Release that Witch Chapter 1091
Sean was studying the man tied to a chair in a tent. The latter did not avert his eyes. He was also gazing at Sean in silence.
It was unusual for a traitor to be so quiet. Back in the old king's city, Sean had witnessed numerous betrayals. Although traitors tipped him useful information, Sean despised the worst of human nature portrayed by a traitor: avarice, obsequiousness and power-hunger.
The reaction of this man, however, raised Sean's interest.
After the two men stared at each other for quite a while, Sean broke the silence. "Name?"
"Joe," the man answered. "Are you the commander here? I mean the commander of the Graycastle troop rather than the lord of Thorn Town or some other random lord."
"Is that important to you?"
"If you aren't, I won't spit a word, because... there's no point of doing that."
"This sounds quite interesting," thought Sean.
Sean leaned forward a little a bit and said, "I'm the Chief Guard of the King of Graycastle, King Roland Wimbledon, and also the captain of the Graycastle exploration team. You can call me Sean. I'm the person whom you can put confidence in. Now, can you tell me the whereabouts of the treasure?"
"You must be looking for the Magic Ceremony Cube in the Temple of the Cursed at the Cage Mountain," Joe replied flatly. "The Earl of Archduke Island Lorenzo has it!"
Sean was a little surprised at his bluntness. He had thought the man would negotiate with him before providing some vague clues that required him to verify their validity, but the man immediately told him everything. Sean asked, "Have you... seen it before?"
"No, but it isn't a secret in the church." Joe then briefly related the war between the church and the Kingdom of Wolfheart. He said, "Lorenzo bragged about his discovery and exaggerated the Cube a lot in his report. Many church executives knew about it, but the Holy City of Hermes didn't pay it much attention."
"I see. So the treasure was in the Kingdom of Wolfheart before being captured by the church. Fair enough," Sean muttered as he stroked his chin. "But why did you tell me this? You can also sell the information to some other lords, can't you?"
Joe took a deep breath and said, "Sir, have you heard of... the God's Punishment Army?"
"Naturally. It's the secret army the church took pride in," said Sean derisively. "Unfortunately, however, it was flattened by His Majesty's First Army during the battle at Coldwind Ridge."
"Very well then," said Joe, who did not seem to be remotely upset about his response. "It would be easier for me to make it clear outright. As Lorenzo has a group of God's Punishment Army, nobody dares challenge his authority over the Archduke Island except the King of Graycastle."
"So?" The guard said while raising his brows. "I thought those man slaughter machines were all killed in action at Coldwind Ridge. How many of them are left?"
"Ten... no, probably around five," said Joe hesitantly. "Anyway, it's not a lot."
"Five would be enough to guard a castle," said Sean with a smile. "What do you want from me then? Or how much would you like me to pay you for this piece of information?"
"No, my only hope is to stay alive," Joe said in a hushed voice. "The church has nothing to compete against Graycastle now, but Lorenzo is still planning to revenge the church. His men have already entered Thorn Town, and I don't want to meddle in this matter. If..." He broke off and then continued, "If this information is helpful to you, I hope the King of Graycastle could acquit me."
Sean doubted whether this was his real motive.
Sean rested his chin on his hand, a gesture King Roland often made when he interrogated prisoners. Although Sean did not possess a special ability to distinguish lies from truths like Ms. Nightingale did, sometimes he did not necessarily need magic power to do so.
To be honest, he did not perceive any signs that indicated this man named Joe had a strong desire to live. When he stared into his eyes, he could see a hint of stone cold self-determination in them.
Perhaps Joe did not realize that he was wearing a look of a desperate man.
"Just this one request?"
"Then I'll ask someone to escort you to Neverwinter."
"Huh?" Joe said, noticing something wrong. "Why do I have to go to Neverwinter?"
Sean rose to his feet and said, "I don't have the power to acquit you, but I can't abandon a person who retracts from a wrong path. Don't worry, everybody in Graycastle knows His Majesty is a benelovent and honorable man. The Witch Union can also double check the reliability of your testimony. If you didn't lie, you would be treated fairly and certainly be exonerated from your wrongdoings. If with luck, you'll probably even receive a large sum of rewards for coming forward."
"S-sir... that treasure..." Joe stammered, attempting to stand up but the rope restricted his movement.
"If Earl Lorenzo does have the treasure, His Majesty will get it from him sooner or later. Besides, you have nothing to do with the treasure, right?" Sean said while spreading out his hands. "No need to worry. Although Neverwinter is far and we can't set you free for the time being before confirming the validity of your information, we'll pay you for sure. The church will no longer pose a threat to you." With these words, Sean turned to a soldier and instructed, "Send him back to his cell."
"No, sir, hang on..." Joe said. His expression changed. The previous indifference yielded to a panic and defenseless look. He struggled to stand up, threw himself abruptly to the floor and said, "Please, don't send me to Neverwinter!"
His feign nonchalance dissolved into a look of forlorn despair as his voice rose. Sean stopped. He did not understand why this man would suddenly sink into such a state of despondency when he was already prepared to die.
"Why?" Sean asked as he wheeled around. "Or rather, you actually wanted something else?"
"Please, please save her — save Farrina, please!" Joe implored, banging his head to the floor as he kept yelling hysterically. "She doesn't have much time. She... she doesn't have much time left..."
His voice, in the end, trailed off into a sob.
"That's probably his real intention," thought Sean.
He walked up to Joe who trembled uncontrollably, patted him on the shoulder and asked, "Who's Farrina? Why doesn't she have much time? Now I really need to have a good chat with you."
After Joe restored his composure, he related everything to Sean. At this point, Sean understood what had happened.
It was actually a story about love.
Joe was indeed the last remaining church member, whereas the former bishop had become his enemy. With no other alternatives, Joe thus turned to the former opponent of the church, the First Army from Graycastle, for help. Compared with external rivals, traitors were always more despicable. Meanwhile, Sean also learned why Joe was ready to die: he knew from the beginning that the First Army would eventually see through his plan and believed it would be better to be hanged and die together with Farrina together than being tortured by Lorenzo.
Joe could have taken things slow. However, considering Farrina might not survive Lorenzo's endless torture, he decided to risk his life to come to seek First Army instead of waiting for another few months. He knew Lorenzo would not kill Farrina immediately, as he still needed her for getting the Holy Book. Yet Farrina definitely could not wait for that long. After all, human bodies had a limit. By the time Graycastle took action half a year later, it might be too late.
At first, Sean did not want to meddle in the internal conflict of the church. He was also suspicious of the validity of Joe's information. However, after learning that this was all about love, Sean believed Joe.
The next thing Sean needed to do was to find the men sent by Earl Lorenzo to further confirm the news.
"I see. Once I catch those people, I'll let His Majesty know at once," Sean promised slowly. "I'll send him a message via carrier pigeon."