You’ve guessed it, Tue Thu Sun release this week too!
Volume 2, Part 6, Back to the Republic
Chapter 0370 Ryo’s Determination
The lounge on the first floor of the Kingdom Delegation quarters in the Holy Capital.
A strawberry tart and dark coffee were placed in front of Ryo.
But, strangely enough, they were untouched.
The reason being….
“Le me ask you again. When you were watching the battle between the golems in the Republic, you did not offer your assistance, is that correct?”
“Yes, that is correct.”
Ryo nodded and answered the question of Stefania, the head of the Inquisition.
“Then, did you do anything to the destroyed golems after that?”
“I took a look at the parts, trying to understand how they worked.”
“So, it’s possible that in doing so, you may have come across something classified.
“I merely took a look at garbage that had been destroyed and thrown out. If it’s something you don’t want people to see, I don’t think you should put it out there. If it’s classified, then you should probably refrain from sending it out of the country.”
Because of such exchanges… Ryo has not been able to take a bite of the cake.
By the way, only coffee was placed in front of Stefania.
Of course, that hadn’t been touched either.
Ryo and Stefania were the only two people present.
Other inquisitors and the Kingdom adventurers were watching from afar, but….
They were not allowed to approach.
That was the arrangement.
However, many of the Inquisitors were relieved when they heard about it.
They were afraid of Ryo’s instant freezing ability.
At that time, when Ryo said, “We can talk anytime in the lounge over there”, he was more or less just going with the flow, but Stefania took him seriously, made an appointment and there they were.
“One more thing about the golems. Were you the only one who examined the damaged golems?”
“No, Mr. Neil, Mr. Neil Andersen did too.”
Seeing Stefania digging specifically into that event, Ryo decided to ask.
“I saw Mr. Neil Andersen in the Papal Palace the other day. Wonder where he was headed?”
“Someone who may have uncovered classified materials of the Church, in the Papal Palace? Are you serious? You sure you didn’t mistake him for someone else?”
“No, I am positive. I saw him walking in the courtyard, surrounded by four monks.”
Ryo stated clearly.
He didn’t want to say that he got no response even after probing with <Passive Sonar>, because that would be giving out too much information, so he intentionally disclosed that he saw them in the courtyard since he thought that would be better.
He thought he could find out something from Stefania’s reaction.
“Hmm…. I haven’t received any reports on that.”
Ryo asked at Stefania’s muttering.
“Isn’t that strange, for such information to not be reported to the Archbishop, the head of the Inquisition? Oh, and the reason I met with Mr. Neil Andersen in the first place was because of a request to deliver a letter sent by a Cardinal here, you know?”
Upon hearing Ryo’s words, Stefania’s expression changed, albeit only slightly.
Perhaps from mentioning the letter.
“I believe… I heard that it was a letter from Cardinal Sacharias.”
“Is that true?”
Stefania leaned forward a little at Ryo’s words.
“According to Mr. Neil. But he said that he had received many invitation letters in the past, and was surprised as to why now again after all this time. And then the same person who said that was suddenly in the Papal Palace Isn’t that odd?”
Ryo said, and Stefania fell silent.
She seemed to be thinking about something.
“Cardinal Sacharias? Really?”
Stefania’s muttering was barely audible to Ryo.
Though her reason for being doubtful was lost on Ryo.
“That’s all for today. Thank you for your cooperation. We may have to trouble you again, so thank you in advance.”
With that, Inquisition Chief Stefania and the Inquisitors left.
In their wake were two cups of untouched dark coffee….
Ryo drank it all at once.
His own cake and coffee included, of course.
“What a waste…”
He muttered to himself.
A man sat down in front of Ryo.
It was Ignis, the chief negotiator of the Kingdom Delegation.
The expression on his face was of peak exhaustion and bitterness.
“Mr. Ryo, I have a favor to ask you. There’s something I would like to consult with His Majesty the King.”
((Yeah. Ignis is right, the massive trade ship will be completed in two years. And certainly, it is not a ship built for long-distance sailing.))
When he told Ignis Abel’s answer, Ignis sighed more deeply than ever.
Seeing Ignis like that, Ryo felt pity for him.
((Abel, can’t you do something about it?))
((I don’t know what to say…. I mean, if you’re asking me to provide a ship that can sail long distances, especially between the Central and Western Countries at the drop of a hat… then I’m afraid that’s impossible. Rather, can’t you just procure one in the Western Countries over there? Money is no object.))
Not many people can say “Money is no object”, one of the lines he would like to say someday, in real life.
Ryo, feeling a little envious, conveyed Abel’s words to Ignis.
“Yeah…. I also thought of that and approached the church, the Theocracy, and of course countries in the vicinity of the Theocracy, but… none had ships they were willing to sell.”
Ships that can travel long distances and are used for trades are built to order.
They are built on commission.
Hence already built ships are hardly found on sale….
But… he didn’t see why they needed a ship now in the first place….
“The idea was to send out one ship each from both the Theocracy and the Central Delegation to survey the shipping lanes. If this goes well, the trade negotiations will be almost complete…”
“So you’re saying the negotiations are at a standstill because we don’t have a ship.”
“Yeah…. Of the three Central Powers, our Kingdom is without a doubt the one that excels in shipping. Whitnash can even be called an international trade port. So, there is pressure from the Empire and the Union for the Kingdom to provide the ship…”
The Empire and the Union are potentially hostile nations, though they are working together as a delegation.
The other day King Roberto Pirlo was kind, but when negotiations between countries are involved, some things go beyond personal friendship.
That is inevitable.
The Theocracy may be thinking, “If they can’t provide such basic requirements, conducting a joint survey of the route is out of the question”.
They were feeling them out.
Even the ‘Theocracy’ was not exactly united….
Some may want to proceed with trade negotiations, while others may not want to.
He wanted to lend a hand to Mr. Ignis in front of him somehow.
However, procuring a ship was no walk in the park….
The sudden flash of inspiration may have came from the mention of Neil Andersen with Stefania, who had just been there.
“Though there’s no guarantee, but…”
Ryo told Ignis about the possibility he came up with.
Hugh, as expected, couldn’t help but ask.
“You had no luck with the Theocracy and the neighboring countries. And even the Papacy has reached out to many countries, but they couldn’t procure it from anywhere, right?”
Ryo asked, and Ignis nodded.
“Then I think our only option is to go somewhere that’s not allied with the Theocracy.”
“So you think we should try the Republic? The last time you were there, you got dragged into so much shit that even after you came back, people from the Inquisition came after you… even after all that?”
Even Ryo wouldn’t go if he didn’t have to.
But, they had a decent chance there.
First of all, the Republic is one of the leading maritime nations in the Western Countries.
Moreover, Ryo personally has connections with the Franzoni Shipping Company, which is said to be one of the most technologically advanced companies in the Republic.
As to whether or not they would be welcomed was another matter….
“I will go alone this time too. I don’t want to take Niels and the others with me and get them involved in another weird drama.”
Ryo said determinedly, and Hugh nodded in agreement.
An hour later.
“We’ve got a letter of credit from the Kingdom. The payment is guaranteed by the Kingdom of Knightley itself.”
“And… how much does it cover…”
“Five hundred billion Florins.”
“F-Five hundred billion…”
The Rainshooter cost 370 billion Florins to build….
“We need to secure the ship as quickly as possible after all. And it has to be one that can sail long distances. I’m sure it won’t be easy. In short, buyout one that’s even been spoken for if you have to…”
“Oh… you mean entice them with money and swoop in from nowhere.”
Negotiations are not always done fair.
Moreover, as time is not always on your side, you sometimes need to adopt extraordinary measures.
So, Ryo carried the letter of credit, the holy seal that he had been borrowing, and his status as the premier duke of the Kingdom.
He must use all of that to obtain a ship.
And there was a deadline.
In a month, the inauguration of the Pope would finally take place.
He had to be back before then…
In large organizations, information is not completely shared.
That is a problem.
Therefore, there may be only a limited number of people in the Church who know that Ryo is the head duke of the Kingdom.
Cardinal Graham seems to know, judging from his answers to Monk Carle’s questions.
Who else knows…
Archbishop Stefania seems not to have been informed.
Does it have something to do with him not being protected?
There are various factions, I’m sure.
Well, it will probably appear in the story eventually.