A Chance Meeting

“A Chance Meeting” is an image story written on June 9, 1997 by the Langrisser IV scenario writer Yoh Haduki. It provides background information on the characters Wiler and Ranford, and explains how the two met during their years at the military academy.

The text was included as a bonus on the Saturn edition of Langrisser IV.

“Ahh, wonderful weather today.”

The young man spread himself on the grass, watching the swallow-tailed kites fly past.

The sound of sword swinging under guidance could be heard in the distance.

Taking in the relaxing atmosphere, the young man let out a yawn as he brushed his silver hair, and spread out the book from under his arms to begin reading.

Every time he laid his eyes down on a passage, no sound could disturb him. The historical world view and setting provided to him by the tome would become his entirety. What suddenly broke his concentration and forced him back into reality was the shadow looming over the pages.

The young man raised his head to find a sharp, handsome face with slender eyes, soft skin, and blonde hair.

“Well, if it isn't Ranford. Are you sure you want to be seen around me? I wouldn't want to hurt your reputation as the ace student.”

The silver-haired young man spoke as he closed his book and sat up.

“I thought it was time for your sword instruction.”

“Heh, that's what I was about to say. What are you doing skipping out on sword training, Wiler?”

The blonde-haired young man named Ranford retorted as he sat down next to Wiler. His low, soothing voice always put the listener in a comforting mood.

“I hurt myself during the last training session.”   Ranford showed him the bandage on his left arm. Wiler knew very well that this injury came about from protecting someone.

Charmingly good looks, a brilliant mind, and compassionate. On top of that, his swordsmanship skills were top of the class in the Academy. It's no wonder he was the talk of the female students.

Such thoughts grazed his mind as Wiler looked at Ranford. And then it struck him: here they were chatting away as if they were long-time friends.

The two were indeed famous at the Stellenberg Training Academy.

One was the greatest student the Academy had ever known, while the other was the worst in Academy history.

“I find you interesting, Wiler.”

“An ace like you interested in a drop-out like me? Heh, I guess it's something only you geniuses would understand——trying to obtain something you don't have, eh?”

“Jest me not, I am being serious here.”

Ranford was a kind one, but he spoke with a certain sharpness. Wiler no longer felt comfortable quipping.

Up until now, the two had never exchanged a word despite attending the same Academy.

While Ranford was always surrounded by other students, no one ever approached Wiler. Of course, Wiler wasn't the type to approach others either. But here they were: the two of them seated side-by-side on the grass. What would other students think if they were to happen upon this spectacle?

“I have never thought of you as drop-out. In fact, I've always thought highly of you.”

“It's an honor to hear that from the top-ranking student in the Academy.”

“The reason most people fail to understand you is because your thoughts are not restrained by the old, traditional ways of thinking. In other words, other people are too concerned with the archaic schools of thought. Perhaps you were born too early. You are the one who truly deserves to be called 'genius'.

There was no hint of false praise in those words. As Ranford spoke so directly, Wiler felt flattered. He attempted to conceal his blushing cheeks by scrabbling his hair.

“Don't you feel embarrassed saying that?”

“Embarrassed?”

“Heh…”

Wiler whispered as he continued scratching his hair. While he was flattered at Ranford's words, it had been a while since Wiler had spoken with anyone for such a long time. It felt somewhat tingly.

“Speaking of which, your counter-argument the other day was right on.”

It happened a little over two months ago.

”…So assuming you have the same numbers as the enemy, employing this strategy will result in victory with a tenth of your soldiers remaining. Any questions… Wiler, speak your mind.“

“Yes, instructor. Your explanation assumes that the enemy attacks us blindly with no thought… Furthermore, I take it this stratagem results in the loss of 90% of our troops?

“Sacrifice is a part of war. Are you saying you can win without fighting?”

“That would be ideal. If we could get the enemy to surrender before the battle, we would not lose a single soldier.”

“What you speak of is a pipe dream! Soldiers who don't fight?! Is this not a war?! Ridiculous! Enough of this!”

The lecture hall was filled with gibes and sneers directed at Wiler. But Wiler merely looked around, and shrugged his shoulders and sat down as if nothing had happened.

That remark resulted in Wiler's isolation within the Academy.

“It does seem like you lack social tact though, always ending up on the short end of the stick, eh?”

“You see right through me, don't you?”

The two laughed in unison. Their bout of laughter ended with Ranford suddenly turning into a serious expression.

“Rather than the fool who forsakes his identity to blend in with everyone, I prefer to become the hero who gets hurt sticking to his beliefs until the very end.”

“Thank you.”

Just then, the bell signifying the end of class sounded.

Ranford stood up and wiped the grass off his clothes.

“But you know, I think it's ok to be a fool at times. Let's talk again like this someday. Next time, we'll share our thoughts on the art of warfare.”

Those were Ranford's last words as he walked back towards the Academy grounds. Wiler once again scratched his own silver hair in embarrassment while watching Ranford walk into the distance.

Translated by DragonmasterX 2012/08/11 22:54

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"Dawn of Darkness""A Chance Meeting""Prohibited Parody Play"