Book 1, Chapter 88

Punishment

Alice nodded in approval, “Luck is a very important part of one’s power. Offer some more sacrifices to the Eternal Dragon. Also, don’t think that sending Amilon and Sheff packing means you’ll be able to deal with the other Archerons. Those two pieces of trash are a disgrace. Honestly, I’m quite regretful that our territories are three thousand kilometres apart.”

Raymond laughed, “I find it regretful too! If our territories were to be joined together, that might have been enough to form a marquisate. However, the true wars are fought on the endless planes. I anticipate the day when I come to know the coordinates of yours.”

Alice smiled, “I anticipate the same thing. However, I’m afraid what happened today can’t be resolved so easily. You’ve already infuriated Gaton, and even I’m a little afraid of that guy. Take care of that little barony of yours!”

Having said this, Alice stood up and headed outside the room. She suddenly turned around at the doorway, scanning everyone in the room and saying indifferently, “If I were you, I’d definitely return home more often in the near future to see if anything’s happened.”

In that moment, the expressions of practically everyone but Raymond and Valen changed. They all understood the threat behind Alice’s words: the incident with Faulk was a terrible opening. The fight between their families would no longer abide by the age-old traditions of nobility, and the Archerons would begin to use underhanded means as well…

A long while after Alice left, Raymond sobered up from his thoughts.

The atmosphere in the room was stifling, and everyone looked terrible. The Joseph Family had a long history, and as experts who depended on the Josephs each and every one of the people here was a small noble with their own land. Valen and Naseby themselves were barons, the titles inheritable, which was why Alice’s threat was straightforward and effective.

The results of Faulk’s failure was obvious. The big shots of the major families were no fools, and they would see through the conspiracy behind this matter. Later this very same day the news would spread out, and would include some details outside the actual scene as well. Time had been tight, and they would not be able to erase all traces.

Now they would have to expect the Archerons’ revenge. Faulk being injured and crippled was a part of the price, but that was not enough. The only reason he wasn’t killed was that Goliath wanted to avoid any issues that would bring, and also to leave some room for them to exact a more proper revenge. Or perhaps they would use this as a pretext, making a big fuss about it. They would follow the culture of revenge amongst nobility: an eye for an eye, blood for blood, and plunder until the price had been paid.

However, things were different if the Archerons targeted these minor nobles. Although they were part of the Joseph Family’s core strength, they were not a part of it by blood. Outside of Valen and Naseby, the rest of their families hadn’t accompanied them for generations, so Duke Joseph would likely be willing to let them go.

Poison Snake, for instance, was only an expert temporarily hired by them. Even as he was dying probably thought that the fight was just a battle between two hedonistic children of large families, with no idea of what was truly going on. Even if he died the Joseph Family could just hand over some compensation in the form of gold. In the eyes of families with great backgrounds like them, gold was one of the least valuable things.

Their values to the Josephs followed a similar logic. Although they could be considered experts individually, experts were the thing the Archerons lacked the least. If the Archerons went all out on them, nobody in their midst would be able to escape. The Josephs did have people able to contend against Goliath, and even Gaton or Mordred, but the issue was that they would not send out these people just for a few trivial characters like them.

Even if this situation was on a bigger scale and applied to the family, things would still be the same. Now, just Gaton alone could contend against the entire Joseph Family. If all the Archerons were seen as a single entity, then in terms of individual strength, they had an absolutely crushing advantage over the Josephs.

Thankfully, this bunch of lunatics had never truly worked together, and some even betrayed and sold each other out. An example would be what had just transpired. However, the temporary alliance between Gaton, Goliath, and Alice was already enough to cause Duke Joseph a headache. It would be a simple task to deal with those people who were attached to the family.

Thus, all eyes landed on Raymond in that moment. If the Joseph Family was willing to protect them, then the Archerons would target the direct descendants of Joseph. However, this matter...

Raymond gazed at these subordinates that had followed him for many years, and gently said, “With Alice’s personality, that was definitely not an empty threat. Hence, if the family is to protect you, then there is a large possibility of war with the Archerons.”

Everyone’s expressions turned even worse. But then Raymond smiled with confidence, “However, I have no habit of abandoning my comrades. I anticipate exchanging blows with Alice, and even Gaton, on the battlefield.”

Everyone, including Valen, heaved a sigh of relief. Joy and gratitude surged in their hearts.

……

Meanwhile, Richard had returned to the Archeron island, and Senma disappeared immediately after handing him to the butler. The arrow from Poison Snake was actually extremely dangerous, with astounding power that allowed it to penetrate both her magical armour and skin, reaching deep into her internal organs. The poison and indistinguishable curses attached to it were already eating away at her strength, and only by relying on an unknown tenacity had she managed to bring the boy home.

The butler was shocked upon seeing Richard’s state. The boy’s forehead, the back of his skull, and many other vulnerable areas were all bruised black and blue, with blood still seeping out of some parts. His clothes were completely ripped apart at the chest, abdomen, and back, obviously not from tearing but from powerful attacks to his body. It was easy to imagine the harm that must have been done to him.

When a powerful cleric from the family was rushed over, he wrinkled his forehead upon seeing the state of Richard’s injuries. He proposed that the areas with lighter injuries were handled externally, lessening the strain on the divine spell and allowing him to expend some effort after casting it to check if there were any other repercussions.

Soon enough, Richard returned to his own room. The butler believed Richard, who had gone through shock, needed to get a good rest. Richard did appear tired as well, though that was because he had used Eruption twice in succession. His injuries had mostly healed, and the areas where the skin had broken had ointment applied on them. His internal organs had obviously been shaken up, but after a few days he would completely recover.

The cleric had spent the most time on his head. He hadn’t actually felt uncomfortable at the start, but after being fiddled with for so long, he had begun to feel slightly dizzy.

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OMA's Thoughts

Theo: You thought you're only getting two chaps today? Think again.

Translated By: Ying

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA