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Tower of Karma - Chapter 31

Published at 2nd of August 2016 09:23:14 AM

Chapter 31

31 . KNIGHTHOOD AND CITIZENSHIP


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“Hilda von Gardener . Step forward . ”

 

“Yes!”

 

Finally the turn of the young aspirants came . Soon it would be Karl´s turn . Willian was looking at Karl, who was beside him . Because had his hands full just on himself, he hasn´t been paying attention to Karl . But then, just to be sure, Willian… .

 

“…”

 

Karl was frozen stiff . Despite seeing that, Willian let out a smile instead .

 

“…I guess it will be difficult even if I was to tell him to calm down . ”

 

As he was trembling, Karl turned his eyes to Willian .

 

“Wh-wh-what should I do . I-If I do any mistake in front of his Highness, my family will…”

 

Destruction would befall the Teirah family . It was obvious . This was the place Karl and his family were standing at . This was the feeling of tension of not knowing which words would inquire the anger of the monster that supported a kingdom in its back . It was more unreasonable to tell him not to feel pressured .

 

If there was the chance that the people Willian cared for were to get involved with that problem, he also wouldn´t be able to stay calm like he was now . Family was something distant in the past; him being by himself was the reason for his carefreeness . Perhaps in a certain sense this could be considered not being restrained by that heavy pressure .

 

Hence, Willian thought it should be fine if he was to lend his shoulder to Karl for just a little bit .

 

“That´s right… If you fail…”

 

With words of failure being spoken, Karl´s tension increased .

 

Hilda, who had received a special reward, was glancing at Karl´s direction with a worried face . If Karl was to fail, Lutogarde would also suffer for that . Perhaps it was because of that that she was being worried, or then, it was the pity of seeing an acquaintance suffering . If not, then perhaps…

 

“If you fail… then let us crumble together . ”

 

“Bh!?”(ブヒォ!?)

 

Karl spat out in a weird manner . Fortunately, because the two were in a far away place, nobody heard it . Of course, something of this sort is to be taken into consideration . (TL note: Like when you spit what you are drinking when people get surprised at TV shows and so . I really just can´t find a verb for that anywhere - . -)

 

“I will take the prince as a hostage and have negotiations with the king . Then, we would seek asylum in Ostoberg or Garius or some other kingdom . While it would be a long travel, it would also be interesting if we were to go to the distant Arkland . How is it? Doesn´t it make you excited?”

 

Willian was saying absurd things . Even Karl knew all that were just dreams .

 

“This is not the time to be saying jokes . ”

 

One after another the young aspirants were being called . It wouldn´t be weird if Karl was to be called next now .

 

“I´m not saying this as a joke . If you make any mistakes there, all I have to do is to simply do that . I have already visualized how it would happen . I will protect Louran-sama, Aianhart-sama and Lutogarde-sama too . From the beginning, since that time, I became your sword . I am not serving Arcadia; I am serving Karl von Teirah . ”

 

In the inside, Willian was filled with lies . Willian felt a bit uneasy on how he was able to tell all that so smoothly . It was because of how it felt as if he was telling the truth that…


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“Am I unworthy of it?”

 

Willian looked at Karl´s eyes . The eyes tell as much as the mouth . And that was why…

 

“You aren´t, you are good enough!”

 

Karl´s trembling stopped . It´s body that was stiffened had some of its limpness returned .

 

“Karl von Teirah, step forward . ”

 

Karl´s turn came at last . Before, it wouldn´t have been weird if Karl had fainted at that moment . However, right now…

 

“Yes!”

 

He stuffed his chest with pride and walked forward .

 

“Be calm . I will be following behind you . ”

 

“Yes!”

 

Karl advanced forward . Willian was the sword that protected Karl´s back . A sword of such loyalty that approached the extents of absolute sincerity . Karl didn´t have any doubts on such absoluteness . Because of that, Karl walked forward filled with confidence .

 

“Hou, so that´s the one of the Teirahs . ”

 

The surrounding eyes slightly changed seeing his imposing standing figure .

 

“Karl, you…”

 

Hilda too showed surprise at the change Karl, who she knew since they were little, had .

 

“”Willian is together with me . He told me that . In that case, all I need to do is to believe . ””

 

Without hesitations, his sight was directed to heavens . He looked at Eahart von Arcadia .

 

“”To me, Willian… is even higher than his Highness . ””

 

Wind blew . Although for only an instant, there was no mistake . It was only a breeze, but it definitely happened .

 

“…Karl?”

 

This was the growth that not even Willian… . No, it was because it was Willian, who had been together with Karl all this time, that he had never expected: the growth of Karl von Teirah . It wasn´t just Willian to have come to that realization .

 

Karl got down on his knees and bowed his head down . His conduct was what was expected of a noble; it was refined .

 

“Ten-man leader Karl, the rumours about you have reached even my ears . Your military results were incredible . In the whole history of Arcadia, there hasn´t been any ten-man squad that has made as much excellent achievements as you . Therefore… . ”


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Eahart took out the sword in his waist .

 

The place became in uproar . Cold sweat ran through Karl´s back as he wondered if he had committed any mistake . That was an instant of tension for Willian, who was watching that scene . If what he thought it was going to unfold happened to be the case, he would need to make his move .

 

“Karl von Teirah will be promoted from a ten-man squad leader to a hundred-man commander . In addition, I will grant Karl von Teirah the title of knight!”

 

The place was in clamor . There were many that expressed their surprise with loud voices . Karl himself was also surprised . He was desperately making all his efforts to not let that feeling out of his mouth . However, sweat only increased on his back . What happened was something out of expectations for Willian . A ten-man squad captain receiving the title of knight was something unheard of . Moreover, among the nobles, Karl was only an emerging low-class noble family that didn´t even have any connections . What just happened was impossible .

 

“Do you swear you will become a sword for the kingdom?”

 

The sword was softly put onto his shoulder . An impossible occurrence was happening .

 

“I swear on my sword . ”

 

Eahart smiled when he heard that answer . He sheathed his sword and went back .

 

“Karl von Teirah, you may go now . ”

 

“Ha!”

 

It happened for only a short time, but to Karl, it was like eternity . He had resolved himself and walked forward, but he couldn´t have expected that what awaited him was such an overwhelming thing .

 

“Th-this is bad Willian . I can´t breath…”

 

“You´ve done well . Even I was surprised . Who would have thought you would become a knight . And not only that, but even someone of the royalty was present . ”

 

With his arms . Willian supported Karl, who had his strings cut by all his tension, and started to think .

 

He started to think about the reason why someone from the royalty was present in the party . The reason was simple . Let aside knight titles, even giving nobility titles was limited to the royalty . Karl received the title of knight, and therefore, someone of the royalty went his way to come here for the sake of granting it to him .

 

“At last… Willian Rivius, step forward . ”

 

“Eh?”

 

Before, the place was all boiling with excitement with Karl´s entitlement to knight . That same place immediately became silent .

 

Karl was surprised . Once again, for Willian to be called was something that was the most unexpected out of the things that were outside of expectations . It may be possible for people being nominated centurions to be called, but it was impossible for people being nominated a ten-man squad leader to be called there . In that case, why in the world was Willian called?

 

“Willian Rivius . ”

 

“Ha!”

 

For the moment, Willian had to walk forward . Moving Karl out of the way, he stepped forward . The voices of the many people gossiping about things such as “That guy is a foreigner, isn´t he?” “He isn´t even a ten-man captain yet” “Why is the white mask being called for?” “Could it be he got his Highness displeasure?” reached Willian´s ears .

 

Willian arrived in front of the stairs . He turned his eyes to heavens . The golden monster was right in front of him .


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“”He seems tasty . ”

 

Drool overflowed his mouth . He slurped it back . With his tongue, he hurriedly held back the saliva that was about to drip out of his mouth . Willian started feeling like laughing . Having to step forward to such place and getting into a situation he knew nothing of what was about to happen, Willian enviously desired the man in front of his eyes . He desired to steal from him from the depths of his heart . He wanted that light . If he stole it from him, his thirst, his hunger would definitely be satiated .

 

“Now then, first I would like to apology for having suddenly called you . This might sound like an awkward question, but… . Could it be you are an ugly person?”

 

Eahart suddenly asked Willian something unimaginable .

 

“I cannot decide for myself whether I am ugly or not, but I have confidence my appearance is fine for exposure to the public . ”

 

Willian laughed under his mask satisfied . This was a question about his mask . In that case, many answers could be thought about . If Willian had been brought here only for the sake of this question, then this was something that he could be thankful about . This place was somewhere that made him stand out very well .

 

“Then, do you wear this mask for some reason?”

 

Just like Willian had thought .

 

“This is a tool to separate my warrior self from my normal self . At the battlefield, there are times I start feeling a deep killing intent . At those times, due to my mask interposing between the two, I can have composedly make objective decisions . ”

 

“Is that the motive behind Karl´s ten-man squad success?”

 

“All achievements were accomplished by Karl-sama´s strength, of course . My strength is nothing but negligible . Moreover, if your Highness were now to ask whether this mask is important to me, the answer would be yes, your Highness . ”

 

Willian kept his head bowed . Eahart looked at him from above .

 

“Fufu, I won´t make such inelegant action such as taking the mask away from the white mask . All I wanted is to ask about it . Now then, to the main point at hand . ”

 

It seems Eahart didn´t call Willian here to chit-chat . He called him with a motive . Something must have happened .

 

“I´ve heard a lot about your achievements . You´ve taken down the high-ranked centurion Haian at Raconia . At Tayar, you´ve also taken the high-ranked centurion Urkeus . A few days ago, you´ve even taken down the [Polar Bear] of the small northern country of Ratolukia, the centurion Shulvester Niklainen . ”

 

The people that had military connections to Baldias´ troops became open-eyed at that information . Hilda and the other youngsters were also open-eyed in surprise .

 

Shulvester Niklainen, the [Polar Bear], was an old experienced centurion that boasted of his tremendous popularity with the populace . He left his name in history when he battled Baldias at the days Baldias was still a centurion . Because he was a commoner, he couldn´t be promoted higher than that, and much more now that he became old, he had been battling in the frontlines of Ratolukia . Willian had killed this caliber of a man .

 

“”Rumours travel fast . I thought this time it wouldn´t be included in the investigations . ””

 

Willian having killed Shulvester was really recent . Recent to the point that even Baldias wouldn´t have been able to know about it . For Eahart to have caught such information so fast, it could be seen he wasn´t a simple royalty . But even so, there should be a reason for that…

 

“Of course, your achievements until now have been incredible . However, it is not enough to call your achievement of having killed the [Polar Bear] just incredible . Do you know why is that?”

 

The battle against Shulvester has indeed been heroic . Even with how Willian was now, he had been considerably puzzled when making his decisions . Because Shurvester himself was old, he had lost his edge . Not only that, Willian barely defeated him .

 

Cooperating with the centurion responsible of the front, they had encircled Shulvester, and when he was about to forcefully break out of the encirclement, Willian attacked . Despite how Shulvester was supposed to be all weakened and full of wounds, he was much more powerful than before . After Willian and that monster having clashed their swords many times, Willian was finally able to kill him .

 

For having killed such monster, it wasn´t weird that Willian was receiving that extend of praises . It wasn´t weird, but in the end, it was the leader who received the price; the centurion . Besides, his golden days of fame had passed long ago . He didn´t think he would get something special from having done that . In the end, it would be considered as if he killed nothing more than just some simple soldier…

 

“Ratolukia, you know, has surrendered to Arcadia . That was something I´ve heard last night though . ”

 

Willian was still with his head down . Karl looked at Willian . It wasn´t only Hilda and the other youngsters, but rather, all people in the whole place were open-mouthed . This was how much it was a shock to them .

 

“Originally, that country didn´t have resources left . They were in a condition which their land was becoming barren and infertile, and they were starting to stray from the image of what a nation is supposed to be . It was only a question of time until they crumbled . However, this last push was the defeat of the hero [Polar Bear] . It was the victory of Karl´s undefeatable ten-man squad and the centurion responsible for that . I thought not giving anything for the one responsible of bringing down a whole country was something improper as to be expected . That was why I have come here . ”

 

While there was the reason of giving Karl the knight title, this was the main reason . Willian was finally able to understand . He also understood the reason why Baldias didn´t know about it, and only Eahart knew of that . Matters about a country crossed over the jurisdiction of the military; that was the territory of the government . Eahart took his information from there .

 

“However, you are still not even a ten-man squad leader . Even considering your achievements, this is still a fact . While I believe saying this makes it too small of an evaluation of you, it is difficult for me to promote you in one go . Besides, Karl-kun is from noble descendancy while you are a foreigner . Giving you the title of knight so suddenly is difficult . ”

 

Eahart drew his sword .

 

“Therefore, I will grant Willian Rivius the status of a second class citizen . Of course, with the condition you will continue to work for the sake of our kingdom as a ten-man squad leader . ”

 

Even if one was to marry someone, while the born child would be a second class citizen, the person himself, who was a third class citizen, wouldn´t have his social position changed . This was the exceptions among exceptions . Perhaps for Karl and the other nobles it didn´t feel like that big of a deal, but to Willian, he could only feel surprised .

 

He believed that he could get detached from his third class citizen status by becoming a noble . This was a very narrow path . Willian believed those were matters that were still distant in the future .

 

“Do you swear on becoming a citizen of our nation?”

 

It wasn´t like anything would change if he was to be recognized as a citizen . It wasn´t like his privileges would increase, and his standing and merit simply became that of a [normal citizen], which was so distant from him before .

 

“I swear . I swear on my life . ”

 

However, Willian was showing a smile on his face . He had finally went up a step that was actually definite . It wasn´t like Willian wanted to rise in the military . At most, the military was just a tool for him to step onto . This was the only method .

 

“Willian Rivius, you may go now . ”

 

His objective was to rise in power in this country . It was to eat up all the people that would scorn at him as if he was lower than worms . The has finally decided the reason behind this goal [now] .

 

“Ha . ”

 

It was possible for the king to give position to people . This power was one similar to the one of god . Something like that was only possible after standing over ten thousand people . In that case, all he aimed for was only one thing .

 

The top of people . In other words, [king] .

 

Willian turned around and saw the scene that had been unfolding behind him . Nobility, nobility, nobility; the bunch that were chosen . Willian once again realized that this was still half-way . He realised that he was still at the bottommost position, and that his origins were the lowest . It was because of that that all this had meaning .

 

“”くひっ”” (TL note: Onomatopoeia? . - . I have no idea ‘ 3’)

 

It would be interesting if a lower class was to eat up all this . It would suffice as a comedy show,  truly .

 

“”I will eat all of them . But that after I am done eating the ones at the back . ””

 

Under the white mask, a beast of greed quietly boiled .



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