Translated by Tianic, edited by Grammarly
Having dealt with the captivities and the day’s army affairs, it was sundown.
Throughout the day, I wouldn’t dare to leave Fischer all by himself because I worried that he might have been illy forcing himself to suppress the inner sorrow and anger while attending his duties.
That was why I had the cooks prepared a rich dinner for Fischer and summoned Webster and Tennessee as companies in the hope that Fischer could feel better at the day’s end.
All the delicacies on the dining table did not offer much help for Fischer’s face was hellishly heavy and he went absent-minded multiple times.
Helplessly, I hinted Webster with my eyes.
“Your Grace, I heard you released the enemy commander?” Webster was a clever old timer to understand me, “May I inquire your intention?”
“I’d give his neck a clean chop!” Tennessee was less clever but not the least, he followed, “I heard the crap wet his pants, what a useless, soft-spined coward.”
“Er, I did.” Fischer’s attention re-focused, he talked slowly, “I’ve given it a fair thought on either to keep him alive or to kill him. It turns out killing him will do us nothing good save for making you all feel good. But by releasing him could we let the rebels know that I am secure with Cohen’s army guarding my safety. So some weak-minded enemies might just turn and leave Swabia. In the latter case, Luhrmann’s plan is hindered. Finally, those viceroys who did not take part in the rebellion will more or less have their ways to this information, which will ultimately strengthen their faith to stand against Luhrmann.”
“A thorough thought, Your Grace. You are better than us old timers.” Webster sighed then turned the subject to me, “What about Cohen? I feared that you would have had that major assassinated.”
“You’ve underestimated my loyalty.” I gave Fischer a look and said with a smile, “Since it’s His Majesty’s decision, I will follow instead of doing things otherwise.”
“That easy?” Tennessee shook his head, “Hell I don’t buy it. That’s essentially not your style.”
“My, my, Viceroy Cohen!” Fischer’s eyes looked at me. Whatever was on his mind, it brought a hind of a smile on Fischer’s face, “Just spit it out.”
“Fair enough.” Seeing Fischer was drawn to the conversation, I shrugged, “I wish all generals in power in Porta are useless asses like that major. This way, if future conflicts arise, a major like him will do us much favor.”
“Why I’m not surprised.” The three shook their head together, “I knew it.”
“I’m flattered.” I laughed, “I’ll take that as a compliment!”
“Makes no difference.” said I, “I grew up with you dearest two’s teachings. I merely carried forward what I’ve learned.”
“Well done, I’ll give you that.” Webster gave me a thumbs up, “We’ll tell Visual about it.”
“Let’s eat, uncles.” Fischer reached for his knife and fork. It turned out he was better in the feelings, “I’d rather eat up all his money than talking to his father.”
Hence all went on track. The dinner carried on.
After the meal, my two aged mentors excused resting. Fischer and I took for a trip.
As evening fell, starlight occasionally shed through the cloud-curtained sky. It was early winter. The night breeze was beginning to carry a hint of cold.
Fischer traveled on a trail in the castle without a word while I followed and remained the same silence.
We went all the way to the wall top of the castle overlooking the night patrols as well as the flickering campfires in the far or close distance. The entire campsite was within our visions.
“A thing can happen so fast that you can’t get ready to react in this world.” Fischer put a hand on the wall, he finally talked, “Our safety was at stake this morning and hours later, you and I are drinking without any fear. If we acted one step wrong in this, we would have been killed.”
“If you weren’t smart enough,” Fischer said, “Cohen, we might never meet each other.”
“Your Grace, leave those meaningless thoughts alone. It already went this far.” I walked by Fischer’s side, “Be strong! It’s your responsibility.”
“I understand, Cohen. I have duties.” Fischer lowered his head, his tone also lowered, “But, but my heart hurts!”
I tapped his shoulder.
“Think about your parents! They would want to see you like this.” I urged softly, “Brother, I feel you. But you need to be strong now. Those two will live forever in our hearts.”
“Your Grace, I assume the former king and queen would want you to be strong.” I took Fischer’s hands, “They died because they knew you’re able to flee the danger and avenge them. You will fulfill their wish and be a good king. Don’t let them down.”
“I would give anything in exchange for their lives.” Fischer said with welled eyes.
“Don’t be silly, Your Grace. That’s the god’s work.” said I, “All men must die. The king and the queen went away with pride. One was a wise king, one was a merciful queen. They’ve become 2 of the shiniest stars in the sky and they’ll be solely remembered by all.”
“Is that so?” Fischer looked up into the night sky. His hands shivered.
“What Your Grace should do now is to rip away the dark clouds shading in front of the stars.” I lowered my tone, “Luhrmann, as well as the Cardinals, they will die!”
“They will.” Fischer answered immediately, “I’ll kill them myself even I have to chase them down till the end of the world.”
“Rest assured, Your Grace, You’re not alone. I and my followers will be by your side until the end of time. No one will stop us!”
“Cohen, I know you’ll always be with me, but…” Fischer landed a hand on my shoulder. A hint of confusion revealed from his eyes, “whenever you call me ‘Your Grace’, I felt we are no longer as close as we were.”
“Er, actually I was not used to your new title to begin with. But you’re a king now and you need to brace a king’s disposition. And as the king’s closest friend, it is my responsibility to uphold your disposition.” I said with a smile, “Your Grace, I know it’s a bit hard to get used to and you’re not alone. We must take time to learn to accept it. Your Grace, no matter what we call each other, it’s just a title. In my heart, Your Grace, you’ll always be my best friend, my brother.”
“Can you promise that?”
“I can and I swear you’ll forever be my brother.” I said earnestly, “And you will become a good king. It’s not only your goal but also the former king and queen’s goal. Let us achieve this goal together.”
“Looks like there is no other way. I’ll try to be a king.” Fischer nodded and stood upright, “Cohen, when are we getting out of here?”
“Tomorrow morning.” said I, “As soon as Brigadier Wilder’s troops make a timely withdrawal from DC region, we’ll be ready to set off.”
“Wilder is a brigadier now.” Backhanded, Fischer said, “How’s he doing?”
“Not bad, though he makes tiny mistakes sometimes.”
“Tell me about your stories.” Fischer has finally cheered up a bit, “Tell me how you escaped.”
Therefore, side by side, we sat on a stone stair. I started from the dreadful Clay City battle to the bizarre tunnel. The attractive telling went on and on until midnight. Fischer was deeply appealed.
Suddenly, dense horse hoof sounds traveled from afar.
Seconds later, Malphite’s unique steps began shattering the stairs. He came right towards Fischer and me.
“Your Grace, sir.” Malphite saluted, “Our 2nd Legion wingman scouts came to report. Brigadier Wilder has withdrawn from DC perimeter. Your Grace and sir, please set off ahead of him. Brigadier wilder has requested to guard the rear while you leave”
Fischer and I shared a look.
“Viceroy Cohen, do your work. This king will rest.” Fischer stood up, “Captain Malphite, you’ll assume a Major rank from this moment on.”
“Yes, Your Grace.” Malphite was a bit surprised.
“No need to worry. I can’t let you be a low-rank IGT captain.” Fischer left while telling Malphite, “And it’s not free. Watch Viceroy Cohen’s safety for me.”
“Yes, Your Grace.”
Seeing Fischer off, I told the orc, “Send my order, we’re rolling out to Dark City at dawn!”
“Sir, yes, sir!”
Wilder caught us on the 4th day of the setoff. We ran into Moya and the 36 Clans he was assigned to escort. Thus Fischer had the protection of my entire mighty troops began marching towards Dark City.
Since I had Moya and Carlos, naturally I gained timely knowledge of the newest intelligence about Dark City and Darkmoon.
Before the DC rebellion, there were already roughly 40, 000 PUF troops on the Darkmoon border. As for my Dark City, though underestimated, there were about 10, 000 PUF soldiers there. At the start of the rebellion, these rebels who were under Luhrmann and his closely connected viceroys began attacking the 2 provinces under my influence.
I wouldn’t have to worry about my Dark City due to Martin Luther was personally attending to garrison duty as well as there were enough troops left. A robust administration system had enabled the city to react to the attack quickly. Once the 20, 000 rebels had marched 300 miles into my province, they were encircled by an army consisted of alien races such as elves, dwarf, sandmen. Martin Luther was their commander, of course. After a day’s fight, the enemies were completely annihilated.
As for Darkmoon, things were not good to look at. Luhrmann has attached importance to this province which was run by my father for many years. He had deployed 70, 000 soldiers to attack. Under encirclement, my father and my 2 brothers had only 9, 000 operational soldiers. The battle went on harshly at the beginning days. The troops depreciated to 3, 000 by the time reinforcements and General Martin Luther had arrived.
Depletion of soldiers was nothing to be mentioned, the worst part was the destruction of the peripheral towns and villages.
Everybody knew that Luhrmann had abundant wealth and supply behind him since he had taken hold of Divine City. It was an irrefutable fact that he had taken over more than half of the empire despite a few provinces were still resisting. One can only hope to gain an enormous amount of supply and money in order to defeat him.
Now it was my turn to sore.
As a matter of fact, among the 17 provinces in Swabia, King Fischer practically own only Dark City and Darkmoon. These 2 provinces covered ⅕ of the total empire. Particularly, my Dark City was newly established and welcoming millions of 36 Clans refugees who were so eagerly waiting for a settlement. How on earth was I going to afford to supply an army to defeat such a large sum of rebels?
Sadly now, Darkmoon, my only hope, was ripped off of its stability and prosperity. I was even more anxious. I had no idea how to convey the news to Fischer.
As a result, Fischer had to comfort me now.
“Calm down, my viceroy.” Fischer seemed to have a well-thought plan, “I’m not good at leading armies, but you can’t outwit me on IAs. We’ll manage it.”
Well, he said it. I had to nod and believe. I trusted him as a brother.
The situation called, I ordered Moya to deploy 10 field regiment from his 3rd Legion, Wilder to deploy 2 knight battalions from his 2nd Legion into assisting Darkmoon’s defensive project.
The rest continued marching towards Dark City. Two days later, we were faced with the tall and magnificent Dark City gate.
“Once again, this gate. How time passed.” Fischer said on his horseback while admiring the stone wall, he talked softly, “Cohen, what’s on your mind?”
“Me?” I said without hesitation, “If they want to kill me, they’d better finish the job, or I’ll make them pay.”
“I don’t doubt that.” Fischer told me, “I wish I had a simple heart like yours.”
“Is that so, Your Grace?” I said embarrassedly, “That doesn’t sound like a compliment.”
“It was,” Fischer laughed, “on second thought, your simple mind would have tumbled if it really is.”
“Why would I!?” I argued loudly, “Am I such a man to you? I’m a decent man!”
“In this case,” Fischer slight lifted his chin towards the city, “please, draw your eyes to the gate.”
I did as I was told.
Down the tunnel in the wall, dozens of Dark City senior officers have neatly presented themselves. In front of them stood 3. Sure enough, my heart tumbled drastically.
“How’s your heart now.” Fischer’s sound echoed in my ears, “Is it still beating?”
“Positive…” Reluctantly, I answered because Fischer was the fucking king now, “My king, it is jittering like hell!”
“I’m beginning to love to be a king.” How mischievous Fischer sounded, “I assume you know why.”
Of course, I knew because Fischer was free to boss petty viceroys like me around now, as a king.
If he were a prince instead of a king, I would have kicked him down his horse and found a no-man place and had him clobbered.
However, it was different now. He was my king, the king I swore to protect with all my life. I had to swallow everything from verbal abuse to even sentencing me to death.
“I know.” I gave Fischer an innocent look, “My great, great, great king.”
“Hahaha…” Fischer made a laugh then took off his helmet, “I’ll let you ride faster since you look anxious.”
Hence 2 horses galloped one after the other to the gate and made stops at the crowd down the Dark City gate.
A dozen trumpets began horning royal anthem.
Fischer was imposing in appearance. His golden hair reflected golden sunray. A pair of majestic eyes swept over everybody.
“Your Grace, Dark City IA directors Flynn Rhona, Carey Rhona, Winslet,” Flynn Rhona walked 2 steps forward, fingers nipped the edge of her gown and slightly bent her knees lower to show her courtly courtesy, “and all senior directors, at your service.”
“Your Grace!” 3 ladies bent their knees as all other male officials dropped on their bodies to Fischer, the Swabian King.
“All rise.” Fischer nodded.
As the crowd rose to their feet, a pale man-figure emerged from behind the people. Dean of the newly-founded Dark City Academy, Lorenzo once again dropped to his knees.
“Your Grace, your humble courtiers were shocked to learn the grievous news of the pass of King Climos and the queen. With sorrow, here presents the declaration proclaims the rebels for Your Grace to review!” Lorenzo agitatedly fetched a scrolled, “A man as cruel and unscrupulous as Luhrmann will not end well.”
Fischer dismounted. He helped Lorenzo up.
“Dean Lorenzo, I assure you, I will end his life.” Fischer said firmly, “This king will recover Swabia, restore our land!”
“We are ready to offer our lives!” The crowd knelt once again.
“I feel your loyalty.” Fischer replied loudly, “You’re an absolute necessity for me in order to achieve it. Now I have you, I will succeed. Now rise…”
“You Grace, please follow us to the viceroy’s mansion for further rest.” Flynn intended to move the conversation to a better place than at the gate. The girl was talking to Fischer but her eyes inevitably glimpsed on me. Her cheeks reddened.
“Might as well.” Fischer told me, “Viceroy Cohen, with me.”
“Yes, Your Grace.”
So then I slowly took off my helmet into the gate with Fischer. While I gave a brief overlook at my bureaucrats, I did not forget a light smile to my 3 wives. However, they ignore my friendly gesture.
Why, how could a husband who returned from deadly battlefields receive a welcome like this?
Our guards were called up.
O, Dark City, after almost a whole year, I’m finally back!
This chapter was originally published on Wuxianation, any despicable reposts or copies without proper citings are strictly prohibited.