TL: One more chapter coming in about two to three hours later. This chapter is kind of complicated and I’m not sure if it’s easy enough to understand. Just ask which part you don’t understand and I’ll see what can be done.
Chapter 80 – The story of fishes swimming in chaos (2)
Amandina watched Redi’s back as he limped away, while Yula was beside helping him walk.
“Are you letting them just leave, my lord?” She asked.
“What do you expect me to do here? Instead of letting them pile onto our problems, it’s better to dismiss them.” Brendel answered simply.
“But I still feel like you’re scheming something.” She glanced at him with slight suspicion.
Brendel rubbed his nose with a dry smile: “Is my character that awful in your eyes? I thought that I did things openly in the past.”
“Yes, it would appear so. But I have never thought that my lord has ever done things that appear to be as simple as they look. I recall that you arranged miss Freya to enter the Royal Cavalry Academy, which could be seen like a friend’s encouragement, but I would think that it is because you noticed the fights between the Royal Faction and the Regional Nobles.
If I recall correctly, the Royal Cavalry Academy is within princess Gryphine’s private lands, and she’s the most outstanding individual out of the current royal family members. Not only that, the younger and weaker brother of hers is strictly cared for by her, almost like a guardian and not as an older sister.
Based on the king’s health, it is likely that the princess will become a Princess-Regent in the future. Once that happens, my lord’s action will also become a long-term investment.”
Romaine nodded quickly when she heard the words ‘investment’.
“These other invisible investments that you made from the time that I met you might not look like they are of any use in the beginning, but once my lord has your lands and reap the benefits that you have sown earlier, then you will become a direct supporter of princess Gryphine.
If it is someone else, I would think nothing much of these actions that have been done, but the people close to my lord will surely understand that your ambition is nothing as straightforward as it seems.”
Amandina looked up to Brendel: “Am I wrong, my lord?”
The young girl took a long breath after she finished her speech. She had spent a lot of time speculating in the past few days because Brendel’s actions were becoming stranger and stranger, to the point where she did not understand them at all, and she did not wished to fall behind too much.
Especially if she was the chief advisor.
Brendel blinked a few times before he answered: “You’re close enough.”
[Although you missed a few points.]
He thought to himself.
[Rather than call it an investment, I would rather call it a relationship. There’s no need for me to gain ‘honor’ here, what I need is something I can grow and use in the future. A gamer is different from a lord, especially when I have ‘that’ land in mind.]
He could have waited until the civil strife within Aouine reach its highest point, with Madara invading the kingdom with its full might, until the Princess-Regent would finally not be able to control the situation, then garner the biggest profits by stepping in at that point.
But he did not do so.
His attachment to the people in the game made him send the future Goddess of War to the princess, and believed that these two brilliant women would not disappoint him. Even if he predicted wrongly, at least he would not leave behind any regrets.
Still, he did not expect Amandina to know his thoughts that well, so he merely smiled and gave a neutral reaction. She certainly showed off her intelligence if she was able to predict that much.
He turned back to look at Romaine who looked like she was having fun. She did not seek to understand why Brendel needed to do what he did, and only wanted to help him do the best he could in his plans.
[The future ahead might call for even more drastic measures. Sometimes knowing too much hurts, and one might not attain happiness, Amandina…… But looking at Romaine makes me feel it’s a pleasure on its own.]
“Beyond that,” Amandina continued: “The money made from the auction was invested into Miss Romaine’s goods which were subsequently used for the celebration after the Madara war. The returns were then poured to gain deep access into this local region. This is the first time that I realize that having gold coins is an amazing thing. Miss Romaine’s touch seemed to go permeate into the complicated noble society and the underground thieves’ guilds.
There wasn’t even a need to maintain a good relationship in order to gain access to the information too. I thought it was only at Bruglas that contact was made with the Brotherhood of Thieves, but it seems like it was done much earlier.”
“This is one of the reasons why I formed a coalition of merchants.” Brendel admitted it: “But it is not for the reason of acquiring more money but power. Once people brought themselves into some form of any system, even if they have their own personal agenda, their actions would most likely benefit others just like how the circulation of goods would bring about abundance.”
“Information gathering isn’t really hard. My aunt says that information is everywhere around us.” Romaine interrupted as if she was interested in the topic.
“That’s because the information we require isn’t particularly demanding on quality. The hardest part on acquiring information is not on the process of collection, but to determine which information is useful. This requires skilled professionals.” Brendel gave a laugh.
“My lord, you’re changing the subject. All the things that you do is because there’s some form of benefit.” Amandina gazed at him.
“Even if you point out only these two things, I can only say that they are a coincidence.” Brendel did not wish to spend time on this topic. He had too many secrets and each lie that he gave, would inevitably lead to more lies to cover up the old ones.
“The Red Bronze Dragon mercenaries retired as if they wanted to stay away from the public’s attention, but I can safely state that it was a measure to make sure Miss Freya enters the Royal Cavalry Academy…… But my lord, how did you know there were openings in the academy? No, not only that, it seems that my lord has the ability to see even further. While we are still focused on the problems before us, you seemed to have already seen the end results.”
Amandina looked a little ill and grumbled.
“I-I’m not sure if this is some form of talent, but I feel tremendous pressure.”
“Alright, alright,” Brendel quickly raised his hands to surrender: “I got it. You’re right, it’s a form of talent. But there are areas that I can miss out if I plan things alone……”
He looked at the trees into the distant. The night battle seemed to intensify as the camps started to get burned by fire. The northern sky was gradually filled with red light. Their location was starting to become unsafe.
This was a temporary stop after all.
“…… We’re discussing too many things that are not related to our current situation. We should leave this area before the fight reaches here.”
He quickly ended his sentences and grabbed the longsword near him and fled from Amandina, and prevented her from asking more questions.
[At this rate you’re going to even get my identification number……] Brendel obviously would not divulge himself as a parallel-world traveler with knowledge about the future.
Amandina understood that it was a poor attempt to change the topic, but she had gone a little too far by saying too much. It was normal for a leader to keep things from his subordinates, and Brendel’s foresight boosted the confidence she had in the things they were doing.
Thus she followed him without any objections.
A few moments later she turned around and whispered: “Ser Nightsong Tiger, are we really fine if we head east?”
She had carefully observed Redi’s expressions, and saw him making a scornful face when Brendel said they were going east.
The Nightsong Tiger looked at her with an impressed expression.
“Yes.” He added a motion to pat his left arm, which was a gesture to guarantee something: “Miss Amandina, I have never seen anyone like my lord who is as familiar with these bastards who deserve to go straight to hell—
He looked at Brendel’s back.
“I say this humbly, we have frequently fought them in the past, and the Disciples of the Black Flames love to use distractions as a strategy. However, it is difficult to discern their true locations. Even if it’s me, I can only pinpoint their ambushes to two locations, either in the south or west area.”
He pointed towards Brendel’s injured hand.
“Do you see our lord’s wounded hand? I’m willing to bet that he took less than a minute to deal with that high ranking contract demon, and he probably did it with less than ten moves. Only a veteran can see through the Lord of Throns attacking style and approach this monster quickly. Even though it has a wide range, it is far less threatening to fight in close combat.”
Amandina listened to his explanation and understood about half of it. It was evident that the veteran soldier was immensely respectful of Brendel. As she looked at Brendel’s injuries on his back and hand, she suddenly realized something.
The current generation of Aouine nobles were ‘soft’, unlike their ancestors.
[Brave, wise, decisive and tough. A lord like this makes me wonder how far his accomplishments will go.]
Amandina exhaled quietly.