Chapter 4 Episode 9
Night, 14th Day, 11th Month, the Year 2813.
“Well then? Why did you want those kind of terms?”
It was about the terms Ryouma had demanded during the meeting this noon.
Lupis had accepted all of them.
It was natural for Lupis to do that because of how she was cornered and also of the urgency.
It can be seen from how Lupis accepted Ryouma’s demand promptly without going to go through a meeting with the ministries.
Well, it was also true that Ryouma had kept the terms and conditions at a minimum so that it could be decided promptly, but the other side did not know that.
Toward Elena’s question, Ryouma answered with a smile on his face.
Looking at his face, one can easily say that he had ulterior motives.
However, Elena had her own convictions.
“Suspicion? There’s no such a thing. You’re thinking too much.”
Towards Elena who spoke with such assertions, Ryouma could not hide his surprise.
“You said you don’t have any suspicion, but still you are asking me that kind of question?”
It was a natural objection on his part.
It would have been natural if she asked because she was suspicious of something, but to enquire something yet said not feeling suspicious, it was expected for Ryouma to doubt her.
However, Elena’s facial expression did not change.
“Ryouma-kun… What are you planning?”
Her eyes were serious, there were no fluctuations that could be seen from it. –
He was convinced that Elena wouldn’t pull back if he didn’t give her a satisfying answer.
(Geez… Well, I guess it can’t be helped for Elena to be like this, huh?)
A bitter smile appeared unintentionally on Ryouma’s face.
It was not like he had an ulterior motive or anything like that.
He had done so to increase the chance of winning even if it was just a little.
Since in a battlefield, he would be dead if he did not do his best.
And with the current army Ryouma had, he won’t be able to influence the battlefield very much.
How can hundreds of troops influence a battlefield where countries collide.
What it can do was only to deal a death blow if there were some gap. That was what he was in the process of doing.
The protagonists in this war would be the knight order led by Elena and the reinforcements from the Mist Kingdom
It was also true that he did so he could lessen the burden Elena had carried.
However, he could only provide a little advantage for them.
It was a cheap price despite the advantages they get.
(I guess I have no choice. It would be tasteless of me if I make Elena feel suspicious here…)
Ryouma quietly thought of that and heave a sigh.
“Is this about the matter of war funds?”
He had asked the permission to migrate homeless people from the royal capital and the surrounding territory, as well as one month time period to prepare for participating in the reinforcement.
The emigration of engineers seemed to be a little of a bottleneck, but even that much won’t cause too much noise.
The departure of engineers might cause the security of the kingdom to worsen but it was not something to be too concerned about, and even the time needed for Ryouma to prepare for the reinforcement was especially short, which can only be regarded as a good news.
Which only left one problem that concerned Elena, it was about the 50 million baht he had demanded Lupis to give him as war funds.
“Didn’t you say that you’re going to prepare the war supplies by yourself?”
Elena directed her investigative eyes toward Ryouma.
The amount of war funds was unnaturally too small.
Elena understood that Ryouma needed funds for the development of the Wortenia peninsula, but it would have been good if he had said so honestly.
Everyone knew that the order for reinforcement was unreasonable.
And nobody would have complained if Ryouma asked aid for the peninsula development in exchange for his participation.
There was no need for him to name it war funds in this kind of situation.
“Well sure I wanted to do that, but after I saw the condition of the royal capital, I’m not sure if I should’ve asked that…”
“What do you mean by that?”
“It means just like what I said. Her Majesty does not seem to be able to control the kingdom. I guess she is already on her knees? That is why, I don’t think she would be able to manage the supply when the country is under such conditions, no?”
Towards Ryouma’s explanation, Elena’s face grew stiff.
“Although all of this was not because of her direct fault either, but well…”
Towards Ryouma who ends his words with a chuckle while shrugging his shoulders, Elena felt a cold chill run down her spine.
(This kid… He is capable of grasping the conditions of the kingdom just by looking at the situation in the royal capital?)
Certainly, Lupis reforms had never been successful.
Or rather, it can be said that she had faced much frustrations.
Originally, Lupis was someone who led the knight order she had minimal contact with bureaucrats and nobles.
As a result, when Lupis centralized the power within the throne, it caused a big opposition from the bureaucrats and aristocrats due to the limitation it had imposed on their power.
In their eyes, a political neophyte had invaded their territory using the throne as an excuse.
That was the image the aristocrats had towards Lupis.
Had Gerhardt ended up dead, they might have given up, but Gerhardt who managed to establish connections and backing with the royal family thanks to Ladine, despite having his rank demoted into a viscount, is now stronger in terms of political power.
Although the ministerial level had been changed.
Despite having Earl Bergston and Zereff, nobles who were bystanders and had nothing to do with Gerhardt, taking the office.
The lower bureaucrats had been serving Gerhardt from the time he held the real power.
With them being uncooperative, the nation could not move well.
The truth was that since it had been decided they would send reinforcements, the order to gather supply such as weapons and foods had been released, yet they only managed to assemble two-thirds of the intended amount.
Of course, the reinforcement party can get supplies from the Zalda Kingdom, but they could not let everything be done by Zalda either.
Since Ryouma and the others would go as reinforcements, they could not loot the Zalda Kingdom territory either, thus it was natural for him and the others to prepare some amount themselves.
All that being said, Mist Kingdom as well, behind their majestic knight orders, they also brought a lot of supplies.
Not only medical and food supplies, they also brought with them spare armors, weapons, and horses. –
Elena was at a loss for words.
The young man in front of her, despite being young already knew this much about the military.
An army was equal to a huge monster.
It was a beast that produces nothing, only eating a huge amount of supplies.
And when such supplies run short, the creatures called troops would begin to desert.
However, few people understood that basic principle.
Even in the military personnel, other than some senior officers, most of them could not grasp such concept.
But even with his answer, another question appeared inside Elena’s mind.
(This boy… From where the hell was he going to procure the supplies then?)
Certainly, supplies were important. Therefore, she understood why he had asked the war funds.
But, no matter how much money one possessed, there were no points unless one finds someone to sell the goods.
And the number of goods the military needed was always beyond comprehension.
One knight order led by Elena, and the hundreds of soldiers led by Ryouma. Although the number was less than three thousand, they still could not gather the supplies needed for them from a small shop in the city.
It was usually handled by a firm that was used to huge procurements, but those firms would not easily take an order from a first-time customer.
If there were no arrangements beforehand, those firms wouldn’t undertake the contract.
That was because such huge procurement carried a high risk when it failed.
“Don’t worry. To be honest, I’ve already made the arrangements. We can pay the money afterwards.”
Ryouma speak of Elena’s worries as if it was nothing big.
“I’ve already talked with a firm from Epiroz city. Well, in that regard, I was lucky. Anyway, in short, we already secured the supplies for the next six months.”
“I see, so that was why you only need one month…”
The young man with a gentle smile on his face had come to the royal capital with all preparations in mind.
One could easily see that he had already thought of the possibility of being called beforehand.
By Ryouma’s own free will, he was actually going to help the kingdom.
In itself that was something to be happy about.
But, considering his past actions, such a thing was incredibly unlikely to happen.
(From when did he… No, that is wrong… The right one would be, what does he do all of this for?)
Elena did not ask Ryouma the question that appeared inside her heart.
Because she felt everything would collapse the moment she asked the question.