Adam's silent nod served as an affirmation, his purposeful strides leading him toward the veiled entrance. As the wall yielded, it unveiled a place veiled from common sight â an expanse that housed the clandestine sanctum of the 6th army. This covert bastion emerged as a place of its own, a hidden base fashioned by the artistry of space magic. In a breathtaking display of magical mastery, the expanse that should have spanned hundreds of miles was compacted, seamlessly condensed into a mere matter of meters.
Upon his arrival, which had been discreetly relayed by the owner, Adam was accorded a reception befitting his stature. The echoes of anticipation reverberated through the chamber, materializing into the form of Captain Eva Riley, poised and ready.
Her tall stature was accentuated by a lean, athletic build, hinting at her formidable capabilities as a leader. A cascade of dark, chestnut hair framed her face, falling in loose waves that seemed to mirror the fluidity of her movements. Her sharp, hazel eyes held an intensity that spoke of both wisdom and a history of battles fought. Dressed in a tailored uniform that bore the insignia of her rank, Eva emanated an aura of authority, her every gesture reflecting the weight of her responsibilities.
"Mr. Thomas, your presence here is rather unexpected. What brings you to our midst?" Eva inquired, her tone tinged with a mixture of curiosity and anticipation. The uncommon occurrence of his visit piqued her interest, and she motioned towards her office, inviting him to delve into the matter in privacy.
Acknowledging her gesture, Adam offered a curt nod before the two of them traversed the familiar path to her office. Upon arrival, Eva took her customary place at the head chair, his demeanor revealing an uncharacteristic gravity. Instead of joining him, Adam approached the window, deftly manipulating the shutters to seal off their surroundings from prying eyes.
With a reassuring glance around the secured confines of the office, Adam eventually sank into the sofa. His exhalation bore the weight of impending discourse, a precursor to the revelation he was about to share. "Eternity has made contact," he disclosed, a grave tenor infusing his words. The atmosphere seemed to shift, the gravity of their conversation settling upon them both.
Eva's countenance reflected her own heightened tension as she leaned in, seeking clarity. "For what purpose?" she questioned, her voice measured.
His gaze steady, Adam recounted the events succinctly, laying bare the sizable offer they had rebuffed and the consequential fate of the Eternity agent. Eva's features tightened as the narrative unfolded, her mind no doubt racing to decipher the implications of this encounter.
Pausing, Adam met her gaze, his expression reflecting the gravity of their situation. "In light of this, I believe we should be prepared, ready to reveal our forces should the need arise," he proposed.
Eva's brows knitted as she pondered Adam's words, a momentary silence enveloping the room. With a contemplative exhale, she refocused her attention on him. "Should the need arise for us to reveal our strength in the face of an attack, I'll ensure the order is set in motion," she affirmed, her tone resolute.
"What about him?" Adam queried, his voice carrying a tinge of concern. "He's been the very reason we've maintained your secrecy, treating you as our ultimate trump card."
"He's present here. Would you like to meet him?" Eva offered.
"Not at this moment. Simply inform him to prepare. We could be confronting 4-star magicians. Farewell for now," Adam responded, rising from his seat and departing.
----- After Adam departed from the base, Eva, too, exited her office, her brisk steps a testament to her newfound urgency. She left behind a trail of orders, mobilizing the entire army for an imminent battle. With resolute purpose, she embarked on a stroll towards one of the base's hidden gems-an unassuming tavern nestled within its confines.
From the exterior, the tavern exuded an inviting charm, its rustic faÃ§ade adorned with softly hued wooden planks and meticulously carved pillars. A sense of cheerfulness emanated from its very being, a stark contrast to the impending storm of conflict that loomed.
Peering through the stained-glass windows, one could only imagine the convivial hubbub resonating within-the clinking of cutlery, the clatter of drinking glasses, and an echo of waves of laughter that extended beyond its walls.
Stepping over the threshold, the tavern's worn metal door yielding to her touch, Eva was met with a palpable hush that seemed to envelop her. Eyes fixed upon her; patrons watched in curious silence as she navigated the dimly lit interior.
Behind the bar, the bartender remained engrossed in the pages of a newspaper, his indifference palpable. Eva's presence, though unannounced, prompted no change in his demeanor, a testament to the establishment's enigmatic charm.
An unwavering principle governed within the confines of the 6th Army's tavern-a code dictating equitable treatment for all, regardless of the exalted titles they bore beyond its walls. Eva, too, adhered to this egalitarian ethos as she navigated her way toward a secluded corner. A subtle gesture beckoned the bartender, a silent request for her favored drink.
Approaching a table that was already graced by another occupant, Eva showed no hesitation in settling into one of the unoccupied chairs. The silence from the person already seated offered no protest, an unspoken agreement of their shared domain.
ραndαsnοvεl.cοmAs if summoned by her intentions, a waiter materialized at their table, presenting Eva's drink. "A war looms on the horizon," she remarked, her words punctuated by measured sips from her glass. Her gaze remained affixed upon the other individual, her discerning eyes capturing every nuance.
Seated at the same table, the other person had an air of mystery around them. Their clothes matched the rustic feel of the tavern, and they seemed quietly confident. They had dark, slightly messy hair and a thoughtful, observant look on their face. A strong jawline suggested strength.
Their eyes were a mix of blue and gray, holding deep stories within them. A faint scar near their eyebrow hinted at past challenges. As they sat, you could sense a controlled power about them, like a strong energy held in check.
Lost in their thoughts, they traced their drink's rim with their fingers, aware of their surroundings. Amidst the tavern's noise and the tension of the coming battle, they appeared remarkably calm, like the calm before a storm.
"So, are you ready?", Eva's question hung in the air. "Never been more so," came the gravelly response from the other person. "Excellent. Freshen up, and grab new clothes. Just two days remain before we're plunged into a relentless battle," Eva's voice was swift, fueled by urgency, her drink vanishing in a single gulp.
"You ought to linger a bit, savor something," the other person chimed with a hint of humor.
Eva scoffed; her amusement laced with a touch of exasperation. "Chris, you know I'm no good at this. Besides, if you hadn't turned down this position, I'd probably still be nursing drinks in some corner of this tavern. Thanks for shaking things up, you wretched soul," she playfully retorted before departing, leaving behind a trail of banter.
Following Eva's departure, Chris lingered a while longer, leisurely concluding his drink. With deliberate pacing, he savored each sip, embracing the temporary solace.
Setting aside his emptied glass, Chris approached the bartender, his stance steady as he leaned against the bar table. "What's the damage?" he inquired casually.
Without glancing up, the bartender provided the tally. "120 credits â 10 from your end, and 110 from the captain's tab."
The revelation struck like a sudden gust of wind, causing Chris's composure to waver. "That woman," he muttered beneath his breath, a blend of irritation and exasperation tinging his words. Nonetheless, he settled the bill, his hand producing the requisite payment despite the evident discontent that lingered in his expression.