“Noc, do you know who it was who summoned you to this world?”
“I have no idea.”
I had previously learned from the League of Reincarnators that Soleste was the first to be summoned to this world. I was curious whether he knew who it was that summoned him, but I didn’t have any high expectations.
“Why didn’t you summon others?”
“Once someone is summoned here, they can’t go back to their previous world. I figured that many people wouldn’t want that so it doesn’t actually succeed often.”
“Why is that?”
When I try to summon someone, I can communicate with their soul. I need to get their permission or else it has a very low chance of succeeding. Also I can only use it once a year.
Was it the same for when Lorina crossed over?”
“Did I also do the same?”
“If I remember correctly then yes.”
I had no recollection of such an event so I was curious if I had actually had a conversation with Soleste.
“What did we talk about?”
“It was a simple one, told you that I was going to summon you and asked you what your opinion was. You then asked if you could escape from the darkness. When I answered that it would be possible, then the summoning went through. Your soul left the dimension of darkness where it had been sealed away.”
After that point I pretty much knew the rest, I had entered the body of a skeleton soldier and had gained consciousness.
“So does that mean that when you summon a soul you need to have a body prepared?”
“Right, I personally was summoned into a body that was brain dead.”
“Then what about our bodies in the previous world?”
“I believe that they would have experienced death.”
“Did I truly die in that World?”
Noc looked back at me silently. Despite having finally learned how my soul had been summoned into this world, I didn’t have any significant emotional reaction.
“Understood, if I ever need you to instruct me further with regards to summoning, I will call for you. Where will you be staying from now on?”
“ I prefer to remain here. If you require my presence, simply call for me and I shall arrive by your side at once.”
He understood that as an ArchLich in a large city, he would only be an inconvenience to me. Of course it was even more true for a DemiLich such as myself, but I was a special case that would stay locked up in my tower. After granting him permission to remain in his crypt, I headed back to my observatory and stayed with Valenor.
“Ho ho, Lorina seems to be suffering at the moment.”
“Come on Johra, I also want to watch her torment! I hate her and want to see her suffer!”
I continued to watch Lorina struggle as the undead mages I had unleashed chased her down tirelessly. Lorina would only engage them for a short period before choosing to run away because she knew that she couldn’t beat them.
‘I really wish there was a recording function for this, if only I could watch these scenes over and over again. Compared to here even I was luckier in my first few days as a skeleton.’
Lorina’s torment was never ending, although she had an undead’s body and wouldn’t tire nor want for food and water, the same could not be said for her mental state. The idea of constantly being pursued by a higher level monster was quite daunting. It was the perfect torture that could go on forever if she didn’t manage to somehow improve her strength.
Naturally the easiest solution was to simply turn around and fight it. Even if she died, it would be a welcome change to this endless torture. But I knew her to well, I understood that her pride and desire for revenge drove her to never give up, allowing me to always have a channel to relieve my boredom.
She began to herself, finally realizing that she had caused her colleagues’ deaths.
Her mental situation was currently too unstable and was unable to come to terms with these things. Her solution was simply to attribute all the problems in her life to Johra, and simply focus on revenge.
She clearly wasn’t aware how harmful this was to her, and that she was now very likely to fall on the path of darkness. Johra could notice these small changes because he knew everything about her.
‘She’s definitely headed towards evil, was it simply luck on my part that I didn’t do the same?’
‘ No Johra, it’s a choice, you were always in control.’
‘Perhaps Gnoss, but I also feel that there was a certain amount of chance involved.’
I had to admit to myself that despite what Gnoss had said, I had also come close to falling to the darkness.
“Well… it’s just a hypothetical.”
Valenor gave an inquisitive look, but I just continued to casually stroke her hair with the back of my hand.
Today’s Necropolis was a thriving city. The creatures which had previously been hunted and persecuted by the humans had banded together and created a metropolis which was the envy of all.
‘Lord, there’s a rumors flying around which you might be interested in.’
‘What is it Alpeon?’
I had instructed Alpeon to organize a spy network to span the continent and gather useful information, but this was the first report I had received.
‘It concerns the Elves which had lost the war.’
‘Oh interesting, so what is going on with these Elves?’
‘They began being hunted by the humans and are now being sold as slaves. They are being treated as an inferior species because of their audacity to attack Necropolis.’
I was excited by the news. The Elves had gone unpunished after betraying me, so I was still undecided as to how I wanted to punish them.
‘Lord, should we accepts these gifts from the nobles?’
‘Indeed, following your incredible victory over the golem of destruction, the kingdoms have taken it upon themselves to enslave Necropolis’ enemies and present them to you as gifts.
I was indeed very interested in owning Elven slaves because they had been a race that had betrayed me and I felt that their enslavement was justified.
‘Good, create a shelter to house these Elven slaves.’
‘Should we consider them as livestock?’
‘Indeed, our hospitality shown to them will be on the level on animals.’
Necropolis’ architecture was sublime, filled with carefully crafted pieces of art by Dwarven artisans. It was decided that the slaves pen which would be no different from a chicken coop, would ruin our image, so it was built more on the outskirts.
‘Alpeon, let’s also make a gladiator’s pit.’
It had been a suggestion from Valenor. She mentioned that despite living together in harmony, most of these creatures still had a violent and bloodthirst nature. Extended periods of peace was an unlikely scenario so they would need an outlet to let loose.
Gladiator fight would be welcomed by all and be a new attraction for the city. Also, the loss of life wasn’t a concern with my new Resurrection Song.
‘I will do as you say Lord.’
Although I had only asked for a single gladiator pit, after consulting with the heads of the other departments, they built 5 large coliseums like the one in Rome.
It had been an idea from the Gnomes to rank them in order of strength and have a fixed schedule, allowing it to become a huge tourist attraction. Large inns and restaurants were built around the coliseums that had been constructed on the outskirts of town, catering to countless tourists every day.
Necropolis had previously been a city that focused on production, but after the coliseums had been built, it also became a famous tourist destination. People came from around the world to watch the fights, and aspiring warriors came here to make a name for themselves.
“Wow it’s so crowded all of a sudden.”
“Johra should I go and burn them?”
“No need, wouldn’t Alpeon get angry?” I answered.
“I’ll just make Alpeon deal with the aftermath.”
“Although it’s a bit overcrowded, it is indeed fun to watch the gladiators fight.”
The name of the highest ranked arena was Necroforge. The name was inspired by all the heated battles that were fought there and only the strongest and most famous gladiators had the privilege of fighting in it. The fights in that coliseum were always very popular. Nobles came from all the kingdoms to buy front row seats and I would also join in on the fun occasionally.
“I think it’s funny when I see you fight with your avatar, can I also join?”
Valenor was unable to control her own strength, if she were to join she was sure to be disappointed, but more importantly it would be a disaster for all the other gladiators.
“Okay, but only sometimes and make sure to reduce your strength a lot.”
Even if I disagreed with the idea, I wasn’t able to flat out reject her.
If someone were to die, then I would have to bring them back to life. If it happened too often then me resurrection ability would become known to all which would be annoying. Valenor definitely had to control her strength or else she would cause me an endless amount of trouble.
‘Lord, 2000 slaves will be arriving tomorrow. Would you like more or is it sufficient?’
Alpeon had just messaged me telepathically. Reducing their numbers meant killing them. Although it sounded terrible, I felt it was fine considering their betrayal.
‘How many slaves can we currently accommodate?’
‘At the moment our slaves pen can house 5000, but it is still under construction. Once it’s been completed we can hold twice that number.’
‘Ok, then just accept as many slaves as you can and allow them to participate in the lowest ranked coliseum.
‘I think it should be fun to give those slaves a chance for freedom.’
‘Will you truly give scum like them a chance?’
‘Well we can’t be cruel and rob them of all hope now can we? It would be more enjoyable to see them struggle for their freedom.’
‘Okay, I will do as you said.’
I was making an evil smile but my skull fae was unable to have any facial expressions.
“Johra, why did it get cold all of a sudden?”
Valenor was very perceptive, but I couldn’t tell her about my evil smile.
“Um… maybe it’s the change in the seasons.”
“Ah, it must be that.”
The autumn harvest season was coming to an end and winter was just around the corner. Valenor and I went out for a ride to enjoy the changing of the seasons.