After the battle with the mutated Killer Ape, investigations were conducted and by the time we were released, the sun was about to set. Towards the end of the investigation, word was received that the guild master was finally apprehended. That is to be expected, since he and Phil were the ones pursuing him. Borrowing Til’s shoulder, we somehow managed to return to the inn where quickly washed up before going to bed as we were all exhausted.
Suddenly, I felt an intense blood lust and got out of bed.
[Honestly, is this how you greet someone?] (Yuuya)
After grabbing a change of clothes, I grabbed my sword and left the room.
It would appear that we have an unexpected visitor.
I headed towards the back of the inn alone to meet the guy who emitted a large amount of blood lust towards my room.
[What is with you, being all stealthy like this. How about showing your face for once? Since we are on the same side, we don’t have to hide things from one another.] (Yuuya)
When Phil went after the guildmaster, she wasn’t alone. There was a handsome youth in his mid-twenties with silver hair extending to his shoulder wearing a mask. At a glance, it would look like he is an old man. However, if you look carefully, the person carries the air of a dignified swordsman that has zero openings.
[It’s been a long time. Teacher.] (Masked Man)
[You don’t have to be so polite with an old man like me, hero..Leonard.] (Yuuya)
It is the hero Leonard. One of the only men who managed to conquer the Tower of Trials that has a 2% survival rate, increasing his level limit to 70 and becoming stronger than anyone can hope to be. A man who could be said to be the strongest adventurer. A disciple who had everything drilled into him by me. This is our first meeting in ten years.
[No matter how much the circumstances has changed, you are the master whom I respect, and the teacher who guided me back when I was a reckless young youth..and my important friend.] (Leonard)
[Don’t you have a grudge towards me for what I’ve done?] (Yuuya)
[Of course not. Back then I knew that teacher’s decision was the correct one. Or rather, it was me that was stupid. Because of my actions, my teacher abandoned me and Phil decided to leave. Once I matured, I finally conquered the Tower of Trials.] (Leonard)
The Leonard standing before me feels completely different from the Leonard that I remember. Just what did he experience this past decade?
[I was watching the entire time. From the audience seat. It was an amazing fight. But aren’t you being too cruel teacher? This whole time you have never showed me such a technique.] (Leonard)
[It’s been ten years since we last met you know. Even I can learn a trick or two in ten years. And about that, if you were in the audience then you could had lent a hand in the battle a little earlier. Letting me, a level 20 adventurer to battle that monster all on my own.] (Yuuya)
[I thought about lending a hand, but despite being level 20, my teacher was as strong as I remember back when he was level 50, with skills that were even stronger. I would never give up the opportunity to observe such wonderful swordsmanship either. As expected of teacher, you are amazing. Even with the title “Sword Hero”, I’m still nowhere close to my teacher’s level. It’s frustrating.] (Leonard)
Note: the original name for sword hero is 剣技, which sounds a lot like swordsmanship / technique
I was caught red-handed.
I felt intense blood lust coming out from Leonard.
[I came to this town today for the sake of meeting Phil once more. Lyle received a message from the guildmaster in this town that Phil is currently living in this town, and told me about it. Once I heard about it, I didn’t stop until I got here.] (Leonard)
That guildmaster. Did he seriously dig his own grave?
He went out of his way to showcase the power of his monsters, just to let Leonard come out and arrest him by giving out Phil’s location? That is unexpected.
[I thought that if it was the current me, then there was a chance that Phil would accept me. However, I miscalculated. I had forgotten about my own teacher after 10 years. Unfortunately my teacher reunited with Phil before I did. The teacher who was superior to me in every aspect except for swordsmanship. And although it wasn’t easy to catch Phil’s affection. You did it just by reuniting with her earlier than I did, isn’t that too cruel?] (Leonard)
Leonard’s hand started to grip the sword on his waist.
[Your blood lust has been growing stronger for a while now. Are you thinking that you can win Phil’s heart just by killing me? It seems that you have changed quite a bit this past ten years.] (Yuuya)
The possibility of me beating Leonard in the current situation is impossible.
He is a genius who managed to master all my techniques and even improved them further. In addition his level was raised to 70 thanks to the Tower of Trial.
[I do. However, the way I am right now, I will completely overwhelm teacher. That is why I have a request. One year from now, we will have a battle to the death. So please do your best to become stronger from now on. A year from now, I will steal every technique and skill that you possess and become the true “Sword Hero”. Then I will steal Phil’s heart. After all, I’ve managed to obtain everything I ever wanted after teacher left.] (Leonard)
That wasn’t a joke. He is serious in killing me.
[Even if you kill me, there is no way that Phil ever falls for you,] (Yuuya)
[Ahahahaha. Don’t worry about that. I have my ways of forcing her into submission. It doesn’t matter what she feels. Right now at least. I understand it now. It’ll never work because teacher is here. It’s uncool of me to be inferior to my teacher isn’t it? Teacher, I’ll take my leave. I look forward to seeing you again.] (Leonard)
Leonard turned and walked into the night.
He was always this hard-headed even back then, but he wasn’t like this. Just what happened to him to make him change this much?
Regardless, there is something I have to do. When a disciple strays from the right path, it’s the master’s job to bring him back. A year from now, I will beat him down with my full strength.
Several days have passed since my reunion with Leonard.
Due to the incident caused by the guild master, the entire guild was suspended, making it impossible to enter dungeons or to accept quests. Rather than sitting idly, I’ve been spending this time training with Luna and Til without entering the dungeons.
The guild master’s intention was discovered as a result of the investigations. After advertising the ability to evolve and control a monster in the Colosseum, he planned to escape from the town and make a living selling monsters. He thought that he would be able to escape due to having three monsters on par with the mutated Killer Ape as his bodyguards, however it was thanks to his unusual bodyguards that he was discovered and eventually defeated by Phil and the hero Leonard.
[He was a nuisance until the very end huh.] (Yuuya)
Causing a national scandal during the festival, ruining the event and incurring the hate of the people. Even adventurers were unable to hold in their anger and stress towards the guildmaster. His plan was to hold the audience hostage and force the adventurers in the event to make the decision to escape with their life, leaving the hostages to die and displaying the disgusting personalities of adventurers . Simultaneously, he would prepare his escape while the mutated Killer Ape would display it’s strength by battling Phil or Leonard who would be attracted by the noise.
Furthermore, in order to ensure the plan’s success, he leaked the information about Phil’s whereabouts to her former party member, the Thief Lyle in order to lure Leonard here and created a situation where a novice adventurer would have to either escape from the arena or defeated by the monster.
[His well-thought and meticulous plan was ruined.. By me huh.] (Yuuya)
Not only did I choose to stay without abandoning the audience, I even defeated the mutated Killer Ape which possessed overwhelming power. The public image of adventurers was protected by a “novice” adventurer who chose to confront the monster with overwhelming strength, even ruining his display of power by defeating the monster. His bodyguards were also easily defeated, resulting in his arrest. In the end, even if he managed to escape, his plan wouldn’t had succeeded. Everything turned out near perfect for us. However, afterwards it was discovered that the guildmaster was assassinated in the prison, most likely by his collaborators to prevent any information from leaking out. This confirmed to us that the true threat hasn’t been eliminated, and there were more people with the similar ability to evolve monsters.
[Luna, Til, it’s about time to take a break.] (Yuuya)
[Uhn. I understand.] (Luna)
[My throat is soo dry, I want a cold drink~.] (Til)
The two girls who were training in the courtyard started walking back towards the inn. The girls were sweaty and wearing light clothing, making it difficult to look at them directly.
Luna began drinking the special nutritious drink that I made. Her face began to cramp up.
[During training, I suddenly thought back to Yuuya’s fight. Yuuya was amazing. It was completely different from sparring with Luna. Even though I tried to, I couldn’t replicate Yuuya’s movements. The difference is too large. Frustrating..] (Luna)
[Me too. When I saw the battle, I couldn’t help but tremble even when I wasn’t involved. There is still so much to learn. I’ll have to continue to do more self-defense training.] (Til)
I see. No wonder they have been so fired up recently, so the two of them were just inspired by my fight that they ended up trying even harder than before.
[Don’t worry about it. The two of you are talented, far more than I. Eventually you will be able to do a battle like that too.] (Yuuya)
[I can’t say that I agree with you. It was overwhelming. The monster was too strong and I was scared. Even if you say that we will be able to do that eventually, it feels like that time would never come.] (Til)
Before I knew it, Luna approached me and grabbed my side.
[Uhm, Yuuya. Do you remember our promise. After the tournament, you would reward Luna for winning.] (Luna)
[Of course I do. It’s for my cute disciple, I’ll do anything.] (Yuuya)
Luna got shocked after hearing my reply, her fox ears going limp.
[Yuuya. Luna’s request is to make a promise.] (Luna)
Luna stares directly at me with eyes mixed with uneasiness and expectation, as if she was making a request with her eyes.
[Luna wants to be with Yuuya forever, so never leave Luna’s side.] (Luna)
[I thought it was something important since you said it like that, so it’s just that.] (Yuuya)
[It’s not just “that”! Yuuya abandoned Phil.. Luna doesn’t want that..] (Luna)
Although I thought she was just being her brazen and happy self following me ever since we met, it looks like she has been worrying about this the entire time. She was afraid that I would leave her.
I let out a smile and caress Luna’s head.
[I promise. Until Luna wishes so, we will always be together.] (Yuuya)
Luna’s face bloomed like a beautiful flower after hearing my answer.
[I love Yuuya!] (Luna)
Luna jumps into my chest as she grins uncontrollably. Her fox tail was also moving back and forth. Such cute actions fit Luna very well and I gave her lots of pampering. Til who was watching at the side started grinning.
[I want to celebrate with Luna but… As a sister I’m worried. It’s the rise of a powerful rival! Well I guess it doesn’t’t matter at this point. Fuu fuu. Congratulations you two. Fuu fuu. Don’t the two of you have the hots?] (Til)
This girl.. Although I wonder if it does look that way towards other people. It doesn’t feel that bad though. I’ll stay with Luna as long as she wants to.
Even after finishing our dinner, Luna continued to cling onto me and was sitting on my lap. Occasionally, I would lean back and let out a laugh. In such a setting, a visitor came. It was Phil.
[Yuuya. Sorry for being late. I really wanted to come here sooner but some stuff happened. Also.. If I had reached earlier then.. You wouldn’t have to do such a dangerous thing.] (Phil)
[Maa. It turned out fine so don’t worry about it. How about you? Guild work after the incident must be tough right?] (Yuuya)
[It’s really tough. But don’t worry, I will do something about it! It’s my job after all.] (Phil)
After that, the conversation with Phil continued on. Since we were the only people around, we also talked about the incidents and other matters.
[Yuuya. I came here today to explain what happened on the day of the festival, and that I had to give my reply someday.] (Phil)
On that day we officially became a couple and I asked her several important questions.
[You asked me that if I wanted to go on a journey with you, whether I would be happier being a receptionist or an adventurer with you. I’ve thought about my answer carefully since then.] (Phil)
[Ah. I did say something like that.] (Yuuya)
[I was in a bind, and constantly worrying about my answer. I want to be with Yuuya, but I enjoy being a receptionist and helping others. I felt satisfied and fulfilled at my job. But in the end, I feel the happiest is being together with you.] (Phil)
[I see. We’re still together aren’t we?] (Yuuya)
I stretched my hand out to Phil. But she didn’t take it.
[Not now. At the very least, for the time being, not for a while. Thanks to the incident, the guild is in shambles and if I’m not here, the guild will eventually crumble and the city will inevitably be doomed.] (Phil)
Shes right. It is an important time for Rumberg right now. It’ll take time before the guild can restore its credibility.
[I can’t do something as irresponsible as that. I love the guild and the adventurers here too. Give me two months. No. A month to restore the guild. And once that’s done. I’ll come for you. So please, wait for me until then.] (Phil)
It’s going to a little bit lonely since the trip with Phil has been postponed. But I’m proud of her answer. She has grown up to be a fine woman who became capable of thinking about others, the guild and the adventurers. There is only one thing I can do. To support her decision.
[I understand. Then I’ll wait for the day when I can see you once more. Do your best for your own battles.] (Yuuya)
[Of course. I’ll definitely return to your side.] (Phil)
Phil leaned in and we kissed.
Luna raised her fox tail and Til was covering her eyes, watching from the gaps between her fingers. At our level, we are already approaching the limit for the dungeons in the area. We will be leaving the town soon, we will have to separate from Phil. However, I’ll wait for the day when we can meet once more. I’ve decided to tell her everything on that day.
Luna came between me and Phil and began hissing towards Phil.
It isn’t an act caused by any romantic feelings from Luna. It’s just that child’s desire to monopolize me. Her actions are definitely weird, I’m looking even more forward towards our future reunion. Unable to hold it in, I started laughing.
Living the days with futile effort, I’ve moved forward without being rewarded for my actions. But it all started to change the day I met Luna. And since then, the fruits of my hard work started to appear one by one. I was finally rewarded. Being rewarded for my efforts felt really sweet. I wish these days would continue on forever.
<End of Volume 1>
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