[The Hated Hero Fights with the Protagonist (Mock Battle)]
In the end, the time for the mock battle arrived without a single good idea coming to me.
In the original storyline, in order to show off the power of the Holy Sword, Barrett threw away the training sword used for the mock battle, opting to go with his Holy Sword instead.
He also had his opponent, Raul, use his Demon Sword.
But no way I could follow his example.
I was going to fight with the training sword as per the rules.
The venue of the mock battle was the training ground on the east side of the school buildings.
A total of 37 students who were examined to have the light element had been gathered in the vast empty space.
Among all magic elements, the light element was deemed as a particularly special one.
The reason being, depending on the application, it could allow you to cast spells of other elements such as fire and water and become the so-called all-rounder.
Needless to say, not everyone was capable of such a feat, they only had the potential to.
Pardon me for throwing out this spoiler, but Barrett was an all-rounder.
So was Raul, by the way.
However, Raul’s spec was so ridiculous that he could even cast spells of darkness element, said to be unachievable by those with the light element.
I got the feeling that maybe the author added this setting in a rush to differentiate the two’s capabilities, but… well, that was beside the point.
The problem I was faced with right now was not about how many elements I could potentially command, but about the mock battle between me and Raul.
In the original storyline, the knights were in attendance for observation, and then the Holy Knight Klaus, a cut above the rest even among their ranks, saw through Raul’s potential and took him in as a disciple—that was how this event was supposed to play out, but now, for some reason, the observation itself had been abruptly canceled.
Meaning that Raul would have no chance of forming ties with the Holy Knight.
Please don’t tell me he has fallen to the dark side—that would be the worst development…
As I was filled with anxiety, the teacher announced my opponent for the mock battle.
Things had been diverging from the original storyline, so I was hoping for the sliver chance to get a different opponent, but—
【Barrett Albers vs.
My hope was dashed.
Geez, why would this be the only thing going according to the original storyline…
“Please do your best, Barrett!” said Tayte with a smile.
“? Are you nervous?” Tayte tilted her head.
Yeah, but for a different reason from what you have in mind, most likely… There was no way I could tell her the truth, so I could only opt to lie to her again.
“I’m okay, Tayte.”
“Are you sure? …T-then.”
Tayte fidgeted with her little hands, then gestured for me to come closer.
When I did—
“Then, if you win, I’ll give you a reward♪.” She whispered.
I’m going to win this even if it costs me my life.”
“I-it’s only a mock battle.
Y-you don’t need to go that far…”
I put strength into my hand holding the training sword for the mock battle.
I felt on fire all of a sudden.
Tayte didn’t seem to think much about it, but now that there was a reward in it for me, I couldn’t possibly half-assed this.
…That being said, knowing Tayte, this reward of hers should be something appropriate for all ages.
Ah, don’t get me wrong, I was happy about it, okay? I mean, just the fact that it was from Tayte was more than plenty for me.
Well anyway, my cute childhood friend-cum-fiancée was giving me her full support.
I must not make an unsightly display.
Tayte’s words set my spirit ablaze.
Raul… I couldn’t afford to lose to you, but I would definitely bring out your hidden power and let everyone acknowledge you.
“Begin!” The teacher acting as the referee shouted, and the mock battle finally started.
“Let’s go!” I, having received encouragement from Tayte, launched the first strike spiritedly.
The dull sound of wooden training swords colliding echoed.
Raul blocked the frontal attack—but, losing in terms of strength, he was slowly being pushed back.
“Gh…” Raul ended up being blown away despite having put all his strength behind the training sword.
Come to think of it, each attribute in his status was at the lowest value, wasn’t it?
“That’s Barret Albers for you… he’s so strong.”
“But what’s more surprising is that he’s fighting fair and square.”
“Yeah, usually he’d beat his opponent until they’re crying and begging for forgiveness with a big smile on his face…”
What a scum.
Barrett, the man whose reputation went up just by having an earnest fight—I already knew it, but this guy really was the worst!
“Raul Lorenz, will you continue?”
The teacher asked Raul, who had fallen on his rear.
Naturally, Raul chose to continue the match.
—It was at that time.
I sensed an ominous feeling.
The one standing before me was the Protagonist Raul—or at least he should be, but it felt like he was a different person now.
Just what, a beat after I tilted my head.
Raul disappeared from my view.
Then a burst of mana pierced my skin.
……Don’t tell me, Raul is—
Before I could finish my thought, I sensed a strong presence from my flank, and I raised the training sword in a hurry.
It was Raul.
He had closed in on me at a speed invisible to my eyes and was releasing a powerful slash aimed at my flank.
Why was Raul so powerful?
In the original storyline, he shouldn’t have awakened yet at this point.
As my mind was mired in confusion, Raul gave me a sidelong glance and tried to launch another attack, but—
He suddenly collapsed on the spot like a marionette who had its strings cut.
The teachers rushed over and our classmates burst into commotion.
“T-today’s mock battles will now be suspended! All students, return to the classroom!” shouted the head of year, Mr.
Walker (the skinhead macho man), and the students were forcibly moved to the classroom.
What on earth had happened to Raul…?
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