency has increased. ]

[ Your crafting proficiency has increased. ]

*Sigh.*

I sighed once and carelessly placed down the hand axe.

Then I walked towards the cabin. There was no door yet, but I could create one using hinges.

Entering through the doorway, I sat down in the middle of the cabin.

It felt spacious, perhaps over five pyeong. It was bigger than I expected due to the large logs, but more space isn’t a bad thing. It might reduce heating efficiency, but it’s acceptable.

There were holes for windows, but they weren’t fitted with glass yet. Similarly, I’d reserved an area for the fireplace, but without suitable materials, it remained empty.

The flooring and wall coverings hadn’t been laid, and there was not a single piece of furniture – just a simple log cabin.

Yet it had walls, a roof.

Once the door is closed, no bugs can get in. If I can find something for lighting, I can study more comfortably at night. A desk and chair would make it perfect.

I ran my hand over my face.

I had a home.

The sensation was surprisingly moving, testament to how tough life had been.

I’d been so busy surviving that I’d forgotten this fact.

With my own living space now established, I decided not to push myself any further and wrapped up the day, sitting quietly.

[ Living Skills Details ]

Rank: Novice Craftsman Specialty: Carpentry Dexterity Lv 13 Design Lv 8 Gathering Ability Lv 11 Carpentry Lv 12 Hunting Lv 8 Fishing Lv 6 Cooking Lv 6 Repair Lv 5 Remarkable four-step craftsmanship.

I postponed examining the soaring living skill proficiency, dexterity stats, and increased physical stamina. It was time for advanced crafting skills soon, but I wasn’t in the mood to check.

The journey was still far from over.

I needed wall and floor materials, furniture, to finish the fireplace, a fence wouldn’t be bad, plus additional food supplies, a small shed for storing firewood and other items, and installation of doors and windows.

But for now… I just wanted to be under these walls and roof.

I lay there in the middle of the cabin for a long time.

“Ohhhh!”

There was Lucy, who had appeared at some point, dangling from a window hole, flailing her legs and with stars sparkling in her eyes.

To her, the painstakingly created cabin seemed to be nothing more than a giant cat tower. She excitedly tried climbing all over it.

I thought of chasing her out but… I too wanted to bask in this sense of accomplishment for a while.

The sun was setting gently.

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