The second thing Ox took pride in was this ‘sense’ of his that he cultivated from his training.
That was how confident he was in this ‘sense’, and yet that very thing could not see through Ryouma.
(Who is he? …He clearly looks like a kid, but he feels just like the adults around him. Almost as if they’re of the same age… It’s like they’re equals. But more than that… He is strong. The foreign man next to him is strong too, but even then, he appears to stand above him… I should stop. This isn’t something that I can understand just by thinking about it. In the first place, the only thing I know is to swing my sword and show my strength. It doesn’t matter who it is, what I have to do hasn’t changed.)
The slaves passed through the door one after another, and each time they would come back dejected and leave.
Ox Lord watched them as he tightly held his set of two beloved swords.
Before long the ninth candidate came back, and he silently stood up. On each side of his waist were his beloved swords.
“…I’ll ask again to be safe. Is it really alright for me to use a real blade?” [Ox Lord]
“That’s what the president said. He says the customer himself gave permission too.” [Employee]
“This isn’t one of his games, is it?” [Ox Lord]
“I can understand why you’re suspicious, and it was indeed the president himself who suggested it in the first place, but this time it seems it really is okay. I confirmed it again with your opponent after the last battle. He says it’s much better if you used a weapon that you were familiar with than an unfamiliar one.” [Employee]
“…That’s good then. Thank you for your consideration.” [Ox Lord]
After bowing his head a little, Ox thought back to his days as a gladiator.
He gathered his thoughts and focused solely on the battle. He stepped firmly on the ground and imposingly made his way to the garden.
“Sorry to have kept you waiting.” [Ryouma]
The person who greeted Ox Lord was none other than Ryouma, who was standing at his starting position.
He has probably been standing there since the last battle.
(As I thought, he’s not someone that can be beaten with normal methods.)
No one could ever guess that this child standing before him had gone through four battles prior. It seemed he hadn’t even broken a sweat.
Ryouma asked Ox Lord why he chose him as his opponent.
“It doesn’t matter who I’m facing. All I can do is to fight with these swords of mine. All I can do is to show the strength of my sword.” [Ox Lord]
‘Any further talk is meaningless’ ‘Everything will be made clear by my sword and the results.’
Ox Lord’s brief response strongly implied that. But what really made that evident was that he had already walked toward his starting position and was standing in front of Ryouma.
“Very well. Let us begin.” [Ryouma]
Ryouma didn’t object as he drew the slime katana by his waist.
Ox Lord immediately felt the change in the air.
(If a foe had been within his range, he would have surely been cut with the draw of his sword.)
Ryouma had only drawn his sword. But that was enough for Ox to revise his opinion of Ryouma and evaluate him even higher.
Ox drew his left sword with his right hand.
His sword was like a refined stone, a gray with no luster. It was thick and firm.
Shaped liked a nata hatchet or a kitchen knife. It reminded Ryouma of the Seax Dagger that he knew about in his previous life.
The two warriors clad themselves in ki and strengthened their bodies.
(Victory belongs to the swift!)
Ox quickly closed the distance between them and slashed vertically with his powerful arms.
Ryouma swung his katana in response and parried Ox’s blade.
As a piercing metal sound resounded, the two warriors distanced themselves from each other.
Ryouma was struck with admiration.
This man before him possessed a speed that did not match his figure, and could swing his sword with such weight.
What was more was that the strength of his swing did not only come from his arms or from his ki-reinforcement, but from the sword itself. His sword was heavy. And yet he could wield it so easily like it was nothing. When Ryouma thought about how he used to wield two such sword at the same time, he couldn’t help but imagine how much training it took for him to master such a style. Ryouma was all praises for Ox.
But the same was true for the person-in-question.
(His sword is undamaged. Not only can he use ki, he is even able to parry my attack perfectly.)
Ox’s sword was made from a metal refined from a mineral unique to this world. A metal known as Heavy Rock Steel. It’s defining traits include its dull color, a strength above iron, and a specific gravity greater than lead.
Ox’s sword was forged specifically under the assumption that it would be a male of the minotaur tribe, which was known for its physical strength, that would be using it. Moreover, it was not just any male of the minotaur tribe, but a man who has trained his body throughly and could even handle the sword while his body was reinforced with ki. The weight of the sword was such that a normal person would struggle just to lift it. When such great weight is converted into a single stroke of a sword, one could only imagine how great the resulting destructive prowess would be.