#When I returned, my family was ruined (76)
―This is the first time since the meeting. How have you been?
Chaiman’s appearance revealed in the crystal ball was full of composure.
“Are you planning on holding a flower ceremony?”
-exactly. We five elders have made a decision. The schedule is in one month.
-At that rate, all of my direct relatives would have received the letter. Even if it were Prince Theron of Kingdom 7, the same would be true. Excluding Prince Theron, who is located far away, I think the schedule is not that tight…
Chaiman spoke with a meaningful smile.
“Are you pretending not to know His Majesty Sigmund’s intentions?”
-What does it mean? What do you mean?
“I’m not twenty yet.”
I was able to understand at once what the archduke was claiming.
Sigmund was the 17th king.
One of his wills was to elect the head of the duchy when the archduke became an adult.
-I know that. But won’t you soon become a saint? Holding the flowering ceremony a little early will not mean going against the will of His Majesty the late King.
No matter what the Archduke said, he planned to keep the schedule for the enlightenment ceremony as is.
‘There is no time.’
The territory occupied by the Archduke was becoming more stable as each day passed.
They lowered taxes, banned the circulation of Dragon Clan God Books, and eliminated any justification to attack this side directly.
That didn’t mean that they were completely safe from the Archduke’s clutches.
In fact, all you had to do was give the justification. The residents of the territory will start shouting cheers the moment the archduke advances.
There was a rumor going around that even the assassins sent by Irdan were defeated, although I don’t know what tricks they used.
It was said that the Archduke’s power may be more than he imagined. Therefore, Myers had to be elected as head of the family as soon as possible.
The youngest Confucius.
If he becomes the head of a small household, it will be possible to restrict the Grand Duke’s actions.
-The decision of the council of elders has already been made for a long time. No matter what the Archduke says, the schedule will not change. I’ll see you in a month.
Contact with the crystal sphere has been lost.
Will the flowering ceremony proceed quickly?
On this side, it was something to be thankful for. The fact that the flowering ceremony took place quickly meant that the head of the family would be elected quickly.
I was just thankful that they would lift me up on their own.
It wasn’t that long.
* * *
A week passed.
Most of the county’s major affairs had been resolved.
Frexian and Elena.
Although the two people had excellent administrative skills, what was decisive was Sylvia’s help.
She was a near-all-rounder when it came to using her mind.
If it weren’t for Lawrence, the work wouldn’t have been done so neatly in just one week.
It was when I was taking a breather after finishing my work.
Elena said as she entered the office.
“Ethan. “Can I talk to you for a moment?”
I entered the office and sat down. Elena, who was sitting next to her, wiggled her hands and spoke.
“You mean Lawrence, he’s a good kid, right?”
Although he may be blunt, he is an outstanding talent when it comes to using his head. I was just thinking about Sylvia.
It was an unfortunate situation.
“But why Lawrence all of a sudden?”
“It’s already been four months since we met Lawrence, right? “I’ve been keeping an eye on her, and she seems to be having a bit of a problem.”
“Aside from the fact that he rarely expresses emotions, I’ve never seen him sleep.”
“You mean insomnia?”
“I think so. “From what I heard from the maids, they say she drinks alcohol every night.”
Ethan tilted his head.
“huh. It’s a habit. You need strong alcohol to fall asleep. The problem is that I can hardly sleep even after drinking that much.”
The act of drinking itself was not a problem. There was no law that said only adults could drink it.
At around seventeen, I’m at an age where I can’t say anything about drinking.
“Do you drink a lot?”
“I heard he drinks about two bowls of rum regularly.”
“…Not a glass, but a bowl?”
“uh. “It’s the bowl you’re thinking of.”
It was a bigger share than expected.
Even knights would feel like their bones would break the next day if they drank two bowls of rum.
“It’s not just that. Not only do I spend most of my waking hours working, but I also barely eat when I eat.”
It was my first time hearing this story.
Was Sylvia like that in her past life?
‘Now that I think about it…’
Even in her previous life, Sylvia always looked thin.
It was still the same now.
“There’s a bit of a problem.”
According to what Elena said, this was a fairly serious problem.
Eating is alcohol.
What I suffer from is insomnia.
If you can’t even use your head all day long and don’t even eat properly, anyone will have no choice but to say that this is a perfect way to live a short life.
“When you’re seventeen, you’re in the prime of growth, right? For a boy, he is as small as a girl. No matter how I look at it, there seems to be a problem.”
That was because it was a woman, not a man.
Of course, even for a woman, she was on the small side.
I didn’t have the heart to tell Elena this.
Sylvia didn’t want it to be revealed that she was a woman.
“I talked to the Frexian administrator, and he didn’t notice for the first time. I tried talking to him a few times, but he never listened. So…”
Elena handed me a bracelet.
“You tell me better. “Hand this too.”
“It’s your strategy.”
It wasn’t wrong.
Ethan took the bracelet.
Even with a quick look, I could immediately figure out what it was for.
‘It’s an artifact that helps recover from fatigue.’
It was a fairly effective product. I don’t know, but I probably paid a lot of money.
“And I tell him to eat more instead of drinking. That child will probably listen to what you say. Understand?”
“Then I’ll go.”
Elena came out of the office.
Ethan, who was quietly looking at the bracelet, called Sylvia.
* * *
“Did you call me, Master?”
She took a seat near Ethan.
“I heard it from my sister. “I heard you suffer from insomnia?”
Sylvia was shocked.
This was a fact that I did not want to reveal to the Archduke.
“…yes. However, it is definitely not to the extent of interfering with work…”
“I heard that you can’t sleep for less than three hours a day. “That’s a level of abuse that even a decent knight couldn’t withstand.”
“Are you eating well?”
“I guess he’s not eating.”
The Archduke made eye contact and said.
“You weren’t planning on going with me for a long time?”
A connection I caught by chance.
However, this connection was no different from a golden copper rope. Sylvia had no intention of missing this line.
“If you want to work for a long time, taking care of your body is essential. “You may not realize it now because you are young, but problems will arise in the future.”
“It would be difficult to correct everything in one day. I understand. So, let’s start by eating properly. Eating well is one of the ways to increase work efficiency. Do you agree?”
Ethan handed me a bracelet.
“It is an artifact related to fatigue recovery. “It’s a gift, so wear it if you can.”
“…thank you. “Your Majesty.”
She carefully took the bracelet.
“Get some rest today.”
“…yes. “Then let’s go.”
Sylvia left the office.
When she returned to her room, she looked at her bracelet.
It was the first time in her life that she received a gift from someone.
At first glance, it was an item that appeared to be worth the price.
‘…Can I accept this?’
Since it was a gift, I was even told to wear it whenever possible.
Not wearing the bracelet here would also disappoint the lord.
After thinking for a while, she eventually left the room with the bracelet on her wrist. The knights belonging to the Dragon Slayer naturally followed her.
They were knights in charge of escort.
One of the knights looking at his face tilted his head.
This is because there was a change in his previously cold and blunt expression.
‘What on earth has changed?’
The knight, who was carefully spying on the trickster’s face, finally noticed the change.
Although very faint.
If you look closely, the corners of your mouth are slightly raised, unlike usual.
‘…Did something good happen?’
How could that cold-hearted trickster laugh like that!
The count’s introspection.
A scream full of pain might be heard again from the dungeon located there…
The knight, whose body was trembling, carefully followed the knight’s footsteps.
* * *
Two weeks have passed since I gave the bracelet to Sylvia.
Recently, she has been eating regularly.
Not only that, but perhaps thanks to wearing the bracelet, my complexion became much brighter. An environment where you can use your brain for a long time has been created.
It wasn’t just Sylvia who started to change.
2 weeks time.
With work gone, Ethan was able to focus on training.
‘The stage of embodiment is almost over.’
I have completely adapted to firearms.
Now it was time to enter the realm of understanding, exploring the origins of fire.
A time when mental training becomes more important than physical training.
I spent the whole day sitting cross-legged, imagining and exploring what fire was.
‘Breath of Black Flame.’
It seemed perfect at first glance, but it was a training method that could not be said to be perfect.
If it were perfect, there was no reason to dye the pure flame a muted color.
Consideration of the flame continued.
‘If you look at it that way, the fight continued in the same way that it always used black flames.’
When you exploded the flame essence before.
I remembered the words of the Fire Lord I met then.
[By mixing pure flame with negative emotions, we created the fire of corruption.]
[In the end, there is bound to be a limit. You will continue to carry imperfections in your body.]
What is pure fire?
To put it bluntly, Black Flame was full of miscellaneous additional effects.
Robbery of energy, internal concussion, and even a curse.
It was a representative effect attached to black salt. It was also the reason why the Duke family was able to reign as the best sword family on the continent.
‘If only we could purely strengthen the firearms.’
There was no need for such trivial features. Wouldn’t everything be perfect if it burned before it even reached you?
In order to break through the huge wall I faced when I became a transcendent.
‘We need to lay the foundation now.’
It was for that very reason that I imagined pure fire through meditation.
I thought about fire all day. Days where I continued to grow mentally, not physically.
Through the days of contemplation, Ethan was able to gradually peel away the shadow of the black flame that had bound him.
‘Fire is just fire.’
There was no need for any unnecessary features.
Suddenly, I felt an itch.
A feeling of being caught by something.
Ethan immediately took out his greatsword.
The moment I infused mana into my sword while imagining the hottest flame in the world.
Flames rose above the black greatsword.
Instead of the usual red flames, the flames emit white light like snow.
It was a color as if all the unclean energy in the world had been stripped away.
Although it was only for a short time that a pure white flame was born.
That you have gone beyond the stage of embodiment and reached the stage of understanding where you realize what the source of fire is.
‘White flame (白炎).’
An unknown territory that no one in the family has ever been to.
The first footprints were left in that area. Footprints as white as snow.
Preparations for the flowering ceremony were completely completed.