Anfey was finally able to lay down and rest a little at night, but Saul and Ernest were not. Ernest checked Black Wraith's body. Saul went to check on the body few times as well. They could not agree on things that mattered.
Ernest didn't find any wounds on the body, which revealed there wasn't a physical fight. In other words, Black Wraith's level was not high enough to fight with combat power! It was inconceivable. Black Wraith was a medium-level swordsman. It would take some effort to take him down without using combat power, even if it was Master Swordsman Ernest. It was even possible to force Ernest to use combat power in the end. Ernest felt the chill on his back when he really thought about. Judging from the scene, that guy must be really good at cunningly using diversions to make surprise attacks. An assassin good at surprise attacks was usually able to take down people a lot stronger and more powerful than them. An assassin that had the same ability level as a Master Swordsman… Ernest clearly felt the threat. Luckily, that guy saved Anfey. It seemed that he was not hostile towards them.
Saul focused more on the methods that guy used to kill Black Wraith. What scared the mages? It had to be killers who can quietly kill people. Mages usually held the advantage at the beginning of the battle, regardless of whether or not they were fighting with a master swordsmen or a golden knight. However, whether or not they were able to maintain that advantage in battle depended on their experiences and magical knowledge. Only assassins who could kill quietly were able to force mages into a passive stance at the very beginning of the battle. Without their magic, mages were no different from ordinary people. The odds were very high that the killer could defeat a mage with a single strike. It wouldn't be wrong to call assassins the natural enemy of mages. Saul was concerned about that killer because he had the ability to hide his combat surges. Saul was so worried, he had no appetite or desire to fall asleep.
Anfey slept through the night, while Saul and Ernest spent the night talking. They decided to stop having Anfey explore the world, instead taking him to Empire Maho immediately. If they didn't have to worry about Anfey's safety, Saul and Ernest would have preferred to stay and find out who killed Black Wraith. At the very least, they could figure out what the Black Wraith wanted with them and why he started the battle at Rose Home Hotel. However, with Anfey's presence, they didn't dare do anything. They did not want to get Anfey involved in a battle.
At dawn, Saul and Ernest walked out of the hotel with Anfey. The hotel was surrounded by Tumen Commerial Union's army. A soldier had knocked on Saul's door at night. Saul told the soldier who he was, and no one dared to bother him afterwards. No one dared to stop Saul when he wanted to leave the hotel. A few patrol sheriffs watched the three of them walk away until they disappeared. They really wanted to beg for Saul's help to investigate last night's murder. The Chief was not in town. None of them dared to ask Saul to do anything. They had to swallow down what they wanted to say to him.
Saul, Ernest, and Anfey arrived at Freedom City, the downtown of Tumen Commercial Union, in a couple of hours. He put his mage insignia on. It was awarded by Tumen Commercial Union and allowed them to go anywhere without any trouble. They went to a Path Array, started it, and disappeared in a bright light before Chief Basdack rushed to the array to see them.
Anfey was trying to feel the magic surges. The scenery around him changed dramatically in the blink of an eye. They heard a warm voice welcome them, "Welcome back, Sir."
"Miorich, why are you here?"
"Sir, you should have told us!" A man over 40 walked up to them. "Don't forget you are the archmage of our Maho Empire. It would an unbearable loss for the empire if anything happened to you. Do you think we aren't able to help you?"
"There is no point talking about 'lost'. It is a talk between us, not a negotiation in the palace!" Saul muttered, "Miorich, Does… the king already know about it?"
"Of course. Do you really think we didn't know anything about it?"
"The king received a secret letter from Basdack and knows about everything." Miorich smiled. Miorich, with his sideburns and pair of warm, compassionate eyes, was likely to leave people unnerved. He was not at a young age anymore, but Anfey found him interesting.
"That guy! Dare to betray me?" Saul was enraged.
In fact, Saul underestimated Basdack's political power as a chief. Basdack had his own way of dealing with things. Basdack did not send out the secret letter until Saul safely returned to Tumen Commercial Union. If anything happened to Saul, Basdack would never admit they had any contact. Then, the fight between Saul and Yagor would simply be Saul acting on his own. It would have nothing to do with Basdack. This was the only way that the king of the Maho Empire would not be mad at Basdack for losing his best helper. To most people, this would look cunning. However, it was normal for a chief to act this way, especially he who was trying to survive among empires.
"Have you ever thought of how to reduce the king's anger, instead of whether or not Basdack betrayed you?" Miorich smiled.
"Are you laughing at me?" Saul rolled his eyes.
"Maybe." Miorich had been very polite until this point…
"You… Never mind, no point getting heated with you." Saul shook his head.
"This is…" Miorich laid his eyes on Ernest. Intuition told him that Ernest possessed unneglectable power.
"He is Er—"
"Ahem, ahem…" Ernest coughed to stop Saul's talk.
Saul shrugged. "This is my new apprentice, Anfey. Please help him in any way you can. Otherwise, if you do not treal him well, I will come after you."
"Uncle Miorich, how are you?" Anfey smiled. This was Anfey's other strategy. When he met someone for the first time, even if they were a 70- or 80-year-old man, he would call them "Uncle." Who did not want to feel young?
"What a polite kid." Miorich briefly laid his eyes on Anfey. He was very nice to Anfey, but he was not a moron. Saul introduced this young man in such a formal way, it revealed Saul must like him a lot. Even though Miorich only sensed weak magic surges from Anfey, he would have to treat Anfey well.
Anfey was not so happy to be called a kid. Why was everybody calling him "kid" or "dummy"? Judging from the body he inhabited, he should be almost 18 years old. He was mature and no shorter than Miorich, where was the "little" from?
"Miorich, did anything unusual happen in the empire?" Saul asked with a lowered voice.
"Unusual? Do you mean…"
"I met a death mage in Tumen Commercial Union. Unfortunately, he escaped from me."
"Death mage?" Miorich looked startled. "Really?"
Death magic was a very strange magic. Maybe death mages and apprentices were not able to beat other types of mages with the same ability level, but once they reached the level of an archmage, the death mages' power would be amplified several times. All of their spells would reach their maximum power. Then, archmages of other types of magic were not their counterparts. Several archmages needed to fight together to beat one death archmage. They were only able to beat him. It would be a lot harder if they wanted to kill him.
"I did not lie to you." Saul sighed quietly. "And... I met a very dangerous killer!"
"Yes, very dangerous!" Ernest said seriously, "I bet you have heard of Black Wraith. Black Wraith was killed by him, and that killer did not use any combat power!"
Miorich looked at Saul with suspicion. Saul nodded firmly at him.
"Tumen Commercial Union…" Miorich took a breath. "Sir, I think I need to report to the king about these matters."
"Sir, do you want to see the king now, or after you go back and get things settled?"
"I will go back first." Saul glanced at Anfey.
"Sure, I will go to the palace first and wait for you there." Miorich said. Miorich nodded at Ernest and walked out hastily. Tumen Commercial Union was an important and strategic place for the Maho Empire. The reason the Maho Empire could provide its people good lives had everything to do with the tributes from Tumen Commercial Union. If there was any change in Tumen Commercial Union, the economy in the empire would suffer a huge loss. They could not afford to let that happen.
"Let's go, Anfey. I will take you home." Saul smiled.
The soldiers who were responsible for watching the magic array stood in two rows. They tapped the floor three times with the handles of their polearms to salute Archmage Saul.
"Going back to your house?" Ernest stopped. "You guys go back first, I will walk around a little bit."
Saul smiled at Ernest wordlessly.
"Don't worry. I will contact you later. I won't break my promise of staying in the Maho Empire."
Ernest explained that he was used to the freedom and worried that he would feel uneasy living in Saul's house.
"My house is huge. Are you worried about bothering me?" Saul said without emotions. "And I have few other students live with me in my house. Two of them are already entry-level mages."
Ernest gave a wry smile. He already guessed something from Saul's weird speech. The reality was that competition was everywhere in life. Saul was worried about Anfey being bullied and looked down upon by his other two apprentices. Those two apprentices seemed to have their own pride. Saul was their professor, so he couldn't show any favoritism towards a student. If Ernest lived in Saul's house, Anfey could go to him.
"Ok, I will go with you." Ernest said.
"Professor, should I buy some gifts for your family?" Anfey asked. "I heard you have a daughter. I only got a present for her." Anfey took out that toy-like magic bracelet as he spoke.
"Don't worry about it. You can wait until you get to know everybody." Saul smiled.