Chapter 56 – Witness
Brendel coldly watched the gathered nobles who argued ceaselessly at one side. The din created by the nobles and the soldiers did not appear to end anytime soon.
The nobles wanted to leave the fortress by the north gate, without any regards for the citizens as they could not care less about them.
[These bastards did not even mention about the citizens even once.]
There was no one amongst the nobles who cared about political fights anymore. Some placed importance on their assets, even to the point where they would rather die than give their wealth up, others stressed that survival was the most important thing.
[Do these nobles think that Madara’s undead would care about their status or wealth? These bloody morons are grating my nerves.]
Brendel lowered his head and wiped his sword. He had received 220 XP, one of the highest gain apart from the Golden Demonic Tree boss.
[Looks like that was a mid-ranked lich. It was fortunate that it did not react in time as these things are usually level 30 plus.]
Due to the low strength, the gargoyle was able to trap the lich in its claws, making it unable to move and ultimately allowed Brendel to kill it easily.
The lich was not limited to mere XP. Brendel chopped off its head earlier under everyone’s stares and took out a bone material. He then sliced off its four fingers from the right hand, pried open its head and pulled out its teeth one by one.
Everyone watched Brendel’s unthinkable actions in silenced horror as if he was a devil. His actions was like an experienced hunter who was processing its prey.
Brendel did not think it was unnatural since he really was processing his prey. The lich was different from regular mobs, as its soul fire had a chance to be molded into a gem, the four fingers holding on to its staff could be used as a spell regent, while the teeth could be made into paralyzing poison. One could even describe that the lich’s body was full of treasure.
Ciel knew a little as to what Brendel was doing, so he stood beside him faithfully. The nobles’ soldiers whose loyalty was to money, had scattered due to the low morale, and Luc Beson’s soldiers had fallen back to their leader. The young wizard recalled the moment where Brendel tested the sword at Dunn’s corpse, and understood that his every action had deep meaning to it, and could not be more impressed in his mind. (TL: Okay… I don’t recall if that sword lit up lol. So Dunn is an undead too or something?)
As Ciel watched Brendel continue to dismantle the lich, he felt the revered archmagi in Karsuk could not compare against him.
On the other side, Luc Beson had regained his composure after the temporary shock. He was not like the nobles who were eager to escape, and looked at Brendel with interest as he grabbed his horse’s reins. In his eyes, Brendel was steady, decisive and flexible, and he was formidable at his age.
[If he’s ten years older, his accomplishments would have been remarkable.]
Although he was in the royal faction, the current Aouine made him shake his head. He raised his head and look at the dark sky, wondering what future the country had.
But only the heavens knew Brendel did not plan this ahead, but simply chose the best option for escape. He looked at Ciel who stood beside him, and asked: “Between the White Knight and the Black Warrior, which one do you find it easier to deal with?”
Ciel was momentarily stunned by the sudden question and did not know how to respond.
Brendel shook his head as he watched the squabbling nobles escape to the east. Their former comrades’ bodies were simply left behind at the river without anyone caring about them. (TL: I made a mistake in the previous chapter, Esebar intended to retreat to the East, not north.)
“The poet Goebbels depicted Karsuk’s nobles as brigands, but I think Grinoires is not too far off.” Ciel spat out his words in derision.
“This country is at its final moments.” Brendel did not care if Luc Beson could hear him as he spoke condescendingly. He did not desire to seek revenge against the people who were going to face death.
[Retreating to the east side means they will face Tarkus’s most infamous general, ‘The Dragon Calamity’, Lord Tamara.]
“Are you not fleeing?” Luc Beson appeared as if he did not hear Brendel’s words as he asked.
Before Brendel had the chance to reply, there were sounds of wings beating in the air. Everyone in the vicinity looked up as they saw two huge bone dragons passing by over their heads, and fear spread throughout them. Hellish purple flames burned between their black bones, and their gigantic tattered wings emitted a dull beating sound as they flew through the air, and the wind that swept through the ground made their hair prick up.
The people on the ground felt like their souls were shrieking from an unending nightmare. In their minds, they saw nothing but bleak hopelessness, and phantom-like bones were suddenly climbing out from the ground with maggots crawling all over them. The ground seemed to turn into a dry, decaying landscape without end.
Brendel punched himself in the arm and recovered from his afflicted status.
[Damn it. The dragons’ fear aura hit me pretty hard. Just flying over us affected us this much…]
He checked his surroundings and the war horses were running away because of the fright, or dropped to the ground because of their weakened knees.
Then he saw Luc Beson who also shrugged off the dragons’ aura. The latter appeared surprised as he saw Brendel’s quick recovery. “Come with me, lad. As you can see, an individual’s power is small against such foes.”
Brendel looked grimly at him, then shook his head.
[You died in history. I’m not going to be caught in your misfortune here. It has been hard to get to this point, but if I can escape from this dead city, I will have fulfilled half of my plans. And from then on, I can grind my level up and wait for Aouine’s final moments.]
Brendel was not about to step into the trap at this point, and decided to tell him the truth: “I’m breaking through the north as my friends are waiting for me there. If you don’t mind, you can join me.”
Luc Beson stared at him in hesitation, but shook his head at the end. There were huge burning blue flames in the west and northern areas, indicating that the undead army invaded through that direction. Even though he admired him, he did not wish to move to a risky area.
Brendel did not tell him that all the other areas were a dead end other than the north due to the distance. Time was of the essence, and explaining that to him was going to take too long.
He patted Ciel’s arm and said: “If that is the case, then we shall take our leave. If there is a chance in the future, let us meet again.”
Luc Beson did not have much of a difference compared to the nobles, but he was at least capable. He was also one of the rarer person in this era who still thought about this country, so Brendel did not mind if he had survived.
[There’s also the fact that I might be considered as a heretic and sent to be burned by firewood. Luc Beson is not Freya or Romaine, He might be able to see past my bullshit.]
Brendel did not take any unnecessary risk.
The year of the bustling flowers and summer leaves, the second day of the sixth moon.
The peaceful land in Fortress Riedon turn into ashes under the burning flames. The undead rampaged everywhere, causing chaos and destroyed many lives.
The citizens found that prayers could not save them and the nobles they relied on abandoned them. A scar that could never be healed was carved into their hearts and gradually spread everywhere from this battlefield.
[The first step towards Aouine’s demise.]
The news of Fortress Riedon’s fall only reached Fortress Vermeire on the sixth day, while Tarkus’s secondary army was at Anchorite’s doorsteps. The defensive lines to Fortress Vermeire were gone and they held on with much difficulty.
The eleventh day, Vieiro discovered Madara’s army and send the news to Corvado, and on the twelve day, Oberg the seven met Madara’s messenger in secret. (TL: Gosh, how many more names are you going to throw at me.)
On the thirteen day, the merchant alliance of Ampere Seale announced they were going to participate in the war.
On the fourteen day, Madara’s messenger was formally received.
On the twentieth day, the battles at the frontlines stopped temporarily. Both countries established a team of envoys, and there was a long negotiation period.
But the talks was progressing slowly and Madara’s army kept burning the lands everywhere, and Aouine’s troops struggled painfully as though they were trapped in quicksand.
Aouine’s slow reactions caused immense losses to the nobles but the royal family was happy to see that happen.
The talks continued to progress. On the seventh month and fifth day, the Madara army advanced into Randner, they encountered Ampere Seale’s hired mercenary army for the first time.
The history’s event of’ Battle at Fortress Frangerd’ raised its curtains as Incirsta became famous in this battle. Under the undead gunners’ cover, the black knights ripped apart Ampere Seale’s flanks again and again, finally defeating them.
Madara managed to advanced greatly after this, reaching even the capital of Randner. Tarkus, Incirsta, Verand, Augusta and Tabhita became known throughout the lands.
On the seventh month sixteen day, Oberg the seven saw the messenger again. Three days later, the talks finally ended and the first ‘War of the Black rose’ ended.
TL: Names everywhere. Bleah. This is the last chapter of The Amber Sword “Volume 1”. The second volume rewinds the events and there would be some sweet battles (at last).