Chapter 32 : The great city of Garrion
New Chapter I hope you enjoy!
Lazarus had reached the great city of Garrion after several days.
It was originally built as a fortress. But when the monsters were exterminated it became a city.
It has walls towering over 40 meters high spanning across the entire city and had several armored guards stationed in every corner. It was so large that it was as if it was a kingdom of its own.
The streets were bustling with very different people. And I mean very different. Humans, Elves and Beastmen were all over the place. Some fully armored and some wearing light clothing.
Lazarus was somewhat taken aback at the sight of the races mixing in with one another. In the corner he noticed a female elf wearing a white dress and a staff at hand was talking to a large man with fur covering his body.
It was indeed a strange sight. After all, in Assail the races were divided amongst themselves.
“I wonder where the demons and angels are?”
Lazarus was currently walking through the bustling city crowd with a hood to cover his face.
Gazing at some establishments he noticed that there were large buildings with different flags and symbols.
— I wonder what they could be?
His A.I’s deep robotic voice echoed inside his mind.
-= These are owned by legions. Legions are the term for guilds here in Valeria. =-
-= In short. Legions are a group of adventurers with an insignia around their body to prove their membership=-
Although amongst the smaller flags ,there was one huge blue flag that stood out the most. It had a symbol of a shield and florel leaves at both sides. On top of a 4-story building which was made of white marble.
It wasn’t really anything special to Lazarus since he has seen skyscrapers. So he just simply continued walking until he had arrived at the center of the city.
“So that’s the guild hall....” Lazarus smirked as he continued walking.
In the center of the city lie an enourmous building towering several stories high. Each of it’s corners had rook like shaped tower. The building didn’t look anything special since it was just like a massive rectangular castle with very few decorations.
Probably because the place was hastily built when monsters were around this area that it had such simplistic designs.
Inside the building there were many different people that had weapons on their back and some were wearing armor. But one thing they had in common was the necklace that signified their rank as adventurers.
Lazarus glanced around as he walked. “Hmm, I wonder where I can register?”
After a few minutes he encountered a long line of people. At the end of the line there was a sign “Adventurer’s Qualification Test”.
With Lazarus noticing the people in line didn’t have the adventurer’s necklace, he immediately lined up with them.
Suddenly several people lined up hastily behind him. Lazarus thought it was strange but didn’t really think too much about it since people might have been excited to become adventurers.
Then a scent of a fragrant flower tickled his nose.
“Hey! Isn’t that Eris? ” a feminine voice echoed from behind Lazarus followed by a tap to his shoulders.
Lazarus turned to see what the person was pointing to and his gaze eventually fell upon a silver haired girl at the start of the line standing across a black sphere placed on top of a table.
Lazarus couldn’t see properly because of the people blocking his vision and he didn’t know who this so called Eris was so he gave a half hearted reply.
“Look!” The girl jerked Lazarus to the side with both of her hands on his shoulder.
Lazarus’ brows twitched as he turned to see the girl behind him.
The girl had deep purple hair reaching an inch below her shoulder, braided at the left side near her cheek. Her eyes reflected the vivid colors of the sky as her luscious lips formed a seemingly gentle yet warm smile.
She wore a white turtle neck sleeveless sweater with vertical lines emphasizing her bust and a black skirt an inch above her knee revealing her long slender legs.
Her smile and the way she talked made her seem like an energetic person. At least that’s what Lazarus thought.
Lazarus had noticed her ears were pointy at the edge but just a few centimeters longer than a humans.
But then the girl’s eyes met with Lazarus’ glare.
“Oh.... uhmm....... Hi?” She gave Lazarus a wry smile and waved her hand awkwardly. “I-I’m sorry.... I got carried away.”
Lazarus sighed and went back in line. “It’s alright.”
Suddenly he felt a light tug on his robe from behind.
“What’s your name?”
Furrowing his brows. Lazarus wondered why this girl was curios about him. Well for now he decided to just go along with the conversation since she might just be friendly. “Just call me Rex. ”
The girls face lit up as she smiled. “I’m Sonia Fenesthia. Nice to meet you! And as you can see I’m a half elf and half human.”
“Hmm. I see”
“Hey! What’s with that half-hearted response!?” Sonia furrowed her brows and lightly hit Lazarus back.
Lazarus feeling annoyed slowly turned his head and gazed at her. “Can you keep your hands to yourself..?”
“O-okey..... I’m sorry...“ Downcasting her gaze she started fiddling with her fingers like a child who had just been caught stealing cookies.
Lazarus heaved a heavy sigh which made Sonia feel even more guilty. Somehow elves were bad news to him. An image of a blue haired elf flashed acrossed his mind.
Shaking his head, Lazarus shrugged the thought since he wasn’t going to get involved with her again.
Sonia became silent but kept stealing glances at the hooded man and was holding back her urge to get to know him.
Surprisingly most people seemed to pass the mana test. Lazarus recalled that Clifford said that the mana test didn’t really matter that much.
Several minutes passed and Lazarus turn was almost comming up, his eyes wondering around suddenly came to a halt and was glued to the scenery in front of him.
Lazarus blinked a few times as he gazed at the silver haired girl. It was as if he was staring at perfection.
Her silvery long hair flowed down to her slender waist and reflected the suns’s subtle shine.
Her eyes were like purple gemstones glistening underneath the clear water stream.
Her armor had several blue runic engravings but still revealed her slender waist, thighs and shoulders.
Lazarus could only wonder why she was wearing armor only on her chest, arms and legs. Wouldn’t that just defeat the purpose of armor?
The man infront of Lazarus grinned. “Hohohoo, I’m glad I tried for today!”
“You know. You’re fawning over her...” Sonia gazed at Lazarus like he had wronged her.
“I’m just wondering about the engravings on t-”
But then the silver haired beauty’s alluring purple eyes met with Lazarus. Her gaze was sharp, as if lined with shards of glass around the edges.
Her purple eyes reflected the image of a hooded man. Their gazes locked towards each other and everything seemed to have come to a stop.
Lazarus couldn’t help but notice her pale complexion and her look of indifference. A goddess was the only way to describe her beauty.
But Lazarus’ head was ringing alarms of caution. He lowered his hood and turned his attention towards the dark sphere.
After Lazarus broke eye contact, the silver haired girl lightly parted her lips and felt a tinge of dissapointment.
She looked down for a few seconds and then turned her attention towards the man infront of her that was holding the dark spherical object.
The man began gripping the sphere and it started to glow a faint blue.
“Woah...” Lazarus eyes widened with excitement since this was the first time he saw how mana was tested .
The man gripped the sphere tighter and it started to glow a bit brighter. But then it’s glow started to dwindle away.
The silver haired girl’s blank expression didn’t change as she parted her lips. “ You’re not qualified...“
“Hehehehe, well at least I got to see you Miss Eris.” The man scratched his head with a flushed face as he left.
— Hmmm... so it was still possible to get denied, well time to bail.
Lazarus gulped knowing that he would fail since he was the sole man on the entire planet that couldn’t use mana. So he turned around and decided to leave. But then a soft hand grabbed his arm.
“Where are you going?” Sonia was furrowing her brows.
“I changed my mind.”
Eris the silver haired beauty tilted her head as this was the first time a man hadn’t even tried and just left after going through the trouble of lining up.
“You can’t just change your mind without trying!” Sonia’s gaze turned to a glare. “I hate people who don’t try! ”
“I need to go. Something came up.” Lazarus didn’t exactly care about the thoughts of someone whom he had just met. And why would she even care about a stranger whom she just met? Rather to Lazarus it felt like she wanted something from him.
Eris who was watching the two bicker, felt as if she had met Lazarus. There was a strange air around him. So she simply wanted to see him up close a bit to confirm. He looked suspicous but she wasn’t exatly suspicous of him. She felt that the hooded man had more to him.
Gazing at Lazarus with a blank expression the silver haired girl softly muttered in a low tone “Try......” his actions somehow peaked her curiousity so she wanted to see what he could at least do.
Though her voice was faint, Lazarus was somehow bewildered at how her voice could sound so gentle and feminine. But as the gears in his head began to turn he remembered that Eris just told him to give it a go. But it could be bad if he did so he somehow fell silent.
"Nothing bad would happen if you fail...." - Eris
“Just do it!” A man from the crowd screamed.
“Hohoho! His scared to try.”
“ERIS is asking you! You should just do it maaan!”
With just one word from the silver haired beauty everyone seemed to have jumped on Sonia’s train.
The crowds gazes felt like a ton of steel weighing down on Lazarus while Sonia’s grip on his shoulder felt like an anchor.
The silver haired girl gazing at him felt like trouble. But declining her would be even more trouble considering the circumstances.
Lazarus approach the dark sphere. His heart began racing as he felt his hands becoming cold. He emptied the air in his lungs and calmed himself. After all, nothing bad would happen if he failed other than having a few setbacks on his goal.
Lazarus gripped the sphere and simply exerted his strength since he didn't have any mana to exert in the firstplace. The black sphere began glowing but the glow was so dim that it seemed as if a toddler was applying their mana to it. Lazarus could only come up with one reason why it even glowed.
The mana in the air....
“Welp, nothing I can do about that.” Lazarus casually walked off but then he felt an soft hand gripping his shoulders. To him it may not have any meaning but compared to the rest of the people who tried to test their mana. Lazarus glow was so dim that it somehow felt as if he was mocking the exam itself.
"Are you even trying...?" Eris was shooting daggers at Lazarus.
Lazarus was starting to grow nervous since a lot of the people were now glaring at him. He had thought that after failing everyone would just mind their own business.
“You....” Muttering in a low tone Eris’ voice was overpowered by Sonia’s scream.
“You can’t just leave just like that!! Not without trying...” Sonia downcast her gaze and started to strengthen her grip.
“I was trying earlier.” Lazarus blurted out the only reason he could come up with. “I-I’ll try again tommorow.”
“Why not now? That wasn’t even called trying!!” – Sonia
“Mind your own business." Lazarus shot a glare at Sonia since she was starting to get annoying " Besides ” Lazarus turned his gaze towards the waiting crowd. "People are waiting."
Sonia having realised the gravity of the situation reluctantly let go of Lazarus arm.
Eris on the other hand wasn’t fazed by the crowd as her hands were still clamped shut on Lazarus shoulder while gazing at him without a hint of any emotion on her face.
“Let go.” Lazarus shot daggers at Eris.
But the Eris simply shook her head lightly while her brows were still slightly furrowed. Suddenly a husky voice called out.
“Seems like we have an interesting fellow here.”
An elven man with a blue robe approached Lazarus. He had a glistening long golden hair and blue eyes with a sharp gaze. He stood a foot taller than Lazarus and placed a hand on his shoulder.
“ Eris hardly ever gets interested in anything. So, why not give it another try? After all, 2 beauties are asking you.” The elven man grinned and gazed at Lazarus with expectations.
“It’s Zen the legion master of Elite Brigade!” a man called out from the crowd.
“Y-you’re right it’s Zen!’
“What’s he doing here?”
Everyone was starting to get excited as the legion master had taken an interest in the hooded individual. Who wouldn’t? Considering Elite brigade was one of the strongest legion in Kratos composed of only a few elite individuals and was pretty well known amongst the adventurers.
Lazarus on the other hand was sweating bullets underneath the hood. Even if he exhausted himself trying there was no way the results would be different. But there was no other choice. It was stupid to get violent here and the people around him seemed stubborn.
Heaving a long sigh. Lazarus placed his hand on the sphere. Eris released his shoulder and gazed at him expecting him to take the test seriously otherwise it only meant that he was simply here to waste her time.
“I’m leaving after this.”
Everyone’s eyes were filled with anticipation as Lazarus gripped the sphere.
The sphere glowed a dim light again and Lazarus gripped it even more tightly. But there was no change.
An expected result......although the silver haired beauty’s brows distorted to a slight frown.
Not even the weakest man alive would emit this type of mana. The only way it glowed this dim was if the person wasn’t even trying.
Everyone who was waiting in anticipation felt like they have been cheated. As their expression turned sour they couldn’t exactly critisize a man who wasn’t interested.
Although the elven man called Zen was grinning from ear to ear despite everything.
“This guy is really interesting. Hahahahaahha!! ” – Zen
Everyone had thought that Lazarus was purposely provoking Eris. While Eris herself had a shadow looming over her eyes.
Lazarus glanced at the elven man. But then he suddenly felt a strong pulse of mana from behind him. As he immediately turned his head he saw that Eris was lunging her rapier towards him, all the while having a look of indifference.
“Rex!!” Sonia screamed atop of her lungs.
Lazarus smacked the side of her blade causing it to collide with the ground. But she immedietly followed up with a powerful round house to his head and Lazarus ducked down and kicked her leg on the ground.
As she was about to hit the ground she fired a surge of mana on her open palm and tapped the ground causing her to spin in the air and land several meters away from Lazarus.
“Oh! She’s using a reinforcement spell but your able to keep up with her!” Zen grinned without even thinking too much that Eris had just attacked Lazarus.
— When did she cast it!? Lazarus was somewhat taken aback. But even if he was baffled at the sudden turn of events, his instincts that was drilled into him by the military simply made him shrug the thought and focus on his opponent.
“Woooh a brawl!!!”
“It’s a duel!!!”
“Go! Go! Go!”
“That kid is doomed!!”
“Eris! Eris! Eris!”
“You can do it robed man!” a seemingly childish voice echoed amidst the chaos but was soon lost in the heavy cheers of the crowd for the latter.
“Tsk!” Lazarus clicked his tongue when suddenly Eris kicked the ground and was nearing him at an alarming speed. She then thrusted her rapier towards him and the crowd began screaming louder.
As the tip of her blade was inches away from Lazarus’ side. He tensed up his shoulder and slammed it down, all the while thrusting his knee upwards with a powerful force. He was pushed a few inches back but the blade had ultimately gone to a complete halt.
“Eh?” Eris’ who had always seemed indefferent was at a loss for words.
The hall was filled with dead silence.
“H-he caught it!”
“What the hell do you want from me?” Lazarus glared at Eris and spoke with a calm tone yet carrying a hint of irritation.
Eris slowly retracted her blade and placed it in her sheathe. She then gazed at Lazarus and gave him a light nod. “You pass.... next time don't try to hide it...”
“What?” Lazarus furrowed his brows in confusion. First he was pressured into taking the test. The next second he was attacked and now she was telling him he passed?
“Are you okay!? ” Sonia ran towards Lazarus.
Suddenly a man appeared from amidst the crowd. He had alarmingly huge muscles with tanned skin and was wearing a white shirt with black leather shorts. His fist was covered by gauntlets which was crackling with electricity and his thick unibrows made him look like a savage. He stood 3 heads taller than Lazarus and had a square chin with brown eyes and brown hair spiking upwards.
“I-it’s Bardok the destroyer!”
“Hmm, Well I do commend you boy for managing to keep up with her. But she still wasn’t serious. And she used a low level reinforcement spell.” – Bardok
A childish voice refutted the large man from amidst the crowd. “He wasn’t serious as well you know. Besides I didn’t feel him even using reinforcement spells.”
“No reinforcement? That’s impossible.” A girl from the crowd muttered.
“His exaggerating. What would a kid know?” – A man in the crowd.
Suddenly a series of dark shadowy sand started swirling in a small vortex and had formed a short figure.
A boy with large horns appeared and the portion of his eyes which was supposed to be white was clad in black. His hair was blood red and like his eyes and he had a sharp slit in his pupils.
He wore a black hoodie with both hands on his pocket and had a large grin on his childish face.
“Hmph! Varus....” Bardok huffed as he crossed his arms gazing at the small demonic child. “Eris is clearly stronger than he is. ”
“That man isn’t even trying. And I bet that he’s stronger. ” Varus smiled mischievously.
“On what grounds??” – Bardok
“Just a hunch! Kukukuu” Varus grinn caused veins to pop on Bardok’s head.
“You rascal!” – Bardok
“Enough! The both of you. He still needs to pass the second test to become an adventurer. So kid, don’t forget tha.... where is he?” Zen glanced from left to right.
Everyone’s attention was caught by the three individuals that they had totally forgotten about Lazarus and had not noticed when he had dissappeared.
Sonia looked towards Eris but she simply shook her head.
With Zen sighing and Bardok scratching his head. Varus simply turned and left with a grin after speaking his last words. “Told you so...” which left Bardok with veins popping on his head.
Lazarus was already outside and had left, the moment everyone’s eyes were off of him. He had attracted way too much attention to himself and didn’t want to get involved any further.
After all. The qualification exam was held in the working days and the final test on the weekends. There was no need to stay anymore than necessary.
Late in the afternoon -----
After finding an inn to stay and gathering information, Lazarus was currently heading towards an enchanter since he was curious about the Mystalia crystal he had on him and wanted to know if it was worth selling or worth keeping.
As he continued to walk along the roads. He noticed a shop with a wooden signboard having the symbol of an anvil and a hammer.
“Hmm, I wonder how much alloys are? ” Lazarus placed a hand on his chin and knew he wasn’t going to get answers by just thinking. So he knocked on the door and entered. “Excuse me. Is anyone here?”
Little did he know that a silver haired beauty had just caught a glimpse of him.
The silver haired girl stared for a few seconds while holding onto a bag filled with bread.
“Hey isn’t that Eris? ”
“Is she waiting for someone? Heheh, well vitamins for our eyes is all I say.”
Several people who were passing by kept stealing glances at the silver haired girl.
“N-no way...... this is!!!”
Lazarus eyes widened as he felt a surge of excitement pulse throughout his body. He glanced at the several ingots displayed in a glass case and was almost about to drool.
“Chromium!” His eyes went towards a shiny silver ingot.
“Led! And so much more!”
Lazarus eyes were glued to the glass case as he his entire body was trembling with excitement. “Now all I need are fertilizers and some coal!! Wait.... how much are these?”
Suddenly a door opened from behind the desk and a man with a muscular body emerged. “Hmm? What can I do for ya lad?”
P.S Sorry for the late release.