336 Provincial Council
The sun was just rising over the sea, reflecting its warmth on the three fishermen while the surf pounded in the background. Soup was lazily sunning herself on the beach after an early morning hunt in the cold waters off the coast of Ionova.
Nix waited until the bobber disappeared from sight before jerking the rod tip up. A moment later, the sweet whine of the line being pulled out let him know that he'd hooked one.
/Go Fish: Jun Li: You got it!
/Go Fish: Semmi: Take your time, I'll grab the landing net.
After a few hard days of upgrading, Nix and his two fishing buddies set up where the Ionova river flowed into the sea. Everything they caught in the river's mouth was over-sized.
After twenty minutes of letting his catch struggle, Nix started to reel it in. Several times he was glad that he'd upgraded both his line and rod in Ever Spire; without a doubt, his old rig would have been completely destroyed.
Jun Li whistled softly when they pulled it ashore by hand. The landing net had been entirely useless.
Golden Serrated Fero
Weight: 59 lbs.
Description: A rare fish
with golden scales that
are valuable in crafting.
/Go Fish: Semmi: Check it for enhancements, Junie.
Junie nodded and made a small incision between the fish's eyes. A moment later, she removed a small black stone.
Black Water Enhancement [Sonic]
/Go Fish: Jun Li: Not bad, going to keep it Nix?
/Go Fish: Nix: Nope. Throw it in the guild bank.
/Go Fish: Semmi: Where did you put Hierophant?
/Go Fish: Nix: Leva has him locked up in the Nether.
/Go Fish: Semmi: You mean your top-secret Overseer Minion, who is now part of the Council of Five?
/Go Fish: Nix: That's the one.
/Go Fish: Jun Li: I wondered how you were able to exert so much influence so quickly.
/Go Fish: Semmi: Mina is here.
Nix looked up from gutting the fish and was greeted by Mina, Milat, and Hyai.
Hyai pulled out a small knife and knelt beside him, cutting several long filets from the fish. "I have just the recipe for this."
Nix didn't forget for an instant that Hyai was also a talented chef. "I'll drop it off at the house before I go."
"I need to report back to the Neva Council before you return." Mina smiled mysteriously, whatever was going on there, she absolutely refused to share.
"Better head back then, I'm returning to Ever Flame today."
/Inferno: Jun Li: I want the Gemini Raid team to head to Ever Flame right now.
/Inferno: Pon: Nix is heading in?
/Inferno: Wind: Finally!
[Nether, Chyanama: 0900]
Leva sat at her desk, smiling and staring down at the items on her desk. A small metallic helmet, a set of lock-picks, and a pair of slippers. They had all been gifts from Morti, Ducky, and Fey. It was the first time anyone gave her something because they liked her.
The Nether Overseer frowned at her blinking hud. A moment later, a full-sized holo of Xia, the Council Advisor, appeared in front of her desk.
"Overseer Leva." Xia bowed slightly, her tone respectful.
Leva returned the bow but did not stand. "Advisor Xia, this is a surprise."
Xia stared at her with wide-set eyes. "I wish to ask you a question, Overseer Leva, on behalf of the Council of Five."
Leva nodded. She had been told by Nix to expect this. "Go ahead."
Xia paused and chose her words carefully. "What is the nature of your relationship with Breach Commander Nix?"
"I am his right hand and trusted General," Leva answered without hesitation.
Unexpectedly Xia cursed; she stared hard at the ground for a moment without speaking. "Is it true that Breach Commander Nix has been cursed?"
Leva nodded. "The curse gets weaker every day. Inferno and their allies are preparing for battle."
Xia considered her options for a moment. "On behalf of myself and your fellow Council members, we offer the Might of the Nether."
Leva let her reluctance show. "Nix's Breach Commander abilities are temporarily disabled; he will rely on me to ferry his troops to their positions."
General NyCyndor and his army are now under your command.
General Ro' Sina and her army are now under your command.
General Genta and his army are now under your command.
General Chog the Furious and is army is now under your command.
Advisor Xia and her Elite Commandos are now under your command.
Leva leaned back in her chair, trying to keep her face calm. "Any sort of Betrayal here will have dire consequences."
Xia nodded in agreement. "We will fight under Nix's banner; I will personally deal with anyone who tries to undermine this alliance."
"Be ready, Nix, and Inferno wait for no one." Leva closed the direct contact and let out a long breath.
Nix rode Nightmare through the Ever Flame gates a few hours later; he detoured slightly to stop at the stable. Flash was already tied up outside and being watched by Randa, who was feeding him a carrot. "How'd things go?"
Unexpectedly the young woman blushed furiously. "Fine, please stay in contact with us in the future."
Nix reached over and accepted Flash's reins. "I will try." With a quick wave, he pushed Nightmare into a brisk trot while Flash followed a few feet behind.
The Town Hall was on the far side of the city, a few blocks away from Tanner Benton's shop in the Market square. Nix took note that the market was oddly empty when he rode past it. He patted Nightmare's shoulder and kept an eye on his backtrail. He didn't know what to expect, and so he expected everything. A fight was brewing, but he wasn't sure when it would start.
[Whisper: Jun Li to Nix] Gideon and Nebs have requested to join our raid force. Any objections?
[Whisper: Nix to Jun Li] None, thank them, and put them to work.
The Town Hall was a large wooden building with two sets of double doors. Nix tied up Nightmare and unsummoned Flash before walking in.
The sound of voices arguing carried through the large room. A dozen people, including Mina, sat in conference at a long table in the front. Long wooden pews were filled with the citizens and shopkeepers of Ever Flame.
When Mina spotted Nix, she immediately stood up. "It makes no sense to elect a Provincial Prefect while we are on the brink of war. I motion to temporarily assign Guild Leader Nix from the Inferno Guild as the Provincial Commander so that he may deal with this issue."
Tanner Benton nodded in agreement. "Seconded. I move for an immediate vote."
Oracle Bor Na tapped her gavel lightly on the table. "Motion carried. Please cast your ballots."
Nix stood in the back of the room, waiting while the vote was being held. After finishing the count, Bor Na waved for him to come forward.
Mina waited until Nix stopped in front of the table before speaking. "Council Members, this is Nix, the Guild Leader of Inferno."
Bor Na stood up slowly and approached him. "This council has unanimously voted to assign you as the Provincial Commander of our Forces. We place ourselves in your hands."
Curse of the Ice Goddess
Objective: Destroy the bandit forces
that threaten the peace of Neva.
Objective: Defend Ever Flame.
Objective: Defeat the Eastern Bandit Camp.
Objective: Defeat the Western Bandit Camp.
Objective: Defeat the Main Forces that have blockaded the Mountain Pass.
The support of your allies has temporarily weakened the Curse that Khione has placed upon you.
Your Breach Commander abilities have been restored.