Episode 49 The Husband Hunt (4)

The dark forest was eerily silent.

The silent forest was eerily dark.

The sky was like a handful of coarse salt scattered across a black carpet, but not a single ray of its countless stars could penetrate the dense canopy of vines, roots, and leaves to reach the bottom of this watery mess.

Not a single grasshopper whined around him.

Crackle, crackle, crackle.

The eerie sound of faint embers gnawing at the firewood.


Morg Camus. She was bound and gagged, glaring at the barbarians of Balak.

With her powers of observation and memorization, she had been able to pick up some of the names and ranks of her attackers while being dragged here.

Beyond the faint warmth and light of the campfire, she could see the silhouettes of the barbarians.

The supposed leader is a girl of about seventeen.

Her name is Aiyen.

Her hair is a mix of silver and black, her ears are pointed and triangular, and her face is charcoal-black.

But one thing is for sure: she’s good.

She was powerful enough to hold off Vikir, a lowly Gradient.

Beside her, a man grumbled as he added wood to the fire.

The man who had shot himself with the tranquilizer needle was named Ahun, and his back was still aching from Vikir’s attack earlier.

The other women and men were also there, most of them around 17 or 18 years old.

They had not made a large bonfire, but had thrown ashes on top of the fire to make a gentle roaring fire, and were sitting around it in a circle.

“I didn’t catch the husband feeling.”

“I liked that girl I met earlier.”

“Maybe we’ll catch him again someday.”

The three women warriors chattered amongst themselves.

Camu could hear, if not speak, the barbarian language, so he could get a sense of what was going on in their conversation.

The savages of Balak always go on “husband hunts,” “saxi hunts,” “son-in-law hunts,” and “daughter-in-law hunts” around this time of year.

The targets are other tribes and sometimes even empire borders.

The reason for this practice of finding spouses in different areas is simple. To avoid genetic diseases caused by inbreeding and to bring in fresh blood from outside.

This is why most warriors who go out to find a mate want a superior seed.

Once they’ve kidnapped the right person, if they’re good enough, they’ll start making children, and if they’re not, they’ll enslave or kill them.

They especially welcome women, because women are more important than men when it comes to calling the population.

Is that why? The savage boy, who goes by the name Ahun, has been staring at the camel for a while now and smiling wickedly.

“The men of the tribe must be happy, having captured such a fine female.”

Understanding Ahun’s words, Camu gritted his teeth.

“You want me to take the seed of your barbarians? I’ll die for that!”

Camu immediately tried to bite her tongue, but Ahun was quicker to gag her.

Ahun chuckled and stuck an arrowhead under Camu’s chin.

“Perhaps this cheeky slave needs an education.”

He was just about to touch the camel’s body.


Someone stepped in front of Ahun.

Aiyen. A female warrior leading a young Balak hunting party.

She pressed the nock of her bow to Ahun’s sternum.

“Get out.”

Aiyen’s words were short.

Ahun’s brow furrowed.

“What the hell, boss. I got him.”

“Bullshit. Just a little less.”

“What do you mean, I shot the tranquilizer needle and lassoed him!”

“Who did that for you?”

Ai Yan asked coldly, leaving Ah Hoon speechless for a moment.

She continued.

“You would have been dead if I hadn’t interrupted that ‘boy with the sword’ earlier.”

She is referring to Vikir.

Ahun began to tremble as Aiyen mentioned the situation earlier.

He cried out in frustration.

“So, you’re saying that this female belongs to you?”

“Of course.”

“The boss is a woman!”

“What does it matter?”

At Ai Yan’s retort, Ah Hoon fell silent, as if he were speechless.

Then, frosty blue flesh began to erupt from Ai Yan’s entire body.

A silvery aura emanated from the bow she was clutching.

Upon seeing it, the camel’s eyes widened.

That was the liquid aura, the symbol of the Gradient.

Although it was faint, it clearly revealed the prowess of a lower-ranked Graduator.

A 17-year-old grader. There were geniuses like that in the world besides Vikir and himself.

Whether Camu was surprised or not, Aiyen didn’t seem to mind at all.

Ahun, meanwhile, bowed low before Aiyen’s power.

“Come at me whenever you want. I’ll beat you to a bloody pulp.”

“……an kouwa.”


“……No. Whatever. I give up. She’s yours.”

Ahun shook his head, a mixture of anger and bitterness.

Aiyen tore her gaze away from Ahun and looked back at Camu.

He didn’t particularly feel that she had saved him.

Neither did he.

“Good eyes, good constitution. You must have good blood.”

Aiyen looked at the camel with the eyes of a thorough merchant.

“I, too, was once captured and sold into slavery by your empire, especially the Morg.”


“And so it will be with you.”

After speaking, Aiyen closes his eyes for a moment, seemingly remembering someone.

“Only, you will not be as fortunate as I was.”

Opening his eyes, Aiyen grits his teeth and stares into Camu’s eyes.

“I will take my time, slowly, bone by bone, soul by soul. I will make it a daily routine for you to lick your tongue between my toes…….”

But Ai Yan was unable to finish her sentence.


A loud explosion erupted from the bushes behind them.

“Die, beastly savages.”

The voice sounded like a death sentence.

At the same time, ice picks flew out, piercing through Balak’s hunting birds.

In less than a second, three or four of the hunters in the rear were dead.

Behind them was Morg Adolf, a reddish mana stalk.

Soon, Morg and Baskerville’s pursuers were on the battlefield.

“I’ll repay your debt.”

Baskerville of Staffordshire and the triplets of the Baskerville family slashed at several Balak hunters with their swords.

Morg’s wizards were desperate.

Numerous offensive spells were flying, creating a blaze of light and sound.


Somehow, the Balak hunters were unable to respond.

Despite the vast disparity in power, if they focused on planning and fleeing rather than fighting back, they should be able to minimize the damage.

But why?

Balak’s hunting party, and the wolves they ride, are greatly perplexed and restless.

It was as if they were more worried about Morg and Baskerville’s surprise than they were about the lights and sounds they were creating.

“Ugh! These lunatics are making such a ruckus in the waters of the night!”

Ahun jumped back in surprise.

His uneasy gaze was fixed not on the swords and magic raging around him, but on the darkness of the water beyond.

It was the same for their leader, Aiyen.


Aiyen moved quickly.

The first thing she did was not to respond to Morg’s magic or Baskerville’s sword, but to kick up sand to extinguish the campfire.

Once the faint glow was gone, Balak’s hunting birds made their move.

They mounted the wolves’ backs, firing arrows as they retreated deeper into the water.

“They’re fleeing. Don’t leave a single one alive!”

Staffordshire shouted to the Baskervilles’ hounds, spurring them on in pursuit.

And through the infernal darkness, a shadow approached the camo.

Vikir. In a flash, he cut the rope and noose from the stake and freed the camel.

The camel, still paralyzed by the paralyzing poison, recognized Vikir’s face.

“It’s ……! It’s you!”


In the blink of an eye, Vikir had the camel in his arms and was falling backwards.

No. He tried to pull away.

If it weren’t for the silver shadow that appeared out of nowhere.

“I knew you’d come, ‘boy with the sword’.”

Aiyen was facing Vikir squarely.

Her eyes scanned Vikir’s entire body as she spoke.

“A strong body to cover such a distance in such a short time.”


“A strong mind to see through the darkness of the water.”


“The hot innocence to risk his life to save the woman he loves.”


Vikir frowned.

Why did he have to listen to this barbarian woman’s assessment of him right now?

Vikir was just about to dodge past her to the rear.

Aiyen points a finger at the camel in Vikir’s arms.

“I will not ask about the past.”

The corners of her mouth curved in a gentle arc.