Two months after Nicole had departed from the Glock Village. The employees of the Litte association started gathering at Marrieda’s new place one after another.
Apparently having told by Nicole beforehand, they brought large amount of groceries and daily necessities instead of souvenirs.
Thanks to that, their food stockpile increased to an extent that they don’t have to worry for another month.
「As expected, the prices for food had increased but, so did the Heavy Iron ores~nii. I guess the difference is about the same――? 」
A small house in the village. In one of the rooms that is now the operation building of the Litte Business Association, Marrieda said so to Ardis while sitting between the desk full of documents.
「Did you manage to contact all your scattered employees? 」
「Unn. Ellie and the others are coming soon probably. Of course, Kyrill is also there as their escorts yo~n. 」
Marrieda’s childhood friend, the successor daughter of the Rovell Business Association was only a one time acquaintance to Ardis.
However, Ardis knew well about Kyrill who admires that Ellie as his sister.
「When will Nicole return? 」
「His letter said that he won’t be able to leave Calves for the time being~nii. 」
「It’s lonely huh. 」
Ardis’s unnecessary comment caused Marrieda’s expression to distort unusually.
「……Ardis-kun can say jokes like that too I see―― 」
「It’s not like it was a joke though. 」
「Well, either ways……. You haven’t met Kyrill for a long time right? 」
Not affirming nor denying, Marrieda changed the topic instead.
「Kyrill now……, he’s already twenty huh. 」
Kyrill who was known the genius of the Mariules Academy was no more than a dependable child. However, that child is now twenty. Disregarding Ardis, the flow of time continued.
「You’re looking forward to meeting him again right? 」
「I guess. 」
In the end, Kyrill wasn’t able to learn to see mana nor start to use arts without chanting but, for Ardis, he’s still a pupil he had taught.
It’s natural how his expression loosened thinking about how long has it been since they last met.
「And is it only Kyrill that you wanted to talk about? 」
Ardis asked because it was Marrieda who called for him in the first place. If it’s just about Kyrill, there was no need to call Ardis when he’s busy.
「Of course, there’s something else. 」
Marrieda stopped her hands, and removed her gaze from the documents.
「It’s not a great news――. It seems like the situation is moving for the worse~nii. 」
Saying so, Marrieda conveyed the information she had obtained thus far from the gathered employees.
Ardis tilted his head at the unfamiliar words that came out of her story.
「Rovres Alliance? The heck’s that. 」
「It’s the military alliance formed centering the Elmenia Empire and San Rojuel Monarchy that came from the southern continent. The now independent Thoria Kingdom and the Alburn Kingdom that had been on good terms with the Empire for a long time is also in it~nii. 」
Ardis’s expression became dangerous.
「A military alliance means……」
「Unn. Apparently they declared that they will dominate the entire continent with that alliance――. The war isn’t stopping yet…… unnya, rather it might worsen from now on~nii. 」
Marrieda said 『Might』 but, it’s pretty much confirmed to worsen already.
Now that the Elmenia Empire had swallowed the Nagras Kingdom, there’s no longer anyone with the power to stop them.
Bronshell Republic in the north of the Kingdom, the Coalition on the Reiten side, and several smaller countries in the west.
After the Kingdom’s destruction, there are no other countries on the continent that has the power to go against the Rovres Alliance.
Although the Bronshell Republic is not a small country, due to its republic nature, their actions are slow, and on top of that, they don’t have the military prowess to go against the Empire that defeated the Kingdom.
It’s certain that they will be absorbed by the Rovres Alliance sooner or later.
「About this, did you tell Moore and the others already? 」
「I plan to tonight but, it’s better for Ardis-kun to know earlier right? 」
It’s not just something that concerns the Glock Village. As expected, the hidden village wouldn’t be in risk of getting invaded but, Michelle who had been peddling goods to the village would be affected, and it’s likely that Sera would invite more people that are affected by the flames of war.
Before discussing what to do for the Glock Village, Ardis needed to confirm the actions of the hidden village.
Even though he didn’t reveal anything about the hidden village, it seems like Marrieda had known about it already.
It could purely be her observational skills, or her prophetic dreams at work, but either ways, Ardis is thankful for Marrieda’s considerations.
「Yeah, thanks. 」
Saying shortly, Ardis immediately left the room.
He had to return to the hidden village and get back to the Glock Village before night falls.
Despite getting a place of rest, Ardis cannot afford to lower his guard.
That night, in Reiten under San Rojeul Monarchy’s control.
In one of the rooms in the largest building that was once called the castle, there were three men surrounding a table.
One of them had sharp facial features and narrow eyes.
One of them was a sloppy silver-haired man in a military uniform.
And the last one is a tall man that looked stubborn.
「The supplies from the Empire arrived without problems. As scheduled, we will start marching to the nearest city-state from here on the next month, be prepared with that in mind. 」
「Even though we had so many casualties when helping them fight the Kingdom before, now we have to attack without the Empire’s help? What a great feeling to be used. 」
The silver-haired man was grumbling unsatisfactorily at the narrow-eyes man’s instructions. His words were then taken hostilely by the tall man.
「Warn you. Not like before, we are now subordinates. Mind your words. 」
「It’s fine. Although of course not when others are around, there’s no need to be uptight when there’re just the three of us. For me, we are all comrades that had lived the same life, it’s just a coincidence that I was entrusted the position of a commander. Don’t worry, I don’t intend to flaunt my position. 」
The thin eye man was indicating that he wasn’t bothered by how the silver-haired man spoke.
The calmest person among the three was the most suitable leader.
「Told you. It’s only you that’s so insistent on this and that. 」
「Can’t agree. Relations must be made clear to not disturb the chain of command in an army. 」
「Even I will properly follow orders when on a battlefield. But spare me from being so uptight inside a meeting room. 」
The thin eye man put a stop onto the two that seemed to start bickering until forever if left unattended.
「Just a little more. Your turn to shine in the battlefield is coming soon. 」
「That’s what I like to hear. The siege this time was so easy that I’m yawning. Automatic chanting sure is convenient but, what to call it? It doesn’t feel like a fight at all. 」
「But it’s thanks to that we don’t have many casualties. After all, it’s not easy for soldiers like us to get supplies so far out from home. 」
Automatic chanting is the prided magic technology that the Monarchy had newly developed.
Configuring it with mana beforehand, it was a revolutionary tool that enables even non-magician to shoot offensive magic.
On top of its high cost, its power is weaker than when a magician directly chants but, as long as there is magic power, it’s possible to shoot offensive magic.
And because of its delicate nature, there was a need to transport it extra carefully, and although not suited for a brawl, it’s a very useful tool for a siege.
This time, they had only used it during the night to hide its existence, as it was completely hidden during the day.
They would barrage with the automatic chanting machine during the night, and the magician will take over during the day.
And then, when the magicians go to sleep in the night, they then restarted the automatic chanting attacks.
It’s something no enemies can handle. Day and night, they are being sieged with no time to rest.
「Confirmation. Is the preparation for the auto-chanting machine complete? 」
「No problem. Three of them can’t be helped as there’re missing parts, but the remaining hundred forty-seven are in perfect condition. We can use the same tactic of only deploying it during the night to bait the enemy to make a mistake. In fact, Reiten thought that we had used magician throughout the night. 」
Answering the tall man, the thin eye man was saying so as if pitying his enemies.
Of course, no matter how much effort they put into concealment, it’s inevitable that it will be revealed to the enemy sooner or later.
「The auto-chanting machine shouldn’t yet be known to the Coalition, so the next time…… and the next time should be doable. 」
「And what about after that? 」
「Either way, the most we can handle at a time is five cities. We must not get help from the Empire. After falling the third city, we must not allow the frontline to widen before our remaining army arrives. 」
Did he think that the thin eye man was being passive, the silver-haired man grumbled irritatedly.
「Isn’t it fine to use the Imperial army since we’ve gotten an alliance and everything. 」
「Bad idea. Even if an alliance, it is not desirable to let the Empire expand more than this. 」
It seems like he was more intrigued by the later parts of the tall man words rather than his criticism about his idea, as the silver-haired man looked over at the thin eye man for an explanation.
「Is that correct? 」
「Yeah. Our aim is to create a stable foothold on this continent, and having the Empire expand its power too much is a trouble. We managed to get the Empire to agree on the condition that they will not put a hand into our conquering of the Coalition because of our help with the Nagras Kingdom before. That’s why, we have to emphasize the fact that we can exert our control on the city just with ourselves.」
If they lent the Empire’s hands and their influence remained afterwards, it’s nothing but troubles later on. They must take control of the new territory without any influence from the Empire.
「Luckily, the Empire is now focusing on stabilizing its new territory after absorbing its long enemy. A good timing for us. While the Empire is paying attention to itself, the chance to destroy the Coalition and make our country land here must be grabbed now. 」
「What a troublesome story. I’m more suited to just beating enemies in front of my eyes. These things are better off on you. 」
The silver-haired man that gave up thinking waved his hand around and threw his responsibilities.
The thin eye man who understood the silver-haired man’s personality well didn’t rebuke the words of his irresponsible friend, but instead offered what he wanted to hear.
「A right person for the right place, I suppose. Leave the troublesome things to me. As much as this, I expect your performance on the battlefield. 」
「Yeah. I will make a show out of those self-conceited bunch. 」