Five months have passed since Noah was reborn in this world.
It was spring, or at least it seemed so for what he saw of the outside environment. The mansion he lived in resembled a countryside villa from his previous life, yet it had the size of a castle and was mostly made of wood, with a wall made of rocks on the perimeter.
In that moment, he was in the arms of his new mother, peeking around while she was walking through the mansion talking to him. Little did she know that Noah managed to understand most of what she said.
'The language of this world is not so hard, also because it has a lot of similarities with the English of my previous world. Well, it's also thanks to Lily never leaving my side and continuously speaking to me'
These five months were spent by him mostly in his mother's embrace walking around Balvan mansion, with Lily explaining the most random things to him. Thanks to that he had a general idea of his position in the family and how the mansion was structured.
The mansion was divided into 2 rings, outer and inner. The inner ring was composed of a 4 stories building and it was the place where the main family lived; the outer ring had two 2 stories buildings and a 3 stories one and they were respectively inhabited by guards, servants, and guests.
At the moment, they were on the first floor of the guest's building, which was reserved to them since he had the blood of the main family in him, and since Lily was the beloved concubine of Rhys.
Noah's father, Rhys, was the third and last son of the old patriarch of the Balvan family, Thomas. As such, even though they did not get access to the inner ring, they could still live a comfortable life in the outer one.
"You must grow strong, little dear, the people in the inner ring will see you as a bastard and will spare no effort to abuse and bully you, especially the legitimate grandsons and granddaughters of the patriarch"
Hearing this, Noah's mood became heavier.
'I lived a life without meaning, in a world full of compromises and now that I'm reborn I'm asked to endure bullying because of my social status only to become a tool for the main family to use. It seems that I will live another life void of meaning'
Lily kept talking but Noah's mind was away, trying to figure out the best course of action for this life.
'If I stay here I will probably have a lot of benefits, after all, the Balvan family seems quite wealthy. I just don't know enough of the outside environment of the mansion so I can't be sure of the possibilities the outside world has to offer'
Noah was already considering running away from the family. He appreciated the affection and the efforts of this new mother, but these feelings were far from the love he should've had for a parent.
'I already had a family and it didn't go so well. This time I don't have to go through various experiences to understand the kind of person I am so I can always choose the things that suit me the most. If life in the inner circle is too hard for the sole reason of being a bastard I won't mind abandoning the mansion. Plus, I have 25 years of experience in advance and the knowledge of a more advanced world, my possibilities should be plenty.'
From the clothing of the people, the structure of the buildings and the state of the furniture, he could guess that this was a world without electricity, so way behind in the field of technology compared to his previous world.
'Yet, this might be also a disadvantage; my habits are those of the industrialized society and my thoughts are those of a guy from the 21st century, I don't know how the people here might react to some ideas. I must be careful.'
Sometimes thinking about his future, sometimes listening to his mother, the day passed and the night was approaching. Lily walked to a balcony in order to watch the stars appear on the dark sky. Noah used this chance to study the environment outside the mansion. Outside the defense wall, there were sheep grazing the fields, there was a large stone road that started from the main gate of the mansion and stretched in the distance, cutting the green fields into 2 halves. A field of what seemed corn was being cultivated on his right side and a forest was barely visible on his left in the distance.
It was a beautiful scenery, one Noah wasn't used to seeing, and now this was his new world. Then he shifted his gaze to the sky, and he seemed to see the darkness enveloping the redness of the clouds due to the sunset. At the beginning it was like a small dot in the distance, becoming bigger and bigger as it was going in their direction. Only then he realized that something was wrong. The darkness wasn't caused by the nightfall but by the silhouette of something undulating through the clouds.
It was fast and it was getting closer and closer.
At some point, a deafening roar ran through the peaceful countryside. It was coming from the figure in the sky.
A black winged body dove from the clouds diagonally, speeding toward the flock of sheep outside the mansion wall.
It was 7-8 meters long and had big black scaled wings, actually the scales were covering all of his body.
It dove at such a high speed that Noah could not make out the time difference between its exit from the clouds and its nearing to the terrain where the flock was.
Suddenly, the wall illuminated with purple and runes appeared on its surface. It emitted a steady but loud hum and the purple color of the wall spread toward the countryside in the direction of the flock.
The beast seemed disturbed in its descent and tried to halt itself mid-air spreading its wings.
But its speed was too high and it inevitably fell on the ground where the purple halo was going, creating an immense pit.
The moment the purple halo touched the dragon, smoke rose from the pit and another roar, one of pain, sounded in the dusk.
The dragon rose to the sky again as fast as possible and stared with venomous eyes at the mansion. Smoke kept flowing out of his belly like from an open wound. Apparently, the purple halo had injured the dragon.
Filled with hatred, the dragon inhaled and then spat out a tongue of red flames toward the mansion that took the form of a lance as it kept nearing the outer ring.
Lily was frozen in fear seeing the lance of fire coming in her direction while Noah was still too stupefied by what he was seeing in order to even recognize the danger he was in.
Before the flames could reach the outer wall though, a figure appeared mid-air in between them.
He raised his right hand and mumbled something then the lance of flames hit something like a wall of air.
The attrition between the flames and the shield lasted for some seconds before the flames were extinguished and the floating figure was visible again.
He was an old man, with a straight combed long white beard reaching his waist and unbound long hair flowing in the wind. He was wearing a Chinese kimono with large sleeves yet the right one was now burned, showing his slim but sturdy arm.
He looked at the dragon right in its eyes and the dragon did the same.
That standoff lasted for about 10 seconds before the dragon roared once again and turned to leave at high speed through the sky, in the direction of the forest.
The old man waited a bit more in the air over the wall looking at the direction where the dragon went. After being completely sure that the beast was gone he sighed and disappeared.
Lily was still frozen by fear and did not notice that was holding the frail body of Noah too tightly.
This pain was what made him return to reality as he left a small groan to wake his mother from the reverie.
Lily returned to reality too, softening the grip on Noah, and she was about to say something before being interrupted by an aged and deep voice.
"So, this is my latest grandson, am I right?"