Chapter 140: A Rough-Secret Meeting
The mercenary city of Belfein had a special tavern destined for high-class mercenaries. This tavern was an unreachable place for mercenaries who placed themselves on the battlefield in order to get the money to live.
This place was more like a salon than a tavern. A salon that one could not enter without the privileges given by the Lord of Belfein. Money could not even buy an entry to this unreachable place.
From the entrance, the atmosphere was different from a normal tavern.
What stuck to our nostrils was not the cheap scent of alcohol, but the scent of perfume and ornamental flowers decorating the place. This scent of flowers was only meant for the aristocrats to feel comfortable. Even though it was a lot of luxury, I rounded my eyes involuntarily when I realized that such useless and delicate things were brought to the tavern.
For me, a tavern was a place where you could listen to the hustle and bustle of drunken men. A place where you could enjoy the cheap alcohol. A place where you could let go of your painful daily life for a few moments.
Therefore, when I felt the elegance of ornamental flowers in such a place as this, it was clear to me that this high-end tavern was completely different from the taverns I frequented.
Bruder and I were now inside this absurd luxurious tavern, which even made me feel like an outcast.
We were facing her across a table. We were having a meeting with Belfein’s guardian, the Steel Princess Vestaline. A number of mercenaries surrounded her. They seemed to be her guards.
「What a luxurious welcome, such a waste. 」
Places like these ran with a lot of money. While saying those words, I sat on a sofa that I’ve never sat before. It felt so soft that I could not even imagine what kind of material it was made of.
In the battle between swords and mercenaries, there were those who always grabbed the victory flag first. This time, I tried to be the one to seize it myself. Nonetheless.
Right now, the enemy was overwhelmingly larger. I could see many disadvantages in this strategy. However, I did not care even if there was only one or two advantages among countless of disadvantages. Mercenaries were ruthless people, in fact, the worse kind to have as enemies. The same with the Steel Princess of Belfein. With so many mercenaries and enemies, I wondered if I could win under these conditions.
Now, all the conditions were aligned with the opponent. This situation felt the worst, actually.
I did not know if I should deal with the Steel Princess as I did with the hero Helot Stanley. At least, I could not think of a way to easily overcome this situation.
「…I have something to ask you. You have to answer honestly, and obediently.」
I felt a slight darkness in the tavern. The lack amount of light created an atmosphere that was truly lewd. Perhaps, this tavern was also a place to bring in people of the opposite sex.
This place was perfect for a secret meeting.
Vestaline’s lips moved repeatedly, creating a slight shadow on her silhouette. She felt no consideration for Bruder and me after we were brought suddenly to such a place like this. Apparently, the intention to obey her was hidden behind her words.
「It depends on the content. It would be a problem if you asked me about the amount of rum bottles that I drank up to this day.」
Bruder professed those words while sitting next to me. When I glanced at him, I could see that he was slightly out of breath.
It could not be helped though. Although Bruder was not in a good shape due to the last fight, his current condition was due to something else. Bruder harbored intense emotions against this woman, Vestaline. His expression looked pale and blue. His eyes seemed to be tragic and sad. His eyelids vibrated as if they were twitching, and his lips bit into the canine teeth to the point of spilling blood.
However, Bruder endured these painful emotions. Both of us understood the situation. A large number of mercenaries surrounded us with a killing intent. We clearly knew that we were in an overwhelmingly disadvantaged situation right now. With that reason, Bruder suppressed his emotions. A single word could mean our downfall.
If we both went wild here, it would be impossible to escape. The mercenaries kept their eyes on Bruder and me. I noticed that their hands touched the swords and spears at their waists. They were ready to strike us with their weapons at any moment. Everyone’s eyes quivered upon hearing Bruder’s light-hearted response.
「I don’t want to know that. Please refrain from saying unnecessary words. I just want to know about one single thing.」
For a moment, Vestaline’s lips closed. I felt as if she was scared of the words she was about to profess. Perhaps, she wondered if it was okay to ask us whatever she had in mind.
Nonetheless, Vestaline opened her mouth after hesitating for a short moment.
「Everything you two know about my father Mordeaux Gon. Tell me everything, including what you saw and heard.」
She finally put into words both her worries and curiosity. Her piercing eyes swayed, but her expression was still arrogant.
I put my finger on my lips. I wanted to bite a chewing cigarette at such a time as this. However, if I put my hand in my pocket on this moment, a weapon would certainly struck at my neck immediately.
Ah, how annoying. I wondered why this Steel Princess took such forceful means just to ask us that question. As expected. How would she feel when she realizes that she was not born but only raised as the pretend daughter of the prestigious Lord Mordeaux Gon?
The strange knocking sound shook the air of the cheap brothel. For me, this knock saved me. After all, Saint Matia pursued my actions with her strange power, and Bruder was Bruder, a man who gave off a weird atmosphere by sulking somewhere.
To be honest, I felt grateful to the unknown visitor for wiping out this distorted air.
Even if the method of knocking felt a little too rough.
「Excuse me. 」
I heard the voice of a man who seemed to have a certain old age. I wondered if this man waited for our reply.
After knocking in a strange and rough way, my ears received the sound of someone forcibly breaking through the door.
My eyes widened in shock, and I involuntarily pulled Matia behind my back. This visitor did not seem to be a simple assailant. There was no way such a person could know our existence through knocks and words. It meant that this visitor clearly knew Bruder and me. Perhaps, this visitor wanted to take us as tributes.
Ah, I should have felt it at this point. There was no one who paid homage to a person who slept in a corner of such a cheap brothel in the prostitution street.
When the wooden door broke, multiple people entered the room forcefully. At least to some extent, they seemed to be disciplined. Even though it was a small room, these people moved very swiftly and lightly. They did not attack us immediately.
However, not good. It would be a bad move to take a step back. I would not have a problem if there were just a few enemies. Still, multiple people was a different story. Some of them even stood in front of the door. Moreover, I had the Saint woman by my side. I had to do my best so that she would not get injured.
「…What’s wrong, I have no plans to hold a ball. I’m sorry but I will ask you to leave.」
I even felt a cold sweat flowing from my chest. I desperately held back my body so that my teeth won’t break. I felt my heavy breath because of this tension.
However, if I left everything up to these people, it would cause us harm in the end. I wondered what I should do.
I looked sideways and glanced at the window. This corner room was on the second floor.
「It is disrespectful from our side to resort to violent means. We are here to pick you two up at the behest of our leader.」
In front of me stood an elderly man dressed in armor. This man was the one who spoke through the door earlier. His voice was by no means delicate, but he had a compassionate sound behind his rough persona.
「I thank you for your invitation. But from who? Also, there are three of us here, are you not mistaken?」
This man had a strong will in his eyes. His throat involuntarily withered with saliva. That will was the determination to achieve his purpose, no matter what. I had seen such light contained in his eyes before. It was the same shining light of my teacher’s eyes.
The throat of this elderly man made a noise.
「I apologize, but I can’t tell you. It is fine for you to call me rude. However, we cannot retreat because of the strict order to bring you in.」
This elderly man spoke with a tough voice. It seemed that I could not easily escape from him. How troublesome. This kind of verbal interaction with an unyielding opponent sounded excessively nasty. This situation was truly an overwhelmingly unfavorable situation.
He continued to speak. His big eyes stared at me fixedly. I felt that this man began approaching me slowly.
「Besides, I am not mistaken…I have a command to bring you two together.」
While speaking, this man pointed to my face and Bruder’s face, who laid on the bed.
I see. I fully understood it now. It looked like he implicitly told me what he meant. Then there was no point in asking how he found us here. After all, Bruder and I were already infamous people in this city.
We were the people who defied the Iron Devotee and Steel Princess, Vestaline.
I felt some emotions swaying in my chest. Per my calculations, I realized that the devil’s finger stroke the back of my mind.
「…Okay. I accept the invitation. However, this one is injured. If you want to bring him too, then you should call a carriage. What do you say?」
I gazed at Matia as a sign. He did not say that he would take Matia too. In other words, he would not take any hostages. I didn’t know if it was his will or the order from his employer.
Matia had a dissatisfied color on her eyes in response to my gaze. Nevertheless, for a moment, she looked like she was thinking about something, and then she took a deep breath and spoke.
「Yes, it can’t be helped. If this situation is unavoidable, then I shall accept it too. There’s nothing I can do under these circumstances despite who I am. But Lugis, will you be okay?」
Apparently, based on her whispering words, Matia read my intention to some extent. She knew that I had no other choice but to follow this path. Of course, I did not intend to toss my life away, neither Bruder’s life.
Matia smiled at the situation. A light, yet peaceful smile.
「Don’t do dangerous things. Be sure to come back to me. You have to return no matter where you are and no matter what happens. Always.」
Yes, Matia added a few more words before we left.
Good turn of events 😉
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