TWEM Vol. 1 Chapter 6

Chapter 6 – My First Request

The next morning, I went to the adventurers’ guild, following Dass’ instructions.

I opened the door just like I did the day before, but as soon as I entered I felt the eyes of everyone present on me.

Eh? What? Did I do something?

A bit lost, I approached the receptionist, Neena, for help.

“Did something happen?”

Neena looked at me, sighed, then replied.

“If someone comes to register as an adventurer and wipes the floor with three B rank adventurers, anyone would be curious, don’t you think? And he’s starting at B rank to boot.”

I thought that even in that case, it was too much attention…but Neena dropped the topic and placed a silver card on the counter.

“This is your adventurer card. It functions as an identification document and if you show it at a weapon or armor shop you can receive discounts too. If you need to issue it again, you will have to pay five large silver coins, so be very careful…lastly, you have to shed a few drops of blood on this part. This will bind the card to its owner.”

I used the knife Neena gave to me to cut my fingertips a little and let the blood drop on the card.

As I did, the card glowed for a moment.

“…with this, the registration process is complete. Congratulations. Ah, the guildmaster called for you, so please go to his office.”

Neena smiled warmly and gave me the card.

I took it from her and promptly headed to the guildmaster’s office.

I knocked and entered the room, finding Dass buried in piles of documents.

“Hello, thank you for coming. I’m sorry, can you sit down and wait a little while? I’m almost finished.”

I did as I was told and took a seat on the sofa. Shortly afterwards, Dass put the pen down and sat on the sofa across mine.

“The reason why I asked you to come here today is to raise you to rank A.”

Eh? I was registered at rank B just yesterday, right?

“Isn’t this too fast?”

I expressed my confusion and Dass nodded.

“Indeed, it’s an unprecedented speed. But based on your abilities, I don’t think it’s undeserved. That’s not the only reason, of course…”

“Are there too few adventurers of high rank, maybe?”

I mentioned an idea that came up in my mind and Dass laughed bitterly.

“Hahaha…that’s actually true. The guild reached the conclusion that it can’t let go of someone as skilled as you…so as a special exception, we planned to promote you to rank A.”

“I see. Is it that simple to go higher in rank, though?”

I asked because it would be a problem for me if the procedure took a long time. Dass held his chin with a hand, deep in thought.

“Well, let’s see…to be promoted to rank A, you actually need the recommendation of two guildmasters. I’ll explain the situation to another guildmaster I know and have them write a recommendation letter, so it’ll probably take about one week…did you plan to leave the town?”

I replied that I indeed planned to leave town the same day, head for Vaana and cross over to the Perdis kingdom.

Dass then told me to wait a moment, wrote something on a piece of paper and gave it to me.

“Show this recommendation letter to the guildmaster in Vaana. If you do, they should issue your card on the spot.”

Puzzled, I asked Dass to explain further.

“It’s this easy to issue?”

“Yes, well, I’ll send a horse messenger to inform them of the situation. Because of guild regulations, you need to carry the recommendation letter yourself, so we’ll have them take care of other necessary procedures. If you give them the recommendation letter, they’ll issue your card right away.”

“I see, pretty efficient.”

Convinced, I thanked Dass and got ready to leave.

I turned my back to Dass and was about to exit, when he called out to me.

“By the way, it looks like there are more and more bandit attacks on the road to Vaana recently. You’ll probably be all right, but stay alert.”

“Understood, thank you for the warning.”

I thanked Dass again and left the guildmaster office.

…oh yeah, if there’s an escort request to Vaana, I might as well take it.

So I thought as I returned to the lobby.

Neena was still at the counter, so I asked her about the request and she acted right away.

“ —please wait a moment. If there are any escort requests to Vaana, I’ll find them right away.”

I sat on a chair next to the counter to wait, staring off into space, but the adventurers who witnessed my spat with the three C rank adventurers the day before came up to talk to me, one after the other.

Most of them thanked me for giving them drinking money, saying that they had the best time in a long while. It felt pretty good, I thought.

After a few minutes, Neena returned to the counter.

“Mr. Haruto, I found a request matching your inquiry. It’s about escorting a trading company party, and they’re set to leave very soon. The request is for four people, and they already have three…will you take it?”

“Yes, thank you, I will…I’m also grateful for everything you did for me, Ms. Neena.”

I took the opportunity to say thanks to Neena, who blushed and smiled.

“It was nothing. Until we meet again, then.”

~

I was told that showing my adventurer card to the guild once we arrived in Vaana would mark the request as fulfilled, so I went straight to the rendezvous point.

I put all my luggage in the dimensional storage in the morning, before leaving my lodging, so I had little on me.

I quickly reached the rendezvous point and found two-horse carriages, with Bacchus next to them.

“Oh? So the request came from you, Mr. Bacchus?”

Bacchus heard my call and walked towards me, smiling.

“Oh, so you took my request too, Mr. Haruto. That’s quite reassuring. We struggled to find one more person, you see.”

It had slipped my mind, but Bacchus did tell me that they were going to Vaana too.

I then heard a voice from behind me.

“You’re the last one?”

I turned around and saw a group of three nasty-looking men.

A bit wary of them, I replied “that’s right”.

I started wondering what kind of people they were, if they were going to mess with me in a “classic” way like the people from the day before, when— 

“I see! You’re a huge help, really!”

“It’d be a bit too tough for just us three, you see.”

“Yeah, you’re a savior.”

They were much more amicable than expected.

Despite how rough they look, these are actually pretty good guys!

That’s what I was thinking when the rugged leader of the group asked me a question.

“We’re a rank C party, can we ask what rank you are?”

“Of course, I’m rank B…though I just registered yesterday.”

I showed my adventurer card as proof and the three adventurers froze in place, wide-eyed, then started flooding me with questions.

“You registered yesterday and are rank B already…could it be that you are the guy everyone’s talking about?”

“Whoa, the rumors were real!? But at least we know that this request will definitely go well!”

“Yeah, we’re expecting great things from you, man! What’s your name again? …wait, we should introduce ourselves first. My name’s Barnar, I’m a swordsman. These two are Norkas, a swordsman like me, and the spearman Oorde.”

I see, so the leader of the group is probably this rugged-looking guy, Barnar. The short guy is Norkas and the tall one is Oorde.

“My name’s Haruto, nice to meet you.”

“Yeah, same here…by the way, what’s your fighting style, Haruto? You don’t seem to have a sword, are you a magic-user?”

The leader asked me with a puzzled tone, but I grinned and answered.

“I’ll explain once we’re out of town, look forward to it.”

Barnar cocked his head to the side, even further mystified by my words.

~

We departed soon afterwards: the horse carriages traveled fast, as the town quickly became smaller and smaller. We boarded the two carriages in pairs: me and Barnar in one, Norkas and Oorde in the other.

After a little while, Barnar apparently couldn’t contain himself anymore and asked me the question again.

“C’mon Haruto, you can tell me how you fight now, right?”

“Right…”

I answered Barnar’s question by pulling out my sword from my dimensional storage.

“What the!? Ah, a magic bag…damn, I’m envious. But you better keep your sword visible in town, or people are going to think you’re easy prey.”

I sincerely nodded to Barnar’s warning. He was more experienced than me as an adventurer, after all.

“So you’re a swordsman, Haruto?”

I lightly shook my head, then put a hand out of the carriage.

Barnar looked at me curiously as I cast, via No Chant, a basic grade wind spell, Wind Ball, to hit a boulder a bit far from the road.

The ball of wind shot forward straight into the boulder, sending its pieces flying everywhere.

“What was that!?”

“Wind Ball.”

“A Basic Grade spell with that much power!? That’s easily medium grade!! But more than that, you can use No Chant!?”

“Yeah, well…anyway, I meant to show that I fight with this sword and magic.”

Barnar stared at me as if he couldn’t believe his eyes.

~

After a few more hours of travel and lunch, my Detect Presence skill picked up something.

I checked the map and found more than 20 presences on the path of the carriage.

Dass did say that bandits appear often around here, right…

Barnar’s party was rank C, so they might have had a hard time dealing with so many opponents.

I told Bacchus, the coachman and Barnar’s group about the human presence ahead of us, so they would be alert.

After we proceeded some more, the human presence displayed on the map jumped out in the open.

“Stop the carriage, now!! Leave all your luggage and get lost. Or you’re going to lose your lives too, savvy?”

The man in the lead of the group, probably the leader, barked an order.

They really were bandits, after all.

I and Barnar’s party quickly got off the carriage and walked towards the bandits.

“Damn, there’s 20 of them…”

Barnar’s tone betrayed his concern, but I replied calmly.

“No, they’re actually 25. There are 2 hidden in the bushes there and 2 more in the tall grass over there. The last one is hiding behind that tree.”

Hearing me precisely spot his hidden comrades, who were impossible to see from our position, the leader of the bandits couldn’t help but express his surprise.

“H-how do you know!?”

“Their presence is clear as day.”

I chuckled as I replied and the thieves in hiding came out too, visibly frustrated, and approached their leader.

“Tch…!! But we have an overwhelming advantage in numbers!! You won’t be able to act so high-and-mighty for long!!”

Indeed, as the leader said, their numbers were much higher than ours.

Barnar and the others too looked nervous.

“There are too many of them…even with Haruto on your side, our odds look desperate.”

Barnar and his party had their weapons at the ready, but looked intimidated and not ready to actually fight.

“I can handle them by myself, don’t worry. It’s a good chance to do my first real battle against people anyway. Barnar, guys, please guard the carriages.”

Barnar’s party reacted with disbelief at my words, while the bandits erupted in vulgar laughter.

“Seriously? Did I hear right? A brat like you is going to all of us on? And this is your first real battle against people too!? You’re going to make us laugh to death.”

I, however, grinned as I taunted them even more.

“Yeah, I expect it’ll be a piece of cake. And it’s not *all of you*, it’s *just you* for me, savvy?”

My words sent the bandits in an almost comical fit of rage.

“What the hell did you say!?…I’ve heard enough! Tear the brat a new one!!”

Following the furious leader’s order, his lackeys drew their swords. Barnar and his comrades finally regained their bearings and shouted at me.

“Hey, Haruto!! You can’t possibly take all of them on by yourself, can you!?”

“This is your first real battle against human opponents, right? You don’t have to push yourself so hard!”

“We’ll fight with you!! Change your mind while you still can!”

As these voices reached my ears, I walked towards the bandits.

I was glad that Barnar and the others felt that way, but they might end up getting in my way and I didn’t want them to be injured.

“I’ll be okay, leave it to me.”

I then drew my blade.

I did not take any particular stance, however — just let it dangle from my right hand.

It might have looked like I was being lazy or sloppy.

It was a real sword stance, though, only feasible to those who had mastered sword skills, the “Stance of Nothingness”.

The bandits probably thought I was looking down on them, as they charged at me, howling even angrier than before.

The first offensive came from three bandits.

I dodged their slashes at the last second and countered by slicing their necks.

I felt the sensation of cutting through flesh, but did not experience any guilt or aversion to killing other humans.

When I was almost killed by the knights and gained my new powers, I decided not to have any mercy to my enemies.

With this oath in my heart, I did not feel any hesitation about killing those who attacked me with murderous intent.

As the three bandits collapsed on the ground, I swung my sword to wipe the blood off.

“Damnit!! What are you standing around for!? Surround the brat and kill him!!”

The leader, struck by the sight of three of his lackeys dropping at the same time, ordered his lackeys to surround me and was promptly obeyed.

They were over 20 in total.

If so many people attacked me at the same time our blades would end up clashing several times, I thought, so I was worried that my sword would break, but…

Oh yeah, I just need to increase the sword’s endurance.

I quickly created a suitable skill with All Creation.

<<Skill “Enchant” acquired. The skill level reached 10. Skill added to Magic Unification.>> 

Enchant was a type of magic that could attach particular effects to items etc.

The effect I would attach this time was “Fierce Blade”. It raised the sharpness and endurance of swords and katanas.

I actually wanted to attach various other effects, but the number of effects that could be attached on a weapon depended on its rarity and endurance.

The sword I currently wielded could only house one at most.

As soon as the enchanting was complete, the 22 bandits attacked me all at the same time.

I ignored the ones that attacked me from behind and charged the ones in front instead.

The bandits in front of me tried using their swords to shield themselves, but I swept through them all the same.

The next instant, my blade had cleaved the bandits in two, sword included.

I thus broke through the encirclement, but there were still bandits to deal with, who attacked me from behind the ones I defeated.

I was surrounded again: I waited for the bandits to get close enough, then activated the low-grade wind magic spell Wind Slash, which produced a blade of wind.

I didn’t unleash it like that, however, but kept it wrapped around my sword and waited.

I then visualized it spreading in a circular motion and performed a full rotation on my feet while swinging my sword.

“What!?”

The bandits reacted with shock as the blade of wind spread in a circle, just as I visualized.

The magic spell was shot at the same speed of my sword swing, reaping the lives of more than 10 bandits at once.

Satisfied by the magic spell acting exactly as I imagined, I started walking towards the leader of the bandits.

“Y-you…you’re a monster!!”

The leader, shrieking pathetically, fell on his butt and desperately crawled away from me.

The other surviving bandits were about eight. They stood in my way, valiantly defending their leader, but their legs were shaking.

“Y-you’re not getting any closer to the boss!!”

The bandit leader inspired unexpected loyalty, I thought.

I was considering such thought, impressed, when the eight bandits attacked me.

I dodged each of their attacks, finishing them off in turn.

After all his lackeys died, the leader started begging for his life.

“P-please!! Spare me!! I don’t want to die yet!!”

“What? You tried killing us, but now you say you don’t want to die? Pretty selfish of you, don’t you think? What about all your subordinates that died?”

“T-that…”

The leader did not say another word.

I should go ahead and kill him too.

So I thought as I raised my sword to give the final blow, but Barnar stopped me.

“Hey, Haruto. You’ve already done enough.”

“Barnar, this guy tried to kill us.”

“That’s true, but…looking at this carnage, anyone would try to stop you.”

I looked at the surroundings: it was like a sea of blood.

I felt no guilt towards the act of killing people, but I wasn’t exactly a fan of gore.

This feels kind of sickening…I thought, then I heard the familiar robotic voice.

<<Skill “Mental Fortitude” acquired. Skill level reached 10. Skill added to Magic Unification.>> 

As the voice trailed off, I felt much better too.

All Creation had created another skill for me on its own.

This skill was really useful beyond limits…

It also helped me regain my cool a bit.

“…I suppose I really went overboard. I’m sorry, Barnar…but I want you to leave this guy to me.”

“H-hey…you’re going to kill him, after all?”

“No, I won’t.”

Barnar seemed relieved to hear my answer.

“ —well, he’s going to have a bad time, though.”

Barnar and his party looked at each other, with stiff expressions on their faces.

~

After I punched the bandit leader’s stomach and knocked him unconscious, I started by cleaning up the surroundings.

I used an Earth magic spell to gather the corpses, the parts scattered everywhere and the ground bathed with blood and buried them on the side of the road. I leveled the ground afterwards, naturally.

After I finished I dug another hole and buried the bandit leader there, with only his face sticking out. 

Next to it, I planted a board that read “I am the leader of the bandits that was terrorizing this area”.

Barnar’s party — who watched everything I did — and Bacchus, who got down from the carriage halfway, looked at me in disbelief, though.

“Eh? What’s wrong? Burying him was too much? Maybe I should hang him from a tree…”

“No no no, that’s more than enough! Really!”

Bacchus interjected and did not let me finish my sentence.

I couldn’t see the problem and cocked my head to the side, but Barnar and the others sighed helplessly.

~

After a while, we got on the horse carriages again and resumed our way to Vaana.

We were quietly rocked by the carriage for some time, then Barnar spoke to me as if recalling something.

“Oh yeah, Haruto…what wind magic was that? I never saw anything like that before.”

Hm? Oh, the circle one, probably.

“It’s a variation of Wind Slash, basically. By launching it with a circular movement, you can turn it into an attack that goes in all directions. The offensive power and range change depending on the magic power used, but…well, for a first attempt it worked pretty well, I guess.”

Barnar was once again bewildered by my answer.

“You created a magic spell on your first attempt!? By the way…it looked like it activated when the enemy was pretty close, does it take a lot of magic power to cast?”

“Not really, it was about the same as a normal Wind Slash. I actually kept it pretty low, if I infused more magic power the slash would have affected a wider range…and I didn’t *create* spell, just *modified* it a bit.”

“…a spell as powerful like that was *kept pretty low*…? You’re really something else…”

Barnar looked at me as if I was an alien or a supernatural phenomenon.

Don’t look at me like that, for god’s sake…

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