Reincarnation of the Swordmaster Chapter 26

Asher stepped out of the office.

Reika, who had been waiting, approached quickly.

“What did you talk about?”

“Just some trivial matters. It went well.”

Boros readily agreed that his offer to help was not an empty promise. He was curious why Asher wanted an intelligence organization, but he did not pry.

Reika breathed a sigh of relief.

“Phew. I thought you had caused some trouble again.”

“……”

He had caused trouble. Reika just wasn’t there to know it.

Asher changed the subject.

“Are you going to go back now?”

“I have to. The atmosphere is too tense to stay any longer.”

The arrival of outsiders had caused the disturbance, making things unpleasant for everyone. Reika frowned.

“Caron. That guy, I have to ask the lord about him.”

“He’ll handle it. Have you gathered your things?”

“Mostly. Not much left now.”

“Then I’ll step away for a moment.”

“Where are you going?”

“To mourn.”

Asher answered briefly and walked down the corridor. He took a bottle of liquor from the wall and headed outside the castle to a small hill near the domain.

Asher sat on a small rock and opened the bottle. A luxurious smell wafted out.

It was the expensive liquor that Balvarka used to detest, claiming that cheap drinks had their own taste, which he enjoyed.

But Asher knew. He also liked fine liquor; it was just that he couldn’t afford such luxuries and had to settle for cheap ones.

Asher tipped the bottle. The spilled liquor soaked the grass and soil.

“It’s okay to indulge in luxury after death, right? Well done, Balvarka.”

Balvarka’s body was nowhere to be found. It had been twenty years since he had died silently, making it nearly impossible to locate him. It was too shabby an end for a hero.

“…….”

Asher clenched his fist. Such an end was not fitting for a hero.

Great hero Balvarka had many accomplishments. He should have aged as a beloved lord and father, and died surrounded by people’s grief. That would have been a fitting ending.

But now, a doppelgänger had killed the hero and was impersonating him, and no one, not even his son, had noticed.

The story felt twisted. It was as if the proper conclusion had not been reached, just scrambled senselessly.

“This is depressing.”

Asher threw the liquor bottle.

***

Three days later, Reika’s group returned to the Irak domain. The incident at the Bellaturia domain had become known, and people fell into confusion. Everyone started fearing and doubting each other.

And the person most troubled was the lord, Revebrock.

“This is driving me mad.”

Revebrock held his forehead while leaning back in his chair. He had sent Caron to resolve the problem, but he had brought back a bigger one instead.

“Balvarka was a doppelgänger?”

“…Yes.”

Caron answered with a blank face, and Revebrock sighed hopelessly.

“Balvarka was a doppelgänger.”

Revebrock had seen Balvarka himself decades ago. The spirit and will of Balvarka still held strong in his memories.

But to think that Balvarka had died and a doppelgänger had been impersonating him.

“…Was this what Haiban meant?”

Caron was still blankly prostrated. Revebrock pressed his forehead.

“Caron.”

“Yes.”

“It’s already in the past, isn’t it?”

“But.”

Caron bit his lip.

“But I.”

“Tsk.”

Revebrock clicked his tongue. He knew why Caron was acting this way.

“Caron. I know everything about you and I’ve accepted you. Moreover, it wasn’t your will.”

“But…”

“Enough.”

Revebrock frowned.

“Didn’t I tell you not to dwell on the past? Or are you so weak that a few words from a doppelgänger could shake your mind?”

“…….”

“We have matters to discuss now, and we can’t afford to waste time on your past. Get a grip. Caron, the knight of Irak.”

Caron’s eyes slowly lit up as Revebrock’s stern words hit him. Revebrock banged on the table.

“The hero defeated the demon king over fifty years ago and those things were supposed to decadet.”

“Something must have twisted.”

“Or it was a lie.”

“That seems like too extreme a thought.”

“Then why have the monsters returned?”

“…….”

Caron couldn’t answer. Revebrock shook his head.

“Whatever the case, they’ve returned. Now we need to prepare for them. …Thinking about it, it’s a relief.

Revebrock sighed in relief.

“I nearly sold my daughter to a doppelgänger.”

It was a terrifying thought, having almost handed his beloved daughter over to a monster. But there was still one nagging doubt.

“…Asher had uncovered the identity of the doppelgänger?”

“Yes.”

Caron confirmed.

“He knew not only the characteristics but also the weaknesses of the doppelgänger.”

“I really don’t know.”

Revebrock stroked his chin. To him, the current Asher was too different.

“He changes suddenly, beats you in swordsmanship, and now he’s even noticed the doppelgänger. Does he not even try to hide that he’s suspicious?”

“It’s more like a kind of indifference.”

“Indifference?”

“Yes.”

Indifferent to how others see him.

Revebrock chuckled at Caron’s words.

“He really is different. What do you think? Should we be wary of him, or is there no need?”

Caron closed his eyes for a moment and then spoke.

“I think it will be fine.”

“Are you sure he won’t be hostile to us?”

“If he was an evil being, there would have been no reason to reveal the doppelgänger’s identity. If he wanted to harm us,

There have already been multiple opportunities. On the way back, you could have killed us all and disappeared. But you didn’t.” He didn’t actively try to do anything, but that didn’t mean he intended to harm humans. Karan thought there was no need to be hostile towards him.

“This is fine, isn’t it?”

“Even if someone else is impersonating Asher?”

“Did the lord care about Asher?”

“Of course not. I don’t care what happens to such a person.”

Indifference oozed from Lebrock’s voice. Only Benesia had ever held any affection for the Asher of the past.

“Alright. Let’s leave the matter of Asher here.”

Asher and another distinct human. That was his plan of treatment.

Now, onto the main topic.

“Hyban warned me to strengthen my forces. And then a Doppelganger appeared. What could be next?”

“…Monsters.”

Those were the things that had been in opposition to humans for the longest time.

Karan groaned.

***

‘That settles it.’

Asher was listening to their conversation from the window. Having heard the outcome about himself, Asher let go of the window sill and came down.

‘There should be nothing to worry about now.’

Lebrock and Karan’s wary eyes had been irritating. Now that the doubt was gone, he could act more freely.

Suddenly, Asher chuckled.

‘You, of all people.’

Lebrock had watched Asher grow up from a young age. Yet, he said it didn’t matter what became of him. Asher grew increasingly curious about what Asher had been in the past.

“It’s late today, what were you doing?”

When he visited the training ground, Rayka was practicing swordsmanship as usual. Now that he could focus solely on the sword without worrying about other things, her movements were sharper than before.

Asher silently watched her. She, like Lebrock, had known Asher since they were children.

However, she hadn’t doubted Asher significantly. Asher asked her,

“Do you think I’m strange?”

“What are you talking about all of a sudden?”

Rayka frowned as if he was talking nonsense. Asher continued,

“I have changed.”

Even Lebrock, who had watched him since childhood, did not believe it. It was unlikely that Rayka wouldn’t doubt him.

Rayka clicked her tongue.

“I wondered what you were starting to say. Didn’t I tell you? I was never interested in you.”

That was literally what it meant. Rayka had no interest at all in Asher.

“Whether you’ve changed or not, it’s none of my business. Why should I care?”

Asher felt better having changed. Thus, there was no past to be concerned about in her view.

Noticing her attitude, Asher burst into laughter, causing Rayka to become flustered.

“What’s wrong? Are you hurt?”

“No.”

Asher waved his hand and stepped away.

“I’ll go it alone today. I have a place to be.”

“Okay. Yeah.”

Asher left Rayka behind and walked out of the village. The gazes of the people watching him were complicated.

‘In the end, no one really saw you.’

The past Asher was ignored by everyone. Whether he was there or not didn’t matter. Only Benesia had shown him affection.

‘Or maybe not.’

Even Benesia wasn’t much different. He had changed, but Benesia hadn’t questioned him. She was just pleased with the turn of events.

In the end, Benesia didn’t truly love the human Asher. She was merely obsessed with the idea of the child she had raised.

No one truly watched over Asher.

‘Poor kid.’

No. He wasn’t pitiable. Their indifference towards Asher was Asher’s own doing.

As they said, it was none of their business. He had far too much to attend to.

‘The doppelganger said,’

The doppelganger had realized Asher’s identity and reacted. The reaction was different from what Asher expected.

Not just shock but as if realizing something, it cried out dejectedly,

– Why are you here?

Surprised by the unexpected reaction, Asher wanted to interrogate, but the doppelganger had killed itself and returned to the darkness at that moment. However, one thing was clear.

It knew about him.

Asher continued his walk, entering an alleyway. When he felt no human presence, Asher spoke to the air.

“Come out.”

“You’re a sharp little guy.”

As Asher’s words ended, someone walked out from the other side. A frivolous-looking man. He smirked while watching Asher.

“Are you my new employer?”

“Not an employer, just borrowing.”

Boros kept his word. Three days later, his information network had arrived in Irak territory.

The man in front of him was the owner of that network.

The man flicked a dagger.

“Anyway, you’re my employer now, right? You’re Asher, correct? I’m Kaius.”

Kaius chuckled,

“I’ve been impressed watching your deeds. Killing a doppelganger secretly. Scary stuff.”

“You’ve been watching?”

Asher hadn’t noticed his gaze. Kaius laughed heartily.

“In a treacherous world, you’ve got to keep a trick or two hidden. Seems like you have more secrets, hearing what the doppelganger said as it died?”

“You have sharp ears.”

Asher slightly furrowed his brow. Kaius nonchalantly said,

“If an information network can’t do that, it’s useless. So. Young master. What do you want to use us for?”

Kaius looked at Asher with interest,

“Surely you’re not asking us to find the neighbor’s dog?”

“Before that,”

Asher flicked his fingers.

“Hand over the information you have.”



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