The First Order
Chapter 1196: The final clue

Zhang Xiaoman could never have expected that he, the one who had been left behind, would actually be the first to rendezvous with the future commander.

"Future Commander, you mean to say there's a doorway leading to the capital of the Kingdom of Sorcerers right in your house?" Zhang Xiaoman asked in shock.

When Ren Xiaosu explained the principle behind the enchanted doorway to them in detail, they were all extremely fascinated.

Moreover, this was not a unique superpower but one that was replicable through an inheritable spell.

"Future Commander, do you think I can also open this freaking enchanted doorway?" Zhang Xiaoman asked.

"Yes." Ren Xiaosu nodded. "Anyone with a red Eye of True Sight or higher can activate it. This doorway will lead to wherever you wanna go the most."

At the side, Black Fox calmly tried to talk Zhang Xiaoman out of it. "I suggest you better not activate the enchanted doorway now. It won't be very nice if it opens into Triratna Alley."

Ren Xiaosu was curious. "What's Triratna Alley?"

Black Fox explained, "Future Commander, many young ladies need help on Triratna Alley. Zhang Xiaoman has to make a trip there twice a month."

"Why are you slandering me?" Zhang Xiaoman roared while blushing.

As he trailed off, Ren Xiaosu slapped him on the back of the head. "Don't go to places like that anymore. You're already a brigade commander. Can't you settle down and find a wife?"

Zhang Xiaoman covered his head and looked at Black Fox viciously. It was as though he was saying, "Just you wait!"

However, Black Fox ignored him and confirmed with Ren Xiaosu instead, "Future Commander, do you require all our troops in the 6th Field Division to be fully armed? How should we deal with those sorcerers?"

"Leave the sorcerers to me," Ren Xiaosu said.

"Alright, I understand." Black Fox continued asking, "Should we convert Stronghold 144 into a field camp or turn it into an actual forward operating base?"

"A field camp." Ren Xiaosu thought for a moment and said, "When there's another war after this, we'll totally have enough time to train new sorcerers to activate their enchanted doorways. More importantly, this enchanted doorway is in my house, so don't break my flooring when you guys shuffle in and out."

Black Fox said, "… Understood."

Actually, Ren Xiaosu had also given it some thought before. According to P5092, a war with the Wang Consortium was unavoidable.

But the problem was that it was likelier the Wang Consortium would be the one initiating this war rather than Fortress 178.

When that time came, Stronghold 144 would become the main battlefield, and his enchanted doorway would become less important in that war.

Right now, the greatest significance of the enchanted doorway was that Ren Xiaosu could summon a modern army from a 1,000 kilometers away to directly deal a devastating blow to the sorcerers' main camp in Ghent City.

The only thing that worried Ren Xiaosu was that there were too many civilians in Ghent City.

Although those civilians were not related to Ren Xiaosu in any way, he could not be so deranged as to completely disregard their lives.

If Ren Xiaosu were so indifferent, he would never have become the future commander of the Northwest.

Ren Xiaosu said to Black Fox, "As for the specific battle plan, we'll talk again after I join up with P5092. Y'all get ready here first and ensure that you can move out at any time. On top of that, get all the equipment ready. Whatever that won't fit through the enchanted doorway, just leave it to me to transport."

An enchanted doorway would not open up bigger even if it were activated on a larger object. There were principles dictating the way they worked.

Under normal circumstances, the enchanted doorway could only allow one to three people to pass through at the same time. This rule seemed to be determined by the grade of the Eye of True Sight. Ren Xiaosu possessed a black Eye of True Sight, so his enchanted doorway could allow three people to pass through at once.

Zhang Xiaoman and Black Fox returned to the 6th Field Division's military base in high spirits and started making arrangements for the field camp to be set up inside Stronghold 144.

That same night, a large number of trucks entered Stronghold 144. Meanwhile, Wang Yuexi quickly organized the staff of the stronghold's management committee to conduct an eviction of the surrounding residents and draw up a compensation plan.

A military base to accommodate 20,000 soldiers would definitely be very large no matter how compact it was. They would definitely have to set up a cordon in the vicinity of the base and demarcate it as a restricted zone, so no civilians would be allowed to live inside the area.

However, it was not that easy to do the eviction. Wang Yuexi was so worried about this his hair almost turned white.

As there were ten residential zones around the future commander's residence, just the compensation alone would cost a large sum. Although Stronghold 144 was rich enough to afford such compensation now, the residents might not be willing to move away.

In such situations, it would not be practical to try and run the operations from behind the scenes. Wang Yuexi would have to take the staff from door to door to evict people through the night.

Wang Yuexi said to the staff around him, "Remember to remain polite. Even if the residents are unwilling to move, don't be rude to them."

"Yes, sir." The staff were all mentally prepared to fight a tough battle.

Military operations would, of course, take priority. If someone truly refused to move, they would have to be forcefully evicted.

But if things could be resolved peacefully, the Northwest Army would not want to come into direct conflict with the common folk either.

When Wang Yuexi knocked on the door of the first house nearby, a middle-aged woman opened the door in surprise. "Oh, it's Little Wang. What brings you here in the middle of the night?"

"It's like this: We're evicting the residences in the vicinity for the interim. Based on our 6th Field Division's plans, we might need to requisition your place for about a month." Wang Yuexi patiently handed over a document. "This is our requisition plan with the specific compensation details in it."

The latest_epi_sodes are on_the ʟɪɢʜᴛɴᴏᴠᴇʟᴘᴜʙ.ᴄᴏᴍ website.

The woman was taken aback. "What's the purpose of this?"

Wang Yuexi explained, "Well, it's nothing confidential. The future commander is preparing to attack the Kingdom of Sorcerers. Have you ever heard of the Kingdom of Sorcerers? They're the ones who've been harassing Fortress 178. Right now, the future commander has found a way to attack them, so he needs to turn this neighborhood into a field camp to hold the 6th Field Division. But don't worry, they'll just be setting up military tents on the outside and won't go into your homes."

"Oh, so it's like that." The woman smiled and said, "Well then, I'll move out tonight to make space for you guys. Do you want me to leave the house key so the boys can go inside and take a hot shower or something?"

At this moment, someone opened the door of the house next to them. Another middle-aged woman said, "I overheard you all talking. We'll move out tonight as well."

Wang Yuexi was stunned. To be honest, he had expected this to be the most difficult step, but it turned out to be the simplest one.

Before the woman returned to her house to pack her things, she even said excitedly to Wang Yuexi, "Can you pass a message to the future commander for me? Tell him Auntie Li from the market says to attack those sorcerers without mercy! He has our full support!"

"Huh?" Wang Yuexi was stunned for a while. "Why don't you guys take a look at the compensation details first? This way, everyone will also know how much compensation they will receive in the future."

Auntie Li giggled. "It's fine. I'll just go live at my son's place for a month. Why would I need any compensation? You guys worked hard to solve the food shortage and fought battles to avenge the Northwest. If we want to be compensated over such a small matter, what does that make us?"

Wang Yuexi shook his head. "No, Auntie Li, those are two different matters. Rules are rules."

"Alright then, just pay as you see fit," Auntie Li said with a laugh.

"How can we do that?" Wang Yuexi got anxious.

However, Auntie Li punched Wang Yuexi in the chest and laughed heartily. "Why are you being so damn polite? Don't hold me up from packing."

Auntie Li punched Wang Yuexi so hard it made him cough twice.

Another middle-aged woman next door said, "Little Wang, since you're so close with the future commander, can you ask him for an autograph on our behalf after the war?"

Auntie Li said, "You were only asked to move away for a month. Why are you troubling others with so many requests? The future commander is very busy, so how would he have time to give you an autograph?"

Wang Yuexi was speechless.

Auntie Li said to Wang Yuexi, "Alright, stop wasting time here and go do your job. You guys have already toiled so much on the front lines. Surely we can't disappoint you all on your return to the stronghold, right?"

It took only one night for the stronghold's management committee to completely vacate the neighborhoods around the future commander's residence. Although not everyone was as easygoing as Auntie Li, the fact there were people like her somewhat made Wang Yuexi feel that all of their hard work was worth it.

When Ren Xiaosu returned to the other side of the enchanted doorway, Qian Weining, Mel, Summer, and the others were still standing guard.

He casually put the metal door into his storage space, making it look like a magic spell. Everyone almost couldn't differentiate who was the real sorcerer here.

Melgor wondered, "You were in there for several hours. Where does this enchanted doorway lead to?"

"You'll know in the future." Ren Xiaosu said with a smile, "I've roughly figured out how to deal with those old aristocratic clans."

Next to him, Summer shook her head and said, "Maybe you haven't encountered a true archmage before. That's why you think the Magi are a little weak. But I have to seriously remind you that things are not as simple as you think. Otherwise, we wouldn't have stayed in hiding until now."

"Oh?" Ren Xiaosu said, "Tell me about it."

"It definitely wasn't down to luck that the Houses of Norman and Tudor have remained established in Ghent City for 200 years." Summer said, "There's too many exclusive spells in the world that have not been made public, so no one knows what trump cards they hold."

"Alright, I understand." Ren Xiaosu nodded and said, "Please take me to Ghent City. I've had a change of plans, so I need to get my hands on what that Rider left behind as soon as possible. I'm worried that I won't have a chance to retrieve it once it gets chaotic."

Summer was taken aback for a moment before agreeing, "Alright."

No one knew what Ren Xiaosu meant by that. But a moment later, everyone suddenly felt a strong warping force pulling at them. It was as though they were being dragged away from this part of the world.

With a loud crash, everyone was pulled away from the turbulent coast and fell back into the dark tunnel!

They saw two people in leather armor holding their Eyes of True Sight inside the tunnel. The wall that had the divine dragon drawn on it had been blown up.

Before Summer could steady herself, she was reacting, "They're not our people! It's the bounty hunters from the sorcerer clans! They've discovered this place! Fight back!"

However, someone else had reacted faster than her.

The moment Ren Xiaosu fell back into the tunnel, he pushed off the ground with his arm supporting him before his body fully hit the ground and shot towards the two bounty hunter assailants like an arrow.

During the leap, Ren Xiaosu's armor quickly covered his entire body and blocked the two bounty hunters' Greater Fireball spells.

At the rear, Chen Jingshu and Xu Anqing hurriedly raised their hands to fire the spring-loaded crossbows hidden in their sleeves. Although the concealed crossbow was small, it could shoot three bolts all at once.

However, because they were too hasty, the six bolts all deviated from the targets.

Chen Jingshu and Xu Anqing were annoyed. They knew they should have been calmer.

But to their surprise, the six crossbow bolts they fired were all caught by Ren Xiaosu in midair in this narrow space. Right after that, he threw them at the two bounty hunters facing him.

Visit ʟɪɢʜᴛɴᴏᴠᴇʟᴘᴜʙ.ᴄᴏᴍ, for the best no_vel_read_ing experience

The diverted crossbow bolts were thrown at an even greater speed, and all of them pierced the heads of the two bounty hunters.

When Qian Weining saw the events play out from behind, he suddenly felt an inexplicable sense of familiarity. He finally realized this was probably the reason for his 100% kill rate in archery.

Ren Xiaosu went to check on the two bounty hunters. "No bloodline spell was activated?"

"It doesn't seem like they were sent by the House of Tudor," Xu Anqing analyzed. "They should be from the House of Norman."

"Wait a sec." Ren Xiaosu frowned. "That Sorcerer Titus from before was part of the Norman family, right? Where is he?"

Everyone looked around but couldn't find him anywhere.

However, Mel mentioned, "I saw him fleeing through the tunnel after we fell out of the enchanted doorway."

Ren Xiaosu lamented, "You seem quite concerned about your romantic rival."

Mel's face turned red. "I-I'm just observant!"

Ren Xiaosu looked at Xu Anqing and said, "Y'all're way too careless. Didn't you notice someone like him sneaking into the group?"

Xu Anqing laughed and shook his head. "How could we possibly not notice?"

As soon as he finished speaking, several people emerged from both sides of the tunnel. One of them was even carrying Titus Norman, who had just fled.

From the look of things, these were the members of the Sanctuary who had been lying in ambush in the tunnel.

After these people entered the tunnel, they kept looking at Ren Xiaosu knowingly, as though everyone was already aware of his background.

"So it was an operation to root out spies." Ren Xiaosu said, "What a heavy price to pay, sacrificing an enchanted doorway just for that."

"This enchanted doorway's location has already been exposed, so we thought of exploiting it for what it was worth," Xu Anqing said.

Chen Jingshu said to Ren Xiaosu, "Come with us. We'll head deeper underground. If the enemy dares to make a move at this time, they've probably already made other preparations."

"No," Ren Xiaosu said, "y'all can go ahead, but Summer and Mel have to follow me to the Rose Monastery. I must quickly retrieve what that Rider had left behind."

"But it'll be very dangerous to return to the surface now." Xu Anqing frowned.

"Yeah, it'll be very dangerous for them," Ren Xiaosu said.

Xu Anqing was speechless.

After Ren Xiaosu left, Xu Anqing led Qian Weining and the others to the depths of the underground. Eventually, a member of the Sanctuary couldn't help but remark, "He really looks so identical to that Rider."

"An'an's father said he wanted Ren Xiaosu to lead us. Jingshu, you've spent some time with him. Do you think he's qualified to be our leader?" Xu Anqing asked.

Chen Jingshu thought for a while and said, "He's much stronger than you guys think, and I know this for a fact. I'm afraid that even if An'an's father were here, he wouldn't be a match for him. However, his leadership ability is still debatable. We don't know whether he's capable of leading the entire Sanctuary."

"Mhm, he's so young, I doubt he has much leadership experience," Xu Anqing said with a nod.

The nightlife of Ghent City was active beyond imagination. A dazzling array of taverns lined the busy streets of Rose Avenue, and there were even beautiful women smiling and welcoming guests outside the taverns.

Inside the taverns, the hearty laughter of men and women could be heard through the wooden doors. Occasionally, a dance tune would be heard, and the people inside would start embracing and dancing together.

Outside the taverns, luxurious carriages were parked on the side of the road, while the coachmen and servants smoked handrolled cigarettes as they waited for their masters.

Usually, the coachmen and servants would be required to wait a long time in such situations, as the young nobles reveled past midnight.

It would be late into the night when young men and women would be boarding their carriages with their favorite companions in their arms before returning to their respective homes to spend the night together.

Rose Avenue was well-known in Ghent City. If Ghent City was known as "The City That Never Sleeps," this place would be known as "The Street That Never Sleeps."

The long boulevard was not that wide, probably only wide enough for three carriages to pass through at the same time.

On both sides of the streets were three-story-tall Gothic buildings. Taking a bird's-eye view, this large capital would appear very neatly structured. It was as though the buildings were blocks of chocolates placed next to each other, creating a pleasing sight.

But in the shadows of this glamorous city lurked a scent of blood that did not match its glamor.

In a dark alley next to the Rum Tavern on this lively Rose Avenue, a manhole cover was suddenly moved aside from the inside.

Ren Xiaosu, Mel, and Summer climbed out of the sewers one after another. At this moment, a man and a woman were secretly making out in the alley. Compared with the lively Rose Avenue on the main street, this alley was considerably quieter.

When the couple saw Ren Xiaosu climbing out of the sewers, they nearly cried out in alarm. But before they could make a sound, they were knocked unconscious by Ren Xiaosu.

"How should we deal with these two?" Melgor asked in surprise. Then he saw Ren Xiaosu stuffing each of them mercilessly into two dumpsters.

The latest_epi_sodes are on_the ʟɪɢʜᴛɴᴏᴠᴇʟᴘᴜʙ.ᴄᴏᴍ website.

Summer whispered, "Head left. Ghent City is heavily guarded now, so we must be extremely careful."

As they were talking, two patrolling soldiers suddenly passed through the alley.

When they saw Ren Xiaosu, Summer, and Mel, a strange look of intrigue appeared in their eyes.

When they walked past each other, the two patrolling soldiers even muttered, "These young people really know how to have fun."

Mel, supposedly the most cowardly of the group, felt blood rush to his head. He said angrily to the patrolling soldiers, "You two, get back here! We're here to destroy Ghent City. We're not as nasty as you think!"

Ren Xiaosu was speechless. Summer was too.

Ten seconds later, Ren Xiaosu stuffed the two unconscious soldiers into the sewers. Then he praised, "Mel, I never knew you to be so ballsy. The power of love is indeed great!"

Summer smiled and said, "Melgor, you seem a little different from before. You've become braver."

Melgor scratched his head and said shyly, "… Really?"

Ren Xiaosu sighed, "People in relationships can really lose their minds."

Rose Monastery was located at the end of Rose Avenue. As the three of them walked on the streets, no one suspected them at all. They just thought that they were here to have fun.

The trio quietly climbed over the walls of the Rose Monastery, then descended into the well behind it.

After they went into the well, realization dawned on Ren Xiaosu. It was no wonder no one had discovered the secret hidden here even though the monastery had been renovated. It turned out the Russell family had hidden everything inside a secret chamber that was dug in advance in this well.

The secret chamber was not big. There were several boxes of books and some boxes of gold coins stored inside.

The boxes containing the books were covered with a layer of canvas tarps to protect them from the damp.

Summer rummaged around for a while before handing a wooden box wrapped in canvas to Ren Xiaosu. "This is what that Rider left behind. I swear on the Russell family's reputation that we have never opened it before."

The moment Ren Xiaosu took the box from her, the voice from the palace in Ren Xiaosu's mind said, "Clue collection quest complete. The reward is archived and can be retrieved at any time."

The palace did not mention what the reward was, and Ren Xiaosu was not in a hurry to retrieve it either. Instead, he continued looking intently at the box in his hand.

All the unsolved mysteries would be revealed tonight.

For some reason, Ren Xiaosu was not nervous at all. Rather, he was unprecedentedly calm.

At this moment, Old Xu, who had been sent out earlier, was standing on the roof of a building. It was quietly watching the commotion around Rose Avenue as the sound of galloping horses approached like a tsunami.

It could see several groups of soldiers holding torches even farther away.

Tonight's Ghent City had become even livelier than usual.

In the darkness, an iron arrow suddenly shot out from the shadows. The bowstring twanging and the incoming arrow sounded like rumbling thunder.

This iron arrow was headed straight for Old Xu's face.

But when this powerful arrow arrived in front of Old Xu, Old Xu casually put its palms together and caught the iron arrow in its hands.

It only took a moment for the arrow to go from extreme motion to sudden stillness.

A clamor erupted in the darkness.

The commotion outside the monastery traveled down into the well. Summer's expression turned solemn. They had kept their whereabouts discreet. If they still got encircled at this time, it would mean there were still problems within the organization and that the spies had not been wiped out.

Summer said to Mel, "They probably only know that we came to Rose Avenue through the sewers and don't know we're in the monastery. Only the three of us know about this place. I'll lure them away later while you stay hidden here. Make sure you don't go out!"

Mel looked helplessly at Ren Xiaosu and realized he was calmly opening the wooden box to reveal a letter inside.

The secret the Russell family had been protecting for over 200 years turned out to be just a letter.

Melgor said anxiously, "Xiaosu, tell us what we should do now."

Ren Xiaosu smiled and said, "Don't worry, let me finish reading the letter first. Who knows, the problem outside might already be resolved by the time I finish reading it."

"Do you expect the problem to resolve itself? Then you might as well just say we can wait here to die. Have you ever considered there might already be thousands of Knights of Tudor congregating outside?" Summer asked.

Ren Xiaosu carefully opened the envelope. "Don't worry, with me around, not even gods that descend from Heaven can kill you two. Moreover, those people outside are just a group of pseudogods."

Summer's expression turned even more solemn. She took out her Eye of True Sight and recited an incantation in the well outside the secret chamber.

A second later, a scene of Rose Avenue appeared on the water's surface.

On the long boulevard of Rose Avenue, she saw countless corpses of the Knights of Tudor extending out towards the horizon. Blood was also flowing continuously along the gaps between the brick pavement.

Visit ʟɪɢʜᴛɴᴏᴠᴇʟᴘᴜʙ.ᴄᴏᴍ for a better_user experience

Tap the screen to use reading tools Tip: You can use left and right keyboard keys to browse between chapters.