The cities in the desert are somewhat different to our cities. If Rosvenor Empire’s buildings are new models made by piling up concrete then the cities in the desert would obviously be made from piling up yellow sand. All of the buildings looked like they were covered in a layer of sand. Even the city walls carried the smell of sand on it. We stood atop the sand dune off in the distance and looked at the city far off in the distance. That’s the first city of the five nations, Karnashun. Karnashun is located furthest north, more accurately the area furthest north that has people residing there. The city is the earliest city the Rosvenor Empire came to and also the most convenient for the empire to travel to, thereby also becoming the richest city among the five nations of the desert.
It’s morning right now. There are people coming and going from the city in the desert. Everyone wore scarfs and linen capes they wrapped themselves up with similar to us right now. It looks like that’s what the residents of the desert wear. Lorana and I looked at the groups of people as we rode atop our horses. She pointed to them and said: “See that, your majesty? Those people are not locals.”
“The sand under the feet of locals of the desert can’t possibly be distributed like that. That proves that they rode horses here and are definitely from the north.”
Big sis and I both have enhanced senses as elves. I noticed that there was no sand on their heels. There was only sand on the front of their shoes which was sand blown onto their shoes. I nodded and replied: “It looks like this sort of metal is attracting people here non-stop.”
“What do you want to do then, your majesty? Send an envoy in and then ask Karashun’s master to provide us with sufficient support?”
Luna looked at me and then said: “I think that things would become much convenient if such a group could receive official support.”
I thought about it for a bit and then responded: “Switch out my cape with the insignia of the royal family on it, leave the Earth Dragons outside the city, bring in some materials and ammunition, and try not to attract attention. We’re mercenaries that come and go, understood? Oh, right, leave most of our people behind to stay outside the city entrance. Everyone else come in with me so that we can support each other from the inside and outside.”
“Though it would be really good to have Karnashun’s support, as soon as we reveal ourselves, then our plans will be revealed too. I imagine Socina City’s people will catch on soon. What we need to be conscious of right now is to not let others find out we’re here because I should be getting lovey-dovey with Lucia in the North right now!”
I stroked Luna’s head then looked over in that direction and said: “Of course, communicating with the master of Karnashun is necessary too. However, we need to enter the master’s palace covertly.”
Lorana nodded and then sent a scout to go and search for the person manning the stables outside the city. After we reached him, I paid him three-times the standard price to get him to look after my Earth Dragons and to be discreet. Then we lined up slowly underneath the city walls to enter the city.”
“May I ask who you all are?”
I couldn’t understand too well what he was saying because of his dialect, but I had a vague idea. Just as I was going to respond, Loarana pushed me back and then pulled my hoodie down further. She answered the guard: “We are mercenaries. We heard there was meat to eat here so we came over.”
The guard immediately lost interest in us. It looks like he’s not interested in visiting mercenaries, or might even be sick of them by now. He looked at our weapons and materials, and then we all put down a silver coin deposit. We then entered the city lightly.
“Your majesty, if you don’t want to reveal your identity, do not reveal your face. Your wedding attracted the attention of plenty of people. If you reveal your face every time, you’ll definitely be recognised. Every king has their ‘eyes’ just as her majesty has her own ‘eyes and ears’.”
I nodded. The team walked up along the road. A few kids from the city entrance immediately rushed up to us to recommend their inn and tell us about how good it was. I was surprised they solicit people here. I suddenly felt like I just got off at a train station.
Lorana didn’t give anyone her attention. She led us through big and small streets. Karnashun City is much smaller than the royal capital. Its surface area is only as big as one district. However, I could tell that they put in a lot of effort to keep it clean. Horses couldn’t kick up dust. The buildings were distributed very neatly and orderly like it was split into two areas, one being the business area and the other being the residential area.
“Your majesty, let’s stay here. I stayed here before and I’m very familiar with the owner.”
Lorana led us to the front of a hotel. The hotel didn’t have a sign at the front. They just hung a silver wild boar sign. We dismounted and entered the yard. The stableman came in to take our horses. I pushed the heavy timber door open and entered the hotel.
It was really dark inside. In the desert, they opened their windows only a tiny bit. Sunlight was blocked out by the loess. The only light inside was the fireplace. An old man at the counter looked up. His squinty eyes looked as though they’d never open. He looked at me and went to speak.
“Boss, let’s see…… two ten-person rooms, and two double rooms.”
“My, why are you back?” The old man looked at Lorana, paused and then continued, “Didn’t you fail the last time you came? Why would you come back for something futile again? Not to mention you brought so many people this time. There’s plenty of metal in the world. Why must you be fixated on a mine in legends?”
She laughed and replied: “I’ve given up. My employer hasn’t though. Give us a good deal and I’ll come to search for it again. Who knows, I might find it.”
“You might, you might. As if.” The old man complained a little as he placed a few keys onto the desk and said, “Nobody has been able to find it. Moreover, that sort of stuff can never make you rich. True big money is earned through bloodshed and murder.”
He looked at us and then sighed. He said: “You young people love get-rich-overnight things. You’re brimming with energy, but how many will return? You young’un’s take your life so lightly. Only we old folks want to live as much as a second longer.”
“We’ll return alive.” After my simple response, I picked up the keys on the table. I looked at the table that had marks which indicated it had been around for a long time. In a soft yet resolute voice I added, “I’ll make them come back alive.”