Since there is not enough room for this in the author's note box and it's important to know before starting to read the second volume I'm leaving it here. There were a couple of small revisions that impact the story that I had made while editing the first volume. If you started reading Advanced Arsenal on or after January 26, 2019(GMT+8) then you will have already read these revisions and you can skip ahead to the actual chapter.
I wrote that Annie had lost her hand earlier when I wanted to have it where only a couple of fingers on her right hand were lost. She lost her pointer and pinkie fingers.
Before the revision I had made it where Thomas left the abandoned village without accepting a reward or giving the children anything. This didn't really make sense to me when editing the chapters since he has lots of money right now so I have revised it to where he gave two silver coins and ten copper coins to them. That's enough money for them to survive for a short while but not too much money to become a target if they go to a city.
There were other small edits that improve the way that the story flows(in my opinion) but they're meant to fix grammatical errors, replace missing words in sentences, or to mention details a bit earlier on.
<END OF AUTHOR'S NOTE>
After the guard had brought Thomas and Estella to their cell, Thomas had been laying down on a bench while looking at the ceiling. Estella was already snoring on the other bench since she had only gotten a few hours of sleep and had been up for longer than Thomas was. There was a guard not too far from the cell that was keeping watch on them so Thomas couldn't even bring out a blanket. Unlike the guards at the gates, this guard carried a short sword and was wearing light armor. Thomas had tried talking to the guard but they didn't respond to any of his words.
From the distance a clinking sound could be heard alongside the steady sound of heavy footsteps. Thomas decided to sit up before the footsteps reached the holding cell that they were in. A fully-armored man stopped in front of the cell--his left hand resting on the pommel of his sword. The armor he was wearing was made from a shiny black metal and had a silver crest on its chest. Attached to the armor was a black cape with a silver-threaded trim. Behind him stood two soldiers in the same type of heavy armor as those outside the gate but their spears were shorter.
"Are you Gren?" The man with the fancy armor seemed to be talking to Thomas and it was impossible to tell what he was thinking from his expression--largely because there was a helmet covering his entire head.
Thomas didn't know what this man wanted but it was pointless to lie about his name. "Yes, that is my name."
"Good." The man signalled to the guard that had been keeping watch on Thomas and Estella. The guard moved to open the cell while the man continued talking. "We've got some questions to ask you about Newton. Come with us."
Before Thomas could give them an answer the two soldiers positioned themselves behind him and one of them pushed his back with the butt of their spear before commanding him. "Get to walking, kid." Thomas started following the man wearing the black armor even though he didn't like that one soldier's attitude.
The path they took was different from the one that Thomas entered from. On the way Thomas could see many more soldiers; some guarding different rooms or patrolling and others sparring against one another or practicing swings in a small courtyard. Eventually they reached a staircase that led down with the way being lit up by magic lights.
The passageway became tighter and Thomas's view was blocked by the man in front of him. Occasionally there would be the sound of someone's armor scraping against the stone wall coming from behind as they walked along. The man in front stopped suddenly and Thomas almost bumped into him. Thomas could hear someone knocking in front of him. There was a series of two knocks and then another three in quick succession followed by the sound of metal sliding and locks being turned. The door's hinges creaked and then the four of them continued to move forward.
On the other side of the door was a large group of soldiers that seemed to be getting ready. The armor they had laid out next to them was being put on them by a group of young boys. The situation looked weird but their armor didn't seem easy to get in and out of so Thomas figured that the boys were probably squires.
The armored man entered opened up a door and gestured for Thomas to go inside. After Thomas entered a light turned on and he could see a large table. On the table was a large amount of sand and some blocks placed at different points making it resemble a village. After getting closer Thomas realized that the village that it was meant to look like was Newton. Thomas unconsciously reached out to the block that was placed where the hut Gren lived in would be.
"Don't touch that. It took a while to place everything in the right place." Thomas withdrew his hand and then the man took off his helmet--revealing a blonde head of hair and a handsome face that was ruined by a weak chin. Thomas noticed that the two other soldiers stayed outside the room. "I brought you down here to find out just how much you know about Newton's current condition and to give me whatever information you have on the attack. Tell me everything, even if you don't think that it's important."
Thomas started talking about what happened before the attack. The soldiers had left and left only the weaker guards behind. Then he talked about how the village was surrounded and that the bandits started to set fire to the huts on the outer layer of the village and that his mother told him to hide in the hut before she tried barricading the door. At this point the man stopped Thomas.
"Where is your home located on this table?" Thomas pointed towards the block that he was reaching for earlier. "And your mother, what was her name?" After thinking about it, Thomas realized that Gren never knew her name. She didn't get close to the other people in the village so it's unlikely that they even knew her name.
"I don't know." Thomas felt bad for Gren. Thomas grew up as an orphan but he still knew what his mother's name was. Gren wouldn't have even been able to make a proper monument to her without her name.
"It's possible that we have her name written down in our records. If you'd like I can have someone look it up for you. It's the least we can do for you in exchange for the information on the attack. They'd just need a description of what she looked like." The man picked up a piece of paper and dipped his quill in ink before looking over to Thomas.
Thomas wanted to find out her name so that he could create a small shrine for her. He did have her blood flowing through his veins, after all. "She was tall for a woman, had green eyes the same as mine, silver hair, and an almost pale white skin."
After writing something down, the man placed the sheet of paper to the side so the ink could dry. "Continue from where you were. You said that she was barricading the entrance to your hut?"
Thomas continued, telling the man about how his mother died protecting him and that the bandits captured him because they needed him to fit through a hole. The man stopped Thomas once again to ask about the location of the hole and what was inside of it. Thomas finished off by telling the man about how the exit was in the forest and that there was a trap by the entrance.
"Did you get a good look at the man leading the bandits? Is there anything that could help identify him?" The man brought out another piece of paper and prepared his quill. Thomas then told him about Susan's bushy beard, the cut underneath his right eye, and that he looked to be in his forties. Thomas also told the man about Susan's name and the story that he was told.
"Thank you for the information. We've already confirmed your identity but for now you'll be brought back to the holding cell. In the meantime we'll find someone to take care of you since you're still underage." The man opened the door and told one of the soldiers to escort Thomas back. The other soldier was given the papers and told to bring them to the scribes.
As Thomas approached the area with the holding cell he could hear a lot of noise up ahead. There was something banging against metal bars and a familiar female voice screaming things. "You murderers!" Whatever was happening up ahead seemed serious so Thomas and the soldier rushed forward. 5 Best Chinese Romance Books of 2018 So Far