|Author: Hayaken||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 3068 characters|
|Translator: Mab||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1475 words|
|Editor(s): Hydra, Liomad|
「Hmm?! So this is the work of an assassin from Alucard who was targeting me?!」
When he heard Inglis’ explanation, King Charleas showed an astonished look.
「M-, madness! Unforgivable! I understand if it was Venefique, but Alucard has been a long-time ally of ours! And yet they stabbed us from the back like this!」
Wraith colored Redas’ face.
「However, if they could pull out such a destructive result, why didn’t they use it from the beginning? They only gave us the time to evacuate…」
As expected, King Charleas would pick on that fault. The correct answer was because this explosion wasn’t part of their plan either, but Inglis would never say it out loud. She had to hide it and cover it up. And the best way to do that… was to divert the topic.
「More importantly, Your Majesty, I believe it is best if we make haste and prepare.」
「I-, indeed, you have a point! We have to reassemble and renew His Majesty’s personal security!!」
Inglis shook her head at Redas’ conclusion.
「That’s not what I am saying.」
「What do you mean, Miss Inglis?」
「We should consider reinforcing the defenses of our northern border with Alucard, as we are expecting an invasion in the near future.」
「By gods! Were they not satisfied with sending a group of assassins?!」
「Rather, I believe they sent assassins here as the forefront of their invasion. If they managed to eliminate His Majesty the King, they could take advantage of the chaos that erupted within our kingdom to gain an upper hand in the incoming invasion.」
「Conversely speaking, if they didn’t have that much resolve, they wouldn’t possibly send assassins to their allied country that possessed a significantly superior military prowess compared to them. After all, any wrong steps would lead to their own downfall.」
「If that is true, then this is a matter of emergency. Not to mention, the Holy Knight Order has been dispatched to the eastern border to deal with the Venefique!」
King Charleas’ expression strained. His attention was already focused on the relationship between countries, a much bigger matter than the incident at hand.
「It’s true! Alucard’s inner politic is……!」
It was Ian who tried to speak up. Inglis quickly signaled Yua, who stood next to him, with her eyes.
Yua held Ian’s head down into her flank, sealing his mouth. She seemed to be doing it casually, but Yua’s strength was nothing but ordinary. Ian was at her mercy and was easily silenced
「The group of assassins that we encountered was enhanced with Highland technology, one that was much different from Artifacts. It seems that it was bestowed to them by Lord Abel, the Archlord that came here in the last incident.」
「What did you say?! Miss Inglis, that person is still alive?!」
「No, I won’t say that he is… It is true that he died at the hand of Ironblood Chain Brigade, as Inglis would never lie to me.」
King Charleas corrected Redas.
「……uuhn, that sure stings.」
Rafinha whispered in a volume that only Inglis could hear. After all, they were trying to cover up the actual reason behind the destruction of the Royal Grand Theatre right now.
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「……It’s okay, I didn’t say a single lie.」
Technically, the theatre was destroyed because Diego blew himself up. Inglis only omitted the details about the cause of his self-destruction. She was not lying. She was saying half-truths.
「In other words, he already laid his hands on Alucard before he came here. That explains his unapproachable attitude…」
「Yes, Your Majesty. I believe that he had won over Alucard beforehand and made arrangements for them to attack us. Apparently, there was a Prisma that appeared in Alucard and brought about devastation there. Therefore, they turned to Lord Abel and sought help to increase their national defenses.」
「In return, Lord Abel tasked them to attack our Kingdom, is it……Alucard is by no means a land-rich country. It is unlikely that they are able to provide enough offerings to trade for Hyrule Menaces or sufficient amount of Artifacts.」
「Exactly as you say.」
「But then, why didn’t Abel try to kill His Majesty the last time he was here?」
「Because that is how the people of Midland would think, Mister Redas.」
「I am afraid I cannot speak it so brazenly in front of His Majesty.」
「It matters not. Let it out, Inglis.」
「……By your order, sir. To Highlanders, Kings of Midland countries are not something they would bat their eyes on. They won’t even spare a moment for them, much less bother to take their lives. At the very least, they may trample all over them for their own amusement.」
「Muu! What insolence!」
「Not to mention, I believe that Lord Abel had seen what His Majesty was made of the last time they met and deemed him to have absolute reverence for him. Therefore, if the invasion from Alucard he set up had failed, he knew for a fact that His Majesty would come to him wagging his tails if he offered improved ties. Thus, he saw no reason to take His Majesty’s life. The Highland didn’t care who rules and governs this country, as long as they receive the offerings they demand.」
In the Highland, there were two major political factions; The Church Founder’s Union and the Three Archdukes Party. Special Envoy Theodore, as well as his predecessor Myynti, belonged to the Three Archdukes Party.
In recent years, with their permission, the Charalia Kingdom was able to obtain Flygears and Flygear Carriers, weapons of Highland that were previously banned from ever touching the Midland. The Church Founder’s Union seemed to find this technological permit unacceptable, and their conflict with the Three Archdukes Party seemed to intensify.
As a result of that clash, the Charalia Kingdom continued to deepen its ties with the Dukes Party, whilst the neighboring country, the Venefique Kingdom, which was backed by the Church’s Union, was showing signs of an invasion. And now, the Alucard Kingdom, Charalia’s neighbor country to its north, was about to join the fray.
The conflict between two major factions in the Highland had developed into a conflict between countries down in the Midland. A so-called proxy war.
In such a situation, the fact that Abel didn’t kill King Charleas meant that the King was being belittled by the young Highlander. His attitude spoke for itself, he believed that even if his plot to destroy this country had flunked, this King would still grab his hand if he ever reached it out. After all, this country wouldn’t have the guts to resent and bite back at him by then.
「……Fumu. A most correct viewpoint.」
The fact that he nodded to Inglis’ speculation instead of getting angry showed the extent of King Charleas’ magnanimity. He was aware of it. He knew for a fact that he was being taken as a fool. And he accepted it. He believed that it was the best he could do for his country, his kingdom.
If he had such a strong conviction, then Inglis had nothing to say to him. He just needed to summon her to fight strong opponents, that’s all she ever asked.
「Then why did they send the assassins now? I can’t seem to see a good reason?」
「Try looking at it from another angle. In the eyes of the higher-ups of the Alucard Kingdom, His Majesty the King is our Supreme Commander. If His Majesty was killed, this country would be thrown into chaos, and consequently invading us would be easy. Therefore, they could bring their casualty to a minimum while also fulfilling the order they received from the Highland. In other words, sending assassins is proof that the people of Alucard have made up their minds to invade us and are now moving in earnest. Thus, I believe we are expecting a huge movement of the army in the future. And, in conjunction with them, the Venefian army may also move forward with their own invasion…」
「What?! That means our Kingdom will be caught in a pincer!」
Just as Redas roared… a single Flygear flew over to Inglis and the rest at high speed. A Knight who seemed to be a castle keeper was riding on it.
「Your Majesty! YOUR MAJESTY!! Where are you?! Urgent report!!」
「I am here. What happened, tell me.」
The Knight hurriedly lowered his Flygear to the ground and knelt before King Charleas.
「I have an urgent report! We are seeing troops of Alucard gathering at the northern border!!」
Inglis’ prediction was spot on. Everyone gasped in exasperation.
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