Chapter 064: Where Lei Is (Otou-sama’s POV)
It didn’t necessarily mean that there is good news. Many of the people I sent to search for her have come back empty handed. I wonder if I should let Luke listen in.
“It’s fine, Otou-sama. I want to listen too.”
But, Luke’s eyes were unwavering.
No matter what news we get.
Graces hinted that a public search would increase the value of Lei instead. Nevertheless, I have been using as many talented people as I can through magic from Frontier’s magic tool, which I have never used before. There are few people I trust, and Frontier is massive.
I held back my hope and waited for the investigator in my office. A knock sounded right away.
The man who Jude showed in was filthy in his travel clothes. But I had no other choices. He said the report as soon as possible.
“You don’t have to be formal. So?” I urged the man who was trying to give his greetings.
“A person who is thought to be Leila-sama is in Lentforce.”
Is in. Was that what he said?
“Lentforce… Jude, give me the map.”
Jude pulled a map out from the shelf. Meanwhile, Luke and I desperately tried to control our trembling hands. She’s in Lentforce. She’s alive.
If I’m not mistaken, Lentforce is in Wester. I lost Lei near the border of Wester. The information matches.
Jude spread the map on the desk.
“It’s here.” Luke pointed at a place west of the royal capital, Gardestar. It’s close.
“She’s this close…”
“Otou-sama. I learnt at the Academy that the Wellington separates Gardestar and Lentforce, and there are no trade routes through the mountains.”
“Yes, that’s right. It usually takes about four weeks to get to the western end of Wester. It also takes about four weeks or more from around Farland.”
“Otou-sama, why don’t you listen to what he has to say first?’
“Oh, you’re right. I couldn’t help but think about going to get her.”
I can’t go myself. I faced the investigator.
“Tell me the circumstances and current situation.”
When I looked at the investigator, he seemed pretty tired.
“Jude, a seat. And also some snacks and a drink.”
A chair was prepared for the investigator straight away, and he sat down gratefully.
“Thank you. I rushed here from the border.”
The investigator began talking after thanking me, “Firstly, I saw the person who is thought to be Leila-sama. She has the same blonde hair and violet eyes as Milord. Also, people called her『Leila』.”
“I’m certain it’s her. Then?”
“It seems like she’s being taken care of by a young and reputable hunter party. It looked like she is living healthy.”
I sucked my breath in. Healthy. Lei.
“If possible, I wanted to take her back here with me. But I concluded that it would be impossible and rushed back here to report.”
“What do you mean?”
I do feel that if it is, in fact, the person in question, then it would be good to bring her back. That is why I gave him the Four Marquis’ symbol.
“I’m sorry to tell you, but people don’t recognise the symbol of the Four Marquises unless they live near the border. They doubt whether it’s real or not. Leila-sama is protected by strong hunters and the whole town. I couldn’t even talk to her.”
“What about the mayor?”
“I was afraid that he wouldn’t believe me and that he would detain me.”
The man on the chair released a bit of his tension and said, “To begin with, I knew where she was from the people who want to kidnap her.”
“What did you say?!” I stood up.
“The gang is more daring than Milord and are operating on a large-scale. Therefore, the information about a violet-eyed Four Marquis child being kidnapped, then going missing temporarily, then somehow managed to get picked up by young hunters and headed to the West is spreading wide amongst those who do the dirty work behind the scenes. I followed that information and maintained a reasonable distance from the gang and ended up in Lentforce.”
I can’t believe it’s like that.
“I should have made the search bigger…”
The investigator shook his head.
“If people know that you are searching for her, then more reckless guys would appear because they want the reward. And the gang will feel pressed and act recklessly too. They aren’t taking firm measures and are playing the waiting game right now because the town is firmly protecting the child. Meanwhile, I rushed back here.”
I looked at Jude.
“If her location is clear…”
“Yes. I think it would be better to use the Four Marquis’ name and bring her back with a large team.”
“Alright!” I stood up again.
“It takes 4 weeks to get to Lentforce. Put together a team centring on the guards in the mansion who can move. Arrange a lot of guards so that it would be fine even if they’re attacked along the way. Recruit hunters from around Kaylie. You can find them through the magic tool shop. Or…”
I thought of ways to win over good hunters.
“Should they enter Wester from the north through Farland…?”
“Milord, can you stop?”
What was his name? Well, whatever.
“I don’t think Wester is any better than Farland. But there are royal families in each country, and you would affect their pride if you go to Wester from Farland to rescue your daughter.”
“Hmph. What a hassle. If that’s the case, then it’s fine if we let their relatives go?”
“Pardon me, but Kingdom is the same.”
That’s right. Leila was kidnapped from this mansion.
“Otou-sama, I’ll go.”
“Leila’s world is small. Her world consists of Sebas, Hannah, Otou-sama and I. Her world basically revolved around us. Hannah and Sebas aren’t here, and she would be wary of strangers, no matter how much they insist they were sent by the Four Marquises.”
I knew Luke would say that. If I can go, then I would, and Luke is the same. But…
“Luke, you can’t.”
I could have at least let him go if she had been in Kaylie or near the border. But I can’t let him go somewhere further than in Frontier.
“You’re the only one who has the blood of the Albans. I can’t afford to lose you. This time, neither the supervision department nor the King would let you go.”
Both Luke and I looked at Jude in surprise.
“I’ve never talked to Leila-sama before, but she’s seen me many times.”
I never knew that they’ve met before.
“At first, she showed signs of looking at me as if she was asking who I was, but she pretended to pass me. I went to see her many times after that, and she understood that I was a butler-like Sebas. She would sometimes smile at me after that. We’ve never talked to each other before, but she knows that I work for the Albans House.”
“Why did you go to see her in secret…? You could have just gone to see her openly.”
“Well, how do I say this? In short, Sebas took the lead before I could.”
“But you’ve never travelled somewhere far before… and you’re old.”
“I’m just over 40,” Jude said plainly.
“There isn’t anyone who would want to go to Frontier, especially if they’re maids or those without power. In that matter, I also care about my necessities as a butler.”
It hurts me that Jude would be gone. But I’m grateful that he would go for Leila.
But Jude, who had triumphantly declared with joy, didn’t go to Lentforce in the end.