The Great Mage Returns after 4000 Years – Chapter 70 – Ivan (1)
Editors: Ana_Banana, Yahiko
On the second day after entering the forest, one of the ranger leaders reported to Alkon.
“Captain Alkon! We have a group of undead at 7 o’clock!”
Alkon’s expression stiffened.
“Tell me more details.”
“I didn’t take a close look as I was afraid that they’d notice if I got closer, but there are at least dozens of them. It’s not only low level undead like Ghouls and Skeletons, but there also seems to be Dullahans and Death Knights there as well.”
“At 7 o’clock…damn. There’s no way to avoid them.”
Alkon grumbled and drew his sword.
“Rexler, you keep watch of the carriages here. I’ll give you ten Mercenaries.”
“The Wizards and everyone else will follow me. Kain, can you enchant weapons?”
“Good. Ms. Syax, please help out as well. We will leave as soon as you are finished, so please hurry.”
Except for light, the elemental attribute that worked best against undead was fire.
Therefore, Frey applied fire enchantments to the Mercenaries’ weapons. With this, the low level undead would be unable to regenerate and could be easily defeated.
The problem was the Dullahan and Death Knight.
It was basically impossible to do much damage to them unless it was a 5 star spell.
Frey decided to watch the situation first.
This was because Alkon had a confident expression on his face.
‘I’ll get to see how strong an S-rank Mercenary is.’
After a while, the subjugation team set off.
Frey and Syax were placed at the back of the group, together with the priest, and the rangers led from the front.
The expressions of the Mercenaries became more and more tense as they drew closer.
Some of them even began to sweat.
Even veteran Mercenaries who had gone through many bloody battles would want to avoid undead.
This was because their characteristic persistence, grotesque appearance and powerful odor covered everyone fighting them with the uncomfortable and dirty feeling of death.
In addition, high ranking undead such as the Dullahan or Death Knight were powerful enough to threaten the lives of A-rank Mercenaries.
However, when the Mercenaries arrived at their destination, they were shocked by the scene before their eyes.
“W-, what? This…”
“What happened here…”
The place where the undead was supposed to be.
No, the only things in this location were pieces of debris that appeared to have once been undead.
Broken bones, rotten flesh and shattered, pitch black armor were haphazardly strewn around the area.
The undead had been annihilated.
“W-, we only took thirty minutes to get here.”
“It hasn’t even been thirty minutes yet.”
And they did not disappear naturally.
Someone had eliminated them.
Frey only paid attention to the Death Knight’s corpse, although it was strange to say that about an undead.
There was a large fist print on its chest plate.
And the back of the armor was torn as though something had exploded from within.
The Death Knight’s armor was made from a material stronger than steel, but it had still been torn like a piece of paper.
‘Mana was used to smash it from the inside.’
Frey was sure that the scene inside the armor was much worse than what could be seen from the outside.
He knew who had gotten rid of the undead.
It was the Successor of the Magic Warrior King.
It couldn’t be anyone else.
* * *
Frey immediately examined the scene.
And he realised that it should have taken no more than ten minutes for this group of undead to be annihilated.
‘It seems he is even better than I thought.’
From the traces of the fight that he saw, his strength should be around the top ranks among First class Magic Warriors.
He might not yet be a Warrior King, but his strength was close to that level.
The more he looked at the bodies of the undead, the more he felt that his judgment was correct.
‘I’m starting to become more curious as to what type of person he is.’
At least he could be sure that this person was truly Kasajin’s heir.
Frey felt strange.
The Warrior King’s Fist was created solely by Kasajin and was a martial art tailored for his own body.
Of course, this didn’t mean that you couldn’t use it simply because you had a different physique from Kasajin.
In fact, Frey also trained his body using the Warrior King’s First. The problem lied in the efficiency.
No matter how hard he tried, Frey would never be able to draw out the true essence of the Warrior King’s Fist because he was not suited for martial arts.
It would be a good thing if he was able to even bring out 20% of its true might.
But this guy was different.
‘He has a good understanding of the Warrior King’s Fist. He must have trained his body the same way Kasajin did.’
The whole body would be composed of muscles harder than rocks. It was probably possible for him to smash a boulder apart without using any mana.
At the same time, Frey was relieved.
Seeing that he’d annihilated this group of undead with such prejudice, it seemed that he was not one of the Demigod’s subordinates.
“Did you notice something?”
Frey stood up and replied.
“I found traces of martial arts.”
When he pointed out the fist mark indented on the Death Knight’s armor, Alkon’s face became colored with amazement.
“You are a Wizard of great knowledge and skill. No, wait a second.”
Alkon’s expression became serious again as he looked around.
“Hm…this appears to have been done by one person.”
He had a good eye. His S-rank wasn’t merely a title.
“I think so too.”
“Hoh. I don’t know what to say. To defeat this number of undead, it would have to be at least an SS-rank Mercenary.”
Frey looked into the forest.
That guy’s trail continued inward, but Frey didn’t think he needed to pursue him right now.
‘Eizek said that he was near the Great Reynols Forest.’
However, this forest was nowhere close to the Great Reynols Forest, even if one was to exaggerate.
This meant that the Successor had come all the way here for some reason.
‘Is it to get rid of the undead?’
Perhaps that was the case, but it was too soon for Frey to draw a conclusion.
First, he went back to the carriages with Alkon and the rest, and after making preparations, they started moving immediately.
The Mercenaries did not relax.
Although they did not personally fight the undead, they had still felt the sinister aura that exuded from their bodies.
It made the Mercenaries’ expressions stiffen considerably.
However, the deeper they went into the forest, the more unsettled they became.
No one else said a word, but they were all thinking the same thing.
The broken bodies of undead lay scattered before them
It was a scene that they had seen numerous times so far.
One of the Mercenaries kicked a skeleton’s skull while saying.
“Maybe we’ll meet this person soon.”
His words soon became a reality.
Shortly after they began moving again, they could hear sounds coming from the distance.
There was also a slightly muffled explosion.
The Mercenaries all turned to look at Alkon, who thought for a moment before giving his orders.
“Subjugation team, follow me.”
Since he had divided the group beforehand, the team moved without hesitation and followed him.
The sounds grew louder as they approached, and after a while, they came to a clearing.
And in it, a man was beating up undead.
The expression ‘beating up’ was not a mistake.
In a way, it was a very unrealistic sight.
At first glance, the image of a topless man standing among a group of undead would make the viewer feel that he was in danger, but the ones in danger were the undead, not him.
Whenever his fist struck, there was the sound of something exploding.
The Death Knight that was hit by this blow flew away as if it had been struck by a cannon, and it did not stop until it had shot through quite a few trees.
“It’s hard to believe even when watching it with my own two eyes.”
The Mercenaries muttered with blank expressions on their faces.
What the hell was his fist made of? It had made the Death Knight’s armor crumple like a piece of paper.
However, it could be said that the high ranking undead were fortunate since the Skeletons and Ghouls struck by his fists simply popped like firecrackers.
The man smashed through the group of undead while his lion-like mane flew in the wind.
It was insufficient to call his entire body a weapon.
Every time he punched, kicked or headbutted an undead, they would shatter like a sand castle against boisterous children.
The fight, no.
The one-sided massacre soon ended.
The man crushed the last remaining Dullahan’s skull with his bare hand.
Even though it was wearing a helmet, its head was smashed like a rotten apple.
He spit on the body before turning his head to look at Alkon’s group as though he’d known of their existence the entire time.
As soon as he caught the man’s gaze, Alkon shivered.
There seemed to be a light within his eyes that threatened to explode at any moment.
“Who are you guys?”
“W-, we’re Mercenaries.”
“Is that so? Okay then.”
The man immediately turned around as though he had lost interest. However, Alkon stopped him.
“What is it?”
“Who are you?”
“I, I didn’t mean your name. Why are you removing undead here…”
The man, Ivan, frowned.
That alone seemed to change his expression to one similar to a beast.
“Why do I have to tell you that?”
“Don’t annoy me or get in my way. Or I’ll kill you.”
Alkon, who was an S-rank Mercenary, could not even mutter a word at Ivan’s threat. In the meantime, Ivan turned around and continued on his way.
Frey realised that now was a pretty good time.
“This man is suspicious.”
“I think so too. Still, it doesn’t seem like he’s an enemy…”
“We can’t jump to conclusions. And it would be dangerous to leave it unverified.”
Alkon tilted his head slightly.
“Hm. Is it? He didn’t seem to care much about us just now.”
“That may be true for now. But I’m worried by the aggression he showed.”
Alkon scratched his cheek while remembering Ivan’s threat.
But he soon shook his head with an embarrassed expression.
“I think so too, but we can’t track him or fight him.”
He wasn’t confident that he could defeat that man even if he gathered all of the Mercenaries.
It was an accurate judgement.
Ivan’s strength was not something that they could overcome simply with a numerical advantage.
Frey pretended to think for a while before speaking with a stiff face.
“Wouldn’t it be better to find out this man’s identity? We still need to continue along this route, but it is too dangerous to let an unidentified man wander around.”
“So I’ll go find out.”
“A Wizard alone? That’s too dangerous. Wouldn’t it be better for a ranger to go?”
It was normal for him to think so.
Frey slowly persuaded Alkon in a low voice.
“It’s better for a Wizard to hide from a Magic Warrior than a ranger.”
“You would be risking your life. I could tell just by looking at his eyes. That guy is a beast. If you get on his bad side…”
“I know. But I can’t think of a better way. Besides, I’ll only be in the group till you arrive at the Great Reynols Forest.”
Alkon probably knew that already.
Frey kept speaking in a low tone.
“So you probably intended to make use of my power as much as possible before we arrived.”
“…right. You’re smarter than you look.”
Alkon nodded since his intentions were already exposed.
“Then I’ll leave it to you. Since you are willing to do this dangerous task, I’ll give you double, no, triple the reward. And if you feel it’s too dangerous, then you should leave right away.”
Frey nodded and immediately chased after Ivan. It was easy to find him.
All he had to do was head to the huge commotion that was shaking the entire forest.
Ivan was slaughtering undead again.
Frey watched on with a curious expression.
‘Why is he hunting the undead?’
Because undead were a threat to humans?
No, he didn’t seem to have such a noble purpose.
Was it for training?
It couldn’t be that either.
Although these groups of undead had high ranking undead like the Dullahans and Death Knights in them, they were no more difficult than some after meal exercise for Ivan.
He could see it now.
Ivan’s face while he faced the undead was filled with nothing but irritation and annoyance.
“Damn bug like bastards…”
He corrected his posture and seemed to draw power from the earth.
At that moment, a violent storm broke out and swept the swarm of undead away at once.
‘Knife Fist. Not bad.’
It was one of the few long range attacks in the Warrior King’s First style. The tacky name was also given to it by Kasajin himself.
Then a Ghoul that was behind Ivan bit his shoulder.
The expression on the half rotted face of the Ghoul became strange.
No matter how hard it bit down, its teeth could not penetrate.
Ivan snorted and smashed the Ghoul’s head. That was the last one.
Ivan then spit on its body.
It was the same thing he had done before. Was it one of his habits?
“What the hell do you want?”
Ivan’s eyes turned to look at Frey.
Frey didn’t bother to hide his presence. Instead, he was openly watching Ivan’s performance with his hands folded over his chest.
Frey didn’t answer and instead inspected the bodies of the undead.
It was a deliberate act.
He didn’t know much about this man, and this was his first time meeting him, but he already had an idea of what his personality was like.
He was his own man.
He lived in his own world, and he felt no loneliness or regret in that fact.
To deal with a man like this, you must first make him interested in you. (TL: you hear ladies?)
Ivan raised an eyebrow when Frey ignored his question.
This meant that he was already slightly interested.
Frey spoke just as Ivan opened his mouth.
“How long has it been since you started learning the Warrior King’s Fist?”
Then Ivan gave a fierce smile.
“I was wondering what kind of guy you were, but you’re just another Circle dog. Get lost. I have no intention of joining your little group.”
“You’re using the Warrior King’s Fist, but you won’t fight against Demigods? How shameless.”
“That’s not something an outsider would understand.”
Frey glanced at him for a moment before touching one of the undead body parts at his feet.
“These undead. They seem to have sprung up recently. Does it have something to do with you?”
Ivan stayed silent.
He didn’t deny that it was related to him in some way.
After staring at Frey for a while, he finally spoke.
“You cursed me for not doing anything about the Demigods. That’s where you’re wrong. I know about the background of the Warrior King’s Fist. This martial art was specifically designed to kill Demigods.”
“It seems you are well aware. Then why did you refuse the Circle’s offer?”
“You’re talking about those guys? Ha. That’s ridiculous. Then I’ll ask the opposite. If I join the Circle, will we be able to kill Demigods?”
Ivan’s question was sharp.
He glared at Frey.
“I’ve met guys like you many times before. No matter how well I cover my tracks, you always seem to find me. But do you know what they say as soon as they see me?”
He grit his teeth.
“They clamor at me to join their circle without even mentioning two words about the Demigods. The current Circle is rotten. It’s a place filled with pigs who only know how to fill their own stomachs while Demigods pull strings from behind the scenes. I’m not going to join such a filthy pigsty.”
Ivan stared at Frey with a gaze that seemed to say ‘if you dare to say nonsense, I won’t let you go’.
But his expression became a bit strange when he heard Frey’s words.
“Everything you said is true. I agree with you.”
(TL: For those who might not remember, the ranks for Magic Warriors are:- Apprentice, Third class, Second Class, First Class and Warrior King.)
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