Chapter 55: Meeting with Lord Warung
The tour around Raul Dukedom went well. There wasn’t really anything to do.
On the way back, I met with Lord Warung in Marquis L’Mitedeau’s fief.
Lord Raul seems wary of Lord Warung since he was a renowned militant since he was only granted a small audience with me in the presence of the Chancellor’s many aristocrats.
I see… They are wary of Lord Warung. Lord Warung has a military force that was said to rival Lord Raul’s in terms of military power. That was why the Chancellor wasn’t paying attention to things he usually paid attention to.
This could be said to be luck. He didn’t set the meeting here. It was the Chancellor.
Marquis L’Mitedeau’s fief was occupied by an unauthorized person. The original owner of this fief was… Fabio.
By a stroke of luck, I was able to sneak the surviving members of L’Mitedeau into here.
I will ask them to hide in the fief and prepare to raise an army… After they have surveyed the hills… Good luck.
I’m waiting in a heavy and gaudy outfit for the audience. I guess this was another way for the Chancellor to apply ‘pressure’ on Lord Warung.
I will definitely get rid of this formal attire when I obtain real power. Why do they put heavy gold decorations on their clothes? It’s too heavy.
“The 8th Emperor, Carmine de la Gade-Bungdalto.”
The gift I was given was called ‘guandeleo’ and was made by drying something called guande grass.
Symptoms I have learnt from observing Helck le Duffe are… A foggy mind, and lethargy. The withdrawal symptom is sudden irritability. This doesn’t occur over time, but straight away.
I’m going to act out these symptoms thoroughly.
“It has been a long time since we have met, Your Majesty. I am Richter du van Warung.”
Lord Warung came to see me with Nadine numerous times when I was a child… but we could only briefly greet each other at that time.
He was a typical military man who rarely came to the capital. He respected my father, who went to war with him, and distanced himself from politics since he wasn’t good at it.
I need him to show me how he feels about his sworn son’s friend being used as a puppet for the aristocrats.
“Who are you?”
I leaned back in my chair and stared at him blankly. The Chancellor and the other aristocrats weren’t surprised when they saw me act like this. They think their ‘gifts’ are working.
“… What? I am Duke Warung. I am sorry for all the trouble that my daughter has caused you.”
Duke Warung thought I was sulking. I hope he notices what’s going on.
“Lord Warung, His Majesty is tired from his long journey.”
Are you trying to make this meeting end earlier? You’re annoying, Chancellor.
“Lord Raul… Then why have you not responded to my formal notice…”
“Ah, Lord Warung. Long time no see.”
The room was silent. The vacant Emperor had interrupted Lord Warung. Anyone would feel uncomfortable.
Lord Warung’s eyes widened in shock. He’s noticed.
For Lord Warung, who was a warrior, the Emperor his lord, and someone whom he should protect. He would not tolerate my current behaviour.
“… I understand. If Your Majesty is not in the best of moods, then we will have to reschedule this for another day.”
… Oh, did he back down? I was going to act like I was going through withdrawal symptoms if he hadn’t noticed. I thought he would be outraged… Did I fail?
I glanced at Count Palatine Vedett but he shook his head.
I don’t need to act like I’m getting worse?
… So, Lord Warung isn’t bad at politics, he just doesn’t like it.
“Now, let us return Your Majesty.”
The Chancellor led me out of the room. Perhaps the Chancellor and his aristocrats are letting their guard down, just as Lord Warung intended.
This seems promising.
Let’s talk about politics for a bit. If a rebellion occurs in the Empire, they will be ‘rebelling against the Empire’ not ‘against the Emperor’.
Legally, an Emperor is only recognised as an Emperor once they have been enthroned, but my ‘coronation’ has yet to be held due to the political strife. The ceremony, which should have been performed, has yet to be since it was more convenient for the aristocrats this way. In other words, they were ‘infringing on the Emperor’s authority’.
So, the rebels will actually have a cause; taking down those who try to butter up to their masters while secretly plotting against them.
Incidentally, the Theanabe Union rebelled for ‘independence’, so they didn’t need a just cause to begin with.
My purpose this time is to make Lord Warung raise his army. I can worry about whether he rebels or not later as long as the cause of ‘defeating the Chancellor and the Chief of the Ministry of Ceremonies for the Emperor’ was established.
I don’t care if he succeeds or not. All that matters is that he rebels.
What would the Chancellor and the Chief of the Ministry of Ceremonies do then? They will probably rush my ‘coronation’ to prevent this just cause, and at the same time, they will send their troops to deal with the rebels, leaving the capital bare.
That is what I’m aiming for. This is when I will purge the aristocrats and seize real power.
This was why I needed to get Lord Warung to make up his mind to rebel at this audience.
I have a good reason for choosing Lord Warung for this role. Actually, I chose him to start this rebellion from the very beginning.
First, because of his military power. The Chancellor and the Chief of the Ministry of Ceremonies are wary of Lord Warung’s army, so they will have no choice but to respond with everything they have if he rebels.
Second, because of geographical factors. The capital, Cardinal, is located at the centre of the Bungdalto Empire… Lord Warung’s fief is in the southern part of the Empire, Lord Aquicurl’s fief is in the western part of the Empire and Lord Raul’s fief is in the eastern part of the Empire. The distance between these fiefs and the capital is almost the same.
Lord Warung’s fief is in an excellent position; it wasn’t too far, nor too close, but far enough away to buy me time to act.
If the capital is occupied before I take control of it, then I might become the puppet of the next occupier.
That’s why this meeting was quite important. I had to make Lord Warung raise his army no matter what it took.
At first, I was worried that I had failed when I saw Lord Warung withdraw from the audience so quickly but… Judging from the way Count Palatine Vedett acted, it was the opposite.
He backed down to ensure that the Chancellor and the other aristocrats wouldn’t realise that he had decided to raise his army; thus, ensuring its success.
It was easy for Lord Warung to pull off this feat as a general who has fought many battles.
After I returned to the capital, the new year started without any signs of movement. The Chancellor and the Chief of the Ministry of Ceremonies were wary of Lord Warung but they let their guard down since Nadine, a potential hostage, was still in the capital.
But I know that Nadine was restless.
Lord Warung will definitely make his move.
History is about to be made.