They travelled for some time in the carriage pulled by a horse. Lakshman was looking ahead eagerly when a sudden thought came to his mind.
He looked at Darian and asked “Darian, why are taking a detour? Couldn’t we get armour from the city?”
Darian looked at him and said “We could do that, but the armour sold is not always top notch. There is a lot of thing that goes with making an armour that I don’t believe they are always made to be strong.”
“Then there’s the price of each armour plus custom made ones as well. It gets complicated when we don’t inspect them and find faults later in use,” Rumble said with a grumpy expression on his face.
“So… The ones sold in the city are bad?” Lakshman asked curiously.
“They are good, but they won’t suit people like us,” Rumble said and he took the horse reins Darian passed him.
Darian turned around to look at Lakshman and said “The city sells some excellent armour, no doubt about it. The problem is that we’re all powerfully built and their armour won’t work well with us. We need strong armour to handle battles and protect us at the same time.”
Lakshman looked confused. That was when Marilia sighed and said “Darian, you’re confusing him.”
“Oh…?” Darian said and he looked surprised.
“Stop confusing him and get to the point!” Marilia said and she narrowed her eyes seriously at him.
“Okay, okay,” Darian said hastily and sighed. Then he said “What we want is Magic Enchanted Armour, but the city doesn’t sell them. That’s why we’re going to a certain place where we’ll find what we’re looking for. I know that he makes really amazing armours!”
“Ah,” Lakshman said as he understood. Then he asked “Is he a friend of yours?”
“You could say that. Twenty years ago, he was a full-fledged adventurer like us. Together, we went on many adventurers across the world and fought together countless times! After that, he retired and became a blacksmith.”
“Wow…!” Lakshman said in amazement.
Half-an-hour later, they entered a large clearing which was when they saw it. A large house was situated in the middle of the clearing. It was made completely of wood, but looked very strong.
“Alright, let’s go,” Darian said once Rumble brought the carriage to a stop.
Rumble released the horses and let them graze on the grass. Meanwhile, everyone made their way towards the entrance to the house. As they neared, the door opened and a man walked out.
The man was well built with a well-built body with several scars. He had a long beard and dishevelled hair which gave him a very odd appearance. The man also had a very sharp beard which seemed to be twitching as he watched them .
“Hey Mekalum! Long-time no see,” Darian said cheerfully.
“Yes, it has been a while, hasn’t it?” Mekalum said in a dull voice.
He extended his hand out and the man took extended his. They grasped their hands and shook firmly. Then they let go and Mekalum looked at everyone in the group.
“Rumble, Marilia and… hmm? Three new faces?” he inquired as he turned to ask Darian.
“Yes. That’s Lakshman, then there’s Ondine and finally Tetra,” Darian said as he indicated them in the order of their names.
Tetra fumed with annoyance and said “Why was I introduced the last?”
“It’s because you aren’t that important,” Ondine said quietly.
“Why you…?!” Tetra said in a frustrated voice and the two girls glared at each other.
“Lakshman, Ondine and Tetra? Hmm…” Mekalum said as he observed them. Then he looked back at Darian and asked “So then, what brings you to this neck of the woods?”
Rumble laughed as Darian said “Yeah. We came to buy some armour if you don’t mind.”
“Sure. Let’s go inside first and talk.”
With that, Mekalum walked into the house and was followed by Darian, Rumble, Marilia and Lakshman. Ondine and Tetra remained outside as they began shouting at each other. Lakshman was glad when the door shut out their angry voices.
Once they all sat down on available chairs, Mekalum asked “So then? What kind of armour are you looking for exactly?”
Darian began explaining about their plan of going to Floria region. Then he indicated Lakshman’s armour and wanted it upgraded it to have some magic protection and boost. Lakshman listened intently since what they were saying was about his armour.
After that, Mekalum said it would take him two days to complete making the armour specified by Darian. Lakshman was excited at the prospect of getting new armour. Then he realised that he and Ondine were the only ones getting armours.
He asked them “What about the rest of you? Don’t you need one?”
Darian, Rumble and Marilia looked at each other for a moment. Then they smiled as they turned back to look at him.
“I’m a straight up warrior. Wearing stuff like armour will only slow me down,” Rumble said and he winked at him.
“I’m a magician so I just need the basic armour to keep me protected,” Marilia said to him.
“I already have my custom made armour with me. I just never bothered to wear it except for fierce battles!” Darian said and he grinned at him.
Lakshman widened his eyes in amazement as he said “Wow…! I keep forgetting you guys are super strong and all!”
At hearing such words, they began laughing. Even Mekalum smiled as he said “Super strong is an understatement. Just watch them when they get into it and you’re mind will be blown!”
“Are they really that strong?”
“Wait for the right chance to see them in action and get ready to be amazed! Anyway, I’ll need to start working on your armour. So if you could come back in two days, I’ll be done.”
Like that, Mekalum began rose to his feet and began gathering materials. With nothing else to do, Rumble and Lakshman walked out of the house.
As soon as they got out, they heard loud shouts of two girls. Ondine and Tetra were yelling at each other and making hand gestures towards one another.
Lakshman instantly became very annoyed at their loud voices. He put his hand to his side and pulled out a staff. It was the same staff that his magic tutor, Sumara Manjuvad, gave him as a parting gift. So he pulled out the staff, directed it at the girls and chanted a magic spell.
“Spirits of water, pour down and cleanse the minds of ugly anger. Rainfall!”
In an instant, a white cloud suddenly materialised. It hung in the air and hovered above Ondine and Tetra. Then it slowly turned murky grey and began raining water on them. The girls were frozen in shock as rain of water fell on them from the cloud hanging overhead.
A few seconds later, it vanished and left two girls really wet. Ondine and Tetra were dripping wet and were looking startled. They were looking shocked as they wondered where a rain of water began pouring down on them when everything around them was dry.
Then they heard footsteps from behind. Turning around, they saw Lakshman holding the staff while looking at them angrily. That was when they realised what had happened and lowered their heads in shame.
“The two of you…! Think about what you were doing! Now, separate!” Rumble said and he surprisingly looked angry as he directed them away from each other.
Lakshman looked up at him and apologetically said “I’m sorry about what happened.”
“I know why they were arguing, but it’s no longer funny!” Rumble said irritably.
The girls wandered away and sat down on opposite ends of the clearing. Rumble and Lakshman watched them silently. Then Rumble sighed in relief and turned to speak to Lakshman.
“So you can use magic as well?” he asked and he looked impressed when Lakshman nodded his head at him. Then he said “Then let’s train it! You’re physically strong, but you didn’t train using magic at all! Let’s do that for these two days!”
“Right, but… what am I supposed to do for training magic?” Lakshman asked since he never thought of how to train using magic.
Rumble smiled and said “Let’s go monster hunting! You can attack the monsters with magic and that’ll be your training. However, use strictly only magic and use a sword when you get desperate!”
“O-Okay, but isn’t it wrong to attack and kill monsters just for the sake of training?”
“Oh, that! Well then…! We’ll just have to bring back the monster meat and have Marilia cook them for us. That way, we’ll have tasty meat for lunch and dinner!”
Seeing the eagerness in his face, Lakshman sighed. Then his eyes widened as he suddenly remembered what Rumble had said moments before.
“What do you mean by saying I’m going to attack the monsters with magic and use sword as a last resort?”
“Oh, it’s simple. I’ll draw the attention of the monsters and you start attacking them! That’s our plan of attack!” Rumble said and he winked at him.
Lakshman raised an eyebrow and said “I somehow don’t like this idea…”
“It’s fine! So let’s go hunt those monsters already! Let’s go, let’s go, let’s go!” Rumble said and his voice quickened with excitement.
So Darian and Marilia assisted Mekalum in armour making. Meanwhile Ondine and Tetra were sitting far away from each other to think about their actions as punishment. With nothing else to do, Rumble and Lakshman decided to go monster hunting.