chapter 109: once and future king

I let out a long sigh as I watched Leowynn and Ryone gradually walking back towards the town. I had the feeling I’d know what her answer was going to be, but there was no way I’d push her to answer early. No, she’d live a full life first, that way she’d have plenty of time to have her own experiences and the chance to make new connections.

Though, there was one thing I needed to test out first. Closing my eyes, I sent my thoughts towards the sleeping lion soul within me. I could still distinctly feel its presence even in the Admin Room, which was why I considered making her this offer in an attempt to let her spend more time with Ryone and myself. However, it was still important to know if we could bring her out of my body.

Focusing, I urged the lion spirit to leave my body, summoning it out into the room around me. A fierce roar echoed in the room, a bright light forming in front of my chest as the spirit seemed to jump directly out of it. Strangely, it did not look at all incorporeal as it would in the mortal world. Instead, it looked just as lifelike as it did the day I fought it… Okay, it died that day, so let’s say the day before I fought it.

Terra… I mentally called for her, deciding this is as good of a time as any to practice my mental communication skills. Thankfully, I received a response shortly, so I at least did not ‘dial’ the wrong goddess this time. I thought that the only beings allowed in the Admin Room were the Keeper and any purchased companions?

This was something that she had told me long ago, hence why I was performing this test in the first place. However, soon the answer to my question came to me. That’s right. Guessing you brought out your spirit beast if you are asking, so let me explain. A spirit bound to you is still considered a part of you. The connection is far stronger than something like a hunter’s pet, or a tamer’s monster. If you die, it dies, and it can only manifest with your power.

And the reason it doesn’t look like a ghost anymore? I had a feeling I knew the answer to this one, but I wanted to ask just in case.

That part’s easy. Remember, up here the energy at our disposal is limitless. The quality of the body your spirit possesses is based on the amount and density of the spiritual energy used to form it. Therefore, when you summon it up here, it appears in a perfect body.

Only allowed on

Hearing that… I honestly couldn’t hold back another question. Okay… but wouldn’t that mean I could just cheat and have it drink in the spiritual energy, so that it is stronger when I descend later?

I could faintly hear a laugh over the connection. No, a bound spirit can’t consume the energies of the Administration Room. If you tried to force it to, the spirit would likely be destroyed by the overwhelming energy.

Okay, so note to self, don’t do that. Alright, thanks. Anything in particular that I should pay attention to, now that I’m talking with you? Figured it’d be good to see if there was anything interesting going on that would be good for me to look at.

Hmm… A few people are making some advances. Aha, here’s a nice spot for you. I’m putting it on your monitor now.

Charn Presli stood at the helm of one of the many ships that sailed the wide blue ocean. His journey was a long one, having already been over a week since they saw land. With him were a dozen ships, each carrying a dozen human men and women. He treated these people as if they were his family, and many of them were indeed.

They had not been cast out from the kingdoms, but rather chose to leave, to start their own life beyond the sea. They did not agree with many of the views of those self-righteous kingdoms, those who thought themselves as gods. There was but one lord in his heart, and she did not sit upon a mortal throne.

As such, he and his kin, and those who wished to join him had left, unsure of what they may find beyond the horizon. They brought with them enough food for a few more days, but after that they would have to rely on catching the fish that swam beneath their sails. It was not an impossible task, but Charn had already seen the fearsome might of the ocean beasts.

Originally, there had not been twelve, but fifteen ships as part of this voyage. Yet, three days after their departure, a great shadow appeared from beneath the water. A snake as long as a city, with a mouth that could swallow a castle’s gates appeared from the water. The beast was repulsive to behold, with scale and flesh dropping off its length as quickly as the waters that surrounded it.

The creature had no intelligence within its gaze, and immediately rushed towards them, swallowing three ships in three strides. Through the holes in its flesh, we could see the broken wood and flailing bodies falling down its throat. Yet after it swallowed those ships, it seemed placated, and once more sank beneath the waves.

It was not that they had no power to fight it. The clan of Presli was a clan of mighty warriors, yet this was a creature which moved too fast, and with too much force for them to face. After it left, they could only pray to Bihena, as well as the spirits of the seas and skies to watch over them for the rest of the journey.

“Father, I see land!” The youngest child aboard Charn’s ship called out from the front. His eyes had been ever-focused forward. Despite his young age, none dared question his sight. He had begun training as a monk, and had long since learned how to enhance his sight far beyond normal means.

“Good, Elphis!” Charn said with a laugh. If his son could see land, then it was at most another two days away. If they could make it for two more days, then they could reach this new land. He let his voice build up in his throat, shouting out for his words to be carried to the nearby ships. “We have land, men! The spirits have heard our call, and the Goddess has blessed our travel!”

After his voice echoed out, he could hear his words being repeated again, the message being spread beyond to all of the ships. Cheers could be heard from the weary men and women who longed to reach shore. These sailors moved with renewed vigor, knowing that their new home was just beyond the horizon.

With fair winds and clear weather, Charn and his fleet arrived at an empty shore. This was no small island, and from the moment they saw it they could not find its ends upon the horizon. From a single glance, it was clear that the place had never been touched by the hands of men. This was made even more obvious the moment their ships pulled in near the beach.

Each one dropped a large stone tied to a rope, anchoring them in position. While it wouldn’t protect them from the beasts beneath the waves, this would at least prevent them from drifting back to sea. From there, every man, woman and child dove into the water, quickly finding themselves able to stand and run to shore. Before the eyes of every traveler, the spirits sent their message.

You are among the first group in history to successfully travel to a new land by way of sea. This is a grand achievement, earning all present the title of ‘Beyond the Seas’. While at sea, beast and monsters weaker than you will flee your presence, while those too weak to perceive it will be drawn to you.

Charn couldn’t help but laugh uproariously at the blessing that the spirits gave. Though some may see the last sentence as troublesome, those who traveled the waters knew the importance of keeping fish nearby. This deterrent would likely be ineffective against the great beast that had consumed their kinsmen, but against the more common threats it would suffice.

“Come, men!” He shouted with a wild smile on his aged face. “Let us build our new home.”

It was at this point that the young boy who had originally spotted the island came up to him. He was eager to hunt for food and help with the construction, but first there was a question that must be asked. “Father, shouldn’t we name this place? The spirits have told us that we were here first, after all!”

Though his child was young, his insights often stretched far beyond his years. Charn nodded his head in agreement with another laugh. “Alright boy. Since you were first to see the island, you shall be the one to name it. Do not shame us after we have come all this way. I’m sure we’d hate to have to find a new land already.” A few of the nearby kin laughed at his words.

The child took the task seriously, sinking into thought as he came up with the name. “Then… we shall call it Rokindrol!” He nodded his head, earning an approving smile from his father.

“A fine name! Now, go along. There is still work to be done!” He shouted, causing his youngest son to immediately begin running into the nearby forest, where many had already disappeared to begin work.

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I couldn’t help but chuckle dryly as I watched this scene. Terra was certainly right, the first people to settle on an island was worthy of a bit of attention. While it might seem small, that was only in comparison to the gigantic proportions of the continents. There would still be enough land for them to explore and cultivate for many generations to come.

But first… Irena, can we talk for a moment?

Of course, Dale. What’s the matter? Her response came almost as soon as I had finished asking my question.

I saw a monster just now in the world below, in the seas. It looked to be an undead creature. I thought your people were taking care to make sure that couldn’t happen? Naturally, I had to ask that. The presence of undead horrors within the sea was likely more important than even the first settlers to a new land.

Dale… Her reluctant tone came through the connection. My people cannot easily traverse the depths of the oceans, even if they had the numbers to do so. It is unfortunate, but until we find a race more suitable for that, there is nothing that I can do to stop the appearance of undead within the sea. Even me acting personally, I would not be able to harvest all of those souls more than once a year, and that is only assuming that they did not resist.

It’s alright, I’m not blaming you. I just wanted to clearly understand what’s going on. I could see how it would be difficult. If a spirit had to focus on maintaining their form with water constantly pushing through it, they’d hardly be able to use the same kind of battle tactics that they could on the surface. Not to mention that there are likely far more creatures beneath the seas than on land.

If I gave someone a domain that controlled the ocean and its wildlife, would that make it easier to take care of those creatures? I asked. While there were no free domains waiting to be assigned, I could still purchase one for someone.

Hmm… perhaps. If I work together with them, then we should be able to take care of most of the spirits with our joint power.

Hearing that, I nodded my head, before reaching out to contact Bihena. Free for a moment? I was getting a lot of practice with this mental communication today, though I’d have to ask the goddesses for feedback later to make sure I wasn’t ‘broadcasting’ too loud or anything.

As long as you meant to call me and not someone else, sure. Bihena’s voice came back to me through the connection. What’s up?

I want to give you a new domain. Your people were the first to cross the water and reach a new land, so I was thinking about giving you the Oceans domain. Of course, there are other reasons too…

At first, I could feel excitement coming through the link, but it was soon extinguished by a small grumbling tone. You want to push more work off onto me?

Irena’s forces can’t clean up the spirits in the water. She says that if she works with someone that has the appropriate domain, then the two of you should be able to take care of it.

Then why don’t you just give her the Oceans domain? A somewhat frustrated tone responded to me, making me chuckle dryly.

Well, I thought about it, but really wouldn’t it make little sense for the goddess of the Underworld and Justice–who no living being knows about– to receive this domain? It’d be more fitting for one of the living gods, with you being first on the list. I did my best to explain, feeling her reluctance gradually lessening as I did.

Alright.. Fine. I’ll take the Oceans domain. At least it will give me something to worry about that isn’t politics. I swear, if you had come to me with another government-related domain, I probably would have driven my head through a wall.

I felt a small grin forming on my face. So you don’t want to be the Goddess of Nobility, then? I teased lightly, hearing an almost furious scream from the connection at the mere thought of getting that title. With a laugh, I let go of the connection, and brought up the market to buy the domain. Thankfully, the first non-free domain for a given god or goddess was only twenty points, so it wasn’t much to worry about.

With that small distraction out of the way, I once again began fast forwarding, curious how my daughter would react to all of the information that was given to her. My daughter… The thought still felt a bit strange, given that she was almost ten times as old as I was now, but it also made me feel… good. In this world, I could say that she was the only person that was actually family, after all.

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