Volume 3: Chapter 191 – Diplomatic War (4/4)
“Hmm… An alliance, huh,” King Ashtal said.
“It as you say, Your Majesty,” Carlion replied.
“And what would that alliance bring my kingdom?”
“Prosperity, Your Majesty. Both to you and to us.”
While King Ashtal entertained a messenger from the southern Elrain Kingdom, hushed voices exchanged in the backdrop.
“…I can’t believe they have the gall to show their faces like this.”
“Good grief. How could they even think of coming here?”
The genius adviser, Carlion, pretended not to hear anything, while his escort and guard, Cell the Sword Dancer, sent them sharp glares, though in the end, she too said nothing.
Carlion inwardly laughed it off as he thought that it would only elate them were they to react. Despite having such thoughts, however, he kept a serious face as he faced King Ashtal.
“What do you intend to do?” King Ashtal asked.
“Currently, the Kushain Believers are waging a war against the monsters, but that will end soon, and when it does, they will turn their sights to unifying the south,” Carlion replied.
“Ho? It seems a big one has appeared.”
Although King Ashtal has put on the years, his eyes were as sharp as ever. He once showed ferocity befitting that of a king who ruled a country of holy knights, but in the later years of his rule, he turned his focus to peace and became a wise ruler. Despite that his sharp eyes of discernment that came to be known as the King’s Majesty were as sharp as ever. It was such that a glance from him was enough to make people shake. Yet Carlion calmly received that gaze of his and responded with nothing more than a smile.
“Your Majesty is wise and insightful, so I’m sure you’ve already heard of our Red King’s strength.”
“It is foolish to conquer the world with strength.”
“We only intend to level the world with strength. After that we shall create a land of peace ruled by a virtuous king.”
“And you dare claim that you possess such power?”
“Power is meant to be wielded, but I intend to serve my master with my schemes.”
“I see. In that case, how will these schemes of yours, which you’ve woven for your master, bring prosperity to my kingdom?”
“First, we strike the heretics dead, then we could work together and turn our sights to the west.”
That was blunt. Too blunt. King Ashtal could not help but narrow his eyes in response.
Gulland had indeed departed for the western region, but what was most in need of reinforcements was not the west but the south.
The chaotic state of the south due to the wars regardless of the goblins was indeed an issue King Ashtal could not ignore.
“You must be tired after having traveled such distance. Why don’t you take a rest for now? I will give my response the day after tomorrow.”
Carlion and Cell bowed in response, then they withdrew to the rooms they were given.
As soon as they entered the room, Cell used her long elven ears to check if the vicinity.
“…There’s no one suspicious nearby,” Cell said.
“Not that there’s much we could do with just the two of us,” Carlion replied as he coughed.
“Don’t you think you should be more tense at times like this?” Cell suggested.
Carlion’s laid-back attitude was met with Cell’s sharp glare.
“…Or do you find it funny to see me so cautious?” Cell continued.
“N-No. I don’t have any such intentions.”
As Carlion continued to cough, Cell sighed and sat on the first-class sofa.
“The clan leader asked me to escort you. If you’re unwell, then get some rest.”
“I will. I will,” Carlion replied, but he showed no signs of going to bed.
When Cell saw that, she – in a rare display of anger – approached Carlion angrily.
“W-What’s the matter— Uwaah!?”
Then as if she were handling some light luggage, she pulled Carlion up and threw him on the bed.
“W-Why does it seem like you’re used to this!?”
“I have a younger brother back home.”
“News to me.”
“I didn’t think it was important.”
At Cell’s aggressive appeals, Carlion finally slipped into bed.
“Do you get along well?”
“Somewhat…” Cell replied as she made a distant look.
Seeing that, Carlion wryly smiled and closed his eyes.
“Good night, big sis!” Carlion jested.
“You!” Cell was about to retort angrily, but after considering that she was dealing with a patient, she turned around and quietly sat on the sofa, then she checked the surroundings again.
“…Did he fall asleep?”
Cell approached the bed again to check Carlion’s countenance. In her eyes was a gentleness that she rarely showed.
“…What a pain. Looks like watching over someone isn’t such an easy job after all.”
As Cell muttered that, she gently stroked Carlion’s pale face, then she went back to the sofa to keep guard.