(The king’s worries)
[AN: Sorry for the very long updates… I have been very busy… and also, if you find my lacking please please bear with me… I am not a writer and I do this for fun.]
After that, Rhemus made sure that Luke was given the necessary care, so he was brought in the guest room and assigned two servants that have expertise in caring a sickly child, and Richard had bought expensive medicine for him which made his condition a lot better. However, he remains unconscious as he needed time to recover, so it was decided that he’ll spend a night in the mansion.
They all felt relieved that the boy’s condition was far from having serious complication. However, Augustus is still admonishing over the fact that Richard had used strong mental spell that could have killed the boy; and even if he survived, it might leave him in a coma for the rest of his days or it will make him either cracked, mute, or a stupid person.
The use of magic which harms or influence a person is a crime and depending on the kind of spell used, the heavier the punishment. He kept on yammering Richard over this matter which the latter almost lost his composure that he threatens (in a friendly way) to punch his friend Augustus. Indeed, the king can get away with a crime.
They are currently in the courtyard having a drink and a nice conversation as they watch how their grandchildren are doing, like old friends reunited with each other after so many years they had gone apart. But then, Richard is somehow thinking other things and is quite perturb over that matter.
“Things are getting out of hand in Arkimutt.” He started. “Several dark organizations are rebuilding their severed alliances and are growing even more powerful each day. If this continues, it will have the power to dominate a country or shake the balance of power in the continent.” – His voice is low and deep which indicate how serious he is when he meant those words.
“Hmm… I believe the Council of Nezragul will remain unyielding when challenged by these dark forces; however, it may have a chance to break apart the council if things were not taken properly.” – Rhemus concluded as he then took a sip of his wine.
The council of Nezragul is an organization which governs the rule of magic throughout the two continents, mainly for the purpose of stopping black wizards in their wake and prevents the rise of these powerful dark entities. It is ruled by the council of 100, which is an assembly of high wizards of the highest order and in some ways it has the jurisdiction over mandates of laws and regulations of sorcery and wizardry in every countries as per the agreement of these countries. They are the dominant force and no one can make a dispute of this; however, it has no power to impose their own policies in a sovereign country or to meddle in worldly conflict between nations. It is because the council was diverse in culture where the members were once prominent figures of their motherland; they left their worldly belongings (such as status) behind in the service and protection of all mankind.
It was founded in the darkest time in the history of mankind more than 2000 years ago which was regarded as the era of the black wizard Belgeohr. The rise in power of Belgeohr was considered as the dark days which lead to the founding of the Great Council of Egarval who put an end to Belgeohr’s dark reign. The world then recognized that such an organization is needed to oversee the laws regarding the use of magic and for centuries the council was performing its duties quite effectively which maintained the balance of power. And they grew more powerful. However, like many other major power (organization), it slowly deteriorated and crumbled on its own. The council then, had undergone various changes and reformation, but it was short lived. And now, the council was re-established of what was now known as the Council of Nezragul. Reflecting to the mistake of the council of the old, the new council is showing a promising future.
“The council had already taken measures regarding the matter of several wizards joining these evil organizations. They have taken this matter quite seriously, as expected of the council. But, I highly doubt they can stop them from recruiting several of our mages and wizards.”
“The incident of a single night raid in the Republic city of Manoria which massacred people by the thousands and had killed a high wizard with a little loss on their side had instilled fear and despair to us all. If the council’s response is delayed or worse they cannot stop this ever growing madness, it will ruin the council’s prestige. They do not want to lose our veneration afterall.” – Rhemus
High wizards are individuals with promising talents whose entire life were devoted to the study of magic and would require enough time and resources to nurture one. Their numbers were very few; hence, they were regarded as national treasure and the symbol of the nation’s power. Therefore, if a single one of them is to die in the hands of these evil organizations, it will create confusion in the ranks of their mages which would then impacted the stability of their national power.
“So, how many Nezragalian elites will the council mobilized to counter these criminals bold move?” – Augustus
These elites Augustus mentioned were warlocks. The warlocks are master wizards whose proficiency in combat were tested and recognized by the council. These wizards had a fair share of ordeal in war. And with enough number of 10 they could overpower the late black wizard Belgeohr or so they claimed. However, one thing is for sure, when these warlocks were to take their mandates, they will bathe in the blood of their enemies, it wasn’t a ruse as they have done so in the past. Who would face an army of warlock? When compared to an army of adept mages which is the main force that comprises the division of magic unit in all the countries, these warlocks will outmatch them in every possible situation even when outnumbered by 3 to 1. When these warlocks were to enter the battlefield, it will shake the spirit of a veteran warrior.
“Every nation must participate. This move is not just the council alone to take. A letter from the council had just arrived yesterday. The council will respond to their provocation… it will be an all-out war. Therefore, all wars must stop.”
When the council implore the unification of every country to form a single coalition force which intends to stop a greater threat to humanity, then these countries are obliges to show their complete support by seizing their war efforts and comply with the council’s wishes according to the code of conduct which was signed and agreed by the council and kings.
“Hmm… It was unexpected for the council to make such abrupt decision. Although, it is good, I find that there is more to it than meets the eye. They cannot call for all the countries to unite without bypassing the procedures. It only means that there is a greater threat that the council is trying to hide from us.” – Rhemus deduced.
“It was included in the letter a report of major disturbance in the northern continent. The wild folks were advancing south. The council didn’t want to invite panic from the public so it is confidential. It is appreciable that they are thinking for the welfare of our people.” – Richard said and the two nods in appreciation.
“For 500 years, they remained in the wild. Base from their current behaviour, it seems that there’s some external force which influenced these brutes from advancing. Then…” – Rhemus shot a look at Richard.
“Yes, it has to be these organizations that stir these troubles all along. The council was never been keen on explaining things on their own accord, so this is simply our own speculations.”
“It is too much of a coincidence is it? These savages are once again invading!” – Augustus eyes flared.
“But it makes sense.” Rhemus paused and thought of something. “For the council to be this extreme on passing this sole decree, then presently we’re in an ominous situation. This is no joke.”
“Well, that single night raid had instilled fear not just in the Republic but to every country in the continent. It clearly demonstrated how dangerous these ever growing criminal organizations. They must be destroyed as soon as possible or we are bound to repeat history.” Augustus paused and took a gulp on his wine. “We cannot allow such thing to happen.” He then looked at the children happily playing. “We have to ensure a bright future for our young generations for as long as possible. I am happy to die in the place of my grandchildren. I am not afraid to die, I never was.” – He said in dignified manner.
“We all know that fact Augustus.” Richard sincerely said to his friend. “That you’re a martyr. Hehe…” – And he chuckled.
“Damn you Richard! You started this serious talk and now you ruin it!”
“Haha! But you have to admit Augustus… that was a spot on.” – Rhemus joined and the two laugh altogether and the sound of their laughter echoed throughout the courtyard.
“Kidding aside, I am going to raise our national security to level 4. Also, since we are in a crisis we need to further strengthen our military forces and proceed with other preparation essential to our survival, so an increase in tax is necessary.” – Richard
“Mm… we can all agree to your arrangement. The other nations will be doing the same. After this war, we are to prepare another war in the next ten years or so, but this time it will be nation against nation. Is there no end to this?” – Augustus
When there is an advent of crisis which calls for the unification of every country and that there will be no war to occur in a span of time between these countries, with the unrestricted increase in military forces these countries amassed, then after the primary crisis were resolved, these once united countries are bound to point their blades on each other’s neck; and when it happens, the council will leave this matter in their capable hands. They have to solve it using their own diplomacy or fight their own war.
“It is just the way it is Augustus. This world will never be at peace. Peace is just a concept for people who had grown tired of war; the younger generations do not know this notion. After we die, our descendants are to decide what will happen next.” – Richard momentarily cut his monologue and took a small sip on his wine, and then he emptied his cup in a single gulp. “It is easy for other nobles to simply ask for war for all they know they are not risking their life in the frontline.”
“Absolutely! But still, we are sending our youngster for them to experience what we have experience – the taste of winning and defeat, and or death. For them to learn the value of life, to cherish it, to love it; and that, they will mature to hate what we hate – endless fighting, needless bloodshed.” – Rhemus commented
“Must we go to this cycle? I am sick of it!” – Augustus
“Perhaps, that is what our late ancestors had felt when they left us to join the council.”
“Hehe… I never considered my late father a coward, because he joined the council to become a prosecutor and away from the conflict.” – Augustus
“Ah… I too wish that I could just become a prosecutor like your father. Just sitting and watching things in the tower, it sure is boring but at least it isn’t stressful and depressing than the king’s role.”
“Haha! I think you’ve got the wrong idea Richard. My father has a lot of worries before his death.”
“But observing a specific event wasn’t so bad, I mean, there is no other work involve aside from just sitting there, stare at the mirror and scry, then make a definitive report. It was an easy job. There wasn’t so much work involve too, since black wizards activities are isolated and infrequent. Well, maybe this time it is different.”
“Hm… well you can always join the order when the time comes, after you’ve done your service in the country.” – Rhemus
“But that’s 100 years more, and I would rather choose to retire and spent the rest of my life in a villa, planting vegetables and trees. You know what bothers me the most Rhemus?” He paused. “It is when the time comes that I will lose all of those who are loyal to me, take Gregor for instance.”
It is not that the king was in a state of emotional breakdown or distrust to the people around him but because of the pressure he’s having. It must be known that the world is filled with dangers in every corner, with every beast of a man would try to take his kingdom. He understand that showing weakness in this time of trouble will invite unnecessary circumstances, but he understand more that keeping his people loyal to him by his side will guarantee his rule. It was not due to fear of losing his crown or throne but the fear losing his head and the head of his entire family. There is no man who wants to see his family beheaded and a father who wants to learn that their daughter or granddaughter ravage, is some of the worst case that would happen to the royals.
“Gregor has set his goal to join the council, we have known it long before. Nevertheless, I suggest that you refrain from having such thought, your majesty. There are so many things for us to do here and neither has it occurred to me nor Augustus to simply leave you here alone.” – Rhemus
“If the three… If, the two of you were to leave, I do not know what to do. After my family, the three of you were the only person whom I could completely trust.”
The royal family surely is the most powerful family in the kingdom, however, that doesn’t mean they have the power to control the court (but influence) with the exception of the king; they hold no real power over the court since they are not bestowed any position within the court. That means the succession of power is, after the king are the dukes, and then the respected nobles of each territories. So it is understandable that, if the king will lose his influence over the majority of the nobles, then chances are high that these high nobles will revolt. And also, most of his relatives were ambitious. So his worries are not without basis.
“That will never happen. Right, Augustus?” he looked at Augustus to which reply was utter silent. “Don’t worry; I am very sure Augustus just doesn’t want to admit it. Hehe…”
Then came a knight in magnificent golden armor which exude glorious aura unique only to the select few, a great warrior and acclaimed heroes of war. He stood in front of the high nobles and pays his respect to the two esteemed lords of their land and to his superior – his majesty the king.
“Ah… forgive me ser Arthur for I lost track of time.” Richard then looked at the two dukes with a downed look on his face for which the two had understood and they got up from their chairs.
“It is an honor to have his majesty visits my abode.” – Rhemus address in a formal manner of speaking to which the nobles approach the other nobles of equal or higher status.
“Very well, we are still in the second day of the kingdoms celebration and I must prepare.” – Richard
“It must be very tiring. I suggest his majesty to take it easy.” – Augustus
“Haha… there is no helping it Lord Augustus, but thank you for your concern. Either way I must make haste now.” He then looked at the knight. “Well take our leave ser Arthur.”