The Star of Annihilation
Chapter 19 – Argenta (1)
Written by : eleven
* * *
It was late at night when Roy and Nate headed back to the house.
When they came back, they saw Roy’s mother sitting at the dinner table with Desmond and his Archmage, Raymond, chatting amongst each other with laughter every now and then.
‘I had only heard rumors in my past life… but I didn’t expect the First Prince to really be so easygoing.’
Desmond was one of the types of people Roy had once admired when he was a kid in his previous life. Someone free-spirited and rarely bound to things.
Yet, Roy himself knew that he now hated these types of people due to a cynic nature he had developed after being constantly fooled by people that used those kinds of faces as a cover.
“Oh, Roy come here dear!”
Mathilde’s expression was warm and sweet.
Desmond and Raymond’s eyes followed after hers, seeing Roy and Nate covered in their sweaty and once-white tunics that were covered in dirt.
Roy approached them from a distance and Desmond smiled warmly at them.
“Hey there, my name is Desmond. Are you Roy?”
Roy nodded silently as Nate watched the interaction between the two with curious eyes.
“I was talking with your mother here, and…. I want to be your supporter.”
“…Supporter? What do you mean by that?”
“Well, I believe that you and your friend Nate here, are something this Empire needs right now.”
Desmond took Roy’s silence as a cue to go on with his speech.
“I’m not sure if you know this, but not even most ten year-olds are at the level you, Nate and that girl Elizabeth are at. To be where you are in magic at your age, is difficult to find even with some of the more talented children of the magician families.”
As Desmond spoke of these words, Mathilde was smiling at Roy warmly and with a smile full of zero expectation.
‘Why though mom?’
Roy looked at his mother and felt conflicted.
One one hand, he didn’t trust the Empire at all. That went for his wariness towards the Imperial Family as well.
He also did not like the blatant discrimination they had inside the capital and the ancient lineages of magician families that did not pay a favorable view towards aspiring magicians of commoner descent. It was especially discriminatory in the Imperial institute.
His mom, Mathilde, knew all of this. That was why Roy couldn’t understand her expression at all.
But more than that, the First Imperial Prince wanted to directly support him? What more would that do besides put a large target on his back?
If anything, that would screw him over.
But…. there was also Lucius. Lucius was now his teacher for swordsmanship.
So instead of going any further with his conclusive thoughts, he decided to listen and hear Desmond out.
“So what are you offering?”
“A full ride and much more to the Imperial Institute of Swordsmanship and Magic. I’m aware that Lucius is already your teacher and I can arrange it so that you have one-on-one training with him during your class time dedicated towards swordsmanship. You’d be the only student to ever have a Swordmaster as their private and sole teacher.”
“So what if I have all this?”
Roy retorted, already seeing so many flaws within Desmond’s statement and continued.
“There’s no way we would be able to afford living in the capital, and as for Nate, we aren’t even his legal guardians. You would have to ask his biological parents for that. And… from what I can tell, it probably would be something they’d be against since they already hate the fact that he hangs out with me.”
Roy spoke down to the Imperial Prince, Desmond, without even caring about how informal he was being.
Raymond stood up, about to protest about the ridiculous tone of voice that Roy was using with the Prince, but Mathilde and Desmond, didn’t seem to mind it at all.
“I can completely understand that, but I also need you to realize your importance to the Empire. I’m not saying to become a martyr or anything, but to just understand that as the Prince, I am willing to invest heavily into you. Potions, elixirs, equipment, clothing and house, I will provide it all.”
This was already against Roy’s core beliefs. He believed that one had to earn what they received. If they did not, it could only be used as collateral against him in the future.
“That’s an awful big investment. What makes you so sure it’s worth it? Or rather, what happens if we don’t live up to that investment?”
“That’s on my part then. However, I assure you that I won’t be the only one to offer such things. Our entire reason for this trip was that our father, the Emperor himself, is the one who believes in this investment.”
Roy fell silent as he looked around at his mother and Nate.
“What are you looking at me for?”
Mathilde suddenly spoke up with a smile.
“It’s your decision in the first place.”
She added, and Nate also nodded.
[I want to go with you as well.]
Nate sent Roy a telepathic message through the mana.
“….I’ll need some time to think about it.”
“Of course, take your time.”
Desmond nodded in response and pointed his chin towards Raymond to get up and leave, as their pitch had been given and it was up to the boys themselves.
Mathilde bowed to the First Prince once more before he and Raymond left the home to go back to their carriage.
“What do you think?”
Roy asked Nate.
Why he was asking the 8 year-old boy, was simple. Roy was just stuck and didn’t know which way to go at this point.
What would be the right choice here? He couldn’t help but think he was cheating this life. He was nothing but a meager 4-star magician in his previous life that had some knowledge that he brought over to this life.
“I think…. It would be fun to travel to the capital and meet other kids our age. But only if Roy is there.”
Nate spoke surprisingly honestly. Roy already knew he would never choose Howard based on the information he knew, and Michael the third and youngest prince, was a sleazeball. He had seen Michael ogling his mother’s bottom and Roy bit his tongue earlier because of how bad he wanted to hit him.
In a sense, it could be said that Desmond was naturally the best pick if they were to receive support.
In terms of the Imperial Institute, Roy knew enough about it from his previous life when working with other magicians. Essentially, admission at the earliest age was twelve. That gave him and Nate, four years to prepare for it.
However, Roy did not just want to leave immediately. There were several things he needed to get done before he was enrolled, and he intended to make use of that time as possible.
But…. the biggest thing was that the Dragons were going to start being active soon.
Hell, the Dragon that had razed his village in the past, Argenta, was going to be coming very soon.
The continent didn’t just have one big war against the Dragons. In fact, their existence had been known in some areas, but others thought it was just rumors.
But when people saw the massacres, they immediately pointed at their enemies, trying to get justification to act out and start wars.
The Dragons were smart as they made humanity fight with each other before completely exterminating them.
Quietly muttering the name to himself, Roy had no idea that the Dragon he was speaking of, was already on its way.
* * *
Tubel shuddered. When he sensed the dead mana around the innocent-looking man named Ferneth, he immediately realized that this was no simple Arch-Lich.
It was perfectly capable of blending in with humans and had Tubel not been 8-stars instead of 7, he would not have even noticed the immense amount of dead properties within Ferneth’s vessel.
But, there was something far more dangerous that made Tubel suddenly shudder.
If he had to guess, it was about three thousand kilometers away. But the ‘thing’ that was three thousand kilometers away was traveling so fast that Tubel couldn’t possibly think it was a human being.
Not only that, but the amount of monstrous mana that the being had, was not even close to human standards.
Even if Tubel had three versions of himself, he didn’t think he would be able to defeat whatever it was that was heading in his direction.
Three hours. At most, that was how much time he had till that creature was at the village of Kerto.
Tubel didn’t think about warping towards a set of coordinates near it, as he was sure it would just result in a pointless death.
‘I don’t even know whether to call this a blessing or not.’
Tubel thought to himself as beads of sweat trickled down his forehead.
A Swordmaster of the Empire, A Spearmaster, and three archmages were here. Well even an Arch-Lich if you considered the amount of firepower here on top of Tubel’s presence.
But even with these numbers, Tubel was not sure. He was panicked at this moment, far more than he had ever been in his entire life.
At that moment, Tubel felt as if he knew what it was.
In the shrubbery of the forest, Tubel stood atop a tree branch and stared at the stars in the sky that were just starting to shine as the sun started to set.
It was the large gray stars. One of them was moving in their direction.
Tubel then examined the size of the incoming gray star that was circling around his star and the other stars in the sky.
Compared to the rest of the other gray stars in the sky, this one was average at best, but in reality, was one of the smaller ones.
‘There’s stronger ones…Much stronger ones.’
Tubel’s eyes shook.
Chapter 19 – Fin
The Star of Annihilation