Chapter 16 – Revenge of the Iron-Blooded Sword Hound


Episode 16 Solitary (3)

It began by accident.

Before the regression, Vikir’s hunting party, the Hound Group, was raiding the dungeons that straddled the border between the Enemy and Black Mountain when they found a strange artifact.

It was a fragment of a sword manual.

It was a single torn page.

Sensing that something was amiss, Vikir memorized its contents.

When he turned in the paper in question, Hugo immediately realized that the page contained something out of the ordinary.

Hugo searched through his entire library to find a book that contained the page.

What he eventually found was a swordsmanship tome called The Lurking Ambush.

It was an ancient book, found not in the restricted area where the higher martial arts were concentrated, but in a shallow layer of miscellaneous books that no one bothered to look at.

The sudden discovery of this sword technique, buried in an unknown location, had set the entire Baskerville Street ablaze.

“This sword art is the essence of our Baskerville.

Hugo raves.

At first glance, the swordplay was unremarkable, but when the missing pages were added, the system of swordplay was redefined.

A sword that would seemingly defend itself against an enemy’s attack, then suddenly leap out and bite down on the point of death, with the sole purpose of inflicting pain on the enemy.

This sword art, which must have been written long ago by some ancestor named Baskerville, describes how to draw ten teeth.

The Baskerville Tenth Form.

Hugo, who had achieved the rank of Sword Master with only seven katana, could not help but be intrigued.

…… But even with Vikir’s retrieval of the missing first half, the book was still incomplete.


There were more missing pages in the second half.

The torn pages totaled seven.

The other six were unaccounted for, except for the one that Vikir found.

Hugo spent the next several years collecting the torn pages of this “lurking ambush”.

The Baskervilles were relentless in their pursuit.

After investing vast amounts of time and money, Hugo realized that the torn pages of the Swordsmanship Book were hidden deep within the estates of each of the seven families that supported the empire.

Naturally, Hugo set out to retrieve them one by one.

It was a project he called Operation Reclaim the Torn Pages or Operation Restore the Missing Teeth.

Vikir shook his head from side to side as he recalled the memory.

He could still smell the blood at the end of his nose.

“…… It was a long, drawn-out operation.

Hugo unleashed the dogs to retrieve the page.

Whether they knew about the torn pages or not, the resistance from the other families was fierce.

For them, it was a matter of course.

No one would look good with someone else’s hounds bursting into their courtyard.

The Baskervilles practically declared war on all the other houses.

Countless Baskerville hounds perished under the weight of it all.

The number of siblings and companions I had grown up playing with dwindled at an alarming rate.


The familiar faces of yesterday are nowhere to be seen in the mess hall.

The gaps left by the missing teeth were filled with new ones, which fell out just as quickly.

The one permanent tooth that didn’t fall out through all that gnashing of teeth was Bikir’s.

Bikir became a vicious black dog, fighting and fighting and fighting.

Eventually, he gathered the seven missing pages and brought them to his master.

A few fingers and toes, a pair of ears, ugly burns and cuts covering his entire body, and his lost brothers.

The reward for all this was simple and straightforward.

“Well done.

A single word of praise from Hugo’s mouth.
Why did he think it was enough at the time?

“It was a stupid …… life.”

Bikir gritted his teeth.

Before the regression, Hugo had used all these things that Vikir and the hounds had asked for to provide for himself and his two sons.

Hugo’s cultivation had risen beyond the seventh degree to the ninth, and the honor of Ironblade Baskerville had soared.

The blood of the hounds and the flesh of the dead lay beneath him.

“That will not happen in this life.”

Vikir closed his eyes and recalled the pages in his mind.

Everything that had been written on those lost pages was in his mind.

Nevertheless, the reason why the pre-regression Vikir couldn’t go beyond the fourth degree was because he didn’t know the original.

The pages he remembered were sparse, only seven pages at most.


Without the original, they were useless.

…… But not now.

In Vikir’s hands now was the original copy of the ‘Lurking Ambush’ sword technique!

Though seven pages had been torn out, the missing information was still perfectly clear in Vikir’s mind.

The experience of fighting through layers of siege, sometimes with no way to keep the pages themselves intact, and carrying them in his mind, shines through.

Soon, Bikir began to peruse the book.

……10The first foot of the decadal eclipse coincides with the solar eclipse.
The moment a sword is drawn and shows aggression in its first trajectory, all swordplay from then on has an inherent limitation……

Indeed.

If an uninformed person read this book, they would treat it as a hodgepodge of nonsense.

Ten formulas, what the hell does that sound like?

But as he recalls the contents of the torn pages and fills in the blanks, what was once a mishmash of bluster and rhetoric becomes the puzzle pieces of a masterpiece.

Vikir notices that the gaze of his surroundings has completely disappeared, and he moves his body accordingly.

Four teeth, honed to the limit before his regression.
After that, the story begins in earnest.

The book explained how to reveal the fifth tooth, how to make the sixth tooth, how dangerous the seventh tooth was, when to reveal the eighth tooth, if the ninth tooth actually existed, and what the tenth tooth was.

Even though he didn’t have enough mana and his body was immature for an eight-year-old, he would surely be able to recreate all of these things someday.

‘……15 years old.
Within it, you will regain all of your pre-regression powers.’

Of course, it doesn’t end there.

After that, you will go beyond the fifth degree, to the sixth and seventh degrees, which you were unable to reach before the regression.

The stain of the past, the time when you were pushed aside and ignored by your superiors because you didn’t have the aura of a Gradualist, but didn’t have the swordsmanship to match, will never have to happen again.


“I’ll start by memorizing the contents of the book.

As soon as the memorization is finished, the book will disappear from the world forever.

Then Hugo won’t find it, and he won’t have to make nine teeth.

Pretty sweet revenge for an eight-year-old, don’t you think?

Vikir laughed, albeit dryly.

He still had more than twelve hours to go in the Mansang Library, no matter how little time he took.

For the children of Baskerville Street, it would not be too difficult to memorize a small book in that time.

Half a day from now.

Unaware of what she would become afterward, Vikir read the book.

…….

……….

………….

And then, at exactly 11 hours and 50 minutes from now.

…boom!

A small fire broke out in the shallowest part of the Mansang Library, in the compartment where the jobbers were gathered.

No injuries.
No fatalities.

Damage was minimal, with one tome burned to the ground.

It was a small enough incident that even the servants shrugged it off.

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