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“Uhh, haha, I’m sorry, I mean for real. Actually, I mistakenly killed you.”
I didn’t think that my life would turn into this. Even I couldn’t hide my surprise.
An ordinary high-school student like me, walking with my smartphone in one hand, my vision suddenly turned dark. When I gained my senses, I’m standing on top of the clouds and on top of that, there’s a grandpa with white hair and white beard saying that.
“Umu. You are Shirokuro Sansui, right?”
“That is right.”
“Your name is too old-fashioned, so I mistakenly blew out the candle of your life.”
Candle of my life?! Is something like that from the Japanese Old Tales really exists?!
In some meaning, it might be more shocking than the reincarnation I’m going to through now.
To think that the longevity of humans is decided with the length of their candles……I mean, to think that God would blow out mine.
“I mean, it’s true that my name is old-fashioned, but isn’t that too unreasonable to kill me because of that?”
“That’s why I’m apologizing. I messed up your life after all.”
“Uhh……you speak like it’s something so trivial.”
“It’s not like I’ve messed up “only” your life. Saving you is another form my good will too.”
How arrogant! It’s completely his fault, but he doesn’t feel bad about it at all!
This grandpa, doesn’t he have the sense of guilt or sense of shame?!
“Nevertheless……I can’t return you to that world at that era. Right now, you have already finished your autopsy, funeral, and cremation. And all of your family has already reached the end of their lives, in fact, they’re already here.”
“Time passed so quickly?!”
“It took me quite a long time before I noticed my mistake. I cursed ‘Oh my (handsome and great) God!’ Haha, it was billions of years since I felt like that……”
“No way……it’s already been that long……”
“Feeling like Urashima Taro? Like ‘that’ thing you frequently see in SF literature.”
“No, God. That’s not something someone like you would ask right? Most of all, be more thoughtful of me!”
“Well, well, calm down. I also feel a bit apologetic about it. And so, I’ll give you a new life in a new world with my support.”
This, it turned out to be a cliché development. But, I still can’t feel that this is real.
I died because of God’s mistake a long time ago, and all of my family is already dead.
In other words, from my perspective, it’s like I time slipped into the future.
And even if he lets me reincarnate or teleport into an isekai in this situation……
“Nonetheless, you can’t start over as a baby. That’d be awful to your to-be parents in that world.”
“Is that, morally right……? You……?”
“Just imagine it. The child you gave birth after experiencing pain, was actually a teenager inside. Imagine the feelings of your parents breastfeeding a teenager!”
“Yeah, yeah, that sounds so right coming from you who killed me, the child my parents brought into the world.”
“Well, everyone’s a child born from the pain of their parents after all〜.”
This, what’s this? This conversation that is really unreasonable.
Anyways, it looks like I’m not going to start over as a baby again.
“Nonetheless, since you are going to live in an isekai, you’ll die if I sent you off right away.”
“Ah, you’re really giving me superpowers?!”
“Correct, correct. Do you have, uhh, something you want to be?”
“Then, I want to be like ‘Strongest in the World’ and kick asses!”
“Don’t you feel ashamed saying that yourself?”
He replied with a proper common sense. It’s true that I feel a bit ashamed saying that.
However, please think of this carefully. Would you like to teleport to another world, and spend a life full of dangers?
Honestly speaking, if I were asked a thousand times, I’d answer all the same.
Why in the world do I need to throw myself into a situation where I could die any time?
“You want glory yet you want to avoid the risks……crazy shit.”
“I don’t want to hear that from someone who killed a person just because his name is old-fashioned!”
“Well, alright. Let’s do something about that……”
The grandpa suddenly started to write a letter.
He took out a brush out of nowhere, wrote on a white paper without using ink, sealed it, and handed it over to me.
This, don’t tell me he wants me to read it?
“This letter, give it to the man in the place I’m going to send you to. I wrote in that letter that he should make you his disciple.”
“Well, in a nutshell, I wrote that he should train you until it’s safe to say that you can be called ‘the Strongest’.”
“I need to work hard?!”
I thought like, uhh, he would give me a wonderful superpower with a mysterious way.
But, but, I was wrong. This is the pattern where you’ll need to work hard to become strong!
Frankly speaking, from the third-person perspective, it’s no different from receiving cheat powers from the beginning, but it’s a pattern where it’s too difficult for the one who’s actually going to do it!
“What are you talking about? If you want to become strong, then, of course, you need to train for it.”
“Didn’t you feel apologetic about me?!”
“That’s why I wrote you a referral letter. It is literally guaranteed by God. Be grateful for it. That guy doesn’t easily take disciples after all.”
“You only wrote one letter! ONE letter!”
“Eiii! Well then, good luck and train until you become ‘the Strongest’.”
“Don’t fuck with me〜〜〜!!”
“I felt an ominous presence……but it was a guest from another world.”
Standing in front of me was a cheeky looking kid.
I looked around and saw that I’m deep within a forest. The virgin forest that is yet to be touched by human civilization is surrounding me.
Just like the kid who looks like an elementary school student said, I was clearly out of place wearing my high school uniform.
No matter how you look at it, I’m a man who is a foreign matter in this place.
“However, you are quite unlucky. This place is far from human habitation. Although I can be your guide, it would take time, so prepare yourself. Let me see, with your physique……it would take a week.”
“No, uhh, it’s……”
Don’t tell me, is this kid in front of me the guy God was talking about? The one I’m going to call as master?
He’s wearing a humble kinagashi, with a wooden sword on his waist. He also speaks like an old man.
And no matter how you look at him, he doesn’t look “simple”.
In the first place, in this place where it would take a week to reach human habitation, there’s no way that a kid like this would be living alone.
Honestly, this kid in front of me doesn’t look strong at all, but I can’t think of anything else, so.
“Uhmm, this……please take it……”
“Nu, a referral letter? Fumu……fumu fumu.”
The letter I handed to him, it’s better to call it as a correspondence I guess.
He started to read it and made an indescribable face. Probably, he hates that God just like how I hate him.
He let out a deep sigh.
No matter how you thought of it, it wasn’t a sigh from a kid.
“Well, alright. I’ll take you as my disciple.”
“However, my training is difficult. Prepare yourself.”
After saying that, the kid wearing a kinagashi started to walk on top of the leaves of the grass.
He looked like some kind of a martial arts master. It’s not like he chanted some spell too. How does that work?
“Ahh, by the way, what’s your name?”
“I’m Shirokuro Sansui.” (白黒 山水)
“Hou, good name. My name is Suiboku. The sage of Suiboku-ryū.”
Hearing the word “sage”, I understood.
Although it’s true that his appearance is that of a kid, from his clothes, he somehow feels like a sage who renounced the world.
If he’s really a sage, then I can understand why he also looks young.
“Umu. Not that different from the sage you are thinking of. A superman with perpetual youth and longevity, one that uses Senjutsu, recluse themselves deep in the mountains, and does not spare their time other than practicing.”
He explained proudly and walked in front of me.
I’m wearing my school uniform with sports shoes, but I still can’t catch up to him.
He was standing in places that won’t damage the grass, but I’m treading through the mountain path I’m not used to. It can’t be helped that it would be hard.
“However, you are going to be my disciple, so you need to become a sage as well.”
“Can I become a sage too?!”
“Of course. As long as you follow my instructions.”
This, what encouraging words.
I see. As long as I train under him, I can become a sage with perpetual youth and longevity! An immortal!
Amazing! This might even be better than just becoming ‘the Strongest’!
“First, I’ll lead you to my house, so follow me. Let’s start the training tomorrow.”
“Umu. I just hope your eagerness lasts.”
My Master laughed in amusement.
That’s right. The days where I step towards being the strongest is starting!
At dusk at that day, I slept on the floor of a humble hut.
The ground’s hard, the air’s cold. But it’s difficult for me to complain, so I decided to cheer myself up saying to myself I’m going to become a sage’s disciple, but……
The next day, I was awakened as soon as the sun came up, and was given one wooden sword.
It was a wooden sword, one that you can find anywhere.
“The training is simple. You only need to swing your sword every time the sun rises, swing your sword until the sun sets, swing your sword when you wake up, swing your sword before you sleep……repeat that until I tell you otherwise.”
“……uhm, I wish to ask something……”
“What is the standard ‘otherwise’?”
“It’s until I judged, in my standard, that you are ‘the Strongest’.”
“That’s, how long will it take?”
“Let me see……even if you don’t have the talent at all……even so, you should become strong after 500 years!”
At this moment, I realized that I might’ve chosen the worst choice I ever had in my life.
I thought of running away, but nature was all that there is around us. There was no place I could escape to.
On top of the fact that the person in front of me wishes to train me with good intention, the content of the training is too plain……
However, it was not like I had prepared my heart to swing my sword for 500 years at that point……
“It only means that it would take that much time until you reach the words ‘the Strongest’. I myself, have trained for more than a thousand years, but I still can’t see the end. There’s no ‘the end’ in training!”
No, I don’t mean that, it’s not like I absolutely, definitely, unconditionally, want to be the strongest!
It’s just, uhh, I want to look cool in front of girls and beat up arrogant pricks. My goal isn’t to become the strongest!
I want to become the strongest to live my life happily, not commit all my life just to become the strongest!
“Well then, let’s start with the first swing! Even for me, it’s the ‘swinging the sword in the air’ that I’ve repeated until I’m sick of it, and you’re going to do it repeatedly as well until you are sick of it, but……there is only one thing important. It’s the resolve to devote yourself to the sword! As long as you don’t forget that, you shall attain it! The Way of the Sword, the Way of Martial Arts is like that!”
Hearing his sage-like declaration, I couldn’t say anything back.
I couldn’t even feel a God-like feeling from the God I met earlier, but towards the sage-like sage in front of me, I hoped that he would be a little bit more thoughtful.
Uhm, you can be a Sage that’s not so serious too you know?
Just like that, my 500 years of training started.
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