Since it sounded like the king had some business with me, I went over by myself. That cunning Shadow bastard didn’t show up a second time either. However, he sent an awfully polite letter.
What he wrote was terribly round ’bout, but it basically said, 『Show up at the palace if you don’t feel like makin’ enemies out of us. If you do, I’ll use any means to crush you. Make sure to absolutely keep this a secret from Indra』.
As I thought, he apparently realized that he can somehow handle me, but the same couldn’t be said ’bout Indra. No choice, I s’pose. I’ll drop by for a bit.
Officially I was told to report on the dungeon clearin’ and present a part of the loot as a gift to the king.
Well, since I figured as much, I presented some jewels, which I’d have offered ‘nyway, together with a jewel box. The nobles persistently bickered ’bout it bein’ too little or too commonplace, makin’ me think that they sure are cheeky to run their mouth despite not havin’ contributed ‘nythin’ themselves, but their behavior was well within the range of what I’d expected.
No matter how much I handed over, they’d never be satisfied either way. Even if I gave ’em all our loot, they’d obviously spout some crap along the lines of “Bein’ able to only fetch so little, no wonder, considerin’ your commoner trash that’s posin’ as adventruers.”
Me thinkin’, Very well, let’s kill one of ’em and steal all their jewels n’ ornaments in such a case, clearly stems from me bein’ influenced by Indra. That girl would definitely say somethin’ like that. Or rather, she’d actually go through with it.
The king raised a hand, causin’ the nobles to quiet down. I heard they didn’t take him serious back when he got enthroned, but it looks like he made them shut up forcefully by crushin’ any opposition with his own martial prowess and the schemes of that cunning sadist.
Hence, no matter how dissatisfied they might be, the nobles aren’t showin’ any of it on their faces.
“We shall gratefully accept the presents offered by you. You achieved a great deed by clearing the dungeon. Everyone, leave us alone.”
A commotion ran through the audience hall, but Shadow loudly said, “It’s a royal decree. All of you, leave the hall. Knight Leader, make sure that they find the way out.”
The Knight Leader followed Shadow’s instruction.
A wave of malice washed over me. They gotta be lookin’ down on me as upstart, huh? Or seem to plan killin’ me and stealin’ all my assets.
…Man, I really wanna get out of here as soon as possible and drink some booze.
“Hero 【Thunderclap Whitefang】, I’d love to have a little chat with you. …Shadow, prepare a room.”
“……As you wish, Your Majesty.”
Whoa, the cunnin’ sadist looks totally ‘gainst it. That bastard probably doesn’t want me ‘nywhere near the king after havin’ lost the verbal argument ‘gainst Indra.
――Then again, he’s been wary of me ever since my academy days. Or to be precise, he’s wary of everyone except for the king.
Anyway, seems like he’s recognized me as an enemy after his lil’ showdown with Indra.
I unintentionally let a sigh slip out. After casting a glance at me, the king fixed his eyes on the cunnin’ bastard.
“Shadow, there was something you wanted to tell him, right?”
“What’s the point in you making an enemy out of a hero? Or did you possibly forget why I’m in my current position in the first place?”
“…No. Sir Hero 【Thunderclap Whitefang】, the other day I was extremely rude to you. My behavior on that occasion had been inexcusable. Thus it is only natural for you to feel upset. But, please, I would be deeply indebted to you if you could find it in yourself to forgive my impolite conduct.”
Whoa, what an incredible accumulation of sarcasm.
I sighed once more, “No, my partner has been rude as well. My partner…please treat her kindly. If you trigger her, I will not be able to hold her back. As such, I would like to ask you to desist from doing something that would be equal to summoning a dragon over.”
…Seriously, gimme a break. That girl seems to truly love teasin’ folk like that cunnin’ sadist. It’s way too dangerous to let these two meet.