Devon was obviously quite pleased with this transaction. He could hardly wait to see how great the benefits his slaving hounds could reap with this.
He raised his cup towards Richard with a smile, “Mr. Richard… Let us forget about that idiot Schitich, and have a good celebration. I hope we can have many more successful partnerships after today. Amon has many magical materials, while Bivier can procure a shocking amount of minerals. As for me, outside of gold you are most welcome to visit my slave camps if you’re interested. You might find something to your liking over there.”
Slave camp? Richard’s heart skipped a beat, and he immediately smiled and asked, “What kind of goods do you have in your camp, Mr. Devon?”
“Whatever you may want! Barbarians, orcs, demonic beasts, half-orcs, elves… Even the cruel and savage desert people, you can find them all at my slave camps!” Devon was brimming with confidence, waving his hands mightily before he lowered his voice and spoke with an air of mystery, “I recently came into possession of a batch of interesting goods. If you’re interested, I can show them to you tonight.”
Richard muttered to himself for a while before asking, “I want to select a group of people from your camp to form an escort team. Do you have any suggestions?”
A glimmer of light flashed across Devon’s eyes, “Slaves are the best kind of cannon fodder! They’re just quite dangerous and hard to control. As for the kind of slaves, you should choose based on the scale of your team and the terrain you normally fight in. If it’s a team that needs less than 500 and they’ll be fighting in the Bloodstained Lands, then the desert people are your best choice. They can conquer the harshest of conditions, fighting two to three days without food or drink and still being in optimal condition. They’re also natural horsemen.
“For smaller battles needing more personal strength I recommend headhunter orcs. Adult warriors are level 7 at least, and slaughter is their second nature. However, they’re extremely dangerous. Barbarians of the snowpeak tribe make the best personal guard. Even teenagers are level 8, while trained adults can reach level 10. They have their own weakness though. They’re too expensive, haha!”
The joke was quite lame, but everyone present still laughed merrily. This response showed the status this obese man enjoyed.
Devon had thrown out a few leads in that ardent explanation. He was sounding out Richard’s future plans— whether he would be fighting in the Bloodstained Lands, his usual battle style, and whether the fights would be small in scale or large. Of course, to no one’s surprise the young man maintained the same graceful smile from start to finish. There was no information to be gathered from his expression, as he didn’t respond to Devon’s questions in any way.
Through their private room’s door, Richard glanced outside to see an eye-catching warrior who was obviously much taller and stronger than ordinary humans. He was half a head taller than even Gangdor himself, radiating a valiant aura from head to toe. Even though he was dressed in human clothing, one could still see that he was a barbarian warrior roughly around level 10, similar to Gangdor.
Richard pointed to the burly man, “That’s a warrior of the snowpeak tribe?”
“Indeed. Zagu is my number one guard, and he’s been following me for seven years.” Having said that, Devon had the fellow come over so Richard could get a close look at him.
Richard stood up and went a few rounds around Zagu. He even cast two detection spells, grabbing the barbarian’s body from time to time. Zagu’s face flushed with anger, but he stopped himself from acting up. Everyone present could see his displeasure, but nobody cared for the anger of a slave.
Richard didn’t bother either. Norland had similar practices with slaves, and he was actually doing something important. He wasn’t grabbing the barbarian out of curiosity, instead taking the chance to understand the structure of his body and especially the distribution of his bones and muscles.
Having completed a detailed inspection, Richard understood a little more about the barbarian race. He then returned to his seat, closing his eyes as all sorts of data was analysed and tidied in his mind. The figure of an adult barbarian slowly started to form in his consciousness, and although it was still a little fuzzy it would grow more detailed the more of Zagu’s kind he met.
Barbarians were naturally gifted with tremendous strength, not unlike the orcs. They were natural fighters, easily able to cross level 10, but from that point forward advancing was extremely challenging. They found it hard to train their energy reserves, and unlike humans they were too primitive to have systems of skills and training method. Devon’s bodyguard seemed to be quite strong, but there wasn’t much room for improvement. He would cap out at level 12, and had little capacity for runes as well. He could use a single elementary rune at best.
Even though he was a single level above Zagu, Gangdor’s eruption rune gave him immense strength. He also had a powerful bloodline, and had gone through rigorous training in the Archeron death camp. His skill was high enough for him to defeat even six or seven such barbarian warriors with ease. Things would only be different if the barbarians could also have bloodline abilities and high rune capacities.
Waving the man away, Richard asked, “This Zagu is an outstanding warrior indeed. However, he is after all a slave, how do you guarantee loyalty?”
“Zagu is a third generation barbarian. The barbarians of the snowpeak tribe have one good point— their faith in their ancestors’ spirits. As long as they swear to something on their ancestral spirit, you can rest assured that they will be loyal. This is why I recommended them as guards,” Devon explained with a smile. He then shrugged his shoulders, “However, they really are extremely expensive. A young warrior with potential can cost more than a thousand gold, while I wouldn’t sell someone like Zagu even if you gave me 1,500 coins.”
Richard knocked on the table as he thought it over, before making up his mind. He would go with Devon in two days, visiting a slave camp to have a look.
At that time, Bivier the mineral merchant spoke up with a wide-eyed gaze, “Mr. Richard, I heard you’re a respected mage. Mages never fail to surprise us; do you have anything to offer aside from the scrolls? As long as the artifact is good, gold will not be a problem.”
Richard and smiled and said, “I so happen to have a good artifact here, I can let everyone appraise it. This is the result of my teacher’s latest research, the pinnacle of his achievement in alchemy and magic.”
He gestured to Olar, and the bard took out a magic box and carefully placed it on the table. Everyone with knowledge of the business could immediately tell that the jewels embedded into the box alone were worth more than a thousand coins. The craft was especially exquisite as well, obviously made by elven hands. Just the box alone could fetch a price of 1,200 coins.
The room grew quiet and everyone waited with bated breath. They watched closely at what sort of valuable artifact would emerge from this box that was worth more than a thousand coins.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
Translated By: Styles
Edited By: Theo
TLC'ed By: OMA