BBYW Vol. 2 Chapter 43 (WN)
Chapter 43 – The Cost of Power
“…I believe that is the magic tool called ‘Zeus’.”
After Sakuya finished her report, Rossellia spoke with a grave expression.
“It is said that the founding emperor, Baal Zebul, found it in a dungeon during his time as an adventurer. A divine weapon that allowed him to devastate small countries in the area and build his empire.”
“A divine weapon? That’s a pretty amazing description.”
“It may sound so, but if the legends are true, it deserves such a name.”
For a tower that can make it rain thunder, the moniker of “divine weapon” wasn’t exaggerated, I thought. The endless thunderstorm could very well look like gods unleashing their fury on foolish humanity.
“I’ve never heard of such a magic tool, though. I don’t think they’ve ever used it in the battles against Lamperouge.”
If such a magic tool had been used in the past, there would be imperial flags waving all over the Lamperouge territory by now. Even the impregnable Fort Bryden would have crumpled like paper before attacks from the sky.
“Zeus cannot be moved from the location it was first installed, so the range of its attacks is limited. The kingdom is probably outside that.”
“That’s a relief, I thought we were done for.”
“Furthermore, Zeus has a major side effect…or rather, I should say its activation comes with a cost. That is why the founding emperor left word that it should never be used, unless the empire was on the verge of collapse.”
I curiously asked and Rossellia nodded.
“That magic tool draws power from currents of energy flowing under the earth, transforms it into lightning and releases it. Its prolonged usage will cause trees and plants to wither, destroy harvests and turn the surroundings into a barren wasteland.”
“…I see, that’s a steep price to pay.”
Even if you could win any war, if your country turned into a desert you might as well have lost. I too would ban the usage of a weapon that sacrificed the land and people we were supposed to protect.
“That matches our reports. The spies infiltrated in empire territory noted that the flora around the capital is withering and dying at an unnatural pace.”
After Rossellia’s explanation, Sakuya expanded on her report. I saw Rossellia turn pale.
“If Zeus continues to be used, the empire will collapse. The capital…maybe the whole empire will turn into a desert.”
“The question is, is Grett Baal aware of that… I suppose not.”
He did abandon his own army in order to save himself, after all. I wouldn’t expect him to care for his citizens’ wellbeing.
Sakuya nodded to my words.
“After annihilating the Third Imperial Army and the Huang Dynasty forces, Grett Baal is targeting the nobles opposing him and the towns and villages that rebelled against him. Some court officials have attempted to dissuade him, but have all been executed.”
Thinking of her homeland and the destruction looming, Rossellia trembled.
“Oh Grett…what can I do…?”
“In my experience…someone like him, who sees everyone else as inferior fools, will never listen to warnings or criticism. Either we wait for him to realize his mistakes, or stop him by force.”
“Well, anything goes for me, as long as he doesn’t target House Maxwell…but who knows what will happen.”
I let out a deep sigh, then looked up at the ceiling. We had just gotten over a pretty bad situation, and an even worse one popped up.
“I will tell the spies to continue monitoring the situation. I will inform you as soon as we receive new information, my Lord.”
“I’m counting on you, Sakuya.”
“I beg of you, please let me know too! I want to know what happens to the empire, to my homeland…!”
“Understood. I shall take my leave now.”
Sakuya left, without a sound, leaving only Rossellia and me in the room.
“Lord Dyngir, I…”
“Don’t say any more.”
I realized what Rossellia was going to say and stopped her.
“There’s nothing you can do, even if you were in the empire right now. Just wait and see what happens for now…who knows, the situation might improve even if we don’t do anything.”
“…yes…I shall pray for that to happen…”
Rossellia held her hands together and lowered her head. Were the prayers of this angelic maiden going to reach the heavens? The answer was, indeed, something only the gods could know.