His Soul is Marching On to Another World; or, the John Brown Isekai (Fall of the Slave Harem)
(This volume of the John Brown Isekai was brought to you by the fine folks over from my Patreon:
May their efforts to advance the righteous cause of emancipation be never forgotten.)
Note for readers of the novelette volume(s): Fall of the Slave Harem is the first volume in the novel-length edition of the John Brown Isekai, set in a high fantasy setting. The story is completely different from End of the Slave Empire and Total Nekonomic Collapse, so you can read this volume safely without spoiling anything from those other two volumes. Hope you enjoy the long-awaited full-length John Brown experience!
Old John Brown's body lies a moldering in the grave,
While weep the sons of bondage whom he ventured all to save;
But though he sleeps his life was lost while struggling for the slave,
His soul is marching on.
- John Brown's Body by William Weston Patton
68th of Winter, 5859
Mount Curry, Azdavay / Casamonu
Today was a beautiful day like any other. The last few precious snowflakes were slowly floating down to the ground, racing each other in a futile attempt to cover the earth with a thin sheet of heavenly white. The birds had come back from a tactical retreat, celebrating once again the defeat of General Winter.
These mountains, consisting of earthly dark green with disappearing hints snow-white that were slowly beginning to brim with life, were quite a sight to behold.
In the midst of these scenic mountains was 19th century radical abolitionist John Brown, who had no idea where he was. The scenery around him was too ordinary to be Heaven, too unscorched to be Hell.
He would have loved to ponder the implications of not having died after being killed, yet the old man was currently unable to do so with clear conscience.
Brown’s physiological needs overrode his need to think about where the hell he was. The old man was currently without shelter and in dire need of finding sustenance (he hadn’t exactly eaten much before his hanging for he, like any other rational man, thought that he should be dead right now).
Thankfully, Brown was on a plateau that sat on a lower part of the mountains. There were a few trees, newly blooming plants, and plenty of melting snow to serve as water if need be. Cutting through plateau was a desire path, showing that there was larger fauna near the area.
His first instinct was to examine the surroundings for anything edible. Brown saw some bushes nearby that looked like they might contain something of note, yet, he couldn’t recognize the odd, green pear-shaped berry that crowned them. The other plants in the area too looked nothing like anything he had seen in the American Northeast and Midwest.
Going around eating strange berries he found on the side of some road would likely lead him to a more-than-upset stomach, an unwanted psychedelic trip, an early second grave, or all of the aforementioned three if he was to get especially unlucky.
All of the above were, to put it lightly and in the politest of terms, most disagreeable.
Brown decided that he’d first quench his thirst before racking his brain further on the topic of eating. Thankfully, snow was mostly safe to drink without any treatment; he picked a clean pile of snow from the floor and slowly melted it in his mouth.
A now athirst Brown noticed, on a slight cliff that was reachable with a little bit of parkour, a cave that had blended into the surroundings. Its small entrance was covered with vines, making it hard to notice at first glance. It seemed like good shelter, another thing that he currently needed.
Brown also needed something to warm him up after having picked up snow with his bare hands. He found a suitable piece of flint discarded next to the road and a dry piece of bark off of one of the trees. He took them and climbed to the cave, laying the bark in front of it. The old man took out his belt, which had a prong fashioned out of steel, and struck its prong against the flint. Sparks came flying out of the makeshift fire starter; soon the bark was on fire. Brown briefly warmed his hands before heading back down to find some dry twigs to further fuel the fire.
His grand adventure to acquire a stick or two was interrupted when he ran into three… Things. He couldn’t exactly find the words to describe them; the closest he could get was “amorphous blobs of jumping transparent liquid with a bluish tinge”. Brown had been hanged exactly a hundred and twenty-seven years before slimes ever got popular.
He – in great awe mixed with greater confusion - watched the curious creatures hop around, before the creatures were bored of hopping and decided to tackle the seemingly weak old man that had been rudely watching them.
He was definitely not expecting to be tackled by sentient balls of goo. The first slime hit Brown so hard that he almost fell to the ground. Nevertheless, Brown was not a stranger to combat. The second one was less fortunate; it met the furious fist of a combat-ready Brown, who now understood that sentient balls of goo were potentially dangerous.
The second slime lay defeated, unmoving on the ground. The first slime attempted another attack, but it joined its comrade on the ground after having an impromptu appointment with Brown’s other fist. The third slime, clearly the most rational of the trio, ran away from the man who had so viciously slain his comrades in cold not-blood.
Having completed the classic isekai ritual of slaying low-level mobs, Brown was left with two semi-intact balls of goop on the floor. He was curious about these creatures; he leaned to take a closer look.
The slime left over from the slimes had consistency similar to honey, and also smelled temptingly sweet. Brown wasn’t the only one to be tempted; a scaly, lizard-like bird, with a similar size to an eagle, suddenly snatched one of the dead slimes and took off to the skies with it. Brown decided to take the slime that was left over. If a bird could eat it safely then he should be able to do so too.
On the way back to the cave Brown also completed his mission of finding dry sticks. He made a proper fire by adding aforementioned sticks on top of the burning wood bark. Warm, with shelter, and with food (?), Brown had quickly climbed the bottom-most floor on the hierarchy of needs. Finally, he had time to do some pondering and planning.
He sat in front of the warm fire, thanking the Almighty for providing him with this meal, scooping up bits of slime with his hand while his brain was racked to the fullest.
Where was he? Clearly, he wasn’t dead nor was he in the afterlife. This place was most likely not on Earth either, he had never heard or read about amorphous, sentient blobs existing anywhere on Earth.
It was clear, to Brown at least, this must be a work of Providence. It couldn’t be an accident that he was here, clearly, the Lord must have sent him here for a purpose.
So, what tune did the Lord want to play with His instrument? That was the chief question that was currently occupying Brown’s mind while he dined.
Today was a beautiful day like any other. The last few precious snowflakes were slowly floating down to the ground, racing each other in a futile attempt to cover the earth with a thin sheet of heavenly white.
The famous mountains of Curry, consisting of earthly dark green with disappearing hints snow-white that were slowly beginning to brim with life, were quite a sight to behold.
In the midst of these scenic mountains, walking on a path, was one earthling otherworlder whom had been titled “Watanabe Generico” by the few comrades he had acquired. He was a young man with a protagonistly look befitting his title: short black hair, distinct lack of facial hair, and a twig-like physique.
Watanabe had been a gamer in his past life, having spent many hours grinding for levels in MMORPGs and whatnot. He had gladly accepted the offer made to him after his death; to use his gaming skills to save the land of Gemeinplatz (or something vague, he wasn’t sure what he had been told)!
Yet, the ambitions of Watanabe didn’t stop at just a vague notion of “saving the realm”. In his previous life, Watanabe had never had any chances to have any relationships with women other than his mom and his sister (which thankfully were not romantic relationships). He wanted to rectify that in this new world.
Watanabe thought of himself as the peak of masculinity, an alpha male if you will. He was a self-declared intellectual, spending copious times watching videos on YouTube and listening to podcasts by self-declared “independent thinkers”.
He thought, and the people that he listened to told him, that society on Earth must have brainwashed women into ignoring true men like him, what other rational explanation was there for his previous maidenless predicament?
It couldn’t have been the fact that he only showered only once a month, nor the fact that he never went outside, and surely, this predicament couldn’t have come about because he always looked down at any woman he was with.
No, surely, a man like him would seem so attractive to the traditional women of this world that he’d soon gather a harem… Right?
He couldn’t really afford to wait, so he had used his “hero”-ing money to buy a slave. “When in Rome, do as the Romans do.” is what he thought when he had made the purchase.
Following him, bound in chains, was some slave whom Watanabe simply referred to as “Rye Bread”, he couldn’t actually bother to learn how to pronounce her name. Her actual name was Kyauta, a woman around two heads taller than him.
She could’ve easily beat Watanabe to death, she really wanted to do so, if she was the one who was armed and not in chains.
Other than having someone around him that wanted to kill him if given the chance, Watanabe Generico had another problem: He wanted something sweet to eat. This otherworld lacked in conveniently accessible sugar found on Earth. An absence of Mountain Dew had been troubling him since the beginning.
Watanabe seemed to hit the jackpot, only in terms of his quest for sweets, when he chanced upon a plateau in the lower regions of the mountain. There lay some trees, and under their protective shade laid bushes which had green pear-shaped berries crowning them.
Is this edible? I shouldn’t put myself at risk, he thought. He plucked one of the berries and would have handed it over to Kyauta if her hands weren’t busy being in chains. “Hey, be grateful. Your gracious master’s giving you a generous gift.”
Kyauta recoiled in response. “Sir, they are not edible, these are-”
“What, you think you know better than me, woman? I’m a modern, intellectual man from the 21st century, you should listen to my wise words. Come on, don’t be shy, say ‘Aaah’…”
He got a prompt response from Kyauta, that being a spiteful spittle of spit being spat upon his now dispirited face. He was mad, quite mad, frothing even. He raised his generic broadsword to retaliate with unjust punishment, his anger trapping him in a state of tunnel vision.
Then, without a chance to even scream or shout anything, Watanabe suddenly collapsed. He hit his head on the cold hard ground with great force that ended his pitiful life in another world.
Watanabe Generico had failed to notice the fact that John Brown had been slowly sneaking up to him, a novice mistake to not be aware of any wild abolitionists while adventuring. Brown had simply done the Lord’s work by caving his skull in with a large boulder.
Brown quickly checked the many pockets of Watanabe Generico, finally finding a set of keys. He got up, intending to free Kyauta from her shackles, only to notice that she was already a few meters away. She had been doing the sane thing by running away from the stranger who had bashed someone’s head in a few seconds ago.
“Don’t skedaddle just yet!” shouted Brown. Seeing that she had no intention to approach him, Brown threw the keys towards her as far as he could “Use these, young lady! Get those cuffs off!”
Kyauta paused for a second, leaning down to pick the keys as best as she could with her limited movement capability. She then continued her merry way away from Brown, not willing to take chances with the wild man from the mountains.
Brown didn’t intend to give chase; it’d probably cause more misunderstandings if he did so. Plus, he had a whole corpse to dispose of now.
The old man had honestly hoped that he’d get a break in the afterlife, where he would finally reunite with all the family he had lost over the years, where Earthly sorrow and separation would end under the grace of the Almighty. Brown had already considered his mission done when he had sacrificed himself to become a martyr on Earth.
Yet, if Providence had prevented his death, if he had been raised again by the Heavenly Father, then he’d never stop or falter in his divinely ordained mission, not until he finally found himself in front of the Pearly Gates.
(HoneyFeed doesn't have a dedicated section for Author's Notes, so here they are.)
Finally, I am very happy to present you the novel-length John Brown experience. Sorry for taking so long, I do unfortunately have IRL matters that I have to tend to. I've had to (and will have to) spend basically all of my free time either writing, drawing or editing these last two months to get these chapters ready in reasonable time. Still, I do enjoy writing, and seeing people enjoy the John Brown Isekai is enough. I hope you enjoy this crazy ride, I have some insane stuff planned for the future chapters. Cheers!
P.S.: The Gemeinplatz calendar (exampled with the "68th of Winter, 5859" in the opening) is split into four seasons, each season is split into 9 decameron (a unit consisting of 10 days) meaning that every season has 90 days. One year in Gemeinplatz is 360 days.
(Psst, here's a sneaky little secret just for you: You can read chapters early on my Patreon, and support your fellow human doing their best to write!)