Mariela is a young girl who is one of the many alchemists living in the Kingdom of Endalsia. However, when the capital city was rampaged by a horde of monsters in an event known as "The Stampede", she used her magic to put herself in suspended animation in hopes of wading off the invasion. She wakes up to find that she survived, but the spell worked out too well. She slept for two centuries, and is surprised to find that Endalsia has changed a lot in that time. In addition, Mariela finds out she's the last surviving alchemist in the Kingdom.
With nothing else to do, Mariela seeks to rebuild her previous lifestyle back in the vastly-changed kingdom, and along the way, she meets a couple of new friends on her journey. A new chapter in her life as an alchemist begins.
The Alchemist Who Survived Now Dreams of a Quiet City Life is a fantasy light novel series written by Usata Nonohara and illustrated by Ox. Published in Japan on July 30, 2019, and later localized in the west by Yen Press on October 15 of the same year, the series stars Mariela; a young alchemist girl who only seeks to return to her normal life. A manga adaptation is also available.
This work provides examples of:
- Because You Were Nice to Me: Mariela buys a crippled slave and uses her alchemy to restore him to health. Siegmund is absolutely devoted to her in return.
- Big Creepy-Crawlies: The 55th floor of the dungeon is infested with three foot long cockroaches.
- Big Eater: Pre-suspended animation, Mariela was poor and only bought the cheapest foods. Post-suspended animation, the money from her potions monopoly means she can afford much better, and she is clearly making up for lost time. To the point where a minor part of book 3 is "Chubbyela" being put on a diet.
- Catch-22 Dilemma: In order to clear the dungeon near the Labyrinth City, the military needs potions. However, potions have a very short shelf life if taken outside the region in which they are made, and in order to make potions in a given region, the alchemist in question must have made a pact with the local ley line nexus. But, since the nexus communicates in the language of the area's dominant race, and the dominant race of the area are the monsters of the local dungeon, it isn't possible to form pacts until the dungeon is cleared and the nexus gains the ability to speak a human language. Mareila is the sole exception to this rule, because she made a pact with the local ley lines before the dungeon formed, and the change to the nexus didn't impact pre-existing pacts.
- The Cobbler's Children Have No Shoes: A side-plot in the second book centers around a healer responsible for treating adventurers wounded in the labyrinth, who spends the back half of the book lamenting the fact that despite the fortune in potions and medicines he uses daily, he can't do anything to treat his twelve year old daughter who was maimed in a monster attack, because all those medicines are the government's property and not his. After helping expose a criminal at the end of the book, he is granted permission to use a potion for personal reasons as a reward.
- Conspicuous Consumption: Due to the fact that it's been generations since the last time anyone's been able to make more, potions are considered to be a rarity to only be used in dire need - some people even go their entire lives without using any potions they own and pass them on to their children. As a result, the Black Iron Trading Company sees Mariela casually using potions without a thought as this, until they realize that she can make more.
- Dead All Along: Estalia, an alchemist kept in suspended animation by the Aguinas family for two hundred years in the hopes of restarting the Endalsian alchemist tradition once the Labyrinth was vanquished. Unfortunately, she was stored in a flawed magic circle and didn't make it.
- Doorstep Baby: Mariela was one, left outside an orphanage with nothing but a note giving her True Name.
- Fake Ultimate Hero: Because she's a beautiful woman from a known line of former alchemists who happened to be engaged to a leader in the labyrinth suppression effort, everyone assumes that Caroline is the alchemist who defeated the Labyrinth and that Mariela is her apprentice when it's the other way around. But since everyone in the know about the truth also knows that Mariela doesn't want the extra attention that correcting the record would bring, they let the misconception stand.
- Fetch Quest: After a while Mariela starts giving these, having adventurers working to clear the Labyrinth gather the ingredients she needs to make the potions necessary for them to delve into the deeper levels.
- For Want of a Nail: Mariela's sleep lasted longer than expected because she left a lamp on when entering the magic circle to put her in suspended animation, which burned up all the oxygen in the room. As such, the spell couldn't release her until the air cleared, which didn't happen until the door to the basement she was hiding in decayed and fell apart two centuries later.
- Geometric Magic: Magic circles, most commonly used on storage containers so that the potions within don't degrade.
- I Know Your True Name: Making a pact with the ley lines requires giving the ley line your True Name.
- Mundane Object Amazement: Mariela missed out on two centuries of technological advancement, and so can be fascinated by tools that are fairly common now but didn't exist when she went into stasis, like hand mixers. The locals think she's from a backwater village as a result.
- Mundane Solution: Making holy water require's an innocent maiden's hair. When told of that, the people who needed the holy water think some woman made an Important Haircut as a sacrifice to make it. In truth, Mariela found a neighborhood kid with a bad haircut and offered to fix it for her.
- Normal Fish in a Tiny Pond: Before the Stampede, Mariela was only a modestly above average alchemist who was barely scraping by due to the fact that the region had more alchemists than it did bakers. After leaving suspended animation, she's literally the only alchemist in town, and the massive demand for healing potions for the labyrinth clearing forces cause her to make more money in a week than she used to in a year.
- Photographic Memory: Mariela's master had a spell that allowed her to induce perfect recall of a specific thing. She used it on her repeatedly to teach her the diagrams of magical circles. This saves her life - the suspended animation circle is very complex, and any mistakes in making it can have fatal side effects. The climax of the second book reveals that other alchemists tried to survive the Stampede the same way she did, but were killed by a faulty circle.
- Rags to Riches: In Mariela's day, alchemists were more common than bakers. The high supply of potions, combined with the fact that she was a newcomer into the business with no connections, meant that if she hadn't been able to gather ingredients from the forest for free, she'd have gone broke. In the modern era, the need to purge the dungeon has caused high demand for potions, and she is literally the only supplier in the region. The girl who once considered a five copper bottle of fruit juice to be an unnecessary luxury now has an income in the hundreds of golds.
- Really 700 Years Old: Thanks to having been in suspended animation, Mariela is 216 and looks 16.
- Sole Survivor: Mariela is the last alchemist of Endalsia after an event called the Stampede destroyed a lot of the kingdom and caused a dungeon to form that tainted the ley line nexus, making it impossible to train more.
- Up to Eleven: The largest known dungeon in history was fifty floors deep. At the start of the second book, the forces trying to clear the dungeon in Endalsia are on the fifty-third floor.