Once Zeska surrenders, we just have to offer the same deal to the other cities and wait for them to realize that no one is going to come to their rescue.
I bet that after the second no-show, the faith in their hero will crumble for good and the rebellion will end peacefully. Lith said.
It makes sense. Captain Ahria pondered.
Why did you give them three days, though Isn\'t that too long
Quaron can\'t use his communication amulet without being located so they have to reach him in person and this might take a while. Lith shook his head.
On top of that, I\'ll use this time to investigate the city.
Due to my offer, those who supported Quaron until now are probably quaking in their boots and will seek each other\'s support to get away with their lives.
It\'s the perfect opportunity to understand how deep-rooted the treason is.
Also, I\'m curious about what Quaron could possibly offer to already powerful people to put everything on the line and support his coup.
He may be working with the Undead Courts or maybe even with Thrud.
The rebellion is but a symptom of a hidden disease.
Investigating the city How Estar asked.
I\'m not an Archmage just because I\'m good at breaking stuff. Lith replied.
I\'ll open a Warp Steps in the sky above the city arrays and then use Light Mastery to break the fall.
I can freely change the color of my constructs and no one will notice black stairs in the middle of the night.
He conjured a black dahlia in his hand, making his seconds in command gasp in amazement.
I\'m sorry for doubting your strategy. Ahria gave Lith a deep bow, quickly followed by her colleagues.
Pelan joined them only once he realized to be the only one still upright.
Who is the best at stealth among the troops Lith asked.
I am. Captain Rudra replied.
I may not be a Light Master but I know how to distort light and my uniform can change color according to the circumstances, making me nigh-invisible.
Excellent. Lith nodded.
It\'s of paramount importance that you follow the messenger discreetly and discover Quaron\'s location.
They are unlikely to Warp but even a magico can fly at high speed so it\'s better if you get in position already.
Rudra nodded and took flight, quickly reaching an altitude where the arrays didn\'t hinder air magic anymore.
He stood above the middle of the city, waiting.
The army had surrounded Zeska from every side so no matter what direction the messenger would take, Rudra would know where to go thanks to the network of communication amulets.
Much to Lith\'s surprise, when the city gates opened, two men come out instead of one.
\'A decoy Dammit, the City Lord is smarter than I thought.\' He inwardly cursed while quickly giving more orders in his communication amulet.
Yet only one of them hurried towards the edges of the elemental sealing arrays while the other, a man in his mid-thirties, marched toward Lith with strides filled with confidence and a defiant look in his eyes.
\'Or not.\' Solus said.
\'This guy has a deep orange core.
If he can fly then I can travel through time.\'
The man had thick black hair and blue eyes.
He was over 1.95 meters (6\'5) and had shoulders wider than most doors Lith had ever walked through.
He wore a full suit of heavily enchanted armor, wielding a longsword with only one hand.
I don\'t care what Eman says.
I don\'t trust someone who relies on magic even to pick their own nose. He said.
And why did you feel the need to come here and tell me yourself Lith asked with an amused tone.
I\'m here to make sure that you don\'t follow Hest and to offer you another deal. The man said.
Face me without any magical trick, warrior to warrior.
If I win, you leave us alone as you promised.
What if I win Lith asked, already annoyed by that nonsense.
The question left the man flabbergasted.
Sergeant Throq had expected Lith to refuse the fight, not to discuss terms.
\'He\'s just a child who has yet to reach twenty years of age.
Without his magic, the difference between our battle prowess is like heaven and earth.
Verhen is shorter, lighter, and much less experienced than me.\' He thought while never stopping his advance.
I asked you, what if I win I\'m not wasting my time with a pointless fight. Lith said.
\'What an idiot!\' Throq inwardly smiled.
\'I came here with the intent of forcing him to back down and restore the troop\'s morale.
Between the spell and his poisonous speech, the citizens are too scared to hold their ground anymore.
\'Even if he killed me, it would have just shown the others how ruthless and cowardly the dogs of the Kingdom are.
To give my people the will to fight, even my life is a small chance to pay.\'
\'Yet I would\'ve never expected Verhen to be so conceited and his soldiers to be so incompetent that they would let me come this close.
If he dies, the army will lack the power to recapture Zeska and my people will find their courage again.\'
\'This is my opportunity to turn this around.\'
Then don\'t fight and die! Throq drew his sword and lunged at Lith\'s exposed neck in one fluid motion, moving so quickly to be just a blur.
He had drunk the best enhancing potions the militia had before leaving Zeska, in case he needed either to escape or to bring down as many enemy soldiers as he could with him if after refusing his challenge Verhen ordered to capture him for intel.
Lith intercepted the attack, pushing the blade aside with the back of his right hand while pressing the palm of the left against Throq\'s chest and giving him a gentle push.
A gentle push that sent him flying against the city walls with such speed that his spine shattered on impact, his head burst open like a melon, and so did many of his internal organs.
Even before his corpse touched the ground there was already a pool of blood spreading below him.
The Sergeant\'s final thoughts didn\'t go to his beloved city or to the family that waited for him behind the walls and that he would never see again.
All he could think about was the feeling of hitting a lump of metal that had reverberated through his blade and Lith\'s expression.
It wasn\'t that of a warrior reacting to a sneak attack so much as that of a man who swats an annoying fly.
Do you want us to retaliate for the assassination attempt, Major Estar, like the other Captains, had let Throq come near their leader simply because they knew he posed no threat.
Make sure that Rudra has succeeded following the messenger, have my tent built at the edge of the sealing arrays, and report to me as soon as you are done with your tasks. Lith conjured a tower of light again to speak with the Commander of the City Guard.
If that guy was your champion, then according to our deal Zeska is mine to reclaim.
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