Chapter 516: Sudden Additions
A week later, Seth had finally finished everything he wanted to achieve before going on his quest.
A troop of 200 blade-armed Guard Golems ready to be deployed to their duty was waiting in a storage room.
He had finished over 400 rare and epic rings for the Turquoise Anvil and raised his to lv.4.
The accessory production on Hoens side had also started off after the Tower drones had mined several metal veins in the vicinity. With the help of some armor golems Seth had made on the side, the Dwarf was able to mass-produce low-tier magic rings in the hundreds per week.
Jane had worked quickly and found a location for their new shop. The name “Copper Anvil” that Seth came up with on the fly stuck and became official. It was a slightly less expensive location at the edge of the city center, but still on the way where all kinds of people would come by on their way to the adventurer guild.
Seth was currently talking with Mary about their future course of action while he would be on his quest.
“I will make the preparation for the third expedition to deploy the golem along the trade route,” she assured him as Seth would be already preparing their set-off.
The partys plan was to travel along the central mountain range to the north, past Gamma, towards the northern sea. The reason was that Apollo had specifically said Hyperborea. In myths, it was known that it was supposed to be an island in the far north past the mountains.
As Urth was one giant continent, there was only one northern ocean, that could be meant. Although nobody knew exactly where Hyperborea was, this was a problem they would have to solve once they reached the northern sea.
“Oh, right. Princess Leana contacted us. She also wanted to talk to you about your expedition. She wanted o meet with your party before you set off.” Mary mentioned.
“What could she want? Whatever, I will meet her. Do you think tomorrow is okay?” Seth decided a little confused.
“Okay, I will contact her people later.”
The date was set quickly and the party met with Leana later in the evening. The princess had invited them all into a high-class restaurant for dinner.
“Seth, Im glad you were able to accommodate my request so quickly.” the princess spoke up after the meal.
“Of course. What can I do for you?” the blacksmith asked. His belly was full and he was satisfied.
“I heard you would be traveling up north.”
“I would like to join you on this quest.” the princess suddenly dropped the bomb.
Why would she want to come along with them on a quest? As far as he knew, she was a busy person. Was it okay for her to leave behind her duties for maybe several weeks and get herself into danger?
His doubts were written on his and the princess started to explain. Although the residents of Urth, had given up on establishing contact with other Districts after several failed attempts, in the beginning, Chrona had not.
As Seth knew, the system church had transported several Starta Villages to different points on Urth. To their dismay, Urth had proven to be one of the few worlds where even their prophets were unable to pinpoint safe areas. They had lost several villages with only a little information on the why returning to them.
Many of these losses happened in the northern part of Urth, the place Seth bravely decided to travel to. Similarly, none of the teams Leana had sent north returned, but they were able to send back some information before contact broke off.
“According to them, it seemed like there are signs of survivors in the place you call Sigma. However, we have no idea why contact broke off soon after this message made it through. Since you and Yulecats Fur are traveling North, I wanted to take this chance and come along. In exchange I offer my assistance with the knowledge we gathered from our own expeditions.” she explained.
“But why do you have to come along personally?” Seth asked curiously.
The princess stayed silent for a moment before she continued.
“That is… I have to take responsibility for our losses. I have to personally see for myself what is going on to give a satisfactory report to the empire.” she stated righteously.
Seth was deliberating. Having some information about part of the way would definitely help. They had some maps of Urth, but that didnt really help assess the danger. They didnt include what monster waited in their way, or their strength. There was even the possibility of the terrains having changed.
The only problem was, that Leana was a non-combatant, which would make this journey an escort mission. Even if she brought her own people to protect her… Seth had to admit that he didnt want to get on the bad side of Emperor Leander.
Losing the life of an Imperial Princess in the middle of nowhere, seemed like a good way to get thee really quick.
“Fin is in favor!” a squeaky voice suddenly interfered in their conversation.
A tiny Fin with a big bulging tummy laboriously climbed on the table.
“Fin? Do you even know what we are talking about?” the blacksmith asked her.
“Yes! Leana wants to accompany us on our quest. I think its a good idea.” the fairy supported the royals participation.
“…Since you are here, lets talk about this with everyone.” Seth simply shrugged.
After explaining Leanas request to the rest of the party, there was no major dissent, while Fin was strongly advocating in favor. He didnt know what Leana had done to Fin, werent it normally the fair folk that stole children and left changelings? Had the princess pulled an Uno reverse card on his fairy brute and exchanged her for someone else?
“Since nobody is against it, I think we can say that we all agree,” Seth concluded.
After the initial agreement, they ended the meeting and separated again. They agreed to talk about the details at a later time. Returning to Minas Mar, Seth didnt bother a lot with the sudden participation of the princess.
The blacksmith had something different on his mind. This journey seemed more dangerous than he initially thought. Probably, it was because his previous experiences of traveling the continent had always ended well. It had given him a false sense of safety.
Leanas people, the scouts of the empire, were far from weak. Even Seth would have to admit with grinding teeth, that their equipment he had seen in Chrona was probably better or at least as good as what he gave the lords of Minas Mar.
These kinds of people vanished without a word out there. This was added to his previous concerns about the Age of Gods. It was no longer only the question of whether they would be able to withstand the waves of the coming future.
Maybe they would have a hard time just withstanding the dangers already present…
What could he do?
Set was confident, that he was able to make even better equipment now, as he was constantly trying to improve all of his skills. But he didnt have the time to reforge several sets of items. It wasnt like he had a deadline, but there was a nagging feeling.
A feeling that told him, that it was not a good idea to let a god wait. What if Apollo got the idea that he was trying to ditch the task? How far would he go to force Seth to go on the quest?
What could he do in a short time to boost their survival chances?
He found himself sitting in his workshop, asking himself exactly this question. He already knew the answer, but he was still struggling with the decision. There was no time for a big golem, but would an army of small golems make a difference?
There was no arguing that his Mighty Golem Knights, were strong, probably stronger than Yulecats Fur. But were they strong enough to protect them against something that wiped out imperial scouts?
~What are you thinking so hard? Have you forgotten about the great me? Just rely on me.~ Puffles intruded on his thoughts.
~Im here too, mom!~ the Imugi joined in.
~How could I forget you?~ Seth answered amused.
Of course, he had not forgotten about Puffles or Tatzel, but his worries were not gone. After all, he also wanted to protect these two from harm. What was the point if he had to get them into danger if things went downhill?
The only ones he did not worry about were Python and Ceres. These two were incredibly strong from what Seth could tell and had the advantage of being golems he made. Unless encountered something with the ability to destroy their souls, he did not have to worry about them.
He saw only a single option to quickly increase his power by a large margin and that was by repeating such a unique success and creating another golem on the level of Ceres or Python. This was the point he was struggling with.
Currently, he possessed only one soul that could have a chance to turn into something that would rival these two and it was something he found extremely dangerous to mess with.
A very special mask appeared in his hands.
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