Supreme Magus - Chapter 1947: Setting The Bait (part 1)
Chapter 1947: Setting The Bait (part 1)
"Indeed." Dolgus nodded. "I'm not familiar with Menadion's techniques, but everything she crafted in the tower possesses a unique energy signature and the same happens to artifacts that are Forgemastered with the aid of a piece of her set."
"I've been here for centuries and I can tell you that either the Mouth arrived in Verendi about twenty years ago or until that moment the thief managed to go unnoticed."
'If what they are saying about the Mouth is true, maybe the Hands work just the same way.' Solus said via the mind link. 'Luckily until now she was too busy learning how to use them to Forgemaster and sell anything.
'We have to warn her or she might have problems with Garlen's Council.'
'I'm more worried about ourselves.' Lith replied. 'Dolgus just said that the tower leaves a specific energy signature as well. I've crafted and sold several pieces so it's only a matter of time before someone understands that I have the tower.'
'I wouldn't worry about that.' Solus said. 'We triple-check every one of our pieces and we never noticed anything weird. I think that when Mom fused me with the tower, that energy signature was replaced by my own.
'After you bonded with me, it changed again into yours. Even if there's still some mark in your creations, it bears your imprint, not that of the original tower.'
'It makes sense.' Lith pondered. 'The Council examined several of my armors but never noticed anything. We are safe, but Faluel might not be.'
'We'll worry about that later. Now we have more pressing matters at hand.' She replied before turning over to Dolgus.
"Since you all knew my mother, what does the Mouth do, exactly?" Solus asked, realizing how little she knew about her own legacy.
"I have no clue." The Griffon shrugged.
"Never been to Garlen." Theseus gave another stroke at the painting.
"I don't know either." Bytra said. "Menadion developed most of the tower's properties and the set's pieces after you were born, Solus. I only heard a few rumors about the Mouth being capable of improving the spellcasting of its wearer.
"It should allow even to blue cored people to body cast, to handle many spells at the same time like the tower did, and, according to some voices, even be able to conjure Origin Flames to purify metals."
"What?" The entire room went into an uproar.
"This doesn't make any sense." Dolgus said. "Such a powerful artifact would have triggered a war between Awakened if not even with the Dragon and Phoenix bloodline. They wouldn't stand idly while they lose the monopoly over Origin Flames."
"Yet nothing happened." Zoreth shared the same doubts. "If not for one of our associates recognizing the Mouth's energy signature, we would have never known it had moved to Verendi."
"How do you plan to get information about the artifact?" Lith asked, burning with greed. "I doubt that whoever has it will give us an audience if we ask them politely."
"You are wrong, little brother." Zoreth said with a sly smile on her face. "That's exactly what's going to happen."
The group had split as soon as Theseus was done with his painting. It was almost dinner time and Lith had to go back home. Zoreth and Bytra left as well, giving Dolgus the opportunity to relax and get the first good night's sleep ever since he had rescued Theseus.
There was no trust between them so the Abominations had no interest in sharing their plans just like the Griffon wanted to go back to his full strength before dealing with a potential enemy of untold power.
The following morning, everyone was curious about what Zoreth's next move would be. Much to everyone's surprise, she and Bytra had reverted to her original appearance, drawing lots of admired gazes.
Bytra and Solus caused so much gawking that many people swallowed insects, choking on them.
Lith was so amused by the show that he even shapeshifted into his Tiamat form a couple of times as they walked toward the main plaza of the city of Maraka, but no one noticed.
Solus' golden hair and Bytra's golden eyes got the full attention even of children who pointed at them, asking their parents if the Great Mother had finally returned among them.
"What exactly are we looking for here?" Lith asked.
The surprise was quickly fading and the crowd of those following the foreign goddesses increased by the second. People still kept their distance but soon the group would have been swarmed.
"Trouble, little brother. And we are about to find it." Zoreth replied with a cruel smile.
"I'm sorry, but you lost me." Lith noticed how even the kids playing along the streets were looking at them with eyes full of hostility and curiosity.
Zoreth had openly declared to the flabbergasted guards at the city gates that they were illegal immigrants. On top of that, everyone in the group now wore magical equipment that identified them as either mages or powerful warriors. ᴘᴀɴᴅᴀ-ɴᴏᴠᴇʟ
As criminals, however, they were completely at the mercy of the authorities who had the right to imprison and interrogate them with any means they deemed appropriate to extort information from foreign spies.
He heard many of those present discussing where that odd bunch came from and what their goal might be. The people of Maraka would have already lynched them if not for the fear of facing the pointy end of the magical weapons.
"That's because you are too used to hiding your strength. Resorting to subterfuge and deception to get what you want without getting in trouble with the Kingdom." Zoreth replied. "Don't get me wrong, you did the best you could.
"You are alone and have to worry about your loved ones. Even with all of your power, you can't protect them at all times. We, instead, are Abominations. Those we love can protect themselves and each one of us has the power to level mountains.
"We don't care about the authorities, their armies, or their mages. If you become one of us, you'll enjoy a level of freedom like you never had before. No one will dare to touch you simply because the consequences would be… dire."
"What about the Council?" Solus asked. "Won't they intervene if you commit a massacre? We may be powerful, but so are they. On top of that, they outnumber us one thousand to one."
"Please." Bytra replied with a scoff as the group came to a halt in the middle of the plaza. "They never cared about human lives, otherwise they would have done something to stop the wars that plague Verendi every other year.
"Even if they did, the Council will never commit its full forces for a mere city. Worst case scenario, they'll send someone to check on the situation before taking action."
"Stop right there!" A stern deep voice caused the crowd to step aside and let a small platoon of 30 soldiers pass.
They wore enchanted armor and ten of them wore golden robes that identified them as Elite Mages.
"According to the city guards, you have no documents and have confessed to having illegally crossed the borders. Do you deny it?" The captain of the guards, a well-built man over 1.8 meters (5'11") tall said.
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