Translator: Silver Editor: Namorax
Following the the orders of his King, Zahar once again entered the room and bowed.
Three people entered the room behind him.
At the front of the group was a giant knight in silver full-plate body armor, but why was he wearing such luxurious armor? And what was that grass-colored, unknown animal sitting on his helmet?
If it wasn’t for the wagging tail, one would mistake it for a helmet decoration from a distance.
Directly behind the silver knight was an unparalleled beauty who would attract anyone’s attention.
The woman was a dark elf: her pointed ears, lilac skin, golden eyes and snow-white hair were things you’d never see among the elves of Rouen Forest.
However, the woman wasn’t wearing a dress befitting of her beauty, instead she wore the garments of a soldier or mercenary and a leather breastplate with strange markings on it.
A silent girl of small stature was the one to bring up the rear.
Her entire body was wrapped in a concealing black garment, the triangular black ears atop her head and the long black tail attached to her waist were proof of her beastmen heritage.
The beastmen girl’s clear blue eyes calmly flowed over the sitting Margrave, the pressure her gaze caused created wasn’t something he could shake off easily.
The three of them carried an unusual atmosphere as they sat in the new chairs Zahar had prepared, their gazes glancing over the King and Margrave respectively.
“Wendelin-dono, allow me to introduce you. This is Arc-dono, Ariane-dono and Chiome-dono. These are the three we spoke of before, the ones who rescued my country.”
The Margrave’s gaze poured over each of them as they shook hands and exchanged greetings with one another.
It could be said that they were out of the ordinary in appearance and composition, especially the knight, who didn’t remove his helmet with the animal on it, although he was sitting.
A glimpse at King Asparuf revealed that he was absolutely earnest about this.
“I am sorry for asking you, Arc-dono. However, according to Margrave Branier’s testimony, the same crisis that threatened my country is fast approaching his territory. Somehow, an undead army twice the size as the one we encountered has attacked the capital of Salma Kingdom. In this situation, the Margrave fears that his territory will be consumed and that the army will place Soulia at risk again. I know it’s a complex situation, but can we rely on your power once more?”
The Margrave was surprised that the King had lowered his head to those of another race, but it convinced him that the King thought his country wouldn’t have survived without their power.
Moreover, even though the King had just informed them of an extraordinary threat twice as powerful as what they previously faced, they remained unfazed.
One of them, the dark elf women… Ariane merely looked displeased by this before she started talking with the knight, Arc.
“The last time it had been because of Lille-chan’s request that we involved ourselves with the fate of a human country, but this time it will be our own decision whether or not we meddle in this mess, you know.?”
“Hmm. That may be so, but our conditions would be in vain if we allowed one of the few human nations willing to ally themselves with us to be destroyed, wouldn’t they?”
King Asparuf held his breath as he watched the conversation that would determine the fate of a country play out.
Even though the Margrave didn’t know how the trio managed to repel the undead, he could tell that the future of his country depended on their decision.
Therefore, the Margrave needed to say somethin
g to attract their interest. Something that would make them lend a hand to humans once more.
“Would you mind if I interject something? We have reports that some monsters which seemed to be some kind of scouts were moving towards Rouen forest, where Arc-dono’s fellow elves are living. These things are probably intending to use the Branier territory as staging ground to march against them next. And from there against the Dimo Earldom.”
Although it was mere speculation, it was something they must consider at least.
With that in mind the Margrave turned to the trio to gauge their response.
“Could they have been the ones who injured Rouen’s warriors? Given the way Cardinal Palermo acted, there’s a good chance that the horde will move itself towards the village.
When the Knight Arc voiced his thoughts, Ariane raised an eyebrow.
What Arc just revealed put the Margrave somewhat at ease.
The scale of the force that attacked Rouen was unknown, but the fact that their warriors had suffered casualties meant that they didn’t have the same level of power as these three.
If anything, the trio’s power should mark them as some kind of special forces.
In the first place, Margrave Branier had never heard of any elven warriors that possessed such power in the Rouen. It was the reason why the story of how a couple of elves and a beastmen repelling a hundred thousand undead was so unbelievable.
Though the Margrave didn’t know the current relationship between the elves of Canada and Rouen, it shouldn’t have been all that bad given what he was hearing.
“Should that happen, wouldn’t the capital deploy its forces under the pretext of rescuing Rouen?”
Having said that, Ariane crossed her arms and showed a thoughtful expression, but Arc bent over and whispered something in her ear.
(Can’t the damage be mitigated if the elves take action first?)
(It’s foolish, but the issue is the village’s pride in their combat ability. Arc, if those with your level of power appear, a guardian Dragon King can take care of it.)
While it was meant to be a secret conversation, it was may as well have been a speech in this quiet room.
Existences called Dragon Kings were said to be at the apex of all life.
The topography itself vulnerable to change because of their tremendous power.
The fact that the elves could move such a being with a simple request made the Margrave dizzy.
While the Margrave was drifting in the whirlpool of his own thoughts, Ariane announced their decision.
“I do not believe that Canada will be all that concerned with the collapse of a single human nation. However, the continued existence of human nations and territories that acknowledge elves and beastmen as people will be more beneficial to us then the race dying out. If you can prove your sincerity, you might convince the elders to intervene.”
The King and the Margrave shared a look after hearing what she said before the Margrave asked her what she expected.
“What kind of proof?”
“Mostly the same conditions imposed on Nozan Kindom: all enslaved elves and beastmen shall be released and any unjust slavery is to be prohibited.”
“I can accept that. On the honor of my family’s name, I promise to fulfill those conditions.”
The Margrave agreed to Ariane’s conditions without a moment of hesitation.
Since the Margrave’s territory was connected to the elves’ Rouen Forest, he’d kept a watchful eye on interactions with the elves to avoid unnecessary friction.
As for the beastmen, the nobility of Salma Kingdom didn’t want to upset their relationship with the Hiruku Theocracy, which was why it was illegal to own beastmen slaves, just like it had been in Nozan Kingdom. Most nobles left beastmen alone in the forest and mountains they resided in.。
In other words, Margrave Branier wouldn’t be burdened by the conditions in the slightest.
However, Ariane suggested another seemingly impossible condition.
“…… If the council of elders decided to destroy the Hiruku Theocracy, would you accept it?”
The King and the Margrave were taken aback by her final condition.
“The Pope of the Hiruku Religion is the mastermind behind all of this, right? There shouldn’t be any reason to hesitate on the matter, right?”
It was the Knight Arc who stepped in to help the two dumbfounded, relatively powerful humans with their conversation with Ariane.
“Ariane-dono, the Hiruke religion is widely practiced among humans. Wouldn’t a reckless invasion just expand the rift between elves and humans? If leaders like Asparuf-dono and Branier use their power to oppress the faith of the people, it would only cause sects to spring up all over the place.”
Both men looked towards Arc and nodded their heads repeatedly.
The beastmen girl, that had been silent till now, voiced a compromise.
“Then opposing them under the pretext of removing the current pope and cardinals, on the grounds of them having distorted the doctrine concerning different races for their own benefits, should be fine. Either way, it’s impossible to overlook the current Hiruku doctrine.
The King and Margrave could only groan at what she said.
As she said, from this point forward, it would be difficult to maintain a border with the supposedly docile Hiruku Theocracy after they invaded their neighbors with an undead army.
The current Pope’s removal was fundamental in finding a basic solution.
“If you can weaken the power of the Hiruku religion, it should greatly increase the chance of gaining the elders’ support. We can’t promise anything if there aren’t any benefits.”
Ariane had just promised the two that the final condition could be negotiated on.
“So, should we return to the Rouen Forest and talk about this with Dylan-dono?”
“Well, my grandpa…… my grandfather is one of the great elders, this is something that should be taken up by the council.”
While Arc the Knight and Ariane the warrior discussed plans together, an uneasiness sprung up within the Margrave and caused him to unintentionally interrupt them.
“Sorry to interrupt, but it will take four days to reach Rouen from here. In addition, Ariane-done mentioned bringing this story to Canada a little while ago, correct? Canada is west of Rhoden Kingdom, so my territory would be a battlefield before you make it there and return.”
The Margrave had voiced a reasonable concern, the trek to the Great Canada Forest was normally a long one, and assuming they managed to amass a formidable fighting force, by the time they returned, Nozan Kingdom might not even be left standing.
However, the Knight Arc simply said: “There’s no need to worry.”.
The Margrave became irritated by his answer, but King Asparuf took over the conversation.
“Arc-dono, can you use the ‘Spiritual Path’?”
The Margrave was shocked by the question before he started looking between the two.
The “Spiritual Path” was a human legend that said elves possessed a secret ability that allowed them to instantly travel across large distances.
Still, the Margrave knew it was simply a legend.
If they really possessed such an ability, then the elves who had been caught and enslaved by humans would have easily escaped.
However, Knight Arc cast a confused look towards Warrior Ariane beside him.
Seeming to judge that using the name humans imposed upon the ability was too presumptuous, the King recount the moment Arc used the “Spiritual Path”.
“It’s the power Arc-dono used to defend me when Cardinal Palermo transformed into a monster and attacked me. Did you not use the ‘Spiritual Path’ to instantly move in front of me?”
Arc finally spoke up when he realized what it was the King had been talking about.
“Oh, transfer magic?”
The King gulped in response to Arc’s response.
“W-With this transfer magic are you capable of instantly traveling anywhere?”
The Margrave managed to hold down his impulse to speak and carefully listened to Arc’s answer to the question.
“It isn’t that convenient of an ability, but reaching Rouen shouldn’t be an issue. Ariane-dono, how long will it take to raise our case with the council of elders and return here with their reply?”
The shocked King and Margrave remained expressionless as Arc asked Ariane about the duration of their upcoming trip.
“I don’t think everything will go smoothly in this case. So, I imagine three days at least.”
Ariane shook her head and shrugged as she answered Arc’s question.
“There’s no much time left then, we should get going……
Arc rose from his chair and bowed to the King and the Margrave before leaving the room with Ariane and Chiome in tow.
Silence took over the room as their backs disappeared in the distance.
“Can the relationship between humans and other races ever be the same?”
The Margrave had muttered that question to himself.
However, King Asparuf and the royal guard Zahar nodded their heads in agreement with what the Margrave was implying.