SPACE 3. For the Benefit of Muratio Star!
Ark scratched his head. He had to go on a journey with the prince to suppress a rebellion. He needed to reach Tri-Force to release the space ward and call the Murat forces currently in space to take care of the rebel army on Muratio Star.
Of course, the journey wouldn’t be easy. But the person Ark was accompanying was the prince who would become the next Horus. Even if it was a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, the prince would be accompanied by guardsmen befitting his status.
‘It would be good if I could join forces with the guardsmen.’
That’s what he thought…..
“Are they the prince’s guardsmen?”
Ark asked after Tot guided him to the centre of the city to the shrine where the prince lived. Tot nodded while scratching his head with the handle of the staff.
“Prince Kuhwen is someone who loves literature and art more than war. So he also dislikes bringing a lot of soldiers.”
“It turned out like this.”
A sigh naturally flowed from Ark’s mouth. Only 30 soldiers could be seen around the shrine. There were also 20 people in the entourage wearing the clothes of scholars and artists. They were NPCs that were no use in a situation like this. They gawked and gossiped as Tot and Ark entered the shrine.
“Is that the person that Tot-nim regards as the Elim’s Heir?”
“There is a rule that the Elim can’t be a Murat but…..”
“Isn’t he an orphan that the late Elim picked up? He is also an uncivilized human.”
“The humans are a species that have barely sneaked out from the stone age. Now a human has been selected to become the heir to the Elim?”
“The Elim are warriors that represent the Murat. In a Murat emergency, they can take the place of the commander. In other words, the prince might appoint the Elim successor as our commander. We have to take the orders of a primitive man.”
“The Zodiac took over so the selection of the Elim successor needed to be sped up. It is doubtful whether he really has value.”
And they didn’t seem to like Ark. No, to be surprised they looked at him with contempt. Ark sighed while Basak snorted and looked around roughly.
“Those bastards! Hyung-nim, just give me a command! I will be your shield and knock down everyone who is talking badly about you!”
“It doesn’t matter. They’re just making noise.”
Ark replied in a disinterested voice. The reason why Ark sighed wasn’t because he was hurt by the soldiers’ words. Ark’s heart wasn’t delicate enough to be injured by the gossip of some NPCs. It was just hopeless. He had an ominous feeling that the journey wouldn’t be smooth after seeing such soldiers. However Tot misunderstood Ark’s reaction.
“Yes, you thought well. The Elim is a person who shows things through actions, not with their mouth. If you show your ability then their attitudes will change. One of the important qualities of the Elim is not to be affected by ignorant words.”
“But where is Prince Kuhwen?”
An answer came from behind him. Tot, Basak and Ark turned around as they heard the voice. The next moment Ark’s face turned confused. There were 10 children behind him. They were covered in dirt and looked just like neighbourhood children playing in a village.
“T-this! Once again…..”
“Prince-nim, you are…..”
Ark heard the voice of an aristocrat mixed in among the children. But they were all wearing similar clothing so he didn’t know which one was the prince. Then one of the boys started to talk with an innocent smile.
“Jed, why are you looking around restlessly with such an expression? Surely you haven’t forgotten my face during the short time you were away?”
Jed was a name he heard for the first time. But judging by the atmosphere, that seemed to be Ark’s name. And that meant this child talking calmly was the prince! Ark was astonished because the prince was younger than he thought.
“What? No, huh? Then you…?”
“What? Have you really forgotten my face? Or are you teasing me after seeing the other children? If you’re doing such a thing then stop. It isn’t funny.”
The boy inflating the ball said.
“No, actually he…..”
Tot approached the boy and quickly whispered. The boy looked at Ark with an astonished expression and approached him before sighing.
“Such a thing….I heard from Tot that the test to assess the qualities of an Elim was dangerous but to even lose your memories? It is regrettable that you lost your memories but you won through such hardships and passed the test. Tot’s eyes really are sharp to be able to recognize your talent since childhood.”
“You’re overpraising me, Your Highness.”
He lowered his head with a humble expression. The entourage gathered around him then shouted.
“Oh my god! Elim’s Heir is going to be someone who lost their memories? Does that make sense? Can we rely on someone who doesn’t even remember his name in this state of emergency? Your Highness, this is ridiculous! Please cancel Jed’s heir designation!”
“Watch your words!”
The boy turned his head and shouted. Ark, the children and entourage looked surprised at the boy’s unexpected behaviour. At that moment, Ark witnessed an amazing scene. The boy’s face that looked approximately 10 years old was changing dramatically. The mischievous boy’s face changed into that of the Murat prince.
“What did you do after my Royal Father was killed by Set? The hearts of the Murat residents trembled with anxiety. The glorious Murat nobility were just worried about losing their status. In order to rescue the Murat, he pushed through the Elim successor test and lost his memories. What do your eyes see when you look at such a man?”
The boy, no the prince looked at his retinue and continued talking.
“Answer me! Do you think Jed is worthy of your contempt? Answer me! Do you have the qualifications to spurn Jed after he lost his memories? No. So close your mouths. Although I couldn’t receive the formal succession, I am still the person who will become the next Horus!”
Ark glanced at Kuhwen. When listening to the entourage, Ark had thought ‘Hah, this guy must not be able to do anything about the rude comments around him.’ Yet a children covered in dirt had managed to quell their reaction.
He needed to command the NPCs for this task so the NPC’s tendencies was very important. However, his uncomfortable feeling went away after seeing Kuhwen. Furthermore, he even felt vaguely nostalgic.
‘This NPC, it isn’t strange. Yes, Haverstein!’
He became friendly when Haverstein who was the Lord of Jackson in his early days of New World. He first knew Viscount Haverstein after his father died in the labyrinth. Ark met him after returning to Jackson with the news. At that time, Haverstein was a similar age to Kuhwen and his acceptance of his father’s death impressed Ark. He maintained a good relationship after that and helped Ark become a hero of New World.
The atmosphere around Kuhwen was very similar to when Haverstein was young.
‘I should maintain a good relationship with him.’
Fortunately Kuhwen liked Ark. After subduing his retinue, Kuhwen grabbed Ark’s hand.
“Jed, that fact that you lost your childhood memories is saddening for me. But you just lost your adoptive father so maybe your amnesia is a blessing. I also lost my father but I have no time for grief. I need to take control of the Murat or the Indus, Potamia and Oritious might break the peace. Countless Murat would then lost their children like us. It isn’t just for my sake that I want to gain the status of Horus. Nor is it revenge for my Royal Father. I need your help for the sake of peace and millions of Murat. Jed, you are the Elim’s Heir so we are now equal. Therefore I ask that help me become the Murat’s Horus. Will you lend me your power?”
“It is Ark.”
Ark replied with a smile.
“That is a name I discarded in the past that I recalled through my training.”
His name was corrected to Ark. It would become confusing if he kept on being called Jed. The retinue’s expressions turned ugly at Ark’s attitude but Kuhwen just smiled.
“Yes, my old friend Ark. Will you accept my request?”
“Of course Your Majesty.”
Ark kneeled down and replied. Right now Ark wasn’t thinking about solving the problem and returning to his galaxy. He sincerely wanted to help this young NPC.
“I will do my best to help you.”
And he answered with a resolute attitude. A 3D image of an obelisk with an inscription carved on it floated in front of him.
|<For the Benefit of Muratio Star!>
You have reached another space and time after entering a black hole and met the Murat Prince.
Currently the Murat Emperor Horus has been killed by rebels led by Set and the Murat have fallen into a state of confusion. Fortunately, the Prince was heading to the Holy Land on a pilgrimage and managed to avoid Set’s assassins along with the retinue that accompanied him. Tot who is referred to as the spiritual mentor of the Elim has said that the only way to quell the rebellion is to turn off Abraxas located in Tri-Force and continent the Murat fleet scattered throughout the universe. When you succeed in this mission, you will be able to return to your original universe.
A formal quest was registered. Then Tot approached and began to talk.
“Now, you have formally become the Elim’s Heir. You should be familiar with what type of presence the Elim is. There is a reason the Elim is called the strongest warrior in the galaxy. Take this for the moment.”
And a set of armour was pulled out. It was a set of boots, helmet and pants larger than the petite Yoda so Ark didn’t know where it was stored. No, he was being given items so he wouldn’t question it too closely….
|-You have acquired some items.
<Elim’s Training Helmet (Force +300)>, <Elim’s Training Armour (Force +300)>, <Elim’s Training Pants (Force +300)>, <Elim’s Training Boots (Force +300)>
Ark received the set of armour.
“This is the armour that the Elim’s Heir uses while training. Your foster father who was the previous Elim gave you lessons so your spirit should be prepared. It isn’t armour intended for actual fighting but it is better than the armour that general soldiers use. This should be sufficient for an Elim’s Heir.”
In Tot’s words, the armour wasn’t a magic or unique set. But in the current circumstances Ark only had a helmet. It was no different from when he first began the game with rags that only had 1 defense. However the armour set had high defense compared to the level and it also had 300 Force attached to each one.
…..It was perfect.
Ark even switched the helmet.
“Now it is time to consult about the future.”
Tot continued speaking.
“Damn! Open! Open up!”
A shout was suddenly heard from the side of the entrance. Kuhwen and Tot turned around with a doubtful expression. The guards that protected the soldiers lowered their heads and reported.
“Your Majesty, the residents have caught some suspicious people.”
“Yes, they look like animals and appear to be an unknown alien race from outside Muratio Star. They were lingering around the village.”
“Unknown alien race? How can there be such a species?”
Kuhwen frowned as his entourage murmured.
“Your Majesty, perhaps they were sent by Set to spy on us?”
“I also have the same idea. There is a ward around this planet so Muratio Star isn’t easy to enter. The fact that an unknown species has entered this place isn’t a coincidence. They might by spies or biological weapons of Set. I think we should dispose of them right away.
“Please wait a moment.”
Then Ark interrupted.
“It is better to see them first. I might know them.”
An unknown alien species was seen in Muratio Star. He had the idea that it might be one of the parties sucked into the black hole after hearing it. If would be useful to the situation even if they were from Ferguson or Hawk’s team. However the retinue was prepared to attack.
“Jed, how would you know them? How could you know an outside alien species?”
“Jed is now Ark.”
Kuhwen said while looking at his attendants.
“And my idea is also the same as Ark’s. Even if they are a suspicious alien species, we can’t simply kill them without looking at them first. That’s because Horus is a position that maintains peace among the various races in the galaxy. I can’t just kill someone without seeing them. Especially if they are someone Ark knows. I will decide after meeting them with Ark.”
“It is your right.”
Kuhwen smiled and shook his head. Meanwhile 10 locals dragged in some wagons. There were 4 alien species trapped inside. 3 of them that looked like monkeys were embracing each other while crying. And the remaining one was angry and abusing the residents with curses…..
“These bastards! Open! Open this up! Do you know who I am…..eh? H-Hyung-nim?”
Ark flinched and turned his head as he looked at a hamster! It was Ark’s subordinate, Tori.
“Why are you here by yourself? The other team members?”
“Waaaaang! H-Hyung-nim! It really is Hyung-nim. Hyung-nim, you’re alive!”
“Okay. Try and calm yourself down. Where are the other team members?”
“Ohuk! I don’t know! I don’t know! I just remember going into the black hole with you! Then I was in a forest in the middle of a desert! The Nymphe and armour was missing and we barely managed to escape the desert and reach this village when these people caught and locked us up! Hyung-nim, these guys called me a hamster! Yes? Please say something!”
Tori answered while dripping tears.
One of the monkeys that was crying suddenly raised his head and spoke in a tearful tone. And he crossed to the window grate and shouted.
“A-Ark! It really is Ark! Ark, it’s me! Me! I’m also alive!”
“Eh? What the, this monkey? Do I know you?
“Damn! It’s me! Ferguson!”
The monkeys shouted. No, they…..Ferguson, A and B….eh?
“What, what the? Did this world change you into monkeys?”
“M-monkeys! We are the Umpu Clan!”
“Umpu clan? Wait? Then you also weren’t human before?”
Come to think of it, Ark had never seen Ferguson, A and B’s appearance properly. On the grey planet he had no interest but Ferguson, A and B had been wearing thick armour so that only the eyes were exposed. No, it was strange when he thought about it. Ferguson, A and B had exceptionally long arms compared to other users. This was the reason why.
Ferguson, A and B looked like monkeys once their armour was peeled off. Ferguson, A and B’s identity was revealed out of the blue…..if he thought about the behaviour they demonstrated in the meantime, he wasn’t surprised.
“Yes! The Umpu was an alien race with low intelligence and high stamina and defense. They were innate warriors! They were excellent warriors…..no, now wasn’t the time to think of this! Anyway, along with their equipment it wasn’t easy for them to die! Ark, you should do something!”
“As expected, do you know these people?”
Ark replied to Kuhwen’s question. Once again, his team members consisted of alien species. He was worried about their safety and thought he needed to pass the quest to escape and find them. Yet instead of his team members, it was actually a hamster and the 3 monkey brothers?
Well, Tori was a non-pioneer NPC so it would be the end if he died. Other than Ellain, it was lucky that he found Tori first. While Ark was thinking with an uncomfortable expression, Kuhwen smiled and said.
“Hamster and monkeys, your companions are quite broad.”
“I wouldn’t call them my companions but……”
“If they’re killed then it would be difficult?”
“Didn’t you hear? Release them.”
Kuhwen commanded with a nod. The retinue around him jumped with surprise and exclaimed.
“Release them? We still don’t know who these people are!”
“We can’t just release them because Jed, no Ark says so! How does Ark know them?”
“And we can’t call an alien species our equals! Look at them! They’re wandering around naked without proper clothes like savages! They are like beasts! To suddenly release them……”
“What? Beasts? What did they say?”
Ferguson huffed at the words. However the retinue just continued deriding him.
“Look at this! Didn’t he just show it? That’s evidence that he is a savage beast!”
“This bastard! What did you say?”
Ferguson shouted angrily. To be honest, this wasn’t just the opinion of the retinue. This guy was weeping while captured until his situation changed. Now he was reacting to the retinue’s taunts. He really possessed the IQ of a monkey. On the other hand, the hamster showed a different standard of judgement from the monkeys.
“I’m different from those monkeys! My species isn’t dangerous at all. Just look at me! I’m all round so what type of risk can I be? My teeth are only capable to peeling seeds. Look how soft my fur is. Please touch it. If you touch then you’ll know that my species is a harmless animal! Yes!”
He was like a puppy that wagged its tail and turned on its belly. The form of Tori made even Kuhwen blush.
“Once again, the range of your companions is really wide.”
“Like I said, they aren’t really companions.”
Ark blushed and replied.
It wasn’t a compliment that he wanted. Anyway, the hamster and 3 monkey brothers were released thanks to ‘Ark’s defense+ Kuhwen’s order+ Tori’s shameful survival instinct.’
“Phew Ark, I owe you a favour.”
Ferguson approached Ark and sighed with relief. He placed on arm around Ark and spoke.
“I really almost died. Damn, I don’t know what is going on. Where is this place? Why did we have to come to a place like this?”
“Your head is at the standard of a monkey so of course you wouldn’t understand.”
“If you don’t want something to happen then take off your arm. Yes?”
“What? Did you eat something strange? Why….wait? Why have you been speaking so roughly since earlier? This child, don’t you know who I am? You might misunderstand because of this shape but I am Ferguson, Ferguson. The Ferguson you kept on praising on the grey planet. I am Ferguson who reached the 18th ranking.”
“I know, you are Ferguson.”
Ark quickly interrupted.
And looked at him with cold eyes and laughed.
“You are the type of guy that attached an anchor to my ship during when running away from the black hole.”
“I’ll say it again. If you don’t want something to happen then take off your arm. Yes?”
Ferguson hurriedly removed his arm like it was on fire. He studied Ark’s face and opened his mouth to make excuses.
Ark spoke in a low voice. Ferguson, A and B automatically jerked into the right posture. Ark stared at them in the eye before turning his body and murmured.
“We can talk about the details later. There isn’t a lot of time.”
While Ferguson, A and B stayed in that stance, Ark followed Kuhwen and his entourage into the shrine. Ferguson who was making a dumb expression suddenly woke up and shouted at his brothers.
“What, what the? You guys! Why did you listen to his command?”
“I-I’m not sure. Why is it?”
“But Hyung-nim also took that stance!”
“Ah no, it was an involuntary reflex…..”
“That’s right! I did it as well!”
“Eh? M-me too!”
“Ohhh. What the? Why did I listen to that guy? Furthermore, it is so cold. My body is trembling like I have a cold.”
“M-me too. Is it because the armour is removed?”
Ferguson, A and B trembled and stuttered. But their armour disappearing wasn’t the reason for their trembles. There was no armour but they were in a desert with 3 suns. The reason they were trembling was due to an unknown trauma deep inside them.
Ark’s chilly attitude woke up the sleeping trauma in Ferguson. However they hadn’t realized it yet.
“We can’t delay here.”
The 3 monkey brothers walked into the shrine while still feeling the trembling. Ark, Kuhwen, Toto, Basak and the retinue was gathered inside the shrine. Their purpose was obvious.
It was to find a way to Tri-Force to turn off Abraxas and quell Set’s rebellion. While waiting for Ark, no Jed, they had finished the expedition preparations. The problem was how to reach Tri-Force.
“I know that we are in a hurry.”
An aristocrat who seemed to be high ranking shook his head and said.
“It has already been 3 days since Set assassinated Horus. When the Zodiac rebelled, they blocked off information and are also periodically contacting Pharaohs from different villages around Muratio Star. And he is also aiming for Abraxas. If the Pharaohs’ fleets are gathered then Abraxas won’t be able to hold up for long.
The name Pharaoh might mean a king in ancient Egypt but the Pharaohs in the Murat were more like castle lords or governors. The Pharaoh that Ark found in the Beltana pyramid was the same thing. He was a Murat who managed the territory of Beltana. Anyway.
“Set has perfectly controlled all the villages on Muratio Star. And if Set occupies all the major cities before the space fleet enters then we’ll have to admit defeat. Because a devil is sleeping underneath Muratio Star’s main city.
The retinue spilled saliva when talking.
But Ark was composed. What was the point of drooling or speaking with a shaking voice? Basak explained in a low voice to an ignorant Ark.
“A long time ago a crisis came to Muratio Star. Hundreds of years ago, the core of Muratio Star suddenly had a nuclear fission reaction and was rapidly collapsing. At that time, a device was installed underneath the major cities of Muratio Star in order to stabilize the core. That device is the devil that they are talking about.”
Ark immediately understood the situation after hearing Basak’s words.
The Murat had the scientific power to destroy an entire power. That scientific power was a double edged sword. It was a power that could deal a fatal blow to themselves. This was why Muratio Star was covered with Abraxas and prohibited the use of any machines that were weapons. A machine equivalent to a weapon would just be a threat to their peaceful world.
That’s why the soldiers in the Muratio Star villages were weaker compared to those in the galaxy. It was also why the space fleet could suppress the rebellion once they arrived on Muratio Star. It wasn’t possible to stop cannons with swords.
But there was a reason Set rebelled. That was the devil core control system that the aristocrat was talking about. It was a device that could collapse the core of Muratio Star. If he occupied all the major cities and took control of the core system then it was no difference from holding Muratio Star hostage.
However Kuhwen’s current power wasn’t strong enough to stop Set from occupying the major cities. They had no choice but to call the space fleet to stop Set’s rebellion.
“This is no different from life or death. We’ve already wasted a day of our valuable time waiting for this human.”
‘…..In the end?’
Ark had an upset expression. They seemed to have already made up their minds about Ark. The repeated attitude of the attendants aggravated him. They were probably like this before Ark even came. These people didn’t know Ark. They were people who knew Ark as Jed. They were unaware that he wasn’t Jed anymore.
Fortunately Ark had a solid foundation. Kuhwen changed from the dirt infested clothes into something inscribed with a hawk.
“I have decided. Tot and Ark isn’t to blame. In addition, it has already happened. Now is now the time to worry about the past. It is better to refrain from any unnecessary words.”
Kuhwen looked at Tot and nodded.
“Tot, go ahead.”
“Hrmm hrmm, understood.”
Tot hit the ground with his staff while coughing lightly. Light spread and sand piled on the table that Kuhwen and his companions were sitting around. And the map soon formed a 3D map. The desert occupied most of the areas but there were also forests and valleys scattered around Muratio Star. Tot pointed to a dark spot and spoke.
“I think we have to pass through here.”
“W-wait? Isn’t that the Valley of Darkness?”
“Oh my god! Tot, are you insane? Don’t you know what type of place the Valley of Darkness is?”
“I’m aware. The Valley of Darkness if a zone infested with dangerous monsters and an unpredictable climate and terrain. Armies have been mobilized several times and they’ve never succeeding in passing through it.”
“Yet you’re still saying that?”
“Right now we only have 80 troops. There are only 30 regular guardsmen. The remaining 50 are the city’s guards. Hundreds of soldiers couldn’t pierce through the Valley of Darkness yet you want to try with just this number?”
“However we still have to go there.”
Tot said in a calm voice.
“It has been 3 days since Set took over and he has already taken over many major cities. Right now we are in the Minaheim neighbourhood. At this rate, it will only be a matter of time until Set takes control of all the cities. The other threat left to Set is Abraxas. So we have to try everything to access the control device.”
“Set doesn’t know that the control system is in Tri-Force.”
“But Set knows that another control device exists. And that it is in one of the scattered Holy Lands. I think this is the main reason why Set’s occupation of the major cities is slower. Perhaps a large number of his forces are mobilized to block all paths to the Holy Lands.”
“But Set won’t think about a route through the Valley of Darkness?”
Kuhwen laughed after hearing Tot’s words.
“Yes, it is such a dangerous place that just hearing the names caused your attendants to jump. If it wasn’t for your Majesty’s lineage of Horus then I would never think it was possible.”
“I guess so.”
Kuhwen nodded his head.
“P-please wait a moment Your Majesty!”
“Yes, the problem isn’t that simple!”
“We have received reports that various soldiers from the cities under attack have escaped and are gathering. Even if we break through the Valley of Darkness, Set’s troops with also be stationed at the Holy Land. The soldiers are moving through various routes to this area so wouldn’t it be safer to move after they join us?”
“I’ve also guessed that Set has stationed soldiers at the Holy Land. However it will take too much time if we wait for the soldiers to gather. So we will set another destination for them. They will join us on the other side of the Valley of Darkness.”
“If we fail then it is the end of Muratio Star!”
“Set won’t even need to take control of every major city.”
Kuhwen looked around at his entourage before saying in a firm voice.
“I know better than anyone about the meaning of my life after my Royal Father died. But my life is nothing compared to all the people on Muratio Star. Horus exists for the people. To save my life while endangering my people is too outrageous. And……’
Kuhwen looked at Ark and laughed.
“I believe in Ark the Elim’s Heir who has returned.”