Clad in cyan as he galloped along a steep slope, Bunide’s gauntlet-clad hands clung tightly to the reins as he turned around. To the north of Ampere Seale, several massive light gates were opening over the horizon. Countless soldiers were pouring out of them, densely packed like ants.
“In half an hour, the entirety of the Black Blade Squad will appear on the battlefield in Ampere Seale, and the Kirrlutz will also be involved.”
“Master, what do you think we should do?”
The leader of the Highland Knights watched the tiny dots over the horizon rise up - those were the Dragon Knights of the Black Blade Squad. In an instant, it seemed like the whole sky was covered as they advanced straight towards Ampere Seale.
The sheer scale…... it was not just the Black Blade Squad anymore. It looked like the Holy Cathedral had completely deviated from their neutrality. The nobles of the north and the cathedral that had hidden their powers in Aouine had colluded with Duke Seifer.
The Kirrlutz people wanted to end the problem once and for all.
He turned around and looked at his subordinates, “What do all of you think?” He asked.
“The Highland Knights have waited for this day for a long time, Master.”
“Everything was fulfilled by that prophecy, Master. We trust in your judgment.”
“The Kingdom had tried to forget the war we fought, but us soldiers had never forgotten.”
“This is because it was a promise.”
“This is because it was a promise,” the Leto told Kodan softly and looked over at the dark waters of the Trentheim sea. The situation in Ampere Seale was getting worse by the day. My Lord must have started his operation by now. He turned his head around.
“On the highlands, the knights will never forget their promises.”
“So, you knew all along?” Kodan asked.
“That brocade is special,” Leto replied, “Besides, the veterans also have their own pride, how could they listen to a child or even the nobles -”
“Again, didn’t you already recognize this from the beginning?”
“A war lasting half a century,” Kodan replied, “it brought calamity that caused Aouine to fall to her knees… Truly a nightmare of an event...”
“Even a person like Leider became afraid, “ Leto sighed. “His prestige back then could be said to be inferior only to My Lord’s. But, I don’t agree with him. Wanting to save the corrupted Aouine as it is is a downright betrayal to this Kingdom and her people.” Leto added.
‘Why does Aouine even exist?”
“Because of the longing for glory.”
‘So what was the story during that time?” Kodan asked.
“No one knows,” Leto shook his head, “those who knew have already left this world. Maybe Master Tuman knows something, but he has already left the Kingdom.”
“Actually, I have a theory.”
Leto turned around and looked at his war companion curiously.
“Before the trial, My Lord asked me a question once,” Kodan took a deep breath and said, “What was history’s truth?”
What was history’s truth?
“With that being said,” Brendel scanned the surroundings and asked, “What’s going on?”
“I thought you would ask this question a little later, My Lord,” Ciel answered, laughing awkwardly. Brendel stared at him coldly, not giving him a chance to fool him.
“Actually, the answer is very simple,” Ciel looked at the princess and answered, “Maybe you had already guessed part of the answer, our relationship - is just like the relationship between the Highland Knight and his wizard attendant.”
“No, Master. I am not joking.”
Brendel shook slightly, the darkness in his mind got struck by a bolt of lightning, as if there was something that got lighted up. He raised his head and saw Ciel looking at him with a serious face.
“That’s the truth. Master, you are a true Highland Knight.” Ciel grinned, “I never lied to you. Everything was destined to happen.”
“This is impossible, Ciel. You’re joking.” Brendel realized suddenly that something must be messed up, “We are not…”
He slightly wanted to say Planeswalker, but when the time came, he found it difficult to say it.
“Looks like you got it, Master. I remembered you asking me once, what are the Cards of Fate. I answered you like this - ‘The cards are a regulated representation, a collection of concepts, just like how you could summon Ciel with this Highland Servant card and summon Medissa using this Silver Elf Knight card. This is because we all have close ties with you.’”
“The Planeswalker world is the reflection of the Laws of the world. History, cause, and effect are also a type of Law.” Ciel replied.
“So what? I am definitely not a Highland Knight……” Brendel found this impossible to accept. It was just like someone told him that a repeatedly used lie could eventually be turned into truth. This questioned his values because he knew himself better than anyone else.
He was Sophie and he was Brendel. He was definitely not a noble, he was even a game addict. All he had now was just his absurd dream about becoming a hero. His past life was not related to this world at all, even in this current life, he was just a miller’s son.
The only relation he had with the nobles was probably his mother from the Cardiligals.
He suddenly froze.
Why did the Cardiligals leave the Karsuk Highlands? They were generations of nobles on the highlands that were normally married off to the Highland Knights. But why was my mother married to the Cardiligals？ All this while he had been refraining from thinking about his own family, with the most impactful memories he had of them being about his grandfather who had been part of the ‘Eleven Months' War.’
Ever since the Golden Tree incident, he had deliberately tried to forget and not bother Brendel’s life.
But today, everything seemed to come together again, forming something he could not ignore.
Ciel looked at him, “-You have become a Highland Knight, Master. You should be able to understand this.”
“No.” Brendel shook his head and said, “I still don’t understand. Although I might be related to the Highland Knights, from what I know the inheritance of the Highland Knights doesn’t work this way…...”
“Yes.” Ciel smiled mysteriously. “Master, why don't you think carefully about how you were able to summon me? What is the heritage of the Highland Knights really like?”
Brendel could do that easily. The tagline of the Highland Knights was engraved on a stone at the ancient Karsuk Highlands and was eulogized by all generations. Even tourists and poets spoke and sung of them. As a player, he would definitely be aware of it- “The blood of the Highland Knights is passed from generation to generation, and he who embarks on the Knight’s path begins upon taking up his ancestor’s sword.”
Before he could even finish saying the sentence, he froze.
Brendel’s face turned pale.
His sword fell onto the ground with a clang.
Ciel smiled without saying a word.
‘My brocade is quite good in fact. Even the old sergeant praised me, and said that my brocade was the best among all the other students.’
‘My bedroom’s door wasn’t far from me. Thank Marsha, I could barge out of the room with just a few steps and I would be able to see my sword lying right there.’
‘That sword was one of my heirlooms. My grandfather used to use it on the battlefield. I heard that he used to be a knight’s servant for a period of time, and the sword was given to him by that old knight-’
‘That sword was a 32nd-year edition. It was engraved with patterns of the ivy plants, in honor of the victorious battle on the Grinoires Highlands.’
‘I remember His Majesty changed the design of the cavalry sword that year. The sword became half an arm’s length shorter, and the copper ornaments on the guards were replaced with ordinary iron flowers. It was to save costs as there was an ongoing prolonged war- the Eleven Months' War.’
Brendel could not hear clearly, he felt his brain ringing loudly as if something was about to explode. He shut his eyes tight, thinking that he was a complete fool.
A 32nd-year edition sword? War commemoration?
I am such a fool.
Didn’t the Highlands Knights take part in the battle on the Grinoires Highlands? I clearly should have remembered all these facts, but remained ignorant and misled due to Brendel’s memories. How could I have forgotten such an important thing?
Brendel pulled himself back together after a while. Fortunately, his soul did not leave his body entirely so he was able to accept the truth. He managed to calm down- Brendel, you fool. If you had looked at this whole matter from Sophie’s perspective, everything would have been much clearer.
He lifted his head and looked at Ciel, Oberwei, Maynild and the princess. It seemed like only the four of them understood what was happening.
But why did it have to be these four people? Brendel sorted out his thoughts a little before asking, “So, obviously my grandfather was not just an old veteran that nobody knew, right?”
Brendel was not dumb enough to think that the princess knew each and every one of the veterans who served in the Eleven Months' War. Besides, based on the reactions of the princess and Oberwei earlier, it seemed like his grandfather had been quite the figure in the past. Relating to Bunide’s words, Ciel’s identity was suspicious as well.
Brendel felt annoyed, as he was the only one who knew nothing about this. I know this cute face is dumb, but not remembering such an important thing sure is too much!
And now he needs an answer.
“You didn’t know?” Princess Gryphine continued, “ The Marshal truly complied with the agreement and never disclosed a word to outsiders.”
She looked at Ciel who was standing at the side, “Mr.Ciel?”
Ciel could not help but laugh bitterly and said, “This is actually a misunderstanding. In truth, back when I returned to this world, I already realized that it was Goddess Alice that is weaving the fates of this world-”
“Like what I said, nothing can escape fate.”
“Marshal?” Brendel looked like he heard an inexplicable word. From what he knew, Aouine never had such a rank, position or title like this. “What is going on?”
“Master, like what you have guessed, your grandfather was never someone unknown,” Ciel said after a sigh.
Brendel did not say anything. He had guessed it earlier, that his grandfather’s brocade was beyond ‘perfect’ in terms of quality, it is impossible for a normal veteran to have that. Even Leto who was an old veteran too was incomparable to his grandfather.
The funny thing is that Brendel had always thought his grandfather’s brocade was just ‘a little better’ than other people for the past nineteen years, and his face blushed in embarrassment.
The most ironic thing was that Brendel never knew his grandfather’s name. When he was still alive, people used to call him ‘Old Charles’, which was obviously a nickname. From what Brendel could recall, there had been no other names similar to this one.
As if confirming his thoughts, Ciel continued, “Actually, we should start our explanation from the Highland Knights. Just as My Lord expected, when your grandfather was young, he was a true Highland Knight, which is why you inherited the blood of the Highland Knights.”
“At some point in time, he had a wizard servant called Ciel Peloche.”
“Ah-” The surrounding youngsters sounded like they had heard a strange story, and they turned to look at the young wizard who told the story in shock. Although Brendel had guessed it, he could not help but take a breath. “Ciel Peloche......Ciel Peloche, Ciel, you were the wizard of the Peloche family?”
Ciel nodded his head.
‘Peloche was the most prominent title among the Highland Wizards. They had the closest bloodline to the Silver Race. Are you trying to tell me that to have you as a servant, my grandfather or I was named after Kadiloso?”
Princess Gryphine interrupted, “Mr. Ciel did not lie. Brendel, your grandfather is the descendant of the most prominent family of the Highland Knights. His real name should be Darius, and people often referred him as Earth Sword Saint Darius...”
Brendel felt that he was listening to a mythical story at that moment, except he was somewhat related to it. In his fading memory, when the Kingdom was in its second period of glory,Aouine had three powerful men who had reached the top of the Elemental Realm: Earth Sword Saint Darius, Saint of the Silver Sword, Gory Keyes, Scholar of the Silver Fortress, Tulman。
Brendel could not believe that his grandfather was the most famous among the three.
He looked at the princess and Ciel blankly.
Ciel laughed bitterly once again, “My Lord, actually your grandfather does have another name- One that was his glory but also brought about his downfall- Harrasgue Dragon, the marshal of the Holy Cathedral of Fire in first Holy War……”
“So,” At last, Kodan asked, “Have you written to Bunide? What did you tell him in the letter?”
Leto nodded and looked at the sea for a moment, then he answered, “I only asked him if he still remembered Harrasgue Dragon.”
“Haha,” Kodan broke into laughter. “Of course he does.”
“How could he forget?”