Big cities were symbols of congestion and diversity.
But now, on the road along which I was riding, there was only still silence.
Many soldiers and knights lined up at intervals with their swords on both sides of the path while citizens were watching.
I could see numerous emotions in the passing faces, but it was mostly tension and fear.
The solemn and heavy atmosphere made me feel like a great tyrant.
Is it because the Lord’s seat had been empty for quite a while?
It was the first time in several years that a new ruler had been welcomed, so they were probably all anxious.
Because a Lord was an absolute being with omnipotent power, and if a madman sat on such a throne, it could become a literal living hell for them.
A typical example was the Sixth Lord—the Tyrant, or the Eight Lord—the Black Sea Empress.
But all their worries were for nothing.
I was already too busy taking care of my own life, so would there be time to sit down and play emperor?
I had no intention of directly intervening and ruling this land.
As long as I solve that one problem.
Alkimas Workshop was located here in Buckhorn City.
The owner of the place, the alchemist, Scarlett.
It’s a matter that needed to be resolved before I left in search of another mystery.
She was the talent I was planning to pull to my side, just like Asher.
The top priority was to improve the specs, but I should also take care of the talented people I could take care along the way.
If it’s this time, maybe they are currently being hit by the Varia Merchant Corps.
While thinking about this and that, the carriage soon arrived at a huge castle in the center of the city.
The procession of soldiers was filthy long, stretching all the way from the entrance of the city to the main gate of the castle. What kind of useless waste of manpower was this?
After passing through the front gate, I got off the carriage.
The two people who greeted me at the front were an elf wearing luxurious clothes and an old man with gray hair who looked like a butler at first glance.
The elf greeted me politely.
“Greetings to Enrock’s new master. I am Baslan, who was the regent of the territory.”
Regent? Was there anything like that?
There was no way that they would leave the seat of the Lord empty, so something like a regent was only natural when I thought about it.
I thought the other would explain this and that while guiding me to the castle, but the words that followed were unexpected.
“I was waiting to see and greet the Seventh Lord before I returned to the Overlord Castle.”
“Yes, I am originally an administrator belonging to the Overlord’s Castle. I was dispatched here under the command of the Overlord and acted as the regent.”
Oh, was it like that?
He was an official with a high enough ranking to take the place of a Lord.
The old man next to him also came forward and introduced himself.
“I’m Floto, the butler of the castle.
The real guide was this one.
The elf immediately left the castle, and I entered the central hall of the castle, following Floto’s guidance.
The interior was exactly what I had imagined.
A typical landscape that came to mind when talking about a castle in a fantasy world. Spacious, splendid, majestic.
“The banquet is ready, my lord.”
Originally, I would have rejected it. But…
A day or so would be fine.
It’s not like I would leave the castle right away anyway, and it seemed like the other had already prepared everything. If I rejected it, I would ignore the effort made by the servants.
And since I had to look at the faces of the servants of the castle at least once, the banquet was, to some extent, was something that I just had to do.
…Honestly, it’s all excuses. I’m human too. So, I also wanted to take a break for a while. Because I had a hard time getting here.
With the mindset to work hard again from tomorrow, I enjoyed a comfortable rest today.
A huge mansion on the outskirts of Buckhorn City.
It was the building of the Varia Merchant Corps, which completely dominated and monopolized the upper road from the northern border of Enrock to Buckhorn.
Two men were sitting opposite each other in the upper living room, talking.
“So, what about the information about the new Seventh Lord, Brother?”
At the words of the man wearing an eyepatch, the dignified man shook his head.
He was Varia, the owner of the merchant company.
“There’s no particular gain. From what I’ve heard, he’s a complete outsider. And he’s human. Have you seen his face at the parade?”
“I’ve seen a glimpse from a distance. He’s quite pale.”
“Bark, even if there are no ears around to hear, I always told you to watch your mouth.”
“It’s only the two of us anyway, so it’s okay to talk comfortably.”
Bark grumbled lightly.
“This is a good situation for us. Those tenacious alchemists are now without a windshield.”
An old group of alchemists in Buckhorn City.
Many efforts had been made for a long time now to get them out. But with the vacancy of the Seventh Lord’s seat, it came to nothing for a while.
For the past few years, the newly dispatched regent managed the city strictly.
Of course, bribes didn’t work.
However, with crowning of the new Lord, the situation had changed.
There were the ones who reigned at the highest level.
The competition for power and interests of those lower was nothing more than a fight between worms to them, so they cared little. Just like the previous Seventh Lord did.
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As long as the new Seventh Lord was not a lunatic like the Tyrant or the Black Sea Empress, the situation would turn in favor of the upper ranks again.
“I’ll have to visit the workshop tomorrow.”
“Are you going to pressure them right away?”
“It’s true that the situation is in our favor, but we still don’t know what kind of character the Seventh Lord has. It’s best to make those people from Alkimas to raise the white flag on their own as quickly as possible.”
“That’s right. The workshop owner and the elders must have their pants twisted by now.”
Varia and Bark smiled evilly at each other.
The next day, after enjoying the banquet.
I started doing what I had to do.
He brought a lot.
I looked down at the wriggling caterpillars in a bucket full of them.
The butler brought it after receiving my order.
The larvae were experimental materials to be used for a precise investigation of instant kill.
“Shall we start?”
I picked up a knife.
The purpose of the experiment was to find out how long instant kill would take effect after the blood had been discharged from the body.
The method was simple.
I would drop blood on the caterpillar and activate [Instant Kill]. And every time it succeeded, five seconds would delay the activation time.
After sacrificing dozens of caterpillars, I completed the experiment.
About three minutes.
As a result of the experiment, the effective time for instant kill using my blood was about three minutes.
Blood that had flowed out of the body for over three minutes could not activate [Instant Kill].
The first thing that came to my mind while contemplating how to use this newfound knowledge was the vampire blood technique.
If I had the ability to freely manipulate blood, the synergy with [Instant Kill] would be truly amazing.
The problem is that I can’t change my race.
There was usually no way to change the race one was born with in this world.
Even if I could change it, I wanted to remain human as much as possible.
A way to use blood magic even if I was not a vampire.
There was one thing that came to mind, but it was a way that had considerable risk.
Let’s put it behind my mind for now.
Anyway, I got the information I needed, but there was still a lot I didn’t know.
For example, what was the range of targets that could be instantly killed? Would instant kill work on the undead, as well as spiritual bodies?
These, too, should be checked later when the opportunity arose.
The next thing to deal with now was the Alkimas Workshop issue.
I said to Asher, who was waiting outside the room.
“I need to go out for a while.”
I was curious about how effective the potions in this world were, and I also wanted to look at the workshop.
Aria was an apprentice alchemist at the Alkimas Workshop.
Her morning job was to work at the counter in the store building.
The workshop’s main source of income was the city councils of nearby cities, including Buckhorn, and other adventurers as well.
The city council rarely came to the store directly because they made bulk purchases.
And adventurers were not yet active at this time of the day.
In short, Aria was having a leisurely time, as there were few guests.
Aria, who was yawning, saw the figure of a customer who just entered the store.
She hastily shut her mouth.
The guests were a young man and a woman. She looked like an escort. The two were both very attractive, especially the man.
Aria greeted brightly, thinking that her eyes were blessed so early in the morning.
The man silently nodded and looked at the potions on display.
Is he a young master from another city?
It was a face she hadn’t seen before.
The man, who had been looking at the potions for quite some time, came closer to the counter.
“Are all the potions you have currently on display?”
“Ah, all the potions on display are below average quality. High-quality potions are usually made-to-order.”
The man nodded and asked again.
“I want to buy the highest quality healing potion in the workshop.”
At that, Aria laughed inwardly.
Apparently, this ignorant young master didn’t know how expensive the product was, especially the potion made by Alkimas.
“If you are talking about the highest quality healing potion, there is ‘Scarlet’.”
“Isn’t that the name of the workshop owner?”
“Yes, since it was a potion invented by the owner, that is how it was named.”
Aria replied with a bright smile, thinking of teasing the other a little.
“Three platinum coins.”
In terms of gold coins, a whopping 300 coins.
It was an amount that couldn’t be readily purchased with a light heart.
Aria looked at the man’s face, expecting a shocked reaction.
But he just nodded his head without a change in his expression.
“I will buy it.”
“If it’s made to order, how long will I have to wait? Can I pay the full amount in advance?”
Saying that, the man took out a purse full of gold and platinum coins from his bosom.
Aria couldn’t close her wide-open mouth in shock, then she stuttered.
“Now, wait! I’ll bring the workshop owner right away!”