Chapter 63 – A schemer, that might point to someone like that

“Ye~~~a.”

The rebellion, which broke out in the Knight Baumeister territory, was safely suppressed with zero casualties.
In the end the ringleader Klaus ended up avoiding the gallows cleverly. It appears that the outcome was as he had expected, but in some respects there might also be parts where he is feeling relieved.
After all my true feelings are that I don’t want to watch someone’s execution.

“You are harbouring complicated feelings about Klaus, Wend.”

Although everyone struggled hard to do the aftermath finishing the suppression of the rebellion, I was lying in a grassland at the edge of the territory and watched the sky.
Ina was my sole escort, but I think she doesn’t stand on duty overly much.
The reason for that is that she can’t move since I requested her to let me rest my head on her lap.
Since it’s not often that wild animals come here, it’s not much of a problem. Given my social status, several soldiers are slightly away serving as guards.
Becoming important seems to be quite serious.

“Complicated, it’s rather that I want to argue him into silence.” (Wendelin)

“Into silence, you say… He is not a child.” (Ina)

After rushing into the dining room of the mansion with the objective to rescue Hermann-nii-san’s group, I asked Klaus 『Do you hate hanging this much?』
The feelings of an originally Japanese person wasn’t that I desire something like hanging from the bottom of my heart either, but I wondered whether Klaus would be shaken if I said that.
In the end he splendidly saw through it being a bluff.

“Where Klaus-san is concerned, I think it will be difficult since it should be easy for him to hide his feelings.” (Ina)

Even so, there should exist things that make him worried, angry or astonished within his mind.

“I believe he is sighing at the degree of stupidity of his grandchildren.” (Ina)

Currently they were under house arrest, but it’s already scheduled to send them to the location where the new village construction is planned tomorrow.
The total number of people is 22 which includes Walter, Karl, the youngsters who participated in the rebellion, their wives and children.
First they will have to build their own home and then they will cultivate new land by themselves.
Confiscating their previous fields and houses, Hermann-nii-san has prepared the materials to build new houses.
Although they have been allowed to keep things like cash, clothes and furniture from their previous homes, the reason for that must be that they won’t be able to buy food.
There is the poll tax, too. The tax has been taken by collecting the cultivated crops. With this it has been decided they they will be exempted from paying taxes for 3 years.
However, since they will starve if they don’t cultivate a section of the fields enabling them to get food even if the taxes are brushed off for three years, Klaus will do a part-time job in order to get some remittance.
That’s because even his former house and fields have been confiscated.
He had some assets in cash, but according to Klaus it wasn’t that much either.
It’s around the average amount of a normal village headman.
Although it was possible that he would be about to get hung again if had pilfered the taxes since father’s generation, it doesn’t seem very likely that he did so.
It’s a bit disappointing, but since it’s Klaus, he won’t do such blunder, I thought.
Klaus, who will come along with me, doesn’t possess much money on hand either. He had only a single bag where he stuffed in a few clothes for changing and things for his own body.

『Passing 60 years in age, I’m going to work in the outside world. I’m fairly excited.』 (Klaus)

Moreover, since he is enjoying the current situation from the bottom of his heart, Klaus’ courage is likely very large.

“It means that Klaus achieved his aim.” (Ina)

If the circumstances stay as they are, he took measures that Walter and Karl won’t be killed and will be punished since one couldn’t deny the possibility of them running wild after Klaus’ death.
That was likely the objective of this rebellion.
Walter and Karl, who will be troubled with cultivating new land from the scratch, had my condolences, but you could say that it was no more than reaping what they sowed.

“Will they be monitored during the difficult reclamation as well?” (Ina)

They are able to buy the necessary things in the store, but Reiner, who’s the new manager of the store, is prohibited to sell the things cheaply to them. However, Hermann-nii-san also banned selling the items expensively.
Also, it seems that there will be personnel placed to monitor them 24/7 in turns.

『If they scheme something next, I will take responsibility and get rid of them. I won’t leave something like a second suppression to you either, Wend. This is my territory after all.』 (Hermann)

With such exchange, it seems that they accepted their punishment obediently.
There’s also the opinion that he is soft-hearted since they haven’t been sent to the gallows, but since they are cultivating new land by themselves in a grassland with nothing on it until their deaths, it’s probably a far more harsh punishment that hanging them, in a certain way.
It’s also impossible to flee.
There is surveillance. No matter how much we began the development in that place, there are still many ferocious wild animals in the surroundings of the grassland.
It’s probably not possible for Walter and Karl, who can’t use anything but a bow, to run away.

“I will leave that side to Hermann-nii-san, we have a war to deal with.” (Wendelin)

“You have become noble-like, too, Wend.” (Ina)

“Did you become wife-like, Ina?” (Wendelin)

“I have no confidence in that…” (Ina)

“Isn’t that fine since it’s boring if everyone’s the same? I’m grateful since I can talk with our normally, Ina.” (Wendelin)

If it’s Elise, I have to behave a bit respectfully. Luise is funny but she has strange sides as well. Wilma occasionally has a wicked tongue. Katharina has times where she is, how to call it, out of sync.
Therefore I think it’s valuable for me to have someone like Ina with whom I can talk normally.

“Since that’s how it is, continue the lap pillow like a normal fiancée.” (Wendelin)

“I will. Isn’t my lap too firm though?” (Ina)

“Is it? It’s not particularly firm for me.” (Wendelin)

“That’s great then.” (Ina)

I drifted into a light nap in Ina’s lap pillow for about an hour.

 

◆◇◆◇◆

 

“I came to receive you, Earl Baumeister-sama.”

“I appreciate your efforts. A small magic airship is after all handy for such occasions.” (Wendelin)

The next day after the rebellion suppression and its aftermath finished, a small magic airship arrived to receive us.
It’s one blow against Margrave Browig who leads the East and who sabotaged us at this important time.
There’s also the possibility of him scheming something again if we don’t do at least this much. Moreover, with a large-scale deployment of troops at the border of the South, a request for troop participation by Margrave Breithilde has emerged as well.
I comply to the requests of my patron as much as possible and in exchange he will accommodate me in response. It’s a straightforward relationship.
Since it’s also indispensable to retaliate, I decided to rent a small magic airship from Henrik, who is the second son of Armstrong-doushi, and carry out the troop movement with it.
We made a temporary chartering contract.

“I’m sorry for doing that albeit it being a good time to make money.” (Wendelin)

“No, not at all, there’s plenty to profit from it. So, the number of people is as planned?” (Henrik)

The participants are us, Burkhart-san and also the Earl Baumeister feudal army which is led by Moritz. That’s the line-up.

“Damn! I wanted to send out soldiers as well!” (Hermann)

Hermann-nii-san apparently wanted to send soldiers, even if it’s only a few, as well, but he was busy since it was just after the end of a rebellion, although there were no casualties. With a frustrated expression he told me that he won’t join in.

“The only one participating is Klaus.”

“Has that guy foreseen all of it?”

“Recently I don’t understand it well either.”

Also, there were the figures of the soldiers from Margrave Browig’s side who were captured after failing the rebellion orchestrated by Klaus who became a freeter after retiring as village headman.

“Is it alright to take such fellows on board?”

“Klaus persuaded them splendidly.”

“That man was the ringleader of the rebellion, wasn’t he?”

The common-sensed Henrik resembled his father when his expression stiffened up, but it was a fact that Klaus made those guys changes sides.

 

◆◇◆◇◆

 

『Master, do you plan to have them join the mission as your own pieces?』 (Klaus)

Immediately after Klaus’ temporary employment was settled, he asked about the treatment of the captured rebels.

『That’s my intention, but first I have to ask Margrave Breithilde about it, I guess?』 (Wendelin)

『I have no doubt that Margrave Breithilde-sama will give you permission without saying anything against it. That’s because it was you who caught them, master. It’s master’s privilege to decide what you will do with them.』 (Klaus)

No matter how much relation there might be between a patron and their vassal, the Margrave Breithilde household and the Earl Baumeister household are different households.
Therefore he won’t meddle too much in regards to the treatment of prisoners and spoils of war, Klaus explained.

『Is it alright to persuade them ahead of time? I will try persuading them.』 (Klaus)

『You will, Klaus? It looks to me that it will turn into a great booing as you have betrayed them.』 (Wendelin)

『What will turn that around is the wit of an old man.』 (Klaus)

Once I gave him permission we headed together to the unoccupied house where they are imprisoned. When we opened the door, he received a large booing from them as expected.

『Traitor!』

『You back-stabbed us!』

Though he is the ringleader, Klaus is for some reason together with me.
Their anger is natural. It’s at a level that I want to help them as well.

『I shall tell you so that you don’t misunderstand, but I cooperated with the rebellion using all my power.』 (Klaus)

Klaus said that’s why they were able to takeover the feudal lord’s mansion that skilfully.
However, the unlucky thing was that a bad opponent appeared for the suppression.
Or rather, I think Klaus has a strong character to be able to calmly talk about him participating in the rebellion at full power in front of me.

『Earl Baumeister-sama, Burkhart-sama, who is employed by Margrave Breithilde-sama, and Storm-sama, who is renown as strongest of the West. The three of them ended up gaining total control with an Area Stun… I swear that I haven’t colluded with them secretly. I believe that such thing isn’t necessary for Earl Baumeister-sama either.』 (Klaus)

Due to Klaus’ explanation the booing voices gradually ceased.

『So, what kind of business do you have with us, who have been arrested?』

Acting as their leader, a man of around 30 years asks Klaus.

『That is, Thomas-dono, to mediate everyone’s government service.』 (Klaus)

『Us who are headed for the gallows? What kind of joke is that?』 (Thomas)

『No, it’s no joke.』 (Klaus)

Moreover Klaus continues his explanation.

『The Earl Baumeister household is an esteemed household which rose in rank quickly due to individual resourcefulness of Wendelin-sama. That’s something wonderful, but they are lacking manpower after all. Usually it would be proper to hang for the kind of crime of Thomas-dono. However, it’s wasteful to thoughtlessly kill people here.』 (Klaus)

『If it’s people, there’s plenty left. You can even go to the capital’s slums.』 (Thomas)

『It’s not people for reclamation, but necessary people who were educated and are able as civil officials and military officers for the Earl Baumeister household. People like you, Thomas-dono, who received training and education in the Margraviate Browig.』 (Klaus)

Due to Klaus’ statement, Thomas and everyone averted their looks.
It seems they were told by Margrave Browig’s side to not talk about their birthplace even if they were to be executed.

『Getting this far, there’s no necessity to hide your birthplace. Haven’t you told me about it before?』 (Klaus)

They likely ended up talking about it since Klaus is a veteran.
He might have gotten the information out of them by skilfully inducing their sympathy with the story about him presenting his daughter as mistress or the misfortune of his grandchildren.
He is an outrageous geezer after all.

『You don’t want to cause troubles to you family and your homes. I understand those feelings well. However, who was the person who used you and threw you away, Thomas-dono? Without allowing you to blend in the feudal army which is currently being dispatched and right in the middle of enemy territory, you were given a mission to cause confusion in the rear as sacrificial pawns. I planned to act together with you, but if it’s only as mediator, I believe that you have the abilities to serve the Earl’s household properly.』 (Klaus)

『The world isn’t that generous…』 (Thomas)

Their leader, who is called Thomas, slowly begins to talk.
Someone like the third son of an insignificant retainer household was better off with just being used, even if it’s as sacrificial pawn.
There is help from above if the person is at a level of being a genius, but for them that doesn’t apply.
The eldest sons and those who have been picked up as children of high-ranking retainers, who have connections.

『Rather than that lot, our side is probably better off. However, as long one isn’t an idiot, connections are given priority.』 (Thomas)

Because the ruling of the territory has changed into a system, you can become something as long as you aren’t an idiot at the level of what is called 『Birdbrain』.
That’s why connections are given priority over everything else.

『We know about the story of the special development procurement by the Earl Baumeister household. However, the eastern nobles including Margrave Browig bear grudges against the Margrave Breithilde household. Even if we request government service, we will be rejected before we can even approach the doormat.』

The bad relationship between the two Margrave households is truly deep.
Moreover it has amplified even more in the last two generations.
It’s very unlikely for Margrave Breithilde to let any concessions flow into the East.
Even in regards to appointment of human resources, it seems that former eastern inhabitants are completely cut off.

『If that’s the case, this is a chance.』 (Klaus)

『Chance, you say! You, what are you on about!?』 (Thomas)

『The encounter was the worst as it was during a rebellion suppression, but you can call this a connection too. You directly met the Head-sama of the Earl household.』 (Klaus)

Due to Klaus’ excessive statement everyone except him is lost for words.
Of course, it’s the same for me.

『Currently it’s a minus, but how about starting over by exerting great effort at this place? You are young. I believe that you are still able to perfectly start over.』 (Klaus)

『However… For that redo…』 (Thomas)

That was the biggest bottleneck for employing them.
Although they have been used as sacrificial pawns, with it turning into a betrayal towards their homes and their former master, there was the possibility of them meeting their relatives once again on the battlefield.
That’s why I also didn’t consider head-hunting them.

『Still, the other side doesn’t think of you as family anymore, do they?』 (Klaus)

『…』 (Thomas)

『I will take your silence as approval.』 (Klaus)

With them being pieces which are to be used and thrown away, they have been told to not talk about their relationship with the Browig camp.
Therefore, at the current time they don’t have something like a home to return to either.
『There are no such people among us』 like that.
Even if Klaus declared that Earl Breithilde won’t take care of them, they could have guessed such circumstances.

『The Browig camp doesn’t want you to be a weak point in negotiations.』 (Klaus)

It was Margrave Browig household’s side which started the war, but of course they can’t continue until one of the households falls.
Aiming to secure rights by occupying successfully at present, they are sure to begin negotiations behind closed doors.
For those negotiations they are nothing more but hindrances.
Since they wanted them to preferably get entirely killed, they had them execute such reckless operation.

『Your esteemed homes should have obtained some kind of benefits by offering you as sacrifices. Instead, even if your personal circumstances come out at the negotiation…』 (Klaus)

Our children don’t have such younger brother.
They will likely reply in such way.

『Don’t you think that it’s frustrating?』 (Klaus)

『…』

『The relationship with your family is certainly something important. However, that’s a matter of being mutually considerate of each other. Something like a relationship where you are only used one-sidedly is equivalent to a fraud, where the family relation is used, on top of it being distorted.』 (Klaus)

Due to Klaus’ harsh words, Thomas’ group felt down and dropped their shoulders.

『Therefore, let’s have you make a comeback here. Those are lives you should have lost once after failing the rebellion anyway. Isn’t there the move to make a fresh start in life and serve the Earl Baumeister household?』 (Klaus)

『Make a fresh start in life…』 (Thomas)

They listened to Klaus sincere persuasion with serious expressions.
Though I believed that I discovered anew the talent of Klaus as swindler.

『How about it?』 (Klaus)

『I will start over! Serving them by raising distinguished war service, I will marry and obtain a home!』

『I will do it, too! I have already accomplished my obligation towards my family’s home!』

『Me too!』

Raising their hands one after the other after a short time, Thomas, who was the only one left not doing so, asks Klaus a question.

『I’m already 32 years old. Will I be able to start over, I wonder?』 (Thomas)

『Yes. Someone like me has already passed the age of 60. Even so, since I’m able to move, Thomas-dono has still time left even if you are older than 30 years.』 (Klaus)

『Then I will start over as well! I will teach my family’s shitty elder brother a lesson!』 (Thomas)

All of them declared that they will participate in the battle against Margrave Browig’s army because of Klaus’ persuasion.

 

◆◇◆◇◆

 

“That’s quite an amazing story.” (Ina)

“It’s Klaus’ old man wisdom, I guess?” (Wendelin)

“Even so, his ability in negotiations and persuasion is terrific. It’s an enviable ability for a merchant. So, Klaus-dono is?” (Ina)

“Consulting with the group standing this way.” (Wendelin)

As it will stir up problems if they suddenly blend in with the feudal army commanded by Moritz, we decided to leave stuff like the formation of the other unit to their leader, Thomas, and made him the commanding officer.
And Klaus settled into the role of being a liaison between them and me.
I know that he is a competent one, but my feelings were a bit mixed about his way of splendidly fitting the job.

“Is it alright?” (Ina)

“If he bared his fangs once again, he would definitely hang. That Klaus shouldn’t do something this stupid.” (Wendelin)

It seems they are currently pondering about something like new family names.
Since they have already discarded their family’s home, it seems they want to give themselves new family names and raise war achievements.

“Regarding it as kind advice, isn’t it in fact an advice that cuts off any paths of retreat for those men?” (Ina)

“Since they would have gone to the gallows if it stayed as is, isn’t it more or less kind to… (Why am I covering for Klaus?)” (Wendelin)

As expected, it’s difficult to make use of fellows who refused to serve the household.
Since it would be troublesome to manage them even if they are used like criminal slaves as it’s also wrong to force them onto the capital, the view that they should be executed isn’t mistaken.

“Since my job is to swiftly transport everyone… Yes, even as simple captain of a chartered vessel…” (Henrik)

Klaus was moving freely at another place of Henrik who has a feeling of being somewhat drawn in.

“Everyone is single, right?” (Klaus)

“It will be troublesome for our family’s home if we had a wife and children.” (Thomas)

“If that’s the case, you have to persist here.” (Klaus)

“That means?” (Thomas)

“Although it was delayed by the dispatch of troops this time, Margrave Breithilde-sama planned to hold a large-scale marriage interview meeting.” (Klaus)

If I remember correctly, that has been planned.
At the beginning it apparently was a meeting to push a concubines onto me, but as I refused, it was changed into a meeting to introduce wives to Erw and Roderich.
However, once complaints appeared that it was only the two of them, it evolved into a large-scale meeting allowing all the retainers to attend if they are single.

“If you are officially entering the service of the household after raising achievements in the war, master will allow all of you to participate as well.” (Klaus)

“Ooohhh~~~~!”

“I will be able to marry!”

“I’m full of fighting spirit! I will even capture father and elder brother!”

Hearing about the marriage interview meeting from Klaus, everyone seems to rise their tension to abnormal levels.

“Umm… Does such permission really exist?” (Ina)

“What Klaus says has the highest efficiency on young, single men.” (Wendelin)

“I see. That’s profound.” (Ina)

Leaving the Knight Baumeister territory after a full day, we arrived close to the grasslands at the border of the stationed feudal army of Margrave Breithilde on board a magic airship.

 


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