finished speaking and disappeared.
Ulan, too, quickened his pace.

It wasn't hard to find the venue.
The brochure had a map attached to it.

Some time later.

He arrived at the Wolf Arena.

“Attention, everyone!”

A figure, presumably the test supervisor, stepped up to the podium.
He was a rugged-looking man, his face crumpled into a scowl as he spoke, “I'm Ethan Arnoff, the supervisor for this test.
I'm about to begin the explanation of the Great Brawl, so keep your ears open and listen carefully!”

Immediately after the guttural shout, Ethan immediately cut to the chase, “The Great Brawl is a talent test to see how well you'd fare in a real battle, assuming you were to be thrown into the fray.”

Ethan moved slowly, shifting his steps.
Then he gestured to the arena, “The test is simple.
All you have to do is get in the arena, fight each other, and win.
How about it? Do I need to explain more?”

As he looked around the audience, he asked if there were any further questions when a boy raised his hand.

“Mr.
Supervisor, I have a question.”

“What is it?”

“How many of us have to fight until there are none left?”

“First, we will select five people.
They will be guaranteed a minimum B grade.
Then, those five will fight each other, and the two who survive in the end will receive an A grade.”

“What if we can't be among the five…?”

“Obviously, you will be below C grade.
By the way, the first one to be eliminated will receive an F grade.”


In the middle of this detailed explanation, another student raised his hand.

“But how do I get an S grade?”

“That's a very good question.”

Ethan chuckled.
As if he'd been waiting for the question.

“An S grade can only be earned by the winner of a fight between the two remaining players.
In this case, the one who loses will receive a B grade instead.””

“W-what if we refuse to fight…?”

“They'll both end up with an A grade.”

In other words, the last two players have a choice.

They can either negotiate with their opponent and play it safe and get an A grade, or they can fight and strive to claim the S grade.
The choice is theirs.

That's when Ethan pulled out something; a bead as small as a fingernail.
It emitted a vivid blue light, exuding a mysterious aura.

“By the way, this will be the criterion for defeat.”

“What is that?”

“Your lives.”

Just after he finished speaking, Ethan crushed the bead under his foot.

Quack!

Shards scattered in all directions.
As a result, the intense blue light emitted by the bead vanished like smoke.

“When it shatters and loses its light like this, it means it's broken.
This bead contains a small amount of mana, and if it's destroyed, it will be considered as losing your life and treated as a defeat.”

By the way, it doesn't matter where you store the bead.  As long as you don't detach it from your body, it seems to be fine.

“If there are no further questions, we will begin the test immediately.
Please proceed to your assigned areas in the order I call out.”

As soon as Ethan finished his explanation, the assistant supervisor waiting in the back began to call out the names of the examinees.

“Himmel Deorg, to Zone 1!”


“Verno Davigne, to Zone2!”

The waiting candidates made their way to the arena; the arena was circular, and each zone, as the supervisors called it, was like the hands of a clock.

As one by one the positions were filled, there was a person who caught everyone's attention.

“That person….”

Pale golden hair and turquoise eyes; a slender waist and a well-defined figure.
She was the type of woman who would make anyone turn their heads as they passed by.
Unlike someone of the same age who would be hard to believe had such a physique.

However, the reason Ulan noticed her was not merely because of her face and figure.

“Where have I seen that face before…?”

The problem was that he couldn't put his finger on it and remember who she was.
So, with a furrowed brow, he delved into his past life's memories.

Just as Ulran was searching through his memories, the supervisor called out her name.

“Ibella Elearde, to Zone 12!”

When her name rang out, Ulan's eyes widened.
He recognized the name.
And in that moment, the face of someone from his memories overlapped with hers; a comrade-in-arms, one of the Seven Heroes who had fought alongside Ulan against the monsters of the Abyss in his past life.

Sword Maiden, Ibella.

When he compared her to the image of Sword Maiden he remembered, they were quite similar.
The hair, eyes, and facial features were identical.

“I see.
So it is Ibella?

He couldn't recognize her because she didn't have a scar.

Sword Maiden’s face was originally scarred.
A large scar running from her left eyebrow to her cheek, and smaller scars on her forehead and chin.

That's why she always wore a mask.
She only showed her face to comrades-in-arms who she trusted and Ulan was one of them.

“But I didn't realize she also attended the Arsene Academy.’

He didn't know, as they rarely talked about their past lives.
Ulan looked at Ibella observantly, feeling curious for some reason.

Then it happened.

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