Chapter 286 “Change”
Genuine older brother.
Genuine... older brother, how can this be?
Tilly held the letter in a startled fashion with both hands, her mind not able to focus in the least, all the thoughts in her mind were tumbling up and down like the tide.
Her father, King Wimbledon III had five children. Gerald, Timothy, and Garcia, due to their earlier birth, could be considered as the first circle. By the time Roland had been born, the previous youngest Garcia was already six years old and would naturally not take him along to play with her. By this reasoning, she and Roland should have formed another circle, but... this hadn't been the case.
Her brother was always yearning for their two elder brothers' approval, and tried to integrate into their circle, but the only result was that they would often bully him. In the end, this caused Roland’s character to become twisted and irritable. Of course, he never dared to release his anger at Gerald or the others, and instead had come to vent his anger on her.
For example, he had once tried to persuade her to steal father’s crown with him, and when he was met with rejection, he inevitable flew into a rage out of humiliation and began insulting her; it would sometimes even go so far that they exchanged blows. Later, when their father found out about this, Roland had been taught a ferocious lesson. After this incident however, he restrained himself a lot, but his bad habit of threatening her in all different kinds of ways was still as strong as before.
At that time, she had still been unable to understand these matters; but in retrospection, Tilly only felt that it was rather ridiculous and... childish.
The year she became ten years old, she discovered some cut in half earthworms had been placed into her favorite shoes; it finally became unbearable for her, and so she finally decided to fight back. She called Roland to come over, and as he opened his mouth to threaten her once more, she directly threw one of those earthworms into it – ever since then, he'd never dared to provoke her again, and she in turn, had stopped talking to him.
After becoming an adult, Roland still hadn’t changed. Instead, it had even become more severe. She often heard about his dandy deeds, and among the nobles, he was always referred as being violent, mean, and without any learning or skills. To sum it up, he was the worst image of a noble among all nobles. Except for his identity as a member of the royal family, he had nothing at all. Regarding this evaluation, Tilly fully agreed with it... Furthermore, she also knew, that the reason he had the outward appearance of being violent and irritable, was because he was doing everything to cover his greatest weakness – being timid and afraid.
However, can such a person unexpectedly stand up and side with us witches? Giving asylum to a group who are known as ‘the Devil’s minions’, in the end even becoming an enemy of the Church without any hesitation?
For a moment, Tilly didn’t know what to say.
"Tilly, Tilly?" Only after Ashes had shaken her two times was she finally able to come back to herself.
"I'm all right; everything is just a little… hard to believe," she shook her head. "Sylvie said that the Lord of Border Town is very probably the real Roland Wimbledon and not a puppet controlled by a witch or replacement.
"Oh, that stupid one who tried to grope me in vain – Keke, that animal?" Ashes coughed twice, "After not meeting for a year, he truly changed astonishingly. Apart from his appearance and impression which were still almost the same, I felt like I met someone completely different."
"Can you speak a bit more clearly?"
Ashes crooked her head and thought for a long time before she found the right words, "I think... the biggest difference, was that he appeared to be cleaner.”
"No matter if it was his style of dressing… or the feeling he gave to other people. None of it resembled a noble. He didn’t wear any ornament, no matter if it was gold or jewels there weren’t any on him." Ashes recalled, "Even his clothes were all utterly of common style, they seemed to be relatively simple, without lace, added decoration or golden threads. If not for his hair color, which was too eye-catching, there was almost no difference between him or a commoner, and… yet, at the same time, he didn’t seem to be an ordinary person.”
"He resembled a nobleman?" Tilly asked.
"No, not like a nobleman," Ashes curled her lips, "Those aristocrats are unclean. Not like a pool of stagnant water, but unclean like the muddy silt underneath the pool of stagnant water. As for him… I’m unable to come up with a precise description, in short, he let people feel good."
"It’s quite difficult to believe that you can say something like this."
"Uh, I merely want to answer your question seriously, nothing more."
Tilly breathed out deeply, it seems that brother has changed quite a lot, but in the end, what might have led to his transformation? Or is it because of a reason he himself isn’t aware of; and thus, unconsciously caused him to change into such a different person?
The 5th Princes suddenly remembered the content of Roland's first letter - "Therefore, I have to destroy the entire Church, and turn their statement that the witches are the Devil’s messenger into dust. However, rescuing the people from their ignorance and stupidity will be a long and slow process. For this, I will need even more help from you.
“Concerning, what would lead to this decision, what caused me to no longer be as indifferent to everything as in the past, are all trivialities that can slowly be elaborated on when we have the time. The ability to express oneself in a letter is limited, so I won’t say any more than necessary.”
Perhaps only by meeting him in person will I be able to discover the real cause.
To regain her train of thought, Tilly turned her sight back to the letter.
The latter half reported on what Sylvie had seen and heard during her stay in Border Town.
Originally Roland had chosen her for the purpose of verifying the natural mineral resources in the North Slope Mine. However, in the end, they had instead discovered an enormous amount of God’s Stones of Retaliation – it turns out that the stones with the ability to suppress a witch’s ability, comes out of the ground; just like any other mineral. So, in conclusion, the New Holy City at Hermes must also be in control of such a vein, which allows the Church to continue to produce the God’s Stone of Retaliation.
Once again further down, she came across another piece of news which attracted her attention.
That he possessed a type of weapon which could release iron balls and arrowheads from an iron tube, which contained a great deal of power, and was accompanied by a deafening roar... Even though Maggie and Ashes had already mentioned this kind of thing, but it was the first time that she had ever seen such a detailed description. Sylvie had even attached a hand-painted diagram to the paragraph.
"Oh? As it turns out, that thing which caused my injuries looked the same," Ashes, reading the letter by looking over Tilly’s shoulder, remarked. "Since we are allies now, you can ask him to send a large batch of weapons to Sleeping Island with your next letter, and tell him that we need them to guard against the Church. If he doesn’t want to... Humph, this ally might not be as reliable as you thought.”
"Being allies doesn’t mean that you won’t guard against each other at all," Tilly said laughingly, "This weapon is clearly the foundation he used to build his home, so how could it be so quickly handed over to others? This kind of test would only destroy the trust we worked so hard to build – I also excluded Molly and Wind Reader from the list I gave him about our witches. And this winter, we will go and visit Border Town anyway. At that time, we will be able to speak from face-to-face, don’t you think that that would be a better time for it?"
"Well," Ashes spread her arms out and said, "You have the final say in this.”
Tilly showed her a smile and then continued to read the letter.
When the line of sight turned to the last paragraph of the letter, she couldn’t help but feel shocked once more.
Roland unexpectedly invented an undergarment which was used to wrap up the woman’s chest, he even went so far as to present it to every grown-up woman in the Witch Alliance. This is simply too absurd! It is known to send personal clothes as a present, but only between lovers, how could he – hold on! Tilly suddenly remembered a story which had spread throughout King’s City. Apparently, there was a time when Roland had presented some young noble ladies with skin-tight corsets; but among them there were some who had immediately thrown it back into his face, which later turned into a joke among the nobles for some time after.
This indeed sounds like something he could do!
Tilly suddenly felt tangled up; on one hand, this brought him more in line with the image she had in her memory; on the other hand, she now felt that it might not be so good to go and meet him.
In the end, should, or should I not go to meet him in Border Town this Winter? The 5th Princess thought to herself in distress.
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