”Its time to get up, young master. ”

Leko stirred from his position at the gentle voice. His eyes snapped open, and he groaned at the burning light that assaulted his eyes. Leko muttered curses as he slipped out of the too comfortable bed. He sent one last longing look to it before moving to the bathroom to wash up.

Kurio watched his master, amused.

”Do you prefer any outfit today, young master? ”

”Light and comfortable, but I plan to go out later. ”

Humming, Kurio went through his masters clothes. Picking out a simple yet elegant outfit. He was certain the young master would appreciate it. He placed them on the bed. Kurio then waited for his master to finish with his wash.

Leko grumbled as Kurio helped him dress. The outfit seemed too much, but Leko was too lazy to look for something simpler. He couldn be walking around in something that would make it obvious that it wasn the real Leko in this body. It was better to let Kurio handle what he wore until he could figure out what the old Lekos style was like. Hed change it in small doses so that no one would think anything of it. It would seem like a preference change. Leko needed to do a lot of this. He doubted the original Leko, and he had similar tastes. He would rather not pretend to be someone completely different for the rest of his life. The gradual change was the best and least suspicious option. He could blame it on his new status as a hunter.

”Young master, will you be attending breakfast today? ”

”Mother insisted. ”

It would be the first time in a long time that Leko sat with family to eat. It wasn like it was his actual family, but Leko still felt quite nervous. Would they notice? He hoped not. It would be harder to navigate this new world if he were on the streets.

”Leko, please sit down. ”

The smiling woman gestured to a seat next to her, which Leko took. He kept his face impassive as he ignored in the silent stares from the other members of the family.

Yesterday, hed been a bit too emotional and responsive. His reaction to the new situation was embarrassing. He needed to be in more control.

He looked down at the food and held back a gasp of delight. Growing up poor, Leko had only ever eaten the most basic and cheapest meals their family could get. Once he got older and had a more stable life, he picked up a love for food, for the different types and tastes.

Keeping tabs on the cutlery, the family used Leko imitated them. Being the son of the Duke, the old Leko knew etiquette. Leko mentally added it to his private study list. He couldn make an absolute fool of himself.

”What quest did you get yesterday? ” Friar asked.

Leko hummed around the fork in his mouth. He swallowed and answered.

”A training quest. Jaika wants me to work on becoming stronger for the next two years. ”

”Im glad. I worried it might have been something else. ”

He could understand. There are plenty of gods who were cruel and used the humans as they pleased. Some gods sponsored a human, only to give them a single task as soon as the human accepted. It wasn for mutual benefit but because the god needed someone to do something for them.

”Talking about training, father. ” Leko looked at the Duke. He turned his attention from his food to Leko. ”The schedule you
e working on for the next two years. I want to do nothing but work on bettering myself. Please, spread my time out as much as possible. As long as I have the time to eat and sleep, anything else I want to use for training. ”

”Ha, ” Bilair gasped.

Leko glanced at the boys face for a second. His eyes darted to all the faces on the table and he took in their reactions. Leko turned away from them and ignored their looks. There wasn detail on what the old Lekos relationship with his family had been. The bit of information he had on the old Lekos personality. The reactions he got both yesterday and this morning. This all pointed out that the relationship wasn very good. That was fine. Leko didn need a family that clung to him, thinking he was someone that he wasn . Its better for him if they didn like him. The youngest girl feared her elder brother. The boy seemed to look down on him. The elder sister had contempt for her younger brother. The Mother was clingy, but she seemed easy to please. The Duke showed no care for his son in the novel, and his icy look seemed to align with that. Leko was certain that he pleased the man yesterday, but who could fault him? His mad dog of a son was doing something other than being a disgrace to the household.

”Ill make sure your schedule will give you the largest results, ” The Duke said.

Nodding at the man, Leko turned back to his food and ignored the stifling atmosphere. Friar kept conversation with everyone at the table. Shed switch from one child to the next, with the odd question or comment thrown to the Duke. Leko kept his silence except for when her wide eyes turned to him. Only then would he muster up a few words.

Stepping off the carriage, Leko observed the surrounding area. He was in the lower part of the city, not as wealthy as the area closer to the castle, but not the slums, either. The citizens watched him with wary gazes.

Ignoring the eyes on him and the hushed conversations, Leko started exploring. The heros start Line was pretty detailed about the lower part of the city. With it having been in Calens point of view, there wasn much about the upper parts. The only time Calen had been in the upper area was when he talked to the Duke and during the war, after its destruction.

Leko flicked his eyes from one location to the next as he strolled along the cobblestone path. Baira was the capital of Hosyn. It should come as no surprise that we can find many powerful people inside these walls. The Duke allowed skilled people to find refuge in his city. Many people who run from other continents hide out inside Baira. It was a smart move, in Lekos opinion. Powerful people can better defend the territory. Helping them when no one else is willing creates a sense of loyalty.

This can backfire, though. People with the wrong intentions can infiltrate the city with ease. Leko doesn understand how that never happened in the book. Pose as someone who is running from a continent and gain access to the enemys capital city. This was why he hadn liked the book at all. Too many plot holes.

Not that it helped, Hosyn had still razed to the ground in the war. Even all the powerful people were useless in the end. Leko stopped walking outside a small library. It was an unassuming place with an unassuming owner.

A bell jingled as he stepped into the homey space. The wandering bookkeeper only got mentioned once in the first volume of The Heros start line. That one mention was all Leko needed.

He didn want to be the kingdoms hero. Neither a powerful hunter. All Leko wanted was to keep this territory that would be his new home in one piece. To keep the Hosyn family alive as thanks for the new body. He needed powerful allies. The territory needed powerful people to keep it whole. The heros start line had plenty of powerful individuals that Leko could pick from. Only they were allies of the hero. If Leko took the heros allies, then would he not become the hero instead? Calen may have been strong, but hed be dead without the help of his allies. Leko had no intention of becoming a hero. Calen could keep his title and his allies.

[The bookkeeper gave Calen what he needed. Using a simple excuse of it having belonged to previous family members. He did not want nor need to inform this child of his position as an influential merchant in the underworld.]

”Oh, ” The old man blinked at Leko.

”Hey old man, you have any good books here? ”

A powerful merchant in the underworld was a must-have. Leko would need things for some of his plans, and who better to get them than a merchant? Especially one that would have no ties with the hero, so Leko could steal him with no regrets.

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