Chapter 1:

John Brown's body lies a moldering in the grave?

His Soul is Marching On to Another World; or, the John Brown Isekai


Persons convicted of the forcible violation of any female prisoner shall be put to death.
- Article 41 of the Provisional Constitution and Ordinances (1858), prepared by John Brown.

Today was a beautiful day like any other in Gemeinplatz. The sun was shining, the birds were singing, the catgirls were being enslaved. You know, the usual.

A self-declared protagonist and hero whose name is not important, for he was as ordinary as any other, was walking along a dirt path. Like many protagonists, he had an edgy coat, jet black hair, and a supposedly legendary sword whose name was stolen from either Norse, Greek or Japanese mythology. I don’t think I also need to mention that he was someone from Earth who had ended up in Gemeinplatz after some sort of contrived accident that most likely involved a truck.

Behind our so-called hero was, of course, the first and currently only member of his harem, a demi-human named Ayomide. Like many other unfortunate demi-humans in her situation, she was chained up and under some sort of enslaving-magic that prevented her from going against our protagonist. She had been bought for only 15 gold coins, a convenient first “companion” on the journey of the protagonist.

“Man, what luck! I picked an offensive class just to find cheap support!” said the protagonist who thought out loud while walking. There was no one that could hear him loudly narrate anyways, so he boldly put out his vile thoughts out for the readers to read. “Man, I’m definitely going there again to look for someone stronger and hotter when I get some more of that sweet dosh. This short stack is not cutting it, despite her impressive bust. I want a jade-beauty, and no jade is dark like her!”

There was no one that could hear the internal pleas of help from Ayomide either.

Suddenly a loud explosion rang across the generic green plains of Northern Gemeinplatz. The protagonist suddenly collapsed, his scattered brain matter dirtying the dirt path.

Ayomide could feel the spell put on her disappear. She was able to think clearly again, though seeing someone suddenly die on the ground didn’t leave much room for clear thought. She had no time to relax and celebrate, whatever had come for her so-called “master” could be coming for her too.

Unlike anything she expected though she saw not a monster, but a monster of a man come out of the bushes surrounding the path.

The man that came out of the bush held a wooden club that had smoke coming out of its end, which Ayomide guessed that it was some sort of magic wand. He was old, and not only that, it was clear that years of stress had taken a toll on the man. His white hair and bushy beard were in a state of utter dishevelment.

It was clear that he had been living outside of civilization for an extended time.

The man signaled Ayomide to be quiet with a “Ssh!”. Seeing that he was most likely not aiming to kill her, Ayomide watched as the man walked towards the collapsed protagonist. He checked if his adversary was dead. Seeing that he clearly was as dead as the Confederacy, the old man checked the protagonist’s pockets, finding the key he had been looking for.

“Come on young lady, let’s get these off.” said the man pointing at the chains that bound Ayomide. She extended her arms towards him as he unlocked the chains, fully freeing her from the grasp of the living impaired protagonist.

“Umm… Mister, what is your name?” asked Ayomide. She regained control of her limbs, randomly moving her numb arms and legs to confirm they were still working. “Thank you for saving me from that vile worldling Earthling.”

“My name’s John Brown, young lady. What is yours?” He handed his coat over to her. “Wear this, you have to protect your decency as a young woman.”

…My decency? What the hell is this old man talking about, thought Ayomide as she wore the coat to protect herself from the cold. The protagonist had left her in tattered robes that didn’t total to any sort of protection. “I’m Ayomide, mister.”

“Then, Miss Ayomide, you are now a free woman just as the Lord intended.” said the old man. He then turned back to enter the bushes again.

“Wait a second, I thought you were a highwayman or something!” exclaimed Ayomide, observing John Brown attempt to leave the scene. “If you’re not looking for loot, then why are you… You know, shooting someone on the road and then leaving their corpse intact?”

“Right. I’ve not prepared for this moment. Everyone else has ran out of fear the moment they saw me coming out of the bushes.” replied John Brown. He continued with a voice full of fervor. “But, if you are asking my mission, then it is a sacred mission given to me by the Lord.”

“The lord? So, you’re just a hired assassin of some nobleman then?” asked Ayomide, shrugging. I guess I just got lucky then that this assassin seems to be the honorable sort.

“If I was then I wouldn’t reveal my mission and leave witnesses behind, would I?” replied John Brown. “No, I mean the Lord. The one that is higher up than any other, incomparable to any mortal men.”

The lord?! So, the emperor himself then?” exclaimed Ayomide in shock. I’m facing a high-profile assassin here! Maybe I should just stop interrogating him lest he decides to exterminate me for being a witness…

“I-” blurted John Brown as he heaved a deep sigh. “Okay, I have a sacred mission I have to fulfill for someone that is not mortal, and is all powerful. I do not have any masters or lords that are in human form. Do you understand that, young lady?”

“Yes… I think.” replied Ayomide. She gave up on trying to understand who was commanding this man. “Then, what is your mission, Mister John? May I join you whatever it is?”

“If it is of your own volition then yes, you may join.” said John Brown. He headed for the bushes again. “Follow me young lady, I shall tell you of my mission while we head for the headquarters.”

She would probably be enslaved again by manhunters if she went back to civilization, so Ayomide decided that joining Mister Brown would be a much better idea. She followed John Brown, heading for the forest, slowly marching on past a myriad trees.

John Brown continued walking while he began relating his story to Ayomide.

“Young lady, do you know about the United States of America?” asked John Brown reaching a spot where no one on the path could hear them while talking.

“No, I’ve never heard of any ‘united states’ or an Ah-mey-reigh-ka.” replied Ayomide.

“Then my suspicions are correct.” said John Brown. “The Lord has granted me another chance to complete my mission after I failed and was executed by those traitors to the Union.”

“Executed? You look very much alive to-” said Ayomide before she realized where this man came from. He must be from that fabled “Earth” place where all those heroes come from! Though, he does look a whole lot older than most of them. Plus, unlike other Earthlings, he’s not a massive prick.

“I thought the same thing. I clearly remember riding my coffin to the gallows, and the noose tightening around my neck. Yet, divine providence works in mysterious ways, young lady, and by a miracle of the Lord I have survived to arrive in this most foreign place.” continued John Brown.

“So, what was this mission that ended with your execution?” asked Ayomide.

“Mine was and is a sacred obligation, to fight against a vile institution thing that profanes the word of the Lord and the laws of the Union.” said John Brown as he paused to jump over a toppled log. He waited for Ayomide to jump over as well before continuing in an excited voice that showed great fervor. “That institution is that of slavery, which throughout its entire existence has been none other than the most barbarous, unprovoked and unjustifiable war of one portion of citizens against another portion, the only conditions of which are perpetual imprisonment and hopeless servitude, or absolute extermination.”

He surprisingly has a lot of big words for someone with such a wild appearance, thought Ayomide. “So, you’re planning on fighting slavery? By yourself?”

“I will if I have to, but I’d prefer not to.” replied John Brown. “We’re here.”

John Brown had led Ayomide to the entrance of a small cave that was hidden in the forest. “Excuse me if it’s a bit cluttered, I’ve been busy the past few days.” said John Brown. He parted some vines covering the entrance and entered the shallow cave with Ayomide following suit.

Inside the cave was a disorderly stash of looted weapons and armor in the corner, ashes left over from a fire in the center, and some items of food piled up in another corner. A horrible smell permeated throughout the cave due to some leather that was being tanned in the cave. It was a dank, dark and uncomfortable cave, but to Ayomide, it was much better to being led around by a so-called hero.

“Have something and sit down if you’d like, young lady.” said John Brown pointing at a corner with food items. “You should be able to find something fresh.”

Ayomide spent a few minutes scrounging through the items of food, most of them being stale, finally finding some fresh apples that seemed edible. She sat down on the cold, hard floor and began munching on the fruit that seemed like a fruit of paradise to her.

“So, young lady. You say you want to help me in my mission.” began John Brown while he talked while gathering some timber stored in the cave to start a fire. “What can you contribute to the cause?”

“In my home village, I was trained in support magic and enchantments.” replied Ayomide taking another bite out of the apple.

“…Magic?” said John Brown as he dropped the logs in shock and his voice was replaced with that of concern. “It’s not related to dark magic or anything Satanic, is it?!”

“N-No! I don’t even know who or what a ‘Satanic’ is!” replied Ayomide seeing the overt reaction of John Brown. “I do some healing, buffing, and enhancing of items, it’s nothing suspicious I swear!”

“Thank the Lord, I was concerned for a second there…” said John Brown. He took a deep sigh of relief. “Be careful while dealing with the occult, young lady. Don’t stray too far from the path of the Lord!”

“I- I will try my best…” What’s with the reaction?

“I don’t really know what you can do, but I’m hoping that I may get your help with this.” said John Brown. He took out a fire striker and a piece of flint. After a few seconds of smacking the two together a fire began that lit the walls of the cave, revealing drawings made of chalk.

“This” said John Brown as he pointed at the drawings on the wall “is what I’ve worked on since I arrived here.”

“It looks kind of like a map, mister.”

“And it is one. I have, to the best of my abilities, mapped out locations of interest. Mansions, plantations, armories… Wherever I’ve seen enslaved men I’ve put in drawing and writing. Yet, security is too high for one or two people to raid one of these places.” He pointed at one location that was much more remote than the others. “Except for one, this smaller estate seems to be lacking in guards and is isolated enough that they won’t be calling for reinforcements that easily.”

Ayomide watched and listened as John Brown further elaborated on his plan. As she finished eating the final apple in the stash, so did John Brown finish his explanation.

“Now then young lady,” said John Brown at the conclusion of his speech “mind giving me a hand?”