༺ Everyday Life (2)༻
It was April – about a month had gone by after the admission into Merkarva Academy.
Alicia Arden was having the time of her life.
Although the freshmen lessons were a bit complex in Merkarva Academy, that was nothing in comparison to the training schedules of Arden, the renowned swordsmanship household.
Here, she didn’t have to swing her sword ten thousand times a day, get her swordplay constantly checked by others, or have to duel with fierce and sweaty brothers and sisters of the dojo.
Most importantly, she didn’t have to meet her older sister who occasionally returned home!
All she had to do was listen to a few of the mandatory subjects, eat and have a light exercise to keep her weight in check, and have fun with her new friends!
As a direct descendent of the renowned Arden household, she was at the top of the campus hierarchy and was a target of admiration. It was extremely easy for her to make friends.
Right. Alicia Arden was by nature lazy, lacked the desire for improvement and did not have any deep concerns about swordsmanship.
Her talents as a swordsman were unprecedented, but her mindset was that of an infinitely under-achieving student. That was who Alicia Arden was.
“Tomorrow’s a weekend so let’s do a few missions and go on a walk around the city~.”
“Where are you going?”
Alicia was startled by the voice that suddenly echoed from behind.
“You’re not coming to the training rooms these days, are you?”
“Oh, that’s… because I have too many things to do these days. There are assignments and… I also have to take missions.”
Seeing the unimpressed look on his face, Alicia felt rather guilty for no reason.
After unconsciously looking down on him for being a Grade 5 Knight and realizing that he wasn’t someone to mess around with, Korin became a difficult person to deal with for Alicia.
When she was in front of him, she felt like her laziness, lack of practice and over-dependence on her talents were being exposed.
The granddaughter of the Sword Emperor, Alicia Arden – the true face of the genius who acquired a Grade 2 Knight Guardian Licence at a young age was on full display whenever she was with him.
She did consider his ability to overwhelm her talents to be amazing and she also did go with him a few times when he asked if she wanted to train together at the training rooms but…
‘He’s a maniac! His training methods are way too inhumane!’
Korin Lork put great emphasis on training the fundamentals.
Stab, slash and block. Unlike the other knights of his age who were immersed in killing moves, he was someone who placed a great amount of importance on the stability of the fundamental skills.
His point was that you had to train the basics before anything else.
Hearing that from someone who was physically a lot weaker than herself was slightly odd, but seeing him increasingly becoming stronger in the span of just a few days made her realize all the more how lazy she was.
But even so, it was way too bothersome.
There was no way it would be fun to be stuck in the training rooms immediately after the lessons were over.
Even his friends like Jaeger and Lark didn’t look like they were able to keep up with his insanely maniac routine.
Sometimes, even the other peers like the scary former-mercenary, the druid with a mysterious atmosphere and the golem user, who looked a bit too gloomy to strike a conversation with, joined in Korin’s training routine.
What was it about this person that was attracting so many other people?
“Well, I have no plans on dragging an unwilling person into it. You’re going to take a mission on the weekend right?”
“Ah… yes. There is a patrol mission and a bodyguard mission so…”
They were both simple missions with little danger. It was to be expected of Alicia who wanted to avoid tedious and exhausting missions.
“Are you still short on money?”
“Sorry? Umm… Actually, I recently bought some clothes…”
Now that she was able to adorn herself with worldly clothes that she couldn’t have even dreamed of back when she was at her home, she had gone slightly over the top and her purse was running low on money. These days, she only had the option of having food at the academy cafeteria.
“I know a mission that pays quite well. Do you want to form a party?”
“Hutt…! How much?”
“2 gold coins per head. The difficulty is around Grade 2.”
“I will go!”
The reason she couldn’t just run away from this boy, who was a bit difficult to deal with, was because he tended to give great pieces of information like this. If not for his maniac training routine, Alicia would have been glad to see this boy every time.
“We’ll depart some time next week, so save some money this weekend. Buying food and borrowing things like tents are all going to cost money.”
“Yes. Mr. Korin!”
While feeling slightly glad that the boy wasn’t even asking her to go to the training rooms together anymore, Alicia bid him farewell.
My daily routine was rather simple and desolate. It was lesson, lunch, lesson, training rooms, dinner and training rooms.
Even though we were in a guardian academy, I do admit the fact that my schedule was more challenging than average.
However, I had to get stronger. Although I did manage to save Marie, that was only the tip of the iceberg.
The scenario would continue throwing challenging trials at me.
Gathering peers to stand up against those trials was very important but, one of the key members of the group – Alicia Arden – was lazier and more of a… normal girl than I expected.
It was understandable though because she had just been a normal student until recently let alone a successor candidate.
Alicia wasn’t the type of person to follow through just because I stimulated or pushed it onto her.
There was only one person in the world who could prompt her – her older sister, who Alicia both feared and admired. Only with the prompt of her sister would Alicia admit her true nature and her talents.
‘It’s about time for her to arrive in this city.’
The fastest way to see Lunia Arden without triggering the death event of Alicia Arden was in an emergency quest that popped up in the middle of a patrol mission.
There was still some time left until that point, so I had to do what I could do until then.
A normal player would use the system window to make several things and be introduced to how crafting worked in this time frame.
Park would have gone around the whole city looking for hidden pieces.
But as for me, I couldn’t craft because I didn’t have the system window and obtaining the hidden pieces was also quite iffy.
Most of them were quite useless for the time being and I had no use for them.
The Six Ways of the Spear was accompanied by the befitting levels of enlightenment as one proceeded down the derivative skills.
Compared to the simple styles, they were more complicated and difficult. They were hard to learn so I wasn’t even able to master half of them in the previous iteration.
Back in the game, those abilities, attacks and spells were usable by just pressing Q, W, E and R… and the player could just read the names of the abilities to use them, but that didn’t apply to me.
In order to master the techniques of this world that I hadn’t even bothered to remember back when I was busy playing the game, I had to focus and imagine tremendously.
They weren’t simple skills that I could learn by hitting the level requirements and allocating skill points.
Because I wasn’t the player, I couldn’t use a wide range of martial arts and magic, and there was only one thing I could do.
Imagine, focus and enact.
A dazzling stab – a foreboding snake that slithered and deceived the eyes of the enemy.
Ominous Snake: Secret Arts – Distorted March.
A stab that blocked the paths of the enemy with the help of aura – the remains of aura left behind the traces of the stab would disturb the vision of the enemy and take control of the area.
In complete darkness, the only thing I could perceive was what was on the other side of the veil of darkness – the halted space that could even be considered the gap between dimensions.
I fixed my posture and stabbed forward with the spear. It was the fastest stab and the strongest hidden move of the Ominous Snake.
A short yet heavy thud filled the training room. Was that a success?
— Clap clap clap!
There was a chair inside the training room, on which was a bright girl clapping in admiration. She was the mage with water-coloured hair who often came for a visit.
“That’s amazing, Korin!”
“…Did you see that?”
“Nn! It was super fast!”
“So it was a failure.”
Marie tilted her head with a puzzled look on her face.
The fact that she was able to see the fastest stab meant that it was a fail. Because the true Rearing Head of the Venomous Dragon wasn’t simply in the realms of being ‘fast’.
“You accelerated twice in the middle, right?”
“Uhh… You saw that as well?”
Although I failed at using the skill inside the Domain, it did still reach the boundaries of the Domain. It should have caused an illusion of the dimension of time being contorted, so how the heck did she see that?
She did awaken as a vampire but that was still very impressive.
“Senior Marie. Do you really have no plans on learning swords or spears?”
My eyes told me that Marie would also have great success as a knight. It was to be expected of a girl with the physical abilities of a boss character.
“Nnn… I can use hoes and sickles, but not swords. You see, I actually tried going to a dojo when I was young.”
Was she the type who had no talent at understanding ‘martial arts’ despite having impressive physical abilities?
“But that’s when you were young, right? If you try consistently then… no. Forget it. It’s probably best to focus on one thing instead.”
That stupid Park was the prime example. He learned all sorts of spells and secret arts but had too many skills to make proper use of them.
No matter how gluttonous one was, there was a limit to how much they could digest.
Instead of doing a sloppy job at learning everything, it was generally better to focus on one thing instead.
“How’s your magic practice going these days?”
“Nn… I’m learning from Professor Josephine.”
A one-on-one lesson from the Dimensional Witch, Lady Josephine… Marie had gotten herself a great teacher so she should be able to learn how to control her abilities very soon.
Once again, I realized that something that we couldn’t even try in the previous iteration due to her being unable to retrieve her rationality until the end had been changed due to my decisions.
“Do you want potatoes?”
Marie took out sandwiches and meat pies as well as steamed potatoes which must have taken her a long time to prepare.
“It’s not a lot, but there you go!”
How was this not a lot?
In any case, I started having the extravagant meal as Marie started stealing a glance at the bandage around my right hand. My palm had been ripped while I was practicing the move. Even though it should recover very soon, I had to wrap it with a bandage in order to have the meal.
“Are your… wounds not being healed?”
“It’s not good to have blood everywhere while having the meal right? I have to absorb the blood back anyway.”
“…That’s a pity.”
After unknowingly letting out a comment, her circular eyes started to tremble as if there was an earthquake in her eyes.
“No! Just no! That is not what I was trying to say!”
Ever since that incident, her atmosphere often tended to change in the blink of an eye. I wasn’t sure about the reason but it seemed that I was somehow affecting this girl.
“Anyway, you’re still having blood, right?”
“Nn… This thing.”
She started carrying around packs of blood ever since she awakened into a vampire. The packs were designed to be able to suck after opening the lid.
“Is there a lot of difference between fresh blood and blood packs?”
“There is… a bit. The freshness? Or maybe the flavor. Your blood was especially more delici… Wait, that’s making me sound like a strange person!”
“It’s normal for eating habits to change over time. Let’s just say that.”
“Is it like the difference between normal vegetables with pesticides and organic vegetables?”
Marie showed her whole-hearted agreement to my words.
“Nn nn! That’s it! And it’s similar to frozen meat and fresh meat that was butchered just recently!”
That was very easy to understand. The difference between fresh meat and frozen meat was indeed quite big.
The cafeteria in Merkarva Academy received meat at once using magic freezers so it was rare to have raw meat.
We did sometimes get raw meat, but that was only because we were getting actual livestock. It was seriously questionable which supplier it was that was supplying the Academy with live animals… regularly at that.
The transportation and infrastructure of this world weren’t even at the level of the one in modern Earth. Supplying live animals would be extremely difficult unless they were an extremely big company…
Wait, did that mean Marie had to eat frozen meat her entire life?
Thinking about it like that made her seem even more pitiful. How could someone live the rest of their life while only having frozen meat?
“It’s fine to have mine sometimes.”
“W, what are you talking about?”
“I can recover anyways so feel free to come to me when you’re fed up with the blood packs. I can let you have my blood at least.”
Her chin dropped in an instant and didn’t show any signs of closing back up. Her white skin turned deep red as she clenched onto her sleeves.
“D, don’t say things like that even as a joke.”
“I’ll have to turn your offer down! Because I don’t want to cause any trouble!”
She sounded resolute but her face was burning with passion. I could hear the coarse pants leaving from the gap between her clenched teeth.
“More importantly, Korin!”
Marie immediately changed the topic and took out a pretty jar of glass from her basket.
It was a glass bottle with a pinkish liquid inside.
“What is this?”
“Umm… Korin, are you bad with any food? Like beef tartare, sashimi or pig intestines…”
“I can have everything. Talking about pig intestines reminds me of blood sausage soup. A warm meal with the soup just heals your soul, does it not?”
Back when I was in Korea, I loved having blood sausages. In fact, I would have had even more if only there were more places that sold them.
Being a Korean game, Korean cuisine was quite commonplace in <Heroic Legends of Arhan> so there were quite a lot of traditional Korean restaurants in the city.
“Reeally? Umm. T, this…”
“Is this perhaps blood?”
“Nnn? Y, yeah… it’s not 100% blood though and… I added the powders of white lizard tail and a few other ingredients… into my blood…”
Her voice shrunk over time. She must be aware of it herself that the ingredients sounded fairly iffy despite her goodwill.
“It might be a bit… disgusting but it’s good for your body. The blood of a vampire is one of the best ingredients out there…”
“Isn’t this, like, priceless? Is this really for me?”
“If you don’t mind, Korin…”
“Ehew. Of course not. Thank you very much.”
What Marie made was a potion created with her own blood and a bunch of other ingredients. In this world, potions were usually for the recovery of vitality, mana and aura but there were more.
“Thanks for the treat.”
– Gulp gulp!
※ It has been made with special ingredients.
– Your Aura Rank has increased by 1 rank.
– Your Aura Capacity increases by 500.
– 10 points will be equally distributed.
I was finally seeing the unfriendly system window again, and most importantly, my Aura Rank had gone up.
In Heroic Legends of Arhan, increasing the total capacity of aura and mana was relatively easy but raising the ‘Quality’ was extremely difficult.
Considering how the final Aura Rank I had in the previous iteration was Lower Medium, it was evident that what just happened was exceptionally remarkable.
My Aura Rank and Mana Rank had barely gone up by 1 after Marie’s incident where I completed a Precept with the difficulty rank of S and yet… it went up yet again from just a potion.
“Was it tasty?”
“Tasty? It’s not for the taste is it?”
“R, right! I’ll try to make it better next time!”
Was she going to make another potion for me in the future?
Well, a repeated use of the same elixir did drop the effect by a lot but there was nothing bad for me if she was going to make another one. Besides, even if the core ingredient was the same, the effect would change depending on how she brewed it, and what sorts of other ingredients she added inside.
“Oh right, Senior Marie. Do you know any blacksmiths?”
“A blacksmith? Are you trying to make a weapon?”
“Yes. The chairman said he will provide the funds no matter how expensive it is.”
“I heard that too! I’ll introduce you to the one that made my staff!”
Marie said while showing me her staff with a blue gem inside.
Looking back, Marie’s staff was an extremely amazing weapon which was even stored personally by that crazy Park. It must have been tremendously expensive so the blacksmith that made the weapon couldn’t have been a nobody.
“What is the blacksmith’s name?”
“It’s Ferghus! Ferghus the Weapon Breaker!”
Her eyes blinked like that of a baby.
Aura Rank: Lower Medium (4,530) – 500
Mana Rank: Low (2,470) – 200
Very Low -> Low -> Upper Low
100 -> 200 -> 300
Lower Medium -> Medium -> Upper Medium
500 -> 1,000 -> 1,500
Lower High -> High -> Very High
2,000 -> 3,000 -> 4,000
Lower Unique -> Unique -> Upper Unique
5,000 -> 7,500 -> Above 10,000
– When your HP falls below a certain level during a fight, your HP Regeneration speed will increase tremendously.
+ 50% Regeneration
– Gain tolerance against attacks deemed lower than [Grade 4]. Significantly lowers the chance of having a stat debuff from poison or contamination.
– Gain increased tolerance against the same attacks.
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