23 「Days of Passage」
It was the fourteenth day of transition into the New World for both Momon and Jack. Two days after the triple homicide of the members belonging to the Swords of Darkness, and one day after the dispatch had left the Royal Capital of the Re-Estize Capital to Carne Village.
Since then Lizzie and Nphirea Baleare had relocated to Carnve Village to fulfill a pact made with Momon after the near complete destruction of the Party.
It was clear he wasn't safe either in the city as there may be even more people out there like Clementine and Khajiit which would look to use her grandson as a weapon.
Today was a strong day, one in which everyone was gathering in the village. While the Swords of Darkness had arrived in the middle of the Sunlit Scripture Conflict, they were remembered for taking out soldiers who dared come to massacre the populace.
They were considered heroes even though it was mainly just Jack who had slaughtered them with rather explosive bullet magic. Something he considered overkill now compared to then.
The funeral was getting a larger procession as time went by. Friends, family. People who knew them arrived from E-Rantel to see them off, as well as to admire the new wall. The Golems had already begun to pave a new road onto the Highway which connects the Cities and countries together.
It was clear that the progress of development was steadily getting faster and faster. Soon this village was going to become either a major habitual zone, or a very vacant ghost town.
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There were various buildings which were allowed for everyone to use. There was even a freshly built Inn for the visitors to stay in. It was operated by one of the NPCs from the Citadel who was specialized in cooking, accounting and cleaning.
So there Jack stood overlooking the three caskets in the middle of a cemetery which was now completed. It had a set of refined granite stone walls surrounding it with black metal fencing on top. Each of the tomb markers, whether written on or blank, were made out of slabs of polished reinforced cement.
Before the caskets on the tomb stones, grave markers, were the names of their friends:
"Peter Mauk, The Loving Leader and Friend."
"Lukrut Volve, The Obnoxious but loving."
"Dyne Woodwonder, The Friend of Wisdom and Great Understanding."
Within an hour or so the people were all around the caskets. Viewing the Glyph of Light that represented their face, which hovered above them.
People offered prayers, others rested a flower on the casket or a handful of dirt.
Food, ceremony. The Culture of Re-Estize and the people in it despite having a main religion was rather diverse. People lived their lives as society allowed it, or deemed fit.
Jack didn't move from where he stood. He was dressed in just his uniform again. However his eyes weren't just on the casket now. She was watching Ninya hovering over Peter's casket.
She was talking to him, or at least, his corpse.
People he knew found closure and clarity should they believe the dead could hear them. Who knows though, maybe in this world they could. The idea made him smile a bit, thinking that his friends were looking down on him. Or at least protecting her in anyway that they could.
They hadn't begun their training yet, and they didn't sleep together, not that he minded. He could still remember the warmth he felt when she had slept pressed up next to him in the middle of the plains when they were coming to the Carne's Village to get herbs for Nphirea.
Part of him wanted to cry because his mind wondered over to the possibility that he hadn't asked her to stay. If she had gone and died, twice at the hands of the same person. What would he had done?
Surely he would have brought her back, no matter what. Even if her soul refused to come back, he would bring her back. He would force her back into her body.
The idea of the agony that would put her through though made him wince.
Then suddenly a calm passed over him for the first time since he had gotten here. He had the chance to be overwhelmed by his own emotions, but suddenly they were cooled.
He blinked several times and looked around, taking in each face, each scent and all the information he could gather by just seeing them. Then his eyes locked onto the front gates of the main wall.
One of the people manning the front gates was flashing a mirror in his direction.
Apparently someone was wanting to come in. He could only assume it was the group of adventurers and the one known as Climb, whomever he was.
As the doors opened he watched as five people on horses came trotting into the Village territory. The doors would close loudly behind them, causing a small female on a red horse to jump slightly.
A brow raised slightly, noting the white mask with a red jewel on it. She wore a lot of red, including the hood over her head. And there was some black as well which covered her body beneath her neck.
She had an interesting feeling coming off of her and when he went to gage her level, he quickly found that she was probably the strongest of the six making their way towards the ongoing funeral.
Without a seconds notice with a flash of blue lights, he was no longer where he once stood.
Within around the same time he vanished from sight, he reappeared behind the trotting horses. His eyes were mainly on the little red with the blond hair. Though his eyes also moved to the ones dressed as Shinobu, and onto the one with the actual Sword of Darkness on her back.
EvilEye who sensed the use of magic very close to her, turned her head and froze. Her horse immediately came to a stop and the rest of them turned their horses around to see what was going on.
"Whoa! Where did you come from? Like are your feet are we?" Laughed Gagaran, stepping off her horse as she was dressed in her full set of armor. She wore this big friendly grin.
Just by looking at her, Jack could hardly tell she was a woman despite the massive pecks on the armor itself. Were they encasing her breasts, or were those just for overzealous decorum?!
"Wait, weren't you over there!?" The identical twin Ninjas shouted in realization who had just showed.
Lakyus however was staring at him, looking him over once twice and even three times. "Are you the one known as Sir Cipher?" It looked like her hand was itching to go for the hilt of the massive sword which once belonged to the Black Knight.
"My friends call me Jack, Cipher is my Alias."
"Like a Cryptograph?" EvilEye raised a brow at this under her mask as she looked him over herself.
She could tell he was several times stronger than anyone here. Even herself as she was probably well over seventy five levels below him. Her eyes moved over his uniform before biting her lip.
"Exactly, though the name itself means Person of No Influence, or Non-Entity."
Nodding slowly as if it was relevant, she would slowly peal herself away from the horse and drop down onto her feet. She stared at the man before walking up close to him.
It was quick to find that she was extremely short compared to him since he was a little over six feet tall. He was also rather lithe so he wasn't super muscular to the point that he was bulky. So they had about the same width.
Squinting at him, she didn't really know what to think. Out of everything she just felt a neutral vibe off of him, but he smelled of blood and it wasn't his own. He killed recently and appeared rather unaffected by it. If anything, she could sense the calm.
"You must be the Blue Roses," he finally spoke up as he narrowed his sights on the only other male present, Climb. He was blond and in Knight's armor. "What brings you to Carne Village?"
"You can't be serious," Lakyus snickered as he seemed to ignore the fact that this giant wall had appeared overnight including the movement of the Citadel. "Do you think moving that Fortress would go unnoticed!?" She pointed over her shoulder towards his Guild Headquarters.
"Is that Sarcasm?" Jack asked as his eyes took in the blue, red and gold hues which decorated her attire. It was light armor, but that weapon she had and definitely wanted to use, was heavy.
It was hard to think of her as a tank, but to think of her as a Warrior was just odd. It was like a combination of Ranger and Warrior. Though in reality, she was a caster and warrior, a warrior priestess.
Using silent magic to call forth the 「Greater Identification」Spell, he would view her information as well as the other members of her group. In a fun turn of events, it appeared that EvilEye, also known as the Vampire Lord Landfall or Keno Invern, was a Vampire of all things. A fellow Hetermorphic being.
On top of that her former affiliation was that of the Thirteen Heroes.
"So you knew the Black Knight," Jack said out loud without knowing it.
Slowly Keno nodded, wondering where this was coming from. Though she could only assume he already knew who everyone in this group was. Surveillance Magic was in heavy use throughout the Continent at the moment and it was making just about everyone who could sense it uneasy.
Jack sighed quietly with a small smile across his lips as he gazed over the little LandFall. "It's nice to finally meet you Landfall." He used her former name casually which caused all of her friends to briefly reach for their weapons.
However he didn't react to their movements and instead kept his attention on Keno.
"People call me EvilEye," she responded to his calling her out as the former Vampire Lord.
Jack acknowledged with a simple tip of his head, before looking past them towards the funeral as it was going on. There were some tents where food was served and such.
"So what can I do for you?" He asked as he moved his attention towards Climb who appeared to be the Princess Renner's personal toy, or in some extraordinary fashion, pet puppy.
"The Six Noble Houses want to bring you in after learning of your potions, and now your..." For a mere minute he was captivated by the wall which surrounded him. He could hardly see where it ended as trees and buildings blocked the view. "Unsanctioned Fortification of a Village as made them think you're planning a move against the Kingdom."
"And what does Gazef think?" He asked as he narrowed his sights on the blond male who was taken back by the casual mention of the Head warrior.
"While he seems to support you, he does believe you went overboard. It appears you're going to war."
"And if I am?"
For a brief moment they went silent before all looking at one another, then back to him.
"The Slane Theocracy and the Baharuth Empire are watching us. Especially now after I eliminated the majority of the Black Scripture after one of their former members killed some of my friends." Jack wore a fake smile as he said these words as there was no happiness in them.
"You... Eliminated them!?"
"All except for four of them... One wasn't present and I captured three of them."
"Where did you fight them?"
"They were present near E-Rantel during the Vampire Attack." He glanced off in the distance for a moment before turning his head to look at Nphirea who was walking with his Grandmother and Enri off in the distance.
"So I ambushed them a day into their retreat," he yawned quietly as if it was just a boring story.
"How'd you fight that many God-Kin?" EvilEye stepped forward, knowing very well that even as descendants of players, they were relatively powerful.
"The Vampire killed two of them and critically injured another." His eyes wandered over to Lakyus who was eying his uniform.
A small grin formed over his lips as he stepped towards them.
"That would still leave Nine of them..."
"I suppose. The first one I killed was the Second Seat, the moment he landed a hit, he died."
Those last few words echoed in the back of their minds for a few moments. The Second Seat landed a hit on him and died rather than inflicting damage?
"And he did no damage to you?"
"No, but the fourth seat managed to burn me."
Jack just shrugged slightly, "Very little damage though." A smile remained tainting his lips before he went to walk passed them and rejoin the funeral. "Feel free to join in. The 'Swords of Darkness' appreciate your visit."
Lakyus blinked a few times hearing the name of the party. "Huh?"
"Our Party's primary goal was to acquire one of the Black Knights Swords, or all four of them since there used to be just four members before I joined." He laughed quietly to himself and shook his head, "Now there is only two."
"Right... The Zurrernorn attack... They were kille--"
"They were killed by Lady Clementine, a former member of the Black Scripture and some guy named Dale from Zurrernorn. If Momon had made it there sooner, they might've still been alive."
"I can revi--"
"No you can't," Jack cut her off from what she was about to say, as if he knew she was going to say she could revive them. Mostly because he knew that she had such an ability, but he already blocked their capacity to be resurrected.
"I used true death on them, there is no need for them to experience death a second or third time."
Lakyus frowned, "That's not your choice."
"It is now."
Turning his back to them, he grasped his left wrist behind his back with his right hand and began to walk. Just the fact that he could use certain abilities meant he was highly powered and irregular.
On top of that it appeared he knew exactly who Keno was. Or at least appeared to.
She was pretty sure he was a player considering he had eliminated the Black Scripture, but what he was isn't known to her.
"Hey!" Lakyus shouted after him, "The Six Nobles and the King demand you come to the Royal Capital!"
Glancing over his shoulder looking over at them, "After the Funeral. Like I said, you're welcome to stay until then."
"At night fall it is!"
"It's going to last three days, good luck with that."
"You only have one da--"
"Three lives cannot be celebrated in one day!"