GDK 463: A Big Gift
Except anything related to the Origin Crystals, Han Shuo told the story of his encounter with the old monster and Tiana at Tarrag Canyon. Even the incident at the Sacred Mountain of Church of Light located in Oden Empire was disclosed.
Candide was all ears as Han Shuo described his account from the beginning 'til the end and his brows were tightly knitted together.
"Lord Candide, about those true powerhouses of Profound Continent and the Soul Race people, do you have any knowledge of them?" The reason Han Shuo revealed everything was to ask Candide if he was aware of their existences.
"Tiana is the protector of Kasi Empire. In Kasi Empire, Tiana is a godly being. She is a character of the same as era our Lancelot Empire's dark divine magus Ayermike Cotton. I genuinely did not expect her to still be alive!" Candide exclaimed.
Ayermike Cotton? A character his era?! Han Shuo was startled.
Ayermike Cotton is one of the most reputable characters in the history of Lancelot Empire. It was all thanks to his existence that Lancelot Empire was established and possessed such mighty power and influence these days.
However, Ayermike Cotton the dark divine magus was a character from 500 years ago! Having found that out from Candide, Han Shuo then realized just how long Tiana had actually been alive. It was no wonder that even Stratholme the antediluvian old monster that lived through two dynasties would address her as 'Elder Sister Tiana'!
"Besides Tiana, about those of the Church of Light and Soul Race, does your Lordship know of their origins?" Han Shuo asked as he stared blankly at Candide.
"That divine knight and light divine magus of the Church of Light you mentioned, I've read a little about them from ancient records. They are both existences of the Church of Light famous for their strengths a few hundred years ago. Everyone assumed that they had both died of old age. They had unexpectedly lived on until the present day.
"As for that Saintess of the Church of Light, and that Soul Race of Tarrag Canyon, I have no idea. If not for you telling me this news, perhaps, I would have never learned of such characters on Profound Continent. These beings are far beyond anything I can imagine," Candide lamented as he repeatedly shook his head and sighed.
Although Candide's knowledge was rather limited, Han Shuo learned, at least, of the origin of Tiana and that she was a protector of Kasi Empire.
"Bryan, do you mean that you already have the strength of Stratholme and Tiana?" After a long while, Candide suddenly asked as he stared blankly at Han Shuo.
Just then, Han Shuo mentioned fighting shoulder to shoulder with Stratholme the old monster and revealed the encounter with the Soul Race. Candide soon realized one small detail — Han Shuo and Stratholme were beings of the same class!
There was nothing worth hiding here, so Han Shuo nodded and calmly admitted, "I believe I now possess that so-called demigod strength."
"Unbelievable, truly unbelievable!" Candide spoke somewhat incoherently and mumbled, "Madam Grace's astrology is truly miraculous. No wonder she said that you can bring Lancelot Empire a new future. With the presence of an existence like yours, any nation can grow mighty."
"Mighty or not, I don't know, but I do know that Stratholme will not be appearing in the seven grand duchies for the time being, and the Brut Merchant Alliance has just lost their sacred lightning magus Reynold. Given that the magical beasts from Tarrag Canyon roam all over their streets disturbing residents, in addition to the group of Soul Race of unknown origin, I reckon they won't have the capacity to deal with other matters.
Now is the best chance for our Lancelot Empire to send troops and take down the seven grand duchies. It is now or never!" Han Shuo explained to Candide ambitiously.
"Bryan, go meet His Majesty. I believe that His Majesty will fully support you!" Candide urged. It seemed that he was itching to get on with it as well.
Han Shuo nodded. After authenticating his identity as a Fourth Dark Sun envoy from Candide, and without notifying Emily, Han Shuo headed directly for the imperial palace by means of transportation arrays in Dark Mantle headquarters that only some highest level personnel could operate.
"Bryan, you joker, disappeared all of a sudden for three years. You have finally returned!"
Lawrence, the king of the Lancelot Empire, personally came to greet Han Shuo when he heard that Han Shuo had requested to meet him and laughed heartily as soon as he saw Han Shuo.
Compared to three years prior, the Lawrence now had more of that imposing demeanor of a monarch weiding the power to dictate the lives and deaths of others. He appeared even more mature and experienced. He even deliberately kept a beard over his originally clean shaven upper lip. His eyes beamed wisdom and prudence.
"Your Majesty, long time no see!" Han Shuo stepped forward with a faint smile. Leaning over to Lawrence's side, he continued, "Your Majesty, let's have a chat alone!"
Lawrence waved his hand at his imperial bodyguards to send them away,"You are all dismissed!" Afterwards, he dragged Han Shuo back to the grand hall, chucklingly said, "So we are actually still good friends away from the public eye. How come you remember to visit me this time?"
"I came here with the intent of presenting you with a big gift!" Han Shuo smiled.
"Oh? A big gift?" Lawrence asked engrossing.
"The seven grand duchies!" Han Shuo proclaimed.
Lawrence's body jolted. His eyes burst out cold rays that one wouldn't dare look at directly. With excitement in his voice, he asked, "Bryan, are you confident about this now?"
Han Shuo nodded, and again disclosed what he had to Candide.
By the time Han Shuo completed his story, Lawrence was trembling from the head down. He held firmly onto Han Shuo with both hands, his fiery eyes ardently on Han Shuo, and in an astonished voice he asked, "Bry…Bryan, you mean….. you mean you now possess demigod strength?"
"That's right!" Han Shuo affirmed.
"Good! Good! Good!" Lawrence howled with laughter with his face to the sky. He then continued with a broad smile, "After the honorable Ayermike Cotton, finally, our Lancelot Empire is once again blessed with a demigod being! Haha, from now on, no one will disregard the mighty existences of my Lancelot Empire!"
"Don't celebrate so soon. Like I just said, a demigod existence isn't the apex of strength on the continent. Besides, I'm not the only one with demigod strength. Tiana of Kasi Empire is another. Over at the Church of Light headquarters in Oden Empire, there's far more than one demigod existence!" Han Shuo doused Lawrence with cold water when he saw that Lawrence was so excited he nearly went mad, and feared that Lawrence might rely on him too much.
"I know, I know!" Lawrence said in an elated voice. "Of course I know. But with you in Lancelot Empire, I feel much more reassured in my heart. I have long thought of conquering Brut Merchant Alliance and Kasi Empire, but had always shelved it aside because of all sorts of apprehensions. But now, our Lancelot Empire can really flex our military muscles!"
"Alright. I knew you wouldn't do anything so ill-judged! Hmm, you can start with the seven grand duchies first. Of the seven, Helon Duchy and Boulet Duchy have secretly allied with me long ago. As long as we set about this covertly, without Stratholme the old monster appearing to upset the apple cart, swooping all seven grand duchies is definitely in the bag," Han Shuo said in a deep voice.
"Very well, I will back your campaign fully. Whatever military resources or physical resources you require, speak, what do you need? Tell me, and I shall aid you with all the resources of my kingdom!" Lawrence cut straight to the point. He seemed determined to firmly tether up Han Shuo.
"Frankly, military strategizing isn't my strong suit," Han Shuo replied with a bitter smile. After thinking for a moment, he continued, "As for how to attack the seven grand duchies, it's better if I just leave you and your men to discuss and deal with it. Oh, by the way, it would be best that Dorcas is appointed commander for this matter. This chap has roamed about the seven grand duchies for the past several years, and is therefore totally familiar with the situation there. In addition, he has expertise in military strategy. I trust he will make a fitting commander!"
"No problem, I will make arrangements! Rest assured, without Stratholme's hindering this time, the seven grand duchies will surely give in to the military might of my Lancelot Empire!" Lawrence assured.
"Well then, I have said what I ought to have said. I believe you will need some time to prepare as well. I shall depart now! I, for one, have yet to make time to see my ladies. If I don't look for them as soon as possible, they are going to start grumbling for sure!" Han Shuo said smilingly to Lawrence.
After receiving a few meaningful winks from Han Shuo, Lawrence empathizingly said, "I understand. Haha, go ahead and repay your 'debts'! Oh, right, your mansion has been rebuilt and all the servants are still there. Every now and again Phoebe, Fanny and the others stay there for a few days. Don't forget that you still have a home in Ossen City!"
Previously, during the upheaval at Ossen City, in one night, many mansions of the nobles were destroyed into puffs of smoke. The mansion he received as a count was no exception to this heavy damage. Originally, Han Shuo thought that the mansion had been completely ruined. It looked as if Lawrence did indeed care about Han Shuo very much, to go as far as to completely rebuild the house for him.
"Thank you, Your Majesty!" Han Shuo replied. Without saying any more, he left the palace.
"A demigod expert! Madam Grace is indeed an admirable astrologer. Bryan, oh Bryan, you truly are my lucky star!" Lawrence muttered softly after Han Shuo had left.