Befitting of the Vassal of the Wisdom of the Empire

“Ah! Are you the wolf the princess was talking about?”

Dion Alaia had left the village of the Forest clan and was alone in the forest. After receiving a report from Mia and the others, he went in search of the warrior wolf in question. To his surprise, finding it was easier than expected, leaving Dion slightly disappointed.

The warrior wolf lay curled up inside the dark forest. It pricked up its ears and glared at Dion. Its eyes gleamed fiercely and it wrinkled the tip of its nose.

Dion smiled wryly and shrugged at the sharp fangs peeking out of the corner of its mouth.

“Hey, do you want to fight me? Your brothers were smart enough to realise the folly of challenging me.”

As he spoke, he put his hand on the hilt of the sword at his waist.

After a brief stare-down, the tension drained from the warrior wolf’s body.

“Hmm. You’re not going to attack me, huh? Just as I thought, you seem smarter than an ordinary wolf. You are also different from the wolf I encountered back then. Wow, to think that there are so many intelligent wolves in the world.”

He stroked his chin and took a deep breath.

“In any case, there seems to be no doubt that the wolf master and that girl are connected. Now then, princess, what do you plan to do?”

Suddenly, Dion reached for the sword at his waist.

What was that? Just now, for a moment, I felt like I was being watched.

He looked around, but there was no sign of anything unusual. The faint presence that he had detected quickly disappeared.

Without letting his guard down, Dion took turns looking at the surroundings and the wolf, then let out a quiet sigh.

“Well, well, something smells fishy. Indeed.”

“Ah, Captain Dion, you’ve come at the right time.”

As soon as he returned to the village, Ludwig arrived promptly.

“Well, what’s wrong? Is there some kind of trouble?”

“Ah, actually, there’s been a slight change of plans. It looks like it will be a little while longer before we can return to the Empire.”

Dion heard about the situation from Ludwig.

“The secret village of the Fire clan, hmm.”

He unknowingly looked up at the sky, as if lost in thought.

“I see. If it’s our kind-hearted princess, she will delve into this matter without hesitation.”

“I can’t deny that. However, it’s not just because she’s kind-hearted. As I mentioned before, the stability of the Equestrian Kingdom is essential to realising Mia-sama’s vision.”

Ludwig smiled wryly and then continued with a serious expression.

“In addition, when considering the future, it wouldn’t hurt to strengthen ties with the Equestrian Kingdom. One doesn’t need to put in much thought to realise that developing a deep relationship is easier by extending a hand when the other party is weak than by requesting negotiations when they are at their peak condition.”

“The right time to extend a hand in friendship… I see.” Dion nodded in understanding.

But then he sighed and shrugged his shoulders.

“Well, personally, I wish for the chance to fight that wolf master again, but…”

Ludwig tilted his head in confusion at Dion’s slightly evasive words.

“Is there something bothering you?”

“Several things, actually. Well, as of now, I can specifically think of two. One is the intentions of the Chaos Serpents. That girl called Aima is most likely connected to the Serpents, right? ”

“That is probably true. However, Mia-sama cannot decisively conclude that yet. The technique to command wolves is not very common, so it’s natural to consider that she is somehow connected to the assassin.”

“If that’s the case, there’s a possibility that her very presence is a trap. I don’t think the Aima girl is lying, but I am not sure about the authenticity of the information she holds.”

“And the second point of concern relates to the trends in the Remno Kingdom?”

Dion smiled in response to Ludwig’s question, as if anticipating it.

“Well, since it’s you we’re talking about, you must have already realised. That country has close ties with the Equestrian Kingdom due to their joint cavalry drills. They wouldn’t want the Empire to get too close to the Equestrian Kingdom, so it’s natural to expect some kind of intervention from them.”

Dion crossed his arms and continued.

“Well, I am not particularly worried about Prince Abel. I don’t think he would resort to any underhanded tactics. Although I do sense that he is hiding something, I think it’s safe to ignore that for now. We can say for sure that he wouldn’t harm the princess, at the very least. However…”

Then, Dion paused, looked around cautiously before lowering his voice.

“If anything, what concerns me more is the Sword Saint Knight of Remno.”

“You mean Sir Grammateus? What about that gentleman?”

“He is a crafty old man. Setting aside his personality, he is very skilled with the sword. If he were to receive some dubious orders from the King of Remno, it could become quite troublesome.”

Dion Alaia did not think of himself as an exemplary knight. Rather, he saw himself as a rogue knight, with a strong sense of being a maverick. Even though Dion saw himself in that light, he chose to follow the orders of the master he served. Moreover, his adversary was a man known as the Sword Saint of Remno. He was a loyal vassal who had served the Remno royal family for many years, providing swordsmanship training to the royal family and laying the foundation for their swordsmanship.

“He will carry out his master’s orders with unwavering loyalty.”

“I see.The King of Remno is certainly not a person who can be trusted unconditionally.” Ludwig acknowledged.

“Well, nevertheless, if I am allowed to handle him directly, then I can manage one way or another.” Dion remarked.

Ludwig, perhaps sensing what Dion was getting at, nodded in agreement.

“I see. That is why it would be troublesome in case the wolf master showed up?”

An unknown future would await them after the chaos resulting from the potential conflict of three incredibly powerful individuals with different objectives converging in a single location.

“Well, I don’t think he would directly target the princess’s life, but it’s better to be cautious. Even if the princess insists otherwise, if nothing happens, we can simply laugh at our cowardice. It is certainly better than regretting it if something untoward were to happen due to our lack of caution.” advised Dion.

“That’s true too. That attitude is certainly befitting of Mia-sama’s vassal. Understood. Let’s keep an eye on Sir Grammateus’s and Prince Abel’s movements, as well as the actions of the Remno Kingdom.” Ludwig nodded deeply in agreement.

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