Release that Witch Chapter 443
Sir Eltek was sitting by the fireplace contemplating.
They had not heard anything from Miso Eltek since he had left the night before. It was morning now, and he had yet to return.
Sir Eltek felt a deep sense of unease.
Recently, Miso had been very close with the majorfamilies in the Western Region. As the prince’s agent in Stronghold, the Honeysuckle Familyhad announced His Highness' intention to integrate the Western Region. All territories would adopt one law and the enfeoffment rights of the nobles would be taken back, which meant they could not expand their subordinate nobles or recruit knights to fight for them.
As for lower nobles like the Elteks, they felt little influence and enjoyed many benefits. As the rumor went, anyone who was loyal to His Highness would be rewarded his favor. Right now, the less influential nobles were the safest people because they would determine the success or failure of His Highness' reform plan.
Consequently, the smartest thing to do was wait and see.
However, Miso Eltek hadn’t shared that philosophy.
"My lord, the attendants looking for the second master have returned." said the steward, pushing open the door to the knight's study.
"Have they found him?"
"No," the steward shook his head. "They’ve searched the taverns, casinos, theaters and brothels and still can't find him."
Eltek was increasingly anxious. He had dispatched two companies of scouts to search for Miso. The first one went to the homes of lower nobility nearby. Most of these nobles were vassals in the employ of Duke Ryan and retained a status comparable to the Duke’s family. Miso often went to these places for parties or dinners.
The second group went to the entertainment venues, popular spots for young nobles.
Seeing both parties return empty-handed, the knight's sense of dread intensified.
He stepped to the window, looking toward the eastern territory. The territory of the Elk Family lay in that direction. It was the largest earl domain in the Western Region. Since the collapse of Duke Ryan, Petrov from the Honeysuckle Family had completely swung to Prince Roland and the Elk Family had edged ahead to become the leading power against the prince.
Hell, had Miso gone there...
"My lord, the second master has returned!" Suddenly an attendant ran into the study, breathless. "He's changing clothes in the hall, and it seems he is getting ready to go out."
The moment Eltek stepped into the hall, he felt his anger rise to a new level. He saw Miso replace his thick coat with a thin and soft leather. The shiny armor of a knight was in front of him and two squires were doing their final preparation work.
"Where did you go yesterday?!" The old knight couldn't help shouting. "What are you up to now?"
"Father, our chance is coming," Miso said excitedly, "A chance to be baron. Maybe even viscount!"
Eltek felt his blood pressure increasing. "Who told you this?"
"Jacques Medde, he brought the king's confidential order!"
Eltek took two steps back, his heart sinking. Jacques Medde was the eldest son of the Elk Family. Never mind the involvement with Timothy. Everyone knew that Timothy wanted to eradicate Roland Wimbledon.
His worst nightmare had occurred and now it was even more serious than he had anticipated.
"What did you hear?"
"Lord Medde summoned the nobility of the Western Region into his castle and opened his Majesty's holograph. It said that if someone conquers Longsong Stronghold, the king will promote his title and expand his domain!" It seemed that Miso was still immersed in the grand scene. "Lady Miller from the Wild Rose Family, Lord Cavan from the Maple Family and Lord Remy Noah from the Wolf Family all pressed their fingerprints and pledged an oath of allegiance, without hesitation. The rest of the nobles and knights are determined to follow the four families and remove the Honeysuckle Family."
It was ridiculous. How could the four families make such a decision based on a piece of paper? The knight lamented inwardly. Had you forgotten how they had treated King Wimbledon III when Duke Ryan was guarding the Western Region? When had they become so loyal?
The only answer was that this was a complete fraud to convince the lower nobles to become pioneers in the movement. The plan would commence in a few months and the four families might agree on the benefits after finding success.
Eltek opened his mouth but didn't share his thoughts. This was Miso Eltek, not his eldest son Ferlin, and such dissuasion wouldn't convince him.
"To win honor and status." Miso wore a cuirass made of stainless steel. "Morning Light, the top knight in the Western Region, only won honor for himself. While I fight for my whole family. Father, when this is finished, you'll know that I'm as worthy of respect as my brother."
"If Timothy vanquishes Prince Roland, your words may come to pass. However, the army of the new king is still far away while Prince Roland's army is very near," the old knight thought.
"Don't you remember how Duke Ryan collapsed?" Eltek said in a low voice.
"Things are different this time. The king has shipped a number of snow powder weapons, the same ones used by Prince Roland. He'll provide better ones to Medde. Without the possession of superior weapons, can Roland seize Longsong Stronghold again?" Miso clipped his sword to his waist and nodded to his father. "The battle is coming soon. Please wait here for good news."
Looking at his back, Eltek threw his crutch to the ground.
"My lord, why didn't you stop him?" the steward came up to hold the trembling Knight.
"It would be easy to stop him, but the family would suffer a great calamity," he nodded slowly. A noble attending the 'rebellion' meeting hadn’t shown up at the agreed place. What did this mean for the four families? The crime of escape or defection could lead the whole Eltek Family to death.
"Look on the bright side, if the four families win," the steward comforted. "After all, the months of the demons are long and it'll take two or even three months for the snow to melt. When the army of Prince Roland arrives, the king's army may have already besieged the Western Region."
If it were the past, he would view it in the same way. However, after having visited Border Town once, the knight had a totally different view of Prince Roland. Not to mention his eldest son Ferlin Eltek and his family's benefactor Lady Agatha were all living in Border Town.
He turned to his steward and told him in a stern voice, "Go to Border Town immediately and deliver this news to His Highness. If the city gate has closed, go to the docks in the outskirts and find some ferrymen or fishermen. It doesn’t matter how you do it, just do it quickly!"