Cohen of the Rebellion Volume 9 trivia
Translated by Tianic, edited by Grammarly
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As the only sacred land for the Asmodian inhabitants, this vast island was not as dim and dark as its name suggested. It had sufficient sunlight and gentle climate. The island view was also quite elegant and spectacular.
Unlike his arch-enemy, the Light Lord who built his palace on a mountain, the Dark Lord's misty palace was located in the central island where a vast grassland could be found. Around the misty palace stood 18 smaller architectures. It seemed only in this way could the Dark Lord’s supreme status be unfolded.
As for the grand Dark Temple which existed only to serve the Asmodians, located itself in an open space on the edge of the island.
Currently, 2 people wore golden robes were kneeling outside a palace door. Their bodies remained still, and their faces were extraordinarily solemn and respectful.
They were the gold-robed cardinal of the Dark Temple, or goldinal for short.
The goldinals were the highest people in status in the Dark Temple. They had the highest power. The total number of the goldinals was 3. They were the left goldinal, the right goldinal, and the pope goldinal respectively. It was these 3 men who held the power of everything and thousands of priests in the Dark Temples across the Asmodian Alliance.
In the Asmodian Alliance, nothing could escape their eyes and ears. Their power could only be higher than the red-robed cardinals from the Protoss Alliance's Light Temple.
The ones who were kneeling on the ground were the left and the right goldinals.
As the sound of gentle footsteps came near, the two supreme priests lowered their body even more close to the floor.
"Rise, you two." The one who spoke was an Asmodian female who resembled a human being but with a pair of pure black feathered wings on her back, "Follow me."
"Yes, Your Highness."
Humans had to behave in front of even a lowest Asmodian member. The two goldinals followed as they did not even dare to breathe any heavier.
As they crossed a yard and toured a set of buildings, the 3 entered the garden of this palace and stopped by a gazebo.
"Your Graceful Elder Princess," The leading Asmodian entered the gazebo and bowed to an Asmodian female who faced back to the rest, "Two goldinals have arrived."
"Good, you can leave." The Asmodian who was addressed as 'Elder Princess' said without turning her body.
From the figure view of her back, this Asmodian female who sealed her wings had a tall and slim body. Though she only wore a suit of a light purple robe, she had the lithest and most graceful posture on this continent.
The 2 goldinals knelt once again and said together, "Left and right goldinals of the Dark Temple, at your service, Your Graceful Elder Princess."
"Is there a matter of importance for you to see me?"
"Yes, Your Grace. We're here to report that the P/A War is over. Protoss United Forces have signed the treaty and promised numerous supply."
"So to speak, we won."
"Yes, Your Grace, we won."
"It is, indeed." The Elder Princess said, "Therefore, you tell me. Since it's a victory, why the war that was supposed to fight only on the Line shattered an Asmodian empire?"
"Forgive us, Your Grace!" The Elder Princess' query paled the goldinals, "It was an incident. We had enough information about everything on that army."
"Yes, Your Grace!" The left goldinal cleared his throat, "The so-called 'Phantom Legion' was actually one secretly built by PUF in order to gain victory during this war. It was documented as the 9th Legion of the Protoss United Forces. Its commander was a lineage nobility and a Protoss Knight from Swabia: Cohen Kheda. The army's documented soldier number is 70, 000 slaves. In fact, it has 250, 000. Its soldiers are well-trained and equipped. PUF even built a large-scale fleet to cooperate its battle plan…"
"Hold it." The Elder Princess interrupted the left goldinal, "You mentioned he is a Protoss Knight?"
"Yes, Your Grace!" The left goldinal replied promptly, "Cohen Kheda is indeed a newly-titled Knight of Protoss."
"Recently-titled, I see." The Elder Princess said, "This Cohen Kheda is under 20 years old, isn't he?"
"Indeed, Your Grace…"
"Hmm, it was unusual for a human at this early age to command an army of 200, 000."
"How wise," The right goldinal was compliant, "There might be another secret commander."
"You said the war is over." The Elder Princess said emotionlessly, "Therefore, this 9th Legion was defeated, am I right?"
Having heard the Elder Princess said that, the 2 goldinals started to sweat like hell. Their so-called 'victory' was merely a documented victory. Currently, it was the 4th day when AUF sieged the 9th Legion in the clay city.
How were they going to tell now that the Elder Princess asked?
Finally, the left goldinal made his mind and said, "Yes, Your Grace. There is no doubt that PUF lost the war. However, we don't yet have detailed information about PUF's 9th Legion. This is why I cannot tell for certain."
"En, very well." The Elder Princess paused for a second then she said, "Tell the military headquarters, if the commander of this army is captured, bring him to me."
"Yes, Your Grace."
After the goldinals had left, the Asmodian Elder Princess turned back.
To take a closer look, her face was indeed worthy of a princess. Under her beautiful half-moon like eyebrow was her pair of clear and big eyes. Her straight nose and scarlet lips, as well as her crisp oval-shaped face, all set off her graceful and elegant posture.
If she made a step further, she would become rather glamorous. Combined with her impeccable figure, every piece of her body held together to make an incredibly alluring female.
Her beauty will conquer all men who adored prettiness. No one could reject a body mashed up of glamor and grace.
The Asmodian Elder Princess suddenly chuckled to an empty area by the fence. Like spring breeze blew over a jade, her smile became warm and kind.
"Aho, you got me, big sister." One more Asmodian female showed on the fence. She made a low cry then started chuckling. In her hands held a delicate face beyond compare. A playful and nutty expression was mixed into the Asmodian female's born feminine charm. She was innocent but also elegant, youthful but seductive. She was a hundred times prettier than her big sister.
"You're the Asmodian Younger Princess. Quit running about. What does that make you?" The Elder Princess took her seat beside her younger sister, "And what did I tell about eavesdropping?"
The Younger Princess pursed her lips, "This is not my fault. The positions have all been taken. Everyone has a job, except me. I get boring!"
"Oh, my sister." The Elder Princess said at the Younger Princess' face, "You had almost 2, 000 years of age if I put you in the human world. Can you just quit making such childish looks?"
The Younger Princess was a bit annoyed about her elder sister's comment, "No!"
"Well, don't get upset." The Elder Princess never had a way around her younger sister, "My sister is the prettiest Asmodian girl. Throwing a tantrum will make you not so."
"Well, sister, tell me. Why did you ask the priest for that Protoss Knight? You knew they were lying."
"The priests were afraid. They didn't have a choice. For matters of less significance, I'll let them be. Excessive demands are pointless." The Elder Princess said, "As for this Cohen Kheda, if he is really that good, I will turn him into a Lord of Death."
"A Death Lord…" The Younger Princess said, "will it be awesome?"
"Sure will. Humans’ worst arch-enemies are none but themselves. As long as we tempt them with little benefits, they will fall to us." The Elder Princess took her younger sister's hands, "Satisfied? Now, go back. I have other human beings to see."
"How come you're always so busy. You don't even have time to talk with me." The Younger Princess said, "Why did father want you to mind these affairs?"
"Human is a peculiar race." The Elder Princess explained, "They would rather be acceptable to let a female lead them, that's because…"
"Boring… see ya." The Younger Princess's body shook twice and disappeared.
The Asmodian Elder Princess shook her head out of helplessness.
As for the goldinals that returned the Grand Dark Temple. They were ordering their subordinates to send griffins and deliver today's news to the AUF headquarters.
(Asmodian Alliance, Brooks empire, capital Foxburg, Asmodian United Forces headquarter)
"Greetings, Your Holiness!" A crowd of generals was standing in front of the headquarter gate to welcome the supervisory chief from the Dark Temple, the one was also one of the three supreme administrators of the Dark Temple: the pope goldinal.
"The Dark Lord blesses you. Greetings, generals." The pope goldinal walked off his carriage and approached slowly to the high-ranks, "Is Marshal Valerian at the headquarters?"
"Yes, Your Holiness. Marshal is expecting you." AUF's Chief of Staff talked and approached the pope with a smile.
The Chief of Staff was an admiral. His rank did not require that he should welcome the pope personally. But as one of the candidates of the next AUF supreme commander, he was eager to impress the pope.
"Is he? Let's go and see the marshal." The pope nodded, "I have tons of things to tell him."
"This way, Your Holiness." The Chief of Staff made a few steps back and followed behind the pope goldinal.
"Mr. Staff Chief, you've become an admiral after years." The pope walked on the long stairs and said with a light voice, "How time flies."
"How amusing, Your Holiness." The Staff Chief replied with a smile, "I recalled when I was studying in the Dark Temple, it was you who gave me the Major rank!"
"You remember that? I was just a temple priest. How could I compete with a respectful admiral?" The pope chuckled, "Everything has changed, except for these stairs."
"Don't joke me around, Your Holiness." The Staff Chief answered cautiously, "Admiral is just an ordinary man. I dare not compare myself with a temple personnel."
"Don't get nervous. We're the winning party of the war. Everyone should cheer up."
The crowd chatted while climbing the stairs, after the stairs, they entered the grand hall.
The grand hall was large enough to hold a thousand visitors. Gold thread decorated carpet extended from the gate all the way to the porch back. Fresh flowers were everywhere as well as colorful ribbons. The whole headquarter was full of joy.
"Oh, the celebration is about to begin?" The pope looked around, "Not bad."
"Your compliments. It's the young generation's idea. Because the generals are going to the grand Dark Temple, the ones left want to cheer up the headquarter." The Staff Chief explained, "You know, news of victory is always encouraging."
"Better help them to make it even better. Ah, the young generation. They're always after the fun of life." The pope seemed to be affected by the joyful atmosphere, he said with warmth, "Invite some noble celebrities. We can't make the ball too cheap."
"As you wish." The Staff Chief said, "In that case, I have to warn those brats beforehand in the event they'd do anything inappropriate to the young ladies."
"Oh? Haha…" The pope finally laughed, "Well, well, don't say that in front of a pope…"
"Oh, you don't know the half of it." The Staff Chief knew the pope was in a good mood, so he spoke less cautiously, "Marshal Valerian is even worse than me."
"What about him?"
The Staff Chief leaned forward and whispered a few words to the pope.
"That old bastard, haha…"
The pope's laughter echoed all the way to Marshal Valerian's chamber.
"Presenting His Holiness!" The guard on the door shouted. Marshal's door immediately opened.
"Greeting, Your Holiness." Marshal Valerian's face was full of radiant with vigor. He showed up wearing a suit of neat casual wear, "I've been expecting you!"
"Greeting, Marshal." The marshal’s rank was much higher than a general. Marshal Valerian was in the equal position as the pope goldinal. Thus the pope returned the courtsey, and with upright manner, he said, "You know, a priest's outing must go through miscellaneous procedures. I was already doing as fast as I can."
"Thank you, pope." Valerian laughed, "I have some good wines. Come in and drink with me."
"In the morning?"
"Just come…" Valerian dragged the pope into the room.
"Don't drag, my robe…"
"I have a young man for you." Valerian shut the door, "A remarkable young man: Major Swiss Hepburn!"
"Yes, sir!" Swiss replied loudly, "Greeting, Your Holiness!"
"This is Major Swiss Hepburn, deputy commander of military intelligence." Valerian told the pope, "He has excellent capabilities, bright future. I sincerely hope that Your Holiness gives this young man a chance to express himself."
"Greeting, Major." After greeting the Major, the pope turned to the Marshal, "Valerian, I'm just a priest…"
"Cut the crap. You’re a powerful pope goldinal, why are you not blushing?" Valerian hinted Swiss to fetch more wine from another room, "And, pay attention to what I'm about to say. Promoting this young man is not for myself."
"So…" The pope paused for a moment, then he finally decided to cast a spell. A light-colored sphere started to swirl around the two in order to keep their conversation within the circle.
"You know, the War is over. Though I am still the marshal, I'll be no longer the supreme commander of the united force." Valerian seated the pope, "However, who's able to take over the position in the headquarters as a whole?"
"I've heard about it." The pope nodded, "Your deputies have all expressed eagerness…"
"They've come to bother you? Spineless rats." Valerian sighed then he said with anxiety, "Deputy Commander of the HQ, he was good at commanding wars. However, he was an admiral at most. Commanding the overall situation is not his strong suit." As for the Staff Chief, he's obsessed with strategy and tactic. He'll never excel given his limited mindset."
"Marshal, you'd better not let that Major…" The pope said while hinted the other room.
"Can't he?" Valerian said with a smile, "This young man is well up in politics, knows about the army, has a calm mind. Moreover, he'll be around his 40s by the next war. He's the best candidate."
"Twenty years! Is it too early to make an arrangement like this?" The pope was both amused and annoyed by Valerian, "I'd even not be a pope after 20 years."
"I know about the changeful world. That's why I made such an effort." Valerian said with a lower voice, "20 years is nothing. For the alliance's glory, I could even plan for 40 more years."
"You're always right about people. I trust you. But it's a huge matter." The pope said, "It's difficult."
"I've made arrangements." Valerian gazed at the pope's eyes, "I guess his face did make him famous, he's just a major, a rank worth nothing in the united force. Only such a rank can distract the competitors. If he's assassinated someday, that would be a major loss for the alliance."
The pope made yet another bitter smile. No one knew more evident than him that the high-ranking positions seemed to be respectful and glorious, they were actually on thin ice every moment.
"We don't have many chances to meet. So I want to settle this today for good. I've exchanged ideas with several emperors, they all support me." Valerian continued, "But putting him in that exact position without trouble is too difficult for us worldly bureaucrats. However, the thing will be totally different with the help of the supreme official from the Dark Temp. In return, I can compromise on other things, great compromises."
"Sigh, what a headache." The pope leaned on the chair, "You old bastard always give me problems."
"Don't think I don't know how much you've gained from the War. Stop thinking, just make your decision already." Valerian said, "Do you priests have your candidates already?
"Not bad, marshal. We do have 1 or 2 ideal people." The pope came clean finally, "Don't glare me like that, we're from 2 different cliques after all."
"It's not hard to decide. Yes? No?" Valerian was never an ambiguous person, even at a time when such a huge trade was about to deal. "You annoying temple guys."
"Yes, yes!" The pope said, "Happy now? I will do my best to fulfill the deal. But you can't oppose me on the following subjects."
"No problem!" Valerian said, "Deal!"
The marshal and the pope were basically 2 most decisive roles in the Asmodian Alliance. After their respective oath, the biggest Asmodian deal within the next 20 years is done.
"Get rid of your shit spell." Business was done, Valerian restored his nature, "What's so good to be a petty priest."
The two have been the leader of their respective clique for dozens of years. It was rare that they came to an agreement today. Thus the pope didn't bother put on airs in front of Marshal Valerian. He cut out the magic immediately.
"Major Swiss!" Valerian shouted toward the neighboring room, "Where's our wine?"
"Yes, marshal." Swiss walked out with a tray.
"Let's have a toast for a good collaboration!" The marshal and the pope drunk up their wine.
"Major Swiss!" Cup down, Valerian said stiffly, "Have you realized the mistakes you made in the HQ?"
"Er… I have no idea, marshal!"
The sudden change made Major Swiss so confused. But the pope knew it was the first step of their preferment and fostering plan: demoralization.
"A man who doesn't even know his fault is not qualified to stay in the HQ." Valerian did not make further explanation, "Give me that major uniform. Go back home and think about it. You're fired!"
"You're no longer part of the united force, that's an order!"
"Yes, marshal. I… I shall…" Though Swiss was confused, he left, dejected anyway.
"Did you see his face?" After, the pope said softly, "What a heartbroken look. I was this close to telling him the truth."
"Is it proper for a priest supreme to say such words?" Valerian was discontent. He thought the pope was tempted by Swiss' face.
It was indeed not the pope's fault because it's the first time Swiss show personally in front of the pope. The pope was admirable to not act silly at Swiss's face.
"By the way," The pope slightly blushed, he said, "Ahem, isn't there another way to drive the major away?"
"If he doesn't leave immediately, he will be promoted even higher than a petty major judging by his outstanding performance in this War." Valerian said, "He can't. If someone makes him a lieutenant general, he'll become their target."
After a long moment of silence. The marshal and the pope were all thinking about the big word 'power'.
These two old men were all at the peak of the power mountain. Their jobs, titles were all the highest without any potential promotion. Thus they both had deep thoughts and feelings about the power temptation.
"So, what brought you here?" A good while later, Valerian asked.
"Sure I won't come here for nothing. The pope said, "Since the war is over, all commanders of the main battle legions and senior officers from the headquarters will need to go to the Hell Island. The Dark Lord will see you. I need your exact number of people in order to make further arrangements."
"That's not a problem. We have some loose ends on the 2nd warzone. The rest commanders are on their way back."
"Loose ends… ah! I get it" The pope said, "I hope everything goes well."
"Quite well. They've kept those bugs there for 5 days already." Valerian stood up and said slowly, "It's just a loose end. Since the moment PUF signed the treaty, warfare has ended on the Line!"
"Indeed…" The pope recalled his profits, he nodded, "The War is over."
(Heaven Island, at the foot of the Holy Mountains of Light)
Like what happened on the Hell Island, the pope cardinal of the Light Temple came to Protoss Princess to brief the war. Although it happened on the same day, the pope cardinal said his words with profound humility. As for the reason, it was because the Protoss United Forces suffered a terrible defeat!
After the briefing, the pope knelt on the jade stairs with great anxiety. Since the left and the right cardinals were conducting military affairs in the PUF headquarter, the pope had to face everything alone.
Princess Charlotte of the Protoss race was standing in the pope's upfront. David, the God of War, remained silent behind Princess Charlotte.
Princess Charlotte's expression was calm and straightforward as always as if nothing could change her face.
On the contrary, David was never as conservative as Princess Charlotte. His giant eyes were on fire. If it were not for the princess, the trembling pope could have been torn apart.
David cannot tolerate the news of failure brought by the red pope.
The War God was furious for a reason. It was the 2nd consecutive defeat for the Protoss Alliance during the P/A War. If the alliance is going to fail again in the next war, David could just resign.
"So to speak," Finally, Princess Charlotte broke the suffocating atmosphere, "You've signed the treaty?"
"Yes, Your Grace. We had no other option."
"It's the first time the temple had total control over the united force affairs. Before that, didn't you promise you'll do a good job? Didn't you said you can win even without a Protoss supervisor?" Princess Charlotte inquired, "And yet here you are telling me we were defeated."
"You Grace, please be lenient…" The red pope knocked his head again and again on the jade stairs, "AUF's counteroffensive attack was so unexpected. These devils have been hiding their elite troops. When we found out, their total number have exceeded 1, 500, 000…"
"And you failed to 1, 500, 000." Charlotte said, "Who told me when he impeached Prince Ulysses that he's certain about the victory even AUF doubled their armies!? And when he pled to cut the Protoss Knight number, who said the title cannot be given to none other than royal blood?"
"Your Grace, have mercy!" As his own word was being said by the Princess herself, the red pope nearly fell on the floor, "The defeat was due to AUF's devilish plot and Cohen Kheda's headstrong behavior! He ignored the HQ's order and went as far to the enemy's rear end. In order to save the sieged 9th Legion from Camp, our 10 main battle legions ended up being surrounded by AUF troops. To preserve our troopers and the victory of the next war, we had to sign the treaty…"
"Shut up!" David, the War God, interrupted the red pope with his cold words, "I doubt anyone would save a slave army with 10 main battle forces!"
The red pope's mouth corner twisted and said harshly, "… Your Highness, after more than a year of training and development by the united forces and the Light Temple, the 9th Legion's combat ability had drastic improvement. It had evolved into a main battle legion with excellent equipment and battle skills. Before the Protoss Knight hastily marched into the Asmodian Alliance, the 9th Legion was able to contain all enemy troops in their 5th warzone. Maybe because of that, Mr. Cohen Kheda made his rash attack. He's a young man at his 20s after all. The man is easy to get complacent…"
"Indeed he's a 20. What about the commanders of the armies you sent to rescue him? Are they all 20 as well? 10 main battle legions are nearly half of the entire united forces. If AUF wanted to encircle nearly 600, 000, they need at least 1, 000, 000! You tell me, why would anyone take away a million soldiers from the Line where the War was actually going on in order to siege you?" David refuted relentlessly, "And you let the entire 600, 000 be encircled. Even an idiot wouldn't do that!"
"Your Highness, forgive me…"
"Quit it, David." Charlotte stopped the War God and asked the red pope, "And the whereabouts of the 9th Legion and its commander, Cohen Kheda?"
"When the rescue came, the 9th Legion was annihilated in Camp, and Ser Cohen Kheda was MIA. Later, due to the treaty was signed, we had to retreat from the Line. Thus we can no longer search for Mr. Cohen Kheda. The warfare has ended on the line."
"I see. You're dismissed." Charlotte said, "You're responsible for the failure. As for the punishment, you'll be notified after the gods consult."
"Yes, Your Grace." The red pope went off the stage kneeling.
"My Princess, that priest was clearly lying…"
"I know…" Charlotte said, "David, just give me a moment."
Since the princess said it, the War God had no choice but left.
Princess Charlotte pondered for a while on the stage then turned about and started heading to Princess Micha'el's palace.
Princess Micha'el was sitting in her chair without many expressions. Her eyes gazed at the view out of the window. This Protoss princess seldom had the time and the mood to enjoy the scenery.
"Sister…" Charlotte was behind Micha'el. She wanted to talk but hesitated.
"You can talk!" Micha'el retracted her vision, "What's the important matter that brought you here?"
"It's… our troops failed again in this war."
"Let them be. It's not the first time after all." Micha'el said in a light voice, "Every 20 years. The War has been going on for hundreds of times. Winning and losing does not matter."
"It's different this time…"
"Different?" Micha'el said, "I see. It's the first time the Light Temple under your management had total control over the military headquarters. I'm sure you expected to win."
"It's not that." Charlotte faced her elder sister's back. She was slightly uneasy, "The 9th Legion was surrounded and annihilated, its commander… ah!"
Princess Charlotte cried and stopped because her elder sister, Princess Micha'el has turned to her and gazed Charlotte with the coldest eyes.
"What about its commander?"
"M… missing in action…" Charlotte finished her words, head lowered. She could never face her elder sister's such look with utter calm.
"… I know when I asked you to give him the Protoss Knight title, you were reluctant. I also know that you favor others over Cohen Kheda." Micha'el shook her head slowly and rose from the armchair, "However, I did not know that you actually did it."
"Sister… it's not me."
"The Light Temples are flourishing under your administration. And the cardinals' status is already higher than common emperors. Why are you not satisfied?" Micha'el made one step closer, "Wasn't it because Cohen Kheda did not flatter or you're discontent that my outlook outruns yours?"
"I…" The inquiry nearly muted Charlotte, "I… I did not know…"
"Without you instructing them and your indulgence, how could the cardinals dare to tell a lie like that? How could the headquarter dare to use the 9th Legion as a scapegoat?" Micha'el stepped on. Her voice was not high, though the words were sharp, "Would David leave his supervisor post without your order? Saving a slave army with 10 main legions, such a lie can't even deceive a human being."
Princess Charlotte looked away from her sister.
"What did Cohen Kheda do that offended you? You cruel girl." Micha'el stopped beside Charlotte. Her eyes were fixed on Charlotte's face, "Why you had to let this human die?"
"Yes, I'm no match to you! My outlook, my brain, my ways to deal with things…" After a moment of silence, Charlotte suddenly raised her eyes and looked into her sister's, "But I'm just able to make your chosen one die miserably. Yes, I acknowledged the cardinal's lie. They know I dislike Cohen Kheda. When the failure became a foregone conclusion, I was glad to let Cohen Kheda take the blame."
"As I've expected…"
"And you, my beloved sister. A human chosen by your prospective outlook could fail! Cohen Kheda, if he has not been slaughtered by Asmodian troops, he must be kneeling the Asmodian princess waiting to be demonized!" Charlotte said so fiercely, "In the latter case, this human who walked with you shoulder by shoulder, he not only will kiss the Asmodian princess' toes with great devotion, he'll also die in your hands! Ha, how ironic. How ironic! If my memory is correct, chase and kill each Death Lord is your share of duty!"
"Do you really think so?"
"I do! I just don't understand why do you like him so much?" Charlotte said, "You want to save him now? It's too late! By the moment you arrive the spot, all warfare will be over!"
"You're foolish." Micha'el's eyes were remained cold, "I pity you."
"And you think I like him? You think I wanted a pet? Or you think that I kept him as a lover, so you killed him to make me sad?" Micha'el faced her sister's eyes. Unwittingly, Micha'el's eyes have been filled with sympathy, "Let me tell you. Among all Death Lords, the 1st was the fiercest of all. Cohen Kheda, his mindset was higher than the first Death Lord, his character is even more insolent. If I'm right and you've given him the maximum freedom and right, a Cohen Kheda without limit will become a sharp edge against the Asmodians."
"And you, my smarty pants sister, you just can't wait to hand over this precious man to the Asmodians. I wish he had died, or this new Death Lord will become yours as well as the entire Protoss race's nightmare!" A sense of scorn was added to Micha'el's eyes toward Charlotte, "Now, take the consequence all by yourself! Face it, it's your deed."
"Sister, don't scare me." Charlotte said, "A petty human being is not capable of doing so."
"Capable or not is not my word to say. But rest assured, I'm a Protoss princess after all. I will not rescue him. However, if one day he comes after you. I will not help you either." Micha'el sat back into her chair, "I've said my word. You're free to leave!"
"Very well. Princess Micha'el!"
Charlotte turned away and left.
(Protoss Alliance, Porta empire border, Lantis City, Protoss United Force headquarter)
The military headquarter was built before the War. When designing it, the architect put a vast, dignified and solemn square in it to hold the celebration people once the war wins.
Currently, there were no people to celebrate anything, nor was there any joyful atmosphere. What was moving was just people dashing on and off every now and then. Some were with uniforms, some white priests were burning papers at corners. A massive dark cloud was accumulating above the square.
Protoss United Force was defeated.
The failure meant many people will have to assume responsibilities. In the PUF military headquarters, everyone from as high as a general to a little door guard was thinking about how to get through these bad days.
After Prince Carl Ulysses was deprived of his position as the PUF supreme commander, the left and right cardinal took over the command as well as the entire Protoss United Forces. They were the primary reason for the defeat.
It later proved that appointing military commanding positions to temple bureaucrats was a stupid idea by nature.
In the PUF supreme commander's chamber. The left and right cardinals were sitting behind a spacious desk. Their eyes were fixed on a letter on the wood.
The letter was from the red pope. In the message was the reaction from the Protoss race after they knew the war result.
"We were right. Princess Charlotte detests Cohen Kheda." The left cardinal said, "She took our lies. How merciful of her."
"But since we let Cohen Kheda take the blame for the failure, would the rest Protoss members buy it?" The right cardinal was worried, "What if the War God or other gods stand up and accuse us?"
"We could always pass the responsibility to our next victim." The left cardinal said, "The Light Temple was always under Princess Charlotte's direct management. As long as this princess does not act tough on us, it's not anyone else's business to accuse us. We're halfway to being safe."
"The next half…" The left cardinal said, "We can't let anyone question about this matter in public. Once someone comes out and ask for trouble, the Protoss race has to intervene. If we let a single Protoss member other than Princess Charlotte know the truth, we'll be in trouble.
"I told you it's not right to do so…" Once the right cardinal heard the word 'trouble', his voice instantly turned worried, "You insisted on giving the 9th Legion to…"
"Lord right cardinal, should I remind you again? It's not the time to tell who's right or who's wrong! We're in the same boat. One goes down, all 3 go down!" As the right cardinal tried to evade the responsibility, the left urged, "Indeed, selling out the 9th was my idea. But the trade to save the 10 main battle legion was pope's idea! Didn't you have families in there? And you ordered that 10, 000 men to seal the canyon entrance, try to remember that."
"I know…" The right cardinal said in depression, "What should we do now? If someone makes a big deal out of it. We're all screwed."
"That's why I'm discussing with you, idiot!" The left cardinal said, "But don't worry, ordinary people cannot disturb us, except the emperors."
"We should make preparations early." The right cardinal said, "We must list everyone who potentially would say things against us."
"Emperors from other countries… I don't think they're the trouble." The left cardinal said, "After all, not many people dare to oppose the Light Temple. Besides, those 10 main legions we saved all came from those empires. They gained the benefit. I doubt they'll oppose us."
"You have a point though. We have to make arrangements!" The right cardinal pondered, "Let's do it. I'm sending my trusted men to contact the other emperors. Inform them about the benefits and stakes. Make them give up doing whatever things they’re planning for good.
"This is what I've been anxious about. I'm not worried about anyone else but Swabia where the biggest problem rests." The left cardinal sighed, "Look, Mr. Right, Cohen Kheda was the Commander of the 9th Legion, he was also a Swabian nobleman who kept a close distance with the royal family. He was also the only Protoss Knight remaining in that empire. Judging from these 2 points, Swabia is not going to stop making trouble for us. Until then, we're not gonna have any peace."
"The current Swabian emperor is Climos Summers, isn't it? Let's promise him benefits, would that work? We'll give him so much that he forgets this Cohen Kheda…"
"Easier said than done, Mr. Right. Cohen Kheda is a Protoss Knight and he's not a royal member. That's why the title is for the lifetime. He was a Swabian ace card." The left cardinal said, "If your ace card was beaten, can you take that easily?"
"We come up with a good idea asap!"
The right cardinal thus started tapping his head and pacing in the room.
The left and the right cardinals started working together since 30 years ago. By then the two were just regular senior priests. One of them was vicious, the other was insidious. They were perfect partners.
After working together for dozens of years, whenever they came across troubles, the left cardinal will make decisions, and the right cardinal will scheme. They were an excellent match.
"Okay, I got something!" After pacing for dozens of times in the room, the right cardinal's forehead was reddened after the continuous tapping, "I got it. It's a two birds and one stone way!"
"What is it!"
"Climos Summers will give us trouble." The right cardinal grinned, "But the Swabian emperor will not."
"Isn't Climos Summers the Swabian emperor?"
"Yes, he is." The right cardinal was certainly proud of his plan, "To be precise, he is now."
Though the man had done tons of dirty business, the left cardinal chilled after he understood the implication, "You mean…"
"Yes, that's what I meant." The right cardinal was calm, "Don't worry, we can pull this off."
"There's no other way. Let's settle on this." To solve the problem, and to keep his position as was, the left cardinal made his mind. Then he asked with confusion, "What's the second bird?"
"Swabia is a rich country. It has very fertile land, vast forest, flat grasslands and tons of mountains and rivers…" The right cardinal seemed to be carried away, "I want to have her since I was a junior…"
"Are you stupid?" The left cardinal slapped the other man, "You, you wanna be the Swabian emperor? Isn't being a cardinal better than an emperor?"
"I was just lamenting." The right cardinal touch the slap bruise, "Of course I won't. Though we do have an excellent candidate. If he becomes the Swabian emperor, it equals that I… no, we're the kings."
"Who is he?"
"The PUF Chief Quartermaster, Prime Master of Swabia, Luhrmann!"
"Him?" The left cardinal cracked his mouth, "A petty temple-assigned official?"
"Don't say that. Small or not, they're all just relative words." The right cardinal said, "I found this guy harbored evil intentions when he was still a white priest. He's been operating in Swabia for years, and he has his own network across the empire. I discovered his intention a long time ago. We should help him. In this way, he'd better be succeeded. If not, doesn't matter. By then, Swabia will be in chaos, who's gonna remember that short-lived Protoss Knight. Haha!"
"By the way, is the 9th Legion really wiped out?"
"Of course, AUF hates Cohen Kheda's guts." The left laughed, "They've been sieging in the grand canyon for 7 days. Cohen Kheda’s troops might end up with nothing already!"
"Then there's no problem. Call Luhrmann in for instructions. I guarantee he'll be thrilled." The right cardinal was so joyful that he could barely stand, "What a sin that I myself ordered to cut his leeway. I would be so disturbed…haha!"
"Go to hell, you!"
"You want some drink?"
"Wait," The left cardinal stopped laughing, "We have to finish the war report. Why don't you write the last sentence."
"Hmm, alright." The right cardinal took over the pen and read out word by word while writing, "… since then, all… warfare… ended… on… the… line…"
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