"Of course, all this is incumbent on the Hero managing to inherit Abe von Amsterg's share of the realm at the very least. Preferably, Nicholas von Amsterg would be removed from the equation as well, if possible." The Voice says, "It is also the reason why Fate has stepped up its activity. Fate seeks to turn events from their proper course and doom this world to darkness."
"Unlike your plan of dooming the world to a never ending proxy war between three great powers." I remark dryly. Please stop eating your own bullshit Voice, I always was of the impression that you were more self-aware than that.
"Anyway, I hope you don't expect me to stick around for your whole plan to come together." I grumble, "I doubt my body back in my own dimension can wait for that long."
The Voice rasps, "There will be no need for that. Plans like these have momentum of their own. Once we push things far enough, Fate will not be able to interfere even if it wanted to. Once things have progressed to that stage, I will be able to send you on your way. Also, time runs differently between our two worlds, so do not worry about missing too much time back in your home dimension."
"If you say so." I mumble. I had no way of ascertaining the truth of The Voice's claims. I could only hope that The Voice was acting in good faith.
I down the last of the beer in one gulp and pitch the empty can out into the sea. The can bobs in the water before being swallowed up by the surf. The night wind blows again and I hold myself tight.
"Its getting cold." I murmur, walking back to the cab.
"The changing of the seasons." The Voice rumbles meditatively, "The snow will be here soon."
The cab's engine fires up and we drive off into the darkness.
"Marshal." the handsome man bows deferentially at the young girl in a Gothic Lolita outfit sitting at the head of the table. Her crimson eyes take in the man before her. Bronzed skin, sharp features and hard well defined muscles that are accentuated by an expensive suit. A head of well groomed dirty blond hair. Blue piercing eyes.
This may be the manor owned by the von Amstergs, but courtesy and power compel its master to bow. Especially to one as powerful as his guest.
The girl nods, "Rise, young master Nicholas. How go your preparations for the operation?"
Nicholas rises to his feet, his gaze respectfully cast downwards, "Marshal, I have briefed all the troops that you have brought me and transport to the Academy has been arranged. I do not wish to take any chances though, is there any chance more troops could be made available before we commit?"
Marshal St Clair shakes her head, "The eyes of the enemy have already been drawn to our preparations. To wait any further would be to invite disaster."
"Respectfully Marshal, I disagree." Nicholas answers, "Your man at the Academy has shared his concerns with me, but I see no harm in a delay. If SOPO was really aware of what is going on, they would have swooped in by now. The very fact Trietel remains free is proof that all they have are suspicions, nothing else."
"Its not SOPO I am worried about." St Clair shakes her head again, her fingers playing with an amulet hanging from her neck. An amulet portraying a featureless woman, partially wrapped in red thread.
"The true goddess had granted me a vision while I slept, Nicholas." St Clair says, "The Tyrant. It knows."
Nicholas nods, face tense. He had failed to fully heed the warnings of the goddess regarding the warehouse, merely making a token effort to increase the security there.
And now Salvation had been lost. Perhaps never to be regained.
"Salvation. How is its recovery progressing?" Nicholas asks.
"Not well," St Clair replies with a frown, "The Cathedral does not have the facilities to repair the extensive damage caused by the explosion. Our brothers also report of a small army of drones sweeping the sarcophagus, no doubt the eyes and ears of the Tyrant. They cannot move Salvation to a more suitable location."
"The Professor will find a way, he always does." Nicholas consoles.
"I hope so, but we cannot just count on Salvation. The Tyrant's noose tightens around all our necks as time passes. Waiting is a luxury we may not be able to afford." St Clair says.
Nicholas slams his fist on the ground seething with anger, "Why? Why are there people who would support their own slavery? Can't they see what the Tyrant represents?"
"Just as we serve the goddess in our fight for freedom, the Tyrant has servants of its own. There are men in this world who would willingly aid in the oppression of others for a small slice of power and influence." St Clair ruminates, "We cannot give these men another opportunity to strike. The damage done from the warehouse attack has already cost us dearly."
Nicholas clenches his right hand by his breast and bows once more, "As you say Marshal, so shall it be done. I shall join the troops myself and ensure the success of the mission."
St Clair smiles gently, "Good. I will leave the matter in your hands then. When you have completed the raid, return here to the manor. I will summon the helicopter from the Standart to take us to safety." A motion of dismissal is made with her hand, "Now leave, I wish to pray for your success."
Nicholas draws himself up to his full height, declaring in a voice full of spirit, "Tomorrow, the goddess shall bear witness to our triumph."
"And the world will finally know freedom."
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