Yoo! Nana-chan says she’s really, really sorry for skipping an update, and that she’ll make up to you tomorrow (she’s dead tired now…)!
*some random person eating cookies*
Chapter 70: To the Battlefield, Once Again
“Hoho, you came already, grandson-in-law-dono. Bea too, it’s been a long time. How have you been? Good, I hope.”
“Of course. What about you, grandfather? How is your health?”
(Toto is here too, grandpa.)
The Frontier Count showed the two of them a kind smile, one that he would never show me, as he welcomed us.
How comes Toto isn’t afraid to sit on the Count’s shoulder? She sure is amazing…….
I gathered my soldiers and we were going towards the fortress, but I decided to first stop by at the Frontier Count’s castle and give Bea into his custody.
It was because the frontier Count wasn’t a part of the current strategy.
Obviously, my master and my foster father would take part in it, but they wouldn’t be able to leave the skies above the Frontier Count’s domain; they were supposed to protect the border, after all.
And so, the Lord had to remain inside his castle.
Still, he kept on bragging about stuff like how boring the house-watching role was or how he wasn’t ready to lose to the young ones just yet.
(Grandpa, this is delicious!)
“Is that so? I have a lot of that left!”
He narrowed his eyes and brushed Toto’s hair……..He was extremely indulgent towards Toto, maybe because she looked like a little Bea.
“Listen, Toto-chan, if you eat too much now, you won’t be able to eat the dinner later. Be moderate, okay?”
“Hoho, it’s all right! Come now, drink some fruit juice.”
(Thank you, grandpa!)
He transformed into a foolish old geezer who loved to pamper his granddaughter………But, I certainly could leave them in his care without any worries.
This castle, in which Bea and Toto would live for a while, would be held by the Frontier Count.
Only by imagining it chills ran down my spine………A foolishly looking old geezer trampling down the enemies, while smiling towards his granddaughter.
“I leave them in your care then. Bea, Toto, I’ll be on my way now.”
“Yes, take care. I wish you good fortune!”
(Dad, take care.)
As I embraced Bea, Toto followed along as well.
She used her entire small body to stubbornly cling to my head and hug me.
“Yeah. I’ll definitely come back. To wherever you are, Bea……”
I kissed Bea, who was completely flushed then I left the room.
Right at that moment, I decided inside my heart that I would finish this business as quickly as possible.
“Albert, we’re leaving.”
“Yes sir! Everyone, begin marching!”
We were advancing on the road that led to the fortress.
First, we had to meet with the Empire’s Main Army.
After 4 days of marching, we arrived at the fortress.
It was because I brought along infantrymen as well……….Our speed was rather slow.
However, this time we were waging a war of occupation, so the number of soldiers did count. It couldn’t be helped.
“Your Excellency, Duke Zest, it’s been a long time. I’m Raiza.”
A knight said to me, as he got out of the fortress.
He was a big man wearing an imposing armor and helmet……..His hair was blue……Ah! It’s that man with blue hair!
“Long time no see, Count Raiza. Or, it might be better to say, the General Commander of the Empire’s Main Army.”
He was the supreme commander of the Emperor’s forces, an army of 20.000 soldiers.
The blue-haired Count Raiza looked like a man in his 40s.
He became famous in his youth as a great military man, therefore, the Emperor acknowledged him. He was a viscount, but his Majesty conferred him the count title and entrusted him with leading the Empire’s Army. Count Raiza was such an excellent man.
Also, he was the Emperor’s right hand.
“Your Excellency, just call me Raiza. For now, you should rest inside the fortress.”
“No. We’ll have a meeting first. If we take our time, the Tarminal Kingdom might make a comeback, and that would be troublesome.”
Raiza bowed his head in assent and silently led us inside the fortress.
We went straight to the meeting room, since I wanted to make our move as quickly as possible.
What was decided during the meeting was that ‘In the invasion of the Tarminal Kingdom, the Supreme Commander Raiza would lead the Empire’s Main Army to attack, as I provide the rear guard, as I follow after him’.
They wanted this fight to be the Main Army’s turn to shine, so I was supposed to obediently follow; after all, it was I who went all out protecting the fortress not long ago.
The Tarminal Kingdom’s main forces were recently defeated, so it was supposed to be an easy victory.
It seemed it was safe even without me providing the rear guard………
But well, since his Majesty asked me in person, I decided to follow them for now.
We stayed in the fortress for the night and began marching the following morning.
The border with the Tarminal Kingdom was very close, but it would take us 10 days to reach the royal capital.
We would be on the road for a while……..
Just as we expected, we didn’t encounter any enemy during the first 3 days.
But as we passed by a few more villages and towns, we still didn’t find any enemy soldiers.
We asked the residents about this, and were told that no soldiers were seen around after that time a few days ago when a number of worn out soldiers ran past them.
Did we really force the kingdom into a corner to such an extent?
We sent a few more scouts ahead and increased the speed of our march.
Even so, the enemy soldiers weren’t showing up……..It felt a bit weird.
No matter how you looked at it, it was strange…….Did something happen?
We found out the answer once we arrived at the royal capital.
“I have a message for your Excellency, Duke Zest! The royal capital will raise the white flag, but its gates will remain shut and its cannons ready to fire back! However, we want to capitulate, so we’ll send out a messenger!”
Isn’t this a trap?…….
I wasn’t the only one who thought about that.
However, the next words I heard threw me into an unnecessary chaos.
“The messenger will be a kemonobito man, the current representative of the royal capital! In order for us to capitulate, he asks to be allowed to do so in the presence of Lord Albert!”
“………….A coup d’etat?”
“………Yeah, most likely.”
Instead of making them fall, I had now to participate in a truly bothersome discussion……..
DA BEST (among the worst): Mockii