Author: Demon Lord D (D魔王)
Chapter 12: Second Chance
Iron Gauntlet walked around for a week with his legs clenched together, and no longer appeared at the breakfast hall.
–It was told that since then he really didn’t go to the ‘Mermaid’ anymore.
The “Eagle Mercenary Troop” silently disbanded, the members all entered smaller groups. Many of them were completely changed, becoming extremely polite and modest, desperate to forget the past.
The elf no longer asked to join the knight’s table, of course, he had no need to do so.
Everyday when he walked into the hall, people would always jostle to ask him to join in this or that mission.
Undoubtedly the elf was popular, and very suited for teams.
Only after working together once, he would be able to remember everyone’s faces and names, even though he didn’t speak much, he was a very good listener. On the occasion that he did speak he would make the others in the team laugh and cheer.
Of course, he never forgot his greetings. Other than the knight, the names after “Good morning” became longer and longer.
In the end, gradually, it became “Good morning, everyone.”
This is good, the knight thought.
This is where he belongs.
At night he would watch the courtyard from the upper floors, the elf would always be standing there, silently shooting twenty four arrows into the target, taking it down, and then repeating this until the church bell sounded twelve o’clock.
The elf’s movements became more fluid.
From the degree of tightness of the bow(1), it could be seen that he was slowly regaining the strength he lost.
However, the knight didn’t have a lot of time to observe, because he needed to seize this time to rest.
From an abandoned well outside the city he retrieved his abandoned shield and sword.
The moment he gripped the hilt of the sword, feeling that familiar weight, the knight knew – that he had not given up.
After twelve, he would sneak into an isolated corner of the courtyard, practicing the sword skills that he had abandoned for a month or more.
The ten o’clock curfew during the war helped him a lot, no one could see him. Thus the knight could also enjoy the freedom of being out of the heavy armor for a time.
But how much longer would these days last?
There was news that the rebel army had started to abandon the other locations, gathering their forces to prepare to attack the capital.
If the flames of war really came close, the mercenaries would become very popular.
Because unlike the army that eats the king’s grain, and giving compensation to the family of the fallen, mercenaries could only receive rewards if they lived to complete the mission.
The knight hated war, but hated the ones who started the war even more.
If it was possible to end this civil war as soon as possible, he didn’t mind staining his hands with blood.
If he performed heroically enough during the war, there might even be a chance at amnesty.
How ridiculous, to become a criminal because he didn’t kill someone, and be cleared of the crime by killing more people.
The recruitment order from the crown came out, although there wasn’t much details, the requirements and expected rewards were listed very clearly.
The request were for a party of ten. The knight shook his head, preparing to leave.
When he moved to the breakfast lobby, he brushed against the elf.
“Good morning, Cain.” The elf said.
The knight continued pass as if not hearing.
“Ah… please wait a moment.”
This is a first.
The knight stopped, turning to look at him.
“Um, I know you only take on solo missions,” the elf looked hesitant, “but is it possible to break that rule once? You know, that the crown is recruiting parties of ten, the reward seems to be fairly high. – We are still missing a warrior.”
The knight was silent, but his heart had started to beat rapidly.
Too dangerous. Refuse him.
The elf’s green eyes carried expectation and trust, his face was a little pleading.
The knight didn’t reply, he made no movements, watching as those eyes started to cloud with the shadows of disappointment.
“Sorry,” the elf lowered his head, “am I troubling you?”
As long as you ask, no other warriors would refuse you.
“I’m very sorry.” The elf said very politely, “It won’t happen again.”
He nodded one last time, revealing a lonely smile to the knight.
“… Good bye, Cain.”
It might be dangerous but accept it.
The team members he choose won’t be informants.
You’ve rejected him once, this is the second and last chance.
Damn it, he heard that elven race were born with natural psychological persuasion magic, that can’t be true right.
The knight sighed, despising his resistance to the Chaos element.(2)
“… I didn’t say ‘no’.”
After a moment of shock, the elf smiled.
“Thank you,” He said, “thank you very much.”
Seeing the reward, basically all the mercenaries signed up.
After many rounds of selection, about half the people were ordered to return to wait for orders, only four groups remained to be taken outside the city. “Thorn”, “Wolf”, “Cheetah”, and the elf’s temporary group of ten.
The red haired Titan enthusiastically suggested ten or more names for the team. Finally, everyone the relatively reasonable name of “Bread and Oatmeal porridge”(3). – It was the only type of food provided by the ‘Mercenary’s Home’.
As for the names that did not make it, the knight was too lazy to remember them.
At the camp outside they met a gloomy man, Hazlett Duncan, the captain of the Royal Knights, this mission’s commanding officer.
“Tonight,” Duncan said, “according to the reports, there will be a team of rebel vanguard passing through this area of the city. The numbers are unclear, in order to maintain speed, they won’t send out too many people. Also, there will be no riders. It is possible that this group will not be using any flares, but rather potions to increase night vision. I will also prepare these things for you.”
He pointed to the map, “Your mission is the hide along the paths that they will pass, if possible attack them. Arrows, swords, knives, traps, whatever, by fair means or foul.”
“There are four routes to choose from.” Duncan marked the four red lines drawn on the map, “one, or two teams will meet with the rebels, as for the others –“
He said in a scornful tone, “Consider that you’ve each received a gold piece for free. – Good, now,are there anymore questions?”
The captain of “Thorn” thought for a moment, then said, “Will there be any backup support?”
“You can assume there won’t be.”
“Then, what is our purpose in the grand scheme?”
“… A vital pawn, but still a pawn. That’s all you need to know.”
Clearly he did not plan to continue to explain.
“After this succeeds, will there be more missions available?”
“Possibly,” Duncan glanced at the four teams, settling on the elf, “there are some amongst you I am not familiar with. So think of this as a field test.”
The elf raised a hand.
“For assigning routes,” the elf said, “If we can choose for ourselves, we want number three.”
Duncan frowned, “Number three is not suitable for ambush.”
“The rebels will think the same.” the elf replied, “For being in hot water for a night, one gold coin isn’t really worth much.”
Light laughter rang out all around, and was quickly silenced under Duncan’s gaze.
“If there are no more questions,” Duncan waited for a moment, then said, “Thorn, number one, Wolf, number two, Cheetah, four. Start moving towards the ambush points at eight tonight, I’ll give the details to your captains. Everyone else can take a rest.”
- I think he meant the weight of the bow. Remember, Ellen had trouble pulling the 100 lb bow at the start of this.
- I assume magical persuasion is in the chaos element? Lol I’m not really sure it made sense, but since he’s a paladin and probably has high amounts of the holy element, his resistance against chaos magic would be high. So why is he cursing it? >.< Probably cause he thinks he wouldn’t have so much trouble accepting the offer if he didn’t have resistance against Ellen’s persuasions? (Poor Cain, I should probably tell you that it’s not magic that persuaded you lol just Ellen XD)
- If that’s one of the more reasonable names, I worry for what other names Titan might have come up with lol, anyone have suggestions? XD
Notice: I will be going on a trip next week (starting tomorrow actually) I will try to work on more chapters, but I cannot guarantee a release next week. The joys of being able to speak Japanese relatively well is that I get to be the one in charge of all the dining arrangements T_T Do you know how annoying it is trying to satisfy 9 ppl with different food preferences!? Hopefully, you will not see a news report about a tourist going crazy and murdering her travel companions next week 😛
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