Chapter 12 - Ki and Mana (1)

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The final attack.

Even though it lasted only a brief moment, Jonathan clearly saw how Roman counterattacked.

‘It can’t be.'

It was just one step.

Moreover, that spot was the only safe place.

If he stepped back, he would’ve been hit by the wooden sword enveloped by Aura, and even if he moved sideways, he wouldn’t have been able to escape the range of the attack.

Auras were explosive powers.

Aura's eruption was specialized for instantaneous power, and the longer the distance it would cover, the more power would be transmitted. This fact made it even more disadvantageous to try and block it.

Of course, he thought the attack would be dangerous for Roman, who was only an ordinary person. However, the sight that had unfolded before him was much more different than his expectations.

He destroyed the possibility of Chris’ attack being completely unleashed.

Just taking one step prevented his opponent from fully unleashing his powers, and with a slight twist of his body, he boldly evaded the attack right in front of his eyes.

It was really dangerous.

However, even in a situation where his face might be smashed in, Roman managed to subdue Chris while maintaining an unshakable posture.

It was astonishing.

It was literally unbelievable.

Jonathan could not accept the reality that unfolded right in front of him.

‘…I didn't know anything about Young Master Roman all this time.'

Roman was a fool.

Since he had personally taught him, he knew Roman was someone who had no talent. Due to that, he felt terrible and gave up on him without even making an effort.

However, the Roman who was in front of him right now was different.

Roman not only had the temperament of a fighter who never gave up, but even his basic skills as a swordsman were excellent and sharp.

A counterattack that knocked down the opponent in a brief moment could never be compared to something like a lucky punch.

The person must have excellent basics and the ability to quickly put their thoughts into action to succeed in battles this quickly.

A solid defense.

An attack flowing as naturally as water.

Jonathan became certain.

Roman's skill was not something that could be manifested by training for one or two years. It was obvious that much more time had been put into training than just a few years.

‘When did he grow up like this?’

Jonathan thought back to the events of a month ago.

In fact, even back then, I only saw Roman wandering the streets while he was drunk.

He clearly remembered how pathetic he was.

His notoriety of being Dmitry's Fool grew even worse when he saw him chanting loudly.

In Jonathan’s memory, Roman was nothing more than a pathetic human being.

But now, starting with the Blood Fang incident, even Chris, an Aura Knight, had been defeated.

It was then.

Baron Romero, who had been watching the duel together with Jonathan, said with a bewildered expression.

“Knights’ Commander, Jonathan.”

"Yes, my lord."

“What the hell just happened? How did Roman defeat Chris? Wasn’t the vice commander a 2-Stars Aura Knight that Dmitry is proud of?”

Honestly, he was feeling the same as him.

Baron Romero needed an explanation for the unbelievable sight that took place before him.

He wanted to hear directly from Jonathan how his son had grown so fast.

There was a slight hesitation for a moment.

Then, Jonathan looked at Roman and Baron Romero alternately with complicated eyes and finally gave out the most plausible answer after much thought.

“…It seems that Young Master Roman is a genius in swordsmanship.”

Roman caught his breath.

His cheek was stinging.

He noticed blood was dripping from the thin cut when he raised his hand to touch the painful area.

‘Pathetic.’

Chris.

He wasn't so bad.

He knew how to aggressively push his opponent, and his eyes to read the flow of the fight were quite sharp.

However, the thing is.

‘He’s not bad only by the standards of this world.’

He knew how strong he was because he had dealt with the Blood Fang crew, including Ben Miles.

If it was Chris, he could wipe out dozens of them with his skill.

He seemed to be the strongest of all the people, excluding Jonathan, whom Roman had encountered in this world.

But, what about Baek Joong-hyuk’s standards?

The worst.

Even if he picked the lowest soldiers of the Heavenly Demon Cult, they would be much stronger than Chris.

The eruption of Aura at the end was a bit threatening, but it was sloppy compared to the techniques used in Murim.

'At the end, that was a pretty sloppy eruption of energy. It’s similar to Ki, but I don’t understand why he used it like that. I think it's the power of mana that Hans talked about. However, this world uses it in a much different way than Murim does.'

I was curious.

Let’s see.

I want to find out about it.

To survive in the world, it was necessary for Roman to know exactly what kind of power his opponents would be using.

However, just then.

“Hahahaha.”

Baron Romero's laughter was heard.

He was thrilled after hearing his son was a swordsmanship genius by none other than the Knights’ Commander, Jonathan.

“Oh my god. To hear that my eldest son is a genius in swordsmanship. Commander Jonathan, are you really sure of that?”

"Yes, my lord. No other reason can explain the growth of Young Master Roman. In the meantime, it seems that I have not been able to recognize the true skills of Young Master Roman because my abilities are lacking. Young Master Roman is, without a doubt, a genius.”

"Is that so? To think my son really is a genius.”

His face suddenly got brighter.

Baron Romero looked at Roman proudly and signaled him to come closer.

“Son.”

"Yes, father."

“I've never been in a better mood than today. I am extremely proud of you. As even the Knights’ Commander admitted it, I want to applaud the fact that my son, Roman, accomplished something by himself, and not because he’s a genius in swordsmanship. If there's anything you want, tell me now. A reward should definitely be given. For the sake of my special son, I will prepare a special reward for you.”

Romero Dmitry.

This was his true personality.

He was angry at the behavior of his son, but he was a fool who was recognized by all.

He was not good at raising children, so he couldn't express his feelings properly. However, there was no doubt that he truly loved Roman.

A reward.

The table was set.

Usually, he would receive rewards with a smile, but Roman's reaction today was slightly different.

A reward, huh.

Roman wasn’t familiar with this world, but when Baron Romero mentioned a reward, something came to his mind.

“I am aware that my enlistment in the military is inevitable as my marriage to the Lawrence family has been broken. My two younger brothers, who left for the capital, cannot fulfill their military service duties either, so I will have to leave for the battlefield in six months. So, I request you to give me the authority to choose the troops I'm going to take with me. Also, I would like you to support the costs generated during the process as well.”

It was a straightforward request.

Baron Romero looked startled at the fairly specific proposal.

“…Huh.”

Military service obligations.

It was a bittersweet reality just thinking about it.

As the Dmitry estate belonged to the kingdom of Cairo, it had no choice but to share the dangers faced by the kingdom as well.

That was an unavoidable reality.

Married nobles could be temporarily exempted from military service, but Roman's view of trying to avoid the military service had suddenly changed.

Nevertheless, Romero wanted to believe in his changed son.

In Roman’s life, what he could do as a father was to help him soar.

"I understand. I will grant you full authority for the matters related to the military service.”

“Also, I have one last request.”

“Tell me. This father could do anything for my son if you continue to show a side of you like this.”

Was it because his expectations were previously low?

Baron Romero's faith was blind.

Roman smiled lightly and looked at Chris lying on the floor.

“I want to learn Aura in the future. So, for private tutoring, please assign me that swordsman I dueled.”

This new world.

Now is the time to get to know this world a little more.


How much time has passed?

Chris opened his eyes.

As the blue sky was pouring down on his eyes, he burst into tears without realizing it.

“Wow, this is fucking embarrassing.”

Defeat.

It was an uncomfortable reality.

The fact that he was defeated by no one else but by Dmitry's Fool made him want to hide his face even in a mouse hole.

But what can I do?

This is reality.

The fact that he was defeated by Roman would never change.

After he woke up, he saw his own reflection in the mirror. He looked miserable.

He was often called handsome, but now he could only see a fool with two missing front teeth in the mirror.

This was a situation worse than any normal defeat. He hurriedly found his broken teeth, but there was no way to put them back into their place.

“...Should I just die?”

It was a moment of serious concern.

The problems didn’t end with just that.

Even though he couldn’t escape the abyss of despair, an order was suddenly given to him, which was as straightforward as possible.

“What?!”

“I know how you feel. However, this is the command of Lord Dmitry, Chris.”

“Knights Commander’—No. Master, this can’t be right. I understand that I was somehow defeated by Young Master Roman and have become a fool with missing front teeth. But are you saying that I need to teach Young Master Roman about Aura? This is unacceptable. Even if my head is blown away as a punishment for opposing you and the lord, I won’t accept it.”

He laid flat on the floor.

It was a desperate will.

He truly didn't want to see Roman's face again.

He had a bad relationship with him in the first place, so losing to Roman felt more humiliating than anything else.

Jonathan said, “Then, I will make an offer to you.”

“...”

“Go and understand exactly how he changed so much under the pretext of teaching Roman. As long as you handle this matter well, I will allow you to learn the secret skill that I have been putting off until now.”

“...Are you serious?”

"Of course."

"Damn it."

Chris jumped up from his seat.

The secret skill.

It was the secret that made Jonathan into a 3-Stars Aura Knight.

Chris, who had always longed for his secret skill, could not refuse Jonathan's offer.

He spoke in an annoyed voice.

“You can’t take this back.”

At this moment, Chris crossed a river of no return.


The next day.

Chris met Roman in the training field.

But…

Pfft.

Roman just laughed.

For a moment, Chris’ eyes twitched, but he managed to suppress his anger.

For quite some time, the two didn't talk at all, just looked at each other's faces, but Roman’s suppressed smile was obvious.

‘Fuck this.’

The wind blew through the place where two front teeth were supposed to be.

Chris already regretted accepting the offer, but he knew that in order to achieve his goal, he had to take on the worst.

Calming his boiling anger, Chris said with a nonchalant face.

“Now, let me explain about Aura.”

Aura.

It was a branch of mana and also the power used by Aura Knights.

If wizards store mana in their magic circles, knights basically spread mana throughout their bodies.

“The inventor of Aura was Emperor Alexander, who is called the harbinger. Unlike wizards1, he was the first to figure out how to strengthen the human body by spreading mana throughout his body. Aura is a power that instantaneously releases this mana. Mana, which was normally spread throughout the body, is released in an instant according to the user's will, creating a powerful force.”

“...”

Roman's attitude was serious.

He didn't take any offense to Chris' explanation or show a playful attitude.

When Chris started teaching, Roman showed a serious side. Due to this, his animosity subsided to a certain extent.

“Honestly, it’s not important to know the history of Aura. Mana is a power that only the chosen can use; one in thousand can walk the path of an Aura Knight, and one in ten thousand can walk the path of a wizard. Therefore, it is important to check if you have the qualifications first. The minimum requirement for an Aura Knight is to feel mana. It is usually at this stage that most people get frustrated. In my case, it took me half a year to feel mana, but in fact, if you just feel mana in a year, you would be considered above average. So, in the end, it mostly depends on talent.”

It was a statement with a bit of arrogance.

He was quite proud of himself.

As Jonathan's disciple, when he felt mana for the first time in half a year, there was an uproar in Dmitry that a genius had appeared.

Chris.

He was such a person.

However, Roman did not give him the reaction he wanted.

"You said 1 year. That means the possibility of becoming or not becoming an Aura Knight will be decided in that time.”

"That’s correct. If you don't feel mana within a year, it would be within your best interests to give up the path of an Aura Knight."

“Then, can you explain what you did after you felt mana? Can you explain the way you experienced it?”

"Of course."

His confidence went down a little.

However, it was fine.

Once Roman started mana training, the winner would be inevitably decided. It would either be Roman or Chris.

‘Even if Young Master Roman is a genius in swordsmanship, mana talent is a different matter. This training will give you a taste of the harshness of reality. And as the years go by without feeling mana, you will realize how great a person I am. Heh heh heh, thinking about it now, this wasn't a bad offer at all.'

He was so excited.

In the past, he had seen many people who were desperate for mana training.

Roman was no different.

Chris hid his true thoughts and taught him how to train his mana.

“The mana training method…”

With Chris' teaching, Roman gradually began to immerse himself in his own world.

  1. Wizards’ bodies are usually much weaker than those of Aura Knights. This is because wizards usually store mana in the magic circles, focusing it on a single place. However, Aura Knights spread it throughout their body, resulting in the body becoming much stronger than that of a normal person. ↩️

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