Chapter 31 "Our friend"
Roland was sitting at his desk in a dazed state. He actually didn't expect that someone was trying to commit murder in his castle. He was afraid that if Nightingale hadn't promptly discovered them, they would have murdered him in cold blood.
Who ordered this assassination attempt? Was it his third sister, or one of his other siblings? Why were they doing this? It was a five-year struggle for the throne, but in the past few months they had already tried to kill him twice. Roland, full of irritation, banged his desk. This was simply outrageous! Couldn't they just let him face the Months of the Demons?
Footsteps could be heard from outside of the door. It was Carter, his chief knight. After he pushed open the door he said, "Your Highness, the identities of the deceased have been identified. From the eight bodies, seven were original members of the patrol, but the last one is still unidentified. In addition, there are two who are still alive and under the care of the witch... if not… After being treated by Miss Pyne, they have yet to wake up. Also the path to the sewers is being closely guarded now."
They were from the town patrol? He knew that the team raised by the former Lord wasn’t reliable. Roland gritted his teeth, actually, eight from the ten people were disloyal, so not letting them join the militia was really the right choice.
"That is good, and also make sure they are always well-guarded, don’t let them commit suicide like the last time!"
"Like...The last time?"
"Oh, nothing." Roland shook his head. Apparently due to Nightingale's early wake up call, his head was still confused. "Anyway, I want to know everything about them. Who is their leader? Who is their contact person? Who is their investor? You must investigate all of this and more…"
"Yes, Your Highness." Carter had gotten his orders, but he did not leave immediately, instead he went down on one knee and said, "That the assassins could sneak into the castle was my dereliction of duty. I hope Your Highness will punish me."
"Enough is enough. At that time, you weren't even in the castle, so this has nothing to do with you."
"Well ......" Carter hesitated, "Can you tell me who it was in the end that prevented this assassination attempt? I could see from the scene, that they..." the knight had to swallow, "all of them seem to be have been killed by the same person and were totally defenseless."
"That you can tell?" Roland was curious.
"If they were evenly matched, the scene wouldn't be so clean and the wounds would be in a wide range all over the bodies," Carter whispered, "Everybody was killed down in the small warehouse, in addition to blood and dead bodies there was nothing else on the ground. There was almost no damage to the goods placed down there. Those big boxes which store bacon didn’t even have a sword cut. That shows that the man didn’t need to use any cover, it seems as if he was taking a walk in a small clearing. With all due respect, Your Highness, this is just too incredible. "
"So that’s the reason," Roland nodded his head, he understood the meaning of Carter’s explanation. After a theoretically strong person was surrounded, he would fall into an extreme adverse situation - real fights usually didn’t end like what was shown in movies, where the surrounded person sends one enemy after the other towards the ground. An attack from a blind spot would be particularly deadly. So to fight many, the correct approach would be to rely on the terrain and the environment so that they could always face the opposition.
But Nightingale was not one of those ordinary people.
"No matter what you do, you have to complete the mission I gave you, first. This person cannot be revealed yet, but when the time comes, I'll tell you."
Although he knew that the chief knight was one of his loyal and reliable subordinates and that he also knew that Nana and Anna were witches, but Roland still chose to hide the presence of Nightingale from him, because the difference between her and the other two witches was that she didn't belong to their side. She only stayed in Border Town because of Anna. She belonged to the Witch Association Cooperation, and would sooner or later leave this town.
Carter gave a salute and retired.
Roland could understand his thoughts. As a person well versed with the sword, Carter constantly practiced a training program that was produced from summarizing and accumulating fighting techniques for hundreds of years, and in truth they were proud of their heritages. But when he saw the scene in the warehouse, he couldn’t believe it and began to have doubts - if sword play could be perfected to such a state, of which heritage were they normally so proud of?
"I thought you would tell me to come out," Nightingale revealed herself. She was still sitting on the corner of his desk, with crossed legs.
"I also thought about it. How about it? You can just settle down here as my hidden sword. You will get two gold royals as monthly salary, the double of what Anna gets. What do you think?" Roland began to advise it further "You will get a house with a garden, two days off each week, and even paid leave every year - uh, that’s it, the rest would only be a monetary reward."
To his surprise, Nightingale didn't flatly refuse him. She only smiled and said neither yes or no, „I cannot abandon my companions, no matter what."
"That would be now, but when the winter is over, Border Town will begin a time of reconstruction. And at that time, how many people will still care about it. And then... the witches will no longer have to suffer discrimination while walking in the streets. No one will see you as the devil’s spokesperson."
"And so on... You are always talking about it," said Nightingale indifferently.
It was time to stop. It was always better to see than to hear. This kind of thing could only be changed slowly. Roland changed the subject, "Nana has been safely sent back, right?"
"Ah yes, but she got spooked."
Roland sighed, it couldn't be helped, after all, it was midnight when she had been woken up by Nightingale. When she was brought to the scene and saw the battle place, she almost threw up. Nightingale gave him a short account about the things which happened, and then he told her to get Nana. Usually, Nana had to only heal chickens. But now, when the little girl saw people covered in blood, she immediately fainted. After a short while, she woke up and began to heal the person from the town patrol with her face full of tears.
In order to keep Nana’s family in the dark, Nightingale was also responsible for taking her back.
When everything was settled, it was almost daybreak.
"How was the investigation? Could you figure out which of my good brothers or sisters sent them?"
Nightingale shook her head, "They were all people of your own patrol, with only one exception, but he also didn't carry any identity-related evidence with him. With enough money, anyone could hire them. But I think that this perhaps isn’t related to your siblings."
"Because it was extremely unorganized. During multiple occasions, the team actually had a lot infighting. And immediately after their failure they didn’t commit suicide, leaving at least two people alive. And then, they had no professional performance. In general, they were just street punks. This is unlike the style of your brothers and sisters, it is more likely that it was a layman’s plan. I think that even if I wasn’t here there was no way their assassination attempt would have succeeded. Don’t forget that Anna is sleeping downstairs. "
Nightingale reached for Roland’s cup, she didn’t seem to care about drinking from the same cup as him, and then said, "No matter what, your knight had asked for the truth of what happened in the sewers, and I bet he will soon know the truth – compared with the former piece of your sister, that guy is much less professional. If I hadn’t left, he would still kneel before me begging me to not to kill him."
"That seriously injured patrol member, it seems that he is the one I summoned not too long ago."
"Really?" Nightingale tilted her head, "I think that you'll have to reward him. If he hadn’t stood up against the other guys, I would not have found them so quickly and they would have slipped into the basement of the castle. Although it is still not clear why he did that, but the enemy's enemy is our friend, right? "
Yes, Roland thought, but the important part was not if he is a friend or foe, but rather that Nightingale said the two words.
- "Our friend.“
Previous Chapter Next Chapter