Chapter 81 - Continent’s Best Swordsman (2)

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“Hmm… no. I don’t know. I do know that the schoolmaster, Mr. Ian, is one of the strongest swordsmen on the continent, but other than…(*)”

“No way, is one of them him?”

“Yes. Ah, the head of the Lindsay family, Joshua Lindsay, is an amazing one.”

“You’re far less interested in the world than I thought. Still, to be a swordsman and not know thi…”

Airn was embarrassed.

The list was called the ‘ten strongest,’ so it was obviously filled with more than just swordsmen. All kinds of people like magicians, sorcerers and many more. Sorcerers would usually be excluded as their strength cannot be measured.

‘The only swordsmen I know belong to Krono.’

If he had to add one more, it would be Hill Burnett, the vice-captain of the Twilight Knights.

However, the level of the ten strongest was too high for him to be mentioned.

After taking a sip of water, Kuvar started talking.

“From generation to generation, the ten strongest people on the continent were from the five western kingdoms. The heads of the swordsmanship families, the Holy Kingdom’s White Knights commander, and the commander of the Red Knights alone took around seven spots. Most of the other three spots were also from the same place.”

However, from 50 to 60 years ago, that tradition had disappeared.

Swordsmen from non-western kingdoms began to stand out.

The best among them was, of course, Ian.

Despite being from a commoner’s part of the continent, he showed brilliant talent and rose to the level of Sword Master at the age of 25, and by the age of 50, he was one of the strongest.

When asked who is the best, his name would be the first to come out, so it was no exaggeration for people to treat him as a great being.

“But I don’t think that Ian is the strongest. I think that someone else is the strongest.”

“Someone else?”

“He is also a commoner. Someone called Khun.”

“Khun?”

Airn frowned.

A name he heard somewhere. However, he couldn’t remember where. He must have heard it in Krono….

“By the way, Khun is said to be married to the deputy of the Krono Swordsmanship School. The couple are both Sword Masters. Isn’t that amazing?”

“Ahh, I heard that.”

“Right? It’s a famous story.”

Airn listened to Kuvar.

The woman thought that he was a ‘better teacher than Ian.’

Which meant that the life of this supposed strongest man couldn’t be ordinary.

And the story that followed was great enough to meet his expectations.

However, it was a little different.

“Huh? 70 years old?”

“Yes. It’s said that he barely managed to reach the level of Sword Master at the age of 70.”

“Uh…”

Airn was at a loss for words.

He wasn’t stupid enough to think that everyone would reach the level of Sword Master at a young age. Being a Sword Master is such a rare thing.

But still, at 70. It meant that he achieved it at an age where one’s life was nearly over.

Becoming a Sword Master at that age meant that the man hadn’t neglected his training all that time.

“… incredible.”

“Right! In fact, people said that they don’t know about a swordsman called Khun. Only the Krono’s people and a few more knew about him. Because that man considers Ian as his rival. Ah, I heard that a few people learned about him because of that.”

Did they make fun of him?

Kuvar smiled.

What he said was true. Most people thought that Khun was stupid.

Anyone would think that someone who considered the best swordsman on the continent as their rival was stupid.

However, Khun didn’t stop challenging him.

And Ian didn’t back out either.

Time went by.

⁽¹⁾To the question of the Sword Master from the West who seemed to be the strongest on the continent, the schoolmaster of Krono replied:

‘Ten years ago, I thought I was the best. The commander of the Holy Kingdom’s White Knights may be offended, but at least I stood till the end, hehe.’

‘Compared to 5 years ago, I’m not that confident anymore. It’s a draw every time I fight Khun.’

‘Now? I really don’t know. Maybe he got stronger, maybe I got stronger. Should I try again? Well, I still don’t know.’

It was a statement that shocked the world.

Since then, no one ignored Khun.

All the swordsmen on the continent looked forward to meeting him with their swords, and commoners praised him.

Some people even called him the best on the continent.

In fact, even Kuvar was influenced by it.

Of course, to him, it didn’t matter if Khun was the best or not.

It was the heart that wasn’t broken at an old age that made Airn admire the man.

The relentless effort until it bore fruit was admired by everyone.

At least, that was what Airn thought.

“Hmm, shall we talk about something else? The commander of the Holy Kingdom’s White Knights, Julius Hul, is also a great swordsman. It’s said that Ian, Khun, and Julius Hul are the three greatest swordsmen on the continent and…(*)”

Julius Hul, a knight of the Holy Kingdom, can easily cut down powerful demons.

Joshua Lindsay, the descendant of the great hero Dion Lindsay from 400 years ago and the head of one of the 5 Great Swordsmanship Families.

Likewise, the other heads of the Rey, Clifford, Preston, and Page families, Karakum, the great warrior of the Orcs, and the captain of the Holy Kingdom’s Red Knights were all included on the list.

Lastly, Ignet Crescentia, who is weaker than the top 10 but famous for being the youngest Sword Master.

Stories of strong people.

However, Airn couldn’t concentrate.

It was because of Khun’s story and the various thoughts he got from it.

“I have a lot going on.”

“Huh? Still thinking about Khun?”

“Yes. I can’t imagine what kind of heart he must have to go that far.”

“I can’t either. It would be normal for anyone to give up before even turning 50. Without giving up, he became a Sword Master at 70. And now that he is over 90, he gets called the strongest… just like a novel. He truly is a great person.”

“Khun must have been amazing at 50 too.”

“Um?”

“Even though Khun at that time was an ordinary swordsman who was ridiculed by people because they didn’t understand him… still, he must have been a great person.”

“…”

Kuvar stopped talking, and Airn started talking.

It wasn’t a long story.

50-year-old Khun, 70-year-old Khun, and 90-year-old Khun.

All three times, Khun must have been a different swordsman with different skills, but each great in their own way.

The 50-year-old Khun didn’t achieve what he did at 90, but nevertheless, he had more to learn than anyone else.

Likewise, among those who haven’t bloomed yet, there must be many great people.

However, no one knows them yet.

Hearing that, Kuvar’s expression went stiff.

‘This is an interesting young one.’

He had no particular reason to tell the stories of powerful people on the continent.

He just did it because it was fun.

The discussion of who is stronger and who is best is childish, but it’s something that everyone involved themselves in.

Especially swordsmen.

However, Airn’s reaction was different from Kuvar’s expectations.

‘His thoughts aren’t limited to swords. He speaks with a much broader perspective.’

Any other swordsman would have asked,

Is he that strong, or what his swordsmanship is…

Airn didn’t though.

He was trying to see the things hidden inside.

‘He knows nothing of the world, yet he thinks like an old man.’

It wasn’t a bad thing, rather a very nice thing to see.

And this was what he wanted to see.

It was better to keep bringing up such topics.

If they piled up like firewood, one day, the flames would start growing bigger.

With a smile, Kuvar said.

“Good words. As you said… there must be a lot of people in the world who haven’t come out yet.”

“Right?”

“Probably in Derinku.”

“They could be here too. Maybe the innkeeper who made the dish or the old man we met along the way… maybe the one in the clothing store is learning too. Like Khun.”

“Of course. For some people, the old man in the clothing store is a better teacher than Ian.”

“Right.”

Kuvar nodded his head.

Lulu, who was woken, smiled.

The hot food had come out, and it looked more appetizing today.

However, the peaceful meal didn’t last long. It was smashed before they even ate.

A group of mercenaries who were drinking at the table next to them did it.

To be precise, a young man, who had a large build, smashed their food after walking towards them.

“Let us hear it too.”

“Hmm?”

“What? Krono’s schoolmaster is no different from the clothing store’s old man. You bastards, do you know how great Sir Ian is…”

“…”

“Kids surely talk easily when they aren’t taught a lesson. Is a Sword Master a funny topic? You think it’s easy! Huh!”

Airn couldn’t even talk.

He just said that as an example.

It meant that even an ordinary person now could be someone great the next day. He had no intention of lowering the standard of Sword Master Ian.

He didn’t say anything bad about Ian.

However, this man was looking at Kuvar and Airn with an angry face.

Fortunately, the man’s party apologized to them.

“We’re sorry. This friend of ours has an impulsive and angry personality, plus he’s drunk…”

“Wh-What are you saying! I didn’t even drink that…”

“Shut up! And I think our friend got overly excited because he respects the Krono Swordsmanship School so much. We will back down…”

“Ah, yes.”

Airn nodded his head.

It felt bad.

Probably because of Krono, it felt like he was insulted and complemented at the same time.

But he was glad that the fight didn’t escalate.

It was then.

Lulu, who was up, mumbled while looking at mercenaries and Airn.

“Airn, Kirill told you. Don’t walk around with that look and look strong. Otherwise, weak ones will come to you.”


Editor’s Note

⁽¹⁾ The initial question is left out, and the questions in response to Ian’s answers in the next two lines are also left out.

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