Chapter 0345 Fear of the Sea
The next day.
An appetizing dinner, comfortable sleep, and delicious breakfast.
It’s perfect, indeed.
After breakfast, Ryo did some light stretching and was about to leave the inn… but someone was standing outside by the entrance.
It was the person called the ‘Bureau Chief’ yesterday.
When Ryo came out of the inn.
“I deeply apologize!”
He said and bowed deeply.
It seemed that he had received confirmation.
In the span from yesterday to today, that was pretty fast.
“Looks like you have your confirmation?”
“Yes, we have. Your Excellency, I am truly sorry about the incident this time…”
“Let’s go to the lounge since we shouldn’t stand around talking.”
Ryo said and went to the lounge where he had eaten the delicious cake yesterday.
The Bureau Chief followed him.
In fact, it seemed that the Bureau Chief had subordinates or escorts in the area who followed him in as well.
A total of ten people.
Ryo again ordered the ‘Blackboard Cake of the Month’ and mocha coffee.
The Bureau Chief and his subordinates had only coffee.
Even when Ryo asked them outright. What about you guys?
However, they must have thought that it was out of line to order something when the Bureau Chief didn’t make one.
So they politely refused.
It seems that hierarchical relationships in the workplace are always burdensome no matter the place….
Ryo ate the cake and drank his coffee with relish.
The cake was just as wonderful as yesterday.
All the while, the Bureau Chief remained silent.
Still breaking out in cold sweat.
Can’t blame him.
He had tried to falsely arrest the Premier Duke of a major power… that is, the number-two of the country, even though the country in question is all the way in the distant Central Countries.
Moreover, he completely dismissed him when he said, “If you apologize now, I’ll forgive you”.
In most countries, that is a capital offense. In other words, the death penalty.
In some countries, the whole family is charged with the crime.
That’s how aristocracy works…
Finally, Ryo opened his mouth.
“So…as for your apology, Bureau Chief…”
The Bureau Chief gulped and swallowed nervously.
“I don’t know the laws of the Republic, but in the Kingdom, it’s a capital offense… and thus carries the death sentence.”
He checked with King Abel yesterday, so he was sure of it.
“Yes… It’s the same in the Republic…”
Evidently, it appears to be a grave offense.
“I see. However, it is not difficult to understand that the Bureau Chief may have acted preemptively for the sake of his country or his subordinates. So, this time, I’m willing to let the matter go unchallenged, with one condition.”
Ryo nodded with a smile.
“So, what is the condition…?”
If it turned out to be a tough one, the Bureau Chief would find himself stuck in another dilemma…
“It’s real simple, actually. I heard that the Republic is a country with a thriving maritime transportation industry. Moreover, your fleet of ships goes as far as the Dark Continent. And that you even cross the seas where monsters run rampant. I’d like to experience your seafaring technology for myself.”
“Of course, it doesn’t have to be a state secret, something on the civilian level works just fine. Just, if possible, the best of the best at the civilian level would be great.”
Ryo still remembered.
He hadn’t forgotten that there were monsters like the Kraken in the sea.
Yet fishermen go out and fish in those seas.
And even the fishing village that was once ruled by vampires was said to have had protection against sea monsters.
If so, a country with such a well-developed maritime transportation system must have quite a bit of technology.
Of course, the Bureau Chief in front of him would be in quite a conundrum if he asked him to divulge state secrets.
But, since that wasn’t the case… he should be able to accommodate him to some extent.
The Bureau Chief thought for a moment and nodded.
“I understand. If you’re okay with something at the civilian level… my family runs a shipping business. I didn’t take over the family since I chose this field, but my younger brother inherited it, so I’ll try talking to him.”
It was truly a win-win.
That afternoon, Ryo visited the Franzoni Shipping Company.
It was the family home of Bonifacio Franzoni, Bureau Chief of the Secret Services.
Incidentally, Ryo had already been removed from the surveillance target list of the Secret Services.
As they had already conducted various verifications.
It was all good news for Ryo, but there seemed to be a problem on the Secret Services’ side….
It appears that agents of the Secret Services were being attacked in the Republic.
Indeed, ‘Cesare’ and others from yesterday were trying to kill not only Ryo but also Captain Bangan and Vice-Captain Amalia.
In fact, those who first attacked and were frozen were targeting the captain and vice-captain…
So many things happen between countries behind the scenes.
So Ryo visited the Franzoni Shipping Company alone, but was treated very courteously.
Very early in the morning, the Bureau Chief had made the request, even adding the extra condition ‘the best of the best as much as possible’.
It seemed that the Bureau Chief wasn’t too bad of a person.
Although Ryo had unilaterally concluded that he must be a terrible person since he was the head of an intelligence agency…
While Ryo was waiting in anticipation of the seafaring technology at the Franzoni Shipping Company, a serious discussion was taking place in the conference room of the official residence of the Head of the Republic.
“So basically… war is inevitable.”
“Yes, Supreme Advisor. The United Kingdom of Stachen’s First and Second Armies have already advanced from the capital and are heading for our country’s borders. Furthermore, we are informed that the United Kingdom’s Navy has also left the port.”
Chief of Staff Rash replied to Supreme Advisor Lord Burley’s question.
“The First Army means that the King himself is leading the troops…”
The one-eyed Head of State Columbano della Russo, muttered.
The United Kingdom of Stachen is one of the great powers in the West.
In particular, it is even said to be in the top five in terms of military power.
The United Kingdom of Stachen and the Republic of Mafalda have fought many times in the past.
As a maritime nation, the Republic is unbeatable in naval battles, but not so formidable in land battles.
They fought them off each time, but not without a cost.
A very troublesome neighbor.
And this time…
“We cannot ignore the movements of the members of the church who have infiltrated the country.”
Supreme Advisor Lord Burley mentioned.
Yup, this time, the Church had slipped quite deep into the Republic.
That was because they knew that the Republic’s military was in a much worse state than it had been in the past, and they saw this as an opportunity to do away with the Republic once and for all.
And now, the biggest problem of the Republic.
“Are the… golems still inoperable?”
The fifty golems that have been the cornerstone of the Republic’s defense were all down…
And the cause was unknown.
Of course, it was the state’s top secret, but both the Church and the United Kingdom must have gotten hold of the information somehow.
Suddenly, the door to the conference room opened and a man with a report rushed in.
“Sir, we have a problem!”
Immediately, the report was handed to Head of State Columbano.
He read it.
He read it again.
Then handed the report to Lord Burley, the Supreme Advisor, at his side.
“The Golem Corps of the Van De Vie Theocracy has left the Theocracy…? I suppose they are headed for our country.”
“It seems that the Theocracy is serious about destroying the Republic…”
“I have to say, they were all very interesting.”
“I’m glad we were able to meet your expectations.”
The chairman’s office of the Franzoni Shipping Company.
Sitting at the reception table were Ryo and Girolamo Franzoni, the chairman of the company.
Ryo visited the Chairman’s office because the tour was over and the Chairman himself wanted to send him off personally.
Even though Girolamo was the chairman, he was asked by his brother to treat him politely.
Moreover, he’s a Premier Duke from the Central Countries….
He was a person with whom he must confirm whether he was satisfied or not.
And both sides were pleased.
Ryo was about to excuse himself when he heard a loud voice from the hallway.
“Absolutely not! With this kind of design, it’ll sink in no time. Don’t you get it, this water is…”
After that, the voice seemed to be saying something, but it didn’t travel to their ears…
Then, he saw Chairman Girolamo smiling.
“Sir Andersen… his voice is loud as always.”
The name sounded familiar.
That’s right, the person to whom he delivered the letter yesterday was… Neil Andersen.
“You don’t mean Sir Neil Andersen, do you?”
“Oh? Does Duke Rondo happen to know Sir Andersen?”
“Yeah, we met yesterday…”
However, since he met him not as Duke Rondo, but as an adventurer who delivered a letter as a commission, Ryo was a little hesitant about whether he should meet him there or not.
But the situation did not wait for him to decide.
There was a loud knock on the door, and before Chairman Girolamo could reply, it was opened and Neil Andersen entered.
“Chairman, I’m sorry, but this design doesn’t… oops, you were entertaining a guest, sorry I didn’t realize that… hmm? I believe you were in my house yesterday… Sir Ryo, right?”
“Yes I was, Mr. Andersen. Hello again.”
“Sir Andersen, this is His Excellency the Duke of Rondo of the Kingdom of Knightley.”
Chairman Girolamo explained.
Maybe because he didn’t mention such a thing when they met yesterday. Neil Andersen said in wide-eyed astonishment.
“Oh wow… the Kingdom’s…”
Ryo felt a little uncomfortable.
He couldn’t exactly put his finger on the reason behind the discomfort… but it’s safe to say that the feeling this time had nothing to do with magic nullification.
But something about Neil Andersen’s words…