Anyway, good news everyone, said in the voice of a certain professor
My editor has finished his part and sent it back. Rather, due to some technical mistakes it's not quite here yet . . .But it's done so that's good. I haven't added anything to 'Changes to Book 2' chapter because I haven't made any yet, which puts me in a slightly awkward position in writing book 3 as you can likely imagine. Since I have no plans on changing any major plot points, maybe making them better but not removing them, I can likely get away with a few chapters. Expect a more constant schedule sometime early July through middle of august.
Also got my first sketch of the cover-art, so that's coming along well too.
In short, everything is working out pretty well.
"It is as I said before your Majesty, that dungeon invites nothing but calamity upon our land." Father Tobias declared, the outrage clear on his normally pleasant face, "First a demon and a cult appear in our city, then a crypt of centuries old evil appears to massacre half the townsfolk!"
"The cult was here long before the dungeon arose," Lord Mannis interjected from the side.
"The cult came out of the mud of our cities a mere few days before the dungeon was found," Tobias countered, "The reports are clear on this as they had little time to spread properly. The death of the princess. . ."
"Enough," Prince James raised his voice, "Do not speak of that tragedy again Father Tobias." The weeks of ruling in his father's stead had taken a toll on the young man. Lines of experience had begun to appear on his face, and he had started to grow a beard like his father.
Father Tobias nodded curtly, "Apologies your highness, but my point stands. The city has had nothing but trouble since the dungeon appeared. It is my duty as Father to ask how we will deal with the dungeon so as to preserve our city."
The other nobles rubbed their hands and murmured between themselves. Even Lord Mannis chewed on the point. Everyone agreed that the city had gone through some hard times.
Prince James eyed the empty seats in the room, "From what I can see, the dungeon afforded us the perfect opportunity to rid ourselves of the rotten limbs. Even the undead tomb dungeon was destroyed; you yourself told us how pleased the gods were."
Father Tobias frowned angrily, "The gods may be pleased with the destruction of evil, but that does not mean we should be carefree. What is next to come for us?" He raised his hands, "Our city lies in chaos because the corrupt noblemen who supported the under-carry are all gone. The black-market is in shambles, and many are at a loss on how to adapt to the change. Not that it is a bad thing," He said hastily at seeing the raised eyebrows and frowns, "It is just a large void now in our city. The criminal elements that survived are now engaged in turf wars that threaten the lives of our citizens."
"Furthermore," he continued, "The Dungeon Town took so many losses that it is almost deserted. Everyone from miners to craftsmen were forced to fight, and now there is a large demand for many services. The church is overwhelmed in the passage rights for those who fell in battle."
"Father, get to your point please," Lord Mannis stood up at this moment and crossed his arms, "I am tired of you playing around with your request."
Father Tobias turned to him and crossed his arms, "The dungeon is an ill-omen and must be put down, I said this before. My request then, is for the complete conquering of the dungeon and the removal of the dungeon crystal."
The room erupted in arguments; some calling for destruction while others defended the dungeon. Prince James slammed his sword onto the table, silencing everyone.
"As I said before Father," He said quietly, "Bring me a valid reason and I will consider your request. At this moment, however, the dungeon has served itself to us. We have made profits through it's mines and loot drops, and it even assisted in the fight with the undead dungeon. Now, I realize that all of these actions were done selfishly to preserve itself, but we are no different in that regard. I will not authorize it's destruction without a proper reason, and this is final." Prince James removed a wooden mallet from his robe and hit it against the table, announcing the decision was complete.
Father Tobias considered, then nodded his head in acceptance, "Understood your Majesty, I will not bring this topic up again."
His calm answer surprised everyone in the room.
"Father, why so calm about this decision?" Magus Ganus asked in surprise, voicing the opinion of many.
The Father chuckled, a slightly dark edge in his voice, "Naturally, with how things have gone, the dungeon will create it's own downfall soon enough. We just have to wait for the next disaster."
The room was silent as everyone considered the ominous prophesy.
Lord Mannis cleared his throat, "Be that as it may, let us turn to the next topic of discussion." He inclined his head toward the Prince, "Your Majesty, the reports clearly state your father has succumbed to his grief and lies witless in his bed. The city cannot be without it's ruler, so I move we begin planning your ascension ceremony to become the new King Duran."
James rubbed his beard in thought, "While I agree with you Lord Mannis, I do not wish to give up on my father just yet. I have some things in mind that may help him with his recovery; rumors that I will have to confirm later on. For now, let us move this to the side. I call forth our spies from the empire's war front."
"Is he up yet?"
"No my lord."
"Is he up yet?"
"Is he up yet?"
"Not yet daddy."
" . . .How about now?"
"NO!" 3 voices yelled at Doc, startling him from his vigil over the cocoon in his heart room. He turned with a sulky expression toward the source of the voices; his pixie partner Claire and the two worgs he had adopted as daughters.
"You didn't have to yell." He muttered to them.
Claire placed her hands on her hips, "You've been constantly asking us about him for days now Doc. Only Anadine is taking you seriously now."
Anadine, a blue slime with the appearance of a former princess, smiled happily up at Doc as she saluted, "A pleasure to serve my lord."
Claire smacked her on the head, sending vibrating jiggles through her body, "You need to stop encouraging him otherwise he'll go on forever."
"I like to hear my lord's voice." Anadine said happily.
Claire groaned and placed her hands on her face, "I ca't believe I have to deal with two of you now." She complained, "Why couldn't you have been smart?"
"Because I'm a slime."
" . . .Touche." Claire nodded in defeat at Anadine, who winked and reached up to hug her. Claire avoided the tentacle hug and dived into the fur of her daughters.
"No hugging! No hugging!" Claire cried out from the safety of the fur. The two worgs growled jokingly, their inner voices giggling at the scene.
Doc smiled happily, "It's nice having so many people to talk to now. I can't wait until our new boss joins us in . . .what did you call them? Shenanigans?"
"Not helping Doc." Claire's muffled voice arose from the fur, "You should keep a better hold over your bosses so they don't try to eat me."
"We don't try to eat you mommy." The worgs spoke up.
"I know, and I love you all the more for it." Claire replied happily as her head popped up out of the fur, "Unlike some who keep trying to bury me in slime."
Anadine smiled, her face slightly confused, "I thought two becoming one was the highest form of intimacy my Lady?"
Everyone stared at her. "You eat people because you love them?" Doc was the first to react.
Anadine blushed and placed her hands on her cheeks, her expression cute. Evidently, slimes could blush by changing colors; Doc learned something new everyday.
"No my Lord; When I eat them they join you, which in turns allows me to join with you too. It's . . .my offering of loyalty to you."
Claire scratched her head in thought, "Well, she's not exactly wrong; though what she's doing is sending shivers down my spine."
"We'll eat more adventurers to send to you daddy!" The twins chorused in excitement.
"No, uh, just keep doing what you have been doing." Doc tried to dissuade them, "I think Anadine is a little confused on what love and loyalty means."
"Love is becoming one, and loyalty is offering up one's collected love." Anadine answered promptly.
"Yeah," Claire said dryly, "But I don't think love is made of bones and blood. Is that why you you hug me too?"
"Oh no my Lady; you just taste really good, like how my Lord tasted when I hugged him." Anadine smiled happily.
Claire was horribly conflicted now; the knowledge she was the same as Doc conflicting with being treated as a delicacy. Doc was experiencing a similar dilemma.
"Anyway," Claire got on a tangent, "Our new friend should be awakening in a few days, so let's all do our best to make the dungeon as nice as possible to present to him."
"I'll clean up." Doc spoke up.
"We'll eat all the remains." The three monsters chorus'd.
Claire crossed her arms, "Okay, that's everything. I'm going to go get some more plants to place in the dungeon and my house."
She disappeared in a flash of purple light, flying up into her travel tunnels toward the forest exit.
Doc stared after her.
"Is she back yet?"
"No my Lord?"