Chapter 4: The First Pawn
Part 1: How to Build an Army
Each territory within the Chessboard World was seven miles from one end to the other. Since it was square, each space on the board was forty-nine square miles. That was obviously not the limit, but for the very lowest level of power, that was still fairly impressive.
The twins’ domains were large enough to have several rivers and a few small lakes. Azra, Yuri, Reaper and Ailyn were all currently bathing in one such body of water. It was a minuscule stream that flowed only a hundred meters to the south of that gigantic tree.
“No, I’m sorry Sis, but I don’t want your avatar to have sex with mine anymore… It’s just getting too weird, okay? I didn’t care at first, but now it’s like… I don’t know. Why can’t you screw him yourself?”
The tiny grey-skinned goblin woman was clinging to Azra’s back, as he was standing in the deepest part of the slowly flowing river. On the other hand, both Yuri and Reaper were sitting on a large rock a few feet away.
“Unfortunately, I don’t seem to have the stamina to keep up with my avatar. It is almost always aroused and I believe that our genitalia are rather… incompatible. DC, is it possible for me to alter my avatar’s penis size without killing him first?”
[You may make changes to your avatar in the design program… However, no, the avatar must be respawned. I recommend that you refrain from destroying your avatar for the moment though. Your quest has been updated.]
“I wasn’t planning on destroying my avatar for such a minor physical change. Regardless, once I can begin spawning female Ratkins, I should be able to relegate mating duties to them. It will be much cheaper creating an army this way.”
After hearing what his sister just said, Azra lifted his right eyebrow and asked “Yuri, are you sure you’re okay with that? Let’s put aside the fact that you’re essentially making a bunch of sex slaves… Won’t those offspring be like your own children? Are you okay with forcing them to become cannon fodder?”
She tilted her head in confusion and wondered “Wouldn’t all of the units that we spawn be our children? How is there any difference between sending them into battle or… I see now. Your intention is to create several generations of offspring before sending any of them into battle… Although that method would be ideal, I doubt that we have enough time to implement it. At the very least, it would require several decades.”
“No, Yuri… Never mind, you’re just too ridiculous sometimes. It’s like talking to DC. How can you be so callus? There are other methods that we could use… At the very least, there are many strategies where we could avoid having to make sacrifices.” As Azra was about to expound upon the virtues of ‘turtling’, a message popped up and interrupted him.
[Quest Update: There are currently 43 people left in Salmon Creek Village. Most of them are insignificant, but a man named Henry Lucas has recently received one of Uriel’s pawns. In order to obtain it, you must gain his trust. You cannot steal the pawn and if he dies, the chess piece will return to its previous owner.]
Part 2: An Impossible Task
“What? We don’t even have to do anything? I figured that we would need to fight an army at the very least…” Azra was worried over how low the difficulty was.
[For people like you, it could be an impossible task.]
“Hey! Why the fuck do you need to be so mean all the time?!” As he was yelling, he didn’t notice that the little goblin on his back giggled.
Reaper let out a sigh, as Yuri explained “She is simply stating a fact. Judging by all of my research on human behaviour… We are likely outliers. Our thoughts and actions vary greatly from nearly all societal standards that I have read about.”
[Both of you have many personality quirks and I anticipate that any social interactions you have, will almost certainly end in catastrophe.]
Azra grumbled “Alright, I get the point! We’re losers! I’m fine with that… But regardless of how awkward or weird we are, at least we can probably kick that bastard’s ass! We’ll just beat the shit out of him until he decides to trust us!”
Yuri suggested “Perhaps I can attempt to seduce him? If he happens to be homosexual, then you can seduce him instead.”
[Most Quests involve combat and conflict. If you are required to gain his trust, then you will likely need to fight against a common enemy. Annihilating the Rusty Saber Bandits should win his favor.]
“Yeah, we aren’t seducing this guy. All we need to do is kill some people and it’ll be fine. Don’t make things weird Sis! Besides, he might be really ugly or have some horrible STDs. Maybe he’s a religious fanatic and he might hate women who are slutty? What if this asshole tries to kill us? Just let me do all the talking when we reach the village tomorrow, okay?”
Although it had been a whole day for Azra and Yuri, only twelve hours had passed on Elysium since they took their break. The sun was high in the sky and shining brightly down upon the snowy forest. A curious gray lynx was attracted to that mysterious glowing chessboard and attempted to knock over that silver king with its paw.
However, the chess piece wouldn’t even budge. Even the board was locked in place. Thus, the lynx indulged in its feline nature and sat down onto the warm square object in an attempt to claim it. A rift in space appeared and the confused cat was instantly sucked inside.
As two people totally dressed in arctic clothing stepped out of the portal, that terrified short-tailed cat immediately noticed the massive change in temperature. It had experienced many summers and wasn’t a kitten anymore. Yet, it had no idea how it could go from the middle of the winter, to a place that was so hot and humid that it could barely breath.
It started cautiously exploring the strange room that it was trapped inside and saw the two weird looking animals that were sleeping on each side of the room. One was hairless and grey, while the other was covered in black fur.
Since it didn’t understand the situation, the lynx hurriedly fled to the nearest window and jumped outside. Then it began falling. When it was about to hit the ground, it suddenly vanished into thin air.
[Interesting… It appears to be a female Long-Furred Elysian Lynx. It would fit much better in a temperate or arctic climate…]
The lynx had lost all of its momentum and been teleported into the middle of a huge snowy field. There were a few trees spread out, but for the most part, it appeared similar to an arctic tundra. Off in the distance, there was a giant silver tower.
That curious cat quickly decided to go investigate.
Part 3: Brigands and Bandits
“Bro, be reasonable! The Boss is willing to protect this village… All you need to do is join us. Those Rusty Saber Pussies aren’t shit compared to us Coldstone Brigands. Sooner or later, Boss Coldstone will finally let us wipe out those evil bastards!”
A scrawny little balding man with pale white skin, wearing thick leather armor, was standing in front of a massive man who was swinging around a greatsword with one hand. Henry had his fur coat on, since it was below freezing outside. However, his head was totally exposed to the biting wind.
“Robby, I’m sorry… I know that you mean well, but it just isn’t in me. I can’t rob and kill people for a living. Besides, I refuse to give Boss Coldstone free reign over Salmon Creek. We already pay a tax so that he won’t attack us…”
That long blade suddenly swept over and rested upon the left side of that tiny man’s neck. A small amount of blood trickled down, as Henry asked “Didn’t he promise you the same thing when you joined? He still isn’t willing to risk his gang in order to protect the village that you grew up in! Tell me Robby, why should I trust that he’ll change his mind if I join?!”
Robert Jones carefully used his leather-glove covered hands to push the sword away, as he frantically backed up a few meters. Then he yelled “Dude, Bro, not cool! And how can someone like me, compare with someone like you?! Boss would be willing to sacrifice fifty men, if it meant roping you in! This village is nothing compared to what you’re worth to him!”
Henry scowled, grumbling “What the hell is so valuable about me? I might be a little bigger and stronger than most guys, but I wouldn’t be able to fight off fifty men on my own…”
“No Dude, you don’t get it… The Boss has big plans for the future. He wants to turn the Coldstone Brigands into a mercenary company. But in order to do that, he needs capable captains to lead the grunts like me into battle.” Robert had a self-deprecating smile on his chapped lips as he gazed up into that giant man’s dark-brown eyes.
It was incredibly difficult to find anyone in such a remote region that understood tactics and also had the strength to back up a leadership position. Aside from Henry Lucas, everyone else was already taken.
After sheathing his greatsword, Henry let out a long sigh and looked up towards the bright-blue sky. Then he shook his head and looked back at Robert, “I’m sorry, but my answer is still no. I’m not interested in becoming a mercenary or a brigand. Tell Boss Coldstone that I don’t want to be his enemy, but I can’t work for him either. My place is here, in Salmon Creek. If we survive this ordeal, we’ll still keep paying the tax… Just don’t push me too far. I might not be able to wipe out a whole battalion, but it only takes one well-placed arrow to end a man’s life…”
The tiny man frowned, shaking his head in disappointment. Then he walked away while holding his bleeding neck and muttering “Fucking self-righteous prick…”
Chapter 2: The Divine Chessboard World
Chapter 3: New Quest
Chapter 4: The First Pawn