The harrowing battle lasted merely four seconds and ended with Link's complete triumph.
The Dark Elf Magician was not dead or even injured. The Flaming Hand spell was carefully controlled such that it only destroyed his spell, but dealt no harm to his body.
However, Parsons had lost all energy to resist. He cowered within the giant palm of flames, revealing only his head. He closed his eyes awaiting his final judgement.
On the ground, Assassin Hedel held his broken leg in pain. His voice had become hoarse from his screaming. He had also become extremely weak due to the loss of blood. He whimpered helplessly while he lay on the bed of cold snow.
Link thought for a moment and came up with a solution to deal with the two Dark Elves.
They must die. However, it was not time yet. He needed to get some information out of them before he would end their lives.
He snapped his fingers lightly and released a Glass Orb spell towards Hedel. The glass orb positioned itself right beside Hedel's ears before exploding. The shockwaves from the explosion entered Hedel's brain without any obstruction, causing him to faint almost immediately.
Link then ordered a servant, "Remove all his clothes and equipment. Shave his hair and bandage his wounds. Don't let him die just yet."
Link did not shave his head merely to insult him. It was due to the Assassin's common habit of storing their triumph card in the most unexpected areas, including their hair. This was what made Assassins dangerous even if they were nursing a broken leg.
The servants all looked at each other in fear. They were merely ordinary people who had not seen a Dark Elf in their lives. Furthermore, they just witnessed this Assassin take the life of countless soldiers and servants in the castle. None of them had the courage to approach the injured Assassin.
"I'll do it!" Clyde spoke. He was a Warrior and knew exactly what Link was thinking.
He stepped forward and removed Hedel's body armor. He then picked up Hedel's dagger from the ground and skillfully shaved his head with a few clean strokes. After making sure that there were no hidden weapons, he then began to bandage his wounds.
A Level-5 Assassin who was well versed in Battle Aura possessed a strong vitality. After the initial treatment of his wounds, his breathing stabilized and he was out of danger.
Clyde then used a rope to bound Hedel tightly, making sure that he could not even budge before looking at Link. He asked, "Brother, what should we do next?"
His brother had shown outstanding battle prowess. If a family simply wanted to survive, unity was all they needed, However, if they wanted to make their name known throughout the continent, a powerful individual would be required.
Link was such a person!
In the military, the strong were naturally given respect and power. Since Link had shown his overwhelming strength, Clyde's attitude was completely different from before and he was not uncomfortable in showing it.
Link was no longer a "defiant kid just after learning a few magic spells". In his heart, Link was now a genius, a calm and terrifying Magician that could bring prosperity to the Morani Family.
He would definitely follow him to the ends of the earth.
Link thought for a moment and threw a low-level recovery potion to Clyde. "There are still many tiny metal fragments in the Assassin's body. Even though his condition has stabilized, it is only a temporary measure. Feed him the potion."
Link had considered the benefits before taking this action. By leaving the Dark Elves alive, he would be able to obtain valuable information about the Pralync Kingdom. By keeping both of them alive, he could even validate their statements through comparison.
"No problem." Clyde obediently opened Hedel's mouth and fed him the recovery potion.
Link then turned his attention to the Magician now that Hedel's issue was settled.
The Magician had completely given up. He simply stayed helplessly in the Flaming Hand and had a pained and fearful expression on his face.
Link immediately cast a Mana Lock spell on him.
This was a spell he learned from Herrera. It needed the complete cooperation of the target for it to be successful. It was an extremely strong spell and it was impossible to rely on one's own willpower to break free of the restrictions. This was at least true for the Magicians he had seen up till now.
Link was not completely sure that the spell would succeed. He took a chance seeing that Parsons was currently dejected and filled with disbelief and fear. When Parsons realized that something was amiss, the shackles were already locked in place.
A Magician who lost his magic powers was nothing more than an ordinary human.
Link then released his Flaming Hand and Parsons fell onto the ground with a blank expression on his face. Link knew that he would offer no more resistance.
Link then stepped forward and released The Magician's Hand, using it to remove the magic equipment from Parsons body piece by piece, starting from the staff to the defensive magic ring, the dimensional bracelet and the crystal headwear, leaving nothing behind.
When this was done, Parsons presented no threat even to the most defenseless of humans.
"Second brother, bring the two prisoners to the dungeon and lock them up. Remember to lock them up separately, do not allow them to interact with one another," Link ordered.
"No problem." Clyde obeyed and carried each prisoner in one hand before swiftly transporting them to the underground dungeon.
Only Wharton, Lilith, Molly, Trevor and a few trembling servants were left in the courtyard.
Wharton stared at Link with complicated feelings. He kept silent the whole time.
Link ignored him and turned his attention to the servant, "What are all of you doing! Bring the injured master to his room. Also, Trevor, summon the priest from the county.
"Yes, third young master."
After a flurry of obedient replies, the servants hastily went to do what they were told, as though they were instantly unlocked from their previous shackles.
As for Wharton, his mouth opened a few times, clearly feeling the need to speak to Link. However, despite the many attempts, he was unable to let out an audible sound. He did not manage to say what he wanted to in the end.
Link's transformation was too drastic. He was no longer the little brother he could bully, but an unfathomable powerful Magician. Thinking on his previous attempt to suppress him, Wharton couldn't help but feel ridiculous. He must have looked like a clown.
At the same time, he was overcome with embarrassment and rage. He did not know how to face Link.
After he was brought back to his room, only Lilith and Molly were left.
Their feelings were much simpler and direct. After the initial shock, only joy and relief remained in their hearts. In Lilith's eyes, no matter how powerful Link became, he was still her son.
She witnessed the entire battle and saw a confident and powerful Link dominating the battlefield. It reminded her slightly of the old Duke when he was younger. No, in fact, her son exceeded the old Duke in every way.
She was incredibly proud.
Lilith smiled as Link walked towards her. Tears of joy flowed down from her eyes. Her son had finally become strong enough to protect her after all these years. She no longer had to suffer in this cold and cruel household.
Molly felt both joy and respect at the same time. She lowered her head and averted Link's gaze the entire time. She felt that the gaze was incredibly oppressive. When Link stared at her, she instinctively bowed before realizing that Link was simply her younger brother.
"Brother..." She could not continue her sentence.
Link concealed his magic presence seeing the slight expression of fear on their faces. His expression was then restored back to the gentle and inviting smile he had previously.
He spoke softly, "The castle is slightly messy, I will have to let the servants clean it up. Mother, sister, please go rest in your rooms."
"Oh, alright." The two woman then headed back to their rooms.
There were only a few servants left and around twenty soldiers who were lucky enough to survive the massacre. At this moment, Clyde had also returned.
Link then said, "Clyde, the castle needs to restore its daily operations as soon as possible. The losses have to be calculated as well."
Clyde patted his chest and said, "I will take care of it!"
He then took the remaining soldiers away while Link followed closely behind.
The three Dark Elves were indeed powerful. They merely took a total of five minutes from their initial attack to when they reached the dining hall.
In this time, they killed a total of 180 people, less than 10 of whom were servants while the rest were soldiers. There was even a Level-3 Family Knight among the casualties.
This efficiency was astonishing.
When the bodies were finally accounted for, the plaza was almost filled with dead bodies. There were close to no injured personnel, all of them were killed in a single blow.
The mood was heavy.
Link also felt apologetic at the sight of this scene. He was the reason the three Dark Elves made their way to the Morani castle. He had indirectly taken the lives of these soldiers. He sighed before speaking, "They were all loyal Warriors. Their souls have reached the heavens. In order to ease their worrying hearts, I have decided to compensate their families for their deaths."
The soldiers who were lucky to be alive listened intently. Clyde, on the other hand, had a worried look on his face. This was a huge number of casualties. If they compensated the families at the standard rate of eight gold coins per soldier, that would add up to 1400 gold coins. Their family did not have this amount of wealth.
He wanted to remind Link about their economic predicament but was unable to in front of the surviving soldiers. He could only stare at Link anxiously.
Link saw Clyde's uncomfortable movements but ignored them completely. He faced the soldiers and continued, "Every dead soldier will receive 20 gold coins in compensation while every servant will receive 15 gold coins. For all those surviving servants and soldiers, you will be rewarded with ten gold coins each."
This caused a commotion within the 20 surviving soldiers, clearly excited over the news. However, some of the veteran soldiers had a look of suspicion on their faces. They clearly did not believe that the Morani Family would have this much money.
Clyde could no longer contain himself. After all, it was better to stop this atrocity now than to lose their reputation because they could not come up with enough money for the compensation. He pulled Link over and whispered, "Third brother, our family does not have this much money... this is..."
Before he could continue, Link used action to contradict his words.
A crisp sound of metal colliding against one another echoed through the plaza. Under the illumination of the surrounding light from the torches, a blanket of shimmering circular objects covered the snow ground.
They were gold coins, a huge amount of them!
Link had asked for 6000 gold coins in advance from Herrera previously. However, before he could spend this money, an accident happened. He thus had over 5000 gold coins left in his dimensional pendant. This was merely 4000 gold coins, not even his entire fortune.
Link then rebutted, "Brother, I guess this would be enough?"
In fact, everyone in the plaza was staring at the golden phenomenon on the snow-covered ground. Two of the Warriors who were not completely dead suddenly seemed to be filled with energy, coughing and desperately signaling to their surviving comrades that they were still alive. Link cast an Elemental Healing spell on each of the soldiers who escaped from the clutches of death at the sight of this golden wonder.
All the suspicion in their hearts dissipated completely at the sight of these gold coins.
"Brother, use these to settle the compensation issues. As for the rest of the money, use them to repair the castle.
"Yes, no problem!" Clyde no longer knew what to say. He had this sudden realization that all his worries were nothing in front of his younger brother.
To the surviving soldiers, they would be loyal to anyone who gave them enough compensation. Furthermore, it would be for the best if their master was both generous and powerful at the same time. They could not let this great opportunity slip past them.
A Warrior started chanting the first name of the Morani family. Soon, the entire plaza was chanting in excitement, "Morani! Morani! Morani!"
Clyde looked at the excited faces around him and his heart burned with a newfound passion.
When he returned to the Silver Fortress, he would confidently announce, "I am from the Morani Family, the brother of Link, the great Magician!"
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