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Volume 3: Chapter 179 – Expectations (3/3)
It is known that military officials often butt heads with civil officials. That is true even for Germion Kingdom or the Holy Shushunu Kingdom.
Military officials criticize civil officials as heartless people who freely play with people’s lives through their papers, while the latter would criticize military officials as delusional fools who believe money grow on trees.
Issues between the two branches can sometimes threaten the very existence of the country, so it is up to the king to ensure that the two remain suppressed.
In one sense, it could be said that the military and the civil bodies are the wheels of the chariot, and it is up to the king to ensure that they remain on track.
A country that fails to do so would naturally fall off course.
In which case, the people will fall into into misery, the country will be taken advantage of by other countries, and…
“Lord Kanash, your fame might be known throughout the world, but we cannot accept this! Our country cannot endure any more wars!”
The meeting was being held at the pillar of Elrain Kingdom, within a room in the royal palace.
It was a slim civil official who said that previous line in a loud angry voice.
“Even if the treasury can’t take it, the enemy is already on its way! Are you telling me to order my subordinates to die meaninglessly!?” General Kanash yelled back as he stood up from his seat.
“But we don’t have what we don’t have!”
“Well, do something! Isn’t that your job!?”
“In the first place, if you hadn’t lost in the last battle, we wouldn’t be in this situation!”
“You bastard! Is that the way you treat the people who risked their lives to protect the country!?”
One provoked, and the other bit. They were supposed to be in a meeting, but they were only arguing with all of their arguments running parallel each other’s.
Within that heavy atmosphere that was tensed to the limits, the clan leader of the Red King, Brandika, yawned. Carlion, who was behind him, chuckled when he saw how bored he was, but he still made sure to prod him with his elbows and remind him to act appropriately.
“This is a waste of time. Can’t we go home?” Brandika said.
“That won’t do. At the very least, we need to stay until the end,” Carlion replied.
When the civil official saw Brandika looking so bored and Carlion acting like he was watching a funny play, his eyes opened wide. From his perspective, it seemed like they were making fun of him, so he turned his verbal assaults from General Kanash to Brandika.
“In the first place, it’s because you had to hire mercs for such a stupid price that the military went over budget! Isn’t the fact that you had to resort to hiring mercs the same thing as admitting your incompetence!? Why do you we even have an army!? Just who do you think allows you to hire these money-grubbing pests!?—”
As the civil official was ranting angrily, Brandika suddenly slammed against the desk, causing cracks to appear over its marble surface.
“…If you don’t want us, we can leave anytime,” Brandika said. “Just pay us for the time we’ve worked.”
The aura emanating from Brandika was just like that of a beast’s as he glared sharply at the civil official. He was an accomplished warrior who has gone through many battlefields and was the clan leader the Red King Clan. The intimidation from such a man was indeed not something a civil official could handle, as the civil official very quickly went quiet and paled.
“Hey, Carlion. Our contract was sealed with the kingdom’s symbol, right?”
“Yes, I’m sure of it. I have it with me, so I can bring it out for confirmation if needed.”
All the civil officials participating in the meeting were all looking down and speechless. At the end of the day, the army was indeed incapable of bringing as much results as the Red King, and the civil officials themselves couldn’t fork out the money to pay them.
“…That won’t be necessary.”
It was General Kanash who said that in place of the civil officials.
“It is embarrassing for someone in my position, but we need your help, Clan Leander Brandika of the Red King Clan. Please lend us your strength. If you leave now, we won’t be able to hold the line against the Kushain believers.”
The Ashunasan Alliance has indeed been established, but without a proper mediator, their forces were currently being dispatched according to each country’s discretion.
“General Kanash, I personally see you as a friend, but I am also a clan leader, a person responsible for the lives of others. Borrowing your words, I don’t want to order my men to die meaninglessly.”
They couldn’t fight without money.
General Kanash turned to the civil officials, but everyone was looking down.
Kanash endured the urge to click his tongue as he proposed an idea. “Very well. In that case, I will use my properties to…”
“Clan Leader, that is too intangible,” Carlion interjected.
“Yes, they’re essentially telling us to put it on their tab. Moreover, if we take a look at the army’s current situation…”
Elrain Kingdom was already at the point were they were unable to pay their soldiers’ wages on time. It was indeed true that the national treasury was at its limits.
“Which is why, I have a different proposition,” Carlion winked at Brandika, then he stood up and said that to the various officials.
Unlike Brandika, Carlion was far more delicate and had no intimidating aura about him. He was just like the civil officials, so they were quick to lend an ear.
“In exchange for our services, we ask that our clan leader, Brandika, be given court rank and be made ruler of the city of Sapnir.”
The civil officials were speechless, while Brandika only frowned as he folded his arms and sat on his seat.
Carlion smiled as he continued his proposition.
At the top of Elrain Kingdom was the king, followed by the few royal court nobles, and then the civil officials and the nobles with territories.
The nobles with territories would receive a court rank from the king according to the size of their territory. Their territory itself is the source of their power. Of course, the royal family also has its own territories. Which is why, the royal family is really nothing more than the noble with the most territories.
Carlion’s request implied two things to the civil officials.
One was that they had no intentions of standing in opposition to the royal family of Elrain Kingdom. The other was that they will exert their utmost in this war.
Managing a city required certain qualifications. In this country, that qualification was a court rank, but to receive a court rank is to acknowledge the royal family and come under it.
Sapnir was a medium-sized city. If Sapnir were to be given to them, they would need a fairly high court rank.
The civil officials were happy to acquiesce Carlion’s request. After all, court ranks did not need money and it was better to sell off a city than to pay up now. Looking at it long term, they were giving away a city that could produce a great amount of wealth, but looking at it short term, they were simply covering the costs of hiring a massive merc organization.
But of course, the most important reason of all is that Elrain Kingdom could no longer do without the Red King Clan.
“We will consider it,” a civil official said.
At that, Carlion bowed and returned to his seat. No one noticed the smile he exchanged with Brandika as soon as he sat.
The next day, word of Brandika receiving the title of count and the territory of Sapnir got out.