AGE OF ADVENTURE CHAPTER 29: THE RETURN TO THE CAPITAL

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ZANTLEAF 

CORO CITY 

The Vanheim camp was in jubilant mood. The soldiers were dressing each other bandages while healers using their magic to heal the wounded soldiers.  

The players cozy up to some soldiers who have made contributions as this will help them get quest later. 

The minstrel and bards sings victory song uplifting the spirits of the soldiers who lost their comrades. 

The cooks now possessing many supplies from the defeated Vetten army cooks to their utmost with many players cook have their level exponentially increased.  

The same could be said for players how have warrior class and berserkers. 

Not only NPCs benefited in this war, the players also gain benefit with such crazy amount of experience that rivalled or even surpassed dungeon raids. 

In the streets of city of Coro, the residents celebrated running around with the flags of Vanheim and chanting Hail the King 

All around, the news of Vanheim victory has been spread across the city and the whole continent. 

And the whole continent from the west to the east, from the south to the north, all the eyes of the kingdoms is now watching Vanheim every move. 

And the central figure of this startling development is the person name Aero. With one battle he made his name known to the world and the title Strategist aptly describe him. 

That man is now standing inside his war tent, accompanied by the generals and commanders of Vanheim military as he pondered upon something.  

Aero creased his eyebrows as he looked at the wide map in front of him. It was the map of Vilajeri continent. 

He mostly creased his eyebrows when he look towards Niovar kingdom.  

‘Hmm’ he contemplated.  

The officials inside the tent did not know what Aero was thinking about but they think the strategist must be thinking some kind of plans or scheme and they did not dare speak. 

They waited for the strategist to finished contemplating. Actually Aero was not thinking of anything important.  

He just don’t know what to say for a while and waiting for the right words to come. But the officials inside the tent did not think so, and their gaze was full of respect 

The strategist method has been proven and they are fill with awe. There is also the fact that Aero possess high charisma in his stat 

It was then someone entered the tent. Everyone looked towards the entrance and saw Dan and they bowed slightly. 

‘I have return’ Dan said with a salute 

‘At ease’ Aero said swishing his sleeve. 

“The calculation has been made, Strategist Aero” Dan said handing the document to Aero.  

In front of the officials even Dan have to mind his manners since Aero position in the army is unique.  

Aero nodded as he received the documents. He closes his eyes and take a deep breath before opening the documents 

Then reading the document report Aero formed a smirk and the officials inside the room all felt relieved.  

At least it is good news reported in the documents. 

From what is recorded in the documents 100 thousands Vetten troops surrendered after Aero killed their commander, Kyle.  

Kyle was made to be an example. Aero decapitate his head and parade his head before putting it inside a cloth sack. 

The cloth sack is still wet with blood. If that is not enough Aero also did the same thing with Kyle deputy, Chris. 

It is a little cruel and even one would call barbaric but it produce great results as it lowers Vetten morale. 

After all, their heads is   a spoil of war.  

In Brave World the NPCs knows that adventurer can spawn after being killed but that doesn’t mean that they don’t feel satisfied seeing the head of their enemy.  

Not to mention after each death the players will weaken and lost some items. 

And just because players can spawn doesn’t mean that the NPCs don’t have any countermeasure against adventurer. 

Aero then asked Dan 

‘The head? Is it packaged nicely?’ Dan hearing this smirk 

‘Yes, it is packaged very nicely’ Aero smiles and nodded 

‘Good job’ he said and patted Dan shoulders. 

After decapitating Kyle head, Aero wrapped Kyle head with a cloth.  

It was not only intended to weaken the morale of the enemy but also because he wanted to present the head to King George. 

The troops that didn’t surrender were killed without mercy and Aero ask the magicians to burn the bodies.  

It is known in Brave World a bodies that is being left without proper disposal will turn that body into an undead.  

And Aero didn’t want the reputation of merciless and cruel. Killing rebellious soldiers and taking heads to be presented as a gift was not considered cruel in Brave World. 

But leaving the dead to become an undead and bother the living, now that is considered cruel for the NPCs.  

Since not every village has a Priest or Paladins 

But killing so many people and presenting head might seem cruel in the eyes of players but in the eyes of the NPCs it is normal conduct in war to kill the enemies and presenting the head of the enemy commander to the King.  

And Aero grasped this fact very early in the games.  

Instead of trying to change this world to fit his world, he decided to accept the fact that while this virtual world has magic, its culture mimics the mediaeval era. 

And Aero also take the equipment of the fallen soldiers of Vetten by looting them and given to the troops as rewards.  

After all not only NPCs who fought on Vetten sides. 

They also have player soldiers who drop pretty good damn items 

Caravans after caravans were filled in the battlefield as they kept taking the loot. Low level merchants that was contracted with the kingdom of Vanheim joined in.  

Thieves and robbers also appears but they did their craft silently and stealthily else they attract the ire of the military.  

Aero notices this but he kept his eyes closed. As long as those thieves knows their place, they were allowed to do some thieving. 

Smart thieves knows not to touch the real valuable items.  

Those who are stupid enough will be hunted down by the entire Vanheim soldiers. And these thieves are not idiots.  

They only take a few and quickly leave.  

They only wanted to raise their skills and proficiency. Aero understand their motivations which is why he did not initiate a crackdown. 

By the order of the King, all the loot will be brought back to the capital.  

But Aero knows…not all will be brought back. Aero knows it and The King knows it.  

And they both allowed it. 

After all they emerge victorious. And Aero and King George both knows, the soldiers deserve a few rewards. Even the most righteous officials inside the war tent understand this simple logic. 

While for the rest of the loot only after the victory ceremony then and only then will the loot be distributed.  

The loot that was collected was like a mountain of gold. The battlefield is littered with flesh and pieces of meat.  

Looking at the scenery when Aero was about to depart he sighed. He waved his fan to his face feeling the wind as he look outside the window of his horse carriage and shakes his head. 

He could see the traces of battle and see some head smashed into the ground by the hooves of cavalry leaving a shape of a person face on the muddled ground. 

‘War in Brave World is truly realistic’ he pondered upon it and then closes the curtains of his carriage. 

Thankfully he managed to keep his head as he traces this neck. 

The thing about dying in Brave World is that you will feel a slight pain when the capsule gives you a slight shock to the pain receptors in the brain to forcefully log you off from Brave World.  

Then when you log back in you will find that you will lose some level and proficiency.  The more painful the way you die, the higher the level drops.  

But there is another rule about dying.  

Any items that you had equipped when you die, will be left as it is. So, considering so many players died during this battle imagine the money and the items that they dropped.  

This is why war is a lucrative business.  

Who knows for how much he could auction the stuff he will get after the war. But Aero did not hoard the valuable stuff.  

He refrained to take the prize because he knows the importance of reputation. Sometimes reputation alone could deter an enemy. 

Reputation is important. And Aero wanted to cultivate powerful reputation for himself. 

Imagine if other players see him hogging all the good stuff. Aero knows the cause for the war was a noble cause.  

Though he himself knows the cause of the war was because of his own ambition. But as long as people didn’t know that, then his cause is the noble one.  

And he won.  

So he could write the history and whatever he said is right. 

If he get caught doing something like hoarding looted items for himself, imagine how hard it will be for him to ask for help one day.  

But who is this people he need to ask help from? It is the players and the NPCs of this Brave World. 

What if war happens again? Aero knows he need to instill the sense to the other players that he am honorable and trustworthy. 

That is the reputation he wanted to form in the minds of the people. 

That he fought this war because he wanted to protect Vanheim.  

If there is one thing I learned, reputation is very important. Guard it with your life. Guard it with everything you have’ 

As his horse carriage bump into a stone, the carriage slightly rocked. And this sudden movement instead reminds Aero of another matter. 

The matter of Erdanis state.  

Erdanis state is already occupied by Veranis soldiers. Veranis troops came from East to aid us.  

To save time they moved to Erdanis instead of Karelia state.  

After conquering Erdanis, they moved through Silmar state undetected. It is not a waste to use Erdanis forest to hide the troops. 

Not to mention, the soldiers of Veranis moves with ferocious speed and attack reminiscent of a blitz attack. 

And even if Silmar state’s nobles realized the appearance of soldiers they couldn’t do anything. 

Their troops were given to Kyle to invade Vanheim. They couldn’t even imagine the small kingdom of Veranis would attack Vetten a larger and more powerful nations even in their wildest dreams. 

They of course did not expect that Vetten so called stealth invasion failed to hide themselves from Aero calculations. 

After that it all happened like Aero planned. Kyle must not have thought that Aero retreat was a calculated decision and was instead a signal for Veranis offense to begin.  

Inside the carriage Dan is also inside. Aero explained it again with Sarah adding on. 

Dan after learning the true plan from Sarah was angry at her 

“Why didn’t you tell me? At least you could tell me. I thought when we were retreating that it is over!” clearly angry he’s been duped again.  

Or maybe he is angry at the fact that he is being duped in front of Sarah. Aero was not an idiot. Anyone could see that Dan had a crush on Sarah. 

He is too transparent with his feeling. Maybe that is why Aero felt at ease with Dan. Because he is too easy to read. 

“Well, sometimes to trick an enemy, you must trick your friend first “Aero chuckled 

“No. You’re just having fun teasing us didn’t you?” Dan said. 

This time Aero could not hold his laughter anymore. 

“HAHAHAHA…Correct.’ 

‘If you could only see your face. You look like you ate a squirrel. Dan, seriously. I mean, Raina and Amy were like a rock. You were sweating and muttering prayers. I…….’and Aero was having trouble trying to stop giggling before he burst out and said  

‘You just activated my mischievous side.” Aero was laughing out loud. 

Amy and Raina on the back also started laughing. Dan was red with embarrassment. Then Raina patted him on the back 

“Now, Now. Aero was just kidding with you. No need to get so angry. And we won didn’t we?” Raina said trying to calm him down while still laughing. 

After a while, Dan calmed down. 

“Ok..I guess you’re right.”  

Dan nodded his head. Still he doesn’t look satisfied. 

“I’ll give you great items after the ceremony, how about that?” Aero offered. 

Dan frown turned to a slight smile. And after a while even Dan forgot about Aero joke towards him.  

That’s what Aero likes about Dan. He is quick to forgive.  

Maybe that’s the reason many people feel comfortable being friends with him. As they ride, the night arrives so they set up a tent in the middle of a forest.  

A perimeter has been set and guards were sent to patrols and scouts were dispatched to scan for any potential dangers of enemies. 

Around the middle of the night, Aero was relaxing inside his tent when the camp received a notice that Alexander is coming.  

Sarah was sent to receive the Prince while Dan look displeased. Aero just shakes his head. 

‘A prince needs to have his entrance, huh.’ He thought to himself. 

Sarah returned to the camp with Prince Alexander. Aero quickly scan the Young prince with his eyes and a mysterious smile could be seen on his face. 

A young boy and a prince. Even his appearance befits the looks of a prince. It is the kind of face no one would get bored looking at it. 

He rode to the camp with a large bulky black horse. Aero did see it in the battlefield when the young prince led his army into the fray of the battle 

It look intimidating on the battlefield 

Aero was thinking while looking at the fierce gaze of the black horse. Then he looked at the young prince.  

A great hero needs a great horse. 

The Prince has a handsome face with flawless skin, long braided blonde hair, a muscular body with a deep voice 

The way he talks and walks, it is truly a bearing of a majestic prince. 

He accompanied Sarah and then after they finished talking small talk, the Prince began asking about the rewards they were promised. 

“Don’t worry, Prince Alexander. In a week ask your Royal father to come to the Vanheim capital to be officially given the state.” Aero said 

Alexander look towards Aero like he was judging him and then he nodded. 

‘ Then, I will trust you, Aero of the East’ Aero smiles bitterly. Prince Alexander then jump to the back of his horse and rides away with his entourage of elite soldiers to their camp. 

In his journey back Aero had heard about what people called him. 

Aero of the East. Zeus of the North.  

He didn’t like the title very much.  

It was like the whole world wanted him to fight with Zeus. Aero did not underestimate himself but he knows he is far too weak to be compared with Zeus.  

Just because he won one battle did not mean he suddenly become the most powerful person in Brave World.  

He knows that Zeus is the strongest person in Brave World. While Aero progress is fast thanks to his secret class, he knows if he fights Zeus, he might die from the first slash. 

What is this “If Aero of the East does not come forth, Who can be his match?” is all about? 

Even if he came forth, the most he can do is insult him. What is this notion that he could somehow match Zeus strength?  

Alexander return to his camp after he explained that the conferment is just a formality.  

The state has already been Veranis. It is already acknowledged by Vanheim 

But the conferment of a state is a big deal. Aero understand it the most. It is a show of power.  

The ceremony will help the Vanheim Kingdom to look as a strong nation to both its people and the rest of the other Kingdoms. 

There is also the fact that the Conferment of state has not been practiced for long. This is why it is such a big deal.  

Usually only emperors had the power to confer an annexed state. And that is why Aero wanted George to confer the state.  

Aero has large ambitions. George also began to share the same ambitions as Aero.  

Aero wanted to become an advisor that help bring about a new emperor and a new dynasty to the Vilajeri continent. 

And George also shares the same dream. 

If George really confers a state to Veranis every Kingdom will recognize George ambition and his intention to rule.  

It means he is thinking about uniting the Kingdoms. By conferring a state to an existing monarch, he is declaring he is aiming for the Imperial Throne. 

Conferring a state has always meant this. Even Veranis know this. George is announcing his intention to all of the people in the Continent. 

He wanted to become an Emperor. 

After Tian Dynasty rejected Vanheim Kingdom asking for military aid, Aero will use Veranis to destroy Tian Dynasty, while Vanheim attack the rest of Vetten.  

With the treaty formed with the Orcs Aero could also outsource quest to Gruk and his horde. 

Aero knows Gruk will be more than happy with this development. Aero knows there are not that many quests in that barren lands of Nairhell.  

It is amazing enough that Gruk could become high level players in such conditions and place. 

The treaty that was formed will also open up opportunity for merchant class to level up.  

Venturing to new lands and opening up trade route, which merchants won’t like that? They will beg for an opportunity like that. 

However anyone who wants to open a trade route needs to make a contract with the Royal Family.  

This is Aero chance to gain money and solidified the power of the royal family. He will use his influence to help those who will give him money. 

He alos need spies to spread the word that the King wanted to make a contract with Merchants Company. 

Maybe Reeds Company or Darius Company will contact him, when they hear the rumors.  

Aero can use his influence to list the names of merchant companies that will help the royal Family opening up the trade route. 

Aero is grinning mischievously. It is worth all the pain befriending the King. Finally it is bearing fruits all of his hard work and effort. 

For now Aero needs to return to the King to give him his report. And he also needs to advise the King in the policies that George should undertake. 

As he walked outside his tent after contemplating many matters, he hears the sound of the night crickets. He felt the clam winds and felt that this world was really too realistic. 

Somehow, he felt that this world truly felt like a second home for him. In the real world, he was Daniel, the university dropout man with no money and no car.  

But here he is Aero, the strategist and advisor to the highest authority of a kingdom, possessing immense authority and power. 

He never hated being Daniel. But he admits that being Aero is better. But more importantly the reason why he likes being Aero is because then he would forget.  

The pain of being Daniel. 

As he thought of this his gaze went to Amy tent in the distance and he shake his head 

‘She is not her. Let it go’ he said it. But he didn’t know whether what he said was a prayer or a plea for help.  

He sighed as he returned back to his tent. 

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 Third chapter for the month. Leave some comments

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