Chapter 53:

The Outskirts

A Terrible Evil Villain And Their Destiny

“Well then I’m off!” Gilles said excitedly as he ran out the door, nearly barrelling through Bryson.

As Bryson nearly collided with the larger boy he jumped backwards and tripped over a sofa armchair and fell backwards onto the sofa. As Bryson gave a grimace and sat up, he saw Sable quickly brush past him without a single glance.

As he saw Viola exit out the door he quickly got up and followed behind. Exiting out the door he turned left and found Viola walking down the hall.

“Viola!” He called out.

“Hmm? What do you need?” She asked turning around.

“How come I was never informed of your ploy?” Bryson said with narrow eyes.

“What ploy?” She asked innocently, “Oh, you discovered Lottie! I was going to tell you, it must have slipped my mind.” She said feigning surprise.

“Not funny.”

“Okay, okay. You got me, I withheld some info from you. It wasn’t like you were going say no now, were you?” Viola asked with an amused smile on her face.

“… No.” Bryson said begrudgingly.

“So no issue here then.”

“Why didn’t you tell me in the first place?”

“Because I was hoping to witness you finding out. I thought your reaction would be amusing. Was it?” She asked.

“…” Bryson narrowed his eyes at her, “No.” He said flatly.

“Aw, it was a funny reaction. Such a shame that I missed it.” She said giving a look of disappointment.

“Was that really the reason why?” Bryson said, the daggers he was glaring at her with becoming sharper.

“Pretty much.” She beamed, “Oh, come on, it was harmless fun. Besides it’s good that your friends are learning useful talents.”

“She’s not my friend.”

“Shame, you need friends.”

“She’s a commoner.”

“Well, you seem to struggle to make friends with nobles.”

“There is no struggle. I haven’t tried.” Bryson said giving her a tired look.

“Why’s that?”

“Have you seen the other kids?”

“Yeah, there aren’t a lot of kids your age, and those that are, aren’t the best to be around.” Viola said recalling the nobles around Bryson’s age, “A lot more girls then boys isn’t that right?” she asked.

“Yeah, a bit weird. You know why?” Bryson asked.

“… No. I don’t.” Viola said with a pause.

“What are you hiding from me?” Bryson asked puzzled.

“So what did you pick?” Viola said quickly changing the subject.

“Oh, for the mission? Uh, going to the outskirts to investigate some villages.” Bryson said showing Viola his sheet of paper.

Viola quickly read through the contents, “Huh, I remember mother talking about this during a tea party.”

“You have? Is the sickness serious?”

“Yes… well, sort of. From what I’ve been told anyone with magic proficiency is immune to whatever this disease is. But it’s pretty deadly to those who lack magic.” She said tapping a finger on her chin. Her heterochromia eyes glanced back at Bryson, “Very few people on the outskirts can use magic, makes sense why there’s an outbreak there.”

“Well, then at least I should be fine.”

“Yeah, still be safe, father won’t provide us with much protection.” She warned.

“I will, who do you take me?”

“Someone who’s barrelled themselves into several life-and-death situations in their first decade?” She said dryly.

“…Shut up.”

“Heh,” Viola chuckled before patting his head, “Good luck”.

“Yeah, yeah.” Bryson said swatting away her hand. With the conversation finished Viola continued down the hallway while Bryson looked at his paper again. Hopefully no surprises this time. He thought.


After some preparation Bryson walked down the stairs at the front of the manor, he passed Sable walking toward a room. He gave a wave over to her.

“Hey, I’m off to complete my task.” Bryson called out, as an airship waited for him down the steps.

Sable glanced over, “Don’t get sick.” She said.

“Did Viola already tell you what I was doing? What did you pick?” He asked. In reply, Sable turned away and kept walking.

“Good talk.” Bryson muttered under his breath as he headed to the airship.


As Bryson laid across a couch on the airship, staring at a viewing screen that was currently playing a movie. As much as he was enjoying the movie, he was starting to get bored being stuck inside the airship for the past few hours.

The airship itself was large and had plenty of room for him to stretch his legs. It had multiple levels and rooms that comfortably housed the staff he brought with him. Fully powered through a mixture of magic and technology it was just one of the five personal airships that the Coldwaters had.

“How much longer?” Bryson asked.

“The pilot says we’ll land in just a few minutes.” Nico said entering the room.

“And then we need to drive the rest of the way to the villages?”


Bryson gave an annoyed groan, “I’m already regretting my decision.”

“Well, you just need to visit the place and leave Lord Bryson.” Nico offered, “You don’t need to do anything else right?”

“No I don’t.” Bryson said as he got up and stretched. Looking outside he saw through the window the ground slowly getting closer as the airship descended. But how bad is this issue? He wondered. He brought out a medical team and some supplies, but he honestly had no idea how severe it was.

“By the way, isn’t Lila usually with you, why did you bring only me with you?” Nico asked.

“Because this disease affects those who lack magic. You have magic while Lila does not.” Bryson said. Nico much like the other royal guards was able to use magic to some degree. Lila on the other hand, only ever used magic that the bracelet contained to cast anything.

“Oh, that’s very kind of you to think about Lila’s safety.” Nico complimented.

“Yeah, I-” Bryson began before cutting himself off thinking for a moment, brows furrowing, “Shut up.” He said.

“Uh, o-okay.” Nico complied in confusion.

A moment later on the speaker, the voice of the pilot announced, “We are about to land, please prepare to depart.”

“Great, let’s go.” Bryson said quickly as he moved out of the room. As he walked out the room, quickly brushing past Nico.

“Alright.” Nico said still confused as he followed Bryson out.


Bryson Coldwater sat in the back of an off-road vehicle with Nico. I can’t believe that we have to drive another forty minutes to get here. He thought. Apparently, the airship couldn’t get to close to the village for a number of reasons.

Bryson was told the village naturally didn’t have a landing zone for an airship. They couldn’t land closer outside the village due to the difficult terrain. The only place they could land that was within village was at the centre. And Bryson personally felt that it probably wouldn’t be a good idea place an entire airship in the middle of the village, blocking everything.

That and apparently a couple of the staff seemed to be susceptible to whatever disease was going on due to a lack of magic in their system. And here I thought I said to make sure that all those accompanying me here would be able to use magic. Bryson thought in annoyance. It was why he had to have the servant assigned to him for this trip also stay back on the airship.

He had very specifically made the request; however, it seemed as if the request was ignored. I guess the losses wouldn’t be that important. Bryson thought it was harsh but not inaccurate.

Even if the staff would be infected, it could be cured back in the city with all the infrastructure advanced medicine. But here outside in the middle of nowhere, these villagers are unlikely to fair very well.

Looking towards the village Bryson made an unpleasant face. He thought the farming village he had to visit a couple years ago was bad, but this village was on a completely another level.

The rugged terrain forced the villagers to build their homes far apart from another and resulted in the area having a sparse feeling. From what Bryson was told these villagers were far more hunting and gathering based. The lack of real farms only added to the emptiness of the entire place.

“I don’t see anyone to greet me.” Bryson said.

“Feels like a ghost town.” Nico said looking around.

“Where do we even go then?” Bryson asked.

“Uhh…” Nico said as he pulled out a small badly drawn map. Bryson rolled his eyes as he saw the map. This place was considered so irrelevant that there wasn’t actually any real information on any of the archives. Save for one old and most likely out of date map of the village.

“The… huh, there is a cluster of buildings that should be further down. That could be where we can find the villagers.” Nico said.

“Alright then.” Bryson said and indicated the driver to move further down the road. As they passed by the buildings, he tried to peer through some of the windows to these homes.

Each window seemed to have collected a couple weeks worth of grime and showed no movement inside. This is pretty strange. He thought as he kept looking around.

Finally, when they approached the area with a denser cluster of buildings the vehicle stopped. Bryson looked over to one of the buildings and saw a young boy standing by the door.

He had dark brown hair, a freckled face, an old-looking fur coat that looked too big for him, a poorly maintained spear. His head drooped down as if he was falling asleep. When he heard the vehicle approach, he slowly looked up before his eyes widened in surprise.

“Wh-what are you doing? What is that? Stop!” The boy said hurriedly seeing them approach on the vehicle. He raised his spear and pointed at them.

Nico gave the kid a warning look, “Careful where you point that spear. You are in the presence of royalty.” He said as he began to get out of the vehicle.

“Reese stop.” Bryson commanded as Nico exited the vehicle. Nico complied with the order and halted outside the vehicle giving the kid a hard look.

Sometimes I forget just how serious the royal guards take their jobs. Bryson thought as he was sure that Nico was about to punt the kid into oblivion for threatening Bryson with a weapon. Which isn’t strange, as to threaten the life of royalty is punishable by death.

“I was informed of an issue here; I have come to investigate.” Bryson explained to the now scared-looking boy, “Can you take me to whoever is in charge?”

“You, you’re the people that pops called? You’re here to help?” The boy asked in disbelief.

“Yes.” Bryson said.

“Come! Come! In quickly!” The boy said as he quickly ran into the building.

Nico looked over to Bryson who gave a reaffirming nod and Nico opened the door for Bryson to exit. Alright. Bryson thought. Let’s see what we have here.