Chapter 160 – The Old Leader
“Let’s end it here for today, everyone.” I told all members of the council.
“But we haven’t finished discussing the government’s attack on our city…” One of them replied.
“I’m aware, but it can’t be helped. There is an important guest coming, so it will have to be left for later.” I told them… A guest, yes. That girl who isn’t even trying to hide her evil aura anymore… she’s just announcing that she is coming.
The council members were confused by my words, but they decided to leave like I asked them to… And now that I was alone in this room, I said, “Well, what is it?” To our ‘guest’.
“Oh, I was caught.” She said as she entered through the room’s window… We’re on the third floor, but I suppose that doesn’t matter for her.
“It’s not like you were trying to hide yourself… So? Can you tell me why you decided to instigate the citizens to fight against the kingdom’s government?” I asked her. I understood that there was probably some truth behind the words she said on the day of the migrants’ attack. The crown prince being dead and the second prince being the most likely candidate for the throne are probably true, but… I doubt that the part about the second prince hiring migrants to attack us was true.
“So you were worried about that?” She asked me.
“… I’d like to know what is it that you are trying to make the followers of Krebskulm do.” I answered. I wish Ronove was still here to help us out in those troubling times. If he hadn’t antagonized her from the start, he could have been able to minimize the damage she might cause us in the long run… But that stupid hot-headed son of mine had already succeeded me in becoming the high priest of Krebskulm, so there was nothing I could do to stop him.
And now, the intensity of the Chaos within this girl is unbelievable. At this moment, she is far more terrifying than I ever thought she could become.
“You don’t need to be so wary, I’m just acting freely, doing what my heart tells me to.” She answered. It was a motivation that was so in-line with Krebskulm’s teachings… Why did this girl have to be so compatible with the sea, yet so far into Chaos?
I wish I knew of a way to save her from this abyss that she has fallen, but the sea itself considers her an enemy already… And yet, she was the one who helped us attain freedom, and was also quite the sweet person when interacting with some of our citizens… No matter how much I think of her, I cannot understand how this girl’s mind works.
“But well, what I wish to do, is to establish a new country.” She told me.
“I see…” I replied. It made sense. Our people weren’t fond of the kingdom’s government already due to the time of slavery… If you add that to the recent attack and put all the blame on the prince, you’ll create a large resentment on the populace, to the point they might be willing to fight against the whole kingdom for the sake of their freedom. I am unsure if even I would be able to convince them otherwise.
“So? What’s your answer? I’ve already obtained the cooperation of Margrave Wallace, so if you also agree, we can make sure that the kingdom won’t ever be able to rob the sea of its freedom again.” She told me.
So she already has Margrave Wallace by her side? I wonder how she did that… Perhaps he was a youngling like Ronove who was not capable of keeping a clear head in times of need, and ended up getting lured into Chaos.
… As a priest of Krebskulm, I cannot agree to stay by her side, but… Before being a priest, I am the leader of the people of Belzenstock City. I need to do what is best for my citizens, and allying with her might be what keeps us the safest, even if only temporarily.
“Will the believers be kept safe?” I asked her. I should try to keep as many people alive as possible after all… For that, I need her to give me a guarantee.
“Mmm… I’m not sure what you’re asking, but it’s fine if you take a while to think about it. I’ll give you three days.” What does she mean about being unsure? And also…
“Three days?” I asked her.
“Yes. There will be a migrant gathering tomorrow, and I’ll be attending. You can use this meantime to think of your answer.” She replied.
A gathering… She said those same words on the last time we had met. Migrants seem to really enjoy festivals don’t they? Though this probably came at a good time as I’ll have more time to think this through.
“Well then, I guess I’ll be off.” She said.
“Won’t you at least meet up with the sisters before you go?” I asked her.
“Sisters…?” She asked back, “Who were those, again?” She doesn’t even remember? Nia cried so much when she heard that this girl left without even saying goodbye… Were they truly nothing more than tools for this girl? “Oh, right! The slave sisters. I remember them now.”
Slaves… Such an insulting word. She said it so easily, so naturally… So this is how she remembers those two sisters… I see. This is how it is in the end.
“This is good enough.” I told her, “I won’t be needing the three days after all, let us fight together… Let’s be comrades on the fight for the foundation of a new country.” I said.
Each word that I said pained my heart, but there was no choice, there was no room for hesitation… There was no way this woman could obtain salvation.
“You should go to your gathering, and I’ll be preparing things over here for the upcoming foundation of a new country.” I told her.
“Oh? Alright, thank you for your cooperation.” She replied.
“But of course, for this is what is best for all believers of Krebskulm.” I told her. We’ll do what we must do. Even if it means bowing down and licking her shoes, I will protect my people… I cannot let her destroy us, even if it means going completely against the faith I have followed for all of my life.
“Well, then. I’m off.” She turned around and started moving towards the window that she used to enter.
“Be safe out there.” I told her… This monstruous woman… I’ll offer her what I need to in order to protect my people, even if it means offering my very life…
At this point I wonder… Can she be truly be called an enemy of the sea any longer? When we once again chose to fight by her side…? I do not know, nor do I know if I won’t regret my actions in the future… But I will pray for the safety of all the citizens of Belzenstock, and do my utmost to preserve them.