Chapter 264 Assaulted
Two months later.
Right before the break of dawn. The mist still clung in the air.
A black carriage slowly rumbled out of Feidnan City.
The tall architecture of the city was quickly left behind as the carriage rushed forward. Large patches of farmland started to appear on both sides of the road. One could vaguely see the scattered farmhouses and villages through the thick and dense mist.
As the sun hadn't rise yet, the road was still very dimly lit. It was very easy to damage the precious carriage when driving in such weather. As a result, there weren't very many people walking on the roads of Feidnan City. This was even truer the further they got from Feidnan City. Human buildings were built further and further apart. Tall and massive trees started to appear more frequently and in greater density.
Greem pushed the curtain aside and was greeted with a face full of cold, moist air. It was a refreshing and slightly cooling.
Just five kilometers out of the city, and already the forests on both sides felt a little primal and overgrown. This scene allowed Greem to imagine the past. Several years ago, humans, under the lead of the adepts, had forged their way through this primal forest with great difficulty and created settlement after settlement. He could imagine their pain and suffering as they fought tooth and nail against the creatures of the woods for every inch of the land they owned…
In the earlier records and books about adepts, Greem had often read about adepts being the guardians of humans. They would aid the nobles in managing their lands and fight off the attacks of terrifying magical creatures. They would eliminate the vicious beasts and ensure the security of the human settlements.
But that was all in the ancient past!
Greem could very clearly trace the development of the adepts over the past couple thousand years. The adepts had slowly risen above the human nobles, eventually rising to the the very top, to the ruling position of the entire race. They had then forcefully united the massive Continent of Adepts.
The status of the adepts and the nobles had completely reversed at this point. The previous rulers of humanity now cowered before the powerful adepts. The nobles were now the representatives and servants of the adepts. The ordinary humans also became insignificant to the adepts, turning into the weak and pathetic 'lower races'.
The strict rules of high-grade adepts forbade adepts from using the humans as experimental subjects as well as forbidding adepts from massacring ordinary mortals. Otherwise, the adepts might have long stripped the mortals of all they had. Even they themselves would have become the lab rats of the adepts' experiments, or pitiful slaves driven to their deaths.
Just as Greem mulled over the history of the adepts, the coachman turned back and spoke.
"Master, this trip is going to take a while. You had best take the time to rest well!" The coachman was a middle-aged man with an honest face. However, with his powerful elementium sight, Greem could very clearly see Snorlax putting on a fawning smile beneath the face created with the Spell of Concealment.
"Mm, good work!" Greem nodded slightly and let go of the curtain.
"Hmph! Good work?" Alice, who was curled up by a side of the carriage, and who was clearly still dazed from waking up, yawned as she said, "This is just part of his duty! It's what he's supposed to do. Oh right. Aren't you a powerful adept now? Couldn't you use your status to rent a Socrates Condor? We could get to Motta City in a single day!"
Feidnan City was the headquarters of the Sarubo Clan. It was considered private property. As such, no flying ships were allowed to land within the area. Thus, they would have to go to the public City of Motta, one hundred and fifty kilometers away. It was only there that they could rent a flying ship to hurry to Silver Union territory.
"We have plenty of time anyway. It's a good experience to cruise about like this. We get to see the local customs of the Zhentarim Area." Greem let out a gentle smile.
Alice started rubbing her eyes, then stared earnestly at Greem, as if she was looking at some monster before her.
"Fine fine fine!" As if realizing that his excuse was a little too forced, Greem couldn't help but explain himself, "The tower spirit gave me a warning a few days before we left. It seemed to have sensed someone casting divination magic on me!"
"Divination magic?" Alice was suddenly excited, "You are saying someone is plotting against you?"
"You are excited now that we have enemies?"
"Of course! Think about how boring this trip would be otherwise!"
"Have you never considered the situation seriously? If the enemy dares to plot against me, they would include every variable and factor in everything about me. That includes you. Are you not afraid of death at the hands of our enemies?"
"Tsk tsk… why should I be afraid if you aren't afraid?" Alice spoke in disdain, "Since you already know about the enemy’s existence, you must have made arrangements to prepare against them. Otherwise, do you think you would ever volunteer as bait? With your personality?”
The black carriage slowly pulled onto a gray road amidst a sea of trees.
This road, that should have been filled with travellers, merchants, and carriages, was now extraordinarily silent. All of the carriages stopped by the road. All the humans and the horses and the cows lay by the roadside, deep in slumber.
Snorlax instantly halted the two handsome white horses at the sight of this. Before he could even let out a warning to his master, a light breeze of fragrance found its way into his nose. And so, the next second, Snorlax and the two horses pulling the carriage collapsed.
Greem pushed aside the curtains and looked at the scene before him. He leapt off the carriage and inspected the strange scene. He frowned. A bright red layer of fire hovered around his mighty figure. It was this layer of fire that prevented Greem from succumbing to the odd potion.
Greem's elementium sight had a clear view of what was happening. The moment he stepped out of the carriage, the moist forest air surged towards him. Some transparent powder mixed in the air crashed against the red layer of fire.
They sizzled as they burned.
Red flames sparked across the bright red layer and all of the powder was reduced to ashes.
Inside the carriage Alice, who had been pumped up for a good show, had already collapsed and was sound asleep. The tricks of an adept were not something she could defend against as a pseudo-adept, even if she was one of the most powerful pseudo-adepts alive!
Three silhouettes of varying sizes appeared in the woods from the right. Their faces and figures were hidden beneath thick cloaks. They silently observed Greem.
Greem hesitated for a moment. He didn't try and wake Alice or Snorlax. Rather, he sorted the equipment on him and followed the three mysterious adepts into the depths of the woods.
After walking for five hundred meters, they arrived in a forest clearing.
The trees here were far less dense, with a pond just two hundred meters away. Apart from the tall trees and the low-lying bushes, not a single person could be seen in the area. This was a good place to settle any conflict.
"You should know the purpose of our 'visit', don't you?" One of the shorter cloaked men asked softly.
His voice sounded like that of a middle-aged man.
"The Black Glove Association?" A grin appeared at the corner of Greem's mouth.
The short cloaked man pushed his hood down, revealing a green and wrinkled face, along with a hooked nose and a head full of dirty green short hair. He wasn't a human!
The Head of the Black Glove Association. The one and only Second Grade Green Dwarf Adept– Pyro.
Greem felt liked a heavy rock had been dropped onto his heart when Pyro's sinister green eyes locked onto him. Even breathing seemed more difficult.
"Is it fine for the Head of the Black Glove Association to so publicly kill an official adept of the Sarubo Clan? Are you not worried that Lady Sanazar will personally visit you lot?"
"Of course we wouldn't be able to endure the rage of Lady Sanazar… if it was us of the Black Glove Association that killed you today. However, if the ones responsible for your death wasn't the Black Glove Association, even Lady Sanazar would not have a reason to persecute us! She wouldn't dare break the orders of the Zhentarim Association and hurt the innocent us, would she?" The green dwarf Pyro spat out coldly.
"What do you mean?"
"Lord Pyro's words are easy to understand… " The scrawny and tall one of the trio suddenly pushed his hood down as well. The man laughed wickedly, "Because he won't be doing anything today. We will!"
This scrawny man had a pale complexion with dried and wrinkled skin. His voice was low and hoarse. However, when he uttered the last sentence, his head suddenly turned 180 degrees, revealing a woman's face behind his head. 'His' voice also suddenly changed to that of a female's.
The female face had her eyes shut tight. A strange smile was plastered across her face, but there was nothing odd about the way she spoke. Moreover, she… wasn't a mask or a face drawn onto the head. She was an actual woman.
"Two-face Kane!" Greem gasped.
Even though it hadn't been long since he ascended to an adept, he still made sure to do his studies and had a detailed understanding of all the famous adepts of the Zhentarim area. With the extreme efficiency of the chip at his disposal, he kept detailed tabs on all the adepts, both famous and lesser-known, that belonged to any adept clan, academy, organization, or force within the Zhentarim area.
Green Dwarf Pyro hadn't been lying. Two-face Kane didn't belong to the Black Glove Association. He was a powerful wandering adept.
Kane. Born to a normal noble's family in the central area of the continent. He and his twin sister were verified with magic talent at a young age and were sent to a small adept academy to study. His experience was similar to Greem's. He and his sister met a particularly terrifying and evil adept.
He and his twin sister had decent talent, as well as an extremely unique innate mental link. Consequently, they fell into the favor of an evil adept and were chosen for an extremely dangerous experiment on the merging of lives.
What happened next was easily predictable.
The terrifying life-merging experiment had forged the souls of the brother and sister together. They shared a single body, with two faces, one in front of the head and one behind. The two shared one body with two souls, taking turns to use a single body.
The sudden stimulation of their soul energies had allowed the twins to suddenly advance to adepts. Moreover, the chaotic nature of the merger had allowed them to break free of the adept's control.
Two-face Kane and Lucy, who now simultaneously possessed the strength of two adepts, reinforced with an innate mental link, instantly began a slaughter. They butchered all four adepts and twenty-seven apprentices that lived in the small adept academy before running away and disappearing from the public eye.
As his soul was chaotic and his personality distorted, the Two-face Adept Kane spent most of his days wandering in the central area of the continent, avoiding the capture of the Adept's Association's Department of Corrections. On the other hand, most adept clans ignored him. They didn't want to deal with such a powerful adept, and as such, they let 'him' and 'her' go unnoticed and unrestrained for all this time.
However, who knew? The Black Glove Association was willing to fork over large sums of money to purchase their services!
Greem helplessly put on a bitter smile.