Chapter 169

“The soul transfers to another person?”

“Yes, everyone who is stabbed to death by this dagger shares the same fate.”

“The dagger of Çarcas, Carnion…”

Raven muttered while looking down at the dagger. The evil energy had disappeared like magic, and it appeared completely plain.

Çarcas, the God of Darkness.

The empire was generally tolerant of all religions and did not restrict the freedom of its citizens in choosing their faith. However, the Church of Çarcas had been defined as heresy by the empire and it had a history of causing small and large incidents with evil and bizarre sorcery.

Of course, priests and sorcerers belonging to other denominations had their fair share of accidents, but the sorcerers of Çarcas were on a whole other level. They utilized the forbidden acts of reviving the dead and binding the souls.

Their source of power was based on death and souls, so they needed more death and soul to compose stronger spells.

“Carnion has appeared in the world only a few times. The details are not well known, but the top masters of the Twilight Tower concluded that the cause of incidents of Lellen’s Mad Count Georgia and the Red Cube Knights’ rebellion belonged to the death sword Carnion.”

“Hm…!”

Vincent spoke with a mixed expression.

Raven was quite surprised. The events of Lellen’s Mad Count and the Rebellion of the Red Cube Knights were so famous that practically everyone had heard of the stories.

More than a hundred years ago, there was a rumor that Count Freddie Georgia had become a vampire and was controlling dead monsters. The imperial castle had dispatched the Royal Knights and a heretical interrogator.

They found out that the rumors were true.

Only one person came back alive out of the ten Royal Knights and one heretical interrogator, and the survivor ended up becoming a skeleton knight after completing his report to the emperor due to the sacrificial necromancy spell.

Eventually, the Order of the Golden Griffons and two imperial regiments came together to form a massive army and set out on an expedition to the Great Territory of Georgia. The Mad Count’s frenzied army collapsed in a matter of ten days.

The story of the Red Cube Knights was similar.

Baron Ginoa was the head of the Red Cube Knights and a renowned, respected lord of the west. He was considered one of the most powerful independent lords at the time.

But like a lie, the entire knight order turned into an order of death knights equipped with black helms and armors.

Like a gale, they reduced two great territories into ashes before turning their aim towards the capital. 20 high priests of the Temple of Light were dispatched along with the 1st imperial regiment, a group of heavy cavalries considered one of the most powerful forces in the empire, and the capital defense corps. In the end the death knights were annihilated, but the empire had been forced to deploy their strongest regiment along with the capital’s defense corps to deal with knights numbering in the 30s.

What was even more surprising was that it took only five days for the Red Cube Knights to demolish two great territories and near the capital. It was a seemingly impossible task, but it was made possible by the necromancy spell which affected them.

Their steeds were cursed as well, which created a horrifying combination of death knights and steeds. The death horses could gallop for day and night at top speed, never eating, never tiring. It was a terrifying group of knights and horses that could not be defeated with normal weapons.

It was enough to shock and plunge the entire empire into shock and fear.

But to think both of those infamous events were due to a single dagger…

“The Twilight Tower and very few sorcerers are aware that the two incidents were due to Carnion. But it could not be made public.”

“Why?”

Vincent’s expression turned a shade darker at Raven’s question. He answered in a solemn voice.

“Because it caused an even bigger event in the past.”

“…..!”

The two cases mentioned before could also be considered unprecedented, so it was hard to believe that something worse had been caused by Carnion.

“Carnion was commissioned by the Queen of Death to the Nameless Necromancer.”

“The Queen of Death…!”

Raven unknowingly raised his voice.

Everyone knew of the Queen of Death.

She was the biggest reason that the Aragon Empire was founded.

“Carnion was made to keep the man she loved by her side forever.”

“…She wanted to kill him and keep him by her side.”

“That is correct. However, she failed. Something more powerful than her was by the side of the man she loved.”

“Perhaps…?”

A thought flashed by Raven’s mind. He narrowed his eyes.

Vincent sighed loudly and nodded his head.

“It is as you may have guessed. The man whom the Queen of Death loved was Alex Pendragon, the founder of the Pendragon Duchy.”

“…..!”

Raven had guessed at the possibility, but it still came as a shock.

“But even the Twilight Tower masters do not know how Duke Alex Pendragon and the Queen of Death became acquainted, and what kind of relationship they shared. The only thing we are aware of is that she made Carnion to keep Duke Alex Pendragon by her side forever. The truth has been passed down as an oral tradition.”

“Hm.”

“And a being’s intervention at the time apparently sealed Carnion in the Great Tomb of the Departed Souls. The truth about the matter is probably…”

“Soldrake should know.”

“Yes.”

Vincent gave a heavy nod, and Raven became lost in thought.

This made it clear.

This incident was not just a simple assassination attempt.

The entire truth was not yet known, but a huge conspiracy spanning hundreds of years was hidden behind the incident. Otherwise, there was no reason to attempt to kill him with a dagger made to kill the founder of the Pendragon Duchy.

“You might have guessed, but this is highly unusual, my lord. The Nameless Necromancer must have been aiming at the lord to gain your soul. But since Lady Seyrod took the blow instead, their plan must have gone awry.”

“…..”

Raven stared at Luna’s body for a moment without a word, then spoke in a chilly voice.

“What is he attempting to do with the human soul?”

“Outstanding heroes, powerful knights, or beings with a contract with god-like beings. They can all serve as nourishment for incredibly powerful spells. You, my lord, would be a prime example. Moreover, they could be resurrected as undead that are incomparably powerful to the usual monsters.”

“Was he attempting to kill me to use me as an undead in his legion…?”

“It may be, but I do not think that was his purpose in this particular instance.”

“What is your reason?”

Raven’s voice sank deeper and deeper. Vincent realized that Raven’s anger was growing larger by the moment.

“It may be presumptuous, but he would not turn the soul of one contracted with a dragon to a simple undead. As I said, Carnion itself was created by the Nameless Necromancer to kill the first Duke of Pendragon, commissioned by the Queen of Death.”

“…..”

Raven nodded heavily to signal Vincent to keep talking.

“The biggest problem is that the Nameless Necromancer’s identity is unknown even to the Twilight Tower.”

“Hm…!”

Raven was a little surprised.

The Twilight Tower possessed numerous sorcerers and wise men that could rank top ten in the entire world, so how could they be unaware of the necromancer’s identity?

“The Queen of Death is clearly identified. She was the Queen of the Kingdom of Arkantia, a woman who sacrificed the blood of a thousand humans and a thousand monsters to train her necromancy to the extreme. She was the strongest of witches.”

Raven nodded his head quietly. He had already known about the Queen of Death.

“But the Nameless Necromancer is different. He is so secretive that practically nothing is known about him. We do not know how long he has lived for, if he is just one person or if the name is passed down from generation to generation.”

“It’s to that degree…?”

“Yes. Such a figure has personally stepped forward. He is trying to kill you with the dagger created to kill the first Duke of Pendragon. Moreover, he planned the assassination well knowing that Soldrake is not by the lord’s side right now.”

The unknown variables were the cause of Vincent’s concerns. Vincent had always made plans while looking one, two, three steps ahead. But in this instance, the opponent was an unknown being wrapped in a veil, and had planned out his plan while being completely aware of Raven’s situation and movement.

Of course, legendary treasures like Carnion were not common, but there was no guarantee that such an event would not happen again.

And…

“Phew…”

Vincent dropped his gaze with a long sigh.

Recognizing Vincent’s intent, Raven lowered his gaze as well and spoke in a cold voice.

“Such things must never happen again.”

“…Yes.”

It was fortunate that his master was safe, but Vincent was quite shocked by the death of Luna. He had been quite close to her in their days in York Town.

Most of all, he was concerned that her soul would not be able to find rest by the goddess’ side, but rather be used for evil by the Nameless Necromancer.

It was both a great misfortune and a huge threat for both the Seyrod County and the Pendragon Duchy, as well as for Luna herself.

“For now…”

Vincent looked up at Raven’s words.

“The duchess, my two little sisters, and Lindsay. I will bring them here.”

“My lord, that means…”

Raven slowly raised his face.

Vincent was startled.

Raven’s eyes blazed with the blue sparkles of fire. It was the same look he had when Vincent first met him.

“Vincent Ron, I do not want to be a helpless moron who can’t even protect the people around me.”

“My… lord…”

“I will leave the future plans up to you. However, the safety of the Pendragon family is a top priority. They are… precious people to me.”

“…..”

Vincent shut his mouth, but it was not because he was disappointed.

He knew his master to be a cool-headed, brilliant man who could read the situation accurately. But if his lord had one thing he was lacking, it was an interest in people around him.

All the great monarchs in history were often known as cold-blooded.

It was half right and half wrong.

He who had nothing to protect could never be great. If the object were wealth, he would become a great merchant. If it were their king, he would become a renowned knight.

Lastly, he who wanted to protect people would become a great monarch.

It was the words of the wisest man in the Twilight Tower, and Vincent himself agreed wholeheartedly. The cold blood of a monarch should only be directed towards his enemies. He had to have warmth towards his family and his people.

But his lord, Alan Pendragon, was a man who was cold to everybody.

Although he sometimes showed a humane side, it seemed to be a result of his clumsiness because he was inadequate in dealing with people.

Vincent decided to serve him as his master while counting on change. If one was clumsy and ignorant, they could learn slowly.

But Alan Pendragon did not show change.

He was mechanical and businesslike even towards his blood relatives and the concubine he received directly.

However,

He had changed due to the death of a girl.

“I will kill everyone who tries to hurt my people. Nameless Necromancer? I won’t forgive anyone even if it is Çarcas himself.”

“My lord…”

Vincent’s back was soaked with sweat even though it was a cold winter.

Raven was letting off a flaming spirit.

“If a god hurts my people, I will kill the god. I swear on the name of Pendragon and by the name of all gods.”

Woosh!

The wounded, angry young dragon’s eyes blazed with a fire, a fire that burned as hot as the flames of a volcano.

***

The next day, the assassination attempt on Duke Pendragon and the sad news of Luna Seyrod’s death simultaneously reached the Pendragon Duchy and the Seyrod County.

High Lord Count Seyrod became shocked and fainted on the spot, and the Pendragon Duchy also fell into panic.

However, the words of the duke were to be prioritized, so the Pendragon Duchy quickly overcame the shocking event and began to act.

The centaurs and the orc warriors left the Ancona Forest and killed the groups that were disturbing the duchy along with the duchy’s troops.

Irene, Mia, and Lindsay obeyed the words of Raven and left for Leus under the escort of Isla, Karuta, and the orc warriors.

Elena Pendragon, however, decided to remain in Conrad Castle.

As a direct member of the Pendragon family and a senior, she stated that she should stay behind to keep her place in Conrad Castle. Raven agreed with her words.

The duchy and Conrad Castle had Killian, the heavy cavalry, and hundreds of griffons. Moreover, the Black Tiger Argos was always guarding the side of Elena.

On top of that, Vincent travelled between York Town and Conrad Castle, so Raven felt assured that Elena would be safe.

Thus, all the members of the Pendragon family came to Leus with the exception of Duchess Elena Pendragon. Of course, the appearance of the Ancona Orcs caused a great shock to the people of Leus.

Everyone murmured that the new governor of Leus, Duke Alan Pendragon, had made the resolution to draw his sword in earnest against the pirates, along with a certain “someone”.

They felt sorry for whoever had to face the 7th regiment and the mighty forces of the orc warriors.

But there was one thing they were ignorant of.

On top of the Ancona Orcs, fifty griffons were clandestinely headed to Leus… Above all else, the strongest being was also headed to Leus. Even the strength of the 7th regiment, orcs, and griffons combined could not stand up to this very being.

Soldrake was coming in response to the determination of Alan Pendragon, the companion of her soul.

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