Chapter 28 Fierce Scar
When Roland tried to change the theory into practice, he discovered that it wasn’t as easy as he imagined.
In the backyard after four or five days, the production of a harder drill was successful. It was easily quiet since he could use the high-temperature flame from Anna, which could easily get above 1500 degrees, and was enough to melt iron. Without needing to think about temperature control, and using the conventional method of producing steel, it was easy and quickly possible to make a small quantity of steel bars – namely the high-speed stirring of iron clubs with molten iron. The excess carbon and other impurities in the pig iron would oxidize when coming into contact with the air. By repeating this several times before letting the molten iron cool down, it was possible to get high-quality steel.
The problem laid within the steam engine.
The worked up noise and vibration by his prototype of the steam engine was very impressive, even when stabilizing the drill it was impossible to complete a pipe. When doing heavy work or menial jobs, this degree of tremor didn’t matter, but processing a gun barrel was clearly not possible.
If he wanted to improve the steam engine, he would have to create a centrifugal mechanics governor to control the output power of the steam engine, and then he could reduce the tremor by using gears to adjust the rotation speed of the drill. And he need a simple lathe machining gear. With all this in mind, Roland simply found no way to achieve this goal while preparing for the coming Months of the Demons.
In the end, he could only use the old fashioned way, and let a blacksmith hammer the drill into the barrel. But the plan to mass-produce firearms was impossible. According to the number of smithies in Border Town, it was only possible to produce 3-4 root barrels each month, but only in the case that he stopped the production of the second steam engine.
The only good news was that didn’t have to worry about the quality of the barrels. The blacksmith only had to knock out a rough pipe, and then Anna could do the unifying commissure, her work was seamless and so good that it basically eliminated the risk of a barrel explosion.
So Roland had no choice but to change his former plan. He had intended to recruit hunters from Border Town, who would then form a rifle team – most of them were proficient in archery with either a bow or crossbow, both were handy weapons. In addition, they only need a short amount of time to train with the firearms, so they could be quickly sent into combat.
But now with only four guns produced before the Months of the Demons, he could only pick the most outstanding hunters and had no manpower to build up an elite group. Roland decided to let Iron Axe handle this matter, he already spent fifteen years in Border Town, so he should know who the best hunters are.
For the last month, Brian was unhappy.
Especially when he met the militia in the street, his unsatisfied feeling would be doubled… He even felt a trace of loathing.
He felt His Highness had forgotten him.
A month ago when he was called by the chief knight, he was full of excitement. He would have close contact with the 4th Prince, and get orders directly from His Royal Highness, how fortunate and glorious would that be!
He grew up in Border Town, and although he born from a common hunting family, by virtue of his ability he was able to get a place as town patrol.
He knew he could not rely on his family background to become a knight, but instead could only wait for the opportunity to get enough merits to receive the honor of becoming a knight.
His Highness asked him what he knew about the demonic beasts, so he was apparently unwilling to give up his own territory during the winter. He was trying to find ways to fight the demonic beasts. Later the wantonly built walls also proved that there was no doubt that this year they would spend the Months of the Demons in Border Town.
If he wanted to stop the invasion of the demonic beasts here, we would have to set up a front-fighting team. Brian thought that he himself was a good candidate, he was proficient in investigating, fencing, and riding, and in the last year he was even the last person in Border Town who ignited the flames, proving that he did not lack courage, but he had never expected that His Highness intended to elect a team from the civilian population to fight against the demonic beasts!
Yes, a purely civilian team, and not just him, but the entire patrol team of ten people were not accepted during the review by the chief knight. This was simply incredible, did His Highness think that these people, who had never held a sword, would be better at fighting than his own town patrol? He was afraid that when they got to see the evil beast’s fierce appearance they would instantly collapse!
But His Highness seemed to be serious… He not only trained the mob, but even gave them a uniform and many other clothes. Every afternoon Brian could see this group of people dressed up in a brown and gray leather armor, they were arranged in two columns running down the street. In the beginning, they were lacking any order, but recently the had become neater and neater.
While he himself still had to perform his boring task every day, he couldn’t see any possibility of promotion now.
When he was tossing and turning at night, he could hear a sound at his door, then the door opened and someone came in quietly.
“Hey, we are up,” whispered a person in a low voice. Brian could tell to whom this voice belonged, it belonged to member of his own patrol, nicknamed Fierce Scar.
In his room slept five people. In addition to himself and Greyhound, the other three quickly stood up, and they seemed well prepared, they hadn’t even taken off their coats.
“Captain, get up, I have something important to tell you.”
In Longsong Stronghold Fierce Scar had a noble relative, who had not heard of his great noble uncle? So thanks to this he had a high status within the team. It was not good for Brian to ignore him, so he had to climb up and ask, “What happened?”
Greyhound also woke up, “This is… it’s so late, why don’t you sleep… aren’t you sleepy?”
“I have the greatest job in your lives to introduce to you, you want to be canonized as a knight, right?”
“What…What? Knight?” Greyhound was surprised.
Brian heart jump wildly and he quickly asked, “In the end what is the job?”
“You all know my uncle Hill, he isn’t only the herald of Duke Ryan, even more, he is one of his confidants. This is news he himself personally confessed to me,” Fierce Scar spoke with a low voice, “The 4th Prince preparing to shake off the shackles from Longsong Stronghold made Duke Ryan very unhappy. He has decided to let the prince know who the true owner of the western border is. “
“Difficult, difficult, don’t… your plan… assassination…” Greyhound was so nervous he even begun to stammer, and he didn’t even speak a complete sentence.
“How would that be possible,” Fierce Scar laughed maniacally, “After all, he is a Prince, if we kill him, not even Duke Ryan could shelter us. I said this is your biggest chance in your life.”
Brain felt subconsciously that the deal was certainly not as simple as he claimed it to be, but the temptation to be canonized as a knight was too great, he could not help himself and opened his mouth, “Begin to talk, we are listening.”
“Food! If he has no food, he can only humble himself and go back to Longsong Stronghold where Duke Ryan already promised him a place. As long as we can successfully burn the food, which the 4th Prince had previously bought, Duke Ryan will organize the canonization ceremony for us, and will give each of us fiefdom east of Longsong Stronghold. This is a golden opportunity, Captain, what do you think? “
“Y-you are crazy… now, hadn’t His Royal Highness’ astrologer said that this year… Months of the Demons would likely hold on for more than four months… if we set the food on fire, if we burn it all, what would we eat!?” Greyhound again and again shook his head, “two… two years ago, there was a great famine, has everyone forgotten it?”
“What does it have to do with us?” asked another person disdainfully, “Anyway, I do not intend to stay here, if we do the job for Duke Ryan, we can live a comfortable life in the stronghold.”
“Yes, do you want to eat this hell of slag for a lifetime, do you?” Other people begun to chime in.
Hell, they already colluded at an earlier time. Brian’s heart became cold, and in addition, except Greyhound most of them were from outside of Border Town, they came from all over the kingdom and they don’t have any nostalgia with this town. Feeling powerless to stop them, Brian had to change the subject, “But the purchased wheat was transferred to His Royal Highness’ castle, and all the doors are guarded by His Highness’ knights, how could you go through with your plan?”
“That’s why I need your help,” Fierce Scar smiled proudly, “From an early age you have stayed in this broken place, so no one is more familiar with the environment here than you. I remember that you once said that there is a ravine in an abandoned well, and its end is connected with the castle’s water supply. Through it, we can silently enter the castle garden. Didn’t you find it when you were still a child? How is it? With this easy task, you can become a knight in the future – a knight personally canonized by Duke Ryan. “
A knight… should not do any injustice, instead, he should have the courage to fight against it, and he should not be afraid of any danger, and should always be ready to protect the weak! For Duke Ryan’s personal gains, the residents of his hometown would face the threat of hunger and death? Becoming a knight like this, there was no glory at all!
He refused to open his mouth, but Greyhound begun to shout.
“You are a group of maniacs! You… you’re… actually thinking about the idea of burning the food! I would never! Never let you leave this place! I will report it, report to… ahh,” Greyhound only spoke until here, his voice suddenly became weaker, with an incredible look he turned around, looking at a former teammate standing behind him and sneering at him. A black dagger was insert in Greyhound’s waist; the dagger was totally inserted into the body. Greyhound shivered twice, he opened his mouth and tried to say something, but he could only emit a hoarse breathing sound.
The other guard stirred his dagger twice, and then he abruptly withdrew it. Greyhound, like a doll who suddenly lost its support, softly crumbled to the ground.
“How?” Fierce Scar was suddenly so close to Brian, that the latter could even feel the foul breath exhaled from his mouth, “I think you have made a decision, right, Captain Brian?”