‘It appears that we’ll have to drop tonight’s plan for now.’
We skipped breakfast and went straight to the tavern with Angelina. The sun appeared much earlier compared to before, but the warmer temperature didn’t come earlier. The air was still moist and wet. I was still shivering despite wearing clothes for winter. Angelina and Veirya, whom were on my left and right, however, didn’t mention anything about it. The two of them maintained cold expressions. Their faces were totally identical, so I couldn’t tell who was on my right and who was on my left. Veirya told me how to distinguish between them… But it’s basically impossible to use that differentiation method she taught me… I wouldn’t have been able to identify who was who if Veirya wasn’t clinging to my arm the entire time…
Veirya only cared about me this way when Angelina was around.
However, once we reached the vicinity of the tavern, I realised that something was wrong at the tavern. A group of townsfolk were gathered at the entrance of the tavern, loudly shouting something. Some had even armed themselves with blades and farming tools. They seemed to be ready to riot. After lingering for a moment, Angelina swiftly drew her sword. Veriya swiftly smashed her sword onto Angelina’s blade. In a cold tone, she asked, “What are you planning to do to my townsfolk?”
“Don’t do this, yet. I need to know what exactly happened.”
I pressed my hands down on the two who were confronting each other with their swords. The people in this town haven’t started fighting with the people from the tavern, yet these two seemed to be ready to spill blood before the people did. Veirya looked at me with extreme displeasure. She seemed to be suspecting which side I was on… The thing is, we will be the ones who suffer, if we attack without clearing things up beforehand. We’re now facing the chapel. Judging from what the man and Angelina said, the chapel is a very powerful force in this nation. They’re able to have their own military force, after all. Based on the information that I have, it would seem that they could rival the military.
I walked into the crowd and saw the entrance of the tavern. Fully-equipped soldiers armed with weapons vigilantly watched the townsfolk on both sides. The townsfolk all looked at the soldiers before them with looks of outrage. If the soldiers weren’t armed, the townsfolk would’ve ripped them apart.
There was a risky wooden board in the vacant space where the two sides faced off against each other. From the shape of it, it resembled a shield.
I looked up at the townsfolk on both sides and asked, “What exactly happened?”
The townsfolk shouted with infuriation, “They insulted our beliefs! They burnt our Wolf God shield that represents an abundant harvest!! We soon have to plant our crops, yet these people just snatched our Wolf God shield from our store without a word and burnt it. This shield is our town’s treasure, yet they burnt it, just like that!! Your Lordship, Lord Veirya! Are you not going to do something about these barbarians?!”
The knights looked at the townsfolk before them. In loud voices, they declared, “We are knights of the chapel. This is Her Majesty’s territory. You have no right to believe in a heretic god! You must believe in the true god! You must share our belief!! You heretics are to immediately abandon your belief. We promise to protect you. If you refuse to come to your senses, our chapel has the right to exterminate all heretics! If you don’t believe in our god, you will be abandoned by our god!!”
“It’s always been the Wolf God that’s protected us! You people never came to our rescue when the demons attacked us! You want us to believe in your god now? Never happening! You burnt our Wolf God shield, so you must pay the price! You must apologise to our god!”
“Get lost, heretics! Don’t be unreasonable! We are showing you the way! We defeated the Demon King, under the guidance of our god! That is the miracle of God!! What you’re now doing is an insult to our belief! Either you believe us or you pay the price for stubbornly being unreasonable!!”
A knight, who seemed to be a small team captain, looked at my face. He aggressively aimed his long sword at me and shouted, “Who are you? Since you don’t believe in our religion, you are a heretic, too!”
Veirya coldly looked at the soldiers. From behind, she shoved me away and before the small team captain could react, I heard the heavy, dull sound of metal. When I turned to look in the direction of the sound, I saw the body of the captain, who was ordering people around, quiver and slowly drop to his knees. Blood violently poured out. I looked up at the fountain of spraying blood. It took me a while to realise what happened. His corpse dropped to the ground while his head that was rolling on ground still kept its owner’s aggressive gaze. It appeared that, like me, he didn’t react in time, either.
The people around us had yet to react, as well. Veirya whipped the blood off her sword, and then coldly looked at the knights., “He’s my property. You are not to be rude to him.”
Angelina and I shouted at virtually the same time.
I truly didn’t think Veirya would kill. She had killed someone from their side, before our discussion begun.
‘What she did has shaken the foundations of our talk!! If we begin discussions, Veirya’s impulse will put me in a passive position!’
Angelina quickly drew her sword. Veirya coldly looked at her. I quickly stepped in between the two, but it didn’t look as though either of them cared about me, nevertheless. They stared each other down with cold gazes. Angelina had taken on a fighting stance, “You started first this time, Veirya.”
Veirya didn’t back down. It was the first time she revealed such a blatant desire for a fight. It was obvious that she wanted to fight with Angelina. I couldn’t let that happen, though. Putting aside what the chapel wants to do for now, we’re already in a position where we have to begin bowing our head, because she killed without thinking. It’s best to avoid violence. Once you’ve used it, either they explode or you explode.
If Veirya and Angelina fight now, we’ll have to agree to any request made by the chapel. After all, we were the ones who were unreasonable in the first place. If it’s determined that we started and were unreasonable, then it’ll be impossible for us to explain ourselves to the Queen, too.
‘I have to stop Veirya, now.’
I pressed my hand on Veirya’s shoulder and shouted at her, “Veirya! Stop! Stop! Don’t fight! Don’t fight! We need to find out what exactly the chapel wants from us! Don’t fight yet! We’ll be the loser if you fight!”
Veirya looked at me with surprise, “Who’s side are you on?!”
I shook my head and explained, “I’m telling you not to fight, as I’m on your side! I’m not worried that you’ll kill Angelina, but it’ll be hard to tidy up no matter who you kill!! It’s no longer time for fighting, Veirya! Leave what comes next to me, Veirya!”
“He’s right, Veirya. It’s no longer an era where you can solve things with your sword.”
Angelina watched Veirya. She seemed to have calmed herself down. She gently sighed and got out of her stance.
Veirya looked at me with a somewhat lost gaze, but also a hint of rage. She slowly sheathed her sword back at her waist. The doors to the tavern finally happened. A fatty looking surprised came out. He looked at the corpse and head. His eyebrows twitched a few times. In a loud voice, he exclaimed, “What’s this?! What… What did the boy do wrong?! Why did you heretics kill him?! We can talk things over. I’ve shown you the utmost respect possible, so why did you kill our children?!! He’s just a kid! A kid!”
‘Here we go. Making a scene and being unreasonable.’
I took in a deep breath and massaged my temples.
‘I’ve seen countless of these unreasonable folk. I have a rough idea for how to sort this out, but it might be easier to sort out without Veirya.’
“Veriya, go back and take care of Leah. We won’t be able to go out today. Let’s go together next time when we have time.”