The Laid Back Hero of Atlas – Chapter 37: Royal Engagement of A Different Kind

“Dispute territory!!”, the Queen snapped standing up, “Are you saying our claim is uncalled for!”

“Silence, Esteria you will hold your tongue.”, Drakken said to her, “Let him finish before we jump to conclusions.”

“I mean no disrespect in calling thus.”, I said, “I am merely stating I know the area quite the hot topic between the three nations. By all rights the map shows it properly belongs to you, but I know from my world just because it is drawn on the map doesn’t mean anything. There were plenty of similar conflicts in my world over misdrawn border claims.”

“Why you!”, she started to say.

“Silence!”, Drakken said, “You can’t blame him for not knowing the situation. He isn’t from our world so to assume he should know better seeing as he was brought here after the Decay invasion is unfair.”

“Why are you being so nice to the human!”, she snapped.

“I am civil if the other party is willing to be civil.”, he said, “I am not an animal, and I will not put the crimes of the humans of this world on him. If you remember in the past a summoned hero did help our country so I am willing to give him a chance based on our previous experience with a hero.”

Sitting back in her seat she was visibly angry at me. Returning to the conversation he asked where exactly we were talking about. Asking for permission to take out the map I brought he gave us the go ahead. Holding the enlarged map open Joan pointed to the ruin location.

“These are the ruins in question, Your Highness.”, she said politely.

“I see now.”, he said, “That area has been in political turmoil for a few centuries now. I understand why you are cautious about it.”

The King wasn’t an idiot. Under his reign the area had fallen, been retaken, and fallen again at least seven times to his knowledge. Recognizing my hesitation in calling it disputed territory he calmed his initial slight anger at calling it disputed territory.

“You think that is the source of the issue?”, he asked.

“No, I think it is the magic source feeding the spells spread out across the continent.”, I stated.

Handing a nearby guard the printed photos I made with magic I showed the King my original findings. Looking the photos over he recognized the language right away as the language of the druid’s.

“Have you no way of translating it?”, he asked, “You seem to have some knowledge of them.”

“I believe them to be part of a group from my world’s very distant past. Sadly even in my world most of what we knew was rumor alone.”, I said, “However there are two known tablets with translations on them that could be used to make it readable to us…the issue is where they are being kept.”

“Meaning?”, he asked.

“The first tablet we knew of is kept in a crypt located in the heart of Dragon Falls. According to reliable intelligence there are currently three Ice Dragons spending their final days there. Even I as a Hero would have issues taking on three at once.”, I explained, “The second tablet was located in the country of Flamoria on your neighboring continent.”

“Why not ask them for it?”, he asked.

“A year after I was summoned, roughly, the Decay invaded the country. The King of Atlas at that time didn’t send aid which end up costing Flamoria all the land it once had.”, I said, “Only recently did I lead an army to retake a third of that land back to end the famine on the continent. It was after that we found papers in Atlas that listed the tablet as an item in the royal treasury of Flamoria.”

“So why not retake it?”, he asked, “You could easily retake it now, right?”

“There is more to it than leading an army into the former capital…the last battle in retaking the land from the Decay we ran into trouble.”, I said, “As it turns out the demigods are involved with the Decay’s invasion.”

Sitting up in his seat the King seemed interest in this.

“I can’t say which one it was, but we encountered him in the last nest we attacked.”, I said clenching my fist, “I couldn’t even scratch him…”

“It sounds like you lost a lot of men to him.”, Drakken said sympathetically.

“I lost two of my best friends to him, and lost countless men to him before he vanished.”, I said.

“Was your hunt for him what brought you here?”, he asked.

“No, after that conflict I realized I wasn’t the toughest kid on the block anymore.”, I said, “Had my other fiancée’s at the time been fighting with me…I can’t say I would have been able to protect them. Driven by that thought I started looking for parts of sword called the Fragments of God. That is what ultimately brought me here.”

“I see, that makes a lot of sense.”, he said, “If the demigods are assisting the Decay it would explain the recent stalemates with the Decay.”

“Yes, so in the process of looking for the fragments I meet several more of my fiancée’s here on this continent. As such I want to help the people they care about not freeze to death in this hell hole iceland.”, I said.

Nodding the king sat back in his seat thinking. After a few moments he asked me a question.

“Let’s say I give you permission to blow this ruin up, and you piece together your sword to fight the demigods…what will you do next? You’d be at the top of fighting power in this world.”, he pointed out.

“Honestly after I kill the remaining demigods, beat back the Decay, and restore some form of peace to the world I want to retire.”, I said crossing my arms, “I have twenty-eight beautiful women I want to just kickback, and relax with. Build a home on a decent private island, have a family, and live the rest of my life in peace.”

“No goal of becoming a King?”, he asked.

“In the end that may happen solely due to the cost of supporting twenty-eight women…”, I said, “They aren’t cheap…”

“Haha!”, the king laughed in agreement, “That is true.”

“If I did become king I would change the system to mimic the one my former country had.”, I said, “It had its flaws, but the power resided with the people. They voted for people to represent them, and they were the one’s who voted for changes in the law.”

“That sounds very interesting.”, he said with a grin, “With a nearly immortal lifespan it should be easy enough for you to achieve”

Stopping for a moment I looked at him confused.

“Say what now…”, I said.

“You are almost completely immortal. Did your summoner not inform you of that?”, he asked.

“No, they pieced together the spell since the main archive was destroyed by the Decay.”, I said.

“Oh…well you are almost completely immortal.”, he said, “I say that because while age won’t kill you nearly everything else can.”

“That is good to know…”, I said sadden by this.

“Isn’t that to your liking?”, he asked.

“No, that means I will end up outliving my fiancée’s.”, I said with a frown, “That is really not something I want to think about. I can’t imagine having to bury my wives, children, grandchildren, and so on while I sit there never aging.”

“I never thought of it that way.”, he said, “It is kind of troubling.”

Getting off topic I redirected the conversation.

“So then about bombing the ruins.”, I said.

“Ah yes.”, he said, “Before I can give you an answer I want to discuss it with my military commanders. I need to ensure that it won’t ruin any plans we may, or may not have a foot.”

“I understand.”, I said bowing my head.

“Please return in three days time for a response.”, he said with a nodded.

Bowing again the three of us excused ourselves from the room. Shutting the door behind us the guards resumed their positions.

“Such a rude human!”, Esteria snapped.

“I found him to be quite interesting.”, he said with a grin, “Not to many people will look me in the eyes with such confidence.”

“You aren’t saying you find that human tolerable, are you?”, she asked.

“Yes, I am. By all rights he is the most polite human I have met.”, he said, “Had you provoked him we wouldn’t have a leg to stand on. He followed proper procedures in the greeting, and respect to us. Causing unnecessary conflict with him would be very unwise.”

“Why?”, Esteria asked.

“According to Nepa he has the blessing of the God of War.”, Drakken said, “Provoking him would be the same as stating we hate the god himself. There will be rioting if that were to occur.”

“I wasn’t aware of that…”, she said reflecting on her actions.

“Not only that, the way he spoke he has taken out a few demigods. If that is true he stands head, and shoulders over me in combat.”, Drakken said, “Gaining an ally like that for this nation would definitely make the neighboring nation think before attacking us.”

“I am assuming you intend to do “that”, right?”, she asked.

“With twenty-eight women to his name I think one more won’t hurt. Plus I feel comfortable with the fact he appears to treat them all well.”, Drakken said.

“I think you should speak them before deciding their future for them.”, she responded, “They will be quite upset with you for not involving them.”

“I will speak with them this evening. I don’t think it will roll over well, but it is better than the alternative. Even you must see that.”, Drakken said.

“Yes…I can agree…begrudgingly.”, she said with a sigh.

Having been told to wait for three days the three of us checked into a room in the tourist area. I didn’t want it to become known that I could teleport, though it was only two locations, because it may cause unnecessary turmoil if someone like me moved around so easily. Relaxing in our bedroom for a bit I took out the Communication Mirror as we called so I could inform the others. They were thrilled that I wasn’t able to come back so they asked if they could come to me.

“Think about that carefully…”, I said, “We are in a country of demons who happen to be sensitive to magic. I felt comfortable enough doing this much, but bringing several of you over may cause issues.”

“That’s fair enough. Once you get permission though you will bring more of us, right?”, Ruby asked.

“Yes, Lucilla have you finished that magic detector yet?”, I asked.

“It is mostly done. The device needs some fine adjustments, but it should be done in two days.”, she said.

“Alright. All of you get your gear ready. I will end up bringing all of you over once things are settle…assuming we get permission.”, I said.

“Alrighty, see you hopefully in three days!”, they said blowing me kisses.

Returning the gesture I ended the connection before turn to Jona, and Crystal.

“Since we have three days on our hands why not take in the sights?”, I asked.

“Are you sure that’s a good idea?”, Jona asked.

“No offense to them, but I think we will be under surveillance the entire time we are here. I don’t blame them given our strength.”, I said, “That being said I figure it will be safer for all of us to be out in public. Last thing we want them is to break in here catching at an awkward time.”

“Oh!”, they said realizing I meant our intimate time.

“Anyways, it’s getting late now so let’s get our dinner.”, I said with a smile.

Leaving the room we enjoyed a warm meal of soup, and bread before getting an early night. The next morning after breakfast the two of them decided to show me around the capital. I didn’t know it leaving the inn, but my view of this world was about to take a massive shift…in the wrong direction.

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