Word had already spread. Damn that Cubra!
On hearing that Cassel would be leaving the village, even the village elders who were hard of hearing came running out hobbling on their canes. Cassel was soon overwhelmed by the villagers’ reactions.
“How can such a smart child like you think to want to do such a thing? We were all looking to you to become the chief of town Lurune in the coming years. Didn’t you hear from your father that every person here in the village had been pitching in to be able to pay for your schooling? How can you think to waste your previous life on a fool’s war the nobles play as if it were nothing but a game? Think about all the studying you have done until now. You were not meant to live by the sword but to be a scholar.”
The chief begged as he held Cassel’s hands tightly in his own. At that, Cassel immediately bowed his head. He had always thought he was useless because of his lack of skill in swordsmanship but he was thankful to hear words of high regard in some other area – even if they were empty words. But all of that was shattered by Luchi’s next words.
“Idiot, you’re going to back down with just that?”
Janet was standing next to Luchi with her arm shyly threaded through his. She had lost her small Mona Lisa smile and had replaced it with a big great grin for the newly minted knight. And that alone was enough to lose refuel his desire to become a knight. Curse him. What kind of poison had he fed that angel last night?
“What use do books serve in today’s world?”
Luchi laughed aloud as he continued.
“In the battlefield that I’ve seen, only those armed with a sword, armor, or shield survive. There is no room for a scholar wielding a pen. Only with a sword can you defend a town or attract a woman. Well, I’m sure the village elders will match you with a nice girl someday. You are their little pet after all.”
“Fool, you talk too much. If you think you can come into this town to recruit soldiers, then I suggest you leave right now!”
The chief shouted with angry fists in the air.
“Shut up, old man! Should I tell you exactly how many days it would take my entire unit to come to this town if I just report to my upper officers of the abundant crops this town is teeming with?”
As Luchi roared his threat, the town chief stepped back meekly.
Finally, Cassel could not stand it any longer and shouted out.
“Why don’t you go on and test out whether or not a scholar wielding just a pen can survive on a battlefield? Should I tell you exactly how many days it would take me to outrank even you?”
Though he had shouted out these words out of anger, he felt it could really be possible just as soon as he said it.
As if he had been waiting for Cassel to say just that, Luchi speedily scratched out a letter of recommendation and handed it to an attendant with quick words of instruction to deliver it. Then he turned promptly away and left.
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