Chapter 11: A dream...or nightmare?
(Tap Sa POV)
I always wondered about the graveyard near the bridge. Today I'll ask Sir Atup about it.
"Sir? I see a lot of high-level items on the graves over there. Were they your fellow guards?"
"Oh Tap, you're here. Actually no, they're not from the kingdom. It's the graves of the intruders that tried to harm our kingdom or destroy the bridge."
Amazing. So he defeated all this monsters wearing high-level items and survived? I couldn't even recognize the other equipment because they're so high level.
"Don't even think about getting any of them. I can see you, you know."
"Of course not, haha."
I walked around the graveyard to check the different graves and I was really interested in one of them. It had no equipment or anything.
"Who's grave is that, Atup? The one with no equipment?"
"Ah, him. He was a fiery one. Literally. He was a powerful flame spirit who burned most of my face and that's why I wear a full helm."
"That's terrible, he was that powerful?"
"He almost turned the magical river dry."
"It must have took you a lot to defeat something that amazing."
"It took everything I had."
The night after we talked, Sir Atup rested for a short while and Anget replaced him in watching the bridge.
(Sir Atup POV)
Tap Sa asked me about the graves today. I wasn't able to tell him about his father yet and how it happened.
He didn't recognize his father's high level items. They must not have met for a long time but the aura that they exert are the same. The sword is also identical. It must be a twin sword.
"I guess I can tell him next time."
I fell into a deep sleep after that.
You cannot beat me.... I am the strongest monster there is how can a mere human like you face me?.... I am above you..... It's over now! I am the destroyer of worlds!
I was hearing phrases from the enemies I have defeated before while defending the bridge.
One of the phrases was a question, it was a question that made me determined in protecting the kingdom.
"What would you get in defending this bridge? To what end will you use your power? What is the reason for your existence?"
"There are a lot of monsters in this world. They are absurd beyond reason. Some would even challenge the world itself and its creators..."
Atup's arms was engulfed in blue flames. An avatar made from raging flames was over him.
"There was once a flame spirit who came to this land, to this bridge in search of something to burn. Instead it found me."
In an instant, the whole bridge was in flames.
"You ask what will I do with power? Someone like you who was born with it cannot understand."
"What's this!? The Azure Flame? Are you kidding me? It was no mere spirit! That was a-"
"The main reason would be that you don't understand power is simply because you do not have enough."
Nothing but ashes remain.
The reason... for my existence... The power.... it's to protect.
It was another nightmare. The fight was with the Spearmaster of the Hojun. The one who possesed the legendary Sun Spear.
He was strong enough to make me use powers that I gained from my previous enemies. Now he's one of the graves in the graveyard.
"Are you alright, Sir Atup?" Anget came, she must have heard me talking while asleep.
"I'm good. It's just one of my regular dreams."
"That's not good."
The monk Gnip came by too. He was nearby.
"That's what I told you about not being at peace with your mind."
"I understand but I can handle it."
"If you underestimate the mind, it might lead to your inevitable destruction."
"Come to me when you want to talk about it. I won't force you or anything but I will listen to you."
I always thought Gnip was weird but he must be a good guy too. He's also not forcing anyone to follow his ways but he is teaching to those who are willing to listen.
Tap Sa is one of his regulars because he's searching for ways to increase his strength.
"Ah... the spirits are calm tonight..."
Gnip said as he walked away.
I still think he's kind of weird.
"I'm also here for you if you need me."
"Got it, Anget. You really don't need to worry about it. It's just a dream."
Just a dream...
(Short stories inside the Kingdom!)
Hello, it's Atab here...
I wonder who I am talking to in my mind but I guess I just want to express how happy I am.
I'm currently lying down on some soft grass inside a well protected kingdom.
Who knew that I would find a place to stay after leaving my previous home. This actually feels more like a home than the one before.
Although I have to cook a lot more than the regular servings since my customers here are a lot more than "regular" persons.
It's exhausting but I get the rest of the day as free time so I rest a lot and try to get some new recipes from time to time.
"Master Atab, we have prepared the ingredients."
"Good! Let's get to cooking right away!"
The maids in the castle are also helping me in my job since they were the ones who cooked originally.
Mr. Rick is also a great help when he's not in a bad mood. Or when he's nagging.
"Yes, Mr. Rick?"
"You didn't put any vegetables in the Princess food today again!"
"But she requested her favorite dish. The roasted pork with special sauce made from magical bee's honey."
"You always say that. It's been a week now! You have to take note of the Princess' health!"
"I got you, Mr. Rick. Sorry about that!"
"As long as you understand... (sigh)."
Hehehe. I guess my job has ups and downs but I'm really good at it.
Maybe I'll try to help out at the bridge too. Like taking turns in watching the bridge.
Can that new guy Gnip teach me how to fight?
"All right, let's do this!"
"Atab! The soup is boiling!"