Not Handing Over
Larwin pretended like he didn't see the threatening poses Leguna and Harrison were in and approached them with a smile. "What are the two of you making all this commotion for?"
While Larwin was rather pudgy and always wore a gentle smile, those who understood him knew that treating him like a pushover was an invitation to suffer.
It was true that he seemed gentle and benevolent, but the gazes he swept Leguna with sometimes instilled fear in him. He came to understand the phrase 'petrified by a gaze' which he read in novels so often.
Leguna turned to give Harrison a careful glance and noticed he was also feeling a little unnerved. Perhaps he feared the emperor more than Leguna did as a result of his family's constant warnings.
It made Leguna feel a little edge over him. He adjusted his feelings and took the initiative to explain.
"Your Imperial Majesty, Eirinn was taking a casual walk and accidentally stumbled into the forbidden area. I didn't think the city guard would be so intolerant as to not let us pass. I got into an argument with Harrison here over it."
"Oh?" Larwin looked at the paling Wendy and turned to Harrison. "Is that true, Harrison?"
"Your Imperial Majesty… The matter is more or less as he said. But…"
"But…. Miss Eirinn is a little too harsh. My brothers had politely asked her to come along for a simple investigation but she abused her power as a high-order priestess and went all out on them!"
"Harrison you liar! Politely? A simple investigation? If your subordinates really were that polite, how could Wendy have gotten so badly injured? She had a sword pierced through her abdomen!"
"Hmph! Don't make things up! At least, your subordinate can still stand! Those eight brothers of mine are incapacitated on the ground!"
Eirinn blushed. The guards had been really rough to the point that even the gentle Eirinn felt genuine rage. So, while she did heal them out of her foolish kindness… She hadn't done her utmost.
I'm not going to soothe the pain! Hmph! You baddies actually hurt Wendy so badly! I'll see if you dare do this again! Thinking back at her 'vile' thoughts just now, she felt a little embarrassed. Now that Harrison brought it up again, it felt like her bad deed was being exposed.
"Your subordinates are only pretending to be incapacitated! Have a duel with me and I'll make sure you're really incapacitated for good!" he couldn't help but yell. Harrison had tried time and again to trouble him to the point he could stand it no longer.
"Don't think I'm afraid of you!" Harrison's face was red with anger.
"Alright!" Larwin finally made a dissatisfied bellow, startling the other two silent.
However, his rage only lasted for a second. By the time the two turned meek, he wore his warm smile once more.
"I believe this matter isn't that big of a deal. Why would the two of you have to disrupt the harmony because of this? I believe it's best to resolve this matter today."
"Understood, Your Imperial Majesty." Harrison immediately agreed obediently.
Leguna hesitated for a moment, before he nodded. "As you wish, Your Imperial Majesty."
"Good." He looked at the two satisfied, but changed his tone to a stern one the next moment. "However, a clash between the bureau and the city guard can't just be overlooked."
"I wonder what the ideal resolution would be?" Harrison asked.
"I'm not interested in whose fault it is today. However, there can't be a rift between the two organizations because of this. That's why, the ones from each side who fought first, please send them to the court. We'll decide how they judge this matter. At the very least, there must be a resolution from both sides."
The whole place quieted down after he said that. Nobody would've expected him to pick such a rough and crude method to resolve this.
The one who acted first gets punished? How is this different from the Mercenary Association's stupid rules? he thought. He understood what Larwin was intending, however. The ones who lashed out first were unimportant figures. So, to save face, tossing them out to be scapegoats wasn't a bad deal.
Not to mention, Larwin managed to defend both Harrison and Leguna in this case.
While it was Eirinn's fault for going to the wrong place, she wasn't the one who acted first. If Larwin's arrangement was to be followed, only Wendy would be treated as a scapegoat. Larwin knew Leguna saw Eirinn as someone really precious, so he doubted Leguna would agree to letting her come to any punishment. However, he should be fine if a mere subordinate was punished, right?
And in terms of numbers, Leguna only had to hand Wendy in while Harrison would lose a whole squad of guards. It was already biased against him.
Though, Larwin didn't mistreat Harrison either. He decided to hand the scapegoats to the court, which Harrison's father basically ran. He could come up with any punishment he liked.
That was the ideal middle ground for Larwin. Not only would both sides be punished, it would be fair to either side. The scapegoats would at most be punished with 30 strokes anyway.
Harrison quickly saw through his intentions and felt much more relieved that the matter would be handed over to the court.
So, he immediately agreed. "Yes, Your Imperial Majesty."
Naturally, the faces of his guards began to pale. They had acted like that thanks to Harrison's orders, but not only were they not rewarded, they had to be punished for it as scapegoats! It was something they found hard to accept!
However, they chose to remain silent in the end. Harrison turned to glare at them after he agreed to Larwin. From his expression, they could tell he wouldn't mistreat them for their troubles. The thought of that stopped the guards from revealing the truth of the matter.
They also understood that revealing it would do nobody any favors. In the end, they would be punished all the same and also offend Harrison in the meantime. They would rather take the beating and get Harrison's reimbursement. While he was quite the arrogant fellow, he did treat his subordinates rather well.
Leguna fell silent and turned to look at the three women behind him. Eirinn seemed a little hasty when she heard what Larwin said. She had wanted to speak up, but Innilis stopped her. Innilis didn't express anything about it, but he could tell that she was dissatisfied with the arrangement.
As for Wendy, she kept her head low weakly as if it had nothing to do with her. She didn't say a word.
After some thought, Leguna shook his head. "Apologies, Your Imperial Majesty. I won't hand her over."Previous Chapter Next Chapter