Two merchant caravans moved to the side to allow the supply wagons to pass. The Shansa Empire soldiers coldly looked at the merchant caravans. They were ready for anything that might happen. They were real elite soldiers, so they would never let their guard down.
Groups of people were not allowed within a radius of a dozen miles of transports of armor and supplies during peaceful times. Right now, they could not do it, at least not in Hengduan Valley. Merchants did not have high social status, but the influence they had could not be ignored. Every country had merchants working for the countries or private businesses. If any military had done anything in the Hengduan Valley, then merchants of their country would suffer revenge. If the military killed any merchant, their merchants would be slaughtered somewhere else.
The problem was Hengduan Valley was not Shansa Empire’s territory. They had no right to block any road for their use. Otherwise it would draw a response from the Country of Mercenaries. Before they could conquer Blackania City, they needed to keep a low key.
In the far-off city of Moramatch, Anfey was reading a magic book by candle light. Two girls were making the bed for Anfey. They also spread some fragrant powers around to cover the odor left by previous owner. Black Eleven walked in big strides with some excitement on his face.
"Can you guys leave for a second?" Anfey asked in a low voice.
"Yes, master," the two girls answered obediently and left the room.
"Any update?" Anfey closed his magic book.
"Yes, they have left. According to their speed, they should be passing us in five days," Black Eleven reported.
"Ok. Are they transporting dead or live boarbeasts?" Anfey asked.
"Dead ones. Blood could make griffins excited, so griffin riders usually do not feed them with alive animals unless it was the last resort.
Anfey became quiet and slightly closed his eyes.
"More than three thousand elite soldiers protecting their armors and supplies? That is too many people." Black Eleven smiled bitterly. "If Christian and Risk were both senior magisters, we could set up a few more magic arrays of chaos with crystals. No matter what, we need to think in different ways, otherwise we would not be able to pose any threat to them." Anfey said.
"Didn’t you say I am wasting magic crystals?" Anfey smiled. When Anfey asked Christian to set up the magic arrays of chaos for the first time, Black Eleven did not know what Anfey was trying to do and was against him. He realized later on that those trashy magic arrays could still work well as long as they were used properly.
"Are you really going to set up magic arrays of chaos?" Black Eleven asked.
"No, we are just doing little things. There is no need to make a big deal out of it." Anfey said.
"What do you want to do?" Black Eleven asked.
"How many people do you have? I mean, the ones disguised as soldiers in a logistical force," Anfey asked.
"Three. The information I just gave you was from them," Black Eleven said.
"Pass my stuff to them. Tell them to leave it in the bodies of the boarbeasts. I do not care how they do it. I only need to know they put the stuff in boarbeasts’ bodies. They cannot have Shansa Empire notice."
"Are you asking them to do it?" Black Eleven opened his eyes wide.
"I can’t?" Anfey asked.
"Too risky, Anfey," Black Eleven said.
"To be honest, I do not want to attack Griffin Aerial Unit. You asked me to. If we need to take risks, why couldn’t they take risks?" Anfey said.
"I did not mean it that way. Anfey, Shansa Empire is transporting more than four hundred boarbeasts this time. It would take a long time for three of them to do it. What if they were discovered?" Black Eleven said.
Anfey was lost in thought for awhile. "Do griffins eat rotten meat?"
"They only eat fresh meat. They love to tear up live animals and eat the meat with their blood. For rotten meat, they might eat it when they are starving," Black Eleven said.
"Would rotten meat affect griffins?" Anfey asked.
"It would affect griffins just the way it would do to humans, maybe even worse. At least, we could cook the rotten meat. Griffins do not eat cooked meat," Black Eleven said.
"We could think about this another way. Give your people this," Anfey said, taking out a bottle of green liquid from his shirt.
"What is this?" Black Eleven asked.
"Hagan made a rotting chemical. This can speed up the rotting process of the meat. It can spread as well. A few drops on each wagon would do the trick."
"If it is this simple, they should have no problem." Black Eleven took the bottle. "And then what?"
"You have to purchase five hundred boarbeasts in five days and deliver them here," Anfey said.
"What?" Black Eleven was shocked by Anfey’s request. The town of Moramatch was located in the middle of nowhere. The natives in Moramatch raised only four boarbeasts in total. It would be really hard to buy so many boarbeasts in such a short period of time.
"It does not have to be exactly five hundred. The more, the better. You just give your best try," Anfey said.
"Do we put that chemical in boarbeasts’ bodies and then sell them to Shansa Empire soldiers?" Black Eleven smiled bitterly.
"Yes, but we need to discuss more details" Anfey continued slowly, "Didn’t you say the boarbeasts that they transported are dead. Didn’t it take seven or eight days to get to their destination? How could they keep the meat from getting rotten?" Anfey asked.
"The wagons for transporting armor and supplies were made special. Our Maho Empire does the same thing. There is a permanent magic array in each wagon. As long as the magic crystals can provide energy, the permanent magic arrays keep the temperature in the wagon low. If it were not a long journey, the goods in the wagon would not go bad," Black Eleven said.
"I see. Hagan told me before that this chemical would work if the temperature is not too high or too low." Anfey said. "There are still other problems that give me headaches. If we provide them borebeasts after they have just lost so many boarbeasts, I am afraid it would raise a red flag," Anfey said.
"We definitely could not give them all the boarbeasts all at once. We can sell them dozens of boarbeasts first, and we can hint to them that we have more in stock, but those are saved for ourselves. We could do some bargaining with them at the end. Maybe we could even make good money out of it," Black Eleven said.
"It sounds doable." Anfey smiled. "I have one more question. I do not think Shansa Empire soldiers would just feed our boarbeasts to their griffins. They may pick some to eat themselves first. It would be difficult if this is the case. What do we do if they find something unusual?"
Black Eleven went quiet for a while and said slowly, "We do not need to poison the first dozens boarbeasts. That way they would not find anything wrong."
"But if their commander is a very cautious person, he would not just check once." Anfey shook his head. "He would find out what we are doing to the boarbeasts then."
"What can we do then?" Black Eleven heaved a long sigh. He was not willing to give up. They had gone so far when this problem happened. However, he had to admit Anfey’s concerns were reasonable. It’s better to think about how to solve the problem now than selling themselves out by their neglect later.
It was getting quiet in the room. After a long silence, Anfey said, "Maybe I should do an experiment."
"What experiment?" Black Eleven asked.
"What do you think is the difference in the boarbeast meat that griffins and humans eat?" Anfey smiled.
Black Eleven’s eyes brightened. He gave Anfey an admiring look. "One is cooked, the other one is raw meat."
"It’s possible the chemical Hagan makes loses its effectiveness after cooking. If this does not work, we still can figure another way around the ‘cooked’ and ‘raw’ problem." Anfey smiled. "We can make it happen. Don’t worry."
"Anfey, if we can wipe out Griffin Aerial Unit, Maho Empire would never forget you," Black Eleven said.
"Your words give me goose bumps." Anfey could not help smiling. "I would believe you if you said you would not forget me. You must be lying to me if you say Maho Empire would not forget me."
"I…" Black Eleven blushed a little.
"We are doing such a little thing for the whole war," Anfey said.
"The king has said before that a little thing sometimes could be enough to make a big difference, or even decide which side wins and loses a battle," Black Eleven said.
"Ok. We will stop talking about it for now. Can you hurry and send the rotting chemical to your people. Tell them to do it on the third or fourth day. Count today as one of those days. This way Shansa Empire will have to continue to purchase boarbeasts from us," Anfey said.
"I understand. Anfey, anything else?" Black Eleven asked.
"Let me sit on the details and other small problems," Anfey said slowly.