The Holguin territory in the western Nagras kingdom. The castle in the center of the city is decorated with luxurious furnishings suitable for nobles.
Inside a room of that castle was a man sitting on a rocking chair.
「Master. The Young Master has returned from the capital. 」
The old servant with white hair notified. There were five people in the room.
One of them was sitting on the rocking chair, it is the previous Marquis Holguin. Another is the old servant who served the previous marquis loyally.
Then two armed escorts stood behind the previous marquis. The last person is a person dressed like a spy kneeling before the previous marquis.
「Tell him to wait for a while. We’re having an important meeting now. 」
「Understood. I shall convey to the Young Master to wait in his room. 」
The old servant exited the room after getting the order.
「So? Since you’ve come here to report especially, you must’ve got something good? 」
The previous marquis continued their talk after getting interrupted by the old servant.
「I have determined the Countless Swords Sorcerer’s residency. 」
「What? Is that true? 」
The previous marquis who was taken by surprise leaned out unintentionally.
「Yes. I have managed to find the Countless Swords Sorcerer’s residency outside the capital. It is inside the Corsas Forest just northeast of the capital. 」
「Corsas? In that kind of forsaken land? No wonder finding it failed numerous times…… 」
The previous marquis bit on his nails in irritation.
「Explain in detail. 」
「Yes. Although I have tried tailing the Countless Swords Sorcerer many times, he managed to shake me off every time. That’s when I thought to change my approach, to target someone close to the Countless Swords Sorcerer instead, that’s when I found out there is a student in Mariules Academy who would purchase supplies and head out of the capital regularly. 」
「Although the student would return in that day, the supplies he had when he left wouldn’t be brought back. It looked like he was delivering the supplies to somewhere, and just as I’ve tailed him yesterday―― 」
「Are you saying you’ve seen his residency in person? 」
The previous marquis overwhelmed the spy’s report and asked.
「Yes. Although it is still in the outskirts of the Corsas Forest, there was an opening and a house there in somewhere no mercenaries nor explorers would normally visit. There is no mistake that the house in question is the Countless Swords Sorcerer’s. 」
「Magnificent, good work! 」
The previous marquis stood un in an expression of joy.
「And it’s not just that. What I’ve seen there, it will surely be use of Your Excellency. 」
「Hou, tell me. 」
「It is a pair of about fourteen, fifteen years old ―――― twins. 」
「Twins, you say? 」
The previous marquis was stunned at the totally unexpected word.
「Yes. The reason why Countless Swords Sorcerer is living remotely in the forest is probably because of that. I am sure that he intends to hide the existence of the twins. 」
「Hohouu……. I see, I see! Twins huh! 」
Starting to realize the meaning behind the news the spy brought, the previous marquis seemed to get more and more excited.
「You have brought even greater news that I’ve expected! Let me have your compensation doubled! 」
Just as the previous marquis offered doubling the compensation, a knock was heard from the door.
「Father, it is me. 」
The person who knocked the door said so, and before waiting for a response from the previous marquis, he opened the door and entered.
It is a young man at least two folds younger than the previous marquis. He is the current Marquis Holguin and the previous marquis’s actual son.
「I’m busy now. Didn’t I told you to wait? 」
There was the old servant standing behind the current marquis. Seeing his expression, the previous marquis could tell that his son ignored what the servant said and entered anyways.
「Why is Father who is relieved of all duties and under house arrest busy? 」
「Shut your mouth. Even if I am relieved of my duties, my connections are still there. What kind of son are you to say something like that when I’m moving for the sake of our family? 」
「I have no recollections of anyone asking you to do that, Father. It seems like you are plotting something again but, please refrain from doing anything and instead tend to the garden or something. I will be handling our house. 」
「Who are you saying that to! Since when did you have the rights to belittle me!? 」
Not afraid of the previous marquis even as he shouted, the son looked at his father with a cold piercing gaze and narrated the reality.
「It’s since I have succeeded the house, so? Let me be honest, Father. You are nothing more than an ex-marquis now under house arrest. The acting head of the house is me. Please refrain from doing anything without my permission. 」
「Who do you think brought this house so far!? 」
「You are also the one who brought it into demise! It was good that you tried to make my sister into the next empress, it was good that you made good use of the faction inside the army. However, the truth is that you failed! Thanks to that, Duke Nyrestia is now on our bad side, the crown prince is displeased, and our rights of Lotus Cup was lost too! Whose fault is it that our house is now seen as a fallen noble!? You cannot not know how much trouble I’ve gone through just to wipe up your mess! 」
The previous marquis was tied with words after being scolded violently.
「……In any case, I don’t wish for our house to become worse. Please don’t do anything extra without my knowledge. The current Marquis Holguin is me, don’t forget that. 」
He spoke everything he wanted say and left the room. After his son left the room, the previous marquis’s anger exploded.
「Kuh……! It’s all because of that hateful black hair! 」
Kicking the rocking chair he was just sitting on into a corner, the eyes of the previous marquis with ragged breath was lit with a dangerous flame.
「Unforgivable, unforgivable……! A mere brat! I don’t care if you’re the 『Three Great Demons Subjugator』 or 『Countless Swords Sorcerer』, I will have you regret making an enemy of me! Convenient that you’re hiding filthy twins. No matter how famous a mercenary you are, no one would stand with someone siding with the evil god. 」
According to the teachings of the Goddess, twins were the pawns of the evil god who had caused chaos in the world.
The existence of the Goddess which is believed by everyone no matter who cannot be ignored even by the royalty. Even the Nagras Kingdom and its enemy, the Elemenia Empire commonly believed in same Goddess.
Ignoring the teachings of the Goddess, the meaning of raising pawns of the evil god is something even illiterate commoners would know.
There’s a need to coax the church, and then expose the existence of the twins the Countless Swords Sorcerer is raising.
And naturally, the Countless Swords Sorcerer would be seen as a heretic, and his reputation would be destroyed.
When that happens, no one would be willing to stand on that sorcerer’s side. Even Duke Nyrestia would cut his ties to a heretic for sure.
「There’s a need to visit the church. 」
Ignoring the warnings of his son, the previous marquis started plotting.
「Someone who is easy to manipulate, highly devout, and has a limited vision……」