The order from Iskandar
Just when I arrived at the entrance to the labyrinth of Straheim, Krikala, to explore it, I was caught by Willy Gunman and was now being forced to go to a residence on the northern edge of Straheim.
The investigation about Munch’s incident was being pursued, but soon, more troubles took place in this Straheim. Perhaps the investigation was not going very well.
When I entered the reception room of the mansion, I frowned at the ominous faces.
“Grey, no matter what, this is too discourteous.”
At my blatant behaviour, the fatty Emperor showered me with words full of criticism. [T/N : About fatty, not sure if it’s a typo or that’s how it is. I will correct it later if it turns out to be wrong.]
“You know what? Do you understand why I’m in such a complicated situation right now?”
In the first place, Georg was the one who had planned such a reckless scheme. If he hadn’t forced me to take the exam of Magic Knight Academy, there was no way this situation would have happened.
“Yes, I know.”
“Then at least please properly hold the reins of your wild-animal-like relatives. They are annoying.”
“Ah, Grey, I heard you gave a sound beating to that monstrosity of old geezer! I felt so refreshed when I heard this that I can’t tell you!!”
Dammit, you aren’t even listening to people at all.
“Sigh…… that’s enough. Let’s hear what you have to say.”
I let out a big sigh and sat down on the nearest seat. There was no need to pay any more attention to this Emperor.
“I’m really sorry, Lord Grey, that you have to be wrapped up in the mess within the imperial government.”
His Excellency Prime Minister El, sitting next to the Emperor, bowed his head in deep apology.
“No, please don’t worry about it.”
I also bowed in courtesy.
“Why is the treatment between me and the prime minister so different?”
Unlike the Fatty Emperor, Prime Minister El had provided me with various favours. It was a natural distinction.
“So, what can I do for you today?”
I also didn’t have much free time. Classes for students, management of Sagami Co., as well as my personal training, which was the most important task at hand.
I wanted to get it done as soon as possible and explored Krikala.
“First, we, the Ministry of Domestic Affairs, would like to explain.”
The Kaiser-bearded gentleman standing next to the Emperor snapped his fingers, and a young man behind him who looked like a civil official placed a document in front of me.
This gentleman with a Kaiser beard belonged to the Ministry of Domestic Affairs? At least I was sure he was one of the cabinet ministers as he was the host of the knighthood ceremony.
He’s probably the minister. Anyway, the Ministry of Domestic Affairs, which was also an intelligence agency, was involved in this matter. Even if I didn’t read it, I could more or less guess what it was.
The content should be something that he didn’t want that smug-faced, silver-haired tomboy, who was sitting next to the Emperor while drinking coffee, to hear.
But the girl’s personality was such that even if I asked her to leave the room, she would refuse. Was there no other way I could do it?
“The content should be about the human slime incident, right?”
The young civil official behind gasped. Judging from his condition, just as I expected, it should be about the slime incident that was currently stirring the Straheim.
“As expected of Lord Grey. It’s just as you said. Now, first, have a look at the documents.”
At the urging of the gentleman with the Kaiser beard, I looked over the documents.
“Thirty two people drinking the alcohol in the tavern, Kumabachi, dissolved into mush….”
This is the hottest news in Straheim right now. I had Krama investigate the details, but I also raised the alert level.
Even in the recent students’ quest, I had Spy and Hatch escorted them. If it was those two who could use teleportation, they would be able to escape from attackers.
“And the surprising thing is they were all alive for more than half a day. Well, that depends on the definition of alive.”
Politely, Willy gave us an additional explanation.
Everyone was alive for more than half a day. That was something completely new for me. I thought the rumour on the street was that people dissolved into mush and looked like slime.
If that’s the case—
“It’s Material, isn’t it?”
“You think so too, Lord? I’m of the same opinion,” the Kaiser-bearded gentleman nodded in agreement with me.
“Yes, there is no other way to create such a magical phenomenon.”
In my judgement, the gentleman with the beard changed his gaze at me for the first time.
“Lord Grey, what do you think about this incident?”
The hawk-like sharp eyes of the Kaiser-bearded gentleman looked like a completely different person from the completely harmless aura he had given earlier. That was probably the true nature of this man.
“This is, in all probability, a case similar to the undead attack case.”
“Dammit! Not again! What grudge does that monster have against our Empire!!”
The Emperor slammed his right fist down on the table, and the vibration caused the cup of coffee to topple over violently.
“Please calm down, Otou-sama. Even if you vent your anger here, there will be no progress.”
The silver-haired girl, who was drinking coffee next to him, chided his father, Emperor Georg.
Seeing this, I really wondered which one was older here.
“So, I wonder why Lili is here, in a place where we are talking about a dangerous incident?”
Anyway, the attackers are in the possession of such dangerous and heinous Material. The level of danger is considerable. And then, if she listened to details of the case and knew what was going on, there was a possibility she would be dragged into this shitty incident. Even an idiot could think of how dangerous that would be.
“I know exactly what you mean, Grey. But you know, we have our own problems.”
Willy, who was standing next to me, was quick to sense my feelings and interjected.
“Circumstances? There are reasons to involve children in such a disturbing incident. Is that what you mean?”
Prime Minister El choked. Meanwhile, Georg feigned an ignorant face, pulling a towel from his maid and starting to wipe the wet table.
“The Ex-Emperor gave us an order when he knew about this incident.”
Iskandars’ order? That gave me a creep.
“What is it?”
At my question, Willy gives a meaningful look to the Kaiser-bearded gentleman.
The Kaiser bearded gentleman nodded broadly, stood up, took out a letter he had set aside, then read: “Grey Ines Navarro! I have an imperial order for you. Within two weeks from now on, together with Lilinoa Rose Archive and Olivia Rose Archive, drag the unscrupulous people who have stripped their fangs to our Empire in front of His Majesty the Emperor! It doesn’t matter if you are alive or dead!”
What a ridiculous letter.
“That bastard! Brute!”
Iskandar should have understood that this incident was not a normal one. If it was an incident of the same rank as the undead threat, it would be impossible to solve it without me or the Emperor acting in person.
It was true that he didn’t act on his own even in the case of the undead. But that did not mean that he was indifferent to the threat. Perhaps after realizing the threat level of this incident, he was testing the current Emperor.
If Georg defeated the undead, he had a chance to continue as an Emperor. On the contrary, if they were wiped out and Georg died in battle, Iskandar would become Emperor himself and choose a new successor.
In the first place, Iskandar was strong. And he had the temperament of a conqueror. He was the emperor of emperors. This Iskandar would not give up the throne to someone who had no chance. He probably had high hopes for Georg in his own way. Well, Iskandar himself would firmly deny it, and even if I told Georg that, he wouldn’t believe me.
In any case, he was the kind of guy who would let his own son take a bad, dangerous gamble. In the first place, I knew that he would not approve of me just because of my achievements in the charade of the Magic Knight Academy. But still, who would let their beloved grandson or daughter get involved in such a dangerous case?
“Even though he’s retired, the old monster still has a tremendous amount of power. In addition to that, beginning with the Lord of Military Affairs, other ministers have also agreed to this matter. And there’s no way the lineage aristocrats who practically worship that old geezer will go against his words. In other words, that’s how it is,” Georg spat hatefully.
“Even if you said that, why is Lilinoa or even your imouto-dono (little sister) accompanying me!? Does he think this is something that can be resolved while carrying two burdens!?”
Treated as a burden, Lilinoa swelled her cheeks like a squirrel.
“I’m sure they’re expecting you to be able to do it,” Georg muttered sarcastically, and somewhat sadly.
Expectations, huh. If this was true, then Georg, who was in a similar situation, was also being expected by Iskandar. It was typical for Georg to be unaware of this.
“I don’t have the right to refuse anyway, right?”
Georg bowed his head, and then Prime Minister El and the others also expressed their gratitude in succession.
“So, what should I do specifically?”
“Until the incident is resolved, I want you to live with them together in Starheim.”
Lilinoah’s cheeks turned a light shade of red at the words of Prime Minister El. She also let out a big sigh.
“Frankly, I don’t think you are in your right mind. First of all, isn’t Her Highness Olivia engaged to the first prince of the Vitsley Kingdom?” I hurled the obvious question.
“That…….. Originally, Her Highness Olivia wasn’t desiring this engagement in the first place. After all, the First Prince of Vitsley Kingdom is a vicious man.”
Judging from the way Prime Minister El mumbled about, he seemed to have a considerably troublesome personality. Nevertheless, if abandoned arbitrarily, it will create a feud between the Empire’s administration and the Vitsley kingdom.
Right now, the Empire was greatly exhausted due to the undead attacks, and the lawlessness of the lineage noble factions in the country. It no longer possessed the power of the three major powers it once had. Friendship with neighbouring countries was a must now.
“If handled improperly, won’t this become an international problem?”
“Do you think the Ex-Emperor cares about that?”
“Hmm…… certainly, I don’t think he does……..”
Iskandar was a conqueror, recognized by both himself and others as a hero. I also recognized this. But he had no idea how to prosper in peace. This was obvious when he claimed to be a bloodline dictator.
“Now that Grey is convinced, let’s discuss the specifics.”
The Emperor, with a big smile on his face compared to the tragic heroism look on his face earlier, made such a ridiculous suggestion.
“You know, I don’t think I have agreed to this at all?”
“Don’t be embarrassed, don’t be embarrassed! Even if you are embarrassed, it’s only disgusting!”
This rotten Emperor! He always said too much!
“Lord Grey, I’m sorry but—” Prime Minister El bowed to me.
“Yes-yes, I understand,” I dropped my shoulders and muttered quietly.