Chapter 18 – The Beastkin kids (1/2)
“Master, before we return to the party, I would like you to accompany me for a bit.”
Not wanting to intrude, everyone else decided to return to the fortress after our discussion on the future.
She must mean for me to accompany her to sword practice. We have yet to do that so far today, and since there will be a party later, she took the opportunity to squeeze it in.
But wait just a second… I disregarded the possibility right away, but it’s still possible that she would like me to accompany her to some nighttime activities.
Come to think of it, Syrah-chan was looking at me pleadingly and her eyes were a bit teary.
I gave a solemn nod, placed down a bed, and had Sati put on the cat ears for me. Then I pulled the not really resisting Syrah-chan to the bed.
She seemed a bit conflicted, but not really against things, so I kneeled above her.
“Ah, no, I meant sword practice…..”
Tsk. I thought I could get her to go with the flow, but I guess it wasn’t to be.
“Don’t you want to relax for today? We already drank some alcohol too.”
While saying that I started with the touches. Sati also slipped into the bed.
If I didn’t go out of my way to say that this break would be only for today and tomorrow, then even Sati might have something to say about it, but Syrah tends to ask for training frequently.
“Will has been training today as well, Master.”
“Yeah, apparently so?”
It seems Syrah-chan did not want to fall behind Will.
“I also think that we should show the beastkin here how strong you are, Master.”
Showing them our training, huh. Well, they would of course see it if we do it around here, and it’s not something we need to especially hide, but….
“We can leave this for later tonight, when we can take our time….”
“Take our sweet time?”
Syrah-chan nodded jerkily, so I reluctantly removed my hand from her boobs and got off of her. This trip was supposed to be a week for powering Syrah-chan up anyway. I wouldn’t like it if Syrah-chan, whose Skills are higher than Will’s, were to lose out to him after got trained by Fran.
“Then, how do you want it today? Light training or serious training?”
Light training is just lightly putting blade to blade. As for serious training, it means either fighting with real blades in full armor, or leather armor and blunted blade, like in the Grand Tournament.
“Serious training, please.”
Sati also nodded in agreement to Syrah-chan’s words, so that was that.
“Then let’s go for full armor and no magic today.”
Wearing full armor cuts down on the incoming damage, so it’s still less painful than a match was at the Grand Tournament.
We equipped ourselves, then flew down to the ground from the warehouse’s second floor.
“We’ll be having sword training now. This is something you need to do every day.”
I informed the beastkin who were surprised to see us in full armor, then we moved to the free space next to the river.
The partying beastkin came with us of course, then the people gathered around the temporary bathhouse noticed that something was happening, so they came to see us too.
I guess this was inevitable.
We took plenty of distance from the spectating beastkin. We will be going at it quite intensely, so it would be dangerous to be closer than that.
First it was Sati’s and Syrah-chan’s turn. Syrah-chan was obviously no match for her of course. Seeing her be blown away after getting hit through a chink in her defense, the beastkin spectators oohed and aahed.
I healed Syrah-chan up, then moved on to my match with Sati. I couldn’t help but be mindful of our spectators, but with Sati as my opponent, I had to concentrate.
Sati became even stronger after experiencing the Grand Tournament. She became quite smooth with the footwork Sergeant-dono taught us and each of her hits became heavy.
Her training with Fran was a good experience for her as well. As expected of someone who started learning swordsmanship from the age of three and has been practicing for more than ten years now, Fran had a lot of diverse techniques which she showed us liberally in the last week. She of course did not show them because she wanted to, but because you can’t simply fight Sati if you hold anything back.
So Sati and I diligently reviewed the techniques she ended up showing us and gladly incorporated a number of them into our own style.
However, since she pestered us a lot to train with her, she must’ve profited a lot from our exchanges as well.
Also, even with Sati visibly stronger now, I could still keep up with her. That means I’m steadily getting stronger too.
The problem is that training with Sati is becoming even heavier, I can’t even relax my vigilance for a second and it’s very physically tiring as well. When we are having a serious match, it’s even more intensely exhausting.
Today’s match ended in my favor.
The riverside we were standing on was riddled with loose stones, so our footing was quite bad. During a charge Sati stepped on a stone wrong. She adjusted her foot right away and did not even really lose her balance, but it still left a minute gap in her defense, which I mercilessly exploited to get a point off her.
“My footwork is still not good enough.”
However, Sati didn’t seem to be bothered by the bad footing. Did she let me win for today? I couldn’t be sure and it’s just training anyway. I won’t complain about it either way.
Next one was Syrah-chan’s turn against me. I managed to add to the number of dents on Syrah-chan’s dark armor today too.
Next match will be a one versus two. That’s always extremely difficult, but that’s why it’s good training.
At first Syrah-chan managed to hold out under our attacks. She did her very best to hold out. A one-on-one fight is decided by a single hit, but when fighting against multiple people, the rule is that you need to deal damage for it to count, same as the Grand Tournament rules. Without that, a match like this would be over in a flash, not giving time to learn anything.
She needs to solidify her defense while avoiding serious injuries, and look for any possible gaps in the incoming blows.
Being on the duo side isn’t easy either. The duo side can’t afford to lose and the solo side is obviously doing everything in their power to fight back.
There are usually enough of us for me to slip out part way, but today there are only three of us here. I was thoroughly exhausted after the third match already.
“Amazing! You’re all so amazing!”
Immediately after we finished up, we were rushed by a bunch of enthusiastic kids. This fight was roughly at the level of the Grand Tournament finals. Not something you see everyday.
“Master’s true strength is far beyond this. If he uses his magic, then we two simply don’t stand a chance.”
“Masaru-sama is good with a sword, but he’s the best with magic!”
“Magic! Wanna see some magic!”
They already saw me make the bathhouse and create hot water with magic, but I guess I might as well show them something else. If I target the river next to us, then it won’t bother anyone.
“Very well, come with us then. I will show you something.”
When we arrived at the river with the kids in tow, there I sensed some kind of presence in the middle of the river. It was four or five meters long and it was swimming deep underwater against the current, undetectable without my Sense Presence.
“Maybe it’s the lord of this river?”
I asked the kids about it and they said it must be an armored fish that was seen from time to time.
“Can we eat it?”
Hohoh. It ran out of luck by running into me. With such prey in front of me, I don’t need to shoot my spell to just show off.
Since it’s in water, Thunder will be best. If it doesn’t work, then Fireball will be enough to blow it up or….. no, failing on the first try here would be too embarrassing, so I better get a bit more serious.
The range was fine. Pouring in quite a bit of mana, I started chanting the Level 4 Wind Magic spell, 【Mega Thunder】――
With a flash and thunderous roar, a thick bolt of lightning impacted the surface of the water.