The Laid Back Hero of Atlas – Chapter 21: A Knife in the Dark

Picking up Sapphire so she could be a part of this conversation I informed everyone of the job I had been given. Sapphire, Susan, and Hesta were in complete acceptance of the job. The four Heroines wanted to assist in killing the King because they had learned what he had done. Strella was worried about me possibly dying. When everyone burst into laughter saying a whore like King couldn’t beat me she seemed to relax. She was concerned about me being around for the child so it was understandable. Lucilla handed me a few inventions she made years back asking me to try them out. All that was left now was for Amber, Almina, and Dola to approve of this venture.

“You are taking us with you, right?”, Amber asked.

“Of course. I was hoping each of you would come with me.”, I said.

Looking at one another no one seemed to have a complaint about it. Satisfied now the remaining three gave their blessing. Discussing what would happen afterwards came next. Informing them of my plans to take control of Atlas somehow I gave them the suggestion of setting up a temporary home in Atlas. Being on the coast the capital had access to nearly everything that circulated around the continent. Thinking of this everyone said it would be fine as a temporary home. Strella said her father wanted to put a shop in the capital city so I told her he would be more than welcome.

“Maybe one day he will hand the business over to our child.”, I said with a warm smile.

Burying her face embarrassed she looked so adorable. Receiving a jab in the ribs from Ruby I explained that Lucilla could use the ocean front to test more dangerous weapons as it would be safer to fire them where people wouldn’t get harmed. Smiling pleasantly she gave the thumbs up.

“Presently I talked to representatives from the Regulos Empire, Everwood, and the Iron Mountains. They won’t be sending support during our attack. All three countries want him gone immediately.”, I said.

“What about Jafirica?”, Sapphire asked.

“They aren’t on good terms with Atlas. The King there already seems to want me to be the new King for Atlas.”, I said, “Given the situation though I may leave someone else in charge.”

“I see.”, Sapphire said, “Have someone in mind?”

“Yes, George would make an excellent King.”, I said, “He may be more military oriented, but treats his men well.”

“I agree one hundred percent.”, Sapphire said with a nod.

“So when do we leave?”, Almina asked.

“I am thinking we leave tomorrow. George has already given allies the warning, and they have taken steps in secret to help us.”, I said, “Our first goal is to eliminate the corrupt nobles, and get evidence of their crimes. It will be easier to remove their families from power.”

Everyone agreed so after enjoying the first night with all my harem in one room we set off. Taking our travel speed into account I decided to take the trip at a calm seventy miles an hour. At this speed we would reach the capital in five days. That should give our allies the time they need to prepare.

The trip went pretty smoothly aside from at night. Using her pregnancy as a crutch to try, and sleep in my arms no one was having. She got one night, and nothing more as they had a rotation schedule already decided. Thankful that Amber, the harem leader, thought so far ahead for it. It was a bit stuffy, but cracking the windows slightly was enough to let a gently breeze flow through the van. On arrival into the capital we noticed the situation was quite bad.

The food vendors were all boarded up due to the food shortage. Not a scrap of food could be found at any diner, bar, or inn. Due to the shortages we found a line outside the slaver tents. Knowing full well what was going on the women became visibly distraught. The children in line were all completely skin, and bones. If one walked by to fast you’d think they’d fall over from the breeze. We watched as the slavers chased everyone away as they to were in a pickle because they had no food for slaves, or themselves.

“This is horrible!”, Lucilla said, “Doesn’t the King care about his people?”

“That bastard doesn’t give a damn about any of us!”, a women in line said to us, “He sent our husbands off to die so we could eat only to have him go back on his word. The minister told us that the land that was taken back wasn’t suited for farming…”

“That’s bullshit!”, I snapped, “The military ate off of all the fruit trees, and wild edibles we found there. Saying that the land wasn’t fertile enough is nothing, but a lie!”

“All of us know that. He won’t send supplies to the men so they can start planting.”, she said, “Our children are starving, and he just fattens himself in his castle…I have already had to bury my youngest child because I couldn’t make any milk…”

Hearing that I started tearing up. The loss of a life to me was important, but when it came to a child I couldn’t hold back my emotions. Knowing that an infant had died because of the King’s cruelty was the last straw for me. I knew that one infant wasn’t the only fatality in this ordeal. Countless lives had already been lost, and now it was up to me to prevent anymore from dying.

“Almina, do we still have some of your elven bread left?”, I asked.

“I think we have maybe seven loaves left.”, she said, “Not nearly enough to feed everyone.”

“Forget about us. If you have enough to feed our children, please do so!”, the woman said.

“Well, do you think we can do that?”, I asked.

“We can probably do that much.”, she said.

I didn’t need to tell the thirteen women to spring into action. Immediately setting up a place to hand out scraps of this special bread we brought all the children over. Giving them each a small piece the bread would satisfy them as if they had eaten a full meal. It wasn’t much, but it was all I had to offer them. Most of our other food stock would kill them due to them being starved. Having used all of the bread to feed the children the families thanked us head over heels for our kindness. As the crowd started to thin out a sheriff showed up.

“By order of the King, the Rogue Hero is to be regarded as a criminal due to his attitude towards the-“, he said.

Before he could finish I put a bullet in his head. It was obvious he wasn’t starving like everyone else meaning he was a shitty sheriff to begin with. Turning to me the people asked what I was going to do next. Standing on top of the van I shouted out so all could hear.

“Your King has abandoned all of you to die. You have all seen it with your own eyes. The once busy marketplace is now, but a rundown shanty town.”, I said, “I say enough is enough! The King has had several chances to repair his reputation with all of you, but has abandoned you due to his pride!! The nobles that are supposed to aid you have also turned their backs on you!! Where are they now trying to save your families?! That sheriff who came here trying to be an ass doesn’t look starved, or anything close to that! I say to you all now I will overthrow the King, and in his stead put someone in charge that came from people like all of you! He was commoner at birth who rose to great heights in the military never forgetting where he came from. For his safety I will keep his name private till the King’s head lay at your feet!!”

The surround people started cheering as they all started spreading the word. I knew that it would eventually reach the King’s ear what I wanted to do. Normally it would be an issue, but I had a plan to uses this to my advantage. Looking at me after I got off the van Amber asked why I made that bold claim.

“Tha castle is protected by several layers of defensive magic.”, I stated, “The safest way for us is to get him out here in the open.”

“Why would he leave the castle though? If he is safe in there why leave?”, Strella asked.

Pointing to the four Heroines, Susan, and Hesta everyone realized they would know the royal escape routes. Realizing this everyone understood that the King would be nervous about a surprise attack, and at the first sign of trouble flee the castle. Now the only thing we needed to do was push him over the edge to get him to flee.

“How do you intend to do that?”, Sapphire asked.

“You think the King will stay in his castle if his allies were to suddenly die…do you?”, I said with an evil grin, “I think we should pay the pigs a visit this evening.”

Finding a decent inn for the next few nights all of us rested up for our night raid. After the sun had set I lead all of the women down to the Black Market where, to his credit, the merchant said the place was in chaos. Seeing me with thirteen stunning ladies the merchants asked how much for them. Putting the barrel of my rifle to his head I shot him a nasty glare.

“Any of you lay a hand on them I will ram a pike up your ass!”, I snapped, “They are not for sale, and not for any other man to touch!”

With beaming smiles the thirteen of them were in very high spirits afterwards. I guess defending them will always earn me brownie points. Meeting up with my contact he was relieved to see me. Saying everything was in order for the operation he begged me to not harm any of the women in his care.

“So long as they follow the plan there is no risk of them being harmed.”, I said, “You’re sure none of them have an emotional-”

“Absolutely not! Each of them hold a personal grudge against these nobles who forced them into this line of work to pay their debts.”, he said, “I picked them for this job for that specific reason.”

With a firm nod I gave the women their marching orders. While I went in for the kill my women were to eliminate the guards that were there protecting them. After that they would seek out any family members the guards had down here, and kill them as well. With a parting kiss to each of them we split up. Guiding me into the love hotel these nobles were in the man lead me into the secret pathways through the hotel. Arriving at the first room he gave the woman the signal. Playing along as if she was really into it she said she wanted to freshen up. Tossing him her bra he went for it like a moth to a flame. Sliding the panel out I crept into the room. Walking back into the room he shot up eager to sate his lust. Before he could move though his head left his shoulders. Falling to the ground like the dead animal he was she spit on him.

“That’s what you get for raping, and murdering my younger sister you jackass!!”, she snapped.

Leaving her to dispose of the body we continued through the hotel executing the nobles one by one without the guards ever hearing a peep. Due to the nature of the nobles visits the guards had been instructed to not rush in unless they were called. In the end, this order was what ended up costing both the nobles, and guards lives. With a smug grin as I executed the last noble he brought all the women together. Ensuring that they gathered all the keys for the nobles homes he asked what I intended to do.

“Simple, did they look starved to you?”, I asked.

“No…WAIT!!”, the hookers said realizing the truth.

“That’s right. Those nobles have food stashed away which I will give to the starving people.”, I said.

“If that is the case their personal belongings…”, the man asked.

“Aside from a few items if the houses happened to burn down with everything in them how would they know any better?”, I asked with a grin, “I have no issues with you taking their belongings. I ask though that the people down here get a small portion as severance pay.”

“That is agreeable.”, he said with a firm hand shake.

Leaving them to clean up I met up with my harem. Having eliminated the relatives down here, and all the guards they gave me a thumbs up. Covered in blood I still gave each of them a hug, and a kiss on the lips. I knew it had been tough on them to kill others, but I was proud of each of them. With our business concluded for the night we returned to the inn for the remainder of the night.

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