[Everyone has their own decision and fate . You’ve chosen a path full of thorns, with dangers, difficulties, and obstacles, but you braved on…]
Rhode shifted his gaze away from the system prompt . He closed his eyes and let out a sigh of relief .
This mission is finally complete .
Rhode was ready for a prolonged war with this ridiculous mission without any specific goal . No matter what, the reward for this mission was incredibly generous . Even though there were no EXP and monetary rewards, it was still unbelievable that an additional Phantom Guardian could be unlocked . However, Rhode didn’t have any clues until the start of the Dragon Soul Ceremony and the situation took a turn after he met Lilian .
The Light Dragon Soul and Light Parliament .
As a player, Rhode sharply realized the hints from the title of this mission and its contents, so he was determined to give it a shot . No matter what, the Light Dragon Soul was only a puppet in the original history of the game . It would be enough for him if he successfully instigated her even if the mission wasn’t complete because he could still cause some troubles for the Light Parliament .
Thereafter, Rhode and Lilian spent a wonderful teatime together . He described the adventures that he and his companions had experienced on this continent, which included scenarios that had happened in this world and some that he had gone through in the game . For Lilian, who had always stayed home, they were full of keen interest and pleasure . She even exclaimed in awe as she listened to the exciting parts of the stories .
At the same time, Rhode ingeniously pried some information from Lilian . Got to say, even though this information wasn’t some top secret, it left Rhode stunned .
The Dragon Soul Heirs were unlike the Archangels who bred offspring through asexual or sexual reproduction . In fact, the Dragon Soul Heirs couldn’t bear children even if they were married . Perhaps this was due to their supreme power, where the vitality of other races couldn’t withstand it . Even though the Dragon Soul Heirs possessed supreme powers, they weren’t immortal . For instance, the Dragon Soul Powers were dominant sources of strength and the Dragon Soul Heirs were nothing more than vessels who sustained and transmitted them . However, just like how any energy vessels would wear out after long years, Dragon Soul Heirs would also grow old and be affected by various reasons and couldn’t contain the Dragon Soul Powers . As a result, they had to search for a new heir .
But the heirs weren’t selected through any beauty pageants . Angels, Elves, Humans, Dwarves, Undead Creatures, Vampires and other ordinary lives couldn’t bear the power of the Creator Dragon Souls . As long as they were not the selected ones, they would be completely devoured by the supreme powers and would disappear forever during the transmission of the Creator Dragon Soul Powers .
As the Creation Poem stated, this continent was formed from the bodies of the Creator Dragon Souls . Whenever the current Dragon Soul Heir grew weak and old, a new heir who possessed the essence of the Dragon Soul Powers and capable of bearing the Creator Dragon Soul Powers would emerge before the Dragon Soul Heirs on this continent . After the birth of this new life, they could carry out the inheritance ceremony and pass on the Dragon Soul Powers . The current Dragon Soul Heir would lose its aura, return to an ordinary life, and live the rest of its life peacefully until death .
The average age of the Dragon Soul Heirs spanned from 300 to 500 years old . If they were to engage in battles which diminished their Dragon Soul Powers, their life span would be drastically decreased and this was the same for Elves, Humans, and Undead Creatures . Even though they were the Dragon Soul Heirs, they weren’t the Creator Dragon Souls themselves, after all . They were only the vessels of spiritual powers and naturally couldn’t merge together as one . But even so, their life span was much longer than other races .
And it was the same for Lilian . It was 20 years ago when she received the powers from the former Dragon Soul Heir and became the new Dragon Soul Heir . However, what surprised Rhode was that she had never stepped out of this temple in the 20 years . She would only leave this place whenever the Dragon Soul Ceremony took place and take a stroll in Casabianca under the escort of the Light Parliament (But to Rhode, this felt more like allowing a prisoner out for exercise) . Under the tight, watchful eyes of the Light Parliament, Lilian had no idea about the outside world . Even though her age was only a little younger than Rhode judging from a Human’s perspective, she was only a newborn in the eyes of the Dragon Soul Heirs . Not only on her appearance, but her mentality was also as that of a child . It could also be said that even Lapis, who was the most innocent and pure subordinate under Rhode, was more mature than Lilian… In fact, Rhode felt unimaginable after knowing this truth . He let out an inward sigh of helplessness after gazing at this naive and innocent little girl . Either she was an extremely shrewd person who was an expert in disguise or the Light Parliament was too great in brainwashing, it wasn’t easy for Lilian to maintain such a harmless character for the past 20 years…
“Your Majesty . ”
Suddenly, a deep voice sounded . Rhode and Lilian turned around and spotted Archangel Boulder on the other end of the bridge . He gazed at both of them silently .
“The Light Parliament Chairman is requesting to see you . ”
Rhode let out an inward smile as he observed Lilian’s excited little face crumbling instantly . This Dragon Soul Heir before him was behaving like a little child who was having a lot of fun with her toy, but her parents took it away from her and urged her to do her homework . Lilian eventually lowered her head and let out a hopeless sigh .
“Mr . Rhode… I’m sorry, it seems that this is all for today…”
“It’s a shame, Your Majesty . ”
Rhode stood up and bowed slightly to Lilian . He knew why she expressed such a lonely expression . After all, they were here to participate in the Dragon Soul Ceremony only and now that the ceremony had ended, they had to leave the Country of Light and return to the Munn Kingdom .
Lilian pouted in dissatisfaction . Shortly after, she sighed, stood to her feet, and presented a smile to Rhode .
“Thanks for accompanying me, Mr . Rhode . I’ve had a great time . Can…”
Lilian hesitated for a moment . She stole a glance at Archangel Boulder before leaning in to Rhode’s ear .
“… Can I go to the Munn Kingdom to play with you next time?”
Rhode widened his eyes in astonishment . Then, he showed a passionate smile .
“I will always welcome your arrival, Your Majesty . ”
Rhode sensed the gazes of reluctance and anticipation from Lilian as the large doors closed tightly behind him . But it seemed that his instigations worked to a certain extent… And this was enough . But… this wasn’t the end .
“Hi there, Parliament Chairman . ”
Rhode gazed at the elderly man before him and greeted with a smile .
“… It’s you?”
The elderly chairman sulked slightly, but he quickly dwindled his look .
“I didn’t expect to meet you here, Earl Rhode . Have you recovered from your injuries?”
“Thanks for the concern, Parliament Chairman . ”
Even though Rhode sounded respectful, his attitude was otherwise . He didn’t show any respect to this elderly man at all . Instead, he narrowed his eyes, lifted his chin proudly, and looked down on him in disdain . He perked up the corners of his mouth .
“It’s merely a bite from a crazy dog and countless dogs have died under my sword, so I don’t mind a few more . I might as well kill all of them and cook them up in a hotpot . What do you think, Parliament Chairman? It’s the harsh winter now, so you might as well have some piping hot food for your frail body, isn’t it?”
The elderly man’s complexion turned ashen . He knew what Rhode was hinting, but what could he do? Fall out with him? What could he do even if he fell out with Rhode? Moreover, he wasn’t here to bicker with him . The elderly man let out a snort and shifted his gaze away from Rhode . Then, Rhode’s voice captured his attention .
“By the way, Parliament Chairman, I just thought of something . If I recall correctly, I was the victor from the battle yesterday, right?”
“… What are you trying to say?!”
The elderly man glared fiercely at Rhode while the latter twitched his brows before shrugging with a sigh .
“If I recall correctly… What is it called? Forget it . I’m not interested in remembering the name of that man who challenged me and was defeated . According to the rules of the Dragon Soul Ceremony, the victor should receive a generous reward, isn’t it? I left too hurriedly yesterday and didn’t manage to request it . Your honorable parliament wouldn’t keep everything to yourself, huh?”
“… What do you want?!”
The elderly chairman no longer looked ashen . Instead, he had turned purple . Indeed, such a rule existed for the military exercise in the Dragon Soul Ceremony . Apart from receiving the blessings of the Light Dragon Soul, the final victor could also gain a generous reward . The Magician Knights were killed in the overly bloody battle and Andre was left gravely injured . The problem was that not only was Andre’s life in danger, but according to the Clerics who treated him, he was also suffering from a mysterious and terrifying curse where spiritual spells couldn’t remove it . Even though such a curse wouldn’t take Andre’s life, it would leave him incredibly weak and he couldn’t get up on his feet . It could also be said that even if Andre wasn’t dead, he would be no different from a handicapped person .
[Holy Sword Succubus—Curse Property: After striking its target, there is a 30% chance of inflicting a weakness curse . Undispellable . ]
If Rhode knew about it, perhaps he would exclaim in awe on how lucky Andre was to hit the 30% probability . But… as for whatever happened to Andre thereafter, it had nothing to do with him anymore .
Even in true battles, the Magician Knights had never suffered such a terrible loss . This led to complete chaos in the Light Parliament and them forgetting about the rule in rewarding the victor . The elderly chairman didn’t expect that this young man to be that shameless to ask for it!
Rhode didn’t care if he was being shameless or not, since it was only right for him to receive the reward and it would be a waste not to . Furthermore, this could leave the Light Parliament fuming . Such a method to kill two birds with one stone was as great as gulping down an ice-cold drink on a warm, summer afternoon… Why would Rhode even reject it?
“I won’t ask for too much . ”
Rhode revealed a smile and spread his arms apart .
“If I recall correctly, in the collection of your honorable parliament, there is a ‘King’s Protection’, right?”
The elderly chairman opened his eyes wide . His aged, weak body swayed and he extended his trembling finger at Rhode .
‘King’s Protection’ was one of the most valuable gems in the Light Parliament’s collection . Rumor had it that it was one of the weapons used by the King who worshiped the Light Dragon during the founding of the Country of Light . It was a completely white shield embedded with magical runes filled with divine guardian powers . This shield was enormous and heavy, where ordinary humans couldn’t move it at all . In fact, ever since the establishment of the Light Parliament, the ‘King’s Protection’ had been hidden deeply in their treasure chest and conserved as a symbol of human bravery .
“There shouldn’t be a problem, right, Parliament Chairman?”
Rhode said with a smile .
“This is my privilege as the victor, right? If you aren’t willing to, I will need to discuss with Her Majesty . I guess, according to the traditions…”
The elderly man interrupted . He gritted his teeth and glared at Rhode as though he were his father’s murderer . After a few moments, he let out a long sigh .
“… Alright, I will hand the King’s Protection to you before you leave tomorrow . Is this arrangement fine?! Earl Rhode?!”
“Sure, I’m glad, Parliament Chairman . ”
Rhode’s smile broadened into a grin . Anyone would burst into chuckles when a few words could exchange for a legendary artifact . But this was only the start for him .
“Alright then . Next…”
The elderly man snapped .
“Earl Rhode! Our Light Parliament will not tolerate being bullied! If you go overboard, we…”
“How can this request be too much, Parliament Chairman?”
Rhode spread his arms apart and looked at the elderly man with an innocent-looking face .
“Have you forgotten? Only Anne and I have stepped onto the battlefield . In other words, both of us should receive a reward . The previous reward was for Anne and the next should be for me… Do you have any objections to this?”
The elderly man gawked, but couldn’t utter a single word . His beard trembled constantly . Rhode wasn’t sure if the elderly man would collapse to a heart attack . Finally, the elderly man lowered his head, perhaps due to Rhode’s reasonable explanations or perhaps he was too fatigued .
“Alright then . Earl Rhode, what do you want?”
“My request is fairly simple . ”
Rhode extended three fingers delightfully .
“I just want 30 of the best Soul Cores . ”
“… Just like that?”
The elderly man widened his eyes in astonishment . He was mentally prepared for Rhode to raise a request that would rip him off . But he never expected that this young man only asked for 30 Soul Cores? Even though Soul Cores were indeed hard for ordinary people to lay their hands on and the best ones were rarely seen in the market, it wasn’t surprising for a massive force like the Light Parliament to possess some . Although Soul Cores were precious, they were merely expensive and rare… On the other hand, a legendary artifact like the King’s Protection was true wealth!
“That’s right, Parliament Chairman . I think this shouldn’t be tough for you . ”
The elderly man hesitated for a moment . Then, he frowned and shook his head .
“I’m sorry, Earl Rhode . Even though we have Soul Cores in our possession, we don’t have 30 of them . I’m sure you’re aware that they are precious and rare . Moreover, you’re asking for the best Soul Cores… I can give you 10 of them at most . ”
“No problem . ”
Rhode agreed instantly .
“Alright then, I look forward to you fulfilling your promise, Parliament Chairman . ”
Rhode nodded slightly before turning away without hesitation, leaving the elderly chairman before the large doors in a daze . He didn’t expect that Rhode would agree to his words so straightforwardly .
What exactly is going on in his head?
The elderly man remain perplexed despite much thought .
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