Chapter 24

 

Raon opened his eyes, feeling the sunlight enter through the window.

‘It’s difficult.’

He skimped on sleep during his break to cultivate more, but he didn’t manage to create an aura.

‘This isn’t a common cultivation method.’

He’d felt it when he saw Glenn’s expression and when he examined the ‘Ten Thousand Flames Cultivation’ engraved in his memory, but it definitely wasn’t a martial technique that could be exchanged for a bronze tablet.

Let alone a silver tablet, even dozens of golden tablets wouldn’t have been enough.

‘Why did he just give it to me?’

He couldn’t understand why he gave him such an excellent aura cultivation method.
After all, he thought Glenn hated him and Sylvia.

The most surprising part was that he didn’t do anything when the book was reduced to powder, and Raon was the only one able to have that knowledge.

‘Is there a problem with this aura cultivation method?’

He thought Glenn had probably given it to him because it wasn’t a complete cultivation method, or it had some kind of flaw somewhere.

“Hmm…”

He carefully checked the content of the ‘Ten Thousand Flames Cultivation’ in his memory.

‘I don’t see any problems.’

He didn’t notice anything in particular, but he thought he should be careful, just in case.

That’s not the only thing you should be careful about.

Wrath suddenly burst from the ice flower bracelet.

If you don’t watch out for the King of Essence, your soul and body will be engulfed by wrath.

“So be it.”

Raon nodded at Wrath, who was chuckling.

That is an arrogance not even seen in devildom.
I will definitely shut down your arrogance this time.

“I keep telling you.
Do it if you can.”

Raon waved his hand dismissively and left the room.
He couldn’t show any weakness to Wrath.
A serene mind.
A mind as calm as the lake in the middle of the night, that was what he needed.

“Raon.”

“Young master Raon.”

Sylvia, Helen, and the maids were waiting in the entrance hall.

“You haven’t been here for long enough.
I couldn’t talk to you enough, and you didn’t eat enough…”

Sylvia teared up as she expressed her regrets.

“I can come back every weekend from now on.”

Unlike before, when he was a temporary trainee, as an official trainee he could return to the annex building during weekends.

“But…”

The atmosphere became heavy.
It looked like Sylvia’s feelings had spread to the maids.

“I… I’ll be back.”

Awkward situations and emotions like that were his Achilles’ heel.
Raon quickly waved his hand and walked towards the exit of the annex building.

As he opened the door, he met Judiel’s eyes.
She was sitting at the end of the line of maids.

“Huff!”

Judiel covered her mouth, about to scream.
Her forehead was drenched in cold sweat, and she was shaking all over.
She was the picture of someone overwhelmed by the monster they called fear.

‘It looks like I won’t need to worry.’

That was what he’d wanted, but he didn’t like dominating people with fear.

He thought he should properly accept her as his subordinate once she brought him valuable information from the Central Martial Palace.

You are such a monstrous guy.

Wrath sounded like he was sighing as he spoke, all while watching Judiel’s expression.

‘Being called a monster by an actual monster isn’t too bad.
What a compliment.’

Raon slightly smiled and made his way towards the fifth training ground for the first time in a week.

 

***

 

Raon arrived at the training ground ten minutes earlier than the scheduled time.

The number of children had visibly decreased.
Out of the one hundred sixty people, only forty-two remained.
It made the training ground look half empty.

The fact that only a quarter remained showed that Rimmer was meticulous about results, despite his usual frivolous appearance.

“Raon Zieghart…”

“Hmm!”

“He looks different again, somehow…”

The way the children looked at Raon had clearly changed.

Six months ago, they looked at him with mockery, ridicule, and a little bit of compassion.
Now, however, they looked at him with jealousy, surprise, and admiration.

However, Raon wasn’t interested in them.

As he was warming up with only the ‘Ten Thousand Flames Cultivation’ in mind, he heard light steps approaching, followed by a nasally sound similar to sniffing.

‘Those steps…’

When he turned back, Runaan was there with her vacant eyes, just as he’d expected.

Now that girl is following you around while sniffing.
I thought she was a cat, not a dog.

‘I’m not sure.
She looks like a puppy and a cat at the same time.’

Raon awkwardly met Runaan’s eyes.
She approached a step closer to him than usual before stopping.

“Thank you.”

“Huh?”

He didn’t understand why she suddenly thanked him.

“…”

After thanking him, Runaan’s eyes started to resemble a cat waiting for food, sparkling unusually. 

“Eh, okay.”

Raon responded with a puzzled expression and Runaan stepped back after bowing slightly.
The distance between them returned to the usual.

“Umm!”

She clenched her fist as if she’d accomplished something.

“Why did you suddenly thank me?”

“Because I’m grateful.”

“Ah…”

Runaan tilted her head as if Raon was the weird one.
It looked like he wasn’t going to get an answer even if he kept asking her.

Wh-what? What is she trying to do!

‘I don’t know, either.’

It was his first time seeing a child like Runaan in both his past and current lives.
Looking at her blank purple eyes made him space out—like he was watching a bonfire.

But since she wasn’t disturbing him, nor picking a fight with him, he couldn’t really do anything about it.
After all, she’d thanked him—even if he didn’t know the reason.

‘Is it because I’m not familiar with emotions?’

Wrath was also confused, but a psychopath like him couldn’t be used as a standard.

‘So, this is how I learn about being flustered.’

Raon sighed.
He couldn’t find the answer no matter how much he thought, so he shook his head to return to his senses.

“Young master!”

Dorian ran up to him, green hair fluttering like wings.

“It… it has been a long time!”

He bowed at a 90-degree angle, as if he were bowing to an instructor.

“Ho-how have you been? I thought I would die.
I already felt like I’d die when I was just a temporary trainee, so I can’t imagine how difficult it will be now that I’m an official tr-trainee.
I kept having nightmares.
Ugh…”

Dorian kept talking without waiting for the answer.
He was a weirdo for being scared instead of being proud of becoming an official trainee.

“But I’m glad that young master Raon is the top trainee.
If young master Burren was the top, then I… I wouldn’t have been able to breathe.
It would’ve been better that I failed the exam…”

When Dorian was saying that, Burren entered the training ground along with the collaterals.

“Hiee!”

Dorian collapsed under Burren’s cold gaze.

“Hic! Hic!”

Dorian started to hiccup while trembling all over.

“Raon Zieghart.”

Without paying attention to the scared Dorian, Burren approached Raon.

“I admit my defeat from one week ago.
I showed everyone my disgraceful side.
I’m sorry.”

Burren bowed at a 90-degree angle without any hesitation.

“Huh?”

“Eek!”

“Lord Bu-Burren!”

The trainees around them opened their mouths wide in surprise.

“However!”

Burren’s eyes were burning when he raised his head.

“I didn’t give up.
I will stand in front of you again, no matter what it takes.
I won’t withdraw, nor will I give up.
Of course, I have no intention of losing to you, either.”

After Raon, Burren also pointed his finger at Runaan.
He then walked to the left.

“I… I thought I’d die.’

Dorian stood while trembling, as he was chilly.

“Wh-what shall I do now? Shall I go ahead and beg?”

His eyes were moving twice as fast as before.
It was curious how he could still stay conscious in that state.

“You don’t need to worry.”

Raon shook his head.
Burren was only looking at him and Runaan.
He didn’t seem to be paying attention to anyone else.

He still doesn’t know his position, even after getting beaten up.
Follow him and pluck out his eyes, right now!

‘That’s pretty amazing on its own.’

Accepting his own mistake and asking for a rematch wasn’t an easy feat to achieve for a thirteen-year-old child.
It was a behavior befitting the direct line of the prestigious Zieghart family.

I don’t care if that’s amazing or not.
The King of Essence didn’t like it, so kill him.

‘Hah!’

Raon snorted.
When one nuisance finally closed his mouth, the other started talking.
It looked like silence was never going to happen.

 

* * *

 

Reaper Scans

[Translator – Kyangi]

[Proofreader – Harley]

Join our discord for updates on releases! https://dsc.gg/reapercomics

 

* * *

 

Swoosh!

 

As he was flexing his ankle and ignoring Wrath’s anger, a green wind burst over the walls.

“Sorry I’m late.
I overslept a bit because I was drinking yesterday.”

Rimmer appeared alongside the wind.
He smiled awkwardly while scratching the back of his head, his hair resembling a bird’s nest.

 

Snap!

 

Someone could be heard grinding their teeth.
It was Burren.

How dare he make the King of Essence wait! That arrogant pointy-eared bastard has finally gone insane! Tear off his ears, now!

Wrath was boiling with uncontrollable anger.
It looked like Burren and Wrath could become friends.

Rimmer walked onto the platform, humming.

“Did you rest well?”

He waved his hand.
The way he was faltering made it seem like he wasn’t completely awake.

“Yes!”

On the other hand, the children’s shouts were loud and strong.

“First of all, I congratulate you on becoming official trainees.’

“Thank you!”

“As you must be already aware, those who failed were given the chance to join the sixth training ground if they wanted.
Don’t be too disappointed if your friend dropped out.”

Rimmer smiled as he told them that they could meet with their friends again later.

“We are going to start the official training from today onward.
The overall structure is going to be the same.
You will have to surpass your limits throughout the training, whether it’s your mind, stamina, or martial arts.
Not only is it the fastest method, it also allows you to reach the highest peak.”

He concluded by saying that there was no end to basic training.

However, he didn’t sound all that convincing with the lazy display he put on, what with his constant yawning.

“A few more training programs will be added from now on.
The first is the aura cultivation method.
Starting tomorrow, you will cultivate aura during daybreak and evening training.”

Since it was well known that the best time to cultivate aura was at daybreak and evening, everyone nodded.

“We will also start the swordsmanship and fist technique training that you’ve been waiting for.”

“Ohh!”

“Finally!”

The children’s eyes shone like jewels as he spooky about the swordsmanship and fist technique.

“And…”

Just as Rimmer was about to continue, the training ground door burst open.

 

Whoosh!

 

Standing in the doorway, the origin of the dusty wind, was a girl in her mid-teens.

Her ebony hair was flowing over her left shoulder, and her eyes—clearly separated into black and white—shone like pearls.
Her skin was as white as the snow.

“Oh?”

“Eh…”

The boys on the training ground couldn’t close their mouths because of her graceful figure, so different from Runaan’s.

However…

“Oh, fuck.
Why is it so hard to open the door?!”

The swear word coming from her mouth made the boys’ jaws drop for a different reason.

“You’re finally here.”

Rimmer smirked and pointed to the approaching girl.

“I wasn’t in charge of her, but she is a failed trainee from the last batch.
Since you will be training together from now on, give your greetings for now.”

“I’m Martha.”

The girl that introduced herself as Martha frowned, chin raised.
Despite her graceful appearance, her behavior wasn’t any different from that a thug.

“Apparently, she is a kind girl despite looking like that, so if you can get along…”

“Mind your own business, sir.”

“Well, I guess.”

Rimmer laughed and shrugged his shoulders.
On the other hand, the trainees’ mouths were still wide open.

“Just warm yourselves up for today.
We’ll start regular training tomorrow.
So.”

He glanced at each of the children and grinned.

“Run, at full speed.”

“I saw that coming.”

When Raon was about to kick off after nodding, three shadows sprinted forward.

They belonged to Runaan, Burren, and Martha.

“Yo-young master.”

When he was about to start running after them, Dorian approached him.

“Wh-what do we do? That person is here.”

“Do you know her?”

“Do… Do you not know about her? She is also from the direct line.”

“Direct line? I don’t remember seeing her at the Judgment ceremony.”

“Ah, she isn’t a normal direct line.
She was adopted because of her talent.”

Dorian told him that Martha was adopted as the daughter of Denier Zieghart, the third son of Glenn, and that she was adopted solely because of her talent.

“Talent, huh?”

Raon nodded, watching Martha run ahead of Burren and Runaan.
She was one year older than them, but he could tell that her talent wasn’t ordinary at all.

“From what I’ve been told, Lady Martha was the top trainee from the last batch, just like young master Raon.”

“Then why did she fail?”

“She… She beat up.”

“Huh?”

Dorian continued, his folded arms trembling.

“Not long after training began, she beat up five tr-trainees until they were half dead.
And there were two people from the direct line among them.”

“Two from the direct line…”

“Be… be careful.
Apparently, she has a bad personality.”

Raon nodded slightly and started running.

‘Be careful?’

She should be careful of him.

He had no intention of hiding his strength.
If anyone challenged him, he would trample them.

 

***

 

“Huff…”

Raon exhaled violently once stamina training, which lasted until evening, was over.

“Ugh…”

“I… I’m dying.”

“I’ve only rested for one week, yet…”

Most of the trainees were groaning on the ground.

“Let’s stop for today, since overdoing it will affect tomorrow’s training.”

“Th-thank you for your trouble.”

“Thank you.”

The children bowed to Rimmer and the instructors before collapsing again.

“I’ve said this before, but the aura cultivation will start tomorrow.
Since I’m going to distribute the cultivation book, those who haven’t acquired an aura yet should come forward.”

As Rimmer gestured with his hand, books with a thickness of a pinky fingernail rose onto the platform.

“Don’t be disappointed because it’s a supplied cultivation book.
The Rinden aura cultivation technique will work anywhere in the continent.”

While most of them didn’t move, only a few trainees with commoner backgrounds came forward and accepted the cultivation books.

“Hmm?”

Rimmer’s gaze was directed at Raon.
Despite not having any aura, he wasn’t coming forth.

“Raon Zieghart.”

“Yes.”

“I don’t think you have any aura, either.”

“I’m going to learn the aura cultivation technique that I’ve obtained recently.”

“Hmm!”

It looked like he’d obtained a cultivation book from the family head by exchanging his bronze tablet for it.

‘He must have been given one equivalent or higher than a silver tablet.’

Since Glenn treasured Raon more than he pretended to, Rimmer was certain he gave him a cultivation technique better than Rinden.

“Those who have already learned an aura cultivation technique shall cultivate in their respective room at daybreak.
Those who’ve received a cultivation book today, as well as Raon Zieghart, shall come out here at daybreak tomorrow.”

“Me, too?”

Raon tilted his head.

“Since you haven’t learned an aura yet.”

“Understood.”

“Alright, then let’s stop for today…”

“Wait.
I have something to say.”

Martha, who didn’t have a single drop of sweat despite finishing stamina training, raised her hand. 

“Who is the top trainee here?”

She looked through everyone, with her hands on her waist.

“It’s me.”

Raon opened his mouth, facing Martha’s black eyes.

“The direct line and vassal families must all be dead to lose to a brat who doesn’t even have an aura.”

Laughing at Burren and Runaan, she stood in front of Raon.

“I can’t bear someone weaker than me standing above me.”

Cool air surrounded Martha’s entire body.

“Let’s fight.”

 

____

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