Reincarnation of the Swordmaster Chapter 6

Training (1)

“Is that so? I didn’t think anything special happened.”

“It must be a matter of perspective.”

To those who have lived here their whole life, about twenty years, it would seem like just ordinary time passing by.

But he had lived through the previous generation and had direct relations with those mentioned in the historical records. To him, it seemed to be filled with indescribable events.

“Anyway, it’s just a history book. A history book. Stories that will be recorded forever. They have nothing to do with us.”

“That’s right.”

Asher nodded with a smile. Of course, his name was not recorded in any history book. After all, he was just a captain of the guard. Not worthy enough to be mentioned in the history books.

Leika got up from the hay and dusted off her buttocks.

“Ah. Asher. I have a favor to ask.”

“Let me hear it.”

“Take me as your disciple!”

She pushed her face forward, her eyes sparkling as she came close enough for him to feel her breath. He pushed her away with one hand and said,

“I refuse.”

***

“…That’s blunt. But still, it’s the employer’s request.”

Leika mumbled with a stupefied face. However, Asher’s decision was firm.

He had overseen almost all the guards in the empire and had taught swordsmanship to many foster children. But that had always been in the realm of advice. Never had he taken an actual disciple.

From the beginning, it was obvious. He was not great enough to teach anyone.

He had trained in the Empire’s swordsmanship, but after all, it was just the Empire’s swordsmanship. Simple enough that even a snotty kid could learn, which is why he was able to learn it.

In other words, his level wasn’t that spectacular. He believed one could reach it with time investment, without needing a master.

“So… just to foster successors.”

“Are you going to learn the Empire’s swordsmanship?”

Asher let out a laugh of ridicule as Leika hesitated. She had no intention of doing so. Almost no one who pursued the path of the sword trained in Empire’s swordsmanship, and she was no exception.

“A disciple who does not learn the master’s sword techniques. Can such a person even be called a disciple? That’s curious.”

“But… there’s this saying! That one learns more from their disciples….”

“Me, from you?”

Asher chuckled. It was a clear mockery.

“You’re joking too much.”

“Hey…”

Leika clenched her fist, thinking Asher was belittling her, but the reality was the opposite.

“I have nothing to learn from you.”

Talented individuals cannot understand those without talent because for them, certain things are a given. They get frustrated with those who cannot do these basic things and eventually give up. He had experienced it too many times.

“Having you as a disciple would just be a waste of time. I have no intention of doing so.”

She might have something to learn from him, but not the other way around. Asher was not a philanthropist, and he certainly didn’t have time to spare. Eventually, Leika hung her head dejectedly as Asher sat back on the hay.

“But that doesn’t mean it’s completely impossible.”

“Huh?”

Leika looked up. Asher grinned. This was an opportunity for him. Perhaps he should use it.

“If I get permission from the lord, I’ll consider it. How about that?”

She nodded blankly.

***

Place the left arm behind the back. Spread the legs wide, and grab the ground with the right hand. Bend and extend the arms repeatedly.

After about twenty times, his arms began to tremble. He sprang up with a jerk and massaged his arms.

“Twenty times, huh.”

Asher frowned. Twenty push-ups with one arm was hardly adequate. It would take at least a year to bring him to an acceptable level.

‘If things go well, there will be plenty of time.’

Asher thought as he picked up the sword. His arms screamed, but he ignored them and swung his sword. The Empire’s sword techniques slowly unfolded at his fingertips.

‘I wonder how it’s going now.’

It was about time to talk. The proposal Leika made was one. To ask the lord to relieve him of his duties as an employee. It was only natural if he was to truly take on the role of a mentor, and she had easily agreed.

If successful, he would have ten hours of free time a day. Even if he taught Leika, it would only be about two hours. To him, it was a gain, not a loss.

If things went well, he might be willing to teach her this and that, although it would be a different lesson from what Leika had in mind.

He chuckled and moved his sword.

The muscles screamed. The mind shouted its limits, but he did not stop. How many hours had he been training today?

‘About seven hours.’

He estimated as he twisted his wrist. A sudden pain almost made him drop the sword, but he forced a swing. He turned around. His waist screamed.

If any other swordsman saw him now, they might call him insane. The body is not made of metal. It does not become stronger just by hardening; training beyond certain limits should not be done, and corresponding rest is absolutely necessary.

But he kept swinging his sword, as if he was unaware of what rest was. His whole body attempted to cease movement, but he moved by sheer willpower.

He was not unaware of it. In his past life, onOptionsItemSelected

It’s nothing.’ He laughed at the sudden thought. Was it not?

Swordmaster.

The realm of a great human. Swordmaster. Even if it was right before his death, he had reached that place. Just remembering brought a smile to his lips.

In the end, he had not been wrong. The path he had taken, which others called madness, was not an error. He was overjoyed by this realization. But he had his doubts.

‘…Why is the aura’s color…’

It was widely accepted that the color of one’s aura followed the color of their eyes. The swordmasters he had seen were no exception.

However, his aura was a stark white, completely different from his ashen-colored eyes.

Moreover, with shaking hands, he grasped the sword. He moved his immovable body towards the tree. He grasped the sword. The aura did not manifest. The senses were alive, but like a blocked dam, there was no response.

But when he swung the sword down, his muscles exploded, and he pulled his arms.

Boom!

The air burst, and the tree shook. Fallen leaves slowly descended, obscuring his view. He massaged his creaking muscles.

“This is strange.”

He could not understand. Not this power, nor the reason for his reincarnation. He lifted his head.

‘The capital of the empire.’

There, was the Gate of Swords.

Perhaps, he could find answers there. He planned to leave on his twentieth birthday. Until then, he would train his body to his satisfaction. That was his current plan.

Hours later, Reyka, looking tired, came to him. His answer was affirmative.

***

He swung his sword. The trajectory painted the air, the tightly gripped hand smoothly slicing through the atmosphere.

“What brings you here?”

‘I’ stopped the sword. He casually shook off the sweat and turned.

A woman stood there. She was beautiful, but her emotionless expression was off-putting as if she was a doll. She shook her head.

“Nothing.”

“Then leave?”

He spoke indifferently and resumed swinging his sword. However, she did not move. Still with an emotionless face, but now with a vacant look in her eyes.

‘Annoying.’

Though irked, he did not stop his sword. From experience, he knew she wouldn’t leave just because he told her to. He continued to wield his sword, ingraining the swordsmanship he had honed for the last twenty years into his fingertips.

“Why go to such lengths?”

“What?”

He retorted at the sudden question. Though his mind was briefly distracted, his body repeated the memorized motions. He lowered his stance, turned, and used the recoil to thrust forward. She began to speak with the same blunt face.

“You have no talent.”

“…”

What a thing to say.

He swung his sword again, impassively. Had anyone else heard that, they might have exploded in anger and thrown their sword at her, but he didn’t react. It wasn’t the first time he’d heard it.

“So what?”

“Because I’m telling you. You can trust me. You have no talent.”

She declared it as if sentencing him. He glanced at her, unmoved.

“You might never escape the Imperial Swordsmanship. Sure, with time and experience, you can’t be called weak as a warrior… But you won’t change. You don’t want that kind of life, right?”

“So, you’re telling me to find something else?”

“Finding your own talent is the right path.”

“Bullshit.”

I snorted. Despite the conversation, my body continued to execute the sword techniques. The techniques etched into me by hundreds, thousands of repetitions did not waver.

“Annoying, but yeah. I don’t have talent. Even a random kid on the street might be more enjoyable to teach. But so what?”

This was the path I had chosen. If I planned to let talent define me, I would have given up long ago, perhaps right after graduating from the academy. But I didn’t lay down my sword.

“I do this because I want to. So, shut up and get lost.”

“…Really? Then there’s nothing I can do. It’s your life.”

“Is this why you’ve been watching me for days?”

“I finished a job. I had some time, so I came to see the man the rumors are all about. You are exactly as the rumors say.”

“You’re probably more famous than me.”

I stopped the sword. I didn’t remember her name, but I knew who the woman before me was. A sword genius. A talent monster. And the youngest swordmaster.

“Did you know? I thought you didn’t realize since you didn’t react at all these days.”

“So, should I pack some praises and adoration for a woman who doesn’t leave when told to?”

Her face finally showed emotion, amused, she lightly laughed.

“At least those who pursue the path of the sword would do that. Or show jealousy and hatred. But you are unusual. Not hatred, not adoration, just indifference. It was worth the visit to see you. Your name?”

“──.”

“Right. ──. Let me tell you one thing.”

She smiled. A twisted, madness-filled smile was directed at me.

“You will achieve nothing. Your talent is that miserable and futile. All your life’s effort won’t amount to even decent grain, you’ll return to the earth without even becoming a third-rate swordsman. That’s your future.”

“So. What’s your glorious name?”

I spoke impassively. She laughed.

“Rephania. Rephania Harvest.”

***

I opened my eyes.

“…….”

Asher swept away the blanket and sat up. The young body felt disconnected from the dream.

‘It was a dream.’

It had been a while. Besides, a dream of a past life. His youthful way of speaking was hard to adapt to.

Rephania. Even when he had become an old man, she hadn’t changed. Still beautiful, still twisted. She must still be alive. What might she be doing?

“Huh.”

He got up from his spot. There was no time to be lost in such idle thoughts. Reyka would be waiting for him by now.

“Kick.”

Suddenly, Asher laughed. She had always told him. You have no talent. You will achieve nothing.

But what about that? At the end of his life, he had reached a realm of accomplishment. And now, he was teaching the sword to someone who could be considered his successor, a student of hers. The irony made Asher unable to contain his laughter.

In the end, he couldn’t hold back his laughter anymore. The sound filled the room and spread outside. When had he last laughed like this? Thirty years? Forty years? It had been a very long time indeed.

“You were wrong, Rephania. Always wrong.”

Chuckling, he left the room.



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