Chapter 38 “Heart of a King”
“Back when the guy came here it was on a crummy boat. Shame for the boat though. The crew really shouldn’t have parked it so close to the island because the monster ended up swallowing it whole as well as everyone aboard. I had to pull him here like the three of you in order to save his life. That’s how I ended up making a deal with him.” Though Chris was elusive on the details, what he did give though was more than enough to cue in on what occurred later.
Du Wei was no newcomer when it came to the history of the Roland Empire. As a child who had the mindset of an adult, he had been thoroughly indoctrinated to the history and biography of the founding ruler like a kid being fed with candies.
It can’t be helped, in his opinion, Aragon Roland’s life was like a hero out of the legends. It was surreal how lucky the man was. If he had to use a catchphrase from Earth, it would be ‘his luck is as strong as a cockroach!’
Born of a declining aristocratic family, Aragon was the third son of a low ranking noble in a small kingdom, meaning he had no rights to the inheritance of his House. So what did he do? He went on an adventure in his younger years.
He was but sixteen when he left home. Traveling alone through the land as a mercenary, he was so full of adventurous fantasies that he will have it no other way. That suited him well during that time because it was a turbulent era full of danger and opportunities.
Unlike the current state where one empire rules them all, the main state of the continent was divided into multiple smaller kingdoms. Strife with war, battles never ceased and smaller kingdoms would often be conquered by their neighboring nations. A perfect situation where heroes of legends would be born.
In the beginning Aragon wasn’t what you would expect of a leader, he only wanted to enjoy life and explore the world. That’s how he fell in love with the sea. He wanted to explore the vast ocean and what lay beyond its borders.
That year he was twenty one already. To realize that wish, he invested all of his savings into a merchant ship. Unfortunately for Aragon, his first voyage ended up in failure and proceeded to lose everything – his crew and his ship. However, only he managed to return alive through some miraculous means that remains unknown to this day.
According to most historians, it’s widely believed that if it weren’t for that crucial misfortune at sea, the great founding emperor would’ve likely become a great marine merchant.
Dreams shattered and broke afterwards, Aragon then had no choice but to return home where his father and brothers lived. And since he’s the third son, he had no right to the land and its properties. So, once his father passed away not long after, all he had for his name were a small sum of coins given to him by his father’s will.
However, what came next literally shocked everyone. Instead of investing what little he had into a small home or starting a business, Aragon spoiled his money away at organizing a private army.
Everyone mocked over this decision. His home country was at peace and war was far away, there’s no reason for a private army. But he proved them wrong! In less than half a year, war had arrived at their doorsteps due to the conflict of two neighboring nations.
It was during this period Aragon’s remaining brothers were killed during the chaos and his ancestral home burned to the ground. Not going to be disheartened, Aragon then led his men away and joined a great nation, which eventually rewarded him with a high military position for his achievements.
Afterwards it was a full on display of glory and strength.
Peerless in the battlefield, it didn’t take long for his name to spread to every corners of this land after his innumerable exploits. By the end of the first war, he had both wealth and title, a feat far surpassing anything his father had ever achieved. This was proof his choice back then was the right one.
Peace ensued in the coming years, giving him the opportunity to do other things. Despite the summons of that great kingdom to continue on with his services, Aragon refused and turned his sight on the Magic Union.
Less than a year later, he was awarded with the qualifications of a mage….
Then came the second war three years later. By then he was already known as a Grand Magician as well as a peerless swordsman, a feat achieved by none before then.
A man once asked Aragon why he became a magician back then, his answer was simple: his army needed a mage and he couldn’t find one. That’s why he learned magic, to fill in that gap.
When war broke out again, the country where Aragon lived was already in great peril. Tapped dry of reinforcements because a final draft had already been issued to the nobles, it was Aragon’s arrival with his private army that turned the tide in their favor.
Whether it be friend or foe, both sides were exhausted. No doubt about it, the battles thereafter were easy picking for Aragon.
Slaying the enemy commander in the last battle and completely crushing the enemy head magician, Aragon issued out a final blow to the enemy ranks when he performed a forbidden magic of devastating proportion. Thousands of lives were lost in that instant.
By the end of the war, Aragon’s influence had crept into every fiber of the kingdom. Weak and without much power at his hand, the king at the time was left with no option but to award the man with the title of Dukeship.
Then a year later the king passed away….
Coincidence? Maybe, but historians have always disputed the claim of illness being the cause. More believed it’s too “coincidental” and even pointed to Aragon being the real reason why the king died because there was no immediate heir to the throne.
So who became the final beneficiary? Of course it was Aragon.
Taking the old king’s niece as his wife, he enthroned the woman as the Queen of the kingdom. Then three years later his wife too died. That’s when Aragon crowned himself king!
Later on in the records of history, Aragon Roland was then constructed as the perfect invincible commander, leading his army to occupy one territory after the next. Before long, merely after fifteen years of unification, the land was whole and the Roland Empire was founded!
A perfect story from a fairy tale, right?
Du Wei tries hard to recall all that he could about the lives of the first emperor….
It’s pretty obvious Aragon had come here after his shipwreck, according to Chris’s claim anyways. Then through this servant of the Devil, the man successful made a deal to gain something great that would allow him to propel himself to the top of this world.
And now, this very same “servant” wants to offer him the same deal? His heart that had been calm and thought to be dead was starting to pound with excitement.
“Adorable Little Noble, your heart seems to be beating really hard.” Chris’s smile was very suitable for his devilish background.
Inhaling deeply: “Dear Mr. Chris…. Of course my heart would be beating hard, I’m being tempted by the Devil right now!”
Now that did it. Chris’s smile was already spooky as it was, now it’s even freakier than ever. With a wave of his black sleeve, Vivian and Joanna who were behind Du Wei suddenly fainted away at the same time. It’s as if they’ve been enchanted with a sleeping spell.
“No one will know about our deal,” Chris smiled, “When they wake up again they will forget everything that has happened here, including everything about me.”
The opportunity was now laid before his eyes!
Panting due to his short of breath, Du Wei honestly had trouble keeping his composure: “A deal eh…. tell me then, what can you give me…. and what do you want in return?”
Chris did not reply immediately to his question, instead he asked one of his own: “Don’t you want to know what I gave Aragon?”
“I think I have an idea already,” hesitant at first, Du Wei answered in earnest at the end.
What did Chris give Aragon?
Towards that question, Du Wei’s first instinct was swung towards the great strength portrayed by the founding emperor. Wielding the power of a Saint Class warrior and the power of a Grand Magician. Both abilities together had made Aragon the top being in this world. He can slaughter the strongest fighters in the enemy ranks, and he can defeat the toughest of magic casters. All of this made him the perfect commander in the battlefield.
However, this also raised some doubt in Du Wei’s mind.
According to the historical records, Aragon never had any incidents where he suffered from a major injury in his life! Even during his senior years, he had neither sickness nor pain, only a quiet death in his sleep at night.
His life was too perfect.
“In addition to his powerful martial art and magic, did you also give him an almost invulnerable body?” Du Wei inquired.
“Not exactly that, but a body without any fatal weak points,” Chris smiled devilishly. “When Aragon left here, he was already a man without a heart. I cut out his heart and kept it here with me! That’s why he can never be harmed, he has no heart so how can he be killed?!”
Towards that explanation, Du Wei’s body instinctively started to twitch in the corner of his eyes and mouth.
“It can’t be that you will also ask for my heart, right?” Du Wei maliciously looked at Chris like he’s the evil one: “What are you going to do with my heart? Surely you won’t have it for dinner, will you? Fried or grilled?”
“Neither.” Chris doesn’t seem to mind that mockery, instead his reply was calm and somewhat proud: “I merely wanted it as a souvenir. A heart of a true king… the heart of a leader…. is there something more interesting to collect than that?”
Du Wei exhaled a sigh at the guy’s statement. He can tell things weren’t that simple, but since Chris wouldn’t say then he’s in no position to demand the truth.
“Then you only took his heart?” Du Wei frowned, “Anything more?”
“No, that’s it, only his heart.” Chris’s answer was direct and plain, borderline boring.
Looking at how confused Du Wei was in his eyes, the old being chuckled: “I know a mortal child like you can never understand the pleasure of owning a king’s heart. Don’t mind it and just take it as is.”
Du Wei really wanted to lament over his situation.
“Fine then, tell me, what do you want to take from me? Just a heads up, I don’t think I can accept having my heart ripped out though.”
“No, no, no, one heart of a king in my collection is enough for me. I don’t like to repeat things.” Chris showed off his wicked smile again: “Besides…. such a long time had passed since then and my power is starting to fade. When Aragon left, he also took with him half my power, otherwise how would he master the manipulation of magic so easily?”
So that’s how…. Du Wei blew a whistle, applauding the man’s ability to barter a trade.
“Besides, Aragon later broke his agreement with me and didn’t accomplish his end of the bargain.” Shaking his head, Chis appears disappointed: “I’ve come to realize doing a one-time deal is very risky for me. Even if you do break our agreement after you leave, I can do nothing to you. That’s something I learned after my experience with Aragon. So, if you want power then I will give it to you in intervals.”
“For example, I can let you enjoy a little sample first my adorable little noble. After that, you will do what I ask you to do. When accomplished, you will come back to me and I will give you a new reward!” Chris said this with a slyness befitting his dark image.
“A sweet little sample? What sort of sweet little sample?”
“Whatever you want,” Chris grew even more wicked in his expression while his voice carried with it a strange temptation.
“I can give you everything! Although it does have its limits because I can’t grant what is beyond my ability, but it should still be enough to tempt anyone who comes by my offer! If you like girls then I can give you the ‘eyes of enchantment’! With that ability, you can charm any girl you come across and make them fall madly in love with you. Heck, they will even perform a nude dance on the spot if you so wish for it.”
Uh… That’s so tempting…. Exhaling a sigh, Du Wei wasn’t going to be convinced so easily.
“You know I am a noble right? I believe with my status and background I won’t be lacking in females. Besides, I’m not that fond of the female sex that I would pony up myself like that.”
“Well… if you don’t need girls then I can give you the heart of a dragon. Your current body seems quite weak….. Hmm, if you have the heart of a dragon then your body will be reinforced immediately and become abnormally strong like that of a dragon! That’s not all, I can also give you a small little gift as an extra… for example, you will be able to use some low tier draconic magic.”
Imagining himself with big bulky muscles… Nope, Du Wei squashed that idea immediately.
“I am sorry. I am not interested in the war. The strength does not give me security….in fact, from a historical point of view, a strong warrior plays only the role of subordinate for the true man with power.”
“Then I will give you power.” Chris in deep thought said: “If you like the power, I can give you a heart that can see through the mind of others. You can see through the disguises of your opponent, and you can hear the voices from their heart! This will let you take a superior stance during your political career…. With your clever head, I’m sure it won’t be long before you become a great figure in the human world! ”
“I am the eldest son of the vice-commander of the empire.” Du Wei twitched in his mouth when he mentioned this part: “I am also the first successor to the Rowling family, do you think I would be worried about my future position and power? My father will become the empire’s military commander soon, or even the Chancellor. Surely I will get all of his inheritance when the time comes. I am sorry, your proposal cannot move my heart.”
Actually, Du Wei was lying straight to his bones, but Chris doesn’t know that nor does he have the means to verify the truth.
“You… Little Noble! What on earth do you want then?” Apparently even a millennial old monster like Chris can be annoyed too.
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