The carriage stopped a little away from a well-maintained road, three young people gathered in a hurry next to it, and an orc and a cat were watching them.
Except for the fact that the party members were unique, nothing was special about that sight.
Maybe it was just a usual chat time after lunch. Actually, there wasn’t much of a difference.
However, the words which came out of their mouths, Bratt and Judith’s to be exact, were bloody.
“Are you talking about it? The first of the 7 matches at Murray manor?”
“Right. When I stabbed you were flustered.”
“Flustered, what nonsense, don’t you remember that I evaded to the right and that your sword didn’t even reach me?”
“That’s the proof. That you got hit because I attacked differently than usual, and because you got hit, I reflexively avoided it. Dodge to the side, dash, and then counterattack, it comes out like a habit. So, you expected me to do it right away.”
“… I will admit it. I need to pay more attention.”
An in-depth discussion about who stabbed and cut.
The two were truly demonstrating what ’fighting with words“ meant, but Airn later realized that this was a replay of the matches.
And he was surprised by how they remembered every move they made, he could feel their mad obsession with swords.
They didn’t just memorize actions, they thought about,
Why did they do that? What was the benefit from it? What if it got blocked, and what could be used next? What would the opponent’s response be?
Seeing the two weaving dozens of ideas into one, Airn couldn’t help but admire them.
“What could be an easier way to attack in that situation?”
The discussion about swords didn’t end.
After a hypothetical situation appeared, discussions followed one after another to solve it.
Judith would start and Bratt would continue, watching the two of them come up with topics three times in a row and then searching for the answer, Airn was able to realize a lot of things he missed.
Psychological warfare between swordsmen, coping and creative breakthrough techniques, and accurate judgement according to the situation.
Various other large and small things made up Judith’s swordsmanship.
“How is that? Do you get that?” (*)
“… huh. I think it would be difficult to do it right away.”
Airn answered Judith’s question.
To be honest, just listening to them was overwhelming. 1
And his realizations were also overwhelming.
‘I was so overly concerned with my attitude towards swords that I neglected swordsmanship a lot.’
That meant that since he came out of the world of sorcery, he hadn’t paid much attention to swordsmanship.
“I’m sorry, but can I just listen to you this time?”
Bratt nodded and looked at Judith again. And the verbal sword training resumed.
Of course, it didn’t last all day. If it did, they would have had to sleep on the street instead of in a town.
They could have continued the discussions in the carriage, but they didn’t.
Bratt was next to Kuvar, driving the carriage and Judith was on the roof of the carriage.
Lulu fell asleep next to her.
The only one left was Airn, who was inside the carriage.
In a space where he was alone and relaxed, he smiled.
He felt glad about the free time where he got to think for himself.
When he thought about it, it was the same in the school. The two always helped and he always received.
While it warmed his heart, his feelings of regret and desire to win grew little by little.
‘I should do my best so that I can join them as well.’
He didn’t want to constantly be helped.
He didn’t want to be left behind.
In order to do that, he had to match the level of the two as soon as possible.
Airn Pareira, who had made a firm decision, slowly closed his eyes.
He wasn’t ready for imagery training.
Will, mind, and belief. The most important things, but… now was the time to focus purely on swordsmanship.
The troubles which started then, continued for three hours while the carriage moved.
And lasted until they reached a village and entered an inn.
Airn had been concentrating on swordsmanship until it was time for dinner, but then he got up as the food was about to come out.
“Sorry. But I’ll skip dinner.”
“Where are you going?”
“To practice swordsmanship.”
“At this hour…”
“I’ll find somewhere. If it doesn’t work, I’ll go outside the village to practice and come back in the morning.”
With those words, Airn left the inn.
Kuvar looked at him with a puzzled look, and Judith, who got up a few seconds later, also left the inn.
The air became empty.
As food filled the table, Bratt shook his head.
“He’s at it again.”
“What do you mean?”
“Airn. Every time he acts like that, he shows incredible growth. It seems like Judith was also stimulated and went away. Seriously, if that crazy monster is training, I can’t even imagine the results.”
“Didn’t that happen when he was with you, Mr. Kuvar? It should’ve happened.”
“I knew it.”
Bratt nodded with a serious expression and then moved his fork, without losing his grace.
He finished his meal a little faster than Kuvar and Lulu and got up saying.
“I too will train. When I saw that face, I felt like I had to do something,”
In the end, only Kuvar and Lulu were left.
It was still the third day after Bratt and Judith joined them.
A week passed since Airn went into training.
During that time, he went back to the basics and spent days thinking about swordsmanship.
Fortunately, he realized something. He remembered something he had forgotten.
It was what the roots of his swordsmanship was.
‘My swordsmanship’s center is…’
He entered the world of sorcery to find his sword and acquired various swordsmanship.
Bratt’s sword which resembled water, Judith’s which resembled fire, Ilya’s which resembled the sky, and the sword of the man.
And the basics he learned at Krono.
None of them were unimportant, but the main things were the man’s swordsmanship which he learned and Krono’s swordsmanship, which contained a little heaviness.
‘The problem was that I forgot them and tried to just imitate Bratt and Judith’s swordsmanship.’
There are some things that he vaguely felt through their matches and discussions.
The point was that he couldn’t be Bratt or Judith.
It wasn’t a good idea to let the opponent’s attacks flow or to imitate the sword of Judith which was explosive.
If he did, it would mean that he was chasing after the two, and would do that for the rest of his life.
If so, what should he do?
Should he throw away everything he learned so far in the world of sorcery and start over?
‘Focus on the content. Add only the parts which can be taken and applied from Bratt and Judith’s.’
Instead of losing his center and being dragged here and there, hold onto the center and harmonize the other attributes.
Having reached a satisfactory conclusion, Airn’s swordsmanship slowly began to bloom.
He couldn’t follow the free and light footsteps of Judith.
Because he wasn’t her.
It was because he was dull and heavy compared to her, who moved like fire.
However, he was able to capture her explosiveness. And it melts away the heaviness.
Airn’s attack, which was completed in that way, was as if a red-hot sword was flying.
It was impossible to make an attack flow as smoothly as Bratt did.
Because he wasn’t Bratt Lloyd.
He didn’t dare imitate the movements.
The water that dissolved the heaviness which made one feel stiff wasn’t there, but it was fine.
Because he made a defensive technique, which was like striking a deep puddle, it relaxed the incoming attacks and made them lose their strength.
Bratt Lloyd, who felt that was shocked.
“This crazy basta…”
It wasn’t him who said that.
Judith constantly complained over and over again as she looked at Airn, who changed in a week.
She had no choice but to do so.
It was because her win percentage against Airn, which was at 90% had fallen to 70%.
“Shit. How can the world work like this?”
“This is how the world works. I felt this 5 years ago when I saw Ilya. And I feel it now.”
“Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck….”
Lulu trembled at Judith’s rather different choice of words.
The air in the carriage was overflowing with the desire to compete.
However, instead of being uncomfortable with that, Kuvar felt a kind of compassion.
‘It’s hard to stay with a genius.’
He knew that because he was a spiritualist.
The intense fire which cannot be compared to ordinary people.
A person with such an attitude will never be able to lose.
Whether it’s rock-paper-scissors or a quick meal, if there’s a competitive element, no matter how trivial it may be, that type of person has to win.
And when irrational talents appear in front of such a person, they will suffer.
Perhaps Judith’s heart would swell like an active volcano.
‘It will be my job to manage it well. Of course, right now… that might be difficult.’
From an adult’s point of view, Kuvar was concerned about Judith.
He hoped that the talented young woman wouldn’t burn herself with her passion and get injured.
… exactly a week later, he realized that he had greatly underestimated her.
“Ugh! I won!”
“Judith learned from Airn. There’s a mixture of lightness and heaviness in her footsteps. It’s gotten pretty tricky…”
Even without Bratt’s explanation, they knew.
Because Kuvar was attentive, and even if his body didn’t know, his eyes showed him.
Just as Airn absorbed Judith’s strengths.
Judith did the same thing with Airn’s strengths.
At that, in a very short amount of time.
What made it possible…
‘Talent and tenacity… I was greatly mistaken. Judith is a genius.’
It wasn’t just her.
Bratt Lloyd, too, accomplished something during the time when the other two grew.
Just looking at his attitude would make anyone realize it. There was no nervousness in Bratt anymore.
Kuvar finally realized.
There was no way he could have accurately judged the full scope of their talent.
‘Genius, genius, and another genius…’
It was when he was thinking.
Bratt, who came in front of him, asked.
“How long until Partizan?”
“Uh? Ah! Let’s see… we’ll arrive tomorrow.”
“Oh, finally! They won’t avoid us like they did in Lation, right?”
“You don’t have to worry about that. It’s a city built by people who don’t like that kind of attitude.”
“Ah what? Look at Airn. He looks like he’s going to destroy all the swordsmen in Partizan.”
“What are you…”
“I like that attitude. Very nice. Whether we destroy or get destroyed, let’s just go ahead and realize that one side is bound to be destroyed!”
“Don’t be silly.”
Judith, Airn, and Bratt were excited to challenge the swordsmen in Partizan.
Kuvar smiled softly as he looked at them.
Seeing ambitious people made him excited too.
In such an air, Lulu alone felt different.
‘It seems that they don’t have a sense of what level they’re at because it’s just the three of them right now…’
Well, once they get to Partizan, they’d find out.
The black cat yawned and fell into meditation again.
Judith and Bratt joined the party over a week ago.
And the party finally set foot in Partizan.
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