Chapter 2 Episode 33
Editor: CptCruiser beep boop bap bam
Day 176 after being summoned to another world: (Decisive Battle 5)
“With that being the case, Duke Gerhardt wishes to capitulate and ally himself with Princess Lupis once again… As a proof for negotiation, we will hand over Mikhail Banashu who is under our protection in Irachioon.”
Hearing Sudou’s words, heavy air dominated inside the tent.
Everyone was speechless after hearing Sudou’s words.
No rather, it’s more correct that everyone was unable to think properly because Sudou’s suggestion is that much of outrageous.
It was an unexpected situation where the mastermind of this war suggested capitulation and change allegiance before the decisive battle.
“Ane-sama… This situation… It’s bad isn’t it?”
Sara whispered close to Laura’s ear.
“Indeed… Ryouma-sama’s plan might get hindered because of this…”
Laura directed her line of sight with a blank expression the moment she heard Sudou’s words.
There are 16 people currently present.
Princess Lupis, Meltina, Elena, Ryouma, naturally accompanying him are Laura, Sara, Lione, and Bolts, other than these people, there are also some influential nobles under Earl Bergston present.
Inside the tent, these people listened to Sudou’s words intently while sitting at a round table.
“As expected, the effects will be bad huh?”
“Yes, by looking at the current situation, that’s all I can imagine it will be….”
The two sisters are whispering to each other making sure that the others could not hear their voices.
Lione and Bolts, Lupis and Meltina, and the nobles who sat near each other began to also discuss the matter in low voices.
Only Ryouma and Elena remained silent.
“Ryouma-sama… With this situation, what he’s going to do?”
Toward Sara’s question, Laura was unable to find an answer.
In the end, they both directed their eyes toward Ryouma in silence.
No matter what the conclusion of this situation is, it was irrelevant for the sisters.
They have already sworn to follow the man named Mikoshiba Ryouma anywhere he goes.
Ryouma closed his eyes and leaned back into his chair relaxedly.. By doing so, he tries to mask his emotions from the others but in his mind he had already begun analysing the situation and was trying to find the best possible solution
and there was only one way that he could imagine to break them out of their current situation..
(This really hurt my head…)
That was Ryouma’s true feeling.
Even if she’s someone whom he can trust as a human, in term of capabilities, she’s not someone whom he can trust completely but Ryouma has never thought that Princess Lupis was this stupid.
(In Sudou’s argument… He was asked to forgive the Duke who raises a rebellion against Rozeria kingdom’s royal family with the reasoning that he’s doing it because of the will of the last king… No matter how I see it, that’s just too unreasonable… And now because Hodram betrays him, he wants to capitulate and pledge his allegiance to the princess with the reasoning that the General is rebelling against royal family? That’s just too stupid…)
That’s was Ryouma’s honest opinion towards Sudou’s words. Gerhardt was trying to play innocent by saying that he was only following the previous king’s will.
Furthermore, because Hodram betrayed him, he wishes to show his loyalty to the kingdom because he couldn’t forgive the general who’s rebelling against the royal family with no proper reasoning Forcing Hodram to bear all the blame for the rebellion.
Another problem was that Sudou spoke these words in the presence of others and one could say that this situation has taken a turn for the worst.
Of course, Ryouma has no problem with the people who gathered but the one that Ryouma was looking at was Princess Lupis, from the beginning Ryouma had never trusted the Princess’s capability in politics.
That is why he wanted to leave the judgement all to the Princess and although he wanted to praise the princess for realizing her shortcomings and gathering the others, he understood that the praise would be for nothing if the topic of discussion was about the exchange of Mikhail’s return for the Duke’s pardon. This topic was already bad but it got worse when she invited others to the discussion.
That because the conclusion can easily be seen.
(In the end, the princess does not want Mikhail to die huh…)
Ryouma’s heart becomes cold.
Indeed Mikhail’s is a man with great loyalty and high battle strength.
For the princess, he’s one reliable and trustworthy retainer.
Thus, as a human being having the princess not wanting to kill him is a natural thing for that reason alone, Ryouma doesn’t want to blame her for it.
However, a ruler must never show their wavering feelings and no matter the cost must repress them. The issue was not about Mikhail who was a reliable subordinate in the eyes of the princess but more about Gerhardt who wanted to be pardoned. No matter how reliable one life is, it couldn’t be compared to the life of Gerhardt who began the rebellion in the first place, to spare such person for a single retainer was unthinkable…
Although the princess has not yet openly declared her intentions, Ryouma was convinced that the Princess wanted to help save Mikhail. If not, the princess would surely think of taking Sudou’s life, since he was an unknown person that had entered the Princess’s tent without permission. It was an undeniable fact that Sudou is an invader among the people in the tent, so no one would complain if the princess decided to take his life
The princess went through all the trouble of gathering all her important personal to listen to Sudou’s words, so regardless of her decision, her heart could easily be seen.
(‘I want to help Mikhail, so I want to grant Gerhardt wish’,that must be her line of thoughts. However, she seems to realize that alone can’t become a justification thus she tried to gather the others so that it won’t become skewed later.)
If the princess were to accept the demands just like that, it would obviously have many repercussions. After all the one she was about to spare was the mastermind behind the whole rebellion. That reason alone was why Lupis gathered the others, to spread responsibility for these actions as much as possible.
“Well then, I would like to hear everyone’s opinion.”
Ryouma wanted to click his tongue immediately after hearing Lupis’s words but no matter how annoying the situation was for him, he wouldn’t allow himself to show his anger.
“Does anyone have any opinions?”
The room was silent to Princess Lupis’s question while her gaze traversed towards each member in the room. However there was no response, since everyone already understood that the Princess had already decided what to do in her heart.
Ryouma himself did not consider the life of Mikhail to be equal to the life of Gerhardts, it can be said to compare the life of a mere knight to a demon lord but it would be useless for Ryouma to voice his reasons since if he were to suggest abandoning Mikhail he would have to do it after the meeting.
“Do you want Mikhail to die!”
“You assume that even without trying to help!”
“What are you talking about newcomer!”
Those kinds of words awaited for him if he took the wrong step, the ones most likely to argue were Mikhail’s colleagues, the knights..
Furthermore, even if Ryouma were to suggest abandoning Mikhail here, the Princess will probably not accept it. If that were the case, Ryouma would be painted as the villain and besides that, Mikhail had been captured under Ryouma’s command so if he were to suggest abandoning him, he might be accused of wanting to kill him.
Sometimes even the most sound arguments will be dismissed due to human empathy. However when a ruler has been drowning in kindness, distortion is bound to occur somewhere. If there was no room for the ruler to hear the suggestions then it would be better for Ryouma to hold off on the suggestions.
In such situation, Ryouma felt Elena’s gaze.
Ryouma shook his head while he murmured toward Elena in a low voice.
He understood what she wants to say from her gaze.
However, if she said that, Elena would definitely be accused of being a bad person..
“If that is the case then, let me…”
“Please stop. If the princess holds any distrust toward you here, it will become harder to rebuild the future.”
He immediately denies Elena’s suggestion.
For her, she has not gained a trust from Princess Lupis similar to that of Mikhail and Meltina.
Of course, for her to raise an objection in place of Ryouma would carry more weight since she still has the nickname of “Rozeria’s White Goddess of War,” but he thinks that the princess will not give up Mikhail’s life.
“Then what should we do? If we stay like this…”
Elena understood the danger of their present situation, just like Ryouma.
In exchange for Mikhail’s life, Duke Gerhardt will survive from prosecution and in turn Princess Ladine will be acknowledged as royalty and be given the rights for the second succession.
With that, Princess Lupis was putting herself into a more dangerous position.
A mastermind of rebellion should be beheaded, that is common sense in this world.
If she were to pardon Gerhardt, it would mean she does not acknowledge Duke Gerhardt’s actions as a means of rebellion but rather as the previous king’s will and such will not be counted as a rebellion.
There was no other way then to let everything play out even if it were just mere wordplay.
(I guess the only one who can break through this situation is Meltina huh?)
Ryouma’s line of sight is directed to Meltina, sitting next to Princess Lupis.
(Tch…She looks happy enough knowing that Mikhail is alive… Well, I can understand since her colleague survived… But she doesn’t realize that the situation is just worsening with every passing second… I guess it’s impossible for her, that means…)
He gives up on Meltina the moment he saw her smile, Ryouma then tries to desperately think up of a method to breakthrough the tension..
(It is impossible to kill Gerhardt. Which means we can only kill Hodram in this battle… The problem is after that, Princess Lupis can’t control Gerhardt. Even if she abolish his power, it will return someday… Wait a minute, someday? )
A cruel idea came up inside Ryouma’s mind.
Indeed, there’s no need for Ryouma to kill Gerhardt.
(Does she really want to die that badly?)
Ryouma planned to abandon Lupis.
(Don’t worry your highness, I will not betray you. However, if you stay like this, you will die. I don’t know how many years it will take, but that day will come sooner… Of course, I will still advise Elena. However, I have no intention of helping you anymore. Afterward, please deal with the people in Rozeria kingdom by yourself. At best, try to take care of that Gerhardt afterward.)
Ryouma raised his hand to gain permission to speak.
“Then, can I say something?”
For a moment, Lupis’s expression turn to one of pure fright..
She understood that her judgment was not right but her empathy refuses to abandon Mikhail’s life.
“Go ahead, Ryouma.”
Ryouma stood up from his chair after Lupis give her consent.
“I think we should accept Sudou’s suggestion and accept Duke Gerhardt’s allegiance.”
The tent shook after Ryouma said those words.
“Wha! Are you serious! Mikhoshiba-dono!”
“Yes, I’m serious, Earl Bergeston.”
Bergeston was a nobleman who had managed to acquire enough military knowledge to understand the situation, adding his experience in diplomacy and court politics, he was someone who could perceive the dangers of accepting Sudou’s proposal.
“What are you aiming at?”
Ryouma’s words had surprised Earl Bergston to the point that the nobleman decided to ask Ryouma of his true intentions even in the presence of an enemy messenger.
“No, but I can’t forsake Mikhail’s life. Furthermore, there might be some truth in Duke Gerhardt words. Regardless, this would be better than war, no?, and considering that the area around Irachion is prospering, having a large scale war would undoubtedly affect their growth and lower their potential income, Wouldn’t it be better if the princess were to accept the Duke’s allegiance?”
There’s no lies in Ryouma’s word.
If they confront the duke’s army, they will undoubtedly suffer greatly in the future due to the reduced tax revenue but even after Ryouma’s explanation the Earl appeared to not be satisfied, since the reduction in tax revenue had already been calculated by the time they had decided to march towards Irachion.
“However your highness! When we accept the Duke’s allegiance, we should add some condition from our side.”
“What do you mean?”
“We can’t balance everything with only the return of Mikhail, we should confiscate the Gerhardts title and also ask him to pay reparations for the war.?”
Hearing Ryouma’s words Lupis then entered deep into her mind. She realized that the conditions provided by Sudou were extremely disadvantageous for her and the only reason she had considered his proposal in the first place is due to them using Mihail as leverage.
That’s why she could somewhat understand Ryouma’s aim but if she were to negotiate poorly, it could cost Mikhail’s life and even though she had given up on him when she thought he was dead, now knowing that he was still breathing she wanted to help.
Between justice and her own empathy, her heart couldn’t decide what was worth more to her.
“Fine… His Excellency the Duke has delegated me that he’s willing to accept such condition… He will pay the reparation of war as much as 500 million Baht, and also relinquish his Duchy rank and title.”
From inside the tent, loud voices arose. The amount Sudou mentioned was more than enough to cover the cost of the current war, a breath of relief overcame the nobles since they could give enough rewards to their subordinates while also securing enough income to bring into their own households.
“That’s not all, I want him to also promise to not attend any office within the court for the next five years..”
Sudou’s face distorted after hearing Ryouma’s words.
(Fuuh… He had expected that we would confiscate the Duke wealth and title… But he seems didn’t expect that we would suspend him from office…)
For Ryouma, that condition is absolute.It was a measure put forth for the protection of Princess Lupis who in her current form would only be prey to Gerhardt. That’s why he proposed to suspend Duke from office for five years, this way the nobles who become the foundation for the princess will be able to root out all of Duke Gerhardt’s power from various branches of office.
“Fine… I accept your condition as Duke Gerhardt’s representative. Is that enough? Your highness.”
Sudou asked Princess Lupis who’s dumbfounded.
“Yes… That is enough…”
She had no choice but to nod.
“Very well… I will immediately return to Irachion and report to the Duke, and then I will bring Mikhail here.”
After saying that, Sudou lowered his head and immediately left the tent.
After Sudou’s departure, the meeting ends and the nobles leave to go about their various duties, leaving only five figures in the meeting place, Ryouma, Bolts, Lione and the Marfisto sisters.
“Is it alright to just leave it at that?”
Toward Lione’s question, Ryouma had no choice other than to nod his head.
“Although it is not what we really wanted, this is all I can do given the current situation… asking for any more would be impossible.”
Indeed Ryouma had done his best.
In fact, he wants to praise himself to be able to do that in such a situation.
“Will they manage it in five years?”
“Who knows? To be honest, I’ve never thought that far.”
Ryouma shrugged his shoulders while answering Sara’s question. All, Ryouma did was buy time, if he were to put this in medical terms, Duke Gerhardt and Hodram were nothing more than dangerous disease which Ryouma planned to cleanse with surgery(Warfare). Lupis who is acting as the patient as requires the surgery, refuses to remove Gerhardt so with that being the case Ryouma had no other choice but to keep the disease at bay.
By keeping Gerhardt at bay for five years, the patient may naturally become stronger this in turn allows her to handle the disease by herself. There was nothing else Ryouma could do anymore but pray for Lupis’s growth in the coming years.
All that remains is for the people of the kingdom to help guide her, Ryouma who had been rolled up into this war by chance was not someone who had to carry such responsibilities.
“Well with this, all that remains is Hodram and his 2.000 knights…”
Lione nodded her head after hearing Ryouma’s words.
After dealing with Hodram, everything should be over.
“Will it be tomorrow or the day after tomorrow…”
“The day we attack Irachion eh?”
“Yes… It would be our last battle in this war!”
Ryouma nodded in agreement while answering Laura’s question.
What remains is the decisive battle against Hodram.
The civil war in the Rozeria Kingdom is finally reaching its conclusion..