Two weeks have passed since Sumara Manjuvad, a member of the Manjuvad Demon Clan, was decided to the the home tutor for Lakshman by his parents. Indra and Lakshmi were very impressed by her and decided to alter the schedule which their son was trained in while allocating a room upstairs beside their son’s room for her to live in for the duration of her stay.
Lakshman would conduct his physical and sword training with his father beginning in the morning. After breakfast, he studied the educational subjects and the literature of the world under the watchful gaze of Mariana, their maid. After lunch, he would learn to use magic instructed by Sumara till evening. After dinner, Sumara entered his room and helps him with his magical studies till it was bedtime.
One day, Lakshman was a given a test by Mariana early in the morning because he was slacking off due to his father hurrying away on a mission and did not train him that morning. So, she conducted the test by making him answer the questions regarding the history he had learnt the last few days.
“Alright, young master. I will ask you a few questions and you answer me correctly, alright?” Mariana asked him and he nodded his consent. She smiled a little at him and asked, “What are the ranks? Explain what you’ve learn from our previous lesson.”
“Okay,” said Lakshman in understanding. He took a deep breath and said, “They are the ranks that are given to categorise things like spells, monsters and titles by their individual standards like strength and power.”
Mariana nodded her head with a smile and asked, “Yes and how many of them are there? List them in their appropriate numbers, starting from weak to strong.”
“Eight,” said Lakshman and he listed the ranks by their order.
“Correct,” said Mariana and she momentarily nodded her head approvingly at him. “It’s good to see that you’ve really remembered a lot of the details fairly well.”
He smiled and said, “It wasn’t hard since their practicality,” He gestured upstairs and at outside as he said, “Mom’s an Advanced Ranked Magician, dad’s a Saint Ranked Swordsman, Sumara’s a Saint Ranked Magician and you, Mariana, are an Advanced Ranked Magician.”
Mariana briefly raised an eyebrow in surprise and said, “That’s good observation skills.” As he smiled confidentelly, she decided to make things a bit difficult in her next set of questions. “Okay. So, who was it that one that created the ranks? What kind of influence he had on the world?”
“That was, um, Zekadraite Askajengret, also known as the Emperor of the World who liked in the Iron Era, also known as the IRN Era for short. He was the strong person in the entire world and had no equal as he defeated all of his opponents and brought them under his ruler ship easily.”
“Indeed. He certainly did all of that and he also did a few other things,” said Mariana as she looked at him intently through her spectacles. “Can you name some of which he contributed in?”
“Yes,” he said and nodded in consent before listing them as he said, “He created the Ranks and a group of the worlds’ strongest warriors called the Nine Pillars of Power! Their members are:”
- Phoenix Titan
- Dragon Titan
- War Titan
- Death Titan
- Demon Titan
- Sun Titan
- Moon Titan
- Magic Titan
- Sword Titan
“During his reign, they proved the peace until he suddenly vanished on the 1000th year of the peace. After that, war exploded onto the world with all races trying to control the world until it was stopped by the Phoenix Titan. Apparently, this great man had sacrificed himself to summon the World Guardians to stop the war and bring peace once and for all.”
Mariana was surprised that he remembered all of that small detail and said, “Excellent! You seven remember the parts that I didn’t really have much time to go through about.” As he smiled sweetly at her, she asked him another question.
“For how long did he rule the world and what happened once he decided to step down?”
He shook his head and said, “He never stood down. Instead, he disappeared off the face of the world at the end of the 1000th year of the Iron Era for no given reason.”
“It’s good you picked up a purposeful mistake I made in asking my question,” said Mariana and 0Yes and what followed his disappearance?”
“A war occurred between the other races around the world and it lasted for around three years before it was brought to an end.”
“Yes, but what stopped it? What happened for such a large scale war to come to an end?”
“It was stopped by the Phoenix Titan as he sacrificed himself to summon the World Guardians, who quickly ended the war between the races and brought peace.”
Mariana was left speechless because of how surprised she was at her young master answering all of her answers flawlessly. It was difficult for any kid of his age to remember so much, but he seemed to have obtained a gift for remembering things very quickly. She was mightily impressed by how good the power of his memory was.
At that moment, his stomach growled for breakfast and she looked at him seriously on her face and decided to ask a question of opinion because she wanted to see his capability to reason.
“Final question: Who’s the strongest among the Nine Pillars of Power?” she asked finally.
Lakshman looked at her puzzled as the question momentarily stunned him and left him speechless. He placed a hand on his chin and he looked up at the ceiling as he thought about how to respond. There was no clear answer to that question and he knew she was merely asking for her opinion, however, he wanted to get it right as well.
After several seconds of silence, he finally made up his mind on something and he said, “The Phoenix Titan.”
Mariana looked curiously at him and asked, “Out of all the nine warriors, you picked the Phoenix Titan? Why? What brought you to that conclusion?”
“It’s because he was the one who sacrificed his life and summoned the World Guardians that saved our world from war and chaos,” said Lakshman in a firm voice with a confident look on his face.
His words surprised the Mariana and she smiled at him as she said, “Well done, Lakshman.”
“Thank you,” he replied cheerfully with a bright smile on his face.
Just then, they heard Lakshmi calling them for breakfast. Deciding to wrap the session up there and continue it after having breakfast, the two rose to their feet and headed over to the dining room to eat.
For the first-half of the day, everything went smoothly as Lakshman learnt more about the World Guardians, who were historical figures who sacrificed their lives to protect the world. Later, his studies moved into learning the language of the world and he was really tired by the end of it. Thankfully, the ending of the session was perfect as it was lunch time and Mariana gave him a break.
“You’re getting the hang of learning the Global Language, young master,” she stated as they sat in chairs in front of the dining table while eating from their plates full of food.
“You’re teaching him the Global Language?” Sumara asked curiously while eating her food neatly. “Does that mean he completed learning the Human Language?”
Mariana nodded her head and replied, “Yes, Miss. Manjuvad.”
“Please call me Sumara,” said Sumara with an insisting look on her face and momentarily surprised the maid before she smiled and nodded in ascent.
Once lunch was over, Mariana rose out of her seat and slowly carried the plates into the kitchen for cleaning before doing some house cleaning for the day. Meanwhile, Lakshman and Sumara headed over to their backyard to practice magic as she decided it was the best spot for training.
She started his training by making him use Beginner Ranked Magic and mainly had him using Beginner Ranked Water Magic. It was really tiring for him to train as it was difficult to control the power, speed and aim of the spells he used. Sumara specifically made him focus his energy on getting over the power, speed and aim of the spells before he can progress further.
Seeing the difficulty, he faced, she calmly explained by saying, “Imagine if you’re throwing a rock. How do you go about throwing it?”
“I…” began Lakshman to answer her question and hesitated momentarily as he thought about his answer before he said firmly, “I would hold it in my hand, aim carefully before throwing it with only the force I want to apply. Oh!” He suddenly exclaimed and widened his eyes in surprise as he realised what he was missing and he smiled confidently as he said, “I got it!”
“Good!” she said with a bright smile on her face to see that he picked it up quickly and watched him in silence as he practiced more and more Beginner Ranked Water Magic.
He continued to practice for some time since lunch and Sumara, seeing him getting tired from practicing, decided to take a break and give him some rest.
“Okay. Take a break,” she said in a commanding voice to stop him.
He breathed a sigh wearily after training for an hour by chanting magic spells before he said, “Thank you.”
So they walked to the back of the house where there were chairs and a table set. Once they reached them, both Lakshman and Sumara sat down. Then they relaxed as Lakshman let out a soft moan contentedly. For a while, they sat in silence as the two of them relaxed their bodies and minds.
Lakshman thought about his study session that day and recognised that she was a Saint Ranked Magician, but knew nothing about the magic spells she specialised in. So, he sat straighter in his chair and asked, “Miss Manjuvad?” As she turned to look intently at him, he continued on with his question and asked, “I was wondering what kind of magic you specialise in.”
“Mmm,” said Sumara and she sat straighter up on her chair before she replied, “It’s simpler to state the magic and their ranks, rather than explaining what I specialise in.”
“Okay,” he said and listened to she listed her ranked magic specialisations.
- Saint Ranked Water Magic
- Saint Ranked Wind Magic
- Saint Ranked Ice Magic
- Advanced Ranked Earth Magic
- Advanced Ranked Boost Magic
He was perplexed from how she listed them and he asked, “What’s up with that list, Miss. Manjuvad?”
Sumara stared at him for a moment before she asked, “Lucky, don’t you know how the ranks are applied to an individual?”
He shook his head and said, “No. I’ve just been learning about the use of the ranks and nothing much else.”
“Oh. I see. You’re still hitting the basics,” said Sumara and she smiled in understanding before she explained. “You see; everyone gets ranked by the strongest magic they could possibly use. You’re a Beginner Ranked Magician who can only perform Beginner Ranked Water Magic right now. As for me, I’m a Saint Ranked Magician who can perform Saint Ranked Water Magic.”
He blinked at her in surprise and asked, “What about your Advanced Ranked Earth Magic and Advanced Ranked Boost Magic? Do they just go to the side-lines?”
“Yes, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t focus on raising their ranks,” said Sumara with a smile on her face.
“I see. Okay,” said Lakshman and her nodded in understanding before he asked, “Also, is it Magic Force that I’m using when I execute the spells?”
“That’s right,” said Sumara with a nod of her head in agreement. “There are three types of Force. I take it you know them?”
He nodded his head and said, “Weapon Force is the force used behind weapon based skills, Magic Force is the force used to execute the magic spells and Energy Force is the raw form of energy that is used for basic energy release.”
“Mmm. Good,” said Sumara as she complemented, which caused him to smile. Wanting to see how much knowledge he has about the elements, she asked him, “Can you list the elements for me?”
“Sure,” he replied and listed them in an unsorted order than he remembered them by.
“Amazing! You remembered them all perfectly!” Sumara exclaimed in surprise despite usually being very composed. “Mariana is a really good teacher!”
“She is,” he agreed with a cheerful smile on his face.
She smiled in return and she looked up at the sky to check the time before she said, “Okay. It’s almost evening. Practice for another hour and we’ll wrap it up there for the day.”
Lakshman grinned excitedly and they rose to their feet before walking out onto the garden before he began to practice magic. Sumara watching him with a little bit of distance for safety sake and advising him whenever he was having difficulty performing spells of higher level.
An hour later, she concluded his training for the day and they returned to the house. They walked into the house and Lakshman immediately walked into the dining room to sit down as he breathed a deep sigh in exhaustion. A moment later, Mariana arrived at the entrance and seeing how exhausted he was, she crossed her arms and looked seriously at him.
“Young master,” she said severely and he jumped in surprise before turning to look at her. “Please go have your bath and fresh up.”
“Ah, come on, Mariana. I’m tired,” he replied wearily, but the maid did not drop the subject.
She quickly walked forward and forcefully urged him to his feet as she said, “Come now, young master. That’s the reason you have to take a bath so that you feel good after training.
Sumara, who had stopped by on her way to her room, looked into the dining room to see what was going on. Quickly understanding what it was about, she chuckled and said, “Go on, Lucky. Listen to her. You’ll feel better afterwards.”
With them both urging him, he decided he might as well do it and he sighed before heading upstairs to get his clothes. He quickly headed into the bath and walked out several minutes later feeling very cool as he realised the advice given to him by his maid and teacher was on spot.
“How do you feel now?” Sumara asked as she came out of her room carrying a new set of clothes in her hands just as he was about to walk into his room.
“Yeah. It feels amazing,” replied Lakshman cheerfully.
She nodded in understanding and smiled at him before heading towards the bathroom and closing the door firmly behind. By the time she was completed having a bath and walked out wearing the new set of clothes, Indra and Lakshmi entered the house. Lakshmi was tired, but Indra was exhausted as he slowly walked into his room and flopped on his bed.
“Indra!” Lakshmi shouted angrily to see him lying on the bed with worn out clothes. “Get up and have a bath before you do anything!”
“Lakshmi…! I’m tired…!” he replied wearily, but his wife was not going to let him go.
“No! Have a bath, otherwise, you won’t have dinner tonight!” she said in a powerful commanding voice.
With no choice, Indra got off the bed wearily and accepted the new set of clothes shoved into his by his wife, who looked at him crossly. At that time, Sumara was downstairs with a magic book on her hand and she was standing next to the entry way and watched as Indra slowly walked out of his room and headed upstairs for the bathroom.
She blinked up at him in surprise and muttered, “I can see where Lucky got his laziness from.”
It was an hour later when the dinner was finally complete and everyone arrived at the dining room to sit down. Sumara was a bit hesitant and although she had been here for the last two days, she still had not got used to eating with others. Noticing this, Lakshmi and Indra urged her to take a seat and she sat down next to their son.
“Mariana. Serve her some food,” Indra said and he gestured at the plates full of food in front of her.
“Yes, master,” said Mariana while she moved forward and placed the food onto Sumara’s plate.
“Ah! Not this much!” Sumara said in a surprised voice while looking at her loaded plate. “Mariana, please take some out. This is a bit much for me.”
“Ah, come on, Sumara!” Indra said bracingly between a mouthful of food. “You’ll get skinner than you already are if you don’t eat at least that much. Go on.”
Sumara appreciated the concern with a smile and shook her head as she said, “I don’t really perform activities that consume a lot of my energy, so this is a lot. My worst fear is that I might get fat with overloaded energy in me from eating so much.”
“You’re kidding!” Indra said with a laugh.
“He’ll say that anyway, Sumara. Just ignore him,” said Lakshmi while watching her husband laugh. “Anyway, eat whatever you want and as much as you want. There’s always enough for seconds.”
“Thank you very much, Lakshmi,” replied Sumara and the two women exchanged smiles.
As requested, Mariana took the excessive amount of food off her plate and taking her seat next to Lakshmi to eat. Sumara took a bite of her food and she found it very tasty, so immediately started eating eagerly. It took several minutes for the family to finish eating and all the while, Indra was telling them non-stop about the adventure he had that day.
“These idiots thought we were facing a wild boar, but it turned out to be a Two-Headed Ceberus. They’re practically blind even though we had a magician cast Light Balls to illuminate the cave. Anyway, there were a large group of them for some reason and were very ferocious with the way they attacked us.”
“What were you expecting? A welcome party?” Lakshmi asked sarcastically.
“Very funny,” said Indra with a grin on his face. “Still, it doesn’t make sense to see them all the way in that cave. I mean, their lair isn’t even near that cave, yet, they were there. It’s a mystery.”
“Do monsters often attack the villages around here?” Sumara asked curiously as she paused to ask him of her question.
“Rarely,” replied Indra in a casual voice. “It’s mostly the Two-Headed Cerberus that run away from their homes when their lair gets attacked by adventurers. Seriously, most of them are no brainers, trying to get the reward money for their mission and not carrying for the monsters that escaped.”
“Mmm. Is that why there was recent talk about a nearby village that was almost wiped out?” Sumara asked in a slightly nervous voice.
A dark look appeared on Indra’s face and he said, “Yes. Much of that village suffered from the attack of a mass of Two-Headed Cerberus attack. We were faced with a problem because they seemed to be unusually strong and we were almost cornered, but we got lucky when the Sword Titan showed up.”
Sumara blinked in surprise as Lakshmi exclaimed, “The Sword Titan?! He was there?!”
He nodded and said, “Yeah. It’s him alright from the way he used such overpowered sword techniques, but the way he came and went was strange. He suddenly appeared out of nowhere and decimated the monsters and suddenly vanished without a word with us. He’s so mysterious.”
“There’s the rumour that he doesn’t mix with the crowd and keeps to himself,” said Mariana quietly as she ate her food gracefully.
“Obviously cause’s he’s part of the Nine Pillars of Power and one of the strongest warriors in the world,” said indra with an annoyed look on his face. He shook his head and said, “Anyway, the main problem is that there’s been unusual activity with the Two-Headed Cerberus that make sense.”
“Just be careful, okay?” Lakshmi asked and he readily nodded his head in understanding.
“No worries,” said Indra brightly as he continued eating his food.
They all ate happily in a blissful silence, not knowing the danger they would face very soon by one of the Two-Headed Cerberus.