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“Although you may see me as an unfamiliar foreigner, I am rather familiar with this city’s decorum.  The Pilsen’s demons were supposed to call his highness Kubalt, as ‘the great one’.”

I forgot about this, but with Guram, the Minotaur, it came back to my head.

“Referencing the king to your highness was originated from the humans, so it is allowed only among the people of the world.  On the other hand, demons must refer to their king as ‘the great one’ without exception.”

That was the decorum of this demon king’s territory.

“Yet, how can a lowly goblin call the great one as ‘he’ or ‘him’, you think?  Looking at that portrait earlier, you said, ‘him’.  How impertinent of you.”

“…..”

At this point, the goblin did not say anything particular and simply stared at me.

“Then that goblin will just only be at the equal level as the demon king.  However, you know it too?  That it is almost impossible for a goblin to rise above that of the demon king.  Furthermore, his highness, Kubalt, is also an expert in disguise, don’t you think that it would be appropriate for me to assume that the goblin, before me, is the demon king.”

I stood up from my seat and elegantly bowed.

“Your highness, my salute has been delayed.  I am Ballasthedde Valer.”

With that determinative action, the goblin has finally broken out in to laughter.

“Hahaha!”

As the black smoke entwined around the goblin, a handsome man with a horn on his head appeared.

“I’m Kubalt, the leader of Pilsen.  I welcome you to my demon kingdom’s palace.  A visit from someone with your wisdom is always welcome.”

“It’s my honor.  Your highness.”

From his laughing countenance, I could see that he approved of me.

“Valer, you’re erudite and wise.  That was the reason why you subtly took a look at my ring.  I’ve never knew that there was a human who knew about the indestructible ruby.  Your learning is truly astonishing.  Even the demons who call themselves gurus do not know of that.”

“I’ve heard about it from a wise man, a long time ago, which allowed me to be able to just distinguish them.”

“Still, I don’t believe that this alone gave away my identity.  Valer, it seems that you’ve already anticipated my moves.”

That wasn’t a wrong observation.  I was opened to the possibility that the demon king, Kubalt, might want to call me upon my arrival.

“It wasn’t all that of a difficult problem if one was to think about it a little longer.”

“Huh-huh!  How so.  I’d like to listen to your wise reasoning.”

“It isn’t even worth calling it wisdom.  Your highness.  If you are like those who are quick to receiving rumors, most likely, you’ve already heard about the appearance of a potential mate for the Countess of Niederbayern.”

“I was very surprised to hear that, as well.”

Kubalt was nicknamed the spy king since he was engrossed in collecting intels, but this matter did not require his level of intelligence gathering in order to grasp it.

Many people have already seen me at the government building in Lantzhuit.  Furthermore, in that same evening, it would have been easily learned by paying a little bit of attention to the many of the excited government workers of Walpurgis.

“Perhaps, you took an interest in me.”

“I’ll not deny it.  I have never thought that that countess was ever going to show any interest in a man.  I was just curious as to what kind of person he was.”

“Presently, Niederbayern is filled with dispatched intel agents due to the currently ongoing matter.  Your agents were also present among them, most likely.  Perhaps, they had informed you that I was on my way up north.”

“Correct.”

The value of intel on me was not that great as of now.

Therefore the intelligence agents probably checked that a man for Countess of Niederbayern had appeared, but did not monitor the fact that I had left the palace in the middle of the night.

However, for Kubalt, who was extremely sensitive to the intels all around him, the case might be different.  His intelligence agents were well known for checking up on every detail.

“So, I thought that perhaps, if it was your highness, you might be keeping an eye on this unknown fellow by the name of Valer.  It probably didn’t even incur a drop of sweat as far as monitoring me as I leisurely walked down the river’s shore.  So, I’ve just decided to come to Pilsen.”

Kubalt looked incredulous.  He had his mouth slightly opened as if he was highly impressed.

“Ah!  Astonishing.  You’re truly an audacious person.  However, couldn’t your guess have been incorrect?”

“If nothing interesting thing happened in this city, that would have only implied that your highness did not take much interest in me, and that wouldn’t have been too bad either.  That’s because it is something to celebrate, knowing that I have not yet been caught in the web of the intels, set by the spy king.”

In a hurry, Kubalt even laughed as he clapped his hands.

“Hahahaha!  You’re truly an interesting fellow!”

“Since we’ve become acquainted like this, I need to get your help on something.”

“Your dauntless courage impresses me.  You’re requesting something as soon as you meet a demon king.”

The intelligence gathering ability of this spy king was the best of the best inside the empire.  If his support can be secured, he would certainly become a very strong ally.

“Like the money goes around the world, how can something good only move in one direction?  If your highness can help me, there will surely come a day in which I can return that favor.”

“It is good that I’ve met you today.”

Enjoying himself, he tacked on the words as he drank some tea.

“I can see now why that Countess of Niederbayern has chosen you.  Such an extraordinary man can be hard to come by.”

“Well, it isn’t really that the Countess has chosen me, but…”

Kubalt clicked his tongue when he heard that.

“Well, are you dull when it comes to that kind of things?  Or pretending to not know it?”

“Sir?”

“It appears that what happened in the countess’ residence wasn’t something that you wanted to happen, but it has already happened.  Soon, the feudal lord of the Bayern will hear that news as well.”

“Ah…..”

I forgot.  Was I stupid.  Being fully preoccupied on the matters at hand, what happened at the countess’ residence had completed escaped my mind.

“What I’m saying is that you may have to come up with a great excuse.  As you may also know, the feudal lord of Bayern is well known for being a do anything sort of person for her niece.  What I’m hearing is certainly not an exaggeration.  If you think that you are not confident enough to be liked by him, it is better for you to just keep you head down and stay put.”

“Huh…..”

Only then I came to remember the fiery character of Maximilian, the feudal lord of Bayern.  I meant that that man’s character truly went beyond being like fire, and actually enjoyed burning everything.

Whether it was a prisoner of war, or some fellow who might have caused a scandal with his niece, he would not be able to demonstrate any tolerance.

Gurrrr-.

Suddenly, I felt the chills and thought that I had to resolve this issue without any errors.  Only then I thought that I would escape death by burning.

“What?  You didn’t know?  It is true that the countess of Niederayern is well known to be a tomboy that marriage proposal has been cutoff, but… the true reason isn’t because of that.  Being the successor of Bayern, how badly would having a wild personality or being scandalous impact her?”

“Then?”

“The feudal lord of Bayern has performed exorcism on everyone who ran to beg to give the niece’s hand to them!”

Ultimately, it seemed that the feudal lord of Bayern was seeing every man who came near his niece as someone possessed by ‘evil spirit’.  What does he mean by exorcism….. It wasn’t too difficult to be able to guess that it wasn’t an ordinary exorcism, either.

As I could not hide my confusion, Kubalt clicked his tongue.

“Click-click!  You’re surely a promising young fellow, but at the same time, you’re a promising firewood as well.”

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