Chapter 108 is here!
If you’d like to read chapter 109, 110, 111, 112 and 113, or just support the translations, please feel free to check out on my patreon page.
Anyway, here’s the chapter, I hope you’ll enjoy it!
There were five major countries in this world, but even among them, the power of Asgard still stood out.
Especially when it came to their military power.
And that major threat was finally baring its fangs at Jormungand.
That being the case, it was only natural for some of the aristocrats with unclear allegiances to take a stand on the enemy’s side.
That was especially true for small and intermediate noble households near the border, which received direct and indirect assistance from Albert.
These were the perfect prey for him.
【”At this rate, you will be obliterated by the mad princess. Is that what you wish?”】
After being told so by Albert, most of said noble households gave up on their allegiance to the kingdom.
In the blink of an eye, almost a dozen noble households had made a switch to Asgard’s side.
However, despite this success, Albert was wearing an expression of unhidden dissatisfaction.
That number was not even a quarter of the noble households that had agreed to cooperate with him at first.
It seemed they were waiting for the result of the next battle to decide.
【”―― These cursed fools! Know your place!”】
Indeed, if Skuld could obtain yet another decisive victory, the rest of the nobles would come for Asgard’s flag like an avalanche.
This would likely bring down a whole third of Jormungand.
However, such results would be credited to Skuld’s name, not Albert’s.
At this rate, even if Asgard were to win, Albert would get the cold shoulder from the empire, rendering his betrayal meaningless.
There was no way Albert would admit to his shameful wrongs and accept that he had wasted his life.
【”Don’t they realize how much they owe me?!”】
Albert was feeling bitter about how few allies he had managed to gather.
This was under his expectations.
Kurats’ existence was definitely a psychological barrier to the nobles.
His unprecedented achievement of driving away the fourth army by himself was making them hesitant to betray the kingdom.
Albert believed that was foolish.
Against the mad princess Skuld and the devil swordsman Gunther, it would be unlikely for even the kingdom’s sword Rosberg to stand a chance, let alone for a commoner like Kurats.
That man’s achievements were, without a doubt, exaggerated and embellished through the efforts of the Snow White Valkyrie, princess Frigga.
(How is anyone not realizing something so obvious? This world is full of fools.)
However, continuing to complain was not going to bring him anywhere.
Felbell’s worries were not unwarranted. Albert himself knew that if he failed to gain achievements, he would very likely be the subject of a political purge.
He had to show to the meritocracy that was Asgard that he could be of help. And he had to do so before Skuld could achieve yet another victory.
―― When such thoughts were going through his mind, Albert received new intel.
The few members of Felbell’s faction that remained in the palace informed him that the count of Bashtar was coming in person.
Albert believed this way exactly the opportunity he had hoped for.
◆ ◆ ◆
【”Is he really going with only these troops?”】
McClain muttered in shock as he glanced at Kurats and the army composed of only a hundred people, even when including Triestella and other close aides.
McClain thought there was no one in the world as reckless as himself, but the lord’s recklessness appeared to be even beyond his own.
During the golden age of Owl’s eye, McClain had triumphed over an army of 3000 with only 500 men.
However, this time around, in the worst case scenario, Kurats would be facing Asgard’s second army; an army of 40,000 men.
It was only natural for McClain to doubt the sanity of his lord, who was gonna face them with a force that barely reached a hundred.
【”…Remember the mine we were defending?”】
【”Yeah, but I wouldn’t call that a mine, it was more like rubble over a wasteland.”】
【”Well, that used to be a mine. Until the lord crushed it. Speaking of which, did you know he beat an army of tens of thousands of low-level to high-level monsters all by himself?”】
Bruno scratched his head like even he couldn’t believed what he was saying.
【”―― Hold on, is he really human? Are you sure he’s not the demon king?”】
Drops of sweat fell from McClain’s temple.
He thought the rumors were exaggerated and that it would be a big deal even if a tenth of what he had heard was true, but he was finding out that those rumors were actually more subdued than reality.
【”We didn’t personally see him fight, but we did see Frigga’s side of the battle. With her griffon, she could definitely be a match for a thousand men. And even she is no match for the lord, so you can make a guess.”】
Bruno spoke quietly while looking up like he was reminiscing while McClain seemed to be resigning himself to the situation.
【”Makes you wonder, is there any way we can contribute?”】
【”Maybe we could escort them there.”】
Meanwhile, Frigga was not feeling a single worry in the world despite being part of a force of only a hundred.
The mercenary group “Owl’s eye” led my McClain had the potential to surpass an army with ten times its numbers, but while the Nosferatu forces composed of Triestella’s subordinates did not surpass 50 members, they could easily be a match for a force of many thousands.
Since all the subordinates looked like beautiful women, the mercenaries jokingly called them the lord’s harem force, but the fact was that they were far beyond the average human when it came to their physical abilities.
The one issue they had was they would sometimes look towards Kurats with enchanted eyes, but that did not cause any problem in particular save for irritating Frigga.
Furthermore, the four strongest amongst the Nosferatus, Tristella, Meril, Berta and Crushiandra, could deal with thousands of enemies on their own.
Of course, the same could be said about Frigga, so long as she could ride her Griffon.
As for Kurats, trampling down tens of thousands of men would be like taking candy from a baby for him.
Now that he had obtained his new sword, Warcry, not even Frigga could predict how strong he had become.
Due to the out-of-standard endurance of everyone in the small force, as well as the fact that the supplies needed to sustain such small numbers weren’t significant, they were able to rush to the Strasbourg territory at a terrifying speed.
But in an unmistakably unfortunate turn of events… the news of the Bashtar army stepping out with shockingly small numbers came to Albert’s side in no time at all.
◆ ◆ ◆
【”―― Of course, I expect I can count on your cooperation then?”】
Gathered together somewhere in a forest 20km away from Strasbourg, answering a call to the territory of baron Desaix, everyone present were nobles who had been brought up from a young age with the purpose of working for Albert’s interests..
Even so, they had not cooperated with Albert’s rebellion at the start.
Despite the teachings they had been fed all their lives, they had still decided to act as mere spectators, up until the point when Skuld had pulverized Leclerc’s army.
Seeing this as a proof that the kingdom was in a bad spot, they hurriedly chose to join Albert’s side at last, but of course, Albert’s response was cold.
【”I-it’s certainly right that we’ll find ourselves at the top of the chain if we successfully bring in some achievements, but…”】
【”We do not have the same assets as yourself, your excellency…”】
Albert snorted at the men whose words were drowned in passiveness.
【”Are you expecting to get a warm welcome from Asgard after surrendering like you did without bringing anything to the table? This is your last opportunity to contribute. You could content yourself with your current position, or you could rise to the occasion and distinguish yourselves.”】
Asgard was not kind to those who surrendered.
This was an established understanding drawn from all their actions so far.
However, the empire’s system was still based on merit through and through, even those who were once enemies could become high officials provided they were capable enough to do so.
But Albert knew well that the men in front of him were not part of those sufficiently capable individuals.
That being the case, at the end of the day, their only option was to collaborate with Albert.
Given they had abandoned the kingdom, there would be no tomorrow for them if Albert abandoned them.
【”B-besides that, is it really true? You said the count of Bashtar is coming with only a hundred people or so, but…”】
Asked baron Desaix while wiping his forehead.
Considering there had been 12000 soldiers in the punitive force previously sent by the kingdom, 100 people was an absurdly small number.
【”If that’s true, then maybe that means the rumors about what happened in Lapland were true as well…”】
The baron of Desailly, who was also present, was becoming pale as he said so. Clearly, he was getting cold feet.
He just wanted to place himself wherever he could stay safe. It was easy to tell what he was thinking from his expression alone. He did not want to make an enemy out of a monster.
【”Do no fret. I will provide the gentlemen here with the Alphonse magic riders of our army. Do not believe in mere rumors. How could we, as nobles, allow ourselves to be frightened by a plebian youngster?”】
Given their privileged class in society, nobles were sometimes as prideful as they were cowardly.
Now that Albert had offered a collaboration and tickled their pride as superior men, there was only one answer they could give.
【”Alright, you can count on us. We’ll be sure to show the head of Bashtar his place.”】
【”Indeed, very well said. Bashtar will not be able to ignore your accomplishments.”】
Albert nodded, satisfied.
They did not absolutely have to win.
As long as they could kill Kurats alone or at least seriously wound him, their battle would be over.
Even if they were to lose, all Albert would have to say was that baron Desaix and the other nobles had nothing to do with him.
Pulling such tricks was easy for Albert, as the leader of a whole faction.
However, this also meant he was still not ready to get his own hands dirty even at this critical point.
All this showed was the limit of his talents. But he had no way of realizing that.
The odan highway that led to Strasbourg.
This was where the allied force of baron Duraix and the other nobles had been stationed. They were currently in a battle formation on a clear and open stretch of grass along the highway.
Following their common sense, they believed they could defeat an army of only a hundred soldiers hands down.
No matter how tough Frigga and Kurats were, they believed the term one-man-army meant they would be a match for a thousand soldiers at best.
However, the combined forces of all the nobles present amounted to 4000 men.
Moreover, now that Albert had provided them with Alphonse magic riders, their military strength had made a leap forward.
Under these circumstances, defeating Kurats was not a dream. No, they could definitely do it!
Looking at the Alphonse riders, these powerful weapons that could determine the whole outcome on their own, baron Desaix was already becoming drunk on a feeling of omnipotence.
There was no sign of anyone that could be considered to be a mage within the approaching forces of Bashtar,
In other words, there was no risk of them bringing out the new magic that Leclerc had used in the previous battle.
【”Fuhahahaha! You can only blame yourselves for being conceited. Come, become the nourishment of our future success!”】
Before they became aware of it, Desaix and the other nobles had all but forgotten their fear of Kurats, who had obliterated Asgard’s army in Lapland, along with their Chaos riders.
【”Aaaaaah! That is so unfair! I wanted to go, too!!”】
【”But it can’t helped, can it? You lost the contest.”】
Marika shot down Lunaria’s complaint without a shred of mercy.
Lunaria was clenching her fist and pouting while looking down.
On her desk, there were so many documents piled up that they reached over her head.
In the last few days, the size of that mountain had been increasing non-stop, never going lower.
【”―― Please fill-in the documents that were submitted for your approval.”】
As yet another pile of documents was dropped by Marika on the already high mountain, Lunaria let out the most powerful scream she could.