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First Journey (Part 1)

After 2 days, the hunters returned from the mountains. Ryan who missed his father, went outside the town to welcome him. This time, the harvest was plenty. Ryan helped his father carry the two mountain antelopes, he hunted.

At dinner, Ryan spoke with his parents about his rite of passage.

Ryan’s mother was worried and didn’t want him to leave, but his father agreed to his request. Also Ryan’s mother was dejected, she still obediently followed her husband arrangements.

Ryan was surprised with his father’s consent. He thought he’d need to argue with his father for a few days to convince him. Ryan’s father looked at his son’s tender face and said : “You mother and I love you very much, but you are a man and you’ll have to leave one day. Besides I trust your masters and feel relieved that you have masters like them.”

Looking at his father’s weary and caring face, Ryan couldn’t help but burst into tears.

The next day, Ryan and his parents went to Caleb’s* hut. Not only, Caleb and Draenor were there, but also Noam and Maeve were there as well.

(TN: I changed Jalip to Caleb, the original text is 加力布 with pinyin Jiā lì bù)

Ryan spent most of his time training in martial arts and magic so he didn’t have time to make any friends other than Noam and Maeve. That’s why they were the only ones who knew about his rite of passage.

His father gave him the money he had saved over the years, his mother prepared a travel bag for him, Caleb gave him a dagger and Draenor gave him a magical storage pouch.

This pouch was an essential item for adventurers. It looked like a normal small pouch, but inside it, it contained a big space that could be used to store items.

Ryan knew about the existence of such pouches from the talks of Caleb and Draenor and had always been envious, but he didn’t expect to have one of his own today. After Draenor taught him how to use the pouch, Ryan put his travel bag and the dagger into the pouch.

Because they didn’t known in advance, Noam and Maeve couldn’t prepare anything special, so they used 16 fangs of the wild boar that Noam hunted to make a bracelet and gave it to Ryan.

Everyone silently watched as Ryan slowly walked away.

At night, there was a gentle breeze that cooled the heat of July. Ryan sat next to a campfire holding a piece of meat that was just cooked, blowing on it with his mouth then eating it.

‘This rabbit meat is delicious.’ Ryan ate with relish. “The smell of edelweiss rabbit is amazing, even though mother wasn't the one to prepare it. I just left home this morning and I am already homesick.” Ryan made fun of himself as he began planning the spendings of his journey.

Even though Ryan got a lot of gold coins from his father, it wasn’t enough to support him until the end of his trial. In addition, he still had to search for a teammates for the tournament.

“It seems that I have to register as a mercenary first.” Ryan said. “Doing a job for money can be a form of experience as well. But the tournament is in less that 4 months and I still hasn’t completed the most important task which is finding teammates. This is giving me a headache. How should I find them?”

After Ryan thought about it for a long time, he felt that the best thing to do was to take things slowly, one step at a time. And his first step was to go to Tacre town and register as a mercenary and earn money by taking missions. That way he’d have the chance to work with others and find if there was anyone suitable to be his teammate.

After Ryan finished eating, he stood up and stretched his muscles and patted his belly. ‘ I’m full.’

Ryan added a few more branches to the fire and watched as the flames burned more, then nodded his head as he guessed that the fire would last till dawn. He then walked to a big tree and climbed it agilely and sat on its trunk.

When Ryan was a kid, Caleb took him to Hengduan mountains few times. In addition, his father was a skilled hunter. So the basic survival skill was drilled into his bones. Making a fire can prove effective in preventing magical beasts from approaching. Beasts like wolves and snakes are afraid of fire and they won’t dare coming if they saw a fire. And sleeping on a tree can provide another degree of safety. It would also be best if there was a tent that can provide protection from bad weather.

Thinking about the things he had to buy, Ryan took out the pouch that his master Draenor gave him. Though it looked small, It contained a big space inside. It was made using alchemy and space magic. Ryan didn’t know anything about either subjects but he didn’t care. As long as he could use it, he didn’t need to bother about anything else and he could always ask Draenor about how it was made in a later date.

Ryan went through the items in his storage pouch and retrieved the dagger that Caleb gave him. The dagger was as almost long as his forearm.The scabbard was made of the leather of a common antelope. Ryan hold the dagger and swang it with some force.

The blade of the dagger was pitch black and wouldn’t even reflect the moonlight. Ryan was disappointed with its ordinary appearance. He held the dagger in his right hand and moved it against a tree branch but he didn’t expect that the branch that was the thickness of his arm would be cut off.

Ryan was shocked with the effectiveness of the dagger. He didn’t expect such an ordinary looking dagger to be that sharp. He held the dagger and stabbed it into the tree and as he expected the dagger sank into the trunk without making any sound.

Ryan was elated with Caleb's gift. With this dagger, his close combat would be more deadly.

Ryan pulled the dagger out of the tree and examined it hoping to find out why it was sharp but he knew nothing about weaponsmithing, though Draenor once taught him some elementary alchemy and enchanting. After examining it for a long time, all he got was that, the dagger was enchanted and that enchantment was what made it sharp and made the blade pitch black without any luster unlike ordinary weapons. He also found 2 words “Death shadow” inscribed on the blade which he suspected to be the name of the dagger.

Perhaps because it was his first journey, or because of how excited he was to obtain such a sharp weapon like the death shadow, Ryan almost didn't get any sleep that night. He kept tossing the dagger all night, until the sky was bright, then he slept for a little while.

When he woke up, he put out the fire by pouring some water from the container on it. Then, he refilled the container from a nearby stream. After he ate the remaining rabbit meat, he walked towards Tacre town.

Tacre town wasn’t far away from Foggy town. It was about day and a half travel distance. Before noon, he arrived at Tacre town.

This was Ryan’s second time in Tacre town. He first came to Tacre town when he was about 3 or 4 years old. As he was a kid at that time, he could barely remember anything. But that wasn’t enough to stop Ryan. He used a trick that was used by the main character in a story book that Caleb gave him. He took 2 copper coins and gave them to a child playing outside and asked him to show him the way to the mercenary guild.

It was a very old building, a 100 years old at least. There was a wooden sign on the door that had weathered through storms for many years, but the emblem on it could still be identified. It was a sword and a staff intersecting with each other. As Ryan recalled some things about the mercenary guild that Caleb told him about, he pushed the door and strode in. 

Although it had been a long time since Caleb took a mercenary job in Tacre town, everything was still the same as he described.

After Ryan paid a gold coin, he was registered as a mercenary and was given a magic crystal to symbolize his identity. With it, he could accept missions from any branch of the mercenary guild on Eslar continent.

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