Chapter 33 Those Who Teach (2).
Chapter 33 - Those Who Teach (2)
Tung! tung! Tuh-tuh-tung!
Azell hit Boar consecutively. By then the pain had seeped into his bones. He let out a moan, and he started stagger.
It wasn’t just the shield. Whenever their swords met, the impact was being transferred to Boar.
Azell’s movement was too skillful. Boar had realized what Azell’s intentions was, so he tried to avoid hitting against Azell’s sword at any cost. He used the fact that his shield was round to shed the blows at an angle. He avoided exchanging blows, and he tried to focus on attacks that would put his opponent on the defense.
However, it was all for naught. Azell read all of his movements as if he was reading a dictionary.
It was inevitable. He couldn’t block with his shield, and he couldn’t hit his sword against the other’s sword. It was basically fighting with both his hands and feet bound.
The duel had been only going on for 5 minutes, but Boar was about to pass out. Sweat was pouring down like rain, and he was having a hard time breathing.
This shouldn’t be happening. He was a Quadruple Master, and he could easily surpass the physical limitation of a normal person. If he used Spirit Order, he could be in full body armor and fight for several hours.
However, the continuous hits and the strain on his mind robbed his stamina in a flash.
“Let’s end this.”
Azell spoke indifferently, then he started to swing his sword. Even though Boar was about faint, he still raised his shield.
However, Azell’s sword was like a lie as it passed through the shield. After passing the obstacle, the sword touched the end of Boar’s chin.
“Kuk... Don’t insult me. Kill me!”
Boar spoke in a shaky voice. It seemed like he was trying to be dignified, but one could easily see he was scared.
Before Azell could say anything, Arrieta stepped forward.
“Stop! End it there.”
“Azell Zestringer is the victor of this duel. Do you disagree, Sir Boar?”
“...no. I acknowledge my defeat.”
Boar answered as his body shook from humiliation.
At that moment, Azell spoke.
“Truthfully, you impressed me a little bit. You have more guts than I thought, Sir Boar.”
At those words, Boar looked at Azell with surprised eyes. Azell guessed Boar didn’t expect a compliment from him.
He opened his mouth with difficulty.
“I, I’m also impressed by your techniques. I apologize for my rudeness. You are an outstanding martial artist. You deserve to be acknowledged by the princess.”
His face had turned red. It seemed like he was embarrassed. However, his words weren’t forced, and he could tell Boar was speaking from his heart.
‘What a funny guy.’
He had thought Boar was an arrogant and impudent prototypical wastrel of a noble, who couldn’t put himself in someone else’s shoes. Truthfully, he was acting that way. However, he had an unexpected side where he was able to quietly accept what he had experienced.
Azell saw him again as a martial artist. He was young, and he was born with some talent. He came from a good family so he had received a lot of assistance. However, he had become a Quadruple master, so he had a strong will and he showed signs of being thoroughly trained.
He might be worth looking over for awhile. Azell spoke as he thought this.
“It’s time, Sir Boar.”
“You have to do the dishes?”
Boar made an expression as if he had chewed on a bug.
“Koo-ook. It is h...humiliating, but I have to accept the result of the duel. I have no choice, but do it as a knight! I’ll do it!”
If someone saw this, one would think he was smearing ink on their family’s honor. He was acting like requiring him to wash dishes was a crazy request. Azell queried in dismay, when Boar acted as if this was some tragedy.
“By the way, I’m actually really curious about this, so I want to ask you... Sir Boar, why do you consider washing dishes to be shameful?”
“Isn’t it the work of a the base born? It isn’t a work a noble knight should do.”
“But I saw you do some miscellaneous works? Why is that so different?”
Azell carefully looked back on Boar’s action as he asked. Boar never prepared the camp, prepare dinner nor wash the dishes. However, he didn’t refuse any tasks that required strength. He did Arrieta’s work for her, but I discounted it since she was the princess. There were also instances involving Enora.
‘Miss Enora. I might be presumptuous, but I’ll help you despite it. I’ll help you onto the horse.’
Enora was short, so he helped her get on the horse.
‘Miss Enora, I’ll move the belongings.’
He also helped Enora move the packs.
Boar spoke as if he didn’t know what Azell was talking about.
“Isn’t it a knight’s duty to use his strength for a delicate woman? ”
“...if you see it like that, then wouldn’t the preparation for camp be hard, also? Why didn’t you help?”
“Each person has their own roles. A woman doing her duty shouldn’t wield a knight’s sword. Vice versa, a knight shouldn’t infringe on a woman’s work space. Of course, she has her own work to do, and isn’t it a job she is capable of doing?’
This guy’s code of chivalry was quite twisted. Azell turned to look at Giles in dismay, but he was nodding his head if he agreed a hundred percent with that sentiment.
Azell let out a sigh.
“Any ways, even if he discount that, the preparing the camp isn’t Ms Enora’s job, right?”
“That, that is true. However, it is a job for those beneath me.”
“”If there was a servant or squire present to do it for you, then that should be the case. However, we don’t have that person here. Tell me the truth. Sir Boar, you’ve never gone on a mission without a servant or a squire?”
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Boar’s face turned red as if he was hit in a sore spot. It was as Azell predicted.
Azell let out a sigh.
“What would happen if you were chosen for an mission that requires a small elite group, and there are only knights of higher position than you?”
“Of course, you would have to divvy up the chores. This includes preparation for camp, dinner preparation and even washing the dishes. Do you think a fairy will show up to do the miscellaneous work for you?”
“I won’t ask you to cook. However, you should take a portion of the work Giles and I do. Would that be so disgraceful? If you think so, please throw away that thought. Let’s ask the princess.”
When Azell pointed the arrow at her, Arrieta flinched. Azell asked her a question.
“Princess. Have you ever been accompanied by only high ranking knights?”
“Yes. I don’t have any battle experience with them, but we had a situation where we had to move quickly. For a whole day, I had to ride with Count Arhen, and Sir Jarsten, the deputy of the Royal Knights.”
“How was it?”
“They knew how to prepare the camp, and they also prepared the meals. I helped a little bit, but they grumbled that I shouldn’t do the work.”
“You heard it, right?”
When Azell asked him a question, Boar had a dumbfounded expression. His mouth was open, and he looked like he had just been punched.
“Did...did they really do those chores?”
Azell didn’t know this, but Count Arhen was a warrior in his 60s, who gained his reputation as a blade master. Jarsten was a dignified middle aged knight from a great family.
Arrieta spoke as she thought about that time.
“Yes. They said it reminded them of their apprenticeship days...”
They had also complained about doing such work at their age, but Arrieta omitted that fact.
Azell asked a question.
“Didn’t you do such work during your apprenticeship, Sir Boar? Didn’t you do some miscellaneous work?”
“...I, I’ve never done it.”
“I’ve never apprenticed under a knight.”
Boar spoke, while he became embarrassed. Azell was confused.
“Uh, how could that be if you are part of the Royal knights?”
According to Azell’s general knowledge, this didn’t make any sense. Even if one is from an important background, one had to go through a step-by-step process to become one of the Royal Knights. One was made an official knight once one becomes somewhat serviceable.
“It isn’t impossible. After becoming an official knight from outside, the prominent knights has to give a recommendation. Then one has to pass the evaluation given by the upper ranks of the knights. There is such a method to enter...”
“I entered that way.”
Boar acknowledged this fact. Azell thought as he looked at him.
‘So this is why he is lacking in some fundamental concepts!’
He heard from Giles that Boar’s family was lead by Marquis Zilred, and they were known to be a prestigious family. Boar was the third son, but he possessed excellent talent. He had become a Quadruple Master at a young age, so the family had supported him extensively.
It was understandable to see why Boar’s sense of value was twisted. It was surprising that he still had an innocent aspect to his personality.
“After hearing princess’ words, I realized my way of doing things is wrong. From this day forward, I will diligently share the workload. Moreover, Sir Azell.”
“I would like to apologize once again for my rude behavior up until now. I was the one who was lacking, and I insulted you when I couldn’t even recognize your skill level. Of course, you have every right to be angry. Even if you weren’t a knight, you have enough skill that can’t be ignored by anyone.”
“You don’t have to think of it so rigidly....”
“Then I’ll go do the dishes.”
After saying this, Boar took off his armor. Then he picked up the dishes he flipped over then he went to the creek.
“I can’t get a grasp on what kind of man he is.”
Everyone there all nodded their head.
After the commotion, everyone went to sleep.
Azell, Giles and Boar rotated to keep a night watch. Enora and Arrieta was excluded, since Giles and Boar strongly insisted a princess’ sleep shouldn’t be bothered for such a task.
Arrieta had no choice, but to follow their words. She wasn’t averse to doing any task, since they were already short-handed. However, she also knew the people below her would be uncomfortable if she insisted on doing the work.
Azell had taken the first watch, and he spent the time meditating. He slowly resonated with the mana in his surrounding, and the newly produced magical energy seeped into his entire body to fill his energy pulse.
‘Someone is watching us.’
At the same time, Azell detected someone observing them.
Even though he was meditating, he didn’t slack off on guarding his surrounding. Instead, he had opened his senses wide open, and he had sensed someone watching them from afar. Moreover, this person was using magic.
‘When we were in the town, I wasn’t sure... But this confirms it.’
When they visited a city or a town, he had felt someone’s gaze on them. However, their party was eye-catching. There was also a lot of people around, so they inevitably received a lot of looks from others. The gazes didn’t have any intent of attack nor did anyone use magical sights. He had his suspicions, but he couldn’t be sure.
However, he was sure now. Someone was using magic in the night to view them from a distance.
‘After we left the town, I didn’t feel the gaze for awhile... Either he has a specialized skill in tracking or maybe he is using a hunting dog?’
Azell and his party members hadn’t covered their tracks while moving. There were numerous ways to track them if their group was the target.
‘If it’s those Dragon’s Shadow bastards... It wouldn’t be strange if they attacked right about now.’
The party was camping at an uninhabited location. This would be a golden opportunity to attack, so why weren’t they? Azell was puzzled by this fact.
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