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“Luise, are you alright already?” (Wendelin)
“Currently I’m fine, but the burden of the secret technique will affect my body…” (Luise)
“It was an amazing technique.” (Wendelin)
“It has reasonable power, however it’s not to the degree of advanced spells used by high-ranking magicians. It loses out in range and strength.” (Luise)
“It’s splendid in hindsight since it defeated that Gigantic Rock Golem.” (Wendelin)
“I wasn’t able to move much for three days though.” (Luise)
Herthania Valley, which was a nest of defending rock golems, was safely liberated thanks to the operation carried out by us.
The reinforcements of the royal army and the nobles’ feudal armies, split into 10 military units, pulled most of the grounded golems by entering and leaving the boundary border. During that time me, doushi, Burkhart-san, Katharina and Luise attacked their master, the Gigantic Rock Golem, located in the centre, from the sky.
The golems, which protected this Herthania Valley, all of them were controlled by the Gigantic Rock Golem as defence system to defend Herthania Valley, which was drawn up by the genius magic tools craftsman, Earl Ischrubak, of the Ancient Magic Civilization.
There was a great number of airborne wyvren and hawk golems, the heads of the Gigantic Rock Golem which regenerated right away even if destroyed and golems who increased the restoration speed and strengthened the offensive.
We were made to fight quite the close game, but in the end the activity of the Gigantic Rock Golem ceased after being busted by the secret technique of the magic combat style of Luise and 100.000 golems returned to being simple rocks after that.
That means it resulted in a safe liberation of Herthania Valley.
“Wend, what did you do during those three days?” (Luise)
Since Luise had rendered distinguished service, she was allowed to rest for three days.
Since it’s not like she couldn’t move at all, she apparently went to the toilet at least, but all of the other stuff, like her daily meals, has been taken care of by Elise and the others.
“The teachings of the magic combat style are deep.” (Wendelin)
“There are many skills and secret techniques, but it’s also true that the majority of those can’t be used by anyone.” (Luise)
“What’s with that?” (Wendelin)
“This time’s 『Big Bang Attack』 isn’t something that can be used unless the user himself has a certain extent of mana. Even if it’s used by a person who doesn’t possess more than a common amount of mana, it won’t smash a slightly big rock, right?” (Luise)
That means, if one has the ability to handle that by having plenty of mana, they will be able to release powerful techniques which won’t be inferior to advanced magic by just applying the magic combat style.
“The majority of people doesn’t have that ((mana)) though, thus they have to put emphasis on the types of technique. As for the aspect of fighting by charging mana, doushi and you, Wend, are strong, too, right?” (Luise)
Doushi was peerless against thousands of golems in this time’s battle.
It’s not like he defeated all of them, but as he destroyed several hundreds without letting them get close at all, there would be another paragraph added to his legend as the strongest.
On the other hand, since such way of fighting doesn’t suit my character, I will fire spells no matter what.
Given that doushi is in reverse weak at emission-type spells, one might even say that he is a strengthening type while I’m the emission type.
I think there was such a type division in a manga I read in the old days.
“Earl Baumeister-dono, an investigation team from the capital has arrived.”
“Are they going to start analyzing in this place, I wonder?” (Wendelin)
“No, I believe they will take things back.”
“It will be great if there are some results this time.”
After the liberation of Herthania Valley, we moved our troop headquarters next to the mithril deposits located in the central area.
It was for the sake of me investigating things like deposits with magic and to protect the liberated Herthania Valley from people entering inside as ore thieves.
One part of the soldiers, who participated in this time’s operation, have taken up positions at the outer edges and are guarding against the intrusion of such people.
As a matter of fact, there were reports of them having arrested some intruders already.
It seems residents of neighbouring territories attempted to intrude with the motive 『If it’s now, it might become a nice profit as it’s easy to harvest ores』.
Currently it’s at the level of being individuals, but the Browig household is the most probable for trying to do something as they are probably regretful.
“The lot from the magic tool guild has high pride.” (Achilles)
Viscount Achilles, who is managing the guarding of the troop headquarters, reports to me that magic tool craftsmen from the capital came.
They had chartered a large magic airship to collect the remains of the Gigantic Rock Golem destroyed by us.
“The artificial personality crystal, the magic core production device and other devices, which I don’t understand, all of them can’t be used because they are broken.”
“You want to apply them towards advancement in technology, even if it’s just a small amount, by analysing it somehow, right?”
Actually I wanted to seize those without breaking them, but if we did such skimping in that situation, let alone failing the operation, there would have been victims and thus it couldn’t be helped.
Apparently they were all broken by Luise’s secret technique, but it’s probably the best to leave the reproduction of ancient magic technology to the magic tools guild.
While saying that, it doesn’t seem like there are recently many outstanding achievements by the magic tools guild.
Their members have great influence since the production of magic tools is monopolized to 100% by them, but at this point their technology hasn’t advanced overly much for several hundred years.
In that case, to analyse the excellent relics of the past, they forcibly bought the products, which were discovered in the Demon Forest, and moreover this time’s Gigantic Rock Golem by paying a large sum.
With the sorcery guild showing interest in the magic core production device, the magic tool guild, which is on bad terms with them, purchased the Gigantic Rock Golem by high-handedly issuing paper money.
The price for all of it was 500 million cents.
Even though I overcharged it as joke, I was also surprised when they put a bag filled with platinum plates in front of my eyes with a *bang*.
“Huh? How are they going to take it back?” (Wendelin)
“It looks like they will load it onto a chartered large magic airship. Though it seems like it’s necessary for them to make a round trip.”
The entirety of the Gigantic Rock Golem is regular rock and such, but from their point of view, it might have some yet unknown structures even in that empty rock and thus they are going to take it back without missing even a single piece of it.
Declaring that they will carry out the loading and transporting themselves, I recalled that there were indeed many obsessed people like engineers even including my previous life.
“There were golems as well?”
“As expected it’s not all of them though.”
They have bought a considerable amount of magic cores and masses of rocks which formed the golems that were controlled by the Gigantic Rock Golem.
This will be research material, too, but not all of it after all.
The remains of the golems, which stopped working in their entirety due to the destruction of the artificial personality crystal, is easily a share of more than 100.000 bodies.
Since it’s difficult to take all of them back, they collected only a share of samples and piled up the rest next to the troop headquarters where soldiers are currently gathering ores and usable magic cores.
“So, how do you plan to develop this place?”
“I usually entrust it to someone.”
Since my own territory is lacking manpower, it was natural for me to supplement it with personnel from outside.
Besides, if it’s people, there is plenty of them.
In case a noble discovered a mine in their territory, he will try to compensate for everything by himself as much as possible.
There were many prospectors, mining engineers, refining experts and such working away from home, but many miners are those below second son of farmers who are left over.
That means it’s a good place for employment for people who can’t inherit agricultural land.
However, depending on the situation, there are also many mines where minerals can’t be mined anymore after a few decades.
It’s fine if a new mine is discovered in the same territory or at worst in the territory of a neighbouring noble, but if nothing is discovered, they will be unemployed.
There are such circumstances, too. One can gather as many miners as one likes.
“It’s alright for them to immigrate or to work away from home. In short, it will be fine if they can get metals by digging here.”
There’s also no necessity of fussing over taking care of anything and everything by myself.
Gathering talents from other nobles’ territories and the areas directly under the control of the kingdom, it will be fine if our men only check for fraud.
“That’s a very broad-minded setup.”
“It’s fine if it doesn’t take time, isn’t it?”
If we did everything by ourselves, it should take quite the time until ore can be excavated.
For that reason I decided to use people from outside.
“(Beside, it’s fine if I give the surroundings a few candies to suppress jealousy.)” (Wendelin)
Herthania Valley is the property of the Earl Baumeister household, but the majority of people working here will be outsiders.
The significant point of this is guaranteeing income and employment for people who are registered in territories of other nobles or areas under the direct control of the kingdom.
That will also become a measure to stimulate employment for the residents. And that’s connected to the invigoration of the economy and and increases in the revenue.
The miners, who are working in regular mines, return to their home town and use their earned money there.
With just that it becomes an economic measure for their home town.
“Even the royal army will increase by one official position.”
As a matter of fact, I’m planning to sell most of the plots, which are located at the outer edges of Herthania Valley, to the kingdom.
There’s no ores in those plots, but they will place 1000 soldiers and a troop headquarters called 『Royal Army Herthania Valley Garrison』 there.
Their task is to defend so that nobles other than the Earl Baumeister household won’t meddle with the Herthania Valley. The remuneration is a stable supply of ores to the kingdom and a fee for consigning the security to them.
“There’s that as well, but the mithril deposits in this place are bigger than expected. If the kingdom will come intervening anyway, I might as well bring them in earlier by by giving them a bait, right?” (Wendelin)
“Also, it was tied in the arbitration draft negotiated by the rules.”
“The people, who thought that it is an inferior property, ended up offering it up themselves for a slight reduction of the reconciliation money. Won’t they have sentiments of wanting to get it back?”
For the sake of preventing that, we employed more guards than the Browig household.
“In addition, with such large-scaled mining area, won’t it become necessary to run a refining establishment in the future? As people will gather, a city administration will be indispensable, too. We need manpower.”
It’s necessary to employ the young people of appointed nobles, who are secluding themselves in the capital, as future personnel so that they can carry out the checks for fraud over here.
They, their relatives and parents will guarantee the possession of Herthania Valley for the Earl Baumeister household in order for their children to have a steady livelihood.
“That’s why it will become busy immediately.”
As there’s an insufficiency of mithril anyway, a lot workshops, located in the capital, are saying that they will buy it even in the state of being an ore.
Given that they want to send airships as fast as possible, they told us to please prepare a port where it’s possible for magic airships to land and take off as well as to mine, even if it’s only a bit, until then. It once again reached the point that I will be pressed to provide roads and a plot of land, where a city will be built, as public works adventurer.
“That stone-paved road is magnificent.”
“That’s because there’s plenty of materials.”
Since there are as many rocks, which aren’t ores, as one likes, I create stone plates with those as material by magic and complete a paved road by just pushing them into a dug-out path.
“Will you promote your rule in both, name and reality? Since the post of commanding officer of the Herthania Valley Garrison is encouraging for me, I will pay attention to stuff like meddling by the Browig household. However, will they come rushing in at once?” (Achilles)
“Although the arbitration negotiations haven’t finished yet, it’s an urgent situation…” (Wendelin)
The arbitration negotiations between Margrave Breithilde and the Browig household aren’t progressing at all thanks to the Browig household persisting in a reduction of the reconciliation money.
What effect will our liberation of Herthania Valley bring about in the middle of that? There was no reason for me to know that yet.
“Even if something is said, this place is the Earl Baumeister household’s possession. It’s not something I will concile to the Browig household.”
“That’s true, I guess. The Browig household itself is still remaining at this point in time because of His Majesty’s kindliness.”
If this was during war times, they likely would have lost their peerage long ago.
In case of war times, it will reach a conclusion if it’s possible to abate the confusion, which accompanies the change of peerage and the inauguration of a new feudal lord, with strength.
Even the soldiers won’t hesitate since it will become deeds of arms if they remove the disturbing elements which are resisting.
The Browig household care-freely continuing the quarrel between brothers itself was proof of this country being peaceful.
“First we will put priority on the preparations for being able to excavate the mithril deposits.”
Since it’s fortunately possible to open-air mine the mithril deposits, it’s probably possible to excavate the ores without spending too much time.
Around one week after that I received reinforcements from Roderich after creating the foundation of a port, where it’s possible for magic airships used for shipping to land and take off, and the infrastructure with magic.
『It’s an enclave, but it’s impossible to do local agriculture or stock-farming. For a while it will only be digging out of ores. After several years you plan to optimize it by building large-scale workshops where it’s possible to refine to some degree. That’s about it…?』 (Roderich)
Roderich’s voice is audible through the magic hand-held communication device.
For the sake of this Herthania Valley being controlled completely by the Earl Baumeister household, he dispatched additional personnel.
Guards, mining engineers and personnel from government and financial affairs to manage the new city that will be built.
In addition to this, we have decided to employ a large amount of people in this place.
Immigrating and working away from home applicants gathered in this place.
『Is it impossible to be self-reliant in regards to food?』
It’s not impossible, but it won’t work if we don’t carry out work to establish soil on top of the bedrock quality-like ground and begin from afforestation for that reason.
However, there isn’t even a river or swamp in this Herthania Valley.
Since it’s hopeless if we don’t draw water through water wells from below by digging through the thick bedrock, it will likely require time in the range of several decades at the least.
There’s also the problem of mine pollution appearing from the ore deposits and mines.
If it’s me, it will finish with 『Extraction』 of the metals which can be used with magic, but there’s a low possibility that the next generation and afterwards will be able to do that.
While pondering over countermeasures against mine pollution, when it comes to improving the soil so that it’s possible to do stuff like agriculture, this will be postponed no matter what.
The first priority is the situation of the Savage Lands development after all.
『The self-support for food is fine for a while. Make the surrounding nobles into allies and buy it from them.』
This is also for the sake of preventing interference by the Browig household.
In order to not lose their precious client, they will probably be gladly cautious of the Browig household.
『That’s alright, but won’t the prices be raised?』
『That’s possible, however it’s likely difficult if they don’t consult with all the nobles selling food.』
Besides, if it gets too expensive, it’s fine to import it from the Baumeister Earldom and the Breithilde Margraviate.
『Nobles aren’t a monolith either.』
『That’s how it is.』
『It was the personnel selection of a governor, but were you pleased with the person I chose?』 (Roderich)
『I leave such things to you.』 (Wendelin)
After that talk the governor and other parties have arrived with a magic airship from the Baumeister Earldom.
“Although I was appointed as governor for the time being, I’m uneasy.”
The one who Roderich designated as governor was the third son of Earl Armstrong, Felix.
Though he has no experience in domestic and financial affairs, it will be fine if we compensate for that with other people. The reason he was appointed is because he is in good control of Viscount Achilles who will be the commanding officer of the Herthania Valley Garrison.
Even if he plots something bad, it will become difficult for him to realize it if the governor of this place is the third son of Earl Armstrong who is an authority in the royal army.
Even the capital’s Earl Armstrong household won’t be frugal with supporting their third son who has become a chief retainer of the Earl Baumeister household.
Although it costs money accordingly, me and Roderich will die from overwork if we try to take care of everything with a developing household.
The way of increasing allies by giving them a certain extent of concessions will be a gain, if you look at the long term.
In addition, it’s easier.
“For the first generation of this place being military officers is also for the sake of preventing meddling by others. Since there’s also plenty of budget, I’d like you to make sure that the ores are excavated well by hiring people skilfully.” (Wendelin)
“At your command!” (Felix)
Being appointed as first governor, Felix will start the governing of Herthania Valley by also borrowing help from his home.
Even though I continue the public works, I get back the time to drink refined tea in my free time.
“My elder brothers will likely be in a great panic.” (Karla)
“Even if they panic, there’s nothing they can do anymore.” (Wendelin)
“You are much more like a noble than my elder brothers, Earl Baumeister-sama.” (Karla)
Me and Karla talked while drinking tea in my free time.
It’s not really just the two of us as Elise is the area as well, but it’s something irregular.
Speaking of the action benefiting her household the most for now, it’s her, who is a daughter of the Browig household, seducing me.
“That’s true. Herthania Valley is already possession of the Earl Baumeister household in due form. At the beginning they were delighted to get a reduction of the reconciliation money with this inferior property, but…” (Karla)
Having liberated it completely, it’s now starting to be developed as promising mining area.
Unable to tell me to return it this late in the game, they should be worrying endlessly.
“Karla-san, might you be thinking that it’s fine if you are pushed onto me.” (Wendelin)
“I do. From the viewpoint of my elder brothers, they are believing that I will become happy with that if it happens. A social outcast daughter becomes the wife of the dragon slaying hero. You can even say that it’s a huge success in life.” (Karla)
If you consider it from the position of a noble, that wasn’t a mistake recognition.
“What are you thinking about it, Karla-san?” (Wendelin)
“I don’t really want to have something like the Browig family name. Why can’t I receive treatment as daughter of the Bänker household…?” (Karla)
She is pitiable, but those two won’t let go of Karla in the first place even if the person herself desires it.
If we assume that the Browig household accepts the current arbitration draft, she will be next married of to some place for the sake of recovering the household.
“If you are indebted from your childhood and in addition to that accepted as daughter of a noble…” (Karla)
Even though she has been left alone until now, she has been called at this point just to be used.
Karla is indifferent towards the future of the Browig family because there are such circumstances.
“Being treated as daughter of the Bänker household, huh…”
Karla is the daughter of Margrave Browig, but you can say that she was treated as daughter of the Bänker household until now.
It’s unusual because she willingly wants to be lowered to that treatment, but she won’t be used politically if she is the daughter of a poor Knight household with no posts in the capital. That’s also a way of thinking that will grant her freedom and let her marry whoever she wants.
Since she is saying that she wants to be independent together with her mother, I didn’t know whether she might not have even considered marriage.
“Can’t it be done somehow?” (Erwin)
Erw, who is serving as my guard, interjects which is unusual for him, but it could be called natural as any obstacle to marry her will be gone if Karla ends up becoming the daughter of the Bänker household.
“The one who decides Karla’s position is the family head of the Browig household…” (Wendelin)
In this world the position of a household’s head is powerful.
That’s why Karla couldn’t go against being summoned by Margrave Browig. She won’t voluntarily say no even in the matter of both successor candidates trying to push her into becoming my wife.
“That’s right… Klaus.” (Wendelin)
At this point I request the opinion of Klaus, who is a genius at coming up with plans hated by people.
It’s Klaus who thoroughly did things I hate until now.
If it’s that guy, he should be able to come up with a nasty plan for the Browig household.
“It looks like you have quite the expectations of me, Wendelin-sama. I have only an extremely orthodox plan. Or rather, it isn’t even a plan.” (Klaus)
However, as Klaus has been aware of the inside of my mind for a long time, he answered while not caring about that any further.
“Pushing for a successor besides those two, we will make an agreement with that new fellow or such?” (Wendelin)
“That’s how it is. And, for Karla-sama there’s someone who is a prospect for that, isn’t there?” (Klaus)
Since there’s a prospect, she expressed her desire to be the daughter of the Bänker household to me.
It would be weird if she didn’t take that in consideration.
That’s because I, who is the family head of the Earl Baumeister household, has no authority do to anything to the Browig household.
“Does she want the new family head to sever connections with her…?”
If either Philip or Christoph become the new family head of the Browig household, Karla will definitely be used.
Therefore Karla likely wants me to move so that another candidate becomes the family head.
“Is there any gain in it for me, I wonder?” (Wendelin)
I try asking meanly on purpose.
With the payment of the reconciliation money already decided, Herthania Valley, which I received on the condition of reducing the payment amount, was liberated.
At least for us of the Earl Baumeister household the dispute has already ended.
“It will become a help for Margrave Breithilde-sama who is your patron. If the dispute doesn’t come to an end, the development of the Savage Lands will be delayed. It’s also possible to make an agreement with the new family head to not get involved with Herthania Valley. I believe that it will save you unnecessary hassle for a while.” (Karla)
“(This person, she is shrewd…)” (Wendelin)
I have a hunch that it will be fine if this person becomes a female family head and a son-in-law is adopted, but the person herself probably doesn’t wish that.
That means it doesn’t match with her own abilities and aspirations.
“(Does that mean that she is somewhat wasting away…?)”
She is resembling my lover from my previous life, but for some reason I have no romantic feelings towards her at all.
Despite her appearance, Elise has quite the discerning parts, but normally she appears to be a girl who gallantly prepares tea and meals.
Even Ina, it’s not like she’s a woman lacking appeal to talk with when it’s the two of us.
I think she is a bit of a shy person though.
Luise is fine since she usually gives such impression.
Wilma is taciturn, but her following me around like a puppy is cute.
As for Katharina, one will be surprised of the gap to her outward appearance, if you try hanging out with her.
However, Karla doesn’t leave the stage of lip service although she attends to everyone politely on a first look.
Without a doubt she doesn’t wish for a marriage with me.
It’s impossible going by the circumstances anyway. I don’t have any aspirations of wanting to make her forcibly my wife either.
“(Wendelin-sama, I believe we should accept Karla-sama’s proposal.)” (Klaus)
Klaus advices me with a whisper.
“(Did you expect me telling you to economically usurp the Browig household through our support after making her my wife?)” (Wendelin)
“(There’s also the labour shortage and the vigilance by the kingdom. Just the profits of the administrative and maintenance side in Herthania Valley will likely be large.)” (Klaus)
Even I understand at least this much.
I tried asking Klaus while wondering whether he would possibly aim for the rehabilitation of his grandchildren by using the expansion of the Earl Baumeister household.
“(Besides, the Browig household is a noble family existing since early days of the kingdom’s founding. Your family’s tradition of being established for around a century won’t stand up to that.)” (Klaus)
That means it’s not worthwhile ruling over them with unpleasant feelings as it will take time and money.
However, because they are a prestigious family, they are a truly bothersome existence.
“(That’s right, isn’t it… We will quickly make someone else than those two the new family head and have them sign the arbitration draft, huh…?) Got it. I shall accept it.” (Wendelin)
“Thank you very much.” (Karla)
Once it’s settled like that, we will immediately enter Margraviate Browig.
Since a guide is necessary, I continue to freely use public works magic while gathering newly employed personnel and reinforcement to help out with speeding up the extraction of the mithril deposits for the sake of earning money in Herthania Valley during the time waiting for that guide to come.
With the Herthania Valley liberation operation our funds decreased due to the rewards for the military forces, who participated in the diversionary tactics, and for the raiding members except me, but I planned for this to balance out right away with the sales of mithril ores.
Since there are also gold, silver, copper and iron deposits in addition, there will be even more earnings once we advance with the exploitation of those as well.
“A forcible liberation with the power of money and magic, eh? You became a splendid noble, too, Earl Baumeister-sama. So, who are the members heading towards the Browig territory?” (Klaus)
“We won’t go with overly many.” (Wendelin)
Me, Erw, Burkhart-san, doushi, Wilma and Karla, these 6…
“Guide, you say? I’m quite well-acquainted with the geography though.” (Nikolas)
Since they are busy as the arbitration between us and the Browig household already ended, it was decided that Nikolas from Thomas’ group, who were called back, would come along.
“So, will we also disguise ourselves?”
“We don’t have a reason to do that. We will enter the Browig territory as adventurers.”
The arbitration between the Browig household and the Earl Baumeister household came already to an end.
Even if I entered their territory as adventurer, it’s not like there would be any problem with that.
Rather, it will likely be a problem if I do it in a sneaky way.
“It’s not like we are entering the Browig territory while publicizing everything. There’s probably not many peopll who know my face either.” (Wendelin)
“No, that’s definitely not the case. By no means, do you plan to openly meet with the new successor candidate?”
“More or less I’m an Earl. I won’t do stuff like manoeuvring behind the scenes.” (Wendelin)
Something like meeting with a new successor candidate after disguising myself will only be doubted as shady dealing.
Entering boldly, it will be fine if we openly meet with the new successor candidate, whom Karla mentioned, in our free time while also going on hunts.
“If you do something, it will be alright if I pluck your hair again.” (Wendelin)
“I will attend to it normally, but…” (Klaus)
Leaving the matters of Herthania valley to Felix, Moritz and Elise’s group, we arrived after one day travel with Hendrik’s small magic airship at the central city of Margraviate Browig, Brotrich.
A port for magic airships exists in the outskirts of Brotrich with almost the same scale as the one in Breitburg.
Anchoring the ship there, we first headed to the Brotrich branch of the adventurer’s guild with the eight of us including Hendrik.
“Together with the old man…” (Hendrik)
“It has nothing to do with blood relationship or such! If you are a merchant and possess a dream of at least surpassing Artur-dono, you will make use of this time’s chance!” (Armstrong)
Hendrik had a slightly reluctant looking expression after seeing doushi being together with me.
I can understand his feelings.
If there’s a blood relative close-by while you are doing your job, it’s a bit awkward emotion-wise, I guess.
Doushi also said something quite stern as father.
“Can’t be helped. I’m here for the sake of reporting to master. Doushi is here for the sake of reporting to His Majesty.” (Burkhart)
Either being fed up with the dispute caused by the Browig household, they are probably insuring the manoeuvring I’m boldly carrying out.
For me it’s also convenient that both of them are tagging along.
When I report the gist of our activity in the last few days after arriving in the adventurer’s guild, the young, female receptionist ends up going to call her superior in panic and surprise.
“How troublesome…” (Wendelin)
“Umm… What’s your business with us today, Earl Baumeister-sama?”
“I won’t be treated me as noble during the time I’m hunting as adventurer. Wasn’t there such a directive?” (Wendelin)
This directive should have been handed down to the branches from the adventurer’s guild’s headquarters.
There’s also the matter with the previous underground ruins. It’s a rule that was properly watched by the branches in Breitburg and near the Demon Forest.
“I’m going to hunt.”
Since it’s weird to suddenly start manoeuvring, we first depart towards a nearby monster domain after receiving a map.
“Is it fine for me to come along as well?” (Karla)
“If you don’t complain in case something happens in the worst case.” (Wendelin)
“That’s only natural.” (Karla)
Karla participated as well while holding her bow.
Since she received a card when she registered in the adventurer’s guild at the time of becoming an adult, that was also a reason for not being able to decline her participation.
“With these members there won’t be even an injured person unless there’s some accident or we become too careless.” (Wilma)
What Wilma has said is right. There were no complaints regarding Karla’s participation at all.
“Karla-san, I will protect you.” (Erwin)
Erw is very happy to be able to go hunting with Karla.
Also, if he says that he will protect her, it’s not wrong since Erw is a vanguard and Karla a rear-guard.
“Dad, why even me!?” (Hendrik)
“You are a young man of the Armstrong household! It’s laughable for you to become flustered at the level of entering a monster domain in the city’s outskirts! What will you do as purveyor to the government if you won’t accompany a feudal lord!?” (Armstrong)
Being forcibly made to register as adventurer by his father, doushi, Hendrik was forced to participate after being given an armour and a spear as weapon.
“Even though I’m a merchant…” (Hendrik)
“You are a young man of the Armstrong household! Training in martial arts is indispensable! Even as merchant, it’s about you cutting corners in regards to that!” (Armstrong)
“I’m doing it every day!” (Hendrik)
Being pressured by doushi, Hendrik’s eyes were almost teary.
“Err… Please don’t expect anything from my physical strength. I will guide you though.” (Nikolas)
Nikolas, who has the lowest fighting strength among us, gives us a warning.
“If you just guide us, the rest will make sure that you won’t get attacked by monsters.”(Wendelin)
Travelling to the monster domain located in Brotrich’s outskirts with Nikolas lead, Hendrik immediately had to fight against a bear monster with support from Wilma.
Being given an assignment that is above intermediate level all of a sudden by his father, Hendrik might have the misfortune attribute.
“Dad, usually ((you start)) from smaller…” (Hendrik)
“This level of monster; in my case I can bring those down with one fist strike!” (Armstrong)
“Only you, dad, can do such thing~~~!” (Hendrik)
“Ah, I’m able to defeat them like that, too.” (Luise) (T/N: Why is she here? O.o)
“Luise-sama, I’m talking about those in a normal human category.” (Hendrik)
“As expected of doushi’s son.”
Due to Luise correcting him, Hendrik gives her an answer filled with poison albeit in a polite tone.
Even while I’m saying that, as expected of doushi’s son.
In the beginning it was close fights, but after continuing he got used to it right away and brought down several monsters with his spear.
“Amazing, Hendrik. Won’t you join our party next time?” (Wendelin)
“Master, I’m a merchant though…” (Hendrik)
Without any dangers, the other members hunted one monster after the other.
“Everyone is great.” (Nikolas)
Only Nikolas had a normal field trip in a safe location.
Among those, Erw and Karla hunted monsters with a nice efficiency.
After Erw inflicts a blow, Karla finishes them with an arrow.
Likewise they are going with the reverse pattern.
If seen from the side, they are a fairly nice combination.
“If it’s Karla-sama, you will become a good adventurer. You are also skilled in matching with other people.” (Erwin)
“No. That’s because Erw-san is a great adventurer.” (Karla)
There should be something else Erw is expecting.
“(Erw thinks that they can work well together since Karla-sama is well-matched with him.)” (Wilma)
Wilma utters to me in a whisper.
If it’s the thinking of the current Erw, the possibility of him reaching that conclusion is probably high.
“(The answer is that Karla-sama has talent though.)” (Wilma)
Due to Wilma’s calm analysis I express nothing but a dry laughter.
I’d like him to do his best as close friend, but for me to support him officially will only work after the manoeuvring of Karla being treated as daughter of the Bänker household goes smoothly.
I intended to give both of them my blessing if that happened and Karla was interested in it.
Currently it’s impossible for me to support him as Earl Baumeister.
Erw probably understands that as well.
That’s why he is trying to do something about it by himself.
And, the first step is both of them having a mutual love.
“If it’s adventurers, there will be dangers but it’s also easygoing…”
Even Burkhart-san, who is hunting with magic while muttering such stuff in a whisper, might have piled up various stress thanks to the recent dispute.
Firing spells in rapid succession, he continuously hunted monsters.
“It’s fine at this point for today, huh…?”
As it has become evening, we decide to finish for today since we were able to hunt a splendid amount of monsters.
We have to search for an inn, but Karla says that she has something in mind.
“The mansion of that new successor candidate or such?”
“Yes. That’s right.” (Karla)
The dispute is dragging on. It’s a person where it’s wrong if we don’t got to meet them anyway.
First off, what is sad is that it’s no good if we don’t consider various things in regards to the lot from the Browig household.
If the successor candidate, Karla mentioned, is really excellent, they would provide a nice meal to us with a smile, I thought.
“The retainers, who support Philip and Christoph, might come to assassinate us.”
“The probability isn’t zero.”
“Since they will be this time a waste of mana, I won’t paralyse them but burn them black, freeze them or chop them up.” (Wendelin)
Area Stun was a spell making it possible to defeat them without casualties, but it consumes mana as it’s difficult to regulate its power.
We used it unreasonably because it was a dispute, but if the opponent is an assassin, normal spells won’t consume mana quickly.
“Before that, all of them will be beaten to death by doushi.” (Burkhart)
“It will be legitimate self-defence!” (Armstrong)
Karla didn’t particularly change her expression due to my, Burkhart-san’s and doushi’s threats.
“(If Karla-sama was a man, it would be a simple story.)” (Wilma)
It’s just as Wilma says. That’s because the discussions will stop once Karla is made to succeed.
“It’s this mansion.” (Karla)
With Karla’s lead, we move to the mansion of that person.
That mansion was build close to the huge mansion of the feudal lord which is located in the heart of Brotrich.
Its scale was small, but it has a nice image due to being maintained beautifully by the owner.
“I’m the adventurer, Karla. I came here because I have business with the master of this mansion.” (Karla)
The soldier, who guarded the gate, knew Karla’s face.
After he returns into the mansion in a hurry, an elderly butler-like man comes to invite us.
“Karla-sama, Have you returned from the front?”
“Various things happened. Is uncle-sama in?” (Karla)
“Yes. Master is currently bored. Especially since the feudal lord’s mansion is in such a state.”
As Philip and Christoph are absent, the retainers supporting either party are standing off against each other with the corpse of Margrave Browig, who has been refrigerated for the sake of a funeral service with unknown schedule, in between.
“There are many people who don’t enter the feudal lord’s mansion anymore and a part of the government affairs has been delayed as well…”
“That’s terrible, Beckener.” (Karla)
“It doesn’t affect me much since I’m master’s butler. Even for master there’s nothing ((to do)) but to stay quiet currently. By the way, the people in the back are… Excuse me. I shall guide you.” (Beckener)
It seems he realized our true identity.
The butler called Beckener guides us into the mansion.
When we are drinking the black tea which was offered in the parlour, a 40-years old man with a refined face and a young man around 20 years, who seems to be his son, appear.
Both of them resembled Philip and Christoph a bit.
“I’m Gerd Oskar von Browig. And, over there is my son…” (Gerd)
“I’m Lienheit. However, those are quite extravagant members.” (Lienheit)
It looks like both of them know doushi’s and my faces.
“Gerd-san is the younger brother of the deceased Margrave Browig?”
“Age-wise we are close to 30 years apart though. It’s the same as with Earl Baumeister-sama. The previous Margrave had a young maid give birth to me in his last years.” (Gerd)
He has been acknowledged more or less although he was quite apart in age. He is living by receiving wages and a reasonable status so that he won’t threaten his nephews while they are growing up.
The rest will be succeeded by his son, Lienheit. He has no particular complaints, Gerd.san explained.
“The news flowed in, but ((the situation)) is messy.”
“What are those two doing?”
“Simply put, they are prolonging the arbitration negotiations to negotiate a discount for the reconciliation money.”
They are likely waiting for Margrave Breithilde to give in.
Until the time he will think that it’s better to push forward the Savage Lands development by cancelling the war time quickly even if the reconciliation money is haggled down.
“They are somehow making light of the royal family thinking that they won’t ever crush the Browig household.”
At present you could say that, but if they overdo it too much, the possibility for the kingdom’s side to snap won’t be zero either.
Therefore, it shouldn’t be good for them to get too unreasonable.
“That why you want me to succeed, Karla?” (Gerd)
“There’s no other way.” (Karla)
“The other sons?” (Gerd)
“You know, uncle-sama. It’s difficult for them, who gave up their succession rights and left towards lower households once, to become successors again…” (Karla)
Since they went down to branch and retainer households in order to not dispute over the inheritance rights, it will trigger a big opposition if they simply return.
“In that regard, you have your inheritance rights, uncle-sama.” (Karla)
As a matter of fact he possesses an inheritance right coming right after those two.
Because of his usual conduct they aren’t cautious of him at all and it’s considered to be meaningless as he has almost no retainers supporting him.
“I’m an ordinary man who receives his living expense for just looking at the account books for a bit…” (Gerd)
“I don’t think so at all.” (Karla)
Karla seems to consider Gerd-san to be a capable person.
Certainly, he has such aura.
Living by receiving a moderate amount of money in a moderate position is very likely his worldly wisdom.
From the point of view of the deceased Margrave Browig, something like an excellent younger brother, who is apart by years, is nothing more than a hindrance if he considers the future of his children.
Since there’s also the danger of assassination at worst, you could say it was safe for him to not exhibit his abilities.
“The one who sheltered the seal official, Heimo, is you, uncle-sama, right?” (Karla)
“Why do you think so?” (Gerd)
I have a feeling like I heard such conversation once before, but by no means did I expect for it to appear from Karla’s mouth in this place.
“It’s my intuition. Nii-sama’s frantically employed people to make them search for him, but his way of vanishing is far too skilled. Nii-sama’s didn’t catch hold of information stating that he has left Brotrich.” (Karla)
The two extended the search range believing that there were flaws in the gathered information.
However, Karla believed that he was actually sheltered by Gerd-san who is living at a place close to the mansion.
“As expected, I can’t relax my guard around you, my niece.” (Gerd)
Certainly one must not be negligent around her.
Doushi, Burkhart-san and me are frowning.
Acting like she has talked about everything to Margrave Breithilde and me, Karla concealed the highly, most important information in reality.
“Certainly, I’m sheltering Heimo. At this rate he might get killed and the seal will be stolen.” (Gerd)
Once Gerd-san makes an eye signal to his butler, Beckener, he brings in one man after leaving the room for a moment.
He, who is almost at the same age as Margrave Browig, is probably the seal official, Heimo.
“You hid him after all, uncle-sama.” (Karla)
“Sorry. The two approached me telling me that master nominated them as successor even though it was a lie. Even the seal, they told me if I don’t hand it over, they will change the seal official…” (Heimo)
The matter of changing means him getting killed if it isn’t a natural death.
Since the seal official is a special position, they can never be replaced if it isn’t by the feudal lord himself.
“Due to my troubles, Gerd-sama has lent me a hand…” (Heimo)
After that he always hid in this mansion.
“I believe that it was terrible, but is there a testament from the crucial Margrave Browig? If there is, various things will move ahead, but…” (Burkhart)
From the standpoint of Burkhart-san, who accompanied us after receiving the thoughts of Margrave Breithilde, it will be fine if the arbitration negotiations finish quickly no matter who succeeds.
“That is, master has…” (Heimo)
He just revealed 『Those two are lacking something important as feudal lord』 and apparently didn’t say anything further.
“The feudal lord didn’t decide it…?”
He likely took into account the possibility of being unable to deny that there might be a dispute between the supporters of both parties if he nominates either of them, but as result he didn’t do anything besides being irresponsible.
“Well then, that means there’s no problem if Gerd-san succeeds either.”
“No one will follow even if I succeed?” (Gerd)
“Considering it the other way, the retainers might think it’s fine for you to declare the matter of succeeding now if they can obtain good positions.”
It would have been probably fine if they won in the dispute, but in reality those two lost and are naturally distrusted as successors by the kingdom, Margrave Breithilde and me.
For the retainer households, who presented their daughters as wives, it’s too late, but there was the possibility of the other households switching over to Gerd’s faction if they can secure their current treatment.
“Will it be alright with a group that switches over that easily?” (Burkhart)
Burkhart-san say looking worried whether it’s fine to count on such lot.
“If you put it in reverse, that kind of group is tractable.”
The kind of retainers, who possess odd believes and fanatic loyalty towards those two, are dangerous.
Given that it’s wrong to not protect a household that is capable of being hereditary even for retainers, it can’t be helped even if they abandoned those two who caused disgraces up to this point.
What the current Gerd-san will do is to push their backs.
“How about holding a tea party tomorrow?”
First it’s about gathering supporters.
And, we will carry out the the ceremony in front of them at that place.
“Heimo-san will entrust the seal to Gerd-san.” (Wendelin)
The seal official will entrust the seal to a person other than the feudal lord.
That would be equal to declaring that person as next feudal lord.
“What do you think, Heimo?” (Gerd)
“My deceased master regarded the conflict between those two as dangerous. I wonder whether there will be blaming slander since he couldn’t prepare any move, but since I’m the seal official appointed by master, I will follow the conclusion of master. Personally I don’t want those two as successor since they even aimed for my life.” (Heimo)
Heimo-san answered Gerd-san’s question like this.
And he said that he will retire once he hands over the seal to Gerd-san.
His son will inherit the rest of the household, but he seems to be a civil official in charge of a normal mainstay class of agriculture administration.
“I was appointed as seal official because I was a playmate of master since his childhood. Gerd-sama will make someone else, who has some kind of relation with him, his seal official. Such is life.” (Heimo)
“I might not appoint a seal official.” (Gerd)
Given that he lived being restrained by his elder brother and nephews, he apparently hasn’t made many acquaintances. Even considering it age-wise, it seems troublesome to search for a seal official he can trust.
“I will have a talk with the rest too though. And it will be fine if I assign new human affairs centring around the retainers who declared their support.” (Gerd)
The feudal army’s top brass has fellows where it will be wrong if they don’t receive the treatment of having their households shut down and taken alongside an execution of the family heads.
They are the group who schemed that night attack.
It will be also wrong if the civil officials of finance affairs doesn’t receive at least reductions in hereditary stipend and revocations of their official positions as group close to Christoph who provided the budget.
Even the people related by blood to the deceased Margrave Browig will be a danger if they remain in the territory. He probably has to ban them to a certain extent.
“Although there’s few of those who have entrusted their life to one party despite supporting the two, it will be fine if I head hunt from a slightly distant place.” (Gerd)
Especially the majority of the feudal army’s top brass, who are passionately supporting Philip, are still prisoners together with their soldiers.
They have few means to stop him even if they do something to us in this place.
“Let’s send a written invitation to those of the feudal army’s top brass, who have remained in the mansion, as it looks that they are not altogether hopeless.”
If their luck is good, there’s the possibility that they will be able to rise to the top although they have resigned themselves to a lower position as they didn’t offer their daughters as Philip’s wives.
Moreover, the bunch, who has dispatched their troops as support for Philip, has likewise caused a big disgrace.
If it’s such lot, it will be fine to have little hesitation in betraying them.
“Wend-sama. How heinous.” (Wilma)
“People’s factions are like that.” (Wendelin)
Even in my previous life there was a department chief who made me say “V, V” (T/N: for victory or maybe a Code Geass otaku? ;)) in my time as new employee, but once he lost his standing for a stupid reason, I had no choice but to laugh at the manner of the betrayal of the lot who clung to him like suckerfishes.
Since it’s normal for life to have ups and downs, let’s have those two leave seeing that they failed.
“It will be alright if you send written invitations, except to the fanatic supporters.”
“That kind has mostly become prisoners though.”
“In that case the talks will be quick.”
We are allowed to stay in Gerd’s mansion as is on that day.
In preparation for the next day, Beckener-san ran about to deliver the written invitations together with the other servants.
Once listening to their responses, it looks like everyone accepted the written invitation readily as they have apparently been already told through the adventurer’s guild that we are restless.
“Will they send assassins or such, I wonder?”
“They surely won’t do that.”
I’m an adventurer and am here in someone else’s name. It’s not like I’m particularly sneaking around either.
Even the dispute itself has been ended by the Earl Baumeister household. It will become a problem if something happens to me here.
That’s true for the royal family as well, but I’m likely being watched by the adventurer’s guild.
“The adventurer’s guild distributed the news to the Browig household’s side to prevent such imprudence.”
However, according to Beckener’s report, there are several strange groups investigating this mansion.
It’s probably inevitable for them to be worried what Gerd-san and me are talking about.
“In that case, it will be tomorrow.”
And, on the fated next day, a strange tea party was held in Gerd’s mansion.
Just before noon Beckener-san lines up tables and chairs in the mansion’s garden and arranges tea and sweets there.
As the majority of the invited retainers were those supporting either Philip or Christoph, they talked with Gerd-san while smiling on the surface.
“Since it has become such situation, they cannot help wanting to pull each other’s feet. It suits you, Wilma, that attire.” (Wendelin)
Because it was a tea party, Wilma wore clothes chosen by Karla.
It seems to be something previously worn by Gerd-san’s daughter-san who was married now.
“I want to be a bit taller. If that happens, I will be an adult woman.” (Wilma)
Wilma, who sulks because her height is lacking, was really cute.
“I believe it’s fine since you are cute though.” (Wendelin)
We, who are chatting, drew the gazes and consciousness of the participants.
There’s already no more benefit even if they lend a hand in the conflict of those two.
Even while supporting either side on the surface, they are aiming for some timing to slip away.
“Oh, yes. They are guests invited from outside for today’s tea party.” (Gerd)
Gerd-san introduces me, doushi and Burkhart-san in order.
They have already known about us, but they gave their greetings as if it was a completely unexpected encounter.
“Which reminds me, didn’t you play a very active role in the recent dispute or such, Earl Baumeister-sama?”
“More or less.”
It’s a barefaced way of talking, but it’s a kind of talk happening often as it’s about deeds of arms in disputes since they are retainers of nobles.
I talk about the events which happened until now indifferently. The retainers, who heard that, sighed.
There were especially many people listening attentively to the information about the liberation of Herthania Valley, which still hasn’t entered the news much, after saying 『I haven’t heard about it!』
“It looks like they are disagreeing in the arbitration negotiations for this reason as well.”
The one disagreeing is the Browig household’s side who is declining to pay the reconciliation money.
If they don’t obediently pay seeing that they lost, it will be more disgraceful than having lost. It was the same in this world as well.
“It seems Margrave Breithilde is troubled as well.”
“Even the royal family is slowly reaching its limit of patience.”
While a heavy atmosphere spreads, finally the main star makes an appearance.
The seal official, Heimo, shows up. He began to criticize the two successors on the spot.
“It was just as master said. If either becomes the successor, it will be grounds for a dispute. In reality, the two are continuing to damage the Browig household by linking it to the succession struggle. If it’s now, we can still somehow rebuild the Browig household, but…” (Heimo)
“Heimo-dono. The will of master is?”
“There isn’t any.” (Heimo)
Heimo clearly answer the retainer who timidly asked.
At the same time he glared at a part of the retainers.
They likely forced a conferment of the seal on Heimo.
“Seeing that there’s none, I believe it to be legitimate for having Gerd-sama, who has inheritance rights coming after the two whom master was anxious about, succeed.” (Heimo)
“That’s too forcible!”
“You have to listen to the opinions of the two, who have left to the negotiations, and those who are accompanying them.”
“There are many people who have become prisoners in the dispute! They have an opinion too!”
“If we do that, it will go around in circles once again.”
Many of the retainers, who found fault with Gerd-san’s succession, were those who glared at each other in front of refrigerated corpse of Margrave Browig until yesterday.
They are quite influential supporters in the Philip faction and Christoph faction, but their position is half-baked.
The chief retainers among the chief retainers, who have been entrusted with house-sitting without being allowed to depart to the front and unable to join the negotiation team, haven’t been invited to this tea party.
Half of the uproar is also an appeal to their superiors and bosses in their own faction.
“Those who became prisoners won’t be released if the arbitration negotiations don’t finish. Now then, when will they return?”
Moreover the ones prolonging those negotiations are Philip and Christoph.
The clamouring lot ends up sinking into silence due to my question.
“Besides, if it’s Gerd-dono, he will probably receive the permission to inherit from the kingdom at once, too.”
At least, different from the other two, he hasn’t caused any disturbances.
Even as for the ability to rule, the kingdom isn’t looking for someone with overly high skill in that as a matter of fact.
Since there are people governing with a system that includes groups of retainers in big territories, it was important to stand in a superior position even if one’s an ordinary feudal lord.
“Earl Baumeister-sama. Still, there’s no basis to assume that the kingdom will give its permission right away…”
“If it’s about a basis, then there is one. Isn’t that right, doushi?” (Wendelin)
“In case of His Majesty, he told me to carry out the ceremony of succession to the peerage at once!” (Armstrong)
Doushi, who was excessively eating the sweets placed on top of the table, stopped stuffing his cheeks for a moment and answered clearly.
He got permission properly by contacting His Majesty with a magic hand-held communication device during last night.
“Even if we go right now, the ceremony of succession to the peerage will be held without any kind of problem.”
“Well, then let’s go together?”
“No, leaving this place in the current situation…”
“It will finish within an hour though. After all we will travel by magic.” (Wendelin)
I tell the hesitating retainers that there’s no argument if they head to the capital via teleportation. Gerd and nine people chosen from among the retainers travelled to the capital peremptorily as is.
The soldiers, who are guarding the royal castle’s gate, know my face and once I inform them about the objective of our visit, they let us through.
“Earl Baumeister-sama, although we will be meeting with His Majesty, our attires…”
“It doesn’t matter. The current Browig territory is in a crisis. It’s ordinary dresses suitable for a tea party, but it won’t be taken as discourtesy.” (Wendelin)
It looks like the retainers realized why they were invited to the tea party.
“Earl Baumeister? You are working quite hard on behalf of the matters of other territories.”
“It’s for the sake of quickly returning to a peaceful daily life.” (Wendelin)
“Philip would have been useless if I didn’t take care of him…”
“Isn’t that favouritism?”
“That idiot. Even though he would have been a general by now if he honestly served in the royal army after abdicating his inheritance rights…Certainly he won’t be able to stay in the Browig territory. It will be for the sake of nipping a second rebellion in the buds.”
“I see. I can agree with that.”
I have a talk with Minister Edgar and Minister Rückner, whom we met on the way towards the audience hall, but the retainers watched it with a feeling of being there in body but not in spirit going by their state.
Following the unforeseen situations, their thinking capability likely got fried.
“The ceremony of succession to the peerage will finish right away.”
Once we enter the audience hall while taking them along, His Majesty was already sitting on the throne there and waited for us.
“Earl Baumeister, you worked hard on this occasion.” (Helmut)
“I have just joined the transportation industry temporarily.” (Wendelin)
His Majesty showed a light smile due to my joke.
“I see. In that case, shall we begin, Gerd Oskar von Browig?” (Helmut)
“I, the king of Helmut Kingdom, Helmut the 35th, grant you, Gerd Oskar von Browig, the third court rank, the rank of Margrave.” (Helmut)
“My sword shall be wielded for the sake of Your Majesty, the kingdom and its people.” (Gerd)
Once Gerd-san makes his oath, His Majesty orders a chamberlain to bring a mantle.
“I believe it’s something handed down and given to the Browig household by the royal family for generations, but in the current matter there will likely be many troubles for a new Margrave Browig. There might be those who find fault with your succession. It will be fine if you wear this and contribute to the peace of the East.” (Helmut)
“As you wish!” (Gerd)
While watching Gerd who had put on the mantle from the chamberlain, the retainers’ faces became ghastly pale.
That’s because they were the lot who raised the most objections and nitpicking towards Gerd-san’s succession after declaring to be Philip supporters and Christoph supporters.
“With you accompanying him to the ceremony of succession to the peerage, you are retainers who are loyal to the new Margrave Browig, right?” (Helmut)
Their faces become even more white due to His Majesty’s question.
That question was equal to a test of loyalty* by His Majesty. (T/N: Also means “tablet bearing Christian images, on which Edo-period authorities forced suspected Christians to trample” as it’s 踏み絵 aka “fumi” = stepping on, trampling + “e” = picture)
“All of us will serve our new Lord solidarity.”
By no means are they able to say that Philip or Christoph are suitable at this point in time. In order to protect themselves, they had no other path left but to earnestly serve Gerd-san.
“That’s good. The ceremony of succession to the peerage is, as you can see, something wearisome. Thus I shall give you, his fellow followers, a souvenir.” (Helmut)
The nine retainers received a large silver coin as memento.
It’s a large silver coin that used the amount of silver of 10 common silver coins. Its design is different, too.
The amount of silver has a worth of around 100.000 Japanese Yen, but since only retainers who came along to a noble’s ceremony of succession to the peerage can receive it, it has a premium-like value.
Since it’s a chance to get hold of a number of coins depending on the amount of retainer households of historically old noble households, there’s also a tendency to compete with those numbers.
If I remember correctly, Klaus, who accompanied father, should possess one as well.
Since I had zero retainers at the time of my ceremony of succession to the peerage, none of my retainers possess one.
Probably there are quarrels who will get to go at the time a child receives the ceremony of succession to the peerage.
“(However, it’s a heavy silver coin, isn’t it…)” (Wendelin)
Not only in regards to its weight but also in a much more different meaning.
I couldn’t see it as anything but a cursed silver coin as it will be wrong for them if they don’t pledge allegiance to their new Lord by forsaking the two whom they supported until now.
Even the kingdom likely got quite angry in this time’s case.
You can even say it’s a harsh reward for them.
“Well then shall we go back?”
In the end the succession ceremony finished without taking even an hour.
Before returning, Minister Rückner, who was in the succession ceremony together with us, told me 『Them making an enemy out of Earl Baumeister is foolish. You are a generous noble』, but that’s an overestimation, I think.
That’s because I have done nothing but taking a disgusting revenge against the Browig household.
Once we return to Gerd’s mansion via teleportation and explain the gist of ((what happened)) in the capital, the retainers, who were left behind, readily approved of Gerd-san’s succession.
Especially the group, who accompanied Gerd-san and was called to attention by His Majesty, all of them have a determined look.
“Lord, please enter the feudal lord’s mansion and start the preparations for the funeral service of your predecessor.”
They apparently resolved themselves to get rid of their superiors, who recommended the same candidate as them before and are remaining in the mansion, at worst.
They enter the mansion accompanied by Gerd-san and Lienheit, who is his son.
Immediately appointing their private armies as guards of those two, they entered the room where the corpse of the previous Margrave Browig is enshrined and declared the following to their former superiors who were surprised by the sudden events,
“The new Margrave Browig is Gerd-sama! After receiving the official succession ceremony from His Majesty in the capital, he was bestowed a new mantle as proof of that! He will formally take over the government affairs from here on.”
“Who will believe such a lie!”
“Did you go insane!?”
Regardless of being in the Philip or Christoph faction, the retainers, who were next to the corpse, begin to criticize them all at once.
Since their opponents were a lower ranked group, their tones were harsh all the more.
“Just when the hell did he receive the succession ceremony in the capital!? Cut it out with your daydreams!”
“Thanks to Earl Baumeister-sama’s magic that time was shortened! Naturally he has accompanied us to the succession ceremony as well. Do you have any complaints?”
Since they were higher ranking retainers, they knew my, doushi’s and Burkhart-san’s faces.
Furthermore, Karla is next to me as well.
“Were we done in…?”
“Calling it being done in is weird. Rejecting the two people who dropped the Browig territory into chaos with their succession struggle, we have accepted to be governed by Gerd-sama. Earl Baumeister-sama lent us a hand unable to just watch the chaos right next to him.”
“Well, that’s how it is. It will influence the development of the liberated Herthania Valley after its transfer.” (Wendelin)
I deliver the final blow to the chief retainers who are dumbfounded as is.
“I think it’s still recoverable for you if it’s now though. If compared to the group, who has become prisoners after departing to the front, and the group, who is pointlessly delaying the negotiations, that is.” (Wendelin)
A decrease in territory as well as vassals* and an increase in debts due to being made to pay reconciliation money. (T/N: Just a reminder: In this novel vassal means a retainer under a patron while the word “retainer” itself is a general term to clarify the social position, though in most cases retainer = vassal)
With the inauguration of a new feudal lord, the reorganization and restructuring of the retainer group in the Margrave Browig household will begin hereafter.
If they declare their support to the new feudal lord ahead of time, they will survive at worst. And if they act cleverly, there’s the possibility of being appointed a responsible post by Gerd-san who had few supporters until now.
“Since you guys were responsible for watching the state at home, I believe it will be a chance for you instead.”
The group, who followed the two since they will be appointed a responsible post by them, will have their family heads forcibly retired, will be deprived of their positions or ((will suffer)) a reduction in their hereditary stipend.
If that’s difficult, they have no other future ahead of them but either being exiled together with the two or having their households crushed and their family heads hung without a doubt like the lot who planned that night attack.
“We will obey to Gerd-sama…”
As they have apparently accepted their fate, they immediately welcome Gerd-san’s family after beefing up the security of the feudal lord’s mansion by gathering their private armies and at the same time they put colleagues, who are expected to disobey, and the families of Philip and Christoph under house arrest.
Sending a messenger to the church, they informed the church that they will conduct the funeral service of the predecessor tomorrow.
“That’s fast.” (Wendelin)
“There won’t be any problem even if we hold a public funeral service, where we will invite mourners from outside, much later. Now it will be a private funeral service carried out with just the retainers and family. Since we have also published an edict, it’s possible for the fief’s population in the vicinity to participate as well.”
Lienheit, who was appointed as funeral service chairman in a hurry, was slightly bewildered by suddenly advancing from his carefree position to being the next Margrave Browig.
“Good grief, now you’ve done it, Earl Baumeister-sama.” (Lienheit)
“This as well is for the sake of my own peace.” (Wendelin)
“My peace vanished completely though…” (Lienheit)
With the matter of Gerd-san serving as chief mourner of the predecessor’s funeral service, it’s equal to declaring to his surroundings who will succeed him afterwards.
Moreover, being the funeral service chairman was equivalent to an informal decision as next Margrave Browig for Lienheit whose seat is next to Gerd-san.
The person himself hated it quite a bit, but one can also say it’s inevitable since he ended up advancing from being the heir of an easygoing branch family to being the next Margrave.
“A poor treatment like this! That will be never forgiven!”
“Why is my husband not allowed to participate in the funeral service!?”
“In spite of being part of a rebellion, to do something like the deceased Lord’s funeral service!”
Of course there were people who kicked up a fuss.
It’s the legal wife of the previous Margrave Browig and the wives of Philip and Christoph who are under house arrest.
However, I was unable to feel pity for them.
Each of them stirred up the dispute between the two successor candidates.
“For the Browig household to be disturbed by such greenhorn!”
Especially the elderly woman, who is the legal wife of the predecessor, among them was enraged.
Dressing her body in expensive clothes and ornaments, she seems to be refined since even her family has a good pedigree, but once she gets angry, she looks like an excessive demon hag*. (T/N: oni baba)
“Wend-sama. Demon hag.” (Wilma)
“Wilma, don’t become like this.” (Wendelin)
“I will make sure not to.” (Wilma)
Our appearances in mourning dresses, which we borrowed for the sake of appearing at the funeral service, ignored the rage of the demon hag.
Though it looks stout-hearted, she was the cause of the dispute getting unnecessarily worse as result of her excessively dotting on the second son Christoph as her precious son.
“The Browig household will end! It will be usurped by the household of a lowly upstart like the eighth son of a peasant knight!”
The surroundings freeze due to the statement of the demon hag.
It’s not so bad if it’s said behind the scenes, but she spit out abusive language in front of me.
“Gerd-san, the honourable madam over there seems to be confused due to mental fatigue.” (Wendelin)
“Yes… I will have her devote to recuperation after this…” (Gerd)
The demon hag and the two wives will be first sent to the mansion of Margrave Browig in the capital. After that they will spend their future in the church or under house arrest.
With the funeral service having begun in the church, they are forced to visit the coffin following after Gerd-san and Lienheit and then get forcefully pushed into a magic airship headed for the capital.
“While having my hands full with just my own territory, I won’t do something like ruling the Browig Margraviate. Although internal dissension is nice and all, please make sure that it won’t become a nuisance for other people.” (Wendelin)
I bluntly tell demon hag and the other two, who are forcibly moved to the port, at the end.
While hanging their heads, demon hag and the other two were led out from the funeral service venue by retainers and soldiers.
The funeral service itself continued for the whole day and many of the fief’s population offered flowers.
It was a private ceremony, but we have participated as well with Gerd-san as chief mourner.
The fief’s population surely understood who the new Margrave Browig is.
“It will probably be busy for a while. Those two haven’t done anything except ruining themselves either…”
The funeral service finished safely, however there was a mountain of difficult problems.
That’s also because the number of retainers supporting Gerd-san is still low.
“Is it a salvation that there aren’t any military forces to stage a revolt…?”
With many having become prisoners, there’s no way for them to arbitrarily raise an army as the heads of the households are absent.
“Here’s the list of the households whose family heads participated in the night attack.” (Wendelin)
“17 households, eh? That unexpectedly many.” (Gerd)
Apparently there were many who went to the front line desiring distinguished war services.
“Won’t you be able to gain their support by approving the children and siblings, who have been left behind, as successors?”
They will be recognised as new family head in the name of the new Margrave Browig.
It’s the same for the other retainers who have become prisoners.
Their hereditary stipend will stay as is without them being blamed.
If they are told that, there won’t be any opposition from their families and servants who were left behind.
From their viewpoint it will be fine if the household is maintained, no matter who becomes its master.
“However, there are also people we can’t shut our eyes to.”
There’s a place where Gerd, who became the new Margrave Browig after resolving himself, dispatched soldiers to right away.
The branch families and retainer households, where the siblings of Philip and Christoph have married into, Junior Commander Godwin, who led that night attack, and the chief retainers of the feudal army who participated in it.
Because their family heads and their men departed to the front, their families end up being captured quickly by the soldiers who stormed in.
“I won’t gloss it over. I will have everyone from my elder brother’s direct descendant’s lineage leave.” (Gerd)
If they stay behind in the territory, it’s very likely that they will scheme something good-for-nothing.
The chief retainers below Godwin will be hung for their wrongdoing of causing a huge disgrace. Their families will have everything they own taken away from them and will be banished from Browig Margraviate.
It’s pitiable, but there’s no way to cover for such a failure.
“This female fox!”
“You are the same as your mother! Being deceived by the son of a peasant knight, you are a whore who dropped the Browig household into hell!”
Karla simply stared with an indifferent expression at the events carried out by Gerd-san and me.
She was the daughter of the previous Margrave Browig, but she doesn’t consider herself to be so.
For her it doesn’t matter at all what will happen to other households.
Her elder half sisters were pathetically abandoned by the branch families.
Since there will be impacts in ruling if they are shut down, they accept the conditions of a decrease in hereditary stipend, penalties and making a relative, who is not a child between the family head and her elder half sisters, succeed. Her elder half sisters are divorced and get sent to the same church as their mothers.
They hurled abusive remarks at Karla while in the middle of being dragged away, but she had an appearance of not particularly caring about it while being expressionless.
“Karla-sama is in a certain sense amazing…”
Burkhart-san was unusually attracted a bit by Karla’s attitude.
“If you allow me to say it from my standpoint as her uncle, I feel you are right.” (Gerd)
She is a thoughtful, gentle person, but calmly dividing people into being important to her and those who aren’t, she cool-headedly discards the latter.
If you think about it, even in this drama of the Margrave Browig household’s family head change, you can say that she ignited the fuse.
“(No, is it her revenge…?)” (Wendelin)
It’s probably her revenge against the Browig household which toyed with her and her mother.
If you consider it like this, it might be fortunate for the predecessor to have died while not knowing of that conclusion.
“The story of telling me to take her as wife or such is unacceptable.” (Wendelin)
“No, as expected, I won’t tell you that… Even if we repair our relationship, that’s a talk for the next generation and the ones after that, right?” (Gerd)
Given that the new Margrave Browig doesn’t want to prolong the discord with the South, he will first gradually open up ((the territory)) with trade and agreeing on migrant workers going to the Savage Lands development.
Something like marriage should be a matter for the generation of Lienheit, who is his heir, or his children.
There’s no way to dispute forever. If they are cornered too much, there will also be the risk of a sudden discharge ((of hate)) once again.
There were really various difficulties in interacting with one’s neighbouring nobles.
“Earl Baumeister-sama, I was also able to escape the curse of the Browig household. Thank you very much.” (Karla)
Gerd-san immediately removed Karla from the family register of the Margrave Browig household with his authority as family head.
That means she she became publicly free and will be treated as daughter of the Bänker household which is the home of her mother.
Even the Bänker household shouldn’t use a daughter, who was removed from the Browig household’s family register, as tool for a political marriage of convenience.
Before that, if told that there’s no merit in being married into that household itself, then it will be the end of it.
“That’s great.” (Wendelin)
Karla’s gesture of thanking me was really beautiful.
If it was an ordinary man, they would have likely fallen in love, but I have drawn away from her quite a bit due to her manner.
If I made a child after marrying her, I had a feeling that the future Earl Baumeister household would become a second Browig household.
“(Karla-san is making me believe that on purpose…)” (Wendelin)
Moreover she makes sure that I don’t fall in love with her by deliberately showing such behaviour.
For herself it’s also disagreeable to marry into the Earl Baumeister household.
“(No, no. I lost my interest in you…)” (Wendelin)
It’s a feeling like 『Farewell, person who resembles my former girlfriend』.
Like this, people become adults after throwing away their past.
“Wilma, you are cute…” (Wendelin)
“It’s a bit embarrassing, but it’s nice…” (Wilma)
When I stroke the head of Wilma who was close to me, she blushed while looking happy.
But, that man shouldn’t draw back at this level.
“(Wend, you are my best friend, right? Please remove all the obstacles hindering Karla-san marrying me.)” (Erwin)
Erw delightfully said to me in a whisper while bowing.
“(Karla-san became the daughter of the Bänker household, but as for her definitely becoming your wife, Erw…)” (Wendelin)
I think there was no problem in regards to the family status, but the problem is how Karla herself feels about it.
Even if I order the family head of the Bänker household to do it, there’s no guarantee that she, who can live by herself if she feels like it, will accept it.
“(If it’s Erw, there’s no hope. The probability is cut at 10%.)” (Wilma)
Since the sharpness of Wilma’s perception was the real deal, it wasn’t a prediction that was that far off.
“(It will be alright. After Wend prepares an occasion, the rest will be for me to show my manliness) Karla-samaa~~~.” (Erwin)
Leaving with such words, Erw began to talk with Karla at once.
“(What do you think, Wilma?)” (Wendelin)
“(As Erw said that he will do it himself, it will be fine to leave it to him.)” (Wilma)
If it’s my current authority, it’s possible to forcibly request it from the Bänker household as well.
However, I don’t want to pressure Karla. I’d like Erw, who is my best friend, to realise his love with his own power.
“(Besides, Erw has his pride as well.)” (Wilma)
If Karla was forcibly married to him due to my order, that will hurt Erw’s pride as man.
What Wilma pointed out was as usual perceptive.
“(Erw, please do your best.)” (Wendelin)
I look at Erw who is eagerly talking with Karla.
Although the Browig household problem was mostly resolved, my troubles weren’t completely settled yet.
“Well then, I will go to those two to give them the final rites!” (Armstrong)
“Doushi, you are too straight forward.”
“All things considered, I thought that those two will come back in a hurry…”
I’m talking with doushi and Burkhart-san inside Hendrik’s magic airship.
The seizure of the territory by Gerd-san, who is the new Margrave Browig, was mostly finished.
Within merely one week even the shadows of a dispute between the Philip faction and Christoph faction vanished and they have pledged their allegiance to the new family head on the surface.
Unable to deal with a sudden coup d’etat, there might be those who abide as it’s currently inevitable, but as time passes, the opportunity for something like a rebellion passes as well and it will become impossible.
Due to the legality after having succeeded the peerage from the royal family, we, who got a complete victory against the Browig household in the dispute, helped him out.
If he improves the relations gradually with the current family heads, the retainers won’t have any choice but to acknowledge Gerd-san becoming their feudal lord.
Besides, the change of rank and ruin of the chief retainers, who aren’t here at the moment, has been decided.
There were also many people who worked eagerly as they wanted to be promoted by Gerd-san, who hasn’t many trusted retainers, by contributing at once.
“The information wasn’t relayed?”
“As expected, that must be it, I believe.”
Next to doushi’s group, Gerd-san and me talked.
Although we arrested the relatives and retainers who remained over here with the unexpected coup d’etat, it’s not all of them.
The possibility was high that people, who escaped in time, have informed the two who left for the arbitration negotiations.
“They were unable to slip away, I guess.”
Since they have voided the arbitration draft with their night attack at the first time, there’s likely no way for them to selfishly return to Brotrich a second time.
Burkhart-san predicted that.
“They might take it lightly as the majority of the retainers will support them, once they return.” (Armstrong)
“They might be thinking that something like the Gerd administration, which has a weak foundation, can be easily overthrown”, doushi explained.
“Is that really so, doushi?”
“They might want to believe it to be so.” (Armstrong)
Even so, the majority of their loyal retainers has accepted the third as new family head.
Since that’s connected to their households if they acknowledge it, it means that they won’t take any reckless measures like forcefully opposing him.
“Most of the lot left behind wouldn’t have much of a change in their positions no matter which of them succeeded to begin with.” (Armstrong)
Those, who had the possibility to be appointed to a higher position if Philip or Christoph became new family head, were mostly among those who departed to the front.
From the standpoint of those left behind, it was also a chance to take down those above them.
Since the limits of retainers are set, this rare dropping out of senior retainers means a chance for them who are lower- and middle-ranked retainers.
“It’s a set ruin for everyone and even the group who is related by blood to the family head predecessor! Well, after causing such a disturbance, they are probably fortunate to not have their entire family massacred.” (Armstrong)
“If it was before the ceasefire ((with the Holy Empire)), their blood would have definitely been purged”, doushi explained.
“Wend-sama, we will arrive soon.” (Wilma)
“There’s no change from a half month ago, huh…?” (Wendelin)
Receiving the report from Wilma, I look at the scenery below the magic airship.
Stuff like the tent, where they are carrying out the arbitration negotiations, and the encampments of both armies had absolutely no change from the time before we headed to Herthania Valley.
“Is that so? If pushed I’d say…”
“Erww~~~~. We arrived.”
“Eh? Already?” (Erwin)
Once we descend from the magic airship after pulling Erw, who is having a chat with Karla while looking happy, we are immediately greeted by Margrave Breithilde.
“At last it’s the arrival of a state that looks like the negotiations will be concluded, huh?” (Breithilde)
“I’m the new Margrave Browig, Gerd Oskar von Browig. I’m sorry for having put you through various troubles.” (Gerd)
Seeing Gerd-san who wore the mantle provided by the kingdom, Margrave Breithilde showed an expression of relief from the bottom of his heart.
“So, how is the situation?” (Gerd)
“Day after day they are greedily nagging to cut the debt.” (Breithilde)
He seemed to be fed up by both of them having irresponsibly started to take a path of cooperation in this matter.
“Shall we start the negotiations at once?” (Breithilde)
Once we entered the tent, where the negotiations are held, Philip and Christoph immediately begun to kick up a fuss.
They probably didn’t believe that the ringleader, who caused the coup d’etat, would come here at all.
“It’s inexcusable to cause a revolt in our absence! Get ready to be hung!”
They had a force as if they wanted to grab him at any time, but that was prevented by the retainers whom Gerd-san brought along.
“Philip, Christoph, my succession to the peerage was already accepted by the royal family.” (Gerd)
“There’s no way for such thing to happen though!”
“The calculation doesn’t match! Isn’t that mantle a counterfeit?”
“Christoph, did you call the mantle bestowed by His Majesty a counterfeit?” (Gerd)
“The time doesn’t match, does it!?” (Christoph)
As Christoph said, if one headed to the capital with a magic airship normally, he shouldn’t have enough time after waiting for His Majesty to be available and performing the succession ceremony.
“Why? I headed to the capital after requesting an adventurer who can use 『Teleportation』 though.” (Gerd)
“You don’t say…”
“Hello, I’m an Earl and an adventurer who can use magic.” (Wendelin)
I transported the new Margrave Browig to the capital after accepting a request so that he can quickly succeed the peerage.
That’s the shape it took officially.
“I was also present at the succession ceremony of the new Margrave Browig.” (Wendelin)
I take out my magic hand-held communication device from my magic bag and show it to him.
“Do you want to try asking His Majesty directly if you still doubt it? 『Is it the truth that my uncle has succeeded the peerage of Margrave Browig?』, It’s fine if you ask that, but please be resolved to be at worst sacked.” (Wendelin)
Once Christoph hears my words, he ends up hanging his head on the spot.
If he asked such a thing, it would become a matter of him denying His Majesty’s authority.
If it’s someone at the level of being merely the eldest son of a Margrave, their head will likely be loped off easily.
“You bastard! Aren’t you ashamed as noble!?”
The remaining Philip shouts at me, but I calmly rebutted that as well.
“You are lucky that I haven’t taken revenge for you meddling with the people of my family before. Because I think that you really are? Seeing that I ended up becoming a noble against my will, I probably have no other choice but to move as noble.” (Wendelin)
“You have killed close to 100 of our men!”
“Your side started it by breaking a law, right? Are you considering how much trouble it took me to not kill as much as possible?” (Wendelin)
“It’s just as Earl Baumeister has said. If he felt like it, he could have annihilated your side with very flashy, advanced, wide-area magic.”
Philip shows an uneasy expression due to Margrave Breithilde pointing that out.
The retainers, who followed him, slowly began to take a distance.
One way or another they probably have the idea of wanting to be spared by the new Margrave Browig.
On Christoph’s side the retainers began to get away as well.
“Herthania Valley was our family’s property!”
“Even so, it would be a bad debt, if Earl Baumeister didn’t liberate it by using a large amount of money and labour, right? I heard the reports, but it was a large army for the sake of restraining and five excellent magicians. I believe that it’s nobility who arranges such things skilfully and carries out such operations. Are you, Philip, who should be excelling as military personnel, picking such a weird fight?”
Philip ends up holding his tongue once again due to Margrave Breithilde pointing that out.
“It’s probably already enough. Those two people don’t even have the right to participate in the negotiations.”
“That’s right, isn’t it? Their punishment is under the jurisdiction of you, Margrave Browig-dono.”
Because of the final verdict by Viscount Knappstein who was quiet until now, both of them are restrained by the soldiers brought along by Gerd-san.
“Also, restrain Godwin and the feudal army’s top brass below him after their release.”
After that the negotiations were finally carried out decently.
He might have been already worn-out.
Margrave Breithilde lowered the reconciliation money a bit for the new Margrave Browig.
Granting it as achievement to him who became the new family head, he wanted him to stabilize the East quickly.
Then the reduced part would be quickly returned by stuff like trade picking up pace.
“Anyway, I’m exhausted…”
“If you can receive a certain amount of money by nodding off while checking the documents. That would be a dream-like situation…”
Margrave Breithilde, who incurred a heavy loss due to the dispute, and Gerd-san who succeeded a peerage he didn’t want to succeed due to his stupid nephews destroying themselves.
Certainly, no one has gained here.
“Earl Baumeister, didn’t you obtain a promising asset called Herthania Valley?”
“Accordingly it has its troubles.”
“Since I know that, please give me a bit of the share.”
Mining engineers, labourers and technicians who will carry out the refining.
Because there’s not enough of all sorts ((of people)), it was necessary to have them introduced to me.
“There are plenty of people, who have no destination after their mine was closed down. The Herthania Valley will probably be alright for several hundred years.”
Once it became a measurement against unemployment, Margrave Breithilde was delighted.
“Well then, have the prisoners been returned?”
The negotiations have concluded and the prisoners will be released and reorganized into the new Browig army.
At the beginning it was a feudal army that served as Philip’s stronghold and had Karla as figurehead, but once all of the top brass was arrested, the retainers, who were left, were recognised by the new Margrave Browig.
If it’s to maintain the status quo, of course even those, who had their hereditary stipend reduced by a lot in relation to the dispute, lost their willpower to resist after seeing the gallows for hanging built up in the Eschago Grasslands.
Before that, they are likely already worn-out from their livelihood as prisoners and the dispute.
They are watching the gallows expressionlessly.
“Philip-sama! Wasn’t I allowed to marry my daughter to you!?”
The Junior Commander Godwin and eight people below him were hung while screaming.
What became a show for both armies was for the sake to receive absolution by Margrave Breithilde camp, even if only a bit.
“Their numbers are somewhat low, but the rest of the top brass lot will suffer a pay cut by being deprived of their official position as well. Well, it’s also not something overly pleasant to look at. Shall we go home?”
After confirming that the war criminals are swaying while trembling after being hung, we are finally able to return to our territory.
Once I look below after taking off with Hendrik’s magic airship, the corpses of Godwin and his goonies are still swaying on the gallows.
Averting my sight, I put great effort into forgetting it right away.