Chapter 274. The Start of War (4)

I followed my uncle into the Black Water Buffalo knights’ training ground. Lieutenant Marton followed me, not understanding what was happening.

The Black Water Buffalo knights were running around the training grounds. Along the outskirts of the training grounds, people who seemed to be middle-rank knight school students were sprawled out, covered in sweat. Considering that some of their fellow students were mixed amongst the running knights, they were probably allowed to join the physical training as a sample.

“Everybody, stop and assemble!” 

The Black Water Buffalo knights that were running around under Uncle Bloody's command quickly lined up in front of him.

"Have you warmed up?!"

"Yes!"

"I trust you didn't push the students too hard?”

"Yes! We did not!"

Looking at the Black Water Buffalo knights answering loudly, the middle-rank knight school students appeared exhausted. It was as if one was looking at a bunch of monsters. In fact, the knights did not have a single drop of sweat.

As he examined the students, Uncle Bloody smiled at a student who was hardly sweating. "Hey, you. Come here.”

The student who was identified quickly jumped out, shouting his position and name. “Trainee number 74, Lisbon von Carter!”

The student standing in front of Uncle Bloody was Lisbon. Since I was only using the lowest level of recognition interfering magic, Lisbon recognized me and was surprised but did not show it.

"Your stamina’s pretty good. Take it. It's a gift."

After receiving the coin thrown by Uncle Bloody, Lisbon was puzzled.

"If you want to join the Black Water Buffalos, show it to the officer at the entrance examination. There will be extra points."

The students who heard my uncle let out exclamations and envied Lisbon.

Lieutenant Marton saw the scene, and he gave an additional explanation. "Wow, I’m jealous. The person who receives that coin is essentially already accepted, Colonel-nim."

"Oho, I see.”

Well, Lisbon was well-deserving of it. I trained him for more than two years and raised his physical strength to where it was near the level of those from my hometown. In addition, Glont and Rosellis seemed to be teaching him often.

"Come on, Leader. It's the moment you asked for," said Uncle Bloody.

A well-built knight standing at the front came forward. Then, he approached and looked at me, saying, “Hello. I'm Proban, the head of the Black Water Buffalo knights."

I was a pretty sizable guy, but Proban was almost two meters tall. I shook his hand with a smile as Proban looked down at me with indifferent eyes. "Nice to meet you; I’m Colonel Den. You can refer to me comfortably."

Proban raised his martial aura as he shook my hand. "I've heard about you. To be honest, this is very unpleasant.”

"Ahahaha, is that so?"

When I responded with a smile even under Proban’s intense martial aura, Lieutenant Marton looked at me anxiously as he stood beside me. "Col, Colonel-nim."

I gave Lieutenant Marton a grin and said to Proban, "Guild Director Glont said that if I crush you once and speak his name, you’d be subdued.”

"Oh, is that so? If General-nim says so, so be it."

A smile spread across Proban's expressionless face, and his martial aura erupted. At the same time, the Black Water Buffalo knights also smiled and let out martial aura. The students who were watching the scene shivered under the pressure of the martial auras.

"Oh, jeez, how inconsiderate to Colonel-nim who is a magician." At the same time as when Proban spoke, the martial aura that had filled the whole area disappeared instantly, and the students who were shaking gasped for breath.

"No, I'm fine. It’s just a morning greeting. How would it be inconsiderate? Oh, it's afternoon, so is that why you said it was inconsiderate?”

It looked like he might apologize even if his greeting was at the level of a good night. [1]

"Ho, is that so?" Proban gave a deep smile. As expected of my uncle’s subordinate, it seems he’s a battle maniac too.

"So, you want to see my skills? I'll take it easy on you, so how many people are coming? I’ll specifically abstain from using magic."

The Black Water Buffalo knights leaked martial aura as if they had heard a provocation.

"A magician who won’t use magic... That's a lot of confidence."

"I’m not saying that I have a lot of confidence, per se. It's just that you don't seem to be satisfied with a magician."

Proban smiled lightly as I spoke bluntly. "There’s no need for you to do that. Your older sister, Miss Leisha, also used her magic at full power and failed to beat three average knights from our division."

I was honestly surprised by what Proban said. Fourth Sister's magic skills were pretty solid too. However, the fact that she failed to win against three average knights meant that the Black Water Buffalo knights had good teamwork.

I nodded my head seriously. "I see. Then, I'll be a bit of a pushover and ask for just half of the opponents."

"Half of three?"

Proban didn't understand me, and he returned the question. I shook my head. "What do you mean? If it’s half of three, will one fight with his legs tied?"

"Then...?"

"Of course, it's half of the entire knight division."

At my obvious reply, Proban, as well as the knights and the students watching, looked at me with bated breath.

"Hahahaha! As expected of Den! Kkk, keuuuuh!" Within the entirely silent training grounds, only Uncle Bloody held his belly and burst into laughter.

The head of the Black Water Buffalo knights frowned at my reply. "Can a magician without magic handle half of the knight division?"

I shrugged. "I'm not a person who lies about what I can handle."

“Fine. Let's have a spar in the training grounds with half of the finest knights here. Group 1, Group 2, Group 4, and Group 6! Take up your swords!"

At the same time as Proban’s command, the knights from the named groups pulled out their swords in unison. At a glance, I approximated that there were about 30 people.

"What will you use for a sword? Would you like to use our knight division's sword?"

I pulled out the officer’s rapier at Provan's suggestion. "No, I'll use the sword that I just got."

This sword didn't even have a minuscule amount of mithril, but the Black Water Buffalo knights’ swords seemed to be made of an alloy with a small amount of mithril and adamantium.

"Are you sure that will be all right? It won't be strong enough compared to our swords."

When Proban asked, I wrapped the sword in a strong aura and spoke, "I may be lacking, but I'm past the age where I complain about my swords.”

For a sword, having the durability to withstand mana was enough. Besides, my sword was sufficiently well-made. When I let out a strong aura, various sword-wielding knights surrounded me, and the knights and students who weren’t fighting withdrew to the outskirts of the training grounds.

"Come to think of it, when knights are sparring, it's courtesy to reveal where you belong, right? Just in case you don't know, I'm from the staff office."

Proban pulled out his sword and stepped back. "You, of course, know, but we are the Black Water Buffalo knights division."

The Black Water Buffalo knights and I fought a war of nerves, pointing our swords at each other. When did I last experience martial aura pointed at me from all directions? I don't even remember.

It was the Black Water Buffalo knights that moved first in the confrontation. The Black Water Buffalo knights pulled out the magic manrikis from their waist and threw it at me. [2]

"What is this!"

I threw myself away from the manrikis flying towards me from everywhere. Since I declared that I would not use magic, I had to keep away from those chains at all costs. Those chains had magic on them that would shock the opponent upon contact, halting their movements and letting the chain wrap itself around the opponent.

"Is it okay for a knight to use something like this?"

At my cry, Proban shouted proudly, "Of course we can! We're a unit specialized in fighting against battle races!”

The knights who threw the manrikis at me infused mana into them and swung them like whips, while the knights who did not use chains charged at me. Three Black Water Buffalo knights approached directly from the front and swung a sword at my neck, chest, and side.

I tried to deflect them with my sword, but I had to throw myself back to evade the manriki that flew by, skirting past it in the nick of time. "Ootcha!"

As if I were doing a backward roll, I touched the ground with one hand and put strong aura around both legs to kick the sword that was aiming for my chest. This way, I made it divert the blade that was slashing toward my neck. Then, I twisted to dodge the sword coming at my side and wrapped my leg around the neck of the sword’s wielder, slamming him into the ground.

"Tch!"

Before I completely hit the ground, another chain sped after my legs. I used the force I had generated when slamming the knight to lift myself up and avoid the manriki. Right as my legs were about to touch the ground again, manrikis flew at me from every which way.

As I lowered my body and rushed forward, I tried using my strong aura-wrapped sword to cut the still off-balance knight that was almost stuck in the ground. However, the two knights charging toward me blocked my sword with their own blades, which were also enveloped in a strong aura.

"Keuk!"

"What power!"

They succeeded in blocking my sword but were pushed back along with their teammate, who had just regained balance.

"Gosh, I must have underestimated you all too much."

I never thought they’d use manrikis, which were hard to learn. Was this the anti-battle race tactic created by Guild Director Glont? This was the first time that the strategy of many people attacking one was so thoroughly employed.

As soon as the three knights were blown away, manrikis flew at me from all directions. As ten chains soared toward me simultaneously, there was no room to escape. I jumped up high and tried to break the chains by shooting out sword auras. A manriki becomes useless if you break the chain.

The Black Water Buffalo knights seemed to be well aware of this and retrieved the chains like a whip. In the end, there were only three chains that had their weight broken off.

"Hey! It's a foul to attach a new weight!” I yelled.

The knights recovered the now weight-less chains, took out new weights from the bag hanging from their waist, and attached it to the chains.

Proban boldly shouted back as if it were obvious, "An extra weapon is common sense!"

That's true, of course. No, but that's still too much!

I ran towards the Black Water Buffalo knights, and they threw the manrikis at me again. When I turned my body away to avoid the weight flying towards my forehead, a chain tried to wind around my right leg. I agilely ran and dodged it, and manrikis flooded in from both sides.

KangKang!

I deflected the manrikis with sword aura, and as soon as my feet landed on the ground, I activated my martial arts skills to the max and ran towards Proban. When I was right in front of Proban, six more manrikis came after me, and I slid to evade the manrikis that shot right over my head. Afterward, I pushed off the ground and immediately went for Proban's neck. Then, Proban took some small beads out of his bag, infused mana into them, and threw them at me.

"What, this bast-!” As I spouted curses, I put up the most durable, protective, strong aura I could, and the tiny beads exploded right under my nose in response to mana.

Kwaaaang-!!

The sound of the explosion buried my curses.



1. This might be slightly confusing, but basically saying that the attack with martial aura was so weak that it only amounts to a morning greeting, while an afternoon greeting would be stronger, and a good night would be even more intense.

2. Manriki is a chain with weights attached at the ends. Used in feudal Japan.

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