Oukoku e Tsuzuku Michi Chapter 374
Leopolt and Myla are doing an analysis on the current situation.
「The kingdom isn’t going to act. There is only one army corp of 15 000 stationed at the border to keep up appearances.」
Myla says with a bitter face.
「I heard this from my father, who said His Majesty apparently received the rare incense, high quality musical instruments, and vintage wines. His Majesty had never gotten involved with music or alcohol until now…… so this is probably for Rosario-sama’s preferences.」
Gretel informs me in a serious tone.
Her dad is a traditional high-class noble so it’s easier for him to attain information about other nobles.
If I were to ask, people would either not want to answer or be too scared to tell me anything.
Myla is looking at her scornfully.
Maybe it’s because Gretel forgot to take off her dog ears? No, maybe it’s because her dog tail is jammed into her asshole.
「I asked the Commissioner of Military Affairs in Lord Hardlett’s name and they have not made full preparations. If we think about the mobility of the South Yuguria army, they will force us into quite a disadvantage at the outbreak of war.」
Leopolt pretended to be me and sent a letter to Erich.
I looked at the copy and saw that a few words were written messier and spelling errors were made on purpose.
Just remembering it now gets me annoyed.
「The situation is bad as predicted.」
I stand up straight away.
「I’ll leave the particulars to you guys. Let me know if you need me. Everything else, you can do as you see fit.」
Leopolt and Myla nod slightly, then see me off.
Rather than me wracking my non-existent brain, it’s better to let them act freely.
Letting them do what they’re good at is the best option.
As for me, I enter a certain room with a stern face.
「So you’re finally here. I’ve been doing it by myself all this time so I’m ready.」
「Sorry for the wait.」
This is Sekrit’s room.
「Fuck me from behind like a dog. Be as rough as you like.」
I embrace the body primed by her prior masturbation and proceed to dominate her three holes.
Claire and Laurie explain the grand plan to increase production of weapons.
They have already talked to Leopolt and Adolph in advance.
「All existing and new furnaces will be in operation. We will show you the production ability developed in Lintbloom.」
「With the termination of the markets in Libatis and around the head office, we can secure more than enough personnel and fuel.」
There are currently way more arms prepared than the number of troops in my army.
Having more arrows is a good thing, however the amount of weapons and armor go above what is necessary, even if we were to increase the number of troops or keep some for spare.
「There is an abundance of spears especially. Actually, they look different than the long spears being used now……」
「It was Leopolt-sama’s order. He wanted to prioritize light weight and ease of handling over strength.」
Unlike swords, spears can be used by amateurs and still become somewhat of an asset.
I can kind of see where he’s going by decreasing the weight of the spear and making it easier to wield.
「I hope it doesn’t come to that if possible.」
I smile wryly and return the inventory to Claire.
「With this many spears, I’m sure the price will be considerable, right? Let me pay it now」
As of this moment, we have gold like no other.
Once war starts, it’s hard to predict what will happen.
「I will collect the total sum after everything is over. I’m sure you have other needs.」
Although Claire smiles, her eyes reflect how serious she is.
「……are you sure? If I lose, you won’t be able to get anything.」
「Fufu, I will be praying for Aegir-sama’s victory. I have bet everything on you. That means if Aegir-sama sinks, I will be finished too.」
「We will ensure the fee is paid after your victory. If no money remains, you may pay in installments at the fair annual rate of interest of 30%.」
Claire and Laurie smile.
With Lintbloom’s weapon production in full swing, we won’t have to worry about a shortage.
The two of them are also supporting me with all of their efforts.
「Thanks, it must be hard work. That’s why I’ll try not to let you fall into ruin.」
「Fufu, sure.」「I look forward to your success.」
I exchange a light kiss with Claire and Laurie.
That was what I intended, but Laurie secretly slipped her tongue in.
What a cutie.
「Alright, time for me to do what I can.」
I wipe my mouth moistened by the kisses and compose myself.
「You came as promised. I’m glad.」
Leah was in the room waiting for me.
She welcomes me with a smile, then playfully screams and starts running away.
「Oh noo~ I’m going to get violated~ Save me~」
I chase Leah to the window, pin her up against it and ravage her three holes.
Tristan drinks his tea and lazily explains the new weapon to me.
His voice can’t be changed, but the way he yawns in the middle of his sentences really makes me want to beat him up. I have to endure or else the conversation won’t go anywhere. I’m an adult after all.
「Even if you tell me the details, I don’t get it. What are you trying to say?」
「In other words, we want a cannon that can be used in an open field battle.」
Tristan isn’t familiar with the construction specifics of the cannon either so he sums it up roughly.
「A cannon on the fields……」
I sigh and rest my elbow on the desk.
Cannons are extremely powerful weapons capable of displaying their might on offence and defense, though that is limited to siege situations. In other words, they can’t be used in field battles.
Because of how heavy they are, they take more time and effort to move.
During a chaotic melee where ally and enemy are fighting, there isn’t much leeway to carry around such a weapon.
It might be a different story if several hundreds of cannons could be lined up to launch a barrage like the Olga Federation or the Garland Empire, but no nation in the Central plains can do that. Of course, it’s impossible for me too.
「No matter how powerful they are, if we can’t move them, the only way we can use them is in an ambush. That’s why we’re thinking of making them smaller, lighter, and easier to carry…… cannons small enough for several people to carry and mount on carriages.」
「Hey now, is there any point to that?」
The strength of a cannon is proportional to its size.
Making them smaller and lighter will reduce power.
What’s the point of carrying a cannon after destroying its greatest point of advantage?
「I guess there isn’t a point if we use them normally. Ballistae are lighter and easier to use after all. Which is why I discussed with the dwarves if we could do something about the projectiles.」
「Are we going to fire triangular shells?」
Tristan thinks about how to explain it to me and gives up.
「Since we’re using them on the field, we don’t need to blow up walls or gates. We only need to defeat armor-wearing soldiers. The dwarves are working on prototypes right now, so I’m sure that when they have a clear idea, someone other than me will thoroughly explain it to you in an easily understandable manner.」
I use the timing when Tristan gets a second helping of tea to get up from my seat.
「I’ve already arranged it with Claire to bring a wagon full of alcohol the next time she comes to Lintbloom.」
「For the dwarves? I was planning on rewarding them.」
I give Tristan’s head a flick.
「Dwarves don’t want money. They want food…… and most importantly, booze.」
I stare proudly at Tristan, thinking that he still has much to learn, and see him in anguish on the floor.
「What are you doing?」
「Uuuu…… you’re going to split my head open! The Margrave has monstrous strength, so I’d appreciate if you think of yourself as an orc and act carefully.」
Who are you calling an orc? For saying that, I’m going to steal your girl.
「Then you would really be an orc. Gosh, I’m going to take a nap…… I did a month’s worth of work in these last three days.」
「Sure, sleep well.」
Tristan’s working hard in his own way.
He probably understood that he couldn’t loaf around too much this time.
When I get to the halls, I see Myla walking with her shoulders perked up.
She’s also huffing angrily. It’s pretty much confirmed who she’s angry at.
「Lord Hardlett! Do you know where that idiot Tristan is!?」
I knew it, he incurred the diligent Myla’s wrath by cutting corners somewhere or shirking his duties again.
「He’s taking a nap over there.」
Myla rushes into the room the moment I told her.
Unfortunately, he’s not going to get a chance to sleep.
I can hear Myla’s angry yelling and Tristan making his excuses.
I’ll at least make sure he gets proper nutrients in his food.
I tell the chef to add more peas to Tristan’s soup before heading to a certain place.
「Welcome, ah! ……Sharon, put up the ‘closed’ sign for today.」
This is Leticia’s and Sharon’s shop.
I wrap my arms around the two of them and head to the bedroom.
As we climb the stairs, I throw my clothes off and the two of them also do the same.
For some reason, Sharon didn’t take off her underwear until the lights were out.
「I have to make a decision soon. It’s going to get harder when my body matures……」
「Your sister will support whichever choice you make.」
I enjoy Leticia’s three holes and Sharon’s two holes.
Sharon still hasn’t let me use her front hole yet. I guess she isn’t ready yet.
Adolph sighs and unwillingly briefs the domestic affairs department.
「……as per the aforementioned, we will halt flood control and cultivation of new land. All labor will be directed to the construction of simple forts and encampments.」
The rest of the members are just as unhappy as Adolph.
To them, stopping development isn’t something they want to do, however they don’t have much choice now.
「The grain we have in reserves will be distributed under the assumption that the roads are going to be cut off. All the sales of grain to stabilize the price will also be cancelled.」
While we have a sufficient amount of grain in storage, most of it is in the warehouse in Rafen. If the roads are cut off, it’s possible that we won’t be able to send food to the frontlines.
That’s why Leopolt suggested that we divide the total into several portions and keep them in several locations.
「If I may…… problems in the facilities will arise such as bugs and rats. The value of grain will decrease and the length of time it can be preserved will be shortened.」
One of the members timidly comments.
We don’t have the same level of storehouse anywhere else besides Rafen.
But now is not the time to worry about the selling price of grain.
「I am aware. We are ultimately officials who serve the feudal lord so it can’t be helped, no matter how nonoptimal it might be.」
He didn’t have to say it like that.
Blame South Yuguria, they’re the ones who are attacking.
「In any case, we’ll do all we can. If we do this, the feudal lord will surely protect the citizens.」
Adolph and the other domestic affairs officials look at me.
If Leopolt were here, I could have used his iron mask. Oh well, I have to accept everyone’s gazes this time.
「I’m counting on you guys.」
Crap, with all these people looking, the nervousness is making my stomach―――― not hurt exactly, I’m getting an urge to fart.
Hm, is that a new female domestic affairs official?
The size of her clothes is off and her chest area looks so tight it’s about to burst open.
Not good, the front of my pants is going to bulge before I let out a fart.
I’ll dismiss myself.
「Hardlett-sama, will there be peace after this fight is over?」
Adolph whipsers softly so only I could hear him.
「I don’t know. Maybe there will be at least one more war.」
I leave it at that and exit the room.
I felt Adolph’s gaze on my back until the very end.
When I’m out of the room, I see a maid waiting on standby.
I’ve never seen her face before so she must be new.
「Pardon me, are you free?」
She tugs my sleeve meekly. What’s going on here?
The room I am taken to is a spare storage room in the basement.
Since the main storage is large enough, this room should be fairly empty.
「What are we doing in a place like this? If we make love in the basement, the smell will be trapped and we’ll be found out right away. Rita will get mad.」
When Carla and I did it in a food storage one time, Maria scolded us severely, so it’s been tested.
She doesn’t answer me.
I take my eyes off her for a second and now the maid disappeared.
The next thing I know, I hear the sound of a door closing shut and it becomes pitch black in the warehouse.
「Hey, what’s the meaning of this?」
I try looking around, but my eyes aren’t used to the dark yet and I can’t see anything.
We can’t make love like this.
That was when I heard Celia’s whispering voice.
「Uu……got completely baited in.」
I hear Carla’s voice next.
「Of course Aegir is going to follow if a woman seduces him. Hand it over, five copper.」
What are you girls betting on?
「So easily taken in by a maid with an unfamiliar face and started working today…… what would happen to Aegir-sama if the maid happened to be an assassin?」
「Reform is necessary after all. At this rate, Aegir-san will be killed by a woman.」
Now I hear Mel’s voice. How many people are here?
And what’s this farce about?
「Starting now, Aegir-sama will――」
Candles get lit one after the other.
「-learn how to be strict with women!」
Oh, I can finally see around me.
When I observe my surroundings, I see a sight I never expected.
「……we aren’t going to be killed, right?」
「……the wives are here so I want to think we’ll be fine.」
That vampire from before who Brynhildr made into her servant is laying emotionlessly on her back on a desk in the basement.
That’s strange in itself, but she is stark naked, and her limbs are being held down by Gido and Kroll in a way that her precious place is exposed.
–Third Person POV–
Side Story: Christoph.
In a certain room underground, one could hear the pleasant laughter of an interrogator and the sorrowful cries of Christoph.
「Eeh! There’s a person like that!?」
「You’re lying, I don’t believe you!」
「I’m serious! And that place gets like this……」
「No way, no way! It gets like that!?」
「Eew, impossible…… it definitely smells.」
Christoph’s interrogator Zillia and two others…… are interrogating together.
Zillia’s rather cruel methods has caught the attention of others.
「Hey, I’m in charge of this guy. Why don’t you two go do your jobs?」
「Who cares, besides you’re not doing any interrogating either. You’ll just go back to laughing and eating snacks with him.」
「This guy is interesting. I can understand why Zillia didn’t get rid of him.」
Zillia unhappily turns away and starts tapping her foot restlessly.
She didn’t find it amusing that the other interrogators were spending time with Christoph.
Apparently she was told that her torturing lacked the ability to make him divulge information.
「Now that I look at him, he’s got a nice face. It would be a waste to kill him.」
「I hear he’s weak too? We’re free to do as we want to him.」
「Hey now, I’m a man too. If you’re not careful, you’ll be bur…… aah, please stop! Don’t poke me!」
The two interrogators poke Christoph’s cheeks from both sides and start the harsh torture.
He could only blush and writhe in the face of the pain and humiliation.
「Hey Zillia, want to switch? I’ll give you the old man I’m in charge of looking after. His balls were crushed yesterday so he’s pretty obedient.」
「No way! I don’t want some dirty old man!」
The three-person torture lasted a while and it wasn’t until the sun went down that Christoph was finally freed.
「I’ll come again tomorrow~」
「Maybe I’ll buy you cake next time~」
「Don’t come anymore! Get the hell out!」
Christoph’s day did not end there.
Zillia’s torture has yet to finish.
「And you, acting all lovestruck……」
「W-what are you angry about…… uwah!」
Handcuffs were locked tightly around Christoph’s wrists.
「How cruel! Putting something like this on me is too much…… I’m practically being treated as a prisoner.」
「Shut up! Everybody here normally wears these!」
Christoph cries anguishedly, however the interrogator shows no signs of mercy.
The handcuffs were just the beginning.
「Here is tonight’s dinner. Bread with beef and potato soup, spring vegetable salad and strawberries for dessert.」
「There is so little…… I wanted to sink my teeth into a juicy piece of meat.」
Prisoners don’t get to eat a satisfying meal. All sorts of methods are being used to corner them.
「Meat is expensive! How much do you think I’m getting paid here!? ……if it isn’t enough, I’ll boil some pasta for you, so eat as much as you want.」
A trace of happiness appeared on Christoph’s face, but his hope instantly gets crushed.
「I can’t eat with handcuffs on.」
「That’s right. You’ll need somebody to feed you if you want to eat.」
She takes a spoon and scoops some of the soup.
「If you don’t like it, then no food for you today.」
Prisoners are humiliated even during meal time.
That’s the South Yuguria style.
「Come on, aaahn!」
Soup pours into his awkwardly opened mouth.
Zillia did not relent after that, using her own hands to cram the bread, the salad, pasta and strawberries for dessert into Christoph’s mouth.
Christoph’s mind is nearing its limit.