Book 3, Chapter 19

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Two days later, Richard and his troops returned to Bluewater. Having received news of his arrival, Amon and Devon were waiting outside for him. They knew that he had just plundered a second-class Red Cossack caravan, which meant they could each reap a reward of about thirty to forty thousand in profit. This was a highly profitable business.

However, even they were surprised by the two saints in attendance. Falcao, who had just arrived the previous day, had joined Rolf to tag along with the welcoming party.

Ever since he was gifted the War Construct scroll, Rolf had felt uneasy about Richard’s safety and wanted to see him. As for Falcao, the news of Rolf’s rune had piqued his interest, causing him to swallow his arrogance and deliberately seek a good relationship with Richard. As a spellsword, he naturally had a deeper understanding of magic than Rolf. He knew the effects of a rune had to be like any other magic item. If the maker was lax or materials inferior, it would be dramatically worse. If he wanted something ideal, pleasing this great mage was of utmost importance.

Richard’s warhorse was trotting towards the welcoming party. Looking at the lineup from a distance, he felt a little startled. There were two extraordinary auras in the crowd, and although both tried to suppress it to the best of their ability, even dressing down and hiding in the crowd, there was no way for them to escape his perception. Every runemaster was exceptionally sensitive, an important characteristic in the craft.

With one of these auras coming from Rolf, Richard felt a sense of pleasant surprise. The swordsman had evidently studied the manual for the scroll, feeling confused by the minimal display needed to unlock the greatest level of power. It would only be a matter of time before Rolf fell into the domain of the Eternal Dragon, and all he needed to do now was find an appropriate time to kick the fellow into a lake of fire to destroy the last dregs of his resistance.

The other person of similar imposition was a scholarly-looking middle-aged man. Even though Richard had never met him, Richard inferred that this was Falcao, one of two saints that were a part of the Golden Warflag. He must have reached the place a few days ago, or the Red Cossack saints would have arrived as well. Devon would not make such a mistake.

Richard adjusted his emotions and flashed his most radiant smile, spurring his horse onward. “Devon, Mr. Amon!” he cried from afar, “Why are you people here? Are you in urgent need of some profit?”

Both put on sincere smiles, welcoming Richard. The three exchanged pleasantries as though they were long-time friends that had never seen one another in forever. The two old foxes were sly and difficult to read, but Richard himself was no better.

Once done, Richard ‘unintentionally’ shifted his gaze to Rolf. “Lord Rolf!” he cried out with surprise on his face, “Why are you here?”

Rolf got off his horse, walking towards Richard with a smile, “I would never have guessed that a great mage with a bright future like you would also be an outstanding general. I heard you just destroyed a second-class caravan, but your troops seem to have sustained little damage. I’m sure no more than three others in the Sequoia Kingdom could perform such a feat.”

Richard laughed and shook his head, “I don’t know much about strategy, I’m just lucky. Besides, there were many accidents when I was fighting the caravan, luckily I managed to take care of them. Now, I’m quite sure you all know this man…”

Richard took out a human head from his bag as he spoke, passing it to Rolf. The saint swordsman took the head, looking at the face before he could make a guess. “Blackwing!” he suddenly cried it out in alarm.

“What?” The faces of Amon, Devon, and even Falcao changed. They immediately gathered around, their gazes landing on the head in Rolf’s hands.

It really was Blackwing!

Everyone fell silent for a brief moment, their breath held in speechlessness.

Blackwing’s reputation was not one whit inferior to Chuck or Phinbar. Having been at level 15 for many years, he could have broken through at any time. A gifted assassin, more than half of the people on Red Cossack’s blacklist had fallen to his dagger.

It was less than ten days ago that Blackwing had killed one of Richard’s most capable subordinates right before Rolf’s eyes. Nobody would have expected Richard’s troops to return with his head so soon! Blackwing was a fearsome character, and somewhat rarely for assassins he seldom moved about alone. The more than ten experienced killers under him were enough to showcase his might.

Even Rolf and Falcao would rather mess with Chuck or Phinbar over picking a fight with Blackwing. If they fell on the assassin’s hit list, even saints like them couldn’t guarantee their own lives. After all, they couldn’t protect themselves with spells or abilities all the time.

Rolf inhaled deeply, uneasily managing to pull his attention away from Blackwing’s head. The moment of death was still captured on the assassin’s face, a mix of shock, anger, and utter disbelief. What circumstances could have left an assassin with so many heads to his name with such an incomprehensible expression?

When he looked at Richard again, Rolf’s gaze was complicated. This handsome young mage hid so many secrets under his alluring smile.

“Master Richard, I believe Blackwing had some more assassins under him…” Rolf continued to probe.

Richard flashed a dazzling smile, waving it off, “Those pieces of trash are all dead.”

The entire group couldn’t help but let out a cold breath. Even with luck on their side, destroying Blackwing’s most powerful subordinates would take a heavy toll. However, all of Richard’s closest aides were still around, evidently unscathed. Even the ordinary soldiers were mostly still present, without any visible change to their numbers. The only possibility was Richard’s army far surpassing Blackwing’s troops.

However, common sense dictated that this was impossible. Falcao couldn’t take it anymore, asking directly, “Pardon my boldness, Sir Richard, did you really kill Blackwing so easily?”

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: Styles

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA