Chapter 64. Ball (15)

"There must be a reason why a noble knight, who can reason with words, wielded a sword for question and answer. I think that's because the guy you were determined to cut is one of those very wicked people who don’t require a prior warning."

Now, I have to pull myself out of the ‘wicked people’ group.

"Oh, of course, I'm just a little lowly thief, so I think I'd have to run away immediately if I met such wicked guys."

"So?"

Good. You're still listening to my bullsh*t.

"But considering you mistook a petty thief like me for one of those wicked guys, I can infer that there was information today that the wicked people would come to the magic school."

Wait, something's wrong! How did Uncle Bloody know that those "wicked bastards" were gonna show up here?

"Keep going."

When I stopped talking for a moment and fell deep into thought, Uncle Bloody urged me to continue with a look of interest. Something felt off, but the top priority now was to run away from Uncle's grasp.

"If my reasoning is correct, the wicked ones are coming here today. But I'm not one of them. Then while Sir Knight is distracted by me, the wicked people can break into this place--"

KwaKwaaang-!!!

My words were cut off by the sound of an explosion in the distance.

“-That a possibility, right?”

Uncle Bloody looked at the place where the explosion occurred.

"Damn it!"

I took a step away from my uncle who had an expression of urgency on his face.

"Then, excuse me."

Uncle Bloody looked like he was about to run off to the explosion site, but then suddenly pointed his sword at me.

"Wait, you're coming too!"

"What?! Why me?!"

I didn't want to get involved with those that I temporarily refer to as 'wicked people who would easily and silently stab you from the back'.

"Don't you yourself think that you're pretty suspicious?”

Uh... well, I was certainly suspicious. I was eating duck meat while wearing a mask on the roof where the princess' birthday ball was being held. If I were him, I would have first started swinging a chainsaw as the best means of conversation.

"No. Look at my kind gaze. What part of it looks suspicious?"

I made my eyes as sparkly as possible. Look at my eyes that shimmered with kindness!

"Get rid of those rotten eyes. There’s no time, so come with me or die. Choose!"

Rotten eyes! So mean! I’m hurt!

"Should I take the lead?"

With a sword pointed at me, I had no choice but to lead the way to the explosion site.

-o-

The evening sun set and the ball began. At the same time, the banquet hall began to get crowded as the nobles living in the capital entered one after another.

A court orchestra was on one side of the banquet hall, performing and filling the space with their music. Dishes cooked with all kinds of spices were placed in the center, the fragrant aroma enticing the appetite of the attendees.

Arelia walked around the banquet hall in the magic school uniform that William had carefully made. Having been born as a princess, she attended various banquets and balls, but today was the first time she felt that the party was fun. At banquets like this, she was always surrounded by disgusting adults with greedy smiles. Her brothers and sisters shared her plight. But this time, it was different. No one knew that she was a princess, and there were friends around her who looked at her for who she was, rather than her status.

"Yuria! Aria! That person’s eating cotton!" Alice held up the cotton candy as if it was something amazing and called the two over.

"You’re right, he’s eating decorations!” Yuria agreed with Alice and looked at the lady eating cotton candy like they were looking at a strange animal.

"Puhat!"

Arelia burst into laughter because they were so cute. There was no way it wouldn’t be pleasant seeing these innocent people after seeing only adults who were just like cunning snakes but hiding those intentions deep within.

"Alice, Yuria. It's a popular snack amongst the noblewomen in the capital these days,” Arelia said.

Alice and Yuria were perplexed and looked at the cotton candy.

"What?! They eat cotton?" Alice looked at Arelia, her eyes full of disbelief.

Alice was also a daughter of a noble family but was also a far-off country bumpkin. And after arriving at the capital, she had never attended any parties in the capital as she was preparing for the magic school entrance exam and adapting to school. Eating cotton that appeared to be for decorative purposes was out of this world for her.

Yuria felt almost the same way, if not stronger than Alice. Growing up as a talented person in the Butterfly Tribe, even the last parfait she ate seemed to be a new world to her, let alone a cotton candy.

With a smile, Arelia tore off a piece of cotton candy that Alice was holding and put it into her own mouth. Her dimples deeply showed as the sweetness spread in her mouth.

"Come on, you can eat it.”

Arelia tried it herself, but Alice and Yuria stared at the cotton candy with doubtful eyes.

"Ayyt!" Yuria closed her eyes tightly, ripped some cotton candy, and put it into her mouth.

It melted instantly in her mouth, becoming sugar water and the sweetness coated her mouth.

"It’s sweet!?" Yuria's eyes twinkled with surprise. The magician’s unique and inquisitive mind activated and she started wondering how cotton candy was made.

When Yuria ate the cotton candy again, Alice also tried a little piece.

"It's sweet!"

While Alice and Yuria were absorbed in the cotton candy, the 9 p.m. bell rang.

Deng-! Deng-!

It was now time for her to show her face as the princess, not Arelia.

"Sorry, I'm supposed to meet someone, but I'll be right back." With regret, Arelia took a little bit of the cotton candy that Alice was holding and stuck out her tongue.

Being in the know, Yuria nodded, and Alice, who did not know the situation, also bobbed her head without thinking.

As Arelia left her seat, Alice looked around. "Where the heck did Milpia go again?”

At some point, Milpia had disappeared, leaving Alice and Yuria in the hall. When she looked around, all she could find was Lisbon. Before she knew it, her brother was waltzing and chatting with young women whom Alice didn't even know. He had truly phenomenal sociability.

"Alice, look at that!"

Alice was admiring Lisbon’s sociability, when Yuria called out, pointing to the large chocolate fountain.

"Oh, my God!"

The two girls enjoyed the ball on their own.

-o-

As I headed towards where the sound of the explosion came from, I thought about quickly escaping. If I tried to run away, Uncle, who was currently emitting a martial aura that was prickling at my neck, would definitely cut me down on the spot.

But something was strange.

If my reasoning was correct, Uncle and other imperial leaders knew that there would be a group of wicked people appearing today at Arelia's ball. Two hypotheses could be established by that inference.

One, that the goal of the wicked ones was Arelia, the princess. Two, this situation was a trap designed by someone.

I know not why they would be after Princess Arelia. But based on the fact that Uncle and the other leaders knew that they were after her, I quickly realized that she was being used as bait.

The reason why Uncle Bloody was so restless was probably that he didn't like the fact that young Arelia was being used as bait and felt sorry.

What I found strange was not that Uncle, who disliked involving the weak, agreed to use her as bait. It wasn’t hard to pressure him with words. Rather, it was the explosion just now.

According to my reasoning, the goal of wicked people was to kidnap or assassinate Arelia. Usually, the standard procedure dictates the mission to be carried out in secret.

Yet, they were causing such a brilliant explosion? It wouldn't be weird even if the ball was stopped right now.

"Excuse me, Sir Knight. May I ask you a question?”

"What is it?"

"Why is the banquet hall quiet when there was such a loud explosion?”

With such an explosion, there should have been screams as people fled. But it was quiet.

Uncle Bloody answered casually, "Since they said they would cast a lot of spells including a soundproofing spell, would they even know that an explosion occurred?”

Excuse me? Aren’t things like these usually classified?

It was a little scary that he told me so casually. If it were someone else, they would have thought that Uncle would kill them or not let them go off. But, well, Uncle was just simple-minded.

"Then I suppose the ball is proceeding peacefully?” I asked.

"Probably."

I stopped walking towards the place where the explosion was heard.

"What is it? Why did you stop? I told you we don't have time.”

"Wait a minute. Let me think."

There's an empire and a hostile organization. The organization was aiming for the princess for some reason. The empire was using the princess as bait. An explosion occurred. The banquet hall where the ball was held had soundproofing magic. Uncle Bloody casually told me information that seemed to be a secret.

Wait, is this information really confidential?

No matter how simple and brutish Uncle’s thought process was, he would know to keep confidential information secure. Nevertheless, he had said it casually without even showing a look of ‘oops’. That was to say, it was not classified.

As long as the hostile organization of the empire at least had the information gathering ability of a neighborhood woman, it was highly likely that they would already know this fact.

Let's think again. An explosion occurred. Common sense says that if such a noise was heard, security would be temporarily driven to the site of explosion. At the same time, the ball continues as if nothing happened.

"I am done thinking now."

Uncle Bloody wore a confused expression. Well, it did seem ridiculous to say that I was done thinking less than 10 seconds after I asked to stop and think.

"Then, let's go. Ah! Those masked men!"

Uncle Bloody looked away from me and in the direction I pointed. It was nice that he was so simple-minded. I made a cross with my fingers.

"Shadow Clone Technique!"

A dozen or so phantoms of me appeared and began to flee in all directions. I mixed myself among them and ran away.

Glancing back, Uncle had a blank face before he seemed to realize the situation and got angry.

"This bastard!"

Uncle quickly wielded his sword and rapidly dissipated the phantoms with nine sword auras, but besides me, five others remained. He looked as if he was considering whether to come after me or head to the explosion site but then ended up choosing the latter.

I turned around and went back to the banquet hall.

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