The July Party
Why was Sophia here? My words were drowned out by the thunderous sounds. The Fire of Guren flared from the venue’s entrance and instantly burned down some of the waiters. Explosions were heard all across the venue, approaching us.
I immediately grabbed Philia’s arm with my left hand and pulled her close. The flames and the explosions were approaching right in front of our eyes. I pulled out the treasure sword Tetracorde from my waist and swung it with my right hand. With that, the flames were cleared. I felt a little relieved having managed to overcome the first attack. The scariest thing about ambushes was the unexpected first attack. If that could be overcome, the rest should be manageable.
“Are you okay, Philia-sama?”
I looked down and saw Philia’s bright red cheeks. I tried to pull Philia close, but I circled my hand on her back as a result , so it would look like I was hugging her from behind.
Philia moaned a little, “Ah, em.. It hurts, Solon.”
In a hurry, I loosen my hand that was hugging Philia. Because I was flustered, I hugged her too tight. However, I still couldn’t let go of her because I have no idea what was about to happen.
“Solon! Philia! Are you both okay?” Lucy, who was holding a magic wand, called to us. When she saw me hugging Philia, she seemed to sulk a little.
“Is Philia more important than me?”
“You’re an instructor, you should be able to protect yourself,” I said exasperatedly. This wasn’t the time to be saying that. The “Crimson Lucy” and Saint Sophia would be able to protect themselves, but Philia couldn’t. That was why I had to do something.
By the way, what happened to Sophia? I looked back, but I couldn’t find her anywhere.
The guards were beginning to block the entrance of the venue. Since people have managed to invade and terrorize the place, it was a reasonable move to prevent more enemies from invading. We were also very close to the entrance, so it would be great if the enemies weren’t able to come in.
But the next moment, a guard’s scream could be heard.
The guards’ bodies were torn apart and fresh blood was overflowing. In an instant, piles of corpses were made on the spot. The one who killed them, was a man in his forties.
“Do you people remember the tragedy of July 9th?” The man holding a cane said in a calm voice. He was wearing a high-quality robe and a ring engraved with a crest. In other words, he was an aristocrat, one of the people invited to the ceremony.
“Aren’t you Count Poros?! Are you insane?!” The one who made a surprised sound was Julian, the vice-captain of the Imperial Palace’s guards. He was seriously injured, kneeling in front of the murderer, Count Poros, with a pale face.
Poros chuckled, “I’m still sane, you know.”
“If you kill the guards of the Imperial Palace, it will be considered treason. Even a count will not be exempted from imperial punishment.”
“Aren’t you the one who’s insane, Julian?”
“What are you saying?”
“If you don’t understand now, then you won’t understand until your death.”
Poros swung his cane. If it had been left as it was, Julian certainly would have been killed by Poros’s magic. However, he didn’t die.
“Isn’t it a bit cruel to kill without any explanation?” I said, using the treasure sword to prevent Poros from attacking. I have left the duty of protecting Philia to Lucy and jumped out in front of Poros. It was not my duty to protect Julian, but considering Philia’s safety, I thought it was best to eliminate the attacker. I applied first-aid and recovery magic to Julian for the time being, but it didn’t seem like I could recover his condition to the point that he was able to fight.
Julian groaned, “Run away, Solon. It is our job to protect the Imperial Palace.”
I wondered why he said that even though he knew he was weaker than me, but it might be due to Julian’s sense of duty. Looking at me, Poros muttered, “Hoh” as if impressed.
“It’s hard to block my wind magic. Aren’t you quite good?”
“I’m honored, Count-dono.”
“Aren’t you the magic swordsman, Solon? And that sword is Tetracorde. I have heard about how it will enhance various magic skills to a fairly high level.”
“Unfortunately, it’s not ‘fairly high’. I couldn’t reach the top-tier level, but it would enhance many skills.”
Thanks to the treasure sword Tetracorde, I could use a certain level of attack magic without chanting and also had enough defense power to withstand a normal magic attack. The attack power of this sword was also excellent, in addition to its various skills. In short, it was the perfect sword for me, a jack of all trades.
Poros said in a harsh tone, “Julian said I was insane, but if you ask me, it was more insane to be on the side of a bloody murderer, the emperor. Even you know, right? The tragedy of July 9th?”
The tragedy of July 9th was the slaughter of people by the Imperial Army. In the summer two years ago, a large number of people living in a tough condition went to the Imperial Palace. They had no weapon, seeking the empire’s protection. However, the emperor and his aides who saw the bizarre procession were frightened and ordered the army to kill them. The bodies of countless civilians slaughtered by the army’s magic attack were laid on the main streets in front of the Imperial Palace. It was said that some of them were young children. Due to this incident, the people lost their faith in the emperor.
“’Never forget July 9th.’ That’s the slogan of the July Party. We have to kill the vicious soldiers, the politicians, the emperor, and many more.”
Those words indicated that Poros was also a member of the July Party. The July Party was a revolutionary organization trying to overthrow the imperial government.
Abolition of monarchy and slavery, prohibition of discrimination based on status, equal distribution of wealth among people, and immediate peaceful end to the war with the neighboring countries; those were what the July Party wanted.
“I’ve heard rumors that there are aristocrats in the July Party. It seemed like those were true.”
“I am an aristocrat. Because I’m an aristocrat, I have a duty to save the people. Are you an ally of the emperor or an ally of this country?” Poros asked.
Then I answered, “At least, I’m not on the Count’s side. What is going to change with you using these means? The July Party had assassinated the minister of internal affairs, but nothing changed. Even if you killed the emperor, nothing would change.”
“Something would change. Only after destroying everything, could the truly ideal world be built. Let’s kill the emperor and the Prime Minister Strass.”
“Did you kill the innocent servants of the Imperial Palace and the guards for that?” I pointed to the charred corpses of the waiters and the torn ones of the guards.
Poros said, without a change to his expression, “They are necessary sacrifices.”
“If you say so, then Count-dono isn’t any different from the emperor you hate. I would be your enemy.”
That signaled the start of the battle. Not only Poros, but the whole of the July Party, had already begun fighting in various places inside the Imperial Palace.
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