Chapter 141 Part 1



Translator: “Ashita”                             Editor: “Weasalopes”

The Imperial Capital.
That is the capital city of the Empire that rules the Ost continent.
The birds that look down from the skies above probably think that it is a starfish the color of sand that has hills attached to it.
The street, made of stone, lined with houses and stores that are disorderly arranged spreads disorderly to the outside.
The style is different from place to place indicating the long history of the Imperial Capital.
If not for the matching tint, the scenery of the Imperial Capital would only leave mixed impressions.
It is a slight blessing that the place in the vicinity yields plenty of beach-colored stones.
The combination of countless towers that towers above its surroundings at the center of the Imperial Capital.
That which has the same beach color is the palace where the Emperor resides and performs his official duties.

「The expedition force has taken massive losses. It is a shame but we had no choice but to retreat」

The insides of the room are decorated with profound ornaments.
Less than ten people sit around the Round Table.
One person among them, a silver-grey haired gentleman forced out his words. His face is dark with a shadow of regret and despair.
The force that is on standby just outside Awoke, the town that acted as a relay station.
There, they got attacked by a long-range magic fired by someone and lost the core of their fighting force.
After much anguish, the Marquis chose to pull back the force.
The expedition force retreated back to the Empire’s domain and the commander, the Marquis himself, returned to the Imperial Capital.

「The Marquis says this but our losses are three Knights. Is it not a waste of the Empire’s resources to turn back with only losses of this extent」

One of the seats of the Round Table spat out his doubts in a sarcastic tone.
Without hiding his unhappiness, the Marquis argued back.

「We lost two A-rank Knights and was even unable to confirm the enemy’s identity」

Glaring sharply, he continued.

「It seems like sir lord must be a genius in militaristic arts to call this 『losses of this extent』. I will hand the right to command the remaining forces to you so please start advancing to the Royal Capital immediately」

After being retorted, the face of the person who made that declaration changed.
Seeing this, another person sitting at the Round Table spoke.

「I too did not anticipate this. The Marquis’s decision is not wrong. The losses would probably have been far greater if they remained on foreign territory」

A man of medium build in the prime of his life. He cannot be called a handsome man due to his drooping eyes.
This very person is the current Emperor of the Empire.
And those who are sitting on the chairs surrounding the Round Table are his retainers who support him. They served from when he was a crown prince.

「The attack happened four times. And three Knights were lost」

At the Emperor’s urging, the Marquis continued explaining.

「All of them were fired from afar using attack magic. The range was too far so we could not determine the firing position」

The people around the Round Table raised their voices in shock.
They had heard the rumors but had never heard about the details.

「The two shots that hit the chest of the A-rank Knight destroyed two pilot seats of two Knights. The shot that hit a B-rank Knight turned the upper half of its body into fragments」

Hearing the shocking contents, they murmured among themselves.

「Fortunately, the final shot had hit a shield. However, the elbow joint of the A-rank Knight, that was blocking with the shield, was destroyed」

The Marquis concludes his explanation.

「With that overwhelming power, the Knights were unable to scout the enemy and were only able to lower themselves to the ground to hide themselves. I deeply apologize to your majesty and the one commanding the expedition force」

In front of the Marquis who bowed deeply, the Emperor looked at the faces of everyone at the Round Table.
He had received the report from the Marquis before this. He had allowed him to speak here to make this matter known to all who are here.

「Do you know how grave this is? Rather than being on the offensive, we are on the verge of danger」

His drooping eyes were stern.

「An extremely long-range magic that cannot be countered and is able to destroy A-rank Knights. And its accuracy is unbelievably high」

He looked around in a circle and continued.

「We do not have it, only the enemy has it. The way to defend against it as well」

A certain image appears in the heads of those who are sitting on the chairs. The figure of the Knight Order advancing to the Empire with this means of attack.

「……The definition of a national crisis」

One person murmured.

「Fortunately, it is an incomplete product with defects. This is only my prediction but there is no mistake」

Hearing the Emperor’s words, another person agreed.

「We would have lost Landbarn if that was not the case. Is that right?」

Nodding, he continued.

「Sheltered Girl used a high-output magic attack. Did you hear about this?」

「According to Rosehip’s report, at that time, there were many fallen Knights from the Kingdom around Sheltered Girl」

Two empty seats side by side at the corner of the Round Table.
Originally, these were the seats for the frontier lord and Lord Rosehip.
They are in Landbarn in preparation for any possible aggression from the Kingdom.

「Evidence that it has defects. So much so that they hesitated to use it until they were cornered」

Hearing this deduction, the mood became lighter.
Sensing this, the Marquis, wanting to make a statement, put a damper on the mood with this cold voice.

「However, I do not think it will stay incomplete forever. We must find a countermeasure」

The room is once again filled with a heavy silence.
Within this, one person raised her hand, wanting to speak.
A young beauty with wavy black hair. The beautiful Viscountess.
Losing in the battle with the League of Northern Nations, she was captured and has just returned.

「I have something I would like to report」

Her face was pale and she had a stiff expression.
She who has failed has the lowest rank within this room. She is in a situation where it is not weird for her rank to drop and be excluded from the conference.
She must be of help even if it is a little in order to regain her standing.
Receiving permission from the Emperor, she apologized to everyone for her defeat.
She also spoke about her encounter with the B-rank Knight from the Kingdom.

「It fired from an unbelievable distance and sniped accurately」

Three shots of the long-range attack magic immobilized a comrade B-rank Knight.
She planned to use the cool time to get closer but was stopped by the rapid-fire.
In the end, she got shot down and was captured.
After regurgitating everything she could remember, she sat back down on her seat.

「They are related. It is natural to think that」

After listening, the Marquis placed a hand at his chin and expressed his opinion.
After the Beautiful Viscountess was captured, there was a notice from her subordinate.
However, going into it in this much detail is a first. It is probably due to the amount of information from the person concerned had.

「In terms of output, it is lower than the enemy that targeted our expedition force. Would it be an experimental Knight」

Hearing these words, the Beautiful Viscountess remembered some words she had forgotten to say so she hurriedly opened her mouth.

「That B-rank Knight does not belong to the Knight Order. It is a Knight from the Merchant Guild」

Her captive period when she was pincered between two middle-aged men. She had tried her best to gather information.
The Knight and the identity of its pilot that had defeated her.
She had succeeded in getting it out from the two middle-aged pilots.

「Merchant Guild?」

Some of them had a dubious expression and voiced their doubts.
That is because they could not think of one – a reason for a unique Knight to not belong to the Kingdom.

「Would it not be developed in secret and its information concealed within the nation?」

A middle-aged man with gentle facial features gave his opinion.
Hearing these words from the expert in information gathering himself, several people nodded.

「Hidden even from the Knight Order, something only a few know of. And the experiment is done in the shadows, under the guise known as the Merchant Guild……huh」

The Marquis thought about it.
It is not impossible.
The reason that Sheltered Girl did not appear in battle. It fits.

(They are still at a stage where the practical trial is being repeated)

Originally, it is not in a state that can be brought out to battle but the situation was grave so Sheltered Girl stood on the battlefield.
As a result of this, a high-output magic was activated at the engagement in Landbarn.

(But even Sheltered Girl was not the real aim)

That itself is the mysterious existence that attacked the expedition force. That is very likely a Knight.
Even as of this moment, they should probably be adding more touches to it at the back of the Kingdom’s military factory with the experimental data they acquired.




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