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I pa.s.sed her the Torrential Era book, and said "Wanna check?". She seemed surprised, but then smiled and replied "I will take you up on that offer. I don't need the book, I already know what it is about". I took the book back, and said "Ask away then". She asked some simple questions at first. People could guess them, if they only skimmed through the book.
She then asked, if I could tell her the names of all the kingdoms. I replied "Sure. There were seven. Kingdom of The North, South, East and West. Phalan Kingdom, Eran Kingdom and Fentour Kingdom. These were the kingdoms in existence, before the Endrosian Empire formed. At least according to that book". She asked surprised "Why did you say, according to the book?". I replied, "There is nothing about the North, or Elysian Empire. Who knows if there were only seven kingdoms, there might've been more. This book doesn't say, so I don't know".
The woman smiled, and replied "You actually came here to read. I'm sorry, I shouldn't have judged you". I waved my hand, and said "Don't worry about it. By the way, what are you reading?". She smiled, and said "Everything I get my hands on. I work here, and in my spare time, I read books". I replied "Must be interesting. If you work here, you must know this place well. Can you tell me, where I can find some books about the Elysian Empire, North and so on?". She shook her head, and replied "These books are on the upper floors. Although you would be able to find some simple books here, they don't contain any real information".
I asked another question. "I understand not just anyone can enter there, but what are the requirements?". She replied "There are a few ways, you can get access to the upper floors. For one, you can apply for a pa.s.s if you are a Formation Academy student. You can also get a pa.s.s, if someone vouches for you. Although this would only allow you to enter the second floor at most. Winning at the Arena is another way. Becoming an official that works for the Empire, would also grant you access. Those that broke through their Inner Limits, get access to some of the knowledge too".
I was stunned. 'So I could get that knowledge all along! Fox you b.a.s.t.a.r.d! You tricked me!' I thought. As I was about to ask another question, I felt someone approaching. Speaking of the devil, Fox showed up. She didn't seem to happy still, but I wasn't happy either. I asked her "Did you finish your shopping spree?". She didn't reply, but looked at the woman, I just talked with. The woman asked "Is that your friend?". I nodded my head, and said "Yep, we came here together. By the way, what other books would you recommend here, on the first floor?".
She thought about it, and replied "That depends on what interests you. If you want the history of our Empire, I suggest Section 11. There will be loads of stories and accounts of battles. On the other hand, we also have Romance Section, Inventions Section and even basic Combat Section". I nodded, and replied "I will check the Section 11 out. Can you also tell me the section number for Inventions and Combat?". She nodded, and replied "Of course, they are Sections 24 and 8 respectively. I have to return to my work now, it was nice talking to you". I smiled, and replied "It was nice meeting you too".
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When she left, Fox asked "You done flirting with her?". I stood up, and replied "I don't like to be mislead like this Fox. I could enter the upper floors of the library, without your help. You withhold that from me on purpose, didn't you?". She replied "So what? Did it hurt you?". I walked towards the exit, and replied "No, but you've been dishonest with me. I don't appreciate people who try to plot behind my back". I then disappeared from the library. I wasn't happy with my friend lying to me, this was a betrayal of my trust. Using me for her own purposes, was not alright with me.
'Today, it might've been some stupid shopping, but tomorrow? I will have to think about that' I thought. Crow, Lazar or Harlin didn't try to use me for their own purposes. When Harlin found out about the Golems, he didn't try to capture me, but help me instead. Crow risked his life, to find some information about Avians and Yagaroths. 'Fox... Is she my real friend? Or hides some sort of deeper agenda?' I asked myself. I didn't know, because I couldn't read her properly with that mask on.
'Either way, I will have to reconsider her as my friend. I don't want scheming people around me, this can only hurt me in the long run' I thought. I decided to leave it for later, and explore more of the Imperial City. I wanted to see what other things, the city had on offer. I walked aimlessly through the streets, when I noticed a training ground of some sort. Loads of soldiers trained using their swords or bows. Some were running, others lifting weights. When I got closer, one of the soldiers stopped me, and said "This area is for soldiers only. Please turn around, and leave". I didn't make any trouble, and left.
Even though I was stopped short, and left soon after, I still saw a few things. There were soldiers that trained archery, and had specific clothing. Instead of full armour, like the usual soldiers had, they only had some armour pieces, and the rest was leather. 'Interesting choice. I can understand why those areas, are protected by the steel armour. Archers have to be agile, but they sacrifice some of that mobility and weight by taking on armour pieces' I thought. It was a good idea. I only wore leather clothes, which allowed for a lot of mobility. The problem was, leather was not as protective as a good steel armour. 'If I compare steel and leather with identical Formations placed on them, the steel will be much better for defence' I thought.
I decided to incorporate that, in my next set of clothes. After leaving the training grounds, I headed towards the Imperial Palace. It also looked exquisite, with statues, ornaments and whatnot, adorning it. I wasn't allowed to enter either. This was the Imperial Palace, only officials or people who were allowed could enter. I wasn't disappointed though. Royalty was something, I didn't care about. I only wanted to check, if I can see the Palace up close. Touring the city took some time, it was already late in the afternoon. On my way back, I noticed some food stalls, and decided to check them out. 'The prices here are at least much more reasonable' I thought. Although I wouldn't call 1 Silver Coin per portion cheap, it was much better than 50 Silver Coins for a room per night. The portions were of a decent size as well, so I didn't complain. After my meal, I headed back to the inn.