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Light Novel / The Mage Will Master Magic Efficiently in His Second Life

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I can’t even waste one second. I must train my magic efficiently this time.
The Mage Will Master Magic Efficiently In His Second Life (a.k.a Kouritsu Kuriya Madoushi, Daini no Jinsei de Madou wo Kiwameru or Re: Master Magic) is a light novel, web novel, and manga series that tells the story of Zeff Einstein, a mage who spent his whole life mastering red magic and was finally recognized for it, yet a new spell that was soon created revealed that his talent for red magic was his lowest.

Bitter at the thought of all his wasted effort, he creates a spell to send his old self back in time to his younger body and together with the determined "genius" mage Milly and the handsome swordswoman Claude, he intends to master magic more efficiently this time.

Alphapolis publishes both the novels and manga adaptation that premiered in 2015.


  • Acting Your Intellectual Age: Zeff acts his appropriate mental age in comparison to, say, Milly, who is a year older physically but an actual Child Prodigy.
  • Adam Smith Hates Your Guts: Zeff unintentionally did this, due to setting the prices of accessories he was trying to sell at the market price he knew from the future. Lydia has to point it out to him.
  • Adaptation Distillation: The manga notably changes or leaves out certain events of the web-novel, such as Zeff dealing with the bandits attacking a caravan. Likewise, the web-novel is much darker (such as Zeff killing bandits without a second thought), whereas in the manga it centers around the shounen elements.
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  • Affectionate Gesture to the Head: Zeff does this to Milly to cheer her up, mostly because he sees her as Just a Kid.
  • Amplifier Artifact: Catalyst such as the Snake Bone Ring and the Teleport Earrings.
  • Anti-Magic: White Wall stops any magic used against it as long as its a Primary-level spell.
    • The "Screen Point" skill of the Leonhardt family.
  • An Axe to Grind: Lydia pull a battle axe out to deal with King Nipper.
  • Background Magic Field: Mana serves as this. When it mixes with different things in nature, it can create monsters.
  • Bag of Holding: Magic Bags. Bigger space on the inside.
  • Bedmate Reveal: Chapter 10 of the manga has Zeff waking up to find Milly in his bed.
  • Beehive Barrier: Safe Protection takes this form in the manga.
  • Bewildering Punishment: Claude has no clue why Zeff is trying to kill her after they meet because she hasn't done what Zeff believes she may do in the future by bringing the Scout Scope to the Magical Association. Milly has to call him out attacking her for no reason before he snaps out of it.
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  • Big Damn Heroes: Seruberie drops in, kills the Undead Knight that was about to kill Zeff's team, and heals them before teleporting out in Chapter 23.
  • Blob Monster: The slime-like demons.
  • Boom, Headshot!: How Zeff dispatches two thieves in chapter 4 of the web-novel.
  • Bring My Brown Pants: Zeff makes some kid trying to bully him wet himself out of fear early in the web-novel.
  • Bulletproof Human Shield: Zeff uses Claude as an anti-magic bulletproof shield.
  • Child Prodigy: Milly. Zeff technically cheats by Mental Time Travel.
  • Charged Attack: Magic Amplifier is a Status Buff spell that doubles the power of the next spell fired, but raises the consumption rate.
  • Conditioned to Accept Horror: The reason Claude brushes off Zeff trying to strangle her, despite having a fairly lame excuse, is because she was used to being beaten by her brother.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Claude.
  • De-Power: A mage can have their ability to cast magic taken away from them, a fate that's worse than death in Zeff's eyes. Grain is sentenced to have his magic taken away for attacking the kids.
  • Dirty Kid: Zeff, considering that it's his perspective that focuses a lot on curves and swells.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: Zeff, briefly, while Lydia basically played around with the King Nipper while using her Axe in a manner he likened to pole-dancing to confuse it. And then afterwards, when she wants to take a bath with him.
    Right in front of me, was Lydia standing with her upper body completely exposed. Her ponytail is let down, and her long hair sticks to her curvaceous body. It was so close before I could see her most important parts, but that was not the issue here.
  • Elite Mook: King Nipper, which would be around a Field Boss' level in terms of strength.
  • Elemental Rock–Paper–Scissors: The different monster and magic systems play to this. Things native to the red system are weak to blue, things native to the blue system are weak to green, etc. Soul magic is the sole exception, which is weak against itself.
  • Eye Scream: Zeff has his familiar blind Grain in one eye by gouging it out with her needle sword.
  • Fairy Companion: Zeff's familiar is one of these.
  • Fallen-on-Hard-Times Job: Claude's family went from honorable knights to becoming adventurers.
  • Familiar: Can be summoned by mages using Soul Magic. They have levels that can be raised.
  • Flaming Weapon: The Crimson Blade spell.
  • Forced Sleep: The Sleep Code spell can immediately place people into a sleep-like state, but it can only be cast in a short distance, has a long enchantment time, and won't work if they look away, making it situational.
  • Functional Magic: The magic system of the setting is divided into five categories, which are also associated with the Elemental Powers and Stock RPG Spells:
    • Red/Scarlet Magic: Fire Magic that focuses on offensive spells. Even the defensive Red Wall spell will burn an enemy, being the only type of wall spell with offensive potential.
    • Void/Sky Magic: Magic that influences the atmosphere, allowing for control over Wind and Lightning. The spells are known to be fast, but hard to control.
    • Blue Magic: Magic that has numerous effects, including Healing, Aura Vision, and Ice magic. It's a good balance for working alone.
    • Green Magic: Magic that encompasses space, plants, and terrain. The spells in it have high powers, but a narrow range of effects.
    • Soul Magic: Magic of angels and demons, capable of sending messages to the heavens. You need a magic catalyst to act as a medium (which are expensive), but it allows you to harm monsters that are typically immune to physical damage and purify them, such as The Undead.
  • Furo Scene: Chapter 25. Lydia offers to let Zeff join her, but he turns her down... reluctantly.
  • Giant Enemy Crab: Nippers.
  • Gut Feeling: Lydia and her father can sense that Zeff is a strong mage, something that usually occurs in skilled adventurers.
  • The Immodest Orgasm: Milly, after Lydia got her hands on the younger girl.
  • Indentured Servitude: The girl who worked for the Caravan owner and her sister in the web-novel were both his slaves, with their term ending a day before her sister was killed.
  • Insufferable Genius: Zeff, due to his age and knowledge. It's more pronounced in the Web-novel.
  • In the Past, Everyone Will Be Famous: Claude Leonhardt is a knight looking for a master in the past. In Zeff's original time, she was the one who brought the Scout Scope to the Magical Association Society.
  • Intimate Healing: Milly does this to give Zeff a Mana Potion in Chapter 7.
  • Invisibility Cloak: The Black Coat spell, which is magic that hides the object with a layer of air, assimilating the figure of the object or person into the background, and making it very hard for someone to discover something amiss without looking closely. Moving can cause it to peel off if not skilled in its use, but when standing still they can't be spotted.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: To be frank, Zeff is a jerk unless you are useful to him and his inner dialogue drips with arrogance, but he does have his moments and the people he has to deal with are usually much worse.
  • Just a Kid: How Zeff sees Milly, despite her clearly growing attraction to him.
  • Kill Steal: There is magic in place to prevent this on regular monsters, but the rules against a Boss Monster are different. Which is how Zeff's old master, Seruberie Shugeru, managed to take the Freybrand. She had been attacking it first and it ran into Zeff's group later.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Milly rushing in to fight the King of Death after being told they needed a plan, due to severely overestimating her chances of beating it. She nearly got her head crushed as a result, and Zeff's arm was broken blocking it, despite casting a Status Buff to reduce the damage by 90%.
  • Level Grinding: Zeff spends most of the earlier chapters doing this with slimes and zombies.
  • Like a Son to Me: Zeff basically considers Milly and Claude like grandchildren to him, due to his mental age.
  • Like Brother and Sister: Lydia quickly comes to see Zeff as a little brother more than anything.
  • Mage Killer: Kane, Claude's brother, is trained to fight mages with Mage Killing Arts. This bites Zeff in the ass because he had been underestimating him right until he whipped it out.
  • Magical Incantation: Higher-tier spells need an incantation to work.
  • Magically Inept Fighter: Lydia has no magical value whatsoever.
  • Magic Knight: Claude Leonhardt.
  • Magic Prerequisite: The Great Magic: Black Thunder spell requires cloudy weather to work, but can call down a bolt of lightning.
  • Mana Potion: Used in combination with Meditation, a mage can quickly restore their magic. Zeff combines five into one bottle to speed up the process and effect, but it's noted to be bitter-tasting to the extent Milly would rather not drink one in the face of a boss.
    • There are also pills.
  • Marshmallow Hell: Claire-sensei subjects Zeff to this when he returns from skipping class, out of concern he had been missing. He enjoys it.
    • Lydia ends up subjecting Claude and Milly to one while they were in Mountain Lodge in Chapter 42.
  • Mental Time Travel: This is the basic premise, Zeff sends his future knowledge back to his childhood in the first chapter.
  • Mistaken for Romance: Claire-sensei believes that Zeff and Milly came to town holding hands because they were on a date in Chapter 14 of the web-novel. The fact that the latter tightens her grip when she escorts them around doesn't help things.
  • Naked Apron: Played with. Lydia does wear clothes while cooking with an apron, but they are so short that she may as well be naked.
  • Oblivious to Love: Milly's growing crush on Zeff is fairly apparent, but because of his mindset being far older he doesn't see her more as more than Just a Kid.
  • Old, Dark House: The abandoned orphanage/church. It now serves as a haunting ground for The Undead.
  • Our Zombies Are Different: Zombies in this setting are created when magic enters into a human corpse and turns it into a monster.
  • Projectile Spell: The Ball and Shot series of spells fire a projectile of whatever element or magic energy the caster is channeling.
  • Red Mage: Zeff's specialty is that he switches between multiple magic styles rather than becoming a Master of One Magic like in his last life.
  • Sexy Soaked Shirt: Lydia after the battle with King Nipper in Chapter 24 of the web-novel.
    • Claude in Chapter 39 of the web-novel.
  • Smoke Out: The Burst Wave spell Zeff invents by combing Red Wave and Blue Wave under Time Square.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Zeff is sometimes spelled Zeph depending on the translator.
  • Spirit Advisor: In the manga, the older Zeff lingers in the back of the younger Zeff's mind and gives him advice and guidance.
  • Stat-O-Vision: The Scout Scope spell invented by Milly's father. The fact that the version Zeff knew in the future was nerfed compared to hers, which is able to read even the level of the individual spells a person uses, leaves him to believe that its very likely she would be assassinated to keep it a secret.
  • Summon Magic: The Summon Servant Soul Magic.
  • Telepathy: Through the Crystal rings they have, Zeff and Milly can use telepathy to communicate with one another.
  • Teleportation: Zeff and Milly are both proficient with the Teleport spell.
  • Time Stands Still: Zeff's Time Square spell basically freezes time for everyone but him. He can't move in that frozen span of time, but he can essentially cast double the spells without a chance of interrupting, making it seem instant, and combine spells as well. The cost of the spell increases, but so does its effectiveness as well. The only reason he doesn't one-shot everything is because he doesn't have enough magic points to use a great magic with it.
  • Time to Unlock More True Potential: Essentially, this is why he sent himself back. He mastered Red Magic only to find out that he had more potential in the other categories, so he's working on those now.
  • Turns Red: When the King of Death loses most of its health, its appearance changes to being close to The Grim Reaper and it's damage increases by three times. Zeff's master one-shots it before it can do even that.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Zeff admits that when he gets mad he starts seeing red and stops caring about things like collateral damage or considering anything else. He nearly strangles Claude after learning her name for what she did in the future, which was uncalled for, and picked a fight with her brother for hurting her afterwards, who was a Mage Killer and would have killed him if Claude wasn't there.
  • Victoria's Secret Compartment: Where Lydia stores her magic bag of supplies.
  • Weak, but Skilled: Lydia is only level 11, lower than Zeff by Chapter 24, but her evasion sense and skill allow her to play around with the King Nipper, which was not only impervious to physical attacks but level 58.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Claude wants to be accepted by her family and older brother, who looks down on her for taking up being an adventurer.
  • Wise Beyond Their Years: Zeff, whose in a child's body but with an old man's experience.
  • Womanchild: Zeff's master, despite being a badass.
  • Would Hurt a Child: The thieves and bandits in the web-novel had no problem with trying to kill Zeff when he came across them robbing a caravan, so he had no problem with killing them in turn.
    • Kane had no problem beating on his younger sister and trying to kill Zeff.
  • Wrecked Weapon: Keeps happening to Claude.

Alternative Title(s): The Mage Will Master Magic Efficiently In His Second Life