Princess Violet had completely hidden her strength, but for Milton to have seen through it, that meant that his state was stronger than hers was.
“Can’t be… Marquis, you've already reached that high state?”
The knight, Carl, who had been standing next to her, was startled by her quivering voice. He knew very well what she meant when she said, ‘high state.’
Milton smiled at Princess Violet.
“Who knows, what do you see?”
She had a guess, but she couldn’t exactly say it. He stood right in front of her, but seeing how she couldn’t accurately read his state, that meant that they were at least equal. Just that alone was surprising. But can it be? Could he really have reached the high state? She knew that Milton was now in his mid-20s, but, to think that he’s reached this point at that age? Princess Violet had often heard that she was a genius, but now the thought that Milton was even more of a genius than she was crossed her mind. And as soon as she realized that…
“Marquis. Please, please give me a chance. I must make a big contribution during this war.”
She asked him wholeheartedly. Originally, she had planned to prove her strength to Milton and win the vanguard position from him. But wouldn’t it be unreasonable of her to do that if the other person was far better than her in terms of skills? For her, when she had to accomplish something great during this war, this was a disaster.
Milton looked at her.
“I have a question for you.”
“Princess Violet, why are you personally participating in this war? And why are you so desperately wanting to achieve something?”
Princess Violet bit her lower lip. After hesitating for a bit, she let out a sigh.
“I’m sorry, Marquis. I can’t tell you that right now.”
“You can’t tell me the reason… I see.”
When Milton’s response seemed to indicate refusal, Princess Violet hastened to explain.
“I’m sorry, but that has something to do with the inner workings of Florence Principality.”
“It’s not that I don’t understand, Your Highness.”
But Princess Violet continued to quickly speak.
“Please… if you accept my request, I’ll do whatever I can do for you. Whatever you want… I’ll agree to it.”
Carl, her knight, tried to stop her as she continued to speak urgently.
“Princess, you shouldn’t recklessly say such things…”
“Please be quiet, Sir Thomas. There’s no way we can retreat now.”
“But, Your Highness.”
She turned to look at Milton with eyes filled with distress and urgency.
Milton gave her a strained smile.
“You seem to have misunderstood something.”
“I just asked for the reason and even if you don’t tell me, that’s fine. It has nothing to do with the war itself.”
Princess Violet looked stunned for a moment.
Milton continued to speak with a bright smile.
“As long as there isn’t a problem with your abilities, a position that matches your abilities will be given, Your Highness.”
“You mean… I still have a chance to accomplish something?”
“More than enough.”
At his words, she let out a sigh of relief. What worried her the most was that because she was a woman, she would have been an outcast and wouldn’t have any opportunities to make a big enough contribution to the war. That was why, even knowing the dangers, she had wanted to be at the forefront of the war. As long as she could be victorious, it was a position where achievements were most clearly visible.
But from Milton’s perspective, there was no need to discriminate against her. Just looking at her stats alone, she was an outstanding knight. She made him wonder whether Princess Violet alone could defend a narrow passage if they were to retreat. There was no reason for him not to use her just because she was a woman. Rather, it’d be regrettable if she refused to work with him. Still, just in case, there was one thing to make sure.
“But, please keep one thing in mind.”
“As long as I am the commander of this war, you and your troops must be under my command, Your Highness.”
She responded happily.
“Of course, that’s only natural. Until this war is over, we will obey your commands and fight under you, Marquis. I promise you this as the representative of Florence Principality’s royal family.”
Milton smiled cheerfully.
“Then, until this war is over, let’s work hard together, Princess Violet.”
“Yes, the best of luck to us.”
Milton had thought there were only useless shits in the Allied Forces, but he had found a very talented and useful person.
Once the banquet was finished, the Allied Forces was officially established. The Allied Forces leaving the capital, Tempeulliche, were now completely under Milton’s command and were marching towards the battlefield. However…
“What do you mean we’re not going to the Northern Front? How can you make such a decision arbitrarily?”
When Milton led the army East towards the Eastern Front and not the Northern Front, the leaders from the other countries immediately rebelled. Count Dios, in particular, took the most offense. It was almost as if he had heard someone cursing at his parents instead of information on the direction they were heading.
“How can you just arbitrarily decide the army’s course without talking to us? Are you ignoring us?!”
Looking at Count Dios screaming and yelling, Milton was reminded of Korea, something he hadn’t been for a while.
‘Huh, so as long as you’re the loudest, you think you’re the best?’
And while they hadn’t directly confronted him, the people standing behind Count Dios all had a displeased expression on their face. Seeing how the leaders of the four other nations, except Princess Violet, all complained to him, Milton thought to himself.
Although it was something that he had already expected, it still didn’t feel great seeing such outright dissatisfaction from them. And so, with as much arrogance as possible, Milton spoke to them, half sincerely half acting.
“I have been given full control over the Allied Forces. Naturally, it’s my decision where I lead the army, but you’re telling me that I need your permission to do so?”
“Isn’t that natural?”
“That’s right. How can you decide the course of this army without saying a single word to us? Are you ignoring us?”
“Then… what? What did you just say?”
“That’s right, I’m ignoring you.”
“You have a problem with that, you greenhorn?”
At first, Count Dios couldn’t fully comprehend Milton’s words. But the moment he did, his face turned crimson.
“You have gravely insulted us.”
“You… You have insulted our honor and I demand an apology! Otherwise…”
Count Dios placed his hand on his sword buckled to his waist.
Milton looked at him with cold eyes.
“What did you just say…”
Milton stood up as he looked at the dumbfounded Count Dios.
“Mutiny towards the commander during a war. No, maybe this should be taken as a military rebellion?”
As Milton reached for his own sword while saying those words, Count Dios was rather dismayed.
‘Ah… this wasn’t supposed to happen.’
When he had placed his hand on his sword’s hilt, it was both an appeal and a threat.
I’m angry right now, so don’t ignore me.
Up until then, most people had taken a step back and made concessions when Count Dios had done this. But Milton had spoken of mutiny and confronted him instead. It was obvious who would win if they were to duel. Count Dios was not capable enough to support his hot temper. If he was to actually duel against Milton, it was obvious who would lose. At that moment, the person who saved him was Marquis Johannes who had been standing behind him.
“Hahahaha… Let’s calm down, Marquis Forrest. Although Count Dios shouldn’t have said that, don’t you think you’re overreacting?”
Marquis Johannes stepped in to intervene, but Milton was too annoyed to let it go.
“He showed the intent to rebel against his commander during wartime. According to military law, there would be no arguments even if I were to behead him.
“Well, that’s… isn’t it a special case right now? Do we need to observe military laws this strictly when everyone is from a different country?”
“Yes, we should.”
“Look here, Marquis Forrest…”
Milton interrupted Marquis Johannes
“During special circumstances like this, I see no reason why military laws cannot be observed just because our countries are different. If we were to accept such special cases, then the army would collapse.”
Scratching his head in annoyance, he continued to talk.
“How could you come to war without even knowing this? Damn, this is why beginners…”
He mumbled the last sentence as if talking to himself, but it clearly reached the ears of Marquis Johannes and the people standing behind him. Marquis Johannes’ face hardened once he heard it. Until now, Marquis Johannes felt that even if Milton didn’t treat him respectfully, at least he gave him the respect as an elder, but now, Milton’s attitude had completely changed.
Marquis Johannes thought Milton was trying to subdue them as the commander. And he also believed that if he was pushed here, he would continue to be dragged around by Milton.
“Your words are too harsh.”
“What do you mean too harsh?”
“We led our armies to participate in this war as well. I’m saying that we’re all in an equal position. But you’re completely ignoring and looking down upon us.”
“Equal position? Ha… you barely brought 20,000 troops and now you’re saying equal…”
The atmosphere turned cold. The other commanders all heard, ‘I have no intention of respecting you,' in Milton’s words. Of course, that was Milton’s intention. He had expected they would try to quarrel with him, and he had no intentions of letting it go. Why?
‘This war can’t be fought with a handicap.’
Because from the very beginning, Milton didn’t view the people in front of him as a helpful force, but a burden. That’s why, Milton had begun to antagonize them. He wanted to make these burdens say a certain sentence with their own mouths.
“If you are going to be this dictatorial, then we cannot cooperate in this war.”
This was exactly what he was looking for. Inwardly, Milton was delighted when Marquis Johannes said he could not voluntarily cooperate with this war. All he had to do now was follow the predetermined procedures step by step to achieve his goal. Milton spoke calmly to Marquis Johannes.
“So what if you can’t cooperate in this war? What are you going to do?”
Marquis Johannes was speechless. Even if he said he wouldn’t cooperate, there wasn’t much he could do. If he continued to refuse to follow Milton’s orders, then he would be going against military law. And he didn’t know if Milton really would punish them according to the military laws. But he also couldn’t take the chance going against him when the military laws could be acted upon. Life was a precious thing. Then, there was only one legal option for them to fight against Milton.
“If we decide that the commander’s arbitrary decisions are too much for us, then we will take back our reinforcement armies and return to our native country.”
Marquis Johannes took out his trump card. If there was no way to rebel within the Allied Forces, then he’ll just leave. This was the only legal way they could fight against Milton.
Of course, Viscount Sabian had already anticipated this and told Milton how to respond.
“Do as you wish.”
“Marquis Forrest? Are you being serious?”
“I am. Allies who interfere with the command structure are not helpful during war. I don’t need you.”
When Milton coldly told them to leave if they wished, Marquis Johannes and the other nobles were dumbfounded.
‘Is he serious? No, he’s probably bluffing.’
‘There’s no way he would…’
‘But what if he’s being serious?’
Truthfully, it was unreasonable for them to take their military and return back to their own countries. How could they return to their countries without fighting a single battle because they had trouble with the commander? None of them wanted to leave such a serious stain on their career. In the first place, none of them were in a high position back in their own countries. Their kingdoms thought this war was a sham and sent just enough reinforcements to make a showing. Even the commanders leading their military were just mediocre.
In other words, if they caused trouble and returned back to their country, there wasn’t anyone powerful enough to cover for them if they were questioned. No, actually, there was one person.
“Marquis, if we were to return to our own countries, then you’ll also be questioned by your own country.”
Gloucester Kingdom’s Count Josh Carbon spoke up.
Milton gave him a sardonic smile in response.
“You still don’t know where I rank in my country?”
“Unlike you, there’s no one in my country who would dare question me.”
‘Except my vixen of a fiancee.’Previous Chapter Next Chapter