Chapter 141 - Reunion

Kingdom’s Bloodline Masterless Sword, 无主之剑 2022/9/13 16:52:06

Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation

Dragon Clouds City, Armor District, alley.

“Don’t you at least have the intention to explain yourself?” Bathed in the light of the setting sun, Kohen’s breathing quickened, his grip on his sword hilt tightened.

Raphael stood before him dressed in white, and gave him a light smile. “For old time’s sake, Kohen, leave this city immediately—a word of advice from one old comrade to another.”

Kohen sucked in a deep breath, suppressing his anger and curiosity. At this moment, he did not even know what to say or how to face his old friend from the Tower of Eradication.

“Miranda is here, she’s nearby.” Kohen was adjusting his breath, trying to appear calm. “Did you know that?”

“Never mind, the city gate should be closed by now.” Raphael entirely ignored what he said, looked up at the dimming sky, and sighed. “Both of you should find a place to hide. Do not come out at night no matter what happens. When the sun rises the next dawn, leave the city. The sooner the better.”

“She doesn’t know yet.” Kohen lowered his head. His face was enveloped in shadows. “Miranda still doesn’t know about you… whatever happened to you… the Tower sent us to—”

Raphael slipped his sword into its sheath. “Whatever you came here for, just forget about it. It’s going to be a rough couple of days for you two. In fact, you shouldn’t even be here.”

“Goddammit! Raphael Lindberg!”

Kohen could not stand it anymore. He raised his head, his whole face indignant as he roared, “Keep your smartass attitude to yourself! Don’t you get it? We came for the Disaster Sword!”

Raphael’s gaze sharpened.

“I met a Disaster Swordsman in Red Street Market and experienced his power. I have also seen what your power could do back in the Hall of Stars—” Kohen growled, clenching his teeth. “Do you know what the Tower ordered us to do with the Disaster Swordsmen? Investigate them thoroughly, trace their roots. No live captives allowed. Kill on sight!

“You really don’t plan to explain yourself?”

Raphael stared at him with a cryptic expression for a few seconds. Eventually, he let out a chuckle, and looked at Kohen with amusement. “So? You suspect that I’ve joined Disaster Sword? Are you going to arrest me? Or kill me right here?”

The two men glared at each other for a while, until Kohen lifted his fist and waved it indignantly.

“No!” Kohen panted heavily, looking down again. “I don’t care about Disaster Sword, or the century-old blood feud between us and them.”

The police officer bowed down, picked up his sheath from the ground, and put away his saber. He stammered, “But I care about my friends; I want to know what happened to you.

“I want to help.”

Raphael gazed at him and gave a light-hearted laugh. “You haven’t changed a bit, Kohen.”

“Tell me what happened from the beginning to the end. Everything that happened in the past three years—your interaction with Disaster Sword, how you got into the Black Prophet’s Secret Intelligence Department. Tell me everything.” Kohen heaved a sigh and took a step forward. “Whatever it is, we can figure this out together. Everyone at the Inner Tower, like Master Shao or Zedi, they don’t know that you… As for Miranda, if it’s for her sake, I can keep it from her as well,” he said grimly.

Raphael inhaled deeply, clenching his fists.

“As for Disaster Swordsmen, they are not just the archenemies of the Tower of Eradication.” Kohen peered at Raphael. “Their intentions are not that simple. They are somehow involved in the attack on the Eckstedt Diplomat Group, and the assassination attempt on the Prince of Constellation in front of the Fortress!”

The smile on Raphael’s face vanished and was replaced with a frown.

Kohen sighed, gazing straight into Raphael’s eyes, “These incidents… I’m not sure whether you know about them, or about the people you are dealing with, but I’m willing to trust you. I believe that you have a reasonable explanation!

“So, before a horrible mistake is made, before you reach the point of no return—”

“This is the reason you came to Dragon Clouds City?” The young man in white interrupted him. “The Disaster Swordsmen plotted two consecutive assassinations on two princes?”

“Allegedly they are in cahoots with an Archduke of Eckstedt,” Kohen said sternly, nodding. “So the feud is no longer just between the Tower of Eradication and Disaster Sword, but between Constellation and Eckstedt! It’s a matter of war and peace!”

“Why send you?” Raphael looked up at him, his gaze as calm as a lake. “Why send you two to investigate this?”

“Because we both have experience dealing with Disaster Swordsmen!” Kohen pounded his chest. “Because we have been on the battlefield, because we are the Seeds!”

“Hmph, Seeds.” Raphael snorted, shaking his head. “I am a Seed, too, so is Misadun, Kroesch, and Ecklyn from Alumbia, Edgar and Beckham from Eastern Peninsular… why didn’t they send us? Why send you two aristocrats of all people?”

“Speaking of which, gosh, I thought the debate about aristocrats and commoners was settled after the fight between you and Misadun.” Kohen sighed. “Kroesch… her right hand was disabled when she was hunting a Disaster Swordsman… I believe that’s one of the reasons why they sent Miranda.”

The last rays of sunlight shone on Raphael’s face. He did not respond but appeared to be in deep thought.

At the mention of the tragedy that befell his old comrade, Kohen looked down at his feet. With a heavy heart, he said, “Yes, the girl who always soldiered on when she was punished to jog with a sword between her teeth, the girl who hoped to be a swordswoman, the girl who was supposed become the next ‘Heart of the Rain’… can no longer lift a sword.

“I don’t want to see you end up like that. So let me help you, just like before!” Kohen inhaled. He took a huge stride forward and placed his hands on Raphael’s shoulders. “If you are doing something unforgivable or are currently doing something unforgivable, let me be your accomplice!

“Whatever it is, we can resolve it! You are not alone!”

Raphael remained silent for two seconds. Then, his expression changed.

“You need to get out of here, now! Either climb through the city wall or dig a tunnel.” A smile crept back onto Raphael’s face. His gaze became cold. “Something is off, and it’s not something you can deal with…”

Raphael shrugged, but found that he could not free himself from the police officer’s arms.

“You know me, Raphael.” Kohen lowered his head. He spoke with much difficulty, “If you refuse to explain yourself…”

The police officer lifted his head, and his gaze was determined. “… Then you’re not going anywhere.”

Kohen was much taller than Raphael, but the young man in white robes did not lift his chin. Instead, his gaze shifted upwards to meet his, which made it seem gloomier.

“Last warning, Kohen Karabeyan, future Count of Walla Hill.” Contrary to his gaze and tone of voice, Raphael’s smile was bright and gleeful. “Some things are not what they used to be. Leave it… especially regarding matters involving the Secret Intelligence.”

His arms shot out swiftly and clutched Kohen’s arms which held on to his shoulders tightly.

Dong! A loud sound of collision.

The two men jolted, but they did not separate.

Kohen still kept a tight grip over Raphael, he did not let go.

“Really, Officer Karabeyan?” Raphael felt the growing pressure exerted from Kohen’s hands. His voice was grim. “You think I was joking about eliminating you?”

Kohen’s face darkened.

“You behaved like this back in the Hall of Stars, and now in Dragon Clouds City.” Kohen clenched his teeth and tightened his grip on Raphael’s shoulders. “Just randomly popping up with a cryptic expression, telling me to ‘leave it’?

“Becoming a Disaster Swordsman, joining the Secret Intelligence… have these things really changed you completely?” The police officer was getting more and more frustrated. “You can’t even give a simple explanation to me, your old friend!”

In the alley, the two men’s bare-handed contest of strength became increasingly terrifying as they exerted more pressure on each other’s arms.

“Like you said, we are ‘old friends’.” With his smile still intact, he narrowed his eyes and said cheerfully, “We each merely chose a different path.”

Looking at Raphael, a wave of dejection he could not put into words washed over Kohen.

‘What on earth turned my dear friend into this?’

Kohen’s breathing became heavy. “If it’s because something bad had happened to you… I never experience what you yourself have; I might not fully understand how you must feel. But if you are willing to confide in me, we can still—”

Raphael shouted coldly, “Kohen Karabeyan, future Count of Walla Hill, do I look like I have been through ‘something bad’?”

“Not at all,” said a strange yet familiar female voice.

The two men were startled. Kohen turned his head. Raphael smiled a perfect smile.

The two of them were staring at a pretty silhouette under the moonlight which had risen at some unknown period of time.

The Head of the Eight Seeds of the Tower of Eradication, Miranda Arunde, sauntered into the alleyway under the silver moonlight.

A sword in hand, she gazed at the two hugging men with a frosty look.

“Is there anything you would like to explain?”

‘Explain?’ Kohen thought. He turned his head and looked at Raphael who stood only inches from him.

Only then did he realize that the pose he shared with Raphael…

The police officer let go of Raphael’s shoulders abruptly, and shoved him away.

“Miranda, let me explain.” Kohen forced an embarrassed grin, scratching his head. “Don’t be mad. We’re not…”

Miranda cut him off coldly. “Shut up, Kohen.” The face of the swordswoman of the Arunde Family was frigid. “I was not asking you.”

Both Kohen’s expression and words froze.

Miranda stared at the young man in white, the man who had vanished for three years.

Being on the receiving end of Miranda’s death glare, Raphael lowered his head and… gave a laugh.

“It has been a long time, Mira.” The young man in white shook his head slowly. “You are… cold as usual? So cold it’s heart-breaking.”

At that very moment, Officer Kohen Karabeyan who was scratching his head, suddenly realized that his presence was a little unnecessary.

Miranda ambled towards Kohen and stood by his side. Her tone of voice was emotionless, as though this person she was talking to was not her former flame. “Mira? Stop calling me that, Raphael Lindberg.”

“Hey,” he looked at the couple awkwardly, “we should find a place to sit down. There are things we need to discuss…”

“Yeah, by the way, Miranda.” Kohen winked at Raphael in desperation, hoping the latter would get the hint. “You haven’t known that… Raphael is a high-level operative in the Kingdom’s Secret Intelligence Department… have you?”

He was interrupted again, this time, by Raphael.

“You are not angry.” The young man in white ignored Kohen. He looked steadily at Miranda’s petite face and said with a smile, “That’s surprising. You know, I expect you to be a little more agitated…”

Once again, Kohen felt that his presence was a little unnecessary.

“And then throw myself into the comfort of your arms, hitting your chest with feeble punches, crying ‘where have you been? Why didn’t you come look for me? Do you know how much I’ve missed you all these years?’ and then close my eyes expecting your kisses?” Miranda gave a sarcastic laugh. “Don’t read so many romance novels—it does funny things to your brain.”

Raphael snorted. “You stole my line.”

Kohen watched his two friends, feeling at a loss as to what to do. He had an awkward expression on his face.

“Besides, I am not one of those weak useless women—why would I be angry?” Miranda flicked the handle of her sword. “What right does the man who clearly had the ability to come back but instead left for three whole years have for me to be angry at him?”

‘She is very angry.’ From behind Miranda, Kohen signalled Raphael with a gaze.

Raphael was still smiling. Miranda looked Raphael in the eyes but failed to find a hint of familiarity in them. It caused her chest to tighten.

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At last, Raphael raised an eyebrow.

“Alright,” he said slowly and indifferently, “you stop all that you are doing in Dragon Clouds City, lay low, and then leave first thing the next morning… if you agree to do that, I will explain things to you both when this is over.

“In the meantime, no matter what happens—”

Kohen scowled. This time it was he who interrupted Raphael.

“Hey, Raphael,” he uttered brusquely, lifting an index finger. “I swear, if you keep using that tone—”

Miranda interrupted him again, “That won’t be necessary. I wouldn’t listen, nor would I believe whatever you have to say.”

Her expression was blank, her tone mild and emotionless, but Kohen felt a chill slither down his spine. For the third time, he genuinely believed that he should not be here.

“Oh?” Raphael’s lips curved up, then he amusedly said, “What you are going to do then?”

Miranda stepped forward, peering at the person she once knew best.

Raphael gazed at her calmly.

Miranda narrowed her eyes, and with the most indifferent and airy voice she had ever used in her life, she said faintly, “I will first knock your sword off your hand… Then beat you to a pulp on the ground.”

Kohen frowned. “What?”

The mistress of Arunde continued, “Break both of your legs… Dislocate your joints… Break your nose… Knock out your front teeth… Stomp on you on the muddy ground…

“And when you are lying on your stomach, crying, begging for mercy… I will extract the truth… out of your mouth, bit by bit!” Miranda said her last sentence coolly.

There was a momentary silence.

“Haih.” Raphael flashed Kohen a bitter smile. He squeezed his eyes shut, sighed, and said, “Looks like… she is angry for real.”

Kohen only felt an incredible headache.

Under the moonlight, two figures acted at the same time.

Miranda pulled out her sword slowly.

Raphael flashed an indifferent smile, and he, too, reached for his sword hilt.

“Um, guys, if this is just one of your couple’s scuffles,” Kohen stuck his head out from behind Miranda and began cautiously and awkwardly, “Can you maybe do this later…”

Right in the next instant, Miranda gave him a fierce rear elbow strike, blood gushed out of his nostrils.