Supreme Magus - Chapter 1084 Royal Summon Part 2
Chapter 1084 Royal Summon Part 2
"Only when you feel like you're at your wits' end and can't progress anymore can you come here to ask for another lesson. That means that each one of you will progress at their own pace and receive individual lessons.
"The only exceptions to the rule are Shapeshifting, that you can only practice here because no supervision can easily spell death, and Forgemastering. That kind of runes isn't something you can learn on your own, they can only be passed on.
"I'll also show you the basic Awakened Forgemastering methods, from which I expect you to develop your own or to incorporate them to those you already possess." Faluel looked at Lith during the last part of her speech.
"All those that require physical training must come here at least three times a week. Quylla, please tell Friya that she has to come here as well. I'll use that same time to instruct her in her duties of Harbinger and teach her the ropes of Forgemastering.
"One last thing. I'm dead tired so unless it's an emergency, I want to be left alone at least for a full day. Go home and rest." Faluel put away the training equipment and took her communication amulet out of her dimensional item.
Taking care of children felt as rewarding as it was exhausting.
'I deserve some quality time with my friends.' She thought.
After Faluel started to happily talk with several Emperor Beasts, most of which he had never met before, Lith gave part of his vitality to the rest of the group. Except for Nalrond, who had been recharged by Faluel, the others were unable to stand.
He checked them with Invigoration, discovering that the melody of their life force had become discordant and that they were on the verge of starvation.
"Do you want a ride back home or do you want to sleep in the tower?" He asked after fixing cracked bones and more bruises than he could count.
"Sleep?" Tista had a crazed look, glaring at Lith with a hatred he had rarely seen.
"While you sat on your ass for over six hours, I've faced death so many times that now we're best friends. I don't want to sleep. I want to take a bath and eat until I feel like I'm going to burst."
"Bring us to the tower and prepare a lot of food, please." Quylla said. "I'd gladly go back home, but I don't have the strength to take a single step nor the patience to wait for a meal. I'd rather kill someone with a fireball and eat their meat."
The way she said it didn't sound like a joke and the fact that the others just nodded, drooling at the thought, made only things creepier.
During the following days, Lith and the others only met at Faluel's lair. He focused mostly on Spirit Magic and Light Mastery since Shapeshifting had niche applications compared with the other disciplines.
As for the Forgemastery lessons, thanks to Soluspedia, memorizing runes took Lith and Solus just the time necessary to organize their notes before storing them in the dimensional library.
A couple of weeks after the incident in the mines of Feymar, Lith received a call from the Royal Secretary.
"Good day, Archmage Verhen. You have been summoned to the Royal Court to provide your testimony about the events that led to the rescue of the Mages Ernas." The hologram from Lith's amulet showed a man about fifty years old, with grey hair and a well-groomed beard.
His voice was polite, but each one of his words sounded like an order, not a request.
"I'm in the middle of an important research, but my duty to the Kingdom comes first." Lith used the expression that meant "I'm a busy man, not someone at your back and call. Yet I respect your authority as long as you respect mine."
"The Royals will be pleased to hear those words. Your audience is scheduled for tomorrow morning at the Royal Castle in Valeron. May the Great Mother grant you safe travel." The Secretary ended the call without giving Lith the opportunity to argue about rescheduling.
"Solus, what do you think?" Lith said.
"That it's better if we bring Tista along. She can back our version of the story and the Royals have probably guessed her involvement. She's not the type that can go unnoticed, even during a war." Solus said.
The two of them called their friends and Faluel. Giving an explanation to a low-clearance clerk was one thing, giving your official testimony to the Royals was another. All their versions of the story had to match and be believable.
'I'm actually surprised it took the Court so long to arrange for an audience. I wonder if this is even bigger than I thought.' Lith called Kamila to confirm his suspicions.
"Did you get summoned as well?" She looked worried and nervous.
"Gods, I've never spoken with the Royals except during galas and your ascension to Archmage. Why do they want to hear from me as well? The only thing I can testify about is the time you left and that you returned."
Suddenly, Lith was happy for his otherwise untimely breakthrough right after rescuing Phloria, because it had delayed his return from the Belin mines long enough to give him a plausible explanation for everything.
'Kamila is right. The only reason to summon her is to figure out if the beasts' Gate network is more advanced than the Kingdom's. They don't know about my tower Warp and are probably trying to make sense of how quickly I traveled.' Lith thought.
"Can you please pick me up tomorrow? If we go together, maybe I'll feel less awkward." Kamila snapped him out of it.
"Sure thing, Kami. Don't worry, you just need to tell the truth." He winked to both cheer Kamila up and remind her that she couldn't lie about what she didn't know.
The following day, except for Nalrond being replaced by Kamila, the entire group met in the Royal antechamber. The Ernas sisters were nervous because explaining their survival without mentioning Baba Yaga's help was the most farfetched part of their story.
Revealing the presence of the Red Mother would explain everything and make the Ernas look like they were raving mad. Baba Yaga was a legendary figure and even if the Royals believed in her intervention, it would raise questions that Phloria wasn't willing to answer.
'If they find out I'm an Awakened, my life will be over. I'll become part of some black ops squad or a test subject. How the heck does Lith manage to live with this burden?' She thought while walking the first real mile in his shoes.
Her sisters tried to reassure Phloria while everyone kept checking their own clothes. Kamila wore her Royal Constable uniform while the rest of the group their respective mage robes. Lith's deep blue stood out amid the deep red of normal mages.
Several court ladies pointed at him while checking him out, giggling, and gossiping. Many even gave him their contact rune.
"Someone is really popular with the ladies." Tista laughed, nudging at Lith from time to time.
Her ample robe hid her curves and the lack of make-up made her look plain compared to the dolled-up women who walked around the Royal Palace.