After the memorial services for the dead were over, we secluded ourselves in Camelot and began with administrative affairs.
The most important obstacle to tackle was providing food for the 30,000 citizens on the brink of starvation.
I decided to send each tribe about half a years’ worth of rye, which would reach each village within a few days.
Still, they were about to starve. I planned to have them recuperate their strength over the next couple of months, but……
“Huh? What did you just say?”
I couldn’t believe my ears.
“I said 3,500 people,” Lucia replied.
“And they all want jobs?”
“Yep!” she nodded with a big grin.
“Why? How did it end up like this after that speech?”
It wasn’t even a speech, I just pointed out their pressing issues—it was never supposed to be motivational. No matter how I dressed my words, the truth didn’t change. I was just trying to make them understand that they’d have to address these issues when the time came and was prepared for a lot of backlash.
“I think they were irritated, of course,” Lucia commented. “But aren’t they happy that they’re being treated like a country?”
“That’s just a figure of speech. They’re still a part of the empire.”
After Zem’s death, I resolved myself to resolve a certain problem that plagued the empire and doing such required the effort of the empire’s citizens themselves. I would only be lending a hand—I needed to make that clear. I mean, would I be any different than that repulsive, purple-suited man if I forcefully altered their history? Even I wouldn’t want to be like him.
In any case, that’s why I gave them firearms. I strayed off a bit from my initial plans, but I would use the Radols to change the empire from within.
“Even still, they’re very thankful for you, Grey-dono, and—”
Stop it. Don’t say any more.
“So? Can you continue with your report?” I asked, forcefully changing the subject.
“S-sure. As per your instructions, I’ve announced that we will begin legislative operations starting from April next year.”
First, I created three new organizations, an administration of justice, a government, and a congress.
I’d have to teach them how an administration of justice worked, and congress’s operations were like playing house at first. Still, there was merit in trying. As the months passed by, they would slowly get more and more efficient, like body blows in boxing.
For now, I split up the government, and giving Radols government authority was my current priority.
“What about educational institutions and the army?” I asked.
“As per your instructions, everyone below eighteen is obligated to receive schooling irrespective of their age. Conscription in the army is completely voluntary and it currently consists of 1,200 members.”
I’d have these 1,200 receive training in firearms, artillery, and magic, also, I’d have them train every day.
“Got it, then follow the instructions listed on these and split them up based on aptitude.”
I’d hear their occupational aspirations out as best as possible, but this was an emergency. Until things started to smooth out, we’d be determining basic assignments.
“Alright, first we’ll proceed with the construction in Camelot and Arkroy.”
There was a veritable mountain of problems, but this was at least a start towards the Radols’ recovery.
Now about the prisoners of war. I checked the files that Kurama had handed me.
After capturing Arkroy, we took in civil officials, civilians, and 1,133 kingdom soldiers as prisoners.
After listening to their aspirations, we found that 434 second division soldiers and 123 of the remaining first division soldiers wanted to stay as Radols.
The second division soldiers technically weren’t kingdom soldiers but were conscripted after their countries had been invaded. They were constantly treated like disposable pawns, and I’d have expected them to want to say even if I hadn’t heard Tosh’s explanations.
On the other hand, the 123 first division soldiers were a bit unexpected. They must have had family remaining in the kingdom, or so I had thought……
“Their villages were razed because of an epidemic?”
“Yes. We enquired everyone so this shouldn’t be false,” said Tosh, formerly an Amrzs Kingdom soldier.
Tosh had distinguished himself in this war, so it wouldn’t make sense for him to betray me now of all times.
He had a serious knack for gathering and analyzing information. The kingdom was an idiot for keeping him as a normal soldier. The kingdom’s talent acquisition system had, like the empire’s system, some serious flaws.
“Got it. Make rigorous note of their intentions and prepare to accept them.”
“Yes sir. One more thing. About Officer Kai and Senior Commander Martha Saruman……”
Officer Kai wanted to return back to the kingdom. Senior Commander Martha, on the other hand, wished to remain. Truly, it was the exact opposite of what I had been expecting.
“Officer Kai’s foster grandparents are still in the kingdom. Additionally, I think he’s trying to sacrifice himself,” Tosh explained.
Sacrifice! So someone of his character was still in the kingdom’s army. Tosh’s files showed that he was without a doubt an exceptional person. I needed him.
“What about Senior Commander Martha?”
“He used to treat commoners like insects and livestock, so he honestly doesn’t have a great impression of me. Recently, however, he’s been giving off the exact opposite impression.”
The normal soldiers generally had a positive impression towards him, according to these files. This didn’t remove the possibility that he was just acting, but would the kingdom really send the son of an archduke as a spy?
“So he doesn’t want to return because he killed a fellow noble?”
“That’s what he said, yes. Still, testimonies have stated that the commander he killed was deranged and tried to chant magic right in front of the enemy. I don’t believe he, the only son of the archduke, would receive any serious punishment. At most, he would be on house arrest for a few months.”
I bet. In fact, they wouldn’t want a scandal like that surfacing. They wouldn’t punish him at all.
And that should have been obvious to him.
“I guess I need to meet him in person then,” I noted.
“Then should I begin preparations for that.”
“Please do. Now next are the criminals……”
This was the hardest problem. It relied on tattle-tales, and the soldiers wouldn’t be so loose-lipped.
“This is the list of people who committed crimes,” Tosh said, placing several sheets of parchment atop the table. Written on the parchments were names of soldiers and criminals.
“56!? That’s less than I expected.”
They treated the captured Radols like slaves that you could do anything to after all. I thought more people would have committed such injustices.
“If you would, factoring in the deceased would increase this number four or five-fold, which certainly isn’t a small number.”
He had a point, people weren’t animals. Even if they couldn’t control themselves, it’s not like they lost all reasoning. In fact, it was much more normal for them to keep their reasoning. I guess 56 is a lot after all.
“Just, the stories of Senior Officer Riemann Chardonnay and other soldiers are a bit complicated and don’t quite serve as proof,” explained Tosh as he grimaced.
It was probably a difficult decision. I could think of a few things—
“Tell me the details.”
“Of course. There are several eyewitness accounts of Senior Officer Riemann assaulting and wounding Radols, but also those who say he isn’t the type of person to do that……”
“What’s the chance they’re covering for him?”
“It’s possible, but I don’t think they arranged to do so beforehand.”
It’d be hard to come to a decision if the evaluations surrounding him were split.
Dozens of people were short from the Radols we had placed under our safeguard from Fort Arkroy. That perverted bastard, Blue-Beard, probably used them in his experiments so we don’t have any who are injured.
“If we don’t have enough suspicion, then at worst we’ll have no choice but to release him back to the kingdom.”
Even if we would be releasing a guilty Senior Officer. He wasn’t your average soldier. Simply releasing him because we didn’t have enough suspicion could be opening a new can of worms, but punishing an innocent was out of the question. I wanted a solid foundation, and that warranted delicate responses.
“I understand, I’ll try checking him out myself,” I said. “I’ll head to Silke after lunch, so bring him there. This concludes our meeting. Dismissed.”
I heaved a deep sigh and started parsing through the files atop the table.
After the end of the meeting, I was munching on a sandwich when Aquido called out, “Sorry for the wait, Grey.”
“Ah, I had to look through some files so it wasn’t a problem.”
“You’re still not back to normal?”
“Looks like it.”
Over a week had passed since I gained the title, “Human Realm”, but I still suffered from its aftereffects.
I couldn’t use any of my gifts, my control over magic power got remarkably more difficult, and forcefully using it could cause it to go out of control. The only saving grace was the fact that my physical stats hadn’t decreased as well.
“Are you alright? Maybe you should rest inside Sagami Co. like Satella said.”
“I know. Once I finish this up, I’ll take a break,” I assured him.
Satella’s been in a really bad mood recently. Ever since I brought up Blue Beard’s existence during Fort Arkroy’s meeting, she never strayed far from my side. Today, I ordered her to babysit Shiina and Drahachi along with Aria as a break. She was very reluctant, of course, but I managed to persuade her.
“Please do, Satella’s one thing, but Carla hasn’t been in top shape either.”
“Ah, I’ll have them take a long break. Alright, bring me to Silke now.”
He nodded with satisfaction and teleported me over.