Izroth was not the only one who heard the painful wail as it caused Mirage, Midnight, Ying Yue, Qi Jiguang and his party, to all turn their attention towards the source of that sound and close in on its location.
"How is this possible?" Mirage said as she could not believe the sight before her eyes. Didn't that person just die?!
A cloaked figure with a greatsword in their hand had the blade of their weapon stabbed into Robin's stomach area. However, there was also a spear pierced right into the head of that cloaked figure. That spear belonged to Jyuuriel who had made his first move since their journey started.
"We are a Faceless One. We cannot die." The cloaked figure said even with a spear through their head.
"Lyn, you-!" Robin coughed up a large amount of blood as he tried to speak.
The cloaked figure who had caught him by surprise was none other than Lyn! It had all happened too fast.
"We are all, yet we are none. To us, death is but a mere illusion. But your death... How beautiful." The cloaked figure said in a fragile tone as a large smile appeared on their face.
A few seconds later, their body had turned into countless particles and drifted away along with the greatsword.
However, it was too late for Robin. The wound left behind by their weapon was too great.
Robin kneeled over and a look of regret could be seen in his eyes. There were many questions going through his mind. Had he been too careless? Should he have just stayed in Tempest? Was he really doing the right thing? Was it worth his life? However, all of these questions were drowned out and soon he was left in this bizarrely calm state. It was a state of perfect peace just moments before death.
Lyn, who had been with him for three months and only knew him as the vice-leader of the Silver Hawk Merchants Caravan, had suddenly transformed into the Faceless One!
During the Faceless One's final attack, or at least what was thought to be their final attack, Lyn was knocked over from the initial impact as one of the rear wagons next to him had exploded.
Fortunately, Robin was uninjured by the attack. Though, this was only because he happened to be at a position that was close to Jyuuriel during the time of the chaos. Although he was unable to move, he could clearly see the fragments and shards that flew in Jyuuriel's direction and then seemingly deflect right off of him.
After the chaos had died down, Robin went over to check on Lyn who appeared to be injured from the attack, however, he soon felt something deathly cold pierce through him.
At first, Robin did not feel any different from his usual self. It was not until he looked down and saw a black greatsword going through his stomach that he realized he had been assaulted!
The individual that he was just checking on and helping to his feet was no longer Lyn, but instead, it was a cloaked figure. As for Lyn, it was as if he had never existed! He was there one moment and gone the next. All that remained before Robin him at that moment was that cold and eerie cloaked figure. But, how was this possible?
That was a question that quickly found its way to the back of Robin's head as he knew that this was his end.
There was a split moment, Robin could have sworn that he caught a glimpse of the Faceless One's eyes and it felt as if he was gazing into a boundless dark abyss.
"Your way has ended in failure. It's about time you hand it over and entrust the task to me." Jyuuriel said without batting an eye to Robin's critical state.
Robin, however, shook his head and replied in a weak tone, "Not to you, to them." He motioned his finger towards three specific individuals, Izroth, Mirage, and surprisingly Qi Jiguang!
Jyuuriel narrowed his eyes and said, "That wasn't part of the agreement when-"
"I'm changing the agreement!" Robin yelled causing him to cough up another large volume of blood in the process.
He then continued, "It's them, or it goes with me to my grave. The choice is yours, however, can you truly afford to fail your mission and live out the rest of your life knowing that you were responsible for the possible fall of your own kingdom?" Robin's eyes were filled with a look of determination and remarkable clarity.
Even though he was already at death's door, he still managed to hold onto a level of dignity worthy of one who possessed a royal bloodline.
Jyuuriel frowned when he observed that look in Robin's eyes. He understood instantly that the second prince of Tempest was not bluffing. While this was far from being the most ideal situation and was not previously what was agreed upon, he had little choice but to accept Robin's demands; even if they were unreasonable.
Jyuuriel swept his gaze across the players present. Soon after, he closed his eyes and turned away from the scene and acted as if he were unaware of the situation behind him.
"Come, my three young friends, I do not have much time remaining. I can already feel the life in me slipping away. I wish to speak with the three of you, alone." Robin said in a calm tone. Just by hearing him speak, one would not think that he was on the brink of death.
Izroth and Mirage understood why Robin wished to speak with them alone considering what they knew, however, Qi Jiguang was clueless as to why he was chosen. But, in the end, he figured that it must have been due to the fact that he was the leader of his party. Though that would fail to explain why Izroth and Mirage, who were members of the same party, were picked out of everyone present.
Midnight and Ying Yue looked towards Izroth and Mirage before giving a small nod of understanding as they walked away from the immediate vicinity.
As for Qi Jiguang's party, they all moved a good distance away when he hinted for them to fall back.
Now, there was just Izroth, Robin, Mirage, Qi Jiguang, and Jyuuriel who was "not really there" that remained.
Mirage furrowed her brows as she witnessed Robin's terrible state.
"I have a high-grade health potion on me, maybe it can-" But, before Mirage could finish her suggestion, she was quickly cut off by Robin.
"It won't be any use. Unless you have some legendary medicine on you or some miraculous healing skill, I'm afraid my time in this world is approaching its end. I appreciate your effort, my young friend, but it is too late for me." Robin's tone became increasingly coarse and there were brief pauses in between every few words. It was obvious that he was using whatever strength he had left to speak with them.
Robin took a moment to catch his breath, however, he felt that if he stopped talking for more than a couple of seconds that he would lose whatever small grip he currently had on his life.
"I have a favor to ask of you three. Think of it as the final request of a dying man." Robin closed his eyes and began to whisper in a language that sounded like complete nonsense. Even Izroth who had gone through every book on the first and second floor of the Amaharpe palace library was unable to understand the words Robin whispered.
Each word Robin whispered left behind a faint echo that reverberated and it sounded as if hundreds of people were trying to speak at the same time. It was not until the latter part occurred that Izroth realized what it was that Robin was whispering.
'This is... A Source Chant?'
Izroth concentrated his hearing and the more he listened to Robin's words, the more he felt that they resembled that of a Source Chant! However, there were strange variations and anomalies present that made Izroth unsure if it truly was a Source Chant that was being whispered.
After all, the Power of Source book that he received from Orion only contained a very simple and basic Source Chant. Needless to say, there were not any books on the first or second floor of the Amaharpe palace library that even mentioned Source.
Another thing that made him uncertain was the fact that if Robin did possess a Source, his overall fighting prowess should have been well above that of his displayed level. Unfortunately, even after reading the Power of Source, Izroth had only just scratched the surface of Source.
A few seconds later, the whispers stopped and the moment it did, Robin's face turned deathly pale as six sapphire-like beads levitated in midair.
"It is fate that the three of you were selected by the Truth Seeker Gem. I can tell you with all certainty, for those who experience the world, there exists no such thing as a pure heart. Therefore, I do not ask that you have a pure heart, but a steady one. You three will not stray from the path; this I know. That's why I entrust this task to you." Robin said as he smiled weakly.
He then continued, "It may be shameless for me to ask this of you when our paths have not been crossed for long, but I beg of you, do not allow my Tempest or the world to fall into an endless cycle of chaos."
Izroth, Mirage, and Qi Jiguang quietly listened to Robin's words. While Qi Jiguang did not know the full details, he was not a heartless person. A dying man had requested something of him and even went to the extent of begging, how could he possibly turn down such a request?
As for Izroth and Mirage, they were aware of Robin's identity as a prince. Therefore, for him to beg them with that kind of status to his name, even if he was near death, was practically unthinkable! That showed just how important this mission really was to him.
The six sapphire beads emitted a faint pulse before they vanished. It was at that moment when Izroth, Mirage, and Qi Jiguang received the same alert from the system.
〈System Alert: You have received the quest «Final Request»!〉
〈System Alert: You have been automatically ejected from your party! You have joined a new party!〉
〈System Alert: Player Mirage has been automatically added to your party!〉
〈System Alert: Player Qi Jiguang has been automatically added to your party!〉
〈System Alert: Please note, if you leave this party while the quest «Final Request» is ongoing, it will be considered a failure.〉
Quest Name: Final Request
Recommended Level: ??
Recommended Party Size: 6
Quest Rank: Unique-S
Quest Objective: The second prince of Tempest Robinarzin has entrusted you with his final request. The fourth kingdom of Tempest is being corrupted from within by an eternal darkness. Due to the reckless decisions of the fourth kingdom, if nothing is done to stop them, the entire Mortal Realm will be thrown into a state of complete chaos. You must complete the mission Robinarzin set out to accomplish. Be warned, there are those who would see you eliminated before the completion of this task. Each task must be completed by all three of the members it was originally entrusted to. If any of the three original quest holders are eliminated in the middle of this quest, it will be considered a failure for all players involved.
Time Limit: 16 hours
-0/3 Reach the city of Everpeak located inside of Proximus territory.
-0/3 Meet with an individual who goes by the name of Wiseman of Everpeak.
-0/3 Successfully reach the magic capital city of Proximus with the Wiseman of Everpeak and deliver your final findings to the current ruling king of Proximus.
-Gain +1 level
-150 gold coins
-250 World Fame
-x1 Lost Skill Book
-Lose -3 levels
-Lose 500 World Fame
-Tempest officially declares war on Amaharpe and Proximus under the false pretense of "assassinating the second prince".
Special Note: This quest may be shared with up to 1 other player by each of the original quest holders.
"In this time, the fate of the Mortal Realm is tied together much more than you can possibly imagine. Remember this, my young friends. For leaving you with this burden, I hope that you can one day forgive me." Robin said as he resumed his original appearance. Just as that happened, his body began to break apart and turn into a stream of particles that flowed up towards the sky.
"We'll be sure to finish what you've started." Izroth said as he watched the last of Robin's particles drift away.
'This is the second time that a member of the League of The Eidolon has managed to slip through my fingers. They should pray that our paths do not cross again, because I will not allow a third time.'
There was a sharp glint that flashed across Izroth's eyes as that thought went through his mind.