Reincarnation of the Swordmaster Chapter 30

With a low cry, the spear made a smooth arc toward her neck. Caught off guard for a moment, Reyka quickly snapped back to reality.

Clash!

“Ugh!” Though she dodged it narrowly, her wrist throbbed in pain. She slowly stepped back as the goblin chuckled softly.

“Not bad at all.”

Swoosh!

The spear blade surged forward. Reyka frantically waved her wrist, creating afterimages that obscured her form. However, the goblin calmly twisted the spear shaft, effortlessly clearing the afterimages.

Clang!

“Damn it!” Reyka swung her sword fiercely, but the smoothly moving spear shaft blocked every strike.

She gritted her teeth and kicked the ground, sending splinters of wood flying toward the goblin. With a single twirl of his spear, he deflected all the fragments.

Despite that, it bought her some time. Reyka quickly moved out of the spear’s range.

Panting heavily, her breath reached her jaw, and her face started turning pale using up every ounce of oxygen left in her body.

But she had no time to rest. The goblin in front of her was that formidable.

“What are you.”

Reyka bit her lip. The spear technique displayed by the goblin was exactly what she had aimed for.

It was the swordsmanship she aspired to—dominating her with mere pristine skill without any complex movements or mysterious tricks.

The goblin almost seemed like Asher. Denying the sudden thought, she gripped her sword fiercely.

“I am a warrior,” the goblin declared, his spear ready in both hands.

“Then show me your strength, human. You can still move, can’t you?”

The spear sliced through the air. Reyka screamed as she forced her hand to move. She managed to dodge by the barest margin, but she was reaching her limit.

This is it! Clenching her teeth, she shook her wrist. Illusions of her sword spread in all directions.

“Wow.”

The goblin blurted out in admiration as the illusions twisted and filled the space. Beautiful as blossoming flowers, the blades were all directed at the goblin.

“Ha.”

Reyka smiled. She had recently hit her limit. No matter how much she trained, she felt no stronger. Asher had said it was natural, and that it was odd she hadn’t faced this block until now, but she wanted to advance to the next stage quickly.

And now, like many talented individuals before her, Reyka transcended her limits in a life-or-death situation. Though her body was still pushed to its limits, a sense of fulfillment surged through her.

“Die!”

With a fierce cry, illusions moved. They scraped the ground and ripped through the air, enveloping the goblin. As the goblin’s figure was obscured by the illusions, Reyka grinned, but the goblin lightly maneuvered his spear shaft.

Twirl.

The spear traced a perfect circle, disturbing the twisted illusions. The space-consuming attack was disrupted by the linear motion.

“Oops.”

Reyka hastily twisted her wrist, instinctively realizing she would be hit, but it was already too late.

The tip of the spear pierced through a gap in the distorted illusions.

Her sword technique was broken.

Crack.

“Gah…”

She was slammed against a tree by the spear shaft, spitting blood. She tried to lift her sword, but her hand wouldn’t move. She had truly reached her limit.

‘If only my body were normal…’

She sneered at her own thoughts. It was an excuse. Even though she had reached a new level during the fight, she had been completely overpowered. Even if she had been in perfect condition, the outcome wouldn’t have been much different. The goblin was clearly superior.

‘Am I going to die?’

It was something she had prepared for the moment she followed Asher, but her trembling body couldn’t be helped. She was still young. A prodigy, yet she hadn’t overcome her fear of death.

But she didn’t want to be contemptible.

“Human, interfering in a fair duel is a grave sin. I hope you have the strength to match!” The spear moved, and Asher drew his sword. The clash of metal rang out as they lunged at each other, their blades narrowly missing by a hair’s breadth.

Clang!

The sword and spear collided. The pinnacle of skill flashed as they passed each other, quickly distancing themselves.

“…You.”

Asher stared at the goblin, his face filled with shock. The goblin before him displayed not the reckless spearplay of a monster, but a systematic movement perfected through countless training and real combat.

A goblin mastering such spear techniques? And it seemed the goblin was just as stunned, looking back at Asher with a blank expression before bursting into laughter and stamping the spear on the ground.

“So it is. You’re no fake.”

“Fake?”

“Today is a good day. To meet a fake yet decent human, and a genuine human. The commands invading my mind have always been a curse, but now, I feel almost grateful!”

The goblin charged. Its spear twisted like a snake aiming for a shoulder. Asher stepped back, lowering his stance and thrusting his sword. The goblin pushed the sword aside with the spear shaft and stabbed with the spearhead, but Asher harshly twisted his ankle and turned, maintaining his low stance. The goblin hastily retreated.

“Ha! Good!”

The goblin roared, his eyes blazing with fervor, and swung his spear through the air.

***

Rayka watched the battle with vacant eyes, the spear tracing arcs and the sword creating lines. She moaned at the display of supreme skill.

“Ah…”

She knew. Her swordsmanship and Asher’s were different.

But she never felt she was inferior. Her swordsmanship was that of a hero, and Asher’s was the Imperial sword technique. She believed that someday she would catch up.

That belief shattered now.

“Ah…”

The spear and sword moved. To her, trained in the simplistic movements of Lepenia’s sword, their motions seemed rudely basic.

Yet, they were beautiful. Rayka couldn’t take her eyes off their movement, enchanted.

***

‘A goblin speaking human language and mastering spear techniques?’

Asher thought as he blocked the spear. It was strong. No wonder Rayka had lost. How strange the world had become. A sneer escaped him unknowingly.

“This is what I’ve wanted. A true blood fight!”

The goblin appeared genuinely joyful, stamping his spear on the ground, eyes glittering as he straightened it.

“Come. Let’s see the end of it.”

“Sorry, but I can’t afford that.”

“You think I’ll let you run away?”

“That’s how it’s going to be.”

As Asher spoke, the goblin hesitated. Flames erupted behind him.

Sparks wildly set the forest ablaze, and screams of goblins echoed around. The goblin’s pupils dilated.

“Kyaaak! This!”

“If you’re willing to fight leaving your kin to burn, that’s fine.”

“…”

The goblin glared at Asher as if to tear him apart. A weaker person might have had their heart stop from the murderous intent, but Asher simply smiled back.

“Despicably cowardly.”

“Isn’t that a human’s exclusive right?”

“Hmph.”

The goblin stamped his spear on the ground. The sound echoed, and footsteps gradually approached.

“As stupid as it is, I can’t leave my kin to die.”

“You can save many if you try.”

“Human, you must be a resident of the place we’re invading?”

Asher nodded silently. The goblin smiled slightly.

“Look forward to later. You won’t be able to run then.”

The goblin returned to the forest. The sounds faded, and eventually, he disappeared. Asher sighed deeply.

“We need to talk. Hyban.”

He picked up the unconscious Rayka. For someone unconscious, she looked quite peaceful. Asher held a goblin corpse in one hand and slowly walked away.

***

The city gates came into view.

Finally arrived.

He moved his creaking legs and reached the gates. A terrified guardsman pushed his spear forward.

“Stop! Who goes there?”

“It’s me.”

“…Asher?”

Recognizing the voice, the guardsman’s eyes widened. Covered in greenish blood, Asher was hard to recognize.

“How about opening the gate? There’s a lady on my back too.”

“What, what? A lady!”

Recognizing Rayka on his back, the guardsman hurriedly descended to the gate. The gate rolled open noisily. Several people were clustered inside the village.

“What are you doing here?”

“We were looking for the lady who disappeared. What about you…”

The guardsman trailed off. Perhaps because of this? Asher threw down the goblin’s corpse he held. People recoiled in horror.

“This is one of the attackers’ corpses. Do with it as you will. But…”

“What, what?”

“I’d appreciate if you made way. We’re tired. The lady needs rest too.”

“Right, right.”

The guardsman nodded absentmindedly. No one blocked Asher’s path as he entered the fortress. He handed over Rayka to a swooning maid and entered the bathroom. Stripping off his clothes, he poured water over his body, washing away the hardened green blood.

“Phew.”

He felt the suppressed pain throughout his body. His muscles creaked and his cartilage screamed as if reaching its limits.

‘I haven’t overexerted myself like this in a long time.’

A full day’s rest should suffice. His body’s healing power was bizarrely quick. People would soon swarm in, and the lord would pry, but that was for later. For now, he wanted to rest. His thoughts drifted to the goblin he had fought.

‘That goblin.’

A goblin that could speak and walked the path of martial arts. He had never seen such a thing before. Perhaps this goblin too had appeared as the world twisted. Moreover, that spear technique.

It was alien. Not merely wielded for survival or to kill enemies, but for a higher purpose, to realize its own worth and to reach the end of its path.

A goblin possessing intelligence and walking the path of martial arts. Quite the entertaining joke.

‘What could it be?’

He would know in a few days.

Asher submerged into the bathwater and closed his eyes.



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