Revenge for the mother?
Standing right on the side as he listened to Israel lecturing his own son, Joshua remained in silence as he did not know what to say. Dimore, who seemed to be reflecting on his own mistakes, glanced at the cold face of the Emperor as his heart was overwhelmed with emotions.
In the previous life, there always had been people who questioned the reason behind the concealment of Dimore's identity. So why would Emperor Israel send his precious son to the military? With the Gift that the second prince possessed, it would have been awfully unfortunate if Dimore had died in the war with the orcs or the Dark Tide, wouldn't it?
There were usually many answers to that question. One should truly train himself in real battles to become a true champion who could wield strong power. Or perhaps the world believed that a prodigy would not be a prodigy if he could not survive harsh environments. Or perhaps even an answer that suggested that the royal family had always been heartless to their own kind.
However, from the looks of it, the question seemed to have a new explanation.
Judging solely by the scattered words and rumors he heard in the past, Joshua could guess the way the drama was headed to. It seemed that the royal family members of different factions were struggling among themselves to secure the throne themselves, leading to the death of Dimore's loving mother. Another reason for the concealment of the second prince's identity was because Israel was trying to protect him from the other members of the family. The Emperor sent Dimore out of the palace in order to train himhowever, the warrior did not like that at all. Hence, he did not dig deeper into the story. They always end up the same. The second prince would take out all of his siblings when he avenges his mother's death before becoming the new Emperor of Imperial City.
Joshua stared at Israel for a moment. The Emperor had a heavy aura and looked terrible since the beginning. His brows were knitted as if he was in an excruciating pain. Even though he concealed it well, the warrior was still able to see through that.
A Legendary-tier champion never had any sort of discomfort or health issues. Only a fatal injury or some old hidden injury that killed him slowly from the inside over the years could have caused Israel that sort of pain.
Perhaps that was the reason Israel would fall in the coming days. Joshua quietly thought about any potential problem that might have existed over the years. He then pushed those thoughts aside and focused on the present moment. The Emperor turned and looked at Joshua.
"Radcliffe. First of all, congratulations on your achievement of attaining Supreme tier. The Imperial Kingdom has gained another warrior with supreme powerthe kingdom should throw a banquet upon that and celebrate it. However, due to the situation that you brought up with us, perhaps it's not the time to discuss that. We should get to the matter before it gets worse."
Perhaps it was too cumbersome to talk with the ambassadors of other kingdoms. Now that the Emperor was talking to Joshua, whom he was familiar with, Israel had cast away all of the formality he upheld as an Emperor when spoke with others. He spoke to the warrior solemnly, "You called it the black plague. Can you give the Royal Mage Guild a sample so that they can work on the cure right away?"
The old mage behind Israel nodded in agreement. "As long as we can do some research on it and find a cure to counter it, or perhaps create a magic potion, then the plague will not be able to cause too much trouble regardless of how many conspiracies the cults are brewing up in the shadows."
"I have sealed the source of the plague in the jail underneath the St. Laurent Cathedral with a Divine Spell. We can get the sample any time we want." Joshua went straight to the point. The warrior could have just handed the list of materials required to make the cure to the plague. However, he would have to handle a lot of things if he did that. People would definitely question him about it. So, he was on standby for the mage to come over and get the sample of the plague. Then maybe, he could just give some suggestion casually on how to make the cure. Perhaps that could speed up the process of making the cure.
"Then you will go to the guild later and pick some of them for the researchers. Nostradamus will accompany you there."
The Emperor appeared tired. He did not look as intimidating as he did back when he was sparring with Joshua. At first, he seemed as if he wanted to say something. However, he remained silent and shook his head. "That would be all for now. I'm really sorry about this. I'm feeling a little tired now Rest assured that the Imperial Kingdom will never overlook your contribution to the kingdom. You shall be rewarded in the coming days."
Those words were obviously suggesting that the guests should leave the hall now. Joshua took the hint and left after informing Israel. Nostradamus and Dimore also took their leave soon after Joshua did.
After everyone left, the door of the main hall automatically closed itself slowly, leaving only Israel standing in the main hall. He looked at the Nuclear Star above his head as the steel crown on top of his head glittered with cool silvery light.
Nostradamus knew that there would surely be many old friends of his who would come to him to get some information. He knew that people would want to acquire information about the upcoming events so that they could be prepared for whatever that was coming.
Though people do not say it directly, their goals are the same. Creatures of politics had always been that way. Nostradamus was not fond of it. He whispered to Joshua and the others before all of them were on the other side of the hallway and before the servants and the other people in the guest hall could get to them.
They made their way to the Royal Mage Guild after leaving Morlaix Palace, Dimore kept his head low and remained silent. He seemed to be reflecting on the words that his father and Joshua told him earlier on. Ying and Ling were not in a serious mood as they chatted away about dinner.
The old mage picked a topic and started talking to the warrior, "Joshua, I believe that you're well aware of the situation and the incident happening in the distant south."
As they walked on the quiet street, the old mage was serious and his voice crystal clear as he spoke, "Everything is happening as you predicted. Although the plague has yet to spread over there, we cannot deny that summer is just around the corner. Corpses of draconic beasts and humans will begin to decay. The plague will spread quickly in that environment, even ordinary plagues would become a great problem. Hence, the plague unleashed by the Evil God of Pestilence is definitely an imminent threat. The ambassadors of the churches and the kingdoms from the distant south are all here because they seem to have guessed how deadly the plague could be after a bloody war."
"However, they can't really stop the plague from spreading. They had never anticipated for the Evil God of Pestilence to unleash such brutality on the world."
Joshua nodded and said, "The berserk dragons have been a great problem for them, causing them to focus their full attention on those dragons. So currently, they have only one option left that is to seek support from the Imperial Kingdom."
"That's right. The believers of the cults and the Pentashade Dragons are in the same league, deeper than we could have ever imagined."Nostradamus's voice dropped lower as he spoke. "We have uncovered evidence that the berserk dragons have been appearing across the great continent. It seems planned as they are spreading their viruses systematically. If the cults are using the same method to spread the plague, we might not be able to stop them."
"Taking precautions against them seems like a futile effort. Even if we can seal the roads and streets, the cultists can still get into the cities and the other places through the Dark Forest. They can just release the infected draconic beast into all kingdoms whenever they want."
Recalling some memories from the past life, Joshua sneered and said, "These madmen fear no death, regardless of whether they would fail or succeed. After all, one successful attempt is all it takes for their twisted plot to work."
Nodding slightly, Nostradamus seemed a little worried. Then he whispered softly, "The Emperor is preparing to announce it to the world after we've set up the research on the plague. It's not going to remain a secret for long. All kingdoms would be on high alert against the cultists by then. The cultists would also increase their effort to spread the plague. The plague might even break out before we could create the cure to it."
"It is normal to suffer some loss in the effort to gain something. That's how things normally are."
Joshua was not a fool. He noticed that the old mage was not in a good mood. The warrior understood that his discomfort came from Israel's injury. At times like this, if something bad were to happen to the Emperor, the kingdom might totally collapse. Just like what happened in the past life, when a bunch of princes and princesses fought over a throne, they almost caused a kingdom to be divided into seven smaller kingdoms.
Perhaps the Emperor had also noticed the problems with his own body. Hence, he summoned Dimore back to the Imperial City. After all, he seemed to be slowly running out of time. He needed to train his second son into someone worthy of the throne as soon as he could.
However, what sort of injury did he have? Was the injury so bad that it concerned a Legendary-tier champion so much that he would need to act so hastily?
"Dragon's Calamity, then the Plague."
The old mage remained troubled as he whispered to himself, "The ruins beneath the Dark Forest have intensified the relationship between the Skypiercing White Tower and the Council of Seven, increasing the tension among them. The warlocks of the royal families in the Western Mountains had been battling among themselves because of the sudden appearance of the Ancient Blood. A different kind of concern rose from the incident where many men had vanished due to the orcs."
"Each kingdom has descended into all sorts of dispute, big and small. Troubles are overwhelming both internally and externally. The innocent have been dragged into the mud. The cultists seem to be taking advantage of the situation as they are using all that they have in spreading death and fear, chaos and despair."
Nostradamus looked very emotional. "It is obvious that the orcs have been defeated. So the kingdom was able to finally focus on developing and expanding. They could finally tend to the wounds and make up for the weaknesses they had over the years during the war. However, things did not go the way it should. The current situation does not allow any of us to let down our guards."
Joshua remained silent. The white-haired mage seemed to be ranting and voicing out his concerns. It was pointless for Joshua to respond.
It was not wise at all to tell Nostradamus that what was about to happen was just a prologue to something bigger. There would be bigger incidents happening in the coming years. More disputes and calamities were about to ravage the world. Was it really a good idea to tell that to the old mage who was already frustrated enough?
No one was that stupid.
Everyone walked out of the main gate of Morlaix Palace. Suddenly, a surge of magic energy suddenly appeared on the body of the old mage.
Frowning, Nostradamus took out a communication magic device from beneath his robe. He looked at the name displayed on the device and activated the Magic Circle on the device without hesitating then started to speak calmly, "Vera? What's the matter?"
"Master Nostradamus! A black shroud of unknown origin has appeared near the Royal Mage Guild!"
The voice that came through the communication device sounded unusually hasty. The mage called Vera sounded extremely anxious. "The black shroud is highly corrosive. Anyone who got into contact with it suffered severe skin burn. The guards of the city have evacuated the civilians. However, the black shroud is spreading into the nearby areas. Many buildings have collapsed and the civilians are being dragged into the mud. All the mages have no way of stopping the shroud from spreading further!"
The old mage did not sound nervous. He calmly thought about it and frowned. Then he chided the man on the other side of the line, "God damn it. What a bunch of losers. How did you even cause such a huge accident simply by doing research on a small box?"