Chapter 614: Scheme

Larfal Ljos Alf, King of the Elves, was currently standing in front of a beautiful altar made of pristine white Holicite, the same material used to forge Riveria’s staff. By volume, the altar would sell for several billion Valis but, regardless of the financial situation of the Elven Kingdom, nobody would ever think to actually sell. As for the reason, it was because the ‘altar’ was actually where Riveria’s mother had been enshrined, sealed away by powerful magic that was intended to preserve her body for thousands of years. Though their time together had been short, Larfal had truly loved his wife, Risteria, and had treasured the time they spent together.

Tracing his hand along the altar, Larfal muttered in a pained voice, “Risteria, my love…what am I to do…please, help me avert this crisis and show me the way…” Risteria had always been a guiding light to Larfal when they were together, making him feel as though she should have been the one to lead their people instead of him. He hated that they had been forced to produce an heir so early because his time as King would have been much easier with someone so reliable at his side. The maddening thing was that the reason they were ‘forced’ was solely because the other houses feared Risteria’s influence and wanted to destabilize his authority, which they had successfully managed.

Risteria had originally belonged to the faction of the High Priestess so the noble families had feared the High Priestess was trying to use her to slowly wrest power away from them. Much like the ‘tradition’ of Kings, the High Priestess only came into existence when the last Elven Queen, Celdia, disappeared after the battle with the One-Eyed Black Dragon. They were the faction that wanted to preserve the ‘old’ traditions of the Elves and had directly opposed Celdia’s husband, the first Elven King, by ‘seizing’ three of the sacred trees and taking in many of the female High Elves and the members of branch families into their fold. This enraged the nobles of the time but they simply had no way to oppose the High Priestess, who was the strongest High Elf in existence after Celdia vanished.

Dear Readers. Scrapers have recently been devasting our views. At this rate, the site (creativenovels .com) might...let's just hope it doesn't come to that. If you are reading on a scraper site. Please don't.

Larfal and Risteria had fallen in love with each other when they were both young, around their late fifties, and he had often sought her counsel when the internal strife between the noble families became too much to bear. He had previously wanted to explore the world, much like his daughter, but never had the opportunity because he was being groomed as the successor to the throne. Unable to find any real enjoyment in life, Larfal had become very fond of his time with Risteria and, even though there was great opposition at the time, took her as his wife when he rose to power. The transition had been wrought with difficulties, but her counsel made things much easier and his position as King became secure after a few years…

Unfortunately, the stability within the Palace also gave time for the other noble families to consolidate their power and, with the backing of the Sage Council, they pressured Risteria into producing an heir to ‘secure’ the future of the throne. Having a king without an heir was indeed very dangerous because, if something happened to the King, it would potentially cause a civil war amongst the noble houses as they fought over the throne. Eventually, Risteria succumbed to their pressure, not because it was taxing on her, but because things had been made difficult for him. After a bit of effort, they finally managed to conceive a child and were both very happy and hopeful for the future.

However, much like other High Elves in her position, Risteria also suffered the loss of her vitality and, no matter how many special elixirs he tried to procure for her, it was simply never enough. As a result, the child that was born was much stronger than normal but, to Larfal’s lament at the time, it was ‘unfortunately’ a girl. This meant he still didn’t have a true heir to the throne and, a few weeks after she gave birth, Risteria succumbed to her weakness and passed away. At the same time, many of the families that had been biding their time moved forward to pressure him on various policies to obtain more power for themselves. If not for the interference of the Sage Council, and his allies in the Lainu family, things would have gone even worse…

Releasing a heavy sigh, Larfal thought about how that alliance eventually came back to bite him because it had cost him his daughter. She had been an incredibly intelligent girl in her youth and, even though he didn’t give her the love she deserved, Riveria always did her best…just like her mother. Telling her she wasn’t ‘qualified’ to be his heir had been one of the most difficult decisions he ever made because he knew Alosrin, his friend’s son, was grossly incompetent. If not for the fact he wanted to keep the throne out of the hands of the more ‘troublesome’ families, Larfal would have never agreed to their engagement. Now, he regretted that he ever considered it at all because it had caused his daughter to ‘flee’ the Kingdom, causing chaos for several years until she eventually ‘redeemed’ herself via her contributions…

Previously, the Elven Kingdom struggled to secure trade agreements with Orario because they had been in conflict with the provincial government for hundreds of years. Riveria, by using her connections in the Loki Familia, had smoothed over many things for them while also contributing the results of her research for further study by their scholars. She was one of the most prodigious Mages to have ever existed so her insights into the ‘truth’ behind Magic were truly inspired. Her research had already completely reshaped how the next generation was taught and also paved the way for a few gods taking up residence within the Elven Kingdom, even though most of them were with the Sage Council faction…

Larfal looked forward to the day when Riveria would return to the Kingdom because he believed her achievements would give him enough momentum to help install her as Queen. Alosrin would likely still become King, but Larfal believed she would be able to manage him easily and slowly change the fate of their entire Kingdom through her hard work and brilliant mind. Since she was the daughter of Risteria, the High Priestess would have supported her and Larfal believed the union between the Alf and Lainu households would have been enough to ensure a bright future for their people. Now, however, that seemed to have all flown out the window after a rapid series of developments he still couldn’t quite wrap his head around.

Riveria becoming Vahn’s apprentice wasn’t too difficult to believe, especially if he was as capable a Mage as reported, but the fact she had decided to marry him was a true ‘betrayal’ of their people. Since he refused to take a second wife, he now had lost his heir and, because Alosrin had been crippled, the tensions between the Alf and Lainu families were at an all-time high. If not for the fact the Lainu family was in dire financial straits, they likely would have had a falling out with each other because Alfred blamed Vahn for his son’s ‘affliction’. Even though Alfred was the one that ‘pleaded’ for his son to have the position as Royal Envoy, he now blamed Larfal for sending his son into a ‘trap’.

Alfred believed that, because Larfal didn’t want his daughter to marry Alosrin, he had conspired with her to entrap his son. He even believed the whole ‘Sage’ fiasco was a plot to lure Alosrin over since it was ‘impossible’ for a human, even a demi-god, to come up with a solution to the fertility issue of the Elves. The fact they were ‘withholding’ the solution was all the ‘proof’ he needed to stir up some of the other noble families. His true reasons behind this was his hope they would invest their resources in either trying to kill Vahn, or capture Riveria, but that didn’t stop him from spouting drivel about how Larfal was ‘scheming’ to give the throne to his daughter and allowing the High Priestess faction to seize power.

Because of Alfred’s actions, which had mostly been carried out in private meetings, Larfal was facing even greater pressure than ever before. If not for some aid provided by the High Priestess, which made Alfred’s argument even stronger, and the support of three of the seven Sages, Larfal wouldn’t be able to keep order. There had already been two attempts to outright poison him at this point and he had lost nearly 2kg of weight in the past few weeks. The only thing that kept him going was the time he spent within this private sanctuary with his wife, hoping that their daughter would come to her senses. He had already broken the engagement between her and Alosrin and now just wished she would return so that he could gain the support of their people to bring stability back to the Kingdom…

A fluttering sound of feathers suddenly reached Larfal’s ears and he turned his head to see a large white dove fly down with a parchment in its talons. Given the golden leaves adorning the parchment, Larfal knew it was from his daughter and felt a little bit of hope rekindle in his heart. He knew it was probably ‘bad’ news, especially since that seemed to be the only new he got recently, but still hoped she came to her senses in the end and was planning to return. The fact this news reached him while he was in the sanctuary made Larfal believe that there was, at the very least, a small chance his hopes would become a reality.

Receiving the parchment, Larfal stroked the dove’s head with his fingers before giving it a small shelled nut and sending it off. After waiting for several minutes, Larfal released a sigh and unfurled the parchment to see what his daughter wanted to tell him this time around. By the time he got to the fourth line, Larfal’s hands were already shaking and he had to steady himself by using the Holycite altar as support. The first few lines were Riveria apologizing about the turmoil that had been caused in the Elven Kingdom but she immediately followed it up by declaring, not only that she had married Vahn, but she now carried his child. Larfal felt like his soul had already left his body but there was still a great deal of information in the parchment and, even though he felt dread in his heart, continued reading in the hopes he had made a mistake…

*Dear Father,

I hope this missive finds you in good health. Know that I feel a great deal of remorse about the current state of affairs in the Elven Kingdom and pray that you are able to resolve them successfully. Know that I will never cease in my pursuit of creating a better future for our people, regardless of how difficult the challenge may be. To that end, I must inform you that I have wed the Sage Aldrnari, Vahn Mason, and now carry his child with the intent to bring it to term.

I imagine this may be a difficult thing to hear during these trying times but, as I have received permission to expose this information, I must inform you things are not as they appear. Vahn is not simply a Demigod, he is a unique race known as a Progenitor, the same as our first Ancestors that originally created the High Elves in the ancient past. Our child will be the truest High Elf on the Continent, so please do not assume I have erred in my decision. Also, so that there are no misunderstandings, know that I truly love Vahn and this marriage was proposed by me, knowing that it would inconvenience him greatly by involving him with the issues of our people.

As I have said previously, Vahn has already discovered the problem that has been plaguing our people since the very first High Elves stepped foot in the forests. Not only that, but he has already developed a solution which has been proven effective by virtue of my own pregnancy. With his help, our people will no longer have issues becoming pregnant, nor will they had complications during their pregnancy that will result in death. The solution he has come up with guarantees both the mother and child will retain their vitality without having to consume large amounts of resources. As King, you should understand the significance of this fact and the implications it has for all of our people.*

Larfal felt like he was trying to ride on the back of an untamed wyvern with how chaotic his emotions were right now. His dread had quickly turned to disbelief when he read that Vahn was a ‘Progenitor’ but that was nothing compared to what he experienced when he read about the fact they had developed a solution for the infertility issue. Though it made him upset knowing that Riveria had been the person to test it, thus become pregnant in the process, it also made him feel an unbelievable sense of relief knowing there was a confirmed solution to their greatest issue. If Vahn truly was a ‘Progenitor’, that would also be very good news because it meant Riveria’s children would be of a higher quality bloodline than their own diminishing heritage. Since she would potentially even be able to give birth several times, it was almost guaranteed she would produce a ‘capable’ heir to the throne in the future, his grandson…

Though he had mixed feelings about his daughter bearing the child of a man he had never met, Larfal felt strangely happy knowing he had a grandchild on the way. If there truly were no issues in the solution they had discovered, it meant he may have ‘several’ grandchildren on the way, something that was hard to even imagine given the history of their people. He now really wanted to meet the boy that had apparently done so much for their people, even though they were purportedly only around fifteen years old. It was almost ‘impossible’ to believe there was someone so capable in the world but, given the fact Vahn was a ‘Progenitor’, Larfal found it somewhat easier to rationalize.

Progenitors were what history referred to as ‘Primordial Man’, and they are the root bloodline of every race in the entire world, being the only race that was capable of mating with Spirits in Ancient times. If Riveria’s words were true, this meant that Vahn actually had the potential of impregnating some of their Guardians and ensuring their Kingdom could prosper even more in the future. Since he was also at the heart of the Alliance, winning Vahn over would greatly increase their ability to trade with the City while also allowing them to potentially create an Embassy. If they could get tariff exemptions and slowly integrate with the political circles of Orario, using the Alliance as a springboard, they may even be able to slowly seize power for themselves in the distant future…

Only allowed on Creativenovels.com

Imagining the possibilities, Larfal suddenly had a smile on his face because he believed his daughter had already thought about all of this. She may claim to ‘love’ him, which very well may be the truth, but Larfal now felt his daughter had come to love him as a means of ‘securing’ what she believed to be the best path forward for their people. He couldn’t imagine Vahn developing the thought of researching the problem of their people’s fertility, much less coming up with a solution, unless Riveria had been at his side spurring him on.

Larfal could imagine Vahn was a brilliant boy, probably far beyond his capacity to even understand, but not beyond his daughter’s. She must have seen the signs of his intelligence early on and help nurture him into what he was today, falling in love with him in the process after seeing his true potential shine through. It now actually seemed believable that they had lured Alosrin into a trap, especially considering the outcome. Realizing this, Larfal had a smile on his face because he felt that his daughter had worked much harder than he expected, likely planning these events over the course of several years, all so that she could secure their family’s position.

If Vahn was truly a Progenitor and a Demigod, Riveria’s children would be a combination of High Elf, God, and Progenitor, three powerful bloodlines that complimented each other greatly. Larfal believed her son would be a capable successor to the throne, especially since they would have the benefit of two brilliant parents. This would ensure that the Alf family not only continued to rule the Elven Kingdom but also guaranteed their bloodline would become the strongest of all. If they took advantage of the situation, they may even be able to force the other families to cede power just so they could preserve themselves, essentially bringing the entire Kingdom under a singular rule…

Imagining such an ‘ideal’ future, Larfal fought the urge to laugh because he now realized his daughter was truly a genius. She probably orchestrated all of these events to weaken the other families by using herself as bait, hoping they would invest as many forces and resources as possible while the Alf family remained ‘neutral’. It would be difficult for him to deal with all the turmoil generated by her actions but, even if he ended up dying through some plot, Larfal believed his daughter would still take power back into her own hands in the future when her son matured. With the support of the High Priestess and the Alliance, Larfal believed the Elven Kingdom was on the road to prosperity and had a large grin on his face as he turned his attention back to the letter…

The rest of the parchment mentioned the reaction of the various gods in the Alliance and how they would be treating the Elven Kingdom in the future. It seemed they were very upset by the forces that tried to interfere with the wedding, especially those that acted on behalf of the Silvas family and tried to invade the Manor. Reading this, Larfal smiled even wider because, even though it was ‘terrible’ news, he now believed it was all part of his daughter’s plan to ensure the prosperity of their clan and the Elven people.

Yes, being unable to trade with Orario would be a massive blow to their economy, but it would take greater unrest for her to be able to institute her child as the true heir to the throne. Even if he died, there would be a power void that the other families would fight over and it would cause the High Priestess faction to hole up inside their own territory as a result. Presently, there were only three High Elf females that were capable of giving birth to an heir for the future King. Riveria had removed herself from the equation and the other two were already betrothed, meaning there were only two potential families that could rise to power.

The other families would never accept this at all and would likely try to reach out to the High Priestess faction in the hopes of finding candidates. Unfortunately, the incident with Risteria had already caused a great deal of tension and there was absolutely no way they would ‘provide’ breeding stock to the corrupt noble families. Since they also had the greatest concentration of power, any attempt to ‘seize’ women from their faction would inevitably result in the destruction of whichever house made the attempt. In the end, the Elven Kingdom would be thrown into chaos and the Sage Council would likely rise to maintain order…making it the perfect political climate for Riveria to appear with a capable heir that also had an even higher quality bloodline than before.

If the Alf family managed to tide over the chaos, they could then come to her support alongside the High Priestess faction and instate her son as the true King of the Elves. With the ‘cure’ to the Elven fertility issue, Riveria would also have the support of the people and they would be able to unify the entire Kingdom under the banner of Alf. Realizing this, Larfal couldn’t stop himself from laughing and, even though his Kingdom would likely face dire straights in the future, potentially even resulting in his death, the Alf family would inevitably obtain the final victory. Knowing this made all of the burdens on his shoulders suddenly feel much lighter as he lovingly stroked his wife’s altar and said, “Our daughter truly has done us proud, Risteria…hahahahaha~!”

You may also like: