Chapter 50 : Egil’s reinforcement
Awhile back before the caravan met its hopeless situation. Where their route to the ‘Egil City’ was intercepted by the enemies.
In the midst of running with Esca, Chrono noticed something was wrong. It was the way the chaotic users moving.
The chaotic users supposed to be heading north as they were pursuing the caravan. Instead, they were heading northeast.
“( They are leaderless, they shouldn’t come up with something complicated.)”
Chrono could fairly guess what the chaotics were up to. It was the last resort anyone could think off to stop the caravan from escaping. It was simple, but could be the most effective way.
As he noticed the changed, Chrono turn his head to Esca before he spoke.
“Esca, if my guess was right, they are trying to stop the caravan by intercepting the route to ‘Egil city’.”
Instead of a bob hair girl with a sunglasses, it was a dark elf with a long beard with red eyes that responded to Chrono. The dark elf was Esca in disguised using Chrono’s ‘disguising mask’.
“I thought so to, what should we do mr…”
“For now, let’s go to Egil city first. We should try to get help from there.”
As she heard Chrono, she widened her eyes. It was unbelievable to Esca as she used to heard about ‘Egil city’ rumor. In fact, it was quite a famous rumor among the merchants.
“B-But, Egil city is no good. They will undoubtedly protect us in the city, but I heard they didn’t responded to Gilbert Messages earlier! Something definitely not right.”
“Yeah, I heard that. But we still can try.”
It was the very reason Gilbert gave up the plan of waiting for reinforcement at the ‘Starhill checkpoint’.
If the duke or mercenaries from Egil city responded to Gilbert’s plea to send the reinforcement earlier. If they simply open up an official quest to help the caravan to Egil’s citizen.
If Egil city actually trying to help,the caravan doesn’t have to go to such length to escape. Eighteen kilometers was a distance that could be covered by an hour or two.
The help should be arrived and the caravan could be saved without any casualties. But for some reason the duke of Egil didn’t responded, neither the clan leaders from mercenary guild.
Beside Chrono, everyone in the caravan bewildered by ‘Egil city’ silent response. If it was not because his encounter with Somnia, Chrono wouldn’t knew the reason either.
According to Somnia’s information, the raid was planned for a long time. Everything was perfected, beside one thing. And it was quite a big hole for the plan.
And that big hole was ‘Egil city’ location that was relatively closed with ‘Starhill checkpoint’. That reason alone may turned their entire plan into a failure.
The chaotics leaders met many times to discuss about this matter. And their best answer at that time was bribing the Duke and mercenaries leaders.
The bribing idea was dropped as they were not only needed to bribe the duke. They also needed to bribe every council member that had power to move the troops.
They also needed to bribe the many mercenaries leaders from different clans. And not to mention random users residing in Egil city that they had no way to control them.
After a lot of discussion and brainstorming, the chaotics decide they would spread a rumor that one of the neighboring city secretly gathering forces and about to attack Egil city at the night of the raid.
As the chaotic user had no way to enter the city in a normal way, they disguised themselves as normal adventurers outside of Egil and spread the rumor to the passerby.
The rumor spread like a wildfire in the Egil City. When the duke ordered to reinforce the city walls, ordering new canons and hiring mercenaries in a different clans. The chaotics knew that everyone in the Egil city convinced about the rumor.
As the result, in the night of the raid, no one in Egil city answered Gilbert’s message. They believe it was a trick by the enemy to lure their forces away from the city.
The timing of Gilbert’s message for help was too good to be a coincidence. The duke and the other leaders decided it was a trap and ignored the message.
Without Somnia’s information, there was no way for Chrono to grasp the situation. As he knew the real situation, Chrono had came out with a plan while he and Esca heading to ‘Egil city’ using the shortest route possible.
Before that, Chrono open his user interface and open the private message with Jurek. He needed to tell Jurek about the plan was changing.
Chrono : “Jurek….”
Jurek : “Wait, We are not done regrouping yet! We will be heading to the north path shortly after.”
“( By the time they reach the caravan it will be too late!)”
Chrono : *ehem* “Just ditched that plan and just join the other forces.”
Jurek : “What? Are you sure about that?”
Chrono : “Yes, just head west and join them for now. And hear the mission briefing from the other
Jurek : “Ah, okay. And sorry about the mess.”
Chrono : “Don’t worry about it.”
As Chrono closed the private messaged system he closed his eyes while taking a deep sighed. The mess Jurek made may have cause the caravan’s demise.
But he could only blame himself. He was too excited devising different plans until it was impossible to follow.
If it was a real military situation where life and death actually matters, thing might be different. But it was just a game where everyone supposed to have fun.
He was only one of the few serious player that actually trying to aim for the emperor seat. In fact he might be the only one in the whole clan having that kind of ambition. Everyone else was just wanted to laid back and enjoy the game.
He learned his lesson. Giving complex plan to a huge group like ‘Blood Brothers’ was suicide. No matter how good the plan was, if it was something no one could follow, it was a bad plan.
While he reflected on his mistakes, Chrono and Esca traveled to Egil city using the shortest route possible.
The sun about to rise from the east sky. At the south gate of ‘Egil city’, under the rose-pink light of dawn, there were two shadows climbing the rocky path.
They held each other hands as it was easy to trip on the path that was not so suitable for traveling.
With no wagon with them, the path that could only be traveled by feets was available. By using the shortest route possible, Chrono and Esca finally arrived at Egil city’s gates.
The gate was shutted tight as the city expected invaders.When Esca saw the closed gates, she felt the hopelessness of the situation. Her jaw dropped, her lower body losing its strength as she fell on her knees.
With the gate shutted tight and the city’s walls as high as ten story building, it felt impossible to enter the city. Esca took a deep breath to calm down as if she could actually calm down.
No matter how much she tried to look calm, her anxiety showed up as soon as she open her mouth.
“H-How about we try to look the other side of the city. Maybe, just maybe they didn’t close the gate there…”
From Esca’s words, Chrono knew she was anxious. But he choose to just ignore it before he calmly answered her.
“No, don’t bother. They definitely shut all the gates today.”
Chrono’s words made cold sweats running through her body and her lips turned pale blue. Instead of worrying about her, Chrono could only impressed how detailed the game was. After some pause, Esca finally spoke up.
“So, what now? How can we ask for help if we can’t even meet them.”
As he heard Esca’s remark, Chrono only smiled wryly. He calmly pointed a place with his index finger. The place where waters came out from the city. The drainage system of the city. The sewers.
“For some reason, this game trying to get overly realistic by having a drainage system in each city and town.”
Esca’s eye brow furrowed as she heard Chrono’s remarked. As if she tried to stop herself from saying the word ‘disgusting’, her cheeky pink lips turned up a bit.
“D-Don't tell me that we...wait, our size couldn’t fit that...that thing.”
While grinning evilly , Chrono leave his remarked.
“Yes, I know. But we have ‘Disguising mask’ that could turned YOU into a goblin. If it is a goblin, you can easily fit in. I know, because I did it before.”
Leaning her body backwards while widening her eyes, Esca answered.
“Eh? you want me to do it, ALONE!?”
“It can’t be help, we only have one ‘Disguising mask’. Or did you want to stay out here?”
“N-No! That is too scary.”
While quite hesitant, Esca had no other choice. She could only do what she was asked to by Chrono. Before she went into the sewers, Chrono gave his briefing on what she should do. He also supplied her with the equipments to cut the sewers iron bars before she set on her mission.
As Esca successfully infiltrated the city, she immediately requested an audience with the duke. Normally, it was near impossible to meet someone with the duke title as the npc guards would blocked her way at the castle entrance.
But that day the Duke was outside of the castle. He, his council members and the mercenaries leaders were in the north watchtower where they observe the enemy movement.
On the top of the watch tower located north of the city, the Duke and the higher up were in the middle of some discussion. While they were on the heated debate,a guard came in to inform the Duke about Esca’s request for an audience.
The one responding to the guard was someone donned with a majestic looking armor, brimming with light. With the appearance of high elf, a tall user with a pointed beard on his face. A high level user full of charisma on his presence. The Duke of Egil, Oliver.
“What?! A merchant want to meet me about the troops reinforcement?”
“Yes, she was outside. Should I let her in?”
He and his council members did received a message asking for the reinforcement troops several hours ago. But they decided it was a trap and ignore the message.
But as Esca’s requests for an audience seems too desperate to be a trap. And for five hours they were on lookout, their enemy's main army was nowhere to be seen.
To Oliver, Esca was somewhat suspicious too. He was impressed that a mere merchant could snuck into his city without being alerting his guards. That facted also made him doubted Esca.
As the renowned leader of Egil city, he don’t want to judge things too soon. He will decide whether to believe Esca after he met her.
“Let her in.”
“Yes, sire, as you wish.”
With Oliver permission, Esca whose waiting outside was brought into the room. As Esca entered the room, she politely bowed her head before she spoke.
“The reason I asked for your audience is to ask for the reinforcement troops from Egil City.”
“Hmm… Like i thought, it was about the reinforcement. Unfortunately our hands are full here, we can’t afford to give any reinforcement, I’m sorry.”
“B-But I saw plenty of the troops out there. You guys definitely can spare us some.”
“We need all the forces we can get as our enemy about to attack this city.”
As Oliver finished his sentence, one of the man sitting in the room hit the table. The man had a slender body, a face resemble a pig and green body.
For an orc he was quite slender although he did had some muscles as a trace of his strong origin. He was called Rektar, one of the Egil city council members.
“How many times do I have to tell you?! That was just a baseless rumor, we have wait for FIVE hours but nothing come in our way.”
On rektar’s remarked, Oliver turned his head to Rektar before he spoke.
“Rektar! you don’t need to shout.”
“But because of this stupid rumor we just lose a lot of time and money.”
“Better safe than sorry. I don’t want to lose a city just because I don’t believe in rumor.”
While Oliver and Rektar having their debate, Esca interrupted. The both of them looked at her way to hear her out.
“ If...If I can guaranty the city safety, would you spare us some soldiers?”
As if to ridicule Esca, Oliver smirked before he spoke again.
“Guaranty? With what?!”
“I-I know I have not much to offer. But earlier, my friend had prepared a contract for you guys and ask me to act on his behalf.”
“Heh, so who is this friend of yours.”
“I’m sorry, but he said I can’t disclose his name.”
“And what is this friend of yours offer us in case we are attack while helping you guys?”
“....I never saw the contract, but he said...money.”
“Huh! Are you kidding me?”
“B-But it’s true. And he said the amount of money involved was worth it.”
As she leave her remarked, Esca hand over the contract scroll to Oliver. Oliver quickly open the contract scroll to read its content. His council members and the mercenaries leaders went to Oliver sides to see the contract contents.
|Contract : Guaranteed safety of Egil City
To : Oliver, the Duke of Egil,
I promised you the safety of Egil city while the city’s troops are away to help the caravan lead by Gilbert. In return, Egil would provide me its troops.
If, by any chance Egil fall to the enemy’s hand while helping the caravan lead by GIlbert, I will compensate the city with one billion gold
Regards, [ SYSTEM : The user wish to hide his name]
Every reader eyes bulged as they saw the amount of gold involved. It was fine to use alias or hide name in a contracted.
But the game would never allowed the contract creation if it was impossible for neither party to fulfill the contract.
In this case, if the contract creator doesn’t have at least one billion gold, the game would not allowed the contract to be created in the first place.
In the north continent, users that had net worth more then a billion gold were less then fifty users. And users that had one billion gold in pure money were less then ten.
Someone who had one billion gold to throw around was definitely insanely rich. With that kind of wealth, they thought the contractor definitely was someone in the top world’s richest.A prominent user that most likely had a big clan on his back, someone they should not upset.
The contractor was too rich for they to believe that he was in that little caravan. ‘Why not just hire ten thousand high level mercenaries to escort him?’ they thought.
As they gathered their thought, in silence, everyone decide the contractor was a kind merchant that want to help his fellow merchant. ‘No way someone like him in the caravan’, they concluded.
The contract offered was too appealing to be rejected. After a bit of discussion, everyone unanimously agreed to accept the contract.
“Rektar, I guess you want some action? Take your men and help the caravan a.s.a.p.”
Because everyone were on standby mode, it took Rektar only a while to gather the reinforcement soldiers. The south gate of Egil city was opening slowly as the hoarded of army led by Rektar line up behind the gate.
As the gate opened, Rektar and his army charged towards the place where the caravan and the chaotics skirmishes took places.
While the army on the move, a man watched quietly from the sides while leaning on the city’s wall. The rose-pink light of dawn turned brighter as the sun about to rise. The marching army in the dawn was like a beautifully drawn picture by a famous artist.
Watching from the side, Chrono could only smile wryly as he saw the marching army. He knew Esca succeed. And for the caravan, he could only hope for the best.
p/s : In case you guys forget, the mc only had one hour (real life time) because he currently play the game from cyber cafe.