Chapter 112: Meeting with Second-Tier Mages
The coachman led the luxurious carriage out of the Orchid auction house and drove it towards the Commoners' Borough.
Abium peeked outside through the silk curtain and frowned as he noticed the carriage moving in a different direction. While he was looking out in confusion, his Teacher Zivior leaned his back against the soft couch and listened to Tabitha's explanation. On the other hand, Tabitha sat on the opposite couch and explained about Abium's clashes with the necromancers in short words.
"Hmm, you made the right choice. But you should have come to the northern tower and ask for my help." Zivior grumbled in dissatisfaction and soon narrowed his eyes as he noticed Abium was staring outside in puzzlement.
"What happened?" Zivior asked. Meanwhile, Tabitha and Ubius also shifted their gaze towards Abium and gave him a questioning look.
"Why aren't we going towards the Northern tower? I thought the secret meeting would be held in the Magic Tower." Abium asked as he fully opened the curtain and looked at the surroundings.
"Well, if we went to the magic tower now, the necromancers and other roaming mages inside our royal city will take notice. Moreover, there is a possibility that someone from the magic tower might be monitoring our movements and transmitting information to the enemies. While checking these simple things, they will have an easier time finding out who is inside and who is outside the tower."
"So, Teacher Alius informed us a few days ago to stay in the capital and started collecting more information about the necromancers. I already tracked down five members and killed them near Dawy's lane, but I didn't find any clues about their plans." Zivior said with a solemn tone.
"So, what did you found out during your last few days' investigations, Mage Abium?" Tabitha knew that although Abium was just a first-tier mage, she didn't dare take him lightly. Abium nodded his head and started talking with a wry smile.
"I came to Royal capital because of another reason. Due to some ulterior motive, Baron Harry and his family members started to create trouble for me and my territory. Baron completely blocked the underground tunnel and started collecting high taxes on the other end. Moreover, his family members killed five of my soldiers and sent their heads in bags to me."
"He dares to provoke a mage?" Zivior fumed in anger. Meanwhile, Tabitha started shaking her head and answered Zivior's anger.
"It's the start of civil war, Zivi. He might have planned a trap for Mage Abium."
"Yes, My Lady. I also thought the same. So, I refrained from taking any action against him. After a few days, I thought of checking on Baron Harry while on my way to the royal capital. But after I met with Baron Harry, I found another secret. Baron said that there was an old guy with gray-hair who asked Baron Harry's grandfather to create trouble for me."
"He also told me that his grandfather and the gray-haired old man already went to royal capital to attend the upcoming Grand Nobles' Gathering. At first, I didn't understand that guy's intention, so I directly rushed back to Royal city to search for them."
"That's why you asked for that faceless glass mask and those paralysis potions!" Tabitha nodded in enlightenment.
"Yes, My lady. I used those to sneak into Baron Harry's mansion and finally found out that Baron's grandfather Randolph was colluding with a necromancer."
"I found out that the gray-haired old man was a first-tier necromancer and was planning to attend a secret meeting on March 14th. After killing that guy, I used this faceless mask and attended that gathering in his stead and then found more interesting things. Their organization name is the 'Order of the dead.' They are planning to do a massacre during the upcoming Grand Nobles' Gathering." Abium stopped his talk as he noticed Zivior started at him with wide-opened eyes.
"Kid, how did you just sneaked into a necromancer organization's secret meeting and came back alive without being noticed by others?" Zivior asked hurriedly. Zivior knew that it was not an easy task and gave him a suspicious glance.
Abium hurriedly took out the emerald gem embedded cursed artifact and gave it to his Teacher. Simultaneously, all three second-tier mages sent their spirit power into that artifact and soon nodded their head in understanding.
"Did you use that slave bind spell on the necromancer's spirit and get more information about that meeting? Hmm, that was a good plan indeed. So, what information did you found out about them?" Zivior asked curiously.
"You can tell that information during the meeting," Tabitha said while stopping Zivior from asking more questions and silently closed the silk curtain.
All of them became silent, and the only sound echoed inside was the carriage moving sound.
"So, where is the meeting place?" After a long silence, Abium asked while looking at Tabitha. He then furrowed his eyebrows as he saw the carriage was directly moving towards the end of the commoners' Borough.
"54 Bailey Street," Ubius said with a gruff voice, and soon everyone noticed the carriage suddenly stopped moving.
"Let's go." Zivior slightly pushed the silk curtain and walked out of the carriage while others also followed after him. Once all four of them walked out of the carriage, the carriage didn't stay there any longer, and it directly moved out of Bailey street.
Abium glanced at the direction where that carriage went in curious and soon returned his gaze towards the two-storied building that stood in front of them.
It was painted in a light green color, which made this house unique in the whole street. Even though it was completely dark outside, the house gave a dim glow and made it more attractive.
Suddenly, a growling sound came from inside the compound, and soon a large black hound started barking loudly while startling Abium. But without minding that hound's barking, Zivior opened the entrance gate and walked inside like it was his own house.
'Aren't we supposed to hide our identity from others? We look more like suspicious peoples. Well, the possibility of those necromancers seeing us here is almost none anyway.' Abium rolled his eyes and soon followed after Teacher Zivior.
After that, the group walked into the two-storied house and soon found themselves walking into a hall. It was a large hall filled with multiple magic lamps. Those lights twinkled and illuminated the whole hall in bright yellow light.
Abium walked into the large hall and then noticed three red-robed figures, and one black-robed figure sat inside.
There was a large rectangular table at the center of the hall filled with many fruits and drinks. Ten chairs were placed on two sides of the rectangular table. Four robed mages sat on one side, while the opposite side seats were left empty. Abium quickly scanned the mages and found out that three of them were second-tier mages, and the remaining person was a first-tier like him.
"Zivior, why are you bringing your student here?" A hoarse voice came from the farther seat as Abium saw an older man around 80-years-old glancing at him. He had pure white hair and a white beard.
He wore the same red robe as others and had thin eyebrows. But what made Abium a little startled was that he had unique round pupil-less purple eyes, which made him look like some mysterious expert!
"You will find out soon enough, Old man, Idus," Zivior said with a proud face and then went towards the opposite seats. Abium also followed after him and then sat opposite to the white-haired old man, Idus. Soon, he shifted his gaze towards Idus's left side and saw a black-robed woman. She around 30 years old and was looking at him in curious. She had blonde hair, azure eyes, an oval face, and fair skin.
"Oh, I didn't expect Anne would also attend this meeting. Anyway, I will introduce my new student to you all. His name is Abium, an elf. He had already constructed two first-tier spells despite being ranked up just two months. He also did some reckless job and already found out more about these necromancers." Zivior said with a proud face.
"What information do you have?" Another red-robed slim lady with black hair asked while squinting her eyes. She had a pale face and looked around 40 years old.
'Ice Queen Ovia! I didn't even see her clearly during the last auction.' Abium nodded her and was about to reply, but another male voice interrupted them.
"Do you guys think those necromancers will attack the palace during Grand Nobles' Gathering? What will they achieve just by attacking the bunch of mortals?" Abium silently glanced at him, who sat on the other corner of the table and furrowed his eyebrows.
'He must be the Dark arts mage, Cole. I heard of him multiple times in the past but never seen him upfront.' Mage Cole had pitch-black eyes, long straight black hair, and had a cold aura around him.
"My student confirmed that. He killed a necromancer, secretly attended the necromancers' meeting using his identity, and gathered more information about them." Zivior said while pointing his finger towards Abium and explaining how he got those pieces of information.
'Hmm? They seem to be not that much surprised about my achievement.' Abium was slightly stunned.
"Oh? Care to explain? What is their motive?" Cole asked while giving a curious look at Abium. It was a sudden meeting arranged by their Teacher, Alius, which made Cole ponder deeply.
'After a long break of 50 years, our Teacher is showing interest in the outside world. Something is wrong. There are many anomalies like the assassination of Sewallus, mythical demon's appearance, the appearance of necromancers during the auction, and the Light Church's scheme to kidnap Prince Raollet.
But the most troublesome person is this unknown mysterious elven kid. He has some link to all those incidents, which makes things more suspicious. But we don't have enough proof that he had some ties with everything.'
Cole didn't understand what was happening right now.
'Ha! I now understand why Tabitha asked Teacher to bring this kid to the meeting. Moreover, he seems to know more about those necromancers than us. I'm curious to know about him.'
While Cole was deeply pondering, Abium started to speak.
"I don't know their exact motive, Sir. But the attack on the upcoming Grand nobles' gathering appears to be just a distraction to divert mages' attention."
"Distraction, huh? So, what about their strength? How many second-tier mages did you meet?" Cole nodded at Abium as if he had somewhat guessed vaguely and asked while taking out a book from his spatial ring.
"There are two second-tier necromancers. The one who organized that meeting is a necromancer named Rilos, who wore a black robe. He is a middle-aged man around 40 years old, tall figure, russet brown eyes, and brown hair."
Abium paused for a second while thinking about the woman named Yalya and continued with a frown on his face. "The other one is a necromancer lady named Yalya. She didn't speak much and had gray frizzy hair, black eyes, and thin eyebrows."
"What about other first-tier necromancers?" Suddenly, the young prodigy Mage Anne shifted her gaze towards Abium and asked curiously. She knew those second-tier mages were out of the league and asked for information about those first-tier necromancers.
"Except for one old guy named Yozis, I didn't speak with any of them. Also, I met Viscount Gauvain's younger son in that meeting." Abium instantly revealed the culprit's name to everyone.
"Oh, it seems he joined the academy to gather more information about all the mages," Idus said with a frown while Zivior responded with a helpless sigh.
"Old man, he is your student."
"I just picked him up during the entrance examination. Well, if he starts acting strangely, I will take care of him on my own." Idus grunted as he nodded his head. He then suddenly thought of something and asked while glancing at Zivior.
"Zivior, what did you found during your mission?"
"Except one page of Mage Novak's diary, I found nothing." Zivior's words surprised Abium. Although Abium had expected the mages might have known about the history of the lost Bidora Empire, he was still stunned.
"Even if we found more about that, no one understood the words of that strange language except Teacher. Moreover, he is just a beginner in that language. It's a waste of time to dig out the Lost Empire's history." Ubius, who had been silently listening to their conversation, suddenly spoke with a solemn expression on his face.
"Brat, who said I'm a beginner? I had already deciphered five pages during the past two decades." Suddenly, an old but mystical voice came to Abium's ears, startling everyone inside the room. Simultaneously, teacher Zivior, Mage Ubius, Lady Tabitha, Ice Queen Ovia, white-haired old man Idus, Dark arts Mage Cole and first-tier Mage Anna stood up hastily and bowed towards Abium's right-side wooden chair.
Abium also stood up while looking at the 60-years-old man who appeared out of nowhere beside him. He had golden hair and a pale face. But what made Abium stunned for a while was the old man's appearance. What he saw was not a real body, but an illusion figure!
'Incarnation!' Abium quickly recognized.
"Teacher!" Everyone instantly shouted in unison while bowing their head with respect.
Abium also bowed his head.
'This must be the Lord Alius. I never thought that one day I would meet and talk with all these legendary figures.' Abium took a deep breath and calmed himself down.
"Sit down." An authoritative voice once again echoed inside the hall, and soon the golden-haired man shifted his gaze towards Abium and asked with a curious look.
"Who is this, lad? A Royal-Elf?"
Meanwhile, Abium felt all his emotions and thoughts had been seen through by the old man. He felt like he was naked in front of the old man and became more alert.
'Hmm, third-tier mage, but he seems to be hiding something.' Azolla's voice echoed casually, causing Abium to become more nervous.
"He is the student I told you about, teacher," Zivior said with a solemn tone and sat down.
"Oh? Is he the elf with an unknown origin?" Alius asked. He then moved his illusionary right hand and placed it on Abium's head. After that, he continued to talk as if he was reading Abium's mind.
"Hmm, you don't seem to have any ill intent towards our academy, nor have any ill intentions towards this kingdom. Hmm? You seem to have a deep hatred towards those necromancers, and from the emotional changes, I can tell you have lost someone in their hands." Alius nodded with somewhat understanding and continued.
"I don't know what your motive is, kid. Your mysterious background is making us hard to trust you, so I have no choice but to put a mark on you till the gathering ends. If you act against our academy mages or sided with necromancers, you will die." Alius warning words caused Abium's heart to thump faster. Before he could nod, he felt a golden cloud-like essence came out of Alius's hand and entered his body.
"Now, Anne, what do you think about the 'Order of the Dead' members?" Alius shifted his gaze towards the other black-robed mage and asked with a smile on his face.