Chapter 0179 Escape
“It’s useless … Green Storm won’t work.”
Garrison Captain Meredith’s report was full of bitterness.
However, Loris, the Duke of Inbury, who heard the report, could see the entire scene where all their Green Storm shots did not work.
“Start the attacks from the wall.”
His order was no longer enthusiastic.
It couldn’t be helped.
Under his own orders, he had killed his most elite troops.
His most trusted military commander, Knight Commander Stanley, was no longer there.
There were no more chances for a turnaround. He was made to understand that even if he didn’t want to.
One person called out to Loris from behind in a whisper.
Khulna, the chamberlain of the Duke’s family.
“Please escape the city, leave the country, and restore the Duchy from abroad.”
It was a proposal that Loris, even in his current predicament, would hesitate to agree to, to abandon his country, abandon his people, abandon his soldiers who followed him to the very end, and live in disgrace by fleeing his country.
“As long as Your Excellency is safe, we can hope for the revival of the Duchy. But if anything happens to Your Excellency, when your vassals stand up after biding their time to build up strength, who will be able to lead them?”
Survive, despite falling to disgrace, for the people who dream of the nation’s revival … those words were enough for Loris.
Flee abroad with his family.
But was it really possible?
“The escape route from this city has been prepared by Gecko. You will appear in the woods on the edge of the basin. Preparations to hide there for a while have been made. We will fake your death in the city, so it will be possible to exit the basin when the enemy’s surveillance loosens.”
“I see, Gecko did …”
Gecko, a merchant of the Inbury Duchy.
He brought supplies into the City of Fion, set it up as a final counterattack base, and prepared an escape route in case of emergency.
“Has Gecko already?”
“Yes, as instructed, Your Excellency and Gecko passed each other when you entered the city and he’s probably laying low near the Kingdom border …”
“Gecko also has a hard time.”
Loris sighed deeply.
Then he said to the chamberlain Khulna.
“OK. I will escape.”
Loris, the Duke of Inbury, escaped from the City of Fion with his family and his retinue.
Two kilometers west of the City of Fion.
Loris, Duke of Inbury, was in one of the forests scattered in the Fion Plains.
He passed through a long underpass from the city, went further into the forest from the place he exited to the ground, and finally was able to take a break.
There was a fairly large cave that could shelter them from the wind and rain.
Even when the sun peaked through, the cave was difficult to see from the city so the hideout was calculated pretty elaborately.
The inside of the cave was very large, and there was enough food for 20 people to live for more than a month, showcasing Gecko’s ability.
The battle in the City of Fion was still going on.
However, the gate had already been broken and the fall of the city was only a matter of time.
The smoke rising from all over the city could be seen even from this forest, two kilometers away.
And Loris, Duke of Inbury, couldn’t look away from the city.
Those who sacrificed themselves to fight for him to escape.
Those who refused to accept the death of the country and fought.
And those who decided to make the city their final stand and fought to die.
He, who originally should be responsible for all of them, left the city first.
Of course, in his head, he understood that survival was his duty.
He could understand it, but he still couldn’t accept it.
In addition, there were present problems.
“Will the Kingdom accept my asylum?”
Loris’s mutter was so soft that no one else could hear it.
It was two hours later that the Duchy flag on the City of Fion was taken down and the Union’s flag was raised instead.
That night, six shadows approached the cave where Loris, the Duke of Inbury, hid.
“Stop! Who are you!”
A sharp but quiet call, pretty skillful in the current circumstances, came from Loris’s guards.
There were only five guards, but the men were completely loyal to Loris.
Even their call to identify the intruder was powerful.
“Please wait, I’m not a suspicious person. My name is Hugh McGrath, the Kingdom Adventurer’s Guild guildmaster.”
A man came out of the dark and exposed his face to the moonlight.
“M-McGrath? Master McGrath …?”
Hugh McGrath’s fame in the Duchy is immense.
In addition, his caricatures are also sold, and it can be said that he is a celebrity with a well-known face next to the Duke of Inbury.
And the face of the man who came out of the darkness was the face familiar to the people of the Duchy.
“Yes, this is McGrath. Can I meet the Duke?”
“I am here.”
When Hugh asked the guards, Loris had already come out of the cave.
When Hugh recognized Loris, he knelt on one knee and greeted him.
“No, Master McGrath, please raise your face. In the daytime, I received a report that you attacked Lord Aubrey’s main army with a small force. Besides, I would be ashamed if you greeted me formally after I have lost my country. The fact that you came all the way to see me …”
“Yes, as you might have guessed, please consider seeking asylum in the Kingdom.”
Of course, it wasn’t at Hugh’s discretion, but at the direction of Finley Forsythe, the Grandmaster who led the Adventurer’s Guild Expeditionary Force.
Finley did not appear in person because of Hugh’s fame in the Duchy, and the calculation that exposing him was less problematic.
And the calculation was about to work.
Loris nodded and replied.
“Yes, at this point, I believe I have no other option.”
“There is another way.”
A female voice was heard from the depths of the forest.
It was a voice that no one expected.
Even Ryo was surprised because he was keeping watch over the city with <Passive Sonar>.
(Even so, I didn’t realize until she got so close … This isn’t normal … and this reaction …)
Four men and women came out from the depths of the forest.
At the front was a beautiful woman with fiery red hair and a strong will that gave a very dignified impression.
And behind her, there was a white-haired ‘That certain Fire-Attribute Magician’ who Ryo will never forget … his other commonly known alias …
“Explosive Blaze Magician …”
The name came from a whisper by Rin.
“Princess Fiona, I did not expect you here. I’m Hugh McGrath, the guildmaster of the City of Rune. It’s been a long time since I met you in Whitnash.”
“Master McGrath, of course, I remember. Behind you, Abel and …”
She smiled there and continued.
“The Water-Attribute Magician who tried to freeze me.”
(Women’s smiles are scary … what an apt saying.)
“I apologize for that. Don’t get me wrong, it was all caused by the Fire-Attribute Magician behind you.”
Ryo apologized very politely. Although what he said was extremely disrespectful.
At first glance, Oscar Ruska, the Fire-Attribute Magician, had no change in his facial expression.
However, when observed closely, one cheek was trembling … the two adjutants, Marie and Jurgen, diagonally behind him could see it.
However, because it was night, it was completely invisible to the Kingdom adventurers.
(The other two, other than the Princess and that guy, are quite trained too … If something happens … are we even in terms of strength?)
The phrase ‘A fight between equally great opponents’ was going through Ryo’s head.
Hero McGrath + Red Sword + Ryo vs. four from the Empire. It was going to be an epic fight.
“We are not here to fight. Today, we wish to deliver a letter under the name of Emperor Rupert VI.”
“His Majesty Rupert’s letter?”
Loris, the Duke of Inbury, had a look of suspicion but received the letter presented by Princess Fiona and read the contents.
At that moment, his facial expression changed drastically.
A mixed expression of surprise, doubt, and skepticism.
He read the letter four times in total.
And the words leaked out like muttering.
“Is this … true?”
“Yes. It is, without a doubt, a letter from His Majesty Emperor Rupert VI of the Empire, and its contents are also true. The Empire officially decided to offer asylum to the Duke of Inbury, his family, and all his retinue.”
The moment they heard those words, Hugh, Abel, and even Ryo, was surprised.
“P-please wait. Regarding asylum, even the Kingdom …”
“Has the Kingdom officially announced it?”
Hugh hurriedly chimed in, but Princess Fiona sharply rebutted.
“The Empire has already officially announced it, the Emperor’s approval has been given, and even the letter has been delivered. But isn’t the Kingdom going to deliberate on whether or not to offer them asylum in the Royal Capital?”
She was completely right.
The Kingdom may even refuse asylum.
The Royal Capital is by no means united.
Hugh understood it, and he knew that the Duke of Inbury, who had a strong ability to gather information, knew too.
That was why he was worried about whether the Kingdom would accept them.
However, because there was no other way, he decided to go to the Kingdom.
But now there was another path.
Seeking refuge in the Empire.
In the Empire, the Emperor’s approval had already been given.
As expected, there was no reason not to choose asylum in the Empire now that it had already been set up thus far.
There was only one concern.
“I would like to ask Your Royal Highness Fiona. How do we get from the Duchy to the Empire?”
That was Loris’ concern.
The Inbury Duchy and the Empire did not share a border.
Even the road to the Kingdom was very difficult. How difficult would it be to reach the Empire beyond that?
“Duke, don’t worry.”
Fiona said and glanced at Oscar behind her.
Oscar nodded slightly and then whispered into something he had.
Five minutes later.
Ryo noticed that the sky turned dark.
Originally it was already night, and the stars and moon in the sky were blocked by clouds, but something was floating in the sky.
According to <Passive Sonar>, it was an artificial object with a total length of over 100 meters.
“No way … a flying battleship.”
Like Ryo, Abel noticed it and leaked those words as he looked up at something in the sky.
“Impossible … it was said to be just a rumor …”
“It’s true that it exists. But it’s said that even the Empire could only build one ship … and it’s right in front of us …”
Hugh was surprised while Loris knew of its existence through his powerful intelligence department.
“Yes. The Emperor has given us a special permit to safely bring the Duke and his family to the Empire. We will take you to the Empire on that ship.”
Princess Fiona concluded her words with a graceful bow.
Loris, Duke of Inbury, had no reason to decline asylum in the Empire so far.
Hugh and his group were frozen in place, even after the Imperial flying battleship, with all its armor dyed black, melded into the darkness of the night.
They were completely and flawlessly outsmarted by the Empire.
The shock was unexpectedly great.
(No, maybe this is good. To put it badly, the presence of the Duke of Inbury could be a very poisonous barb. There is no policy in the current Kingdom to handle it.)
Hugh thought and convinced himself.
If the Duke of Inbury was in the Kingdom, the Union would try all means to reach him.
It is very uncertain if the Kingdom has the power to deflect those attempts.
In that case, he shouldn’t be in the Kingdom at all. Somewhere far away … yes, if it’s the Empire, the Union won’t be able to easily reach him.
(This is good.)
Hugh thought and convinced himself in his heart.
He was convinced but …
“Will the Grandmaster get angry?”
Ryo’s mutter made Hugh depressed.
That was the only word that Grandmaster Finley Forsythe said.
He wasn’t angry, he wasn’t surprised, and even Hugh couldn’t read anything from his unchanging expression.
Forsythe also understood the political situation at the center of his country.
He is the grandmaster in the Royal Capital. Perhaps he is closer to Kingdom politics than anyone else there.
At present, he was aware of the high risk of placing the Duke of Inbury and his family in the Kingdom.
Even though he knew it, he had no choice but to propose asylum.
But the imperial intervention removed the problem.
In fact, no one knew that he was quite relieved in his heart.
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