TL: A bit late with the chapter. The reports about the duels that happened so far will come at the end of the month. This is a pretty good point to stop since there’s no cliffhanger.
Chapter 125 – Galbu
Veronica was unable to think of a reason and shook her head before she answered in an icy tone: “This is a private feud between Kirrlutz and Aouine. I request that the Druids not interfere with this matter.”
The temperature seemed to drop with the female commander’s reply.
“A private feud?” Andellu shook his head with furrowed brows: “Regardless of any feuds or whatever reasons that you have, we will not allow any of you to lay a hand on him in this city.”
There was a slight pause. The people from Kirrlutz was looking at him in disbelief.
“On account of the friendship from the King of Fire, Gatel, we would not pursue the earlier events. However, if the Kirrlutz Empire is arrogant enough to cause trouble in this city, then don’t blame us for being impolite.”
“Our arrogance?” Veronica scoffed: “And how do you intend to be impolite if we insist on being arrogant?”
Even if the three Elders in the city fought against her at the same time, they might not be a match.
“Commander Veronica, do you insist on having a war with us?”
Rono jumped a little when he heard the word ‘war’. A war with the Druids could easily end up as a Holy War.
Faena looked at Andellu in disbelief: “You intend to have a war with the Kirrlutz Empire over a citizen of Aouine?”
“No,” he shook his head, “it’s not because of his status as a citizen of Aouine. It is because he is our most revered guest.”
[The most revered guest of the Druids? What kind of term is this?]
The Druids had never addressed anyone in that manner before, right? When did they become so close with an outsider? The majority of the people in the market looked at each other before each curious gaze landed on Brendel.
Veronica was silent when she heard Andellu’s words. It seemed like the Druids were completely serious about this matter. She had no choice but to compromise: “Very well, I will not seek to capture him. However, what about the matter of this little boy hurting my men?”
“Would you kindly explain?” Andellu turned to Brendel and asked.
“I think you should allow her to speak up.” Brendel pointed at Faena who was bound into a bundle and said graciously.
But his actions were not truly gracious. When the Druids saw the vines around the young girl, they roughly understood what had happened.
If someone tried to attack someone without seeking permission, they would be restrained by the barrier’s defensive system. There were certainly a few people who could resist it easily, like Veronica, but the majority would not be able to defend themselves against the vines.
[This cunning little fox. If he’s a citizen of Kirrlutz……]
Veronica cursed the youth silently, but she also praised him. He remained cool-headed when she accused him of starting the chain of events, and he was also smart enough to deflect it without appearing overbearing. But the most important point was how talented he was.
“Faena, explain.” She said softly as she glanced at the bound girl.
Since the events had come so far, there’s no need to cover up them up. She knew that the fault most likely was on their side, but she had to protect the Empire’s dignity when she discovered that Brendel had attacked her men.
Brendel actually thought the vile aristocrat girl would exaggerate the events and gather sympathy for herself. If that were to happen, she would have fallen into his trap, but contrary to his expectations and shock, she did not lie at all and simply stated the events with a huff.
She even glared at him while she spoke, as though she was saying ‘I have no reason to lie, commoner!’
Naturally, she called Brendel names whenever she got the chance. Country bumpkin, mannerless bastard, wretched male scum who took girls as hostages. He was so annoyed that a vein actually popped out from his forehead.
The Druids made their judgment when they understood the chain of events.
The Kirrlutz Empire was originally in the wrong, but since there were no major issues other than some broken items from the centaur’s shop, they were to pay him for the damages. They then carried the gravely injured Count Cullens from the ground and left with their heads hanging dejectedly.
The feeling they had was similar to the proud knights of Kirrlutz who was completely defeated by the Hazell kingdom a hundred years ago.
The defeated knights had to lower their heads and retreat from that fateful land. The white tassel on their helmets was mostly broken and laid lifelessly over their shoulders.
The Empire had never suffered such a defeat again until this moment. Even when their general was here to fight for them, they still did not manage to salvage their pride. The knights glared hatefully at the young lord from Aouine, who in turn returned a disdainful look as though they were crazy.
“I will remember your face, boy.” Veronica was staring at Brendel.
“You mean the Empire remembers me,” Brendel said with ease as he sheathed back his sword and glanced at the female commander.
“Are you a noble?” She suddenly asked.
Even though this woman was overbearing, she was still considered as a hero because of her deeds. She was also half a teacher to Freya, so he replied properly: “A Pioneer Knight.”
There was a moment of silence.
“It seems like Aouine will have a new legend appearing.” She finally said.
Brendel did not reply.
“Young man, I ask you this,” Veronica’s tone suddenly softened a little, “Are you willing to be our citizen and become a knight of the Kirrlutz Empire? I can give you anything that you want—”
Brendel’s eyes widened. This legendary figure thought so highly of him?
“Thank you,” he smiled before answering, “but I will remain as a citizen of Aouine.”
Veronica looked at him a final time before she nodded and went over to Faena. She patted the girl’s shoulders after she was released from the vines with the Druids’ aid:
“H-hold on,” the young girl’s thin eyebrows looked back at Brendel in shock, “t-the Rock Key, are you going to give it away to that rude man?”
Veronica glared at her and raised her voice: “Do you feel you haven’t thrown enough dignity away for the day?”
“B-but……” The young girl jumped and muttered with a lowered head: “That’s a necessary item in order to pass my test.”
“You’re leaving right now. When we get back I’ll have to discuss thoroughly with your grandmother about your discipline.” Veronica sighed and shook her head.
“What!” Faena’s face paled and she immediately lifted her dress up a little to catch up with her, begging: “Commander, t-this matter isn’t my fault, it’s all because of that human scum who has no sense of decency……”
Brendel stared at that girl’s back in disgust while he released the Holy Swords. His entire party was nearly killed because of an insane female aristocrat who was just as bad as Graudin.
He heard Amandina and Scarlett approached him.
“My lord, it seems that we have offended the Kirrlutz Empire,” Amandina said weakly with a sigh.
“It’s all worth it,” Brendel took out the Rock Key with his left hand and studied it.
“Worth it? My lord, do you not know who that woman is?”
“Veronica,” he nodded, “I recognize her.”
“And yet you still dared to fight with her!” Amandina raised her voice with great exasperation, even becoming a little angry: “My lord, when will you stop doing things that make people worry?”
Brendel was a little stunned and he looked back to find Amandina’s worried expression.
“…… I was utterly terrified.” She stared at him for a long time before she spoke again, and closed her eyes to heave a sigh.
“I’m sorry.” Brendel felt his body become warm and he answered sincerely.
“Please stop saying sorry all the time after doing something like this every time,” Amandina said with a huff.
“I apologize?” He said with a laugh.
He was also relieved when the people from Kirrlutz left. If that Faena girl forcefully stayed behind and started a bidding war over the item, given how rich Kirrlutz was, he might not be able to succeed in getting it.
The Rock Key might be important to him, but paying an excessive amount of wealth was undesirable. He was still not rich and Trentheim was still a poor place.
With the lack of a competitor, Brendel finally purchased it with two Fire Agate crystals. The centaur thought that he profited greatly on this transaction, and he even thought that the Kirrlutz people brought him luck, otherwise the young lord in front of him would not pay so much.
Brendel believed that he also made a great deal, if he discounted the fact that he offended the Kirrlutz Empire.
It was a happy ending for everyone in the market too; they got to see a fantastic duel. The only exception was the people from Kirrlutz, of course.
============ ??? POV ==============
No one noticed the two pairs of eyes that had observed the events in the market from a short distance away.
The two pair of silver eyes that were filled with age and wisdom.
The Silver Bar was located between two trees called Odela and Dasarla. They were Tree Elven words for ‘Aged one’ and ‘Evergreen’. Tree branches that formed something like a bird’s nest were beneath the bar. Even though the outer appearance was strange, the interior design made people feel warm and fuzzy.
The bar was in the shape of a circle and the ground was paved with sturdy wooden planks. Green vines hung loosely from the ceiling. The bar was also suspended in mid-air, just like the ‘Centaurs Hoof Market’.
While the centaurs built their market in a wild and unbridled manner because of their fiery character, the owner of this bar was a Tree Elf, and thus they had the typical elegant Elven designs.
The seats near the western section of the bar had a large circular window which overlooked the market. The man sitting on the left was one of the twelve Archmagi from Galbu, the Silver Leader and also known as the Recorder of Ten Thousand Spells, returned his gaze back into the bar. He wore a long silver robe and his snowy beard nearly reached the ground.
“That little girl seems like she has the features of a Kirrlutz citizen,” he said.
“Veronica, commander of the Azure Skies.” The old man sitting opposite of him replied.
“I suppose that’s understandable. The Lionheart is their legacy. It’s no wonder they would send out their men out in such a hurry. But the descendants of Gatel are certainly getting worse with each generation.”
“What are your thoughts about the sword, William?”
“Mine? Erik was my good friend in the past. If his sword appears, I would naturally want to see the successor that he chose—”
“Rumors have it that the wizards from Galbu are cold and friendless. It looks like they are not true.” The other old man said with a laugh.
“I wish that is the case. Unfortunately, most of us have no desires other than time and knowledge. But no one can surpass the limits of their flesh, not even the races with the Silver Bloodline in them.”
“Hmm. What is the Madara’s undead up to recently?”
“The bunch of skeletons isn’t capable of stirring up any huge trouble, though their movements are a little strange recently.”
“The Silver Candle Association’s monitoring on their borders seems to be interrupted by something. There’s some kind of change in that dark kingdom of theirs, and the Star Seers stated prophecies that an emerging power was rising from the east. I’m not sure if it’s about them.”
“You mean that a new kingdom is about to be born?”
“Perhaps it’s not just one. Though I must say if it’s someone who caught my eyes…… That young boy, isn’t he one of your Aouine citizens? He’s a little interesting.”
“Yes, he is, but I feel like I have seen from somewhere.”
“I discovered there’s a magical seal on him, but it seems like he doesn’t even know about it. However, that magical seal has a mana signature that I’m somewhat familiar with.”
“A particular girl who’s not obedient at all.” The old man’s face had a strange expression.