Monarch of Evernight - Volume 10 - The Flag of Evernight (1183-) Chapter 1224: Cerulean Wave City
This was a natural phenomenon among the poorest of the poor. These people could not provide for the old as all resources would be used on the children, the young, and the strong, in order to preserve their bloodline.
Such a population would produce even more qualified soldiers if they were properly fed and trained.
Finally, they passed through the giant slums area and arrived at the castle gates. Facing one side of the peninsula, the gates of Cerulean Wave City were majestic. This fifty-meter gate almost felt like it could blot out the sky. There were three towers on either side of the gate, sporting three layers of firing ports each and a flat platform at the top that could fit even more archers.
The walls were cut from giant stones, each several tons in weight, and such stones were all over the walls. It seemed only werewolves would be able to carry such things up with manual labor.
The dampness had allowed for large patches of moss at the base and vines creeping up the wall. Numerous leaves and grasses could be seen poking out from the gaps in the stone, and there were even small trees growing tenaciously among them.
The mottled green hue painted the city with the color of vicissitudes, the precipitation of time. This giant city almost looked like a piece of art. From a different perspective, however, it seemed to have fallen into disrepair since vines and grass on the walls were a taboo for defense.
It was obvious that Cerulean Wave City hadn’t experienced war for a good while. Such a majestic city simply had no place in battle. It was more like a historical landmark to celebrate the Whitebone Duke. Only the duke, who had ruled the Jade Sea for three hundred years, could mobilize countless people and spend decades building such a city.
After entering through the gates, Qianye glanced up all of a sudden. His eyes paused briefly on two of the towers before he kept walking into the city nonchalantly.
This small movement caused several werewolf nobles to tense up. The shaman who had been following Qianye glared fiercely at these people. He then summoned a powerful, young werewolf warrior and whispered something into his ears. That werewolf ran away immediately and vanished up the tower in the blink of an eye.
Qianye ignored all of this and kept up his pace into the city.
The main road inside Cerulean Wave City was fairly wide, much more so than human-city standards. The road was lined with stone buildings that stood three to four stories tall. These structures were built according to werewolf standards, so their four storeys were comparable to a six-storey human building.
Most of the roads were lined with stores, but business looked cold and customers, sparse. The selection of goods on sale was fairly lacking, mostly ham, leather goods, weapons, and armor. There were very few manufactured goods and almost no complex products that required a big industrial system.
Seeing Qianye observing the stores, the great shaman pointed to a large street on one side. “That’s the most bustling trade street in the city. There are all kinds of resources being traded, and it can be considered the most flourishing market in the Jade Sea. Why don’t we take a look if you’re interested.”
“Very well.” Qianye nodded.
This horizontal avenue was ten meters wide, only second to the main road. It was lined with a great number of stores and definitely bustling compared to the main road. The manager stepped out to welcome Qianye as he entered a tavern, followed by a swarm of servers. With a bow, the manager presented a large bowl of wine and said, “This is the best we have in our collection, usually saved for the duke’s enjoyment. Please try it!”
Qianye took a small sip from the bowl and found the spirit sweet and pungent. It could only be considered passable. If even the duke’s wine was of this level, it was easy to imagine what the others would taste like.
The three-storeyed tavern looked quite grand, but the interior was rather crude. There were only a couple of tables and chairs in the hall for customers to drink on.
Rows upon rows of jars were lined up behind the counter, almost using half the storefront as a warehouse. The wine receptacles were barely passable—the bowls were just crude pottery, and the same went for most others.
Qianye went up to the second floor and saw that it was a storage area filled with wine barrels suffused with a pungent smell. If this were the Empire, such a big tavern would never be arranged in such a manner since the second floor could be used to display rare collections. Then Qianye remembered the werewolves’ habits—they weren’t going to care about rare wines when they were fine with just any alcohol.
Although such words would breed dissatisfaction, the truth of the matter was that appreciation and taste could only be cultivated with money.
After walking out of the tavern, the establishment next door was the butcher’s. The room, filled with a strong gamey odor, was lined with various kinds of cured meats for sale. From the looks of it, the werewolves didn’t really mind this smell.
There were several such meat shops along the street. Apparently, food was everything in this world. There were also a good number of armor and weapon shops. Qianye looked over them carelessly, finding nothing that could catch his attention.
Qianye actually found a store selling origin guns after passing through half the street and was immediately intrigued. He walked into the store called Thunder God and saw an entire wall decorated with all kinds of origin guns. These weapons were mostly of werewolf-make—crude, bold, and big. Even the grips were much larger than normal weapons. The guns had muzzles the size of a fist, and the thick barrels looked rather powerful.
Most of the guns had barbs around them or even saw blades, which truly made one wonder whether they were guns or long war blades. Their appearance made them look more like melee weapons than anything else.
Qianye picked up an origin gun and couldn’t help but feel disappointed after careful observation. The gun was big, sturdy, and the materials were solid, but it was too heavy for ordinary humans. The origin array inside the gun was too simple and crude—the craftsmanship wasn’t great, and the outdated technique was from hundreds of years ago. It could barely form an origin bullet and fire it.
Not to mention the arrays that could compress and amplify the bullet, lengthen its range, or apply special effects, Qianye couldn’t even find one that could stabilize the bullet trajectory. Speaking in terms of gunpowder weapons, all this firearm could do was stuff a pellet and gunpowder inside the barrel, then fire it.
As for why the gun was so bulky, the materials weren’t good enough, so there would be problems if the barrel wasn’t thick enough. The other reason might be that werewolves would also use the gun as melee weapons. At the very least, they were sufficiently sturdy and heavy.
Qianye put down the gun and asked, “Is this the best you have?”
The shaman replied, “Of course not! These are for ordinary warriors. The true experts are equipped directly by the duke’s manor, where all the best craftsmen work. For instance, this one is from the duke’s manor.”
One of the chiefs nearby removed his gun and passed it with both hands.
Qianye took the gun and fiddled with it. This one was much better in quality and was even studded with gems and golden veined patterns. The origin array was also much more complicated and possessed all basic functionality. That was the extent of it, though; there was nothing special about it. So, it would seem that the craftsmen of the duke’s manor were comparable to any random smith in the Empire and Evernight.
It wasn’t so surprising, considering how primitive this society was. It was virtually impossible for them to grasp high-end origin array technology. Even if they did, they wouldn’t have the relevant processing capacity. On the other hand, even the werewolves of the higher continents preferred melee combat over origin guns.
Even against a genius like William, Qianye had only exchanged fire with him once under the Iron Curtain. Most of the time, Willam’s combat style was reliant on his innate powers, the most powerful of them being his giant wolf form.
Among the four races, the use and popularity of origin guns were the worst among werewolves. This was related to their nature, but there were other reasons as well. The arachne possessed even stronger bodies, but they weren’t too far behind in the utilization of origin guns. Most of them favored hand cannons because of their strength, which increased their mid to short-range combat strength.
Qianye returned the gun to its owner. Since there was nothing more to see at this point, the shaman took the lead and brought Qianye toward the duke’s manor.
The duke’s residence was on the side of Cerulean Wave City that was close to the lake, overlooking the surrounding scenery. It took up almost a fifth of the entire city, separated from the rest of the city by a moat and drawbridge.
Standing at the main gates, the great shaman said, “Since receiving news of your arrival, we have sealed off the duke’s treasure and smithy. The duke’s former residence in the main building remains closed, in the same state he left it.”
Qianye nodded. This great shaman was indeed considerate and thorough with his arrangements.
The walls of the duke’s manor were well-maintained, a stark contrast to the overgrown vines of the city wall. Moreover, the two big majestic doors were coated in copper. The gates were fully open in preparation for Qianye’s arrival.
After entering the gates, Qianye saw a platform against each wall, equipped with a capstan and several strong werewolves standing beside it. Who would’ve thought the duke’s manor was being operated by such a primitive mechanism?
Qianye remembered something all of a sudden. He had felt that something was missing since entering the city—it turned out to be a kinetic tower. As the core energy source for large machinery, a kinetic tower was the mark of every city. Even the cities on Evernight Continent would have one, although most of them were antique models.
Yet such a big city like Cerulean Wave that could fit a hundred thousand men just on its walls alone didn’t have one. Without a kinetic tower, not only would they have to operate the city gates by manpower, but they also couldn’t install various types of powerful cannon turrets. No wonder all the towers were manned by archers.
At this point, Qianye gained a new understanding of how primitive and closed off the Jade Sea werewolves were.
The duke’s manor was more like a small city than anything, with its own warehouse and workshop districts. The main building was where the Whitebone Duke lived. The great hall and dining chamber could be considered quite big, and there was even a sizable museum that housed the duke’s trophies.