He slowly closed the book, gazing out of the window into the now distancing plain.
From afar were a group of dairy cows and sheep sporadically walking around on the plain. S Strong winds kept flattening on the grass, which rippled like sea waves.
"It is scary being a Luminarist…" He let out a long, emotional sigh, "If I were to face the giant magma wolf…"He no longer spoke, but just imagined it. No matter how he simulated it in his mind, it would always end with utter defeat; he would not even be able to get close, and was easily eliminated.
"Looks like I have to choose my core totem soon, and be a Luminarist as soon as possible, Only then will I officially step into this world. There are only one and a half years left."
Garen kept his illustrations into his ba. Holding the forearm-lengthed silver cane, he closed his eyes and started paying attention to the skill and attribute pane at the bottom of his field of vision.
Under the skill pane, there was a faint, red, translucent symbol, just like a growing fetus, and a faint red light shining with rhythm, like a heartbeat.
This is something that Garen had noticed last night, as he looked closer, he realized that in this fetus, there seemed to be a 3D image of a luminescent butterfly.
This made him happy, he always hoped that his abilities were able provide him some help on his journey of the Luminarist. Otherwise, it would be preposterous to think that he could catch up to the elite Luminarists in the span of over a year.
And now it finally seemed like there was a glimmer of hope.
Abilities seem to slowly merge into the luminescent butterfly totem.
"The image today is clearer." Garen retracted his vision, "I guess when I go back to the manor, I would be able to showcase its real function. But I can’t just count on this, I still need to prepare on multiple different aspects."
Now what he lacks is a core totem.
The scenarios that happened while he transmigrated were always blurry during combat scenes, it was always too complicated, always with strong vibrations. He could only see clumps of colors shaking around, and could only roughly make out the strength from just how shaky it was. Even the actual totem form was not very clearly visible.
Garen refused to use a totem by the Tasura Academy, mainly because he wanted to find a strong enough totem by himself, one that gives him
some confidence in what lies ahead.
But this kind of totem would require detailed inherited knowledge; how to nurture and maintain the totem, the conditions needed, even the requirements in terms of time and environment.
At least, he had some sort of plan in mind already.
The carriage arrived in a small town. Garen kept changing carriages, or joining caravans, and soon he arrived at the border of the Lush Forest District.
The Lush Forest District was a garden district. Being covered by large sections of forests, tourists came and went endlessly.
Garen arrived at a small city between the Hanna District and Lush Green district called the Ferlondo. From here, he took a tourist bus and headed for the central part of the Lush Forest District: Trejon’s Territory
In the jade-green forest, two white bus-sized carriages moved within the sea of trees slowly.
The tour guide was the hunter’s daughter; she held a megaphone-shaped paper cone, loudly introducing the culture and habits of the Lush Green District to the tourists.
The carriage was full of tourists who came for a tour, mostly husbands and wives, couples, and a family of three. They were comprised of the working class, merchants, minor nobles and military officers. Males, females and the old and young made up about twenty-odd people in the bus.
Carting the carriage were black cows with strong physiques. There were 4 of them, each about one meter-odd in height, and were about the strengthened version of a typical black cow. Occasionally, they let out a deep roar.
The wheels would run through a pebble or a small pothole from time to time, making the carriage ride a shaky one.
Garen sat on the left side of the final row of the ride, near the window.
Still wearing his usual grey robe, with a black leather box next to his legs, he looked very tidy. Much like a young lecturer of a university, carrying an aura of gentleness.
He sat facing two people, one middle-aged male pastor with black shirt and white sides, and next to a quiet young lady.
The two of them seemed to be together, but they did not talk to each other in the carriage, the atmosphere seemed awkward.
The two of them have not spoken a word since they went onboard about half an hour ago. In contrast, the four people that were sitting diagonally on the right have been speaking merrily. They are two pairs of newlyweds, the gents are talking big, about the glorious old days, about something weird that happened. The two wives
wives were showing off new items purchased for the house; what was it, where was it imported from, and on top of that what kind of cuisines that they have tasted from which chef.
The two pairs of materialistic mercantile couples that were grouped together influenced those around them; everyone around them had started using different methods to imply that they were not to be offended, that they were able to ask favors from whoever.
The poor tour guide could only boringly talk about Lush Forest district’s culture and customs alone, although it seemed like nobody was paying any attention to her.
Of course, there were those who are not interested in engaging such conversation, like Garen, and the pastor and lady opposite him. Also the ones in front of them: a white-haired old couple and a young male military officer.
Garen studied again the comprehension of basic tactics, but upon feeling that his brain was tired, he stopped for a moment to rest.
He looked outside the window. Just when the carriage passed a metal road sign, there were some sort of words written on top, but he wasn’t able to see clearly.
"May I know where are we now?" Garen politely asked the black-shirted pastor.
"Yishenhaire, that’s what the road sign wrote." The pastor replied with a warm smile.
The lady next to him burst into laughter.
"We turned left, so we are heading to White Garcia. Don’t just blurt something out if you don’t know!"
" Perhaps I was mistaken, apologies."The pastor told Garen, with composure. "If it is the White Garcia, we would reach in about an hour." He looked at the time on his pocket watch.
"That’s fast, after White Garcia would be Trejon’s Territory, right?" Garen asked again.
"yes, the Trejons family are the local noblemen. They have maintained the territory’s original look very well. Now, it is a great tourist spot." The pastor nodded."
"We’ll get to see a lot of black swans!" The lady interrupted . "God, the black swans there are as abundant as ducks, it’s a very popular place for scenery!"
"But the bandits there are rampant too. We won’t get robbed, right?" one of the men among the 4 newlyweds on the left interrupted the conversation worrisomely.
"We won’t. I’ve heard that some time ago, the bandit lairs were mostly cleared." The pastor replied warmly. "I have been there once, to officiate a newly built small church . I have met the territory’s city planners, I have a good idea of the situation on the ground."
"The city planner should
planner should be Sinke right? Sinke Minrose, an empire officer from Hanna?"The man asked.
"You know him too?" The pastor asked, slightly surprised.
"We met a few times, He is a well mannered big-shot, we met him once at the musical."the man replied in a slightly delighted tone.
"Planner Sinke was said to have transferred here from places where the turmolous Hanna District." The pastor frowned.
"Turmolous? You mean those damned Noir Rebels? I heard the southwestern areas are quite heavily impacted….. quite a few officers have fled their cities…" The man slowed down his speech.
"Do not speak lightly about the major issues of the Empire!" The wife next to the man tugged at him.
The man and pastor stopped talking, but their expressions were visibly tensed. They noticed that the military officer sitting at the front row glancing at their direction, his look seeming slightly hostile.
Garen however, got more curious.
"You said that there is unrest at the southwest?" He gazed attentively at the pastor and the man.
"Say no more, these kinds of national issues are best not discussed in this environment." The Pastor reminded in a slow voice.
"Can you tell me which cities are in trouble?" Garen lowered his volume too, but he had an expression that looked very curious.
The man on the side could not help but to answer. "I heard that it’s Cloudray City and White Rose city."
"White Rose!" Garen was slightly taken aback. his memory showed a squared flag with black and white on each side. The left, black side was a pure matte black, and the right, a white side which symbolized the pure, elegant petals of white Rose.
"So it’s began..." Garen’s heart felt heavy.
The wheels of history have begun spinning again.
Garen tidied the history scroll, everything started with the war between the Obscuro Society and RAL.
This unrest in White Rose marked the intervention of the Obscuro Society, as well as the beginning of the end of the Reign of RAL that lasted several thousands of years.
As the fires of the war of the Obscuro Society burns, the corrupt, puss-filled body of the RAL, will completely collapse within a year.
"RAL shouldn’t collapse that easily.." Garen internally calculated carefully. "According to written history, RAL is still much stronger than the Obscuro Society, just that the inner ring held back most of their combat prowess, worrying about the troubles outside. Plus, the alliances started fighting among themselves, trying to swallow other whole by not sending help for each other. This was what caused the second wave the second wave of unrest and the third Great War."
"All these stupid royals, they think the unrest would be the same as before, that the rebels would be exterminated before long, and they would use this to empty the nation’s resources amidst the war. Unfortunately… this time will different." Garen sat alone in his seat, his heart feeling uneasy.
The battle of White Rose was Obscuro Society’s one action to gauge the RAL’s integrity. They would assume that RAL’s power was strong and far-reaching, hence they would not launch a large-scale conflict. Unexpectedly, the results were far beyond their expectations.
A simple small-scale conflict could actually exterminate the small empire by itself. The ripples from this would affect the power balance of all the neighboring countries.
Garen’s heartbeat quickened.
"The assault this time was unstoppable, soon, within two months, an war will erupt. The Obscuro Society will launch a full frontal attack, and this war will reach and affect every corner of the world. There will be no place to hide. Luminarists would also completely expose themselves to the public. Enlisting into the army and fight for their lives. I must decide on my own core totem within these two months.Oherwise, when the war erupts, and father is enlisted for war, my safety will be the biggest issue.
This is the first world war for this realm. The Obscuro Society will wage war against 23 countries, launching their strongest retaliation against the traditional ruling coalition; RAL. And they will not do it righteously, but instead use the Luminarists’ style to ignite the fire of war throughout the world.
Garen remembers that in the first world war, the Obscuro Society used totems as a base, and created an army of countless inhuman creatures, destroying everything in its path like a natural disaster. RAL will face countless losses and large areas of their territory will be taken over.
Within a year, the empires from around the world will fall, the world will descend into chaos.
However, even in such apocalyptic and dystopic outlook of the world, there will be three extremely strong and young heroes emerging. Grand Duke Goth, Crown Prince Alyson and Queen Jean Earnest.
The city that the three of them are in, would become the forefront of the resistance against the Obscuro Society, at the same time saving the Three Formations that were about to collapse, becoming the flag and standard of the resistance.
What Garen wants to do now, is to find a strong enough totem for himself within this unrest.