“Stand down Hasen! These two are MINE.” A livid tone escaped his mouth, quelling the familiar’s anger instantly.
Memories of past oppression by the same type of people filled his cool calculating mind.
-Death of loved ones
‘Never again.’ He had promised himself. It was time…
“Master…” Hasen muttered, dissipating and retreating into the ring out of fear. The blood-lust emitted by its master was one it had not felt ever since that fateful day outside of Veratoraliz.
Having seen what just happened, the two students were frozen in place. Terror like never before constricted them and refuse to let them escape. Their previous feasible outlook of defeating the child via ambush had evaporated. An oppressive presence now coiled about and encircled the two as if to choke the life out of them.
Watching the child slowly stalking towards them, they noticed.
His usual calm demeanor was all but gone. His body was enveloped by a thin visible film of pure mana, streaking a pale blue here and there as it reflected the sunlight. His childish eyes were dark and lacked any innocence; Inside them lurked the broken shadow of death.
Powerless as the child closed in on them, the female student started to cry while the male student tightly shut his eyes, unwilling to look at Kaidus any longer.
They did not even have the capacity to think about using their status to bargain, nor the name of their houses.
It was like being in the tight jaws of a Drakall. No matter how much a person begs and plea, in the end, they were just food.
“Open your eyes.” Kaidus spoke to the male student whose knees had given out and was currently eye level with him.
Looking at Kaidus, the student started tearing up.
“Please. *sob* we… we didn’t mean to…” The female inserted in between her sobbing.
“You DARE, lie to me?” Kaidus retorted, his voice emotionless. “Such blatant aggression cannot be construed as ‘ACCIDENTAL’.”
“P-Please!!! We’re sorry!!” The male student cried out in anguish.
“Do not presume for even a second that, being a child, I do not understand the scorn from all of you “Elites”. That I will just lie down and be trampled upon for your amusement!”
“Please… please… please… please… please… please… please…” The boy was whimpering as he begged, while the girl’s sobbing grew louder.
“Why should I spare cowards, who conspire against me behind my back? Why should I spare you two?” He angrily retorted at the incessant pleading.
“Please forgive us… we *sob* we’re sorry… *sob* we won’t ever do it again *hic*” the female student begged.
Kaidus drew away from staring them down.
“Consider yourselves lucky, for this life has taken too much already.” Kaidus spoke, grinding his teeth to suppress the urge to obliterate the two in front of him.
“Know that your insignificant lives mean NOTHING to me. I am here for answers, not to join in on your petty squabbles. Leave me be, or there will BE no next time.” He advised, before walking away.
Wails of relief exploded behind him.
A good distance away from the event that had just taken place, an academy master had been watching.
Ever since Kaidus’s duel with Prim, Keral had paid close attention to the boy.
It was two days ago when he noticed something peculiar going on.
He kept seeing Lisin and Jorva whenever he spied Kaidus walking about the academy grounds.
He had been waiting until after class today to discuss what was going on in private, but as soon as class was over, they had disappeared.
It was sheer coincidence that he saw them behind one of the practical buildings on his way back to his room.
From a distance, it looked like the three were talking, and then Kaidus walked away.
Suddenly without provocation, Lisin and Jorva ambushed the boy with magic.
Keral was surprised at the sudden attack and had started invoking a barrier spell hoping to make it in time. Yet before he even finished the incantation, a cloud of black smoke suddenly erupted from the boy’s vicinity and swallowed the two intermediate student’s magic, like dousing an ember with a tub of water.
What came next was even more startling.
The smoke then formed into a figure and spoke. It was unlike anything he had ever seen before.
‘Master’ the thing had called the young boy. Even being a full building away, the entity’s words thundered in his ears.
Kaidus stepped forward, and the entity vanished.
Suddenly an oppressive atmosphere swept over him, locking him in place, as Kaidus walked towards the two older students.
He tried to undo the immobilization with spells, but nothing worked. It was the child’s bloodlust and overpowering will that had rooted him.
His body unwilling to approach the incident that was unfolding.
Even fearing for the two students, Keral could do nothing but watch in awe.
Jorva suddenly fell on his knees, while it looked like Lisin had started crying.
It was impossible to tell who the victim was in this situation.
Having approached the students, Kaidus turned and left as if nothing had transpired moments later, leaving the two students to cry in despair.
As the child strode away, the oppressive atmosphere cleared away almost instantly and
he was able to move again. Having seen everything, ‘We have severely underestimate Lord Ravon’s claims…’ Master Keral admonished himself.
The master had not been the only one in the vicinity of the bloodlust. A number of students who had been in the building adjacent to the event had become unconscious when the domineering atmosphere swept through.
Like Keral, other masters who had been in the building were fixed in place unable to move. None of them had any idea as to what was happening besides the indomitable fear binding them.
It was only after the air had cleared and Kaidus had left, that people started investigating, only find Lisin and Jorva in their despicable state.
‘What was I doing?! I was about to kill them both!’ Kaidus had returned to his room. His temper having cool enough for him to start thinking logically, he was reevaluating the incident. ‘I did not obtain this strength to become like them!’ He scolded himself.
He had lost his senses when the two students mindlessly attacked him without an ounce of consideration for his well being.
More memories flashed in his mind.
-A broken mind, his powers outraged.
-Death… so much death.
-Everyone he cared about, gone.
He could have gone about the incident a lot more amicably and still gotten his point across. He sat down on the floor and started meditating to calm his mind.
“NO! NO MORE! LEAVE ME OUT OF THIS!” Lisin screamed at Prim who had come to visit her before shutting the door in her face.
“Lisin, let me in!” Prim yelled out.
“Prim you can’t do this! W-WE can’t do this! He warned us!” Lisin yelled from inside her room. Fear and panic in her voice.
“What happened?! Lisin! Talk to me!”
“I don’t know! JUST LEAVE ME ALONE!” Lisin yelled out. She had started to cry.
Unable to get anything out of her, Prim left.
“STUPID! STUPID! STUPID!” Rebuking herself, Lisin recalled the action she and Jorva had taken in their emotional state.
Those icy eyes that were filled with hatred and death. She could still see them clearly whenever she closed her eyes.
“I want to go home…” She cried. Wishing to be as far away from the academy as possible.
“Not you too!” Prim exclaimed when she saw Jorva.
Jorva and Lisin were two of her closest friends in the academy. She had known them since her first year, and their rivalry had helped push her to where she is now.
Unable to accept Prim’s loss to Kaidus, the two had helped her hatch a plan for revenge.
They would watch and tail him to find any sign of weakness or unlawful actions, and use that against him to humiliate or get him thrown out of the academy.
But it seems the plan had fallen to pieces just after a couple of days.
Having visited Lisin, she had never seen her friend in such a state.
A hunched Jorva sat on one of the benches, his face down and unwilling to look at her.
She had asked someone to fetch him from his room for this occasion.
“Please tell me what happened.” She told Jorva.
“W-we need to s-stop this P-Prim…” Jorva was stuttering and his voice, barely audible.
“Jorva. Please. What happened?” Prim asked again.
“H-He had a g-guardian Spirit… I-it t-t-TALKED!” Jorva cried out in fear.
“Jorva. Spirits don’t talk! And it’s impossible for him to already have a spirit!” Prim knew the summoning classes don’t start learning to bind their spirits yet.
“Y-YOU GO ATTACK HIM A-AND SEE FOR Y-YO-YOURSELF!” Jorva yelled back, fear and anger mixed together.
Prim was dumbstruck over the outburst.
“H-He’s not right, Pr-Pr-Prim, s-something’s not right about h-him. W-we need to s-stay as f-far away as we c-can. H-he said t-t-there would b-be-be no ne-ne-next t-time” Jorva eked out the warning Kaidus had given them before bringing his hands to his face to hide the tears.
“H-he’s d-da-dangerous.” Jorva said as he wiped his tears before getting up and retreating.
Prim had come for answers, but now she was more confused than ever.
An old bald man with a scruffy white beard was sitting in his office, happily whistling while looking through ledgers recorded by his assistants.
Earlier in the day, his extremely acute senses had picked up a colossal outburst of mana within his academy.
‘An exceptionally powerful one has appeared.’ He mused to himself at the time.
He is the current headmaster of Zorin academy. He is, Nylen Gvius Daz Jozion. One of two Malizurs in the continent of Darsus, and the only mage of such rank in all of Ferrent. He had earned the title Daz, derived from the spirit name Das for his unrivaled mastery with earth magic.
One of the perks of being a headmaster, was not having to do anything himself. Being something of an eccentric, Nylen had literally shut himself in his room for days now, with his assistants bringing him news and anything he required. His only actual job now was looking through official documents affiliated with the academy, and drafting some of his own for the instructors.
Of course, the letter of recommendation from Lord Ravon had fallen into his hands. He himself was the one who had approved of the untimely admission, but had been skeptical of the contents of the letter, paying no heed to them. The admission was merely to comply with regulations, and do an old friend a favor. He had not been expecting much.
Yet now, his blood boiled in anticipation at meeting the child.
In his room, Kaidus stirred.
Having been unable to purge his frustration with meditation, Kaidus had spent the night falling into his blade forms and mindlessly training until his body gave out and sleep overtook him.
The academy has a system of seven days of classes and then four days off, called the Ryes, for students to practice and reflect on what they’ve learned.
Yesterday was the last day of classes before the ryes, and today was the beginning of the break. He would use this chance to return home.
Hopeful that seeing his family would help ease and clear his head.
Stopping by the shops around the boarding houses, he got himself breakfast—grilled oriv deer skewer with a scoop of mashed mulse and a cup of tangy shara—before heading off towards the academy’s gate.
Being the start of the ryes and early morning, very few students were up and about.
“Good morning Zeeke.” Kaidus spoke to the small feline looking spirit guarding the gate as he approached.
Zeeke was currently in its small feline form, taking in the morning rays in front of its shack.
“RA! GARAR!” It replied back, looking away uninterested.
Kaidus had made an effort to find Zeeke after he had learned about the spirit, and found him three days ago.
Surprisingly, Zeeke was of the nature element, and his elusiveness was due to his constant attention towards animals that had wandered into the academy.
Kaidus was walking back from the library between one of his classes that day when he stumbled upon a small feline chasing a bird across the academy grounds excitedly.
As soon as the cat noticed him, it grew in size and transformed into that of a majestic Joukis, a type of large cat, as if to flaunt its magnificence and for him to disregard the previous disgraceful display.
An immense amount of power could be felt emanating from the spirit.
After showing that he did not mean to intrude onto the spirit’s playfulness, Zeeke came up to Kaidus to asses him before returning to its small form and continuing its antic.
After that first meeting and knowing what it was, he had been able to spot Zeeke about the academy here and there chasing various other small creatures.
“…it is… but a child…” Hasen remarked to him as they passed through the gate.
A short walk from the gates of the academy, Kaidus was paying for a carriage to take him home.
“Will you require a pick up young master?” The clerk asked him.
“Let’s see… trip to the 3rd ward with a pick-up in three days… distance… time…. That will be 17erns and 4kuis. 8erns there and 8 to pick up with an added 1ern 4kuis for convenience.” The clerk replied after doing some quick calculations. “You can either pay for the pick up now or later, along with the additional 1 and 4.”
Kaidus gave the clerk 10 metal double-bits. He had used one of the three green fers Troyle had given him to pay for his meals in the academy and had change left over from it.
“Thank you for your patronage.” The clerk replied, handing him back 2erns and 3kuis.
As the small single person carriage passed the scenery of farms and elongated stone houses around the academy and made its way into the residential areas of the nobility, he regretted not bringing a book to pass the time.