TSS – Chapter 20: Winning the Mock Battle Safely.   

Translator: Haruto.

I’m currently dodging Baran-san’s barrage of attacks while in the middle of our early-morning mock battle. As you might expect of a former S-rank adventurer, he isn’t giving me any chance to counter-attack.

There’s a certain type of power in this world known as mana, which can not only activate spells but also strengthen your muscles, accelerate your thoughts, and improve your swordsmanship. And the way it manifests depends on two main factors: its quantity and efficiency.

I believe that Baran-san is the type of guy that likes to push through any difficulty with the tremendous amount of mana he possesses. As for me, I try to be as efficient with my mana as possible since I don’t have much to begin with.

The size of your mana pool is determined at birth, so people with not much mana like me have no choice but to focus on its efficiency.

Haa! You’re something else, Master of the Heroes!” Baran-san exclaims while swinging his sword around with dexterity.

It’s remarkable how he can swing such a heavy sword with pinpoint precision. You need some amazing strength to do that kind of thing.

“I haven’t been able to counter-attack, though!”

“Haha! The fact that you can evade all of my moves is impressive enough!”

If I remember correctly, there are only four S-rank adventurers in the world at the moment. That means that there are fewer S-rank adventurers than there are heroes. So, yeah, I’d say getting some praise for just dodging the attacks of one of these monsters, even if he’s already retired, is well-deserved.

Some people even believe that the S-rank adventurers could have defeated the Demon King, however, it seems they actually suck at working together. Each of them is overwhelmingly strong, but also ridiculously proud. They’re so eager to show off their own power that they can’t even be bothered to coordinate their attacks correctly. In contrast, Lulune’s party is far better balanced and their teamwork is impeccable, which is what allowed them to slay the Demon King, or so I heard anyway.

“I’m too old to be dealing with these kinds of attacks!”

“So you say but you haven’t even broken a sweat!”

I mean, sure, I’m not particularly tired, but that doesn’t mean that defending myself against these attacks is a piece of cake.

“And don’t you dare bring up how old you are! We’re almost the same age!!”

…Well, that kind of hurts. I was certain Baran-san was way older than me…

Agh, darn it, I need this to end as soon as possible so I guess I’ll have to activate Full-Body Strengthening, too.  

As I mentioned before since I don’t have much mana, I prefer to focus on being as efficient with it as possible, so I only use it sporadically. For example, whenever I dodge one of Baran-san’s attacks, I activate my mana for a brief instant in very specific areas of my body and that’s how I can keep using it without draining my mana pool completely.  

I didn’t want to spend too much of my mana in this mock battle, but at this rate, it doesn’t seem I have much of a choice. The weariness that comes over you when your mana is running low also sucks, so that’s another reason why I didn’t want to do this, but well, it is what it is…

“Alright, let’s do this. You might want to clench your teeth,” I warn Baran-san and activate Full-Body Strengthening.

With the power and speed boost I’ve just received, evading Baran-san’s moves becomes child’s play.

“Wha—?! Your movements changed?!” Baran-san cries out right before I appear behind him and strike him lightly with my wooden sword. The next instant, his body is blasted away at an incredible speed.

…Um, well, the guy was a S-rank adventurer once so I’m sure he’ll be fine…

And as I just predicted, it doesn’t take long for Baran-san to pop his head out of the rubble of the wall he just crashed into.

The audience, who has been watching the fight from the start, erupts in excitement.

“Did you see that?! What kind of skill was that?!”

“I couldn’t even follow him with my eyes! He was too fast!”

“I can’t believe it! He defeated a former S-rank adventurer in an instant!”

Ignoring their comments, I walk over to Baran-san and ask, “You want to keep going? I’d prefer not to use more of my mana, but…”

“…Nah, it’s fine. You pass, obviously,” Baran-san answers somewhat sullenly. I guess he really doesn’t like losing.

I extend my hand to him and help him get back on his feet. Now standing up, he inquires, “So… why did your movements change all of a sudden? You got even stronger in the blink of an eye.”  

“Aah, that was nothing more than your old regular Body Strengthening.”

His eyes shoot open and with a shaking voice he asks, “Y-You weren’t using Body Strengthening from the beginning…?”

“Not exactly. I was just using it sporadically in its lowest form.”

A sour expression takes over his face as he nods his head and says, “I see… You must be the only person capable of pulling that off… It makes sense, though.”

It seems it makes sense somehow.

Baran-san starts brushing the dirt off his clothes and continues, “What does not make sense is for someone like you to be stuck at A-rank. The problem is that to reach S-rank you’d have to visit the Guild’s headquarters in the Republic of Nysalis…”

Huh, that’s actually where we’re heading.

“Well, if you ever get the chance to go there, try applying for a promotion to S-rank. I’m sure they’ll promote you right away, but just in case, I’ll write you a letter of recommendation.”

And so, after the mock battle ended, I was able to renew my guild card and returned to the castle, where three beautiful girls were waiting for me, ready to give me a bit of an earful for having left without saying anything.


The fourth seat of the demons’ round table, Zizinha, is an awfully cunning man. He’s been hiding in the shadows, waiting for the right time to enact his revenge on the heroes.

And at last, he’s decided to make his move. He disguises himself as an ordinary man and infiltrates the capital. And as he makes his way to the castle, a wicked smile appears on his face.

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