Age of Adepts (BR) Chapter 1092: Maple Forest Town
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Lucia carried a thick stack of books in her arms as she hastily passed through the arcane hall, squeezed through the busy corridor, and entered the arcane academy.
Not far in front of her was the knowledge hall where her daily lectures were. The lecturer today was Second Grade Sir Brown, who she respected and admired most of all. Of course, this only made her want to attend the lecture even more.
Yet, at this moment, she was stopped by an apprentice that charged out from nowhere.
It was a young, handsome nobleman. He looked to be only fifteen or sixteen, but he wore a well-tailored arcanist's robe on his person, with delicate patterns woven into the fabric with golden runic threads.
According to the laws of the Arcane Empire, scholars who had yet to request a grade evaluation at the Arcane Assessment Office were strictly not allowed to wear the robe of an official arcanist. However, even though the teenager's aura was that of an apprentice, he was brazenly breaking the rules and wearing an arcanist's robe.
It was a serious crime. If he were to be caught by the enforcers, he would have his status as an apprentice revoked!
Meanwhile, a dozen other teenagers followed behind the nobleman. Judging from how they were dressed, they were also students of the arcane academy.
"Soren, you're breaking the rules again!" Lucia was slightly surprised when she was stopped. She couldn't help but frown and say, "Better be careful not to lose your apprentice status if you get caught by the academy's enforcers. Don't think you can do whatever you want just because you have a Third Ring grandfather in the academy."
The apprentice known as Soren had a prideful expression on his face. He waved his hand and had his 'followers' back away. He then let his gaze brazenly settle upon Lucia's pretty and youthful face.
"Lucia, I will ask you one last time today; are you willing to be my lover?!"
A trace of anger flashed across Lucia's beautiful face. Her intelligent blue eyes stared into his eyes as she firmly replied, "Soren, you've harassed me many times already! My reply is still the same! You can stop dreaming about it forever now! My life belongs to the arcane arts. My soul belongs to the arcane arts. I have no interest in anything other than the arcane arts!"
There was an unprecedented determination to the young girl's words. A sense of maturity and stubbornness utterly incompatible with her youth could be heard behind every word.
"You…you probably don't know yet, do you?!" Lucia's resoluteness had obviously angered Soren. He took a look around him. When he confirmed that no one could overhear their conversation, he stepped forward and leaned by Lucia's ears to speak, "The Empire is already planning to abandon this war. They are organizing a retreat now."
The young girl's body shuddered.
"The quota for the retreat that the Empire can provide is limited. Even my grandfather can only bring two people with him. I am most certainly taking up one of that quota. If you are willing to become my lover, I can beg my grandfather to bring you along."
Lucia's face instantly flushed white.
Even though she didn't want to acknowledge the truth of what Soren was saying, it was very likely that this information was accurate, given the status of Soren's grandfather as a Third Ring arcanist. If this information was true, didn't it mean that the Empire had abandoned all of its civilians and low-grade arcanists and were planning a secret escape?!
Lucia's grip over the thick tomes in her arms had unknowingly tightened so much so that her knuckles protruded and the blood had faded from the skin. However, after lowering her head slightly, she immediately lifted it once again. She stared into Soren's eyes and spoke with deadly resolution. "There's no need to think about it, Soren. I wouldn't agree to your request even if the world were to end tomorrow. From the day I stepped into the arcane academy, I have already made up my mind. I will dedicate everything to the worthy cause of the arcane arts. You can let go of your delusions already!"
Soren seemed to have been angered as well. He replied with a similarly determined and cruel voice, "Don't worry, I won't continue to bother you. It will be another month until the retreat. I believe you will 'seriously' consider this issue. You know where I live. As long as you can come and accompany me for a night before the order for the retreat is given, I can bring you along with me. Otherwise, you can just wait here to die along with the floating city!"
Soren laughed out loud and walked away, leaving the pale-faced Lucia fixed to the spot.
Maple Forest Town.
This place was a completely insignificant human town.
The town was located near a valley, surrounded by a lush forest of yellow and green.
As it was close to the mountains, the mist was thick and heavy. It was hard to see the red disc in the gray sky, even if it was noon.
Greem stood near the entrance of the town. He looked around him and discovered no signs of arcane energy. He nodded in satisfaction.
"We will rest here for tonight, then! The closest human city from this town is fifty-five kilometers away. There are no arcane buildings nearby either. It's the best place for us to rest."
The other three adepts had no opinions on the matter. They shrugged and walked into the town.
The two had maybe a hundred or so families. The one-hundred tattered, old wooden houses were spread across the town in an orderly fashion, outlining three streets and a central plaza.
It was now sunset. The residents of the town had all started their hearth fires and were preparing dinner.
The smoke from their chimneys mixed with the light evening mist, causing the town to appear even dimmer.
The town residents couldn't help but become curious when they saw Greem and the three others walk in with their unusual clothes. They emerged from their houses, their kitchens, and their cowsheds, pointing and nodding at the adepts. They seemed to have taken them for wandering adventurers.
Dark Witch Shana obviously didn't like being surrounded and watched by people as if she were an attraction. She let out a cold grunt and prepared to strike. However, Greem put out his hand and stopped her.
"We are adepts, not monsters. It's best to avoid unnecessary slaughter as much as possible!" Greem calmly said as he turned and looked at Mangus. "Mangus, we'll leave it to you!"
"No problem!" Mangus chuckled and quickly handed over control of the body to Cherisha.
Cherisha's head shifted to the middle of the neck, and her eyes instantly opened wide.
Mangus excelled at fighting, while Cherisha excelled at mental magic.
As Cherisha opened her eyes and snapped her fingers, all the town residents closed their eyes in an instant. They remained standing where they were and starting snoring in their sleep.
"That's good enough. Everyone's been hypnotized now. They won't wake up until we leave tomorrow, and they won't remember us either." Cherisha smiled.
Mental magic was her specialty, and she was the absolute authority of this field in this group!
"Let's go. Let's find a place to settle down. I haven't had a bath in days. I feel like mold's starting to grow on me!" Adept Holly nodded in satisfaction and walked ahead of everyone to the biggest and most extravagant building in the town.
The building that Adept Holly had chosen appeared to belong to a local noble. Not only was the house clean and tidy, but even the maids and servants inside the house wore better clothes than the other residents of the town.
Cherisha snapped her finger once again when they reached the door of the house.
This time, everyone inside the house stopped snoring. However, they were still trapped in their dreams. They sleepwalked over to her and lined up in two tidy rows before the adepts. There was a fairly attractive middle-aged noblewoman in the group, along with two well-dressed noble ladies.
"We are hungry. Start preparing dinner immediately! Also, prepare more hot water. We want a good bath once we are done with our meal. Make sure to tidy up the bedrooms. I want clean sheets for everything."
As Cherisha gave out her instructions, these people, with their eyes shut and wandering in their dreams, immediately began getting to work. They quickly made all the arrangements necessary for the dining hall.
In truth, with the incredible Physique of the four adepts, they would not die of thirst or starvation even without food for several years. However, as human adepts, eating was still a rare pleasure and instance of relaxation for them. As such, under Cherisha's arrangement, the four adepts each took up a side of the dining table. They put on their napkins, picked up their knife and fork, and commenced enjoying this wondrous dinner in another world.
Maple Forest Town was only an extremely rural town in Rian Province. Of course, this meant that the food wasn't all that amazing either. However, it was enough that the four Fourth Grade adepts could politely and elegantly have a bountiful dinner together in a completely foreign plane. There was no need for any fancy food to set the mood.
Cherisha chased away all the ugly and foolish servants. The only ones allowed inside the dining hall to serve the adepts were the noblewoman and her two young daughters.
Fortunately, these adepts all had a reputation to maintain and no unusual preferences. The dinner ended with amicable, friendly interactions.
During the meal, Greem repeatedly lifted his wineglass at Dark Witch Shana, but he was always ignored.
The Dark Witch had not shown herself in the battle last time at all. She had only appeared once the fight had ended.
Any other leader of a party would have been enraged by such selfish behavior.
However, Greem seemed unbothered. Not only did he show no anger, he even seemed somewhat interested in her now. It caused Cherisha to lower her head to laugh in secret and Adept Holly to give him a few thumbs-ups. He also managed to make Dark Witch Shana angry.
However, Greem couldn't care less about her cold attitude and her brimming anger. Instead, he started to flirt more brazenly and boldly than before.
"I am done!" Dark Witch Shana pushed aside the food that she had hardly touched and stood up. She pointed at the noblewoman. "You! Bring me to wash myself!"
Having said that, she lifted her head pridefully and left the dining hall.
A very well-hidden smile finally appeared on Greem's face when he looked at the witch's slender figure leave.
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