Chapter 268: It’s a secret that this is an illegal construction since we forgot to get a permit for it.
Translator: “Pink Tea” Editor: “ryunakama” Proofreading: “Reader A? Kind of? Maybe?”
Day 65 – Evening, The Capital
The darkness of the Capital, slums, hidden in the shadow of the fabulous Noble district. The final destination of the weak and poor, to be exploited at the business district, while financial aid from the kingdom gets plundered for decorations of the Noble district.
Once one winds up in the slums, the only place where they can possibly get any work becomes the commercial district, tightly tied with the merchant confederation, dooming them to be worked akin to slaves for the rest of their lives, but even that accomplishes nothing aside from making nobles even richer.
Shielded by the inviolability agreement dividing the royalty’s and the nobility’s residential districts, no one could extend a helping hand to the slums, any aid snatched away.. The living place for people who greedy Confederation merchants exploit in place of slaves, as the Royal Family forbids official slavery. The slums.
But someone sought that place.
Bringing a voluminous donation of provision and numerous much too appealing presents, the black-haired dark-eyed boy sought to obtain a license to operate that area. While the terms are absolutely perfect, the will behind it is hard to understand. But I’m not arrogant enough to think I can perceive the farsighted and deeply-laid plans of that enigmatic boy. All I have to do is comply and respond to the best of my ability to what is asked of me.
Immediately obtaining approval from the Second Prince and the chairman of the aristocratic council I promptly had the authority transfer, trade permit, and passage permit for the slum district issued. It’s a dirty contract full of favorable terms bought through bribes, but my responsibility is merely obtaining the contract for that person.
Deep down, I’m captivated by the hope that if there is a person, who might shine a ray of light on the slums that no one wants to touch, it would be him. We exchanged only a few words in a short conversation, but there is no one else capable of ignoring the intricate bounds of the Capital or treating its nobles with silent contempt.
And without even a momentary pause, commotion followed.
As by the time reports from the slums came in, the nobles were already in a state of frenzied uproar, it might’ve been presumptuous of me to think of that person in terms of hopes or expectations.
If no one can comprehend the state of affairs, it’s safe to reason that the other party is of a different caliber. The difference in caliber makes it impossible to fathom notions going through their head.
With the different point of view and the height from which one observes the situation they are able to see what we, crawling on the ground, can not, and aim for the goals that no one can understand. Trying to comprehend that is nothing but foolishness, and if one is aware of that, there would be nothing puzzling about this.
But there are plenty of foolish nobles unable to understand that, especially in the Capital, which is crawling with them.
「Seize that property! Why would it be left to filthy beggars whose mere presence in the Capital is sickening! Immediately drive them out and hand it over to us.」
「That is a part of the Noble district and Noble domain. Obviously, property rights to it also belong to the nobles. Hurry up and move the troops.」
「How dare they declare the area off limits for us nobles, what insolence. How about forcing them to apologize after arresting them and confiscating their assets?」
The idiots (nobles) keep yapping. It’s such a mess because they don’t even understand that their lowly noble selves have no ways of dealing with him. They don’t understand the meaning behind that building suddenly emerging out of thin air right under their noses. The Capital has fallen. A sword is being pointed at the palace from the Noble district.
「Under the approval of the Second Prince and the Chairman of the aristocratic council the authority over the land in question was transferred to the Frontier’s Souvenir Store. Along with the license for business and commercial operations they all also were issued with passage permits.There is no cause to seize any of it, and declaring it off limits is within their rights, that area is under extraterritorial jurisdiction of the Frontier. If you are willing to return the already accepted provision and compensate construction costs then how about opening formal negotiations?」
I wonder if the trash only capable of using their authority as nobles for plain banditry is even capable of holding negotiations. Moreover, they don’t understand who they are dealing with. Forget being out of their depth, they are entirely unfit to even consider making such attempts.
「If it’s about provision, then even more was given by the Merchant Confederation, are you saying you are not going to listen to instructions from the Confederation in spite of that?」
「Even if you talk about supplies or aid from the Confederation, the storage is empty, where did all of it go? You might say that it arrived, but the only goods we have seen were those bought from the Souvenir Store, and even those have vanished, so did the Confederation bring any goods? Or did it carry them away? 」
Did they think that anyone would be thankful if they point at the empty storages and call that aid? I don’t know if the goods are being stolen, sold through back channels, or never were there to begin with, but without the stuff there are no obligations either.
「This is the Second Prince’s order, if you made a pact, you ought to obey it!」
「Us, the second division, have agreed to defend the walls of the Capital from any that might seek to invade it. Internal affairs, like dealing with merchants, should be dealt with by your military police, and upon making our pact, we were also ordered not to interfere with the merchants of the capital in any capacity. Moreover, the citizens are equipped with frontier’s wooden swords and also were purchasing『Cloaks of Protection』, so they can hardly be considered unarmed anymore. By now their equipment is on par or even better than that of regular soldiers. Whom would you imagine to come out on top if the tiny military police force were to clash with the huge population of the capital? We are not going to act, and if you harm the citizens it would mean that our pact is null, turning us into your enemies as well.」
Good grief, outside there is the recently returned Shariceres-sama and even Omui-sama is said to have arrived, why for goodness sake do I have to step on a tiger’s tail for some Second Prince?
I was surprised when I first heard that Omui-sama arrived with the Frontier Army, but seeing the current slums, it all makes sense.
He rushed to the side of the boy, who is concealing his identity. Something apart from the Theocracy and the Confederation is beginning to move.
And because the nobles don’t realize that, they are making all this racket, having their attention completely captured by the latest incident. In the end, the position, the heights from which that boy observes affairs are way too different.
「In that case, we will send out military police. Following the pact, you wouldn’t interfere, would you!?」
「If we don’t interfere the Capital will fall, are you sure you want us to stay on the sidelines?」
So despite the situation changing this greatly, they are still completely oblivious to what is going on.
「Is this your idea of a threat? If you abandon your agreement to defend the Capital then following the Life Contract your life will 『Cease』.」
「I simply stated the facts without any intention of threatening you. Besides, if you use military police to oppress the citizens, get into conflict with them, and end up having them open the gates from the inside, wouldn’t it ruin everything? Look outside. There are banners of King of the Frontier Omui-sama and Sword Princess Shariceres-sama side by side. Facing those banners, would any citizen of the Capital, any subject of this Kingdom, choose to follow the Second Prince? Makes you wonder before which banner one should kneel.」
Without any thinking or even considering the outcome they are merely kicking up a fuss out of sheer avarice. The outcome is clear as day even without a fight.
The nobles completely blinded by their greed, the Confederation with its eyes on prospective profits, and the mysterious boy who gazes beyond boundless vastness on impossible to envision far away from his unreachable heights.
「If you harm the citizens we are your enemies. Otherwise, we will stick to defending the walls. That was our agreement, we will stick to it.」
Judging by the way they refuse to back down and still glare at me, they really want that property. Well, that’s hardly surprising. That marvelous wooden architectural complex likely has nothing that can rival it on this continent.
And the ones living there are the poorest and the most helpless of the Capital’s slums. It’s hard not to laugh.
The origins of that enigmatic boy is not something one should be asking about, nor be investigating. If the Princess and Omui-sama have acknowledged him, then there is nothing more to ask.
An enigmatic boy of unclear origin, status, unknown if he is a friend or a foe, and yet I can’t help but come to like him even if he were to turn out to be an enemy in the end.
The poor abandoned by the capital are now looking down on the noblemen from the Noble district, while the nobles are looking up at them with greed and envy.
The best sight one could imagine. This is the first time I saw something this delightful in the Capital. If this is an enemy, then he deserves the highest praise and admiration, and if he is an ally, then there would be no time for me to shine.
「How was the orphanage?」The subordinate that I sent to investigate the slums came back.
「They were getting ready to open the store. The orphans, now neat and clean, were happily helping around in nice clothes. Laughing, despite being in the slums.」
With this alone I can smile and forget about the annoying and unpleasant exchange I just had with the nobles. With just one permit he accomplished what no one else had been able to.
Just obey him. I can’t understand him, but he showed enough worth and meaning to be obeyed.
He must be pursuing heights that can’t even be seen from my level. In that case, I should just blindly accept it.
If denizens of the slums were smiling, then there is more than enough worth and significance to that.