Lith\'s simple reply made the farmer burst into tears.
In the past centuries, the man had done all he could think of to escape from the nightmare his life was.
He had attempted to dig under the barrier, tried to break it, and killed himself in any way he could conceive an put into practice.
Yet the only result was to wake up the same day the High Lord would be activated, no matter if he died due to the black rain or his own hands.
At first, he had put his hopes into the clerics of the High Sun.
They were the most powerful mages of the whole nation of Belamd of which Kaduria was the capitol.
They had forgemastered the High Lord to protect the Kingdom against the invading forces from the north.
They had created the problem, they were supposed to solve it.
Time was the only thing Kadurians didn\'t lack.
Only years later the clerics confessed to having lost their magic powers.
The revelation led to the age of madness.
It lasted decades and ended not because people had found new hope in their hearts, but because nothing they did stuck.
Their actions, both bad and good were irrelevant.
Everything would be reset at the next cycle.
The impossibility to change the smallest detail of their lives made them lose any drive to act.
Then, the farmer had put his faith into the mysterious strangers that would come from time to time, but that too turned out to be a pipe dream.
The strangers were either unable or unwilling to communicate and their actions always violent.
They would ignore the farmer or kill him on the spot without saying a word.
After speaking with other people, the man learned about how the strangers would perform massacres for several cycles before leaving.
Some Kadurians considered the strangers like demons, that would come to wreak havoc and try to steal the High Lord.
Many more considered them the only proof that they were still alive and not trapped into an eternal nightmare.
For a few people, like the crying farmer, they were the last shred of hope left.
The strangers still had their magic, their faces and language would always change.
They were the only variable left in an otherwise immutable life.
Lith\'s words moved the farmer because it was the first conversation he had in over 700 years with someone from the outside world.
Someone the man had no idea who he was or what his answers could be.
Even if just by a single second, the farmer felt the wheel of time had started to spin again for him.
Are you okay Lith was surprised by the sudden cries of joy.
He was about to use Invigoration to check out the Kadurian\'s condition when he remembered Kamila\'s words about healing magic being lethal for the citizens of the lost city.
I\'m more than fine, thank you. The man wiped his tears.
He didn\'t want to waste a single second of the miracle in front of him.
Are you here to help us Can you bring down the barrier and set us free He asked with a trembling voice.
Even if I wanted to help you, I don\'t know how. The ability to understand the Kadurian opened new possibilities, but Lith was uncertain if it was worth exploring them rather than just get done with it and resume his trip.
As for the barrier, it\'s not there to keep you prisoners but to prevent the Black Star from spreading its plague.
I\'m sorry. Lith expected the man to become enraged or to start crying again.
It makes sense. The man said with a sigh.
The High Lord, or Black Star as you call it, has been devised to preserve the lives of the Kadurians at all costs and to unleash the fury of the High Sun, our god, upon our enemies.
I still wonder if something malfunctioned or those idiotic clerics never bothered teaching that damned thing the difference between friend and foe.
Its blueprints are filled with powerful abilities, yet I don\'t recall a single line explaining how to control them.
Lith had no idea if to be more surprised by the man\'s cold blood or by its knowledge about the Black Star.
I\'m sorry, did you just say you worked on the Black Star What was your role exactly
The farmer laughed out loud for the first time in over 300 years.
Do I look like a cleric to you Of course I had no part in its creation.
I simply read everything there was to read to pass my time.
There are no secrets in Kaduria anymore.
No one bothers protecting them.
It would be a fool\'s errand, like everything else.
I can\'t make you any promises, but if you explain to me how the artifact works, I may be able to do something for you. Lith felt his luck was finally turning.
He had struck a gold mine.
He would learn invaluable information that he could trade with the Griffon Kingdom at his discretion and get closer to a solution to his reincarnation problem.
Two birds with one stone.
I studied them decades ago and without the ability to practice magic, I forgot almost everything. The man shook his head.
I can show the blueprints to you, though.
They are easy to find, if you know where to look.
My name is Redan.
Redan put his palms together and gave Lith a small bow.
My name is Linjos. Lith replied without hesitation.
\'I have no idea if this guy is really acting of his own free will or he is controlled by the cursed item.
If I use my real name, I\'d leave a trail behind.
Someone else might do what I did and talk to Redan.
\'Since I\'m forced to leave loose ends, worst case scenario my late Headmaster is beyond any harm.\'
Where are the blueprints
In the personal quarters of high cleric Meru, inside the castle.
\'Don\'t worry.\' Solus said sensing Lith\'s unwillingness to get that close to the angry artifact.
\'Even from this close, I don\'t see any tether linking Redan to the Black Star.
The cursed item is at its weakest right now.
The light cycle has just begun and because of our interference, the barrier is way stronger than before.
\'It\'s blocking most of the energy from the mana geyser.
If the Black Star focuses on us instead of collecting energy, its next attack will also be too weak to put a dent in the barrier.
If that happens, it will take the cursed object years to recover its strength.\'
\'Good to know.
If Redan is telling the truth, I\'ll gain priceless knowledge.
If he is lying, a simple Warp Steps will allow me to return to the barrier and the Black Star will be so weakened there will be no need to get inside this hellhole again.
It\'s a win-win situation.\' Lith thought.
We have no time to spare. He said.
You can\'t enter the city dressed like that. Redan pointed out.
There are still many zealots who consider outsiders as enemies.
Let me lend you some clothes.