The sun had yet to come up but the carnival-atmosphere was over. Other than the sporadic fire, the city was silent. While the people doing business on the streets as well as food stores were in operation, there were few customers. Even the chef was snoring next to the fire. It was the first time Nier and I trotted around in the city on her horses. We took two horses while there weren’t many people and swiftly made our way through the streets.
Atop her horse and while bearing the cold whistling wind, Nier shouted loudly to me: “Your majesty, what exactly do you want to do?”
I gave an ambiguous reply: “You’ll know when we get there.”
We turned multiple times through the streets and finally stopped in front of an inn. The lights were still on at the inn and they were still open. However, the sound of dishes and cups being moved around was now absent. Nier and I dismounted and then entered the inn. Inside were unconscious young people and even people dressed in guards’ uniforms. I wasn’t paying attention to the guards right now, but the boss wiping the cups.
“I am prince Troy Galadriel Rosvenor. Have you prepared what I asked for?”
I looked at him. He looked like a very hale and hearty elder. He silently nodded and pointed to his rear. Normally speaking, cheap wine is packaged in large barrels before being delivered so behind the inn is a courtyard for unloaded goods. There should be a four-row heavy horse carriage like the church’s there right now.
I nodded and then threw down a gold coin. The boss silently took the coin and then suddenly asked me: “Your majesty, do you really have to take action against the church?”
“Do I look like I’m joking to you?” I revealed a cold smile and continued, “People say that old army veterans can’t stand what the church does. Further, the one who came looking for me last time was an old army veteran. I think that you’d all be thankful for what I’m doing, right?”
He nodded and placed the cup down before bending down to grab a gun from under the counter. He then looked at me and said: “The church caused our comrade’s child to die. While we are old army veterans, we’re still her majesty’s soldiers. We won’t let scum like them exist here in her majesty’s territory where we too shed blood for it. Therefore, your majesty, if you want to destroy the church, we can help. We will go through hell and back without regret. Most of our children are soldiers. If you require so, they can take up their arms at any time for you.”
“Thank you very much. I thank you as the prince. I believe that I will definitely require your assistance. Her majesty led you in a quest of bloodshed to form this empire, and I shall safeguard the empire you gave your all to create.”
I bowed slightly to salute him. The veteran shivered from head to toe and then performed a very on-point hand-raise salute. Although he had aged, soldiers never age. A soldier is still a proud soldier when he steps up.
I went to the rear courtyard. The was a heavy horse carriage just like the church’s there. To maintain the heavy weight, a lot of rocks were fitted into the trunk at the rear. I started to suspect that they would be the ones who’d end up doing me in. I jumped up to the carriage and pulled Nier to my side to say: “Nier, what I’m about to ask you to do is extremely impulsive, and yes, also extremely dangerous. Bringing you along with me is the equivalent of putting us both in danger.”
“Your majesty, why do you always do dangerous things when you come back? Every time you come back, all sorts of things happen.” Nier who was at my side complained and then added, “But I am your bodyguard now so I shall accompany to whatever dangerous places you go. It’s just that I don’t want to collide with you like last time again. Your majesty, what do you need me to do this time?”
” I want to crash the church’s horse carriage carrying the statue of god over.”
“What?” Nier looked at me with shock as if I was an alien.
I chuckled and repeated myself: “I want to crash the church’s horse carriage carrying the statue of god over!”
“Have you considered the consequences of two heavy horse carriages crashing?” Nier sighed and said, “Your majesty, what you’re trying to do is no longer considered crazy, but a death-wish. We’re unlikely to survive the crash. Maybe you feel that there is a problem with the statue, but you really will get launched out of the carriage if you do this.”
“That’s why I need you.”
I looked at Nier and continued, “I need you to jump off the horse carriage with me before they crash. I need to guarantee that there is someone who can bring the coach of the other carriage under control after we jump off, otherwise, I don’t think I’d be able to get back up after falling.”
Nier looked at me with an expression that was hard to describe. She then sighed and said: “If you insist on doing this, I shall go with you until the end, without any further complaints.”
“Thank you, Nier. It’d be nice if you were my bodyguard instead of a Valkyrie.”
“Please don’t say that, your majesty. I will forever be her majesty’s Valkyrie.” Nier turned around and didn’t look at me again. I smiled bitterly and then raised my head up to look at the misty sky. The church’s horse carriage isn’t allowed into the city at this time. When a ray of light appears in the sky, I’ll charge over. We aren’t too far away from the church so their horse carriage will definitely stop here to get ready to deliver the statue. As such, I’ll take advantage of that, charge over and crash their horse carriage, flipping it over.
I certainly can’t damage the statue, but if a traffic accident happens, hey, that’s got nothing to do with me. Yes, I like drifting at midnight, and I like riding heavy horse carriages at midnight too. Furthermore, I’m bringing my bodyguard with me. If an accident happens, it’s an accident. What else can they say?
The broken statue will end up as just a pile of stones. I just need to be able to pick up one piece. Who knows, there might even be salt in sight after it breaks.
Nier and I didn’t speak. We could only hear the horses around us snorting and trotting on the ground. I looked at Nier beside me and coughed gently to break the silent atmosphere between us.
“Nier, don’t worry, we still have time.”
Nier paused before turning her head; “I beg your pardon, your majesty?”
“I was saying we still have time to save those children.”
I awkwardly touched my nose and then said: “The children are still around after all. As long as they’re still around, there’s bound to be a way. Nier, since at night.. erm… you… erm… so, I’ll definitely help you.”
“Your majesty, please do not bring that up again.” Nier gave me a cold look. She then backed away from me a bit and continued, “Please do not think that you can still hug me whenever you like. I am a Valkyrie, not your target for affection.”
“Sorry, sorry. I wasn’ t talking about that. And umm, I’ll do my best to help you. Take it as an apology for that hug. Sorry, Nier.”
“…… Uhm, thank you, your majesty.”
We both went silent again. I hopelessly raised my head and looked at the somewhat purple sky. I suck at holding long conversations. I want to have a relaxed conversation with Nier, but Nier never gives me a chance. Nier probably still hates me.
A ray of light appeared in the sky and the world suddenly lit up. It was like sound had returned to the silent world. It was just a single second’s change, yet the ray of light brought life to the continent. I took in a breath of ice-cold air, moved my frozen hands, and whipped the horse.
“Sit tight, Nier, This veteran is going to start now! Let’s go horsey!”