T/n: So ultimately, I couldn’t contact Kerrigan and had to ask another PR, Sai101, to proofread the chapter. Sorry about the lateness.
Note: “fief troop” has been changed to “fief regiment”. Additionally, “Count Lancephil Troop”, “Owells Troop”, and “Count Chase Troop” have been changed to “Count Lancephil Forces”, “Owells Forces”, and “Count Chase Forces”.
Fishing didn’t always succeed just because the bait and the skill were good.
With a solidly stiffen face, Kali shook his head.
“You definitely said that you spread the rumors, right?”
At those words, one of the Owells Forces’ commanders stood up from his seat.
“Yes. Io Lancephil too should definitely have heard of Albert Wein’s news.”
“And there’s no reaction at all even so?”
Kali gritted his teeth.
The commander nodded his head.
“Yes sir. There is no reaction at all from the 1st Castle where Io is cooped up in.”
At the report that continued on, Kali swallowed back a groan.
‘It seems that I thought too lightly of that old man.’
He thought that if it was Albert, whom roamed the battlefields together with Io for tens of years, it would be more than enough to lure out Io.
But this was Kali’s complete misjudgment.
“If it was at a level of returning because of a single retainer, he wouldn’t have ran in the first place.”
The head of the Magic Corp, Tairon Bess, spoke in a slightly low voice.
With a sinister expression, he continued to speak.
“Rather than that, instead……”
Kali squinted one eye and waited Tairon’s next words.
Tairon quickly glanced through the surrounding commanders’ faces and then spoke in a quiet voice as if to whisper.
“Why don’t we break the things Io loves the most?”
“The things Io loves?”
Several commanders asked with puzzled looks.
Tairon formed a frightening smile and answered.
“I’m talking about the fief’s citizens.”
Quiet exclamations popped out from here and there.
Few, with faint smiles, nodded their heads.
‘Right. The things Io loved the most are the fief’s citizens.’
‘Since he was to a degree of enjoying inspecting the castle city even on normal days.’
“We don’t only have the goal of merely conquering Lancephil County. We must take this place as a fief and build a base.”
Kali continued to speak with a worried expression.
“It means that we could face a great difficulty at a later date if we treat the fief’s citizens carelessly.”
At those words, Tairon snorted out a laugh.
“Why would you say something so alike Io? Since when did we began watch the lowly fief’s citizens’ moods?”
At the sharp words, Kali slightly flinched.
Tairon smacked his lips and nodded his head.
“Smack1. If it’s that worrying, we can disguise as Count Chase Forces and cut down the citizens. No, it should be better to do it like that. Since if Count Chase Forces’ infamy becomes high within the fief, it would become a big advantage when competing with them over the fief’s administration in the future.”
Literally two birds with one stone.
It was a plan that could simultaneously plant the infamy of the Count Chase Forces, whom are the invaders, into the fief’s citizens and drag out Io.
Kali slowly nodded his head.
“It’s not bad.”
No, in truth, he very much liked it.
The next plans flooded into his head.
“There are bastards who are currently blocking our advance, right?”
At the inquiring words, the commanders lowered their heads.
“Yes. It seems several village residents have came together and formed a militia.”
Suddenly, a frightening killing intent hung on Kali’s eyes.
“Capture them as well as all of their families. Execute them as an example.”
The commanders answered in one voice and then went out of the barrack.
Kali and Tairon watched that sight and made faint smiles.
‘Io. Will you truly be able to endure even this?’
They couldn’t catch a big fish with a single good bait.
This time, they planned to lay tens, hundreds of baits at the same time.
So that even a big fish with however strong a patience would ultimately can only open its mouth.
Kali’s smile became much deeper.
‘The fishing hasn’t ended yet.’
“It seems there are many excellent talents in Lancephil County, sir.”
Chris shifted through various reports and honestly exclaimed in awe.
Count Io Lancephil, who sat on the opposite side, made a bitter smile.
“Everyone is all working hard because of this foolish old man.”
A long sigh flowed out.
In truth, he had predicted that Lancephil County would soon fall into Count Chase Forces’ hands through Kali Owells, Tairon Bess, Perry Wilson and so on’s betrayal.
But Agens and Tenebra Troop’s reports that rapidly arrived more than overturned that prediction.
“Currently, a front line was created with the Lancephil County’s northeast as the center.”
“They said Guardian Army, no?”
“Yes, sir. They called themselves the Lancephil Guardian Army. They are made up of academy students and ordinary commoners.”
Chris answered with a careful voice.
He lifted the report and added on.
“Beside that, few knights, mages, and Fief Regiment soldiers who didn’t join Owells Forces are included.”
It was a proud yet dispirited laughter.
Io’s face expression was truly complicated and delicate.
‘So I haven’t merely lived in vain even so.’
When he realized the truth that the fief’s citizens are fighting with their lives on the line for him, one side of his heart was moved.
“But Kali and Jonathan Chase’s Forces are elites amongst the elites. It won’t be easy for ordinary commoners to face them.”
His voice naturally rubbed out with sadness.
At Io’s words, Chris, with a short sigh, nodded his head.
“Yes. It seems that quite a many citizens have lost their lives already. But despite so, the number of citizens joining the Guardian Army isn’t going down. No, I should say that it’s increasing instead, sir.”
Chris shook his head with a very surprised expression.
At the situation that he was proud yet was unable to simply be happy of, Io’s heart felt pained.
Chris searched Io’s expression and added on.
“Anyhow, due to the Guardian Army’s actions, Owells Forces and the Count Chase Forces has not been able to advance toward the east and northeast regions even after conquering the Pavor Castle.”
“Could they hold on until the end of the fief war’s time limit that the capital has decided on?”
At Io’s inquiry, Chris contemplated for a moment, then slowly shook his head.
“They will fall before that. Since the difference in strength is so big. But……”
Chris hesitated for a moment, then continued his words with a quiet voice.
“With the Guardian Army’s actions, we should be able to cut down a large part of Owells Forces and Count Chase Forces’ strength. This will become a big aid when Sir Count steps out for counterattack in the future.”
It was a cold but exact judgment.
With a long sigh, Io shook his head.
“They are spilling too much blood because of me. The people who don’t need to die are dying.”
His heart felt heavy.
Even without that, when he heard the news that his friend and comrade Albert Wein was captured in Kali’s hands, his heart wanted to immediately run to him.
‘I had stayed since Chris stubbornly stopped me, but……’
Because it felt that more and more of fief’s citizens were dying as the fief war continued, he couldn’t stop the pained feeling.
Chris noticed that inner feeling.
“Sir Count. As long as Sir Count is alive, Lancephil County can stand up again at any time. Please see the situation longer, and much wider.”
“Yes. That is so, but……”
Even though he knew through his head, his heart trembled as it pleased.
At that moment.
Knock. Knock. Knock.
A sound of knocking on the office’s door was heard.
Chris excused himself to Io, then turned towards the door.
The instant he spoke those words, the door opened and a young man showed himself.
He passed the letter he was holding in his hand and then exited out again.
When the door closed, Chris carefully cut open the envelope and then took out its content.
On the brownish paper, small letters were densely crammed in.
Chris, who was looking over the content, leaked out a quiet groan.
His look was slightly panicked.
“What is it?”
Io asked with a worried expression.
Even though Chris had received all kinds of reports until now, it was the first time Io saw him shaken like this.
Chris folded the letter and placed it on top of the table, and then stared straight into Io’s eyes.
‘Should I tell him, or should I not……’
In the first place, they had promised not to hide even a single small thing happening in the Lancephil County.
But he couldn’t help but hesitate to pass at least the content he just received.
“Please tell me truthfully.”
Io spoke in a quiet and low voice.
‘Everything is Sir Count’s share.’
Chris breathed in deeply and extended the letter forwards.
Io similarly extended his hand and picked up the letter.
The thin paper opened fully.
Suddenly, a quiet exclamation flowed out of Io’s mouth.
Almost as if to rip apart the paper, he tumultuously trembled his body.
Io couldn’t hold back in the end and stood up from his seat.
With a shocked expression, Chris followed and stood up.
“Sir Count. You must stay calm.”
His words adamantly tried to stop him.
But Io had already made up his mind.
“No, I cannot be patient any longer. I will lead the troops and charge into the county.”
It didn’t matter even if it was a road leading to death.
Chris stared at Io with complicated eyes.
‘To think they would possibly put their hands on the citizens who aren’t related at all.’
The content of the report he just read tore through the inside of his head.
It was a story about hundreds of the fief’s citizens around the Pavor Castle were being executed.
He could understand Io’s rage.
But even so, he had to stop him.
He had to hold onto Io at least until Roan came back.
“Sir Count. Count Chase Forces and the Owells Forces are hiding in ambush outside the fort.”
It was the truth.
Agens and the Tenebra Troop had already grasped such facts perfectly.
Io breathed in deeply, then spoke in a calm but blazing voice.
“I know. My life will become perilous. But even so, I cannot only watch innocent citizens die.”
A light flashed from his eyes.
“I am their father, and they are my children.”
His face and voice were resolute.
Io, who had stayed even when Albert Wein whom he roamed the battlefields together with for tens of years was captured, simply couldn’t endure at least the news of the execution of the citizens.
He put Chris, who was desperately trying to stop him, behind him and went out of the office.
Soon, the Count Lancephil Troops lined up in front of the 1st Castle’s gate.
“Those who wish can stay behind.”
At Io’s words, the Count Forces’ soldiers smiled.
There was no particular need to speak up and talk.
They already had made the resolve to march through the bloody road with Io.
The tightly closed gate opened.
As if he had been waiting, Io kicked his horse.
The war horse cried out long and kicked off the ground.
Soon, a white cloud of dust rose with the sound of horse hooves.
Like that, Io charged towards the heart of the enemies on his own.
Chris stood on the castle wall and quietly stared at that sad and beautiful march.
A heavy sigh extended long.
‘Sir Count. If the situation truly becomes hard, you must do as I told you.’
His heart felt heavy.
Before parting ways, Chris and Io shared a secret conversation for a long while.
‘Since he said to do so, I will just have to believe him.’
Now, the work left was just one.
Chris called the messenger bird with a hand gesture.
A letter was quickly written down.
A bird tied with a tube flew up into the sky.
The direction it flew was south.
At that place was Roan.
It wasn’t surprising.
If it was Io, if it was Io Lancephil, he thought that he would easily have done more than that.
‘No, in the first place, him leaving his retainers behind and escaping the fief on his own is a surprising event.’
Roan, who had left the Poskein Lake Subjugation to Semi and quickly climbed north, reached the 1st Castle merely two days after Io had left.
He first allowed the tired soldiers and horses to rest, then quickly called a meeting of the commanders.
“How is the situation?”
At the short question, Chris stood up from his seat.
“Firstly, Sir Count is in a very dangerous situation according to the report of the Agens agents acting within the Lancephil County and Tenebra Troop members who followed along with Sir Count Lancephil. He had received attacks from Count Chase Forces and Owells Forces the very moment after he left the 1st Castle, and about twenty big and small battles have continued on until now.”
Sounds of groan leaked out from here and there.
On the other hand, Roan was calm.
“Is sir still climbing north?”
At those words, Chris shook his head.
“That isn’t so. He is currently tied down.”
“Because of the traitors?”
Austin asked with a brightly flushed face.
Chris shook his head once again.
“No. It’s because of the fief’s citizens.”
It was a completely unexpected answer.
Everyone creased their brows.
But, only Roan had surmised what kind of situation it was.
“It seems the fief’s citizens are stopping Sir Count’s climb north.”
“Yes. According to the report, the nearby region’s citizens have all come together and are blocking Sir Count’s march. Because the fief’s citizens……”
“Because they know the truth that Sir Count Lancephil will die if he goes to the Pavor Castle.”
Chris slowly nodded his head at Roan’s words.
“Yes. That is correct.”
The short answer passed.
A heavy silence fell within the meeting room.
Io who had thrown away his life to save the fief’s citizens and was marching towards the Pavor Castle.
The fief’s citizens who stood and blocked Io’s path of march to save him.
Their feelings for each other were truly incredible.
Their hearts became hot.
The commanders including Austin couldn’t hold themselves and stood up from their seats.
“Let us march right away!”
“Let’s go save Sir Count!”
“We have made our preparations!”
Powerful voices rocked the meeting room.
At that moment, Clay, who had been sitting quietly, subtly shook his head.
“That is impossible.”
His voice was very calm unlike the other people.
Then, the commanders’ sharp gazes fell down.
But despite so, Clay continued his words without changing his look a single bit.
“The capital has sent an order not to participate in the current fief war. If we were to personally join in on the fief war, we would turn all the nobles of the kingdom into enemies. No, perhaps we may be executed by decapitation for the crime of ignoring the capital’s order.”
The quiet voice pierced through the ears of the highly excited commanders.
Austin swallowed back a groan with an uncomfortable look, then powerlessly sat down.
“Then are you saying that we should just watch like this?”
“If Sir Count were to die at this rate……”
“The Northeast will fall into Count Chase’s claws.”
Comments mixed with worries poured out from here and there.
Clay, with a calm expression, shook his head once again.
“No, I meant that it is so if the situation is as it originally was. But thankfully, it seems our side’s situation has slightly changed.”
“What are you talking about?”
Austin angrily shouted aloud.
Clay turned his head and stared at Chris.
“I heard that President Chris has already started the work.”
At those words, everyone’s gazes headed towards Chris.
At the gazes that poured down, Chris made a bitter smile.
‘So he already knew even that far……’
He inwardly awed greatly at Clay’s intelligence strength and ability.
He faintly smiled and carefully opened his mouth.
“I have prepared a hand in the Montea Mountain.”
The instant his words ended, puzzled voices flowed out from here and there.
“If it’s Montea Mountain, the place where our magic stone mine is?”
“Isn’t it the mountain located located in the western part of Count Lancephil’s territory?”
“Yeah, that’s right. We also built a fort while opening the mine.”
Because it was a highly important mine, it was a place that the Lancephil Fief Regiment and the Tale Fief Regiment were working together to protect.
Suddenly, the heat inside the meeting room fiercely blazed up.
At that moment, Roan, who had been staying quiet, opened his mouth.
“All forces prepare to march.”
The commanders, including Austin, answered in a moment of confusion.
However, the confused looks were still strong on their faces.
Harrison couldn’t hold back and asked in a worried voice.
“My lord. We can’t participate in the current fief war due to the capital’s order.”
Roan didn’t carelessly opened his mouth.
Instead, the answer flowed out from an odd place.
“Please don’t worry.”
It was Clay.
He cheerily smiled and spoke on.
“Since we aren’t participating in the fief war for the time being.”
His smile became much thicker.
“Well, it is still for the time being.”
His gaze turned towards Chris once again.
“Isn’t that right, mister president?”
< Fief War (2) > End.
Translator : CSV
- sound of smacking one’s lips ↩