Chapter 183 – The Ambush
“ …this is different than last time.”
Calron muttered as he looked down at his arm.
Bolts of blue lightning darted across his arm but Calron did not feel the scorching heat of pain that he usually felt when bringing out the Azure Lightning. There was a slight tingling feeling under his skin, but it was not overly unpleasant.
Calron did not know at this moment, but the golden veins around his heart were pulsing with a steady rhythm.
Slowly exhaling out, Calron took a deep breath and spread the crackling bolts of blue lightning all over his body.
He groaned as his body was being tempered by the lightning. Calron’s eyes flashed briefly with a bright light, but it disappeared almost as soon as it appeared.
He thought he saw the image of the electric-blue snake, but the memory was too fleeting.
I need to hold on.
After a few seconds, Calron began to feel an immense pressure under the Azure Lightning; however, he forced himself to endure. Numerous veins bulged around his neck, arms, head and chest as the blue lightning continued to envelop him.
This was the beginning of Calron’s training to control the Divine Element.
“You look like you had a rough night.”
Kail commented, seeing Calron’s exhausted face when the young man sat in front of him.
Calron gave a curt reply, but it seemed like Kail was not too interested in his new student’s affairs as he simply started his lecture.
“Economics is a complicated subject, but you need to learn it if you plan on expanding your business throughout the kingdom. It will also help you understand the process of taxation, why we need it, how to manage thousands of people or an army, its logistics and rations, and basically everything about this world.”
Everything about this world? That’s quite a bold claim…
Calron was already confused by Kail’s rushed introduction, but he decided to not show it in case the older man would grasp an opportunity to extend the period of their class today.
The earlier this class was over, the sooner Calron could escape.
“… seeing that you sell goods related to combat, in times of war you can drastically increase the price to your customers since there will be a much higher demand for it. However, if you increase it too much, you will be damaging your customer’s loyalty.”
Hearing the mention of his shop, Calron was roused from his boredom.
For the past ten minutes, Kail had been going on and on about matters of the kingdom, how the fiefs were taxed, why it was necessary and how it affected businesses. It was mildly interesting to Calron, but not as much as the thought of going to the frontlines of battle soon.
He planned on heading to the Patriarch to begin his training on the battlefield.
“Clearly, your mind is occupied with something else, so let’s end it for today and continue tomorrow morning.”
Kail smiled at the young man.
“Really? That’s great!”
Calron exclaimed in surprise, but quickly got up and left Kail’s room before the man changed his mind.
He’s not as scary as I thought…
Calron thought inwardly, recalling all the tales he heard from Linda, Asra and the others about Uncle Kail. Unbeknownst to Calron, Kail’s smile morphed into something ominous as he gazed at the back of his newest student.
He was planning a new syllabus that was better suited for Calron.
Come to the gate now.
Calron heard the Patriarch’s voice through the crystal and swiftly headed towards the main gate of the mansion. He even used the Blood Mist Step to hasten his speed.
As he drew nearer to the gate, Calron noticed several figures in black and golden robes surrounding the tall Patriarch.
“Are you ready?”
The Patriarch asked with a chuckle once Calron arrived in front of him.
Calron jovially replied, eager to test his progress with the Azure Lightning today on the battlefield.
“Good, because we just received a report on a darkling camp stationed inside the woods a few kilometers outside the border and we’ll be ambushing them before they move to a different camp.”
The old man’s voice turned serious as he recounted what the plan was.
“You’ll be going with our clan’s warriors for this ambush as it’s a small one, but for future skirmishes, we’ll be coordinating with the other towers and the royal army.”
The Patriarch announced while pointing to the black and gold robed figures to his side.
There were three men and a single woman amongst the clan warriors beside the Patriarch. Calron also detected that they were equipped with light armor hidden underneath their robes.
One of the men had youthful and delicate facial features, along with his long orange hair tied up neatly in a braid. Strapped to his side were two sheathed daggers, slightly longer in length than normal, so Calron guessed that they were modified weapons. The second man had dark brown unkempt hair and a scraggly beard. He was shorter than the previous warrior, and also a lot stockier with his dense and bulky muscles. Judging from the giant crossbow on his back, it seemed that he was a warrior specializing in long-range combat.
The third warrior was the tallest amongst them, and he had long black hair cascading down his back until his upper torso. With sharp eyebrows and a clean-shaven face, Calron got the sense that he was probably the leader of this group. Unexpectedly, the third warrior had a longbow strapped to his back along with a knife buckled to his side.
It appeared that most of them were long-range fighters.
The woman was good looking with her short blonde hair and high cheekbones, but her stance and personality conveyed more masculinity instead of femininity. Unlike the others, she carried no weapons on her. The scar on her cheek combined with the dangerous aura she emitted, Calron knew that he had to pay attention to not get on her bad side.
“Looking for something?”
The woman raised her eyebrow when she caught Calron scrutinizing their armor.
He quickly answered, afraid the woman might misunderstand his intentions.
“Stop teasing the lad, Eva.”
The dark-haired man interrupted the woman as he stretched out his hand towards Calron.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Calron. My name is Drien.”
Returning the handshake, Drien began to introduce the others to Calron.
“The orange-head you see is Vala, the midget is Felror, and the rude one earlier is Eva.”
Drien laughed while Vala and Eva protested at their measly introduction. Felror simply grunted and ignored the three.
“I’ll leave him in your care, Drien. This is his first battle in a war, so guide him properly.”
The Patriarch stated as he prepared to leave.
“You won't come?”
Calron interjected, unaware the Patriarch was not joining them.
“No, Calron. This is your fight. The others are here to only support you if required, but you’ll be at the front of the battle. Once you get used to it, you can join the real war with me. Good luck, kid.”
The old man informed him and disappeared from the vicinity, leaving Calron alone with the four warriors.
Vala shouted, patting Calron on the back as a greeting.
“You better not disgrace the clan’s reputation by getting beat up by some darklings.”
Eva smirked, poking Calron on the nose.
Drien laughed at the exchange and motioned for everyone to depart. He knew it was Eva’s way of testing the boy and his guts.
“Don’t worry, I won’t disappoint.”
Calron smiled at Eva with confidence.
Right at that moment, thin bolts of blue lightning crackled on the tips of his fingers.
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