How to Live as a Wandering Knight – Chapter 30.1

𝐈𝐭 𝐖𝐚𝐬 𝐖𝐚𝐫𝐦 𝐢𝐧 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐂𝐢𝐭𝐲 𝐓𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐘𝐞𝐚𝐫 (𝟒)

𝐈𝐭 𝐖𝐚𝐬 𝐖𝐚𝐫𝐦 𝐢𝐧 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐂𝐢𝐭𝐲 𝐓𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐘𝐞𝐚𝐫 (𝟒)

I never imagined it, but it was really Go. Except for the fact that it was an old-fashioned Go without komi, everything else was the same.

“This is how you make a house and win. Do you understand?”

“I understand.”

“Well, shall we play and learn?”

Suetlg said, rubbing his palms together. He had been wondering how to pass the time, and it seemed like a good opportunity. Playing with this knight dastard on the Go board would also be fun.

‘𝘛𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘱𝘦𝘳𝘴𝘰𝘯. . . 𝘋𝘰𝘦𝘴𝘯’𝘵 𝘦𝘷𝘦𝘯 𝘨𝘪𝘷𝘦 𝘮𝘦 𝘢 𝘧𝘦𝘸 𝘱𝘰𝘪𝘯𝘵𝘴 𝘪𝘯 𝘢𝘥𝘷𝘢𝘯𝘤𝘦, 𝘬𝘯𝘰𝘸𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘪𝘵’𝘴 𝘮𝘺 𝘧𝘪𝘳𝘴𝘵 𝘵𝘪𝘮𝘦?’

The old man seemed to have no conscience, fitting for a wizard. He said it would be with a handicap but didn’t give any points at all. How could this be. . .

Johan was deep in thought.

He was much more confident in Go than chess, having spent a lot of time on it as a hobby in the past. Johan, who had held his own against professional players with just a two-point difference in the opening, felt underestimated by the wizard.

‘𝘉𝘶𝘵 𝘐’𝘭𝘭 𝘥𝘰 𝘮𝘺 𝘣𝘦𝘴𝘵.’

Since the opponent might be an unexpectedly great master, Johan decided to play his best.

🔸🔸🔸🔸🔸🔸

“. . . . . .”

Suetlg’s mouth was agape. His hands were trembling.

“I swear by the Ipaël River, this isn’t the skill of a first-timer. . .!”

“It is my first time.”

“Even a sultan’s chess player couldn’t play like this!”

‘But you can’t.’

Johan thought to himself but kept his mouth shut. He had many questions for the wizard.

Honestly, Suetlg’s skills were at best third-class. Moreover, he only used very old openings, so there was no way he could compete with Johan.

It was only because Johan had been considerate from the mid-game that it ended like this; otherwise, Suetlg would have been in tears.

“Anyway, since I won, may I ask?”

“One. . .”

“?”

“Would you play one more game?”

“No, the promise is. . .”

“I’ll keep the promise! I swear on the Ipaël River’s name, just one more game!”

‘𝘞𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘪𝘴 𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘴. . .’

Johan was incredulous. But he could understand the feeling; Go players often think they lost due to a lapse in concentration.

“If I lose this time, I’ll give you a gift.”

“Hmm. In that case. . .”

Johan pretended to hesitate, then quickly accepted.

I thought he had no other talent than wielding a sword, but this was useful!

🔸🔸🔸🔸🔸🔸

Suetlg sat with a dazed face. He had been utterly defeated by a young knight new to Go.

Johan waited patiently out of consideration.

‘𝘞𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘪𝘧 𝘩𝘦 𝘸𝘩𝘪𝘯𝘦𝘴 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘳𝘦𝘧𝘶𝘴𝘦𝘴 𝘵𝘰 𝘵𝘦𝘢𝘤𝘩?’

But Suetlg was not that shameful a wizard. He was initially shocked but soon collected himself and spoke.

“Ask what you want to know.”

“Thank you. Then. . .”

“But if you had played like this in Go. . .”

“. . . . . .”

“Ah. Sorry. Go ahead and ask.”

“So, what is magic?”

“It’s listening to the vast nature and understanding its language, then asking them for help.”

Suetlg answered promptly. It seemed like he had been asked this question more than once.

“I don’t quite understand.”

“Of course, you wouldn’t. This is my way of using magic. If you ask another wizard, you’ll get a different answer. Some find secrets in the sequences and patterns of numbers, others discover something among the fumes of sulfur and mercury.”

“Isn’t it all the same?”

Suetlg responded irritably to the thoughtless question.

“Do you handle all weapons well? If there’s a knight who’s good with a sword, there might be one good with a spear. It’s the same with wizards. You shouldn’t think of magic as too easy, nor too hard. Magic is. . . a kind of secret. Those who understand and handle this secret are called wizards. Did that answer your question?”

“It’s both understandable and not.”

“If you understood right away, what would I be?”

“Then I’ll ask more simply. Can I learn magic?”

“. . .Are you a knight?”

An outstanding wizard was revered by feudal lords as a trusted advisor or philosopher. They held a position much higher than that of a lower noble. . .

Just as a knight who earns well doesn’t envy a merchant, it was the same for a wizard.

“Are there no knights who use magic?”

“As far as I know, there aren’t. It’s not an easy discipline to learn, and why would a knight bother? I’m called the sage of the Ipaël River because I learned from my master about the secrets of the Ipaël River and how to control water and the river. My master learned it from his master. The Ipaël River is capricious and cunning. . .

And doesn’t easily reveal its favorite passages. Even if I told you, it’s not something you could easily follow.”

As Suetlg finished speaking, he pushed the go board aside and called a slave. The slave brought a copper basin with a unique pattern engraved on it.

“I never thought I’d say this, but. . . there’s nothing good about learning magic. Just become successful and command a wizard.”

If the knights under a feudal lord feared or disliked magic, Suetlg would tease them even more.

However, Johan couldn’t help but wonder what kind of knight would want to learn magic.

“Do you know why I took out this bowl?”

“?”

“Your next question is, what can be done with magic, isn’t it?”

“!”


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