Lord Joyde The Madman: Heylo, Everybody! How are you all doing?
OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG
GUYS! *intense fanboy screaming*
WE'RE NUMBER 51 FOR WEEKLY POPULARITY!
THE VERY FIRST ON THE SECOND PAGE OMG OMG OMG!
I haven't felt this happy inside for ages :D :D :D :D :)
Anyways, since seeing this has inspired me quite a bit, here comes the next chapter of EUPHORIA! I sincerely hope that you enjoy, let us begin!
Don't mind me guys and girls! I'm just a line break...
The Following Morning... - Zatara Mansion - Leonardo's Point Of View...
"Haaaaaaaaaaah..." I yawned loudly as I sat down in front of the TV before turning it on.
Yesterdays activity made me quite exhausted and Yomi has yet to make a single remark this morning. Our... experience seems to have had a powerful effect on reality."Had fun last night, little brother?"
Michael's voice is heard coming from behind me as his own yawn echoes throughout the room we were in."Is it that obvious?"
"Let me see... your legs aren't spread, your posture is utterly relaxed, your eyes look sleepy but not in the least bit bloodshot, you woke up early morning... Need anymore details?" He asks with a smirk on his face.
And I just grin in turn as I reply."Oh my, Michael. You seem to know so much about the male psyche... its almost as if you're used to seeing this."
He is immediately paralyzed on the spot as he turns his head away from me, his neck creaking as he did so."Um, let's just forget that this happened, alright?"
"Dude, I couldn't care less who you fuck in your spare time nor will I act any different toward you for it." His shoulders slump in relief."Thanks Leo, I appreciate the gesture... but I'm not quite sure father would approve."
Shrugging at him as I internally admit the truth of that statement, I turn back around towards the TV and listen in."-going discussions have arisen in the United World Government HQ about the sudden rise in popularity of Virtual Reality MMORPG games, or more specifically, that of EUPHORIA, the game whose creators are, for the better or worse, responsible for the creation of the original AI, more commonly known as Harold."
Quirking an eyebrow at the TV, I calmly take a sip of my coffee."The American president seems to be intent on either disabling the game entirely, as it violates what she believes to be basic female rights, or bringing the entire genre under the iron heel of the law, as she has so brazenly stated. Europe stands united in its belief that the game is, in fact, nothing more than a game and should stay that way. China has disabled any and all regulations upon Aurelius, allowing its citizens to experience the full brunt of EUPHORIA's vibrant and incredibly realistic fantasy world while Japan has prohibited some aspects of the game and has censored any form of nudity/sexual activity. Russia seems to believe the matter below its level of interest, as its current leader has been recorded saying; This Euphoria, it is nothing more than game. Europa is right, let it be. We have much greater problems to discuss."
Oh, so America isn't a supporter of Aurelius? Strange, given how many of its citizens play the game."This event has caused mayor waves of disapproval between Europe and America, while its relationship with Russia has begun to prosper with a new trade deal being made. Gas Companies have once again been given rights to import their goods into Europe and Russian tourists have begun flooding European cities and sights. That is all for today's episode of World News Network, stay tuned folks and have a nice day."
Letting out a massive sigh as I stand up from the couch, I finish my coffee quickly before going to my room and locking the door behind me."Good morning..."
Yomi's voice echoes in my mind, just as ethereal as usual, but this time spiced with a gentleness I had not expected from her."Good morning, Princess. Ready to play some Euphoria?"
An imaginary smile forms inside of my mind as I walk into my bathroom and start filling up the bathtub with water as I brush my teeth and do other morning routine activities."You bet... Mmm... Yesterday was amazing..."
"Yeah, its almost like we did it way more than three times." I reply with an amused voice."Hmmm... well, if I understood anything that Harold said yesterday, our profiles are two separate brain frequencies coming from the same mind... so maybe we feel each others pleasure?"
I stop dead in my tracks."If that is true, then that's amazing."
"Just imagine all the fun we're gonna have!" She says in sudden excitement as I find myself licking my lips. This will be fun indeed.
Don't mind me guys and girls! I'm just a line break...
Several Minutes Later.... - The Royal Chamber - Rhean's Point Of View...
|Welcome back, Destined One.|
"Good morning, beautiful..." I hear myself saying on instinct as we enter Euphoria and Yomi turns her head towards me with a smile."I could get used to this..."
She mutters out in wonder as we sit up, feeling no need to rush the morning light."Who said you can't?
Another beamed smile is shared between us as I pull her in for another kiss before asking."That said... what do we introduce you as to my subjects?"
She blinks in confusion."Your... subjects?"
I grin at her with and say with quite a bit of pride in my voice."I'm an Emperor in this world... or well, I was and now that I've returned, I'm starting to rebuild my ancient Empire."
She opens her mouth in an O shape as she places a finger on her chin in thought before replying."Well, we're already role playing as it is and considering how much alike we look..."
Blinking at her, I throw a knowing smirk toward her as I say."You want to be my sister?"
She grins right back at me."Oh gods, that would make our relationship so much more wrong... I'd love to."
"So are we the older sister/younger brother duo, reverse or twins?" I ask her as we get off the bed, her hands trailing around the air in an effort to make sense of the inventory menu.
Soon after, the Kimono she was given by Harold along with some other clothing such as an ethereal sash around her neck, white stockings connected to women's shoes."How about twins? Just to make it as wrong as rightfully possible."
"Fine by me." Another grin etches itself upon our faces as we finish clothing ourselves and I finally take a look around my room. Alongside the massive royal bed, there is a set of nightstands on each side, a long oval table of ebonwood along with two chairs, an ornate wooden wardrobe and a gigantic chest made out of gold and covered in crimson silk.
I promptly decide to dump all of my useful materials inside of the chest before looking around the room some more. There seem to be two doors inside of the room, one leading to the inner chambers of this castle and another leading to the balcony, a nice little outcropping with a fence carved out of the mountain stone. The entire room has a floor made entirely out of polished, crimson and yellow colored slate.
Walking towards the balcony with my newly-named twin sister by my side, I find myself stunned by the view as the entirety of Blackwood Valley is shown to me. You see, this area is the result of an ancient meteor crash, causing it to be a low valley with a natural defensive ring of mountains, with no other way to go elsewhere than to cross said mountains existing, at least none that I know of.
This also means that the mountains nearby are all active volcanoes, making the land perfect for farming as the heat of the magma rises to the surface. Of course, there is also the ever-present danger of a volcanic eruption, like the one I caused when I ascended. Blinking at seemingly nobody as I turn my head around towards the nearby mountain, I find that the magma is still pooling around the eruptions epicenter but it has been stopped from causing more damage by a massive wall of stone.
"Glad to see that elemental made himself useful after we freed him... wonder what Zrell is doing right now." I mutter out with interest as I look down onto the town... its still a mess, but there are people running around doing all forms of jobs and they're doing so with remarkably happy faces. Goblins, humans, elves and beastmen... now, I just need the orcs and I'll have my basic setup complete.
That's not to say that the current status is not up to par. I take in a deep breath as I let the crisp, morning air invigorate me and, taking Yomi's hand into mine with a smile, I walk out of the other door and into the castle.
We enter a massive hallway filled with all forms of life as people run around, humans serving as both workers and supporters as they carry supplies around, goblins hard at work with freshly-forged picks out of steel, digging and mining the stone of the mountain relentlessly as few elves carve the stone into shape.
"Master! You've awoken!" Tiara's ecstatic voice echoes throughout the hall as all being stop what they're doing to bow and greet me. The cat in question rushes over to us but stops at the sight of Yomi and, taking note of her Nine Tails, she bows to her as well."Please forgive me, esteemed ancient, I had not noticed your tails beforehand!"
Yomi beams at her with a motherly smile."Tis' alright child, we hadn't even been introduced yet."
Tiara raises her head and looks towards me."Master, your council is waiting for you in our new Order Hall. Please, follow me there."
Shrugging at her as we begin walking behind her while taking in the sights of the construction around us, I ask."So what has happened while I was gone?"
Tiara nods with happiness clear in her eyes."Many things, your highness. I scarcely know where to even begin."
She clears her throat before continuing."First off, the beastmen have been successfully integrated into sharing our ethological views and culture and most of the town has taken the exam in your absence."
"So how many passed it?" I asked with an tired voice, still quite exhausted from yesterday's ordeal."Well, while most of the town passed the necessary requirements of being Unbound, many also decided to switch a rank down, seeing as The Bound lead very simple and yet, orderly lives. We currently have only fifty Unbound people remaining and the rest are all part of The Bound class."
I shrug again as that was a very expected outcome. Some people may think that throwing one's freedom away is a sin, but if you are promised to be taken care off and fed for free... well, some people prefer that way of life. Its a good way to live stress-free. Of course, if one of the Bound wishes to escape that life, all they need to do is apply for the exam, be given all the necessary studying material, study and pass the exam. If they've already passed it, then all they need to do is apply themselves for re-entry to the Unbound and voila, done.
Nice and simple, without any exceptions or useless policies... I guess you could compare The Bound to high-rank prisoners with the freedom to walk out of their prison whenever they feel like it.
Noting my silence, Tiara continues as Yomi does her best to collect all the information she can, her fox ears twirling as she absorbs all the tidbits."Next on the lest would be the School you've ordered to be built... I am glad to say that it has been completed, but people are protesting about sending their children to be taught. Saying things like; I's never been to school, why should me kids be!, and the like..."
"The person who said that should be killed immediately." Yomi decides to chirp into our conversation and I yawn into my hand as Tiara freezes in her spot after my reply."I agree with Yomi. We need to make an example of such idiocy."
She gulps down hard as we continue walking."A-as you w-w-wish... I shall make the arrangements."
Shaking her head in disbelief, she continues."Anyways, the mine you conquered has been fully repaired and manned, the goblins were especially helpful during its reclamation. Also, sometime after your disappearance, there have been a couple now Destined One's to appear inside of our city, as goblins, that is... This has never happened in the history of this world before and... well, I had hoped you could shed some light on the matter, your highness."
"Writing a book, Tiara?" I ask her with a quirked eyebrow and she blushes with a nod."Y-yes, I feel like what is happening around me must be recorded. I may not be the best possible author, but at least someone will be able to use my notes to write something that is not a total fictive suicide."
Letting out a laugh as Yomi giggles at the girls adorably honest response, I reply."When we conquered the mine and I extended my hand towards the Goblins, the Destined One's belonging to my guild all gained the ability to inhabit goblin bodies. Those you thought were new arrivals are simply old souls wearing new flesh."
Her eyes widen in surprise."I... see."
She shakes her head out of her stupor as she continues."Lastly... well, the general has managed to re-write the Azarestrian training manual and has had copies distributed to every soldier... however, this has caused some to protest about the fact that those who cannot read may find it offensive."
I shake my head in disbelief."Tell them that if they continue their protests, the same fate awaits them as the idiot who denied his children proper education shall receive."
A shaky nod is given in turn as we find ourselves in front of a massive iron door. Tiara pivots on her heel, turning around to face us as she bows again."We have reached the new chamber... shall I wait for you and the lady outside or?"
I wave my hand in negative."No, you may leave... and this lady next to me is my sister."
Tiara's jaw promptly drops down to the floor as Yomi giggles at her expression."A-ah, you both have golden eyes a-and white h-hair! How could I have been so stupid not to notice, please forgive me!"
Yomi walks over to Tiara and places a gentle hand onto her head."Its alright, little kitty. Really, don't worry your adorable little head about such things!"
Tiara looks up with confusion etched clearly upon her face, making Yomi squeal out at the adorableness in front of her."AW! Can I keep her, Le-sorry, I mean Rhean, right?"
I let out a massive sigh."Yeah, I'm called Rhean here.. I forgot to tell you that."
She shrugs."Well, I saw your characters name on time, so no biggie."
Shrugging right back at her, I open the massive iron doors as Tiara scurries away with an embarrassed blush on her face. Another massive oval table comes into view with more than twelve chairs placed around it."Good Morning."
Greeting my council as I walk further inside to reveal the people inside, I promptly pull another chair closer to myself before sitting into my throne."Good morning, your highness." They stand up and salute me before all eyes fall onto Yomi, who merely chuckles at them in turn.
Letting out a yawn, I point a hand towards a now-seated Yomi and say."First off, I'd like to introduce you to my twin sister, Yomi. She shall be joining me on my adventures in this world of yours... I want you to respect her as much as you respect me, got it?"
They bow towards her as Yomi raises a finger to her chin."Say, if you are an Emperor... does that make me a Vicar or a Tsarina?"
"I don't sincerely know... I'd say Vicar but.. actually, neither of these fit with your name." I say with a shrug as our council looks at our conversation with clear interest.
Blinking at her, I ask."Well what did you even name your character?"
"I didn't." She replies simply and I let out a sigh as I notice that her profile's name is indeed, Yomi."I think it would be best to change your name so that someone from our world does not connect the dots."
She blinks in surprise."Ah! You're right!... what should I name myself?"
Closing my eyes in thought as I take a moment to think, I reply."How about Haruno or Karin?"
"Blooming fields or Pure Summer Forest, eh? Not that big of a difference." She says as the Japanese meaning behind the names is stated... but..."Isn't Karin purity in Greek and not in Japanese?"
My question sends her eyes into several blinks."You're right... interesting.. Very well, I've decided to name myself, Karin!"
Her cheery exclamation sends the council into a chuckling spree which is stopped only when Charles asks a rather important question."It is nice to meet you, your highness. I am Charles, general of our Emperors armies... that reminds me, my lord, what is your surname?"
I grin at them as a certain surname instantly pops into my mind."My full name is Rhean Ryszard Mayne, or Rhean Mayne Ryszard, depending on which you like more." Yomi bursts into a spree of laughter as she realizes the full translation of my name; aka The Confident Powerful Ruler.
Really, I mean it. Google it if you don't believe me.
Shaking their heads out of their stupors as we all calm down into our seats, the merchant in the top hat begins our conversation... what was his name again? Oh right, it was Mr Loris."My Emperor, I have surveyed the area as you asked and the results have revealed several interesting points to this Valley."
"Do go on." Is my quick reply as I yawn into my hands and the man nods before taking out a parchment, having most likely written notes on his findings... smart."First off, my survey has revealed what seems to be an old and forgotten slate quarry fairly near the town's eastern edge which digs into the bottom of the mountains which surround Blackwood. Granted, it is not of Azarestrian origin, but it was most likely used by an older generation of the town to repair their homes when disasters struck as they are all made out of slate stone and over two hundred years old. This is further proven by the strange amount of broken tools of varying ages being scattered around. There are pick heads, rusted carving knives and all sorts of stonework materials and tools buried beneath the earth and rock."
"Repair and man the quarry. If it is indeed as you say, then we can use it to help fix the town." Loris quickly scribbles my answer next to a patch of his notes before looking downwards on the parchment.
"Next in line would be the two lakes that have formed within this valley... or rather, the Chitter Lake and its outpouring." He shows me a full map of the Blackwood Valley and points towards a river in the northwestern part of the valley which fills into a large lake which is then separated by a swathe of land from another body of water which is connected to it by another river... interesting."The upper lake is an ideal spot for fishing as the mountain gulpers often flow downstream from the mountains in order to breed in the clear and safe waters of the lake, providing us with an ample supply of food from just random fishermen."
"And if we were to build a Hunter's Bastion next to it, we could potentially reap enough food to provide for the entire city for a good long while." I reply with interest clear in my voice and he nods."The Lower part of the lake is... sort of the opposite, but equal potential lays there as I'm sure you have seen the amount of animals that gather to drink from the outpouring."
I nod towards him."Yes, you need not explain... I suppose you wish to construct a Hunter's Bastion on the lower lake as well, not for the fishing but for just regular hunting."
A hunter's bastion is a wooden manor where hunters, fishermen and gatherers come to store their prey and have it safely delivered to the nearby cities... people usually waste resources on building a forester's home, fisherman's hut and hunters cabin next to one another while I just shoved all three into one giant building."Yes, it shall provide us with much leather, meats and bone, as well as some stone as the foresters will clear the area of it to further available land to plant trees."
Another nod from me."Indeed... while we're on that point, I want you to clear the immediate area around the city of woodland. We will need that space to expand as the current area we inhabit is too small for everyone."
He nods as he scribbles some more on the parchment before turning towards me again."I suppose Tiara has already informed you of the mine, the school and the successful incorporation of the beastmen... former slaves?"
"She has." I confirm his question, not even bothering to call him out on that last comment."Good. Then we can get on to more important problems.. you see sire, there is a hidden village in the mountains to our north, a... frontier outpost, if you will."
Quirking an eyebrow at him with interest, I let out a massive sigh."Is this outpost a slaver hideout?"
He gulps down hard in shame."Outpost? Hah, no sire. Its more of a slaver capital. All of the slaves from the nearby area are brought there to be re-taught and then sold to the highest bidder."
"What is its name and location?" He raises himself upwards before taking out a silver pen and encircling an uppermost area of the map, showcasing the hidden road I found his caravan at before... wonder what happened to it in the end.
"You will find it by following the slaver's road where your allies found my caravan... thank you for bringing it back, alongside the rest of the supplies, they will be useful to this town. I have paid your allies the amount you've promised them, so you needn't worry about it." He says with a raised hand."A-anyways, the town which hides the mountain mine inside of which the slaver capital stands, is called Pitting... named as such for the many pit fights which happen away from prying eyes."
"I will incinerate that place to ashes with the help of my guild, you need not worry yourselves about it. However, I want a contingent of soldiers of be at the ready to escort any and all slaves back to Incerum, as the slavers will surely attempt to take them back." The general raises as bows before leaving the room with a salute."As you wish, your majesty. It shall be done as once."
Zyl'mael stands up with his usual level of grace before bowing towards Yomi."My name is Zyl'mael, I am the current chief researcher for our Emperor. It is nice to meet you, Vicar Karin."
Yomi gives him a curt not."Likewise, friend."
Nodding back towards me, he takes his own piece of parchment out and states."As you have commanded, I have re-formed the policies of our old Empire concerning the Bound. As the old ways state, 25% of the Empire's total income will be transferred into a hidden safe, 10% of it shall be used to pay for the living expenses of The Bound, another 10% shall be funneled into your own coffers and the rest will be used in whatever way you deem fit, which means you have 55% of the empire's total income at your disposal. Currently, we possess a sum of 1023 gold, 97 silver and 28 copper within the treasury."
He clears his throat before continuing."Additionally, all income earned by The Bound shall be funneled directly into the Available Treasury."
Then, as if he remembered something important, he blinks in surprise."I should also mention that, with the help of Zrell and one of your guild's lieutenants named Frey, we have managed to reclaim The Azarestrian Plantation south of the city. The dryads there proved to be a worthy opponent, but the tenacity of your allies in the face of continuous deaths was... equally terrifying and inspiring to witness. The plantation was guarded by a Greater Dryad whose heart was later used to enchant the lands she called her home and thus, causing the Plantation to burst into life. It can easily provide for our current number of citizens on its own, but extra food will always be a boon. Additionally, Lord Frey has given me a satchel containing the dryad's seedlings and has ordered me to give them to you... albeit, I do not know why."
Dryad seeds? That could be useful indeed. I take the satchel out of his hands and then take one seed outside of the satchel. Grabbing a nearby knife and cup, I promptly slash my wrist and fill the cup before placing the seed inside and then handing the cup to Zyl'mael."Guard the seed for a day and then demolish the broken fountain in the middle of the city. Once you're done with that, plant the dryad there."
"I.. see. I shall do as you ask, your majesty." He mutters out in confusion, not quite understanding what I just did. The seed will drink of my blood and grow into a dryad who I may as well call my own daughter in the future. She will prove useful eventually, as being allied with a dryad offers great health bonuses to the lands she effects. I'll have to remember to thank Frey for his excellent work.
Don't mind me guys and girls! I'm just a line break...
-.- This is a bad way to end a chapter but my family just decided WE HAVE TO GO OUTSIDE FOR FUCKING ICE CREAM.
FFS. URGH. What a way to ruin my day... and I was so damn cheery too once I saw the ranking...
I really hate it when this happens... that said, at least the chapter isn't too small. Whatever, I'll finish this when I come back.
Anyways, read and review! And Good Morning/Day/Night to you all! ADIOS FOR NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!