The Peculiar Blacksmith
As they have reached the kingdom, Glyde and Rindellia noticed that the castle’s lobby is in ruins and there are dried blood stains almost everywhere in the floor. Two pairs of eyes blinked as they looked around and a group of knights came by before they pointed their spears at them,
“D-Don’t move!” One of them shouted and the two turned their heads towards them. It was noticeable that they look nervous by the way their bodies tremble even at its slightest. They could see those beads of sweats rolling in their faces and the way their eyes stare at them, they could see a glimpse of fear.
“Huh, it seems something must have had happened here.” Rindellia whispered to the other, who nodded.
“We do not mean any harm, lower your weapons. We are from the Avercials.” Glyde soothed.
“Avercials!” One of the knights shouted in panic and stepped back in pure fear, “Th-They’re here to kill us!”
“Negative, we are not here to shed blood.” Glyde said.
“Did something happen here?” Rindellia asked.
“Pl-Please don’t hurt us! We have families!” Another knight said.
“You won’t be able to talk sense in them, Avercial Knights.” A female voice said, coming from the corner of the lobby, and by the window, there is a short female sitting by the window still. Glyde and Rindellia snapped their heads towards the female who had a dark green hair that reaches her waist, she had a pair of bull horns on her head and a fluffy wolf’s tail, which is slightly wagging. Her piercing golden eyes focused on the two and by their surprises, her beauty resembled a lot with Rindellia’s.
“And you are..?” Rindellia asked with an eyebrow raised.
“Gremoire Flametail. A Mixthen.”
“Mixthens..” Rindellia’s eyes widened and froze. Now that she has noticed it, the girl’s voice, face and hair looked all too familiar to her yet she cannot quite lay a finger on it. Glyde, on the other hand hummed,
“You looked like Rindellia in a way.” She said.
“People say that.” Gremoire replied with a laugh, “However, we all know that Mixthens are close with the Avercials.
“Agreed, but, may we know what happened here?” Glyde asked.
“Oh well, a certain Edifyer came here to save another one of your kind. Guess she terrorized all the knights, especially the king.” Gremoire shrugged.
Glyde whistled, “Really, now?” And even if there are major property damages as well as mental damages, she couldn’t help but feel proud at what that fellow Edifyer did. Rindellia had to hit her side with her elbow before clearing her throat. Glyde gave a light chuckle before continuing,
“W-Wow… I guess this Edifyer is strong.”
“Far too strong to be exact. That wasn’t even her full potential.” Gremoire said.
“Well, we all know the requirements of being a legitimate Edifyer. One should be powerful enough to protect herself from dangers and powerful enough to save others.” Glyde winked.
“I had to applaud.” Gremoire chuckled, “But right after taking the Avercial, she just went.. whoosh.”
“That’s the sad part, we are actually looking for her, have you seen what she looked like by chance?” Rindellia asked.
Gremoire hummed, “If you guys weren’t Avercials then it would cost you a good amount of gold. However, since you guys were then I will give this information for free.” She smirked, “This Edifyer has this copper-colored hair with lime green eyes. Shorter than you, miss, just.. about your chest level.” She pointed at Glyde.
“Ahh, I’m Glyde Arcaine Raids by the way and this is—”
“I know who you two are.” Gremoire smiled and turned to Rindellia, “Rindellia Ferhizhchwar, correct?”
Rindellia scoffed, “You’re quite an informant. Are you working for someone?”
“Nah, I’m a free woman. I am ready to serve my services.”
“At what cost?” Glyde asked.
“Oh, just fifty pieces of gold coins in every information I give. A hundred for very important ones.”
“Decent prices. Alright, we’ll hire you at the cost of 75 pieces of gold.” Glyde said before turning her heels and walking out of the castle.
“Wha—! Hey! At least say 85 pieces or something! That’s too low!” Gremoire said.
Rindellia sighed before she turned to follow Glyde.
“Hey! Wait!” Gremoire hopped down and chased after them.
“90 pieces then! But I want you to stay loyal as well!” Glyde said.
“You know that it is against our codes to betray the Avercials! Wait!” Gremoire said.
In the stream near the forest, Damsel stood in the body of water as flowing waters rained down on her slim and noticeable naked body, it is flawless and fair that anyone will be attracted in a romantic and sexual way. Her plump breasts squeezed slightly as she goes to wash her left arm with her right palm. Around her is a transparent ball, emitting a light green aura, which gave her the ability to be invisible.
Damsel sooner took a deep breath as she combed her silky, copper hair with both of her hands and splashed water on her face afterwards.
“Damsel!” Euclesia’s voice echoed as the little girl suddenly rushed inside the ball, acquiring the invisibility effect, “I’m done eating! We should investi—” But before she could finish her sentence, she froze and blinked upon seeing the latter’s body, “U-Uhm..”
Damsel snapped her head towards Euclesia and the two of them stared at each other for a few moments before Damsel’s face turned dark red and her eyes widened. The older girl then released a loud scream that echoed throughout the forest and it made the birds fly away. Euclesia covered her ears with her hands while closing her eyes tightly.
“Euclesia!!! How did you—!!?” Damsel trailed off when Euclesia spoke,
“Ehhh? Well, I simply ran here! Is this ball of invisibility of yours that penetrable?”
“No! No one can even get near it!” But then she remembered that she built this ball to exempt the other Edifyer in entering. She forgot that Euclesia is that Edifyer’s younger sister.
‘Hmm.. I don’t have a sole basis for the other one so I decided to use Euclesia’s aura.’ She thought.
“I see, then, can we go now? Are you finished?” Euclesia asked.
“Almost finished. Wait for me by the campfire.” Damsel said while her cheeks are still burning in embarrassment and her palm planted on her forehead with her eyes closed. She should improvise this ball of invisibility of hers once she gets to meet the other Edifyer.
“Why are you embarrassed, Damsel? We are both girls!” Euclesia blinked.
“I-I know that but I’m just.. not comfortable whenever someone sees me like this.”
“Really? We, the Avercials don’t even care if people see us naked.”
Damsel went silent and opened her eyes to stare at Euclesia with an eyebrow raised, “Seriously?”
“Goodness…” Damsel sighed, “Alright, alright, I get it. But, let me finish bathing first.”
“Okay!” Euclesia then ran out of the space and went back to the campsite.
Damsel had to stand there for a moment to try and gather her thoughts together before she trembled when the wind embraced her naked body, “Shit, I should finish up.”
Back at the kingdom, Glyde, Rindellia and Gremoire went to the blacksmith in the town square of the kingdom in order to sharpen their weapons. As they got there, Gremoire’s nose picked up a weird scent around the vicinity. She raised an eyebrow and looked at Glyde, “Are blacksmith places supposed to smell this way? Smells like dog shit.”
“I have to agree with you and it looks like we aren’t welcome here either however, we have to try and act like we belong here.” Glyde said.
“That, or it is probably a defense mechanism.” Rindellia added.
As they have reached the main entrance, Glyde went and knocked on the door a few times before they heard the phrase “Come in.” from the inside. The blue-haired then grabbed the door knob, twisted it and pushed the door open, entering. Inside, they could see and hear boiling lava in a large container on the far right of the corner and a set of weapons ranging from knives to large hammers, sitting on a long table at the far left. At the middle is a large and muscular man, who is hammering a sword, which the tip of the blade is orange in color due to the heat it absorbed from the boiler. As he hammered, sparks flew from the tip and the heavy clanking sound is crushing the trio’s ears. Glyde and Rindellia seemed to have gotten used to it but Gremoire had to cover her ears due to its sensitivity.
Glyde sooner approached the man, who looked like at his early 40’s and spoke loudly, “Hey uhh, we’re here to ask of your service.”
The man stopped hammering and turned to look at them, his face looks so nonchalant and his drooped eyes focused on Glyde, “How many weapons?”
The man looked over at Rindellia’s sheathed blade then jerked his face towards the direction to where other weapons were, “Place them over there.”
“Got it. How much do they cost?”
“I will have to check on them first to see their sharpness and the length.”
Glyde nodded before she took out her sheathed sword and looked over at Rindellia, who handed hers. She went towards the long table and placed their weapons there. The man put down his hammer, went over the table, unsheathing the two blades and began tracing his fingers along the outline of their swords. After a few more moments, he looked over at Glyde, “The two swords have gotten too dull that it won’t be able to cut a wood and judging by the size of the two blades it will cost you 50 gold. 25 for each.”
“Alright.” Glyde reached for her pouch bag and took out a small bag of golden coins then gave it to the blacksmith, who took it and pulled its string to open it up, he nodded and said,
“Since you three belonged to the Avercial Empire, I will consider these two weapons as top priority. You can get them in the evening.”
“Noted. By the way, have you seen a girl who has copper hair and lime green eyes?” Glyde asked.
Glyde and Rindellia’s eyes widened in surprise.
“Yes, have you seen her? Or knew her?” Rindellia asked.
“If I told you then what would you do?” The blacksmith asked in return.
“Find her.” Gremoire answered.
The man looked over at the teenager and back at the two adults, “I’ve only seen her running away from this place coming from the castle, she is with this little girl whose face shared resemblances with yours.” He said as he focused his eyes on Glyde’s.
“May we ask where do you think she would have gone to?” Gremoire asked once again.
“Hm. There’s a nearby forest outside of the kingdom, perhaps, they spent the night there. This land is too difficult to come out from, judging the way they put up that so-called barracks just near here.”
“The residents inside that place are dead.” Glyde said but the man seems to be unimpressed.
“Those weren’t the only residents, Estreso told me.” He replied.
Glyde narrowed her eyes, “You know him?”
“It seems you are the second Edifyer. I am sure you have already known or that’s out of your range?” The man eyed her.
Glyde sighed, “Sadly, yes. I don’t have the ability to insert myself within the memories of the dead. Only the first Edifyer can.”
“It’s why there are two Edifyers in this world. The first will investigate within the memories and the second collects those from the dead. The first has the ability to collect and investigate however, she cannot move to the other half and the second has the ability to collect and search for the first and the people who have the right to know about the dead but she can’t investigate. After revealing everything in the past, the first will carve and design an epitaph, place it in the dimensional cemetery in which the first owns, and place the memories there. Then, they will find those people and will give the epitaph to them so they can re-watch everything. After that, the first Edifyer will now be able to free the dead.”
“You seem to know a lot about Edifyers, mister..” Gremoire trailed off and the man answered,
“Morgan. Morgan Greens. Regarding my knowledge regarding the Edifyers, it’s best if you won’t know. As long as you finally know what to do from here on out.”
“But, how am I supposed to find her?” Glyde asked.
“Your crest. If it gives you pain then the first Edifyer is just within reach and you will be able to see a red string that leads to her. The first will also feel pain however, she won’t be able to see the string.”
“How come I couldn’t see the red string?”
“You probably tend to close your eyes when your crest is giving you pain since it is unbearable. Pain distracted you it is why you couldn’t locate her. You have to get used to the pain and open your eyes.”
“I see..” Glyde softened her eyes and looked at Rindellia who looked back.
“The two Edifyers need to find each other as soon as possible in order to free as much souls. However, the new Entities seemed to have changed the rules in order to prolong the great change that will soon to come in this wretched world of ours. Which basically means, more wars and chaos. You have to find the first Edifyer, second.”
Glyde look at Morgan with great determination. At first, she was deeply confused to how she was going to find the first Edifyer. Now that she knows, there’s only one thing to do now:
To find her.
“We thank you for this information. We should return by the evening.” Glyde said as she turned her heels to leave along with Rindellia and Gremoire.
Morgan just watched them as they are now out of his sight; he looked at the weapons they left behind.
‘I knew that the second Edifyer will go here, it’s why I allowed myself to meet her first. Now that it was done, I should meet the first. The Outcasts finally made their move on the second, which meant a declaration of war.’ He thought as he closed his eyes and touched the two blades, allowing it to glow in a glimpse and the next thing he knew, the two blades reflected the light coming from the sun rays by the window, showing its sharpness. He grabbed his brown cloak and wore it before he marched outside, closing the door behind him.
Damsel and Euclesia finally reached the Land of the Damned and their eyes widened upon seeing the corpses.
“No way.. Who could have done this?” Damsel asked.
“It’s probably my older sister’s doing.” Euclesia answered.
“But these corpses are hundreds in numbers. She did this on her own?” Damsel looked down at the child.
“Indeed, she did.” Morgan said from behind them and dragged down his hood before walking closer to them. The two snapped their heads towards the male.
“And you are?” Euclesia blinked.
“Morgan Greens but call me Morgan.” He eyed Damsel, “There is something you need to know about your duties.”
Damsel narrowed her eyes, all this time of accomplishing her duties; this is the only time she gets to know what she is supposed to do?
“Why should I trust you?” Damsel asked.
“You are stronger than I am. Too strong that you have the capability to kill me right here. Is that enough?”
Damsel went silent for a brief before she nodded. Morgan then began to speak,
“You have been able to solve the puzzles of the dead, am I correct?”
“Yes, it’s my main duty.”
“However, you are doing the alternative way and I am aware that you know that.”
Damsel eyed him sharply before replying, “Do enlighten us.”
In the top of the castle, the king was being a savage by destroying everything he sees from everywhere. He was shouting in anger as he thrashed and stomped on his broken table together with his books and documents. He could still remember the humiliation that Damsel brought to him by easily trespassing his main territory and beating his best knight. In all of the years of building this castle along with recruiting the best knights there is, the trampling of his pride is far too great.
One of his knights knocked on his door before speaking, “Your Highness, someone wants to ask for your presence!”
“Tch.” The king sooner cleared his throat and took a deep breath. She hasn’t destroyed everything and in fact, she has only destroyed a speck of it. It’s entirely impossible for her to deal great damage of its entirety. He will have his revenge soon and he will not stop until he manages to lure that woman right into the trap he had set up just for her.
He will get her, and he will do all the things he wanted to do to her. He will make sure that he will completely break Damsel; both the body and mind up until her spirit.
“I will find you, you goddamn witch.” He muttered with his voice quivering with anger before he stood erectly and turned to leave the room. He headed down to the lobby, only to find Rakkan.
“Oh, it’s you. May I ask why did you request for my presence?” He stated in his usual voice.
“Simple, I came here to give you news that the person I worked for gave me permission to give you my service.”
“Really now? For what cost?”
“Nothing. I am only ordered to murder the two Edifyers. One in which, had copper hair and lime green eyes.”
The king’s eyes widened before he smirked, “I believe we have the same goal. Right from here on, you are the best knight I have.”
“Any orders for me, then?”
“I want you to find that copperhead and bring her here. Alive.”
The hooded man chuckled, “Are you sure? Because as far as I can see, your land is hiding something interesting. Why not use it?”
The king went silent; he finds it surprising that someone like him knows about the secret regarding his entire territory, “How did you know?”
“I’m an Outcast and we have the ability to find out about it.” He answered.
“That something isn’t meant to be revealed to such a woman.”
“But if you won’t then she will be able to kill you first before you do. You don’t want that to happen, right?”
“Now that you are here, there’s no need for me to do so. Find her and bring her here. That’s all.” The king ordered.
“Very well, king Leords.” He sooner turned around and began walking away.
“Hold! I haven’t known your name.” Leords said.
“Call me Rakkan.” The hooded man replied before he was out of the king’s sight.
Back to Damsel, she was stunned upon hearing what Morgan said regarding the two Edifyers, her widened eyes said it all and it is enough for the man to smile.
“What’s wrong, first Edifyer?” Morgan asked.
“If what you said was true then how come I can free souls before?”
“There’s actually nothing wrong in being able to free souls without the second. You were stubborn and intelligent, which is why you were able to. I’m just saying that in order to free more souls especially if the situations are complex, it will be faster if the both of you work together.” Morgan explained.
Damsel didn’t speak, she was too surprised at this point. Morgan continued,
“You didn’t need the other half of the person’s life event before. The two Edifyers are always meant to have conditions in terms of fulfilling their duties. One will be that once you have met the second, your ability to record the dead’s life events will be labeled as a void. Meaning, you won’t be able to collect memories anymore but it will grant you the ability to investigate the entire life event that one dead person has.”
“So, the first Edifyer was granted the collection abilities in which the second originally should have but only at half power. It was for the reason that the first Edifyer needs to prove that she can handle such tasks before they create the second one. By the time that the two Edifyers meet, the powers will adjust accordingly.”
“Precisely. And the crests will react to each other once that time arrives. The second Edifyer’s main duty is to collect the entire life event, track the people who have the right to know about it, find and protect the first Edifyer.” Morgan added.
“And the first Edifyer’s main duty is to insert herself within the collected memories, create the epitaph and free the soul.” Damsel finished.
Morgan nodded, “You are smart. I am aware of your intelligence and your strength. First Edifyers should be even with the second Edifyers in terms of power in order to defend themselves, should it the second Edifyer is not around.
It is no wonder. It is no wonder why Damsel felt like she needs to find the second Edifyer. It is not to complete the dead’s life event but to correct their responsibilities.
“I should leave. You know what to do from here on out by starting to head towards the blacksmith in the town square.” Morgan said as he turned his heels to walk away but Damsel stepped a few times forward before calling him out,
“What if we did actually meet? How will I tell the second Edifyer about the people who needs to learn about the life event?”
“You need to seal a kiss on the second Edifyer’s lips.” Morgan replied.
“Wha—” Damsel’s face turned red as a tomato and Euclesia had to blink curiously.
“Faster way is better than explaining, right?” Morgan asked.
Damsel froze briefly, did she hear it right? She needs to kiss the second Edifyer? On the lips? She can’t believe it! Now, her brain is piling up with shameless thoughts that are beginning to distract her until her mind went completely blank. Damsel balled her hands into tight fists before calling him out once more,
“Morgan! Who are you, really?”
Morgan halted in his tracks and looked over his shoulder, “It’s not the right time for you to know about me. Survive and get more matured then you will be able to find me again.” He looked away again and left the two of them behind.
Damsel narrowed her eyes as she watched him leave before turning towards Euclesia, “What do you think, Euclesia?”
“I think we should go to where he wants us to go! Maybe my older sister is there!” Euclesia answered.
Damsel nodded, “I thought so, too.” She led the way towards the kingdom and the child followed.
As they reached the blacksmith’s, Damsel knocked on the door a few times and received no answer. She raised an eyebrow and decided to knock once again before she looked at the child and shook her head, “It seems the blacksmith is out.”
“Why not just open it?” Euclesia asked as she grabbed the door knob and pushed the door open.
“H-Hey! Wait! You shouldn’t do that!” Damsel said but it was already too late for she had already followed the child inside. There is nobody around and the only thing they could see are the equipment and weapons. Euclesia went to the long table and her eyes glimmered,
“These are older sister and Rindellia’s swords! They were here!”
Damsel snapped her head towards the child and moved beside her, picking up Glyde’s sword and gently examining the front and back, she ran her fingers along the blade gently, “Whose sword is this?”
“My older sister’s!”
“Huh, it seems she is light with her feet.” Damsel then looked over at the other sword and picked it up as well but she narrowed her eyes when she felt a slight heaviness within despite its normal size, “This blade…”
“Amazing, right? It feels heavy even if its size is not that big!” Euclesia said with a childish grin.
“And it doesn’t look that thick that can make it heavy.” Damsel added before placing Rindellia’s blade down and began playing around with Glyde’s sword by gently swinging it to the side and swung it up diagonally, “This, I love this!”
“Ehehe, well, you should ask for my older sister’s permission first.”
“No worries, she is not around you know. We will just put it back later.” Damsel replied before she sensed a large amount of magical energy coming from the entrance, it felt like it is being held within a ball and upon further thinking, her mind suddenly alarmed her that made her gasp,
“THERE’S A BOMB!” She shouted and immediately grabbed Euclesia by her waist, pulling her close to her and running away from the door before a sudden explosion occurred by the entrance, blowing everything inside away with great force. Damsel was pushed and had hit her back against the wall that made her yelp in pain while her free arm is still wrapped around the child to serve as protection. Thick smoke has engulfed them and Euclesia coughed upon the smoke reaching inside her nostrils, she buried her face on Damsel’s chest to cover her sense of smell from the foreign odor.
Damsel gritted her teeth and as she landed her feet on the ground, she had let the child go and glared at the smoke, that is slowly subsiding, “Euclesia.” She called out.
The child looked up at her to listen,
“I want you to get out of here as fast as you can, there has to be a backdoor around here. Find your older sister and this Rindellia person.”
Euclesia’s eyes widened and looked at the thick smoke, she could see an outline of a tall male who is slowly approaching them. She looked back at the older woman, “But what about you?”
“Go! I’ll fight him off for as long as I possibly could! Don’t worry about me!” Damsel replied without taking her eyes off at the figure within the smoke.
Euclesia saw that kind of look in her eyes before she narrowed her own and nodding, “Okay, just be careful.” And she quickly ran past by her to go towards the back.
The figure’s eyes blinked red before it charged towards Damsel in a blink of an eye, the copperhead’s eyes widened and her reaction speed barely blocked its attack by using Glyde’s blade. The clanking sound and the heaviness from that assault gave her the idea that the figure is using a larger sword compared to hers. Damsel gritted her teeth tightly as she uses all of her strength just to hold her ground and possibly push the figure back.
“I finally found you, first Edifyer!” The figure’s masculine voice sounded and Damsel clicked her tongue.
‘Is he one of the Outcasts? This meant a declaration of war!’ She thought as she just remained in her place, waiting for the other to make a move.
“I didn’t know that someone as young as you would be the first. Seems like the Entities couldn’t think about who they should choose or were they trying to be discreet but failed miserably?” The male said while grinning widely with a murderous intent.
As the smoke completely subsided, the male’s hood finally took off and Damsel’s eyes widened upon seeing his face.
The male has dark skin dark blood-colored hair with matching metallic-colored eyes. The scar on his lip looked like it came from a knife and the way his physique looks, he seemed to focus in brute strength.
Or was it something else?
“I have arrived for your head! Edifyers shouldn’t roam around!” He shouted and pushed his blade further that it made Damsel yelp while she pushes back.
‘The raw power he has.. he is slowly breaking my arms. I can’t hold this any longer!’ She thought before she swiftly dashed to the side and jumped high towards a broken wood of the ceiling, leaving the place but Rakkan followed and grabbed a few mini bombs from his pocket then threw it towards the female.
Damsel saw those coming when she turned around and as she summoned a greenish-edged, transparent platform in mid-air, she landed on it and swung her sword vertically at the bombs, only for them to explode greatly, allowing its thick smoke to engulf her. Rakkan remained levitating in mid-air as he kept his smirk plastered on his face,
“I see you are also knowledgeable in using weapons. You wouldn’t be an Edifyer if you weren’t.”
“I was taught how to use them when I was a child before I was kept under a great mage’s wing.”
“Very well, now come!” Rakkan shouted.
The explosion made Glyde, Rindellia and Gremoire, who were at the magic shop, flinch and ducked along with other civilians. They snapped their heads towards the direction of the explosion,
“That’s where the blacksmith is! Let’s go!” Glyde said as she rushed out of the shop and went towards the blacksmith’s place.
Rindellia and Gremoire immediately followed and as they got nearer the site, Gremoire’s nose picked up two unfamiliar odors and looked up at the skies, seeing Damsel and Rakkan, who are about to face off, she halted and pointed at them, “Glyde and Rindellia, up there!”
Glyde and Rindellia stopped advancing to look up at where Gremoire was pointing at. Glyde’s eyes widened upon seeing Damsel before she yelped loudly when a sudden and excruciating pain ruled her crest, which is now seeping silver-colored blood, she quickly held the right side of her neck as she closed her eyes tightly while bowing her head in the process.
“Open your eyes, Glyde!” Rindellia said.
“Ugh!” Glyde opened her eyes and rose her face up while gritting her teeth. Finally.. she finally found her. She finally found the woman she has been looking for.
That soft-looking hair, colored in copper with dazzling lime green eyes, which is oozing an aura of toughness, there is no doubt that she is the real deal.
“We should help her!” Gremoire said.
“Wait! No! Let them!” Glyde ordered and Rindellia looked over,
“Are you sure?” The Dragoness of War asked.
“I’m sure and I am confident that she will be able to defeat him. Besides, we will just be in their way.” Glyde trailed off before smiling confidently and continuing,
“I have faith in her.”
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