NBAA Vol. 6 Chapter 2 Part 5

“I’m sorry to request this so soon, but I’m going to ask you, Reito, or should I say, Luna, to participate in today’s match. Will you head for the arena now?”

“What, right now?”

Ferris continued talking to Reito, who was surprised.

“Oh, and would you mind using our products for your weapons as well? Your broadsword is too conspicuous, let alone the Reflection Sword. Plus, if we use the same weapon, it might look suspicious…”

Ferris had a good point. If he went through all the trouble of disguising himself and then used the same Extermination Blade in a match, Luna’s true identity would just end up being exposed anyway.

But he also wanted to use his own weapon if he was going to compete.

Reito thought about it for a while, and then he remembered the silver sand from earlier and made a suggestion.

“Can we dye my blade using the silver sand from before? I think that would be less likely to be noticed, and I’d still feel safer using a weapon I’m familiar with…”

“I see. That’s a good idea. A silver broadsword would be perfect.”

“Allow me to get it ready for you right away.”

Alice took Reito’s broadsword. It should have been pretty heavy, but she lifted it lightly with one hand without breaking a sweat and applied the silver sand from the wooden box on the surface of the entire blade.

After being coated with a water-soaked cloth, the “Jet-black broadsword” was transformed into a “Silvery white broadsword.”

“Is this correct?”

“Yes, thank you.”

Reito accepted the large silver sword from Alice.

At that point, Ferris asked Reito, “I’m curious. That sword has a magical mark on it, right? If a swordsman can handle magic, he can also use a magic sword, right?”

“Magic marks?”

Reito twisted his head at the conversation. Then, he remembered the pattern engraved on the holy sword Caledfwlch.

The crest was engraved to make it impossible for people with a level below 70 to handle it. Remembering this, Reito thought about it, and, in conjunction with Ferris’s story, came up with the idea that technology to enhance or add restrictions to weapons like the holy sword’s crest might exist in this world.

“If you carve a magic mark into a broadsword, it becomes a magical sword?”

“What? You didn’t know that?”

Ferris was surprised, and Alice elaborated:

“It is not simply a matter of engraving a pattern onto a sword to make it magical. Unless the metal has a high resistance to magic, it will be destroyed the moment magic is applied to it, and only dwarves can engrave ‘magic mark’ patterns.”

“If only I knew a dwarf…”

The only dwarf that Reito knew was a drunken old man who sold his Reflection Sword for money, and besides, he didn’t have the time to modify his broadsword at the moment.

He could engrave a magic mark using his abilities, but unfortunately, the only magic mark he knew of was the pattern engraved on the sacred sword Caledfwlch.

After he finished talking about the marks, Reito decided to ask about the dwarves.

“Alice, are there any dwarves in the trading company?”

“We have some with exclusive contracts, but it takes time to etch the magic mark. It would take at least a few days.”

“I see… Well, I don’t see what the problem is.”

“Let’s head out, Reito. Or should I say, Luna? You got this.”

Ferris patted Reito on the back as if they were old pals.

Reito and Ferris got into the carriage outside.

Yuniko tilted her head when she saw Reito. Apparently, she recognized him as Reito despite his disguise.

Yuniko, however, showed no further reaction and diverted her gaze from Reito.

“I’ll let you guys handle the rest.”

Ferris called out to Alice and the other maids as they attended to the carriage.

“Understood.”

“Come back safe!”

The carriage headed for the arena, seen off by a crowd of maids.

Reito looked at the Reflection Sword at his waist as the carriage swayed. Since this sword had magic-repellant properties, it was not supposed to contain magic power, even if it was engraved with magic marks. Still, it would undoubtedly be useful when fighting magicians, for example.

“I was told, by the way, that you can bet money on singles matches in the arena…”

Reito was about to be participating in a singles match. As the name suggests, it is a one-on-one match.

Ferris nodded along to Reito’s words.

“Yes, you can bet. If you win, you’re guaranteed to double your wager.”

“Can I bet on my match too?”

“One gold piece… Well, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that.”

Ferris took the gold coin that Reito held out. She said she would bet on it for him.

Until the other day, Reito had intended to keep winning in the arena and earn enough money to buy a Reflection Sword. However, that goal disappeared when he unexpectedly obtained the Reflection Sword.

However, Reito was running out of money, so it made sense that he would try to earn as much as possible.

Before the carriage arrived at the arena, Reito learned the simple rules for singles matches from Ferris. There were many differences with doubles matches. For example, the absence of restrictions on the weapons used.

“Singles matches were played one-on-one. Unlike in doubles matches, a circular stone pavement is used as the boundaries for the playing field. The winner is the one who drives his opponent to the point where he is unable to fight or forces him to declare defeat. If you receive outside help, you lose the game, so you need to watch out. Oh, and if you fall out of the ring and fail to return within 10 seconds, you lose. By the way, if you can return within 10 seconds, it doesn’t matter how many times you fall out.”

“So there are no restrictions on weapons or anything like that?”

“It could be a sword, a spear, an axe, a bow, or even a poisoned crossbow. The most important thing to keep in mind is that even if you kill your opponent during the game, you will not be charged with a crime. The fighters are responsible for any injuries they incur during a match.”

“It’s scary when you explain it so calmly.

“Well, no one likes people who kill people in public, no matter what the cost. Just because it’s technically not a crime doesn’t mean anyone would trust someone who just goes around killing people so easily.”

“That’s true.”

After being briefed on the rules of singles matches, Reito again turned his attention to the Reflection Sword he had acquired.

Reito was slightly worried about whether he could handle this sword in future matches. If it were against a magician, it would be effective. However, the disadvantage was that its attack power was inferior to the broadsword. If he could use two swords, he would be able to use the best of both worlds, but he had too little experience with using two swords in actual combat, even if he did well with them in practice.

“Speaking of which, did you sign me up for a match yet?” Reito was curious.

“Actually, I’ve already made a reservation. If you had refused my request, I was going to send out Grohl… I already know who you’re going to fight against today.”

“Really? What kind of opponent are they?”

“She’s an adventurer from another part of the country. Her name is… Amelia, I think. She’s a dwarf woman.”

“A dwarf…”

Unlike men, dwarf women do not have beards on their faces, but even as adults, they are about the height of a human child. The average height of an adult is about 130 to 140 centimeters. However, Dwarves boast muscle strength that surpasses that of humans, and in terms of simple arm strength, they are second only to giants in terms of strength.

“Amelia is an A rank adventurer. I hear she’s famous for her battle axe skills?”

“Battle Axe…”

Reito didn’t know how good this female adventurer named Amelia was, but since she had an A adventurer rank, second only to the highest S rank, there was no doubt that she was a very capable fighter. Reito braced himself for the battle ahead.

But knowing how Reito performed in the match the other day, Ferris did not expect him to lose.

“Anyway, it should be an easy opponent for you. Don’t bully her too much. Just beat her, and let’s celebrate after.”

“I’m not sure… but I’ll do my very best.”

That’s the spirit. I’m looking forward to it.

“Ms. Ferris, we have arrived.”

A coachman called out from the driver’s seat.

“Oh, finally… There are a lot of people here today… Are there any famous athletes here?”

When they got out of the carriage, Ferris looked doubtful.

Then a man’s voice called out to her.

“Well, well, well, if it isn’t President Ferris, in the flesh.”

When they turned around, they saw a bearded man standing there, handsomely dressed in what appeared to be aristocratic attire.

The moment she saw the man’s face, Ferris frowned.

“Well, well, well… Baron Valentino, it’s been a long time.”

“Ha ha ha! It’s been a long time since I last saw you when you refused to do business with me.”

“This man is a… Baron?” Reito frowned and muttered.

The man called Valentino was surrounded by people who appeared to be his private army. He certainly seemed to be a man of power.

Reito looked at Ferris as if to ask her who he was.

She sighed and introduced the Baron.

“Ms. Luna, this is Baron Valentino, a nobleman of the kingdom.

“A nobleman of the kingdom…”

“Wow, that fine equipment… Did you finally get your trading company a decent adventurer in your envoy?” The Baron said as he glanced at Reito.

Ferris replied grimly: “No need for flattery,” she said. “Allow me to introduce her. This woman is Ms. Luna, the representative of our trading company. What brings you to this town, anyway? With your constitution, even just moving must be difficult, not just walking.”

The Baron seemed greatly offended by Ferris’s words.

“Hmph! I don’t know what means you used to get in Maria’s good graces, but you shouldn’t get too carried away, okay? I’m actually planning to participate in this year’s festival.”

“Hoho? Does that mean the Baron also hired a skilled adventurer?”

“That’s correct. Come on!”

“…Yes, sir.”

The Baron turned around and yelled, and then a petite woman appeared. She was carrying a huge battle axe that was bigger than she was.

“What the hell? Don’t tell me you’re…!”

“Ms. Ferris? What’s wrong?”

Reito was confused about Ferris’s reactions, but then she turned to Reito and said: “… Luna, this is your opponent today.”

According to Ferris, she was his opponent, an A-rank adventurer named “Amelia. Indeed, the characteristics she described earlier matched.

The Baron said with satisfaction, “This is the adventurer I hired. Hurry up and introduce yourself.”

“My name is Amelia.”

“Oh, um, hi…”

The woman named Amelia greeted Reito at the Baron’s prompting and held out her palm toward him. Thinking she was asking for a handshake, Reito tried to shake her hand but felt uneasy and stopped himself.

Amelia tilted her head at his behavior.

“What’s wrong?”

“No… I’m not going to get along with the people I’m about to fight.”

“Ms. Luna?”

Ferris looked curiously at Reito’s face, but she had nothing else to say.

Amelia gave up and withdrew her hand. At that moment, Reito did not miss the Baron’s wince.

“…well, that’s unfortunate.”

Reito turned his back to Amelia.

“Ms. Ferris, I think it’s time for us to go to the registration desk,” he said coldly.

“Huh? Um, yes. Please excuse us, Baron.”

“Hmph… let’s see how much longer you can afford that cocky attitude!”

“I look forward to the match.”

The Baron led his private army to another exit of the arena while Amelia bowed her head and headed for the players-only corridor.

Reito spoke to Ferris after the Barons were out of sight.

“Ms. Ferris, today’s game is not going to be an easy one to win.”

“Huh?”

“If I had shook her hand, I would have been pricked by a needle hidden in her clothing.”

“…What?”

Reito would secretly activate his “Observing Eye” skill when he felt suspicious of someone. He checked the sleeve of her dress and noticed a needle had been sewn into it. If he had shaken hands with her without noticing, it is highly likely that she would have stuck the needle into Reito’s palm. The needle was poisonous.

Just the thought of shaking hands without having noticed anything sent chills down his spine. He was alarmed by the woman, Amelia, who had tried to poison him before the match even started. Reito broke out in a cold sweat and became determined not to let his guard down until the match began.

“Ms. Ferris, you should be careful. You’d better return to the carriage as soon as you leave my side.”

“I’ll be fine… I’m actually going to meet up with an adventurer I know who belongs to the Hailstorm guild later on, so don’t worry about me. I’m looking forward to seeing you at the games!” Ferris said with a smile to reassure him.

They headed to the reception entrance of the arena to register for the match. Reito was about to begin his journey as a player named “Luna,” representing the Ferris Trading Company.

Since embarrassing himself in the match would cause trouble for the trading company, Reito was fired up and ready to compete.

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