Chapter 325 – Contract
The staff hit the ground again as Shang dropped it. He had proven his power already.
The commander kept looking at Shang for a bit before turning to one of the Mages behind her. “Bring them to the front,” she ordered.
The Mage behind her saluted and stepped forward to bring the barbarians away.
“You, follow me,” she said to Shang as she turned around.
Shang took his sword and followed her without saying anything.
The two of them entered one of the buildings and walked into a room.
The room was basically a military office. There were some maps, some chairs, some books, and there were some tables.
It wasn’t anything special.
The commander gestured to one of the chairs, and Shang sat down.
She sat down on the other side of the table, looking at him with narrowed eyes.
For a while, the two only looked at each other.
“You’re a warrior, right?” the commander suddenly asked.
“Yes,” Shang answered with a nod.
The commander furrowed her brows at Shang.
“Do you know what a warrior is?” she asked.
“A strong barbarian,” Shang answered.
The commander’s furrowed brows stayed furrowed.
“No, a warrior is someone similar to a barbarian, but warriors live in the Skythunder Kingdom,” she said.
This time, Shang furrowed his brows. “A warrior is a strong barbarian,” he said.
Some annoyance appeared in the commander’s eyes. “That might be your definition, but in the grand scheme of things, a warrior is not a barbarian, and a barbarian is not a warrior.”
Shang looked with a bit of skepticism at the commander. It was obvious that he didn’t fully believe her.
The commander released a very silent and covert groan of frustration.
‘It worked,’ Shang thought, trying not to smirk.
At that moment, Shang was happy that he always went through many hypothetical conversations with others in his head.
Otherwise, he would have reacted suspiciously.
How would a warrior have reacted to a Mage of the Grandmountain Kingdom suddenly asking them if they were a warrior?
They would deny it.
They would come up with reasons as to why they couldn’t be a warrior.
But exactly that would be suspicious.
How could a stupid barbarian on the northeastern front know so much about warriors that they could argue that they weren’t one?
Would the barbarian even know what a warrior was?
And exactly that was the trap in the question.
A stupid barbarian would simply think that she was referring to the general term, which was generally associated with strong barbarians.
A barbarian would just confirm that he was a warrior, while an actual warrior would deny it.
‘She must have gotten some kind of file from the Governor that captured me. I am already very noticeable due to my missing eye and my power, which means that the Mages will look very closely at everything I do.’
‘This was probably a test to see if I was the spy that talked with someone in the Skythunder Kingdom.’
‘Additionally, whatever special mission I will be joining is probably also quite sensitive and secretive. They can’t risk any traitors entering.’
A piece of paper appeared in front of the commander, and she wrote a couple of things on it.
“Name,” she said.
“Zero,” Shang answered.
The commander frowned and looked at Shang. “That doesn’t sound like a real name.”
“I gave this name to myself,” Shang said.
“I need your real name, the one you got at your birth,” she said.
“I don’t remember,” Shang said.
The commander looked with furrowed eyes at Shang.
After that, she cast a long Spell.
When she finished the Spell, nothing obvious happened, but Shang could feel that the Mana was somehow different.
“Repeat what you’ve just said,” she said.
“I don’t remember my birth name,” Shang said.
The commander closed her eyes to focus on the Mana, and two seconds later, she opened them again.
“Fine,” she said as she wrote Zero onto the piece of paper.
‘That was probably some kind of Truth Spell or something,’ Shang thought. ‘Sucks to be you. I didn’t lie.’
Shang truly didn’t remember his birth name.
The god had made sure of that.
“If you are willing to accept the mission, sign here,” the commander said as she pushed the piece of paper to Shang.
Shang looked at it and quickly read through it.
‘That’s basically an NDA,’ Shang thought. ‘I can’t talk to anyone about whatever I see, or I will be under severe pain until the Mages decide to stop my pain.’
Shang signed the Magic Contract.
After fully signing it, a complex mix of Mana entered Shang’s mind.
As soon as it reached his mind, Shang felt like a chain had been strung around it.
This was the effect of a Magic Contract. It limited the freedom of the subject regarding one specific thing.
‘The Magic Contract is weak,’ Shang thought. ‘The fact that I don’t identify with the name Zero very much weakens the contract significantly. Additionally, they probably don’t use the really powerful ones since we are only barbarians. It’s doubtful that a barbarian would have the necessary control over their mind and Mana to break free from the contract.’
‘I can break the contract whenever I want,’ Shang thought.
The Magic Contract split into two pieces, and the commander took both of them.
Shang didn’t comment on it.
Usually, the second copy was for the person that had signed the contract, but the commander kept both copies.
This meant that the Mages could now act oblivious and claim anything. After all, Shang didn’t have any proof that they were lying.
‘Huh, they didn’t even hand me my copy,’ Shang thought. ‘This means that I would be able to break the contract regardless, even if I had used my real name.’
Magic Contracts were expensive and very complicated.
The standardized paper of the Magic Contracts had a built-in escape clause.
If one of the parties genuinely believed that they hadn’t received their copy, they could annul the contract.
Of course, one would first have to know how to trigger this built-in escape clause, and barbarians definitely didn’t know that.
Naturally, the other party would also be informed if the contract broke.
If Shang decided to annul the contract or break it, the commander would immediately be alarmed.
‘But I don’t have to,’ Shang thought. ‘I can break it when I break out.’
‘It’s really useful to be thought of as an idiot.’
After stashing the two copies away, the commander stood up.
“Follow me. We have to go to another camp for further testing. If you’re lucky, your mission will start tomorrow at dawn.”
“You have a long day ahead of you.”
Then, she stood up and walked out of the building.
Shang followed her.