“You may be alright now, but if you overdose, you’d be in trouble! Are you only going to believe me when it happens?!” Tigress scolded as she felt her patience has hit its limit. 

“Would I really?” Ye Lang reconfirmed with Tigress as he trusted her. What she said could most likely be true. 

Nonsense! Of course! You’re an alchemist, how could you not know?

“Uh… Yeah, you’d definitely be in trouble. I’ll throw these away later. Next time, if any medicine expires again, you shouldn’t be eating them too. The medicine should be eaten only when you are sick, not just for fun. Also, don’t eat the gastric medicine when you’ve got a cold,” reminded Tigress gently.

“I know, I’m not that stupid,” scoffed Ye Lang, as if he would never do anything that foolish. We still don’t know if he’d do something like that though. 

At this moment, he sighed again. Regretfully, he remarked, “But wouldn’t it be such a waste?”

“...” Tigress was speechless. While it’d be normal for someone else to say it, for such a prodigal son like Ye Lang, it was impossible for him to know what “waste” meant.

“Master, you call yourself the top prodigal son. How could you be afraid of wasting a little bit of medicine?!”

“Prodigal son can still not be wasteful. I am a prodigal, not a wasteful person,” Ye Lang explained and redefined what “prodigal son” meant, differentiating between a ‘prodigal son’ and a ‘waster’.

“This……” Tigress was left speechless. It was true that Ye Lang was prodigal, but indeed, he hated waste.

Ye Lang had always been weird, he had inexplicable logic sometimes.

Tigress chuckled and proceeded to finish her chores for the day. Ye Lang too. They both went on with their day. 

At this point in the story, Ye Lang was thirteen while Tigress was fourteen.

The Royal Institute of Education of the imperial capital was a superior elite academy, ranked second in the whole of the mainland. Not even royals could enter easily. However, this position in the second place was an often debated topic. 

The debate was not about the Royal Institute of Education going for the first place. Everyone knew in their hearts who the best school was, so practically no one could ever threaten the position of the first, best academy. 

Since the top academy’s rank couldn’t be questioned, the debate was about the position of the Royal Institute of Education in second place. The third and fourth schools were always eyeing their position, taking every opportunity to replace them as second-best. 

How were the schools ranked, you ask? It wasn’t from analysis of public opinions or any data. They followed a simple system based on a ranking competition held every ten years. 

That meant the rank could only be kept for a decade. Ten years later, if you lost, the ranking would drop and vice versa if you won. It was always changing and unpredictable, even in the short span of a decade. 

The official battle was not all mixed but categorized into magic, martial arts, alchemy (which rarely had participants), and also mixed tournaments. Each school sent representatives for individual and team tournaments. 

The mainland emphasized on martial arts. Schools prioritized strengthening individual abilities. Thus, the individual students’ abilities were representative of how good each school was. 

Notably, the second to fourth-ranked academies were of the Big Three Empires, whereas the top was from a small insignificant country. It was even said that the country itself was the academy, and the academy itself was the country. 

Perhaps political factors played a role in why it was ranked as the first too.  

The majority of the aristocrats in the Big Three empires would choose this top academy as their first choice. This included the Ye household. Ye Lang’s older brother Ye Hui, his second sister, and many of his cousins all studied there. 

If it weren’t for Ye Lang’s peculiar personality, the Ye household would’ve definitely enrolled him there. However, based on the current circumstances, they were instead sending him to the Royal Institute of Education despite its lower ranking. They didn’t trust him enough to let him study too far abroad. At least they could care for him here. 

One other thing. Ye Lang’s sister, Ye Lanyu, refused to be sent to the top academy and went to the Royal Institute of Education instead to take care of him. Her capabilities would have put her among the elites of the first-ranked academy, but since she was here, she was naturally also the top student of the empire’s Royal Institute of Education. 

As a girl, she had the freedom to study wherever she liked, as the family did not have great expectations upon her. 

Since they both studied in the same place, they’d go to school together every day- although more like excitedly appear next to Ye Lang on a daily basis. At this point, Ye Lanyu herself had all the traits of a beauty, which made her a target of courtship for many aristocratic sons in the city.

It was her sweet sixteen, a young beauty blooming in springtime. 

“Hey, time for school!” Ye Lanyu kicked the door open, then dragged an all-ready Ye Lang out of the house. This became their daily routine. 

“Oh….” Ye Lang was used to this. He let Ye Lanyu hold his hand while his other carried a book to read.

Tigress who saw this from the yard would habitually pack stuff into the bag and hurried away to tag along.

Every day, Tigress would follow the odd siblings to the Royal Institute. With her position, she was naturally Ye Lang’s study companion. Aristocrats were allowed to bring along a servant as a study companion in all academies of the mainland. They had to pay academic fees for these study companions though.

Of course, not all royals brought along a study companion, i.e. Ye Lanyu. 

The horse carriage of Ye household would drop the three of them off at the main entrance, then they’d walk have to walk into the campus. The academy prohibited the entry of any form of vehicle, or the place would be congested with all the rich folk arriving every morning.

In this time of the day, there would be a crowd waiting for the three of them outside of the academy. The crowd was not waiting for Ye Lang though. While he did attract a lot of jealousy, in general, he didn’t offend anyone enough to deserve attacks.

The crowd was waiting for the one beside Ye Lang, his sister Ye Lanyu. 

“Miss Lanyu, these are nine hundred and ninety-nine roses purchased from the Cupid’s Florist. They represent my love for you……” came a voice behind a gigantic bouquet of roses.

“I’m very sorry, I don’t like roses,” apologised Ye Lanyu regretfully with a smile. She carried such grace and elegance.    

It was unusual for Ye Lanyu to have such a ladylike attitude. Was she finally growing up?