Chapter 43 – The Desire of the Prince and the Knights
“I thought you would understand, too. Relaying his words doesn’t mean he will show up.”
Albert said that with a serious look.
“Right now, our Magicians, servants, and the like are being mobilized into Decipher Groups at the castle. They are so eager to decipher old documents that they are turning the Library inside out.”
“The aftermath of the Demon incident, is it?”
I had thought about investigating the connection between the Demon and the Moon Shrine a little bit, but it was apparently becoming an important matter.
“That’s right. I’m more suited for learning in classrooms than training in Magic, so they have let me voluntarily help with the investigation…As for the Moon Shrine, it’s not a mistake for it to be sealed, since it is rather dangerous. We have also found evidence of a letter containing Dimension Stone research that was sent outside the City.”
To the outside, right?
It turned out that the Demon had companions.
“Is it all right…for you to talk about such things with me?”
“Well, I’m not really talking about anything concrete, and it’s not like anything will happen, even if we talk about it. You might get investigated by His Majesty and, in fact, this isn’t even the main subject. However, I’d be happy if you could at least keep the things I’ve mentioned secret. There have also been hidden schemes to try and make you known to the public, you know.”
Albert placed his index finger on his mouth and laughed.
Hmm. Was Albert…warning me? Just like he said, even though Albert was searching for talented people, it wasn’t just out of the kindness of his heart.
“Then, what is the main subject?”
“It appears that a portion of the Knights oppose you. I thought about whether it was prudent to inform you about it or not.”
‘I guess it’s better to realize it now, since it has been said by the Prince too.”
“Eh? You knew about it? Then, was this assistance unnecessary?”
“Not at all.”
Having Sheila sneak into the Palace was impossible. The risk was too high. Rather, let’s stop there.
I only knew a portion of their background, which had been brought to light, mainly the name of the group’s leader and their connections. Even if I were to guess about various things, one needed such information to talk about it.
“Will the situation change to where the Knights are cornered?”
“The Knights and Soldiers have talked about forming search groups to descend into the Labyrinth. Even the Kingdom wants clues on how to invade the currently sealed Moon Shrine. Our Soldiers and Knights want to reverse their bad reputation, since they couldn’t show off their ability during the recent Demon incident.”
The Knights were going into the Labyrinth, huh? Was that why the promising Chester, who was under Greg, was getting involved with me?
Perhaps they had thought of me as a rival in the same trade since I had defeated the Demon and descended the Labyrinth?
If Chester’s reputation lived up to his surroundings, then perhaps his usual behavior was intentional.
For example, his goal would be to inspire hostility towards me, using my own trust as a weapon. If I spoke ill of Chester because of this, I’d think the people around us would trap Chester with slander.
If I considered the fact that Greg was popular with those below him and was hated by those above him, I’d think Chester was the same. There was a possibility of the people below him looking down on me if that appeared regularly. If the Knights were to look at me, then I’d be a person more aligned towards the Magician’s Unit.
However, the problem was why they were inspiring hostility towards me. It probably wasn’t clear with that alone. What exactly were they expecting by showing me that kind of behavior?
“Well, I think the people who belong to the Dragon Knights have something to be ashamed of.”
“The flying dragons don’t have a turn to go into the Labyrinth, you know.”
Oh, was that it? I understood the reason.
“In regards to my method of Flight, has it been talked about at the Palace?”
“Umm, that is…Oh, was it like that?”
As expected, Prince Albert was quick to understand. It seemed he guessed what I wanted to say with that alone.
When considering that we were the only ones who could oppose the Demons that could fly in the air, and that I could battle in midair, if the Magician’s Unit ended up being able to do the same thing, they would become unrivaled in the air. At the very least, the disadvantage of being picked off by the Demons in the sky, one by one, would disappear from the Magician’s Unit.
After that…there was the possibility that I would personally be employed by the Palace.
The reason was easy to understand. In short, it would jeopardize their vested interest.
I didn’t really have…such a reason for defeating the Demon, though.
I didn’t think he would understand, even if I explained it, and it didn’t mean that the situation would change even if he understood, so there was no point in trying.
“About your method of Flight, there have been requests for information disclosure. However, it was labeled as a secret skill and they were rejected by His Majesty, so that it wouldn’t leak out and make an enemy of competent personnel.”
By Melvin, huh?
“Control ability and experience is essential for that, so all of the disclosed information is nothing other than what was seen.”
“Haha, it seems like that’s the case. That’s why I feel that I…understand your logic. The Magicians who aren’t involved with the old documents are struggling greatly with the combined use of Levitation and Shield, as well as managing it with or without Chants. They’ve given up hope for using this in battle because of that.”
It was wasteful to pay for this information, since it was easy to understand and had a relatively high priority, so it looked like they were taking care of this responsibility by themselves. I wonder when Magicians who can carry out aerial battles will start to appear.
“Hmm, I don’t think there are any Magicians, at all, who could do it, though?”
“Old man Rickard was able to do it. It was awful and he ended up throwing up because he couldn’t get used to the three-dimensional movements, though.”
…Is that so.
“By the way…Is there something Your Highness wishes of me for the price of this information?”
“I thought the information I’ve given to you wasn’t really that meaningful though.”
“No, it was very useful, so I thought that I should give you something in return, since I understand that you’re trying to become allies with me.”
“…Well, getting acquainted with you was a sufficient reward…That’s right. I have a friend by my side named Alfred, who wishes to become a Magic Engineer.”
“I think he could create various interesting items if we have your Magic Control ability. If you’re alright with it, I want you to help out on various things, if he makes an appearance.”
“…Understood. I’ll give you my word.”
I, who knew that he led a double life, put on a smile that made me look like a bad person.
However, I knew where he was coming from. Should I head there? Personally, I thought it would be better if he were more straightforward. I knew what Albert’s true desire was, and what he was aiming for.
I took a stealthy glance at Marleen and Ophelia. Those two were laughing without worries as they chatted pleasantly with Grace and Ashley.
…Well, that’s fine, I guess? I was still next to Albert, so maybe they didn’t trust me yet.
After saying my thanks to Albert, we left and had returned to the second floor terrace of the reception hall when Chester showed up.
“Theodore-kun, huh? The individual match from earlier ended in a splendid victory. I’ve gone around and greeted our honored guests.”
He said with a smile on his face.
“Is that so?”
Well, I completely hated anything troublesome, so I decided to make it clear to him about where I stood. Should I try speaking with Chester and throwing him a straight ball?
“Umm, I want to talk about something with Lord Chester directly, so I wonder if you could spare a bit of time?”
When I said that, Chester opened his eyes widely and stared at me.
After that, the edges of his mouth rose significantly.
“With me? Fine. I’ve finished giving my round of greetings. Right now, they’re doing land dragon races, and it won’t be my turn for a while. I thought about talking with the Demon Killer Hero-kun without any hindrances.”
“Do you have an available room somewhere?”
“There’s an underground training area beneath the Knight’s Tower for when it rains. How about going there?”