The sun rays gradually disappeared in the gorgeous sunset, and the moon began to emit a soft and clear glow as the night fell.
After a whole day of trekking, the team finally entered the area of Black Rock Mountain. The fatty sat on the ground. Sir Pastor trained his body during his apprenticeship, but he had been pampered and accustomed to it. How could he bear this kind of suffering?
“No, I can’t walk anymore. Let’s camp here and rest.”
Ina looked at the surroundings and frowned, “No! We can’t camp here! Let’s go quickly.”
“I really can’t walk anymore. I have to rest here. No matter what you say, you can’t change my decision!” The fatty gasped heavily as he laid down on his back, ignoring the dirt. His big fat belly went up and down, making Chen Rui think of some kind of amphibian on Earth.
Ina shook her head, ignored the fatty’s complaints and continued to lead the team to move forward. After walking for a while, she uttered a sentence from a distance, “With this kind of terrain, plus the cover of the night, the enemy only needs to throw rocks down the mountain to smash us into meatloaf in our sleep.”
The fatty gasped and shuddered when he thought of the falling rock ambush before escaping into the terrifying forest that day. He somehow gathered the strength to get up again, intending to keep up with the team. After walking a few steps, he tripped over a stone. If he was not held by the arm on the side in time, he would definitely fall into the mud.
The fatty nodded to Chen Rui who was holding him. He panted and said, “Thank you, Richard.”
Chen Rui handed over a bottle of potion, “Drink this, it should help with your physical recovery.”
The fatty opened the cork and gulped it. He felt that his strength was recovering rapidly. His triangular eyes brightened, “What kind of recovery potion is this. It is actually so effective! Is it a master level potion?”
“Master level… Almost. This is given to me by my teacher. Unfortunately, there is only 1 bottle.”
Chen Rui was telling the truth. This bottle was a recovery potion prepared by his teacher, Tetenis, who had reached the quasi-grand master level. It was the last bottle, but in the exchange center of the Super System, there were inexhaustible grand master-level recovery potions.
“My friend, your friendship makes me ashamed. I have to confess to you that I actually secretly hid a few pieces of fine wheat cakes and never shared them. I will share them with you now…” The fatty took out with a few pieces of cakes with a grateful look.
As the carriage was destroyed and the mounts were lost, the food and supplies that had been abundantly stored were lost as well. The fatty usually had to eat cold dry food with the mercenaries. If they were lucky, they could hunt some prey. Unexpectedly, he still kept some food for himself.
“Your frankness also touched me, but thank you, I really don’t need it. I won’t accept it! Because my friends need it more than I do. Well, let’s hurry up and keep up with the team.” Chen Rui smiled as he patted the fatty on the shoulder and walked forward.
In fact, he knew very well in his heart that the fatty’s privately kept stocks were definitely more than a few pieces of wheat cakes. The so-called “frankness” was naturally reserved. Why don’t you share the jerky that you ate in the morning?
The team continued to march until Ina chose a suitable hillside to stop for camping.
“Don’t make a fire. Be quiet. Reduce the scope of the patrol. Try not to disturb the mountain hobbits.” Ina ordered while assigning tasks and organizing everyone to rest and guard.
The exhausted fatty hid in the tent to rest. He was secretly gnawing on the stock hidden in the space bracelet. After that, he laid down. A few minutes later, there was a snoring sound in the tent.
Chen Rui sat among the mercenaries and listened to the big bearded man, Silva, telling the story about the cave hobbits.
Compared with the cave hobbits who were immersed in the underground mines digging various minerals, and the forest hobbits who were only willing to work with elf, the mountain hobbits who were proficient in forging skills had more interaction with humans. Most of the hobbit craftsmen in human society were mountain hobbits.
The mountain hobbits like the human’s fine wine and tasty food, and the human coveted the various equipment that the hobbit’s forged. Smart businessmen came to the mountain hobbits’ residences and exchanged relatively cheap food and wine for equipment made by the hobbit to make huge profits. Some even used the hobbits’ careless and impatient character to cheat them by various means… As time passed, many hobbits began to enter the human world. After contacting all kinds of humans, the hobbits finally awakened to the various deceptions they had suffered before.
After being fooled again and again, the hobbits’ goodwill toward humans turned into disgust. They no longer trade equipment directly with humans. Instead, they sell equipment and purchase supplies through the hobbits or special spokespersons in the human world. Many of the hobbit groups even listed humans as unwelcome objects, such as the mountain hobbit that lived in the Thick Soil Castle in this Black Rock Mountain.
A young guy who had just joined the mercenary squad recently asked, “This time we are just passing by, it wouldn’t arouse the hostility of the hobbits, right?”
The big bearded man thought for a while, and he shook his head, “By right it shouldn’t, but the world is unpredictable. No one can say what will happen in the next minute. We are mercenaries, and we must be prepared to deal with accidents at any time. For example, I have a bad premonition now that maybe something will happen tonight.”
Seeing the tense expression of the young mercenary, the big bearded man and the surrounding people laughed. What kind of premonition is this? The veteran is obviously teasing the rookie.
Suddenly, Chen Rui raised his brows and looked into the distance.
Soon, Samuel showed a vigilant look, and he slowly stood up, “It seems that you are right, Silva. Remember not to ‘premonize’ casually in the future.”
Everyone was taken aback. Knowing that Samuel would never talk nonsense, Ina quickly picked up the huge shield and ordered, “Everyone, get ready for battle! Remember, if it’s the hobbit, you must not act first!”
The mercenaries quickly held their weapons and formed a defensive formation. The fatty Mana who was sleeping was also awakened.
The dense black figures rushed toward this side. They had already surrounded this hillside in the blink of an eye.
It could be seen from the moonlight that there were about 400-500 people coming. These figures were generally short, equipped with metal armor helmets, and uniformly equipped with square shields about the same height as their stature. In one hand, they held a relatively large hammer or battle axe. Judging from the footsteps of the ground, the weight of this armor and weapon was much heavier than ordinary equipment, but these figures still maintained a steady forward speed. They seemed to be used to it.
“The large shield warriors of the mountain hobbit!” Ina was secretly surprised. By right, even if they were in the mountain hobbit’s site, they would generally be warned in view of the number of their team members. It was impossible for so many regular troops to be dispatched.
“Put away your weapons! Remember not to show hostility! I’ll try to negotiate with them.” Ina saw that the situation was strange, so she quickly asked everyone to put down their weapons to show their friendliness. With the terrifying combat power of these large shield warriors, once a conflict broke out, none of us would be spared except Samuel who may be able to escape by chance.
Ina didn’t know Samuel’s true strength, let alone that there was a stronger presence in the team besides the deputy commander. If this person’s strength was taken into account, it would be the hobbits who were in a more dangerous situation.
The hobbit large shield warriors soon surrounded the hillside. The leading hobbit came out and shouted in a somewhat slurred common language, “Despicable bandits, give you 1 minute to return the things that do not belong to you to the hobbit! Otherwise, we will use your blood to wash away the anger of the hobbits!”
Bandits? Everyone looked at each other. Ina finally understood where the misunderstanding was, so she quickly stepped forward and said, “This is a misunderstanding! We are just mercenaries who are passing by!”
“You still have 40 seconds!” The hobbit turned a deaf ear to Ina’s explanation. When he waved, the formation of the hobbit behind began to change and made an offensive stance.
Ina knew this was not a bluff. The hobbits were mostly stubborn. Once they decided it, it would be difficult to change. She quickly shouted, “I’m a friend of Blackbeard Tecklin! I can use Tecklin’s beard to guarantee that my friends and I have absolutely nothing to do with the matter!”
This guarantee was not ridiculous at all because the hobbits value their beard the most. As soon as this sentence was uttered, the leading hobbit was startled, “Are you really Tecklin’s friend?”
“Yes! My father used to be good friends with him. I still remember that he had a habit of singing after drinking wine…”
“Yes, Tecklin does have this habit…” The hobbit’s tone eased a little, then it became fierce again, “No! You humans are all very cunning guys that cannot be trusted! If you don’t want to be turned into mashed flesh under the hobbits’ axe and hammer, give up all resistance immediately and come back to the Thick Soil Castle with me!”
Ina quickly thought about it for a while, looked at her companion, and finally nodded. With the current situation, it is not advisable to fight frontally. Otherwise, we will not only fail to pass the Black Rock Mountain, but we will also be attacked and hunted down by the hobbits.
As a result, everyone’s weapons were confiscated. Under the escort of the hobbits, they continued to march along the mountain road.
Although the visibility at night was not high, the hobbits were very familiar with the environment. It took about 3 hours to walk along the mountain roads with complex terrain before they finally arrived at the mountain hobbit’s residence- The Thick Soil Castle.
Despite the stature of the hobbits, who could only reach the waist of the tall Silva, the castle built was magnificent with countless vines entwined on the gray-white tall city wall. Under the moonlight, it was like an ancient giant looking down with a thoughtful look.
It was late at night, but the castle gate was wide open. Rows of armored hobbits were standing in 2 rows with torches and weapons. The castle was heavily guarded. Obviously, a major event had happened in the Thick Soil Castle which should be related to the ‘bandits’ mentioned by the hobbit leader.
TL: Who are the real bandits? Is this related to the Dagger Brotherhood as well?
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