A Returner’s Magic Should Be Special - Chapter 285

 

A Returner’s Magic Should Be Special Novel


Chapter 285. Collapse (11)



“And so Kansas and some other cities fell.”




Desir’s complexion darkened.




The situation that Swan talked about was terrible.




‘Damn it. I can’t believe we never caught them building teleportation gates… ’




The strength of instantaneous transportation of supplies and soldiers is impossible to understate. Whether you were launching a siege or desperately defending, having a teleportation gate nearby could make a massive difference. To prevent abuse, each country thoroughly restricted access to the teleportation gate, and were careful to prevent an enemy army from simply waltzing into their capital.




However, the Artemis Church had secretly installed gates inside several of their churches, spread throughout the continent. As a general rule, churches operated outside the realm of any individual country’s restrictions, so no one had


noticed their construction.




Most large cities in the Hebrion Empire had more than one church, and a majority of the smaller ones had at least one place of worship. Even if they knew exactly which churches had teleportation gates, it would have been nearly impossible to respond to several simultaneous surprise attacks.




Even so, however, the Empire was the strongest country on the continent. It was hard to understand how they were being decisively outclassed by a religious group.




“Central command is guessing there’s something else that Artemis was hiding.”




Swan read Desir’s quizzacle expression and began speaking without prompt.




“Some of our cities had a large enough militia that they were capable of fending off King-Class assailants. Even if it was a surprise attack, it’s hard to believe that a small scale raid was capable of defeating them.”


Desir asked what suddenly came to mind.




“Is the capital all right?”




“So far. It is guarded by the strongest shield of the Empire.”




The strongest shield of the Empire. Only then did he feel relieved after hearing Raphahelo was stationed there.




“We’ve already secured our other cities. Every Artemis church that remains in the Empire has been destroyed, so we won’t have to worry about any more internal raids. The problem lies in what happens next.”




Swan lowered her gaze and connected the fallen cities marked on the holographic map. The fallen cities were all located around Kansas.




After confirming it, Desir could tell what Artemis had been aiming for from the beginning.




“Their target is Dresden, isn’t it?”





Swan nodded at Desir’s question.




“Yes. Artemis is gathering their power around Kansas. They’re moving quickly. Central command’s prediction is that they’ll begin their march in less than a day.”




A blurry image was displayed on top of the holographic map. He could see a large collection of airships in the image.




Desir found one of the airships familiar amongst them. It was the Brigant.




He calmed the momentary fluctuation of his heart and organized the information presented.




Artemis’s movement was way too fast. It was easy to take down the cities of the Empire with surprise raids, but they also had sustained significant damage. Nevertheless, they were preparing for a grand offensive, as if they only needed to occupy Dresden.


Their focus on Hebrion’s capital was strange. Even though occupying it would inflict a heavy blow on the Empire, they wouldn’t be able to protect it for long. They had amassed heavy casualties in the raids, and would incur even more when they attacked Dresden. Unless they wanted to burn it, temporarily occupying Dresden had no benefit. That being the case, why was Priscilla trying to take the capital?




From the installation of the teleportation gates, to the rapid deployment that followed, it was obvious that Priscilla had planned all of this for quite a long time. But there were so many questions her actions raised.




“The Empire is spread incredibly thin. We can’t afford to leave all our forces in the capital, not when there are several cities that are still under attack, and many more that need to be defended. Not a single magician can be wasted. Especially not when one of them is the greatest magician on the continent.”




Having finished speaking, Swan looked directly into Desir’s eyes, reproachfully.




“… … this is all my fault.”


As Desir nodded gently, Swan spoke unexpectedly.




“You know that, huh?”




Having regained some reason, Desir was clearly aware of his mistakes.




‘I’m blinded by anger.’




No matter how urgent the situation was, he should have judged the situation calmly and picked the best option. However, he completely lost his reason to anger and pursued Priscilla alone, which eventually led to his defeat.




If he had moved differently, the current situation might have been different. No, forget that. If he had kept his head straight, he might have been able to eliminate Priscilla on the spot.




“Well, I can understand your feelings. I’m just as angry at that bitch.”




Swan slowly approached Desir and flicked his forehead.





“But just as you grieved when you lost Zod, remember that if we lose you, there are people who will be sad.”




Only then did Desir think of the people who were worried about him, and his promise to them. He almost lost his temper and broke his promise.




He clenched his fist.




“I’ll be clear.”




Desir took a single deep breath.




‘First of all, I need to do the best I can… ’




He had to regain his composure. He realized at this point that revenge alone was not enough.




“First of all, you need to get well.”


Swan spoke as if she had noticed Desir’s feelings.




“The situation isn’t good, but Hebrion isn’t pathetic enough to collapse within a few days. You should focus on recovering first, and come back to us as soon as possible.”




“But it will take a while to recover enough to fight.”




Desir had an accurate grasp of his injuries. Though he had not invoked the spell, and missed out on the worst of the injuries, he was still heavily beaten up. Swan was not kidding when she said he should have died.




His bones had shattered and his organs were severely damaged. Most notably, Desir had placed extreme strain on his mana circles, and they needed time to recuperate before he could use them properly.




It would probably take months for Desir to be able to move on his own, let alone fight on the front lines.




“That’s why I’m here.”



Swan grinned and reached out to Desir’s neck.




*Ring*




The clear sound of iron resounded.




“It’s a gift from His Majesty.”




Desir felt the energy flowing out of the necklace that Swan had hung on him. His breathing had become much easier. He could feel his condition improving little by little.




‘He allowed this artifact to be taken out… ’




Desir knew what the necklace was around his neck. The string was adorned with various red beads, coming together to a blue cross that sat on his chest. Of all the artifacts present on the continent, it was the only one capable of healing its user: the Immortal Rosario.




The Immortal Rosario was far short of the restoring abilities


Priscilla boasted, but even so, it had the power to imbue its wearer with a continuous regenerative effect beyond what modern medical technology could achieve.




Despite its value, it was rarely used. It had been kept hidden, handed down from Emperor to Emperor. The Immortal Rosario had never left Leonhardt Palace because it was impossible to know when it would be needed.




For such an artifact to not only be removed from the palace, but to be in a foreign country, being presented to Desir…




Surprise was an understatement.




“You’ll get well enough in two days. And one more thing.”




Swan pulled something out of her dimensional pocket. The moment he laid eyes on it, Desir felt his mouth dry. It was Zod’s cane, which he had sent to Desir in his final moments.




“Hephaestus found that the cane had a special password.”


Desir took the cane that Swan presented. Unlike the last time he held it, the bloodstains had all been wiped away.




The surface of it was cold to the touch. Somehow, the cane was heavier than he remembered.




“I’m sure the Tower Master left this to deliver something important to you.”




* * *




‘Now I know for sure.’




After Swan left, Desir was lost in thought for a moment in the dark room.




‘She has been working on this for a long time.’




First of all, teleportation gates were not a simple device that could just be installed anywhere. They were something that could not be constructed without meticulous planning, and hiding their existence was substantially difficult.





‘And she was hiding her strength in my previous life.’




In his previous life, Priscilla’s ability while clearing the Shadow Labyrinth was invaluable, but it was completely incomparable to the power she demonstrated during their battle..




The power she had displayed when restoring the Brigant in Altea was on a completely different level.




Her recovery speed, how thorough it was, and even the ability to restore inanimate objects… none of that was visible in Desir’s previous life.




Why had she hidden her power?




‘Maybe the timeline didn’t change. She might have been planning whatever she’s doing now in the last world, but was forced to wait until after the Shadow Labyrinth was cleared.’




It was clear that he had misunderstood her character. The


character of the duplicitous Priscilla Haicilkite. It was obvious that she had been wearing a mask, all for this moment, from the very beginning.




But there remained the most crucial question that still remained unsolved.




Desir simply could not understand what the hell she was trying to gain by invading the Hebrion Empire.




Even if they succeeded in occupying Dresden, it did not mean they would successfully control the Empire. It was only a momentary victory, and it was something that would soon be taken away again.




Moreover, the Artemis Church was antagonizing every other nation by invading Altea and the Empire.




The way things are going, the Artemis Church will quickly lose everything they have gained.




Priscilla was surely aware that the Artemis Church would collapse no matter the outcome of this incident.





‘There’s only one answer. This isn’t a war of conquest.’






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