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Finally, chapter 100, it has been a long couple of months; I have had to deal with bad translators and failed other problems when it applies to this novel. Finally, I have gotten stable and reliable translators. The target is 6 or more chapters per month as a short term goal. Long term goal is to complete the novel this year. If possible, I will focus more resources on this novel and get 10 chapters or more released per month. It would be a dream to get 16 chapters translated in a month. I will be starting a wiki to help with consistency of character names,locations, magic etc. This is necessary as I will be using multiple translators to work on the novel. Your help will be greatly appreciated Wiki here:
Enough talk, time for some Ian royal bashing action!
8th class Mage chapter 100
A Tribute (2)
“A present?” Ian replied.
A present from the Emperor of the Coldwood Kingdom himself. Ian immediately understood what this meant. In other words, it was a bribe. Actually, there was better word for this. Something that both Ian and the merchant Roberto were thinking of.
It wasn’t sent from one government to another. It was solely for Ian and Ian alone.
“His Majesty the Emperor of Coldwood has personally left this in our hands since we are the best team of merchants traveling back and forth between both countries and have personal ties with you, Sir.”
The Forion merchants had started trading where the boundary line existed between Greenriver and Coldwood and the Morgian territories. They had tried to trade goods between both countries, differentiating themselves from other merchants, and now, they had pretty strong relations with both countries.
“You will be surprised, Sir Ian. There’s so much in here. Not to mention jewels, gold, and the local specialties of Coldwood, and a hand-picked selection of goods by the royal family of the kingdom. If you take a look here in this wheelbarrow …”
‘Would you look at that?’
Ian thought to himself and was sure of one thing as he listened to the merchant droning on. At that moment, he could see what Hector Coldwood was up to. The bastard hadn’t simply sent a tribute. Of course, there was a lot, but that was only 20% of what he had sent over.
‘Most of them aren’t for me…’
Everyone in the land knew of Ian. That was also why everyone spoke of him, and there were so many titles to his name. One of them was the ‘devoted son.’
‘They’re for my mother.’
And so it was. Hector, the Emperor of Coldwood, had sent cosmetics and beauty products including the best shoes, perfume, and dresses meant for noblewomen made by the best designers in the land. Not only that, he had sent the best local specialties of Coldwood and medicines that were known to be good for ladies, and even some elixir. It was indeed the best kind of tribute to give Ian Page.
‘This was smart of him.’ Ian said, nodding to himself, as if he were quite pleased.
He never expected the tribute to be something like this.
“These are things that not even the noblewomen of Coldwood can take for granted. In fact, most of these are even impossible to find in Greenriver.”
Ian would not have been impressed if it had been the same old gold and silver. Riches? Heck, he already had a lot of them. He had stored them in the storage of his own home, a basement on the other side of the portal he had gotten from Herbert, the former owner of the ivory tower., and even in the nests of the fairies. He could even use the storage in the Dragon Lair that Evantus had found if he wanted. The more the better, but that also changes with what you have.
But Hector had impressed Ian.
Roberto, who had been droning on about the things he had brought, stopped in front of the wagon. He then reached in and took out a chest he had kept safe deep inside the wagon. It was a chest with blue silk inside.
“Not just any silk,” Roberto replied, taking out the silk and unfolding it.
It looked like normal silk, so what was so special about it?
“His Majesty the Emperor of Coldwood tells me this is a magic silk that has been kept in the royal courts for safekeeping for a very long time. He was sure you would like it as well, Sir Ian.”
Magic silk, huh?
“There’s a theory made by magicians of the Nexus in Coldwood that this silk could have been used as a material to make the Artifacts of the ancient times,” Roberto continued.
It was then when Ian’s eyes lit up. If this was true, this changed things. This was definitely a gift that caught his attention.
“Would you like to take a look?” Roberto asked, handing over the silk into Ian’s hands.
The Artifact was an object of the Unknown. No one knew how it was made, how it resonated with mana and what formula was used to create it. There wasn’t even a way to find out. Then why did they think this could be a material for an Artifact?
There was a simple way to find out.
‘I’ll know by using mana.’
Artifacts resonated with mana, and their material would be no different.
The silk started to vibrate in no time. It meant that the silk also resonated with mana. This was definitely a magical silk. That was not all, though.
A cold energy exploded out from the silk. It was faint, but Ian could still feel it.
‘This silk definitely isn’t normal.’
It resonated with mana. That meant there was a spell on the silk.
“Well? How do you like it?”
“I do believe … this is a magical silk.” Ian replied, unable to take his eyes off the silk.
He was suddenly exploding with curiosity. What if he used the silk to find out how Artifacts were created? What if Ian could create his own Artifacts instead of using the one that already existed?
‘He sent a pretty useful gift.’ Ian thought to himself.
It was a very interesting gift Hector had sent him. At the same time, Ian could see what Hector was up to. He had probably experimented with the silk for a very long time. He would have only been able to come up with theories, and not actually come up with a way to create it from scratch.
‘There would be no point in me keeping this.’
At the same time it would be a waste to hand this ancient treasure over to someone else. But not if that someone was someone Ian could easily kill off later on. Therefore, it was a good chance for Hector to offer a tribute and catch Ian’s attention. Any magician like Ian would be attracted by the potential of the silk.
‘I do feel I’m being played by his plans though’ Ian thought.
The gifts that were meant for his mother and not himself. The silk that was thought to be a material of Artifacts. Ian was sure Hector had the upper hand and he knew it. It was true, too.
‘But I still like it’
That was the problem. He liked it a lot better than he thought he would.
“By the way… His Highness has written a letter for you as well. Here you go,” Roberto said, handing Ian a letter.
It was a letter with Coldwood’s seal on the envelope.
-With all due respect to the Great Magician, Ian Page
Ian opened up the envelope to read the Emperor’s handwritten letter, not caring where he was reading it. The beginning sentence didn’t look too bad. Not just ‘Dear Ian Page’, but ‘with all due respect to the Great Magician, Ian Page.’ He sure didn’t show the slightest hint of pride nor self-esteem in this letter.
-I didn’t have the chance to ask how you were doing the other day so I’m sending a letter instead.
I could sense his attitude through his words though they were not spoken.
Hector Coldwood, the merciless prince of the neighboring land, who was greedy enough for the throne to slaughter his own family members, had written his letter as if addressing a scary adult.
-I had realized since then how much I lack and how foolish I am as the head of a nation. I was crazed about my fantasy of uniting the nations and attacked your land. If you had not punished me for my wrongdoings, I would have wreaked havoc and not been able to fix the consequences.
Ian couldn’t help but burst out laughing when he read the letter up until this point. He was dying to know how much Hector was shaking with fury and how he could have kept in his anger as he was writing the letter.
‘Deep down, he would gladly kill me again over thousands of times. In fact, he would have feasted on my dead skin. And he would do so if that actually happened.’
Ian knew Hector Coldwood well. The story of him killing off his own family for the throne was simply a well known fact. If Ian thought hard enough, there would be so many more to tell. Hector was the man who had resisted until the end during the Unification War, and he would gladly sacrifice the lives of his people if it meant turning tables of the war to his benefit. His evil nature of thinking of humans as a stepping stone or a tool was definitely no less than Ragnar’s.
‘A letter of self-reflection from a man like himself?’
People don’t change easily. It took 6 years to make Hyden, the Crown Prince of Greenriver, even pretend to be a decent human being. It was questionable that Hector, a man so much more evil than the prince of Greenriver would change his ways.
‘You’ve got to be kidding me.’ Ian shook his head.
He continued to read through the letter. It was consistent from the beginning to the end, with insincere flattery all over.
Ian didn’t like this flattery too much. Maybe it was because Ian knew Hector’s true nature. But the gifts he had sent as a tribute sure looked fine.
“I guess I should send him a letter in reply.” Ian murmured to himself.
“Would you like your humble servant to pass it along for you sir?” Roberto quickly responded, picking up on what Ian had said. “Our team of merchants are leading and taking care of the tourism for the merchants visiting this time. I’ll make sure to pass this along when I get back.”
Of course, it wouldn’t hurt for Roberto to be In Ian’s favor. It actually did him good. From the time he took care of the goblin’s dead body when he was young and submitted the Book of Dragons, he had risen to where he was now as the Chief Merchant.
‘Wherever Sir Ian goes, there is always money.’
In fact, he had been gifted a great amount of money for his work of passing along the gifts Hector had sent as a tribute. Not only that, he had been able to meet the Emperor of the Coldwood Kingdom. For Roberto, Ian was like a tree that grew money.
“Are you not such a busy person, Sir Ian? How could you personally…”
“I’ll be right back. It’ll only take a few minutes.”
Roberto replied automatically, but he soon understood what Ian meant. He was Ian Page, who even made teleportation possible.
The Crown Prince of Coldwood, who actually had more power than the Emperor himself, was sitting in his office. He looked a lot different from when he met Ian in the Amber territory a few months ago. Not only did he look skinnier in the face, but he also had a dark shadow creeping down from his eyes.
“How great is he, that I should…” he muttered.
Hector couldn’t do anything about how he looked. Ever since he had been threatened by the Great Magician of Teleportation, it was hard for him to sleep well. He always spent the nights with his eyes wide open. Even if he did fall asleep he always jerked awake. No. He HAD to stay awake.
‘Even so, he’s still a little duckling who hasn’t even left his mother’s nest. But a little crazy of a magician who focuses on one thing too much.’
Hector eventually had come up with the best solution to keep his head low. Forget about pride. Hector was even willing to take out his internal organs as a tribute to Ian if it meant keeping him away. Maybe then Hector could breathe.
“Just take what I give you and leave me alone. Please!” Hector muttered out loud what had been on his mind. It would be right to say he wasn’t mentally stable now. He was rotting inside mentally.
“Sure, will do,” said a voice.
Hector’s heart almost stopped at that moment. It was that voice from behind him – the same, cold voice despite his young age, the voice that Hector never wanted to hear again.
“I’ll stay away from you.”
Hector whipped around. There was Ian Page. Was he hearing things? No, that wasn’t it. Was he seeing things? No, that wasn’t it either.
“Oh, don’t get me wrong. You sent me the gifts, and I got your letter too, so I just came by to say hi.”
Was he saying the truth? Hector hoped he was. Hector looked less nervous. Even if he didn’t believe Ian, he had to believe him. That was the only way to survive this situation.
“I’ll take your gift gladly.” Ian said.
“I got your thoughtful letter, as well.”
“Is..is that it boy? I mean. Is that all, Sir?”
“Do you want me to do anything else?” Ian replied jokingly.
But Hector was full of fear.
“You don’t look too well. Hope you have some good night’s sleep for a while.”
Huh. Would he be able to get some sleep? That would be impossible. That was also what Ian was aiming for. The tribute Hector had sent was acceptable, but Ian didn’t want to give him a reason to have pride. Which was why he had come by with the excuse of wanting to express his gratitude. Hector had to be stepped on mercilessly once in a while.
“Well then, I’ll come by and visit more often.”
Often? Did he just say ‘often?’ Hector’s face turned yellow.
Lightly re-edited by FlawFinder. There aren’t as many errors or confusing parts as there were before. I might just start reading without editing.