If the pope of Neian was present, he would find that many of the things the young noble had read out were the exact same as the report sent to his desk. However, the nobility and clergy had different ways of thought. To them, it wasn’t important who was behind the scenes. Their goal was clearly to kill Richard, and in the most despicable way possible.
However, the problem was in actually following through. If they had the military power to take him down, there would have been no need for them to sit around in the assembly all day doing nothing but condemning Richard. To destroy him… Just the thought sent a shudder down their spines
How were they supposed to eliminate Richard? His elites were absolutely terrifying and armed to the teeth! Nobody knew where the money came from, but the equipment of his knights far surpassed that of the royal knights. And the royal family only had 500 elite knights, Richard had thousands!
Even if they managed to defeat him in war, what of the rumoured legendary being in the Land of Turmoil? What if his family sent him support? Most of the nobles weren’t even convinced by the allegations in the first place. They made for a good excuse, but without the endorsement of the gods they were not valid in the slightest. Eliminating Richard was undoubtedly in the interest of all of those present, but the first batch of fools who rushed to his gates wouldn’t even leave their bones behind!
The assembly thus went quiet for the first time in months.
Still, the accusations seemed to grow wings. They quickly spread throughout the Sequoia Kingdom, eventually finding their way to the ears of Richard who had just returned. Richard immediately had the broodmother send a batch of elite humanoid knights and her new barbarian infantry to join up with him. They both now had level 11 strength, and the hundred or so of them were all paired with customised equipment from Norland that turned them into wolves amongst sheep.
After upgrading some of the rune knight candidates he’d bought from Agamemnon, he now also had twenty rune knights. Combined with some regular humanoid knights and all of his followers, an army of only 500 set off for the Sequoia Kingdom.
Of course, that was an army with two grand mages, twenty grade 2 rune knights of which more than half were set knights, three powerful priests from the Church of the Eternal Dragon, the pope of the Goddess of Spring Water, and extremely high-ranking cardinals of the other two goddesses. The accusation had obviously stirred the churches he was associated with into action as well. How would they retain worshippers if they didn’t fight back when accused of mingling with invaders?
Even in Norland, this army would be able to crush most small aristocrats without breaking a sweat. Here in Faelor, it could go almost anywhere it wanted without issue. Even if he was surrounded by tens of thousands of troops, Richard was confident he would be able to kill his way out.
Richard and his pack of wolves headed straight for the king.
Sequoia City had no natural resources nearby, nor was it well-fortified. However, this city that was home to over a hundred thousand was the capital of the Sequoia Kingdom even though the actual base of the royal family was elsewhere. The place wasn’t completely undefended, especially after the recent invasion, but the 500 swordsmen that had would be stationed here for the next few years were clearly meant to be a show of force more than anything else.
One morning, the guards pushed open the heavy city gates only to see smoke rising from afar. A team of knights barrelled through the city gates, the glimmer of their enchanted equipment almost blinding them completely. The guard captain could see the crest of the Sequoia Kingdom on the flags they carried, but he couldn’t recognise which noble it was.
“Wh—Who?” the man stuttered loudly, unable to conceal the fear in his voice. The knights who had just charged in seemed to look at him so strangely…
This would be no mystery to those who knew the broodmother. Human beings were a completely valid food source for her, so it made perfect sense for her creations to feel the same. They were forbidden from eating Richard’s army and citizens, but these guards were neither.
*Crack!* A loud whip rang out as a handsome elf stepped out from behind. Olar was no longer as gentle and elegant as he used to be, instead pointing the whip directly at the captain’s face, “Oi, are you blind? You dare to stop Richard Archeron’s soldiers, even when all our flags are on display? Can you not see the crests of the three Goddesses? Move, now! Or are you standing against the will of the Goddesses?”
The guard captain was stunned, starting to curse in his mind. He had never seen Richard personally, but how couldn’t he know the most famous name in this city over the past few months? Letting Richard in alone would definitely get him punished, forget this army of knights following behind.
The captain was under orders to endure any shame and humiliation, refusing Richard entry no matter what. However, looking at the hundreds of soldiers ahead he suddenly realised that was easier said than done. This troop was much larger than a normal escort, he had clearly come prepared for war!
That brief moment of hesitation spelt his demise. Olar put enough energy into a crack on the head to send the man to the ground in an instant, a huge red mark forming across his face. The rest of the guards all watched in a daze for a few moments before they snapped back to reality, beginning to draw their swords. However, while they started screaming threateningly in place, none of them dared to rush forward.
“Whoever has a sword in hand after three seconds will be killed immediately. Don’t blame me for not warning you beforehand!”
The screams immediately turned into squeaks, the swords returning to their sheaths. Some of the more cowardly guards even threw their weapons directly to the ground. Olar just snorted and waved his hand, sending the knights barrelling towards the assembly building.
Today was the day the young noble had mentioned he would release more proof that Richard was an invader. The assembly opened exactly on time even while the commoners were still eating breakfast, a tradition of the nobles here that seemed to be meant just to flaunt some sort of diligence.
The knight came as expected, much calmer than last time with his face almost glowing with confidence. He went up to the podium and cleared his throat, taking a thick stack of papers as before and starting to read out.
The so-called new evidence was the runes Richard was selling on the market. Information from the Baruch Kingdom showed that the Norlanders used runes with magical lines and patterns that matched quite closely to what Richard had to offer, and the Mage Association appraised that the two were astonishingly similar. The only difference was in the specific form and function of the magic arrays.
At the end of his speech, he even had the courage to shout, “Destroy Richard! Destroy the invaders!”
This was the most severe of accusations. If it was deemed true, Richard, his family, and his closest allies would be burnt at the stake or cut apart and fed to beasts. The assembly was absolutely silent, no applause nor criticism of the knight’s allegations coming forth.
*PAK!* A solitary harsh clap resounded through the seemingly dead assembly, pulling heads in its direction. A solitary figure walked in through the gate, following the clap with a second and a third.
Richard was dressed in simple mage robes today, but the three swords behind him were particularly eye-catching. He walked right up to the podium and smiled at the knight who was only a little older than himself.
The youth’s passions immediately froze over. He turned stiff, unable to move so much as a finger. The sheer difference was almost miraculous.
“I heard that someone here accused me of being an invader. My, so serious!” Richard’s tone was exaggerated, but nobody here had the guts to laugh. The three swords and staff were a clear indication that he had come fully prepared to fight.
The half-closed gates were suddenly thrown open, dozens of heavily armed knights pouring into the assembly followed by Richard’s motley entourage. Seeing the sheer murderous aura rising in the air, the nobles suddenly lost their voices. Nobody even had the guts to ask where the guards went.
The young knight lost all his courage, fainting on the spot without so much as a squeak. Richard jumped onto the stage and turned around, calmly glancing through his audience. In the midst of this unbearable silence, he finally spoke up.
“I don’t plan on giving you an explanation.”Previous Chapter Next Chapter
Translated By: OMA
Edited By: Theo