Once out of Varegrave\'s tent, Lith introduced himself to Captain Kilian Aluria.
He discovered that the ranks in the Queen\'s corps were different from the army.
Being elite squads, each unit was allowed to act independently, and was composed by five soldiers and one Captain.
Each Captain only answered to the Queen herself, so despite their low-key demeanour, both Kilian and Velagros were actually big shots.
Kilian tried explaining to Lith how Varegrave had being grief stricken ever since he learned about Velagros\' alleged death.
The two of them had started their military career together, and been through thick and thin for years, before their paths had diverged.
Lith politely nodded from time to time, grateful to the mask for hiding his uncaring expression.
He knew a thing or two about grief and loss, yet he had never attacked someone based on a simple suspicion.
In his mind, Varegrave\'s destiny was set in stone.
He would use his success in the current task to ask for compensation as part of his reward.
If that resulted impossible or too problematic in the short term, Lith would simply postpone.
He had always considered revenge as something that was best served cold, there was no rush for it.
After asking Lith to forgive Varegrave and Lith pretending to consider doing it, Kilian lead him toward the second block.
The first block is where soldiers and personnel live.
The second, instead, is where the hospitals and the research labs are located.
We have healers and alchemists trying to treat the victims of the plague that we managed to stabilise, or at least that was the plan.
The truth is, that even after a month no one has yet understood what the plague really is.
So far light magic is completely useless, while alchemy seems to work to some degree, but only as palliative care.
It treats the symptoms, not the cause.
The more Lith learned about the plague, the more it resembled one of his old medical cases.
He was confident to be able to offer both a diagnosis and a cure, for a proper reward, of course.
Just out of curiosity… He asked.
…in the first block, triangular flags mean a residential tent, right Then what does the diamond and rectangular flags stand for
What do you think Despite having read his file, Kilian was still surprised that even in his earlier circumstances Lith had the presence of mind to notice small details.
Well, since in here dimensional items do not work, I\'d say one is for the food supplies and the other is for the weaponry.
And in case you are wondering, the golden flag is for the commanding officer, silver for the officers, bronze for soldiers.
Lith tried to take out his communication amulet, but to no avail.
Space was tightly sealed inside the array, negating access to his pocket dimension.
Then he tried to use first magic, discovering that even elemental magic didn\'t work.
The array jammed the connection between pure mana and the world energy, leaving him almost powerless.
I also noticed earlier that magic and magical objects do not work in here.
Yet the Colonel didn\'t have trouble smacking me around, and you were able to contact the King.
How is it possible
Kilian smirked at that naïve question.
He had almost forgot their esteemed guest was only a kid, with no knowledge about powerful artifacts.
The array surrounding Kandria is not a Warden spell.
Otherwise it would make no distinction between friends and foes.
It is created by one of the Crown\'s treasures, called Small World.
As the name implies, it creates an extended space within which the one that holds its keystone can change the rules of magic at will.
The Colonel controls the artifact, so he is immune to its effects and can grant privileges to others.
But every time someone uses a privilege, he is immediately notified.
That\'s how he knew something had happened the second the guards used Warp Steps to surround you.
Lith was flabbergasted by the infinite uses and applications such an artifact could have.
- That\'s the most overpowered thing I ever heard about.
I really hope your tower form has something similar.
Me too. Solus replied.
But I bet is not as easy as he says.
The affected area is too big and the effect too powerful.
The Captain is probably just feeding us public information while avoiding to mention the costs and limitations of the artifact. –
She may had burst his bubble, but was probably right.
It was too good to be true.
He decided to drop the matter and concentrate on his task.
Don\'t worry. Kilian added.
Light magic can be freely used inside this Small World.
You don\'t need to ask the Colonel\'s permission.
After they got past the security, Kilian brought him to block two\'s largest tent.
It was big enough to easily accommodate a whole circus.
It was a field hospital, the interior of which was completely white.
Instead of walls, it had countless curtains, that had been arranged creating corridors and defining the space of each patient\'s room.
The first thing that Lith noticed about it, was the silence.
Aside from the conversations between the mages coming and going into the various rooms, the hospital was completely silent.
One could hear the patients\' moans and complains only when a curtain was opened.
All the field hospitals have curtains enchanted to be sound proof. Kilian explained.
It\'s needed for security and morale reasons.
Despite being heavily sedated, some patients are in constant pain.
Their screams would disturb the healers and stress the other residents.
Avoiding escape attempts and mass hysteria is a priority.
All the field hospitals Lith echoed.
Do you mean there\'s more than one
There had to be hundreds of patients in that tent alone.
Lith had underestimated the scale of the plague.
Suddenly, he felt his conscience stinging at him.
It was Solus, of course.
Kilian brought him to a patient, a middle-aged man whose right leg was split open like a watermelon.
Despite the bandages and the attempts to stitch it, it was constantly bleeding.
According to the chart, he hadn\'t much time left.
There weren\'t enough Blood Potions and mages for everyone, without constantly replenishing his vitality, he had only a few days at most.
In Lith\'s eyes, this was the easiest to solve among the plague\'s manifestations.
It was identical to what had happened to Marchioness Distar\'s daughter.
Lith even had a fake magic spell he had later created, in case it happened again and the Marchioness was willing to purchase it from him.
- Selling it to the Kingdom will be much more lucrative. – Lith thought.
The man was pale as a ghost, his body covered in sweat.
The prolonged pain had sapped his strength, he barely opened an eye when the two strangers entered.
Lith pretended to chant a spell, and then placed his hand on the man\'s balding forehead, activating Invigoration.
He didn\'t like at all what he saw, his confidence crumbled.
Captain, can I use darkness magic too Kilian nodded, noticing that Lith carefully wiped out the sweat with magic before moving forward.
He rushed Kilian, visiting several patients with open wounds, but his findings were always the same.
Then, he visited the survivors from the spontaneous combustion and freezing phenomenon, and despite the mask Kilian could tell that something was wrong.
Lith was becoming increasingly nervous, like he had never seen him, not even during Varegrave\'s violent interrogation.
Kilian stopped, grabbing Lith\'s shoulder, executing with only one hand a spell that created a small air dome around them.
- Not only he can use air magic despite the array.
Kilian even invented the Mage Knight version of my Hush spell. – The idea of being plagiarized temporarily suppressed Lith\'s worry.
These people are the official reason you and us are here.
Off the record, though, reality is far more cynical.
If words spread that we have a disease capable of stripping a mage of his powers, our neighbours would join forces and burn the Griffon Kingdom to the ground.
I believe that even most mages, nobles or not, would run away at any cost, to not lose years of painstaking work and dedication.
That\'s why the final wing of the hospital officially does not exist.
Is it clear
Only after Lith nodded, Kilian brought him into an empty room.
He then placed an open hand on the curtain, injecting mana into it.
The surface became covered in runes, and after Kilian murmured an unintelligible word, he pulled it open.
Lith discovered they weren\'t in the field hospital anymore, but in another much smaller tent without any exit.
Dimensional magic. Kilian explained.
The tent had no curtains, except for the one they had come from.
It was filled with beds, were men and women lied.
Their faces were ashen, many were sobbing like they had recently lost their true love.
They were all members of the Mage Association that had lost their powers.
When they saw Lith using magic on them, some started crying uncontrollably, others tried to assault him in a fit of rage, forcing Kilian and the soldiers stationed inside to intervene to protect him from the angry mob.
After they left the prison ward, Lith couldn\'t wait to get the heck out of there.
Thank you for your help Kilian.
For a moment I thought they would rip me apart.
Don\'t mention it. His voice oozed over eagerness.
What do you think of the plague Kilian steeled himself preparing for his hopes to be crushed once again.
It\'s not a plague, it\'s much worse.
To whom must I report to before going back to the academy
Are you saying you have already cracked it