Characters in this chapter:
- Cohen Kheda: The main character.
- Maiza: Cohen’s head guard.
- Manta, Dimmock, Winslet, Windsor, Steven: Sons and daughters of the alien race leaders, rescued by Cohen from hunters at their youth.
- Moya, Jack, Marfa, Wilder: Homeless boys, Cohen’s childhood friends till then.
The once vast plain on this flat land was now divided into sections by several expanded avenues, with tents of various clan styles, big or small. Lambers, stones were carried from afar by workers of different races and piled highly like hills.
“A hundred thousand people, no less.” Maiza gazed upon the heads and said, “Where are they from?”
I shook head to say no, “Let’s get down there and check them out.”
We rode off and headed towards a giant red tent not far away, recognized nearly ten different clans on the way.
“Identity! Off your horse!” A dwarf guard stopped us in front of the tent.
“It’s Viceroy Cohen Kheda!” Maiza shouted on horseback, “Take us to your leader.”
“Your Highness!” He looked at my eyes and hair, then smiled, “The leaders are having a meeting.”
I took off and went in regardless of my dusty cloak.
Beyond my expectation, there were only people in the tent, who were having a meeting around a table.
“Who is it? Where’s my notice?” Dimmock, who was not turning back, asked. He considered rules higher than anything in the world.
“Boss!” Steven saw me and approached with his hippie face, “You are back!”
“Boss!” Manta shouted, “What took you so long! We’ve been waiting!”
“The crowd out there.” I grabbed the glass and drunk, “Where are they from, those people.”
‘Magnificent, isn’t it? Boss, some of them are my people.” Steven said, “We have 8,000 wingmen, 12,000 dwarfs, 25,000 sandmen, plus a thousand elves and dozens of vampires.”
“Don’t forget the humans and craftsmen from other clans.” Dimmock watched me, drinking, “Total is around 40,000.”
“Positive, they are refugees in Darkmoon from a few years ago.”
I nodded and asked, “Only three of you, how about the others?”
“They are all here, Moya, Winslet went to inspect the construction with your paper.”
“Good.” I said, “How’s the preparation? Your people all agreed to come?”
“No doubt, your city is our city.” Steven grinned, “My father was beyond excitement when he heard you are the Viceroy. He at once gathered our best people, they are all yours to command.”
“Lambers and stones are ok for now. Winslet did a calculation that the transportation is entirely up as planned.” Manta said, “The only problem is your design, we were a little thrilled by it.”
“Now I’m back!” I was pleased to hear all the great news, “I’ll give you specific assignment tonight. Now let’s eat something.”
The night was dark while bright in the tent. Not only me and my friends, but a vampire foreman also joined us as well.
“According to your paper, streets and sewage system should be a priority,” Winslet said softly, her face redden by the light.
“The reason,” I said, “Sewage system should be built underground, streets are the foundation of the whole system; thus these two are top priorities.”
“However, isn’t your city a bit oversized, Viceroy?” A vampire said, “Though the wall rounded a bit smaller than DC, it’s much bigger if we add adjacent villages.”
“Listen to me,” I nodded and showed my appreciation to his opinions, then pointed at the map, “Take a look, there are no other cities within a diameter of hundreds of miles, if we build only one city then it’s an isolated one. I’m thinking about centering here and develop supporting towns and villages around it in the same time. Once the wall and necessary facilities are done then we will start building peripheral installations immediately.”
“Why?” Wilder asked.
“We’ve got three years and 500,000 in cash only, this is far from enough.” I looked at everyone, “And now we have nearly 100,000 people to manage, that is more than sufficient. Apart from human resource, we have trouble feeding those people. Thus it’s a must that we select able hands among them and send the rest to towns around the city. Their job is to develop commerce and farming, and it would mean great support to the Dark City in the near future.”
“Are you saying, we are building towns around to support us with money and food?” Marfa widened his eyes.
“Yep!” I answered, “We don’t yet to have basic food and money to support such a large city. In this case, it is necessary to slow down the project. I need a healthy development of the whole territory instead of sick and deformed giant city.”
“Then we could build it small!” Moya said, “Isn’t it better this way?”
“This is what’s troubling me.” I made a bitter smile, “So far as to the Peace continent, our land is relatively huge, and the consistency of races is by far No.1 on this land. Before me, the population here is small but disordered. Lack of management has led to its underdevelopment. However, once we step in, then the abundant natural resource on this fertile land will attract people, businessmen, or even commoners from other nations. By then, do you think a city as small will hold them?”
“I see.” Winslet said, “Well thought.”
“Though we are at a starting point, we need to do better than this.” I said, “Let me assign your work. Steven, how many wingman warriors do you have?”
“En, because we are doing construction, there aren’t many.” Steven answered, “Around 300.”
“Get them off the site and put them into petrol teams of five.” I said, “Deploy them evenly around the Dark City site in a diameter of three hundred miles. You are in charge of communication.”
“Dimmock, how many sandman warriors do you have?”
“Two thousand elites, and more general soldiers.” Dimmock said, “They are combat ready.”
“Gather the elites and frame them by a squad of ten, ten squads into a team, ten teams into a squadron.” I cleared my mind, “Gear them with horses and quarter away at a distance of 100 miles. Give me five teams in each direction. You will assign a commanding officer, I’ll see after that.
“Manta, how about your people!”
“Boss, you know!” Manta said carelessly, “All dwarfs are warriors.”
“We don’t need that much.” I stated with a smile, “Pick a thousand of your finest men and assemble a security team. You’ll be in charge of orders in the constructions site. Listen to me, it is of utter importance to retain orders for us.”
“Leave it to me, boss!”
“Winslet, how many elf warlocks do you have?”
“Zero.” Winslet was embarrassed, “I thought it’s just construction.”
“Things have changed, we need to prepared for the potential assault.” I said, “Could Her Majesty sent some people?”
“Sure.” She said, “How many do you need?”
“Two hundred will do.”
“OK, I’ll write to mother tomorrow.”
“So then,” I said to the vampire who spoke earlier, “How many of your vampires do you have?”
“Eighty!” He stood up, “All of them are the best in our clan.”
“Oh, sorry!.” I said, “I forgot to ask your name.”
“I’m Kenna,” He said, “I’m Windsor’s brother.”
“Well, how unexpected, how’s she doing?”
“She’s doing well, has been a little troublemaker recently.” Spoke of her sister, Kenna smile, “What’s my job?”
“I need you to split your people apart. Vampires are cautious, careful and creative.” I said, “I will assign you guys according to the site project. Every one of you will be in charge of one sub-project. Extra people will be assigned to nearby towns. After the construction is finished, he will become deputy mayor, until a new mayor is appointed.”
“As you wish.” Kenna said, “We’ll do our best.”
“Then what do we do?” Wilder asked, “Anything for us?”
“Sure there are, how can I forget you.” I said, “You and Maiza will establish a headquarter controlling all military units in Dark City. Select your officers among senior guards or refer to other clan leaders’ recommendation.”
“Roger!” Wilder roared while Maiza smiled.
“Jack and Marfa.” I said word by word, “You and all clan leaders will start setting up the City Hall.”
“City Hall?” Marfa was startled, “What’s that?”
“It a management institution in charge of all Dark City affairs. First, you will do your best to manage and coordinate our current construction system. I’ll tell you the rest when I come back from Darkmoon.”
“You are going back?” Marfa asked, “Why are you going back?”
“You don’t know yet!” Jack bluffed, “Boss is getting married!”
At that moment, Winslet’s face turned immediately pale. I suffered terribly and swore to god to slaughter Jack the gossip.