Chapter 25 The 220 Year Gap (3).
Chapter 25 - The 220 Year Gap (3)
Arrieta laughed from genuine pleasure. He wasn’t being greedy nor was he being indecisive from intimidation. He boldly demanded just that amount.
“I’ll send for what you want. Also, do have any thoughts of becoming a knight?”
“If you want, I could appoint you as my knight. I haven’t appointed anyone, so I still have the right to do so. You won’t be disappointed by my treatment.”
It was an unprecedented offer. If one was appointed as a knight by the Dragon Demon Princess Arrieta then one would immediately become a royal knight. No one would be able to ignore him with that status.
However, Azell shook his head from side to side.
“It is a humbling offer, but I’ll have to refuse.”
“Could you tell me why?”
“I myself don’t know the reason.”
“Is it because of your lost memories?”
Truthfully, he didn’t want to tie himself to the throne. He didn’t know in which ways the world had changed. Also, he didn’t know the state of affairs of the continent. The fact that he would be able to establish his identity was appealing, but currently, he wanted to travel around the world freely.
‘First, I have no idea which country Marquis Karzark is associated with.’
Before Azell fell asleep, he was a bachelor. Since he was a war-time orphan, he didn’t have any relatives either. Therefore, it was normal for the succession of his position as Marquis Karzark to end without it passing onto the future generation.
However, Azell did have children. His children weren’t related to him by blood. During the war, he had adopted the children he had formed connection with. Moreover, he asked Carlos to become their godfather. He asked Carlos to supervise his inheritance.
“Did my line end? If it continued then I’ll have to look for them.’
He had many things he had to find out.
Arrieta revealed a sense of regret.
“If that is your wish, it is unfortunate. However, could you listen to my request?”
“What is your request?”
“I’ll stay here for 4 days before I return to the royal palace. I would like you to accompany me.”
“You want me to?”
“Yes. Originally, the Western Frontier guards wasn’t staffed with a large number of soldiers. Moreover, they just suffered a huge loss.”
There were a lot of casualties at the ruin excavation site. A lot of innocent soldiers, and workers had died…
“This is why it’ll be a problematic if I transfer too many troops to my escort party. The commander wants to give me a lot, but I asked him to give me the minimum number of troops needed.”
“Therefore, you want me to follow princess as an escort.”
“Yes. I want to hire you as an escort for a period of time, and you will be amply paid.”
“I understand. I accept.”
Azell had no reason to turn down this offer. He had no idea how much the world had changed in the past 220 years, and it would be better to travel with someone who could vouch for his identity. It would be better than travelling alone.
‘Also, the bastards called the Dragon’s shadow worries me…”
It would be annoying if they targeted Arrieta again. However, he had found out that they were worshipers of the Dragon Demon King, so he wanted to clash against them again to learn more about them.
Azell thought about Atein’s final moment when Atein was about to die in front of him.
‘You will die with me.’
Atein used his dying self as sacrifice to put a curse on Azell.
Maybe the reason why he woke up in this time period and the fact that his curse had disappeared wasn’t because of the sleep that mimicked the hibernation of a dragon….
‘Maybe it was because of his revival.’
He somehow felt that this was the reason.
Then this situation was beyond what Atein could have imagined. He had prepared a method for his revival, and he probably assumed Azell would have died during the time he was ‘dead’. After a large amount of time had passed, the fact that Azell had died would not change even if the curse was dissolved through his revival.
‘It won’t turn out as you wish.’
If Atein had resurrected then he’ll defeat him once again. This time he’ll make sure there won’t be any resurrection. Also, if the resurrection of Atein hasn’t been completed yet and it was still ongoing, then he’ll smash the people , who were carrying out this task hidden from the world.
“Hmmm. The fortress’ library isn’t too bad.”
Next day, Azell had asked Arrieta to give him the authority to be able to peruse the Western Fortress’ library. Of course, this place didn’t have any secret information. It was a library with a collection of books you could buy from the market. The library sounded grand, but it only housed around 100 books. If one really wanted to read books, then one would be better off going to the estate of a noble who had a passion for collecting books.
Azell knew this, so his expectation wasn’t that big. Still, he decided to come here even if the variety of books was limited here.
‘It’s as I have expected.’
The library mostly held books about martial arts or war tactics. Also, there were books about the history of wars. Azell had wanted to see these books. If he wanted to find out about how the world had changed in the past 220 years, then shouldn’t he study the history first?
‘The Nadick empire had completely collaped. Moreover, the Rulain kingdom was… Mmmm. Duke Rulain really was the founder.’
The Rulain kingdom was established around 140 years ago. The country’s land used to be the Southwest region of Azell’s homeland, the Nadick empire.
After the Nadick empire fell, the land was divided into 7 kingdoms. Other small kingdoms existed, but these 7 kingdoms pretty much occupied most of continent.
‘After the era of prosperity had ended, I thought some lines would have survived… They completely collapsed.’
After the Nadick empire collapsed, the royal line was terminated. This was why most of the empire’s territory was able to be divided between various countries.
This process wasn’t very peacful. The seven kingdoms fought fiercely to occupy more land, even if it was by a little. After the borders were established, it took around 20 years for the peaceful times to arrive. During these chaotic times,many had died and all seven kingdoms became devastated.
Afterwards, each kingdoms waged war with each other. There were winners and losers, but Azell’s attention was focused on another part.
‘ The Great Darkness? What is that?’
About 60 years ago, a calamity called the Great Darkness had arrived.
The plague of unknown origin had swept through the entire continent. The plague killed countless number of people. It brought the nations to the brink of extermination, so one could tell how serious this matter was.
During this time, the heretics gained a great deal of influence, and madness started to spread.
The civilization itself took a massive step backwards. Many knowledge were lost during all of this including the secrets of the Spirit Order…..
‘Ah, is this the reason why?’
The Spirit Order practitioners and the magicians of this time didn’t know about basic concepts that was considered ti be common sense, so he thought it was weird. Moreover, the quality of an average Spirit Order practitioner hadn’t gotten better. As he perused over the history, he started to understand why.
‘Also, the collapse of the church….”
During the Great Darkness, the corruption within the church reached its extreme. They couldn’t cure the fundamental problem of the plague and they only used their healing magic on those with money and power. The secrets of the healing magic was hidden, and the priest of affluent background only got the chance to learn it. They were discriminated based on their station, not their talent.
‘They really fucked up.’
Azell sighed. He felt fortunate that he didn’t awaken in that time frame.
This was when Baion, the man Rick mention, appeared.
He had reproduced the secrets of the healing arts and of course, he was successful in solving the root cause of the plague. Moreover, he decided not to share this with the church.
Instead, he teamed up with the priests who were disgusted by the half-decayed church and they formed a private healing institution. This in turn brought about the Medical Association. The healers produced by the Medical Association ended the Great Darkness. They had made the greatest contribution in ending the plague, which had persisted for 30 years.
‘The authority of the church came to an end…’
They used the healing arts as a weapon to wield massive amount of power, and they smashed the corrupted church.
Of course, religion did not disappear. Their power became much weaker compared to before, and they lost their influence over politics. Their power was completely seized.
‘Baion was an incredible person.’
Azell felt admiration toward the man name Baion. No matter what his motives were, he was a world-changing hero, who had broken through the despair.
‘Hmmm. Beyond that… I don’t see anything that’s eye-catching.’
If he looked at Rulain Kingdom as the standard, there was an event 30 years ago where an army of monsters called the Grand Dark Alliance appeared inside the Balan forest. These orcs were much stronger than the others and a mutated orc, Daken, was also much smarter. It had united the forces inside the Balan forest to threaten the kingdom.
The Western Border Fortress was established, and a large number of soldiers settled there. This was the main reason why they were so sensitive to the movements inside the Balan forest..
‘Ho-oh. The bastard called Daken must be smart even if he is an orc.’
Azell enjoyed reading the records regarding Daken.
There weren’t any surprises inside the records of the military force. If one was talking about mutations that increased strength, he had seen numerous instances of it happening in the days of the Dragon Demon War.
However, Daken acted like a charismatic human hero. He called his army ‘Grand Dark Alliance’, and he had structured his army like a human army.
‘Hmm. I want to know more about this bastard… There aren’t any detailed records.’
Azell looked through the books, while feeling disappointed.
“So you are here.”
The door of the library opened, and he heard a voice he remembered.
Azell turned to look at him without feeling surprised.
“Sir Giles. I’m glad to see that you are unhurt.”
“I feel the same way.”
Giles looked haggard, but he smiled.
Since Giles had come to find him, Azell had no choice but to exit the library. He didn’t come here just to exchange greetings. He had ulterior motive in coming here.
“Any ways, I couldn’t recognize you. Truthfully, I thought it was someone else inside the library.”
“Everyone seems to say the same thing to me.”
Azell laughed bitterly.
Last night after he had met Arrieta, Enora had latched onto him and she trimmed his hair. His unruly hair was arranged in a way that made him look good. If he put on some nice cloth, then he could pass as a heir to a noble family. His appearance looked nice.
‘The little lady has some skill.’
She was young, but she was the princess’ exclusive maid. So she had to have some abilities. If she didn’t, then Arrieta probably wouldn’t have brought her here.
Azell asked while walking in the corridor.
“So the Dragon’s corpse should fetch a lot of money?”