“Why are you only saying that now?!”
“Master didn’t give me a chance to speak.”
“A chance should be won by yourself! How can a Sword Saint be easily overthrown and lose his chance?”
“As Master evaluated earlier, I am still lacking. On the other hand, Master is a member of the noble tower. I couldn’t resist.”
“Aish, kids these days are weak. I used to beat a dragon with one hand when I was the Sword Saint.”
“I’ve never heard of a legend like that.”
"Hum hum, you are brave and fearless. You shouldn’t have said anything. Do you know how to respect your elders?”
The unidentified man felt something called shame. He might be irresponsible by nature but he couldn’t hold Kraugel accountable. Kraugel’s polite attitude to the end despite the unjust situation made the mysterious man feel ashamed.
‘There are no true wise men.’
The mysterious man had lived hundreds of years and knew that the personality of a person was innate and not easily corrected. He wasn’t an elder just because he lived a long time and being young didn’t necessarily mean being ignorant. If a person who lived for a long time was unconditionally wise, would the world be like this? It would be peaceful because it was overflowing with wise men.
‘I don’t know anything else but this child’s personality is real.’
The mysterious man let out a deep sigh.
“Sigh, what does it matter? I will die soon.”
“Is it because you leaked the circumstances of the tower to me?”
"That's right. I can’t avoid punishment.”
“Is it punishable by death?”
“Those are serious words! Don’t you know the words metaphor and exaggeration? I’m so afraid that I can’t even joke around!”
‘Is he afraid?’
Kraugel was quite surprised when he saw the mysterious man’s slumped shoulders. A person who thought he was the best in heaven and earth. He thought that the weight of the punishment must be unusual for the mysterious man with a strong self-esteem to show such a frightened expression. Kraugel confirmed that he didn’t have to pretend not to know about the tower’s underground association.
“Don’t worry. I will never tell the outside world what I heard today.”
“You don’t know why the tower is called the Tower of Wisdom.”
“How can a person like me dare to discern the association’s deep meaning?”
There were many reasons why Kraugel had been ranked number one for several years. One of them was the way he treated people. The mysterious man had a great liking for Kraugel.
“It is because the Tower of Wisdom is a tower of wise people. It is impossible to cover up my mistake because they’ll look at my whereabouts and figure out most of what happened here. It is a sense that you can’t cover the sky with your palms.”
Of course, Kraugel also knew it. He had visited the tower six years ago and witnessed that most of the tower members had a creepy perception. However, there were exceptions, such as the mysterious man in front of him. At this point, Kraugel felt envy beyond absurdity because the mysterious man was implying that he was the same as the other association members.
‘He is a great guy in many ways... he seems to live without any particular worries.’
It might be the secret to longevity. Kraugel was thinking seriously while the mysterious man talked to himself.
“Well, you don’t have to worry. I’ll try my best to stop you from being punished.”
Kraugel just listened. If it was another association member present today, they would offer an apology rather than punishing him It was because the Tower of Wisdom was a very rational organization. Kraugel was so dumbfounded that he closed his mouth.
The arrogant man asked proudly, “Then who is the new Pioneer?”
Answering that he didn’t know wouldn’t work. It didn’t make sense for him to not know the competitor who pulled him down from his position. In the first place, there was no reason to avoid answering. The Tower of Wisdom and the Pioneer had a relationship of cooperation. An exchange with the tower was unconditionally beneficial to the Pioneer. The story that the mysterious man told meant Grid would get a hidden quest and a huge reward.
“The ruler of a nation called the Overgeared Kingdom.”
“Overgeared? That’s weird.”
“It is a word that means to borrow the power of items.”
“Borrow the power of items?”
The mysterious man’s face wrinkled like he was eating shit. The sword shone because of swordsmanship. In other words, it was natural for technique to be greater than tools. The ruler of the Overgeared Kingdom seemed to have an opposite idea, making the mysterious man already dislike him. He even thought that he had left the tower for no reason.
However, this only lasted for a moment. He consoled himself by saying that he was happy to be reunited with Kraugel, who was comparable to Muller and had good manners, and then he shook hands with Kraugel.
“It was nice to see you. The next time we meet, you will be the Pioneer again.”
“I will try.”
The mysterious man’s eyes slightly widened. He felt enthusiasm from Kraugel but no confidence. How good was the ruler of the Overgeared Kingdom that Kraugel lost confidence?
‘Ruler... Ruler... Don’t tell me?’
The mysterious man got goosebumps. He was reminded of someone who had superior talent than Muller and was also the ruler of a nation.
‘Is he Madra’s descendant?’
Undefeated King Madra. The miserable genius who spent his life locked up in a cage and whose life ended before he could spread his wings. If Muller was a genius that appeared once in a thousand years, Madra was a genius who would never appear again. If Madra was alive, the Tower of Wisdom wouldn’t exist now. This was the evaluation of the tower’s chief. Why? The dragons would’ve been sealed and the need for the tower’s existence gone.
‘Heh, I’m going too far.’
The mysterious man shook his head. Madra’s descendant couldn’t exist because no secret techniques were left behind. In addition, he wasn’t someone obsessed with items. He was a great man who slaughtered tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands with a paltry weapon.
‘The Overgeared kingdom's ruler is probably a resourceful person.’
It was correct to assume that he was a person who overcame his limitations by relying on a ruler’s power and tools. He would be a big barrier for Kraugel, who was only an individual. The mysterious man judged and turned away. He knew the identity of the other person so visiting would be a piece of cake.
Kraugel asked the mysterious man who was about to leave, "Can I ask Master for Master’s name?”
Kraugel had provided the mysterious man with the information he needed. Therefore, he thought he had the right to ask for this man’s name. As expected, the mysterious man willingly answered, “Biban.”
".... It was an honor to meet you."
The identity of the mysterious man was as Kraugel expected. He was the second generation Sword Saint.
-What are you doing?
[The target can’t receive a whisper.]
[The target can’t receive a whisper.]
“Wow, really great.”
Grid needed information about the Tower of Wisdom and had been trying to contact Kraugel for a fortnight. Yet for the last fortnight, Kraugel was in an area where it was impossible to send whispers. Areas where whispers were blocked were mostly special areas such as instance dungeons or forbidden places. Therefore, Grid had to marvel at Kraugel’s concentration and endurance.
‘He has been training or hunting for at least a fortnight...’
He must’ve prepared a bag of jerky. He didn’t pick up miscellaneous items or threw them away. He must’ve minimized his consumption of potions. The repair kit was heavy so he couldn’t have brought too many. Then how did he handle the durability of his items? Could he keep hunting while using secondary weapons?
‘I feel sorry when thinking about it.’
Grid was able to repair items without a repair kit, his strength stat was abnormally high and he could hold a much larger weight than Kraugel. He was also advantageous in terms of maintaining stamina thanks to Overgeared Corn that he obtained from Kir.
In the first place, he had Sticks’ Mass Teleport so he didn’t need to worry about the time spent travelling to and from hunting grounds. He was advantageous in all respects compared to Kraugel. Grid felt sympathy for Kraugel. Of course, Kraugel wasn’t aware of this difference between the two of them. Kraugel’s situation was the same as others. Yes, Kraugel’s situation was ordinary. He took for granted the circumstances that he had to overcome.
Grid—feeling sorry for Kraugel—was the abnormal and fraudulent one.
“Hmm, what is the Tower of Wisdom?”
The tower was accessible only to the Pioneer. Was it an organization engaged in the destruction of the insane dragon iron? He was somewhat wary. It might be an insidious place like Goldhit’s Tower of Eternity.
It was an unknown area even for Great Sage Sticks, so Grid wasn’t comfortable as he made items using the portable furnace while his pets hunted.
[You have completed the production of Sword Breaker.]
“It is another failure.”
Grid had invested the last fortnight in himself. He focused on the growth of the Overgeared Skeletons, Noe, Randy, and Tiramet, while trying to recreate the Blue Dragon Sword Breaker used during the National Competition. The reproduction here naturally referred to the ‘form’, not the ‘performance.’
Grid had already consumed the Blue Dragon’s Breath and Astaroth’s Horn while crafting the Blue Dragon’s Boots. Of the two materials, Astaroth’s Horn was out of stock so it was impossible to reproduce the performance of the Blue Dragon Sword Breaker. Still, he judged that it would be useful to reproduce the form since the Blue Dragon Sword Breaker was ideal from the beginning.
‘It isn’t easy.’
After all, there were limitations to the items made using the portable furnace and anvil. However, he didn’t want to be stuck in the smithy for two days for an item that would be used in the next National Competition.
“This isn’t going to work. I have to briefly return home.”
Grid summoned his pets scattered everywhere and returned to Reinhardt. He put nine of the 10 Sword Breakers he made in the last fortnight into the guild’s warehouse. He set it up so that those who had the right to take it out were the top swordsmen of the Overgeared Guild such as Peak Sword and Ibellin. They would take it when they saw it in the warehouse later. They would pay a fee according to their conscience.
‘The problem is that their conscience is too great.’
It was often more than the market price. They were always more grateful than necessary.
‘This type of item can be taken for free...’
The items were produced from materials Grid obtained from his colleagues. Grid always felt beholden to his colleagues.
“Are you going to the smithy without a break?”
Mercedes followed Grid, who took off his armor and changed into cloth upon his return. On top of her head was a circlet with blue jewels. It was made by Elizabeth, the only accessories maker of the Overgeared Guild, out of the tears of the water clan’s king. The magic stored in it was the 1st ranked fire magician Laella’s passive magic ‘Blessing of Fire’ which helped with recovery. The tough Mercedes was no longer weary.
"Yes, I think I need to focus a bit more.” Grid answered with a smile.
He was naturally happy walking alongside Mercedes, who was as beautiful as a magnolia. He was like a caterpillar crawling on the petals. After all, appearance was relative.
After exiting the castle, Grid was heading for the smithy using a shortcut when Mercedes stopped him.
It wasn’t until Mercedes pulled out the White Tiger Sword and stood in front of Grid that Grid could see the reason. A suspicious figure in a robe turned upside down was approaching. The atmosphere around them was unusual.
'I'm still not good enough.'
Despite having reached transcendence, he lacked Mercedes’ ability to detect danger. Grid clicked his tongue and asked the man who was 10 meters away from him.
"Who are you?"
“This is no place for the public.”
“Nyahahahat!” Noe, who had been flapping his wings around Grid, laughed. “Master is dressed like a beggar so you are mistaken for a slave, ong~”
“Cough... be quiet, Noe.”
Grid pinched Noe’s chubby belly and studied the situation. The unidentified man was showing interest in Mercedes.
“You rely on items. I don’t think there is anything that isn’t luxurious from head to toe.”
“Who are you?”
Mercedes's tone was surprisingly polite. This was strange because this person dared to block the king’s road and mistook the king as an ordinary person.
‘It is hard to gauge his skills.’
Mercedes’ Keen Insight wasn’t complete. Still, it was growing steadily and she could easily figure out the target’s skills. Yet Keen Insight didn’t work well against this mysterious man. It was proof that his skills surpassed Mercedes’.
“I came from the tower to meet you.”
Mercedes was confused. It was hard to understand because only the tower was mentioned. Meanwhile, Grid was astonished.
‘Does he mean the Tower of Wisdom?’
Greed was already consumed and the nature of the insane dragon iron suppressed yet the location was detected? Grid didn’t know exactly what the Tower of Wisdom was doing so he opened his inventory to take out his equipment.
“Just once! Let me see the skills of the new Pioneer!”
The mysterious man screamed. As expected, he was the killer (?) sent from the Tower of Wisdom. Mercedes and the sword of the mysterious man collided five times in a row. It was all Mercedes defending. The mysterious man’s sword rotated smoothly and Mercedes’ sword couldn’t easily maintain its center, slipping steadily.
The mysterious man felt admiration.
“I can’t believe you held out for a second! Great! There are two geniuses under the sky!”
The mysterious man spoke nonsense and slipped past Mercedes to fly at Grid. Mercedes followed but the mysterious man was a bit faster. His finger was aimed at Grid’s pressure point. However...
[The +4 Lightning Sword Born from Enlightenment and Strong Desires has been equipped.]
[The +3 Valhalla of Infinite Affection has been equipped.]
[The +4 Lantier’s Cloak has been equipped.]
[The +7 Cone Helmet has been equipped.]
[The +7 Overgeared Crown has been equipped.]
[The +4 Alex’s Quick Gloves (Produced by Pagma) have been equipped.]
[The +1 The Arrogant Blue Dragon's Boots have been equipped.]
Grid rapidly pulled out all his equipment from his inventory. For reference, Kraugel’s armor was a cloth ‘dopo’. (Google search)
It facilitated agility but was vulnerable to physical shock. On the other hand, Grid’s armor was very high in physical strength.
The mysterious man, the second generation Sword Saint Biban, was obstructed by Valhalla. Then Mercedes’ sword cut Biban’s back. To be exact, she cut Biban’s robe. The baffled Biban still managed to respond to and dodge Mercedes’ attack. It was the power of the repetitive training and experience that he built up for hundreds of years.
“Indeed...! A ruler wouldn’t have an ordinary servant!”
Biban stood quietly for a while before shouting. He warned Mercedes.
“The existence of the tower should never be leaked to outsiders. Send your knight away for a while.”
“Who are you?”
“I said I was from the tower.”
“The Tower of Eternity?”
“Hah, how can the Tower of Wisdom be compared to such an insignificant tower?”
“Tower of Wisdom...? This is the first time I’ve heard of it.”
A moment of silence followed. Once again, it was a long silence. Biban’s eyes trembled for a long time before he barely managed to settle himself. He spoke slowly, “I saw you coming out of the palace. I have confirmed that all the soldiers and knights in the palace are polite to you and found that your prowess is the best in the city.”
So, please say it. Biban eagerly prayed as he asked, “Aren’t you the ruler of this country?”
“Why are you only saying that now?!”
‘Is this person crazy?’
Grid and Noe had the same thought at the same time.Previous Chapter Next Chapter