Chapter 24 – Hell Kreizig

 

Ever since big brother had left Aldenaf for Naxus, I had been training. Usually, I would do mock battles with Master but he had become a bit more distant lately. Maybe he was missing big brother ? I did not know whether Master had any other friend, even though he was very popular in the village.

 

So there I was, swinging my sword alone. Today again, Master was busy with other things so training by myself was all I could do. There was a school in Aldenaf but only people who want to become accountants or something of the sort go to school. Others are either formed as apprentices or taught by their parents before taking over the family business. This is what Mother had in mind with big brother and Father had high hopes for me to engage in the military when I would be 15.

 

This is the reason why training every day was so important. To make it to the top, I had to work myself hard because I wasn’t a genius like big brother so I had to actually provide some effort to succeed.

 

“Time for a break.”

 

I was sweating a lot due to having practiced for three hours straight. I headed towards the area where Master left and decided to pay him a visit.

 

I reached his house but it looks like he wasn’t there. His mother welcomed me instead.

 

“Oh, if it isn’t Hell ! How are you ?”

“Good thank you. Do you know where I could find Master ?”

“Tras ? I believe he went to meet his friend’s girlfriend. He told me nothing else.”

“Oh thank you very much. I’ll be on my way then.”

“Take care.”

 

Blume… I was of course very happy to have heard that big brother had finally managed to get himself a girlfriend but I was skeptical as to why she was with Master right now. Could it be they were friends too ?

 

I headed towards the town centre with no real purpose and overheard some women chattering.

 

“Did you hear ? Miss Dorthfield passed away recently…”

“Oh my… How will the little Blume manage ?”

“I heard she has a boyfriend who’s an adult so maybe she will depend on him ?”

“Poor girl..”

 

Oh… so Blume’s mother died ? It was starting to make sense. Maybe she was spending time with Master because she couldn’t bear the loneliness and since big brother was away…. She must be very sad right now. Hopefully big brother will be back soon so that he can comfort her.

 

Thinking about this, I made my way back and along the way decided to take the shorter path that cut through the edge of the forest.

 

After a few seconds though, I stopped walking. I could hear a sound, or rather a groan. Could it be… more monsters have approached the village ?

 

I looked around, making sure to stay alert in case of a sneak attack. And as I came closer to the sound, I started to see what looked like… two people having sex.

 

I could not see their face because they were hidden by a tree but I could now clearly understand that what I mistook for groans were just moans of pleasure. I was planning to sneakily get away from there but something I heard just made me freeze.

 

“Oh yes, Tras… you’re so goooood…”

“I don’t think we should be doing this, Blume… Zwölf…”

“Zwölf wasn’t there… he wasn’t there when I needed him the most… Do you know… Haaan… Do you know what my mother died from ? She… Haaaaaaaaaan…”

“Yes.. ?”

“She died from the after effects of the potions he gave her…”

“Really !?”

“Sure it healed her on the short term… but on the long term she should have been given another treatment… and she didn’t…”

“I… I see…”

“Yeah… Zwölf killed my mother. Anyway… just enjoy it now… Haaan… You’re the only one keeping me company… Where is Zwölf right now ? Having fun on his own I bet… Why shouldn’t I have some fun too ?”

“Understood.”

 

I couldn’t bear to listen to anymore of this. I ran away as fast as I could.

 

Big brother killed Blume’s mother ? What is this madness ? If he hadn’t been there, she would have died from the immediate poison anyway !? This girl should be grateful that her mother got to live another three weeks thanks to big brother since they couldn’t afford any potion.

 

To me, it looked like she was just trying to find an excuse to cheat on him. From an objective point of view, sure, Tras would be more attractive than big brother. But blaming her mother’s death on him just to be able to be with Tras was unacceptable.

 

I couldn’t forgive Master either for taking away big brother’s girlfriend and having sex with her behind his back.

 

***

 

I was furiously venting my anger on the scarecrow in the backyard and for once, Mother came to watch me. Or so I thought but she actually wanted me to run an errand for her. She would always ask big brother but he wasn’t there right now so there was no helping it.

 

My task was to go to the nearest town, Ardamant, and gather some medicinal herbs that grow only there. It bothered me a little that I had to put my training on hold for a few days but it wasn’t very often that big brother was missing so it was a good opportunity to cool down the rage I felt this morning.

 

Travelling to Ardamant would only take half a day if I was to walk. If I departed now, there was a chance for me to make it back before the end of the day. Mother gave me indications to recognise the medicinal herb and I left the village.

 

I arrived at the village before noon and used was planning to use the money Mother gave me to buy a meal at an inn.

 

“Here is your chicken soup.”

“Thank you.”

 

I was served by a man with insect wings on his back and scales on his jaw, meaning he probably was part of the Half-race. It was a rare sight in this part of the continent as the Half-race mainly lived in the north east of the Sillis continent, outside of the Porcephone borders but some of them had migrated to Naxus and its surrounding towns.

 

I started eating and it honestly tasted delicious. While thinking that if it was for this meal, it was worth going through the trouble of coming all the way to this village, I heard the sound of plates breaking and some roaring behind me.

 

“WHAT THE HELL DO YOU THINK YOU’RE DOING YOU LIZARD !?”

“My most sincere apologies, dear customer ! Allow me to wipe your shirt.”

 

Two tables behind me, the insect-like man looked troubled and anxious. He had apparently spilled some water on a customer. After closer inspection, the customer was a massively fat human who was wearing some expensive-looking clothes. However, they were tainted with sauce spots so a little bit of water didn’t look like that big of a deal.

 

“Don’t you dare touch me with your filthy hands ! I don’t care about your apologies, you bug ! I want some kind of compensation, right now !”

“But… I…”

“Is this the behaviour of the Half-race !? How dare you disrespect me ?”

“This wasn’t my intention, dear customer…”

“YOU DARE TALK BACK TO ME !?”

 

The man was causing so much of a ruckus that everyone else had stopped chatting and eating and was watching the scene that was unfolding in the inn.

 

All, aside from one man who stood up and walked towards the one causing the tantrum.

 

“Hey, please let it go. You’re disturbing my lunch.”

“HAAA ? Who the hell are you ? And why are you protecting this sickening beast ?”

“My name is Yaquinn and the only beast I can see here is you, you pig.”

 

The fat man stood up, pushing the table aside with his belly. His eyes were filled with rage and his whole face was sweating like a pork.Two people who were sitting behind me stood up right after him. They looked like two warriors.

 

“NEVER IN MY LIFE I HAVE BEEN HUMILIATED THIS MUCH ! Arsh, Snarl, teach this guy a lesson.”

“Yes, sir.”

“As you wish.”

 

The two mercenaries – that’s what I gathered they were from their behaviour – faced Yaquinn and drew their weapons. The one called Arsh was handling a dagger in each hand whereas the other one drew a claymore.

 

I noticed Yaquinn had a sheathed sword attached to his belt although it looked quite thin compared to the ones I was used to.

 

“Against the likes of you, I won’t even need to use my weapon.”

“Huh, are you underestimating us, old man ?”

“Let’s finish this, Arsh.”

 

The two of them attacked Yaquinn at the same time. It went so fast that I barely had time to see what happened, despite having trained for a long time. This taught me that the two mercenaries were powerful foes, probably both above my level.

 

Arsh turned his daggers around and dashed behind Yaquinn whereas Snarl was launching a heavy blow towards him. I see… this was a good strategy because there was no way he could potentially escape a heavy attack and a swift one from both sides at the same time. He had to at least take damage from one of them, however they both looked deadly.

 

Unlike what I expected though, Yaquinn wasn’t scathed in the least after this double attack. He had simply slightly unsheathed his sword but the speed at which he did it was so high that it caused a shockwave around him, deflecting the blows of his two opponents.

 

The two mercenaries were disconcerted by this surprising skill and Yaquinn took advantage of the situation to swiftly strike down his two opponents with his palm. When he hit them, powerful shockwaves were emitted and they were sent flying on other tables around him.

 

The fatty who had just witnessed his two comrades getting defeated so easily ran away while screaming multiple times that he’d be back.

 

The Half-race man approached his saviour with an apologetic look on his face.

 

“Thank you very much, kind sir ! You saved me there.”

“No problem. I don’t like the way Half-race are sometimes discriminated against in this country.”

“Yeah… the Half-race and Hybrids are often victims of racism, even this far into the Porcephone Empire…”

 

I had heard something along the lines of these races being inferior a few times but I didn’t know that the hate against the Half-race and Hybrids was so strong.

 

After finishing my meal, I walked up to Yaquinn’s table where he was still enjoying the taste of an omelette.

 

“Hello, sir. May I talk to you for a bit ?”

“Hmm ? Sure ! I am never against a little bit of company, especially when eating such a fine meal.”

“Thank you.”

“So, what’s your name, kid ?”

“I am Hell Kreizig.”

“Hell Kreizig huh… I am Yaquinn, the wanderer. And I can see it in your eyes. You’re a warrior aren’t you ?”

“Well, I am only 13 and still training. I could never have defeated these two thugs like you did just now.”

“They weren’t that bad, hahaha. I could have beaten them with my eyes closed but I didn’t want to humiliate them any further.”

“So strong… please, teach me how to get stronger !”

 

There was no way I was ever going to be Tras’ student again. Not after what happened. Besides, Yaquinn seemed much stronger than him.

 

“I wouldn’t be against the idea of teaching my sword skills to a motivated youngling like you but unfortunately, I am going to leave this town soon.”

 

Feeling disappointed, I took a closer at him. He was a man about 1m85 tall with black hair tied into a tight ponytail that reached his hips. He had no facial hair but fierce eyes despite a gentle expression.

 

His clothes were quite exotic as he was wearing a grey cape and green baggy pants. He had no shirt and was topless under his cape that showed his abdomen. His pants were held by a belt made of a black rope tied in a way I had never seen before. He was also wearing dark green boots with metal bits on the edges.

 

What was the most intriguing however, was his sword. I had not learnt of such a thin sword and it looked like it could easily break despite being made of metal.

 

“This ? This is a katana. Unlike the swords you use in this country, this is a sword designed with speed in mind, rather than raw power.”

“Hmm… interesting. And you used some weird techniques earlier as well, didn’t you ?”

“They are skills I created myself so it’s not surprising you’ve never seen them before.”

 

We kept chatting for a while longer before leaving the inn together. We were about to part from each other but as soon as we got outside, we quickly got surrounded by about 30 thugs.

 

“Now, now, it’s payback time.”

 

Just as I thought, the fat man was back. And he had brought quite a lot of backup.

Advertisements