Lakshman, Emilia, Sumara and Ondine were travelling through the air at high speed while leaving a trail of their respective coloured energy behind. They have been travelling for some time as they soared towards their destination, which was the place where the supplies they needed were sold.
While flying slightly behind Emilia and Sumara, Lakshman was looking around themselves for any problems. He had Elemental Sight active and with his red crown-shaped eyes glowing slightly, he was able to tell who was ally, enemy and neutral. It also helped him detect any sort of barriers placed nearby, which cannot be seen through the naked eye.
Using the Telepathy technique, Lakshman telepathically spoke to his two wives and Sumara.
“How much further do we need to travel?”
The girls were momentarily surprised before telepathically replying to his question.
“Not much longer. We should be arriving there soon,” said Sumara telepathically.
“We should be arriving there in about five minutes. We’ll be landing soon anyway,” said Emilia telepathically.
“We’ll be landing inside the forest anyway, so it’s okay,” said Sumara and she turned to smile at him.
“Ah… We’ve been flying for almost ten minutes! Can’t we go any faster?” Ondine telepathically complained impatiently.
“Unless you want to get sick from flying too fast, be my guest,” said Emilia and she formed a grin on her face.
“Stupid… Stupid…” was all Ondine managed to say and became silent after that.
After five minutes, they finally landed and looked around at the area that they landed at. It was a thick forest with great cover from the sky while only a small rays of light penetrated through the thick leaves. The location was great for them to land at and leave without being noticed by the nearby people. Lakshman deactivated his magic as it was starting to strain his eyes slightly from keeping it active for so long.
After straightening their clothes up, Emilia turned to him and asked, “Can I have the Item Box now, please?”
“Sure,” said Lakshman and he pulled the Item Box out and handed it over to her.
“Thanks,” said Emilia and she held it in her hand tightly.
“It sure is a good thing you had that with you when you escaped with your life,” said Sumara as she glanced at the Item Box.
Lakshman shrugged his shoulders and said, “Well, truth to be told, I actually wanted to put it away on the day of trouble. However, instinct told me not to do it and per habit, I just left it in my pocket and now, it comes in handy.”
He turned to Emilia and said, “Emilia, I don’t actually know how much money is left in there.”
“Ah,” said Emilia and she placed a hand on it before saying, “Analyse.”
Analyse is a Saint ranked Sensor Magic Spell that allows the caster to check the items of object they are hold on and it puffs out smoke that shows them the items inside and the quantity number.
The Item Box glowed slightly for a moment before a puff of cloud exploded into the air and displayed gold coins made of smoke. Then, the clouds quickly changed shaped to form numbers and the value surprised both Sumara and Ondine.
“My goodness… We still have over 1,000,000 gold coins in here,” said Emilia in an impressed voice. Before stoving it away in the pocket of her clothes.
“How is that possible? To hold over 1,000,000 gold coins? You’re basically rich! Even richer than a king!” Sumara exclaimed in disbelief.
Ondine puffed her chest out proudly and said, “Mm, mm! What did you expect from my husband? He’s crowned the king of Floria Kingdom and has done a great deal of things for the kingdom in a short amount of time, like taking down the slavery system for good.”
“Yes… I heard of how gallantly the king of Floria Kingdom took down the slavery system with little difficulty. I also heard that he took down that justice religion for good. I never thought Lucky would grow up to be such a powerful figure in society,” said Sumara and she turned to look at him while looking impressed.
“T-Thank you, Sumara…” said Lakshman with a wide smile on his face in appreciation.
He was really happy to hear her compliment him, but his mind was still troubled. Earlier, she blushed when he complimented on her dress and it confused him because only women in love do that, usually. So, he was lost as to who the heck she has fallen in love with, but he quickly set those thoughts aside.
“Thinking about that won’t help me one bit! I’ll just have to fight the right opportunity to confess my feelings to her and hope for the best,” he thought quietly and firmly agreed upon it.
He sighed before saying, “However, this money and that have nothing to do with each other.”
“Eh?” Emilia, Sumara and Ondine exclaimed when they heard his words.
“Actually, I obtained all that gold from conquering several Labyrinth Towers in the past,” said Lakshman before winking at them. “I gathered all that money together because I thought just 5,000,000 gold might not be enough, so I had some extra for safe measures.”
“Yes and it certainly comes in handy right now,” said Emilia and she nodded approvingly. Then, she looked at them all and said, “Anyway, let’s get going. I don’t want this to take any longer than it should.”
“Yeah!” Ondine said and she, along with Emilia and Sumara, began walking ahead.
Lakshman followed behind them, but his expression had become cloudy due to sensing something in the distance. What he sensed was not hostile that it triggered his danger alarm, but he sensed great fear as well. Not understanding what it was and unable to see anyone nearby, Lakshman turned away and quickly followed after his wives.
Hiding behind several trees, three men appeared and they remained cloaked by the shadows of the forest trees. These three men watched Lakshman, his two wives and Sumara walking towards the town briskly with nervous air surrounding them.
“They suddenly came out of nowhere and landed where we were, collecting the stuff for food,” said one of them in a quiet voice.
“Yeah, that surprised me, but more importantly, did you hear what they were taking about just now?” the second voice said in a low voice.
“1,000,000 gold coins right?” the third voice said in a serious voice.
“That’s a lot of money.”
“Plus, they look pretty well dressed. So, I guess they are some sort of nobles.”
“How about we steal that money?”
“What are you talking about?”
“Come on! Our village’s in trouble! We need the money quickly to feed everyone!”
“Mmm… You’re right and besides, those guys might’ve gotten that money after killing other villagers.”
“Alright! I’ll go get the men while the two of you keep track over them, but make sure not to get caught. Remember what happened the last time when three of our men got caught?”
The other two instantly became serious and together nodded before saying, “Yes… We know…”
The third person looked at them seriously and nodded once more before leaping through the trees and disappeared. The remaining two dropped down and slowly followed after Lakshman and his group.
“Wow…! This place sure is busy!” Ondine said in great surprise.
“More like crowded,” commented Lakshman while he looked around.
“Anyway, let’s get going and buy whatever we can before they run out of stock,” said Emilia and Sumara wordlessly nodded in agreement.
The town was slightly bigger than Lakshman expected and it was crowded with people. They were all busy with people moving around quickly to get their shopping done without delays. Some glanced towards Lakshman and his party curiously before turning away to mind their own work.
The four of them went from shop to shop while being pushed by the many people gathered there. Walking around, Lakshman identified the people from the Insektand Demon Clan, the Simhara Beast Clan and the Orcana Beast Clan. All of them were busily focusing only on their business and nothing more.
Emilia and Sumara did most of the haggling with the shopper over the money and such while Ondine impatiently watched. If things went Ondine’s way, they would be out of here in time, but would leave a lot of shopkeepers with multiple wounds and destroyed shops in their wake.
Earlier, when Ondine got very angry at the arrogant voice of the shopkeeper. She automatically reacted to attack him, but Lakshman foresaw this and he used the Spirit Slave Command to stop her in her tracks.
“Ondine, I forbid you to hurt anyone while you’re in this town,” said Lakshman in a simple, but firm voice.
“N-No…!” she cried out in a low voice in shock.
After that, she simply folded her arms and made a grimacing expression on her face that clearly told anyone to not mess with her. Feeling nervous from the pressure of her gaze, some shopkeepers gave sold the items at a reasonable price. However, some with fighting spirit, did not back down and fought hard to give themselves maximum profit.
Luckily for them, Emilia and Sumara were no novices and they also fought back with their haggling ability. Lakshman guessed that Sumara had such an experience right from the beginning when she worked for the Manjuvad Demon Clan that made the regular alcohol for the people while Emilia learnt such tact from studying endlessly at Astral Academy about economics and how haggling worked.
At one particular shop, where the clothes were being sold at a rather high price, Emilia became disgusted by the selling price. She attempted to haggle for a few seconds, but she quickly became irritated with this and attempted to walk out of there with an annoyed look on her face. However, the man changed his mind and quickly called them back to his shop. After that, the haggling continued and finally, they were able to agree on a price deal that benefited both of them.
Lakshman smiled slightly at seeing Emilia behave like an expert haggler and muttered, “I would’ve just given the money to the asking price without wasting time haggling. That would’ve been the easy solution for me since I can just go attack another Labyrinth Tower and get the money back that way.”
Standing beside him, Ondine let out an “Hmph!” sound before saying, “If it was me, I would’ve gotten things done my way with force.”
He chuckled and shook his head before saying, “No… You would’ve beaten the crap out of them before making things go your way with force.”
Ondine looked surprised and looked up at him while asking, “How’d you know I would do that?”
He closed one eye and looked down at her as he smiled at her.
“Ondine, you’re my wife and how long have we known each other even before we got married?” he asked her curiously. When she chuckled while forming a smile on her face, he said, “This reminds me of the first time we met at the lake in the forest in my home town where you recklessly attacked me, thinking I was going to hurt the young Water Spirits that I was playing with.”
“Ah… That takes me back,” said Ondine and a wide grin on her face appeared.
Lakshman sighed and said, “Ever since you became my Spirit Slave, your attitude hasn’t changed and even now, you’re still the same. I just hope getting pregnant and having a child will change you’re a bit.”
“Eh?!” she exclaimed in shock at his words and she whipped to look up at him. “P-Pregnant… C-Child…?”
She began blushing deeply as she struggled to form words in her mouth and she looked down at her hands, which she clasped together. Lakshman blinked at her in surprise because he did not expect this kind of reaction from her.
“Ah…! Wow…! I did not expect that she’s become this emotional over it!” he thought quickly in a surprised voice.
Opening his mouth, he quickly said, “Um… I’m sorry if I hurt you or anything by saying that.”
She slowly shook her head and in a low voice, she said, “No… It’s okay…. It just surprised me.”
At that moment, Sumara walked over to them while saying, “Okay. We’re done over here…” She stopped at the sight of Ondine’s blushing face and the surprised expression on Lakshman’s face. Curious as to what happened, she asked, “What are you two doing?”
Both Lakshman and Ondine instantly became startled by her voice and they reacted by turning to her and saying in unison, “Nothing!”
Sumara looked confused and said, “You’re behaving strange all of a sudden.”
“There’s nothing strange about it,” said Emilia, who stood beside her. “It’s just the relationship between a husband and wife.”
She smiled at the two of them with a knowing expression on her face, making Ondine blush and caused her to look away. Lakshman tried to keep a straight face the best he could, but a small smile kept creeping, which made him look like he was having facial expression disorder.
Once the shopping was done, all four of them bought themselves a refreshing drink each. It was a familiar looking brand on the glasses they drank from. As it turned out, the person who owned these mango drinks actually became very famous for selling various versions of the mango juices.
“Wow… The guy became a lot more famous in the ten years that we were absent from,” said Ondine in a cheerful voice as she happily drank from the juice drink.
“Yes! This drink is wonderful and he’s even gotten the approval of the Demon Emperor to sell them in the Demon World, Demagrad,” said Sumara with pleasure after drinking the juice. “The Demon Emperor pays respect to the owner greatly for inventing such a tasty juice that people have ever tasted.”
“That’s amazing. To think there’s a human that’s in close contact with that guy,” said Emilia in an impressed voice as she sipped at the drink through a straw.
Lakshman remained silent as he sipped at the drink and he looked around at the street. Everyone appeared to be quite cheerful as they carried their goods or just walked casually while happily talking to their partners or group members. It was a pleasant feeling to see members from the other races looking happy, even though their world was gripped by the hand of evil.
He concentrated only on the three girls walking in front of him while talking cheerfully. Most people were taken aback at how tall he was compared to the rest that walked there and steered clear from him. Most men that thought of going near the women, saw him looking at the girls and shrugged their shoulders before walking away. They instinctively knew he was someone that should not be messed with.
Lakshman sensed them go and quietly sighed as he thought, “Good. They decided to go because seriously, I’m in no mood to take nonsense from those kinds of people.”
After finishing drinking the mango juice, they threw the empty drinks into the trash that everyone seemed to be dumping their rubbish at. With the shopping done and feeling very refreshed, they left town and headed into the forest. They walked for several minutes in silence before reaching the clearing they had landed earlier. Their plan was to take off from there and head back to the Eternal Turtle, which would have covered some distance to the Teleportation Zone by now.
It was then that Lakshman sensed the presence of several people hiding behind the trees. He sensed the tension in the air along with people possessing hostile intent towards them. The girls also sensed this and they quickly stood back-to-back.
“We got company!” he said quietly and the other three nodded.
“How many are there, Lucky?” Emilia asked as Ondine pulled her swords out and Sumara held her staff at the ready.
“I sense around thirty men,” said Lakshman as he looked around.
“Looks like we’re surrounded,” said Sumara quietly.
Ondine grinned and said, “Great! Let’s kill them all!”
Emilia sighed and calmly said, “Ondine, please behave yourself.”
Just then, the leaves near them began to shake feverishly. The noises from the shaking leaves grew louder and suddenly, all became still and silent. The four of them tensed up and prepared for battle when, all of a sudden, a man walked out into the sunlight.
The man appeared to be wearing rough clothes and seemed to be carrying two swords in his hands. From the way he was holding them, it was pretty obvious he was skilled in wielding the sword skilfully. This made Ondine form a grin on her face as she stared at her enemy with gleaming eyes.
“Hello there. Did you need something from us?” Lakshman asked tentatively when no one made the first move to talk.
The man nodded once and pointed his swords at them before saying, “Drop all of your possessions and surrender peacefully. If you do so, then I may think of sparing your lives.”
Hearing those words, Lakshman sighed and thought, “We just got refreshed, only to end up in this situation. Great…! Just great…!”