Chapter 12: Settlement
Absolute and Ur were taken out by the king and shown to a different room.
“Absolute Ark… your maid has told me most of the story, but can you tell me yours? Can you tell me how it happened?”
(The king would not want to hear this)
“Then please take a look at this video. I’ve recorded it just in case.”
The king looked up at the ceiling as if he had given up on the whole thing, because he thought he could use his power to cover it up at worst, since there were no witnesses at that place and only the parties concerned were in the space. However, Absolute anticipated this and left the magic tool of image as evidence, so there was no way to escape.
(We can’t let him get away with this! Prince Michael will join the side of the hero in the future and use his power to gather troops and kill me, Absolute. I must drag him down while I still can!)
The king finished watching the video and called out to Absolute.
“Absolute Ark…I am sorry about this. As you can see…”
The king bowed his head. If this was not the Ark family but just a high ranking nobleman, he wouldn’t have bowed. But the Ark family is a distinguished family that is responsible for national defense behind the scenes and is disgraced for the sake of the country. It wasn’t a family with whom one could go against.
“We, the Ark family, have supported the royal family in the sound management of the country by getting our hands dirty. But I never thought they would return the favor like that.”
Absolute never backed down when the king bowed his head.
“Is that a royal decision? If so, we, the Ark family, have our own ideas.”
Absolute uses his skill King’s coercion to intimidate the king, but the king withstands the pressure without showing his expression.
(He’s the king, after all, he’s ruled the country for so many years.)
Absolute changes his opinion of the king.
“No, it’s Michael’s outburst. You won’t believe me, but I didn’t expect him to go to such lengths. But, Absolute, cutting off the guard’s arm was a bit much, don’t you think? Wouldn’t you have handled it more gently?”
The king fires back at me, but I am unmoved.
“Even though I’m the son of a high ranking noble, he attacked me. It was self-defense. And it was the Kingsguard who didn’t heed my warning. If he was a Kingsguard, he should have corrected Prince Michael’s mistake, even if it cost him his life. It is wrong to blame me. So how are you going to take responsibility as a royal family this time?”
(At the very least, I want to take power away from Michael, but is it difficult to abolish him? The victim is unharmed…)
“I’ll pay the alimony to you and your maid, and Michael will be placed under house arrest. What do you think?”
(……… too lenient…)
“He summoned a high ranking nobleman, tried to take away my slave with power and violence, and finally attempted to murder me? Isn’t that too lenient? If you judge him for his crime, he will be in the dungeon forever. At the very least, Prince Michael should be removed from his position as crown prince.”
“Is there any other way to go about this? I have only one son, Michael. Without a successor, the royal family is finished.”
The king pleads, but Absolute continues
“Isn’t Princess Haniel here? Wouldn’t it be a solution if you took a son-in-law through Princess Haniel? Wouldn’t that be better than what we have now with Prince Michael as the crown prince?”
The king was troubled… Haniel was certainly better than Michael, but there was a problem.
“Haniel is blind…it would be difficult for her to perform her official duties…”
“Yes, I suppose so. But that is for His Majesty the King and those around him to consider. My demands are that I and my maid, Ur, receive compensation and that Prince Michael step down from his position as crown prince. Your Majesty the King, please decide.”
The king thinks for a moment. Even the king loves his own child. The king’s stomach was in knots.
“I understand. I will remove Michael from the position of crown prince. But if he reflects on his behavior and repents, will you allow him to return to the position of crown prince?”
Still saying sweet things, Absolute pushed him away.
“I’ll then present this video in front of all the nobles, and afterwards he’ll apologize to me in front of all of them, right?”
“That’s right. I’m sorry. I’ll do whatever you want. I am sorry about today…I will pay your fee when you leave.”
With this, the settlement with the royal family was completed, and Absolute and Ur went home while playing lavishly with the consolation money.
[Michael’s point of view]
The first time I met Absolute Ark was during a meeting between my father and the head of the Ark family, which I witnessed when I was only five years old.
My impression of Absolute when I first saw him was disgust. It was the first emotion I had ever felt in my life.
I don’t know what this feeling is, and I remember crying and clinging to my father to stop when he tried to leave me and Absolute alone. So the party was over, and I never saw Absolute outside of parties again.
However, my father would occasionally mention him in conversation, saying that Absolute was smarter or more skilled in magic, which made me feel as if he was comparing me to him, which made me feel bad.
Furthermore, he ruined the ceremony for me at my 10th anniversary party.
I hate Absolute.
My father called me to talk about Absolute.
“Michael… do you know what you’ve done?”
“It’s Absolute who is to blame. He attacked me out of the blue, so I had no choice but to engage him.”
Michael was clueless. He thought he could cover it up because there was no third party in the room.
“I see. Can you say the same thing about this video?”
“Wh-why is there such a thing!?”
“Because it’s from Absolute. You’ve done something you can’t take back.”
“He’s the one who ruined my 10th birthday party, so I’m going to show him the pain.”
The king looked at Michael with disgusted eyes.
“I told you it was a faction of the Dukes Kako, not the House of ArK… the House of Ark is the victim. Well, you committed a crime anyway. Michael, you are no longer crown prince. You should have been imprisoned, but you should be grateful.”
(I’m stepping down as the crown prince? What foolery!)
“By the way, if we show this video to all the nobles and apologize to Absolute, he will allow you to be reinstated as the crown prince. Reflect on it and make the most of it the next time. That’s all I ask.”
Michael suppresses his anger and leaves the room.
(Absolute! I’ll never forgive him. I will be the king!)
Michael’s anger at Absolute grows, and he thinks about his future plans.