Chapter 72 ☆ Royg, Loses Everything
“Shit! All of you are so worthless!! Fight! For what reason have I been paying you such high wages!?”
Royg shouted, but no one stepped forward.
The old knights had deserted him, and the newly recruited nobles had fled…
I didn’t know what had happened to the Knights Order while I was gone.
However, judging by what Vilian and Solm have said, it was clear that they hadn’t been able to find a good production magician.
Perhaps my exile was what caused this descent into madness.
“Royg. The Knights Order is over… Your deeds will soon be known across the continents.”
“It is not over! If I take you back, everything will be resolved!!”
Royg unsheathed his sword, and then dashed towards me on his horse.
“Sir Joshua. Allow me to deal with him.”
“No, Iria. He has no intention of killing me… I will fight. Have the Mopes stop.”
“As you wish. But…please be careful.”
“I will. And I’ll be right back.”
I dismounted from my horse and walked towards Royg, empty-handed.
And then, as if to trample over me, Royg’s horse increased in speed.
“You made a fool of me!!”
“Are you going to do the same to me now? Craft… Spear.”
I crafted a simple wooden spear.
The horse reared up on its hind legs in surprise, and Royg was flung off.
But he managed to get back to his feet and curse the horse at the top of his lungs.
“…You stupid beast!! I’ve let you eat your fill up until now! But even you are conspiring to disgrace me?!”
I didn’t know if the horse understood his words, but it ran off somewhere, just like the wind.
Now, there was no one who would side with Royg.
“Royg. You have no friends now. You must atone for your sins and start again.”
“Don’t…you give me orders!!”
Royg’s face was red with rage as he swung at me.
“You were always in the back. I would never lose to you!!”
I pulled back and dodged Royg’s attacks.
It was no surprise, as he had the War God crest. He was fast… However, perhaps because he was so consumed by rage, he was full of openings.
“Behind… But isn’t that what you’ve been doing now?”
I dodged his attack and then slapped Royg’s face with the shaft of the spear.
Royg turned in the air and fell to the ground.
Royg had been throwing parties day and night while his subordinates died on the field. It might have been years since he last swung a sword like this. There was no way that his skill would not have suffered.
However, Royg still pointed his sword at me.
“Shit! I would never lose to someone like you!”
Royg continued to swing madly. But he could not even scratch me.
And due to his slothful lifestyle, he was already out of breath.
“Haa…ha… Shiiiittt!! Why!? Why can’t I hit you!? If I really wanted to, I could beat you easily! I have the War God crest! I am the chosen one!”
Even now, he swung his sword, which never reached me.
Royg was now only a master swordsman in name only. At this point, the men that Solm trained would be much stronger than him.
Pride had rotted away all of Royg’s potential…
Tears filled his eyes as he roared.
“Nooo! …No!! I don’t want to lose to you!! I’m telling you, let me win!”
The words sent a jolt through me.
A faded memory began to revive.
It was when we were about five years old. Royg had said those very words when we fought our first mock duel.
As soon as the tide had started to turn against Royg, he had begun to cry. Please lose. And then I had allowed Royg to strike my arm with his wooden sword.
After that, I did not fight Royg for some time. And once we started becoming aware of our crests, Royg no longer wanted to fight me properly.
However, this old memory caused me to lower my guard. And Royg’s blade nicked my cheek.
“Ye-yes! I did it!! I win! …Bwwaaah!?”
I swiftly rotated the spear and slammed it into Royg’s jaw.
While still vague, I was starting to understand his actions up until now.
Perhaps the reason that he pulled me away from the frontlines and shoved me into the Knights Order workshop was to make his own ability and achievements shine that much brighter.
At the same time, I felt a little pity at this child-like Royg.
Before the Knights Order was created, I had been thinking of going by myself to the south in order to fight the Demon King army.
But then Royg had pleaded with me, ‘I’m begging you. Stay here and fight alongside me.’ He had cried, just as he did now.
I could not forgive what he attempted to do, and the way he treated me… But if he really meant to repent….
As Royg managed to get back to his feet, I thought of being merciful.
However, it wasn’t towards me that Royg moved. He began to run to the back.
There was an abandoned wagon there. And on top, there was a child with cat-like ears, who was bound, hands and feet.
A weretiger girl… Could she be from the Grank mercenaries?
Previously, when helping the dwarves, we had seen orcs fleeing from the north.
The Grank mercenaries were aiding the Demon King army now. Perhaps they had taken heavy losses in the north.
Royg dragged the weretiger child down from the wagon and held his sword at her neck as he came towards me.
“Joshua. Surrender!! Or this one dies!”
“Royg. Stop this at once!”
“I will not listen to you anymore! Let my men bind your arms and legs and blindfold you! And then you can crawl to me on the ground like a worm! And then I might set this one free!”
I wasn’t even disappointed in him now. I felt intense anger.
Royg made such threats because he knew my personality well.
He knew that I would surrender to save the weretiger.
“Hahahaha!! What do you say!? If you do not hurry, a fountain of blood will burst from this throat! Now, come along, Joshua!”
“I couldn’t despise you any more than I do now, Royg… Yes, I don’t know who you are.”
“Shut up! Admit that you are defeated and fall to your knees! You will work for me for the rest of your life! That’s all you deserve! You are nothing more than a production magician!”
“Royg. All your life, you’ve done nothing but look down on others…”
“Look down!? Of course!! I am destined to dominate and sit above all humanity! I am the chosen one who has the War God crest!”
“It has narrowed your vision. Look up.”
Asuha was closing in, right above Royg’s head.
With a speed that my eyes could not follow, Asuha struck Royg’s blade with her spear so that it flew into the air.
“Wiz! Go to Royg’s feet!”
I shouted, and then Wiz the slime slid towards Royg’s feet, causing him to trip and fall.
Furthermore, Iria and Mette jumped out from both sides of me, and lightly cut Royg’s wrists.
Royg stumbled around, and the weretiger was freed.
Melk the werewolf leapt forward and tore the bindings with her teeth.
“It’s over now. You are safe.”
But without even thanking Melk, the weretiger began to use her claws to slash repeatedly at Royg.
“Ahh! It hurts! Get it off! Somebody! Help!!”
Royg was crying like a child.
Upon seeing this, Melk patted the weretiger on the shoulder.
And then the weretiger’s anger subsided, and the attacks stopped.
“It hurts…it hurts…someone…”
And so I cast healing magic on Royg.
But there was no healing the hands, which had been twisted in all the wrong ways. He would never hold a sword again. War God’s power was lost forever.
“I’m sorry…I’m sorry… I won’t do it again! I’m sorry!”
Royg began to crawl on the ground and attempt to escape on his own. But he seemed to have no sense of direction, as he was going towards the south.
And it was from the south that a Tengu came flying.
“Sir Joshua! Enemies approach from the south!”
The Tengu shouted. And I saw that clouds of dust were rising in that direction.