The Legend of Sun Knight Volume 3: To the Rescue of a Princess
Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)
Fifth Requirement of Rescuing a Princess: “The Mandatory Mentor for an Adventure – A Wise Man” – translated by raylight
My memory was, as expected, a gift from the God of Light. Although I had only seen the map of the Kingdom of Moon Orchid once, I had already memorized roughly all of the locations of interest. If the queen of the Kingdom of Moon Orchid had known about this, she probably wouldn’t have dared to put that detailed map in front of me even at the expense of her own life.
After walking for half a day, I made it to a small town named Forest Leaf without making any wrong turns. This town was, as expected, special because it was completely surrounded by a forest. Only this patch of a place was grassland with a river flowing through it. Without the river, there would definitely be no way for it to have developed into a town.
Even so, this kind of place deep inside the forest was not suited for supporting a large population. Importing goods from the outside was also difficult.
I guessed that the reason there was a town there at all was probably that there were too many adventurer teams that needed to replenish their supplies while passing through the forest. For merchants, as long as there were enough benefits, never mind forests, they’d even dare to charge into a dragon’s lair!
Just up ahead was a trading post for magical beasts and their products. Although magical beasts were dangerous, they had a lot of market value. From skin and meat to blood, horns, and the like, they all had their own uses. They were also an adventurer team’s main source of income.
After I cautiously used a cloth to wrap up the sun crest on my sleeves, I walked into Forest Leaf. Though the town was not big, the buildings were situated fairly chaotically. After walking in, I was momentarily puzzled as to where I should go to find the tavern.
I stopped an adventurer, and putting on a friendly smile, I asked, “Dear brother, may I ask which direction the tavern is in?”
The adventurer looked at me up and down once, and mumbled a few sentences, “Where did a knight this handsome come from? I really ought to… to be one love rival less.” After a pause he said, “See that alley on the left? Go in from there, walk past two weapon shops, and turn right. After you walk past a general store, turn right again. Then, after walking past two wells, you’ll meet a crossroad. Pick the road in the middle. After walking past a bread store, turn left, then walk straight ahead to the end and you’ll reach the place. Did you get that?”
“Got it.” Smiling, I repeated, “Go into that alley on the left, go past two weapon shops, turn right, walk past the general store and then turn right. Then, after walking past two wells, there’s a crossroad. Choose the road right in the middle, and then walk past a bread store, turn left and walk straight ahead to the end.”
The adventurer was deeply shocked. “My goodness! You can really remember all that?”
I smiled at the adventurer, and the person showed a somewhat frantic expression. Then, I walked into the alley on the left. Hmph! If I can even remember a map that is bigger than five tables put together, how can a mere few small turns faze me?
I followed the road that the helpful person had mentioned, but couldn’t see the two wells no matter how hard I looked… Then I abruptly remembered that at the side of this town, there was a river, so there was completely no need to dig a well for water.
Extremely annoyed, I grumbled, “I really shouldn’t have asked a guy for directions. What well—he probably wanted to dig a well to bury me, to be one love rival less!”
Looks like the only choice I have is to find someone else to ask directions from.
I was just about to go back to look for the owner of the general store to ask for directions when a person whose whole body was enveloped by a cloak blocked the way just a few steps in front of me. My face fell.
Unexpectedly, it was someone who had a dark element… A necromancer? But the element composition seemed to be a bit different.
Before I regained my balance, the other party spoke up. With a gentle tone, he said, “What intense light element! Even me, someone who doesn’t have the ability to sense elements can actually feel the incandescence. How unbelievable! Is this the light of the current Sun Knight?”
My face became pale. Who could have thought that this stranger could actually know that I’m the Sun Knight? Moreover, “the current”? That sounds a little strange…
I was still wildly guessing at who this person in front of my eyes could be, but I needn’t have tried so hard, for the mysterious person was slowly undoing his cloak. His cloak dropped to the floor, revealing the true identity of the one under it. He had… a skin color that even the afternoon sunlight was unable to illuminate!
“A dark elf! No wonder no matter how I tried, I couldn’t seem to determine what type of occupation a person with this kind of element belonged to!” I couldn’t help but release a gasp, and then I grew even warier and said, “It had not occurred to me that within my lifetime, I’d ever actually be able to see a dark elf, a notorious race that lives underground! What kind of sinister plan did you come up to the surface for?”
What lay unspoken was: Damn! Recently I’ve really been ridden with bad luck. Touring around in the night leads to an encounter with a dark knight, and walking along an alley I get stopped by a dark elf. Looks like next time I go to the toilet, there might be a possibility of stepping on a dragon… Knock on wood, knock on wood! I don’t actually mean that. Oh God of Light! Please don’t ever take that seriously!
Well, I don’t think I have any choice but to explain what kind of creature a dark elf is, or else everyone would probably be completely unable to understand just how unlucky I was.
In this world, there isn’t just the human race, even though the majority of what everyone usually sees is humans. At the most, one might see some dwarves at the blacksmithing stores. There are hardly any differences between the appearance of dwarves and humans, except that even if a dwarf is an adult male, they would be only two-thirds the height of a human. Their most distinctive feature, however, is that male dwarves always seem to have long beards full of lice, and are exceptionally good at metal smelting regardless of gender.
Elves are another race known by humans. Their reputation is widely spread and practically everyone knows that elves are a proud but extremely kind race. However, almost no one has seen one. This is because they only reside at the periphery of the continent, in the distant depths of the forests. Such places are not where ordinary people are capable of entering.
In addition, there are other races that practically lie in between beasts and humans. For example, gnomes are small creatures that have green skin from head to toe and tend to gather in large numbers. Orcs are a race that appears to have a combined body of humans and beasts.
Although these races are slightly civilized since they have a simple language and are able to use fire and weapons, their lifestyle is not much different from a pack of wolves. Generally speaking, they are rarely included in the rankings of the main races.
Dark elves though are different, for they are definitely one of the main races. Their appearances are very similar to elves, having a slender figure and pointed ears. However, elves are white-skinned, while dark elves have a skin color similar to that of coal and have a head of white hair and red eyes.
Unlike the elves who reside in the forest, they live in the depths of the underground, and have an extreme hatred for sunlight. They almost never come up to the surface and even in a hundred years, you wouldn’t hear someone say that they had seen a dark elf above ground. However, the most important thing about them is their racial characteristics. They are a race that is notoriously evil, and dark elves ranging from an eight-month old infant to an eight-hundred year old dark elf on his death bed all conform to the stereotype of an evil guy.
Besides being evil, they have another important feature: all their citizens are soldiers, making them a terrifying race with unrivalled battle abilities. Their numbers are not high, but regardless of their gender or age, they all rank at elite levels in combat. It is said that as long as there is even one group of dark elves, a town that has an entire military garrison defending it can still be destroyed in a single night.
Thankfully, they loathe the sunlight and hence rarely come up to the surface. If they ever deigned to come up, they would most likely go to create trouble for the elves anyways, due to an ancient feud between the two races.
And even as I say all this, right now, in front of me, stood an evil dark elf who was at least one hundred and eight thousand miles away from home.
He actually revealed an expression of appreciation, and said in a tone of praise, “You are only the second human who has managed to remain this calm upon discovering my race.”
“Oh? Then I really wish to meet the first.”
As I answered, I pondered over whether to change into Dragon’s Saint Brigandine. However, I had heard that the speed of a dark elf was peculiarly fast. If I were to be killed off in the middle of changing clothes, losing my life would be a small matter…
“Sun Knight’s naked body found in dark alley!” *
What kind of perverted, sexual associations would be caused by this kind of headline was another matter, however, for the main problem lay in how this was definitely not an elegant way of dying. If my teacher were to find out that the way I died was so embarrassing and perverted, I shudder to think of what kind of consequences would lay ahead… I believe that everyone here already knows what they would be.
Rather than being repeatedly sent to heaven by my teacher… What were you thinking about? Tsk tsk, you’re so perverted!
I am saying, rather than having to be revived by him after dying, and then die elegantly again for him to see, I think I’ll wear my Sun Knight uniform neatly and meet death elegantly right now.
“You look so serious. Are you pondering over how to kill me off?” the dark elf said with a faint, slightly bitter smile.
No, I’m only considering what kind of pose and expression to use while dying would be the most elegant. A small alley is already not a suitable place for dying elegantly, which is why I must turn the tides by working on the pose and expression!
Seeing that I hadn’t replied, the dark elf’s expression became even more saddened. But that did not eliminate the fact that he may have been putting on an act, for rumor has it that his race was deceitful in many ways. “Before you attack, I still have a friend that I want you to meet,” he said.
A dark elf’s friend? Yay, it looks like I’m really going to die…
Another person wearing a cloak emerged from the corner. Judging by his height, he was probably male. Without saying anything, he immediately took off his cloak. However, he was not a dark elf, but a handsome man with blond hair and blue eyes. His age was about thirty or so, and on his face there was a gentle smile.
Although this person had an appearance that looked very trustworthy, when I saw him, my pupils abruptly dilated, my whole body became rigid, my hands and legs became icy, my heart pumped violently, and waves of spasms came over my stomach and intestines…
The dark elf turned his head to the blond-haired male, not knowing whether to laugh or to cry, saying, “Neo, when your student saw me, this evil dark elf that shouldn’t be anywhere on the surface, he was so calm that his face didn’t even change. But when he saw you, it’s-it’s like…”
The handsome knight with blond hair and blue eyes flashed an open smile, and continued the conversation. “It’s just that he has finally reunited with his most respected teacher whom he hasn’t seen for a long time, and is feeling very touched. Child, it’s been three years since I last saw you. Hurry up and come forward a few steps so that your teacher can take a good look at you.”
I retreated a few steps, and even started to pray for death.
God of Light! You’re really too horrible! I would rather step onto a dragon’s tail than meet…“my teacher.”
At that moment, my teacher turned his head toward his good friend, smiling as he said, “This child sure is shy, right?”
The dark elf smiled wryly and replied, “On the contrary, I don’t really feel that way. In fact, I feel that he looks like he has seen the living likeness of a dragon… Ah! ‘Seeing a dragon,’ that kind of feeling describes this in the most-fitting way!”
You’re wrong! Even a dragon isn’t as scary as my teacher!
My teacher turned his head, still smiling. “My dear Aldrizzt, the joke that you made sure is interesting. However, don’t go overboard with your jokes. Look, my student has been frightened.”
Aldrizzt gave a faint smile. “There is no doubt that he is scared, however, as for whom he is scared of, I’m afraid that is open to question.”
“Perhaps it’s because your skin is too black, that’s why he got scared! As you know, the Sun Knight’s skin color has always been as white as snow.”
“For your student, it might be so. But for you, at most you look like a loaf of bread that has been badly baked,” Aldrizzt couldn’t help but retort.
My teacher’s eyebrows rose. He sighed and said, “Better than looking like a basin of water that a warrior washed his foot in… But don’t be upset, my friend! A trivial problem of skin color cannot hurt our friendship.”
“Friendship?” Aldrizzt said in shock. “So we actually had something like that… Eh! Neo, your student seems to be leaving.”
“Hahaha, Aldrizzt, don’t joke around anymore. Being my student, he would definitely not dare to ‘ignore me,’ ‘not greet me,’ and ‘leave without permission.’”
I froze in my tracks, feeling my own face twitch several times. In the end, my face hardened with the resolve one had before slaying a dragon, and I turned around to walk back to the vicinity of my teacher. At the same time, I obediently started to greet him. “My dear teacher, under the illumination of the God of Light, how have you been recent—?”
My teacher’s face grew serious, and he lowered his voice. Using a commanding tone, he said, “Put the God of Light back into your heart, and then tell me what are you doing in an adventurer team?”
I immediately told him about it in full detail.
After finishing my story, my teacher was still muttering to himself irresolutely. In contrast, it was the dark elf Aldrizzt who criticized me, his expression cold. “As a member of a team, leaving the team on your own initiative is wrong!”
I glanced once at the dark elf. Actually, I want to retort that despite being a dark elf you don’t seem even the slightest bit of evil, and that is what’s wrong! Until I can properly figure out what kind of relationship you have with my teacher however, I don’t intend to offend you.
Suddenly my teacher smiled in understanding. “You left the team because you wanted to investigate me and Aldrizzt, right?” he asked. “A dark element and a light element creature walking together, and always maintaining a distance not too far or too near your team is really extremely suspicious.”
As expected of my teacher, he does really understand me. I’m afraid that if I so much as release a fart, he would know what I ate for lunch.
I nodded and answered, “I had already sensed you at the rim of the forest, but at the time I didn’t really pay attention to it. However, afterwards, when you two were circling around the forest but always keeping a set distance away from us, I became a bit nervous. But I was unable to tell my teammates about it, for it would reveal that I have the ability to sense elements. So instead I could only find an excuse to leave the team to scout a while.”
At this point, an astounded expression flickered over Aldrizzt’s face.
My teacher nodded, and turned his head to Aldrizzt while wearing an expression of pride. “I already told you this much earlier; tailing is not something that you can hide from my student,” he said.
“That is really amazing.” Aldrizzt turned and said to me, “I’m really sorry. I was wrong to criticize you. I take back my words.”
I glared at this dark elf. Could you be a bit more dedicated to your job, and show some evil behavior? Right now, doesn’t this harmless personality that wouldn’t hurt a fly that you’re showing totally contradict the description of dark elves that I gave earlier?
“Why are you looking at me like that?” Aldrizzt asked, a little puzzled.
I looked up and down at Aldrizzt, and then asked with suspicion, “Are you really a dark elf? Could you be an elf who has sunbathed too much, and became burnt?”
Aldrizzt was stunned.
It was my teacher who started laughing. As he laughed, he slapped the dark elf’s back and bellowed, “Aldrizzt, oh Aldrizzt! I guessed correctly again, didn’t I? I already told you, even if you were a dark elf so notorious that everyone was yelling to kill you, so long as you don’t attack him, this child of mine would not unsheathe his weapon, even if he were leaning against you with your arms side-by-side… Though regardless of whether or not he is holding a weapon, he’s still equally weak.”
Once Aldrizzt heard that, his gaze toward me softened a lot, and he even smiled an extremely friendly smile.
My teacher’s mood was extremely good. He slapped my back, and said, “Child, it’s rare to be able to see you. So come drink a cup with your teacher! Your teacher has many stories of adventures to tell you, and also wants to ask you about matters in the Holy Temple.”
When he finished his words, my teacher turned his head to Aldrizzt, and laughed as he said, “This child of mine has even better capacity for liquor than me! You’ll definitely like him. Today you guys can drink to your heart’s content!”
“Oh?” Aldrizzt seemed to be exhilarated.
Hearing that, I took in a sharp breath, my gaze shifting non-stop as I pondered which escape route I was least likely to be caught attempting… There!
“Uh… Neo, your student is climbing the wall.”
“…Come back! We will pay the money for the liquor!”
I heaved a sigh of relief and jumped off the wall. With sincerity that couldn’t be more earnest, I said, “No problem, my dear teacher. It is said that the Sun Knight would be drunk within three cups, but since my teacher has requested it, your student will follow you, even into the depths of hell.”
Facing Aldrizzt’s gaze that was full of smiles, my teacher was a little embarrassed as he said, “Getting you to fish money out from your pocket is even harder than sending you down to hell. I really don’t know how your money grubbing personality developed.”
It was obviously taught by you…
“Go and change into Aldrizzt’s clothes, and then we’ll go drinking,” my teacher continued. “You’re definitely not to say that you’re the Sun Knight, for the image of the Sun Knight blacking out after three cups definitely must not be broken!”
Finding it a bit strange, I asked, “Okay, but why can’t I change into your clothes, teacher?”
“That’s because my clothes are a knight’s uniform, but no matter how we look at you, you don’t look like a knight. You can fool the ignorant common people, but in a place like the tavern where experts hide around, you better be another profession! Too bad neither of us have any cleric uniforms, or else when you wear it, the three of us would look like a complete team comprising of a knight, an archer doubling as an assassin, and a cleric! There would definitely be endless missions given to us! Such a pity…”
F*** you! I am a knight!
My teacher glanced at me. “Don’t go cursing your teacher inside your heart, otherwise later you’ll pay the money for the liquor.”
I almost knelt down and begged for forgiveness. “I’m sorry. As your student I should not have gone and cursed my teacher in my heart…”
Aldrizzt rolled his eyes. This eye roll contrasted greatly with his skin that was as dark as charcoal, and thus appeared particularly white. Anyone on the receiving end would feel pissed off upon seeing it. Aldrizzt couldn’t help but say, “Sun Knight and former Sun Knight, when you guys talk, could the two of you not be more vulgar than me, a dark elf?”
“Though under the illumination of the God of Light for so many years, there is still darkness hidden inside my child’s heart. As his teacher, one’s heart is pained, and this one can’t help but embed the God of Light’s radiance in this one’s words, praying that this one may chase away the darkness inside my child’s heart, and return him to the path of radiance.”
“The God of Light’s benevolence envelops the whole world, his radiance shining in the air and illuminating all of the living in the world. However, your student has darkness hidden in his heart, and has directed this darkness to his teacher. This is really a sin that even a thousand deaths would not suffice! Now that his teacher is holding the God of Light’s radiance to reprimand his student, your student is naturally pleased to accept, and looks forward to the rebirth of himself.”
“…I’m sorry, this time I was in the wrong. Please go back to being vulgar!”
Following that, we opened the doors of the tavern. Once we walked in, all the waitresses in the tavern that could see the door looked toward us, and were happily shouting words like “Neo, ” “Neo, you’re back, ” “Neo, I missed you so much.” My teacher also used his gaze to reply to the waitresses one by one. If I didn’t mention which of the previous Twelve Holy Knights my teacher was, I bet that everyone would assume that he was actually the previous Storm Knight.
In comparison, Aldrizzt wasn’t that popular. Although he had his whole body wrapped tightly, quite a few of people sent him looks filled with hostility. It was obvious that they knew about his race.
I looked at Aldrizzt’s attire, and I immediately understood how. Even though he wrapped his whole body inside the cloak, he would still have to reach his hand out when he ate or drank liquor. Just a glimpse of that charcoal-black hand would be enough to let people know that something was fishy.
If he weren’t a dark elf of the legends, then he would have to be a reanimated, burnt corpse, and neither of those were a good thing.
Although the public was very unfriendly to Aldrizzt, the hostility that the “men” held toward my teacher also seemed pretty intense, and I didn’t seem to be very popular either…
Because the public’s hostility toward us was very obvious, we chose a corner seat that was farthest away from the rest of the room’s occupants.
Afterward, my teacher happily ordered dozens and dozens of the strongest liquor and another bunch of dishes to go with the wine. Since it couldn’t be helped, the waitresses served them one after another.
Aldrizzt seemed to be a bit worried as he said, “Neo, we better not get drunk.”
My teacher turned his head around, and asked funnily, “Drunk? With you and me drinking one dozen, how could we become drunk?”
“But you ordered two dozen…”
My teacher said without any hesitation, “Of course. If not, my student will say that I’m stingy.”
Aldrizzt lifted his head up from his cloak, looking at me with vague bewilderment. I’m not sure if I had interpreted incorrectly, but I kept feeling that his bewilderment also contained pleasant surprise… Looks like Aldrizzt is also a drink fiend. I’m afraid that what this three-man team of ours does best isn’t slaying demonic beasts, but rather slaying bottles of liquor in the tavern.
Once the liquor arrived, I, the drink fiend above all other drink fiends, immediately opened the bottles with both hands, and started guzzling ruthlessly. After my left hand had finished pouring, I changed to my right… After a minute, I took out my handkerchief, and wiped away the liquor foam at the corners of my mouth. Hmm, even though this liquor isn’t as strong as Leaf Bud City’s Drunk-in-One, the alcohol level is not bad.
Once I lifted my head upward, I saw that Aldrizzt was staring blankly at me, and my teacher went into a thigh-slapping loud laughter… He wasn’t slapping his own thigh though, but rather the thighs of a waitress who was currently serving the dishes.
Seeing Aldrizzt’s face, I opened yet another bottle of liquor, and then I raised the bottle and said, “A toast to you.”
Aldrizzt was stunned as he asked suspiciously, “You’re toasting me for what?”
Even though I was not drunk, I was feeling a little tipsy. Seeing the whole tavern look at Aldrizzt with hatred, I used a provoking look to glare at them one by one, and then purposely raised my voice to provoke them, “I toast to you for sitting here!”
“Well said, my good child. Let’s have a toast to Aldrizzt for sitting there!” My teacher also raised his liquor bottle high.
Aldrizzt’s expression was extremely serious. He slowly pulled off his cloak, revealing his thick white hair and black skin. He raised his liquor bottle high, saying, “Then I shall toast back in return. I toast to you guys for sitting in front of me!”
When he finished, the three of us drank our liquor with our heads tilted upward. Once I lowered my head, I saw a bottle of liquor flying toward the back of Aldrizzt’s head. Before I could make a sound to warn him, I saw the flash of a shadow. My teacher had actually used his leg to kick the bottle, and the bottle had not been kicked open. It flew back to the person who had thrown it, and the bottle of liquor crashed into smithereens on that person, dripping the liquor down his whole head.
That person was a warrior, a heavily muscled warrior, with a giant hammer lying beside his feet. With his head dripping with liquor and the veins in his face throbbing wildly, he had evidently taken offense.
“Ha!” My teacher jumped to stand at Aldrizzt’s back, and then he turned his head back, smiling as he said, “That’s good, I hate warriors the most.”
Under the influence of the alcohol, and thinking about how Mike and Ann had looked down on me during the entire journey, I too stood up as I returned the smile.
“Like teacher, like student. Teacher, I also hate warriors the most!”
At this moment, Aldrizzt stood up and shouted, “Neo, Grisia, don’t get into a conflict because of me!”
My teacher and I simultaneously turned around and rolled our eyes at him. Who is doing it for you?
After receiving both of our supercilious looks, Aldrizzt seemed to be a little embarrassed. Looking at us, and then looking at the enraged warrior as well as the dangerous atmosphere that seemed ready to erupt any moment in the tavern, he said a little helplessly, “Do you need my help?”
“Drink your liquor.” My teacher answered.
“Eat your food.” I replied.
Aldrizzt sat down, and I wasn’t sure if he was angry. He turned his body around, his back facing the entire tavern, and started eating his food and drinking his liquor for real.
As the hammer-wielding warrior approached us, my teacher, still showing an attitude of calmness within the chaos, said, “Child, your swordsmanship is not good. It will be better for you to go drink liquor with Aldrizzt!”
“Teacher, what I am wearing now is not a knight’s uniform.” As I answered, I gathered water element, and then I solidified the water on my hands into ice.
“Oh, that’s true.”
Once my teacher finished his words, he drew his sword and blocked the warrior’s hammer that was heading toward me. It produced an extremely huge resounding sound of metal, which made my ears hurt. With a slip of my hand, the ice chunk I was holding that was as big as a casserole dish was tossed onto the warrior, just in time to reward him with refreshing joy!
The warrior flew backward and crashed into a table, breaking it into pieces. His fall seemed to have been quite heavy, but he was indeed a warrior with thick skin and meat. He howled a few times at random, and then he climbed back up. With both his eyes bloodshot, he looked left and right and grabbed a table to throw it at us.
The table flew toward my teacher, but he didn’t even blink once.
At this moment, I extended one hand, and executed the Shield of Earth, which is a technique to solidify holy light into a shield used to block attacks… This technique is actually Earth Knight’s special ability, which I had secretly learned.
The table crashed into the Shield of Earth, and shattered into many pieces in front of my teacher. However, because there was a holy shield blocking him, not even a single splinter fell onto his body.
With both eyes red, the warrior roared, “These actions of yours, do you want to protect that black-skinned fellow? Don’t tell me that you aren’t aware that dark elves are an evil race?”
My teacher coldly replied, “You want to find faults to pick on, go ahead. By coming up with a bunch of excuses, you’ve proven that you’re even less proper than a dark elf. If you want to fight, bring it on! I’ll let you witness the powers of the strongest…knight in history!
Thank goodness! I wiped off the cold sweat that had formed. Fortunately, my teacher remembered to take out the word “Sun”.
At this point, the people of the tavern stood up one by one, and shouted, “What knight, anything mixing around with a dark elf is certainly not anything good!”
“Scram out of here along with the dark elf!”
“Leave Forest Leaf Town!”
Seeing that the crowd was standing on his side, the warrior’s confidence had evidently become greater. With all his might, he roared, “You evil thing, along with the dark elf, scram!”
“Oh? Evil thing?” My teacher muttered to himself for a moment, and then he said with a smile, “Interesting, this is the first time that I have been called that. In order to fit this new title…then, shall I become more evil? Hehe… Hahahaha! Just you alone? You’re not even qualified to start a fight with me. My student! Come to the front here and beat up this dog!”
When he finished, he handsomely flung his mantle, and walked behind me. He sat down calmly and started eating and drinking together with Aldrizzt.
Te-Teacher… Acting as the Sun Knight for twenty years wasn’t enough for you? Now you want to switch to acting as a villain? I didn’t know whether to laugh or to cry, but seeing the fact that my teacher was happy right now, it was better to just follow his instructions obediently.
As my shout ended, I didn’t even recite any incantations as I performed my magic… Actually, it was just that I didn’t have enough time to recite. Evidently, the whole tavern had taken me as a mage, and almost the whole continent knows that the best way to kill a mage is having his enemies chop him into mincemeat before he can complete his incantation to execute his magic.
Thus, the speed that everyone came swooping at me was so fast, it reminded me of a groom pouncing on his bride on their wedding night. I wanted to put on an act of reciting an incantation to pretend at being a mage for fun, but because of them, I wasn’t able to. Che!
With my left hand executing the Shield of Earth, and after confirming that the various weapons of all sorts in front of me wouldn’t land on my head, I performed a variety of mismatched magic with my right hand. What wind blades, fireballs, and ice bolts I could manage to produce, I threw randomly. Even if I didn’t manage to hit the target that I was aiming for, it didn’t matter, for before my eyes, there were people everywhere. No matter how or where I threw my spells, I was bound to hit someone. With each spell, there was an anguished wail accompanying it, which felt extremely satisfying.
Behind my back, there even came a sigh from Aldrizzt. “Your student is really enjoying himself. Clearly an intermediate spell could defeat all of the opponents, but instead, he uses minor spells to stir up trouble like this.”
My teacher nearly spit out the liquor in his mouth, and after he chokingly laughed a few times, he explained, “You misunderstand, Aldrizzt. That is because he only knows minor spells. Don’t forget, my student isn’t an actual mage. Even so, with the Shield of Earth added to his list of skills, no one can beat him. This ‘Apprentice Mage’ is actually even more headache-inducing than a mage, or even a master mage.”
“Why doesn’t he learn intermediate spells?” Aldrizzt’s voice was full of curiosity. “Judging from his ability, he should be more than ready to learn intermediate spells.”
“Oh, for the whole fight till now, have you heard my student recite any incantations?”
“He is not a mage, and is unable to get the actual magic incantation. Thus, he actually doesn’t even know half of an actual incantation. At most, he would put on an act of reciting, ‘A peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked.’ And even he wouldn’t be able to use an intermediate spell without using an incantation.”
With amazement, Aldrizzt shouted, “He doesn’t know any magic incantations? Then how did he manage to learn magic in the first place?”
My teacher said mysteriously, “For this, I’ll have to talk about a certain day when I was teaching him swordsmanship and he practiced it for the whole day. Because of extreme fatigue, I called for a break, and he took the chance to go wander the streets during the break.”
“He was tired but he still went to wander the streets?”
“No, I was the one who was tired. My heart had received too many blows, and was tired…”
“And then he came back. The next day, I taught him horsemanship, and rode for the whole day…”
“Yes, I was so tired from being driven mad by rage. I roared to him, ‘You tell me, why do I have to teach you so painstakingly, you idiot! What uses could possibly come out of you? I can’t stand it anymore, I want to replace you!’ In the end, that child thought for a while, and then released a wind blade to fan me. He even went to the kitchen to take a kebab, and then used a fireball to roast it for me to eat. Last of all, he even made an ice bolt and smeared jam on it, as an after-meal dessert… I asked him how he managed to learn that, and he said that the day before while he was wandering the streets, he saw a group of beautiful mages that bullies were trying to take liberties with. They were so angry that they joined efforts and used wind blades, fireballs, and ice bolts to drive the other party away.”
“Therefore, because of the fanning, roasted kebab, and after-meal dessert, you decided to keep this student?”
“Ye—NO! Of course not! Aldrizzt, aren’t you seeing me too superficially?”
Aldrizzt went into a burst of suppressed laughter.
My teacher’s voice, however, became somewhat angry. “Those people were three beautiful mages, and each of them used magic of different elements. He alone actually managed to use magic of three kinds of elements, and that was not even including the light element that he already knew. With that kind of inconceivable potential, do you think I could replace him?”
“Yes, yes, of course you couldn’t replace him.”
“Your voice sounds like you’re not sincere at all.”
“I am a dark elf that specializes in conspiracies and tricks! The fact that I haven’t played a trick on you is good enough. What else do you want to demand from me? I’m unable to even find the word ‘sincerity’ in the language of the dark elves!”
With a “humph,” my teacher shut up.
Hearing that they had finally finished their conversation, I immediately butted in, “My dear teacher…”
My teacher coldly snorted. “If there’s nothing, you won’t add ‘my dear’ in it. Say it! What do you want?”
There are none who know the student better than the teacher. I laughed dryly twice, and said, “Regarding the compensation for damage of this tavern…”
Before I finished my words, my teacher had already replied snappily, “In the three years that I haven’t seen you, you have become stingier and stingier! As long as you are walking together with us, I won’t let you pay a single cent. In the future, stop asking me about monetary matters. Each time you ask, I will make you recall how the title of the strongest Sun Knight in history came about.”
I put my heart at ease and even smiled a little evilly. Maintaining the Shield of Earth, I started gathering large amounts of “water” element. I filled the air of the whole tavern with water element, and on the other side, I also started gathering lightning…
By the time the crowd started to feel their hair on end and realized that something was wrong and then started to chop at my Shield of Earth even harder, I finally shouted, “Web of Lightning!” Afterward, I released a whole chain of lightning. The lightning followed the water vapor in the air of the tavern and scattered all around. Immediately wretched cries rose in all directions.
Web of Lightning is actually just as the name implies. It is magic that is formed by two kinds of elementary magic, water and lightning. An elementary level added on to another elementary level will form intermediate magic. This made me feel, toward the mysteries of magic, kind of…disillusioned.
“Intermediate magic! And it is magic that simultaneously uses two different elements,” Aldrizzt said, amazed. “Neo, looks like your information that you have regarding your own student is now inadequate.”
When my teacher heard this, not only was he not angry, but he even asked me in high spirits after I sat down, “Child, how did you learn that intermediate spell?”
I said honestly, “After you had left your office, teacher, there was one time I wore a cloak, hiding my identity to wander the streets. On the streets, I saw a—”
Before I could even finish my words, my teacher had already waved his hand in impatience. “Forget it, forget it. You probably saw another beautiful mage again. It doesn’t matter even if I don’t listen!”
I felt extremely wronged as I said, “Teacher, this time you’re wrong. The one I saw was an old mage! I had to spend an unknown amount of my patience before could I see that old mage, with his face full of wrinkles, slowly finish his incantation and use his magic. At long last, I managed to secretly learn this intermediate spell.”
At this moment, the tavern owner, though he had a feeble appearance, walked toward us nervously. Following that, he asked while shivering, “Sir Knights, regarding the damaged items…”
My teacher lazily looked at the situation behind us. It was only to the extent of broken tables, smashed-up chairs, flooded water on the ground, and cracks in the windows and doors. After he threw the tavern owner a few glistening gold coins, the owner was just short of saying with a smile, “Continue, please continue to wreck the place!”
Afterward, the three of us sat beside the tavern’s only clean and tidy table, and continued drinking our liquor, eating our food, and chatting.
I also conveniently explained to my teacher the kidnapping of Princess Alice, as well as the details of meeting the dark knight. Although my teacher was retired, he had still been the Sun Knight for twenty years. His experience was incomparable to mine. Maybe if my teacher listened to my story once, he’d immediately know what the core of the problem was.
Once I reached the part where the dark knight said that he had eloped with the princess, but at the same time, he didn’t know anything about the letter, Aldrizzt said in disagreement, “How could you believe in a kidnapper’s words?”
I straightforwardly said, “Because he looked extremely handsome.”
“How handsome?” my teacher asked with a serious face.
I too, replied seriously, “The kind of handsomeness that, when men see him, would make them want to kill him and then chop his corpse apart.”
Once these words came out, Aldrizzt was stunned. However, my teacher nodded his head in understanding, saying, “Then it is as was stated, an elopement.”
Aldrizzt couldn’t help but shake his head, saying, “This is a little too arbitrary.”
My teacher patted the dark elf’s back, and just like an old man talking to an ignorant child, he said, “Trust me, you’re still young, and have not had enough life experience.”
Aldrizzt burst into laughter. “I’m already one hundred and thirty-six years old.”
“Dark elves can live from five hundred up till eight hundred years old. Therefore, converting that to a human’s age, you’re only twenty plus. Perhaps you’re even younger than my student.”
Aldrizzt rolled his eyes at my teacher from under the cloak, and said mockingly, “Life experience and converting should have no relation right? I have long since experienced life for a hundred and thirty-six years.”
My teacher gave a faint smile as he said, “Yet you’re still a child. That sure makes me envious!”
Aldrizzt looked at my teacher, not quite understanding.
My teacher guzzled a mouthful of liquor, and then extended his hand to wipe off the foam at the side of his mouth. He really had the boldness and unruliness of an adventurer, and there was a large difference between now and before, when he was still being the Sun Knight. He patted my back. “Child, do continue your story.”
I nodded my head. “However, I actually felt it to be a bit strange. The queen forced Leaf and me into participating, because she obviously knew that the kidnapper was a dark knight. To warriors, it is a very intractable problem. Only with our participation could it be assured that we could retrieve the princess. However, on the other hand, Ann brought us on a detour. Evidently, she doesn’t want to let us find the kidnapper. Right now, I really cannot understand whether they want us to find Princess Alice or not.”
My teacher gave a faint smile, as though he didn’t think that this was very peculiar. He explained, “That’s simple. It’s because the queen of Moon Orchid and Princess Ann have taken different standpoints.”
“Different standpoints?” I didn’t understand. Being mother and daughter but taking different standpoints?
My teacher smiled faintly again and explained, “As the ruler of a country, the queen of Moon Orchid would definitely want to retrieve Princess Alice, so as to wed her to the Son of the God of War and achieve her aim of consolidating the influence of the Monastery of the God of War through political marriage. However, Princess Ann isn’t a ruler of a country, and Princess Alice is her sister. If she knew that her sister didn’t love the Son of the God of War, and had someone else that she loved, she would more or less stand on the side of her sister.”
“I see.” Suddenly I exclaimed in realization, “So the queen had no other motives, and really wanted to retrieve Princess Alice! The queen, so as to find a reason not to send her soldiers out to find the princess, most likely forged that letter that the ‘kidnapper’ left. And so, she let our adventurer group look for her in secret. After all, her daughter eloping with someone isn’t something that can be told to the whole world. Princess Ann, on the other hand, purposely entered the group and misled us. This would give Princess Alice enough time to escape with her lover.”
My teacher nodded his head in praise, and then added, “And she couldn’t completely mislead you guys, for that would most probably raise your suspicions to the fact that she had collaborated with Princess Alice. If that happened, there was a high possibility that the queen would intervene from her side to retrieve Princess Alice.”
“Thus, we had always been chasing them, not too far or too near,” I continued. “Occasionally we even met with the kidnapper. Unfortunately, the one who had met the kidnapper was me, and I did not have the ability to restrain him, so he managed to escape again.”
Such a good plan by Ann! When we return to the palace, I, the only person who had met the kidnapper, yet was unable to retain him, would definitely become the target of the public’s criticism.
She does really hate me a lot! Otherwise, wouldn’t letting Austin see Mr. Dark Knight have been better? A cleric not having the ability to retain the enemy is normal, and no one would say that he is wrong… But she just had to choose me.
At this point, my teacher’s face darkened, as he reminded me, “Child, you said that, when you met the dark knight, you were wearing assassin’s clothes?”
My body shook, and my facial expression froze. This is bad! If the dark knight were to tell Princess Alice and Ann that the one he met was not the Sun Knight, but an assassin that was full of light element… Those two women would know that something was wrong even if they used their knees to think.
“Think of a way to cover it!” My teacher’s tone was already a little dissatisfied.
“I’ve got it, I will seal up their mouths… When there’s a need to, eliminating them is imperative!” I replied grimly.
Aldrizzt weakly gave a forced smile as he said, “You two, ‘righteous’ Sun Knight and former Sun Knight, could you not discuss the topic of elimination in front of an ‘evil’ dark elf? Such a situation that violates conventional reasoning tempts my weak-willed heart.”
My teacher and I shrugged our shoulders, and for the sake of the dark elf’s heart, we did not continue to discuss topics that were even less like what a Sun Knight should say.
My teacher changed the conversation topic and said, “Child, roughly which direction is the journey headed in so far?”
I thought for a while before answering, “Although we have been curving here and there in our journey, we seem to be heading southwest.”
“Southwest, is it?” My teacher muttered to himself for a moment, and then revealed the Sun-Style’s incomparably radiant smile. “We have a mission that just happens to also be in the south. How about you journey together with Aldrizzt and me, and complete a mission together with us in passing? Okay?”
My teacher smiled gently. “What did you say? As the ‘Strongest Sun Knight in History,’ your teacher just now became hard of hearing, and didn’t hear you clearly!”
After I finished speaking, I ruthlessly guzzled down a whole bottle of liquor. Since I can’t refuse, then I can only take this chance to drink a little more free liquor as a form of compensation.
My teacher laughed and said, “Also, you better not curse me inside your heart. If the mission is successful, I’ll give you three-tenths of the reward. The three of us can do extremely difficult missions, and for difficult missions, the reward is naturally not at all small.”
Hearing that, I immediately put down the bottle of liquor. I couldn’t be more sincere as I said, “How can you say that? Teacher, as your student, Grisia will definitely serve you without sparing an ounce of effort till the very last second of his life!”
“Then I won’t give you any reward.”
I instantly changed my words, “However, a little reward would always boost one’s morale greatly!”
“Then I’ll give you one tenth.”
Hurriedly, I explained, “Morale is also spilt into a few degrees. If the reward is higher (by one tenth), one’s morale would naturally become higher! When one’s morale is high, a holy knight that originally ‘only knows’ Minor Heal can even use Moderate Heal! If the reward were to be higher (by one tenth), then the morale becomes even higher. Perhaps even Advanced Heal could be used! If the reward were to be raised again (by one tenth)—”
“There’s no need to raise it higher,” my teacher coldly interrupted me. “I actually lean more toward putting my sword against someone’s neck to let them witness exactly how valiant the strongest Sun Knight in history is. I guarantee you that morale will rise so high that even Ultimate Heal can be performed.”
My mouth snapped shut. Okay, three tenths of the reward is better than nothing. It’s not worthwhile to compete with the title of “History’s Strongest” for raising the reward by one tenth.
Aldrizzt seemed to have an incessant headache as he said, “This pair of teacher and student… Can either of you leave some sort of good image of the Sun Knight for others to long for?”