Thinking about it, his past self was to blame.
Of course, he wasn’t claiming that he was good and didn’t do anything wrong.
It was a terrible thing to witness the accidental death of his mother at 5 years old even before his personality had developed, and it wasn’t strange for such a child to lock himself in his bedroom after that.
‘But the reason I couldn’t get out of the room properly for 10 whole years is because of the more frequent winds which came.’
Airn aged 10 or 15 thought so.
No matter where he looked, he saw contemptuous glances. No matter where he listened there were voices of ridicule.
The lazy prince, the deadbeat noble.
Those constant winds. It was so cold that he couldn’t stand it. Airn dug deeper as he experienced it. He dug a tunnel and went inside and tried to evade the reality that was surrounding him by entering the world of dreams. He hoped that the winds would subside.
But that didn’t happen.
He didn’t realize it right away.
When the man from his previous life forcibly made him grab the sword and rise up, he raised his head and the wind flew at him.
The eyes of the people weren’t caring.
This was until he was admitted into Krono. It continued till he met the Six noble families and it was then that he realized it.
The wind will keep blowing. There is nothing that can be done about it.
Instead, more importantly…
‘Rather than clinging onto an environment he cannot change, I wanted to make myself withstand the winds… I wanted to try.’
In a way, it could be said that Airn’s efforts since then were real.
He worked to change himself who swayed to and fro with just the lightest wind. To escape from himself who was hiding from the wind, he stood tall and raised his head.
He trained his body a little harder.
He practiced swordsmanship a little harder. He didn’t just follow the man in the dreams like a puppet, but rather, he did his best to better himself.
And then, a slightly stronger wind came and shook his heart.
But it was fine.
From then, Airn was always in the midst of realizing how to move against the wind.
‘It wasn’t easy.’
The hot wind at the Alhad mountains. The encounter with Ignet Crescentia.
Even after that, questions about himself and his sword could come. And it was a difficult fight. But Airn didn’t give up.
Actually, it wasn’t as difficult as it used to be. After he learned to stand strong in the wind, he was in a state of growth.
And there was Lulu who spoke about miracles, and Kuvar who told him about the five spirits.
Judith who blew like the flame and Bratt who was as calm as water. Then there was Ilya, who loved him. There were thousands of others who gave him lessons and guidance. There was the love and faith they had in him.
It wasn’t an ordeal he overcame by himself. He overflowed with the thoughts of others and grew strong.
As a result, Airn Pareira, who now raised his head high, wasn't bothered by the wind.
“Rather thank you.”
Jarin had a blank expression, and she couldn’t understand his words.
However, it wasn’t like she didn’t understand anything at all. The emotions he let out felt as if the flow of emotions were natural.
It was a feeling which was conveyed through something a little more intuitive, not through language. Still, the present gratitude that he showed her was something she couldn’t understand.
And then the answer came.
“You genuinely cared for me and looked after me.”
“With the strength from that heart alone, I can withstand this current wind.”
Airn closed his eyes. They weren’t empty words. What Jarin had said was meaningful to him. It was the same in terms of the good intentions towards him, but it evoked something in him.
‘Compared to the past…’
His present self had grown a lot more than he thought. Airn who mumbled that, smiled.
His former self wouldn’t have been fine with this.
If it was when he was under 15, he would have slept again to escape from this.
If it was his 15-year-old self, he would have relied on the man in his dreams and used the sword to not feel anything.
But not anymore.
The wind which blew couldn’t shake him. And the good intentions that were directed at him made it happen, and it made the power of the energy of wood stronger.
The wind was still blowing, but he was the one who changed.
“Ah, sorry. I suddenly closed my eyes while talking. I was thinking about…”
“Anyway, I don’t mind. Really. Besides, it takes just a few more days to be out of the Tamoe forest, and after that nothing bad can happen…”
“Why do you hide it?”
“No, not hide it. From the beginning, you should have just said it. We were all misunderstanding you.”
She seemed to know now. Who the man in front of her was.
‘I thought it was strange.’
He was always faithful to his work and polite to others.
However, he wasn’t submissive and showed a dignified attitude and all of that felt like he was acting in the beginning.
It was because of the worst impression they had of him impersonating others.
But now she knew.
Even though this guy didn’t have the golden sorcery sword which symbolizes that man. Even though he didn't prove that he had the aura sword of a Sword Master, she was sure about it.
“Is there a reason to hide your identity?”
Airn felt a bit embarrassed.
There was. But it wasn’t something huge. He just wanted to go around leisurely in the continent and see everything that had changed and understand people in general a lot more.
‘But I came to focus on my chance rather than the continent…’
And that wasn’t bad. No, it was much better.
Before leaving the estate, he was surrounded by the confidence of the man of the purification squad.
“Airn? No, now I should call you, Mr. Airn?”
“No, please don’t do that.”
“Then tell me, why did you hide it?”
“No, it just happened… I missed the chance to speak, and I wanted to travel quietly.”
“I see. Well, it isn’t like I don’t understand. Being known is tough.”
“But, in a situation like this, wouldn’t it be better to talk about it now?”
Airn, who was thinking about it a little, shook his head.
Jarin asked again and he, who was weak under pressure said,
“If I speak now wouldn’t the others be embarrassed?”
“It is embarrassing for me too. To go and speak about it now.”
… he had a much more naïve personality than she thought.
Jarin smiled bitterly and returned to her place with a lighter heart.
Five more days passed.
Fortunately, there were no attacks and the people came out of the Tamoe forest in excitement and were filled with gratitude for the Wise Guild.
Although there was no battle, the people of the Guild showed stability and that itself was a huge help.
“Wow, it’s finally over.”
“I know. Let’s rest for a week when we get to a city.”
“It would be good to move separately now.”
Ethan and Giovanni exchanged glances.
Except for the few people who had worked in places other than the Holy Kingdom, most of them were now moving with the Wise party.
For Ethan and his party, there was no need to tag along. Although they were safe, their minds were on the verge of being hurt and they wanted to recover their strength.
‘No, maybe these guys will take a long break too. Wouldn’t it be better to wait?’
Ethan frowned and looked because their image around the group wasn’t good.
The rumors were growing.
Most of the group were unkind to the man. No one was openly picking fights, but anyone could see how much it would trouble this young man. Sometimes, they would even spit out taunting words.
Fortunately, Jarin was now paying close attention to him.
When he took a deep breath looking at the human, elf and dwarf talk.
“… what is it?”
“M-Mr. Wise! We need help! A d-demon has appeared!
Two men rushed to them on horses. Everyone’s expressions were serious.
They told them that they were a party moving to the Holy Kingdom who got attacked by the demon and that many members were taken to the demon’s den.
“How can that happen?”
They looked into each other’s eyes.
Normally they wouldn’t worry. Most of them were adventurers who were well built or mercenaries. There was no one who wouldn’t go. And naturally, the attention went to the manager of the group.
Gael Wise had a calm expression and asked the soldiers with a polite smile.
“How much power does this demon have?”
It was a voice that calmed the listener.
It was natural. Wise was now the best merchant Guild that could deal with an entire kingdom.
There were five experts with them, so he didn’t have to be scared of any demon. Therefore the elites on the ground, including Brudie Schaffer, listened to the man’s report.
The more the story flowed the more contorted their expressions became.
‘It isn’t just one demon. Many of them, maybe…’
‘There is a chance of a devil being there!’
They couldn’t help but think that way.
According to what they said, the power of the party going to the holy kingdom that was attacked was high. The party had four experts, but they were still pushed back, and some of them were kidnapped too…
It was difficult to consider it the work of a single demon.
Gael Wise’s thoughts changed.
Normally he would advance without hesitation. It was never a good look for those who want to give hope to people to end up ignoring the misfortune of others.
It was a problem if he let the elf woman who was captured die.
However, a devil was a different story.
An expert, a Sword Master and a high priest. Even with them, he wouldn’t dare enter a fight with a devil.
‘I can’t help it. Dealing with them should be left to the paladins of Avilius.’
Gael Wise, who thought that, was about to speak when a young man walked and approached the soldier.
“What? That man.”
“Mr. Wise was about to speak…”
“No, why is he going? Does it make sense?”
“Aren’t you mistaken? He is Airn Pareira.”
“Puah, you think so?”
“What is with your head these days?”
There were no kind eyes looking at him or supporting words.
Some were swept by the rumors and others stepped on him to elevate the pride of Wise.
Some people spoke hoping to hurt him, and some just stayed silent. For those gathered there, this man was Aron.
There was only one person who wasn’t like that.
She asked the man,
“Are you revealing it?”
“Weren't you going to hide it?”
“Wouldn’t it be reassuring for people if I reveal it now?”
It was an unknown conversation.
An unknown opportunity.
When everyone’s expressions hardened at the strange atmosphere, and swear words were about to come from their mouths...
From the air, a golden sword appeared.
And the aura of the sword bloomed. It was an energy which warmed the hearts of others.
“Tell me the direction.”
“If you tell me the direction, I will go there right away.”
“Uh, that, over there…”
Both soldiers pointed to one place.
Aron, no…Airn, nodded and glanced at Jarin and spoke in a firm voice.
“I, Airn Pareira, a graduate of the 27th batch of Krono, will do my best.”
Before long, the golden light split the earth
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