「This will be the first time exchanging words with someone from the Vandolea People’s Federation.」
Right now I am face-to-face with some middle-aged man who introduced himself to me earlier but I already forgot his name.
I just couldn’t bring myself to like this guy and so his name just didn’t stick in my mind at all.
「Indeed, I would like if we could continue to build a friendly relationship with each other.」
That depends on the direction of our conversation, though I have a feeling it won’t happen.
「However I am just the feudal lord of a certain region, I would have thought it is better to discuss national issues with those in the capital.」
Those were just a prearranged set of words, that way I’ll have an easier time to run away.
「No, for this issue it will be faster to talk with you who is directly on the other side of the border of our nation.」
Tch, can’t run.
「Our talks today is in regards to the decision of the borders.」
「Borders? I thought that has already been decided, no?」
Our territory extends until the southern tip of Goldonia, in other words the border line of the former Treia Kingdom should be the border which separates the two nations.
「The border line in between the Treia Kingdom and our nation is extremely vague. After all, there isn’t a proper city or an important source of water near the borders so there was no meaning in establishing the details.」
Then what’s the problem?
The Kingdom probably doesn’t have a clear picture of the minute details regarding the borders on the remote regions either.
「But the development in the border region has been remarkable lately. Many villages and farms have been built.」
Adolph starts to speak.
It didn’t just pop up out of nowhere, we invested money into the area so it can develop.
「Alright, so how do you intend to decide the borders?」
If I don’t hear that first, this conversation won’t go anywhere.
「We want it like this……」
The man draws a line on the map in front of him.
Adolph shouts in shock, though I don’t blame him.
The line which that man drew as the border line, depicting the territory he wanted for the Vandolea People’s Federation, includes close to 20 large and small farming villages and a considerable amount of arable land.
He’s saying that he wants to take the region we poured money and manpower into as his own.
In the first place, the area where Tristan has built a defensive camp is also right next to them.
To give up land to someone who can’t even manage it themselves is like casting pearls before swine.
「Hahaha, I don’t think any feudal lord would nod his head to that.」
I take the pen from the man so I could redraw the line.
However I wasn’t really sure where to draw it so I drew a line going as far south as could, which makes the man’s face twist in disgust.
Crap, I went too far…… that crossed straight through the center of Malt, clearly looking crooked in my favor.
「Are you joking right now?」
I can hear the bloodlust in the man’s voice.
「That can be said to you too.」
The atmosphere of the discussion instantly becomes like that of a deathmatch.
He was the one who said something ridiculous first, I’m not in the wrong here.
As the two of us stare silently at each other, Adolph speaks up to interrupt.
「If we continue our negotiations, we should find some common ground to agree on. If you consider the particulars of our development or payment of taxes or structure of harvest-……」
Adolph’s proposal is definitely realistic.
If the negotiations were to continue, it’s best to leave it to him.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like this guy came to discuss any detailed terms and conditions.
「Our nation knows nothing about all that. If the border is decided, isn’t it obvious that the people who live there will move too? I don’t intend to deviate from the plan which my country laid out from the start!」
See what I mean, this guy just wanted to push his own plan through from the beginning.
In the first place, his atmosphere and method of doing things is not diplomatic like Juno.
He’s not a man we can negotiate with.
I have Adolph stand back.
This is not a negotiation anymore, which means it is outside the domain of a domestic affairs official.
Leopolt replaces Adolph and stands behind me.
「I don’t plan on easily ceding territory either. Which means the both of us are in disagreement, right?」
After hearing the other party speak in a rough tone, I don’t need to act polite either.
That’s great, I personally find this way of talking easier anyways.
The mad slams the table and brings his face close to me.
Don’t tell me he’s going to kiss me, I’ll have him executed for that.
「Hardlett-dono…… my country is a peace-loving country which puts its citizens first. However we are not a nation unfamiliar with war, we aren’t afraid of something like that, got it?」
That’s an easily understandable threat, now I don’t have to worry about any misunderstandings thanks to your efforts.
Adolph looks down with a stern expression while Leopolt nods at me.
They must be telling me to say it, alright then.
This man’s intimidation was quite impactful.
As I thought, this guy isn’t a diplomat, he’s a veteran soldier of some sort. He’s oozing bloodlust.
Adolph and Rita, who is serving as the maid for the discussion, are cowering in fear.
It doesn’t work on me though.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve constantly been in deathmatches after all.
The only peaceful times were when I was with Lucy.
I bring my head close to his as if I’m headbutting him.
I don’t kiss him of course.
「Listen carefully, I’m not like you who only knows war or isn’t afraid of it.」
The man tries to gauge what I’m saying and tilts his head for a brief moment.
Behold the acting ability I polished through my sibling play with the actress Lilian.
「I simply love war. The sound of swords clashing, the echoing screams, the dancing flames…… I can’t get enough of that, I love it all.」
What I truly love is women though.
The man’s face moves back ever so slightly, and I move forward as if giving chase.
「If war is what you want, then I’m all for it. Goldonia hasn’t made any new enemies lately so I couldn’t participate in any. Let’s have ourselves a fun deathmatch.」
Oh yeah, it’s been peaceful but it feels like I’ve been fighting all this time.
I fight and then sleep with women in an endless cycle.
How much of my life would be left if I take away those two activities?
The naked bodies of the girls I’ve slept with in the past are popping up in my mind now…… not good, I’m in the middle of intimidating someone yet I’m going to start smiling.
I somehow suppress the smile and approach the man with a straight face.
「W-what a savage…… you’re crazy. Are you aware of the number of forces my nation holds!?」
「I’m fine with being savage. I don’t know if you have 100 000 or 200 000 but it won’t affect the enjoyment I’ll have on the battlefield. In fact, the larger the number of forces the enemy has, the more excited I get.」
Not good, I’m picturing Nonna’s boobs now. I can’t hold it in anymore.
My dick is starting to get hard…… I hope he doesn’t notice.
I continue forward towards the man as a smile appears on my face. The man steps back and trips on his feet, falling on the sofa behind him.
My expression returns to normal and I take a sip of my tea after sitting back on the sofa as well.
「You should drink too.」
I told Nonna that a messenger was coming from the Vandolea People’s Federation for the first time so she prepared tea with the highest quality tea leaves, and now it’s gotten cold.
If you weren’t going to drink, then let me know beforehand.
「We’re finally going to war again, I’ve been bored all this time so I’m looking forward to it.」
Even Leopolt who is standing behind me is joining in with his crappy acting.
「That’s right, are we prepared?」
「There’s no reason for us to not be prepared for war. If we involve Libatis as well…… I’m sure it will become a large war.」
It may just be acting, but he’s fairly talkative.
Go on and tell me about your bedplay with Nina too.
I tried investigating but I couldn’t quite get him to say it.
「A great war? ……my heart is racing. I’m sure many will kill and many will be killed…… how wonderful.」
「A new river may be created from all the leaking blood and guts.」
「Fufufufufu, I’m starved for blood right now!」
Leopolt is partaking in the cruel acting too.
Celia…… you probably read that line in a book somewhere and it only seems funny to me, so don’t say that anymore.
I stand up and put a hand on the man’s shoulder.
「So that’s how it is. Tell your people i your nation wants to go to war, I’ll entertain you whenever you want. You can reply by declaring war…… or infringing on my territory or whatever, I don’t care.」
The man has clearly gotten spooked and just leaves without taking a bite of the dinner prepared for him.
「Is that really alright?」
Once the negotiations were finished, I sink my body into the sofa as I pose the question to Leopolt.
I’m fine with not adhering to formalities though.
「There were parts where you went too far but it’s generally not a big deal.」
「B-but wouldn’t that mean we’ll be going to war really soon?」
Adolph seems flustered even though Leopolt says it’s fine.
「I don’t think so. If we appeared weak, it’s possible they would invade after negotiating as part of a bigger plan…… but since we’ve shown how battle-crazy we are, that’s meaningless. It was wonderful acting on our part.」
「But aren’t our military forces too different? They have over 100 000 soldiers……」
Adolph is scared of a war starting in the southern region.
I don’t blame him, since if the area gets engulfed by the flames of war, all his work towards developing the region would turn to ash in an instant.
「That is certainly Vandolea’s total military strength. However that is not the amount they will be using to invade us. After all, their biggest threat isn’t us, it’s the Divine Nation of Altair who also shares their borders.」
The Vandolea People’s Federation and the Divine Nation of Altair have practically nothing they can see eye-to-eye on so an amicable settlement between them is out of the question.
If Vandolea mobilizes their entire army to deal with us, Altair would immediately recognize that opportunity and make a move.
「Besides…… they have also sensed the presence of Libatis. I don’t know if they are aware of the agreement we made with Vice Minister Juno…… but they could make everyone around them into enemies if they aren’t careful. They’ll probably decide not to risk so much just for 10 or 20 villages.」
「To begin with, they already have trouble fighting against Goldonia alone.」
Vandolea is trying to ward off their longtime enemies in Altair as they fight while Goldonia has no such enemies.
The entire army can be used to defend against any invasion.
「I’m a little worried about that part too. Why did someone with such a high-handed attitude get sent out?」
Celia tilts her head.
She seems to have figured out lots of stuff on her own, impressive. Although her acting sucked.
「Leopolt, Adolph, Celia, say whatever comes to your mind.」
For now, we’ll think together and leave the things we don’t understand for later.
「They simply wanted to decide on the borders. Maybe they wanted to make it advantageous for themselves while they were at it?」
「That’s a weak line of thought…… in that case, they would have accepted Adolph’s compromise.」
Celia slumps over disheartened. I hastily stroke her head, telling her that I wasn’t particularly attacking her.
「There is no special military significance in pushing the borders a little north.」
Leopolt speaks quietly.
Nina brings him tea.
I’ll expose the secrets of their nighttime activities some day.
「Which means…… it’s another reason.」
Adolph, who seemingly had nothing go right for him today, takes out some documents while keeping a copy for himself.
「This is just a guess…… but doesn’t it have something to do with food?」
「Food? It’s been about food a lot recently.」
「Vandolea’s harvest for this year is unknown to us but is we assume for argument’s sake that they had a poor harvest…… it would be impossible for them to go west where Altair is, or east where the great mountain range and mountain nation territory are. Their only options would be north to Malt or our territory. Not to brag, but the harvest for the areas near the border have risen up considerably because of the southern development.」
I get what he’s saying…… I would understand if it was a feudal lord of 10 000 or 20 000 citizens but would a nation with over 1 million citizens do something as narrow-minded as that?
Besides, the harvest for wheat is already over.
The only things which can be planted on arable lands at this time are low-earning crops like beans or vegetables.
「If you think about it from the other perspective, there is a possibility that’s how poor they are from endlessly going into war, even going so far as to reducing the number of farmhands despite knowing what effects it will have on their harvest.」
I see…… but in that case, there should be other places than the southern border that they would want more desperately.
「Yes, if they’re coming to us and trying to negotiate forcefully, that means……」
「An express messenger from Her Majesty Celestina of the Malt Kingdom has arrived!!」
It looks like we don’t need to think anymore.
「Leopolt, you mentioned completing preparations for war earlier. Was that true?」
「Yes, it’s because the army reacted promptly.」
It looks like we’ll be moving soon once again.
Side Story: Unexpected Visitor
「Go ahead, feudal lord-sama, please by all means do it with your own hands.」
Today, the aqueduct was finally completed.
The aqueduct pulls a large amount of water from the nearby pond and provides running water to all of Rafen.
The state of water in Rafen, which relied on the river because water from wells isn’t the most sanitary, instantly improved.
Furthermore, there was a small trench dug around the nearly completed new mansion for security purposes. Plenty of water is poured in there as well.
Naturally, water is constantly flowing into the main feature, the pool Nonna requested, so she could swim in fresh water whenever she wanted to.
Since the weather gets too cold to swim starting in autumn, a large cauldron was also completed at the same time so hot water can be supplied.
And right now, I’m about to use a hammer to break the wooden lid sealing the entrance of the canal and commemorate the joyous first flow of water.
「Hardlett-sama, please don’t break the stone part.」
「I’m sure it would actually break if Aegir-sama hammered it.」
Quiet, I won’t screw up that much.
I slam the hammer down to crush the wooden lid.
The wooden planks shatter and water gushes out from the opening with great force as if it waited impatiently for too long.
Cheers erupt from not only my family and the servants but also from the workers involved in the construction…… or that’s what should have happened.
「W-what’s all that?!!」「Uwaaaaah!」「It’s a big catch!」
Everyone gathered let out something close to screams.
That is to be expected as a large amount of fish poured out together with the water.
The large volume of water and also the fish flowed into the moat dug around the new mansion.
「Hey…… was there always that much fish in that lake?」
「I didn’t make the effort to avoid foreign obstacles so there may be some mixed in…… even so, this is too much.」
Adolph looks in surprise at the continuous haul of fish flowing in the water.
There are some strange skin-colored fish though.
「Oh well…… guess all of us will be having grilled fish today.」
After I just finished my sentence, a woman screams and jumps out at me from the opening. The woman skillfully twists her body in midair and pulls me into the moat.
「Aegir-sama! Bowguns to the front!!」
Celia hastily orders the escort unit forward.
「Wait! There’s no danger.」
I lift up the face of the woman who jumped at me.
「Long time no see, Mirumi.」
She has a pair of bountiful breasts, smooth skin and a fish-like lower body.
How nostalgic, it’s the mermaid from not too long ago.
「Eh? Eh? Aegir!?」
Oh, she didn’t realize it was me?
「Nope! There was this strange stone pathway which was completed in the pond recently, you see. I took the kids to explore and then we were suddenly sucked up. So that’s what it was…… it connects to Aegir’s place.」
「Children, you mean from that time?」
I helped her out once in the past by spraying my seed on her eggs to facilitate her breeding.
Mirumi smiles brightly and picks up a fish which was swimming nearby.
Its size was not larger than my palm and it looked like a small fish, but when I looked closer, it was a human whose bottom half was that of a fish just like how Mirumi is.
It was so small I couldn’t really tell.
Does it recognize me by smell or something? The small mermaids swim to me and gather around.
Celia shouts something from above, but there’s no need to worry. These things won’t eat me.
Even so, how many are there?
「There’s so many of them…… are all of them-?」
「555 in total, all of them are your children!」
Mirumi hugs me happily. All of a sudden I’ve got a huge family.
「Aegir-sama! What are those monsters!? Reinforcements are coming right now so please hold on until then……」
I hold a hand up to signal the shouting Celia.
「Don’t worry about it, these are……」
How should I explain this?
「I-I get it, she’s your woman! First a snake and now a fish!?」
I’m glad she understood so quickly.
Thus Mirumi and her children can now travel back and forth from the lake to the mansion’s moat via the aqueduct.
Protagonist: Aegir Hardlett. 23 years old. Autumn.
Status: Goldonia Kingdom Margrave. Great Feudal Lord of Eastern Area. King of the Mountains. Friend of the Dwarves. Friend of the King of Aless.
Citizens: 163,000. Major Cities – Rafen: 24,000. Lintbloom: 4500.
Family: Nonna (the pretty Nonna), Carla (concubine), Mel (concubine), Miti (concubine), Maria (concubine), Catherine (concubine), Kuu (lover), Ruu (lover), Mireille (lover), Leah (lover), Casie (starving ghost)
Rita (head maid), Yoguri (playwright), Pipi (lover), Alice (magical girl)
Marceline (lover), Daughters – Stephanie (lover), Bridget (sexually frustrated +), Felicie (lover)
Sebastian (butler), Dorothea (lover, in the capital), Melissa (lover, left for the capital), Alma (left for the capital)
Children: Sue, Miu, Ekaterina, Amata, Anastasia (daughters); Antonio, Claude, Gilbard, Reiner, Bartolome (sons); Rose (foster daughter)
Nonhumans: Lammy (snake lover), Mirumi (mermaid)
Subordinates: Celia (adjutant), Gido (escort unit), Kroll (mendicant monk), Irijina (commander), Luna (commander), Ruby
Myla (security officer), Polte (training supervisor), Gretel (domestic affairs trainee)
Leopolt (staff officer), Adolph (domestic affairs official), Tristan (long-term business trip)
Claire & Laurie (official merchant), Schwartz (horse), Lilian (actress)
Army: 10 500 men
Infantry: 8000, Cavalry: 1000, Archers: 1000, Bow Cavalry: 500
Cannons: 30, Large Cannons: 10
Reserve: Already Mobilized
Security Unit: 150
Assets: 4070 gold (Emergency Military Recruitment x1000 -4000)
Sexual Partners: 226, children who have been born: 48 + 555 fish