The school fencing match is a tournament-style match using real swords and will be the basis for our graduation exam score.
Victory and defeat are determined once someone either verbally concedes, goes beyond the circular boundary drawn on the ground, or any body part, aside from the feet of course, touches the ground. The rules are very straightforward and simple.
Of course, if someone cheats or does something like deliberately injuring their opponent, they will be disqualified immediately.
The teachers are scattered throughout the hall, watching the match from various angles. If they deem the situation to be getting dangerous, they can rush inside the fighting grounds and stop the match.
And since the students can hurt or even kill someone with the swords, the school physicians and town doctors are gathered inside the simple treatment center built beside the venue. If someone gets injured, they can immediately be treated.
They have thoroughly prepared for every situation.
Among the prepared seats in the outfield, some lavish VIP seats are placed at the middle, complete with a covering on top of them.
These seats have the best view of the match, and seated there are some people wearing blue stand-up collared uniforms similar to those of the military. They also had imposing and long blue cloaks and expensive-looking longswords covered with gold and silver ornaments beside them. They are knights from the Royal Knights Order, around six or seven of them there.
Sitting next to them are three or four important-looking old men wearing long coats and hats made out of expensive fabric. Seeing the embroideries of swords and shields on them, I realize that they must be the executives of the Royal Knights School.
On their other side are the headmaster and the other teachers, talking to the knights and executives with smiling faces.
And while waiting for their turn, some students are stiffly sitting on the benches placed right beside the battle ground.
The schoolyard has set up four fighting areas for this match.
Even so, there are around sixty competitors, so it will still take some time to reach the finals.
I tiredly heave a sigh.
The match has started. I’ve been doing well and keeping my winning streak.
It’s actually going extremely well. Many students have never used a real sword before, so they’re too scared. Oftentimes, they can’t even fight properly.
They get cold feet the moment the match starts. After a few clashing of swords, they would immediately yield, or even intentionally go out of bounds.
Isn’t it better for the school to stop using real swords?
This doesn’t feel like a match anymore.
Is this really okay?
“It’s like everyone quickly gave up the match.”
“That’s a given! There’s no way that they can win against Lian-sama!”
“Right!! The winner has already been decided even before you fight!!”
“It’s over for them the moment they enter the battle ground!”
Are you all being a little too hasty?
We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection. If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.
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The quarter finals, semifinals, and the third-place-determining match will be held after the lunch break. Along with the finals.
And then, finally it comes. In front of me, a blond head folds his arms, serenely smiling.
Wait, how is he so calm?
But he seems pretty motivated too.
Where did his usual languid attitude go?
I can feel cold sweat flowing inside my mind, so I try not to tremble and pretend to be calm as I also fold my arms. With my usual conceited smile, I tell him my pre-prepared words.
“S-since you’ve managed to reach the finals, you must have good luck, Alfred! But, your luck is only until here. Not once have you won against me. And you still won’t today.”
Alfred’s eyebrow twitches.
“I won’t know until I try, right?” He replies.
It’s quite unusual. He typically just gives unenthusiastic responses like ‘Hmm…’ or ‘I see’, but now…
When the sleepy swordsman teacher signals the start of the match, we greet each other and pull out our swords.
Alfred cleanly parries my blow.
He usually fights using brute strength, but he is currently very calm. His movements are fluid and efficient, without any excess actions.
And his sword handling and movements are similar to mine.
Ah, I see.
I’ve been teaching him, so it’s only natural that his movements are similar to mine. So he actually remembers everything I tell him. As his teacher, I’m happy to see the results up close.
Even so, isn’t this too different from the usuaaaaaalllll!!?
There’s not even a single pause between his moves, as if he has already mastered it.
Looking at this weird situation, I make a feint by circling around him to tempt him into attacking me again.
As I calculate his next move, I try to break his flow. All while waiting for the perfect moment to counterattack.
Above all, this is quite fun.
After exchanging blows several times…
Instead of parrying my swing, he ducks and lunges at my chest, following my sword movement.
──Just like what I did to him before.
So you do remember this move.
Out of surprise, I pause. Only for a second.
But my opponent definitely doesn’t miss that chance.
As he locks our blades together, his hand grasps the handle of my sword and twists it. Exactly like what I had done to him before.
I slightly lose my grip on the handle ──
And my sword falls to the ground.
Because of the shock, I fall on my butt. For the first time.
Screams and cheers reverberate throughout the hall.
The swordsman teacher, the referee of this match, always looks sleepy, but right now, his eyes are widening from shock.
He looks at me on my butt, and then at Alfred who is standing.
Then his jaw drops, looking like it is about to fall.
“Ehhhhh!!? W-who would have thought of this result!? It’s A-Alfred Flam’s winnnnnn!!!”
As I sit on the ground, I smile.
What is this?
There’s absolutely no need for me to lose on purpose.
He’s already properly stronger than me.
At first glance, he doesn’t seem to be listening to anything I said, but he actually does. And he also learnt it properly.
Alfred proved to me that everything that I did isn’t pointless.
I’m truly very happy.
Alfred grips his sword, and puts it back in its sheath.
He approaches me with a joyful smile on his face, and squats down.
Hearing his cheerful voice, I unconsciously return his smile.
I should praise him for his efforts, right?
After all, he has persistently worked hard. Using his steady effort and will-power until he reach this point.
“Congratulations, Alfred. It’s your win.”
Alfred gives me a wide grin.
He holds my wrist, and pulls me up.
The impact of the fall still remains, and I stagger.
When I think that I’m going to fall down again, Alfred extends his arms and catches me.
He hugs me with all his might.
“Oi! Y-you are really…”
“I’m happy. Finally, I have won against you… My first win.”
…Seems like he’s very happy.
His voice is strangely cheerful and bright.
But I’ll let it slide for today.
His grip around me is too strong and painful, but I just leave it as is.
“Thank you.” And then he laughed.
Hearing Alfred’s weirdly high-pitched voice and laugh, I can’t help but laugh along with him.
I pat his back, which is now wider than mine.
I know that he goes to practice with the village swordsman teacher every time he loses.
Marie also secretly told me about it while laughing fondly.
‘He pretends that it’s nothing to him, but I know that he’s frustrated with his continuous losses to Lian-sama’, or so she said.
Alfred himself has been working hard to become the current Alfred.
To win against me.
“…You worked hard.”
Alfred’s reply sounds childlike. It seems like he is truly very happy.
Upon seeing him rejoice like a child, my smile stuck on my face, and I laugh again.
The applause doesn’t stop, together with the cheers, shrieks, and jeers.
Shrieks and jeers?
sleepchaser is unwell, making her couldn’t edit this chapter out… I hope she will get better soon. 🙁
And someone please spank my editors to take proper rest ┻┻︵ヽ(`Д´)ﾉ︵┻┻ My M team is really full of masochist… ಥ_ಥ
Next chapter, there will be 2 new characters! I will say I hate them beforehand, thank you.