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Episode 34 Invitation from the Imperial Capital

「Kept you waiting. A messenger from the imperial capital arrived. Can you spare some of your time? 」

He is finally here. I got up from the bed and followed the commander. I heard that it should have taken 3 days, but he arrived only after a whole week. Thanks to that, I had plenty of time to waste. I had three meals a day and the soldiers didn’t talk to me needlessly. I wonder if the commander was busy recently, I rarely saw him. Feeding Irimo was my only activity during this time. It seems Irimo didn’t have anything to do either.

I was about to find something to do when the report came. Nice timing.

「I’m Seono of the Knight’s Order of the Hideta Empire」

Black-haired strong-looking guy. A guy with soft and fearless personality.

「Rinos-dono, our prime minister Guremont-sama expressed his desire to meet with you directly. Although presumptuous, I would like to escort you to the imperial capital」

I introduced myself as a butler, but seeing his courteous attitude even to someone like me, I feel inclined to accept his escort.

Accepting his proposal, I put Gon on my back, mounted Irimo and departed for the imperial capital. Seono performed his duties as an escort perfectly, he was well trained.

The imperial capital was 1 day away from Kushana, if you have a horse. We took a break in the middle. One of the guards had the appraisal skill, but he said「I heard that he was a barrier master, but I didn’t see the barrier skill」. His colleagues blamed it on his lack of training since his appraisal was LV1. For now, let’s make my barrier skill visible as LV2.

We took several short breaks during the journey, but you could say that we were riding for the whole day. Even though Irimo was fine, I wasn’t used to the long rides and was pretty tired.

We arrived to the imperial capital with the setting sun. It had no high walls and was situated on a mountain. We climbed a zigzag mountain road and saw the capital in all its grace. It looked as if someone flattened the mountain and built the capital here.

We entered the capital through the gate. After waiting for some time, I was led to a building. I was told to leave the horse here and go inside.

I had a design inspired by that of the Juka Kingdom’s royal palace. I thought it was a part of the actual castle, but, unexpectedly, it was a hotel. A man, who wore the same butler uniform as me, greeted me and guided me to my room. The room was very wide, VIP treatment indeed.

「I will pick you up tomorrow morning. Until then, feel free to rest」

Seono bowed to me and left the place. After that, I was provided with a meal from the hotel, it was a roasted beef. It reminded me of the Versam family. In addition, they had the bread and a soup, I really enjoyed those times.

「They seemed to be wary of us」

When I finished the meal and the dessert and was quietly relaxing, Gon muttered so in a loud voice.

As expected, they didn’t poison the food, but we are under constant surveillance from their side. There are soldiers around the whole room. They even have two guards in the ceiling. Like the ninjas. They might be here for protection, but the empire is clearly cautious of us.

Since arriving in Hideta, I never dispelled the barrier. I still have no intentions to do it, let’s leave it as it is.

To my surprise, there is a shower in this room. I have no idea how they achieved that, but it is my first time seeing one in this world. The bed was fluffy and I was able to have a nice sleep.

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At morning, Seono came to pick me up. Once outside I noticed the royal palace in the distance. Compared to the one in Juka it is rather small, but here, it is a place where only the royal family lives. All kinds of administration and food facilities are spread around it.

I thought that I would end up in one of those building, but they, surprisingly, guided me inside the palace. And I wondered why the road was so wide. The road was maintained so well, that you could never guess that it was on top of a mountain.

Once inside the royal palace, Seono told to wait here. As a substitute, a butler appeared to guide me. The insides of the royal palace were akin to a maze, without the「Map」, I have no confidence in being able to find the way outside.

I passed through a reception-like room and waited for a while. This room was under heavy surveillance too. Ceiling included. They think too much of me.

While I was thinking that, a bald aged man with a mustache appeared together with a wizard-like man in a robe who hid his face. Aged man stood in front of me and

「So you are Rinos-dono. I’m the prime minister of this country, Guremont. It was a long journey for you, please do take a sit」

The magician behind Guremont whispered something in his ear.

「Ho, you have barrier LV2 at your age. Your education skill is also high. It seems you really are a person from the Versam-dono’s household」

The magician person most likely appraised me. It seems he wasn’t able to see through me.

「It is an honor to meet you. I perform as a butler for the Versam family, my name is Rinos. Your Excellency, you don’t need to use the honorifics with someone like me」

「No, that won’t do. You are a boy that marquis Versam tried to adopt despite your status of a slave. I was in his care in the past. I can’t make light of his intentions」

He already knew that I was a slave. Thinking that his intelligence-gathering abilities can’t be underestimated, I lowered my head.

「Well then…..I heard the report about you. Was the capital truly destroyed? What about survivors?….I see, the capital is uninhabited right now. What about the king? Marquis-dono?…..I see, so they are no more」

「Correct. The capital is completely empty…….Will the empire invade the kingdom? 」

「No, it’s not like that. The Great Demon King appeared and destroyed the capital. I think that finding his whereabouts is a priority right now」

「Then, does that mean that the empire won’t touch the kingdom?」

「Versam-dono and general Karugi are no more. The country will probably enter the civil war from now on. Didn’t you come here to escape from it? Well. let’s close the matter. Still, a talented individual was lost」

「Are you talking about my lord, marquis Versam?」

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「No, him and general Karugi. It is no exaggeration to say that they alone supported the kingdom. The empire was never able to defeat Karugi’s army. Marquis was restraining the general, thus creating an equilibrium. I don’t have much hope to meet another politician or general like them」

「I don’t know the detail, but I heard that general Karugi was greatly trusted by the king」

「That king didn’t care about anything other than his desires. You don’t need to hide it. It is an established fact. However, for that country it was rather convenient. If the fool of a king was to personally regulate the army and politics, the kingdom would have been destroyed long ago. Even if it didn’t collapse, the neighboring countries would have done it. The two geniuses were enough to support the country」

That swine king didn’t have any redeeming points, isn’t it?

「However, marquis’ death is regrettable. With that man alive, the country would have been able to rise again. After all, he was able to work for 3 days without any rest. He seemed to be asking his employees「Can you fight for 72 hours? 」every time」

Laughed the prime minister. I see, that’s why he wasn’t around all the time. He was a monster from a certain perspective.

「But I must say, people like you are rare. While not a royalty or a full-fledged adult, you was able to reach the imperial capital, it is not happening every day」

「I’m 14 years old, I’m already an adult……」

「Only the Juka Kingdom considers 12-year-old as an adult. In our empire and the neighboring countries, you can be considered an adult only upon reaching the age of 15. In that kingdom, you can’t bed a woman who is not yet an adult, or so proclaimed the first king. This law was established so that children won’t become hostages, but the king really wanted a young woman in his bedroom. For that, he sent his trusted subordinates in the court. There, he pushed through the law that stated the adulthood since 12 years old. It was fine during the next king, but he had a habit of whipping himself. Maybe because of that, he died rather quickly passing the throne to the last king…… The last king seemed to inherit his grandfather’s blood」

It seems that the kings iterated as lolicon=>pervert=>lolicon. Were there any good kings in that kingdom?

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