The Festival of Magic
Saron still remembered every word, every action of his teacher from back then. He also recalled how the others there reacted.
Naturally, they wouldn't agree to those demands. Saron's teacher was an unknown magus without any repute after all. Nobody knew who he was, what his aims were, and why he would be so arrogant.
It didn't take long for him to understand, however, that his teacher wasn't arrogant at all. He was only there to obtain what he deserved from the empire.
The guards and magi from the school swarmed him and tried to take down the madman. If there was a need, killing on sight wouldn't be an issue as he had insulted the emperor.
But something truly gut-wrenching occurred. The hundred elite mid-order warriors and the tens of magi instructors weren't able to hold his teacher down. In fact, the man didn't even move the slightest to avoid the attacks of all those people.
He easily neutralized the attacks of the royal guards and subdued them with absolute power. The battle lasted only around ten minutes. After that, the man remained standing at his original position and not a single one of his assailants perished. Some either fainted or were petrified at worst. There wasn't a single injured person.
Everyone was silent for a full minute. In the end, the emperor stood out.
Jilroan Stok, current ruler of the empire, was at the ripe old age of 96. But thanks to great magics and various potions, he maintained the appearance of a man in his forties.
Not only was he the emperor, he was also a 19th-strata magus. He was known as the Submyth and the reason he got that title was because he was someone who towered over everyone apart from saints and myths.
More than four decades ago, Jilroan quite liked his title, but after being stuck at the same level for more than two decades, the mere mention of that title would be an insult to him. Quite a number of people who called him the Submyth incurred his anger and were punished in a fit of rage.
Some were thrown into the dungeon for an execution down the line while others were instantly vaporized by Jilroan with a spell. As for their family members, some more unlucky ones were killed outright while others were taken as slaves for life.
While Jilroan was harsh in his methods, most people began to forget that title of his after a few of those punishments were given. Nowadays, people only knew that the emperor was the strongest in the empire and the world of magic. Nobody ever brought up the title Submyth again.
The emperor locked gazes with the man for half a minute before he asked about the man's level of power. Saron's teacher replied that he had trained for many years and had finally reached the myth rank.
Those words shocked everyone attending the ceremony. More shockingly, all the greats of the magic world, the emperor included, didn't dispute that claim. In other words, the man wasn't boasting! He was simply telling the truth.
If the empire could recruit a myth-rank magus, then its future would change dramatically!
Even though Stok had always been stronger than Hocke in terms of mid-tier fighters, their peak-rank fighters were far weaker in comparison.
Even though the galestorm swordsaint, Marolyt, and the wandering holy lance, Kevin, didn't expressedly align themselves with Hocke, these two Chinoan saints were known to have a good relationship with the Hockian imperial family.
Marolyt in particular leeched on the imperial family for food. Even though he and Kevin stated that they weren't willing to use their power to affect the continent's geopolitics, even a newborn child would know that should Hocke be pushed into a corner by Stok, Marolyt would definitely give them some aid.
The way Stokians saw it, the two saints were ticking time bombs that could go off at any moment.
As such, not only was the Stokian imperial family troubled over this, even the citizens of the empire were worried. Time also proved that their worries weren't groundless. Marolyt helped Hocke reach out to the guilds in Lance and not long after, her daughter joined Hocke's administration.
Had it not been for the mysterious myth-rank they had in their ranks, the Stokian imperial family would've been stricken with panic the whole time.
That was why everyone at the festival was so hopeful of having the backing of an expert like that. After Jilroan ascertained the man's power, he agreed to the first condition without hesitation.
However, he was still hesitant about Saron. He wasn't sure how truly terrifying the potential in Saron was. Saron managed to see the unwillingness in the emperor's face back then, but the temptation of having a myth-rank by the empire's side was hard to refuse. The emperor thus gave Saron a chance to make his own choice.
The myth-ranker also wasn't opposed to that idea. Everyone then turned their gazes to Saron. How did he think about the situation back then?
Unquestionably, the magus not only managed to suppress all those fools who attempted to attack him, he also conquered the heart of the youth who had just begun to understand his potential. Saron almost seemingly shouted his agreement to be the man's disciple. That was the day he was told of his teacher's name: Logg.
Not many people knew that name. Only Saron and the emperor did. Saron couldn't be sure whether anyone else knew of it.
That was how low-key a person Logg was. It was as if he didn't exist. Thanks to some kind of spell Logg used, the people who witnessed that shocking scene forgot about it entirely in a few days.
But some still retained memory about him, namely, the senior officials of the empire. Initially, they paid unflinching attention to Logg given his odd origins. There was no saying whether he meant ill for Stok and he was definitely capable of doing so given his abilities.
After a year of observation, however, they Jilroan found that Logg only kept himself busy with some arcane magical research. The man didn't involve himself in Stokian political or military affairs. He didn't do much in the imperial school of magic either, making Jilroan feeling relieved with letting Logg keep the position. The officials were also no longer as worried about him.
Perhaps he was indeed a madman whose only focus was research. Without such a drive, one would find it hard to reach the myth-rank, anyway. That was the conclusion Jilroan came to.
As a result, Jilroan came to understand Logg's desire to keep a low profile. He didn't launch an investigation into the identity of the magus lest it would incur his rage. He didn't know why the magus didn't want anybody else to know of his existence either. Either way, it was working out for him. At the very least, his hidden presence could serve as an unexpected trump card against his enemies.
Just like that, Logg spent a few years living peacefully in the Millennium Capital.
In the following years, Logg didn't do anything out of the ordinary. He raised his disciple and when Saron finished learning much of what he could, Logg began to research magic weapons. The magic cannons were the finest example of the results of his research.
A myth-rank magus who didn't use his power to interfere in the empire's politics and only focused on his research that occasionally produced results like the magic cannon and could also save the empire in times of crisis was a godsend to the Stokian imperial family.
As a result, the imperial family began to respect Logg, and Saron by extension, more and more, making Saron feel more and more aloof. Unlike his low-key master, Saron loved to take the spotlight. Since he was capable of doing so, he didn't mind helping the empire further its militaristic goals and perhaps earn himself noble status.
That was the initial motivation behind his debut on the battlefield. He relied on his terrifying abilities and earned quite a lot of merit from the empire. As such, he gained quite an influence over the military. And with all that, he wanted to wipe away the humiliating encounter with Leguna back then!
And the first target for Saron's payback was the same Fort Kesta in which Leguna had once resided!
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