The Berkley family’s domain.
“Its a territory with nothing.”
This place truly was the sticks.
Derrick seemed to be pretty well-off, so I thought his domain would be more developed, but I guess I was wrong.
Some parts had flourished into urban areas, but the rest was nothing special– no, they were underdeveloped countryside.
Their standard of living didn’t seem that good either.
The average resident’s circumstances were horrible.
While some of them had access to electricity, everyone else was practically living at medieval levels.
In the Berkley family’s estate, I leaned back into the chair the lord would usually be seated in, and looked down at Cashmiro’s bound figure in front of me.
“…now, what am I supposed to do with you?”
I had invaded and taken another man’s home with armed forces, and was now crossing my legs on his chair like I owned the place.
Such a me was currently being appealed to by Cashmiro.
“I’ll give you my head, so please allow me to strike a deal with you.”
By my side, Tia looked down on Cashmiro with disgust,
“That’s not nearly enough.”
Marie was the same,
“Your head alone isn’t worth it.”
I never needed something like that in the first place.
My victory was only a matter of course.
It was their fault for thinking a gathering of Barons could ever stand against a Count like myself.
The difference between our territories were too different.
Though there was one thing I learnt from how they did things.
As I thought, the development of one’s territory was essential.
Even though the Berkley family themselves didn’t seem that strong, the quality of their soldiers surprised me.
Conscripting the citizens from their poor living standards to create instant soldiers through the use of educational capsules was amazingly efficient.
However, the problems that would arise from doing so weren’t worth it.
In addition to that, I felt nothing but contempt when I saw the terrible conditions the people lived in.
–They had nothing left to take away.
Truly, developing one’s territory was a necessity.
As Cashmiro tried to move closer to me, the knights at his side held him down, pressing his head against the floor.
“I’m begging you! I’ll give you all of my treasures. I’ll even hand over as many of my house’s assets as possible! So please, just spare my family! I’ve heard that you were a virtuous ruler. So just once. Please believe in the Berkley family just this one time! We’ll never betray you, and our entire clan will swear fealty to you!”
Just to save his family from execution, he was willing to sacrifice his life and forsake all of his possessions– now wasn’t that such a touching story?
Tia seemed frustrated.
“A shameless lie. There’s no way we could believe such a thing when considering everything you’ve done thus far.”
Cashmiro raised his head and pleaded,
“I’m begging you! Please, at least my family!”
Give up your life and relinquish all your assets.
All for the minuscule chance of receiving my mercy.
“You’ve twisted my arm. Okay, I’ll forgive you.”
I raised my hand at Marie’s surprised exclamation and turned to Cashmiro,
“I’ll forgive you– after your family has perished, that’s no way I could deny you of that then.”
In the first place, killing Derrick– just a single member of their clan, brought me innumerable troubles with the rest of their family ever since.
So executing Cashmiro alone would undoubtedly bring more annoyances in the future.
“Despair at the fact that I was your opponent. A Baron’s punishment for committing transgressions against a Count like myself are heavy.”
“W-wait a minute!”
“Cashmiro… I may not have any interest in your territory, but I’ll make sure to use it to its utmost in the future.”
There might not be anything for me to take from the domain itself, but at the very least I’ll plunder what assets they have here in the estate.
Looting was an essential aspect of being an evil lord.
“All Berkley family officials and executives are to be publicly executed before the populace. Let them know who their new ruler is.”
Hearing my judgement, Eulisia seemed a little concerned,
“Lieutenant General, are you sure about this? It’s usually customary for children that haven’t come of age to be sent to frontier planets after being stripped of their noble status.”
“What? Such conventions existed?”
“There are also women who have been wed into the Berkley family against their will. We need to investigate such matters thoroughly–”
To Eulisia’s words, Marie scoffed,
“There’s no need. Such things have already been investigated beforehand.”
Apparently, we’ve already researched into those things in advance.
Although Marie was usually no good, she did have her moments that showed how competent she actually was, which made it kind of hard to evaluate her sometimes.
“Okay then, begin the executions immediately, and somebody get in contact with the Empire–”
“That’s why I’m here.”
Since Tia said that with a smile, I decided to let her deal with it.
“I see, then I’ll leave this matter to you then. I’m returning back to the flagship to relax, I’m bored of this already.”
◇ ◇ ◇
After Liam had left.
Cashmiro started to cry and shed tears.
“He’s bored… HE’S BORED?!”
The attitude Liam was taking was as if they were never a threat from the very beginning.
He said he wasn’t interested in what had been accumulated here, and seemed to be truly seeking out the Berkley family’s destruction.
Even though there were so many stories about him being a benevolent and virtuous ruler– reality was different.
“I guess I was wrong… this is the end.”
To see the Berkley family that had grown so much be destroyed by a single kid, Cashmiro could do nothing but laugh.
“Go to hell, you shitty brat! I’ll be the first one there to greet yo–”
He couldn’t say anything beyond that.
Because Tia had trampled down on him,
“Shut up. Having a man like you even talk to Lord Liam disgusts me.”
The Pirate Nobles.
As a person who had a grudge against pirates, Tia had no intention to show Cashmiro even the slightest of mercies.
“I’ve prepared a special execution method just for you. Do your best to entertain me. But don’t worry– we’ll be sure to send the rest of your family over right after.”
While Tia was making an atrocious smile, one of the knights called out to her,
“Head knight, if you even execute the children, Lord Liam’s reputation will be damaged.”
When Liam’s name was mentioned, Tia became serious,
“By Lord Liam’s order, I was dismissed as his head knight. I’m just a normal one now.”
“Be at ease, all the children who haven’t come of age will be sent to remote planets instead.”
They’ll be banished to harsh frontier planets where they’ll be forced to live in poverty.
–it was unknown how long they’d be able to survive though.
Marie– who was silently watching over the situation, grabbed Cashmiro.
“Cashmiro, there’s a mountain of things I want to hear from you, so let’s talk before your execution.”
Seeing Marie grab him, the knights started trembling.
All of their eyes gathered on Tia.
“Lady Tia, are you okay with this?”
Was she not going to reproach Marie for her selfish conduct?
However, Tia seemed different from her usual self.
“As long as she doesn’t kill him, it should be fine. That woman should at least understand that much.”
The knights were frightened at the sight of the two who always fought not getting in each other’s way.
◇ ◇ ◇
Cashmiro’s corpse was put out on display to the Berkley territory.
The residents looked at it with dark emotions welling up inside of them.
In such a place, the guide blended in together with the crowd of residents.
He seemed to be in pain.
“…I will use the negative feelings you had towards Liam.”
He absorbed Cashmiro’s grudge.
The dark emotions about Liam that were surrounding the territory were also assimilated.
The reason why he was so hated was because the Berkley soldiers were conscripted from the populace’s families.
Being the one who killed them, it was only natural that they accumulated a grudge against him.
Taking in their negative feelings, the guide could finally relax a little.
After gathering up their grudges, the guide looked forward to seeing Eulisia, who was a fail-safe he had prepared beforehand.
◇ ◇ ◇
Three months after the war against the Berkley family.
Liam’s adjutant– Eulisia, was currently providing him with work support in his office.
And right now she was alone with him.
Eulisia squinted as she watched Liam work so seriously.
(I think now’s the time.)
Having studied everything about Liam’s life, Eulisia was convinced that now was the most opportune moment.
Liam was also a man.
Even he had sexual desires, or rather, his were stronger than the norm.
However, he never laid his hands on the women around him, and wasn’t very good at alleviating them.
It was clear that he was pent up.
Unaware of the guide’s presence, Eulisia made her resolve to take action as he watched over her.
The dog was also observing them– but then left the room.
(That’s good, Eulisia! Now kill him!)
Eulisia– whose mind was only filled with thoughts of Liam, dropped her pen.
She deliberately turned her back to Liam, bending down her upper body to pick it up, while ‘accidentally’ flashing the underwear she was wearing underneath her skirt.
Liam sent a side-glance her way.
(He took the bait!)
All of these were calculated actions.
Even her underwear was specifically chosen with an emphasis on functionality.
They didn’t have much sexual appeal, but those were exactly Liam’s preferences.
However, there would be no point if they didn’t have any at all.
Liam’s had very difficult tastes, or rather, his strike zone was too narrow.
But having thoroughly investigated him, Eulisia knew everything she needed to know.
(These are the exact kind of underwear he likes!)
She slowly raised her upper body and ‘noticed’ his gaze, turning towards him with a smile.
She then covered her butt with her hands shyly– but it was all an act.
“P-please excuse me, Lieutenant General.”
“N-no, it’s fine.”
After seeing Liam get flustered, Eulisia was convinced of her victory.
(Hey, your face is flushed.)
The guide cheered Eulisia on as she looked at Liam with a bestial gaze.
Although something felt a bit weird, he knew that her grudge against Liam was the real thing.
He wasn’t going to sweat the small stuff.
“That’s great, Eulisia! Use your seduction techniques to make Liam drop his guard, then kill him! You can do it!”
Eulisia smiled, but when she was just about to lure Liam in–
—Nias burst into the room while crying.
Moreover, in a swimsuit of all things.
She was wearing a jacket on top of it, but that did nothing to cover the navy blue swimwear that had a white name tag on over its chest.
‘Nias’ was written there.
Seeing that figure, Eulisia immediately understood.
If she was just interrupting, it’d be easy to turn her away, but the problem was her appearance.
It was an inner layer combined with functional yet somewhat amorous work clothes.
–they perfectly matched Liam’s preferences.
(This completely blows away any impression my underwear made–)
But when Eulisa turned to look at Liam, he was showing a different reaction than what she expected.
He muttered, “a school swimsuit?”– or something along those lines.
They completely fit Liam’s tastes, but he didn’t seem interested at all– or rather, he was actually looking at Nias with eyes full of pity.
Nias continued to cry, completely oblivious to his reaction.
“Lord Liam, please listen! The budget and materials you sent have been taken away from me! Since what I’m developing is ultimately going to be yours in the end, this is your problem as well! They’re going too far~!”
What the hell did she do?
If the upper echelons of the Seventh Weapons Factory took them away, she must’ve caused quite a commotion.
Eulisia thought that as she shook her head.
“Technology Captain Nias, the Lieutenant General is currently busy with work. Please vacate yourself from the premises.”
But Liam looked at the crying Nias– and forgave her.
“It’s okay. Nobody will complain even if my work is delayed slightly. Besides, this looks like fun. Nias, do you even realise how you look right now? What’s with that appearance?”
Still crying, Nias had fallen to the floor as she took her glasses off.
“This is because my superiors cut me off while I was in the middle of work! Even though there were new technologies I wanted to experiment with! Sure, there was a risk of an explosion, but that’s just a natural part of development!”
No, that’s definitely no good. As Eulisia made that retort in her heart, she was stunned by Liam’s response.
“I guess it can’t be helped. I’ll talk to your superiors in the Seventh Weapons Factory for you.”
“Thank you so much!”
Nias then went on to hug him, and while he did appear annoyed, he also seemed a little happy.
While he didn’t seem aroused in the slightest, he truly did look like he was having fun.
Seeing his smile– Eulisia instinctively knew that she had lost.
It was like she was shown the distinct difference between herself and a ‘natural’ that she could never overcome.
She collapsed to her knees.
Watching over the situation, the guide let out a surprised, “Eh?!”, and when the sitting Eulisia began to cry, Liam called out to her.
“H-hey, what’s wrong?”
“I did my best! I’ve tried my hardest for decades just so that I could throw you away!”
In front of the stunned Liam and Nias, Eulisia continued to cry into her knees.
Liam called out to her,
“…so you were trying to seduce me, just so you could throw me away?”
“I think there was a problem even before you got to throwing him away.”
This was a line said by an adult wearing a school swimsuit.
Eulisia buried her face into her knees and continued to cry,
“I did my best! I… I retrained myself in the army, entered the special forces, and gained various qualifications, all so that I could be placed by the Count’s side!”
Liam had an indescribable expression on his face,
“You did all of that for me?”
Eulisia made a small nod.
Everything was for the sake of enticing Liam.
In the corner of the room, the guide crumbled to his knees.
“…you’ve got to be kidding me.”
While Eulisia certainly burned with a desire for revenge, he didn’t think that she just wanted to throw Liam away in a rejection.
Liam scratched his cheek with his finger.
“I’m sorry, you’re just another one of the disappointing girls I know.”
Nias was making a triumphant expression,
“Oh, so you know other disappointing girls as well? You sure have it hard, Lord Liam.”
“You’re one of them.”
Leaving Nias and the surprised expression she was making alone, Liam turned back to Eulisia and called out to her,
“I understand. It’s okay, you can still throw me away.”
Eulisia continued to cry,
“But you haven’t even confessed to me…”
She’d throw him away after he confessed. That was something she wouldn’t give up on.
“Does that even really matter? Well… okay.”
So that she could throw him away and move on with her life, Liam took pity on the disappointing girl,
“Eulisia, when I finally leave the army, come with me.”
Hearing Liam’s confession, Eulisia’s whole face broke out into a smile– and then she realised something.
(Wait… if I reject his invitation here, won’t I be stuck in the military for hundreds of years?)
She had been trained to the point where she was assigned to the special forces.
And training wasn’t free.
Naturally it cost money, and the amount needed to train even a single soldier was enormous.
Furthermore, those costs would only increase with each educational course attended to gain new skills.
The military wouldn’t easily release Eulisia after investing so much into her.
(Even if I continue to meet with other nobles, is there any out there that are better than the Count?)
–Eulisia’s original goal was to become the wife or mistress of a promising aristocrat.
With that in mind, rejecting Liam here was completely out of the question.
After all, there was no stock in the Empire more promising than him.
Kurt had potential as well, but the difference between the two was just too vast.
Personality– just barely pass.
Future potential– JACKPOT!!!
Eulisia was looking at Liam’s face with serious intent.
“Hey, what’s wrong? Weren’t you going to throw me away?”
She suddenly embraced him.
“I’ll follow you for the rest of my life, Count!”
Nias wasn’t just going to let that slide though,
“H-hey, you! Putting how he thinks I’m a disappointing girl aside, Lord Liam is my patron! Get away from him!”
“I’m not yours! Actually, let go of me already! Stop looking at me like that!”
Eulisia answered while clinging onto Liam,
“It’s because you have a promising future, Count! Plus, you only have one wife, and no mistresses or lovers at the moment!”
If she could slide into one of those positions, she’d still be a winner in the end.
Thinking about it now, she had technically succeeded in enticing him, so what’s the problem?
It would be a waste to throw him away.
“H-hey! I said you were just another one of the disappointing girls I knew!”
“And yet when I asked you to take me, you requested me to follow you!”
Not being able to endure watching the three of them anymore, the guide stood up and showed himself before Liam.
Of course, he had stopped time as well.
Liam’s eyes went wide at the guide’s appearance.
“It’s been a long time, Liam!”
The guide had decided to just reveal everything him.
Brian(´・ω・) “It’s painful. It took four volumes, but a potential mistress candidate has finally appeared. Your harem is still far away, Lord Liam.”
Written by Mishima Yomu/Wai (三嶋 与夢)
Translated by KuroInfinity at slothtranslationsblog.com