Chapter 32 – A Man Called Vogan Forneus
…Waiting for me.
Reviel’s words somehow made me feel that something very bad was about to happen.
However, it was clear that there was no escaping this. Besides, I could tell by the way that Reviel was looking at me, that he was in a rush, and wanted me to do something about it.
And so, I passed by Yorha, who stood there with a puzzled expression, and stepped foot into the guild.
The atmosphere inside was strange.
It was usually so clamorous, but it was dead quiet now.
As for the reason, I was made to understand it, regardless of my intentions.
The short black hair that stood up.
Ferocious eyes that evoked birds of prey.
The deep red coat he was wearing suited him well.
…Though, he did have a large body that resembled a rock.
The muscular body was far from that of most nobles.
“…It’s been a long time, Lord Vogan.”
…Why the hell are you here?
I thought that I should be praised for being able to swallow back those words, instead of letting them be the first thing out of my mouth.
Besides, I knew the name of the man in front of me.
Duke Forneus’s heir.
One of the highest ranking families in the Gardana Kingdom. Because I used to work in the palace, I had encountered him a number of times.
And so the name came out of my mouth smoothly.
“…Why, didn’t you tell me?”
The words came out of nowhere.
That was strange.
“Why didn’t you tell me about your abilities? Or was it your intention to get him killed?”
The voice continued calmly.
It was almost frightening how cold and lacking in emotion it sounded while being directed towards me.
It was just words being laid out plainly. And yet my forehead began to sweat a little.
As far as I was aware, he was the most skilled out of Gardana’s nobles. And while I had very little to do with him, he was also a Court Magician, and in a lot of ways, nothing like a nobleman.
“…His Highness. Was he the kind of man that would have listened, had I said anything?”
It was all so sudden.
Yorha was scowling with confusion behind me, but I didn’t have time to explain things to her.
It seemed very likely that Vogan was asking this, because something had happened to the crown prince, Legulus, after I was driven out of the party.
Otherwise, he wouldn’t have asked about my intention to ‘get him killed.’
“…You’re not wrong.”
Perhaps he was confirming it.
From that rough appearance, I felt something in his sharp and intimidating air, relaxing a little.
“Would you mind if I asked something now?”
I said. It was hard that he had found out my location and come all of the way here, just to ask me that.
After all, this was Lord Vogan.
And he was known for hating anything that was bothersome.
He would not have taken the role of coming here like some errand boy.
“After I left the party, was it you who joined? Lord Vogan?”
I wanted to know that before learning why he was here.
When I left, Legulus had said something about it.
A brilliant Court Magician would be taking my place.
…And as far as I knew, the only one who could get through the 30th floor of the royal capital dungeon on their own…was the person in front of me.
And so if my successor was not Vogan, then it was possible that the prince was already dead.
“…Aye. I had that bad luck. Nothing could ever be more troublesome. Just thinking about it makes me yawn.”
Vogan answered with a yawn and an annoyed expression.
“…And I still am. I thought some degree of injury would be a good medicine, you know? But it might have been too effective… Damn it. While it was my idea, I really should have kept my mouth shut.”
He said slothfully.
“What are you talking about?”
“…It’s quite simple. Exactly as it sounds. The damned brat used me as part of his diversion, and so I gave him a little lecture. And this is what happened.”
The damned brat was probably Legulus.
Even if he was someone in a high position, there were not many who could call the prince that.
“…Thanks to that, I was forced to be a guard until we reached this place. I even had to help with training for half a month. I think that next year, I will go into hiding. I cannot continue like this.”
He continued to talk, but I understood none of it.
Come here as a guard?
Training for half of a month.
I thought about them slowly, until my understanding deepened.
Could it be that Vogan was entrusted with Legulus’s…
And then a voice suddenly interrupted my thoughts.
“…But it wasn’t accepted.”
It sounded like he was speaking on someone’s behalf.
His eyes seemed to pierce through me, as if he could read my mind.
“…Even if it’s the king’s opinion, no matter how much he is admonished, no matter how right it is, he alone will never agree to it.”
His hand then went into his pocket, and Vogan handed me a letter.
The royal seal was on it.
And since there was no way that Legulus would send me a letter, there was only one other possibility.
“…A royal command?”
I asked, but Vogan shook his head.
“…I heard that it was more of an entreaty.”
To be sure, my banishment was Legulus acting out of control.
So I thought that perhaps that would be used as an excuse, and I was being sent an order as a Court Magician. However, that was not the case.
I was stunned by the reply, which was like a thunderbolt in a blue sky.
And for a moment, my mind went blank.
“…The king said he would bear the shame and make a request. And so I was to give you this.”
Things started to fall vaguely into place.
“His Highness is currently in Fezel?”
“…You are quick. Well, perhaps it was obvious.”
“He wants me to deal with the prince. Is that it?”
“…You are allowed to refuse, of course. The king knows what you’ve been through, and will not force you to do it.”
I had a good idea of what the letter contained. Everything had been set up so neatly.
As for Vogan’s words, I didn’t think he was just saying them for appearances.
After all, he wasn’t the type of person to say things without meaning it.
…In that case, the answer was obvious.
Besides, this was a good opportunity.
I would give him a piece of my mind.
I had been wanting to do so for a short while now.
“…Where is His Highness?”
“…I believe…it was the ‘underground guild area.’ That’s where the brat is. When I talked about the treatment, the man over there agreed to let us use it immediately. Thankfully, he was understanding.”
Vogan said as he glanced over to Reviel.
What treatment was he talking about?
Still, there was no point in thinking about it, and so I pushed the thought aside.
Without accepting the letter, I took a step towards the guild arena, which I had visited when first coming to Fezel.
I already knew the contents.
There was no point in reading it.
“There is something that I want to say to him. I don’t know what you wanted to talk about, or why you came here to see me… But all of that can wait. It just so happens that I was feeling bad about having everyone go to Gardana, just for my personal business.”
And then another step.
And another. But then I remembered something and stopped.
“I almost forgot again.” I muttered as I put a hand in my pocket and took it out. And then I flung it towards Vogan.
The golden pendant flew through the air.
And then it landed in Vogan’s hand as if it was sucked towards it.
“Lord Vogan. Tell His Majesty this. Thank you for the four years.”
Now, I was completely cut off from the court.
“I have some accounts to settle, Yorha.”
I said, even though she clearly did not have a satisfactory understanding of what was happening. And then I left the hall behind me.
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