Volume 2 – Growing In Power
Chapter #68 – The Previous King
The priests had diverted their attention to the King right after shooting the tornado at Daneel, thus they did not notice him vanish from where he had been standing.
Instead, they were preoccupied by an old man that had appeared in front of them. This man had long, grey hair which reached his chest, but his face was clean shaven showing a strong jaw and a bold nose much like the King’s. Only, his eyes seemed to contain an experience that made one wonder just how many years they had seen.
A simple raise of his hand stopped the elements approaching them, resulting in a stunning image where the swirls of sand and lightning were suspended in mid air.
Yet, he only humphed at the priests before disappearing and letting the tornado rage on and destroy the trees behind them.
The five priests who had been watching were puzzled as to why their leader did nothing to stop the enemies after going to so much trouble to set up an expensive formation and carry out an ambush.
Radagast only had a wide smile on his face as he watched them vanish. Noticing the puzzled looks on the other priests’ faces, he said, “That was the previous King, the most powerful person in the Kingdom of Lanthanor. It is his demise that will signal the Church to begin the purge. Our attack was only an attempt to deplete his power and hasten his eventual death.”
One of the priests curiously asked, “Then why didn’t he just kill us if he is so powerful?”
“In his present state, every move he makes shortens his life span. But, attacking the palace is impossible because there is a very powerful spell formation around the palace which will not deplete the previous King’s lifespan when he controls it. He could simply slap us to death without breaking a sweat, but that formation will not be anywhere as effective when controlled by his untalented son. Let’s go. We must report to the Archbishop.”
Hearing this, each of the priests took out peculiar globe-shaped trinkets from their pockets and held them in their hands. As Radagast waited for the space lock spell to deactivate, he gazed at the position where the mysterious master had been standing before.
“Five minutes to break out of a space lock. So he is at least an Amateur Warrior Mage after all. Hmph, as if that level were enough to communicate with the great Arch Bishop.”, he muttered under his breath while committing the face of the man to his memory.
Inside a hidden bedroom in the Royal Palace.
The previous King who had just appeared in the room along with the present King and the Grand Court Mage coughed violently before wearily sitting on the bed.
“Richard, you know this is a sensitive time. Why did you leave the palace?”
In front of this man, the King only had a humble expression on his face. His head lowered, he answered, “I was looking for a potential ally, father. This man made a wondrous solution which the Grand Court Mage observed and said that it was definitely made by at least an Amateur Warrior Mage. I just wanted to get as much help as possible to defend the throne when the time comes.”
The Grand Court Mage also hurriedly nodded to agree when the man on the bed glanced at him.
“Yes, allies will be useful. But from now on, do not leave the palace.”
“I will not, father. Could that man really be that powerful?”, he asked, doubtful after what he had heard from the priest.
“He broke out of a space lock in five minutes. That does require one to reach at least the Amateur Warrior Mage level. Be careful, son. Redouble your efforts. This Kingdom was built by the blood and sweat of the Noble Line of the Lanthanore Family. We must defend the throne at any cost. If we can’t, then we shall perish with it and take as many of the bastards with us as we can.”
The temperature in the room increased as the man uttered these passionate words. Yet, he immediately started coughing again, prompting him to lie down.
“De-defend …. or die …. Take care, son. I must rest now.”, he said with a shaky voice before closing his eyes.
Yet, the King only had a mocking expression on his face as he exited the room.
Meanwhile, Daneel had morphed back into his original form after teleporting into the Outer City. It was lucky that the forest had only been a few kilometers away from the Outer City, allowing him to use minimal energy to escape the location.
His skin was bleeding from the many lacerations he had endured before managing to teleport out. He could only withstand the pain and limp back to his room while being on the look out for any constables that might be patrolling.
With a little luck, Daneel only had to teleport twice to escape the patrols before he finally reached his room. He had just been running out of energy, and his mageroot had started to throb from the over exertion.
Thankfully, all of the cuts were only the surface. The main problem was the sheer number of them. Taking out the healing solution stocked in all rooms in the quarters, Daneel applied it everywhere he could before falling asleep.
The next morning, he woke up to an itching all around his body from the solution working to heal the wounds. Gingerly getting up, he took a bath before hurrying to the minister’s manor.
Although he had no idea if his bluffs had worked, he still needed to go find out just what the situation was.
As soon as he entered, he saw the minister sitting in the hall, smiling.
“The King has ordered the finance minister to extend a contract to sell all the honey trap solution directly to the palace. The palace will buy it from you at the price that was stated during the store opening, although there is a limit of just how much they can buy at a time. It seems your master impressed them, Daneel. The King also asked me personally to ask your master to just consider the matter he requested and give an answer later.”
Hearing this, Daneel beamed with happiness. It worked!
Realizing that all of his financial problems were now solved, Daneel reveled in the joy while he felt his mind relaxing. It had been cluttered with a multitude of backup plans and fears in case the King decided that the ‘master’ had been bluffing.
Now, all he needed to do was slowly focus on building his faction while making trinkets and supplying training materials to all those he took in. Although there were a few miscellaneous tasks like going back to the Enchanter to learn more trinket enchantments and directing Joshua thoroughly to induct trustworthy people into his faction using oaths, the majority of his worries had already been eliminated.
The meeting had been very important because he now knew that the King would flee rather than fight.
After all, knowledge was power. And with this knowledge, Daneel could modify his plans so that he would not be caught off guard when the King did leave, leaving all of the contenders for the throne to fight it out.