Chapter 35 - Four Geniuses (3)

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Why do you pick up a sword?

A very vague question, but it was something that deserved serious consideration.

For a swordsman, the question of why he started, how he learned, and whether he will continue to learn were important things that determine his life’s direction.

‘If you take the right direction for yourself, you will grow faster. On the other hand, if you choose a path which doesn’t suit you, there is a limit to your efforts.’

Ahmed thought to himself.

Of course, there were no concerns about Airn Pareira.

If he hadn’t been on the right path, he wouldn’t have been able to show such a formidable sword in the final evaluation.

No, he wouldn’t have been able to survive in the school.

Because the school wasn’t a place that you can live in with just determination.

‘But I’m curious. What on earth does it mean to be the hardest worker in Krono, where the continent’s best have gathered?’

Eyes of curiosity poured on Airn.

However, the boy didn’t answer.

Seriously, if anyone was suddenly asked that question, everyone would be confused. Maybe because he was in front of the school master, so he was choosing his words.

Thinking that Ahmed spoke.

“Don’t worry too much, Airn Pareira. Unlike other swordsmen, we emphasize morality and culture. We don’t impose our expectations on you, unlike the Knights Templar. It’s alright not to have passion for the sword. It’s okay if you don’t have a noble reason for it. It doesn’t matter if you want fame or money. Anything is fine as long as it doesn’t hurt humans, speak freely.”

Considering the usual attitude of Ahmed, this version of his was hard to get used to.

However, Airn didn’t speak.

No, it didn’t seem possible.

Ahmed felt strange and looked at Ian’s face.

The old man nodded.

“Right.”

And, unbelievable words came out of Ian’s mouth.

“Airn Pareira, you… you didn’t pick up the sword of your own will.”

“… right.”

Marvelous.

Ahmed was shocked.

Not of his own will?

The reason he couldn’t answer wasn’t that he was shy, but because he had no reason?

What could that mean?

“School master? What is…”

“I don’t know either.”

Clearing his throat, Ian sipped his tea.

It was true. Ian couldn’t understand the child in front of him, despite having excellent eyes that could understand people.

“I thought it was strange. You work harder than anyone and take the sword more seriously than anyone else. But… I didn’t feel any emotions from you.”

“…”

“When he realized that his skills were improving, Bratt Lloyd was happy. Judith was scared when she knew that she fell behind Bratt Lloyd. She was so angry that it could be understood from her eyes. Not only them, but all the children cried or laughed at the swords, mourned over the sword, and rejoiced too. And you…”

Didn’t look like that.

After those words, there was silence.

The only sounds which could be heard were Ian sipping his tea and gulping.

Among them, for the first time, Airn thought about the sword.

… no reason.

The only thing which came to his mind wasn’t the sword but the man in his dreams.

The man with his heavy greatsword, the boy’s thought, suddenly disappeared.

“Without your own will, you’re just chasing behind someone else’s path… I won’t ask how you got to this point.”

If he had answered, Ian would have asked. But Airn didn’t seem like he would answer any questions.

However, advice was needed.

“However, if you intend to keep raising the sword in the future, you should seriously think about it from now on.”

How does it feel to lift the sword?

What is the sword being used for?

What was his sword?

Unless he realizes it, there would be no future growth.

“There’s no reason for you to stay in the school. Finding yourself in the wider world is far more important than wielding the sword here.”

“…!”

Ahmed was shocked at Ian’s words.

He said it. But the meaning behind his words could only be understood by smart ones.

Ian just denied the official admission of Airn Pareira.

A genius who managed to overcome all the hardships and take the top spot.

“Thank you.”

However, Airn Pareira was calm.

He wasn’t angry or flustered. It was because he knew that Ian was trying to help him.

“I won’t forget the last advice of the school master for the rest of my life.”

Airn got up and bowed.

He was disappointed.

He wanted to be with Judith. He walked to talk a little bit more with Bratt. He wanted to stay and repay the kindness they had shown, just a little.

However, disobeying the school master’s decision was impossible.

It was when he was about to leave the room.

“What do you mean by last advice?”

At Ian’s words, Airn stopped.

He didn’t understand what Ian was pointing out.

However, as he continued to speak, his intentions became clear.

“Since I don’t go to the school anymore, obviously…”

“What are you talking about? Unconditional pass. I didn’t give you advice because you aren’t good. It’s okay for now, but I think that you would be a better swordsman if that part is resolved.”

“Huh? However, school master, there is no reason to stay here ei…”

“There is. After finding out the reason to hold the sword, won’t you come back?”

Ian grinned like a mischievous kid and pulled out a metal plate.

It looked like it was treated with magic. It was shining.

“Can I borrow a drop of blood?”

“Yes? Ah!”

He pinched Airn’s thumb with a needle, which wasn’t present until a moment back.

Blood oozed out. Ian carefully brought it to the metal plate.

Then a white light dispersed into an engraved pattern, and Airn Pareira’s name was engraved on it.

[Krono Swordsmanship School, 27th official trainee.]

[Airn Pareira.]

“I’ll give you 1 year. Find your true sword and come back.”

“…”

“That must be enough? Is it not? Is it lacking?”

Honestly, he didn’t know.

But Airn Pareira had something to say.

“I will be back within a year.”


“Is this alright?”

“What?”

“About trainee Airn Pareira. You kno…”

“About him finding his own sword?”

“Yes.”

Nodded Ahmed.

He didn’t know that something was amiss in Airn until Ian had pointed it out, yet, he couldn’t help but worry.

The boy’s actions came to his mind.

Without frustration, worry or excitement, he just continued his extreme training every day.

He used to appreciate those efforts, but not anymore.

‘Now that I think about it, it was obvious. There was nothing to be excited or frustrated about because he wasn’t walking his own path.’

He didn’t know how he could overcome the physical pain, but it was natural for one to struggle with the mental pain.

Which was why he felt worried.

Unlike the kids who were running for their long-time dreams, this child just moved.

Will the kid be able to hold onto his sword?

Can he find his own way?

At that thought, the earnest words from Ian erased his worry.

“The three most talented children have gathered around him.”

“…”

“How can a child with such charm be unable to find his own color?”

“Sorry. I must have decided too quickly.”

“No, why blame yourself… hmm.”

Ian, who spoke to Ahmed, changed the topic after coughing.

“By the way, he’s said to be a lazy person in his family, right?”

“Yes. It was said that no one doesn’t know about that family, even the southern part of the Hale Kingdom knows about him.”

“He really is a mysterious one. How the hell did such rumors even come about? Well, this will be fun.”

The fourth genius of the continent.

A story floating around the kids.

After Carl Lindsay, Ignet, and Ilya Lindsay, Airn Pareira had established himself as the 4th genius.

Even Ian agreed.

With a smile on his face, he mumbled.

“In a year, he changed from the Deadbeat Lazy Noble to a genius of the continent… if nothing happens from now, it would be even weirder.”


A few days after the final interview, Airn was on a rock outside the school.

It’s taking a little longer than expected for the family wagon to arrive. He just wanted the wagon to arrive first.

Over the past few days, the boy was often seen blank outside, trying to calm his confused mind.

Of course, even in the end, he couldn’t be left alone.

A silver-haired girl, Ilya Lindsay, appeared.

And stretched out her hand.

“If you have time, come over.”

“This?”

“This is an emblem of our family. If you show this, you won’t be treated badly.”

It wasn’t like he was ever treated badly.

It was so small that two fingers could cover it, but at a glance, it was clear that the metal held great value.

An eagle with a sword in its beak.

In words, it was burdensome for Airn.

However, it was even more troubling for him to refuse others’ favors.

And it wasn’t the end.

“I’ll give you a present when you come over.”

“Gift? What gift…”

“Flowers.”

“Flowers?”

“Adonis. It’s the same flower that was engraved on the bracelet you gave me.”

“Ah…”

He was shocked when she said that she would give Airn flowers, but then he knew that the bracelet had the same flowers.

However, he just learned this, because he just handed her a bracelet that he had made for his younger sister.

He asked.

“Are they homegrown flowers? I didn’t even know that.”

“No. They don’t.”

“Huh?”

“I stopped growing them when I was 7 years old.”

“But I will grow them again now. They will bloom in April or May, so I hope that you come over at least once before returning to school next year.”

“…”

“Of course, you can come before that too.”

Today’s Ilya Lindsay wasn’t confused anymore.

She had a personality that was difficult to understand from the beginning, yet, it felt different now.

And that caused a late reply.

For which Ilya asked again.

“Don’t tell me, are you ignoring the request of your friend?”

“Friend?”

“What? We have been together for a year, and we aren’t on bad terms… aren’t we friends?”

“We are, but…”

Indeed, today’s Ilya was strange.

She was talking more than usual and speaking words that she usually considered embarrassing.

‘Maybe this was how she used to be.’

It seemed like the light which was being overshadowed had finally come out.

Honestly, she looked better now. Much easier to deal with.

But he didn’t know.

The fact that Ilya’s ears, who was constantly speaking, were redder than usual.

The boy, who hadn’t noticed until the end, answered.

“Okay. I’ll come.”

“Great.”

After that, the two talked about various things.

For the most part, Ilya spoke, and Airn listened.

About the Lindsay family, a story of her father and questions about the Pareira estate and cheering for him.

It was obvious that this was her true personality. It was when Airn smiled slightly at the appearance of the bright girl.

A wagon approached from afar.

It had a giant shield painted on it, the Lloyd family’s emblem.

“…”

A person got off the wagon and arrived at the front of the school, and delivered something.

Bratt Lloyd was coming soon.

Their faces darkened.

‘Bratt Lloyd… they thought that he was giving up his official admission and returning to his family.’

A boy who was full of talent and passion, who put in the utmost effort, and wasn’t lacking in any way.

Although it wasn’t like he wasn’t arrogant, he was still a real noble who was a model for those aiming for dignity.

However, how he looked for the past few days was tragic.

No one dared to get close or talk to him.

The reason, the despair on his face was too deep and dark.

‘I hope he shakes it off.’

Airn thought to himself. He really hoped that Bratt would bounce back.

However, that was all. The inexperienced boy didn’t know what else to do for Bratt.

So was Ilya.

In her case, the relationship with him was too ambiguous, especially because she knew too well how Bratt was feeling.

From her point of view, no consolation would help him.

While they were in heavy thoughts, the gate opened. And Bratt Lloyd showed up.

Drooping eyes.

Flaky skin.

His passionate heart was no longer present. It was as if the boy had lost everything precious to him.

In that state, he walked.

Without looking back, without seeming like he had any regrets.

Leaving the school, he moved onto the wagon of his family.

Airn Pareira and Ilya were too devastated and unable to do anything.

But not everyone was like that.

Bang!

A red-haired girl ran out of the gate.

Judith grabbed Bratt’s shoulders before he got into the wagon.

And with a clenched fist.

Punch!

Thud!

Bratt Lloyd, who was hit in the face, looked up at her with eyes mixed with confusion and pain.

He asked.

“Wh-what?”

Punch!

Judith didn’t answer.

All there was, was another hit.

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