The shocking news of the magistrate’s death spread faster than wind throughout all of Hamplet village…and indeed, all of the Ricarnel territories.
And while it was not known how the information was leaked, by the following day, everyone in the village seemed to know that the circumstances surrounding his death were quite unnatural.
The people whispered to each other.
What on earth had caused the magistrate to meet such a horrible end?
Some people insisted that it must have been the wrath of the previous guardian god that had left them. While others said it was the curse of a great shaman.
Regardless of the reason, the person who managed these lands had suddenly died.
So there was no doubt that the crown prince, who was lord of these lands, who eventually send someone to investigate the matter.
However, Qudels informed the villagers that he had something to explain to them first.
And so the people all gathered to the chief’s house, which was where they always gathered for meetings.
When the villagers had all arrived, Qudels began to talk to them in a calm voice, as if he were talking about some everyday subject.
“Ahh, thank you for coming. Let me just give you the conclusion first. This was an accident.”
Upon hearing these words, the villagers started muttering to each other.
This was not the explanation they had been wanting to hear.
“I’m sure we’re all very sad about the magistrate’s passing, but we don’t have time to waste on a funeral. That will be held in the city, where his relatives live. I have already started preparations to have his body sent to them. So everyone can return to work as if nothing happened.”
It was a very matter-a-fact explanation with no emotion.
However, that was not going to be enough to calm the villagers.
The room continued to buzz and it was clear that they were not satisfied with this explanation.
Qudels let out a great sigh and then continued with a voice full of irony.
“Oh? Let me see, do you wish so much that he was murdered instead? Is that what you want me to say? If you really want to be interrogated by the investigator, who will no doubt be a lapdog of the nobles, that can be arranged.”
In the next moment, the mouths of the villagers stopped moving. It was as if a spell had been cast on them.
After all…they had no idea what kind of investigation this would be.
They could think of several possibilities of what would happen, but none of them were good.
It might be called an investigation, but it could just easily involve torture, bribes in exchange for an innocent verdict, and who knew what he might do to their women.
…At worst, this investigator might frame one of them in order to bolster his own reputation.
There wasn’t a single villager who didn’t consider these possibilities.
However, that also meant that any villagers who were too dumb to think of such things had already fallen victim to the magistrate.