I, Giorg Leom Zafing, am standing in front of the king’s office in the royal castle. I had come to the castle yesterday to arrange a meeting with the king, and I had just arrived and asked the knights of the guard for permission to enter.
“Marquis of Zafing, please come in.”
The knight who had acted as an intermediary told Giorg.
I thanked the knight and went into the office.
(Prime Minister …… and even the Crown Prince ……)
As I entered the room, I saw two figures standing on either side of King Alzais. The Prime Minister, Duke Fizier, was on the right, and the Crown Prince, Ilzam, was on the left.
“Thank you very much for taking time out of your busy schedule to meet with me today.”
I bowed to the King, Alzais, and greeted him.
“Thank you for taking the time to meet with me, Your Highness, the Crown Prince and the Prime Minister.”
I then bowed to the Crown Prince and the Prime Minister, who both nodded quietly.
“Well, Marquis of Zafing, thank you for coming.”
“Your kindness is a waste on me.”
I reverently responded to King Alzais’ words of appreciation.
“So, Marquis of Zafing, as reported, you will execute the acting Marquis and his wife?”
“Fumu, I have no objection to that. What about you?”
The Crown Prince, Ilzam, and the Prime Minister, Duke Fizier, bowed in response to Arzais’ question.
“Considering it was the assassination of the former Marquis of Zafing, I think it’s only natural.”
“I think it’s more a matter of not executing them.”
Ilzam and the Duke Fizier responded immediately.
“But the charges are as high as treason. Why didn’t you bring them here to be judged?”
Duke Fizier continued. It is true that, considering the magnitude of the matter, the proper course of action would have been to leave it to the state to decide.
In this country, the nobility has a certain amount of judicial power. The government doesn’t have the right to judge every single matter within its territory.
“I’m sorry to tell you this, but Ghazel lost his position as a Marquis the other day. I have submitted an application to remove him from the nobility as soon as I take over the title of Marquis. In other words, Ghazel and his family are already commoners in terms of status. As long as they are commoners, they are within my jurisdiction and there is no need for the state to bother them.”
Duke Fizier, the Prime Minister, looked as if he was grasping at a bitter pill. I’m sure he remembered that I had applied three years ago to remove the Ghazel’s from the nobility as soon as I took over as Marquis.
“That’s true. I’m sure the Marquis of Zafing notified us to that effect three years ago.”
Alzais nodded at Ilzam’s words.
“…… So, at least the Marquis of Zafing knew that three years ago, Ghazel assassinated the former Marquis of Zafing?”
Alzais said, narrowing his eyes.
My immediate response was met with a swift and swarthy reaction from the three of them. The pressure from the country’s leaders was considerable, but I remained unperturbed.
“Hoo…..Marquis of Zafing. That would mean you were protecting a national criminal. I trust you have a convincing explanation.”
I responded to Alzais’s question without hesitation. If I don’t say something here, I’ll be punished for sure.
“There are three reasons.”
The three of them looked like they wanted to hear what I had to say. They looked like teachers trying to evaluate a bad student.
“The first is to make the Rubelzeis recognize my power.”
“What do you mean by that? The Rubelzeis are the servants of the Marquis of Zafing. Why would you do that?”
I answer, staring straight into Alzais’ face.
“The Rubelzeis are not a group of people who follow blindly. If they were so well mannered as to follow me because I am the Marquis of Zafing, I would have left them to the state to judge.”
“Hmm ……, it’s true that you can’t hold those people down by our status.”
“Yes. I have decided that it is in the best interest of my land to do so in the future.”
“Well, that’s good. Next?”
“Secondly, I need time to work.”
” Is is about the new Viscount’s guardianship and the cession of the village of Erde from the Counts of Serenity?”
“The village of Erde was fortuitous, but the new Viscount’s guardianship is what I had in mind. Both Viscounts are of great use.”
The three of them looked thoughtful at my reply.
“As you know, the Rubelzeis need a lot of hiding places in the course of their missions. The Viscounts are the perfect place to do so. Running the Rubelzeis’s mission through the Viscounts will buy them time to reach the Marquis of Zafing.”
“You mean to take care of the evidence in the meantime?”
I smiled and nodded at Ilzam’s question. The fact that he understands immediately means that he’s just like me.
“Yes, or it can buy time to make another move.”
“Fumu, So, what’s the last reason?”
I laughed again at Alzais’ words.
“It’s for my pride.”