Roan asked back in a composed voice.
Clay nodded his head.
"Since my lord is occasionally obstinate without care to a point of being excessive, sir."
The point of his words were simple.
There were times when Roan would forget the fact that he was a noble of the kingdom and a lord who was leading tens, hundreds of retainers.
He would raid into the enemy camps like his time as a rank and file spearman and even personally carry out dangerous plans and schemes.
Not only that, there were times when he would move without a single escort like the recent Walter's event.
Actions that meticulously forgot of his duty as a lord.
"With the worry of whether my lord would encounter some accident, I have been having numerous animals to always guard your surroundings, sir."
Words saying it wasn't spying or monitoring.
Roan faintly smiled and shook his head.
"If it was for such a reason, then there shouldn't have been a need to do so behind my back, no?"
"As I have told my lord before, I have thought that, If it is my lord, he would notice it himself."
Clay was bold.
In truth, there was a point he was trusting.
'In the Lancephil Fief right now, there is no individual as definitely necessary as I."
Currently, Clay was administrating as well as commanding the Lancephil County's entire administration.
Furthermore, he was even managing the Bureau of Druids.
A situation where there honestly wasn't a thing that did not pass through his hands.
'He absolutely cannot throw me away.'
The moment he throw him away, the Lancephil County will lose momentum and end up aground.
'Furthermore, is the Sir Count not a person who values talented individuals and thoughtlessly throw people awa……'
When his thoughts have reached about that point.
Roan cheerfully smiled and stood up from his seat.
A softly calling voice.
Clay slightly smiled and lowered his head.
He was still overflowing with confidence.
Roan quietly looked at Clay and spoke in a determined expression and voice.
A short but shocking word.
Clay widely opened his eyes.
Because the words he thought could never come from Roan had flowed out.
Roan looked straight into Clay's eyes.
"I will acknowledge your achievements until now and won't ask any more of your errors.
Leave. If you wish, you may take all of the druids along."
It was a final decision.
A decision that absolutely was not easy even from Roan's position.
The druids and the various species of animals the druids controlled were greatly important strength even to Roan.
Furthermore, the abilities Clay had were also the top of the top.
Roan, tight now, had decided to give up all of them.
"M, my lord……"
Clay blurred the end of his words.
His mind was disarrayed and with his senses flown away, he couldn't finish his sentence.
At that moment, Roan threw up a long sigh.
"Clay. I greatly recognize your abilities and talent. You are the most outstanding amongst my retainers, no, great enough to be counted within a hand within the kingdom."
Although he had done an uncivil act, it wasn't as if he had done a crime big enough to be chased out.
Roan, effortfully with a composed voice, added on.
"However much your abilities are outstanding, how could I entrust even single small duty to you when there is no trust between you and I?"
"Tha, that is……"
Clay couldn't easily continue his words.
Roan gently wrapped his hands on Clay's shoulders.
"Clay. The fact that you are an outstanding and talented individual is something anyone would know of. Leave and go find a master fitting for you."
It was a beautiful goodbye possible because it was at the least before the Great Warring Era, the age of anarchy had came.
'If the world was chaotic, I would have slashed his neck instead of chasing him out.'
In the anarchy, one was an enemy if one was not a friend.
If one couldn't take it, one had to destroy it.
'Of course, I don't have any plan to really chase him out right now."
But Clay simply couldn't grasp Roan's such intent.
Because he had greatly panicked at the unexpected words.
Clay couldn't come to his senses.
'Just how did I climb up to here……'
Starting from a rank and file administrator, he had became the head administration manager who led the County.
Furthermore, Roan was the Rinse Kingdom's new star and one of the nobles with the most influence.
For Clay to make the world he dreamt of, he needed a powerful master like Roan.
'Just where would I go after leaving here?'
There was none.
AT least within the Rinse Kingdom, there currently was no one who might be comparable to Roan.
To particularly nitpick, marquises who are names only and the four dukes who were outside powers.
'But those places are basically already finished puzzles.'
There was almost no possibility of Clay squeezing in and taking a high position.
No, before that.
'Even they are not the lord's opponents.'
Although the powers of the duke houses might be greater right now, the possibility of growth was much greater for Roan.
In the end, it meant that there wasn't anyone he could fittingly serve.
'Then that means I'll ultimately have to head to a foreign country, but……'
That was problematic on its own.
'The situations in few kingdoms are disasters, and at places that are a bit good……'
His brothers had taken seat.
Most of all, he didn't wish to turn his back on his mother nation the Rinse Kingdom.
'The conclusion is……'
Perhaps it might already had been out from the start.
'I cannot leave my lord's side.'
The bold pride fell down.
As the pride fell down, the narrow view widely opened up.
'It wasn't that the lord couldn't throw me away……'
His lips sharply trembled.
'But rather I couldn't leave.'
No, to be exact, it was a situation where he couldn't throw him away, and he couldn't leave either.
Roan must had knew that.
Despite knowing that he too could greatly get hurt, he didn't hesitate in thrusting his spear into chaos.
Thanks to that, Roan was able to grasp the higher ground in the current situation.
Clay let out a quiet exclamation.
At least this time, he was perfectly tied up by Roan.
But he couldn't knew.
That the reason Roan could come out forcefully like so wasn't merely because he had endured his loss and made the decision with a bone-carving feeling.
'I'm already receiving a big help.'
Roan deeply breathed in.
His heart rapidly raced.
'Princess. No, Aily. Really thank you.'
Roan's resolute decision.
That was something only possible because Aily's help was there.
An incredibly secretive help that even Clay, who was always spying on Roan, couldn't realize.
'If there are the elves, there is no need to particularly be tied down to druids' abilities.'
Humans and elves.
Roan and Aily was preparing for an coexistence that no one had tried before.
When his thoughts had reached about that point.
Clay kneeled down on one knee and lowered his head.
A look that his disarrayed mind was quickly organized.
As much as his head was good, his decision too was quick.
"I was much too lacking and foolish."
The end of his voice shook.
It was hard to determine whether it was a truth or a lie.
"Please give me one more chance."
Completely switched positions.
But even in this while, Clay was setting up tens of plans within his head.
'Now that it came to this, I'll look to a higher place.'
He would dominate the fief to a point that Roan won't be able to do anything if it wasn't him.
'And if a chance arises……'
His eyes flashed with a sinister light.
A step backwards to advance two step.
If he could merely stay attached to Roan's side, he could aim for beyond that at any time.
Clay dismissed today's humiliation as merely collecting his breath.
A feeling that his heart could only feel slightly better by doing at least so.
Roan quietly stared at such Clay.
'I knew that you will react like that.'
A laughter filled up to below his chin.
Everything was as he and Aily expected.
'Did she called it mind's eyes……'
One of the abilities Aily had.
An ability similar to Kalian's Tears but slightly different.
Aily's mind's eyes that she received from the dragon lords was an ability to see the light that exuded out from people's body based on their personalities and feelings.
A red for rage, blue for sadness, gold for joy……
Thanks to that, Aily was able to grasp people's true intents to a degree through the mind's eyes.
But there very occasionally were ones who were hard to grasp their personalities and feelings of, and Clay was one of those very type of people.
Whenever Aily saw Clay, she could see only one color.
A dark wine light.
'A foul narcissism.'
A feeling that went beyond pride and confidence.
Clay was a man who loved himself the most in the world.
'That Clay is meekly stepping back? Ridiculous.'
A feeling of wanting to instantly cut him in a slash if possible.
But the situation was still a one where he had to leave Clay at his side.
It wasn't merely because his outstanding abilities were regrettable.
'Three years at the longest. The game board will flip within three years.'
Together with the Great Warring Era, the Rinse Kingdom would greatly shake.
The conclusion to the throne succession competition.
Clay was needed for that moment.
Using Clay, Roan planned to set a board that fitted his taste.
'Clay. Since you tried to use me……'
The light in his eyes heavily sank.
'I too will use you from now on.'
With a quiet voice, he called Clay.
"Yes. My lord."
Clay acutely lowered his head.
A look of having shrunk his entire body.
It was a look that truth and lies were mixed half and half.
Roan bitterly smiled and spoke in a small voice.
"I deprive you of all your current ranks and appoint you as bottom rank administrator. But I will tell you that advancement will be possible depending on your achievements afterwards. There will be no more loss beyond this."
And it was an incredible demotion at that where the head manager felled to the bottom.
Clay clenched his teeth.
One excessively arrogant decision had brought much too big of an ordeal.
Even though he had raised many achievements by spying and monitoring Roan, he ultimately fell down again to the bottom.
'He said that there won't be any more loss beyond this.'
Roan was of a personality that absolutely followed what he said once.
Clay deeply breathed in.
'I will definitely return today's humiliation.'
He effortfully made a smile.
"I will receive your order, my lord. I will do my best more than ever from now on."
Clay deeply bowed his head.
He didn't wish for his twisted face to be caught.
However, Roan had already guessed Clay's heart.
'Climb up. Clay. Climb up from the bottom to the top and fatten the fief.'
Of course, although that too would merely be for three years at the longest.
Roan and Clay's gazes complicatedly tangled and intertwined.
The strange company began like that.
While pointing unseen tips of swords at each other.
Of course, although Roan was holding a shield on his opposite hand in his case……
"Oh! So you mean it's Lancephil County once passing through that gateway?"
A young man pointed with a slightly elated expression.
A middle aged man standing at his side, together with a short sigh, answered.
"That is so, sir."
The place the two people's gazes touched was a small gateway located at the end of a road.
The young man, for who knew what was so good, brightly smiled and frivolously moved his steps.
The middle aged man who was watching that sight spoke as if to admonish.
"Even though you are the master of a company that entered within ten fingers in the kingdom, your dignity seem too lacking, sir."
"What does it matter if it enters within ten fingers. Even though we may end up closing it all if not careful."
The young man laid out serious stories as if it was nothing.
The middle aged man slightly creased his brows.
"It's still not at that degree, sir."
"I know. It's a joke, a joke. But it's clear that the situation is difficult."
The young man was still bright and cheerful.
Looking at the gateway that neared before they noticed, he asked in a small voice as if to whisper.
"Goden. Do you still trust my decision and judgment?"
At those words, the middle aged man, Goden, answered without a single bit of hesitation.
"Of course. Since I'm always on Sir Clyde's side."
As soon as his words finished, the young man, Clyde, raised his thumb.
"As expected! There really is only Goden."
He was the master of Clyde Company's master who before chose the Third Prince Kallum Rinse at the end of contemplating the prince who would rise to the Rinse Kingdom's next throne.
"I thought too easily of Sir Count Roan Lancephil. I admit that. But even so, I don't think my decision to choose Prince Kallum is wrong."
It wasn't an excuse.
However much he thought about it, the person who was fitted to climb to the next king's position was only Kallum.
'Prince Simon is excessively hot-blooded and impetuous. Prince Tommy's abilities are much too lacking compared to his ambition.'
In the first place, the throne succession competition would had ran with Kallum's lead if it wasn't for Roan.
'If Prince Simon becomes the next king like this with Count Lancephil on his back……"
Not only Kallum, but he who supported him too would not avoid misfortune.
'I can't leave it alone to let it be so.'
They said that there was always a hole to rise up even when the sky fell down.
Furthermore, the current situation wasn't as so tragic either.
'One year has already passed since Count Lancephil won the fief war.'
People thought that Roan would drive that victory and momentum to finish the throne succession competition.
But actually, Roan left the capital, Miller, and returned to the Lancephil County, then afterwards focused on strengthening his internal affairs without showing any particular actions.
Rather, it looked that the nobles who supported Tommy and Kallum were going out at faction expansion a bit more enthusiastically.
Of course, the one who was standing at the lead in the throne succession competition despite so was Simon.
He, with a reliable backing called Roan, quickly recruited core powers around the capital, Miller.
Roan's influence was that powerful.
Enough to bring small nobles of the neutral factions to their knees without necessarily moving.
'Anyhow, we've maintained a thin ice-like peace for the last one year, but……'
The current Rinse Kingdom's situation was where Simon had dominated most of the northern region with the capital, Miller, at the center.
And Tommy and Kallum each split the south of capital, Miller, and were executing their influences.
A situation that maintained an odd balance.
'But that peace too, that is, is now at an end.'
Because a large event had happened at the capital, Miller, one month ago.
'His majesty the king suddenly fell down.'
King Deni Von Rinse, who pushed national affairs behind him and repeated banquets almost daily, had suddenly fell down in the middle of the last month.
Although he wasn't immediately wandering between death, it was a truth that a large variable had appeared in the throne succession competition.
'Although all three princes still aren't showing any particular movement……'
It was a situation where it wouldn't be strange even if something happened whenever and wherever.
In the middle of this, there was a complicated reason Clyde had come to visit Roan.
'Although it is also to protect our company……'
Clyde unconsciously held his hand on his left chest.
'I will aim for a grand reversal using this card I have.'
It was an information he gained through all kinds of efforts in the last one year.
That was one of the information that Roan currently wanted the most.
'News of Io Lancephil……'
Clyde unconsciously swallowed dryly.
The information he had was much more hideous and gruesome than anyone thought.
'If it goes as planned, I could split Count Lancephil and Prince Simon.'
If it goes well, it would even be possible to recruit Roan into Kallum's camp.
The information Clyde had was giant and incredible to such a degree.
When his thoughts were getting deeper.
"We're now passing through the gateway."
Goden's voice was heard.
Clyde organized his thoughts and looked around his surroundings.
The small gateway was exceedingly clean and strong.
"Anyway, a gateway at not even the national border but at a fief's border…… isn't this somewhat excessive?"
At Clyde's words, Goden faintly smiled and shook his head.
"It probably is because of that last year's intense fief war. It probably means that he doesn't wish to experience the same thing two, three times. From what I've heard, he has set up big and small gateways along the fief's border."
"Anyhow, he really is a meticulous man."
Clay shook his head.
HIs gaze headed towards the people who were going to and from the gateway.
It was an incredible crowd.
"There's amazingly a lot of people passing through."
"Since, as you know, the current center of Rinse Kingdom's commercial supremacy is, the Lancephil County, sir."
"Quite a many companies have moved here during last year, right?"
"Since the tax here is much cheaper than other places wherever you look. Because of that, our company's branch was also built here."
"Right. Since it's not only that the tax is cheap but is the base of trade with the Byron Kingdom and the Istel Kingdom."
"The water transportation using the Poskein Lake is also convenient."
Clyde and Goden's conversation hit off well.
The two people's words were all true.
Roan, to make the Lancephil County into a prosperous fief, executed all sorts of economic revival policies.
But before those policies, the numerous companies and big and small businesses Roan himself owned were very prosperous and competitive.
Especially the Montea Mountain's mana stone mine and the Istel Kingdom's farmlands were producing colossal profits as cream of the crop businesses. (t/n note: in previous chapters, author wrote "mana stone mine" (마나석 광산) as "magic stone mine" (마정석 광산). Not really sure why the author suddenly changed it, though.)
At that moment, the view of Clyde and Goden, who had been quietly chatting, suddenly opened up.
They had finally passed through the gateway and entered into the Lancephil Fief inside of it.
Suddenly, Clyde and Goden's eyes widely opened.
"Ye, yes. Sir Clyde."
The two people fumbled their words with half dazed expressions.
Looks of looking around their surroundings while dryly swallowing.
After who knew how long.
"This place really is Lancpehil County?"
"Yes. That's definitely correct."
Goden immediately nodded his head at Clyde's words.
Suddenly, a giant carriage that tens of people were riding on passed in front of the two people.
It was a carriage two strong horses were pulling, but they didn't had any looks of being tired.
Clyde, with a sharply trembling voice, muttered.
"This is a completely different world."
< Lancephil County (3) > End.
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