Certain Deserter Speaking Out His Mind
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It was in the morning of June 20th that Angelica had heard the report.
At that time, Angie participated in the siege of Reform, the capital of the Kilghina Kingdom, and she was still forced to act as the military police.
Five days after, a scout arrived at Reform…
The army, that surrounded the walls in a distance, had completed a siege that wouldn’t miss even a single rate, but they hadn’t started the siege yet.
Angie was highly regarded in the Crusaders for her achievements in dedicating the siege artillery that was the cornerstone of capturing the Great Fortress. Even so, the treatment she received within the Tyrellme Godly Empire was still the same.
Recalling that she wasn’t happy with the treatment, Angie was pondering her thoughts in her own camp. That was when her subordinate, who took on the role of her messenger, came.
“A deserter?” (Angelica)
The soldier, who had been in charge of the patrolling, answered humbly.
“So, what’s with him? Is he such a high ranking official?” (Angelica)
“No, that’s not it, but… he seems to be saying strange things like wanting to sell information.” (??)
“What an absurd guy.” (Angelica)
There were many ways to get information even if it wasn’t sold. Even if she tortured until the person was no longer in the shape of a person, her people didn’t feel anything bad about it and no one would punish them for doing it.
To begin with, it could be said that the relationship of selling and buying information wasn’t established.
“Well, shall I meet him?” (Angelica)
The man had been pulled up to the front of the tent before Angie went out. She looked the man in the eye.
‘I wonder if it’s fear. No, I can see that he’s trying to curry favor. However, the sitting style is imposing. Perhaps, his self-confidence supports him in doing that. Although he has a neat face peculiar to the Shanti, it doesn’t feel attractive at all.’
Anger hated this man at her glance.
“If my words are wrong, correct it.” (Angelica)
She told the translator who was being brought in. The translator had long ears in a brown robe and had a tattoo on the face. This prevents him from being taken away just because he was mistaken for a slave.
As for this person, he was also a teacher who taught Angie the Shan language.
“Yes. I will do so.” (??)
Angie nodded back to the voice that said that.
Then, she turned to the man.
“So, are you the one who wants to sell information?” (Angelica)
Angie spoke in Shan language.
“Then, this will be quick. You’re right.” (J???)
He sounded prideful.
‘As expected, it seems that he thinks that the transaction will be completed.’
“Hmm. What do you demand for the price?” (Angelica)
“You bastard… no, you can promise me a free life in your territory and sufficient pension benefits.” (J???)
‘Are you a fool?’
Angie thought so, and barely contained the laugh with her nose.
‘Since the dawn of history, there were Shanti who had been bought as slaves and had climbed up to the king’s right arm position with their talents as weapons, but even they couldn’t have a free life. In addition to that, he’s asking for pension benefits. What a childish worldview.’
“It depends on the content of the information. There is no way we could promise such treatment without knowing the importance of the content.” (Angelica)
Angie would like it because it was impossible to guarantee the treatment of this man. For her, she was reluctant to lie, even if the other side was the Long Ear who she hated.
However, even if he didn’t tell, he would be tortured and a terrible death awaited. In comparison, it would be much more reasonable for him to be deceived by lies and freed outside the encampment.
“That may be the case. The information is about the blonde Shanti and the dragon-slayer man you missed.” (J???)
The man told lightly without any appearance of bargaining.
The story attracted Angie’s interest at once. However, she also thought that she couldn’t hear the story here.
Although the man was unexpectedly caught by her people within the area she was in charge of, she herself was neither a heavyweight nor anything in the Crusades.
If she was the only one who had heard the story even though she had to make a false promise, she doubted that people would believe her. Also, if they thought that she told a lie, there was a possibility that they would shut her off. It would be a hassle if the treatment was promised in writing.
If possible, it was preferable to listen to the story with a person who was considered to be a major figure in the Crusades, who had a bit higher position than her.
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Anyhow, the man, who called himself Jaco Yoda, was immediately escorted to the tent of the Papal States.
Anger didn’t take him to her brother but instead, he brought her to the man who would appreciate her the most. That man was the eerie Papal States leader. It was a lamentable circumstance. Even if she took him to her brother, Alfred, the man would be likely dealt immediately.
“Please excuse me.” (Angelica)
When Angie arrived, Epitaph Palazzo, the general commander of the volunteer chivalric order, was praying in a tent built as a simple church.
“Oh, Angelica-dono. How was it?” (Epitaph)
Epitaph stood up and turned to her from a kneeling prayer posture.
“An interesting Shanti surrenderer has appeared, so I took him with me, but… did I disturb your prayers?” (Angelica)
“No, it’s fine.” (Epitaph)
“I see, I’m relieved. So… I was saying that the surrenderer knew the whereabouts of the blonde Shanti.” (Angelica)
“Ooh… that’s interesting.” (Epitaph)
“Yes. So, I brought him here.” (Angelica)
“Well then, let’s interrogate him now.” (Epitaph)
Interrogation would mean torture in this case.
“Well, even if you don’t do that, tell him to speak in exchange for treatment.” (Angelica)
“He wants freedom in my territory and pension benefits.” (Angelica)
Epitaph burst into laughter.
“Hehe… haha… that’s an interesting joke. A devil asking for freedom… What a mistaken idea he has…” (Epitaph)
Epitaph was smiling as if he found it very funny.
“But, let’s make it easier and precise without torturing. If only one lie would be enough…” (Angelica)
‘Torture is to make people speak what they know, by tenfold or twentyfold, while causing pain to others. The tortured side will talk about things that don’t happen, trying to escape the pain and suffering. The information that comes out is often wrong.’
‘The torturer can’t tell whether the person has the information but doesn’t want to talk, or can’t talk because the person doesn’t have it. Torturing a person who doesn’t know anything from the beginning will make the person give false information to escape pain, and we will be made to follow along with it. This is often the case. It is good if we could tell based on his nature like deciphering code, but in the case of the military action policy, it cannot immediately be understood.’
“ Certainly, you’re right.” (Epitaph)
“Then, he is waiting outside.” (Angelica)
“Let’s go.” (Epitaph)
Angie and Epitaph both left the tent.
When they left the tent, there was a man with a rope tied on his back, two Angie’s soldiers and a translator. The translator put his left hand on the pillar of the tent’s curtain and put half of his weight on it, but when he noticed them, he quickly straightened his back and fixed his posture.
“Is that person a translator?” (Epitaph)
“Yes, he is. I brought him.” (Angelica)
The translator’s tattoo was common in this world. It was a proof that he was completely proficient in both languages so that no one would feel strange, and at the same time, it was a proof of slavery and a kind of qualification.
If people like slave hunters attacked this tattooed person and sold him to the city, they would be severely punished for not knowing it. This was because the owners of these translators were basically military personnel and slave traders.
“You, put your arms out.” (Epitaph)
“…? Yes, understood.” (??)
The translator put out his right arm.
“It’s not that. Your left arm.” (Epitaph)
The translator retracted his right arm and immediately put out his left arm.
“To touch the holy church that God gives is an unforgivable barbarism of the devil. In the name of the general commander, I will make a sacred decision.” (Epitaph)
Epitaph touched the saber on his waist. Angie immediately figured out what he was going to do.
He was going to cut the translator’s arm off.
Angie shouted in surprise because she didn’t think that he would be that angry.
“Epitaph-dono! That person is the translator I brought. Please forgive him.” (Angelica)
“Angelica-dono… you’re kind. However, it would be reasonable to give death to the devil who had tainted the church.” (Epitaph)
Epitaph had wrinkles between his eyebrows. After all, even if he called it a church… there was only an altar in the shape of an ordinary tent, but it seemed to bother him when the translator put his arm on it.
‘There’s no way to predict this guy.’
“If it is in accordance with the teaching on the innocent wrongdoing, I also make a mistake that I didn’t tell him in advance that the tent is a church. Please forgive me. Somehow, let me pay for it.” (Angelica)
Speaking of innocent wrongdoing, it came from the episode of Noc, in which Isus forgave the sin of a child who stole a fruit because he didn’t know it.
The appearance of this tent didn’t have a sign indicating that it was a church, and Anger only knew it when she went inside for the first time. Therefore, as for the translator, rather than stealing and eating the fruit, he touched the pillar, which could be regarded as the fruit in that episode. It was too pitiful to lose his arm because of this.
“Besides, if you kill this person, you’ll have to bring in a new translator.” (Angelica)
He looked at the translator. The translator could guess from the situation, so he was crawling on the ground and begging for forgiveness.
“…I’m going to forgive you because of Angelica-dono.” (Epitaph)
Epitaph said so. She looked at the translator, as if she was relieved for a bit.
“Thank you very much.” (Angelica)
“So, is this the devil in question?” (Epitaph)
Epitaph looked down on the man and said. With his arms tied to his back, Jaco Yoda was confused and he didn’t seem to understand the situation at all.
“Please translate.” (Epitaph)
There might be a translator in the Epitaph’s Papal States army, but it seemed that her translator would be used here.
“You can stand now.” (Angelica)
When Angers ordered, the translator stood up slowly while he was still scared.
“State your request.” (Epitaph)
When Epitaph said so, the translator immediately translated into the Shan language and told Jaco Yoda.
“As he mentioned earlier, he wants to be given freedom in life in your esteemed territory and sufficient pension benefits.” (??)
The translator translated the word into the Kura language and conveyed it to Epitaph.
“He wants all that, and be given a treatment as an aristocrat. Then, he will speak as much information as he knows.” (??)
“I see. I promise. So, talk.” (Epitaph)
“…And they left here six days ago. In order to bypass your army in the north, they are probably taking the road on the seaside.” (Jaco)
The information that the man started to speak was filled with more important content than expected.
‘Who would imagine that it was the son of the Hou Household who killed the dragon and there was a blonde princess there? The biggest fish is always the one that got away.’
“This is a rumor, but it seems that the princess of this country also escaped at the same time.” (Jaco)
“Well… is it Princess Telor?” (Epitaph)
Epitaph asked. Angie was slightly surprised that Epitaph had memorized the names of the royal children of this country.
“That’s right. That’s the blonde princess that you want.” (Jaco)
He said it with a distorted mouth.
“The truth is, I escaped because of it. I can’t follow the royal family who quickly escape from the castle.” (Jaco)
Even when he wasn’t asked, he mentioned things one after another.
“Then, let’s talk about the city and how you escaped.” (Angelica)
Angie asked. For the sake of formality, she thought that she shouldn’t speak Shan, so she spoke in Kura.
In a sense, that was more important information. This was because information useful for future siege battles would be obtained.
The translator translated it.
“That… I don’t know.” (Jaco)
“Why is that?” (Angelica)
“That’s because I ran away by avoiding people in the dark night.The rope that I used to escape might be hanging on the wall, but it might have been recovered by this time.” (Jaco)
‘I see. Considering how smooth he was talking, he wasn’t reluctant to give out information so as not to betray the people inside. In other words, the people who were engaged in the defense of the castle, didn’t escape voluntarily. Perhaps, it was because of prison.’
Angie thought so.
He escaped from prison due to the turmoil of the war, and he probably had no choice but to escape. If he was a person who kept running away, he wouldn’t have had the opportunity to talk to others and closely observe the state of the main roads and the castle gate. In other words, Jaco Yoda didn’t know the situation of the castle, so he didn’t know the weaknesses.
“Angelica-dono, do you still have questions?” (Epitaph)
She heard most of what she wanted to hear.
“Well then.” (Epitaph)
Epitaph touched the handle of the sword and suddenly struck the man’s neck.
The man saw Epitaph as if he couldn’t believe it. Then, he looked at Angie with the same eyes. The trachea was filled with fresh blood, and words wouldn’t come out even if he wanted to.
The neck that was cut about 60%, was held in the palms of the man’s hands. However, that action didn’t seem to make much sense.
On the other hand, the expression on his face was rich. He looked at Angie with hateful eyes. Epitaph kicked Jaco Yoda’s chest lightly so that the blood wouldn’t splash on him.
The eyes that looked at Angie turned to the sky, and he stopped moving within a short time.
She couldn’t ask Epitaph the promise of appointing him as an aristocrat. That would be a ridiculous question.
Angie didn’t expect that the man would be killed, but when she thought about it, he might have no chance to be released when she brought him to Epitaph.
She felt a bit responsible and felt sick.
- Since the chapter is from Angelica’s POV, the conversations in italic are conversations done in the Shan Language.
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