Book 5, Chapter 51

Ignorance Is Bliss

Richard couldn’t find any words to say, his mind immediately flashing to Beye. Who would go to a battlefield of despair to hook up? What ‘women’ were in that godforsaken place anyway? There were only killers, male or female.

“I’ll… see to it,” he said reluctantly. It wasn’t possible to turn down such a trivial request.

Excusing himself for a moment, he sent someone to gather his followers from Faelor before returning to the back hall. Without any pressing issues, he happily spent time talking with Ferlyn about the exploits of her past. After a few rounds, he asked to switch to wine instead. The alcohol shed all of his inhibitions, and he started chatting heartily with her like they were old friends.

“You’re becoming bolder and bolder,” she said mysteriously at one point, “just like your father when he was young.”

“I’m just trying to please you,” he replied sheepishly.

“For Flowsand?” she asked with a faint smile.

“Yes, sorry.” At this point, he started blushing red. The year spent mingling with commoners in the Land of Dusk had really dulled his sensibilities.

“Is that so? I know everything about you. You went to Klandor and almost got yourself killed for Mountainsea, and for Sharon you went to a battlefield of despair in a heartbeat. What about Flowsand? What does she mean to you? What do you plan to do with the three of them?”

Richard was a little surprised; not by the fact that she had managed to find out— after all, she was someone who could even peek into the past— but by the fact that she was interested enough to look. Her questions were hard-hitting as well, causing him to look down in shame. He didn’t notice her glancing at a figure behind him.

“I… I…” he tried hard to find words but constantly fumbled. His hands started digging into the flesh of his calves in frustration.

“Tell me what you think of Flowsand. Why didn’t you want to see her before you went off to the Land of Dusk?” Ferlyn pressed on.

“I’m not sure…” Richard took a deep breath and raised his head, “I’m not sure who’s more important to me, Master, Flowsand, or Mountainsea. I would give up everything for any of them, but it was just circumstance that I ended up having to go to Klandor and the Land of Dusk. If I had gone to see Flowsand, I might not have had the courage to go. I couldn’t let that happen.”

However, Ferlyn still didn’t give up, “Then which one of the three is most important to you? If they were to fight, who would you side with?”

This was another pointed question that he had never even thought about. However, he now had no choice but to say something, so he thought for a long time and poured quite a few cups of wine down his throat before speaking apologetically, “Sorry, this needed a bit of courage. I think…”

It was at that point that he suddenly sensed something, turning to look back.

Flowsand was at the door, having lost all of her normal beauty. Her skin was so pale that it could blend into the wall.

If she were to leave him for good, the absence would be suffocating.

Richard stood up in shock, but before he could even speak she had pounced forward and sealed his mouth with a kiss.

It took an entire minute for him to break away, finally managing to get some words out, “You’re back so soon?”

However, she cupped his mouth and huffed, “Wait, let’s talk later. Head out for a bit, I have to speak to this old woman!”

Richard was puzzled, but before he could say anything Flowsand just pushed him out of the hall.

……

“You old hag!” Flowsand was raging at Ferlyn, her body wound up like a lioness ready to pounce on an intruder, “What were you trying to do, asking all those questions? Why did you have to tell him about us?!”

Ferlyn continued to smile gently, “Look at you, so impatient. I almost got him to say the truth, but you just had to interrupt. Isn’t that what you always wanted to know?”

These words seemed to pierce right into Flowsand’s heart. All of the tension faded away and she slumped to the floor, crying with her head in her hands, “I don’t want to know any more! So what if I knew, what difference would it make? If… if… Whatever, I just don’t want to know!”

The question had constantly on her mind, surfacing time and time again. However, she had concluded that it didn’t matter at all. So what if she mattered the most to him, would he give up on Sharon and Mountainsea? And what if he didn’t even care for her, could she bring herself to leave? This was a question that was best left unanswered.

Ferlyn walked over, stroking her hair, “You’re a very smart girl, but too stubborn. But that’s alright, I will help you. Even if one is a powerhouse amongst legends and the other is the princess of Klandor, it doesn’t matter.”

Flowsand continued to cry in Ferlyn’s embrace, constantly wiping away her tears, “I know he needs to get stronger. I know he’s doing it because of me, at least partly. But that’s not what I want! I just… I just…”

“You just want him to come home safe,” Ferlyn sighed.

Flowsand broke down further.

The two ladies stayed in a silent embrace. They were the pride of Norland on any other day, but now they were no different from peasants wishing their beloveds a safe return. However, like most men, Richard and Philip were clueless and just did things their way.

……

Richard was starting to get restless when the door suddenly opened and Flowsand walked out. She wrapped herself around his arm and said happily, “Come, let’s go to the altar. What stuff did you get?”

“You’d never guess!” Richard beamed. This one moment was worth the entire year of battles.

“Then there must be a lot!” she clung even tighter to his arm, her ample bosom constantly grinding against him. It took an inordinate amount of effort to keep himself from having a physical reaction.

“So?” she whispered softly in his ears, literally hanging off him at this point, “How many offerings do you have?”

As a runemaster who was also killing countless enemies in a battlefield of despair, Richard had accumulated a number of offerings over the past year. In fact, he now had more top-tier offerings than Beye did. His response was instant, but Flowsand’s words right after turned his pride into absolute fear: “Okay then, that’s the number of times you’re making love to me today.”

The ceremony was held immediately, and it took an exceptionally long time. The priestesses outside started to burn with jealousy as time went on, clearly realising just how much grace Flowsand would receive. However, Richard himself was filled with dread despite the numerous blessings he had received. The hourglasses representing extended lifespan, the divine crystal, even the divine bow with ten divine arrows did nothing to lessen the clenching of his heart.

It didn’t help that none of these things were immediately useful to him. His biggest need right now was a boost to his bloodline, something that would synergise well with his meditation technique. Still, he just sighed and put everything away. His followers could use the extended youth, and the broodmother always needed more divinity. The bow was extremely powerful as well; combined with the two tracking arrows, it would be the death of any grand mage. However, that would have to wait until Olar or someone else was powerful enough to use it.

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: Hazel

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA