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The man swept back his sky blue hair and loosened his shoulders by rolling them and cracking his neck.
“I was worried about driving a carriage since it was my first time but it was surprisingly easy.”
There was no reply, but the man continued.
“Serina Melford. That’s a pretty name.”
How did he know my name?
Since when did this man start driving my carriage instead of the coachman?
Numerous questions raced through my mind.
“What did you do to my coachman?”
“Well… What did I do? I can’t remember.”
I looked at him with cold eyes.
There was a high probability that the horseman was not safe.
“What do you want from me?”
What were my chances of fighting and winning if I attacked the man here?
Slim to none.
I’d only seen his skills once but I remembered him using magic.
He had used teleportation spells effortlessly.
His skills were a level higher than mine.
The man took a dagger from his chest pocket and threw it.
The dagger swirled around in the air, shining in the moonlight and sprinkling light in all directions.
With a thunk, the dagger fell at my feet.
I stared at it, befuddled.
Not knowing the man’s intentions, I frowned and raised my head to peer at him.
“There’s no device, so you can relax.”
“Why are you handing me this?”
“Cut off your arm with it.”
The man smiled brightly and announced,
“If you do, I will grant you your life. If you don’t, I’m thinking of turning you into a stuffed doll.”
If I cut off my arm, I could die of excessive bleeding. If I was lucky, I could live. I searched inward and clicked my tongue.
It was truly a luckless day.
As I bent down to pluck the dagger from the ground, the man spoke excitedly, like an audience looking forward to an upcoming show.
“For such a long time, I’ve been curious about Melford’s special bloodline.”
Mana was deeply entrenched in our blood.
The Melford house had a long history of birthing wizards, and it was whispered that amongst wizards we were even more exceptional.
It seems that this man heard that my blood was the best among the Melford’s.
Ah, come to think of it, Mikhail only took my blood once and used it for an experiment.
While looking at me he eerily beckoned me kindly.
“I want your blood, your bones, and your skin.”
I held the dagger and straightened my back.
I imbued the dagger with the strongest magical power I could muster and threw it at the man.
It flew at the speed of black light. It was hard to see a sword with the human eye.
A strange ecstasy rose to my lips.
Until the man lightly plucked the dagger from the air.
“Did you refuse my offer after all?”
The man used his finger to spin the dagger.
“May I ask why you’re making such a regrettable decision?”
I slowly slipped off my shoes.
The soft texture of the soil touched my feet.
I was pricked by a fallen branch and it stung, as the leaves of grass rustled under my feet and tickled me.
I put one foot back and sprinted.
While running as fast as I could towards the man, I manifested a sword made out of mana.
My uninjured hand gripped the sword hard.
When I reached the man’s nose, I opened my mouth:
I fixed the hand holding the sword and turned it towards the man.
“—I’m going to kill you here.”
I swung my sword.
At that moment, the figure of the man disappeared from my sight.
“That’s never going to happen.”
Suddenly, the man appeared and moved behind me whispered in my ear.
I swiveled around and slashed my sword at his neck.
The sword drew a round circle and sharply aimed towards him.
The man tilted his head, dodging my blade and then stepped back.
His feet rubbed against the soil, leaving long marks on the dirt floor.
The man who had retreated speedily rushed towards me.
I tried to swing my sword at him again but my hand was blocked by the air.
It was abruptly hard to move my body as if I was submerged in water.
This was expert magic done by a master.
The man was weighing down the surrounding air with mana.
I frowned at a more difficult situation, and the man stepped right in front of me.
The man greeted lightly clenched his fist.
Blood before he swings his fist at me.
I need to avoid him before he swings his fist at me, but I can’t move.
I just tremble.
I clench at my teeth, as a faint thought occurs to me.
You have to move.
Otherwise, you may die.
Please. Please. Please. I desperately shouted and gathered up my magic.
Failure here meant death.