The Legendary Moonlight Sculptor Volume 49 Chapter 4 part2
The users had arrived through the teleport gate of the free city of Somren.
“Come buy some flowers! You can even eat these when you are hungry."
“Unbelievably cheap Wakame! If you don't like having bread while exploring dungeons, try this seaweed after boiling it. It's good for your health, and also has a useful effect that increases your HP recovery rate!"
“Anyone need professional help with repairing broken iron swords? Repairing fee only, no extra charges!"
“I'm selling sculptures! The same pieces as the sculptures made by Weed! They make great gifts. They are yours for only 1 gold piece each! "
The users passed through the merchant stalls gathering in the Central Plaza.
Briton region's growth was based on free trade, with highly developed industry and tourism. Due to the city's prosperity, there were still a lot of users active in this region, including novices.
“Hmm. That’s… “
A few users found some items that intrigued them, but they chose to pass by.
There were a lot of users doing business in the plaza, and all of them were watching their crystal balls; they were spectating the battle taking place in the distant Shelgium via television.
"Wow…Look at that Haven army. They are just overwhelming with their material superiority."
"So they are reducing everything to rubbles with their siege weapons alone. People cannot even attempt to escape."
"Feels like they were really determined to make things difficult for the rebels when they were preparing for this battle. Still, Weed would not be so easily defeated."
"A fight between Weed and Bard Ray…it would be so exciting if that happens again."
The users in the plaza were chatting with each other while watching the crystal balls.
In the city's restaurants and accommodations as well, most users were watching the battle of Shelgium through crystal balls. At this moment, probably even those who were in the dungeons would be taking a break from the hunting to watch the broadcast.
The general public thought that Apren Kingdom and Haven Empire would have a serious all-out war; in fact, that was at least Calcus' exact intention when he ordered his Third Legion to march.
"Let's get to our position and wait."
The users who had arrived through the teleport gate waited in the corners of the plaza according to their rather loose plan. New users arrived each time the several teleport gates flashed with light. As the free city of Somren was a very busy place, this was nothing particularly unusual. Nonetheless, the users who had joined this grand scheme took some care to avoid suspicion by going around those several teleport gates before arriving.
A few other users including Weed and his party arrived using Yurin's painting teleportation skill.
Just a simple look around the city was enough to show the evidence of its great prosperity; the weapons and armors were sophisticated and of fine quality. There was a wide range of high-class trade goods, too. Merchants could make a great profit by buying the goods from Somren and selling them in faraway regions.
"There are about 53,000 troops in this region. The problem is, there are quite a few Hermes Guild members-around 4000 users belong to that guild. However, we don't know exactly how many are currently in this vicinity."
Peil took the role of an intelligence source; he could obtain the information possessed by broadcasting stations through Meirun, and he also managed to get in touch with Darius.
Desperate to get on the good side of Weed, Darius was trying to make himself acknowledged by showering his colleagues with presents.
"Tracing, Armor-piercing, greater-ranged, explosive…are you sure you can just give out these fine arrows to me for free?"
"Of course! He he he. Fine tools recognize their master, you know. Even in Hermes Guild, there aren't many people who use these kinds of arrows."
"Thank you, Mr. Darius."
Peil had once completed a quest with Darius when he was in Rosaim Kingdom, but he didn't recognize Darius at first, having met so many different people since that time.
"Although, I should let you know, I don't have that much authority over things."
"But you are one of the closest associates of Weed's! Ha ha!"
"Well I'm not saying we're not close, but I'm more of his slave than a frien-"
He accepted the gifts without too much concern, not thinking they might be bribes.
'So he wants a position of a lord? Sigh…I don't think I'd have a say in this. I shall just accept what is given.'
But while reporting this encounter with Darius to Weed, he recalled the old memories.
"Huh…So THAT was him."
"Yep. I think he is that jerk we met."
The fate of Darius had not crossed too much against theirs ; true, they were not on best of terms during their discovery of the Island of Heaven, but the real problem was Geomchi and his trainees.
"Wouldn't they be angry if we accept Mr. Darius as a lord?"
"Well, they don't generally hold their grudges for a long time."
"He'll probably be fine, after enduring some hardship for a couple of months. It would be best for him to avoid meeting them at all, but we don't have to show that much care about him."
Peil was actually feeling more pity for Darius.
'He'll be manipulated by Mr. Weed now, after leaving Hermes Guild. I really dare not say which is better.'
Since then he had been contacting Darius regularly, receiving information on the inner status of Hermes Guild or soldier deployment. These sorts of information might change a little over time, but the numbers regarding the default placement of troops would still be quite accurate.
"The total of 53,000 troops. If we assume that only half of Hermes Guild members are around, then there will be 2,000 of them. 3,000 if we are unlucky."
The users scattered around the plaza were waiting for Weed's next words; through the users near him, his words were transmitted to everyone on the group communication channel.
The second, third, and the fourth steps.
They were eagerly awaiting the perfect plan for invading the free city of Someren.
"Now that we are all here, let's start marching to the lord's castle."
"Just like that?"
Looking at the confused faces of the users, Weed took out a big chest from his backpack.
"Here. I'll give these to you."
For about 0.1 second, they thought he had actually prepared something.
'Are they siege weapons?'
'No, they are too small. Legendary magical weapons, maybe?'
'Is he giving us some items of humongous power?'
It turned out that what Weed passed around to the users were flags made of cloth; each of them had a picture of beautiful grasslands and cities painted on it. As Grass Porridge Cult did not have any official flag, the painting depicted the cities in the North. The manufacturing process of these flags involved a couple of tailors shamelessly exploited by Mapan.
"What on earth are we going to do with these flags?"
"We are going to march while holding them."
These tailored items were nothing unusual, but once they hoisted the flags high, there were users who recognized them for some mysterious reason.
"Wait…are those…Grass Porridge Cult?"
"That's a Grass Porridge flag!"
"Why are they here…? Wait, that's Mr. Weed! The god of war!"
Several merchants who gathered around the plaza shouted loudly.
A sudden and brief suspicion dawned on Peil and Romuna.
'Even I sometimes have trouble recognizing him because of his featureless face, and I see him often. How are they all recognizing him instantly?'
'It's so strange. All we are doing is holding a few flags with some grass painted on them. How are they associating that to Grass Porridge Cult in a second? When we don't even have an official banner?'
Not even bothering to check the identity of those merchants, once a commotion broke out about Weed's appearance, users were quickly flocking into the plaza.
The users who were doing business or watching broadcast with crystal balls in taverns were gathering.
"Wow….it's really Weed! I thought you would be in Shelgium."
"Mr. Weed! Are you really Mr. Weed? I was around there when you got that quest from Freya Order."
"All hail great Weed!"
"Long live Arpen Kingdom!"
Weed's popularity in Somren was truly at its peak. For many users from free cities, Weed was simply their hero and role model.
"What's this, what is going on?"
"I don't understand. There's no point in the ambush if we get our identity revealed like this."
Only the users who trusted and followed Weed were left flabbergasted by the sudden turn of event in the course of about half a minute.
"Now, these sculptures are only 50 gold pieces each! I have limited stock, so hurry up! I'll take the first three people only!"
He even started selling his rip-off sculptures until the words of his arrival spread.
If you are thinking that he is being quite unbecoming of a master sculptor, selling cheap works to grab a couple of coins, you would be very mistaken; the carvings like rabbits, foxes and deer that he had been making repeatedly ever since he was a novice sculptor were able to be produced with lightening speed, at the rate of about two hundred per hour. Soon he achieved an unbelievable feat of selling 980 sculptors in 6 minutes; this town was rich, and there were a lot of users buying 10 or 20 at once as gifts.
"Mr. Weed is here!"
"Grass Porridge Cult has appeared."
In the meantime, the words of Weed's arrival kept spreading throughout the city, drawing even more users and heating up the atmosphere.
"Is he still selling the sculptures?"
"They are already sold out!"
"Woow….I really wanted to get one."
Innocent little lambs, such easy preys!
Having completely sold his sculptures, Weed raised his hands.
"I came, I sold, I earned!"
"Weed! Weed! Weed!"
In that rather strange air, the users of the free city of Somren went wild. They were not sure exactly what was going on, but they were happy that Weed, the master sculptor and the most popular figure in the whole continent, appeared before them. They even felt as though THEY had earned all that money. There are good reasons why politicians spend a lot of time and effort on street campaigns.
-Weed: Raise the flags high, everyone.
Weed gave an order to raise the flags on the group chatting channel.
Peil, Romuna and even Python hoisted up the flags with two hands and waved them.
About two hundred flags were waving in the air, and that was enough to form the right atmosphere.
Weed delivered a roaring speech.
"The free city of Somren! I have come to reclaim the freedom that has been lost!"
"Weed! Weed! Weed!"
Peil felt a great shudder traveling down his back as he saw the reaction of the audience.
He had sensed a similar atmosphere when Weed was moving the crowd to build a pyramid in Rosaim Kingdom; a feeling of being mesmerized and swindled without realization.
"I will fight for you all."
"Weed! Weed! Weed!"
"Do not chant my name alone. My hope is that everyone will achieve happiness and prosperity!"
"Grass Porridge! Grass Porridge! Grass Porridge!"
The heat in the air was enough to melt a falling scoop of ice cream before it reached the ground.
In no more than a couple of minutes since Weed's arrival, the users present in the Central Plaza of Somren became intoxicated by this excited atmosphere.
"Let's reclaim the freedom we have lost. By our hands!"
With each word blaring out of Weed's mouth, a roar from the audience followed.
"We will be grateful for your help, however small. If you are afraid, you can just walk with us in the back. Let's show the pride of Somren's people to that arrogant Hermes Guild!"
In a blink of an eye, Weed managed to form an army of 40,000 in the plaza.
"March to the castle of the lord!"
Weed took the lead, and the users followed, weapons in their hands.
Those who they met on the way to the lord's castle, or those who came running after hearing the news, all joined in the crowd.
They were not even properly organized according to classes or levels, but that didn't matter; people were gathering, and their potential for destruction was impossible to predict. Some time later, Mapan wrote about this event in his memoirs in a form of a dialogue.
– Preparation in advance? It took me exactly 30 minutes. I just had to recruit some novice users with the daily payment of 3 gold pieces. I think there were about 100 of them…I was originally going to get about 1000 people, but Mr. Weed objected, saying that it was a waste of money. I really like Mr. Weed when he shows such great consideration towards money, even if it's MY money.
-Their task? Things I had to teach? There were none. I simply told them to shout Mr. Weed's name loudly when he arrived. That was all the preparation needed.
-There was no need to recruit the soldiers through official means, no need to supply for combat. Are you asking what would've happened if the troops of Somren had tried to stop us?
-How would they have done that, when they were stabbed in the back so unexpectedly? Still, it wouldn't have made much of a change even if they had tried. It's Mr. Weed we're talking about. He would have stabbed them again. Harder.
-You mean there would have been the 2nd, 3rd and 4th preliminary steps in reserve? I told you, there were no such things! True, one of Mr. Weed's many strengths is his preparedness, but his occasional boldness is another.
-Yes. Mr. Weed once told me, miracles are made by hard working people with quick wits. He often handles a situation with his hunches and wits, and that surprisingly works out very well.
A combat is all about timing!
Kgoltha, the lord of the free city of Somren, was lying down watching a crystal ball.
"There's no way we could lose this time. Even if Weed has an ability to fly. Kekeke."
Kgoltha and other Hermes Guild users were eagerly waiting for Weed's defeat; with Weed and Arpen Kingdom gone from the face of this Versa Continent, there would be nothing that could stand in their way.
Even with their current situation about the rebels, they thought that the heads of the guild could find a way to resolve it once they lost the central force that united them together.
"We have a trouble! There's a revolt!"
"Ugh…Of all the time, why now?"
A former merchant, Kgoltha raised his big and heavy body.
"Size of the revolt?"
"We can't know clearly yet, but the estimated number is 100,000."
"Well, that's not too bad…"
He wasn't happy with the large scale of the uprising, but thought that it would be subdued shortly.
The amount of wealth accumulating in Somren was such that they even had trouble finding ways to spend it all, so the renovation of the castle walls and defense facilities had been made thoroughly.
'The troops in the city could stop them without much trouble; then the booty could make a considerable profit.'
He didn't think much more ahead than contacting the guild for help in case things went wrong, but soon his adjutant came bursting into his bedroom and said, "The leader of the rebellion army is Weed!"
"Weed? Okay. It's a common name, but I don't recall hearing it around here."
"Weed, the god of war!"
"Huh…there's a user with such a title? It's quite fancy, wherever they got it from."
"You don't know Weed the god of war? He fought against Lord Bard Ray, and he's the king of Arpen Kingdom!"
"Of course I know THAT Weed. Who doesn't? He's the most famous person in Royal Road."
The adjutant beat his chest with frustration.
"THAT Weed is invading this city, right now!"
Kgoltha jumped from his seat.
"WHAT?! Why is he…For what…HOW?"
"I don't know."
"He's supposed to be conducting the siege in Shelgium…it's being broadcast live!"
"That's not important. We need to stop him, fast."
Having made a great fortune early, Kgoltha had owned the stores in the central district of Somren. After securing the position of a lord by making connections to Haven Empire, he was practically rolling in money, but had little interest in war.
"You're saying Weed is attacking us?!"
"How many times do I have to tell you? He is leading the uprising."
"I suppose I have to fight, then?"
"If you are not planning on handing over the city, yes, definitely."
The adjutant who were in charge of the administration of the free city of Somren had been a civil servant from the administrative department, and had been promoted when his competence was acknowledged in real life; a typical capable subordinate suffering from the dull governor.
"Who's going to stop them?"
"I am not sure. Bushiri is the strongest user out of those who are online now. He's a knight, too."
"I remember him boasting during our last banquet. Did he say he's level 512 now? Do you think he can stop them?"
"Things don't look very optimistic. Hermes Guild wouldn't have been chasing after him so obsessively if he could be beaten so easily."
"Y…You're right. What if we call the guild for help while our defense army fights them?"
"The guild will send people in an upmost hurry, but this city will have been taken when before they're here."
The broadcasting stations streaming the battle in Shelgium were faced with a nasty surprise.
"Quickly, connect to Somren free city!"
"It's Weed! Weed showed up there!"
"That doesn't make any sense, why is he there?"
"According to the news, he's advancing towards the lord's castle after gathering users."
"Tell B Team to get ready right now, we need a real-time livestream if possible…Damn it! Shelgium's important, but it's urgent in Somren too! Which one should we broadcast? How are the other stations reacting?"
The broadcasting stations hastily decided to have live coverage of the situation in the free city of Somren, and organized their schedules accordingly.
Companies like KMC Media and CTS Media, despite being major broadcasting stations, gave up Shelgium and moved their focus to Somren.
Fortunately, as many users were active in the United Briton region, there were also reporters present in the area, and broadcast were arranged in less than 5 minutes.
"The waves of attacks from Haven Imperial Army are continuing on in the siege of Shelgium. Currently the outer walls have collapsed and the Empire's infantry is approaching the city. Mr. Oh Ju-wan, the resistance from the northern users are very unyielding, isn't it?"
"Yes, that's right. Despite the large difference in strength they are still enduring persistently. Some are even hiding in the rubbles to attack their enemy."
"The siege of Shelgium is still raging on, but we just received news of Mr. Weed's appearance in the free city of Somren. We will move our broadcast to Somren for a moment."
The users who have been expecting Weed's arrival while watching the television also turned their attention to Somren.
(To be continued…)
More details from the translator
This is supposed to be the sound made by a teleport gate when there's a user teleporting in; just in case it's not clear.
This is a very obvious reference to "Veni, vidi, vici (I came, I saw, I conquered")".
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