Author: alyalia

Duke Krow pressed his innocent pen down on the paper for no reason. It’s strange. I can’t put my finger on it, but there’s something fishy.

 

Although Viscount Girol fled away, Duke Kaien, who was a thorn in his eye, went missing. He discovered the whereabouts of Viscount Girol and sent his hounds, but they failed to retrieve him. However, it didn’t matter. What the matter was the condition of Duke Kaien, whether he was dead or still alive.

 

Viscount Girol’s testimony wouldn’t be valid when Duke Kaien was dead. He wouldn’t have to quarrel with someone who was already dead, and he could even have full control of the empire.

 

Just in case, he dispatched an assassination group to completely get rid of Duke Kaien. They were also ordered to understand the situation of the Kelteman Empire. They might be considered barbarians, but they’re still a nation that claims to be an empire. They stir up wars all over the continent, so suddenly ending it would damage their reputation.

 

They probably have an ulterior motive to get something more out of the deal in exchange for an agreement.

 

Even if this empire couldn’t win this war, this empire would continue to fight for several years. Duke Krow had no intention of ending the war easily. He was thinking of prolonging this war and turning public sentiment by highlighting the emperor’s incompetence.

 

Everything is going my way…

 

But why did he feel so anxious?

 

I must be too sensitive.

 

His hard work for more than 20 years was finally about to shine. He tried to blow away his anxiety, saying that he seemed to have become sensitive because he was on the verge of achieving his goal. But then.

 

“…Why is this?”

 

Duke Krow noticed a piece of paper peeking out from between his desk drawers. When he opened the drawer carelessly, the documents neatly placed in there had become disheveled.

 

Sigh. Someone put their hand on his desk. Duke Krow’s eyes began to flutter. He opened the other drawers, checked the sign if someone had touched it, rose from his seat, and headed to the fireplace.

 

Click. It was three steps from the fireplace. When he pressed the flat wall without a picture, one side of the wall opened with a clicking sound. Creek.

 

The duke pushed the door open and checked inside, then pushed the door in silence. His body began to tremble as he leaned against the wall. His safe, hidden inside the wall, was open. And the bank account certificates and real estate sales certificates stored in it disappeared without a trace.

 

“Who is it… Who the hell…”

 

Only he knew the location and password of the safe. No, that wasn’t right. Just once, there was someone who put the documents in the safe as an errand from him. It’s…

 

“…Nuar.”

 

Is this what it means to be stabbed by someone you trust in the back? Duke Krow couldn’t hold back his rage rising like boiling lava.

 

Crash. Klang. It was only after throwing away the furniture in his study, grabbing the books from the bookshelves, and throwing them on the floor that his anger was about to subside.

 

“W-what are you doing? Father?”

 

Duke Krow’s body froze at the sound of a boyish voice coming from behind him. He took a deep breath, turned around as if nothing had happened, and said with a caring smile. “Nothing. Wasn’t today your riding class?”

 

Schwartz, the son of Duke Krow, looked around the messy study and replied, tilting his head. “Because Jusie- Schwartz’s horse is in bad shape today. Are you really okay? Father?”

 

Duke Krow approached his beloved son with a friendly face and stroked his head. “Everything is fine. You just need to live you’re now. Everything will be taken care of by this father.”

 

Schwartz stared at his father’s face and soon said with a bright smile. “Yes, Father. By the way, can you buy me another horse? Jusie’s condition is jagged.”

 

Duke Krow smiled happily and nodded. “I see. Let’s go buy a horse tomorrow. So go back to your room now.”

 

“Yes, Father. Thank you.”

 

Schwartz left the study without hesitation as he already achieved his purpose. His father’s unusual behavior was no longer on his mind.

 

Shortly after Schwartz closed the door of the study, Duke Krow’s face hardened coldly. Nuar… is that really you? But why?

 

For forcing an unwanted marriage? Absolutely not. Duke Krow knew his daughter well. She wasn’t thoughtless enough to do this. There must be someone who instigated his daughter.

 

“No way, that guy?”

 

Someone’s face flashed through Duke Krow’s mind. The guy who hadn’t much ability and was greedy about the subject of his family.

 

“Yabai…”

 

Obviously, it must have been him.

 

“Pawel!”

 

When Duke Krow called butler Pawel, the butler waiting outside the door opened the door of the study and bowed his head.

 

“Did you call for me?”

 

“Send someone to Count Yabai’s mansion right now. Bring… Count Yabai and Nuar. Right now!”

 

However, Duke Krow couldn’t meet Count Yabai and Nuar.

 

“…They packed up and disappeared?”

 

The butler did not know what to do with Duke Krow’s sad eyes.

 

“Yes… They said they were going on a trip two days ago and left.”

 

“Where is their destination?”

 

“…They say no one knows.”

 

Crash. Duke Krow threw his cherished pottery on the floor. It was the only thing in his study that hadn’t been broken yet.

 

“Pull back the hound now… Damn it!”

 

The man Duke Krow called as his hound was no longer within the empire. He must have already crossed the border on his order.

 

“Call the knights.”

 

They weren’t as good as his hound, but he had no choice but to release his knights and find them. The certificates they took were all his property. Land and buildings were bought with debt. And even the bank account certificate opened in someone else’s name to avoid taxes. If he couldn’t find them, he might have ended up on the street first before pulling the emperor down.  

 

Absolutely. I’ll find them. And make them pay the price of dare hitting the back of my head. Duke Krow vowed again and again. His kind-looking face disappeared, and he had a face like a demon.

 

* * *

“Hey, Dondon.”

 

“Why?” Dondon chewed on a date palm and replied sullenly.

 

“Is it really okay? They’re already so close.”

 

I pointed to the red-haired man, who was slowly drawing closer to the point where we could see each other’s expressions.

 

Dondon lifted the corner of her mouth, put the remaining date palm into her mouth, and chewed it. “Let’s see if dey you could come here.”

 

As Dondon ordered, her army pretended to engage in a fierce battle while slowly falling back. Unlike Dondon, who was calm, I was upset.

 

Why hasn’t Prince Paku shown up yet? The longer the operation is delayed, the more dangerous it becomes for Charter… Where on earth is Prince Paku! When I thought like that, sudden shouts began to be heard from the entrance of the canyon.

 

(Your Highness! An enemy has appeared behind us!)

 

(Aargh!)

 

(Stop them! Push them away!)

 

The red-haired man noticed the commotion. Are turned his gaze away from Arianne and looked back. At the same time, his eyes widened, and his lips twisted. (Paku.)

 

He recognized it at once. A tall man with gray hair. It was Paku.

 

(I see. That’s how it happened.)

 

He wondered why it was a defense battle, which was unlike the usual Dondon, but Paku was with her? He heard that Paku was headed to the border though? Well, whatever. The important thing is he’s here right now.

 

For Are, the emperor’s orders weren’t absolute. Whether or not Paku disobeyed the emperor’s orders was none of his business. Rather, he was even pleased to be able to face him in this place now. The time has finally come to repay the old grudge.

 

Are swept the scar across his cheek with his hand. It was a scar he got from a trivial quarrel with Paku three years ago. Every time he saw this scar, he felt unpleasant because he remembered the past when he was overwhelmed by him. With the sole thought of defeating him, he roamed the battlefield and increased his strength.

 

(Your Highness! What should we do?)

 

Are snapped his neck and replied to his subordinate’s question. (Bring him into the canyon.)

 

(Butt! If we do that, we’ll be isolated!)

 

Are’s indifferent gaze turned to his subordinate. His subordinate, who received that gaze that made him feel goosebumps, bowed his head.

 

Are didn’t tolerate any questions or retorts. Because of panicking, his subordinate forgot about the identity of the man in front of him and made a mistake. It made his subordinate tremble even more. All he could hope was that Are would turn a blind eye, just this once.

 

(Clear the entrance to the canyon.)

 

(Ye-yes!)

 

Fortunately, his life was spared for now. His subordinate quickly conveyed his master’s order before Are changed his mind.

 

(Open the entrance!)

 

The soldiers blocking Paku’s army hesitated momentarily but couldn’t disobey the order. As Are’s soldiers slowly retreated, those led by Paku could easily enter the canyon.

 

As soon as Paku entered the canyon, someone rushed toward him. The soldiers who blocked Paku’s front collapsed in an instant without even realizing it, and Are stopped his rampage only when he arrived in front of Paku. Klang. Their swords collided with each other.

 

(Paku!) Are gave an eerie smile.

 

(Are.)

 

Paku just looked down at Are indifferently. Are gritted his teeth at Paku’s attitude.

 

Today is the time for me to pay off the old debt, Paku. 

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