The Laid Back Hero of Atlas – Chapter 26: The Village of Ice

Throwing our gear on we drove down the hill into the village. Slamming into what appeared to be a giant bigfoot we crushed it under the van. Jumping out I used my cutlass to slash the few of them outside my door. Following suit on the other side the two of them immediately engaged the enemy. Watching us from inside the walls a few of the villagers emerged to assist us. Driving the apes off they let us into the village quickly before they returned.

“Thank you so very much, strangers!”, the Village Elder said welcoming us into his home, “Those beasts have been showing up for the past few weeks attacking us on our way back from gathering firewood.”

“What are they?”, I asked.

“We call them Ice Witches!”, he said in an angry tone, “Those pieces of filth use Ice magic against my people, and without a Fire mage in town we have to quickly thaw them out before they die.”

“I can understand.”, I said.

“What village are you from?”, he asked.

“The three of us are from off the continent. We came from Atlas on the neighboring continent.”, I said.

Before I knew it the villagers were all a buzz about people from off the continent being here. Hearing this the elder asked who specifically I was. Explaining my situation of being forcibly brought here four, and a half years ago he listened intently. When I got to the part of our landing he seemed quite impressed that we made it a shore. Getting to the first village we encountered we handed him the sign with a heavy heart. Seeing the sign the old man teared up shaking like a leaf.

“My poor son…he should have lived a long happy life with his wonderful wife, and three children.”, he said, “He just had his third child not more than a few months back.”

The similarities to the first house we saw made it all to real. Informing him that everyone in that village was frozen solid he broke down into tears. Knowing that his son had frozen to death was too much for him to bear. Passing out after a few minutes of crying we asked to be excused for a while. Informing them that we would be staying in our vehicle the elders wife gave her blessing before breaking down as well. Cuddling with Amber, and Almina in the van I held them extra tightly. Sticking to me like glue we slept this way for a few hours before a knock came at the door. Putting my jacket on I stepped outside to find the elder waiting for me. Telling the two women that I would be back they nodded. Walking back to his home many of the villagers were gathered in his living room. Taking my seat on the ground with them around the fire we began our discussion.

“I don’t think I need to tell you, but our situation is looking quite grim.”, he said, “Between little to no food, the ice Witches, and this bitter cold we are facing the same reality my son did. You being from another world must have some idea of how we can avoid this, or at least prolong our survival time.”

The villagers all looked at me with hope in their eyes. Unlike Atlas none of the nations here had the power to summon Heroes leaving me the only hope they had. With a sigh I asked them a few questions.

“Do you have a good insulation?”, I asked.

“Insulation??”, they said.

“In my world people who live in any climate put paper, hay, or anything like that in their walls to help keep the elements outside, and a comfortable temperature inside.”, I said.

Informing me that all the homes had a substance called Fether in the walls they explained how it kept some of the cold out. Showing me some of it I could have thought it was fiber glass, but apparently it grew on plants that were extremely common around here. Next I asked them if they had a Wind mage in town that could make enchanted blowers. As it turned out the elder happened to be a Wind mage proficient enough to do that. With that settled I asked about an Earth mage being in town. Being a farming village I should have known better than to have asked. Many of them were proficent at Earth magic leaving me to lay out my plan.

Springing into action immediately we managed to get the largest house in town, the Village Elders, installed with my plan. At first we were only getting slightly warm air, but then the warm air came. Feeling the heat for the first time in years throughout his home the elder began to cry out in joy.

“This is simply amazing!!”, he said, “The simple idea will help save us from freezing!!”

Having introduced this world to Geothermal heating this village was experiencing it first hand. Through the process of blowing the cold air down a pipe to sixteen feet below ground it filled a large chamber of warm air that would be forcibly blown out by the cold air thanks to the enchanted blowers. Bringing the sixty-five degree air up through very insulated pipes his home would be kept at a nice temperature from now on without the use of firewood. This meant, if installed in every home, that they wouldn’t need to gather as much firewood anymore. As the village celebrated I gave them blueprints for a greenhouse heated with the same technology. Using magic they would be able to grow normal food again for the first time in nearly five years. Construction would apparently begin the next day as everyone in the village was on board with this.

With everyone in high spirits I returned to the van where Amber, and Almina were eagerly waiting. Pulling me into the van they handed me the mirror. Currently Strella was sitting our bed with a young boy wrapped up in a blanket in her arms. Giggling like he didn’t have a care in the world I looked at both of them peacefully. Making his little hand wave at me I waved back with a big smile.

“What do you think of Stone for his name?”, she asked.

Looking at my son I realized he had a unique birthmark. Seeing it I came up with a better name.

“How about Orega?”, I said.

Looking at me I pointed at his birthmark. Orega was a precious gemstone in this world found only in one location. Being a blacksmith her dad instantly recognized the similarities of the gem, and the shape of the birthmark. Having a piece that looked similar to the birthmark himself he agreed with me.

“Orega sounds fine with me.”, she said letting him drink his milk.

Spending an hour with them we ended the call so both parties could sleep. Going to bed with a smile on my face Amber, and Almina asked when it would be there turn.

“Hey now!”, I said, “I can’t help it that you’re an elf, Almina. Your race doesn’t have children very often. As for Amber you can only have one after doing a special ritual. I can’t help it if you haven’t mastered it yet.”

Pouting I held both of them close before passing out. When we woke the next morning we found the villagers had worked through the night to complete the greenhouse. With the ground inside thawing the women from the village were already planting their crops. Sitting down with the elder again we asked about updating our map for this continent. Saying that the trade city a few days ride east would have that information. Leaving them with materials for some new weapons we left town headed for the trade city he called, Alavar. Running down any monsters we came across we made it in recorded time to the trade city by the elders standards.

Parking at the stables, and getting a room at an inn we split up. I would take my letter of introduction down to the Black Market while the two of them went to update the map. Tipping a beggar for the information I wanted I quietly made my way to the underground market where I met with an arms dealer. Handing him my letter of introduction he looked at me in disbelief.

“YOUR FROM OFF THE CONTINENT!!!”, he yelled out.

Everyone nearby turned back looking at him.

“Keep it down!”, I snapped, “Yes, and technically speaking I am not even from this world.”

“Right, sorry.”, he said, “It is just strange to see someone actively coming here with famine, the Decay, and this blasted winter going on.”

“I understand completely.”, I said with a chuckle, “I came here for two reasons: the Fragments of God, and to figure out why you are stuck in an unending winter.”

“I read about the fragments in this letter. I can only tell you it isn’t in this area. A few months back the roads that we had managed to keep clear were taken over by bandits, and monsters.”, he said, “The military hasn’t been able to do it because of the ongoing fight with the Decay.”

A light bulb went off in his head.

“You could do it, right!?”, he said almost pleading with me.

“I don’t work for free, haha! As a merchant I know you understand the feeling.”, I said.

“Alright, what do you want for your services?”, he asked.

With the girls already looking to update the map one thing came to mind.

“How about introducing me to some of the single ladies?”, I said with a grin, “Preferably someone well-traveled. If we are going to be trekking around looking for the fragments having someone who knows how to get from place to place is key.”

Shaking his head he looked quite nervous.

“Something the matter?”, I asked.

“Your request comes…at quite a bad time.”, he said, “With the famine over the past few years we haven’t had many women available. Most of them followed their husbands into combat instead of starving alone.”

“Oh I see. The families went with them so not many women are free.”, I said.

“Exactly, the few who are well…they aren’t humans.”, he said.

“Meaning?”, I asked.

“They come from the Demon race.”, he said.

“Okay? Why don’t you introduce them to me?”, I asked.

“Are you sure?”, he asked.

With a firm nod he took me to a nearby bar that was empty aside from the staff. Seeing us enter the bartender waved us over. Sitting down to buy him, and I a beer I asked about the Demon girls here. Looking at me like I was insane the arms dealer explained that I had recently arrived from off the continent. With a nod realizing I wouldn’t understand he called the only free women at the time. Coming down the stairs a beautiful icy blue haired maiden appeared. Each place her feet touched iced over instantly. Coming to understand why they both thought I was insane I approached her.

“Hello.”, I said with a smile, “The names James, nice to meet you!”

Her slim body, and nonexistent breasts made her look like a doll in a christmas display. Her icy white skin glimmered in the light of the room as she fidgeted around. Looking her in her pale grey eyes she blushed looking away.

“…hi…I am Crystal.”, she said shyly, “Are you interested in my services?”

Sold before I even asked because of the cool atmosphere she was giving off I hugged her tightly. Seeing this the two men attempted to separate us for fear I would freeze. Looking back at them I laughed.

“I am immune to Ice magic, and enchantments. Sadly it doesn’t have any effect on natural weather though.”, I said with a sigh.

Take her to her room I eagerly wanted to try my hand at sleeping with a Demon. Unsurprisingly she was caught off guard by my enthusiasm as normally people would have hated her given her powers. Once that was gone from her mind she really got into it making herself as welcoming as she could I explained my circumstances to her, and about my harem she was a bit skeptical at first. Thinking that she would be a burden instead of an equal partner I quickly remedied that. Feeding her refreshing hole with my seed she moaned loudly refusing to let a drop go to waste. Stealing her soft lips she gave in to her emotions. Wrapping her legs around me she told me to keep going. After thorough stuffing her smaller than average womb I asked her to join us. Giving me a big smile she happily accepted my offer snuggling up with me telling me love her more.

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