Richard immediately followed the rune knight to the portal, finding the gate flickering in a frenzy of various lights. Thirty rune knights were already in formation around it, alongside a dozen priests and mages that maintained every blessing possible on the front row. Whenever an enemy did come out, the first ten would stall while the rest were buffed as well.
“Hmm?” His eyes were immediately drawn to a young priest that was standing before the portal, emitting pure light gold timeforce from his hand to keep the gate under control.
The priest heard Richard’s voice and immediately stopped his spell, turning around to bow, “Your Grace, the portal is being strengthened greatly. This isn’t only for capacity, either; if this keeps up, it will quickly be able to accommodate legendary beings.”
“Legends, huh… Looks like I was right. Anyway, you’ve done well for yourself, Caesar.”
The youth’s eyes lit up, “Thank you, Your Grace. It is an honour to be recognised even after all these years.”
At the mention of time, Richard couldn’t help but lose focus. It hadn’t even been two years in Norland, but more than a decade had passed in Faelor. The once-emaciated noble teenager had grown into a powerful priest, and from the looks of it had reached level 15 even in this plane which the Eternal Dragon neglected. This was a great talent, even considering the entire Archeron Family.
“Fontaine was my friend, of course I’ll remember his children…” he muttered, “You seem to have a gift with timeforce as well. Tell you what, remind me when this war is done. I’ll take you to the Church in Norland and let you see a true altar to the Eternal Dragon.”
“R-Really?” Caesar immediately paled before his cheeks flushed with joy. No gift was worth more to a priest than the ability to witness the miracles of the deity they worshipped. He even stood a chance to gain a level just from the experience.
Richard smiled softly and patted his shoulder before walking towards the portal, probing it with his mana to confirm the assessment. While he trusted the youth he had nurtured, it also took an enormous amount of energy to upgrade a portal’s level beyond what was normal for the target plane. One only needed to stabilise a passage to increase the number of people that could pass through, but expanding it was orders of magnitude more difficult.
“It seems like I really pissed them off,” he chuckled. Even though he knew little about the dragon plane itself, he did understand Tiamat’s wealth and where she ranked within it. Extrapolating a little, it quickly became clear that the cost of upgrading a portal like this was massive even for the dragons.
“Do we get to fight a legend, boss?” Medium Rare shouted with joy, “I’ll be here every day!”
The ogre warlord’s greatest advantage was his brute strength. Coupled with Mana Armament which he could activate in an instant, he could burst forth with concussive levels of force even for metallic dragons. Unlike Waterflower of Phaser who needed to target weaknesses, he could also just slam any potential entrants right in the head.
Muttering to himself for a while, Richard eventually nodded in approval. Although the portal had been strengthened, it was impossible to know just when the opposing dragon would arrive. Tiramisu was the best guard for the portal; without the Judge or Moonlight, even he himself couldn’t beat the ogre convincingly.
He then connected to a distant cloned brain, looking up the transportation schedule to find an important shipment currently en route from Bluewater that would take an estimated five to six days to arrive. He deployed a few dozen winged serpents to act as guards. This shipment contained fifty dragonblood javelins that had been blessed in Norland by the God of Death, each one almost an epic-grade weapon in itself. When dealing with dragons, each one held the power of a saint going all out in itself, and their users’ power would only stack on top. Even against legends, they were quite effective.
Each one of these javelins cost nearly a hundred thousand gold, but the reason Richard only had fifty was that Faust didn’t have the inventory to satisfy his requirements. He had already placed an order for a hundred more, which would be transferred to him soon. Considering that each of these javelins would lose their special powers with a single use, this was a staggering cost.
However, they were certainly worth it. The fifty javelins could kill even a legendary dragon with a bit of luck, or grievously wound it at minimum. With a five million gold investment, the body and materials from the dragon alone would make up for the loss.
Five days would pass quickly, and in all likelihood the portal wouldn’t even be stabilised before the javelins arrived. It would likely take even more time for the dragon on the other end to pass through. Of course, Richard wasn’t one to pin his hopes on such a thing if he had a choice; three groups of fifty rune knights each were stationed at the portal in rotation, supplemented by 200 shadowspears. The remaining hundred would also remain nearby, prepared to reinforce if the dragon did appear.
Once all the arrangements were done, Richard contacted the broodmother.
“Do you need anything, Master?” she asked the moment he connected to her.
“I need some special drones.”
“Should I stop production on the winter soldiers?”
“No, this isn’t in bulk. In fact, there isn’t much of a combat requirement either. One second,” he transmitted a few images and descriptions from his mind, “These are some famous legends of Norland, I need you to make a few clones of them.”
“I can’t build legendary beings yet, Master…”
“I don’t need them to be legendary, I just need the exteriors. They need to make a strong impression, but that’s it.”
“Hmm… I recently figured out how to make some of my drones emit saint-level auras for a few seconds. Will that work?”
“Perfect, how long will they take?”
“Not very. They only need to be level 5, so the forest can make them without me being involved. You can have the first batch by tomorrow.”
“Alright, make a few copies of my followers as well. Also twenty of myself, swords included this time. The dragons already saw me once.”
“Oh! I see now, that’s genius! I’ll get right on it.” She had finally understood his plan.
A number of cloned brains flew into what was now called Dragon Valley the next morning, bringing over a hundred newly-built drones. Each one looked grand and imposing, coming from a mix of various races and resembling powerhouses of Norland’s past and present. There were even half a dozen resembling Tiramisu alone, both heads perfectly animated and pretending to speak with each other.
At first sight, Richard’s followers couldn’t believe their eyes. However, it didn’t take long to realise that these drones were only empty shells without substance that would die to one strike. Facing their questioning, Richard smiled wordlessly and gestured to the portal. Picking out a drone that looked like the historical Dragonslayer Nolan— a powerhouse that more than half of all plane-faring dragons had heard about— he had it enter the gate.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
Translated By: Choco
Edited By: Theo
TLC'ed By: OMA