Isekai For My Ex Chapter 62: REACHING THE ENEMY
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Andrei, Rara, Erneis, Claire, and Gideon found themselves at the front of the escape path used by the emperor, it was found at the east side of Mizar settlement, on appearance, it was a wall covered by plants and veins, when removed it revealed a sturdy stone door that had writings in it. Andrei, who couldn't read their text, only saw them as scribbles. "What are these? Worms?" He thought to himself to avoid insulting the worlds language.
"Should we pull? Or push? Let's-" He asked them, as he held his flintlock at his back.
"Shut it," Claire interrupted him after seeing Rara taking a knife from her pocket, as Rara sliced the skin of her finger with it, scarlet blood appeared, painting her porcelain colored skin, as it flowed down to her hands.
"Are you okay?" Andrei asked Rara, but as he saw the greatsword bigger than her at her back and the determination written on her face, he didn't ask further. The girl simply nodded and wiped the blood on her hands at the wall where the writings were.
As if sucking her blood, it gradually disappeared into the stonewall, together with a large unlocking sound that can be heard from the other end, it sounded as if stones were rearranging themselves, opening a path.
"Geh, blood as password huh? That's quite amazing," Andrei crossed his arms as he saw it open a path, what greeted them was an empty passageway devoid with any kind of light. Due to the sound of whirring it produced, it was evident that it was a long passageway.
"Rara, after this, teach me how to set this up, Claire here you see, keeps intruding to my room," he pointed his thumb to Claire at his back.
Claire immediately touched an ore with her left hand in her pocket and produced a metal knife at her right, she held Andrei's hand and put a knife against it.
"Yes, yes, so, do wanna try what Rara did earlier? I'll do it for you," she spoke bluntly focusing on the knife and the hand.
"D-Don't do it! We are on an ongoing mission!" He tried taking his hand but Claire was stronger that it won't budge.
"These two, are you really having that husband and wife banter on an ongoing mission?" Gideon giggled, "Andrei, I'm gonna tell her highness Michaela on you," he made a smirk, Gideon wore a blue tailcoat and breeches with golden patterns in it, his hair was tied to its back, and covered himself with a robe. He and Andrei have gotten closer since talking with each other being roommates in the forward base.
"Your highness, can't sleep? Is the bed not to your liking?" Gideon rolled over to the side facing Andrei who laid on a separate bed with his hands on the back of his head.
"Nah, just thinking of something, here and there," his eyes stared fixedly at the empty ceiling, he was deep in thought, seeing that the viscount was still awake he looked at him, who was dressed in his pajamas. "For a viscount, aren't you too comfortable in that bed? It's just a makeshift one right? And it's made from straws, it's ticklish. Aren't you nobles supposed to be picky on that stuff?"
"No, your highness, although I was noble by birth, we were at the lowest rank, I was raised as a commoner, I had commoner friends, ate stretchy bread, drank soup that almost tasted like water, and slept in beds like these, I'm comfortable with it because it's nostalgic. I was only able to climb the 𝑠𝑡𝑎𝑖𝑟𝑠 𝑜𝑓 𝑠𝑢𝑐𝑐𝑒𝑠𝑠 as they say by fighting together with the emperor"
"I see, what kind of enemies did you fight?"
"Well… there are men, monsters, and also men who are monsters, lots of them, but when he conquered, the emperor did not savagely treat the conquered, he banned looting and pillaging, although there was still slavery it wasn't that bad, the emperor made sure that they would be treated properly"
"But as I've heard Kydus is a corrupt country," Andrei asked, remembering his talk with Michaela and the other ministers.
"Yes, we have a wealthy country after all, when the emperor aged, he stopped conquering and settled on the territory we have now, he also gave back the island nations he conquered, but still the empire is large, and the lords who are supposed to protect their people ended up using them to gain power over the other, with no common enemy on sight, small scale conflicts happen from time to time, in a struggle for power"
"If the emperor was that strong, wouldn't he normally, stop that from happening?"
"Well, your highness, he was proficient at war but definitely not at politics, and those idiots try to use loopholes to try and get great wealth for themselves. Even how righteous the emperor or any ruler, may be, if some of his people are rotten it, would spread out eventually to the others, resulting in the people's suffering for generations and generations"
"Didn't you wish for your wealth also? You're a viscount aren't you?"
"Well, if I hadn't met Layla, I would have been one of those idiots right now, but I do have a wish just like everyone else your highness," he put his hands at the back of his head the same manner as Andrei.
"What is it? And stop with the 𝑦𝑜𝑢𝑟 ℎ𝑖𝑔ℎ𝑛𝑒𝑠𝑠, your sentences become long"
"Well, your wish is my command 𝐴𝑛𝑑𝑟𝑒𝑖," he chuckled, "what I wish for was for only one thing, that is, to reunite with my daughter," after staring fixedly at the ceiling he closed his eyes and turned away from Andrei. "Let's sleep, tomorrow we have an early start, I won't wake you up if you're late," he told Andrei, who felt a mellow sadness in Gideon's voice, he decided not to pry any further and closed his eyes.
When they woke up, Gideon was still sound asleep, and he had to threaten him into waking up.
With the passageway open, Erneis muttered his spell, and produced a shield large enough to cover everyone, Claire produced a rapier and held it with her hand, Andrei held his flintlock tightly, aiming it beyond the darkness, Gideon carried a torch with him, the passageway's floor was properly made with bricks, they didn't have to to worry about tripping.
As they walked, the passageway made a hollow whirring sound due to the air passing through it, but in a few minutes of walking they could hear subtle sounds of explosions from the outside.
"It's starting huh, we should hurry," Erneis told them, he sped up his advance and they all followed, this time they all ran with Erneis in the lead, but in intervals, they rested due to the long distance of the passageway. They couldn't afford to be taken by surprise while tired, as they walked the light from the entrance became smaller and smaller until it had become just a tiny dot.
After an hour they finally reached a dead end.
"A dead end?" Rara exclaimed, "but it shouldn't be, did we take the wrong way?" she asked anxiously, her red eyes scanned but there was no other way than the dead-end they were facing.
"Gideon, can you get the torch here," Andrei asked, as he felt the wall and felt the worms deformation at it.
When Gideon passed on the torch, they saw another set of writings again. They all breathed on relief.
"It turns out that her highness Rara has to use her blood again," Gideon looked at the girl and they both nodded together.
"Everyone! Prepare your weapons! We don't have any assurance of what we will face when this is unlocked!" Gideon announced as he took his wand from his pocket.
Claire readied her rapier, and Andrei loaded his flintlock ready to fire.
As Rara's blood was gradually sucked into the wall, the sounds of rocks arranging thud after thud was heard on the other side, Rara took out her greatsword and jumped back inside Erneis' magic barrier.
Light slowly emerged from the other side, as the dead-end wall rearranged itself brick after brick, and at the same time the stench of dead bodies invaded their noses, this made them warier, the enemy was just on the other side of the wall.
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