3 Chapter 3: Breath of fresh air
Caesar lazily stretched his limbs and yawned. He stood up from his chair and glanced at the blankets resting on his shoulders. He smiled, folded the sheets, and softly placed it on the table. He then picked up the books that he hadn't finished reading yet and started making his way towards his room. Whether Sebastian or his father knew of his research topics made no difference. A loving father would never stop his own son from spreading his wings and flying.
Caesar walked through the long halls until he reached his room. He opened the door and sauntered inside, placing the three books on his nightstand.
"Young Master, the lord is out for a meeting and won't be back until tomorrow, would you like me to prepare lunch for you?" Sebastian called out from behind the door and entered into Caesar's room after a few moments of silence.
"No, thank you, Sebastian, I'll be going out," Caesar replied after some thought.
"Going out? Where will you be going?" Sebastian inquired with a tilt of his head.
"To take a stroll outside and get a breath of fresh air," Caesar responded while shrugging his shoulders.
"Very well, young master, I will prepare a carriage and some bodyguards," Sebastian said while stroking his well-groomed beard. He felt that it was abnormal behavior for a noble to leave the house; as such, he would, by no means, allow Caesar to go alone.
"That will not be necessary, I will be going alone," Caesar spoke while walking towards his closet, not sparing Sebastian another glance. Treating employees and servants with respect was an essential characteristic of great leaders. However, that only applied to those who knew their place and didn't overstep their bounds.
"Young Master, you can't jus-."
Before Sebastian could finish his sentence, Caesar shot him a glance and interrupted him. "I will be fine, Sebastian, I am no longer a child. It is unbecoming of you to treat me as such continuously."
"Very well…" Sebastian said, his head drooping downward as he reluctantly agreed to Caesar's request. He was, after all, a mere servant.
Caesar walked to his closet and picked a reasonably dull outfit. After getting dressed, Caesar walked out of his room and headed towards the front door. He adorned a white tunic, grey pants that were tied with a brown string, white gloves, and black boots.
Once he walked through the long corridors, entered into the main hall, and reached the door, Sebastian's standing figure entered into his line of sight. He nodded his head and opened the entrance with a wry smile.
"Have a safe trip, young master," he said while lowering his upper body and completing a perfect half-bow.
"Thank you," Caesar replied with a nod of his head.
Caesar then walked out of the door, and once he was roughly two meters away from the mansion, he could hear Sebastian's voice from behind him.
"Remember to be home before dusk, you have dancing lessons," Sebastian said sternly as he watched Caesar's departing back. It was clear that he was not thrilled about letting him leave the mansion alone.
"I will not forget," Caesar replied. He understood Sebastian's worries and reassured him with a smile before turning back around and continuing on his way. Although he could do as Sebastian wanted, and stay in the mansion, he wanted to explore his new surroundings.
With this in mind, Caesar passed by the vast garden and went through the front gate. The guards that were stationed at the entrance did not have a change of expression as Caesar walked by them. They were trained not to be too curious about a noble's personal life, nor decisions.
After Caesar reached a far enough distance away from the manor, he started observing the surroundings. "This world looks extremely similar to earth. However, it's more… fresh?" he whispered to himself as he walked down the spacious roads, which were filled with fruit stands and pedestrians walking by.
Large carriages that were pulled by vigorous horses rode by every now and then, further solidifying the medieval era feel. The rich traveled by wagon, while the poor traveled by foot. Many poor pedestrians that were adorned in rags begged on the grounds or polished shoes. Periodically, a street vendor would pass on an apple or some change to the homeless.
Caesar possessed beautiful looks, and a noble aura surrounded him, so he was naturally the center of attention on the streets. Fortunately, He was used to getting attention, so he didn't mind it very much. To him, it was a very natural occurrence. No matter which world he was in.
After sight-seeing for a few minutes, He decided to take a shortcut towards his destination and walk through an alley. Although dangerous, Caesar wasn't worried in the least. In fact, he would prefer if some form of conflict occurred. After all, he needed something, or perhaps, someone, to test his new capabilities on.
After walking a fair distance through the alley, two muscular men blocked the path in front of him with sinister smiles on their faces. They were dressed in loose, dirty clothes, and their hair was ungroomed.
"How about you give us all of your things, noble brat, and make it fast," The larger of the two men, presumably the leader, spoke up in a deep, raspy voice.
Caesar could smell the man's foul breath from a few feet away. Thus, He turned around to walk away. However, another gangster blocked his path. He was lanky, and a slight gleam generated by some metal emerged from his pant pockets.
"Where do you think you're going?" he asked with a tilt of his head, showcasing his yellow teeth.
Caesar had assumed something like this might happen. An indiscernible smirk played at the corner of his lips. He wasn't even furious that such a 'tragedy' befell him. Who better to test his strength on then some thugs, who were clearly used to mugging.
Seeing that Caesar was silently observing them, the thugs began growing impatient due to his calm expression. In the past, whenever they mugged someone, they would fearfully cough up their belongings with haste.
"Oi, you bastard, drop all of your sh*t and scram," The leader of the three roared out, saliva escaping from his mouth and landing at his feet. It bubbled on the dirt, and an ominous wind coursed through the alley, fluttering Caesar's hair.
Right as the wind passed, Caesar's eyes turned sharp. He stomped on the ground and rushed towards the single gangster blocking the back. He moved like a blur, and the earth that his feet rested on started to sink.
"What the Fu*k yo-" before the thug could complete a sentence, Caesar appeared in front of him.
The gangster he rushed toward let out a few more incoherent babblings before Caesar kneed him in the gut, causing his body to bend into a crescent shape and fly into a nearby wall, cracking it.
Bleh! The gangster puked out a mouthful of blood and soon collapsed to the ground. Seeing this, the other two thugs quickly became aware that Caesar was out of their league and started running away with their tail tucked between their legs.
"W-w-we're terribly sorry your Excellency, please spare us," they shouted while running.
Caesar's expression didn't change as he once against stomped the floor and reached the two gangsters in mere seconds. He kicked the smaller one into the wall, flicking his body around as if he were a skipping stone.
The leader of these three saw what had happened and started sweating profusely. He now knew that running away was useless, so he turned around and got on his knees.
"I'll give you anything, so please spare me!"
Caesar walked towards the kneeling man with calm and steady footsteps until he was just a few inches away.
"You're quite skilled at mugging, I presume you have done it many times before," Caesar said while straightening his collar and crouching down.
"N-no, this was our first time," the thug pleaded with a tear-jerking face.
"Don't lie to me, trash" A sharp glint appeared in Caesar's eyes as he insulted the kneeling man. The only thing he hated more than a liar was a thief.
"I'm sorry your Excellency, and you're r-right, we have done this a few times," After figuring out that lying in front of Caesar was pointless, he tried a different route.
"If I let you go now, then I would have to take responsibility for all of the future people you mug, would I not?" Caesar asked while lightly tapping the man on the face with his index finger.
"P-please sir, I swear we will not do it again. I have learned my lesson."
"I have eyes and ears everywhere; If I find out you mug another person, I will personally end your miserable life" Caesar threatened and leisurely stood up from the ground, a slight smile on his face.
"T-thank you for your grace; I swear that I'll never do it again," The thug replied with a subtle smile on his face as he reached for something hidden beneath his clothes.
Caesar, who was still smiling, turned around and started walking away towards his destination. Right as his back was shown, a sharp glint appeared in the gangster's eyes before he charged at Caesar with a knife he had hidden in his sleeves.
"DIE YOU BASTARD!"
Caesar was aware that the man was in possession of the knife the entire time. Thus, he merely shifted his body to the left and let the blade pass by the area his body had been just a millisecond ago. He then grabbed the gangster's wrist and lifted it up before striking the man's gut with his other hand.
The punch penetrated the gangster's stomach and entered out of his back. The criminal's eyes became wide and confused. Even Caesar stared incredulously at the result; he had merely wanted to break a few ribs.
Caesar, who was slightly shaky, removed his fist from the gangster's body. The corpse then collapsed right after, "How disgusting," Caesar whispered under his breath as he started rubbing the blood that stained his hands on the body's clothes. Unbeknownst to even himself, he was more revolted by the sight, than he was at the fact that he had just killed someone.
After rubbing the blood off of his hands, Caesar made his way to the outer gates of the city while stroking his chin, 'my body is quite strong. However, I still need to get used to the power,' he thought inwardly. He was an arms dealer in the past, so he was no stranger to killing, nor blood. However, he had never personally killed anyone. Thus, he felt as though his vampiric physique caused him not to be fazed by murder.
Thinking to here, Caesar lifted his right hand, and a bluish mist began emanating out of it. Unfortunately, his body's mana reserves were genuinely pitiful, and he wasn't capable of doing anything more. Caesar had learned the basic understanding of controlling magic; however, it required a large amount of mana to become a catalyst. Creating a cold mist was already his limit.
"It would be wrong to call this the 'ice affinity.' It is more like the 'freezing affinity,'" Caesar muttered. The way that his ice magic worked from his current understanding was that he couldn't actually create solid ice from nothing. However, he had to freeze the moisture in an object, or atmosphere, to create the ice. The real mastery of magic was being able to manipulate your element, not necessarily 'creating' it.
While thinking of his plans, he arrived at the outer gates of the city. Caesar looked around and made sure that no one was watching him, nor following him. He then proceeded to look up and observed the massive city walls for a few moments before crouching down and kicking off the ground.
The ground beneath him cracked, and he flew up in the air, about 10 meters higher than the wall. Unfortunately, however, he launched a bit higher than anticipated. As such, he immediately started to descend at an extraordinary pace.
Boom! Caesar fell to the ground, and a considerable amount of dust wafted into the air. He waved his hands for a few seconds to get rid of the dirt in front of him. After the dust settled, he trodded to the forest. Caesar had heard that after killing a beast, they had a chance to drop a 'beast core.' Eating a beast core could potentially give you more mana. At least, that was what the large books in the library said. Caesar even brought the storage ring that he had obtained a few days ago.
As he walked through the forest, the twigs that blanketed the ground broke under the weight of Caesar walking on them. He continued like this for some time, searching for animals. "Sigh, it would appear that I have underestimated the rarity of the beasts in this world," Caesar whispered while slicking his hair back.
Suddenly, The bushes behind Caesar began shaking. He looked behind him and started inspecting the shadows lying behind the hedges.
More and more shrubs started ruffling around Caesar. In response, he furrowed his brows. There were a lot more than he had initially thought. He couldn't even tell when, or how, they got here.
'What a mess.'
A head soon poked out of the nearby brush. It looked like a white fox. Soon, more and more heads popped out. They possessed red eyes and seemed enraged.
They hissed at Caesar with a bloodthirsty glint in their eyes. 'Am I in their nest?' Caesar thought, inwardly.
One of the little foxes jumped at Caesar, but he quickly dodged and grabbed the fox out of the air. The other foxes soon became even more enraged at the sight of one of their kin being snatched, and they all started rushing at Caesar as a result.
"This isn't good!" Caesar threw the fox in his hands away and started rushing away. Contrary to his expectations, however, the foxes kept chasing after him. Although the white fox's bodies were small, they were quite fast. There were around 20 of them chasing after him.
Caesar abruptly stopped and turned around to face the Foxes. Running away would only tire him out, and once he was tired, he would surely die. Caesar reached for the two medium length branches in his vicinity and tightly clenched them in each hand.
The white foxes once again circled Caesar; it appeared that they did have some intelligence. Caesar raised the branches in his hands and entered into a fighting stance.
Three foxes jumped at him at the same time. Caesar ducked and dodged the first one. He then thrust both of his branches in the eyes of the other two. The other one he had avoided was still in mid-air after the other two were stabbed, so Caesar retraced one of the branches and swung it down on the fox.
The sound of three bodies falling at the same time sounded out. Strangely enough, what felt like eight seconds to Caesar was only about one second to the foxes.
The foxes circled Caesar, clearly enraged at their brethren's death. This time they all attacked at once. Caesar kept striking out as fast as possible. However, the sheer numbers soon overwhelmed him.
The fox's nails penetrated Caesar's shoulders.
Sweat fell down his forehead. Caesar was gritting his teeth at the pain. But, his movements never stopped, striking the foxes one by one. Caesar soon entered a daze; he was unconsciously attacking.
Soon, an unbearable soreness attacked Caesar's body, and he woke up from his daze; to see bloody bodies littering the ground. Caesar was riddled with wounds, but his muscles were sorer than anything. It was as though he had exerted to himself to a point where his physique could not withstand.
Caesar looked around in a stupor, noticing a few glowing circles amongst the bodies, "beast cores?" he muttered out in curiosity. Without hesitation, he walked over to the glittering globes and stashed them inside of his storage ring. Caesar then began limping away from the bodies. That is, until an irresistible hunger arose within him. No, a thirst?
He felt a pain in his mouth; his fangs started growing. Caesar looked at the bodies behind him and had an urge to suck their blood. His eyes glowed red as he limped back to the fox remains and sunk his teeth in their bodies.
A delicious taste filled Caesar's mouth. "It's not enough." Shortly, all of the corpses were sucked dry, and the wounds on Caesar's body began closing at a rate visible to the human eye.
A message soon rang out in Caesar's mind.
[Vampire Physique evolution progress: 1%]