Chapter 37: The Saint returns to Clausel (Part one)
It was early the next morning.
Baron Clausel had not made up as much time as he had thought and had been cornered to the stage of being transported to the imperial capital.
He would now go to the imperial capital by lunar whale from another territory via the surrounding towns.
He wasn’t allowed to have Weiss by his side and was just about to leave Clausel.
The people of the towns surrounding Clausel were watching with bated breath.
Viscount Givens, riding in the lead on horseback, saw this and laughed.
“Viscount. We are almost there.”
“Ah, it’s been a long way indeed.”
The one who said that was the knight who said he was going to Clausel during the battle with Ren in the forest.
Viscount Givens nodded with a cool smile on his handsome face at the sound of his voice.
“All that remains is to transport Baron Clausel to the imperial capital as it is.”
“The heroes living in the imperial capital will take care of it.”
“Yes, but, Viscount, I have to ask you once again.”
The knight asked and Viscount Givens said, “What is it?”
“I understand why you let Licia Clausel live. I also understand why you took her hostage and threatened Baron Clausel. In the end, if we can get the saint to marry into the Heroes’ Faction, it’ll unite us as a faction.”
“Ah, you are concerned about Ren Ashton?”
“Yes. Was it worth the risk to keep him alive? I heard Baron Clausel say that the boy was his favorite.”
Viscount Givens chuckled.
And then he reminisced.
“It was nearly ten years ago, but I happened to discover some information.”
“That’s right. —- It was a coincidence. It was an unintentional connection that I discovered while I was researching the Clausel estate in the imperial capital and I realized it was information that no one else was aware of.”
“What connection was that?”
The knight’s face was full of curiosity, which made Viscount Givens feel better.
But he said nothing more.
“One day you’ll understand. Which is when I’ve gained fame among the heroes and have a voice above the troublesome cohabitants and the high nobility.”
“Until then, I’m the only one who will know the truth.”
The viscount exhaled as he finished.
“I’ve spent many years doing just that. Unlike the saint, I have taken great care to keep Ren Ashton in my possession.”
For that reason, he couldn’t let Ren and Licia go.
Viscount Givens got a report from the knight that the two were sighted in the forest before the hill.
Naturally, he reprimanded the knight severely as soon as he heard about it.
However, since he gave priority to capturing the two rather than reprimanding them, he hadn’t inflicted any punishment of any kind on them.
“You guys head for the hillside right after this.”
“Yes, we’ll be able to capture them soon.”
“Hah, it would be troublesome….. Not only because of Jerukku, but also because you guys have exposed yourselves in such an unbecoming manner.”
“Sorry about that…..”
“If you’re going to apologize, return the apology with work. If you can’t, I won’t tell you how you will be dealt with.”
The knight nodded silently, unable to say anything at the strong tone.
“And I’m also concerned about the light from last night.”
This was the only concern.
The other knights hadn’t come to report, so this one thing was really hanging over Viscount Givens’ mind.
“Even now, we’re somehow managing to outmaneuver the royalist faction. Failure isn’t an option. Do you know how hard I worked to create this situation?”
“Ha. I think this is due to the fact that you were quick, alerted the surrounding territories and applied the appropriate pressure.”
“Yes. Don’t forget that this was a work of meticulous planning.”
He talked about why the royalist faction had remained uninvolved until today and ordered them not to let his efforts go to waste.
If they had heard what was going on, it was only natural that there would have been royalists who would have interfered.
The only reason they weren’t there was that Viscount Givens, in cooperation with his close relatives, had spent many years planning the project in secret.
“It‘ll happen soon.”
—-The end of the Clausel family is near.
Outside the open gates, Baron Clausel looked out at the morning sun rising over the horizon.
“—- who is that?”
He saw a horse coming down the street.
It was a horse approaching slowly against the sunlight.
Unlike Viscount Givens, who questioned the horse, the knight at his side noticed something unusual.
Isn’t that the horse that was pulling Jerukku’s carriage?
The knight was just about to tell Viscount Givens those words when
“Young lady —-!”
Weiss shouted at the rear of the group, and he drove his horse, heedless of Viscount Givens’ knights’ restraint.
What’s going on?
With all those knights and Jerukku, yet they escaped all the way here?
Viscount Givens’ heart gradually grew impatient.
This caused him to stop his horse just outside the gate.
“Don’t do anything rash. Weiss, no one can beat that man. First, we must see what he’ll do.”
From behind, Baron Clausel’s voice could be heard.
But he wasn’t free.
Viscount Givens ordered his knights to form a perimeter around Baron Clausel.
While he was doing so, the horse approaching from the front didn’t stop.
“My Lady! I have no apologies! I’ll make amends with my life —- boy!”
Weiss made his opening apology and immediately noticed that Licia was carrying Ren on her back.
To his surprise, Licia quietly replies.
“…… It’s alright. All of this was something I ordered you to do.”
“I’ll talk to you later…… I don’t want his hard work to go to waste right now.”
Of course, Weiss said he would take care of Ren, but Licia was adamant.
She wasn’t going to give in, saying that she’d take Ren to the mansion herself.
The more he looked at Licia, the more he saw that she too was exhausted.
And yet, Weiss was forced to keep his mouth shut in the face of Licia’s condition.
“—- You must be Viscount Givens.”
The voice of the haggard Licia echoed.
But there was a dignified strength in her eyes that Weiss had never seen before.
The area has lost its noisy atmosphere of a moment ago.
Even Weiss had to keep his mouth shut In the face of Licia’s power.
“I’m glad to see the saint, but be careful with your words. I’m a viscount—- “
“Please refrain from speaking here. I don’t have the courtesy to address a criminal“
Viscount Givens laughed at the bite in her voice.
“You have an interesting way of saying things.”
Viscount Givens moved his horse forward.
Licia stopped her horse and waited for Viscount Givens, keeping Weiss at a distance.
“But make no mistake. The criminal is your father.”
“Look carefully….. Can you still be so bullish after seeing this?”
Licia took the magical tool that Jerukku had been using and questioned Viscount Givens.
The Viscount Givens’ eyebrows furrowed for a moment when he saw it.
He asked calmly.
“It’s a magical tool that belonged to an elf you hired. If I look into it, I may be able to see the relationship between you.”
“Ha… hahahaha! What a thing to say! What sort of crazy thing is a saint saying?!”
“Ren and I —- Ren’s village was attacked by the elf you hired.”
“So, why am I coming out of the woodwork here? You don’t think you can prove it with a single magical tool like that, do you?”
“I’ll find out if I look into it.”
Licia as haggard as she looked was less tactful than usual.
By the same token, Viscount Givens is unwavering.
She should have known that, but her body was in pain and she couldn’t speak as much as she wanted to.
“…… and we were attacked by your knights in the nearby forest.”
“My knights? Someone must have staged it.”
There’s no proof.
Licia provoked the knights in the forest, exposing them to their disfigurement, but still didn’t sway Viscount Givens.
After all, he’s a well-prepared man.
Weiss, who was listening to the conversation, was so angry that he was on the verge of drawing his sword.
It was a miracle that he could hold back.
“I remember his face. The knight by your side swung his sword at me and Ren.”
“Hmm ……is it true?”
“No. I was in command outside Clausel, as ordered by the Viscount…..”
“It seems that the saint has been tricked by someone.”
“I… wonder, Shouldn’t we talk about it in the town to find out?”
“I’m afraid that won’t be necessary.”
Viscount Givens pushed on.
In fact, he was in a position to do so and had already reached that stage.
Weiss objected when he saw that he was advancing his horse.
“Viscount Givens! I, as one who is in charge of the Knights of the House of Clausel, think that you should carefully examine the words of the young lady! I suggest that you return to the town once more to confirm what has happened!”
“That’s also unnecessary. If you insist on it, you can set up a new trial in the capital.”
At the Imperial capital, there are many noblemen who aren’t in support of the Clausel family.
No matter how much Licia returned on her own and couldn’t be used as a hostage, there was no doubt that he could still threaten him with a new move.
It is, in effect, a defeat.
So Baron Clausel was also buying time and waiting for a new move.
Viscount Given’s horse is advancing further.
Soon, he’ll pass by Licia and the others—-
But at that moment…