Chapter 115 – Lurking at Night
“What are you doing? This is unheard of. To allow some common girl of unknown parentage to get through the final qualifier like this!”
The angry voice echoed in the dimly lit room.
Two men with expensive clothes were talking.
“I’m very sorry. We had bribed the people in charge of the draw, and made sure that she would not be able to continue winning, but…”
“I don’t care about your efforts if the results were not what I wanted. Results are everything. How do you not understand that?”
Said the man in the waistcoat with beautiful embroidery.
“Commoners are inferior beings compared to nobles. All the history and tradition built up by our ancestors is proof of this. We must not give them a chance. Our god given rights and glory must be protected at all costs. The good must be protected from the bad.”
He said while looking at his fingers.
“Send out an assassin. While it would be ideal to have her withdraw due to an injury, I would not mind if she were to be killed either.”
“However, that could lead to great international problems and…”
“As long as they do not have a clue, it will be fine. Besides, it would actually be convenient for me if the two countries became enemies.”
“However, surely an assassin is going too far…”
The voice of the man with the spectacle was shaking.
“If commoners start to have power now, then we nobles will lose power. Just imagine it. How your children and grandchildren will suffer after losing their foundation. It cannot happen. In order for the glory of our tribe to continue forever, we must eliminate any obstacles in our way.”
The beautiful golden threads of the embroidery shifted.
The man continued in a calm voice.
“Well, the conversation is over. You will merely obey my orders.”
He would obey and hire an assassin. However, his heart was heavy.
It should be the right thing to do.
In order to protect future generations of his family.
The future of his sons.
Choose the path to survive no matter what.
It was necessary, in order to live in this cruel world of where the weak were victims of the strong.
And so it had to be done.
(Still, is it right? Even if she is a commoner. Should she be killed?)
He could not answer that.
However, a feeling of disgust remained in his mind. The feeling you get after killing a living creature.
The training ground used by the Ardenfeld representative team.
A single shadow watched as Noelle trained by herself.
“To train at such an hour. How impressive.”
In spite of such mutterings, the air in the area did not shift.
This was because there was a wall made with concealment magic, which completely isolated the person from the real world.
“Now. Since I just arrived, I would like to take things easy today.”
He muttered as he looked ahead into what seemed like nothingness.
“Apparently, that will not do.”
Up ahead, the invisible wall of concealment magic that was made through illegal modifications of dungeon relics.
But his eyes caught the invaders behind it.
“So many against one… Well, I suppose it makes sense, since it is her.”
He sighed with exasperation.
“Oh, well. Let’s do some overtime work then.”
◇ ◇ ◇
(…What is this? I feel like I am being monitored by someone.)
It was right after I had finished with some personal training.
I could sense a presence, as if I was being watched.
My wild instincts, which had been honed during the time I spent running around in the mountains, was telling me something.
That I should not stay here.
But as always, I pretended that everything was normal.
And so I headed for the exit as if I had not noticed any change.
“You. You sensed us, didn’t you?”
In the blink of an eye, I was surrounded by men who were dressed in black.
“To have been able to sense our presence. It’s no wonder that you were able to stop him at the ball.”
They were wearing skull masks, and I could immediately tell that they were not to be taken lightly.
Even the way they walked was completely different from other people.
“It would be nice if we could resolve this with some polite conversation.”
I said, and the man shrugged his shoulders.
“Unfortunately, that is not possible. As our client wants you out of the way, there can be no peace between us. Besides, we may not have another chance to get past Leticia’s defenses.”
So they had been hired by someone.
Likely, it was someone who would take heavy losses if we were to continue to win.
“I’m sorry, but we shall not be holding back. And you will die.”
A knife was thrown into the air.
I activated Spell Boost and dodged it. Immediately after, I gasped at how quickly they moved in.
The frighteningly quick steps.
Their movements were precise and smooth.
It was the kind of skill that you acquired in environments where a small mistake could result in your own death.
But I could see and I could react.
If there were only one of them, then I should be fine.
However, as far as I was aware, there were at least more than ten.
And who knew if there were others who were hiding.
Still, if it was just the ones moving towards me, it should not be impossible.
If I focused every nerve in my body, I should be able to do it.
The problem was, would the others target me while I was distracted?
“We have studied the way that you fight. You have an abnormal ability to exceed your limits and adapt. However, you cannot deal with what you cannot see. And so all it would take to kill you is to land an attack that is out of your focus.”
They had studied me.
What was the most dangerous now, is that I didn’t know how many there were.
I didn’t know where they were, and in what numbers.
In other words, I had to fight while considering every possibility.
That was too many things to predict…!
A knife flashed out of nowhere.
It had been unleashed towards my back by someone hidden, and I hadn’t even realized it.
And so before I knew it, the knife was being sucked towards my throat.
Time seemed to stand still.
And then, I sensed a presence that exceeded anything I had felt before.
“Please keep your hands off our magicians.”
Long, light purple hair flowed.
An androgynous face, where both age and gender were a mystery.
I had the feeling that this person was not from this world. There was an atmosphere that did not feel real as they stopped the knife with a finger.
Even the assassins had stopped as if stunned.
But, how… I gasped. And then it hit me.
Magic that could stop time… Spell Stop.
I had never seen such a thing before, but the magic in front of me proved its existence.
A pocket watch swayed in the corner of my vision.
Light reflected from the holy jewel…the Magus Stone.
“A pleasure to meet you. I’m glad to see that you are doing well. You have quite the reputation, newcomer.”
The person moved with such calmness, and smiled with warmth.
“I am Cronos Casablancas, President off the Royal Magicians Order. An amazing, young man who some call the greatest magician of Ardenfeld.”