Reborn As A Cripple - Chapter 3
There were two main schools of swordsmanship in this world.
One is the [Goukenryu]― it’s a school that specializes in attacking as if to say that strength is power.
The other one is the [Jukenryu]― a school that specializes in parrying and defense. In [JRO], you could learn passive skills such as parrying and automatic evasion, but unlike the [Goukenryu] there were only a few offensive skills, and there were many skills that depended on the opponent’s behavior something like a counter, so I got the impression that it was only for pros.
And my family, famous for being the marquess of martial arts― the Dukehardt for their [Goukenryu]!
I’ve had some experience with [Jukenryu] up to the beginner level, but even so, 80% of my sword training was in practicing the [Goukenryu] forms.
In case you’re wondering, most of the remaining 20% was actual combat training, with only one week of [Jukenryu] training with a special instructor.
That’s how I came to be trained in swordsmanship at the age of two, and three years have passed since then. I’m five now.
It shouldn’t be a surprise that the [Growth Rate] for both magical and physical stats has long since been exhausted, but the basic stats continue to grow.
I didn’t kill any monsters, and I was sure as hell didn’t level up…
I took a deep step and smashed the wooden sword of the apprentice knight who was practicing with me by gripping the sword as hard as I could.
A thin layer of the [Magic Barrier] around me started to crack.
Sensing an attack from behind, I spun around and struck the other apprentice knight hard on the side with my wooden sword.
“Well done, Heid! I guess an apprentice knight is no match for you.”
“Apprentice knight… I’m just a warrior though. Didn’t Heid already get a [Hero] class job?”
“Maybe! Heid’s a genius, so that might be possible! HaHaHa!”
My father, Algeo, laughed with great amusement at the apprentice knight who was beaten down by me and was complaining.
“Hey, Heid. You’re five years old now, right?”
“Yes, that’s right.”
“Your genius is well known even among the nobility! The king said that he would love to see your ability in overwhelming an apprentice knight with the blessings of your profession at the tender age of five.”
“Th, the King?!”
No, I was aware that I was standing out from the crowd because I was so absorbed in the quest to become the strongest.
Especially in the world of [JRO], the correction that professions make was tremendous.
Even in the warrior class, all physical stats except for agility were corrected by 1.5 times the base stats, and in the hero class, all stats were ridiculously corrected by 3 times.
This was why it was so unusual for a child who has not yet completed the rituals of employment to be able to fight on equal terms with a knight, even if they were apprentices.
That said, I haven’t entered any social circles yet, and I didn’t think it would reach the king’s ears.
“It’s an honor! And of course, you’ll receive an audience!”
“Ye, yes! I’ll go get ready!”
Since this country’s an absolute monarchy, there’s no right to veto, but I had no reason to refuse it.
I’m not interested in the king, but the royal family of this country has some of the most beautiful girls in [JRO]. ―Still, there’s a possibility that Irene’s around the same age as me, or even worse was that she hasn’t been born yet. But I would still like to meet her if I could.
And so, it was decided that I’d have an audience with the king.
The Dukehardt family, which is my parents’ family in this world, has been in service of the Hermenean royal family for generations, and they are the most militaristic royal family in the world.
In case you’re wondering, the biggest country in this world was the Zanichia Empire, and the biggest kingdom was the United Kingdom of Red Flower, so the Kingdom of Hermenea was not a huge country itself. In addition, the king of Hermenea himself was just a plump old man whose only role in [JRO] was to give quests.
But even with such a plump old man, Hermenea was a nation that has established an absolute monarchy based on the supremacy of professions. As a king, it was only fitting that he has the highest rank warrior profession: the [Marshal].
In [JRO], there was no such description, he was just an uncle who was giving out quests, but according to Algeo, the king of Hermenea has a strict personality.
He reminded me not to be disrespectful, because if I did, I’d lose my head.
Even in my previous life, I wasn’t an etiquette expert, but I’ve played a lot of [JRO], so I think I’m reasonably knowledgeable about the culture of this world.
I’d like to believe that they’d tolerate me being a five-year-old child.
And so, I stepped inside the Hermenean palace with Algeo.
The palace of Hermenea wasn’t that huge, nor was it glittering, nor was it solid as a fortress.
But even so, this country advocated for [Profession Supremacy], and the resident knights in the central royal castle were quite strong. It’s also a fortress that has been made to be impregnable only by the strength of its people, including the royal family.
The knights stationed at the Castle of Hermenea gave me a quick physical exam and then led me to the King’s Chamber.
“Heid. You’re wise, so I’m sure you know what you’re doing.”
“Yes, sir. As the eldest son of the Dukehardt family, I’ll behave in a manner that doesn’t embarrass us!”
Algeo nodded his head in satisfaction when I showed him the Hermenean nobleman’s bow, which I had been trained to do, but had memorized from watching [JRO] movies several times.
“Hmm. So you’re the Child Prodigy I’ve heard so much about.”
“Yes. My name is Heid Dukehardt, the eldest son of the Dukehardt family.”
A muscular uncle who sits on the throne with a dignified attitude… it’s the King of Hermenea.
In [JRO], he was a plump old man, but come to think of it, I’m in 10 years before the game’s start.
The young king was naturally macho, as he had some military experience.
“I see. Hmm. I’ve heard that at the tender age of five, he’s strong enough to overpower an apprentice knight, but he’s an unexpectedly small child, Algeo.”
“Yes. However, there is no doubt about his ability. Perhaps I could show it right here to you?”
“Huh, that seems interesting.”
The King of Hermenea smiled belligerently, showing his canine teeth in a smirk.
Algeo also smiled confidently and looked at me, I can do it, can’t I? He looked at me. What? Could this be a situation where I would fight the knights of the royal palace?
No, no, no. I can’t win, right? Right now, I’m at best only a level 10 magic warrior.
Because there’s no way I could beat an Imperial Guard whose level was usually at 40.
I sent eye contact to Algeo saying that I can’t, but he didn’t look.
“So, Sieg. You’ll have to play with him for a bit. I want to see with my own eyes what the Child Prodigy is made of.”
“Yes. As the king commands!”
With that said, the handsome silver-haired knight stepped forward and bowed.
Sieg? Did he just say Sieg, right now? Sieg, the Dark Knight of Hermenea?
…As far as I know, this character’s level was going to be over 60. Now, chronologically, it’s much earlier, so even if it’s a little lower, 40 would be hard.
I’m level 1, and I’ve raised my [Growth Rate] by a lot and have about the same as level 10 stats, but honestly, if I was up against a level 40, level 1 and 10 were the same.
The mere touch of a sleeve of armor would be enough to reduce my HP in a single blow.
“My name is Sieg. Sieghart Libertar! I am a knight of the Hermenea’s Imperial Guards.”
Sieg raised his practice wooden sword and announced himself. In the presence of the king. The king looked at him expectantly, and Algeo nodded and handed me a practice wooden sword.
It’s not like I can say, ‘No. I can’t’, in this atmosphere.
As if under pressure, I raise my practice wooden sword and announce myself.
“M, my name is Heid. Heid Dukehardt. The eldest son of the Dukehardts! I challenge Sieghart Libertal, Knight of the Imperial Guards of Hermenea, to a mock battle!”
“I accept! As always—”
At the same time as the declaration, Sieg and I stepped in and readied our swords.
The difference in level was hopeless. In addition, I haven’t gotten a profession yet, and I have almost no skills. On top of that, my opponent was a strong character who was well known even in [JRO]. There’s no way I could beat him.
Still, as a [JRO] player I’ll do my best against him!