“It’s been a while, Karla-san.” (Elise)
“You too, Elise-san.” (Karla)
Finishing the meeting with Margrave Breithilde and his retinue, we took the aforementioned Karla-jou with us at once and returned to our field encampment.
Being the daughter of Margrave Browig, she served as Supreme Commander Representative of their feudal army.
She has to be treated politely, but as Margrave Breithilde’s army hasn’t even a single woman with them, it was decided that we would look after her.
After exchanging courteous greetings for starters, we walked with her and two maids, she took along as caretakers.
Although Margrave Breithilde said that she was the only woman, there were at least maids to take care of her after all.
Given that both were young women just before 20 years in age, it might be that he pushed them onto me as he felt like they would be troublesome to deal with.
Once we entered the tent within our field encampment, Elise, who healed the soldiers, came back alongside Wilma who served as her bodyguard.
And they both, being acquaintances, greeted each other.
“You were working as Supreme Commander Representative or such?” (Elise)
“Yes. Father isn’t conscious anymore. It won’t be strange for him to pass away any time now either.” (Karla)
Margrave Browig was after all in a condition where it wouldn’t be weird for him to die any time.
“Umm… That kind of information is…” (Wendelin)
“It’s meaningless to hide it at this point in time.” (Karla)
Apparently she has talked about it with Margrave Breithilde as well.
She also told him about her two elder brothers staying close to the sickbed of the almost dead Margrave Browig so that neither can steal a march on the other and that she became the Supreme Commander Representative thanks to that. [Owned by Infinite Novel Translations]
“However, this expedition…” (Wendelin)
“Both my elder brothers are involved in it.” (Karla)
When I was wondering whether it was just the eldest son’s, Philips’s, order since he is nothing more than a military man, it looks like the second son, Christoph, was participating in it as well.
Not all of the military personnel is under Philip. There are also authorities supporting Christoph among the military officials in charge like those responsible for supply.
It appears that there’s an old strife for power between civil and military officials existing in the background of this quarrel between brothers.
To begin with, Christoph’s participation was only natural since there won’t be any budget if the higher-ups in the financial affairs department, who support him, don’t give their permission.
“In other words, this time’s expedition is a competition of the two?” (Wendelin)
“At first it was Philip-niisama acting on his own…” (Karla)
The whole matter began with Margrave Browig, whose health deteriorated since around a year ago, finally succumbing into a comatose state.
While having two sons, he fell into such state without deciding which of the two should become the successor.
“Philip-niisama and the retainers, who support him, are saying 『In the first place, it’s only proper for Philip-sama, who is the eldest son, to succeed the household. There’s no need for something like the lord’s testament』. Christoph-niisama and the retainers, who are backing him, objected with 『Christoph-sama is the child of Hildegard-sama who is the legal wife. If you follow the merit of lineage, it goes without saying that Christoph-sama is the proper successor』…” (Karla)
“Currently the territory is in chaos due to the polar positions of the two and the retainers supporting them”, Karla explained.
Especially after Margrave Browig fell into a comatose state the mansion turned into a stand-off so that either side won’t selfishly fake a testament after his death and send a succession announcement to the kingdom.
“Why didn’t Margrave Browig name a successor?” (Wendelin)
“It’s because he wasn’t able to deny the possibility of a civil war in case he chose either of them.” (Karla)
It was a disturbing story, but as both parties authorities are competing with each other, he expected one side to rebel if he chose the other side.
Although it will be connected to promotions if the retainers are supporting the winner, those who have supported the loser will have to face demotions and in worst case dismissal, too.
Since the future looks bleak for those like the young people as well, the discord naturally grew large.
“In addition, they have been excluded from the special procurements of the recent Savage Lands development.” (Karla)
“You are complaining to me about this matter as well, eh?” (Wendelin)
“No. I understand your reasons.” (Karla)
If they consider their frequent harassment towards Margrave Breithilde, they should know that they are in no position to complain about being excluded.
However, there were many objections from their vassals for them not apologizing at this point, too.
Therefore, in order to reduce their unhappiness, Philip and the retainers from the military side supporting him carried out the troop dispatch and the rear disturbance in the Knight Baumeister territory. This is the real situation of this time’s battle. [Visit the original translator at infinitenoveltranslations.net]
“Distracting from the internal mess with an external war, huh…? So, which side is the lead?” (Wendelin)
“Pretty much it’s Philip-niisama. His support from the military authorities is deep.” (Karla)
Speaking of the feudal army, which consists of people with distinguished military service, supporting Philip, the war should give them an advantage in the succession dispute, that hasn’t been decided with the family head in a coma, while suppressing the eastern nobles by stealing concessions, even if it’s only few, from the southern nobles.
Karla, who has looked after the unconscious Margrave Browig in his sickbed, apparently has heard about such plans from Philip.
“So, did the second son, Christoph, take an opposing stance to the troop dispatch?” (Wendelin)
“On the surface yes, but I can’t say that it’s necessarily like that.” (Karla)
Christoph, who has a strong backing from the retainers responsible for domestic affairs, has officially adopted a stance of being against the war this time as there are no benefits from it.
However, as it’s necessary to grant budget for sending out the feudal army, one can’t say that he is 100% against it either since they had been dispatched without a problem.
“That means, no matter the result it will become his achievement?” (Wendelin)
Since the supply has been carried out properly, he will say 『My achievement of logistical support is large』 if they win the war and criticize 『That’s why I opposed it』 if they lose.
He’s a type often found among the detestable appointed nobles of the capital.
In order to be safe no matter on which side the coin drops, he will make insurances both ways.
“By the way, you are talking about it quite frankly, Karla-dono.” (Wendelin)
“Do you believe that I chose to serve as Supreme Commander Representative?” (Karla)
Just until one year ago she lived in the capital together with her mother while receiving only a small allowance from Margrave Browig because he was afraid of his legal wife if she entered the territory.
With her mother being an on-site wife for the time when Margrave Browig visited the capital and since her family was a poor appointed Knight household, it’s a fact that her grandfather and those around him sold her mother off for money.
Even so, once they became free-loaders as they couldn’t go to the territory of Margrave Browig, they were treated as obvious nuisances by her grandfather and uncles.
Since she would only experience bad things if she stayed in that house, she frequented the church every day since her childhood and received education and teaching in archery there. Apparently she hunted in the capital’s outskirts in the remaining time.
“Nevertheless, I was suddenly summoned around one year ago.” (Karla)
It was because Margrave Browig’s health deteriorated and now that he entered his sickbed, he just accumulated stress due to the legal wife being noisy about nominating her darling second son, born by her, as successor quickly. Even her married elder sisters began to calculate how large the profit will become if they stick to either side and the crucial two successors didn’t leave the sickbed in reverse.
It was for the sake of the opponent not selfishly and impertinently starting the procedures to become the successor if the other party is away at the time of Margrave Browig’s death. (T/N: The author has repeated this sentence in different variations like 10 times in the last 2 chapters, I will abbreviate it from now on to: “They were watching each other.“)
Margrave Browig, who saw that situation, was likely disappointed in his family for not worrying about his own physical condition in the least.
He called his beloved daughter, Karla, thinking that he 『sheltered』 her by having her live in the capital.
“His heart grew weak when he fell ill.” (Ina)
“That might be so…” (Karla)
Maybe it’s like Ina thinks, but Karla entered the Margraviate Browig territory, unable to decline since it was an order of the Margrave who is an important noble, and looked after him at his side.
“I was showered with sarcasm each time my two married elder sister-in-law-sama’s and my step-mother-sama, who is the legal wife, came.” (Karla)
Even though the one who called her was Margrave Browig, there were apparently many situations where she was verbally abused in a hysteric manner being called 『a female vulture scrounging the decaying flesh』 who came after he got close to death.
“That was terrible.”
“I doesn’t particularly matter to me though.” (Karla)
Judging from the story so far, Karla is likely a woman with a very strong feeling of independence.
She shouldn’t lose to such women if you consider her skill in archery and such, thus she simply ignored the hateful words of the legal wife and her elder step-sisters.
“That’s because I had barely the status of a noble until just a year ago.” (Karla)
Even though she was neglected until then, Margrave Browig, whose heart became weak with the sickness, called Karla with the selfish delusion of 『At the last moment I will reconcile with my daughter who was born by my lover in the capital before my death』.
From her point of view, it was likely a feeling that she wanted to finish it quickly, receive some reward and return to the capital.
“However, it didn’t go that conveniently, did it?” (Luise)
“No, it didn’t.” (Karla)
Just as Luise feared, Karla ended up getting dragged into the inheritance dispute of the Margrave Browig household.
The two elder brothers were kind to their far younger sister from a different mother, but that kindness was out of self-interest.
“I guess they told them 『If you support me in becoming the next Margrave Browig, Karla will marry your son』 or such.”
Either of her elder brother should have tried to gather support by saying such stuff to several influential retainers.
Certainly, it wasn’t such an unusual story either.
“If Karla-san became their wife, it would promise the rise of their households under the next feudal lord. Everyone probably participated in the succession struggle frantically.” (Elise)
The rest is likely as Elise has said. [Owned by Infinite Novel Translations, support the translator]
However, with the crucial Margrave Browig himself not being dead yet, both successors lacked the deciding factor for their victory.
Accordingly the top-brass of the feudal army, who made use of Karla as bait, made Philip’s idea of a troop dispatch reality.
“Philip-niisama planned the troop dispatch with the top brass of the feudal army, but he didn’t place himself as head of the army.” (Karla)
They were watching each other.
“When it was necessary to have someone from the household as Supreme Commander, I was there by chance. That’s how it went.” (Karla)
From Karla’s point of view there were likely parts where she thought that it somehow didn’t matter either way since it couldn’t be helped if she was inaugurated as mere figurehead of the feudal army or if she looked after her father on his sickbed.
Even when she was questioned by Margrave Breithilde and me, she honestly answered everything.
“You had no motivation, huh?” (Wendelin)
“Before that, my niisama’s are irresponsible.” (Karla)
Even though it would have been fine if they at least stood at the head of the army themselves, they forced that upon a young girl at the tender age of 16 because of the danger to be outwitted by their rival.
No matter how much I’m a decorative Supreme Commander, that’s wrong, right? Karla apparently thought.
“They entrusted it to you irresponsibly and the result is a tragedy…”
Even our side had casualties though it was very few. The casualties of Margrave Browig’s side has risen to close to 100 people.
Additionally, close to 10.000 people became prisoners. Margrave Breithilde was at his wit’s end by just taking care of them.
If one considers the effort of managing them, one can’t say anything but 『The one in charge, come out immediately!』
“Since they have done something very absurd by violating the customs…”
Calling in even the reinforcements stationed in the rear, they planned a surprise attack while using real weapons.
As for Margrave Breithilde, since it switched over to a real war, he had additional feudal armies heading over here and the our military forces were increasing every day as it was necessary to manage the large number of prisoners.
Moreover, since it became a real war, it’s wrong to not aim for a complete victory as noble.
Accordingly, the majority of the military forces, which increased up to a total of 25.000, have entered the eastern domain and established a field encampment.
It was a reuse of stuff used by Browig’s army. In addition military officials were dispatched to cities, villages and territories of several nobles in the vicinity to declare the occupation of those areas.
However given that it will be troublesome if we really occupy them by dispatching military forces, it will only be the military officials who have been entrusted with the governing as people in charge on-site.
We decided to occupy since the situation is as it is, but it’s possible that we will be criticized by the kingdom’s government if we cause trouble for the residents by going there with the army.
That’s because there was the possibility that violence and assaults would be committed to the residents in retaliation because of the military forces having suffered losses.
If those injured parties appealed to the Browig household and the kingdom, it would be wrong for the kingdom’s government, which basically doesn’t approve of domestic wars, if they didn’t accuse Margrave Breithilde of having erred.
As there are such circumstances, Margrave Breithilde controlled his military forces while consulting with the cabinet ministers through the magic hand-held communication device.
『Work related to the usual governing of the territory, work related to reclamation and the work related to occupying territory with the feudal army. Earl Baumeister, isn’t there some spell to create a doppelganger of me or such?』 (Breithilde)
When Margrave Breithilde came to ask me that seriously while having shadows below his eyes, I didn’t know what would be a good answer. [Owned by Infinite Novel Translations]
『Earl Baumeister, please lend Thomas-san and his unit to me.』 (Breithilde)
They will apparently tag along to the cities and noble territories, which were declared as occupied, as assistants of the military officials.
Given that they are men from the east to begin with, there are many among them who know this area well. There were also the circumstances that a lot of work would be generated for the military officials who were scheduled to be placed there afterwards.
『Since all of them ended up as your group’s prisoners, Earl Baumeister, it seems they are short of hands to govern the areas.』 (Breithilde)
It was an unexpected by-product.
With us capturing the family heads and their retainers in the previous conflict concerning the concession disputes, people to govern the areas are now missing.
『Since all’s fine in a state of occupation, they will be send to help with the governing work as it’s a military administration.』 (Breithilde)
『I just thought of it now, but we are also keeping the soldiers in custody, right? Is that alright?』 (Wendelin)
If one looks at the Baumeister household, one will understand that there are many ordinary farmers serving as soldiers in the feudal armies.
Having already finished the harvest, they have now entered a period of time where farmers can take a bit leisure, but even so the absence of the main provider of a family is a big deal. If the war continued into spring just like that, it would have caused an insufficiency of manpower for the farm work.
The territories of the nobles, who participated in this time’s dispute for the eastern camp, were in danger of their ruling systems breaking down.
『It can’t be helped…』 (Wendelin)
I have decided to send them all back to their territories.
The family heads, the retainers, the soldiers and the seized arms, goods and money.
All of it belonged to Katharina and me, including the ransom, but after they accepted the calculated standard price of Viscount Knappstein, we came to an agreement with them.
Also, we gave them the conditions to return the taken concessions and the splitting ratio of the territories to the pre-war state and to pay an compensation to the noble households who were their opponents in the dispute. [Owned by Infinite Novel Translations]
We have entrusted calculation of that to Viscount Knappstein as well since our time is too valuable by now.
Because he is the type of noble who is a diligent bureaucrat, we had him calculate the sum of the reconciliation money using the vast amount of precedents in the past as standard.
『How about these conditions?』 (Knappstein)
『I have no particular objections.』 (Breithilde)
『Me neither.』 (Wendelin)
With me, Margrave Breithilde and Viscount Knappstein being present, we carried out the negotiations after inviting the nobles, whose retainers and soldier had been turned into prisoners, and the nobles, who had become prisoners themselves, both parties didn’t have any objections.
The nobles of the Browig side were disappointed of their patron for not showing up in this crisis at all. Even the nobles of Margrave Breithilde might have ended up destroying themselves with things like measures for refugees and such, if the war continued like that and the ruling systems of the neighbouring territories collapsed.
Judging that they don’t have the leeway to negotiate in a stingy manner regarding the reconciliation money, they accepted the compromise settlement from our side.
『Because of that, we’d like to ask for a splitting of the ransom and reconciliation money, but…』
The nobles of Browig’s side, who accepted the reconciliation, have pleaded with tear-stained faces for being allowed to pay the ransom and reconciliation in instalments.
Well, I guess that’s only natural.
They aren’t able to pay it all in one batch to begin with. Even if it’s split up, they will lead lives of being deeply in debt for several decades.
Moreover, they haven’t received any kind of follow-up by the essential Margrave Browig at such time. Having said that, if the negotiations get complicated and they remain as prisoners as is, problems will start to appear in the ruling systems of their territories.
If they consider the circumstances from now on, it can’t be helped for them to become teary-eyed.
『As there was a possibility that it would turn out like this, we dispatched skilful soldiers.』
『It’s because we had this.』
The nobles of Browig’s camp show parchments with a written contract, which were sent from their territories, to the astonished Margrave Breithilde.
On that parchment was written that they will be compensated by the Browig household in the unlikely event when they incurred damage in this dispute.
『Is this legally valid?』 (Wendelin)
『It is.』 (Breithilde)
Margrave Breithilde affirmed its validity.
『It’s not the handwriting of Margrave Browig, but it has the signatures of the eldest son, Philip-dono, that of Christoph-dono and several of the chief retainers have entered their names as well. At times when the family head can’t sign himself due to sickness, such joint signatures become valid.』 (Breithilde)
Such document will become invalid if the family head hasn’t signed it although he is able to do so, but if the family head has a condition which makes him unable to sign it, a joint signature becomes effective.
『With this it will officially confirm that Margrave Browig is in a state that makes him unable to even place his signature on documents.』
Once the Margrave Browig household formally admits the illness of their family head, this document will become valid. [Owned by Infinite Novel Translations]
Otherwise the nobles of Browig’s side probably wouldn’t have sent soldiers and gone as far as breaking the customs.
『I have a feeling something like that at this point in time is…』
『Um, may I say one thing?』
The anxiety of the nobles of Browig’s camp, who were present at the negotiation, is their financial affairs falling into a critical state due to the repayment of their debts, even if those are split up.
According to the contract it seems that the Browig household will shoulder those, but with the current state of affairs the fulfilment of that will be difficult.
They are appealing their wish for us to wait a bit with the payment.
『They are saying that they want it to be split it in 200 yearly instalments?』 (Wendelin)
『No, master. Since their losses will be compensated by the Margrave Browig household according to the contract…』 (Klaus)
Klaus whispers quietly with a small voice in my ear.
In short, they apparently want to request us and Margrave Breithilde to subrogate the ransom and reconciliation money and demand it from the Browig household’s side.
『Such a selfish suggestion… Although…』 (Wendelin)
The difficulty for the vassal to refuse their patron’s request is obvious if I look at my home in my childhood.
If an enormous sum of reconciliation money comes into existence after we conclude the arbitration between us and the Browig household later after this, the Browig household, whose financial affairs would have deteriorated, will give priority to repaying their own debts and might not be able to compensate the other nobles for their losses.
『Even Margrave Breithilde won’t likely accept it. Such suggestion.』 (Wendelin)
It was natural to take it in consideration if it’s his own vassal, but they are the vassals of the Browig household.
As there’s also the possibility that we won’t be able to collect the debt from the Browig household in the worst case, he absolutely won’t do something like shouldering their debts.
『In other words they are saying that they will change their patron.』 (Klaus)
『I can’t say that’s absolutely impossible, but…』 (Wendelin)
『It doesn’t happen that often, but this time the situation is as it is.』 (Klaus)
There is occasionally a change of patrons due to things like affinity between the family heads. Patron substitution of nobles at the border due to their involvements in conflicts like this time can be explained with precedents in the past. [Owned by Infinite Novel Translations]
The nobles, who were until now under the influence of the Margrave Browig household, which controls the east, or who were its vassals, will enter under the influence of the southern Margrave Breithilde household and become its vassals.
『Aren’t they completely disagreeing over things like mining rights and the usage of woods with their neighbours?』 (Wendelin)
『Even between fellow southern nobles those are causes for bad blood and if those things change hands, they will also carry out one-on-one battles.』 (Klaus)
The worsening of the disputes at the border is also because the bosses of each side are different.
Although they won’t borrow the authority of the tiger (T/N: the Margraves in this case), both sides will take a stubborn attitude by all means.
At the time when fellow nobles of the same patron quarrel with each other they will apparently hold back accordingly.
『Their fortune is declining due to the reconciliation money and ransom after an utter defeat and in the end they had an occupation forced on them due to stubbornly violating the customs. Next Browig’s main army was defeated as well. And if I have to say any more, then there’s also the fact that the Browig household hasn’t even sent a messenger in this situation. They were abandoned without having anyone to deserving to rely on.』 (Klaus)
『Additionally, won’t they be able to participate in the development rights if they change their loyalty to the south?』 (Wendelin)
『There’s that, too.』 (Klaus)
They want to escape from paying the debts by passing them to Margrave Breithilde and me including their rights to claim the losses in the disputes from the Browig household.
Since there’s also the possibility that we won’t be able to collect them according to the details of the arbitration, it’s a request that’s only beneficial for the other party while being totally disadvantageous for us, but if you turn it around, it’s like them telling that they will voluntarily declare their joining the southern area in a state similar to being indebted to us.
『Will the southern domain grow?』 (Wendelin)
Around 40 households, which were under the control of the Margrave Browig household until now, will change their affiliation to the Margrave Breithilde household.
As patron there isn’t much gain as it’s difficult to look after them as visible from this time’s concession disputes, but his evaluation in society will rise drastically.
It’s not an era where you can gain new territory in wars, but since there are more than 40 households who changed their affiliation by themselves, this will result in the Margrave Breithilde’s household’s evaluation to grow and this will also connect to benefits if you look at the long term.
『This is why the evaluation of a mafia boss goes up by increasing their henchmen. If the fortune becomes large, they will reach the point of being able to earn money with gangster business methods*.』 (Wendelin) (T/N: shinogi or シノギ, includes jobs in the entertainment industry and harbour business at the front and gambling, prostitution, bouncing, drugs etc. in the back)
『The example is extreme, but well, nobles and the mafia aren’t that different in regards to their contents.』 (Klaus) (T/N: Busted, he is a reincarnator after all!)
Klaus adds his words without rebuking me or particularly changing his expression due to my remark.
Since it’s just a private conversation to the bitter end, he doesn’t seem to mind.
『The Margrave Breithilde household will be marked by the royal family.』 (Wendelin)
『The current Margrave Breithilde-sama is sensitive to such looks from the central government. He will probably at least consult with them beforehand.』 (Klaus)
“Since he possesses a magic hand-held communication device, it will probably be taken care of after consulting with the cabinet ministers of the central government”, Klaus predicted.
『Once some time passes, the Earl Baumeister household will hold more than or comparative authority to the Margrave Breithilde household. Once this happens, it will naturally turn into both sides restraining each other.』 (Klaus)
It’s very likely that this comes true once some time passes as the family heads will be different at time, too.
That’s why I accepted my legal wife from the Hohenheim household, which works in an important office of the church in the capital. Maybe that trend will continue even after the next generation.
If it naturally reaches the point of both parties matching as restraint for each other, the danger will decrease from the point of view of the royal family.
『Being a noble, that’s really troublesome.』 (Wendelin)
『It can’t be helped since it’s something like an occupational trait.』 (Klaus)
It was troublesome to consider such future matters, but we released all of the people, who became prisoners, except those of the Browig household after various happenings like this.
We returned everything like arms, money and goods we seized at the same time, however it’s not like they were given for free.
Since Viscount Knappstein had assessed all of its monetary worth, everything became their debts for form’s sake.
However, all of those claims will just be carried out by Margrave Breithilde and me on basis of the aforementioned contract. [Owned by Infinite Novel Translations]
『Won’t we have to confiscate it by marching up to the mansion of the Browig household in the worst case?』 (Wendelin)
Two hundred years after the ceasefire with the Holy Empire Urquhart it’s the first time for a conflict between fellow nobles of the same country to have gone this far. Margrave Breithilde seems to be troubled by this unprecedented part, too.
Managing close to 10.000 prisoners, holding the eastern part of the Eschago Grasslands, the field encampment of the Browig main army and the food storage facilities in the rear and sending occupation declarations to the cities and villages around this area, we are waiting for the resumption of the arbitration, even if it’s only one day earlier.
『Isn’t that too excessive?』
『The royal palace is baffled as well. Although they understood that Margrave Browig is seriously ill, there’s also the problem of which of his sons will participate in the negotiations.』
Also, if only one side signs the arbitration draft, the other side will call it invalid. That will happen since a legal next family head hasn’t been officially decided yet.
If they don’t decide on the next Margrave Browig first, there won’t be any meaning in starting an arbitration.
『What are those two sons doing?』 (Wendelin)
『It’s also possible that the night attack was arbitrarily decided by the one in charge on-site. They might be panicking after having heard the reports.』 (Klaus)
It was also possible that both of them are quarrelling whose at fault at the bedside of the currently comatose Margrave Browig.
If they are really doing that, I wonder if it’s only me who will consider it as problematic for either of them to become the successor?
『The troublesome aspect of this problem is that the Margrave Browig household can’t be crushed.』 (Klaus)
Even if they are demoted in rank, it will become a question what to do with the remains then.
They have reigned for more than 1.000 years in the east. If the Margrave Browig household, which is a large noble household, vanishes, the ruling system of the east will become unstable.
I don’t believe that the former retainers and inhabitants will obey that easily even if a new noble manages to set in.
If something like a rebellion is unskilfully triggered, that alone will cause burdens to the economy and public order of the south and the centre.
——————- Part 3
“By no means it will work out by leaving it to Earl Baumeister and me either.” (Breithilde)
If he got such extra burden pushed on him even though there is the development of the Savage Lands, Margrave Breithilde would die from overwork. I would end up doing nothing but public works everyday, too.
Even before that, the royal family likely wouldn’t permit it since we would become far too powerful.
There are various things to consider, but it will be troublesome if the east doesn’t become somehow stable with a new Margrave Browig.
『Otherwise they cannot take it by force officially.』
Even our side didn’t intend to wave the reconciliation money or such as it would cause quite a few troubles.
At present we aren’t worried about money, however it won’t be a nuisance to get more of it either.
Also, even if the Browig household gets covered in debts by taking it forcibly until they are squeezed dry there won’t be any problem since they won’t go bankrupt that easily.
If going by my previous life, the American car manufacturer BIC 3 and the Japanese Tokyo Electric Power Company won’t go bankrupt for the same reason (T/N: Too big to fail, in other words I guess)
However, since it would also be a bother if a spoilt second Margrave Browig appeared here, it was necessary to make them picking a fight with us and them losing heavily to us known to the world.
『With the main army destroyed, the damage will probably grow even further.』
We have destroyed an army of 10.000 soldiers and almost all of them have become prisoners.
Even if it’s only the ransom, it will likely increase the burden excessively.
By doing something pointless, they also ended up increasing the losses.
『They will once again prepare military forces.』
『Unless Browig’s camp is absurdly stupid, I don’t think that they will do that.』
As Margrave Breithilde’s said, additional troops didn’t come, but likewise a messenger to resume the negotiations over the arbitration draft didn’t come either.
Margrave Breithilde became very weary with the governmental and military affairs, but I had free time once I simply created a mud wall and a trench to protect the horses of our encampment.
Thomas’ group left as assistants of the military officials in the occupied territories. Moritz’ group immersed itself in our protection and various routine tasks of a feudal army.
“That’s why there’s nothing to do except magic training. Show us your skill in archery.” (Wendelin)
“Earl Baumeister-sama, although I’m a prisoner…” (Karla)
“Even if you defeat one or two people by shooting them down this late in the game, it will only get much more disadvantageous in the arbitration, right? Here, your bow and arrows, Karla-san.” (Wendelin)
“You are a bold one, Earl Baumeister-sama.” (Karla)
Since I got tired of the tea party with the female camp + Karla, I set up an archery target at a tree standing close to our encampment and decided to have Karla, who’s renown for her mastery in archery, demonstrate her skill.
It’s a situation where it cannot be helped for me to be on standby even though I have free time thanks to the Browig household. This much of amusement should be tolerable.
“I will do it as well!” (Wendelin)
“Then, let me do it as well!” (Erwin)
“Wend-sama, me too.” (Wilma)
Deciding to change it into a contest format more or less, we make it a rule to fire 5 arrows from a position being around 50 meters away.
The points will be decided by how many arrows hit the target first and then how far away the arrows hit from the centre.
Given that the target itself is just a suitable board with a painting on it, it’s not like it is a formal archery target and thus it had a partial feeling of playing around.
“Let’s decide the order with lots.”
Choosing the order of shooting with simple lots made out of wooden sticks, the first to shoot 5 arrows will be Erw.
“That was so-so.”
Since all of the 5 arrows hit in an area within 30 cm of the target’s centre, it was proof of Erw’s excelling skill in archery.
“Or rather, if you aren’t able to do this much, you won’t eat any meat as brat of a rural noble.” (Erwin)
Because there are many rabbits amongst the prey the children hunt with bows, they won’t be able to eat meat if their accuracy isn’t at least at this level.
“If I didn’t catch several prey, my meat would be stolen by my elder brothers.” (Erwin)
His father and elder brothers would eat the caught prey first.
It’s not like they would always get results if they went hunting themselves and thus they would steal from Erw since he was a little boy.
Therefore Erw wouldn’t get anything to eat of his own spoil if he didn’t catch a lot of it.
That was the reason why he is more skilled at archery than me.
“Next it’s Wilma’s turn?”
“I got trained in archery.” (Wilma)
At the time when she was raised by Minister Edgar, she also had a teacher in archery.
There are reasons why it’s more effective to be able to handle various weapons to some extent, thus it seems there are many cases where fellow militaristic noble households lend teaching services to each other.
“Wilma and archery, eh…? Will you be alright?” (Erwin)
Until now we never saw her using it. Our image of her was that of a power fighter.
From Erw’s viewpoint it’s likely difficult to imagine Wilma drawing the bow accurately.
“I’m not skilled, but it’s not like I suck at it either.” (Wilma)
Saying that, she fired the 5 arrows in succession and all of them hit the target.
The spread from the centre is wider than in Erw’s case, but there doesn’t seem to be much difference in ability compared to me.
“However, in reality I use my own personal bow.” (Wilma)
“Somehow I’m able to imagine it…” (Erwin)
Continuing after Erw, I was also able to imagine it at once.
Wilma’s own personal bow is certainly a great bow that several people won’t be able to draw and the arrows she fires with it are likely made entirely out of iron.
“Lately you didn’t use it.”
“If aimed at people, it will apparently penetrate them.”
“It will penetrate several people even if they wear full plate.”
If Wilma draws a great bow with her superhuman strength, it will probably turn out like that.
It’s likely a great weapon if there’s a real war, but she apparently didn’t use it in this time’s 『dispute』 since it would have caused many casualties.
“Next it’s Wend-sama’s turn.” (Wilma)
“The pressure…” (Wendelin)
Since I recently focussed on magic training and skipped out on archery, I lacked in confidence a bit.
Even so, once I shot the arrows while concentrating, one went astray and the remaining four hit the target.
“Ack. I grew dull.” (Wendelin)
It might be because I put priority on magic training lately.
“Is that so? I think you are skilled.” (Breithilde)
Once I turned around because a voice suddenly resounded from behind, Margrave Breithilde stood there.
As usual his eyes have terrible shadows beneath them. He probably came to watch the archery contest as change of pace.
“Do you want to have a go as well, Margrave Breithilde-sama?” (Ina)
“No. I will refrain from that.” (Breithilde)
Margrave Breithilde refused the invitation from Ina, who went recovering the arrows stuck in the target.
“With my skill I won’t even hit once.” (Breithilde)
“Is that so?”
“Yes. The teacher, who taught me archery, said following: 『I wonder whether it would be advisable for you, Amadeus-sama, to abstain from drawing a bow when there are people around…』.” (Breithilde)
“That’s amazing of that teacher.”
“He pretty much tried to break it to me kindly. It will become a disaster if injured people and casualties are caused by accidental shooting.” (Breithilde)
Which reminds me, Margrave Breithilde was evaluated to have a minus talent at all martial arts.
Given that it’s fine for him to leave it to his retainers as Margrave, there’s no particular problem with it either.
“Rather than mine, I’d like to see Karla-san’s skill.” (Breithilde)
“Umm, is it really alright?” (Karla)
Since the big boss made an appearance, she was probably worried whether it would be really fine to display her archery as prisoner.
“To say nothing about there not being be any kind of benefit for you even if you hit me or Earl Baumeister with an arrow here, it would only worsen the position of the Browig household needlessly.” (Breithilde)
“There’s truth in that.” (Karla)
Agreeing with the answer by Margrave Breithilde, she begins to concentrate on nocking an arrow into the bow she received from me.
“It’s a nice bow.” (Karla)
“It has the taste of a rural noble.” (Wendelin)
I was better in archery than swordsmanship since my childhood. Since it’s not like I don’t have any money right now, I used quite the high-classed archery equipment even for practising.
“Well then…” (Karla)
Once Karla, who started to focus once again, released the arrow, it got stuck right down in the middle of the target.
Everyone has become speechless due to her overly divine technique.
“If it’s a spot close to the centre, a skilled person will hit to some extent. However, right down in the middle…”
Once she shoots the next two arrows one after the other, those arrows also hit right down in the middle and the arrow, which was stuck in there before, got flicked away and dropped to the ground from the target.
“How regrettable.” (Karla)
At first I didn’t understand the meaning of what she was saying, but I became able to identify it with the fifth shot.
The third and fourth shot also knocked down the arrow which was stuck down in the middle before, but the last shot hit the middle of the arrow shaft of the fourth arrow, split it it in half and made it fall to the ground.
“Umm, this is?”
“As it’s obvious when you hit right down in the middle, it’s the best outcome to make the previously shot arrow fall down by splitting it in two instead of it falling down by being knocked down.” (Karla)
Someone like us, who can be called skilled since archery is well-received in rural territories, could be only regarded as little children at the level of a master’s style.
『The female Nasu no Yoichi』, 『the female Robin Hood』, any of those nicknames are fine as she has a frightening skill.
“That’s amazing. I wonder whether you can teach me archery?” (Wendelin)
The emotion I felt most towards Karla was a 『feeling of reverence』.
Although I earnestly trained my archery since my childhood, I haven’t received any evaluation other than 『half-baked skill』 as I was trying to master two things at the same time with magic in the mix.
Therefore I felt that she, who possesses an ability to allow her to become runner-up at that martial arts tournament, was truly amazing.
“However, you aren’t serving under a lord even though you were the runner-up?”
“It’s because I’m a woman…”
Even so, up until before their marriage there are great places of employment for noble daughters as ceremonial personnel.
It’s in reality considered as one part of marriage training with only 2~3 years of employment, but it’s a narrow path where you won’t be able to get in unless you have suitable abilities.
I have a feeling that she will be able to serve under a lord if it’s Karla, however she was a daughter in hiding, albeit recognised.
It was likely impossible for her to actively ask for something like serving under a lord by herself.
“We will have free time until the messenger for the second arbitration turns up. Can I take lessons in archery from you, Karla-san?” (Wendelin)
“Though that’s fine…” (Karla)
“As she is quite the beautiful person, it’s not allowed to think about making her your wife or such.” (Ina)
“That’s unthinkable. Going by our positions it’s probably impossible, but…” (Wendelin)
Don’t you trust me?
I have been given a warning by Ina for some reason.
And, there was another person who admires her skill in archery.
“Karla-sama, is it…? Her appearance as she shot the arrows was lovely…” (Erwin)
Erw gazed at the appearance of Karla shooting the arrows with a boa~~~~h expression.
“Hold on, Wend. That’s because Erw definitely has other feelings.” (Luise)
“Looks like it, eh…” (Wendelin)
“Karla-sama, you have a magnificent skill in archery. Someone like me is no match for you.” (Erwin)
“Erwin-san is very skilled as well.” (Karla)
“Well, not to that degree.” (Erwin)
Erw, who recovered from being an idiot, addresses Karla while showing a pointlessly refreshing smile. He doesn’t seem to be dissatisfied to be praised for his skill in archery by her either.
And, me and Luise, who saw his state, just stared at each other without judging the new problems that might pop up.