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Translated by SoundDestiny
Edited by SoundDestiny
Alvan is a town in the east of the Kingdom of Styria.
Ruled by Viscount Ruizen, the town was a prosperous logistics centre in the eastern part of the kingdom.
The town of Alvan is currently under the control of the Kingdom of Revra, an invader from the north.
However, despite being under the control of the enemy, the town is as lively as ever, with many traders coming and going.
When Viscount Ruizen heard that the king had been defeated and Castor taken prisoner, he was the first to turn to the Revra side and ask for submission.
Viscount Ruizen’s decision to abandon his loyalty to his sovereign before he had even been advised to surrender was rightly condemned by friend and foe alike. Not only his fellow countrymen on the Styrian side, but also the Revra side and his own people called him a ‘coward who surrendered without a fight’, which shows how out of line his actions were.
Nevertheless, it is also true that the turnover was convenient for Revra.
Alvan is a trading city that attracts peddlers from many towns in the east of the kingdom. It is also the place where they can find a lot of people who are willing to work for them. If Revra can keep the city under them control without a fight, there is nothing better than that.
Viscount Ruizen was admitted to the Kingdom of Revra and allowed to continue his reign as ruler of the city of Alvan.
○ ○ ○
“What? I am suspected of treachery!?”
In the house of Viscount Ruizen, an old man’s voice rang out in anger.
The old man’s voice rang out like a child in a tantrum. He is the lord of the town of Alvan.
Viscount Ruizen rises from his chair and stares at the man sitting in front of him, his eyes red and bloodshot.
The knight in shining armor of the kingdom of Revra sits in front of Viscount Ruizen. The knight, a man in his forties, frowned slightly and wiped the spit from the old man’s mouth with his hand.
“….. I’m very sorry, but you’re right. You are suspected of harbouring the Crown Prince of Styria, Castor Styria, Viscount Ruizen.”
The knight pronounces in a low voice.
Viscount Ruizen shakes his fist and his wrinkled face contorts in humiliation.
“I have already broken with Styria and sworn allegiance to Revra! I will not shelter the Prince now! You think Revra doesn’t trust my loyalty?”
The knight gulped and swallowed the words he was about to say with a spit.
“How can I trust a man who betrayed his master in seconds? Do not speak of loyalty when you are a disloyal man who thinks only of his own safety.”
The old man in front of him will never be convinced by such a good argument.
Bird-ruizen( バード・ルイゼン) has no faith, no pride. All he wants is to rule the town and make a profit.
He has no shame in betraying the kingdom of Styria and turning to the kingdom of Revra.
“……As much as we would like to believe you, we have been informed that a dark-haired man, like the fugitive Prince, has been in and out of the city. As you know, black hair is a colour that rarely appears. It’s too good to be true.”
B”ut even if it is Prince Castor, there is no reason for me to betray him! He might just be coming and going as he pleases…”
“How lax the town’s management is, that a wanted man should come and go unnoticed. Are the guards who stand at the entrance to the town imitating scarecrows?”
It was hard to believe that the soldiers had missed the unusual black hair. Viscount Ruizen is at a loss for words as he suspects that he has been deliberately overlooked.
“Ugh ……, that’s ……, but ……”
But, no matter how many questions he is asked, Viscount Ruizen really has no idea.
If Castor was in town, he would have been the first to capture him and hand him over to Revra. For him, his own career is far more important than the life of his former lord. He has no hesitation in selling the life of the Prince.
“This is a warning. Viscount Ruizen.”
The old man is at a loss for words and the knight points his finger at him as if to give him an ultimatum.
“You must hand over Castor Styria to me in the near future. If you do not surrender Castor….. or allow him to escape from the estate, I will have you punished as a traitor.”
“What……? Please wait, wait!”
When he was told in no uncertain terms that he was to be punished, Viscount Roizen was flabbergasted.
He had turned on Revra, and had survived a great deal of criticism from his enemies. He could not afford to be falsely accused and lose his position now.
He must clear up the misunderstanding even if he has to cling to a knight who is a lower-ranked.
“I have not really betrayed you! Please believe me!”
“If you want us to believe in you, then show us by your actions and results. To capture and hand over to us Castor Styria.As a nobleman of Revra, you must show your loyalty to His Majesty Zardis.”
The knight coldly dismisses the old man, who clings to him, and quickly leaves the room.
‘I’ve said what I had to say. I have no use for you any more’ – the old man’s face flushed with anger at such a blatant attitude, but there was no time for shouting.
If he doesn’t find and capture Castor as soon as possible, his life and position will be in jeopardy.
“I have to find Castor……! If I don’t, my position …… and my life …… will be in jeopardy!”
Viscount Ruizen ordered his steward to summon the captain of the town guard.
When the captain and his men arrived at the lord’s house, the viscount shouted angrily at them.
“The fugitive Castor Styria has been coming and going in this town! Why didn’t you see it coming?”
“……my men have not reported any dark-haired figures, have they?”
“It can’t be! Revra has asked you to hand him over! You disgrace me, you disloyal bastard!”
“No, the disloyal ones are……”
A soldier under his command tried to say that it was him who was disloyal, but the captain of the guard coughed loudly to disguise his words.
“I don’t think the gatekeepers have missed His Highness Castor, but it is possible that he has been in and out of the town in some way. His hair can be disguised with wigs and dyes, and he can even sneak in with his luggage.”
The old captain of the guard breathed a sigh of relief and put on his armoured chest.
“’From now on we will increase security at the entrances to the town. In addition, how about putting a bounty on His Highness the Castor for any sightings?”
“That’s a good idea. Now get on with it! Don’t let Castor escape! Never let the Castor escape! We’ll catch them with our own hands, even if we have to split the grass!”
On receiving the Viscount’s order, the captain of the guard acted immediately.
It was not that they did not like the idea of hunting down their own prince as a wanted man, but for them, as town guards, their own lives were far more important than their loyalty to the Crown.
The town’s inhabitants and neighbouring villages were widely informed of the sighting, and the soldiers of Viscount Ruizen set out to find the whereabouts of Castor Styria.
It was not until three days later that a local hunter reported that a “dark-haired figure” was hiding in the mountains.
Read only at Travis Translations