AOH – Chapter 100

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CHAPTER 100: DIPLOMATIC PLANS

They are climbing down the mountain. It was evening and nearly dark and the dragon is left alone.

It is the first time to be left alone by a dragon.

And the first time in a long time since anyone defeated a dragon. Surely this will be talked about among their community, Arial thought to himself.

245 of Arial troops died fighting the dragon. Dark Elves, White elves, dwarves and Orc.

The group that survived is given gold and the troops which is mercenaries, are now turned into a caravan.

The 155 surviving troops is now carrying the gold, jewels, magical weapons, scepter, staff and many other items that they can hoard from the dragon lair.

After all what use dragons have with such things? Since Gaveror said he had no use for it, Arial took it.

Arial also took the dragon scale and Velamina stock on dragon blood that flow around Arial battle area.

His group also found many armours and arms.

Armours of great importance. Ores and many other. Everyone were given 3000 gold as their reward.

A hefty price but a price Arial has no problem parting with. They could call themselves rich. The people the expedition all talked about what they will do with such money.

Some of the Dark Elves wanted to open a trading company, other wanted to buy weapons, some are returning home and support their family with that gold.

They deserved the gold and they did not regret following Arial expedition.

The 245 people that died, their rewards will be given to their next of kin. Arial will sent his people after he got home to Arrandy.

This is where Mikael could see Arial personality. Like many have attest, his attitude towards his enemies and his friends are like the sky and earth.

Merciless towards his enemies.

And those under his protection and oath, he would feel it his responsibility to redress any wrong which make him a lovable lord by his vassals and people.

After the procedure, Arial feel his body light. His stamina is always is more than anybody else’s but the feeling is different.

Power is coursing through his veins.

‘Let us stop’ Mikael said panting behind.

‘Yes, Commander let us stop’ said another

‘I agree with that smelly Orc, Arial’ Velamina said

‘WHAT!’ The Orc yelled while the other roared in laughter and Velamina chuckles and pat the Orc back.

Arial look at his troop.

Behind him, his troops are sweating profusely, panting and have trouble following him. On the other hand Arial seem to be leisurely walking.

He felt no tiredness or fatigue, nor any heat.

The land of dragons is hot in general but since what happen he couldn’t really felt any heat.

He only felt a refreshing air and wind. And at that time, it should have dawned on Arial. But it did not.

Arial believe it is because of his great internal energy running smoothly again, but even people without internal energy can still feel heat and fatigue.

But one day, he will understand it. So, they stopped. And open camp. They all drink and eat.

They are still many supplies from the monsters they hunt last time. Mikael and Velamina and the Kobolds told Arial about monsters.

Some monsters are poisonous but warrior tribes such as the Kobolds and Orcs and scholars like Mikael knew some monster are not poisonous.

The Firehorses for example. The Bat and the Fireworm on the other hand is very poisonous.

Their blood will cause itchiness.

At the night all of Arial group began becoming more curious about Arial identity. They could hardly believe that Arial is some hunter from Asteros or Vorthy anymore.

Velamina know of course that Arial is a lord but even she do not know of Arial true identity.

Vorthy and Asteros traded with the Dark Lands which is why, it is not awkward for the Dark Lands inhabitants to accept humans hiring them.

Though usually humans mostly congregate in the Capital. The reason that Arial is hesitating is because of his place of origin.

He comes from Human Continent, Davarus.

Velamina and the other then request Arial to tell who he really is. The army crowded around him that night, near the fireplace; with Velamina on the front, her eyes did not leave Arial face.

Everyone wanted to know Arial true identity.

‘I guess you all deserve the truth.’ Arial said after seeing their eager faces.

Well, it is not like he intended to hide his identity all to the end of the journey. These men have fought for him and died for him. The least he could do is tell them the truth.

‘I am Arial, Prince and Duke of Arrandy, Count of Acro and Baron of Danoba.’

‘Prince?’ Some exclaimed.

‘A noble?’ Some gasped

‘Arrandy? Isn’t that in Davarus?’ some whisper

‘You…you are a nobility?’ Velamina said.

‘Yes’ Arial nodded

A prince. And Velamina remember Arial star.

Velamina knows that Arial is a noble but she believe that Arial is a son of a great noble but if he is a prince then…..my God she exclaimed to herself.

She remembers her prophecy. Of how her offspring will be born to greatness, of great nobility. Surely…not…King?

If…but she try to forget her plan.

Before knowing Arial, she was determined to find the man of her prophecy and drug that man, fuck him and leave him.

But knowing Arial, there is something budding on her heart. She knows its love. She could not help but admire Arial stature.

He is kind, strong and responsible. His love for his wife, his fidelity to such commitment, is admirable, and even though Velamina knows that Arial is attracted to her, he did not pursue it which make him even more appealing

If he pursues it, Velamina will surrender. But he did not. And just yesterday, Velamina confirmed that this is the man of her prophecy.

Peerless under heaven, born under two stars.

Then Mikael explained that the Dark land have entered an agreement with Arrandy and the Human Continent in general.

Some of course knew about the story but some who do not finally understand why a man of human continent is here.

‘You knew, Mikael?’ Orc Fera ask

‘Yes.’

‘Oh’ and Arial hold up his hand ‘and do you know who Mikael is?’

‘Who?’ The Kobold said.

‘Mikael Devonhurst’ and the campsite is fill with gasp. Quickly all the people in the campsite kneel.

‘We have wronged you’ some Orc said.

Their reaction is a little different from when they know Arial identity. This is to be expected.

Arial is human nobility.

The dark Lands inhabitants rarely know about the political power of the human continent only the upper administration knows.

All the troops know is that Arial is a prince and nobility but that rarely concerns them but Mikael is different.

Mikael is their nobility.

And like in the human continent, making a good impression on their own nobility surely would give them rewards and jobs in the Capital and so does offending them will do the opposites.

During the journey, Mikael is always being ridiculed by Orcs and the dark Elves for gathering herbs and reading books not helping in hunting or foraging.

The Kobold respects him enough because the Kobold understands the need for herbal properties.

But even then, they are sometimes annoyed by Mikael attitude that always delay the journey just because he found something curious.

But now that they know Mikael identity their attitude underwent such a drastic change. Arial almost let out a laugh.

Well, it is not that different on the human continent when they know his name.

‘We did not know we have such an illustrious person is traveling with us. Forgive us of our rudeness, milord’ Orc Fera said.

‘Yes, we did not know.’

‘We hope our conduct did not offend you milord’ one Dark Elves said.

‘Mikael?’

‘As the Mikael, brother of Arianna?’ Velamina said not kneeling like the others. Arial notices this.

High Elf never kneels.

That is one thing Arial does not understand. Is there something special about them?

Then one dark elf ask

‘Is your sister is really such a beauty as the rumors?’

‘Idiot’ his head got hit by one of his friend, fearing his friend got too comfortable with Mikael.

‘Hahaha…It is fine’ Mikael laughed.

‘She is more beautiful than the rumours if I’m to be the judge of her beauty. And your conduct did not offend me; instead it is refreshing to be treated the way I am during the journey’ he said without any slight or indication of being angry.

‘I am a scholar first, a noble second. So do not be awkward with me and keep your distance. Let us hear the story of my friend.’

And then Arial began telling his story to his troop.

Of how he was engaged in a war of succession between brothers in the Dukedom and how the Dukedom transformed to become a Kingdom and how he was poisoned during one battle.

All his troop listen attentively and paying attention at every word. They almost couldn’t believe his story.

If not how Arial proved himself fighting the dragon, they might accused Arial a charlatan

And Arial told how he got information to search for the dragon heart, all the while, his troop become more and more admiring towards him.

To be engaged in a war at the age of ten and four it is almost unbelievable.

After the story the Orcs then told their stories why they follow Arial expedition for gold and recognition, some have nothing to offer to their clan so they work hard trying to find gold, and the kobolds, of how they wanted to be remembered and famous and the Dark Elves told how they wanted some gold to trade in the Capital.

They all share their stories.

Arial knew it during that time. The Dark Lands race is not that different from human. They all have their aspirations, problems, dreams and hope.

Only their appearance is different from human.

Other than that they are the same. As there are evil human there are evil Orcs, Faeries, demon, Kobold.

And as there is good human, there is good Orc, good Kobold, good faeries.

That night Arial learn another thing and aspire to make contact with the dark lands making them understand each other.

After all his objective is not only the dragon heart.

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The dwarves today began their journey back. In the morning they have started to move so does the dark Elves and the Orcs.

All going home after they managed to do the impossible.

Arial part with them and give each one of them to choose armor, and one weapon from the many stuff that they took form the dragon lair.

Arial also exchange mithril from his loot. Mithril is very rare and hard to produce unless you are dwarves.

Some stay after he promise them a greater pay but Arial does not need so much troop anymore, not now when they have defeated the dragon.

Arial has fulfilled his primary objective. Now for his second objective. Mikael also knows this.

After all if Arial only objectives are only to retrieve the dragon heart wouldn’t that be wasteful?

Arial is trying to establish diplomatic relations with the many races of the dark lands. That is the only reason his council will let him go from Arrandy.

In Arrandy, Arial is a lord and as such must act like a lord but adventuring and travelling is actually Arial dream in his past timeline and this timeline.

If not for trying to avert the invasion he might even not accept titles from any Kings. So his first destination would be the Great Taigns of Dwarves in Dwarven lands.

Arial is excited.

From what Mikael relay to him, the taigns are interconnected, complicated tunnels, a world beneath our feet.

As such there is no dwarves settlement on the surface.

Only the exiles or dwarves with special permission like Dwarves representatives go up to the surface.

Even the treaty is not their idea, only listening to the demon lords. They like their underground Kingdom.

It is described as a huge temple and in the center of the Temple is the passageway to enter the dwarven land.

Around the dwarven lands are usually sand and dark forest and mostly occupied by some dark elves community.

Arial still do not understand how each of this races depending on each other.

At first he believes that each land corresponds to each race but he found out that is not always the case.

Arial must admit that his knowledge about the dark lands inhabitants is minuscule and he believed this is a great opportunity to gain deeper understanding of the dark lands politics and social structure.

‘Helia’ he sighed.

They just got married and he knows he should be going home to Arrandy must have grown economically since the trade routes are open but Arial feel this is his responsibility to find out more about the dark lands.

Many humans in the Human continent is still wary of the dark race. He could be the bridge for understanding.

Arial spotted Velamina and ask her again.

‘You’re staying?’ Arial asked Velamina that morning.

‘Yes I will stay.’ The Elves many of them have started going home. So does the dwarves. The Orc that’s stay is Orc Fera, Orc Sur, and Orc Xer.

Elf that stay are Oelina Sil Sodron, Werchen Sil Dergian and Dwarves that stay are Orgheren and Vigrun.

The first stop would be dwarven land Arial declared. And they all nodded, Orgehren and Vigrun look happy.

It is unfortunate he couldn’t go to the capital considering the time and the geographical position he is in.

If he goes now to the capital he would get in time by Azrael wedding but then he had to go back to the dwarven land and that will cost more than intended.

He of course heard during their journey that Arianna and Azrael is getting married. So Arial give Mikael permission to went back to the Capital and give his blessing to his sister.

Mikael promise he will return back to Arrandy to once again resume his research. Arial agree and begun his journey with Velamina and his small group.

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