~ 131: The choice of the helpless (Part 2) ~
My gesture took everyone by surprise, and I expected it to be so. Most nobles would never lower themselves to the same level as their subjects. Kneeling to pat a dirty peasant child's head was even more of an unfathomable gesture for them. They had to maintain their vague sense of superiority and convince those of lower birth that for some unknown reason to the world, they were chosen to be revered and put on a high pedestal by the divine forces out there.
Just how the nobles cultivated this warped sense of superiority when interacting with those of a lower rank than themselves, so did the peasants developed a warped sense of inferiority. They considered themselves to be the dirt under their boots and as such unable or forbidden from stating otherwise.
While peasants could prove their worth in battle and through luck get raised to the rank of a lower noble, it would still take them several generation until they would be considered full fledged nobles, but even then it would be highly doubtful if they were allowed to hold high positions within the government unless they either married into powerful pure-blood noble families or had their members marry into theirs.
This incredible difference in views and respect was what made my gesture ever more so shocking to the onlookers. If they knew I was born between the true princess of the Teslov Kingdom and a true dragon, the effect would have been even more shocking.
“T-The p-plague...” said the father of the boy after he snapped out of his surprised state.
“What plague?” I asked narrowing my eyes at him.
“Six months ago, a draconian adventurer who traversed the Black Tooth Ridge Mountains arrived in Entalon Town and collapsed in the middle of the market. We thought at first it was from exhaustion or maybe a battle wound wasn't visible to the naked eye, but then the draconians who came into contact with him began to feel sick.”
“How sick? What are the symptoms?” I asked a bit worried.
If this was a very contagious disease, then Spell Crystals imbued with powerful healing spells would have been required. If those didn't work, then it was required for the gods themselves to intervene.
In my case, I made sure to bring with me a good number of such spell crystals and even knew a healing spell or two thanks to Illsy teaching me, but if those didn't work, then I would just have to call him over here and have him cure me and even exterminate this entire plague.
However, my thoughts of worry proved to be a bit exaggerated.
“The nobles hired some of the most skilled alchemists in the town and even brought someone from the capital to look into it. Not even a week later, they found a cure to the plague, but seeing the profit in it, they began to charge an unreasonable ammount of money. Us poor folks didn't have that much, but those who wished to live to see another day sold themselves into slavery.
“Our family was lucky enough to be away from the infected.” said the wife.
“We left the town before things got worst, but then they closed the gates and forbade anyone from entering or leaving.” he said.
“I heard only those cured are allowed to step outside.”
“Why haven't you tried to leave for Callira?” I asked.
“We would, but the nobles forbade us from doing so... also, where would we go afterwards?” the man asked as he worriedly looked at his son.
“I know this may be too much too ask, but if possible, could you take our son as your personal servant? Or just a house servant? He's young and he'll learn, but here with us, he won't have much of a future to look towards.” the mother asked as she bowed her head before me.
I looked at the child and then back at them.
This is the logical way of thinking, but not one I can approve of. I thought and then got up on my feet.
“I'm sorry, but I can't. However, what would it take for the nobles to let you go to Callira?” I asked.
“I see, madame must have her own servants, my apologies.” the woman bowed her head.
“Don't worry about it, but do answer my question, please.” I showed her a small smile.
The wife and husband looked at each other for a moment and then back at me.
“The one who gave the order is Lord Shendrall. He's a Marquess. We don't know if its possible to persuade him to let us go, but there is an alternative...” the wife said and then the husband continued.
“I have a friend... He's one of the guards who makes sure we don't leave. If I can pay him one gold coin, we'll be allowed to leave this place.” he said.
“Even if we do though, what can we do in Callira?” she asked.
“Board a ship towards Illsyorea, my home country.” I told them, but just then, I saw Red returning. “Please excuse me for a moment.”
Walking up to the draconian who exhibited quite the intimidating aura, I asked him “What did you find out?”
The survivors of this plague looked at him with timid curious eyes, but not even a single one of them dared to make eye contact with him. Unlike me, he made it clear towards those around him through his intimidating presence that he had no desire to associate with them. If he wanted to find out something, he would ask them, otherwise, it was towards their best interest to steer clear of his way.
Yet, a single draconian woman dared to step in front of him and show that she didn't care about his intimidating presence. That was me.
“Hmph! I thought I told you to stay inside the carriage, didn't I?” he inquired as he narrowed his eyes at me.
“I will do as I please. Now what did you find out?” I asked again, brushing off his complaint as if it was nothing.
He looked into my eyes for a second and then replied “There's a plague that spread within the walls of the town and the nobles hogged the cure. We can't risk getting you infected with the plague, so we'll camp out here. Tomorrow at dawn we'll depart for Rank Village.”
“Is that so? Very well. Make camp, I have some matter to attend to first.” I told him and then returned to the family I spoke with earlier.
“Associating with peasants isn't a good idea.” he warned me as I walked away from him.
“I'll be the judge of that.” I replied in a calm tone of voice.
There was a worried expression on the faces of the parents, but a rather calm and relaxed one on that of their child's. The matter of what I was going to do with them was a bit too selfish in nature to think about it this way, for if I could help one family, why couldn't I help them all?
Time, resources, and level of understanding... I replied in my mind.
This was the reason why the Magic Academy Illsyorea existed. Although Illsyore as a Dungeon Lord was quite astounding and all of his wives were a force that could wipe out entire armies, at the end of the end, we couldn't watch over everyone we saved and helped.
If we wanted to change this world and make sure things like unjust slavery, abuse of women and children, widespread murder and corruption, and supremacists views would become just localized incidents and not the common sense of these people, then we had to be more than just a single family that tried to change these matters. We had to have individuals scattered across all the three continents in positions high and low who believed in the same things we did.
Thus, while I could save one and maybe even all of them, I would just come out as the 'kindhearted stranger' who lent them a helping hand.
While I can't save them, I can let them choose their own fate. I thought and then showed these three a kind smile.
“You said your friend asked for one gold coin to turn a blind eye to your sudden... disappearance, right?” I asked.
“Yes, why?” the husband replied.
I looked to my left and then to my right to see if there were any suspicious fellows that had their ears aimed at our conversation.
“Here's what we can do...” I then approached them and whispered my plan while giving them that one gold coin that had the power to change their fate.
After I had my talk with them, I returned to the carriage and had my dinner, a big plate of sarmale with cornmeal porridge. It was a food Illsyore claimed to be from his previous life, and it was in fact quite delicious, but only when Tamara cooked it.
Back on the Boss Island, Illsy cooked this meal for us once, but the taste was bland, making it rather unappetizing. I loved my husband, we all did, but not ALL of his experiments were an astounding success; this one was one of them.
With the sun setting over the horizon, there were a lot of campfires lined up on the road, leading towards the entrance to Entalon Town. RGB handled the camp, but I was to sleep within the carriage. In order to keep my promise with the peasant family and make sure my plan was a success, I had to leave the carriage.
I didn't try to sneak away, and it wasn't like of these three Supremes were capable of stopping me. A single punch from me would turn them into a bloody mess.
Because I considered myself to no longer be a part of the Pleyades family, I couldn't exert my political power here or force the situation regarding this plague to come to an end be it by curing everyone here with magic or the cure.
The same applied for the peasant family I came in contact with. I couldn't allow myself to help them by force. I had to offer them the chance and possibility to choose by themselves what they wanted to do.
If they chose to stay here, in Entalon Town, they would see only that one gold coin I had lent them before I returned to the carriage, but if they chose to take a chance and risk traveling towards Illsyorea, I would provide them with more. At night, IF they managed to successfully bribe the guard, I would meet them about a kilometer down the road. I would wait for them at a certain place for three hours. Whether they made it or not depended solely on them. Luck had something to say about this matter as well.
One and a half hour had went by with me waiting for them there, sitting on a chair and reading one of my books with the help of a simple Light Crystal. The two carriages who walked past me thought they had seen some sort of apparition. I couldn't blame them, the sight of a draconian woman emanating my elegance and refined taste reading a book ever so calmly in the middle of the forest at such a late hour was without a doubt a strange sight to behold.
Then, just as a cloud steered clear of the guiding moonlight of Lunaris and Lunoria, the two divine sisters, I saw the family of three approaching me from the other side in the forest. They were carrying with them the little baggage they had managed to take with them. In front of them was their youngest child, a boy who was both curious and gentle, at least for now.
“So you chose to risk it all.” I said with a smile as I closed my book and absorbed it within my Storage Crystal.
“Yes... And about what you said.” the father asked timidly.
“Yes, Illsyorea will accept you, but what you will do there will be all up to you.” I nodded.
“And my son, will he really receive an education like the nobles?” the mother asked.
“It's mandatory there for both peasants and nobles to know how to read and write. Illsyorea, however, is not a country where foreign nobility is so easily recognized. Within the academy, everyone is of equal status, but their individual abilities depend solely on them.” I told them and then took out a small pouch as well as a big bag.
“What's this?” the father asked furrowing his brow.
“It's natural that I wouldn't let you leave on an empty stomach. You have food to last you until you reach Callira and money to buy yourselves a ticket to Illsyorea.” I told them.
“How can we ever thank you?” the mother asked as she received the gifts.
She was now crying, her tears were soaking her cheeks and washing away the dirt and grime that had gathered over the past few days.
“In time, not now.” I replied and then absorbed the Light Crystal, the table, and the chair.
“Madame, may we at least know thy name?” asked the soldier as he bowed his head.
“Ayuseya. Ayuseya Deus.” I told them with a smile.
I had no idea if they would even make it to Callira or if they would reach Illsyorea safely, but if anything, this represented a second chance for them and a step away from the possibility of slavery.
Walking at a calm and relaxed pace, I made my way back to the camp. The RGB group inquired about my absence, but I just told them I went to hunt some whales because I got bored. The look on their faces was priceless, and so I had a good night sleep.
Note from the author: Thank you for reading this chapter, I hope you enjoyed it! Oh, and be sure to check out my other stories too!
I know some of you are troubled by my typos and at times grammar mistakes. I do edit it to the best of my abilities before posting it, but some things just slip through for various reason (mostly because before editing it, the whole chapter is a mess). However, if you have fun looking for them, go ahead and let me know where they are. On my discord server, there's a special channel just for that: help_author_edit
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