Kuro no Maou 431 – Part 1/3

 

The Count’s Daughter

 

 

It was still the night of the 16th of Dark Moon.

Though the blizzard still raged on outside, it was as warm as a mansion with a lit fireplace inside the huge tent the Crusader’s Third Corps were using as their field headquarters.

“I can’t believe this blizzard! If it weren’t for this annoying weather, that castle would be nothing but rubble by now!”

That heroic voice belonged to Baron Hermann, one of the commanding officers of the Third Corps. He was clad in the same silver full plate mail that the knights of the Sinclair Republic wear.

He had a strong, bulky physique, but his armor was strangely a good fit on this middle-aged commander. Could it be this was due to the efforts of the blacksmith who had made it especially for him?

“Well, let’s not be impatient. This snowstorm could very well be the will of the gods.”

The one to answer with a somewhat composed elegance was the general of the Third Corps, Count Bergunt.

Though he was rather slim, he was also well toned. He certainly looked like a count, with his long legs crossed as he sat on his armchair. He was truly the living image of an aristocrat amongst the townspeople, gently shaking a glass of mulled wine with his right hand.

“Their walls have already been breached. We still have about ten more Ancient Golems we can use. Our biggest obstacle, the castle walls, is gone. It’s just a matter of time.”

The noble commanders joined together in a grin filled with the conviction of certain victory.

“Your Excellence, I propose we launch a surprise attack tonight. What do you say about sending our finest assassins to bring a little chaos to those fiends?”

Bergunt quickly replies to one of his officer’s suggestions.

“There’s no need. We don’t have to press any further, considering how the situation is at the moment.”

“Then, how about preventing them from repairing their walls? Perhaps we could send some chimera soldiers to that effect.”

Another officer shared his ideas.

Bergunt took a sip of his wine, and answered.

“No, we won’t do that. The chimera soldiers are still somewhat concerned about their restraints. And we did lose more than half of them during today’s battle. Rather than using them sporadically now, I think it would be much better to send them all to the front on our next attack.”

“As you say, Your Excellence. Your far sight and deep designs are truly something amazing!”

“Hahaha, your idea wasn’t bad at all, either. Have confidence in yourself.”

While complimenting the young officers who would lead in the next generations to come, Bergunt savored both the taste of his wine and their current unexpected superiority in battle.

“Once this blizzard is over, the main force of our army will finally launch a full frontal assault. Gentlemen, please have a look here. These are the three places we should aim at…”

Bergunt pointed at a rough map that lay across the table. It was a magnification of Galahad Fortress’ surroundings, which had become a battlefield.

There were white chess-like pieces standing on top of the map, representing their own army. Infantry, cavalry, sorcerers, knights, valkyrie knights –they were divided roughly into those categories.

Opposite to those, there were also black pieces which represented the demon army. The great walls of Galahad, the terrain within them, and the layout of the buildings, were all displayed on the map to the best of their knowledge. The intel they had on the interior of Galahad Fortress was a combination of what they had learned during today’s battle, and what the Daedalus Army already knew. However, that intel is nothing more than something that could be easily obtained by looking at the fortress from above. The interior of the fortress itself was still a mystery to them.

Nevertheless, the amount of intel they had was good enough for them to plan an offensive.

Bergunt pointed at three specific points in the map marked with a red X: the first two were each of the two holes in the great walls made by their Ancient Golems, and the third one was the fortress’ front gates.

“Considering our numbers, we can attack all these three points at once. Now, let us discuss to our heart’s content regarding who is going to be in charge of what. Haha… this is going to be a long night.”

After that, some of the officers, hungry for recognition, begin to talk one after the other.

The Third Corps is an army of aristocrats. More than the knights, their merits during war were more directly related to their profits than anything else. The First and Second Corps, which consisted of private armies organized by the church, were more likely to compete amongst themselves.

“…Hmm, it’s hard to decide.”

After about an hour of listening to the officers’ heated arguments, they had still not reached a conclusion.

“Gentlemen, I understand your enthusiasm. But the truth is, I already had something in mind.”

Though he was a bit intoxicated by his wine, Bergunt cheerfully decided to go with his own plan.

In short, he had already decided everything from the beginning.

“To wait until this time to say that he already had a plan… Ho ho… that’s so evil of you, Your Excellency.”

Instead of being offended by Hermann’s joking, Bergunt answered him with a cheerful smile.

Their territories were adjacent to one another, so they’ve had a long official and personal relationship. These kinds of interactions were regular between them, and thanks to this, their conversation went on smoothly.

“Come on, don’t say that. I’m sure most of you want to have an opportunity to shine at least once in this battle… However, I believe you’ll agree with my idea.”

The Count’s confident words made the officers feel both anticipation and uneasiness.

“Ho ho… it wouldn’t be that Helvetia saintess I’ve heard so much about–”

Before Hermann could finish speaking about what he had suddenly remembered, Bergunt held his hand up as if to interrupt him, and asked that person to enter the room.

“Come in, Linfelt.”

“… Excuse me.”

A clear reply echoed through the entire room.

The moment she appeared, everyone’s breath was taken away. She had a beautiful and lovely figure wrapped in a white priestess’ robe.

“Good evening, dear Crusader officers. Nice to meet you all. My name is Linfelt Aria Helvetia Bergunt–”

The black-haired girl bowed respectfully.

Black hair was rather rare in the republic, though it is seen amongst some of the townspeople.

However, the reason why her appearance seemed extremely rare was that the pupils in her big, round eyes were completely pitch-black.

She was a black-haired girl with eyes as black as the night.

“Some of you may already know her, but allow me to introduce her to you. This is my daughter.”

He sounded confident when he declared that, but his hair was dark green with dashes of the magical color of the wind, and his eyes were like pale emeralds. They didn’t look like father and daughter at all.

However, since the count himself had introduced her as his daughter, no one said anything about it.

“My daughter Linfelt will handle the hole in the left side, where those Alsacian demons still remain.”

******************

“Waah, it’s so cold! We shouldn’t have come here, Tsumiki!”

She said such things while feeling the intense snowstorm, though her companion didn’t say anything at all in response.

The actions of the Eight Apostle, Ai, are always random. The only reason why they were loitering out there that night while freezing themselves in that blizzard was nothing more than her not being able to sleep.

“Haah– we should go back, there’s even brothels back there–”

She certainly looked like a girl, but the words that came through her mouth were akin to a male Crusader soldier with an excess of libido.

“We should have brought Silvia along, don’t you think?”

Even though she had asked a question while thinking about that red-haired, big-breasted beautiful woman, there was no response from the griffon baby she was holding in her arms. Though he was still an infant, the only thing that was reflected on those cold, bird-of-prey-like eyes in his hawk-like face was nothing that the face of his mistress.

“Aah– it’s cold! Warm me up! I’ll rub you against me, kiss you all over, and hold you tight!”

As she yelled those impure things, she shoved the griffon baby’s lion-like torso onto her face, seeking warmth. Sadly enough, those big breasts she dreamed about weren’t there.

Seemingly annoyed, Tsumiki noisily wiggled his limbs in a fleeting display of resistance.

“–Heeey, over there! Is there anyone there?”

At that time, she heard a warning call from somewhere.

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