Reincarnated To Another World with My Ex Chapter 15: Neutral Before The Storm
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Today, Walter's brother, Zack declared the coup de eta by sending out messengers to the lords of the domain, to join him in his cause, he also had a long narrative of why he wants to take down the monarchy.
In response, the King who was severely humiliated having a son rebel against him passed on the throne to the crown prince Heinrich in order to wage war with him and the lords that have joined with him.
The long narrative Zack circled was written with extreme nationalism, desiring to "save" Stizriven from both external enemies (The surrounding island nations that were supposed to be also members of the Kastea Federation) and internal "enemies" who in his view betrayed the country, which is the royal family who was portrayed in the narrative poorly as peace-loving bums who only loves to decorate themselves and their mansions using the taxes of the people who are living poor lives, and for not doing anything with the current dissatisfaction, which was the small skirmishes that happen with the other nation near its border Luris, that occupies a part of the main Island of Stizriven for two generations, which was rich in resources such as gold and gems.
Aside from gold, gems are very important due to its capability to store magic and use magic through it to use it to attack, without these gems, magic was just something can be used for daily purposes, as such, a mages talent would be unexplored without it. The country that has most of it would have a strong military, as a result of this deficiency, the kingdom's military is considered as weak, and only relies on iron and steel weapons.
The narrative used this well, with its promise to take back the stolen rightful lands by putting a rightful leader, waging war on the country that took it, with a slogan of a country about the nation and not about the royal family. However, he didn't include the other details and just put the words he wanted the people to hear to motivate them to join his cause.
One of those details that were omitted was about the existence of a few mages of the kingdom, that have been given gems that were imported through illegal means from other countries, they have the ability called magic casting, which enables them to use magic of different elements, but their hands are tied to eradicating the monsters around the country, so the small unit is treated as heroes of the kingdom. They are very loyal to the royal family.
If war breaks out, this unit would immediately be sent to the front lines under the royal family's command, meaning at first, they will be fighting against these mages, how does even Zack plan to fight with those?
Plus, if ever they miraculously win against that small unit and the forces of the new King, fighting with a country full of mages - the country of Luris, Stizriven would be defeated easily without any mages in the forces, losing more land. Of course, Luris would fight for that land that made them one of the richest gem exporter.
To my view, it doesn't make sense, I think Walter would also agree, the status quo for the country works better at the moment, with the Monarchy in the lead, peace was preserved for many years, and the economy is stable with the exports of agricultural, steelworks and other kinds of products.
The federation was made in the beginning to avoid these fights between small nations, in order to compete with the countries in the continent. To think that he is dreaming of fighting one of them to take a piece of territory, it's counterproductive and might even motivate the continent countries to attack.
Plus he's using the troubles of people's daily lives, that they are remaining poor due to the resources being taken by Luris, that they are being taken lightly by the royalty and that the lords are imposing hefty taxes for their own luxurious lifestyle, it's true and it needs to be changed, but the way it's being used to impose his ideas in people is so ridiculous! In a sense, he is no different from the people he described in his narrative.
He is much worse in the sense that he's trying to wage a foolish war with the neighbor who has tremendous military strength as if leading people to their deaths. Walter described him as intelligent, he's intelligent in propaganda indeed but is rotten to the core.
He's awakening the people to enter another era they are not ready for, where Monarchy is abolished, and the illusion of people's lives leveraged through his new rule as the supreme leader, but it isn't easy as it sounds, from my history humans have undergone lots of trial and error in order to get peace and harmony in a state where people had equal rights.
Some of those trial and errors have become messy and bloody, and Zack's direction is heading to this bloody civil war, which could cause another series of war and maybe could be the spark for a world war, Walter and I don't want this world where we have just started our new lives, to have that outcome.
I sat at Walter's study as I read the whole thing, it was supposed to be distributed to the townspeople, but I'm glad the knights have intercepted the letter, it's too poisonous for the people in this era to read.
"Walter you need to act fast, or it would be a grim future for both of us, in our new lives, and for the people in this world"
I sighed as I looked at the window and saw the city of his domain Luxenberg. I also need to do my part, in order to have a chance to have another peaceful life with Walter, and a chance to maybe… just maybe… fall in love again with each other.
"But currently… all we do is fight with each other. Though mostly is all my fault."
Even with his confession, there's still an uncertainty left in my heart, what if he's in love of me just because Yui can't be there for him? Or I just happened to be the one who's around him, when he thought that he was alone in this world.
From time to time, I asked myself,
If Yui was here would he even take me to his mansion like this to keep me safe?
If we haven't figured out our old selves and lived as Tiffania and Walter. Would he still fall in love with me despite that? Or would he find another girl that resembles Yui?
Men are indeed strange creatures. Despite the overrated frustration towards us girls for being incomprehensible, aren't boys just the same?
"And by the way, what the hell are these heaps of paperwork he left!? For me Ahhh!!!"
Right now I left Tiffania at the mansion to do some paperwork for me, I left the mansion with my reliable partner old man Gavin, who is shaking as he held his cane, although we are sitting at the carriage.
"Gavin, why are you shaking? Perhaps do you have arthritis?"
"Surely you jest, Prince Walter, aren't you nervous? We are going to the meeting place where your brothers will be deciding where to fight the war! Of course I would be shaking in fear! Everything has been crazy and you've been dragging me each and every time… don't you pity this old man?"
Oh, did he notice that I was relying on him for many things? Isn't he glad that Tiffania's doing the paperwork instead of him and he gets to have a field trip with me? I guess old men are fickle. Okay, let's try a princely bluff.
"Gavin… did you just want to reject a prince's call for your services?"
"N-No Prince Walter, I was just trying to let out a bit of my dissatisfaction"
I was just kidding though, now he's apologizing and I feel bad. This man cared for the previous Walter like his own son, of course, I would feel bad when he gets down when I become sarcastic.
"Sorry about that Gavin, you are right, but I really need you to come with me this time. I'll be sure to reward you with more cookies and increase your salary"
Gavin has a family to support, even though he's away from them he sends his entire salary to them and avoids buying things for himself. As a result, his family is quite well off, his sons and daughters are also well educated according to my memories.
Without Gavin accompanying me, I don't have anyone to consult with the policies the wimpy and lazy Walter ignored before, I can't memorize those stuff overnight, just in case the other prince's try out something funny, I have Gavin to advise me.
Gavin's face brightened up when I told him that I would increase his salary.
He fixed my scarf and my coat.
"Okay, Okay... you need to act tough okay Prince Walter, you can't let your brothers treat you less okay?"
So easy, so simple.
After making fu-, productive conversations with my retainer. We finally arrived at a big patch of land, a plain atop a cliff. Remembering the map this is the border between each of their domains, three chairs were set up facing a table, but this time they were far away from each other.
On the table laid a map painted red and blue, blue are their territories of the nobles that aligned with King Heinrich, he is now the king as my father in this world relinquished his throne for Heinrich, red are the domains under Zack's new government. The map is much closer to what Tiffania predicted, except that Zack's influence and ideals was spread wider than she thought, that some of the high ranking nobles allied with him.
The two parties stood face to face by each other, accompanying Zack are the forces wearing a red band on their arms wearing uniforms of brown long coat and breeches, and behind Heinrich were the proud mages of the kingdom wearing the blue cross on their robe and their white pointed hats, they all have a staff with them, with Heinrich wearing a crown and a bulky and shiny white full plate armor.
Did he just pull the mage unit out from monster slaying just to show off to Zack? What will then happen to the monster-infested areas?
Each of them has their men accompanying them, they were around 10 of them each, even if they didn't bring their entire forces the two's leadership and influence can be seen through how they are treating their men.
Heinrich's men stood behind him and were fully loyal and obedient to him.
Zack's and his men were acting as a whole and stood side by side with him.
The two stared at each other like kids picking a fight, but with Zack showing a smirk on his face, clearly giving a message that he's underestimating the musclehead, Heinrich.
They didn't sit at the seats given, so I relieved myself and sat at the center chair and crossed my legs, I don't want my legs hurting by going along with their intense standoff, Gavin, as usual, came following after me worriedly with sweat on his face.
"P-Price Walter, how could you be so carefree..."
"Ignore them, we are here not for their childish war games… so, you two are really to fight a war now?"
The first one to answer me was Heinrich.
"You are speaking to your King, Prince Walter, what is that attitude?"
Oh, he's scary, but before I was able to give a smartass reply, Zack interrupted.
"King? My comrades, this is evidence of how these ignorant pigs are glorifying themselves, isn't there a better way to address your little brother? Traitor Heinrich.
And great to see you again, my hostage-taker... "
And his clique laughed off him, making Heinrich biting his lip, making him angrier than he was, the usual Heinrich would have threw a blade at Zack but to honor the war he couldn't do it.
And by the way, the hostage-taking thing was something that saved me, I'm not ashamed of it, even a little bit.
"What did you say?! Just because some lower-ranked nobles supported you, you seem to be acting tough huh? Zack? And you call yourself a supreme ruler? Huh! After this war when I defeat you will be sent to the gallows.
And you Walter, how could you abandon your duties as a prince by declaring your domain neutral? I will have to confiscate your territory and the kindest thing I can do is put you in house arrest!"
Idiot? You both are idiots in some way.
"Well, take a look at that map and see where my domain is brother Heinrich, where do you think the war will erupt if I go to one side? My domain in the hicks can become your warzone, do you think I will allow such a thing? Just because I have the smallest population doesn't mean I allow both of you to do your pointless fighting were my subjects are living peacefully at!
Settle your battles at your own borders, and when people become distressed of your situation let them come to my neutral city.
Both of you have at least some humanity left in you right?
Especially Zack, since you started this you know that you can't accommodate all people in your territory and some might try to flee from your new government if you don't want them coming to Heinrich then let them take shelter at my domain out of reach.
Same with "King" Heinrich, you pulling back that unit of mages to fight means that you are letting monsters come back and nest on some of the rural towns, do you think you have the capability to defend from monsters and wage war at the same time?"
"So does this mean that you'll take care of the misfits in this war? Brother, no, you cowardly, hostage taker? It's a great idea, but my policy is to defeat the enemies from inside and outside, do you think you can just take that land from the nation?"
"You both only care for what's important for both of you, this could have been settled in some way without going to war, but you... both of you... King Heinrich who supposed to have passion and a heart for the people, and you, brother Zack who supposed to have the intelligence to uplift your subject's lives just like in your domain, BUT YOU CHOSE TO GO TO WAR! IS THAT REALLY THAT EXCITING HUH? DO YOU REALLY KNOW WHAT WAR REALLY IS?
Don't worry, whoever wins the nation will take care of my domain, as long as you rule it properly. but for the duration war… I need your hands off on my domain, understood? At least allow some breather from the citizens you are taking away their peaceful lives from!"
The two went silent and closed their eyes for a while with their hands crossed, and later nodded.
"Okay, then you can proceed with your war games, I'm out of here. Also, Zack, don't you sneak your men to my territory, I don't want your filthy propaganda rubbing off to my people"
"As expected of the peace-loving royal family"
"Shut up, don't you forget that you have once been part of that peace-loving royal family. Remember both of you, war is just one means of politics and there should have been other ways to solve it.
Don't you get full of yourself and treat people's lives as merely numbers! Both of you need to find when and where will you end this war so that in the end, the generations of people won't suffer over your foolishness."
Surprisingly, I got mad, for the first time I got mad for people I didn't see face to face, perhaps my history told me how cruel truly war is, and if it can be avoided it should be avoided.
I went back to the mansion with me and Gavin not saying a word, I don't want to have anything to do with those idiots who just wants to cause strife to their people.
"Ahh, being at home relaxing and flirting with the maids while being scolded by Tiffania, is so much better than this"
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