Levi shook his head and calmed himself, saying, “The path is currently blocked by heavy snow, and it’s difficult to tell whether or not this is a trap set by the Wild Boar Gang. Toby’s talent is something valuable, and I’m sure that he would do anything to save his life. For now, we should send someone to converse with the Wild Boar Gang before we move.”
“Ah, what a headache! These vermin are trying to step all over us,” Knight Fred sighed.
“Your Excellency Knight Fred, I suggest you rest and teach me tomorrow; perhaps I could test out the sword that Milan has crafted for me.”
Levi rested his forehead on his hand. Under the dim candlelight, his pupils exuded a majestic glow—not one of a noble lord but one of a legendary being that transcends the ordinary.
Knight Fred gulped as he looked at Levi. It was as if he was being stared down by a terrifying beast.
He looked at the oil painting hanging behind Levi—a black snake coiling around the castle, holding a candle in its mouth. It was mysterious, yet sinister.
The young master’s talent isn’t bad. He’s a fast learner, Knight Fred thought.
It took the Baron three months to become a Sword Squire after mastering the breathing technique before becoming a Quasi-Knight a year later. It then took two years to become an official knight and another eight years to become a Great Knight.
Levi, however, has only been exposed to the breathing technique for two months, and it only took him half a month to master it.
Knight Fred couldn’t figure out why, but he attributed it to Levi’s own efforts.
“Master, you need to rest. Do not put too much pressure on yourself,” he advised as he left into the shadows.
Levi’s fingers fiddled with Milan’s sword, and he glanced at the proficiency panel with a sigh.
“I simply want to practice in obscurity. Is it wrong to be a self-sufficient lord who lives a life of peace?”
On the second day of the new year, the sky was still dark in the wee hours of the morning.
The residents and soldiers of Blackwater Valley ventured through the dream realm peacefully.
Meanwhile, on the training grounds, Levi donned his heavy armour and held Frostmourne in his hand; this was the name he gave to his sword, a name that reminisced upon the world that he could never return to.
Knight Fred drew out his sword, Dawn, and said, “I shall teach you a skill that I learnt by accident in my early days of travelling the kingdom. It has no name, but I call it the [Golden Cross]. It draws strange power beyond imagination into your weapon. It doesn’t matter what weapon you’re using—a hammer, a simple knife, a spear, a pitchfork, even. This Golden Cross is divided into three components, which are [Vibrate], [Ripple], and [Whirlwind].”
“Look,” Knight Fred continued. “The simplest is Vibration, then Ripple, then Whirlwind. Despite my experience, I have only mastered Ripple, but its power is beyond compare. The effectiveness of this enhancement is entirely based on the understanding of the user.”
“Is that so?” Levi smiled wryly. “Even someone of your calibre is only able to master Ripple. Has anyone ever reached the highest point of swordsmanship?”
“Master, do not be discouraged. The Ripple is more than enough power for one to hold—even your father was only able to hit this point, and among the Great Knights, he was the strongest among every single one of them.”
Levi nodded. Of course, with his proficiency panel, he would be able to become the best sooner or later.
Holding Dawn in his hand, Knight Fred exuded a powerful aura, and his body vibrated and distorted the surroundings like a phantom. Then, this intense aura was transmitted onto his sword.
The sword shook with violent power and shone with a blinding lustre. With a single slash forward, the sword shot out a violent beam, instantly splitting the huge rock in front of him into four pieces.
In a swift motion, the sword was placed back into its sheath.
Levi was speechless. Although the rock wasn’t as hard as steel, splitting it into four pieces was impossible for any ordinary person to do.
This is the power of a knight. This is what it is like to be strong.
And Levi yearned for it.
Knight Fred huffed. He had only used 30% of his strength to demonstrate to Levi.
Had he gone all out, he could even cut through the thickest of armour!
However, that would damage the sword itself, and it was simply too flashy.
“This is simply exerting force on your sword. You may not understand it; I will demonstrate it to you again.”
Levi nodded. Knight Fred’s swift motions were too challenging for him to capture.
Levi studied Knight Fred’s moves closely and gradually understood the basic mechanics behind them after they were demonstrated countless times.
It was his turn to swing the sword.
Practising is a process of continuous repetition, continuous learning, continuous mistakes being made, and continuous learning.
If your technique is slightly off, this vibration will simply fizzle out.
Knight Fred took the trouble to guide Levi repeatedly.
Levi continued his breathing exercises and devoted himself to swordsmanship training. He wanted to ensure that the initial mastery must be displayed on his proficiency panel.
Based on his talent, Levi would be more than suitable for long-term training.
On the third day, Levi continued to practice until he felt a weak vibration that passed through Frostmourne, and it felt like the sword itself was breathing.
And he felt joy.
“V-vibrate. This must be it!”
And on his proficiency panel, new skills have emerged.