The Star of Annihilation
Chapter 35 – Flaws (1)
Written by : eleven
* * *
The heat of the smithy Lucius and Roy were inside of, was sweltering as they listened to the sound of the bellows of the Empire’s sole Master Blacksmith.
The title of a Master Blacksmith was something that few held, and only one of the few that held the title, was a human.
“Phew, I think it’s turning out quite alright… Huhuhu!”
Masa, the master blacksmith, stroked his sweaty beard with his calloused hands as he chuckled at the work he was working on.
It was a short saber that he had been requested to make about a week ago by the Emperor’s favor for a small 9 year-old boy, named Roy.
The materials were made and scrapped from an odd-looking automata that Roy had brought forward to Masa.
Roy looked at the saber in complete admiration.
‘To think something like this could be forged from the materials of the doll.’
Roy felt amazed at the work in front of him.
The materials he had given the smithy included a by-product of Mithril that was slightly degraded from pure mithril.
Nonetheless, Masa had an extremely pleased expression.
“Rarely have I had the chance to work with materials that amazing, so I had to add a little bit of my personal touch into it. I added a bit of orchicalcum into the smelting process because you had told me you intend on being a magic swordsman, correct?”
“That’s right. Thank you for that, I truly appreciate it.”
Roy replied, smiled, and then bowed in a ninety-degree angle towards Masa.
Orchicalcum was a highly conductive metal with mana. It was especially amazing for enchantments and imbuing elemental magic into the weapons they were made of.
Mithril was a metal that was incredibly hard and was conductive already, but to be able to smelt and mix the ore with orchicalcum was an incredible feat.
Roy looked at the saber in wonder.
“Does it have a name?”
This time, it was Lucius who asked, as he even had eyes of admiration for the blade crafted.
“Ah yes, check the handle of the blade, I used a slightly gold paint and mixed it under the furnace so it has a red tint to it.”
The blade was a shiny white with a red tint. Roy wasn’t sure if it was because the heat was just being reflected around inside the smithy to produce that effect, but the black handle did show the name.
“Yeah aha! It was something that came to mind for some reason when I was working on the final product.”
“What does it mean then?”
Roy asked with an expectant expression.
“To be quite fair with you, I didn’t exactly know what the word meant when it came to me, but rather it had an odd intent that came along with it.”
“What was that then?”
“Well…. I am not normally one to like seeing blades used to kill, as I am nothing but a man who creates. But the intent that came with it when I crafted the finishing touches, was an intent to clear the path in front of it. As if methods were not important as long as the goal was met.”
Lucius murmured to himself.
Very rarely in the Empire did pieces with ‘intent’ come out.
They were pieces of work that were like both curses and blessings depending on how they were used.
When a Blacksmith named a piece, it was very important to the process and finality of the weapon, but weapons with intent were incredible to say the very least.
Even Lucius did not have a weapon capable of carrying intent when he was able to transcend his body’s limits to become a swordmaster.
Although he owned a weapon of intent now, this could be something quite beneficial for his student. Especially for the next few years that Lucius was going to teach him in private.
‘This will be good because he’s not exactly even a third-rate swordsman yet. He still needs to pick a swordsmanship style to take him further.’
Lucius knew Roy’s innate skill level was now at the the level of a third-rate swordsman, but to become a proper one, one needed direction.
“It’s a good blade.”
“Thank you Swordmaster Lucius, it’s always a pleasure.”
Masa thanked Lucius for his comment and was a little curious about the relationship between Roy and Lucius, but did not dare to ask.
“Ah, can’t forget this, can we!?”
Masa quickly exclaimed as he went back into the smithing areafk grab something for Roy and Lucius.
Roy looked at Lucius with a confused expression, as if wondering why Masa went back.
The answer came shortly however, as Masa brought forth a black scabbard.
“This is the sheath I prepared for the blade. I used the extra remaining materials to engrave the blade’s name onto it as well as using some ogre hide to complete a sturdy build for it.”
The scabbard was light and firm. It didn’t hinder the blade’s movements as Roy practiced drawing the blade in and out.
“Once again, thank you very much. I don’t know how I can repay you for this favor.”
Roy bowed. It was one thing to have this favor be done because of the Emperor, but Roy believed that debts were to be settled between just two people and never more.
“Well to be honest, I don’t have much of a need for anything. But if you do find more materials like that and need equipment crafted in the future… do come to me first aha!”
This was building a solid relationship for the future. Luckily, it seemed like Masa was a true smith to the very meaning of the title. Money was only secondary to his passion for forging and working with metal.
“Now then, shall we get going?”
Lucius turned and asked Roy.
They had decided their training route for the next two years. But, their first destination was quite special.
“To the territory of the Demons.”
Lucius smirked as they left the shop, and Roy agreed as they enhanced their bodies and left with quick feet.
* * *
Inside Mathilde Stone’s residence…
“Are you sure you don’t want to go either Nate?”
Mathilde asked Nate carefully as they ate breakfast together.
Nate had been left behind with Elizabeth by Roy. He couldn’t help but feel bitter at this.
Because of this, Nate decided to ask the First Prince if he could also not go to school until Roy came back. He felt weak and left behind.
“I’m sure ma’am. I need to get stronger and school won’t do that for me.”
“Why do you need to get stronger? Have you found something you want to be in life, or found what you like to do?”
At Mathilde’s piercing question, Nate winced.
Roy’s mother was just as sharp as Roy. Nate didn’t have a specific reason in all honesty.
‘If I stay weak, then I can’t be with Roy anymore.’
-Although that thought isn’t necessarily true, it is correct that you are incredibly weak.’
Varpulis’ voice rang out inside Nate’s head.
These days, Nate hadn’t been doing much and didn’t know where to start with his training. However, Varpulis had become more talkative with Nate and had started to offer suggestions.
-Why don’t you ask that man who also uses the spear to teach you? It seemed like he was just as strong as your friend’s new master, if not stronger.
‘Do you really think that even if somehow I was able to get taught by such a person, that even with their teachings I would be strong enough to stay with Roy?’
-No, but I’ve already told you what you can do about that.
Varpulis and Nate chatted with their shared stream of consciousness as God and Apostle.
‘Is there really no other way?’
Nate felt suspicious about Varpulis. He was a voice that had appeared in his head one day, claiming to be the God of Thunder. It wasn’t as if there wasn’t any substantial evidence that Varpulis was real; in fact Nate was convinced that he was taken over by Varpulis that one eventful day against the Holy Church.
-You make it sound as if I’m some kind of Demonic being. I’m not asking you to sell me your soul or anything. It’s just a suggestive form of training so that you can manifest the power that is already inside of your mana core.
Nate fell silent and then realized he had been keeping Mathilde without an answer for some time.
“Ah!… I’m terribly sorry Ms. Stone, I was just feeling distracted for a moment.”
“Huhuhu! It’s alright. Roy can be the same way sometimes.”
Mathilde let out a beautiful and warm smile that made Nate feel a bit at ease.
“I..I think that I need to keep watching Roy first. I think I’ll know what I want to do later on. All I know is that I want to stay with him for now.”
“Ah, is that so?”
Nate nodded briefly before standing up and bowing slightly.
“Thanks for the breakfast Ms. Stone. I’ll be back later!”
Mathilde nodded slightly and then quickly replied.
“Make sure you go with Mister Ferneth and Elizabeth or the First Prince if you’re going out to explore!”
Nate shouted back as he was already heading out the door with a renewed look of determination etched across his face.
‘I gotta find that guy Dante or whatever!’
Mathilde just smiled as she looked at Nate leaving abruptly and sighed.
“They really are too similar…”
Her son and his young friend were quite similar despite being oddballs back in their home village of Kerto.
Nate may be silent and more quiet most of the time, but that didn’t mean he was not similar in nature to Roy.
If anything, he was just silent because he didn’t have the kind of experience Roy had.
Nate was decided and set off to the residence of the First Prince, to find Dante, the Spearmaster.
Chapter 35 – Fin
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