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When I was asked to test the newly registered adventurer, the trainer, I quickly went towards the training ground.
I was preparing to retire for the day because the sun had already set. Tomorrow would have been fine to give the new adventurers an ability test.
But I chose to do the test immediately.
The reason is that I like taking care of new adventurers.
Even if he’s already 40 years old and retired. He was once a C-rank adventurer.
During his active days as a C-rank adventurer, he could be considered as a respectable adventurer.
It was not easy when he decided to retire. He was earning good money from fulfilling C-rank quests. Plus all the time and effort he put in to reach C-rank was considerable. It wasn’t easy to let go.
Even so, he can’t beat the ravages of time on his body. No matter how much he trains his body, he can’t stop its weakening no matter how much he wishes to.
He believes it is stupid and irresponsible to die because of pride and stubbornness.
With that in mind, he retired from being an adventurer.
Some adventurers believe in “Death on the battlefield.” However, living was more important for me.
No matter what they do, they must live for themselves and others.
He retired from being an adventurer can still be found at the guild. He was accepted due to his skills. So, this time he is an employee and trainer.
He believes in training recruits and he insists on training them personally.
Newcomers barely have the knowledge required to survive. Many of them make mistakes and lose their lives.
Ogre is quite proud that since he started training new adventurers the death toll has declined and very few lose their lives.
Also, he is quite proud that many of his trainees became C or B-ranked adventurers in the guild. It is a fact that he happily boasts about.
He dreams of a time that the adventurers he trains will never die during a quest. And that he trains them into becoming high ranking adventurers.
He dreams of mentoring a rookie with a great potential. He can’t help but imagine such a bright future.
So he was quite ecstatic at his new role.
Being a trainer was not a job for him but a calling.
Anyway, when Ogre came to the training ground, there waiting for him was a boy and a girl. The woman was called Esther, a new adventurer but quickly rose to E-rank.
Esther has potential
I anticipate that if she continues to work hard, she will be able to reach C-rank.
Esther has such a huge amount of talent.
Of course, it is not Esther who will perform the ability test this time. It is the boy next to her.
He was a boy with unusual coloring, black hair, and black eyes, which I have not seen yet in Finlis.
But for some reason, he’s covered with blood. He was surprised at first but it quickly passed.
Life as an adventurer is filled with blood and gore. That is why it isn’t surprising to see someone in the guild covered in blood.
Rather than standing there all bloody, I was more concerned about the air around him.
There seems to be an extraordinary and unusual atmosphere around him.
For a second, I felt like a goblin being stared at by a dragon.
(Is he the one I am waiting for, a person that has the potential to be an A-ranked adventurer. Has he finally appeared!?) (Ogre)
I looked at the paper he gave me, but the fire in my blood cooled completely.
“What? You are an ‘inferior’?” (Ogre)
In the remarks column of the adventurer’s new application form, it was written as “Lost Person”.
Immediately, my expectations for the newcomer to dropped rock-bottom.
“Inferiors” do not go above level 1.
Their physical abilities don’t improve no matter what they do. It is because their levels don’t increase no matter how much they try to level up.
The cause lies in the “Level Cap”.
Every person has a level cap.
it is the maximum level a human being can achieve.
If you’re a normal person from Eargard, you have level 20 level cap even if you are a weak person
It is said that some are over level 90, but they are extremely rare.
For “lost” persons, their level cap is at level 1.
History shows that there are no exceptions to this…
Your physical growth is limited by your level. If you cannot level up, your strength and skill will never change.
This was the reason why “Lost” persons were called “Inferiors”.
Me who has level 32 cannot possibly lose to a person who is only level 1.
If the I feel like it, it will be possible to defeat my opponent with just my finger.
(Though I do not want do it. I am tired. I am not even going to try.) (Ogre)
The boy (named Toru on the application form) held a wooden sword in front of me.
I, who was reluctant to deal with “Inferiors”, was suddenly deprived of motion.
Immediately, I felt the hairs on my back raise and my spine tingle.
(What the hell is this… The opponent is an “inferior” person, but this feeling of intimidation. Maybe he has learned some swordsmanship?) (Ogre)
Toru’s stance was so well guarded that even I, a former C-rank adventurer, couldn’t easily find a hole in his defense.
My impression of Toru went up.
Still, I wasn’t that impressed.
Just as quantity overwhelms quality in battle, even if he has a skill that reached its apex has no meaning before the overwhelming difference in physical prowess.
However, my confidence is…
The boy exhaled and vanished in the next moment.
Before I noticed it, I was suddenly rolling on the ground.
My stomach hurts a lot. Bile and acid rise to my throat.
(What happened to me!?) (Ogre)
I had no idea what had happened to him.
However, from the pain in my abdomen and the posture of the boy looking down on me. I could already guess that I was hit with the wooden sword.
However, even if I understand the situation, whether I can, believe it or not, is different.
(I didn’t even know that I was attacked!? Damn… Is he an “inferior”!?) (Ogre)
Originally, Ogre is a C-ranker. He was a top adventurer in Finlis. Generally, it is considered a first-class adventurer.
It’s hard to think that an “inferior” person can make an attack that has such high power behind it.
The other person may have cheated, or Esther may have attacked instead of the boy. While enduring the pain and nausea, Ogre desperately thinks.
However, none of the ideas made sense.
Ogre could not have ever thought that he had been downed by a proper hit.
Under normal circumstances, it is a situation in which one would think of being attacked by Toru. However, Ogre’s knowledge of lost people prevented him from thinking of that as a possibility.
“…For the time being, this is the end of the ability test.” (Ogre)
Ogre spoke after the abdominal pain subsided. He wrote the result of the ability test on the paper at hand and hand it to Toru.
“By the way, Toru. Have you ever learned swordplay?” (Ogre)
“Kenjutsu… or Kendo as a hobby during my school days.”
I am convinced, although I was hesitant, after hearing the unfamiliar words. Kendo was probably learned from his old world.
Schools also exist in Eargard. However, not everyone can enroll. Only a handful of talented people at a certain age can.
(Toru is probably an elite in his original world.) (Ogre)
I believe this after I felt such pressure before the slash.
But even so, there was no explanation of the movement that I could not trace with my eyes.
“But what was that?” (Ogre)
I whispered murmuring while watching the backs of the two leaving the training ground.
In the ability test, Ogre filled in one of three patterns on the reception form.
○ for those with high fighting ability.
△ for people in need of training.
x If there is no fighting ability.
In this ability test, the judgment that Ogre made to Toru was–
“I didn’t think there would be a day when I couldn’t judge my opponent’s ability…” (Ogre)
“I don’t know”
–As a person in charge of ability testing, it was a declaration of help.
Returning from the training ground, I handed the paper received from the trainer back to the receptionist.
As the receptionist read through the contents,
She looked at a certain point twice and stared.
“Umm, Toru-san. You have done the ability test, right?” (Marie)
“What is the result of the match…?” (Marie)
“I hit him once, then I won.”
When I talked about my victory, the receptionist was so surprised it was noticeable on her face.
“You downed Ogre-san with one hit? That’s…” (Marie)
“Toru is amazing!” (Esther)
For some reason, Esther was extremely proud.
It can be seen through her ponytail! It looked like it was swishing proudly.
“He’s a person in charge of the ability test, so that person is considered a very skilled person in the guild, right?”
“Yeah, you are right……” (Marie)
After hearing Toru’s confirmation, I nodded awkwardly.
It is commonknowledge, Ogre is a former C-rank. He was a top adventurer.
But just because the other person is a Lost person, he is not the kind of person who throws a fight for another person.
He has a very strong belief in the adventurer’s ability to fight.
Regardless of who the other party is, he despises injustice and cheating. He puts his maximum effort and beliefs into account.
He is an honorable person that does not match his thug-ish appearance.
I couldn’t believe that Ogre-san had lost.
(I wondered if I was wrong when I evaluated him as a lost person. But before all that, Toru-san having overwhelming fighting capabilities was my first impression!) (Marie)
Guild reception is hard work, performing tasks quickly while being calm and in-control of adventurers with rough personalities.
You have to carry heavy packages such as materials and proof of subjugation. And even if you are a little late for responding, adventurers will yell loudly at you.
The salary is also very low.
However, reception work is still a high-reward workplace.
The reason is that you can make a connection with adventurers.
If you connect with a promising adventurer, you can find a spouse that will provide for you.
A D-rank adventurer can barely make ends meet.
But C and above are different. They can earn a few months’ worth of living expenses in just one day.
Becoming the wife of a person who can earn large amounts of money, being provided for, and living at a comfortable house. You can live a life similar to a low-ranking aristocrat.
It is such a high possibility to marry an adventurer that there is no woman who does not aim to be a receptionist even if it is hard work.
(If I take good care of Toru-san, my future will be secured… Ufufu) (Marie)
(Well, how can I help you? Hehehe.) (Marie)
Marie shows a professional smile but a more sinister smile is behind it.
“As expected of Toru-san.” (Marie)
“…Hey, Toru. What did you do?” (Esther)
Contrary to the warm atmosphere of the shy receptionist, Esther turned her eyes full of suspicion on me.
I can’t remember doing anything at all. I shakes my head showing, “I am innocent.”
“I’m happy to take care of one of the strongest men in the guild. I’ll be taking care of you in the future!” (Marie)
“I don’t know. I don’t know anything!”
The mysterious pressure emanating from Esther causes my knees to quiver.
If this continues, I might bore a hole through my stomach.
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