Chapter 19:

Chapter 5.2, Training Facility

Don't Worry, We Have the Best Supporter in Our Team

“How may I help you, Jayce?” said the young man who was doing the paperwork on his office table.Bookmark here

The moonlight pierced through the glass, showering them with light. However, Jayce couldn’t make out his facial expression whether he was reading the documents that he was assigned to complete or giving him eye contact as he spoke. Bookmark here

“I need to know why would you put Alice, Irene and Aiden in the same class as I am?” His said in a deadly tone, serious expression formed across his face.Bookmark here

“Jayce, you’re fifteen now. I believe it’s time for you to live like a normal student. You have three years before graduation and you might not be able to get this kind of opportunity in the future.” Bookmark here

He answered his question with an easy-going tone while signing the document, approving its request as the principal of Adventurer Academy.Bookmark here

Lysette wasn’t present in the room, dismissed by Lucius when Jayce entered his office at this hour. Bookmark here

“You’re just giving me more questions.”Bookmark here

“No tricks. That’s my answer.”Bookmark here

“That still doesn’t mean you can drag them into my situation!” Bookmark here

Lucius could see the sadness in his eyes. He knew what he had meant, but he was doing this for his sake and he was playing a dangerous game here. After completing a few more documents, he stood up and sat on the sofa across Jayce and said. Bookmark here

“All in time, Jayce. You will soon come to realize why I made this decision.”Bookmark here

“If anything happens to them. I will hunt you down.”Bookmark here

Hearing that, Lucius, still smiling, let out a laugh. Bookmark here

“It’s been a while you fired up.” Bookmark here

He leaned forward with both hands clasped together. Bookmark here

“Also, I heard you completed your first quest with Alice. Congratulation!”Bookmark here

A moment later, an object flew straight at Lucius. Before it reached its mark, a sword appeared out of Lucius’ hand, deflecting the throwing dagger with ease. Bookmark here

“That’s not good enough, Jayce. You seemed to be slower than before, did something happen to you?”Bookmark here

“That’s none of your business.”Bookmark here

“Is this what kids said to their parents nowadays?”Bookmark here

Asking Lucius any further will not get him anywhere, so he reached for the exit, ending the conversation.Bookmark here

                                                           ____________________Bookmark here

“So did you manage to buy everything you need for your apartment?” asked Alice, before taking a bite of her lunch that was prepared by Jayce. Bookmark here

“Yeah. It didn’t take long to get everything you need in the Capital. They almost have everything.”Bookmark here

Before meeting Alice and Jayce, Irene and Aiden had agreed to keep their participation in yesterday’s coliseum as a secret for now. Bookmark here

“Call us when you need help with arranging the weapons in your room,” offered Jayce.Bookmark here

“I pretty sure we got this. Right, Aiden?” Bookmark here

They looked at Aiden, who seemed to be listening to something. He raised his head and tell them what he had just heard. Bookmark here

“There was an explosion in one of the alchemy class. But the situation has been sorted out by the lecturers.”Bookmark here

“That’s normal in the Academy,” said Jayce, bitting a piece of bread that he had made. Bookmark here

“And I thought we’re weird,” Irene replied as she was reading the book that was provided by one of the lecturers, looking through the types of bows that could be made with specific materials.Bookmark here

Most of the materials were unknown to her and she made some notes on her book as a shopping list.Bookmark here

“It wasn’t that bad. There were no explosions that could destroy the entire alchemy lab… yet.”Bookmark here

“So you’re saying you would try to do that?” asked Alice.Bookmark here

“Not really. If I did, I have to pay a few hundreds of gold for the instruments and the reconstruction of the alchemy lab,” he replied, throwing the paper bag, that used to contain the bread he had eaten, to the rubbish bin.Bookmark here

“So what is everyone’s plan for the weekend?” asked Irene.Bookmark here

“Jayce and I were thinking about taking another quest from the Capital’s headquarter.”Bookmark here

“Oh. That’s where we are planning too.”Bookmark here

“How about we do a quest where the four of us can take part? What do you think, Jayce?” suggested Alice.Bookmark here

“I don’t mind. As long as it doesn’t take as much time as our previous quest.”Bookmark here

“Now that was settled. How about we go for a spar?” asked Aiden.Bookmark here

“Sure. I won’t hold back, you know.”Bookmark here

“I know. We still had a score to settle anyway.”Bookmark here

Alice and Irene gave a wryly smile as they felt the tension between them grew stronger. Bookmark here

They kept in mind that they should keep their distance away from them to avoid collateral damage. Bookmark here

“Alice, do you want to battle against me with a bow again?” Bookmark here

“Hmm. Not this time, there was something I need to try, after taking some lessons from Nora and Jayce.”Bookmark here

“Can’t wait to see you try,” she smiled.Bookmark here

“By the way, were you looking for something? You seemed to be searching for something from that book you’re reading.”Bookmark here

“Oh. I was making a list of possible materials that might be suitable for my bows. I’m not in a rush to create them. I will make them when I get my hands on those materials if I get them that is.”Bookmark here

“The same goes for me as well. I need to gather some crystals for my staff.”Bookmark here

The staff she wielded had a crystal on top of it, but what most people don’t know was that the staff itself was the embodiment of the crystal, shaped to a form that is suitable for their owner. Bookmark here

Her staff was passed down by her grandparents. The staff only works for Alice as it chose its owner, the same went to her grimoire. It allowed her to cast multiple types of magic, but she had to fulfil some conditions in order to be able to cast specific magic. Just like how Nora fulfilled one of the unknown conditions to be able to wield and communicate multiple spirits. Bookmark here

Her initial thought was that absorbing magic crystals with her staff will be the key to cast those magic, but so far, she hadn’t found any magic crystals. She read from the books that the magic crystals had to be produced naturally or else the staff will not accept it. Bookmark here

With the limited number of spells in her disposal, she had to learn compound magic. She remembered Jayce’s advice: Bookmark here

You need to apply conditional magic. Bookmark here

She clenched her hand into a fist without realizing it. Bookmark here

                                                           ____________________Bookmark here

The underground training rooms of Adventurer Academy were not physically connected to the dormitory. In fact, it was set up by one of the lecturers who specialized in dimension magic. If Alice and the others wanted to use the training ground, all they had to ask permission from the dormitory’s pet cat, Ashe.Bookmark here

“Hey, Ashe,” said Jayce as he petted the feline. “Can we use one of the rooms for training?”Bookmark here

The cat meowed in approval to his request and jumped off from its bed, guiding them towards one of the doors in the hallway. The cat closed its eyes and a magic circle formed at the door and they felt a different sensation coming from the door itself. Once the magic circle disappeared, the cat gestured them to enter the door.Bookmark here

They thanked Ashe for its service and entered the room.Bookmark here

When they entered the room. The theme of the training room seemed to be the same as the Capital. Buildings scattered everywhere and there are many opportunities to strike their opponents while being hidden. Alice, Aiden and Irene were amazed by the dimension magic.Bookmark here

“A dimension magician did all this?” asked Alice, amazed with the details of the buildings.Bookmark here

“Yes. They saved up a lot of mana to manifest the weather pattern, objects and surroundings. The training room’s theme was always random, so the trainees can’t complain much about it. But I heard from one of the lecturers that it was designed that way to overcome the trainees’ weakness.”Bookmark here

“Weakness? Isn’t this theme suits both Irene and me?” said Aiden quizzically.Bookmark here

“Not necessarily. They set the theme according to everyone’s weakness, so I’m sure this will be an important training to all of us.”Bookmark here

“I understand,” said Aiden.Bookmark here

“So how do we proceed from here?” asked Irene. “Same team as last time?”Bookmark here

“Yes. Also, don’t worry about destroying the buildings here. After the training, they will be restored back to the way it was or create another theme for the next users this room.”Bookmark here

“All right. So, what is the winning condition here?”Bookmark here

“Either members of either team can no longer battle, or one and a half-hour has passed. Once the time limit is reached, no matter what, this battle will end as a draw.”Bookmark here

They all agreed to Jayce’s conditions. And with that, they moved out in different directions.Bookmark here

Are you planning to use compound magic in this training?” Jayce’s voice came to Alice’s mind.Bookmark here

Yeah. But it might take some time to cast it. Can I ask you to give me some time to do it?Bookmark here

Isn’t that why I’m here.Bookmark here

She laughed and looked at her hand, shaking at the thought of failing the spell she had in mind. She clenched her hand into a fist, shaking off the fear that crept slowly into her system and looked around.Bookmark here

The buildings wouldn’t provide much cover as she was up against Irene and Aiden. She would have to travel farther for a better vantage spot with a proper escape route for her. As she gazed around, she found probably the second tallest building in the area.Bookmark here

Jayce, I’m going to cast my spell at that tall building, north-east of your location.Bookmark here

Interesting choice. I will do what I can from here. Good luck.Bookmark here

Thank you.Bookmark here

Alice dashed toward her chosen location, while Jayce stayed close in one of the buildings, two hundred metres from her actual location. Once she reached to the twenty-third floor of the building while Jayce stood in the middle of open area, they waited until their battle begins.Bookmark here

With the signal range throughout the field, probably the workings of the dimension magic that was adjusted by Jayce’s mentioned preparation time, she activated the monocle’s sight enchantment, searching for Jayce, then Aiden and Irene. She couldn’t find others except for Jayce until…Bookmark here

Aiden is at north-west by one hundred and forty metres.Bookmark here

Understood. Strange… Irene didn’t fire any shots after twenty minutes of our battle.”Bookmark here

Something’s not right. Jayce, I need you to head west. I think Irene is waiting for you in the south.Bookmark here

Wouldn’t it be better to fight Aiden head-on?” he suggested.Bookmark here

You can, but I won’t be able to provide support from here. But if Irene was close by. You would have a hard time defeating them.Bookmark here

I will take my chances. You focus on your spell.Bookmark here

She kept her eye on Jayce, slowly approaching toward Aiden while casting the compound magic. She created a light-based magic arrow in her right hand with her magic gloves, then cast a lightning-based magic circles around it. The magic circles shrank slowly, but before they were able to coat her arrow, the magic circles dispersed into the air.Bookmark here

When it happened, she got herself up and quickly relocate to the higher level of the building. She was afraid the dispersion of her magic circles will give away her presence. Alice and the others knew about this from Nora’s class, and since Irene has a keen sight, she could easily locate her by now. Even if it didn’t, she wouldn’t want to risk it. She had to get them right today.Bookmark here

Sensing Alice’s magic, Jayce gave his remark to the situation they were having. “Take your time. I don’t think Irene will be firing at me anytime soon.Bookmark here

Why is that?” asked Alice as she went up flights of stairs, watching every corner in the hallway to keep herself hidden away from Irene and her spirit.Bookmark here

She knows providing support to Aiden will expose her position for you. This is a matter of who is revealing their position first.Bookmark here

But wouldn’t she relocate her position after every shot?Bookmark here

Alice remembered this from the archery lesson from the Adventurer Academy to understand their opponents as much as their own vocation. But the main issue was that Irene and Aiden could be using different weapons for this battle, so she had to be cautious. Both sides knew each other’s fighting style, so it was a battle of who got the upper hand to exploit their opponents’ weaknesses. Bookmark here

If I were her, I wouldn’t worry about it. She can be—Bookmark here

Before Jayce could finish his sentence, a vial flew towards him. Reflexively, he sliced it perfectly in half. However, the contents covered his entire ensemble. He felt the slight burning sensation throughout his clothing, his mana shield gradually crumbles piece by piece. Before he could use his potions to neutralize the poison, Aiden was already locked into a battle with him. He defended against his blade gauntlet with his other sword and kicked him square in the chest, distancing himself away from him.Bookmark here

Well, this is a predicament. Aiden seemed to take into consideration the time to unsheathe my weapons. Judging by his stance, he’s looking for an opening to strike me down if I attempt to remove my ailments.” He sighed. Bookmark here

I will cast a healing spell on you,” she offered. Bookmark here

No. This is actually a good opportunity. After all, we are doing this to improve ourselves.Bookmark here

Okay. But if you were about to get yourself defeated, I will heal you immediately.Bookmark here

Appreciate it.” With both swords in hands, he dashed towards Aiden. He didn’t have any time to spare before the poison took over him, he had to end it quick. Both boys swung their blades, with Aiden’s downward slash with his blade gauntlet, while Jayce’s upward slash of his sword held in the backhand.Bookmark here

Jayce dodged his blade gauntlets by a hair’s breadth and struck his arm with the pommel of his other sword held in a forehand manner. Suddenly, his passive skill took over and he manoeuvred his backhand blade to deflect an unexpected attack from his foot.Bookmark here

“Interesting toy you got there.” He remarked, a sword from Aiden’s shoe almost slashed his thigh.Bookmark here

“Even a surprise attack can’t land a hit on you,” sighed Aiden who made a slight gesture with his foot to retract the blade back to his shoes. Bookmark here

“It did surprise me. I was expecting something else.” He looked at his blindfold. Bookmark here

“Enough talk.” Aiden disappeared and reappeared behind him, extending his blade and swung down toward him.Bookmark here

“Thief skill: Reversal Slash!”Bookmark here

With both swords, he immediately struck both of Aiden’s blades. The weight of his attack felt heavy and he felt the poison dripped down from his sword to his mana shield. Bookmark here

He seemed to fully recover from the time he was held prisoner in the bandit camp. Good. Now I don’t have to hold back. thought JayceBookmark here

As he ponders, Aiden retracted his blade gauntlets, letting him slip into his defence and punched Jayce’s left arm, causing him to lose grip to his sword. Even with Jayce’s passive skill, there were some situations he couldn’t avoid due to his physical physique. Bookmark here

“Urghh,” he grunted, since the attack was done without a weapon, he could feel a reasonable amount of pain surging through his arm. Bookmark here

He kicked the ground between them to gain some distance, leaving his other blade next to Aiden. He knew if he held on his blade, Aiden’s hidden blade from his shoes might hit his mana shield’s weak point. Therefore, he had to engage him with one-handed sword techniques.Bookmark here

He took an offensive stance with a sword in his hand and closed his eyes. He could faintly sense Irene’s gaze, but he couldn’t tell where she was, so that confirmed that she wasn’t around them.Bookmark here

“I’m not going to let you have an advantage over me,” said Aiden, wielding Jayce’s sword and activated the blade gauntlet in his other arm.Bookmark here

“Neither do I.”Bookmark here

After an exchange of words, they dashed toward each other. Sword in his left hand reversed grip for a swift attack. As they closed in the distance, Aiden switched his stance and gave a downward swing with his blade gauntlet and Jayce’s sword, then follow up with a leg sweep while activating his shoe blade.Bookmark here

When he jumped over his leg sweep, he grabbed onto his arm and manoeuvred himself around Aiden in the air. As he did so, he switched his sword to his right hand and activated another skill. Bookmark here

“Thief’s one-handed sword skill: Elusive Strike!”Bookmark here

This skill was different from when he had used it on the bandit leader. It allowed the users to be flexible in any sorts of situation and were not popular among the thief class adventurers. Bookmark here

Despite that they were considered as basic skills, they required higher acrobatic skill and reflex. Jayce chose this as his main skill as a thief due to the limitations by the nature of diverse his magic circuits.Bookmark here

Before Jayce’s attack landed on Aiden’s back. His passive skill activated once more, and he steered his sword at the arrow that flew right towards his head. He kicked Aiden’s back and made a dashed towards his other sword. Bookmark here

Once he grabbed it with his left hand, he activated his Isolated gravity magic on his swords and form a bow with them. A magic bowstring appeared from his bow and with a practised hand, he pulled it towards himself and aimed at the incoming arrow. The magic arrow instantly appeared in his hand and he fired it.Bookmark here

When the arrows collided, an explosion occurred, dispersing sands and dust around them. He activated his mana vision and kept his eyes on Aiden who was heading towards him. Bookmark here

Deflecting Irene’s arrow and Aiden’s attack with his bow, he fired his magic arrows at Aiden when he had the chance. He was being pushed back. Bookmark here

Sure, he could have switched his magic circuit to Arcane Archer to defeat them, but he decided to remain a thief while using his bow, leaving him unable to utilize archery skill.Bookmark here

                                                           ____________________Bookmark here

After relocating her position, she gave another try to create compound magic. Bookmark here

This time, she cast conditional magic before coating them onto her magic arrow. Thanks to Nora’s teachings, she was able to cast her spells faster, but all that remain was for her to focus on completing the compound magic.Bookmark here

Just like how she had created her magic arrow: Mana Arrow, she ignored her surroundings, putting her entire focus on one sole entity. Bookmark here

While doing so, she heard a voice coming from her head. She couldn’t tell whose voice was it. It didn’t belong to Jayce. She then realized the creation of compound magic was about the fail, but then the voice began an incantation as if telling her to repeat it. Bookmark here

Without a second thought, she repeated the voice’s incantation and a moment later, the magic arrow took another form. It broke into pieces and transformed into letters, gathering around her at eye level. As they spiralled around her, the voice told her to read the letters. The letters were written in hieroglyph.Bookmark here

As she reads them, her grimoire was reacting to it. She then looked at the palm of her magic gloves. New magic circles began to form at the palm of her magic gloves. She later understood what she had developed.Bookmark here

With no time to spare, she unleashed her new spell, a magic circle appeared before her feet and a weapon ascended. The weapon wasn’t supposed to be real as it was made of mana. As she held it with both hands, she could feel its weight was dragging her forward, causing her to let it drop on the floor.Bookmark here

It was a white long crossbow; it had a bowstring pulled one metre from the exit of the barrel to the groove. Due to its weight, she dragged the weapon towards the edge of the building. She prone behind it and held it in her hands.Bookmark here

With her monocle, she managed to locate Irene easily as she was firing her arrows at Jayce to support Aiden. Bookmark here

Irene’s location was at a few floors beneath the tallest building in this world. She took a deep breath when she slid a finger to the trigger, she imbued her mana throughout the weapon. She then traced for runes around the weapon and activate them. Bookmark here

Multiple tiny magic circles formed at the exit of the barrel, each of them lined up in an orderly manner. A compound magic arrow appeared in the groove before she checked her aim again. Bookmark here

She pulled the trigger tightly. The bowstring sprang forward with such force. When the arrow went through the magic circles, it disappeared immediately. Confused, she kept her eyes on Irene, who was still…Bookmark here

“…?”Bookmark here

…lying down on the floor as Alice, remained still for an odd number of seconds. She then looked closer; Irene was struggling to get herself back up as if there was an invisible weight placed on her. Bookmark here

Her magic arrow was later found two metres behind Irene. It illuminated its surroundings with its dark ominous glow.Bookmark here

You can resume reading from this paragraph.