Chapter 3 – Kin
Passing through the huge castle walls, I entered the capital while looking up at it like an idiot.
Of course, since I’m wearing dirty clothes, I was not allowed to ride the carriage. I followed from behind by walking while carrying the baby in my arms.
“Hmph, what an ignorant barbarian. Unaware of how honorable it is to pass through the castle gates with My Lady……”
“Well, just leave him alone. He is probably moved after seeing our kingdom’s pride, the unbreakable defense wall.”
When I was reading novels in the past, I probably would have been looking down on the characters from the middle-ages in the novel like them. Well, they looked at me like that so I could tell just a bit.
The gazes coming from the carriage’s window were mixed with disdain. Probably, I could tell how they are looking at me even without using Senjutsu.
I mean, the guards or gate guardians are looking at me with that kind of gaze. I really look like a country bumpkin entering the city for the first time, so it can’t be helped.
In fact, the reason why I aimed towards the capital is because the motherly woman from the farm earlier gave me an advice. At worst, there is the possibility that I would’ve returned without being able to pass through the gates.
“But, is it alright? That barbarian does not look like he is worth inviting to our residence……”
“Blois, we are only going to test him. If the result is extraordinary, then you understand right?”
“If so, does the test prepared would be as difficult?”
“Of course, he does not look like he could write nor read, he is even carrying a baby with him. Let us just think of it as investing. If he does not show that he is worth it, we shall chase him away after giving him some change.”
The carriage pulled by two horses ran through the capital’s roads paved with stone.
Although it cannot be compared to the Japanese city I remember once upon a time, I can tell that it is a town that is relatively developed.
It really looks like middle-ages Europe as imagined. It really feels like teleporting to an isekai. Ahh, really, looking at a civilization after five hundred years is really moving, it really feels so lively.
The baby I am carrying is sleeping well as usual.
No one would believe that a woman died protecting this baby just a while ago in a forest.
Nonetheless, although I would describe my life as full of twists and turns, this child’s also not lacking in comparison. By the way, the gender of the baby is female. I could easily tell just from the flow of her qi.
“It has really been a while since we visited the capital. I wonder if Father and Elder Brother are well.”
“I am sure that they are looking forward to My Lady’s arrival.”
Probably, seeing me who has completely different racial traits and the baby I’m carrying, the two girls have imagined many things, but I guess they would have never thought that our fate might be so odd.
At the very least, the me of yesterday would have never guessed it.
And while I was thinking like that, the carriage continued to run. It ran without stopping, even after the style of the surrounding buildings and the clothes of the people walking on the streets changed.
It feels like, the level of lifestyle is gradually going up. It’s that, it’s as if you got lost in an upscale residential area.
After we entered an area where there are no business stores and only huge mansions lined up, the carriage stopped in front of one.
Probably, it could be called a “mansion” in a correct sense. Although it only has three floors, it looks very wide horizontally from the front, and it should be as wide from the side.
“Welcome, My Lady. The Patriarch and Young Master are waiting. And also……”
“Yes, I picked up that monkey along the way. He brings with him a baby, so guide him in a suitable room.”
Ummu, the discriminatory language won’t stop, but this Ojou-sama is quite thoughtful.
Can you call this, tsundere as well? Nice tsundere, Ojou-sama.
It looks like I won’t accompany them all the time inside the mansion.
One of the butlers guided me to a simple room, so it was decided that I’ll be there on standby.
But even that room was too much for a mere baby-carrying-monkey.
After all, there is carpet on the floor and the wallpapers are beautiful. Probably, I would get guillotined if I make this room dirty.
Unable to move carelessly, I could only accompany the baby in its sleep.
“Come to think of it, I haven’t decided your name.”
It should be better if at least I gave her a name. It would be a tragedy if I could not answer if anyone asks.
Nevertheless, it might be bad if I gave her a Japanese style name……
For the mean time……
“Rain should be okay.”
It should not be that strange of a name.
I thought about what should I do if her name was completely the same with someone nearby, but I thought I’d decide when that time comes.
“Look, Rain〜. It’s your Father〜〜.”
Although I’ve lived for more than five hundred years, thinking about it carefully, isn’t this the first time I’m carrying a girl like she’s my princess? Thinking of that, I guess my life isn’t that good.
The first females I touched after five hundred years is a corpse and a baby……
“Although my life is full of embarrassments……the human world is unexpectedly full of kind people.”
I did not suffer unreasonable persecution for just because my hair and eyes are black.
Although I’ve been looked down on for a bit, I did not receive the common abuse using violence during such situations, and I was always given kindness just because I was carrying a baby.
Umu, umu. As I’ve thought, no matter which world it is, the children are everyone’s treasure.
“Since I’ll be in their care, I shouldn’t be disrespectful.”
And when I was thinking like that, I felt an intense anger from inside the mansion.
It was a familiar reaction in the natural world, as if a parent is about to protect its child.
And its source was……
“Are you the man who jumped over my daughter’s carriage!!”
Together with that justifiable shout of anger, a noble gentleman stormed into the room.
Although he looked pretty old, he is probably the master of this mansion, and that Ojou-sama’s father.
He is definitely younger than me, but he looks like he has far more experience in life compared to me who only swung his sword from dawn till dusk.
At the very least, I’ve never shouted at someone like this with a red face.
“Ha, Hahaa!” *prostrates*
“Nnuu! This is the first time I’ve received such humiliation! I can’t forgive you, I can’t forgive you!!!”
How strange, he’s shouting as if he won’t let me go with just a mere severed arm.
No matter how you look at it, he really plans on killing me.
This, should I just apologize then run away immediately?
Nevertheless, it looks like he was not an unreasonable person who would continue shouting angrily in front of a crying baby.
While I was calming the baby, he became silent as if a bucket of ice water was poured onto him. And, he started to evaluate me.
His eyes, they were those that nobles who have fought through politics countless of times possess, I think.
“Be grateful to that baby.”
“He, hehee……” *nods respectfully*
“Nevertheless, to think that there is someone who would jump over a carriage engraved with our family crest. This not only challenges the honor of my daughter, but the honor of our whole clan. It does not matter if you are ignorant. It does not matter if you are carrying a baby. Prepare yourself, for it is a matter of our dignity.”
“Nonetheless, I do not plan on breaking a promise I have once made with my daughter. I do not believe that you are an assassin from how conspicuous you act, and a possessor of a rare magic is certainly “interesting”. If you show worthy skill, it is true that I might allow you to become hired by our family.”
This, I really have a bad feeling about his words.
“Nevertheless. If you wish to serve our family, then it shall be unbefitting if you are unable to cope with some violence. I shall not allow you to give any excuses, so be aware that the test shall be difficult. Of course, I would not think twice in giving you a warm welcome if you show good results.”
This is bad, his eyes are clearly not smiling.
He’s using the test as a pretext and kill me.
“No need to be worried. In the case where something happens to you, our family shall take care of that child.”
Oh no, he isn’t even trying to hide his killing intent.
Rather than “in the case where…”, that’s really his goal.
“Well then, follow me. Bring that child as well.”
Well, I was guided to the courtyard of the mansion.
However, although it was only a courtyard, it was wide enough to place two tennis courts inside.
After being guided there, I was told to pass Rain to an old maid.
“This will be the last time. Please say your farewells.”
As I’ve thought, this maid also thinks that I’m already a dead man.
After all, the person I’m facing against is completely leaking his killing intent.
It was a fully armed knight wearing a full armor. I’m only carrying a wooden sword, but he’s even equipped with a shield. No matter how you look at it, it’s useless.
He should be able to block a wooden sword just with his helm and armor.
“Listen carefully, kill that monkey before that child stops you. Do it with one stroke. You hear me? Do not try to kill him after making him suffer.”
“Yes, I shall not give that dirty man who bullied my little sister the time to regret……!”
I’m a sage so my senses are sharp. Because of that, I heard what Ojou-sama’s father ordered the knight with full armor.
I mean, I understood their relationship.
That knight, he’s probably Ojou-sama’s Onii-sama. On top of that, he’s severely ill with a siscon disease. I could tell just by looking.
“Ara ara〜, what a huge pinch it is. I did not think Father and Elder Brother will be this angry.”
“But, there will be no problems with this. That barbarian, he will be killed for sure.”
“I guess so〜, but if he was able to dodge an attack from Elder Brother, that would be interesting.”
Ojou-sama is watching, but she doesn’t plan on stopping them at all.
Probably, she’s expecting something from me……
I mean, when I think about it, this is the first actual fight in my life.
My first opponent is a fully armed knight, can’t the difficulty be a bit lower?
His height is about a hundred and ninety centimeters. I would be facing up to look at his head.
On top of that, I feel something unnatural from both his armor and his sword. Probably, it is the so-called magic weapon.
Compared to that, I have a wooden sword I made myself and a kinagashi……
Of course, I was not even given a chance to borrow equipment.
“Well then, let us start the fight with a situation where a fully armored bandit targeting my daughter launched a surprise attack. Of course, since it was a surprise attack, it will be a fight with unreliable equipment. For example, those clothes you are wearing right now. You won’t tell me that you cannot protect my daughter in such emergency, right?”
“If you do not have any objections, try to fight my so……try to fight my guard using that equipment. I do not need to tell you this, but if you cannot defeat him, then I cannot allow you to become my daughter’s guard. The reason for that is, my enemies are strong enough to send a troop of fully armed skilled fighters. That is both in and out. And Blois over there, although she is young, she has the skill to cope with that situation.”
Blois made a face like ‘I do not have that much skill’. Probably, it’s a bit exaggerated.
Of course, I’m not foolish enough to interrupt my employer!
“In other words, I am telling you to “defeat him”. If you are able to to do that, I do not mind hiring you.”
And, there were no lies in those words.
In fact, he his probably thinking that it is worth hiring someone who is that skilled.
The criteria is really quite difficult. Probably, it’s something that is unachievable.
This is really weird. I was just thinking of raising Rain since our fate is connected.
Why did it come to this?
“Well then, my son! Kill him!”
He’s completely planning to kill me.
His huge sword that was big enough it’s unlikely to wield with one hand suddenly flared up.
Is it his magic? Or is it the magic within the sword? I could not tell that far.
However, it is clear that the firepower was excessive. I’m just wearing ordinary clothes, so no matter how you think about it, it should’ve been enough just by cutting me with the sword.
“For the men that draw near my beloved sister……Death! Buuuuurning Spirit!!!”
Is that alright? Shouting your love towards your sister that loudly.
While being completely put off, I raised my wooden sword to middle guard posture.
It doesn’t matter whether the sword is made of steel or wood, whether it is burning or one-handed, as long as one is using it to slash, it is in the category of swordsmanship.
And, leaving aside his love for his sister, he cannot compare against me when it comes to the time spent swinging a sword.
It is true that his single sword strike is more than enough to kill me.
However, if I lose here, my five hundred years of training and guidance from my master will be all for naught. And that is something unacceptable for myself.
The most important thing is the timing. Although reality is not the same with fighting games, it is true that an attack would never land on yourself as long as you give a careful eye in the distance.
He raised his sword overhead to his right and swung it down diagonally.
It does not matter if it is a burning sword. It does not matter how quick he is although he is wearing a full armor. It does not matter even if a shield is protecting his left side. In swordsmanship, he only slashed at me diagonally.
And, the killing intent that he did not even try to hide let me know the timing of his attack.
Qigong sword. It is a basic technique in Senjutsu to use natural qi to strengthen the sword and increase its hardness.
And after strengthening my wooden sword using qi, I simply swung the sword from the middle guard stance, aiming for his helmet.
After all, if I used the wooden sword to clash with a burning magic sword, then the possibility of the qigong sword breaking is high.
However, everything all comes down to the timing. As long as I make the opponent make an empty swing, if I am able to hit his helmet, then the strength of the opponent’s sword does not matter.
Although I could feel the heat from the magic sword, I hit the knight with a “kendo men” without any tricks.
“……I got a point.”
Of course, I did not relax my guard.
After passing through him a distance away, I turned around and measured the distance between us.
He slashed through empty air with his full strength and I hit his helmet soon after.
Although I felt a clear hit, I do not know his physical endurance and the hardness of his helmet, so I cannot be sure.
“Would you like to continue?”
The knight looked towards me while staggering a little on his feet.
Although his vision is blocked by the helmet that completely covers his face, he was able to turn towards me.
It’s quite amazing. He’s used to fighting in that equipment.
“Just a simple, swordsmanship you say……!”
The burning sword erupted and he stabbed it to the ground. And after that, he fell to his knee.
Probably, his condition could be judged as being defeated. I’ll feel bad going too far and kill him.
Well then, the verdict is……
The gentlemen used the saber hanging from his waist and slashed at me while releasing killing intent. Of course, he did that from behind me.
But, I did not let my guard down. I mean, I don’t think there’s a meaning doing this if he shouted that there’s a chance.
I did a quick slash while turning around, hitting the hand holding the saber.
I did not break his hand and I’ve removed the qigong sword. But even so, the wooden sword that I made myself is strong enough for hitting a human’s hand.
And there, finally, Ojou-sama declared the match decided.
“Father, Elder Brother. It was done with the two of you. There is no need for further discussion, right?”
Ojou-sama who smiled while saying that, seemed as if she was laughing at how silly the patriarch and young master looked……
She looked like she’s having fun.
“What a wonderful skill, uhh, Sansui. To think that you did not only defeat Elder Brother, but even blocked Father’s surprise attack. With this, Blois does not have time to be complacent.”
“But even so, I did not see exactly what happened……I wonder when, or what rare magic you used? Blois, do you know?”
“Not at all, My Lady. The only thing I saw was a technique to strengthen his wooden sword and an unfathomable sword mastery. And, I have never heard of a magic that strengthens a wooden sword.”
Other than using the sword, I only know Senjutsu. Of course, I’m clueless when it comes to magic.
However, it looks like there is no magic that strengthens a wooden sword.
If so, then how does magic weapons work?
“As My Lady knows, even if one uses magic to a sword, the strength of the sword itself depends on the skill of the blacksmith. However, that man did not use magic to directly attack, instead, he used his wooden sword to incapacitate……excuse me, land a blow on young master’s magic helmet. Not to mention a sword made with wood, even a sword made with iron would have been shattered instead.”
“Ara, is that so……then the only thing remaining is, he is simply too strong, is it?”
“That, is the only thing I can say. At the very least, that man……he did not show an ounce of fear towards that burning sword, and saw through it at first sight……he is dangerous.”
Saying that, Blois blatantly showed vigilance against me.
Well, of course. Even the maid I passed Rain to looked terribly surprised.
“Ara, ara. What of him is dangerous?”
“The fact that if that man wills it, he can kill My Lady any time.”
“But, isn’t that something you do not need to worry about? After all, he defeated Father and Elder Brother who has far more value than me without killing them. If he willed to, he could have just killed them first hand.”
Leaving aside how strong young master and the patriarch is, I could tell how high their authority is. Honestly, they’re more important than Ojou-sama. It’s true that it is the best proof.
But, why on earth would those VIPs personally try to kill suspicious people?
“Father, please do not tell me that you would go back on your words after doing all of this?”
“……of course, I take an oath to our family name. Shirokuro Sansui, you shall become a sword of our clan.”
It is fine and okay being acknowledged although he still looks regrettable, but can anybody tell me their family name already? Also, their first names too.
Nevertheless, I finally got a job.