AGE OF ADVENTURE CHAPTER 35: CRUEL AND UNFORGIVING

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YESTERDAY

The evening sun sets and night came.

Outside, people are getting back home, hunters and mercenaries lodged themselves inside inn, only players will went out into the forest to hunt monster and perfuming quest to improve their levels.

Even merchant players was still busy, selling and buying things. Thieves also started their trade in the night whole assassin prefer the darkness of the night to ply their trade.

But none of these dark forces dare near the residence of nobles of the Kingdom making the elite residence of the nobles to be completely peaceful and an optimal place to rest

However on a private mansion, one of the most important persona in the kingdom of Vanheim was resting but his rest was interrupted by a secret visit.

Aero was reading up on some history of Brave World when a knock startled him.

‘Who would seek me in the night?’ he thought to himself as he got up from his lazy chair and went down the stairs

‘Who’s there?’ Aero ask as he looked through the peephole. He was shocked to see the King under a dark robe waiting in front of his door.

“It’s me, Aero”

Aero quickly open the door and urged the King to quickly enter.

That night George came to Aero room to decide what Aero would do about the POWs.

“Please come in, Your Grace. The outside is not safe” Aero invited with a hint of nervousness.

If the King somehow meet mishap Aero would not doubt many politicians in the court would pin the blame on his head

The King entered and sat in one of the chairs in the rooms, as he open up his hood and resume his dignified aura.

The room was filled with many books that Aero has bought since he returned. Some of it was also given by George himself.

George did this as a consideration of Aero request.

He requested books from the Royal Library. It seems he is searching for anything about Lizhu Gerard.

“Did I disturb you?” The King ask his tone was majestic.

“No, Your Grace.” Seeing that the King look toward the collection of the books he possess Aero added

‘It seems my search is fruitless. I think I will have better luck in the Secret archive”

Aero has already ask George to see the Secret Archive tomorrow. It will be the first time anyone outside of the Royal family will enter it.

Even George himself didn’t read all the books in the Archive. However this is not why he came tonight so secretly.

George came here today to ask Aero about something and to ask for advice.

“Umh.. Lord Aero, I already heard about your plan to go venture to the west after this. So I would like to hear your thoughts about the Prisoners Of Wars that we have captured in the battle of Coro. Should we execute them? Ransom them?”

Aero also sat down. He looked to George eyes and asked

“What do you think we should do, Your Grace?”

“You’re asking me?” startled by the sudden question George was flustered

“Yes. This subject wanted to hear Your Majesty opinion.”

“I say we ransom them. They will fetch much gold considering there were many sons of nobles”

Aero just groaned. This would have ben considered a breach of etiquette, but George respected Aero and treated this young strategist as his teacher, how could he dare rebuke him?

“No. That could not be done, Your Majesty. Vetten has just lost 40% of its military power, and now you expect them to pay you money, money that they know you will use to fund the war to attack them? They would delay the negotiations and maybe even prepare a last assault against us”

George scratched his chin as he noted the problem in his suggestions. Then he offered another suggestion.

“Then, we execute all of them and erect a victory mound with their skulls. At least this will instill fear in Vetten.”

The looked of apprehension can be seen from Aero expression.

“At this time we have attacked the invaders and pacified the people. The army of a wise king takes the noble cause as its position, so why is it necessary to slay the people? Not to mention doing that will only make you be labelled to be a barbarian, a cruel and evil king, it will caused you to be condemned by the world and lose the will of the people”

Aero explained. George was looking more flustered and anxious than frustrated. Aero could see the King was acting.

The reason the King come here is not because he want to ask his opinion, it is because he want Aero to come up with the solution.

After all while both of the solution has cons, both has pros too. But George wanted a solution that will benefit his Kingdom and remove the threat of Vetten.

Aero could sense this and knows the King hopes he would give a solution that could help him.

It is the only reason the King would ask his opinions.

“So what can we do? We can’t ransom them. We can’t kill them. Keeping them and feeding the enemies of my people does not sit well with me or my kingdom treasury” George declared.

Then Aero smile slyly.

“Then, the path is clear. We will set them free and return them to their home.” Aero said full of energy and with a carefree expression

“What!”

Hearing this King George face turns red in frustration.

‘Wouldn’t that just reinforce Vetten troops? Why would we do such an absurd thing?” This is not the idea that George thought Aero would said.

His tone was rigid and his face expression clearly shows he was displeased. But Aero was calm as he waved his feather fan and said

“The ones that surrendered are not professional soldiers. Some of them are farmers. Some were forced. Many more were prisoners that were forced to fight.”

“So? They still killed my people and such thing must be avenged or the hearts of my people would turn cold” George seethes with anger remembering the good men and women that died protecting the Kingdom.

“I have considered the pros and cons of this move. But will they return to Vetten army? After surrendering?”

Aero asked, his hand keep fanning the feather fan. The King did not answer

Then Aero continued. This time with a smile on his face

“I understand that Vetten III is not exactly a forgiving king.” Aero remarked.

George nodded.

George also knows that. Vetten III is an impulsive man. Bradheim always described him as an opportunist.

And even the war happened because Vetten III senses an opportunity to strike.

If Aero did not manage to see the deception and uncover the mastermind, Vanheim would be finished.

“What do you intend to do by releasing them Aero?” George suspects Aero has something in his sleeve after he calm himself down.

After thinking about it, this strategist of him really likes to made dramatic remarks but his remarks always have a reason behind them.

Thinking of this eccentricity of his strategist made George believes Aero has a reason for giving him this advice.

Aero then explains his thoughts

“Imagine this. A king that is capable, protect his people, sparing his enemies showing the world an image of benevolent monarch.’

‘Your Majesty, like this subject always reminded, wins the heart of the people, you will win the world. Your Majesty with this move, you will be regarded as a wise and benevolent king.’

Then he added

‘Your Majesty will be praised everywhere. Songs and poems will be written of your act of mercy.” Aero said full of spirit.

“I don’t want praise” George said curtly.

Aero just smiled looking at George behavior.

“And there lies the problem, Your Majesty. Praise is useful. It establishes reputation. And the reputation of a wise and benevolent king can be more useful than you know.”

Aero lectured

“Trust me when this humble subject say, when the prisoners are released Bradheim will find it easy to conquer Vetten and each city would fall down like sand castles.”

Bradheim is the general that will be leading the troops to attack Vetten. But George could not understand how releasing the prisoners will help Bradheim conquer Vetten.

George pondered as he look at the confident face of his strategist. He then struggles for  a bit before he finally relented.

He will heed Aero strategies.

‘I mean there is no other choice. Can’t ransom them, can’t kill them and can’t keep them. What a dilemma.’ He thought to himself.

Tomorrow he will release the prisoners and give them supplies for their return home.

Little did George know that by doing this, he will gain the approval of Vetten people in the future.

These former prisoners that were released by George told their kinsmen of their capture and release and of their fair treatment they received at the hands of King George troops.

Thereupon the Vettenians that heard the story were elated, and wherever General Bradheim and his troops went a great number of nobles and peasants alike came forward to give their allegiance to the Vanheimnian forces.

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VETTEN KINGDOM

THE CITADEL

The moment that Kyle logged back in he revived at the citadel in a sorry states that show no sign of his nobility.

He had no clothes, looking truly pitiful. Thankfully only the items he had equipped were looted.

He equipped other clothes from his item menu and went outside the citadel.

The moment he was stepping outside he was arrested by the Royal Army, his arms and feet were chained.

A squad escorted him

With no chance of explaining himself he was dragged down to the palace like a criminal.

He was brought to Vetten III in such a condition with ministers and war officials looking at him with contempt.

High in his throne Vetten III looked angry. No…he was beyond angry. He was furious.

“We have captured him, Your Highness” the squad leader said. The King gestured the soldiers to guard Kyle.

Kyle was thrown to the floor. The minister all jeered at him. Vetten III just stared at him sharply. Kyle tried to get up but then

“Kneel.” yelled the King

Kyle was startled. He kneeled back.

“Explain to me how you lost. You had a larger army. You had better preparation. You had all that our Kingdom could give you. Explain to me how you lost. Tell me” the King voice was laced with anger

Sensing there is no other choice, Kyle explained to the King in detail of what transpired.

The King just listened.

“And that’s how we lost” Kyle concluded the story.

The King just sat there.

Not talking. No movement. But Kyle senses it. There is a great anger in the King eyes that seems to bored down holes on him with his stares.

A silent burning rage and he believes the lucky recipient is him. Though he could never have expected what happened next. Then the King said.

“You once sat at that exact spot and vowed to this King that you will win me Vanheim an bring my Kingdom great glory and riches. You said the Orcs will help you. You said no one could possibly know your plan!” The King slowly raised his voice.

“I..I.I” Kyle was flustered; not knowing what answer would appease the King.

‘You were wrong!!” roared the King

“And your mistake is going to cost me my kingdom. What do you think I will do to you Kyle?” he suddenly spoke in lower tone, but it was chilling to hear.

Kyle does not dare answer.

“Guards apprehend him.” The King ordered

The guards came and cuffed him with magical cuff. Even though his level is high he could hardly escape without a third party help

“Hear my decree. You will be buried in the ground with only your head sticking out. Then you will be cut a thousand cuts upon your face with knifes. The first day I order your wounds to be slathered by salts.” The King tone of voice hardened and his face cruel

The other ministers are horrified. But they know better than to object. Or else, maybe they too will be punished.

Kyle realized it. The King did not ask him here to hear his explanation. He wanted to make an example of me.

Then the King continued.

The King voice boomed in the Throne Room.

“The second day, if you’re still alive your wounds will be slathered with honey so the ants and bees could feast on you.” His voice was calm as he said his decree but the content of his decree was terrifying

At this point some ministers looked like they are about to throw up, imagining what will happen to Kyle.

But that was not the end.

The King continued speaking, this time with a cruel smile on his face like he would enjoy it

‘The third day, if you’re still alive, you will be brought to the square so that my people could see your last punishment. You will be tied in both of your hands and legs and your limbs will be separated by horses each running to different direction. And if by some miracle you’re still alive, you will be burned and left to ash.”

Kyle could not believe the punishment that is handed to him.

This is too cruel.

He knows that Vetten III isn’t the forgiving sort but to think that he would— then Kyle realized the atmosphere in the court.

Everyone on the court has a livid expression.

“The King is really furious.”

“So cruel”

Kyle heard some of them whispering. But none of them will defend him. Even after all he has done for them before.

How he solved their problems before is forgotten.

How easy it is to forget gratitude thought Kyle

“You’re an adventurer so you will return. But at least the pain will be a delight for me to see. And you are banished from this kingdom” the king declared

Banish means the next time Kyle dies he will not spawn in Vetten Kingdom. When he log off next time and needs to log on he will need to choose another Kingdom to spawn to.

This also means every possession that he has in Vetten does not belong to him anymore. He will be penniless.

All his efforts gone up in smoke.

The guards began to drag him to face his execution.

“NO, NO.THIS IS NOT MY FAULT” Kyle screamed pleading.

He was trying to come closer to the King only to be kicked in the gut. Then he tried again.

This time the guards punched him in the face. Blood was flowing from his lips and nose. The ministers just looked at Kyle with pity.

Then the execution began almost immediately. It would be nice to say that he died in the first day. But he did not. He survived.

And that just prolonged his suffering. He suffered until the third day, when finally he was beheaded and burned.

During his execution Vettenian spitted at him, uttered curses, throw stones and rotten eggs at him.

And when his limbs were separated, they cheered.

Like it was a reward for them. You could not have imagined how painful it was for him. How he screamed to the heavens.

How he pleaded and begged to be killed.

He promised he will never forget that humiliation. Kyle has to thank the developers of Brave World.

Those developers must have a twisted mind.

He felt every pain like he was really tortured. But when he logged off because of dying his body is fine.

But somehow he still feels the pain.

The brain would not let itself forgot. And he vowed that when he returns back to Brave World he will have his revenge.

First, at the ministers who stood by when he was executed.

Then, the King who ordered the execution. And he saves the best for last.

‘Aero. You will know my vengeance.’

He has already a plan. He has contact outside of Vetten. He will contact the Blood Brotherhood.

Wait and see. Wait and see.

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Here is the chap。

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