Chapter 9:

Part 8

Fragile Phantasy

KC was stunned as Kryge lunged for an attack, his mind racing with memories of the people who used to bully him, making his body sweat and his nerves raw.

Without thinking, KC threw a punch fueled by anger, but Kryge easily dodged it and countered with a punch to the stomach that sent KC groveling in pain. "Just like I said," Kryge sneered. "You're weak, magicless." He followed up with a strong axe kick KC quickly rolled out of the way, causing the floor to crack under the force of the attack.

KC seized the opportunity to strike, but Kryge's posture immediately changed, as if he had no intention of blocking KC's attack. "Flame field," Kryge intoned, and in an instant he was surrounded by fire.

KC quickly backed away, shaking the flames from his hand. "Hot, hot, hot!" he exclaimed.

"It's time to get serious," Kryge said as he lunged for another attack. KC tried to retreat and escape, but Kryge moved faster than him. "You can't run!" Kryge's fist was closing in on KC's left cheek.

"Burning knuckles!" Kryge cast flames that engulfed his hand, and he punched KC with his flaming fist.

"Burning art-contact explosion!" KC was thrown backwards reeling on the floor, splashed with flames and half his face on fire. "Hwuaaaaaaaaaaaaahh!" he screamed, trying to extinguish the flames.

KC lost consciousness as all the worries and fears of the past came flooding back. He was still no different than he was all those years ago, still a loser.

Kryge approached him, his face full of contempt as he lifted KC up with ease. "I don't want to see your face here again," he snarled before tossing KC outside of the guild like a piece of trash.

Lying on the ground, bruised, burned, and humiliated, KC realized that he had to become stronger if he ever wanted to survive in this new world. He couldn't let himself be defeated like this again.

The cheers and roars of the crowd echoed through the guild as kc lay there, weak and defeated. Suddenly, the guild lady Kristel emerged from the crowd and approached him, offering a magical medicine to ease his pain.

"Drink this," she said kindly, wiping away the blood from his face. "Thankfully, they didn't kill you."

Weakly reaching for the medicine, kc drank it, feeling a small glimmer of hope that his broken bones and blisters might be fixed. Kristel continued to tend to him like a supportive nurse, explaining that the medicine was only effective for the magicless and that he must bear the pain he felt. She then advised him to never return to the guild for the sake of his well-being.

"Thank you, ma'am," kc said with gratitude, although the pain still lingered, he felt a sense of relief that his injuries had been somewhat alleviated.

Meanwhile, Kryge went back to drinking heavily, lost in thought. "It's the harsh reality," he mused. "There is no equality in this world. It's not good for one to hope for something that they cannot reach. My father believed that the weak could become stronger, and that was his big mistake. I will not be like him. I will teach the magicless the lesson they need, even if it's harsh."

Despite the pain, KC focused on his goal to save enough money to buy an adventurer's card so he could access valuable information. He remembered the eateries in the western part of town and force himself to stand-up to made his way there.

The eateries was bustling with customers, and KC approached one of the food stalls to apply for a job. Despite his battered appearance, they accepted him quickly and gave him a uniform to start working right away. As he began his new job.

As soon as KC stepped into the kitchen, he was greeted by a strange-looking chef with a mustache that resembled a broom. "Your job is to take orders, send out dishes, and entertain the customers. Don't frown, and make sure you're approachable. Start quickly, and your salary is 500 silver a day," the chef said, barely giving KC a chance to catch his breath.

However, the pace of the job was too fast for KC, and he couldn't keep up with the other servers who were using magic to float dishes and adjust the temperature of the soup with a flick of their fingers. Meanwhile, KC had to work manually and struggled to keep up with the constant flow of customers.

As the customers called out for him, KC became more and more nervous and confused, unsure of what to do. The chef yelled at him to keep up and not to frown, while signaling for him to smile. KC forced a smile that looked more like a dog's grin, which only resulted in customer complaints.

Feeling embarrassed and overwhelmed, KC could no longer take it and immediately rushed out of the kitchen to change his clothes. "I'm leaving. I can't do this. I'm giving up," he muttered, determined to find another job where he wouldn't have to face so many people.

Despite the disappointment, KC knew that he had to keep searching and not give up hope. Perhaps there was a job out there that was better suited to his strengths, and he was determined to find it.

As KC journeyed in the western part of the capital, smoke fills the air and his eyes caught sight of a factory in the distance that produced adventurers weapons, bombs, and explosives. He wasted no time and immediately applied for a job there. However, it seemed like he was the only one among the group of workers without magic, and his job was to melt steel.

As he lifted heavy iron to melt on the lava like pit, he realized that his lack of magic was causing his work to take a lot longer. His companions laughed at him, and someone rudely asked him to move aside, claiming that he was slowing them down. With great effort, KC tried to keep up with the others but suddenly tripped and almost fell into a pit of lava molten steel. He managed to hold on to a steel bar and was relieved to be alive, but he knew that the job was too risky, so he resigned.

Desperate for work, he headed to the center of the city, where he saw the towering ranking tower with Kryge's name in second place. Kryge had amassed a massive reputation and was now the second most influential person in the city, second only to the Capital Emperor. KC realized that with a little more effort, Kryge could challenge the throne itself.

As KC arrived at the northern part of the city, he was immediately struck by the breathtaking beauty of the water dam covered area. The crystal-clear water was so pristine that he could see the fish swimming below. The atmosphere here was refreshing and invigorating, a stark contrast to the stifling air of the south.

Without delay, KC found a job delivering water to the city by riding a magnificent bird called a Makit. The creature was like a large, intelligent parrot that could understand spoken commands and fly quickly to any destination. KC started his work with enthusiasm and efficiency, but unfortunately, a mishap occurred.

One moment, while flying high above the city, a sudden gust of wind knocked KC off balance, and he dropped several of the water jugs he was carrying. The containers shattered on the ground, wasting precious water and angering the people waiting for their delivery. The Makit scolded KC for his mistake, and he was so embarrassed and ashamed that he resigned from his job.

Desperate for work, KC continued his search and stumbled upon a group of people in the eastern part of the city who were using earth magic to mold clay and create cement for building homes. Other workers were growing plants and vegetables using the clean water from the northern dam. KC decided to try his hand at picking fruits from the plants manually, but the job proved to be too physically demanding for him.

With no magic to assist him, KC had to endure the intense heat of the sun 5 times than normal that shines only on this part of the city, so the fruits and vegetable called go larger and full of nutrients, enduring it while manually picking fruits one by one, leaving him exhausted and unable to keep up with his coworkers he feels like he's going to have a heatstroke. He knew that he could not continue this job for long and started looking for another opportunity to prove his worth.

After trying and failing at multiple jobs, KC found himself in the southern part of the capital city. This area was home to the power plant, which was said to belong to Qougre. Electricity was a common feature in this world, but gadgets like TVs and cellphones had not yet been invented. KC was excited at the prospect of working for the power company, but his dreams were quickly dashed when he was told that they didn't accept people without magical abilities. Despite the fact that he had experience managing electric cables, which he had learned under the tutelage of Doc while working as an aide, they refused to give him a chance.

Disappointed and discouraged, KC wandered to the very end of the city. He noticed that the atmosphere in this area was different from the other parts of the city. The people here seemed sad and depressed, barely dressed and their clothes and homes in ruins. The well-dressed individuals hardly passed through this place and seemed to ignore the residents. While passing by, KC saw an old man selling fruits, vegetables and meats on much more affordable price. Unlike the others, the old man had a cheerful and warm smile.

"How are you? Your day looks sad, eat this. It's on the house," the old man approached KC with a smile, handing him some food. Initially hesitant, KC accepted the offer as he was hungry. "Thank you, man," he said, sitting down to take a bite.

"I can tell something's bothering you. You can bend it on me, son. I'm here to listen," the old man said, his demeanor friendly and inviting. KC felt like he saw Doc in this man.