As Thomas was in Hekrin's shop and feeling the urge to beat himself to death with tofu for not realizing earlier that becoming a Magitech Engineer would be a long process, things were changing all across the world of Age of Gods.
A knight in resplendent armor walked down a hallway. His armor was made of a silver colored metal polished to a mirror shine and covered in gold colored filigree. If one was to look close they could see that some sections of the filagree appeared to be arranged in arcane shapes and runes. The knight strode down the hallway he was in with his left hand resting on an equally ostentatious sword hanging from his hip. The hallway he was traversing was lined with dozens of other knights wearing similar armor.
The knight eventually arrived at a pair of massive double doors that radiated a feeling of dignity and power. The two guards standing at the door nodded to the knight before slowly pushing the two huge doors open and allowing the knight entry into the room beyond. The room was massive, the huge domed ceiling supported by thick marble pillars. The room looked similar to the one Thomas had been summoned into, only much larger, much more refined, and with no magic circle carved into the ground.
The knight approached a figure sitting on a throne made of gold in the middle of the room. Without hesitation, the knight stood before the throne then kneeled on the ground before the figure and removed his helmet. The knight was a rather handsome man with bright golden blonde hair and crystal blue eyes. He had a face so finely sculpted that the majority of women would find him attractive, while the rest would probably try to throw themselves at him. As soon as his helmet was removed he tucked it beneath his right arm and bowed his head to the man sitting on the throne.
The man on the throne appeared to be somewhere in his fifties. He had a thick head of dark hair with gray creeping in at his temples. He had a stern face only marred by a few worry lines and lines from age. His brown eyes focused firmly on the knight kneeling before his throne. Sitting atop his thick hair was a simple golden crown adorned with just a few jewels. The man radiated an air of prestige as he looked down on the knight and spoke in a deep voice that emanated power, "Raise your head and report."
After receiving the order the knight immediately lifted his head, his calm collected look from before was nowhere to be seen. Now his face glowed with a look reminiscent of worship, "Yes! As you have ordered my liege, we have worked with division black to compile a report on the incidents involving the summoning circles. As of the last known report at least five million heroes have been summoned and the number continues to rise by the day. Unfortunately, we cannot get an accurate count outside of our own kingdom, but thanks to information from our allies and spies in enemy nations we are confident in our numbers."
The man on the throne let out a deep sigh and gestured for the knight to continue, "We have not been able to discover the reason behind the summoning circles malfunction. When the agreement was reached by the ten nations to summon one hero each everyone agreed, even our enemies. The ritual was performed in the holy temples according to the holy doctrines. Every nation expended many magic cores to summon a hero for their own use, what happened after that is unknown. The first summoning in each nation brought ten heroes. At first, each nation thought they had gained an advantage but, according to reports, ten minutes later another batch of ten heroes appeared in each nation. From then until this point the summoning circles have not stopped, in the beginning, every batch had ten heroes, but the numbers per summoning have started to diminish."
The knight took a breath before he continued, "With the massive influx of heroes we are unable to confirm all of the abilities they have gained upon arriving here, but we are fairly certain that their range of power is very diverse. We managed to learn the abilities of some and while they all have abilities some of those are stronger, others are weaker, and many are just passive with unknown effects. Some could pose a very serious threat to the nations they were summoned into, including our own. Fortunately, many of them behave as heroes should. As soon as they arrived they eagerly began to help out in their respective cities. Gathering materials, slaying wild animals, even entering the dungeons to purge the miasmic monsters within. However, like any large group, there are some individuals with evil in their hearts who do not obey the rules and do as they please. For the time being the guards are able to capture and jail them, or even kill them in combat."
Here the knights face looks a little confused, "But that has given us knowledge of an ability that all of the summoned heroes seem to possess." The knight looks at the man on the throne, concern written all over the knight's face, "My liege, they are all immortals. After they are killed they return to life within hours as if nothing has happened to them previously. They do not seem to mind dying in the least and continue on as if nothing had happened to them. Even those brutally murdered by strong monsters with their bodies ripped to shreds revive as if nothing happened and happily charge at the monsters once again."
The man on the throne frowns and interrupts, "Are you certain?"
The knight nods his head repeatedly, "I witnessed the brutal death of a hero myself, but just a few hours later I saw the same hero charge back into the fray and even manage to slay the monster that had previously killed him. They are, without a doubt, all immortals."
The man on the throne's frown deepens with concern, "What of their attitude towards the nation?"
The night nods and continues, "From our investigation, they don't seem to be loyal to us, or anyone for that matter, in the least. They are all carefree and do as they wish. Fortunately for us, many of them just seem to wish to slaughter the animals and monsters plaguing the lands. The most confusing part is that when summoned many of the heroes do not express discontent at being brought to our world. In fact, many of them seemed excited and could barely wait to go out and slaughter to their heart's content. There were a few who complained about the circumstances of their summoning, but they were the minority."
A look of concern passes over the knight's face, "Some of the investigators have theorized that the heroes we have summoned are from a world filled with conflict and death. A place where killing is the norm. They believe that is why the summoned heroes seem so happy when they are slaughtering their enemies."
The man on the throne frowned and rubbed his chin as he mulled over the words of his knight for a while before asking, "Do these heroes pose a threat to us?"
The knight frowned and thought for a moment, "As a whole, probably not. For the time being. Though they are able to grow in power like us and have special abilities that we do not possess, many of them seem more than content to work for the various people in their cities doing things like gathering herbs and materials or entering the dungeons to slaughter the monsters within and gather their magic cores. In the week they have been here the cities they reside within have experienced a massive increase in the power of their economies. The heroes go out to gather things like materials for potions for a small fee. The alchemists of the cities, or even hero alchemists, create potions to sell from the materials and the heroes use those potions. The cycle repeats itself continuously in almost every profession bringing wealth and power to the cities."
The knight rubs the back of his head and shrugs his shoulders, "However, as stated previously there are some bad seeds within the heroes who think nothing of robbery and murder to get what they want. While they pose no real threat to the nation at the moment, it's entirely possible that as they grow in power so too shall their threat to the nation grow. It's also possible that in the future the ones we consider to be good could change their minds and impose their will upon us. For the time being, they are too weak to pose any threat to us, but in a few years that could easily change."
The man on the throne frowned at the words of his knight, "So, for now, we hold a position of power, but due to the heroes immortality and their drive to grow stronger through combat it is only a matter of time before they will be able to overwhelm us. This is the conclusion you have all reached?"
The knight nodded, "That's right my liege."
The man on the throne thinks for a moment, "You said they show no signs of loyalty to the kingdom. If we could entice them and bring them into the fold we could increase the strength of our nation. I am sure that other countries have thought the same." The man thinks for a bit longer, "These heroes seem to enjoy performing tasks. We shall start to issue tasks to them as well. I don't care if we have to empty the entire treasury. We must bring the heroes within our nation to our side and prevent them from attempting to take the crown from my head. We must make them loyal citizens." The man contemplates for a while before smiling, "From now on no hero is allowed to purchase land within the nation without having appropriate achievements, they must earn titles of nobility within the nation before they can make such purchases. Work with the other departments to come up with missions for the heroes with appropriate rewards. We can build their loyalty to the nation in this fashion. If they prove themselves competent we can even allow them to rule sections of the nation. However, we must keep a very close eye on them. We cannot allow them to build a force that could threaten us!"
The knight nodded at his liege's commands, "It will be done immediately my liege!"
The man on the throne nodded and asked, "Is there anything else?"
The knight thought for a moment and nodded, "There is one last thing my liege. A subset of the heroes seems to be obsessed with the creation of items. Many have focused almost exclusively on learning things such as enchanting, alchemy, blacksmithing, and other professions. We've observed that some of them are extremely proficient in these fields, even innovating new ideas. They are likely combining the knowledge of their world with ours. I believe we should recruit some of them to work with our professionals to improve our knowledge of their techniques and skills."
The man on the throne nods, "Make it so. We must know what they do. If we can adapt their techniques and improve the abilities of our own men at the same time it would be best. Lastly, have all knights and mages begin training at once. We must grow stronger to maintain our edge over any heroes who would wish to take over the nation!"
The knight nods and climbs to his feet before placing the helmet back on his head and leaving the throne room.
All across the world of Age of Gods similar conversations happened in various throne rooms. The world was moving and changing at a fast pace, the residents scrambling to keep the edge they had... for now.