Book 4, Chapter 3

A Rune For The Legends

Given how weak Dario Schumpeter was, he wouldn’t be able to stop Rosie from looking for lovers in the future, especially if they came from the Mensa Family. However, he would find a way to kill her off after she bore him a successor. This was an implicit condition when old Mensa had arranged her marriage to him.

Now, Rosie’s ‘greatest’ value had been taken by Richard. Although this was deliberate on her end, Richard couldn’t deny that he had benefited greatly. At the very least, he had enjoyed himself very much. All the way from forcing her to strip to the events of last night had been amazing. Even if he couldn’t remember it all, he still felt that insane desire to fondle her to death.

Accepting her would evoke the wrath of the Mensas and Schumpeters, but those families were already at his throat anyway. He didn’t mind adding another source of hostility between them; if he truly was afraid, he wouldn’t have killed off Young Mensa and asked for Rosie to strip for him. That hadn’t just been because she was at the scene.

His hesitation was more to do with his own psyche. He kept feeling like every step since Rosie had arrived on the Archeron island had left him in a passive state. No, perhaps ever since he won that battle of life and death, Rosie had prepared to follow up. If not for that, why had she repeatedly nagged him to let her follow him to a foreign plane? Her convenient appearance at the study last night was suspicious as well. If she had actually calculated the outcome of that meeting, then honouring the bet would be in her plans as well.

He wasn’t afraid of having another shrewd woman by his side, but he didn’t like being led by the nose. If not for Rosie repeatedly challenging him until he gave in to his rage, he likely wouldn’t have done anything to her even when drunk.

He eventually just sighed. Since things had already happened, there was no point in lingering on these thoughts. He wasn’t someone without any responsibilities, and Rosie was a negligible burden. Whether this burden was heavy or light depended on what position he gave her in his heart.

It was still early in the day. Richard called for a maid and got her to send Rosie a new set of clothes before heading to the study. The traces of chaos were still present, empty bottles strewn everywhere with his wine cup lying on the ground. There were even vestiges of the battle last night on the ground.

Without his permission, ordinary servants weren’t allowed to enter this place. The room remained uncleaned this morning because of that, with the half-emptied bottle still on the desk. Standing in the middle of the room, he smiled wryly as he shook his head.

He then looked towards the table, dimly remembering that he had carelessly written some stuff down on a piece of paper. However, the magic pen was still on the table but the paper had vanished.

Richard froze, trying hard to remember what had happened. Where had the paper gone? The traces in the room showed that none of the servants had entered, and a thief with even a modicum of understanding of magic would have no reason to leave the legendary pen behind. On top of that, even at its worst, the Archeron Family wouldn’t have let a thief enter the head’s study.

Had he really not drawn those doodles? Perhaps he just had too much to drink and imagined it all, he told himself.

He’d sent someone to tell Nyris and Agamemnon when he came back, so when he called for the servants to clean the study the old steward hastened over with Nyris’ reply.

There were few words in the letter, but one could tell from the tone that the Fourth Prince was in a great mood. He had invited Richard to lunch together, asking with interest about the situation regarding the latest runes. He still had some time before then, so Richard muttered to himself for a bit and asked the old steward, “What’s going on with Rosie?”

The old steward smiled, “I believe she poses no threat to the Archerons, which was why I took it upon myself to let her move about freely on the island. It seems there are quite a few people in the family who like her.”

Richard snorted, “You think she’s harmless?”

“Yes. How can a level 8 mage pose any threat to the Archerons?”

The steward’s deceptive answer left Richard helpless. He frowned, “You’re giving her too much free reign. Last night…”

The steward laughed in an understanding manner, “I believe she made a huge contribution to the Archeron Family last night!”

Richard’s expression changed to one of confusion, “You think it’s a contribution?”

“Yes, a contribution!” the old man answered resolutely.

Richard couldn’t hold back the urge to rub his head, knowing that he couldn’t change the stubborn notions of this loyal coot. He could only sigh, “Fine then. Make the arrangements, I’ll meet Nyris in the afternoon.”

The lunch was in the same restaurant and room where he had first met Nyris and Agamemnon. The two were already waiting inside, but this time Richard also brought Fuschia along carrying a magic box. Within the box were three million gold’s worth of runes, something enviable even in Faust. If someone took the risk to steal it out of desperation or did something under the table, it would put him in trouble.

The lunch was the same as the last time as well. Nyris continued to eat as he spoke, and Fuschia had the same reaction as Richard, gaping and forgetting to eat herself. Agamemnon remained taciturn, tending to his food.

Having been unlucky the last time, Richard would not make the same mistake now. As someone who had studied in the Deepblue, his appetite and eating speed did not lose out to theirs. The three swept through the food without any poise, not giving Fuschia any chances at all.

Nyris’ eyes were clear as water, continuously casting glances at Richard in excitement. He was emitting an astounding charm, to the point that even Fuschia was no match. She continued to watch on, dumbstruck, while Richard started growing extremely uncomfortable under Nyris’ burning gaze. He didn’t notice the speed of his eating had lowered greatly.

“This guy just cleared his debt,” Agamemnon suddenly interrupted, “He’s just overexcited. Don’t let it disturb you.”

Richard immediately understood, immersing himself into the food once more. It was only Fuschia who maintained any form of elegance in the last seat, meaning she lost out. By the time the three swept through the table and started their discussions, she was only half full.

In the end, Richard couldn’t watch further and called the servant to get dishes prepared just for her. Only then did the beautiful woman look slightly better. However, seeing Nyris smiling like the spring and even Agamemnon’s lips curving upwards, he suddenly understood their intentions. These fellows actually wanted him to show off in front of her, but it cost him thousands of gold! Still, that was a small price to pay for the goodwill of someone so powerful. Many were willing to pay for such a chance.

Richard felt somewhat strange. Somehow, without even realising it, these two had built up a rapport with him over the few interactions they’d had.

The three left Fuschia to finish the new dishes while they discussed their own matters. For her part, Fuschia stopped caring and released all her inhibitions, beginning to eat properly. Someone at her level naturally knew how good these foods were for her internal energy. What was dignity worth, anyway? When it came down to it, she was only in this situation because the others had swept away all the food in the first place.

Richard passed the magic box to Nyris, who opened it up and closely examined every rune. It took half an hour by the time he was done, saying with excitement, “The power of these runes is even greater than the last sets! Goodness, how long did it take?”

“It’s been four months on Faelor,” Richard said after some thought.

“Just four months!” Nyris shouted with a little exaggeration, pushing his seat closer to Richard’s, “If other runemasters want to improve their runes, they could take five to ten years! You used just four months? I don’t think it will be long until you start making the highest-quality composite runes as well!

“Right, do you know about the agility rune that appeared on the auction market a few years ago? It was unimaginable, able to be slotted into a hybrid slot but still almost matching a grade 2 rune! That rune has become a legend now, having sold for more than these three sets together. It was a piece of art! Richard, at the rate you’re improving, you could create a rune for the legends too!”

Richard gaped, a few garbled noises coming from his throat before he could only say, “I… I try not to deteriorate.”

*Pak!* Nyris slapped his shoulder hard, bellowing, “As a man, how can you be so ambitionless?”

This sudden fury from the Fourth Prince was full of charm. His eyes fluttered, nobility and beauty combining to make him seem more feminine than a woman. Fuschia, who had been immersed in her food, abruptly spat out a mouthful of soup!

The three men’s gazes immediately fixed onto her, leaving her extremely embarrassed. Her right foot lifted slightly off the floor, ready to break through with a stomp and send her to the lower level where she could evade the eyes of these despicable creatures.

She was on the verge of going crazy. She just couldn’t understand, the Fourth Prince looked surprisingly pretty and gentle, couldn’t he just act gracefully like a proper royal? Why was he bellowing? THIS DIDN’T MAKE SENSE!

Having worked with her for a decent period of time now, Richard turned away. He switched the focus back to the discussion, growing serious once more. However, seeing Nyris’ bitter gaze as though wishing for something better, he felt at a loss. He couldn’t actually tell the Fourth Prince that this so-called rune for the legends was probably one of his creations, could he?

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: Ying

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA