Ch. 150 The Second Southern Conquest I
“Your Majesty, we pledge loyalty all the mo—”
Raymond blatantly cut off the apologies of the representatives of each city, turning their faces pale as a result.
“Now, now, don’t say that, Raymond. It seems like they are reflecting on their actions. Let’s forgive them this once.”
“Thank you very much for your generosity, Your Majesty…”
They all bowed at once.
Their heads were rubbing against the floor.
It seems the Aderns and the Cilicians don’t really bend their knees when apologizing.
They are not inside the cultural sphere of prostrating.
Which would imply that their attitude towards this apology is of the highest order.
“However, we can’t leave things as they are now.”
I lowered my voice.
The representatives’ shoulders twitched for a moment there.
“From hereon, we will continue the alliance with all the cities. However, I strictly prohibit all the cities from engaging in any sort of political exchange. Make sure to also submit reports of marriage of the people from different cities. Moreover…”
I continued stating the conditions indifferently.
- Hereafter, the cities in alliance with King Almis will be called Union City.
- Military rights as well as diplomacy rights of the union cities will not be acknowledged.
- The inhabitants of the cities will be permitted to move freely. However, in the case of a marriage between two people from different cities, a report must be submitted.
- The inhabitants are to pay 10% of their salary to the country as tax.
- All the mineral resources will be nationalized.
- The union cities can not deny stationing of troops.
- Infrastructure such as roads or bridges, etc. will be maintained by King Almis.
- Depending on the population of the union city, they will have to dispatch a certain number of soldiers.
- 10 important teachers and students will be sent to King Rosyth’s kingdom for studies.
- A standing embassy for King Rosyth’s country will be established in all the union cities.
- Autonomy will be permitted as long as national law permits it.
A complete change from before, the contents of this agreement are far more strict.
Before, a percentage of the income of the cities would have been taken as tax but now the tax is 10% for everyone.
Moreover, the mineral resources… Now that salt is also under my control, if I were to stop the flow of salt to these cities, they would not be able to acquire it through legal routes.
In terms of military service as well, till now, it was just “if possible” but now it has been further enforced.
That said, one can’t really complain even if they were to be turned into a slave if they lost a war in the Adernia Peninsula.
Compared to that, this treatment could be said to be rather soft.
“You do not have the right to decline. If you have any objection, go back to your country and prepare for battle. However, in that case, you do understand what will happen if you were to lose, right? This is the only time I will allow a revolt.”
I looked down on the representatives and declared in a low voice.
Not a single one of them objected.
With that, dealing with the rebellion is over.
Next is dealing with the cities that were actively neutral in the rebellion and dispatched troops according to the treaty.
“Good job gathering here, sit down. I’m sure this talk won’t be bad for you as well.”
I spoke to the representatives in a friendly manner.
On the other hand, they seemed quite nervous about what was going to happen.
I am sure they know very well what I did (Bartolo did) to the cities that did not surrender.
And they surely know about how strictly I dealt with the cities that caused the rebellion.
“Gentlemen, I am sure you are aware of the large-scale rebellion that occurred in the southern area. Due to that, I was thinking of amending the treaty for both our sakes.”
I presented the revised treaty.
- Hereafter, the cities that sign this treaty will be called autonomous cities.
- As long as the autonomous cities do not go against the national law, they will be permitted to uphold their autonomy.
- Abolishment of government taxes.
- In turn, they have to accept the duty of military service.
- The cities in this treaty can deny the stationing of troops, except in times of emergency.
- The maintenance of infrastructure will be done by the cities themselves. However, anything with a military objective will be constructed by King Rosyth’s country.
- The inhabitants of colonized cities will be permitted to acquire the subjects’ rights.
- Embassies will be made for King Rosyth’s country in the colonized cities.
It has gotten quite beneficial for them compared to the treaty we signed during the previous war.
And this is because even among the cities that have been neutral or cooperative towards us this time around, there are cities that have been firm in their rebellion during the previous war which lead to this strict treaty in the first place.
On the other hand, there are cities that came under our jurisdiction under lenient terms as King Belvedere’s country surrendered before they could clash with us.
In other words, this revised treaty is dealing with the situation that had been postponed since the last war.
“I want to have a good relationship with your countries going forward. Are there anything you find unsatisfactory here?”
“N-no… To think you’d abolish the tax… no, we have no complaints whatsoever. We would like to have a friendly relationship with Your Majesty as well.”
The representatives said, bowing their heads deeply.
And thus, the aftermath of the rebellion had been dealt with.
All that’s left is…
“Your Majesty, I bring a report.”
Yal, who had gone to the city of Cilicians under the influence of Lezad and Gehenna of the south, just returned.
Yal’s objective was to prepare for the reconciliation while we were dealing with the aftermath and the strikes.
“It seems all the cities do have the intention to reconcile. However…”
According to Yal, all these cities are wishing for compensation and the release of war prisoners.
How impudent of them considering they just lost.
“I guess there’s no other choice then.”
I exchanged looks with Raymond.
It’s time for war, again.
I passed an imperial edict throughout the country.
That I would subjugate the coward who had been deceiving the people from the shadows.
We gathered an army of forty thousand.
The population of my country is around 370,000 and so this is about 10% of the entire population. Needless to say, it was a big mobilization.
It should not affect agriculture that much since we would be away on the battlefield for only about a week.
Even then, a big mobilization such as this would put pressure on the national treasure.
Well then, why did I gather such a big army?
There are three reasons.
First, to show the world that our internal matters are resolved.
Second, to strengthen the unity inside the country.
And lastly, to make the Cilicians yield.
Although I say that, I did not really feel like making them surrender yet.
That is because I think it will take at least another year for the internal matters to properly settle.
However, we need a just cause for war.
If I were to let this chance go, I might not get such a just cause later on.
That said, I plan on abandoning the plan right away if it does not work.
It would just result in another revolt if we were to force it.
Now is the time to prioritize uniting the country.
And thus, the second southern conquest began.
“The mobilization went pretty smoothly, huh?”
“They surely did not expect Your Majesty to come leading a huge army like this so soon. The enemy is completely off guard.”
Bartolo said in a good mood while drinking alcohol.
The enemy weren’t visible at all until they crossed the border and reached the city-state.
There was not a single scout there.
It would appear that they did not realize the attack at all until our army appeared.
“But even then, it is true that they are still in a state of war. How can their response be this late?”
Raymond said, looking puzzled.
Our country and the cities were in a state of tension.
Under normal circumstances, they would be on high alert. Under normal circumstances, that is…
“That’s ‘cause they’re a democratic state. On top of that, all the cities are not in proper condition either. They probably have not decided whether to fight or reconcile with me yet.”
They had a dispute during the parliament and between the cities as well.
And while they were busy doing that, I prepared my troops surprisingly quickly and came knocking on their doors.
They are probably bewildered by all this.
“Well then, Your Majesty, what would you like to do now?”
“For starters, let’s tell them to surrender.”
The enemy has yet to prepare to intercept us.
If we wanted, we could easily sink their city within a day.
However, if they were to surrender, then that would be for the best.
“Yal. You go and demand them to surrender. You’ve already spoken with the influential people of the city, right?”
“Yes, this city is comparatively quiet politically so I think they’ll surrender soon.”
Yal got up on the horse and headed towards the castle gate alone.
And soon enough, a small window installed on the castle gate opened, letting Yal in.
The gate opened up in about three hours and Yal came out.
A bunch of half-naked men with their hands tied followed after him.
They’re probably trying to appeal that they are not resisting.
Yal came close and wore a triumphant smile.
So, it is alright to assume that this city has surrendered, right?
And so, like this, the first city had capitulated without any bloodshed.
In this manner, a big hypothetical wedge had been hammered into the Cilicians’ unity.