Another World’s Versatile Crafting Master - chapter 490
As the palace gate got pushed open, the magic lamps on top of the pillars lit up one by one. Perhaps the passage of time had diminished the energy of the magic lamps to the minimum, for the light emitted from each lamp could only illuminate the space around up to the radius of a palm. It was as though they could be extinguished any time.
Lin Li and his two Undead servants stood at the door vigilantly. They saw a figure on the throne deep into the palace. Although the aura was very strong, it felt stagnant within the darkness. This reassured Lin Li. After all, if the other party was “living”, he could have alarmed the person the moment he pushed open the doors.
Lin Li could see the interior of the palace vaguely with the help of the faint glow emitted by the magic lamps. There was nothing much for him to look at. Apart from the black shadow seated on the throne that was located deep into the palace, the place was empty.
Should I enter this place? Of course! Lin Li thought. Even if the thing in the palace was “alive”, he would have the ability to protect himself with his power as a Legendary-mage and the trump cards in his hands. This encouraged Lin Li to lead Ujfalusi and Norfeller on that luxurious red carpet and venture into the palace.
Lin Li advanced towards the throne slowly under the faint glow from the magic lamps. It was then that he got to take a better look at the structure of the platform that held the throne. While the platform was made up of a pile of human bones, the throne was created from the bones of a Humerus Wyrm. It didn’t look like one, of course, but it was still obvious to anyone who saw it.
As compared to the gigantic throne, the person seated on it was relatively frail. To Lin Li and his team, however, it did not feel that there was any disconcertment about the contrast of the two. The person was seated on the throne with his upper body slightly leaning forward. There was a sword in his right hand, and one of his feet was on top on the bones of the wyrm in front of him. Although the body was still, there was a strong sense of dignity that continued to fill the surroundings.
Although Ujfalusi and Norfeller tried to stand in front of their master in an attempt to protect him, their bodies could not help but tremble due to the powerful aura. That was the obvious difference among Undead creatures of dissimilar abilities. Despite having courage, the pressure felt from the superiors was not something that could be ignored.
The figure of the person on the throne came into greater clarity as they proceeded closer. He had silver and white hair and blade-like brows. His eyelids were hung low, and he had a straight nose and broad mouth. Despite being ashen and pallid, he was still a very good-looking man, and donned a dull golden full-body armor that had been detailed with intricate mageweath. There were head bones of hideous single-horned demons decorating his joints, and on his back was a crimson cape that seemed to be stained by dried-up blood. The contrast in colors with the plain white throne created even more trepidation within people.
Lin Li was reminded of his experience at the Scar of Death with the sense of the aura emitted by the man. He thought of the bunch of Death Knights he’d taken under himself. Although there was a stark contrast in power between them and the man on the throne, he was able to confirm that the man on the throne was a Retribution Knight with his distinct aura. The strength of his aura was only something that could be emitted by Legendary powerhouses. Lin Li was absolutely certain that the man before him was that Retribution Knight.
Gerian had never mentioned to him that there would be a Retribution Knight here. Lin Li, however, was certain that Gerian would not be somebody who had ill intentions for him. Despite calling him a little bastard, the concern Gerian had for Lin Li was definitely authentic. Lin Li could be sure that Gerian would have told him everything mentioned in that diary without reservations. Hence, it would simply mean that this information wasn’t recorded in the diary.
Actually, encountering a Retribution Knight here was both within and outside Lin Li’s expectations. It would only be unusual for Lin Li not to encounter any Undead creature here when he had already met so many others outside the palace. However, the man was a Retribution Knight, after all. Where could possibly be his team of Death Knights? If there was an ambush of Death Knights here, the only action Lin Li could take was to escape.
Despite having the team of Death Knights he’d acquired in the Scar of Death, Lin Li knew that Death Knights under a Retribution Knight would definitely be different. These knights would naturally be rid of the chance for further progress when they pledged their allegiance to a Retribution Knight, for they had to surrender all Spiritual Force they’d acquired to him. Yet, they also got to rise in power with the progress of their Retribution Knight when they participated in battles.
Just when Lin Li was deducing the origin of that Retribution Knight, a voice sounded in his head. “Oh, it is the rare Retribution Knight! Hold on… That dude looks very familiar…”
That was the self-proclaimed all-knowing and almighty Soul Trader.
Lin Li’s heartbeat accelerated when he heard Connoris’s words. Connoris was an ancient deity who had been around for God knew how many years. If he were to find that fella familiar, he wouldn’t be any common passerby.
“You’ve seen him before? Where?” Lin Li asked Connoris as he cautiously sized up the Retribution Knight who was sitting on the throne.
“Fret not. Let me think… Where have I seen him…?” Connoris racked his brains in an effort to recall it. However, the fact that he had been living as a soul for a significant amount of time, a soul that had suffered some damage, prevented him from remembering who the Retribution Knight before him was.
“Hey, have you recalled who he was? One word, and we will either be leaving or staying here. Tell me quickly,” Lin Li urged Connoris on impatiently. Although he was not certain if that fella was asleep, he was, after all, a Retribution Knight. As a Legendary-mage, Lin Li could not help but feel stressed if he had to deal with a Retribution Knight.
“If I’m not wrong… I think I saw him in the Breezy Plains. Other than that… I can remember no more…” Connoris replied vexedly. For an ancient deity, his state was really pitiful.
“Retribution Knight… Breezy Plains…” Lin Li muttered after Connoris. Suddenly, he recalled the secret Hutton had shared with him. There was a Retribution Knight who, after acquiring an arm of the Immortal King, led a team of Death Knights in ransacking the Breezy Plains. The death toll they brought about was a third of the entire Breezy Plains’ population.
Could the figure before him be the Retribution Knight who had ransacked the Breezy Plains and turned it into a living hell? Wasn’t he purified by Prophet Willen from the Brilliance Shrine? Why would he come to this place? Lin Li’s mind was buzzing with questions. He told Connoris the secret Hutton shared with him, hoping it might trigger Connoris’s memory.
“Before this, Hutton has once told me about the Retribution Knight. But, he said that the Retribution Knight had been purified by Prophet Willen of the Brilliance Shrine. Could this be that Retribution Knight?” Lin Li asked. He thought the process of purification would have allowed the holy light or fire turn the knight into dust. How could he be sitting here like a statue?
Sure enough, Lin Li’s words lifted Connoris’ memory gate. The recovery of memories was a very beautiful feeling for this pitiful fella, especially when those memories could portray himself as knowledgeable. “Are you referring to the Retribution Knight, Rodhart? Now that you mention it, I think that this fella really does look like him,” said Connoris.
“He is called Rodhart?” Lin Li was intrigued. Hutton did not tell him the name of the Retribution Knight. “What else do you know about Rodhart?”
Connoris’s current favorite pastime was to boast his knowledge to Lin Li. Especially after Lin Li experienced tremendous growth, the only thing left for Connoris to prove his worth was the knowledge he’d gained over the years. “You have to be clueless about what Rodhart did before that. He was the most powerful Paladin ever since the establishment of the Brilliance Shrine…”
“Paladin!? You are saying that this Retribution Knight was a Paladin in the past?” Lin Li stared at the Retribution Knight who was seated on the throne before him and had yet to move an inch. He realized how crazy this world could be. The High Elves who were supposed to have a deep-seated hatred for the Undead creatures actually had all sort of connections with the Undead, and a Paladin from the Brilliance Shrine actually turned into a murderous Retribution Knight that killed the innocent.
Before, Connoris had loved to create a sense of suspense with his words to satisfy his ego. However, things were different now. He did not dare to keep anything from Lin Li for fear that the man would deny his wish for a new body. Hence, before Lin Li could ask further, Connoris told him everything he knew about Rodhart in detail.
The stories of Rodhart were not well known to the people of Anril. It was not only due to the fact that a long time had passed, but also the cruel irony for the Brilliance Shrine whose Paladin had transformed into a Retribution Knight.
Rodhart’s background was simple. His life was as plain as a cup of tap water before he became famous. He was under the care of a Priest in the Brilliance Shrine when he was young, and he and his peers were orphans who were educated under the strictures of the Brilliance Shrine. These people would be the most loyal in any organization. They were known as the fanatical devotees to religious forces, as well as Death Knights to secular forces. In the entire Brilliance Shrine, fanatical devotees were the ones who everyone thought wouldn’t betray the organization. Their beliefs were supposed to be the strongest and most extreme due to their strict religious upbringing. Hence, most of the talented ones were chosen by the Priest to become the blades for Brilliance Shrine to eliminate heresy.
When Rodhart was 15 years old, he got through all of the tests held by the Referee of Heresy, and entered the organization with a few other talented youths. During this period of time, the inquisition was the most mysterious organization under the Brilliance Shrine. It made it almost impossible for his exploits to be made known to the public, at most with the exception of the records of his participation in missions, as well as the date and results of his achievements in the cleansing of any heresy.
People only started knowing Rodhart when he reached the Legendary-realm at 32 years old. That was the first time he led a mission as the Referee of Heresy, where he tried to purify a Legendary Lich who owned a Humerus Wyrm. In that mission, Rodhart did not rely on any of his men. He became famous after he slew both the Lich and the Humerus Wyrm single-handedly.
The tremendous power the young Paladin demonstrated in the subsequent missions elevated his position in the Brilliance Shrine. Crowned as the most indomitable Head Referee of the Brilliance Shrine ever since its establishment, there were many people in the Shrine who viewed him as an idol.
“Oh? How did he become a Death Knight when he was supposed to be one of the fanatical devotees?” Lin Li asked curiously. How could a Head Referee of Brilliance Shrine brought up as a strong believer be converted into an Undead creature? Not to mention that he was a Head Referee. Any common Priest who believed in brightness would not have been easily converted into an Undead creature.
“I’m not sure. But, it is not unusual, either. No one would be able to reject the temptation of immortality. Didn’t the arrogant High Elves go study Necromagic? To Paladins, their ability would be as good as stagnant once they reached the Legendary-realm. If not, they would have to seek other ways to improve themselves,” said Connoris disdainfully.
Rodhart entered the mausoleum of the Immortal King in hopes of finding the path towards the Sanctuary-realm. No one knew what he experienced in Immortal King’s mausoleum or what he experienced when he was on his journey there. They only knew that Head Referee resigned from his position and never set foot in Brilliance Shrine again.
Some people said that Rodhart was inspired to retreat into a century of seclusion to look for the path into the Sanctuary-realm, but there were also others who thought that he left to treat his serious injuries. No matter what happened, the news of the death of the strongest Paladin of Brilliance Shrine—the Legendary powerhouse—broke out after a century. Rodhart’s will asked for burial in the grounds of the Breezy Plains—the place where he had been adopted.