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15 The Tragic Dead

 Eleena's Spear of Victory completely vaporized what courage the goblins themselves had left. Having less than half of their initial numbers remaining, they were no longer as vicious as they had been, and were in fact throwing away their armor as they fled.

Marni Wilf breathed a sigh in relief from the salvation of his merchant convoy, while also feeling curious which church the five youth were affiliated with.

They were dressed like children from some remote village-and in that case, it was impossible for them to learn divine spells given that the most inferior of such skills requires extended training in sanctified grounds (i.e. various churches, shrines or temples) hosting various deities.

Moreover, the 'level-up' thingamajig which they mentioned was a complete mystery as well. Even in the Brilliant White Church, was there not just a handful of bishops who could instantly restore all wounds and energy?

He was even more shocked that while those youths appeared naïve and ignorant of the various aspects of life, they were actually watertight and never exposed a single hint of useful information. They concealed the 'leveling-up' divine spell considerably that, despite his eyes which had been trained as he traveled through and witnessed the various facets of the empire, he could not determine which of them actually cast that spell.

"Mister Wilf."

One of the mercenary escorts he hired approached while he was fussing over the mystery that was Eleena's party. "There's something wrong."

"What is it?" Marni was immediately on his toes. "Did those brats do something?"

Could they actually be kin of some evil god, intending to wipe them out believing that they would compromise them?

"No. They are still huddled together, discussing some nonsense like 'rich rewards' or 'skill tree'," the escort replied, shaking his head. "What I wanted to tell you is that the corpses of goblins they killed had all disappeared when our men started the cleanup on the battlefield."

"What?"

Marni turned towards Eleena and the others to find that there were assuredly no goblin corpses around them, although scraps such as those creatures' teeth, claws, or loincloths were strewn over the ground messily.

Marni frowned. While goblin corpses were not worth a dime and they had no intention of carrying it with them, it was too bizarre to have them all vanish. Couple that with those youths' unusual behavior, he decided he had smelled something fishy about it all.Find authorized novels in Webnovel,faster updates, better experience,Please click www.webnovel.com for visiting.

Nonetheless, while Marni the merchant was left utterly confused, Eleena and the others had received a new quest.

Ding!

Side quest started: Preach to the merchants

The God of Game has prepared the Starter Village-a utopia for his believers in the mortal realm. However, the start of all things is the most difficult part, as the village would have trouble developing without the help of merchants directing external logistics. Heed god's will: spread his word to the merchant convoy you have rescued and at least convert one merchant as a fellow believer of the God of Games.

Quest rewards: Shop blueprint (quest item), EXP (amount dependent on task completion rate), Ring of Gospel (Elite)

Note: Quest completion unlocks mission chain 'The Lord's Light Illuminates the Land'

"Excuse me, sir?" Marni then found Edward eagerly approaching himself with the look of someone finding gold. "Do you have a moment to talk about our lord and savior, the God of Games?"

Marni was speechless.

***

"Finally!"

When Eleena's party were trying their best to evangelize about the God of Games as if they were promoting Amway, Angora had also reached his fief-the unnamed town outside the Valley of the Tragic Dead.

The place appeared sinister and run down. If Angora had never obtained the System, he would have been so scared by its mere sight that he would abandon it at once and flee home even if he had the old driver with him.

But he was now completely different. He was even finding an unimaginable affection and sense of belonging to the broken town.

"So, this is my fief..."

"Foreigner, what is your business here?"

Angora turned towards the voice to find a withered old man standing with a crutch several feet away from him.

His face was so misshapenly skinny that he appeared no different from a skeleton. However, his eyes were so sharp that Angora felt a pain as if he was being pierced by blades under his stare.

"My name is Angora Faust. I'm the new lord here!" Angora declared, drawing out the decree from his bag. "From this day forth, this town and the surrounding lands are my domain!"

The old man gave Angora a long, hard look, and it was until Angora felt a tingle in his scalp that he shook his head. "As you could see for yourself, these lands are incomparably barren. Everyone living here are so poor that they could not afford to eat. In fact, they are biting off tree barks to satiate their hunger-you are not going to earn even a copper here."

Angora knew that the old man was trying to warn him, just as he knew that coming alone to take control over the fief was considerably dangerous. His subjects could make him appear as if he had an accident on the way there, which was why most lords would tend to bring along escorts when they did the same.

"I would not oppress my subjects," he said, persuasively calming the other.

"You've misunderstood me, kid," the old man replied, shaking his head again. "The Royal Army had ignited the forests just outside the Valley of the Tragic Dead to stop the revenants from advancing. That fire spread and reached these parts, torching half-a-years' worth of harvest into ash. If the famine problem could not be solved, you, a lord acknowledged by His Grace would be a target whom everyone here would vent their wrath upon."

"Did the Royal Army not reimburse the damages?" Angora asked in surprise.

"Certainly not, kid." The old man said slowly. "Who did you think the 'Tragic Dead' in the name 'Valley of the Tragic Dead' refers to? The corpses of those creatures that had long since arisen as revenants? Certainly not."

The old man then pointed at his own chest and said bitterly, "It is us. The common folk who die because of the battle between the military and the revenants are the real 'Tragic Dead'!"

Angora was left gaping by the old man's words.

Although he was prepared for difficult days ahead as he took the reins over his new domain, he did not imagine that the reality was much more brutal than what he could expect.

Being a normal human who was not learned in magic, combat, or divine spells, how would he survive in this stricken place?

That was when he remembered that wondrous existence which had saved his life.

The Overlord System!