Chapter 0393 Clash
The next day.
The four of them returned to the Holy Capital and investigated the Count Padawan family.
“Their territory is in the western part of the Theocracy, but it’s not that big. It seems that the family has produced quite a few knights and abbots like Tommaso. The current head of the family is Tommaso’s father, Hilario. He has a mansion on the outskirts of the Holy Capital… the capital is too far from the territory, so if he were to keep the things he took from the vaults, would it be in a mansion on the outskirts of the Holy Capital?’’
Etho told the other three what he had deduced.
Etho was quite good at that kind of investigation.
“Okay, then let’s investigate that mansion.”
The other three also agreed to Niels’ decision.
“It’s suspicious just by looking at it. Well, it’s not visible, but just by seeing…”
It was a strange thing to say, but the other three understood.
The four of them were on the hill.
From there, they could see the Count Padawan mansion in the distance.
However, there were quite a number of something deployed on the road leading to the mansion.
“Do nobles also have golems?”
“No, I heard that the nobles in the Theocracy don’t own them.”
Etho answers Niels’ question.
“So that means that the golems were arranged by the Theocracy, the Church, or some high-ranking official there.”
“I see roughly twenty of them.”
Niels commented and Amon counted the number of golems within sight.
“Twenty golems, fifty people… if they’re going to hide a secret, I think they should make it a little more discreet.”
“Yeah… it’s like broadcasting to the public that there’s something suspicious.”
Etho agreed with Ryo’s report and impressions.
“Well, it’s not in the middle of the city. Even if they have this many defense forces deployed, ordinary people don’t know about it. We already had suspicions and since we’re watching from a viewpoint like this, it’s obvious.”
“It seems they are actually expecting someone to attack them?”
“I guess so. On top of that, they plan to use force to repel the attackers.”
Niels said, Amon questioned, and Etho agreed.
Meanwhile, Ryo was searching with Active Sonar.
(Those golems are, I knew it, Holy Knights from that time at the Republic… a sword in their right hand, a small shield in their left… equipment is the same as when I saw them in the Republic. They are official golems of the Theocracy. Judging from the equipment of the 50 individuals, they are not knights… What does this mean? If the Holy Knights are deployed, doesn’t that mean they have the backing of the Theocracy? And yet, the people on guard are… probably adventurers.)
Ryo conveyed the information he obtained using Active Sonar.
“Perhaps they also know who will be attacking them?”
“…The Knights Templars?”
Etho guessed and Amon added on.
“You don’t know what will happen if a fight broke out between Knights Templars… they might have hired adventurers as a precaution.”
Niels added and Ryo nodded.
Given the circumstances, it seemed possible.
“In any case, the main intercepting force would be the Holy Knights.”
After saying that, there was a reaction in Ryo’s Passive Sonar.
“Fifty cavalrymen are approaching.”
“Yeah… that Third Detachment is here. Commander Bachelet is present.”
“Did they find out that the items stolen from the vaults were here too? Aren’t they brilliant?”
Niels crossed his arms and nodded.
Indeed, it could be said that they arrived quite quickly… maybe they also compared the information obtained by other teams.
When it comes to information gathering, there is power in numbers.
“Among the Knights Templars, there are those who follow Cardinal Camilo’s orders, and there are those who follow Cardinal Oskar’s orders… that’s what you mean?”
“That’s a possibility.”
Etho conjectured and Niels agreed.
The Knights Templars are said to number over 1,000 people in total.
Of course, not all of them are in and around the Holy Capital but are scattered throughout the country.
Still, there indeed are quite a few of them in the Holy Capital, and the chain of command may be complicated.
After all, the Cardinals are the top leaders of the Western Church, apart from the Pope.
Being at the top of the church means being at the top not only in the Theocracy but also in the entire Western world.
If it is not a monolithic structure, it is not difficult to imagine that the organizations below it will be faced with various difficult demands.
“It’s a tough world.”
Hearing that, the three of them laughed bitterly.
This time, they agreed with Ryo’s words… Yes, it’s a tough world.
While the four were talking about that, fifty Knights Templars approached the Count Padawan mansion.
And then, they reached the first line of defense.
They could see four people at the head of the Knights Templars group swing something over their heads.
“Is that really… bolas?”
It was released from the hands of the four templars.
A string with weights attached to both ends and when they hit the Holy Knight’s legs, they wrapped around them.
Naturally, the Holy Knights fell.
All four of them, including Ryo, let out cries of admiration.
“Since it’s a golem from their country, they know its weaknesses?”
“I see, that might be the case.”
Etho nodded in agreement with Amon’s words.
“As expected of the Knights Templars. They don’t always lose.”
“I think it is Ryo’s ice floor that gives them the image of always losing.”
Niels replied with an astonished expression as Ryo said that while folding his arms and nodding.
The golems were defeated, but since they were only tangled in their legs, they would eventually escape by cutting or removing the strings.
As if that didn’t matter, the templars all rode past without slowing down.
They ignored the fallen Holy Knights.
Immediately, the next two Holy Knights blocked the front.
Just like before, bolas flew from the hands of the four Templars.
The bolas wrapped… not around their legs, but the sword in their hands.
The Holy Knights blocked the bolas that were flying toward their legs with their swords.
“They already deduced a countermeasure.”
Etho was surprised.
“The 20 Holy Knights may be constantly exchanging information in some way.”
Ryo commented, remembering the golem battle between the Holy Knights and the Civilians that he saw in the Republic.
After seeing the battle in the first row, the Holy Knights in the second row and beyond seemed to have changed their response, but he figured they may have been exchanging information rather than just ‘watching’.
Even on Earth in the 21st century, fighter aircraft, for example, instantaneously share information obtained by other aircraft through tactical data links and utilize it for tactical deployment.
He wondered if the Holy Knights have a hint of artificial intelligence… Ryo pondered.
“I definitely want one.”
Of course, Ryo’s rice field management golem did not have that kind of function.
It didn’t have any artificial intelligence.
Through this trip to the Western countries, he was able to see the interior of quite a few golems.
As for the golem of the QC Duchy, he was able to literally disassemble it from top to bottom and examine it… that contributed to Ryo’s knowledge of golems more than he had imagined.
He was sure that if he returned to the Rondo Duchy and gave feedback to the rice field management golem… its combat power would increase exponentially!
Of course, no one knew why a rice field management golem needed combat power.
The templars ignored the Holy Knights and rode past them on horseback.
However, not everyone could run through.
“Ah, they fell!”
“Two people… the Holy Knights body slammed into the horse… it’s only possible because the golem is a three-meter class golem.”
Amon exclaimed in admiration, using the three-meter class golem category that Ryo created on his own.
Well, it would indeed be impossible for a human to ram a horse…
“Can you fight against a golem?”
“If I remember correctly, the golems of the Theocracy are the strongest in the Western Countries, right?”
“Um, it’s stronger than the one from the QC Duchy?”
“As expected, it would be difficult for a human to defeat a golem one-on-one in a ground battle…”
Niels asked, Amon confirmed, Etho expressed resignation, and Ryo remembered the battle in the Inbury Duchy, where they once participated.
The Union’s artificial golems were powerful.
There was a time when the adventurers of the Southern army surrounded one… but he remembered the sight of Ra, the leader swordsman from ‘Switchback’, being blown away by a golem.
During the war, some golems were attacked and defeated by the knights of the Inbury Duchy, but that was only due to the violence of numbers.
In a one-on-one situation, humans have no advantage.
“I recall a certain water-attribute magician tipping over the golem of the QC Duchy…”
Niels’ murmur didn’t reach Ryo.
The two knights who were body slammed by the Holy Knights and fell off their horses were each blown away by the Holy Knights’ shield bash and fainted.
Even though they blocked it with a shield.
Power is everything.
The Holy Knights embodied that.
“They got hit, but… in any case, all we can do is watch. As expected, from this distance, even my magic can’t reach them. Probably.”
Ryo declared and Etho murmured.
In fact, they were more than 200 meters away, so there was no way to help them.
However, if they got any closer, there was a possibility that they would be detected by the Holy Knights.
When Ryo tinkered with the destroyed Holy Knight, Ryo realized that the detection ability of the Holy Knight was set to be extremely high due to its powerful output.
Rumor has it that this is possible because the Theocracy collects large magic stones indiscriminately, backed by the authority of the church in the Western Countries.
Neil Andersen didn’t deny the rumor either, so it was probably true.
In the end, national power has a great influence on the development of science and technology and on what is produced as a result.
That is largely the reason why developing countries are unable to reach the same level of science and technology as developed countries.
It’s not a difference in human resources, but a difference in national power…
That is why politicians must work hard to ensure that the country does not become weak…
So far, 48 templars had broken through a total of four golems.
However, what appeared before them then was a wall of golems and nearly 30 adventurers.
It was clear that the mansion’s guards were trying their best to stop the templars there.
“Okay, it’s time for us to move too.”
The three of them nodded at Niels’ words.
It’s underhanded, but they would use the templars as decoys.
Well, the templars just rushed in on their own volition anyway…