Thursday, 28 November 2013

KNM: Volume 3 Chapter 5

This chapter is brought to you by AnmesicCat, Masadeer, and StellarAshes.

Holy Knight

Daylight had just climbed out of the healing Maxun before he noticed Silver Mask, Kaiser, Meinan, and Jetter, who had a distasteful expression on his face. They were all standing in front of the healing Maxun, staring at him.

Daylight was baffled, so he asked as he walked towards everyone: “Are you guys waiting for me?”

“Yup. We’re waiting for you so we can be on our way.” Kaiser answered

“On our way?” Daylight was even more confused.

“There was suddenly an academy ranking match this year, so every academy will be sending a five-person team to the match.” Meinan explained the situation to Daylight.

“The old geezer Barbalis didn’t realize the match was the day after those Violet students came to cause trouble, and that would be today. We’re short on time, so we’re here waiting for you so we can be on our way.” Kaiser snapped.

“Academy ranking match? Aklan Academy had been the best for years, why is there suddenly a ranking match?”

Daylight suddenly felt heavy responsibility placed upon his shoulders. If they lost and it caused Aklan Academy’s ranking to drop, wouldn’t they suddenly be the sinners of Aklan Academy’s history?

“Barbalis said, the other academies have joined forces against him.” Kaiser snapped and grunted:

“That damn old geezer, if I were in other academies, I would make him pay too!”

Daylight looked at the quiet Silver Mask on the side, walked in front of him and asked:

“Silver Mask, are you a member of this team too?”

Wearing the silver mask, Liola nodded at Daylight, whom seemed to have sighed in relief. As a defeated opponent, Daylight was quite clear of how strong Silver Mask was.

Daylight calmed down and began to get excited for the battle: “Let me go prepare for the trip then we’ll go.”

Kaiser pouted and took out a long pike — it was Daylight’s weapon.

Meinan opened a bag, inside were Silver Mask’s white, silver-lined uniform, gray Sorcerer robe, and Daylight’s blue-lined Knight’s uniform. Liola didn’t say anything, but his legs were wrapped by two Dragon tails: one was white, the other was red.

Everything was ready, even the Eastern Wind.
[T/N: The refers to the Battle of Red Cliff where two allied forces won a decisive victory because of the eastern wind, and it carried flame ships towards the enemy fleet.]

Kaiser snapped again: “The principal said, since we already have two Dragons, so we will have to ride the Dragons to the match, and therefore save on traveling fees.”

Daylight nodded. As he walked out of the healing room, he asked his Fire Dragon, Flames, to transform outside via telepathy. Liola walked out with Daylight and also used telepathy, asking Baolilong become bigger.

Before long, two giant Dragons stood tall on the plaza. Right after Daylight had gotten on Flames, Kaiser and Meinan too climbed up with him.

Daylight curiously turned around and looked at them, then he looked at Silver Mask, who was standing alone on top of the white Dragon.

“One of you could go ride Silver Mask’s Dragon.” Daylight reminded them.

Meinan’s face suddenly changed, then shook his head continuously. Kaiser said: “No, thank you. We’re not too terribly interested in things like 720 degree turns in mid air.”

“Wait a minute, what about me?” Jetter, who had been silent, suddenly yelled anxiously.

“You?” Kaiser said coldly: “I remember you are from the School of Mecha Fighters? Do the students there not have Mechas to use?”

Jetter ground his teeth and said: “My Mecha can’t be used for long distance flights. I’ve already used a flying Maxun to send it to the match!”

Kaiser smiled sinisterly.

Everyone who knew Kaiser would know that it was the same smile he puts on whenever he saw the misery of other people.

Not only was his smile despicable, the sound he makes when he laughs would wanted to make the listeners punch him in the face:

“Then… You go sit on Silver Mask’s White Dragon. It’s a Sacred White Dragon, and not something you would have a chance to ride whenever you want.”

Jetter looked at Silver Mask hesitantly. Since Silver Mask had some conflicts with him, Jetter thought that if Silver Mask want to take revenge on him, wouldn’t it be easy to give him a little push in mid air?

As if he had read Jetter’s mind, Kaiser lightly flung his fingers and said.

“Don’t worry. If Silver Mask wanted to kill you, it wouldn’t be much harder than stepping on an ant. He wouldn’t take you up into the sky, and then push you off as if he was trying to announce to the world that he killed you.”

Though Jetter was furious at the tone of Kaiser’s voice, he couldn’t refute Kaiser’s statement. Besides, it was indeed a rare chance to ride on the Sacred White Dragon! So with a grudge against Silver Mask, and excitement with riding the Sacred White Dragon, Jetter stepped onto the Dragon and headed to the match.


Jetter didn’t noticed at all why Kaiser and Meinan would rather ride on Daylight’s Red Dragon instead of the Sacred White Dragon. But before long, he understood completely.

With a child’s heart, Baolilong wasn’t at all interested in ‘smooth flight’. His favorite thing to do in the air was tumbling.

Baolilong didn’t like flying straight, but instead flying in the shape of an ‘S’ was his favorite. Flying into the path of a wave was also a common occurrence.

Anyway, since it was rare for Baolilong to return to its true form nowadays, it would always play when it was back in Dragon form, often to the point where it forgets its master was riding on its back.

Fortunately, Baolilong’s master happened to be the best Assassin with a terrifying sense of balance, otherwise Baolilong probably would’ve killed its master a countless number of times. (So in a sense, perhaps Lanski should be thankful to Liola?)

“Let me down! Let me down!”

Jetter desperately screamed on the top of his lungs. Every now and then, Liola would grab him and “fish” him back to prevent him from being shaken off of Baolilong, and falling out of the sky to his death.

“Silver Mask’s balance is unbelievable. Is he really the same age as me?”

Daylight curiously asked. But as he said so, he suddenly remembered that there was an even bigger question that needed answering.

Daylight turned and looked at Kaiser, then asked skeptically:

“Kaiser, is Silver Mask really the Paladin’s apprentice? Why was that Violet Academy’s Water Dragon Knight so sure that he isn’t?”

Kaiser, who was originally laughing his head off at Jetter, heard Daylight’s question and almost choked on his own saliva. After coughing for a long while… Actually, he was using the time to desperately think of an excuse. Finally, under Daylight’s gaze, Kaiser bit the bullet and said:

“Well, you already know, Liola is Silver Mask.”

Daylight nodded. When Silver Mask was in danger, Daylight looked for Silver Mask, but instead saw Liola with a gray Sorcerer robe and a white-haired, pink-eyed child.

“He’s in a disguise because…” Kaiser showed a forced smile and continued, “Because his master, the Paladin, had told him so. As for why… well, maybe…”

“Because the Paladin didn’t want Liola to become arrogant.” Meinan quietly continued where Kaiser had left off.

Daylight’s gaze was now focused on Meinan.

“If everyone knew Liola was the Paladin’s apprentice, then their attitudes to him would be far different.” Meinan kept his calm and continued,

“In order to not let Liola be intoxicated by pretentious fame, the Paladin forbid Liola to announce himself as his apprentice, and he himself never said he has an apprentice, so the Water Dragon Knight said the Paladin has no apprentice.”

Daylight finally understood what happened, and he wasn’t at all suspicious of what Meinan had said.

Daylight continued:
“Whenever the principal needed Liola’s help, Liola would disguise himself as Silver Mask to help the principal. So that’s why. The Paladin’s thoughtfulness is really admirable, and Liola is certainly worthy to be his apprentice. Liola even entered the School of Sorcery, and he didn’t disobey his master’s order even if Knights with lower rank than him would insult him.”

Daylight nodded in satisfaction, and he was no longer skeptical of Liola’s identity. He even secretly reminded himself, never leak Liola’s secret identity, so the Paladin’s thoughtfulness wouldn’t go to waste.

Though the dangerous situation had been averted, Kaiser curiously looked at Meinan, who was making a ‘V’ sign.

‘Since when did this guy learn to lie?’ Had he not been certain that Liola was definitely not Lancelot’s apprentice, even Kaiser would’ve been fooled by Meinan’s explanation.

“We’re here.” Daylight pointed at a place where loud cheers could be heard.

It was a circular arena. It was place only used for special events in the Empire, but now it was used for the academy ranking matches.

Daylight looked at Liola and pointed in the direction of the arena. Liola nodded, and soon both directed their Dragons toward the arena.

Two Dragons appearing in the air on top of the arena made the original cheers silent. Thousands of students in the circular arena widened their eyes to look up, and even the teams in the center of the arena looked up at their opponents.

Having two Dragon Knights indicated significant power, but it was not uncommon, as there were quite a few Dragons on the side.

What was important was the Dragon Knights’ ranks.

The White and Fire Dragons slowly landed, and the administrative staff immediately walked up to Liola and the others. After having seen the school badge on their chest, he immediately raised his microphone to announce:

“Aklan Academy has arrived!”

The arena immediately started to roar. Being currently ranked first, Aklan Academy was commonly regarded as the biggest opponent. Everyone seemed to be surveying the five Aklan Academy students.

“Two Dragon Knights, my god! They even have a rank silver Knight? How is that possible? Silver Knights are usually instructors!” One of the students screamed.

“One Mecha Fighter student. Isn’t that Jetter? Ahaha!” Participants from other academies exploded with laughter, because Jetter had fallen off as soon as the White Dragon landed. And then, with foam around his mouth, he was unconscious and was carried off by the medical staff.

“Two Sorcerer students…” People who were examining the representatives had gotten quiet when they saw Kaiser and Meinan, and they were confused.

Ordinarily, very few principals would send Sorcery students. Out of the tens of teams present, only two of which had Sorcerers. Violet Academy had only sent one Sorcerer, but Aklan Academy sent two.

“Come here quick, you’re the only ones not in position.” The administrative staff beckoned the students from Aklan Academy.

Daylight looked at Liola, and reminded him: “Silver Mask, your rank is the highest. You should walk in front of us.”

After Liola asked Baolilong to return to a meter-tall small Dragon, he walked in front of his companions, and followed the staff to the center of the arena. There were already more than ten teams of participants standing there, and everyone settled their gazes on Liola.

Though Liola didn’t care for their stares, he wondered if he had done something wrong. Why else would everyone be staring at him?

Actually, Liola hadn’t done anything wrong. But he was wearing a white uniform, and he walked very calmly.

His eyes were sharp, and he mimicked a Knight’s pride perfectly. His demeanor was exactly of a Silver Knight. But the reason why all the students were staring at Liola, was because of his rank.

There had never been a Silver Knight ranked among students!

Though every academy had a couple of Blue Knights here and there, no one had ever reached rank-silver while they were still a student.

The abysmal gap between Blue and Silver rank was something that many Knights couldn’t cross in their lifetime. Even instructors in academies were not all rank-silver. The majority of them were still Blue ranked.

“Your position is here. Please wait.” The staff courteously asked Liola to stop. His identity as a Silver Knight made even the staff cautious.

“If I knew this before hand I would’ve asked Barbalis to lend me a Silver Knight uniform, so they wouldn’t treat me as if I’m transparent.” Kaiser quietly complained:

“No, I should just get a Gold ranked uniform.”

“Then every Knight would have their swords on your neck. There are only ten Gold Knights in the world, and they’re all very famous.” Daylight advised with good intentions.

“And Kaiser, no one is treating you as a transparent person.” Meinan was holding an eyelash brush, and looked in the mirror to raise his lashes even more:

“There are more than ten Knights, lots of Mecha Fighters, but only three Sorcerers! I can safely say that we are the most eye-catching ones. Why don’t you straighten up your messy hair? You can use my hairbrush.”

Kaiser looked at the brush Meinan handed over, and he did not bother to hide his disgust:

“Get it away from me! I’d rather be bald than brush my hair with a pink brush with a butterfly pattern on it!”

Meinan shrugged and took the brush back. He then started meticulously brushing his hair, even though it looked straight and neat.

Seeing every academy had a different badge, Liola lowered his head for the first time and looked at his own chest, at the badge he temporarily took off from his Sorcery robe and put on his Knight uniform.

For the first time, Liola realized the Aklan Academy’s badge was a pentacle. Liola raised his head to look beside him. Those students were wearing a violet on their chest. He then looked up and saw a familiar face, because it was the person who came to Aklan Academy yesterday to provoke them and defeat Daylight and Purity — Yizhou.

Yuzhou had a distasteful expression. He glanced at Liola, and his voice was as cold as yesterday: “I will defeat you, you fake Silver Knight and expose your lies.”

The staff saw that every academy had arrived, so he raised his mic again:

“All 15 participating academies have arrived. Then allow me to introduce this ranking match’s judges. The first is the Silver Knight, Feir.”

A man with black hair, black eyes, and wearing white, silver-lined Knight uniform stood up on the stage. He had a warm smile, and it made people feel refreshed.

Feir nodded lightly, and said: “I hope that everyone can compete in this match fair and square. Long live chivalry!”

Feir put his right fist on his left chest, and performed a Knight salute to everyone. All the Knights returned the salute, even Liola had learned to do so.

Feir looked curiously at Liola before he sat down.

“Feir is Purity’s older brother. His full name is King Feir.” Meinan whispered in Kaiser’s ears, which made Kaiser’s jaw drop.
[T/N: In Chinese customs, last name is placed in front of the first name.]

Because of his sharp hearing, Liola heard this information too. So the Knight uniform Liola took from Purity belonged to the same Feir before him?

“Hey! Purity’s last name isn’t really King, is it?” Kaiser was rather curious.

“Yes. Her last name is King, and her first name is Purity.” Meinan said as a matter-of-fact.
[T/N: Purity’s original name is Qing Qing]

Kaiser showed a strange expression: “Then is your last name Mei and first name Nan? Daylight, is your last name Day and your first name Light? Haha, Liola would be even more strange. Could his last name be Li and first name be Ola?”

Daylight answered seriously: “It’s true. My last name is Day and my given name is Light.”

Meinan raised his head from looking at the mirror, and rolled his eyes at Kaiser: “My name is Meinan Glory, not Mei Nan.”

“I don’t have a last name.” Liola replied to Kaiser, whom awkwardly scratched his face upon hearing.

While Kaiser and others were discussing names, the staff had introduced a few Mecha Association’s Honorable Advisors, and a representative from the Sorcerer Association. After the judges had greeted all the aforementioned attendees, the staff saw that everything was just about in order, so he spoke again:

“Now I announce that the First Annual Academy Ranking Match begins! First…”


A voice had interrupted the staff’s announcement. Everyone looked at the person who spoke. It was a person in the Violet Academy, and he was wearing a purple Sorcerer robe.

It was the person who came yesterday to provoke Aklan Academy, and the Water Dragon Knight’s elder brother — Yiyu.

“There is a Silver Knight among students. Doesn’t anyone suspect something?” Yiyu smiled maliciously.

Everyone’s gaze immediately gathered on Liola; their eyes were indeed filled with suspicion.

Yiyu from Violet Academy walked out of his team, and said loudly to the judges on the stage:

“This Silver Knight not only wearing a mask and call himself Silver Mask, he even claims to be the Paladin Lancelot’s apprentice. I hereby proclaim, this person is most likely lying. He’s definitely not Lancelot’s apprentice, and he’s probably not even a Silver Knight!”

This speech caused the stadium to rumble as if there was a bomb. Everyone within the arena, and probably everyone on the Aklan Continent, were already suspicious of this Lancelot’s apprentice appearing out of no where. But because they were intimidated of his silver rank, no one opened their mouth to openly question his identity. Now that someone had spearheaded questioned him, everyone’s suspicions had surfaced.

Standing at the epicenter, Liola still remained calm. Fortunately, Kaiser had already predicted something like this would happen.

Facing everyone suspicions, Liola did not say a word, but instead walked towards the stage. As he walked step by step, the crowd had slowly quiet down. Finally, Liola was in front of Feir, and everyone was quietly watching how this would progress.

Feir’s face was still filled with warm smile, and he curiously looked at what Silver Mask would do.

Liola then took out a silver, metal card from his pocket, and placed it in front of Feir. He said: “Please don’t say my real name.”

Feir took the card he was most familiar with, because it was given out by the Knight Association to prove a Knight’s identity. The silver color represented the Silver Knight’s identity.

The small card had the Knight’s name and rank, a picture of the Knight, and a Holy Sword Emblem representing the Knight Association.

Feir took out his card as well. When two authentic Knight card touch, the emblem will shine with a golden color. This was the best way Knights could confirm each other’s identity. Feir lightly touched the two cards, and the sword emblems on both cards did indeed glow.

“Your Knight card is authentic, but I still need to confirm if the picture is really yours.” Feir said as he handed the Knight card back to Silver Mask.

Liola nodded. With his back to everyone, he quickly took off his mask and then immediately put it back. Though it was a short time, but Feir had already seen his face clearly. He nodded and said:

“You really are a Silver Knight, that I can promise. But I don’t know if you are the Paladin Lancelot’s apprentice.”

“Whether I’m the Paladin’s apprentice has nothing to do with this match.” Liola hadn’t planned on explaining any further.

“But this has to do with your code of honor. Are you sure you don’t want to give any explanation?” Feir asked somewhat curiously.

Liola’s face sank, and he was unsure how to respond to anything regarding to his code of honor.

At this time, Daylight, who had been anxious for Liola, couldn’t hold back anymore. He quickly ran up to the stage, and his serious face was filled with determination. He first saluted Feir, then said:

“Sir Feir, Silver Mask has his reasons for not explaining, and I can promise you on my honor that Silver Mask is not lying.”

“Crap! Somebody’s honor was just destroyed in the hands of Liola.” Kaiser murmured. Meinan, the only one who heard the murmurs, had a helpless expression.

“You’re on the same team as Silver Mask. You would obviously say he’s not lying.” Seeing the favors were tilting in Silver Mask’s direction, Yiyu hurriedly yelled.

Daylight’s face sank, and turned around to say solemnly to that Sorcerer: “I’ve already sworn on my honor. If you still insist that I’m lying, then I must duel with you to protect my honor.”

“We’ve already dueled, and if I remember correctly, you’ve lost to us yesterday.” Yiyu smiled.

Without giving up at all, Daylight openly admitted: “Yesterday I did lose. But to protect my honor, I will give it my best today.”

Unable to make Daylight feel embarrassed, Yiyu was obviously unhappy. He narrowed his eyes and started announcing:

“My brother had met Sir Lancelot before, and the Paladin himself said he had no plans to have any apprentices. This was only five years ago, so how could he suddenly have a Silver-ranked Knight apprentice. Do you think this is possible?”

After his speech, everyone had gotten quiet again. Everyone’s gaze was back on Liola.

“Oh, so, you wanted to be Lancelot’s apprentice, but in the end you got rejected. No wonder you’re acting like we owe you a ton of money.” Kaiser looked up and down at the Water Dragon Knight, and he was laughing sinisterly.

Everyone seemed to thought about what Kaiser said, and what Yiyu had announced, then burst out laughing.

Yizhou’s face had turned colder, and his freezing gaze was on Liola. He said word by word: “The Paladin would never have you as an apprentice!”

Seeing the doubtful voices in the arena was increasing, things were getting out of hand. Liola had no way of fixing this. The only person who could complete his lies, Blood Wolf, was nowhere to be seen after giving him the Knight card last night. (Strange, why does Blood Wolf not care about his honor?)

When Kaiser was completely helpless, a crisp neigh was heard from the sky. When everyone raised their head to look at the sky, their jaws dropped in disbelief. Even the Silver Knight, Feir, immediately stood up, and performed a Knight salute.

A snow white unicorn was snorting amidst the blue skies, and on it there was a man in White Knight uniform. His long brown hair was tied into a ponytail, and his sky-blue eyes seemed to be searching among the crowds. As soon as he saw Liola, Lancelot slightly frowned, and commanded the unicorn to land on the stage, where Liola was standing.

Lancelot got off the unicorn, and walked directly towards Liola. He didn’t not look at anyone else, and he only waved his hand briefly at Feir’s salute. Lancelot walked to Liola, and curiously looked at Liola. His face sank and he said solemnly:

“You don’t know how to salute?”

Though Liola was stunned at the situation, but he still put his right fist on his left chest out of reflex to salute Lancelot.

“Wait for me on the unicorn.” Lancelot sounded like he was scolding his own child. His tone was strict and as if it can’t be defied.

Hearing a command tone, Liola instead felt strangely familiar. His body practically obeyed Lancelot without his control. It wasn’t until he had gotten on the unicorn did Liola remember that Lancelot wasn’t the Leader, and he didn’t need to obey his orders.

Though Liola thought this way, his body still obeyed the order and he stayed on the unicorn without moving. Confused, Baolilong, who was in a meter-long Dragon form, bit the corner of Liola’s pants.

Liola lowered his head to look at Baolilong. After thinking about it carefully, he used telepathy to tell Baolilong.

“I’ll be fine. You stay here and help Kaiser and others.”

On Baolilong’s long Dragon face, two cheeks puffed up, and he grunted in dissatisfaction. But it obeyed Liola’s orders, and walked back to Kaiser. Baolilong frequently turned around to look at Liola, hoping Liola would change his mind and allow itself to remain by his side.

Lancelot now finally looked directly at the judges on the stage. He said, “I’m sorry, but I have to take him away. I will try my best to bring him back before the match starts.”

No one dared to say anything. Even if Liola evaporated from the world, no one would say anything bad about the Paladin. Lancelot knew this very well, and it was just a formality for him to give an excuse to the judges. He then walked back and rode the unicorn, then took his apprentice and flew away.


When everyone was in shock, Kaiser suddenly burst out a cry: “My god! He took away my trump card!”

‘But, why did the Paladin take Silver Mask away?’ Meinan was puzzled as he thought about it.

Friday, 22 November 2013

KNM: Volume 3 Chapter 4

This chapter is brought to you by AnmesicCat, Masadeer, and StellarAshes.

Violet Academy

Liola hurried back to his room and saw Baolilong’s large body stuck in the hallway even though it was considerably wide for a person.

Baolilong desperately howled in pain while struggling desperately, and as a result, the entire dorm shook.

Luckily the gigantic mecha dorm built by Barbalis was fairly strong and it wasn’t destroyed immediately by Baolilong. However, if Baolilong continued to struggle and turn, it’ll be hard to foresee the future.

After not getting a response after several telepathic attempts, Liola yelled angrily:

“BAO LI LONG?! I told you to transform back!”

Baolilong finally heard papa’s voice. It stopped struggling, and the humongous Dragon body started to shrink, until finally, a five year old child laid face down in the hallway, still sobbing.

Liola walked to Baolilong, and then grabbed it by its back.

Liola frowned and asked: “What’s wrong? Why did you suddenly throw a tantrum?”

Baolilong’s large eyes squeezed out pearl-sized tear drops. It reached out its chubby hands, ran into Liola’s arms and held on tight. Baolilong cried for a while, then murmured in Liola’s arms:

“Baolilong had a dream. Mama doesn’t move anymore, and papa was gone. Baolilong was the only one left.”

“Such a poor child, waahh.” Purity couldn’t open the door until now. She poked out her head, and heard Baolilong’s sad experience, then cried with him.

“Papa, you wouldn’t go away too, would you?” Baolilong raised its head out of Liola’s arms, and stared at Liola.

“No. Don’t be ridiculous.” Liola answered Baolilong directly.

Baolilong nodded and held Liola tightly as it whispered: “Baolilong won’t let papa disappear again.”

“Liola-dage, how was your date with the Princess?” Purity asked curiously.

Because Baolilong was in the hallway, they were unable to follow Liola. They even had to let Kaiser jump out the window to ask Liola for backup. All this made the fairy tale fanatic Purity upset.

Liola simply shook his head, and then he grab the gray robe in order to change out of his luxurious clothes. Though the robe wasn’t as pretty as what he had on, but it was loose and soft, thus very comfortable. This was the reason why Liola had gotten more and more used to wearing the robe.

Liola had just changed when he saw that Kaiser, had come back as well. Seeing Liola walk out, Kaiser immediately started complaining and yelling:

“I’m starving! Let’s go to eat, and I’m going to eat well. You’re not allowed to give me bread again!”

“I understand.” Purity snapped. She took out her wallet, which had gotten a lot thinner, and thought that she would have to go ask her brother for money soon.


“That was good.”

Satisfied, Kaiser began rubbing his stomach, and started to walked back towards the Academy. He was followed by Purity, who looked like she was about to burst into tears.

Who knew that as soon as they reached Academy gate, they’d see fires everywhere, and the sound of battle and weapons clashing could be heard. Armors were flying through the air, and the Knights were riding on their mounts fighting each other.

The whole situation was out of control. Even Purity and Meinan thought something was wrong. They ran to the window and stared at the chaos outside.

“Uh, if Mecha Fighters and Knights fought against each other, then it would be normal.” Meinan was completely puzzled and said:

“But now Knights are fighting each other and so are the Mecha Fighters. What’s going on?”

“Idiot!” Kaiser reminded him with a loud yell: “Look closely. Some of the students are wearing different uniforms than ours!”

Since Knight uniforms were universal in the world, the only thing different was their school badge. But since Liola and the others were too far away, they couldn’t see it clearly, so they all looked at the Mecha Fighters.

Aklan Mecha Fighters were wearing blue military uniforms, but about half of the students on Mechas were wearing a purple leather suit. They were obviously not from Aklan Academy.

“Ah! I know where these students are from.” Purity yelled: “It’s Violet Academy. Their uniforms are quite pretty. Purity had almost chose their academy for their uniforms.”

“Violet Academy…” Kaiser tried hard to rack his brain: “The second best school in Aklan Empire. What are they doing here? Unless... They want to take out Aklan Academy to become the best?”

“That’s correct!” A cold voice could be heard from behind.

Everyone turned around, and a few Red and Green Knights were behind them. Though their uniforms were identical to Aklan Academy’s, but there was a violet school badge on their chest. There were also two girls wearing long, light purple robes.

“Hey, guy in gray robe, you’re a student from the Aklan School of Sorcery, right?” One of the Red Knights smiled in satisfaction.

“Such an ugly color. Good thing we didn’t go to Aklan Academy.” The two girls laughed, making fun at the clothes Liola and others were wearing.

The few Violet Academy students slowly walked toward Liola, and their eyes were flashing with malice. Liola didn’t move, and watched their approach calmly.

Kaiser was pulling his hair wondering which way he should escape so they wouldn’t be able to catch up to him, and Purity ducked into Meinan’s protective shield.

The Violet Academy students looked like they were about to draw their weapons to attack.

“Stop!” Daylight hurriedly ran towards them, and yelled angrily at the Violet Academy students.

The Knights saw the Blue lining of Daylight’s uniform, and their face changed. They had no choice but to do what he said and stopped their approach, though their eyes were flashing with dissatisfaction.

One of the Red Knights started to talk: “We just want to duel with them.”

“Nonsense!” Daylight angrily replied: “If you want a duel, go find the Mecha Fighters or Knights, not the Sorcerers. As Knights, you shouldn’t bully the weak.”

‘Does that mean we’re weak… ?’ Liola and others pouted and thought.

“Then we can duel with them, right? Sir Blue Knight?” The two girl Sorcerers looked at Daylight with fawning eyes, and tried to get closer and closer to him.

Daylight frowned, and turned around to them and asked: “Will you guys be okay?”

Kaiser raised his eyebrow, and said: “Don’t worry. If it’s just a Sorcerer duel, then in worst case scenario we can sleep under Meinan’s protective shield.”

“What? Then what about me?” Meinan’s face turned pale. They can’t be asking him to hold a shield all night long, right?

“Let’s go to the dorm.” Liola said concisely. He had no plans in getting involved.

Kaiser immediately nodded in agreement.

“That’s a good idea. There’s nothing good about that dorm, except that it’s practically indestructible. Looks like we can at least sleep well in the dorm.”

“I’ll escort you guys back.” Daylight said worriedly, and then glanced at the Violet Knights ferociously. The two girl Sorcerers ducked behind their Knights.

“Sir Daylight, you’re just too good and far too kind.” Kaiser smiled flatteringly.

Daylight said awkwardly: “Let’s go. I still need to come back to defend the Academy.”

Kaiser continued his flattery: “Sir Daylight is certainly extraordinarily knightly, virtuous, kind hearted…”

“Let’s hurry!”

Daylight, who felt weird after listening to Kaiser’s flattery, immediately interrupted him. Then, he summoned his Fire Dragon, Flames, let Liola and the others ride on it, and took off towards the Sorcerer dorm.

Though many students were dueling in the air, but there was no Violet student who would be brave enough to provoke Daylight. A Blue Knight was considered to be the strongest among students, not to mention a Blue Dragon Knight.

The faces of Mecha Fighters and Knights in the air changed as soon as they saw Daylight, and they hurriedly gave way, fearing they would run into Daylight.

But of course, there are exceptions to every rule.

When Daylight was not far from the School of Sorcery, a light blue Water Dragon blocked his path, with a Knight standing on top of it. That’s right, just like Silver Mask, he was standing on the Dragon’s back.

The person had long dark purple hair reaching his hips, and a pair of cold black eyes. The blue-lined Black Knight uniform and the Violet on his chest had already proved his identity.

Daylight’s face remained calm, but his eyes were shining with anticipation for an impending battle.

Kaiser worriedly pushed Daylight lightly. Daylight turned and looked at the squeaky wheels… no, the Sorcerers to be escorted.
[T/N: Idiom - Squeaky wheel gets the oil. It means people who complain the most will get attention or what they want.]

He said to the Water Dragon Knight: “Wait until I escort these people back, then I will duel with you.”

“We’re all students, why do they need your escort!” The Water Dragon Knight coldly said: “If they can’t survive on the battlefield by themselves, they deserve to be eliminated.”

“They are Sorcerers.” Daylight frowned, disagree with the Water Dragon Knight.

Another voice came out of nowhere and said “So what you’re trying to say is, Sorcerers are weaklings?”

It wasn’t until then that they had noticed there was someone standing on air, covered in a cloak, staring at Liola and others in disdain.

“Levitation… it’s been a long time since I’ve seen a Sorcerer who could do that.” Meinan said.

The person in the air grunted mockingly: “That’s because Aklan Academy is full of degenerates. You can’t even learn Levitation and you got accepted into the academy. Hmph, seems like Aklan Academy is the place where only garbage attends.”

Purity protested in dissatisfaction: “What you’re saying is too rude! We all had a test of our abilities before we could get into the Academy. Right, Kaiser?!”

Purity turned and looked at Kaiser, waiting for his reply.

“Mhm, right!” Kaiser answered earnestly, though in his mind he thought,

‘There was a test of whether Liola and I could write our own name, and whether we know our gender.’

Purity turned to look at the Sorcerer in the air, and her face was covered with anger.

Curious, Kaiser whispered to Meinan: “Strange, since when did Purity became so brave?”

“Because Purity’s older brother is teaching in Violet Academy. Purity really hates letting her brother hear anything bad about her.” Meinan whispered back.

“So that’s why…” Kaiser realized.

“Little girl, how about a Sorcerer duel?” The person floating in air gave out a sinister laugh.

When Purity heard him, and her long, black hair began to dance in the air. She even took off her large glasses. Determination flashed in her eyes. Even Daylight could sense Purity’s change, and the surrounding tinkling magic.

The Sorcerer in the air also had a slight change of expression. He seemed to be even more excited.

He took off his cloak in one swoop, to show his real identity. Surprisingly, he looked identical to the Water Dragon Knight. The only difference was that his hair was short.

“How about a double duel then? You and that Blue Knight versus me and my brother.”

The excited Sorcerer slowly landed on the water Dragon, and stood shoulder to shoulder next to the Water Dragon Knight.

Purity and Daylight vs. Water Dragon Knight and floating Sorcerer, who would win?

Kaiser held his forehead to think: “Let me think. Either the Violet students beat Purity and Daylight, and then give us all a good beating, or Purity finally uses her ultimate, and the hundreds of people, including all of us, perish together.”

“Damn! No matter what we’re screwed. No! We demand to change our Sorcerer. Meinan go take Purity’s place.” Kaiser said firmly.

Meinan desperately nodded. Though a duel was dangerous, but experiencing Purity’s space magic was far more fatal.

“No!” Purity’s hair grabbed Kaiser’s neck like vines, and her eyes flashed with stubbornness, as if she’s going to use her ultimate right now if they were to change Sorcerers.

To prevent himself being teleport to Pluto or wherever, Kaiser immediately changed his mind:

“Then we demand to change Knights!”

Daylight appeared to be hurt and asked: “Why?”

“It goes without saying. If Silver Mask goes, he could finish those two before Purity even has a chance to do anything. This is the only way that Aklan and Violet won’t both perish!” Kaiser yelled.

Daylight was still doubtful, and skeptical of the a possibility that Purity could destroy both academies.

“Silver Mask, Lancelot’s apprentice?” The Water Dragon Knight finally spoke, but his tone was still extremely cold.

“That’s right! If you know what’s good for you, you better do yourself a favor and butt off. Otherwise who knows when he will have a little ‘chat’ with you, then you would be in deep trouble.”

By making use of the Paladin’s name, Kaiser became more bold.

“Imposter.” The Water Dragon Knight said coldly.

Kaiser widened his eyes, and even Liola, who seemed like he had nothing to do with this, raised his head to look at the Water Dragon Knight, unsure if the Knight had a lucky guess or if he really knew that Silver Mask wasn’t Lancelot’s apprentice.

Without a change in his facial expression, Kaiser said: “Imposter? Who are you calling imposter?”

“Lancelot has no apprentice.” The Water Dragon Knight got impatient and unsheathed his sword. He said with a deep voice: “I don’t care who you send. Let’s duel.”

Daylight curiously looked at Liola, as if he had something to ask.

Kaiser saw this and he was afraid that perhaps Daylight had already discovered Liola’s identity.

When Daylight saw Liola covered in blood and locked in a cage, Liola probably hadn’t transformed.

This could be a mess.

Kaiser immediately looked at Liola to see if he had any plans, but his expressionless face told Kaiser nothing.

‘Maybe that guy is thinking nothing at all!’ Kaiser thought.

“Let’s wait before we talk about it.” Kaiser had no choice but calmly negotiate with Daylight, whom nodded in agreement. Whatever Kaiser wanted to say, Daylight will have to wait.

“We send Daylight and Mei—…”

With Purity’s terrifying gaze, and to prevent himself from taking a trip to Liola’s world, Kaiser immediately corrected himself:

“... Purity.”

Daylight nodded, and asked the Fire Dragon land slowly on the ground to drop off Kaiser, Meinan, and Liola. Then he took Purity back into the air, and confronted the Water Dragon Knight.

Both sides seemed to be extremely strong: the Water Dragon Knight and the levitating Sorcerer were obviously strong. But Daylight hadn’t gotten his Blue Rank for nothing.

Also, the immense magic emitting from Purity’s body made her opponents feel like they were about to face their nemesis… Though Kaiser and the others waited to see how it would turn out.

“Hurry! We should go as far as possible.” Before Kaiser had finished speaking, he was already more than ten meters away.

“What about Daylight?” Meinan nervously asked.

“What about him? I’ll visit his grave every Memorial Day.” Kaiser stood at the entrance to the Sorcerer’s dorm and yelled. He was so loud that even Daylight heard him and had a strange expression on his face.

Liola slowly walked to Kaiser, then dragged Kaiser by his collar back to where Daylight and others were dueling.

“Hey, hey, what are you doing?! I don’t care if you want to die but don’t drag me along with you.”

Kaiser desperately struggled using his hands, feet, and even mouth to hold onto the dorm’s door frame. Unfortunately, the strength he has in his entire body didn’t come close to the strength of one of the Assassin’s finger. In conclusion, Liola dragged Kaiser with ease to die… No, to the dueling ground.

“I need you to explain how the fight is going.” Liola’s eyes seemed to be flashing with desire for a battle.

Kaiser laid on the ground and muttered: “If you have to promise me that I won’t lose a single strand of hair, then I’ll explain.”

Liola nodded. After getting Liola’s promise, Kaiser immediately jumped up and started giving a live coverage:

“A double duel is actually fairly common. Normally, two Knights or two Mecha Fighters were the common duo. But before technology was as advanced as it is now, a duo commonly consisted of a Knight and a Sorcerer, because the Knight’s close-quarter combat and defense are both strong, and Sorcerer mainly handled ranged attack, healing, etc.”

“Am I responsible for ranged attacks?” Purity pointed at herself and asked Daylight.

Daylight frowned: “I’ve never partnered with a Sorcerer… Do you know Protective Shield? Fireball?”

“I don’t know either.” Purity answered honestly.

“Then what do you know?” Daylight asked straightforwardly.

“Teleport.” Purity thought about it, and realized only knew that.

“Uh… Then don’t do anything until the situation is dire.” Daylight said tactfully with an awkward expression.

The Water Dragon Knight couldn’t wait anymore; he yelled: “Let the duel begin!” He took his long sword and charged, and the Sorcerer wasn’t idle either, he shot a few ice bolts from his hands.

Since his opponents suddenly attacked, Daylight didn’t have time to respond, so he could only let his mount barely dodge the ice bolts.

Just as Daylight pulled out his long pike, the Water Dragon Knight’s long sword had already reached his eye brows. Daylight flustered to block the long sword, and took a few steps back, trying to get a stable footing.

However, the Water Dragon Knight wouldn’t give him that chance. With every step back Daylight took, the Water Dragon Knight pushed one step forward, which made Daylight remain a defensive stance and could not fight back.

What’s worse was that, the opposing Sorcerer was clearly not incompetent. He constantly threw ice bolts at Daylight’s Fire Dragon, which made the Fire Dragon wail in pain as it tried to block the Water Dragon’s claws. Daylight was already at a disadvantage at the start of the fight.

“Looks like they’re going to lose for sure. If they had Meinan’s protective shield, perhaps they would be at equal footing.” Kaiser raised his head to look, and said as if he had already predicted this outcome.

“Kaiser underestimates Purity too much.” Purity yelled from above in dissatisfaction. Her black hair then again began to fly, and her magic power made it impossible for her opponent to ignore her.

“No! Big boss, I didn’t underestimate you. Please, I beg of you to stay behind Daylight. Don’t do anything stupid!” Kaiser immediately yelled, fearing that Purity would use ‘group teleportation’ and God knows where they would end up.

“Hmmph!” Purity pouted, and slowly gather a black magic ball in her hands.

Purity then yelled: “Daylight, get down!”

Daylight was shocked but still obeyed Purity, but as a result the Water Dragon Knight’s long sword had scraped his arm.

Purity screamed “Your lives are mine!” and threw the ball as hard as she could.

A ball of magic darker than night left her hand. The magic power within it made the opposing Sorcerer panic and yell:

“Brother, dodge! Don’t touch that!”

Hearing his older brother’s warning, the Water Dragon Knight immediately rode the Water Dragon and back away from the black ball. He then carefully observed the trajectory of the ball, fearing that it would suddenly accelerate.

A second passed by, then two, then three… the black ball had only moved about 36 cm, and it floated like an air balloon. It wasn’t even going in a straight line, and it would occasionally float towards Daylight.

Everyone looked at the black ball with doubt. When the black ball floated to about 5-6 meters in front of the Water Dragon Knight, it completely stopped. Everyone waited for ten more seconds, and nothing happened.

“Hehe…” Purity laughed awkwardly: “It looks like it failed.”

Everyone’s faces had a miniature seizure, and Daylight’s face was especially rigid. However, Kaiser and Meinan sighed in relief. It was better for Purity’s magic to do nothing, and they would never wish for her magic succeed.

The Water Dragon Knight had an ugly look on his face.

He said coldly: “Is this the attitude Aklan Academy students duel with? Do you treat duels as games?”

Daylight angrily yelled back: “Then is suddenly attacking before your opponents are even ready something Knights should do?”

The Water Dragon Knight laughed coldly, but just as he was about to open his mouth to say something, a huge black hole suddenly appeared in front of him.

Before the Water Dragon Knight and his brother had the chance to scream, they were completely swallowed by the black hole. All they could see was nothing but falling deeper into darkness… After swallowing the two people, the black hole burped and then disappeared into thin air.


For a long while, Daylight stared at empty place where the two people were standing. Then, He turned around and ask Purity:

“Where did they go?”

“I don’t know!” Purity widened her eyes and answered honestly.

“Are their lives in danger?” Daylight seemed worried. Even if it were a duel, it wasn’t necessary to kill them.

“Their lives aren’t in danger, but they’re probably going to be doing a bit of traveling.”

Kaiser’s laughter at other people’s misfortune got louder and louder. Things were going better than Kaiser had ever imagined.

“Daylight, behind you!” Liola suddenly warned.

Liola felt there was some power rumbling behind Daylight and Purity.

Daylight was stunned for a moment, then he immediately turned his head, but it was already too late.

A huge Water Dragon suddenly appeared.

With the Water Dragon Knight’s spell, the Water Dragon spit out a large pillar of water towards Daylight and Purity, along with tens of ice bolts cast by the Sorcerer.

Daylight had no time to dodge. All he could do was hold Purity in his arms and use his back to protect Purity from the magic spells.

After ten large sounds of impact, the Fire Dragon could no longer hold up and fell out of the sky. When it landed, the earth itself rumbled, and the air around it was covered by dust. But the Water Dragon Knight and the Sorcerer weren’t about to give up. A few more rays of magic appeared and headed towards the Fire Dragon.

Liola grabbed Meinan and ran toward the Fire Dragon, and Meinan cooperatively started his own spell: “Protective Shield!”

All the rays of magic hit the shield, but the shield was completely unscathed.

Meinan firmly maintained the protective shield so the Water Dragon Knight would not have another chance to attack Daylight and Purity.

Liola turned around to determine their situation. The dust was slowly settling, and Purity’s sobbing sounds could be heard faintly.

Liola frowned. He saw Purity was under Daylight’s body and was still conscious. She seemed to have only suffered minor injures. But Daylight, as a human meat shield, wasn’t as lucky. His white Knight uniform had been almost torn completely, and his back was also covered in blood. Daylight was unconscious.

Liola immediately held Daylight up. He placed one finger under Daylight’s nose to check it he was still breathing. Then he grabbed Daylight to take him to a healing Maxus and patch up his wounds.

“Freeze! The duel isn’t over.” The Sorcerer’s continuous attacks failed to penetrate Meinan’s protective shield, and got upset. Seeing Liola was about to take away the Blue Knight, he immediately tried to stop him.

Liola answered with an expression on his face: “He is already unconscious. You win.”

“This is a double duel. As long as one person stands, the duel must continue.” The Sorcerer’s eyes were filled with malice.

Liola sensed that the unconscious Daylight was still bleeding, and his body temperature seemed to be dropping. He couldn’t wait any longer. So he turned and walked towards Purity, who curiously raised her head to look at Liola.

Liola said: “Close your eyes.”

Though Purity was confused, she had never doubted anything Liola said. She obeyed and closed her eyes, and then felt numb in the back of her head.

Purity fell over and fell unconscious just like Daylight. And what knocked Purity unconscious, was of course Liola’s foot to her head.

Liola turned and said to the Water Dragon Knight and Sorcerer.

“Both unconscious. You win.”

Liola’s cold silver eyes stared at them. They felt If they didn’t stop now, they will be paying a heavy price.

The Sorcerer looked at Liola up and down, then he asked: “What’s your name.”

“Liola.” Liola answered straightforwardly.

“Liola.” The Sorcerer repeated his name, confirming he had never heard his name. He then raised his head and said:

“I am Yiyu, and my brother’s name is Yizhou. Tell your principal that the school ranking matches are about to begin, and we, the Violet Academy, were here to greet you first.”

“After the next ranking match, the Violet Academy will no longer be the second best!” Yizhou said coldly, as the Water Dragon underneath him gave out a roar.

The Violet Academy students who were attacking Aklan Academy all stopped to look in the direction of the Water Dragon Knight. Yizhou gestured a command with his hands, and then flew away without looking back.


“Academy ranking match?” Liola raised his head to ask Meinan, whom cluelessly shook his head, indicating that he didn’t know either.

“What ranking match? How come I’ve never heard of it?! But I say, a match like that probably has nothing to do with the School of Sorcery, right?” Kaiser said restlessly: “No person would send Sorcerers to it, right?”

But then everyone thought: ‘Barbalis probably doesn’t count as a person!’

Though all the students were angrily waiting for the principal to come out and explain this ranking match, but even with such large disturbances, the principal was nowhere to be seen. It wasn’t until Liola tossed Daylight into a healing Maxun, and then kick down the principal’s office doors with Kaiser, did they find the principal along with Blood Wolf.

“Liola? It’s a good thing you’re here. Have you decided to be a Dragon Prince yet? I’m busy, you know, I can’t wait all day everyday for your answer.”

Blood Wolf was sitting in front of a game with his eyes staring at a screen. Both of his hands were holding a joystick. After glancing Liola with the corner of his eyes, he muttered and went back to his game.

“Liola, why was the Academy so noisy today? Did you guys cause some more trouble? I told you, I can’t always go and fix your mess. As a principal, I’m really quite busy.”

Barbalis crossed his legs and sat on the sofa. His face was buried in some book entitled The Most Beautiful Magicians in History, and there was a cup of bubbling green liquid next to him.

Liola felt something he couldn’t comprehend. It was like anger but not exactly. It wasn’t until Kaiser had explain it did Liola understand that he was dumbfounded.

“F— you.” Kaiser swore as soon as he spoke, he also raised both his middle fingers and said:

“We were fighting for our lives outside, and what are you guys doing?! Playing games and looking at erotic magazines?!”

‘Did you even move a finger?’ Liola thought skeptically.

“I’m using the most popular Maxun to research for new moves!” Blood Wolf immediately looked at Kaiser to explain.

“And I’m researching the great history of magic.” Barbalis also put down his magazine and explained.

“Bullsh—!” Kaiser mercilessly gave out more middle fingers. He then sat on the principal’s seat, and acted like a principal yelling at his ‘students’:

“You’re still playing?! Other schools already came here. They shat in your toilet and didn’t flush, and just walked away.”

“What?” Barbalis got angry: “What kind of unhygienic guy would poop in my house without flushing? And he didn’t even wipe his ass? What a disgusting person.”

“It’s just a metaphor!” Kaiser snapped: “Hey, Barbalis, what is this Academy Ranking Match?”

Hearing the match, Barbalis’ face changed slightly, then he said awkwardly:

“Uh, it’s just a meeting between Academies where we exchange some ideas and learn from one another.”

Kaiser turned the lamp on the desk towards Barbalis. The light made Barbalis dizzy.

Kaiser said with a deafening voice:

“Barbalis, tell me the truth, otherwise all your beautiful magician girl’s books, pictures, and even statues will all be turned into muscle men.”

“No, don’t turn my beautiful magician girl into a muscle man! I’ll tell you, I’ll tell you anything!” Barbalis cried.

Blood Wolf was speechless, and he felt regretful of the accident that lead him to meet Barbalis.

“Well… Everyone had always been unhappy about Aklan Academy being the best. So the last time there was a meeting between the academies, they decided on a ranking match every three years. The academies would compete with each other, and became better because of it.” Barbalis said with and innocent look on his face.

Kaiser coldly continued to inquire: “When was this decided?”

“A year ago.” Barbalis looked even more innocent than before.

Kaiser jumped over the desk and flew onto the sofa. He grabbed Barbalis’ The Most Beautiful Magicians in History and tore it to shreds. Then, he pointed at Barbalis’ nose and said exaggeratedly:

“You better tell me the rules now. Otherwise I’ll announce this news to all the schools. I promise, the students who just fought with the Violet Academy would love to come to the principal’s office and give you a piece of their mind!”

“Ah! My beautiful magician girl…” Barbalis knew he did something wrong. He howled as he grabbed the shreds from the ground, and explained as he did so:

“Every academy sends a group of five students, and they will be competing in elimination matches.”

“Really? That’s all?” Kaiser narrowed his eyes to inquire.

Barbalis desperately nodded. He had no choice. He fell asleep during the last meeting, and he hadn’t heard anything else.

Kaiser sat down, and cross his legs to think:

“Five people, who should we send then? Liola is a must, and Daylight isn’t bad. Meinan’s protective shield should be useful too. Hey, Barbalis, are there some useful students in the School of Mecha Fighters? If we don’t send one from their school, I’m sure we’ll never hear the end of it.”

Barbalis looked uneasy: “We probably have to send Jetter Motor.”

“You’re talking about the guy controlled a rank-C mecha and was no better than someone controlling a rank-D mecha?” Kaiser snapped:

“We’re better off sending one less person, at least he wouldn’t be able to hold the rest back.”

Barbalis looked uneasy again: “I have no choice. If we don’t send him, I would never hear the end of it from the Commerce Alliance. Liola can 1v5 them anyway, so it’s not going to make a difference.”

“Well, that’s true.” Kaiser nodded. With Liola there, even if the other four people were all Jetters, they can’t lose.

Barbalis put his hand on Kaiser’s shoulder, and said as a matter of fact: “Then we’ll send you as the last man!”

Kaiser opened his mouth wide and stuttered: “Wa-wa-wa-wa-why me? Wouldn’t Jasmine or Lanski be much better?”

Barbalis shook his head: “This is something you don’t understand. The battle between the academies in Aklan Empire will be full of trickery, deceit, and cheating. And who else is more contemptible than you? No one, right? So you have to go. And it’s decided. I will draft a list of names for the council.”

“Wait…” Kaiser still tried to protest.

Barbalis turned and looked outside the window: “Hmm, I hear that Mizerui will be back soon!”

Kaiser’s shoulders collapsed: “Fine. But I will only be responsible for tactics. Don’t ask me to fight.”

“Liola will be there, there won’t be one for you to fight with even if you wanted to.” Barbalis laughed loudly as he patted Kaiser’s back.

Kaiser had no choice but nod his head forcefully and agree.

The silent Liola had another strange feeling. Blood Wolf, too, patted Liola’s shoulder and sighed:

“This is called helplessness! Little bro, I’m going to ask you again, are you not going to the Dragon Empire?”

Liola finally gave Blood Wolf an assured answer: “I’m not going.”

Blood Wolf was shocked at the unexpected answer, and he laughed loudly:

“Good for you, Liola. Now I can see the Dragon Emperor’s shocked expression! But because of your decision, Lancelot probably won’t have you as his apprentice. Honestly, being Lancelot’s apprentice would be quite an injustice to you.”

“We can’t do that!” Kaiser suddenly remembered something. He jumped up from the sofa and yelled:

“If we’re entering Silver Mask into the match, there will be someone who would question Silver Mask’s identity. It’d be fine if he wasn’t Lancelot’s apprentice, but he’s not even a Knight!”

Upon hearing this, Blood Wolf laughed mysteriously: “Who says Liola isn’t a Knight?”

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Ark: Volume 1 Chapter 9

This chapter is brought to you by AnmesicCat, Haikai, Lastear, Lei, Masadeer, and Milk. Special mentions to Rea.

The edited 1.9 is finally up! Sorry for the delay, folks, and enjoy.



The Two Girls

With a flurry of dim lights, a new user was born into New World. Her name was Roco. She was a cute looking female character.

“Woah, woah, so this is what they call a virtual reality game?”

Roco looked at her surroundings with round, fascinated eyes. The sky, earth, mountains, fields, everything about the landscape before her was just as, no several times more beautiful than reality.

Buildings made of stone and wood encircled her. It was just like the sight of Medieval Europe you could sightsee at a theme park.

Roco carefully raised her foot with an uneasy look on her face, and took a step. Immediately afterwards, whirling her arms and suddenly exclaiming.

“Am I really inside a unit? Even though moving about isn’t different from reality? No wonder the game fee is expensive. Ah? Is this my face?”

Roco was running around left and right like a child when her eyes caught her reflection in a glass window. She stared at her stunning appearance, which looked like the X idols she'd often seen on TV.

She unconsciously let out a laugh.

“Eheheh, alright. My plastic surgery looks like it’s been done perfectly, so should I get started on this thing called New World?"

Although she said so in high spirits, Roco scratched her head in confusion.

“But, what am I supposed to do first?”

Just then, an elder who had been glancing at Roco from behind spoke to her.

“Youngin, is this your first time here?”
"Huh? Me?"

Since he spoke suddenly, Roco was startled and stepped back. The elder chuckled as he nodded his head.

“Yes, that’s right. I’m talking to you. What’s your name?”
“I’m called Roco.”

“Little Roco, do you perhaps need some help?”

“Yes, um… for now, please let me ask you a few questions. This is Harun Village, right?”

"Indeed, this is Schudenberg Kingdom's frontier village, Harun. I am the village chief, Hansen."

"Ah, grandpa Hansen!"

Roco excitedly jumped up and down as she clapped her hands. Then, as if she was checking him out, she circled around Hansen, looking him over. Hansen stammered with an embarrassed expression.

"Why, why are you acting like this?"

“Ah, I apologize. I was just amazed to personally see grandpa Hansen, who I’ve only heard about.”

“You’ve heard of me from someone?”

"Yes, Hyun Woo-oppa.... ah, no. I heard it from Ark-oppa."

"Ark! Are you an acquaintance of Ark?"

“Yes, yes. Does grandpa also remember Ark-oppa? I heard he’d come here.”

“Of course I remember! How could I forget Ark? He was a great young man with proper manners and is considerate of others, which is a trait uncommonly seen in people these days.

"Right? Right?"

“Also, his bravery is like none other. There was a time when he saved us from a crisis everyone had neglected. The event is still fresh in my memory. Ah, but what relationship do you have with Ark?”

At Hansen's question, Roco blushed and giggled.

“Excuse me, where do I have to go to meet Ark-oppa?”

"I wonder? Last time I saw him, I heard he was going to Jackson Castle. However, quite a bit of time has passed since then so I'm not sure if he is still there. Why are you looking for him?"

“It’s been a really long time since I’ve seen him. Last week, he suddenly took a leave of absence from the mart and hasn’t returned… I thought I might be able to meet him if I came here. I also wanted to try this once, while I had the chance.”


Hansen tilted his head as if it was a term he had never heard of before.

Roco quickly shook her head.

“Nothing. You do not need to know. Anyway, how can I get to Jackson Castle?”

“Surely you’re not going to go right now?”

“Why not? I can’t go right now?”

“Ho ho ho, look here, little Roco. Jackson Castle is a place very far away. You’ll have to walk non-stop for days before reaching it. In addition, the road is incomparably rough, and there are countless dangers lurking about. A beginner adventurer like you would become a wolf’s meal before you could even take a few steps away from the village. Since you’re an acquaintance of Ark, I’ll advise you with good intentions. If you want to go to Jackson Castle, you’ve got to gain enough experience first.”

“How do you gain experience?”

“If you want, I can introduce to you a suitable job.”

‘Ah, this must be what you call a quest!’

“Yes, then I’ll work.”

As Roco recalled the stories she heard from here and there, and nodded her head.

But after she listened to Hansen’s words, she immediately lost her nerve.

The quest Hansen gave her was none other than defeating what she feared most, mice. Roco, who had agonized over it briefly, set her lips in a firm line and courageously casted her fears away.

‘Che, am I an idiot? What am I afraid of? No matter how realistic it may seem to be, this is still inside a game. Even if they were called mice, it will probably look more like Mickey-mouse or Pikachu. It’s a little discomfiting having to crush things as cute as them, but there’s no helping it. Since this is a game.’

“Yes, I’ll be heading out now.”

Roco bowed as she smiled cutely and left for the tavern.

Roco went to the tavern and chatted with Kraydon about Ark before entering the warehouse. In an instant, she screamed at New World’s terrifying realism.

“Kyaahhh! What, what is this? The mouse here looks bigger and scarier than a mouse in real life!”

The mice who were previously swarming around the warehouse, focused their attention on Roco. Blood had drained from Roco’s face, and she quickly whirled around.

“I-, I can’t! Fight these mice…. I, I can’t do it! I’m not going to do it! Mister Kraydon, I wanna come out! Please open the door!”

Just then, Roco knocked over a stack of boxes, which wobbled and collapsed, blocking the door.

Then, a scarlet light flashed in front of Roco’s eyes.

- You have been attacked by a mouse. Damage 1.

However, Roco wasn’t even concerned by the damage she had taken.

A mouse the size of her forearm came right up to her nose and bared its teeth. Rather than the damage she incurred, this was much more frightening.

With an expression on her face looking like she was on the verge of fainting, she screamed and climbed up the nearby stack of boxes. After frantically panicking, Roco belatedly thought of an escape plan.

“Oh, tha-that’s right. This is a game. I can just log out. Disconnect!”

Game or not, she just wanted to flee the warehouse teeming with mice. However, as a brief message window popped up, even her last hope sputtered away.

- You may not log out during combat. Please try again after finishing the battle.

“This is ridiculous! It can’t be like this! Save me. Aack! Please save me. Wah~ wah~!”

Roco bawled her eyes out as she barely managed to push off a mouse crawling up to her with the tip of her foot.

Unfortunately, in New World, there was no one who would save her even if she continually cried for help. In the end, Roco was trapped in the warehouse, unable to log out or escape. And so she wailed and wailed until she eyes became puffy.

How many hours has it been? Her throat was too sore to let out another scream. Then a new message window appeared.

You have learned a new skill.

Lady’s Wail (Beginner, Active): The wail of a Lady full of sorrows, making even irrational enemy feel guilt.

In addition, it will make an ally feel inclined to leap into fire for the sake of the Lady. However, this skill will only trigger when the player feels tremendous fear.

Enemy attack speed, movement speed, and morale decrease by 20% for 30 seconds, and ally attack speed, movement speed, and morale increase by 20% for 30 seconds.

Mana Cost: 20



At that time, Ark was grinning as he walked down the streets of Jackson.

“I feel slightly better now.

The constant irritation that had remained in a corner of his heart about playing the game had disappeared.

He had no intention of forgiving mistakes. People were quick to forgive those who whined that it was a mistake even after doing something bad, so bad guys didn’t learn their lesson and a just society couldn’t be realized.

Evil doers had to pay the due price. If you’re wronged, pay them back right away-- that was justice. That was Ark’s view on life.

Ark was finally able to achieve his justice.

Since Ark endured until Andel logged in if he didn’t after 24 hours, Ark hadn’t slept even a wink for two days. Despite that, he wasn’t even a little tired. Rather, he was so refreshed that he felt he could fly.

Justice was a good thing after all.

‘Now, shall we go and finish the quest now?’

Ark went to find Raymond's house with a vibrant expression on his face.

As soon as Ark went in, Raymond stared at him with a shocked expression.

“Ah! Y-you… returned. No way… did you bring that mineral?”

Ark smiled coldly and nodded his head. Then he took out the Blood Crystal and dropped it onto the table with a clink.

Raymond’s face as he saw the Blood Crystal was filled with horror.

"You look quite surprised. Are you disappointed I've returned alive?"

“N-no. Wh-why would I?”

“After all, you must be disappointed since someone you sent as fodder returned safe and sound.”

“Wh-what are you talking about? Fodder?”

Raymond denied it as he shook his head vigorously. But he was unable to hide the anxiety in his eyes.

There was no need to rush.

With a leisurely expression, Ark slowly drove him into a corner.

“You said that you went into that cave frequently. If that’s so, then of course you would know of the Golem’s existence. However, up till I went to the cave, I didn’t hear even a single word about the Golem from you, even though you knew it would be difficult to defeat the Golem with my strength. No, you sent me because you judged that it would be difficult for me to defeat it. From the beginning, the reason you sent me was to use me as food for the Golem that was raising the Blood Crystal within it.”

Raymond was startled and flinched when he heard the word ‘Blood Crystal.’

“Ho-how in the world did you hear about something like a Blood Crystal…?”

Raymond quickly avoided eye contact as he mumbled something like an excuse.

"I-I don't know what you are saying."

“Is that so?”

Ark shrugged and turned around.

“I understand. Then it looks like I have to find the Lord and ask him.”

"Wa-wait a minute!"

Astonished, Raymond tightly grasped onto Ark's arm.

“Wha-what exactly do you want?”

“Are you admitting that you did it?”

Ark put on a wicked smile as he made his jab.

Raymond lowered his shoulders as if in despair and heaved a sigh.

“There, there was nothing I could do, either. If you know about the Blood Crystal, you must also know that it’s not just mineral. That’s right, the Blood Crystal is a magical mineral storing an ancient power. A long time ago, I held it by accident and was fascinated by that magical power. In the end, in order to cultivate the rest of the Blood Crystal that wanted more knowledge, I ended up planting it in the Golem’s body. And then I used strangers like you. But now, even that has come to an end. How would I have known that someone among the strangers would perhaps know of the Blood Crystal…”

Once he broke down, Raymond confessed everything in a steady stream.

As he stared at Ark with bitter eyes, he spoke, “I’ll confess everything I told you to the guards as well. In return, couldn’t you give me just a few days off?”

‘Seems like he’s a very stupid person.’

Ark snorted and was about to refuse.

Suddenly, he heard a coughing sound from Raymond’s room. Startled, Raymond quickly leapt into the room.

Ark followed him in and saw a young child coughing, who was obviously very sick, on a small bed.

With a tearful face, Raymond held the child’s hand.

“Oh, oh, my baby. Papa is right here.”

“P-papa… cough, cough!”

The child broke out into a cold sweat as he coughed violently.

While staring blankly at that sight, Ark asked, “Are you perhaps…”

“Please don't ask anymore questions. It's all over. In any case, the Golem was crushed while the Blood Crystal was in an incomplete state. No, even if the Blood Crystal was somehow completed, there’s no guarantee that the illness would be cured. I don’t resent you. And if you just wait a few days for me, I’ll be sure to turn myself into the guards. I beg of you. Please allow this hopeless father to watch over this poor child’s last road.”

As he looked at the beseeching Raymond, Ark was speechless.

He had no idea why he kept running into this kind of situation.

Indeed, he could definitely understand Raymond’s feelings. If his mother could completely recover, Ark would do anything. If he’d been in the same situation as Raymond, he would have done the same.

However, Raymond was an NPC. The dying child was also an NPC.

He knew. He knew that if he just finished the quest and received his reward, that would be the end of it. But why did he feel such an uncomfortable sensation? Why did he see his mother lying on her sickbed, why couldn’t he bring himself to just turn around and find the guard?


“Move it.”

Ark roughly shoved Raymond and grabbed the child’s hand.

“You’re okay. You’ll be able to recover your health just as your father wishes. You’ll be able to go outside and run like the other children while freeing the laughter that’s locked inside your chest.”

It was then, when Ark used his Nursing Skill. The Blood Crystal Ark was holding in his hands suddenly turned to dust and disappeared. Rays of light abruptly emerged from the dust, which was then absorbed by the child's body.

At the same time, a dramatic change occurred in the child’s body. The coughing stopped in an instant and color returned to his face.

Miracle Nursing has succeeded.

You must convey the sincerity born of the sentiment called nursing to your patient-- only then can it truly gain meaning. Sometimes, an illness or the like that cannot be cured with any kind of miraculous medicine or magic can be cured by sincerity.

Now, children who receive this sincere Nursing will recover completely; as you hoped, they will live vigorously while speaking of you as their benefactor of good deed to many people.

*From succeeding Miracle Nursing, all your stats have increased by 1 each.

* You have acquired a new stat, Affection (+10)

It will raise the success rate and effect of all actions that require affection by its numerical value.

Stat distribution is not possible, it will increase when you have done a good deed great enough to be talked about by other people.

* Fame has increased by 50.

* Your alignment to Good has increased by 50.

Since you succeeded Miracle Nursing, you have earned the title of Caretaker.

As a Caretaker, your fame increases and you will receive the praises of many of the sick.

* As a title-related bonus, all stats increase by 1 each.

* Fame increases by 50.

“H-how can this be!”

Raymond stared at Ark with a bewildered expression.

However, the truly bewildered person was Ark. He just used it once because he felt sorry just watching, but he hadn’t known that it would yield this kind of result. After staring at the child with dumbfounded eyes, Ark felt embarrassed to look at Raymond who was pouring out tears, so he quickly left the room.

“I’m gonna leave. Whether you turn yourself into the guard or not, do what you want.”

“Dammit, to give up a quest that’s almost completed... I must be crazy.’

To be honest, he did feel regret. However, Ark quickly shook his head.

It was a G difficulty quest anyways. Even if he let the guards know, he’d only receive that much of a reward. But Ark had already received a reward he hadn’t even imagined. All stats +2! As a bonus, since his agitation had also disappeared, now something like the quest was nothing.

‘The hell, I don’t know. Should I just delete the quest?’

"Pl-please wait a minute!"

He’d left the house, but Raymond hurriedly followed him.

Then he grabbed Ark’s hand tightly as he pulled something out for him. One was the ingredient for making the Tool Box, Ailard Powder, and the other was a booklet with a faint light shining around it.

“Don’t you need to take the Ailard Powder? And this book is our family’s inherited heirloom. Although I still haven’t been able to properly interpret its meaning, it might be possible if it’s you. I’m sorry I can only give something like this. I beg you, please take it.”

Ark wasn’t one to refuse something like this. As Ark snatched and packed it away, Raymond spoke as he bowed.

“Thank you for accepting it. Also, I will definitely turn myself into the guard if my little boy gets well, like I promised to you. It’s not because I’m afraid you’ll accuse me, but because I want to become an honorable father to my little boy. So don’t worry about me anymore.”

Thu-thu-thump, the quest information window opened.

The Secrets of the Blood Crystal quest has been completed.

You have found the hidden ending of Alchemist Raymond’s request-type quest.

Hereby, the Alchemist Raymond sincerely confessed and is repenting on his sin. He will keep his promise to turn himself in and receive punishment.

Special reward: Experience +5000, Raymond’s Secret Book (Rare), Fame +50


Through Raymond’s Secret Book (Rare), you have learned a new skill.

Magic Restoration (Special, Beginner, Active): Using Mana, any kind of item can be restored to their original condition. However, if a novice uses it, the item’s maximum durability will be cut by 10% each.

Decreased durability will cease to exist. If skill level rises, it will be possible to fully restore general items and repair higher level magic items.

Mana Consumption: 10

‘A hidden ending!’

Ark’s jaw dropped.

Although he hadn’t even imagined it, it seemed the child’s coughing sound was actually a diverging point of the quest. Thanks to that, Ark had gone up a level and had even learned the repair skill he’d regretted so much.

Although there was a penalty to the durability unlike the normal repair, the explanation that full repair was possible if he raised the skill level was also attached. In any case, he had learned a skill that only Warriors could.

Kind acts were rewarded after all.

Moreover, Ark hadn’t gotten the real reward he’d worked towards yet. When Ark returned with the Ailard Powder, Norton rejoiced.

“Ooh, so you got it. Thank you. Now I can supply General and Deluxe Toolboxes, 100 each, to the Lord. I’ll deliver it, so don’t worry. And here, this is your share. The 8 percent I agreed to discount you on calculates in money to 200 gold, and that’s left after the price of the 2 Deluxe Tool Boxes from last time. 11 Deluxe Tool Boxes.”

He still needed the Tool Box since Magic Restoration was still beginner level.

Ark stored the toolboxes inside his bag and headed towards the plaza.


The plaza’s bulletin board was pasted full of countless flyers. Guild recruitment ads… and even wanted flyers were there.

If a Chaotic user’s infamy rose, the Lord or the NPC Guard Chief would post wanted flyers like this.

Ordinarily the NPCs took care of it, but there were also users who specialized in hunting wanted criminals. That was because they could obtain magic items more comfortably than by catching a boss monster.

However, the flyer Ark was scrutinizing was something different.

A newsletter: it was a flyer similar to New World’s regional newspaper. A newly discovered region, brief information about a dungeon, or an event taking place in various villages and the like were written.

Ark was of a mind to finish up his Jackson life if he rose another 1 or 2 levels. Then he planned to choose a few places from among the regions that looked alright and leave for an adventure. Since there were no quests he had received, he was uncertain about deciding his destination.

Just then, he heard a loud "wow" from one side of the village.

When he turned to look, a huge crowd was gathered at the plaza.

“Wow, are those people part of the expedition to raid the Labyrinth of Tarsha?”

"Have you heard the quest difficulty is ++C?"

"Holy shit. I haven't even received an E rank quest yet."

“We wouldn’t be able to do it even if we received one. Our levels are different.”

“Just look at their gear. They’re all plastered with Magic items and even Rares.”

“Sigh, when will I be able to put on one of those.”

“Look there, it’s Sir Alan!”

The chattering people’s attention focused to one side.

The person who approached as he received their attention was a Knight riding a white horse. He was a handsome Knight with flowing golden hair wearing a flashing full plate armor set that you could tell was a Rare item at first sight. His arrival took everyone’s breath away.

“I think someone said Sir Alan job-changed to ‘Holy Knight,’ one of the hidden professions.”

Holy Knight was one of the few known hidden professions.

“So that’s why there are a lot of soldiers who look like NPCs.”

“Ooh, just look at that item. New World was launched only recently..."

“They say he started one month after the launch, later than us.”

“The gear of the people who are participating in the attack party with him are no joke either.”

A raid gathered several parties to complete ++difficulty quests that couldn’t be completed with just one party.

It was usually made up of only users, but depending on the quest story, sometimes NPCs joined too. In particular, for a character with high fame like the Holy Knight, the chance of NPCs joining rose.

‘So that’s the highly rumored Holy Knight.’

Although Ark had heard rumors about him here and there, it was his first time seeing him. While Ark was currently satisfied with his profession of being a Dark Walker, at first Ark had also wanted to choose a Warrior-type hidden profession like that.

Granted, no matter what type it was, finding a hidden profession quest was like finding a needle in a haystack….

While Ark was staring blankly at the people, someone from the crowd suddenly approached him.

It was a female Magician with a black robe and her hood lowered all the way to her chin.

“Are you by any chance Mr. Kim Hyun Woo?”

A dumbfounded expression arose on Ark's face.

He'd never imagined that someone would call him by his real name in a game where there was not a single person he knew.

Furthermore, it was a woman? He had no idea who it was.

"That's right... who are you?"

"Ah, so I was right after all. I thought it might be you since you had the same face."

“Do you know me?”

The Magician took off her deeply lowered hood.

Ark squinted as he looked her over. The Magician was a pointy-eared female Elf. He was definitely seeing this character for the first time, but somehow she felt familiar. His memory wavered dimly between remembrance and oblivion.

As Ark titled his head, she smiled with a sheepish expression.

"Ah, seems like you don't quite recognize me after all. Have I modified my appearance too much, perhaps?”

Ark was finally able to recognize her after seeing her smiling face.

"Ah! Are you perhaps the person I saw at the interview?"

“Yes, I’m Kang Misu. Here, I go by the name Lariette.”

“Right, my character’s name is Ark.”

Ark quickly bowed his head to greet her.

He didn't know why he couldn't recognize her face right away. Actually, Ark had thought of her several times so far. No, to be truthful, he'd thought of her quite often. It was natural to feel favorable towards a woman who had shown interest in him in an unfamiliar place and had even cheered him on, especially since she was a woman whose beauty that outshone that of an idol. But that was that. He hadn’t even hoped for an opportunity like meeting her again.

But to meet in a place like this by chance, and it was she who first recognized and talked to him on top of it...

“So you started as an Elf.”

“Yes, it’s a bit strange, right?”

“No, it suits you well.”

They weren’t empty words. There were few people who suited the Elf this much.

At Ark’s compliment, Lariette toyed with her pointy ears as her face reddened.

“But it looks like you’re going to participate in the raid this time.”

“Yes, my level isn’t quite there yet, but I entered through an invitation from someone I know.”

“What is your level?”

“I got a lot of help from the person I know, but I’m still only at 50.”

Lariette replied with an embarrassed expression.

Ark choked.


“Yes. Is something the matter?”

“Oh, no. Your level is quite higher than I anticipated.”

“What level is Ark-nim at?”

"I am now 35..."

As Ark responded in a voice as loud as ants crawling on the ground, Lariette revealed a rather surprised expression. Then she followed by shaking her head with a disappointed expression.

“I’m sorry to say something like this, but Ark-nim, that’s a little severe. Actually, among the candidates, I’m on the low side of levels. The likely people are around level 70. The attack party leader Alan-nim is also a candidate, but this time his level went over 75. Honestly with Ark-nim’s level…”

Even if he didn’t hear the rest of it, he could guess her next words. It was probably that it would be difficult for him to pass Global Exos’ test. He’d basically known, but hearing it right in front of him sucked the energy out of him.

Just then, the Knight riding the white horse approached from behind Lariette. It was Alan, the Holy Knight.

“Lariette-nim, what are you doing there?”

“I met someone I know, so I was just having a little talk.”

“Someone you know?”

Alan examined Ark up and down with a slightly uncomfortable eye.

"Ark-nim is also an applicant."

“Then your level must be alright. The quest this time has quite a high difficulty so we’re low on people, so this is good. Would you like to join the raid?"

"No, Ark-nim is still...."

Lariette studied Ark’s expression as she whispered something to Alan. As soon as she did so, a flash of ridicule glimmered through Alan’s eyes. ..

“Well, each person has their own circumstance. Excuse me.”

Alan turned his horse as if there was nothing left to see.

“Now then, Lariette-nim, let us be off.”

“Ah, yes. I’ll be going now. Please work hard.”

Lariette stared at Ark with bittersweet eyes before turning around. Ark felt an empty feeling while watching her back. He felt like his hope was walking away from him with her.

Actually, Ark had felt smug these last few days.

He had grown used to the Dark Walker profession, and he’d ruined Andel, who’d been far ahead of him. Not long ago, he’d even found a quest’s hidden ending and had received a reward up to his expectation. It seemed like everything was progressing almost too smoothly.

He had even thought that he might have a chance at passing the much-hoped for Global Exos’ test.

But in the end, that was all just his delusion.

Ark’s rivals, the other candidates, were going to do a ++C difficulty quest from an unimaginably high place. The difference between them and Ark was one that he had vaguely expected.

That’s right. He’d expected it to some extent.

Unlike them, Ark couldn't afford to concentrate on playing games all day. So over time, the difference was bound to grow. In addition, he’d wasted a whole two weeks of time in Harun Village, so this much difference might be certain.

He’d known. He knew, but…

'Dammit. I feel really shitty.'

An unbearable feeling surged and welled up.

It wasn’t just because he had fallen behind the other candidates. Alan’s ridicule-filled eyes. And Lariette, who followed him.

When he looked back at the scene, Ark felt like he had just lost Lariette to Alan. It was just something within a game, but New World was a game that was more real than reality. So he felt the sense of defeat more keenly than in real life.

He didn’t want to lose anymore.

No matter what the cost!


'It'll be really bad at this rate.'

After seeing Alan leading the attack party, Hyun Woo couldn’t shake off his testiness.

When the Planning Director Ha Myung Woo gave her speech in the interview hall, she had said they weren’t going to just look at levels. However, level was one of the absolute numbers in the game.

A higher level player can hunt stronger monsters. Naturally, the chances of getting a better item increased, they could proceed to a broader expanse of regions, and they could receive higher difficulty quests. In the end, level was an absolute value in all senses.

Falling behind from that meant failing the test soon.

He had to catch up. It was the only method of survival.

‘Is there any way to increase my game time?’

As always, the problem was time.

He was confident he could catch up if he could concentrate on the game with the same amount of time as the other candidates. However, Hyun Woo could only invest just 6 hours in one day. He had to decrease his sleeping time while fighting fatigue to make even that time possible.

To be honest, he didn’t expect much for Global Exos’ test.

He still thought so even now. However, if he was to fail the test, he wouldn’t be able to play New World anymore. He didn’t know what would happen after one or two months, but in the end, he wouldn’t be able to meet Ark, the character he’d raised with such care, ever again. His efforts so far would all be wasted.

'And Alan!'

Forgetting how Ark had suffered his disregard was unacceptable.

Ark was Hyun Woo himself. Insulting Ark was no different than insulting Hyun Woo. If he could, he wanted to raise his level like crazy and strip Alan like Andel and laugh as much as he wanted at him.

Even so, he couldn’t give up reality because of a game.

Although the money paid to him by Global Exos was enough for him to get by, he still couldn’t afford his mother’s hospital fee if he didn’t work. Even now, wasn’t it true that the wage he received from the mart, his three part-time jobs, and the money from Global Exos was only barely enough to cover it?

‘Even so, I can’t keep increasing the debt here...’

What a dilemma, it was a situation in which he couldn’t do it even if he did this or tried that.

'Half a year! No, even for just a couple of months, is there no way I can concentrate on playing the game?'

Just then, news he had seen a few days ago suddenly flashed in his mind.

It was an article about buying and selling in game items. Now that he thought of it, he vaguely remembered hearing stories of people making a lot of money just by selling game items.

Now that item trading was completely legal, it was a time when item trading occupied one place in the market. Hyun Woo did remember his school days when he’d earned pocket-money from selling items in an online game. He just hadn’t been able to connect that to living expenses, but it was certain that items could become money.

For a game like New World, items could definitely be sold more expensively.

‘Maybe I could sell items and use the money from the sale to pay for mother's hospital fees? Well, with my current level, the items I can get won’t get that much money, but… New World hasn’t been open for very long anyways. There’ll be many people who need items that I can obtain at my level. Yeah, let’s try at least looking it up once.’

Hyun Woo found and entered the auction site that he’d auctioned in ages ago.

As expected, New World’s item auction was actively growing.

As he searched through the catalogue, seeing the market prices made his jaw drop.

“Wh-what is this? Is this really the price of a game item?”

The items of New World were being sold at an unimaginable price.

When Hyun Woo had played his online game, items worth tens of hundreds, tens of millions of won had been traded, but those were items for the very top level players.

However, New World was a whole different level.

A price of one gold was equivalent to 10,00 won (~$10), and a magic sword for level 20-30s was being sold for at least a million won (~$1,000).

For Rare or Uniques, depending on the stats, they ranged from several hundred thousand won to ten million won.

Indeed, the items were valuable. It was a world that Hyun Woo, who would skip a few meals in order to save a few thousand won, couldn’t even imagine.

'1 gold equals 10,000 won... Then the toolboxes I've obtained today are worth two million won!'

It really shocked him.

‘Maybe the items I have can also be sold at a high price?’

After agonizing, Hyun Woo tried posting the Blood-red Mantle of Dreams on the auction. It was a level 20’s Unique item that demonstrated an immense advantage in a fight against a user.

It was a treasure Hyun Woo cherished, but there wasn’t really any other item he could sell that was worth much money. Then, like fire, within a few minutes hundreds of bidders entered the bidding war. After an hour had passed, the price had soared to 400 million won (~4,000 USD).

It was equivalent to 2 months of Hyun Woo’s salary and a half a month of hospital fees.

It was mind-boggling.

‘Holy smokes, what have I been doing all this time?’

Even though it was Unique, it was limited to level 20 and even had a curse on it.

But 4 million won in just one hour! He hadn’t even imagined that a single item like that would rake in an enormous price like this.

However, Hyun Woo was unaware of a simple truth.

It was exactly because of Global Exos’ candidates. New World’s items were expensive to begin with, but it hadn’t been this much. But as the candidates shook the money bag, like a gust of wind, even the prices of low-level items had exploded several times their price within one month.

Andel was the same. You couldn’t drink recovery potions like water by making gold like normal. That ruthless power of luxury came from cash. In any case, to Hyun Woo, the entire situation felt like a light of salvation.

‘This is it. This is exactly it!’

The way to focus on only playing the game!

'I can earn money from the game!'

After finally finding the method, he felt more furious that he hadn’t known until now.

At the end of the auction, the Blood-red Mantle of Dreams was sold for 4,500,000 won.

He also auctioned off Andel's plated armor set because although the defense was good, there was too much of a penalty for users who weren’t Warriors. Even though it was normal armor, in the end it sold for 2,500,000 won.

Although he was regretful about selling them, he disregarded that after thinking of it as an investment.

If he could concentrate on the game all day, there was nothing to regret.

By selling the mantle and Andel’s armor, two months of hospital fees had already fallen into his hands. It was small, but it meant he could just play the game without thinking about anything else for two months. If he made money like this, he might even be able to buy a unit one day.

Even if he were to fail the test, if he can continue to play New World, he could earn money.

‘Alright, we’re gonna try this!’

For the first time, Hyun Woo had embarked on the path of a professional gamer.

The next day, 7,000,000 won (~$7,000) was deposited into his bank account.

As soon as Hyun Woo confirmed the balance in his account, he headed to the Mart. The owner poured curses on him for not showing up for a week. In the face of that, Hyun Woo politely handed his resignation over and fled the mart.

There hadn’t been anyone who’d been particularly friendly with Ark. He didn’t feel even a little wisp of something like regret.

If there was just one person that he regretted, it was his coworker Hye Sun. Hye Sun, who had never lost her smile although she faced difficult circumstances at home, like Hyun Woo. Even Hyun Woo, who’d never given much care to other people, thought affectionately of her as a little sister.

It was inadequate, but he wanted to personally explain his situation at least to her.

“It might be laughable that I’m quitting because of a game, but it’s something extremely important to me.”

“But this suddenly…”

Hye Sun made a tearful face.

“Don’t be too sad. My mother’s hospital is nearby, anyways. Whenever I come and go, I’ll come buy you a drink. And if anything happens, call me any time; whether it’s mice or whatever, I’ll come catch them for you right away.”

“Mice…” Hye Sun giggled as she muttered to herself, “Alright, that other thing… now anything is fine.”

Hye Sun looked aloof, as if she’d peeled away a layer of worry.

“By the way oppa, if it’s for the game, you’re always going to be in New World, right?”

“Yeah, I will.”

"Well then, okay. I'll see you in there."

"What? You started playing New World? What's your in game name?"

“It’s still a secret. I’ll come find you soon. Wherever you are," Hye Sun replied with a beautiful smile.



A spooky laughter echoed in the Shadow Forest.

The person with a bat and a skull beside him, exuding an aura stained with greed was none other than Ark.

It was not the same Ark as yesterday. The determination to do his absolute utmost was alive in Ark’s face. It was a definite change. From today, Ark had been reborn as a professional gamer.

"Master, why are you acting like that? It's frightening."

Sensing Ark’s change, Bat became terrified and shivered.

“Shut up. You get ready too-- from now on there’ll be no breaks. Bat, go scout the surroundings. Find a place where there’ll be a lot of gathered monsters.”

“I-I get it. Calm down.”

With his sword raised, Ark pounded through the Shadow Forest like a madman.

“Wait and see, Alan! One day I will make you fall on your knees right in front of me!"

The entire Shadow Forest heaved. In the past, he had fled if he thought it might be a large group, but now, he went around looking for places where the monsters gathered instead. And when he discovered one, his eyes flashed as he charged.

It wasn't madness, but greed that soaked his sword as it slashed down helpless Zombies and Ghouls helplessly. That wasn’t all. He stripped away all the food ingredients he could call ingredients in the area to the point that the forest felt chilly.

‘I can’t afford to complain about my profession. Since I’ve already chosen it, I’ll become the best with this profession. And to become the best, I have to apply 100 percent of the profession’s special characteristic!”

Ark did not rest even for just a minute.

If he rested for a moment to recover his Health, he immediately made Survival Cooking and shoveled food into his Familiars.

“Sa-save us! PLEASE STOP!”

The Bat and Skull exploded with screams, but Ark had no mercy. That was because raising his Familars’ stats meant Ark would become stronger.

Whenever he acquired an equipment drop from a monster, he would repair it continuously with restore magic until the durability dropped to 1. In order to save even a penny, it was necessary to increase his restore magic early on. It was the same for other skills as well.

No matter which skill it was, if he just raised it, he would either become stronger or it would cost him less money.

There was a reason to raise it with his life on the line.

"Give me your experience! Give me your money! Give me your items!"

At Ark’s frenzied hunting, Undead monsters and the like now furtively avoided him. While his motivation overflowed at even the sight of an Undead’s head, right as he was on the brink of exploding in anger, Ark detected an incredibly dangerous opponent.

A few days after starting to hunt like this, a formidable monster showed up at last. The medium boss that emerged if you slayed a certain number of Undead monsters, the Reaper. A Reaper with a blurred figure approached him cloaked in a black robe as it swung its enormous scythe.

"How dare you make a ruckus in my territory!"

A low cry shook the Shadow Forest.

A truly terrifying sight. However, it only appeared as a lump of experience in Ark’s eyes.

Ark’s level had already become 39 though hunting in the Shadow Forest. With his 20 percent ability bonus in the dark applied, he was no different from a player in the late 40s.

He had raised his skills dramatically, so Sword-Hand Combat had also reached Intermediate.

Even if the Reaper was a level 50 monster, there was no reason to fear it.

“I don’t have time to chat. Come at me!”

“Kukuku. To come at the chief gatekeeper of the spirit world for a human subject, you childish rotten bastard!”

The Reaper rushed towards Ark as it swung its scythe.

Ark quickly dove within melee range as he loosed Dark Blade.

As a BOOM sound echoed, the Reaper wobbled as it stepped back.

The Bat and Skull rammed the Reaper on both sides at the same time.

The Bat and Skull were both desperate. That was because the amount of food they had to eat would depend on the result at the end of the battle.

“Kwak, these little…!”

While the Reaper was still wobbly, Ark used Cat's Eyes.

The Reaper’s Health appeared above its head as red points were drawn here and there on its body. They were weaknesses perceived through Cat’s Eyes.


As he ravaged the red points, the Reaper’s health dropped noticeably.

Once its Health was cut to half, a black aura erupted from the Reaper’s body.

"Feel the fear of death!"

Bat and Skull, who were swept by the aura of horror, convulsed and stiffened.

The Reaper swung its scythe at Ark as if to end him with one stroke. But the scythe was blocked by the sword Ark swung and bounced off.

The Reaper's eyes were stained with disbelief.

"H-how can this be? A human was able to overcome his fear of death?"

"I'm more afraid of poverty than death!"

Ark pushed forward coldly as he swung his sword.

Dark Walkers had a 50% resistance to Fear. That went up another 20% in the dark. If it wasn’t a Fear used by a monster with a huge level difference, there was almost no possibility of him getting hexed by it.

After Ark resisted the Fear, the Reaper cringed even more. After that, Ark had full control of the battle.

As his Sword-Hand Combat attacks fell like a max-output storm on the Reaper, it quickly dropped into critical condition.

The Reaper couldn’t take it anymore and attempted to flee despite the humiliation.

“Argh! Ju-just wait and see!”

"You think I'd let you go?! Dark Blade!"

Ark narrowed the distance in a single breath and loosed Dark Blade on the Reaper’s back, which was rife with red spots.

His mana was increased by 100 because of the Crystal Golem Head he was equipping. Thanks to that, he could cast Dark Blade three times even after using Cat’s Eyes.

One, two, three!

Critical hits exploded in quick succession. The Reaper’s Health hit the bottom at last, and it screamed with a burst of charcoal miasma. Then the body appeared to slowly dim, then suddenly disappeared with an intense explosion.


Ark had no interest in something like the Reaper’s dying words.

The only thing that held Ark's interest was the large scythe the Reaper had dropped.

“Information window!”

Reaper's Scythe (Magic)

Weapon Type

(Modified. For some reason, there was no information window for this scythe.)

Attack Damage






Usage Restriction

Warrior Profession, Level 38

    An eerie scythe carried around by the gatekeeper of the spirit world, the Reaper. The Reaper has mowed down many lives with this scythe and dragged them off to the spirit world. The dead will feel fear just by looking at it. Options: 150% attack power against Undead, Ghost-type enemies. Fixed chance to induce Fear

It was a weapon two times stronger than the Sharply Shining Sword that Ark used.

Even considering that it was a two-handed weapon, it was a weapon with a considerably high attack damage.

The options were good too since there were many occasions where one had to fight Undead when they were under level 40. Although Ark couldn’t use it because it was a Warrior-use weapon, he still made a satisfied smile.

‘It’ll sell for a nice price since there are a lot of Warrior users.’

The Reaper was a monster with an atrocious item drop-rate. Even this much could be called a bonanza.

From 80% experience, he immediately went up a level after killing the Reaper.

'Finally level 40! I have achieved my goal in the Shadow Forest!'

Ark urgently opened his status window to distribute his stats.

Character Name





Good +50






Dark Walker


Cat Knight, Caretaker




300 (+110)

Spiritual Power
















Art of Communication




Special Stat: Knowledge of Ancient Relics


Equipment Effects

Sharply Shining Sword: Attack speed +5
Black Bear Mouse Leather Armor: Agility +2, Cold Resistance +20
Cat Paws: Attack speed +10%, Agility +15, Critical Hit Rate +10%
Crystal Golem’s Helmet: Mana +100

*All abilities are increased by 20% in the dark.

* The ability to hide your body in the dark has formed (Duration time 10 minutes. Cancelled if you get into combat).

* Resistance to Fear, Darkness, Blind, and Charm spells is increased by 50%.

*You can bring out the true abilities from all types of tools.


Passive skills

Sword-Hand Combat (Intermediate:113/300): Polishes Hand-to-Hand Combat and Sword Mastery to increase overall fighting power.

Survival Cooking (Beginner: 92/100) Makes unidentified dishes with ingredients obtained from nature.

Undying Will (Beginner: 68/100) When in critical condition, Attack Power, Critical Hit Chance, and Recovery Speed are increased.

Indomitable Body (Beginner: 61/100) When in critical condition, Defense, Critical Hit Evasion, and Recovery Speed are increased.

Foraging (Beginner: 82/100) Food ingredients from nature can be gathered.

Ingredient Identification (Beginner: 71/100) Confirms effect of ingredient

Riding (Beginner: 3/100) Can handle a horse more skillfully with greater skill level.


Active Skills

Nursing (Intermediate: 149/300) Gives hope, energy, and courage to patients.
Mana consumption: 10

Spirit of the Cat (Advanced: 374/500) Plants fear in mice and other small monsters, sealing off their movements; their Attack Power, Defense, and Morale are sharply decreased.
Mana consumption: 120

Eyes of the Cat (Beginner: 88/100) Penetrates the enemy with a sharp gaze.
Mana consumption: 50

Restore Magic (Beginner: 59/100) Restore an item to its original state.
Mana consumption: 10


Profession Only Skills

Dark Blade (Beginner:42/100) Deals a one-hit blow to the enemy’s weak point.
Mana consumption: 100

Summon Demon (Beginner:24/100) Summons up to three demons from the Netherworld.
Mana consumption: 100

With determination, his skill development also quickened enormously.

If he put every ounce of his energy into each and every sword strike when he used Sword-Hand Combat and preciously devoted his entire soul to Foraging, even if he used them the same number of times, his skill proficiency growth doubled in speed.

This was a fact he’d realized while nursing Viscount Haverstein. However, Ark had not utilized this knowledge properly until now.

You didn’t just do one thing in the game. Hunting, foraging, resting, cooking, trading, etc.. the work to be done was as high as a mountain. It wasn’t easy to put his heart and soul into every single one of those actions, especially for Ark, who played the game while reducing sleeping time.

But now, the situation was different.

Ark had now become someone who makes a livelihood by being a gamer.

‘New World is the only way to live! I must get stronger if only to survive!’

It seemed like his stats and skills reflected the last few intense days.

Plus, a few of his skills were on the brink of rising from Beginner to Intermediate. Until those skills all became Intermediate, Ark would swiftly develop them once again. In addition, his Familiars’ stats had also gone up a few times, so now they were quite useful.

‘Now, if I just raise my level once or twice and my skills also go up, I can hunt level 50 monsters with little trouble.’

However, Ark still felt he was lacking something.

Although he’d already killed the level 50 monster Reaper without much difficulty, that was only possible because he received the bonus from the dark. Honestly, it was still too much to fight level 50s. There.. utilized all sorts of skills.

‘That’s right, I shouldn’t be satisfied with just this. I still have a long way to go to catch up to Alan.’

Global Exos’ employment test and item hunting to make money. These two were his greatest objectives in playing New World. And catching up to Alan became one of Ark’s goals to achieve.

Since that day when he was humiliated in front of Lariette…

‘Anyways, since I’ve caught the Reaper now, seems its about time to move hunting grounds.’

Just then, his main window unexpectedly popped up in front of his eyes. In the middle of icons lined up in a circle, his bag icon was flashing.

With his head tilted, Ark touched it and opened the bag. The Jewel Hand Mirror he’d earned from defeating Debra was quivering.

“Right, the Hand Mirror was a level 40 quest starter item!”

Ark took out the Hand Mirror.

You have gained a lot of experience. Even if you do not try, the knowledge you have naturally gathered from walking the world, breathing, talking, and listening will become the key that will lead you to yet another adventure.

This is one among the many kinds of items that treasure countless secrets. A mirror that was specially crafted has fallen into your hands through one of your adventures.

You, who possess a rudimentary knowledge of ancient relics, have carefully inspected the mirror. You quickly realized that someone’s memory was sealed inside with ancient power.

Bonus from the knowledge you acquired from observing the Ancient Relic Jewel Hand Mirror:

Knowledge of Ancient Relics +5, Intelligence+2, and Fame has increased by 20.

When you are ready to challenge a new adventure, the mirror will know of your decision on its own and will guide you. However, it is not known if the mirror's guidance will bring your good luck or unhappiness.

*As you have become level 40, the Jewel Hand Mirror’s seal can be lifted.

Would you like to lift the seal?

There was nothing to hesitate about.


*Flash* -!

In an instant, an incredible light burst from the Jewel Hand Mirror.

A magical film unfolded with the background of the dark Shadow Forest as the screen.

It was a film that was clear, yet somehow gave off a worn-off feeling, as if it depicted a scene from one part of an old book.

The scene illuminated by the mirror was a beach with a beautiful lighthouse.

A soft breeze caressed the buoyant clouds and gentle waves tumbled as they churned white froth. The sound of singing floated in on the wind on the peaceful beach.

It was a language he’d never heard before. He couldn’t tell the meaning. But the sorrow brimming in the singing shook a place deep inside Ark’s heart. How much time passed like that?

The dreamlike singing gradually faded, and words popped up.

For Christin’s sake…

The Mysterious Mirror’s Whisper

From inside the mysterious mirror, images prompted Debra's arrival on the unknown beach. An indication of a long and far journey. When you're ready, go on a journey to the unknown beach and solve the mystery of the mirror. The mirror will serve as your guide and lead you to the lighthouse.
An incomprehensible film of a seaside has emerged from the Hand Mirror that Debra had. This is hinting a long and far journey. If you are done preparing for the journey, you must find the beach and solve the secret of the mirror. Just as a lighthouse guides a ship, the mirror will guide you.

Difficulty: F

Quest requirement: Requires Knowledge of Ancient Relics.

“It’s a quest!”

Ark, who had stirred from the song with a hazy expression, opened his eyes like a flash.

A quest. Which meant a reward.

It was common sense that rather than catching hundreds of normal monsters, completing one nicely rewarded quest yielded more experience and money.In addition, this quest was started from an item dropped by Debra, which boasted a +E difficulty.

It wasn’t a quest that would end with a reward of just a few gold.

Ark accepted the quest without hesitation.

In an instant, a ray of light extended from the mirror northwards, under the night sky.

“As the lighthouse guides ships… so this is what it meant.”

It was a ray of light that would guide him to the beach of the film.

Ark slung Skull on his back and gazed at Bat, which was circling him as it flapped around.

“Let’s go, Skull, Bat. We will follow this light to solve the quest.”

“Alright, Master. I’ll be good, so don’t feed me food.”

*Clack clack clack clack.*

Like that, with him leading his two Familiars, Ark walked northwards, where the light extended.

Ark’s adventure was just getting started.

To be continued…