BBYW Vol. 2 Chapter 38 (WN)
Chapter 38 – The Creep’s Trump Card
“W-What are the soldiers doing!? How could you come all the way here…!?”
“Either knocked out or surrendered. It turns out they’re sick of serving a master that couldn’t care less about them.”
“Those useless morons…!”
Grett clenched his teeth so hard they made grinding sounds.
The Second Imperial Prince, presently a living impersonation of anger and frustration, had a very thin, almost skeletal physique and a complexion that seemed all but healthy, especially at the moment.
(They might be siblings, but he doesn’t look like Rossellia at all. Lars was also huge and muscular…the Baal bloodline is pretty complicated, I guess.)
After briefly mulling over the mysteries of human genetics, I pronounced Grett’s judgment.
“Well then. As commander of a defeated army, you know what awaits, right? You came here eager to trample Maxwell territory, you’re not thinking you’ll get off scot-free, do you?”
“D-Do you know who you’re talking to!? I’m the Prince of the Baal Empire! The future emperor!! There’s no way I can die in a place like…”
“If you lose on the battlefield, you die — whether you’re a prince or a slave, it doesn’t matter. The rules of war don’t change because of something like bloodlines.”
“Ridiculous…I have lost to a barbarian like you…?! It can’t be!! I will never, ever accept it!!”
“Really now. I guess I’ll have to make you accept it, then. I’m going to use this sword and carve your defeat on your own body.”
I raised my sword and Grett shook even more. I could hear his teeth rattle in his mouth as he backed away from me.
“You’re supposed to be the commander here, how can you tremble like that just because they pointed a sword at you? You have to be worth at least more than that.”
“S-Silence!! I am not going to die in a place like this!! I will become emperor and make Rossellia mine!!”
Grett then raised the sphere over his head. The crystal sphere, colored in a purple so deep it seemed to absorb all light, reflected the prince’s twisted expression.
“A magic tool…!”
“Haha!! HAHAHAHA!!! I will not die here!! Know your place, scum!!”
I didn’t know what effect the magic tool had, but the best solution was to destroy it as soon as possible. I quickly stepped closer to Grett and swung my sword.
My sword was surely going to cleave through Grett, but the crystal sphere let out a dazzling purple glow, which swallowed him. I didn’t stop my momentum and cut through the purple light and Grett together.
With a sharp sound, the light that filled the tent disappeared.
Once it was completely gone…
Grett was nowhere to be seen: I was alone in the tent.
The purple crystal sphere, rolling on the ground, showed a visible crack. I looked at my sword and found the blade stained red.
“This has to be an instant movement magic tool. He went…to the empire, I guess.”
I clicked my tongue and picked up the purple sphere. It looked like it would shatter to pieces at any moment, so I thought it unlikely it could be used again.
“Damn, I really lost him…Ladd’s never going to let me live this down…”
I left Grett’s tent, cursing under my breath.
“Well, not everything went as planned…what’s going to happen now?”
The battle had dealt a heavy blow to the imperial military power. If the empire was going to collapse like this, we could take advantage of the confusion and grab more territory.
If Cerros Baal became emperor and tried to rebuild what they lost, instead, we could gain financial compensation and more territory via post-war negotiations. Rossellia would definitely be at my side and Cerros is known as a pacifist, so he’d probably accept our requests without a fuss.
Or at least that was the plan: now that Grett has escaped, things might change.
“With all the pride he has, Grett’s never going to let House Maxwell just take more territory. He might come attacking again instead, to dispel the humiliation he suffered at our hands.”
I didn’t think we were going to lose, but a longer war meant we would use more resources, which was never positive.
“I really want to settle it in negotiation…but could it work…?”
I sighed, my shoulders dropping, as I headed to rejoin the knights waiting outside the tent. I hopped on my steed and we returned to Fort Bryden, prisoners in tow.
Thus, the battle between House Maxwell and the Imperial Allied Army over Fort Bryden ended in a crushing victory for House Maxwell.
The First and Second Imperial Armies were both decimated. The Baal Empire saw its power and authority severely diminished, and was now headed on a thorny path towards destruction.
…or so it was supposed to: the empire’s circumstances did change drastically, but in a way I had not expected at all.