You. Deceived me, right?
At those words and the calm face of Airn, the Clown knew the mistake he made.
It was a mistake on his part. In a battle of patience like this, the one who hurries loses, and knowing that he came here himself, he couldn’t bear it.
He was so anxious that he burst out.
Since ancient times, betting had been his specialty.
Unlike humans, who lived for 100 years, devils live for more than a thousand years.
Even the youngest devil on the continent had lived several times longer than humans.
To them, waiting for 10 to 20 years to see their prey suffer was like an appetizer before the actual meal.
However, for the clown devil, he couldn’t wait any longer.
It was because of his memories from a thousand years ago.
Back when despite waiting for decades, his painstaking efforts didn’t bear fruit.
When in the midst of immense pain and anger, the suffering and doubt, a human still didn’t fall.
The devil still had scars caused by Karen Winker, who had threatened his existence.
“Damn it, damn it!”
As if realizing something from the devil’s words, Airn closed his eyes and concentrated.
The Clown who watched it rushed in quickly. He tried to headbutt the man.
Despite the two defeats in his life, he was strong.
But his attack just then was in vain. It was because of this place.
He couldn’t do anything other than speak to the opponent. Still, the Clown didn’t stop. He continued to hit Airn with his fists and kicks.
He tried his best to distract the man.
But Airn continued to ignore the Clown, and after some time passed, he opened his eyes and lowered his sword.
It was a simple slash with the sword.
At least it seemed like that.
But the Clown knew.
The strength of the man’s sword even without Aura on it.
The fact that he created a rift in a barrier filled with darkness.
And Airn’s swordsmanship didn’t end with one slash.
He knew, and the more he did, the more he understood.
Seeing him continuously wield the sword with a lighter expression, the Clown turned furious.
Swear words in the demonic tongue filled the space.
But Airn didn’t care. For him, who was immersed in his own world, the devil’s screams were nothing.
A little more time passed, and the Clown couldn’t even get angry anymore.
The sword that cuts water.
No, Airn, who realized the sword that cut his obsessions, was the winner of the bet, and so, the loser had to pay the price.
The devil exploded with a painful expression and vanished, leaving behind bones.
The disgusting debris melted into the water. But Airn didn’t care.
His thoughts were directed elsewhere.
‘Now I realize.’
When he saw Ian teaching him the sword to cut water, Airn was filled with strange thoughts.
The magnificent sword which struck the water on the first day, and the insignificant sword which Ian showed him on the second day.
What did it mean?
Ian didn’t even give an explanation.
It would be a lie if he said he didn’t feel frustrated at the look of his teacher, who didn’t seem to want to answer the question.
But now he knew.
If he had told him the answer, Airn wouldn’t have realized what it truly meant.
If he said that what had to be cut down was his obsession, then only his mind would understand it, but his heart couldn’t have truly understood it.
Of course, that wasn’t the case now.
After enduring it for many years and swinging the sword, Airn felt another pain.
An intense emotion like when he understood that too much fire was harmful to him… he realized that emotions which accumulate slowly like water, were harmful as well.
‘Let’s not do that anymore.’
The cracks got worse. The stagnant water, which couldn’t flow and had a foul odor, leaked through the cracks in the barrier, and then started flowing out.
The negative emotions which had accumulated because of the excessive obsessions within him, were starting to flow away.
It was an effort to let go, and not an effort to hold on.
A new change took over Airn’s body.
No, to be exact, it was a change caused by the Five spirits necklace Airn was wearing.
It embraced the energy of steel perfected in his past life, and radiated the energy of fire which was ignited in the present life.
The energy of water, which flowed harmoniously and proudly, was also balanced.
It wasn’t just metal, fire, and water.
The other two spirits were also present.
Earth, which was not as hard as metal but was more tolerant and stable, grew within him.
It wasn’t too strong to be used, but it was at a level where it could be said that a foundation had been created.
The energy of wood was the same.
Although it was still a sprout, it still formed a solid foundation and could grow into a healthy tree anytime.
The water, fire, and metal inside Airn helped with all of this.
The five spirits formed within him, and the light in the necklace grew brighter.
The five spirits rotated and mixed and turned into Yin and Yang.
As Yin and Yang started chasing each other by their tails, they turned into a single circle.
Before the devils were born, the reality that became the source of all things in the universe, The Great Ultimate, was revealed to the world.
Of course, Airn didn’t know of it.
For Airn, who was now only tapping into the 3rd of the five spirits, it was too much for him to handle.
The sword fell on the barrier as Airn slashed down. Forgetting the passage of time and change in scenery, he continued to move his body.
Slowly, without any rush, he checked himself and kept doing it.
He came to his senses when the darkness passed, and the warm sunlight fell on his golden hair.
And then, as he looked around, he saw a normal scenery.
The emerald water swaying. The atmosphere was a bit strange, but it seemed natural.
The devil appeared, so there was no way the people who were catching fishes before stayed.
Were they fine? Were there any injured or dead?
It was when Airn thought of it.
He heard familiar voices.
Airn shook his head. He saw something huge, but it was neither a lion nor a bird, but it was the Griffin of his sister, Kirill.
The color of anger which was on her face soon disappeared.
And it was replaced with concern.
‘Maybe, a long time passed again…’
Airn’s expression worsened.
In the past, five years had passed when he came out of such a sorcery barrier.
As a result, he became conscious about the time, but when he thought about how the people in his life would have felt in his absence, his heart went heavy.
‘This time, too, I feel like a lot of time has passed…’
As he thought that, the giant Griffin landed. Contrary to the dignified body of the creature, its face looked cute.
It felt more like a parrot than an eagle to compare, and it wasn’t Kirill’s taste.
Three people jumped off the Griffin’s back.
The moment he saw that Kirill, Lulu, and Ian’s appearances seemed to be the same as before, Airn sighed in relief.
This was good.
Maybe just a year has passed. A year or maybe two.
‘Ah, if it has been more than two, I am dead…’
He recalled the promise he made to Ilya, and now he became nervous.
“Brother, are you fine? The devil? Did the devil really appear?”
“Huh, I am fine. Rather it was okay. The devil… right. I’ll explain that… but…”
Could you tell me how much time has passed?
Airn asked very cautiously, and silence passed.
It wasn’t long.
Probably the time it took for them to blink their eyes three or four times…
However, that moment felt too long for Airn.
Of course, he wasn’t too worried.
“As of today, it has been a week.”
“I told you right, Kirill? You said it would take too much time.”
“This time? Then did you know that it would take five years the last time?”
“A-no. I didn’t mean…”
Kirill looked at Lulu, who avoided her gaze.
Seeing that, Airn was genuinely happy, but Ian, who stayed silent, took a step and stood in front of them.
“Did you realize the sword of water?”
Airn didn’t answer it.
Swosh, he summoned his golden sword and walked to the lake.
Ian, Kirill, and Lulu turned to him.
There was nothing special about Airn’s sword that was shown to them. He just swung the word, and the water splashed.
However, looking back at the three of them, Airn’s expression was supremely refreshing.
“I don’t know, but I feel that my heart is much cooler than before.’
Hearing those words from his disciple, Ian smiled.
That evening, after telling everyone what happened with the Clown, Ian handed Airn his graduation card.
It wasn’t something that meant much.
After leaving the arms of Krono, Airn had already become a full-fledged swordsman, and he spoke to Ian.
“I still think that I have a lot to learn, so is it fine to take this graduation…”
“Huhu, if you can’t graduate, then what about the others? Say something that at least makes sense.”
“Stop. After all, graduation is just the beginning, so don’t take it too seriously. And…”
With a moment’s hesitation, Ian spoke.
“Since you are now a graduate of Krono, it means that I can exchange ideas about swords on equal footing with another capable Sword Master. And that means…”
It meant that he was full of qualifications to face Khun.
With that, Ian sipped his tea.
Airn, who sat across, lifted his teacup.
‘By the way, I came here to find Khun’s whereabouts and gain his approval.’
It was strange.
Obviously, he had wanted to meet Khun until a week ago.
He could join the subjugation squad with his approval. Only those thoughts filled his head.
But not now.
But, that didn’t mean that he didn’t want to meet Khun.
This was an opportunity to meet a swordsman as good as Ian.
He was now Airn who wasn’t obsessed, and was the Airn not overdoing anything, and was the Airn who had realized the heart of flowing water. But he still had no intention of rejecting this encounter with Khun.
The flame in his head blazed softly.
‘And, above all…’
He wanted to see Judith.
Recalling her angry face, Airn Pareira smiled brightly.
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