Viewing as Guest
Chapter 06: Efforts & Rewards
Date Published: January 27th, 2015
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〘〙= Status, Combat Arts & Magical Spells
〚〛= Internal Thoughts
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Efforts & Rewards
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Part 1: Dragon-Fire
Part 2: Boardroom
Part 3: Cash is King
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Part 1: Dragon-Fire
Windhoff; a Town 9521km from Vhon. A Flock of Wyverns circles the skies over the Town and that causes the Town’s Military Grade Heavy Machine Gun & Military Grade Theatre Defence Artillery to roar to life. Taking aim at the Wyverns the Town’s weapons released their fury, but the Wyverns simply moved higher in preparation for their attack.
A Wyvern’s skin is tough enough to withstand even Military Grade Theatre Defence Artillery for a short period of time, and boosted by a Mana Shield only a Military Grade Heavy Artillery can convince the Wyverns to move away from that particular target. As such the Wyverns barely noticed Windhoff’s defensive weapons and began to attack.
Dragon Fire strewed down from the Heavens creating a loud BOOOM as it collided with Windhoff’s Barrier.
BOOOM! BOOOM! BOOOM! BOOOM!
The inhabitants of Windhoff seem to understand that there is no Salvation and the Teleport Platforms around the Adventurers Guild Tower become active. An evacuation is ordered.
- - -
Carefully watching at Arvin’s Workshop Elrick is surprised by the evacuation.
Elrick : " Ah! I thought you said the Psionic Barrier would hold?"
Arvin : " It will Hold!"
Elrick : " Then why the …?"
Arvin predictably anticipates Elrick’s question.
Arvin : " Evacuation?"
Elrick : " Yes!"
Arvin : " The short answer is Dragon-Fire!"
Elrick : " But you said …"
Again Arvin knows what Elrick is about to ask.
Elrick : " But they’re not True Dragons?"
Arvin : " But they still have Dragon-Fire, and that is not to be taken lightly!"
Elrick : " Does Dragon-Fire make that much of a difference?"
Arvin : " Dragon-Fire is a Reverse Conversion Mana Chain!"
Elrick : " Reverse Conversion Mana Chain?"
Arvin : " Right! Few of you Atlantians have bothered to study Magic because your bodies will be reset to the level of 8 year olds by the end of the test deployment you call Open Beta."
Elrick : " 8 year old?"
Suddenly something clicked in Elrick’s mind and he now understood the context of the power difference between Users and Natives.
Elrick : " Well? …"
Arvin : " Hehehehe! It doesn’t surprise me! Your bodies may look like those of adults but in terms of experience they’re similar to children. And that’s probably related to the complex relationship between EXP and soul"
BOOOM! BOOOM! BOOOM! BOOOM!
Their attention goes back to the visuals of Windhoff as the Wyverns continue to pour down Dragon-Fire. Screams of people rushing to the Guild Tower can be heard with every impact.
Elrick : " No!"
Arvin : " They are a despicable lot Wyverns, and armed with Dragon-Fire they are an impossible enemy for most of us! Because Dragon-Fire is a Reverse Conversion Mana Chain it’s the highest level Fire Magic. Most magic Spells release Mana into the environment as concentrated Mana converts into ambient Mana, but Dragon-Fire converts ambient Mana into Magic Fire; that’s why it’s classed as Reverse Conversion Mana Chain."
Elrick : " Like the Psionic Barrier?"
Arvin : " Yes!"
As the impacts of Dragon-Fire on the Barrier continue the town seems covered in fire.
Arvin : " Yes!"
Elrick : " The Psionic Barrier can stop Magic Fire but the heat it generates."
Arvin : " And that’s why in this situation Evacuation is the only option."
Elrick : " Ice! Why not use Ice magic?"
Arvin : " When you study magic you’ll understand why Ice cannot shield you from Dragon-Fire!"
Elrick : " Steam?"
Arvin : " Magic can’t materialize something from nothing! Magic has to obey the laws of Physics and that means that to make Ice you need water, and forming Ice uses Mana to extract heat from water. High quality Ice can be used as a weapon against fire magic wielders but it’s a terribly poor shield against Magic Fire."
Elrick : " I see!"
Arvin : " Small Towns have no defence against Dragon-Fire!"
Elrick : " Are they teleporting back to Grandeur?"
Arvin : " The Evacuation protocol sends you to the nearest available location; it’s not a directed teleport as such but an emergency manoeuvre!"
Elrick : " What happens to Atlantians?"
Arvin : " Since all of you have Bifröst Realm Keys to access other worlds you can choose to evacuate straight to Atlantis!"
Elrick : " Will the Wyverns come to Vhon?"
Arvin : " I don’t know! I don’t even know why they’re attacking Windhoff! Although they’re sentient Demons Wyverns don’t normally cooperate with other Demons; Wyverns can be considered high ranking Demons. Since the Ragnarök Demons tend to stick to their own kin and are antagonistic to Demons not belonging to their type or race. So why are the Serpent-Men acting in concert with Wyverns?"
Elrick : " Haven’t they worked together before?"
Arvin : " Yes! Orcs, Goblins, Serpent-Men, Lizardmen, Trolls and various DemiHuman Hybrid Demon Races have on occasion combined forces against us, but Wyverns only answer to the call of Dragons"
Elrick : " Are you saying that there are Dragons on the Knox Continent?"
Arvin : " No Dragon would be stupid enough to come to Ado!"
Elrick : " Stupid?"
Arvin : " Dragons are probably the only Demons that pose a direct threat to the Continentals; so any action by Dragons would solicit an immediate and Violent Response! In particular the Alvs and the Dark Elves! The Dark Elves have proven to be particularly adept at killing Draconic Species, and past incursions by Dragons on Ado were annihilated by the Dark Elves."
Elrick : " Would the Dark Elves respond to the Wyverns?"
Arvin : " Only to a large scale Wyvern attack!"
Elrick : " Really? They would just stand on the sidelines?"
Arvin : " Both the Alvs and the Dark Elves rarely leave the Asgard Continent! In fact until the arrival of Atlantians we hadn’t seen a Dark Elf for thousands of years. Though I’m told that the Alvs and the Dark Elves actively join expeditions to other worlds in order to frustrate the ambitions of the enemies of the Asgard Continental Republic."
They watched in silence as the temperature of Windhoff steadily rose causing paper to spontaneously ignite. The people of Windhoff had no choice but to flee abandoning everything they’d built.
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Before Elrick fell asleep he used the clan communication system to instruct Grinder to use the Guild Tower to teleport back to Atlantis with the Serpent-Men Items as soon as they were repaired. The clan communication is like a Voice Mail system and doesn’t offer true telepathy as that requires Psionic Magic. However for 2 Gold Coins one can purchase a Magic Item similar to a Cell-Phone for communication.
The Item Auction Centre is on Atlantis and to list Items for Auction they have to be transported through the Atlantis Bifröst since logging out of Realm Eternal simply puts the Body in an Inter-Dimensional Pocket. Bringing Items to the Auction house situated in Atlantis requires passage through the Bifröst which Costs 50 Silver coins while teleporting within Realm Eternal Costs 100 Silver coins.
And so after supplying Arvin with his High Elf Blood Elrick made preparation to safeguard assets in case the situation in Vhon turned for the worst. The situation around the Towns in the Knox was tense after everyone watched the town of Windhoff essentially destroyed by Dragon-Fire. Everyone was afraid and with good reason, but the natives were more scared as their lives were at stake.
Elrick admitted to himself that he had taken the encirclement of Vhon like an event, but after seeing the effects of Dragon-Fire he knew that the Army approaching Vhon was no Game-like Event. A life and death struggle would take place with the fate of the Knox continent in the balance, and to make things worse the Users would undoubtedly abandon the natives to their Fate.
〚Elrick : " Decisions have to be made; do we Stay or Run?"〛
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Part 2: Boardroom
The talk with Arvin had shown Elrick that he had vast gaps in information regarding the history of the planet Ado, and up until this point he had assumed that the Asgard Continental Republic had kept a tight lid on Demon activities, but now he knew that there were times in the past when the Continentals were either unable or unwilling to put down Demon incursions.
But the frightening part of the scenario was the prospect of all the Demon groups being controlled by a single authority; possibly a Dragon. This would mean that Elrick had made a dangerous miscalculation about Starlight Spark’s ability to earn money through Realm Eternal. If the Demons are organized by Dragons they would become far too dangerous to deal with on a regular basis.
That meant Starlight Spark could not venture into the less secure regions, but that’s exactly where Starlight Spark needed to go to earn massive profits quickly. But if it means being wiped out every time you encounter Demons then Starlight Spark will find it hard to turn a profit after Open Beta. Elrick knew that he couldn’t count on the resolve of the employees thanks to the high pain setting in Realm Eternal.
The Avatar in Realm Eternal is designed to feel as real as possible and the fear of pain is a very real component of the Alternate Reality Simulation, and despite complaints from professional gamers Phoenix Consortium would not back down from the concept of an Alternate Reality Simulation; Consistently stating that Realm Eternal is not a Game.
A lot of famous professional gamers rated Realm Eternal negatively after a few days of Open Beta claiming that Realm Eternal offers the worst Avatar growth path of all VR platforms. The fact that most famous professional gamers rated Realm Eternal negatively was used as a positive in advertising campaigns of the Phoenix Consortium by emphasizing that Realm Eternal is not a Game.
Elrick had realized ahead of time that the Phoenix Consortium wasn’t aiming Realm Eternal at the MMO gaming community but at the Sci-Fi & Fantasy community. It was a choice between 120 million active online gamers and over a Billion Sci-Fi & Fantasy fans, and since there were already over 10 Top Class VRMMORPG in the market the Phoenix Consortium made the logical choice.
People used to the online gaming environment found Realm Eternal incredibly frustrating during Open Beta and they had many complaints; monsters would run when attacked, animals made sneak attacks, there are hardly any item drops from monsters, it’s hard to gain EXP, when you die you loose all equipped items and natives can even take your inventory, it’s to hard and so on and so on.
What the Online Gaming Community was experiencing was an environment that didn’t revolve around them. In a way Realm Eternal was similar to the real world and the Online Gaming Community didn’t like it, and that had to do with the fact that many of them were used to a relatively easy environment that catered to their every whim without consequences.
However Realm Eternal was different and the capacity of users to affect the environment was limited by numbers, skills, wealth and their efforts. Just like in real life the amount of money spent affected the outcomes, and users who bought high quality equipment and Items were able to quickly hunt more lucrative prey yielding larger rewards.
The power of money was not the exclusive right of users and natives of the Realm Eternal who had the wherewithal used their wealth to gain an advantage in Hunting, Magic and Crafting. Just like in real life the children of the wealthy had an enormous advantage over those less fortunate than themselves, and that meant users who are similarly resourced would have a similar advantage.
Fortunately the things the Online Gamers didn’t like about Realm Eternal were what interested the Sci-Fi & Fantasy community. Without the gaming architecture the Sci-Fi & Fantasy community could immerse themselves in the Culture and Customs of the Realm Eternal.
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In the aftermath of the Wyvern attack on Windhoff the atmosphere in Vhon was tense and after leaving Arvin’s Workshop Elrick wondered the streets of Vhon noting the reactions of the natives to the current situation. Just as Elrick had predicted the users were preparing to leave Vhon and many of them were gathered near the Adventurers Guild Tower.
Elrick was waiting for the other Executives of Starlight Spark to log back in and the 4 to 5 Hours RWT while most of them were eating, bathing and relaxing amounted to 20 to 25 hours in RET. Elrick himself only logged out for 2 hours a day, and that meant a long wait for the Starlight Spark members to regroup. Companionship was one of the major reasons Elrick invited his friends to be Executives of Starlight Spark.
The Executives of Starlight Spark had all taken 10 days of unpaid leave from work in order to focus the full attention on Open Beta. However after Open Beta the situation would get more complicated and Elrick would have to design methods to pass the time in Realm Eternal.
Elrick was slightly relieved when the Clan communication system indicated that most of the Executives of Starlight Spark had returned and they could begin their meeting.
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The Executives of Starlight Spark had rented a conference room at the Adventurers Guild Tower and that’s where they were holding their Board-meeting. They could have held the Board-meeting in Atlantis but they didn’t want to risk a lock-out in the event of an attack on Vhon. Of course Elrick is the Chairman of the Board.
After the formalities were completed Elrick was getting to the heart of the discussions.
Elrick : " All in all Our Realm Eternal Account stands at 7904657 Copper Coins in RWM it’s $1580931.6 USD. If we take into account the 386 Gold Coins in Combat Equipment we’ve generated $2352931.6 in USD in less than ten days"
Bowden : " 2.35 million dollars in less than 9 days!"
Elrick : " We will need to keep about half in Realm Eternal, but I’ve already made arrangements to convert half into Real World Money."
The room goes silent as they realize that there could be a large payout for them.
Armlet : " Are you planning a dividend?"
Boot : " How are you getting it out?"
Axil : " Phoenix doesn’t convert REM into RWM"
Elrick : " Third party transactions"
Arrow : " You want to sell Gold at a discount?"
Spear : " It depends on the discount!"
Elrick : " The discount should be around 2% in the Current Environment."
Grinder : " Current Environment?"
Elrick : " Right! Because I’m a Phoenix Consortium shareholder I receive quarterly updates, and the quarterly report I received 2 days ago stated that users have spent an average of $507 on their Avatars generating a little over $750million in revenue for the Phoenix Consortium."
Staffen : " Why would they reveal it so early? … Oh!"
Staffen realised the answer to his own question.
Elrick : " Phoenix Consortium revealed their cash inflows to attract investments into Atlantis! Since the release of the numbers businesses have tripled their investments in Atlantis, and almost every Major Corporation is setting up an office in Atlantis."
Swordin : " That would mean a massive cash injection for Phoenix Consortium!"
Hammerin : " Probably more than the users put in!”
Elrick : " By my Estimation businesses should put in over a billion dollars in Atlantis Real Estate property in the coming months"
Bowden : " A billion?"
Elrick : " Virtual Reality isn’t like the traditional MMORPG; the difference is like night and day! In the traditional MMORPG you’re looking at a screen and that means that you’re detached from the Avatar, as such spending hard earned money on an Avatar is difficult, and most would be content to Grind, but in Virtual Reality you are your Avatar. What I mean is in Virtual Reality it doesn’t feel like your spending money on an Avatar it feels like your spending money on yourself and that is a world of difference!"
Axil : " So people are more willing to spend Real World Money!"
Grinder : " They would have to have money to spend in the first place!"
Elrick : " And they do! The people who can afford to by capsules are by no means poor. Even the Hipno Pods at $2000 are beyond the reach of 65% of the population of the world, but that means that nearly all the people in Virtual Reality platforms belong to the Middle Class and higher. To put it in context the Top 1% owns over 40% of the wealth in the world, and by the same measure the Top 35% own over 90% of the planet’s wealth. Therefore for the Top 35% spending a few hundred dollars a month in Virtual Reality isn’t a noticeable financial spend. That means the Virtual Reality industry will be worth over a trillion Dollars USD by the end of the Fifth year. All thanks to the higher LSM!"
Swordin : " So it’s not a question of numbers of people but the right kind of people?"
Elrick : " Exactly! The wealthy need a place where they can indulge their eccentricities without being judged and platforms like Atlantis & Realm Eternal are perfect for someone with a few hundred thousand a year in leisure spending to indulge themselves without risks. They can travel to exotic locations without risking real life & limb, and they can buy extravagant property and live like kings in Realm Eternal without worrying about negative publicity."
Hammerin : " The rich will pour money into Realm Eternal; thereby taking the opportunity to purchase slightly cheaper gold!”
Elrick : " Phoenix Consortium has concluded agreement with nearly every major Financial Corporation and because of this nearly all Major Banks are opening branches in Atlantis and Realm Eternal in order to link client bank accounts with Realm Eternal accounts, but the goal is to facilitate the exchange of Realm Eternal Money for Real World Money. This infrastructure isn’t in place yet so after Open Beta I’ll be travelling to London to meet some of my contacts in order to set up transaction accounts. Of course that’s only One of the Goals, and I’ll be soliciting some protection business form them and their clients."
Bowden : " Protection Business?"
Axil : " Are you talking about a Bodyguard Service?"
Elrick : " After Open Beta hunting revenues could be as low as 7% of what they are now, and so we’ll need to explore every potentially profitable avenue. I have already Started the process of recruiting a number of Street walkers to act as Starlight Spark Courtesans.”
They’re all shocked by what Elrick has just said.
Grinder : " Hookers?"
Elrick : " We will provide whatever service is needed, and I’ll basically be rescuing these girls from the streets and giving them valid legitimate employment that doesn’t put their lives at risk. The rest of Starlight Spark will do whatever it takes to earn income! While I’m on the subject we can’t have a repeat of what happened at the Battle of Twin Peaks; I can’t have any of you questioning my judgement in front of the employees and in the middle of an enemy encounter! As Executives of Starlight Spark you have a right to question me as the MD as well as Chairman of the Board, but that has to happen within the Boardroom!"
Arrow : " We can’t even voice our opinions?"
Elrick : " You can voice your opinions within the Boardroom! The next time any of you breaks protocol I will remove you as Executives of Starlight Spark!"
They all look at Elrick and realize that he’s serious, and they shouldn’t push him on this issue. For the first time they feel like they are talking to Elrick the Quantitative Analyst and now MD & Chairman of Starlight Spark.
Bowden : " Do we Stay or Go?"
Grinder : " Staying is needlessly risky!"
Elrick : " I agree why risk the money we’ve already earned."
Swordin : " I think we need to stay; even if it’s only to observe the battle!"
Elrick : " Does all of Starlight Spark need to stay? Wouldn’t the Executives be enough?"
Hammerin : " They need to watch whatever battle takes place!”
Bowden : " It’s a learning opportunity!"
Axil : " We can always evacuate if things get dangerous for us!"
Grinder : " And there might be opportunities to loot Items!"
Elrick : " Then it’s decided; we Stay!"
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Part 3: Cash is King
When the Executives of Starlight Spark came out of the Adventurers Guild Tower they were met by the sight of a Town in panic. There were emergency notices everywhere.
Elrick and the other Executives of Starlight Spark read the Notice.
Axil : " Just 2 Gold Coins?"
Bowden : " That’s $4000 isn’t it?"
Grinder : " But you’d have to risk your equipment!"
Elrick : " I guess more information is necessary!"
Just then one of the Vhon Guards stood before them.
Guard : " Lord Marques Vhon has requested that all Clan Chiefs gather at his home immediately for consultations. I’m to be your guide."
Though the Guard said Request Elrick understood that he didn’t have a choice; attendance was compulsory.
Elrick : " Am I aloud to bring people?"
Guard : " Every Clan Chief is allowed 2 attendants!"
Elrick : " Bowden, Axil; with me! The rest of you; make the necessary preparations!"
The other Executives of Starlight Spark nodded or said “Understood” in acknowledgement.
Bowden turned to look at the Guard.
Bowden : " Shall we go?"
Guard : " Please follow me!"
And so they followed the Guard to the Lord’s House.
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Surprisingly Lord Marques Vhon’s Mansion wasn’t the largest in Town, but it was certainly the Oldest. The Lord’s Mansion was filled with beautiful artworks indicative of the standing of a Lord. The walls were adorned with paintings detailing the long Noble history of the Vhon Family. Apparently the first Lord of Vhon was Marques Vhon’s Father, but the Vhon family holds domain over a number of Villages in the Grandeur Continent in the territory of the Vale Kingdom.
As they reached the hall Elrick could see that over a hundred and seventy people were already in the hall indicating over Fifty Clan Chiefs are present. Elrick estimated that a little over half were users.
Once all the Clan Chiefs arrive Lord Marques Vhon’s steps onto the podium.
Lord Vhon : " Thank you all for coming! I am Marques Vhon; Lord of this humble Town. For forty years the hearty folk of Vhon have eked out a living here in the frontiers, and together we have faced countless incursions by the vile Demonic Species. But in all that time we have never faced the numbers that are upon us now; at least not since the Great War that opened the Knox Continent as a new frontier. Back then the armies of Vale with the full backing of the kingdom and the tacit support of the Continentals drove back the Demon Armies in bloody battles until the stalemate was finally broken by the intervention of the Elf-Dragon King of the High Elves. Since then we established Towns and Vale armies have fought off Demon Raid after Demon Raid."
Lord Vhon takes a pause to drink some water.
Lord Vhon : " With the installation of the Adventurers Guild Towers in Towns of the Knox Continent a new dawn broke out in the Knox Continent. The Asgard Continental Republic gifted Vale Kingdom the Adventurers Guild Towers in recognition of Vale’s efforts to take the frontiers from the Demons. And for our part we agreed to host Atlantians as the Continentals test the efficacy of this new strategy against the Demons."
Again Lord Vhon takes a pause to drink some water.
Lord Vhon : " I must confess that After seeing your Attribute Stats when you Arrived I doubted that you would be as instrumental to the fight against the Demons as the Continentals Proclaimed! But I stand corrected! All Atlantians started with the Attribute Stats of an 8 year Old, but through shear Effort most of you have raised your Attribute Stats to that of 12 year olds, and some have even reached the Attribute Stats of 15 year olds. The pace of your hunting is something we’ve never seen; some of you hunt day and night continuously. To grow so much in just 35 days is unheard of, and it’s probably a side effect of your Immortality in this Realm; you have no fear of death so you risk your lives hunting dangerous monsters."
Again Lord Vhon takes a pause to drink some water, and this time he can see pride in the faces of the Atlantians.
Lord Vhon : " Just yesterday I heard something impossible, and were it not for the Serpent-Men Bodies I never would have believed it! The Starlight Spark Clan Chief Elrick Starlight named it The Battle of Twin Peaks. Something unbelievable took place just 7km outside Vhon; Starlight Spark’s First Ranger Cavalry numbering 217 partly supported by 32 local hunters fought and defeated a 57 strong Serpent-Men Scouting Group. It’s like a group of Children Defeating a Battle hardened Army?"
While Lord Vhon takes a pause the other people in the room turn their gazes to the trio of Elrick, Bowden and Axil.
Lord Vhon : " Lead by their Notable Commander Bowden Starlight the enigmatic Starlight Spark’s First Ranger Cavalry fought a high tempo battle and overcame seemingly insurmountable Odds and defeated a well armed and well trained Serpent-Men Scouting Group. I can only conclude that wherever you Atlantians come from you are familiar with large scale warfare and you are knowledgeable in combined arms warfare tactics. It is that Capability I seek now; that tremendous capacity for Courage!"
People like being praised and Lord Vhon can see pride in the faces of the Atlantians, he knows that he has convinced most of the Atlantians.
Lord Vhon : " All of you in this room have at your command formidable warriors, and though I believe the Psionic Barrier will hold as Lord of Vhon I must prepare for the worst. Vale Kingdom authorities also believe that the Psionic Barrier will hold, and because of that 2 Gold Coins is all I’m allowed to offer you in Monetary Remuneration. Every Clan that participates will receive recognition from Vale Kingdom, and those who distinguish themselves in battle will be recommended for Knighthood. I will personally send the Letter that will Arrive long after the Atlantian Attributes Stats & Skills have been reset. Vale has 200 Soldiers Stationed in Vhon, and Vhon has 245 Guards; hardly enough to fight off an entire Army. And so I humble myself and beg your Aid!"
There is sum murmur as a consensus is formed in the room, and Elrick could see a lot of nods and he understood them to mean that most had elected to fight. Eyes turned to Elrick to see what he’ll do.
In his normal state Elrick would have been vulnerable to the emotional effects of a Noble Lord pleading for help, but Elrick was wearing the immature body of a High Elf and in this form Elrick is dead to all logic that does not advance his own goals. Elrick could see that Bowden and Axil had been swept up in the emotions of the moment and it was up to him to rein them in.
And so Elrick raised his hand and Lord Vhon acknowledges him.
Lord Vhon : " Speak!"
Elrick : " Forgive my interruption your Lordship; I have some queries the answers to which will affect my decision."
Lord Vhon : " Go on!"
Elrick : " I can understand the remuneration restrictions placed upon your Lordship by the State, but in the world I come from I have a Fiduciary Duty to make sure that Starlight Spark remains solvent, and thus I would be remiss if I don’t enquire about other avenues of remuneration."
Lord Vhon : " Other avenues?"
Elrick : " Lordship; When the Demons come within range of Vhon’s guns and Artillery you will attack?"
Lord Vhon : " Yes! But an Army that size will have a mobile Barrier Shield!"
Elrick : " In the Event that your guns kill the Demons would we be allowed to loot the Demons?"
Lord Vhon now understands what Elrick meant by other avenues of remuneration.
Lord Vhon : " Naturally!"
Elrick : " Lordship; how many Sorcerers would it take to bring down the Barrier?"
Lord Vhon : " Minimum; 700 expert level Mages!"
Elrick : " Lordship; the little I’ve learned about Demons indicates that they are not stupid. They didn’t move 10000 soldiers across land without a plan to somehow defeat the Psionic Barrier. That means to counter whatever plan they have we may have to engage them outside the barrier, and that means putting our people at tremendous risk. To mitigate that risk we have to invest in equipment; at least Level 1 Magic Armour which cost 2 Gold Coins. Given the financial restrictions placed on your Lordship we would have to Finance our own equipment. I’m willing to Forgo the recognition from Vale Kingdom and any recommendation for Knighthood if your Lordship buys my Combat & Combat Related Equipment at market price."
There is slight murmur.
The hall went silent and the other Clan Chiefs are flabbergasted by what they just heard. To the other Clan Chiefs the recognition from Vale Kingdom and the possible recommendation for Knighthood are extremely valuable incentives but Elrick just threw them away in exchange for Lord Vhon purchasing Starlight Spark Combat & Combat Related Equipment at market price.
The other Clan Chiefs knew they were missing an important piece of the puzzle that justified Elrick’s actions. Lord Vhon however knew about Starlight Spark’s Deal with the General Dealer.
Lord Vhon : " I’ll only buy equipment that has been used in battle against the Demons!"
This was to make sure Starlight Spark doesn’t simply order massive amounts of equipment and have Lord Vhon Buy it for Vale kingdom at market retail price. Elrick immediately understood what Lord Vhon was doing.
Elrick : " Deal!"
Lord Vhon : " Then you’re in?"
Elrick : " Lordship; before the Battle of Twin Peaks I allowed an Unknown Group of Atlantian Adventurers to get slaughtered because I didn’t want to give away our position. I am haunted by their screams! I know it was the correct tactical decision, but in my heart I feel dishonoured. I relish the opportunity to redeem myself and restore my Honour! We will kill these vile Demons and keep killing them until they loose their thirst for blood; we will cover the land with their corpses!"
It was all a lie of course; Elrick was putting on a show.
Lord Vhon : " We welcome you as Brothers in Arms!"
Elrick : " Lordship; As of this moment I’m in your Service!"
After Elrick spoke he used the racial Magic Skill 〘Aura Glow〙 to emphasize his resolve.
With Starlight Spark signed up the other Clan Chiefs quickly signed on even if for some it was only to learn the secrets of Starlight Spark’s success.
- - -
Elrick didn’t hesitate to sell all of the current Starlight Spark Combat Equipment at market retail price since it had been used against Demons giving 14% profit and bringing in 465 Gold Coins to the Cash reserves.
Elrick ordered 217 sets of Level 1 Magic Armour, 217 Military Grade Longbow & Arrows and 217 sets of Shield and Spears.
The cost would be of (217)X(3.25 + 2 + 0.56 + 0.62)X(0.86) = 1199.99666 Gold Coins.
The expenditure was massive but Elrick considered it minimal risk since the Lord of Vhon would purchase it all at 14% premium before the end of Open Beta.
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