Chapter 14 - About Life (1)
Ian spent several days at Thompson’s home. Derek’s men kept threatening them, so Hoyt and Ian took turns protecting the house.
Meanwhile, Ian was trained by Hoyt.
In Elder Lord, skills were divided into various ratings. Common grade meant one was around the ordinary level, while Uncommon was better even better than that. After Uncommon was Special, and then after that was the Rare rank. Following Rare, the current highest known rank, was Essence. It meant literally realizing the essence of the skill.
Among the famous rankers of Elder Lord, Choi Hansung’s skill, ‘Battlefield Penetrating Eyes’, was revealed to be at the Essence grade.
Most of the user’s skills were Common, Uncommon, or the occasional Special grade skills. Elder Lord resembled reality. Everyone’s abilities were different, and it wasn’t easy for a user to reach a level beyond Special. Therefore, most of them were enthusiastic about gathering as many skills as possible.
"Do you believe in your abilities?”
“I believe in them to a certain extent.”
He learned martial arts. In other words, he was unusually strong. Of course, he trained hard, but it wasn’t like his colleagues didn’t work hard either. Ian knew that he had a talent for violence. Talented people would feel like they were talented.
"Certainly, you have talent. However, keep in mind that talent isn’t the only thing needed to become strong.”
“Are you talking about effort?”
"I think that the word effort is too light.”
"We can be anything.”
He didn’t want to, but he acknowledged it. It wasn’t strange to call it a type of power.
Ian had lived in poverty, and his parents’ business hadn’t been good in his childhood. After his parents died, he inherited their debt and headed to the battlefield to make money. It was a harsh life that he could never boast about to anyone else.
He killed and killed again. It was all for the sake of money. The targets weren’t always evil.
Therefore, if he acknowledged Hoyt, he would have to blame himself for choosing life on the battlefield without trying any other ways. Indeed, such guilt tormented his heart.
Ian continued, "Not everyone can do that.”
Hoyt smiled and aimed his hammer at Ian.
"I am not talking to everyone right now.”
"I am talking to you right now.”
Ian looked at him. Hoyt’s body, full of battle scars and tattoos, was proof of his experience over the past years.
“Are you a common person?”
“Do you want to be a warrior?"
"I want to be one.”
"Everyone... If you are like everyone else, then you can’t be a warrior. A warrior has to go on a path that no one else has traveled before.”
Hoyt moved back and raised the hammer with both of his hands.
Hoyt took a deep breath. Ian flinched. The atmosphere seemed to be shaking, and he could feel something coming from Hoyt’s body.
Strength, it wasn’t the same as energy. Rather, it was the opposite. As a result, Hoyt’s presence became blurred. He was becoming a part of this world. Then again, he became separate from the world.
Hoyt moved his hammer. It was a slow motion. However, Ian witnessed the world moving in reverse. The world broke with the simple movements of the hammer.
Ian wanted to sit down, as he couldn’t believe his eyes. This, this was the pinnacle state that Baek Hanho said Ian was unlikely to reach in his lifetime. This was the domain of the ancient military arts.
It was short, but seemed to last for an eternity. Hoyt raised his hammer and restored his breathing. He looked at Ian and smiled.
"Did you see?”
"I was hoping so, but you really are amazing to see it.”
Hoyt put down his hammer. Sweat rolled down his face.
"When I was your age, there was a really talented orc. I was stupid compared to him. Something that he took one try to learn would take me 20 or 30 attempts."
“That’s right. He really was a genius. He would make an instant judgement and rush at the opponent with marvelous skill. He had a brilliant wit that I could never reach in my lifetime. So, I desperately asked the instructor. What could I do to become stronger?”
Hoyt raised the hand at his waist. Ian handed him a towel.
"The instructor showed me a number of ways to wield the weapon. And that was enough. I didn’t need to know anything else, he said.”
It was the early stages of the pinnacle.
"I believed him and repeated his actions like crazy. People laughed at me like it was ridiculous, but I didn’t give up. I worked constantly without compromise. 10,000 times, 100,000 times, and more. Then at some point, I became a warrior.”
Ian looked at his sword. He could do the same.
"You definitely have talent," Hoyt said.
"That is why I am saying this.”
"Go towards the pinnacle, and beyond me.”
Ian's martial arts were stagnant. It had undergone further development on the battlefield, but was blocked again by a wall. He couldn’t go beyond that. Ian inwardly acknowledged his limits. But today, he saw beyond it. It was inside a game.
[Congratulations! You have witnessed a Pinnacle grade skill.]
[You feel thrilled by the high level of martial arts and the reality of the Pinnacle grade skill!]
[A Pinnacle grade skill is only achieved by the real powerhouses in the world of Elder Lord.]
[The title ‘Person Pursuing the Pinnacle’ has been acquired. All skills will gain proficiency until they reach the Pinnacle grade.]
[You have acquired the Mind’s Eye (Special) skill that allows you to understand the reality of the target.]
[One achievement point has been acquired.]
[Your level has risen.]
'Person Pursuing the Pinnacle’ Ian, Orc Apprentice Warrior
Achievement Points: 380
Orc's Superhuman Strength (Uncommon)
Orc's Vitality (Uncommon)
Orc’s Greatsword Technique (Uncommon)
Warrior's Fighting Spirit (Uncommon)
Mind's Eye (Special)
The messages popped up, but Ian shook his head. Those things didn’t matter right now.
His heart pounded. He wanted to swing his sword. He wanted to move his body. Not just in the game, but in reality as well. Ian still couldn’t believe that he saw it.
"It’s hard since it’s the first time I’ve done it in quite a while.”
“It is really wonderful.”
"You are even more amazing. You don’t seem like an apprentice, since even some of the best warriors would only see a common swing.”
Hoyt looked at the sun. He had the ability to calculate the approximate time according to the location of the sun, a skill that Ian didn’t have.
"It’s time for Ray to finish.”
Ian said, "I’ll go.”
Ian started moving.
Ray, the oldest of Thompson’s children, was attending school. It wasn’t a regular training curriculum provided by the government like in Ian’s reality, but a private institute run by various intellectual scholars. Thompson believed that his children should be in school, regardless of his economic situation. It was an educational facility that the guards of Anail protected, so Derek couldn’t reach it with his hands.
Ian headed towards the school. It had been a few days, so the people of Anail were used to seeing orcs. Some people of different species greeted Ian.
"Uh, aren’t you selling vegetables now?”
"It was a part-time job."
"Stella is still selling fresh vegetables.”
"I can’t trust that girl.”
The reputation system! Reputation existed in Elder Lord. Ian became known in Anail through positive activities, such as selling vegetables and protecting the Thompson family from the vicious loan shark. The attitudes of the NPCs changed from what they were before. They didn’t discriminate against orcs any longer..
Ian entered Ray’s school with light footsteps. However, the atmosphere was weird. The children were forming a circle around something. This was the scene of a typical kid’s fight. There was a familiar face inside.
Ian watched closely without interrupting. Ray and another child were tangled together as they rolled across the ground. Fists were aimed at the other person. Ian touched the shoulder of a child watching on the outside.
The child’s face turned pale as he was faced with the rugged face of an orc. Ian asked quietly, “Why are they fighting?”
"That...Robin teased Ray and said that his dad had run away.”
Ray was pretty tough. Even though it was an even fight, Ray soon overpowered Robin. He got on top of Robin and swung his fist. Robin covered his face with his arms. Ray’s fist hit the guard.
At this moment, Ian interrupted.
The children separated like the how the Sea split for Moses after hearing the orc’s words. Ray also stopped moving.
"You shouldn’t fight.”
Ian pulled them apart. Ray released Robin and started panting, while Robin stepped back with a nosebleed.
"If you say it one more time, then I’ll kill you,” Ray declared, his eyes filled with hate. That Robin bastard hadn’t died.
"That's right, your dad isn’t here right now.”
Ian stopped Ray, who shook his head as he was grabbed by Ian.
“Mister! That asshole, look at what he is saying! I’ll kill him!”
Ian was stumped. When he was a child, he beat someone up for cursing at his family. Ian couldn’t say to not use violence because he understood Ray. In addition, this was Elder Lord, where fists were close to being the law, unlike in the real world. It wasn’t an ideal story. In the end, humans had to learn how to survive on their own in this world.
Ian just shook his head.
"It is done, so let’s stop here. You don’t want to fight anymore, do you?”
Ray was still enthusiastic, but Robin didn’t want to fight any longer. He wiped his bloody nose with his sleeve. Ian dispersed the children.
He took Ray and started heading back home. Ian had raised Yiyu, but she didn’t experience this situation because she was a girl. She would just quarrel with her friends and then they would make up.
"Mister, I want to become stronger by learning the sword like you.”
"If I get stronger, then I can kill those guys.”
Ian chuckled in a low voice.
“Do you want to kill them?”
"Isn’t that too much?”
"I am angry.”
"You can’t kill a person just because you don’t like them, Ray.”
"There is always someone stronger than you. Then what if that person appears and kills a person you care about?”
"Then I will die fighting them, like a man.”
Ian looked at Ray. Ray avoided his gaze as if he knew what Ian was thinking.
"That isn’t a manly thing to do.”
“Ray. It is easy to speak about death.”
Ian patted the head of the silent Ray. He seemed more suited to the world of Elder Lord. He received a secret killing technique from Baek Hanho and survived on the battlefield. These things had no place in the real world. He might run a cafe that made coffee, but he knew more about fighting and killing, life and death, than anyone else.
Ian scratched his head. His mind was complicated. At that time, some people appeared and surrounded Ian and Ray.
“Hello Orc, we meet again.”
This face. It was one of Derek’s underlings who broke into Thompson’s house.
"That monster isn’t here this time, so won’t it be different?”
All of them were holding weapons. Their purpose was obvious, even to a blind man.
Ian placed Ray behind him and grabbed his sword handle. He measured their power. If they were his opponents, then he would be able to get away with Ray somehow.
But there was a man watching from the rear. A middle-aged man with a beard looked at Ian with a bored face. He wore expensive clothing and held a sword. An bright aura shone around the sharp blade.
“Are you a friend of Hoyt...?”
A low and hoarse voice emerged from the man. He stepped forward. A strong force was emitted from his whole body. Ian was nervous.
Strong. Clearly stronger than Ian.
"I am Derek, Young Man.”
Ian gathered his strength as he listened. He had to hang in there. Looking at Derek’s nonchalant face, Ian felt like an egg before an approaching knife. His entire body was ready. Derek approached.
“The interest...I will have you pay for it with your body.”
Praise the Orc: Glossary Link.
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