Titan Beneath the Heavens
Chapter 212: Twenty-fourth Episode: Chapter 4
Chapter 212: Twenty-fourth Episode: Chapter 4
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
Since the beginning of time, the Titan Empire and the Kingdom of West Percy had maintained a rather neutral relationship. This ever-changing relationship was mainly attributable to the change of the royal family in West Percy. Looking back in time, the Persian people who came from far away were the original rulers of this kingdom by the shore, and noble chiefs of the Arabah peninsula had established the territory of West Percy way before the Holy See of Light had complete control over the Westland.
Later, with the help of the Narcissus Knights, Titan rulers got rid of the invading Persian people and established the territory of this modern Titan Empire. With the great victory of Narcissus Andrew, the monarchy of the Holy See of Light in the entire Westland set off a long-drawn-out wave of anti-paganism. Almost all countries had invested in massive manpower, material resources, and financial resources in this war to fight against the Persian in the East. Only West Percy, the kingdom that had seized the throne from the hands of Arabah nobles, was not a part of this movement.
The native inhabitants of West Percy were portrayed as a much weaker party during the great anti-paganism wave in historical books. This was because the Holmes Dynasty mainly relied on compromising with the old dynasty and the support from the royal family in the Faran Kingdom to gain dominance. This new dynasty was committed to shaping itself as the liberator of West Percy, even though factually, the support of Faran was of utmost importance in the process of its establishment. King Holmes initially became the leader only by selection from the nobles, and later established hereditary despotism with the help of Faran King during the final stages of the feudalization process. It was also during this time that the Roman Vatican reconciled with West Percy's royal family. Soon enough, the then Pope King helped officiate the coronation of King Holmes, who was descended from a serf owner.
In this series of major events, the Titan Imperial Family acted as a dispensable observer, but Morisette's attitude toward the West Percy royal family inclined more in line to the wishes of the Holy See. The Holy See was extremely dissatisfied with the Holmes royal family's tolerant and generosity to the pagans. Although the West Percy people had suffered tremendously from the pagan, after a long time of the ruling, assimilation of the cultures occurred due to exchanges with rulers and a large number of immigrants coming from foreign lands. This was also the basic reason why Holmes could reach an understanding with their former ruler.
The fundamental problem of Titan was that the Morisette Imperial Family looked down on King Holmes, who came from the background of serf owner. The interaction between two monarchies depended mostly on the attitude of the respective rulers. Since Titan's contempt for West Percy was evident, West Percy naturally was not able to see eye-to-eye with this old monarchy. King Holmes had always regarded Faran as their traditional ally. At the same time, they were also the original proposers of the Westland Kingdom Alliance, the vanguard that worked together to restrict Titan.
Between the end of the seventh century of the Church Calander and beginning of the eighth, West Percy was no longer the small coastal country that had been left behind like a muddy and poor fishing village. During its ascendant period of growth, the Holmes Royal Family first purchased two provinces from its ally, Faran, for the purpose of northern frontier development. It also spent more than a century expelling Arabah nobles who lived along the coastline. Throughout the process, West Percy completed the feudal rule and inherited a large number of shore-based facilities, fortresses, and preceding navigation techniques and shipbuilding techniques from the hands of the Arabah people.
West Percy was destined to be extraordinary when its first seaworthy sailboat was launched in the Port of Basel! With the expansion of their oceanic territory and the exploration and improvement of their trade routes, the ships carried gold and various luxury goods home that made the kingdom's national power soar. Following the royal family of Italia, the King of West Percy became the richest monarch in the mainland. Not only that, King Holmes, who was born as a serf owner, sought to get rid of his low status. He devoted himself to the creation of the imperial power system, and West Percy finally had the most rigorous and meticulous royal etiquette and royal standard style in the mainland after several generations of hard work.
Compared to Titan, the kings of West Percy were much more open-minded than the Morisette monarchs. This was mainly reflected in the treatment of trade relation and international affairs. Trade had made West Percy a strong force among others, and the easy access to the sea had made it easier for West Percy to accept advanced foreign culture and goods moored by their bays. A large amount of information and rich literary culture greatly enriched the vision of the entire nation, but also made the nation lose itself in the concentration of material and culture.
This loss was mainly portrayed in their religious fanaticism! Religious issues had remained an unresolved legacy in the history of West Percy. According to the Roman Vatican, West Percy's royal family should send all pagans in their nation into exile, but the people who believed in True God accounted for a quarter of the country's population. Out of those, there was a small number of wealthy nobles.
Unlike the Slovenian policy on freedom of religious belief, the West Percy was extremely strict and demanding about religious issues. For instance, a heavy tax was levied on pagans, and they were not allowed to engage in any form of business transactions and intermarriage among themselves. Even if nobles who believed in paganism were among the crowds of court, the Royal Family only allowed these people to be responsible for balancing domestic class order. The Pagans had rather limited rights, most of these rights are in name, but not substantive.
This harsh religious-discrimination policy and the consequent derivative hierarchy of religions would inevitably limit the development of the country and lead to conflicts in all social strata. However, at the stage when West Percy was growing into a major power, the religious conflicts were not so notable. However, up to this day, when the Engel's fleet was dominating beyond the earth's core and the sea forces of West Percy was suppressed at various ports and coastal fortresses, West Percy's royal family and the nobles who had been wallowing in luxury had squandered almost all the wealth acquired. Problems like financial deficits, bankruptcy, the decline in the strength of standing army, and the loss of trade status came one after another. What was deadly was that their ruler was not able to solve any of it.
In the face of the declining national strength, the religious conflicts that were formerly disregarded by the people have become extremely prominent. In order to plunder wealth as well as shift attention away from the main struggle, the ruler of the King of West Percy personally came forward to encourage the wave of religious fanaticism, in an effort to make the citizens believe that the Pagans were the root cause of this critical situation faced by the country. Hence... the Pagan nobles were put into jail, while Pagan citizens were forced into being coolies, especially in the dominion along the shore. The king's constant provocations and instigations left the people who believed in True God to constantly be in a state of anxiety. Even big noble families rooted in the region considered relocating their families overseas, or else... when the king finally lost his mind, what awaited them must be fatal punishments from the religious fanatics.
Titan was not really the one to blame for no matter how chaotic the political situation in West Percy had become, because between the two superpowers there was still the competitive Faran. The relationship between West Percy and Faran was the most classic example of geopolitics. The two countries have clearly defined the scope of power on the basis of the coastline, even their hypocritical "strategic partnership" that has always been despised throughout history had been fully tested in the "Hundred Years War".
Although the Engels did not lose in the Hundred Years War (as they initiated withdrawal in the final war with West Percy's unrivaled fleet), this largest naval battle in human history had determined the ownership and new overlord of the center of the earth's sea.
In Titan's opinion, to be in a war with another country for a hundred years sounded absolutely ridiculous! Titans claimed themselves to be the descendants of the great Roman fighters. The nation's ancestors once conquered the northeastern part of the entire Westland and the non-Romanian continent. This inherent sense of superiority made the Titans not know how to respect these emerging countries. Despite the fact that they had been badly beaten by the Persian people, the rise of Andrew and Narcissus Knights had more or less made up for the vanity and confidence of the Titans. In the meantime, as they despised the Faran, the West Percian, and the Engelish, they had forgotten that Narcissus Knights and the Persian people had fought for more than 400 years to decide the victory.
Forgetfulness led to most dangers! While the major monarchies in the west were gradually prospering, Titan was still daydreaming about the Empire that King Caesar never got to have. This condescending behavior naturally incited resentment. The organizational system of this standing troop of 800,000 provided by the Morisette Imperial Family was also a serious and realistic threat to these emerging countries. Therefore, the Westland Kingdom Alliance came into being, with their ultimate goal in thoroughly defeating the giant Titan in political, economic, and military fields.
"But... Titan was never a dwarf! When dealing with the Titan Empire, ignoring Andrew means automatically giving up the right to win!"
Prince William Steward pondered carefully about the words of the spy boss and finally nodded his head after a long while, "My Lord, in your opinion... what is the chance for us to arrive at a consensus with Prince O'Neil Andrew Morisette?"
"It's hard to say!" the old agent replied as he shook his head. "Prince O'Neil has an eminent reputation overseas and he is also someone of great competence. The Narcissus Knights and the Southern Army Group behind his back are not just for decorations! He never compromises easily, let alone compromising on something he was uncertain on. It would naturally be best if he comes to an agreement with our kingdom, otherwise -"
"No!" William waved his hand and pointed to the stained glass windows of the embassy. "As long as we're still in Titan, we shall not discuss what would happen if the negotiations break down."
James laughed in response. In his opinion, this young man was rather overcautious and nervous.
"Yes, Your Highness! I must admit that it is slightly redundant to discuss the failure of the plan at this time. However, you must consider it carefully! If Prince O'Neil selects our sworn enemy, then it's better for us to give up invading Slovenia."
William was taken aback. He had considered this possibility before, but from whatever point of view, the Engels were the most compatible ally with Andrew. Then again, they were both young men, but O'Neil Andrew Morisette was unpredictable. All signs had shown that his military authority was stepping up their final invasive preparations, but at the same time, he had refused entrance at this strong naval. His motivation remained unclear and puzzling!
"Anyway... if anything untoward should happen to O'Neil Andrew Morisette, and the evidence points toward my country..." The Prince of Engels rested his chin on his palm. "I do believe that those who assault Andrew will not live easily!"
"Of course! I know what you are worried about!" exclaimed the old man.
"I noticed something," the secret officer of Engels Department of Ocean Measurement suddenly knocked on the teacup, and His Highness the Prince, who was sitting opposite the old man, immediately sat upright. "I wonder if you have noticed it? In these recent times when Your Highness met Lady Elizabeth, there had always been some strange faces around you."
The prince nodded in confusion.
The old man shrugged, "This means that my judgment is right! O'Neil Andrew Morisette is a suspicious man. This kind of person has another personality, which is an extreme selfishness and an excessive self-protection."
"What about that?"
Sir James spread his hand, "that would require us to not put off matters along like him. We must show him our sincerity to cooperate and convince him that the intentions of his Engels friends are only to seek common development! On the other hand -"
"Let him be on his guard!" William raised his eyes. He has completely read the old man's mind.
"Except that, the party he has to guard against is our enemy! We have to convince him that our enemy will be a possible threat to him!"
"Your Highness, you are intelligent and prescient! The future of the Great Engels will be -"
"Stop!" William cut the old spy short with conviction. "I also have an intelligent elder brother and a prescient younger brother! Perhaps you have already told them that before!"
"Have I?" The old man widened his eyes in surprise, but His Highness the Prince who was used to insincere flattery was already impatiently waving his hands.
"It is said that… not long ago, the beautiful mistress of Etha suddenly disappeared in the Imperial City of Madria?"
"Yes!" Sir James replied with indifference as he retrieved a file of correspondence. "The Department of Measurement agent in Madria has already confirmed this incident."
"Where will she be?" the Prince was enjoying his afternoon tea in peace, but his mind was thinking in an accelerated zone. This question did not require an answer. The mistress of Etha would not sit and watch as an Engelish Prince rushed into the Titan Empire's superstructure, especially when East Border Andrew was in the midst of planning an invasion into Slovenia. According to the usual style of "Etha", the beautiful mistress would first bait with a candy as if to tease a child, if the offer of candy was not effective, then Etha would fully exercise their fine tradition of being the second largest terrorist organization in the world.
"A massive West Percy sailboat registered as a Lorl Sweet Tea Company docked at Pier 9 along the river, but... no one ever saw this ship unloading the cargo."
William gently stirred the teaspoon in the teacup filled with rose-black tea, and his pair of eyes, which was looking into the eyes of the kingdom's spy leader, was shining with brilliance. "Before we set out... my father king granted me the complete right of disposal to handling affairs..."
"That's right!" Sir James nodded.
"Then in your opinion… what should we do now?"
Within his arms, James slowly revealed a… firecracker? Oh no! That was not just a firecracker. It was an invention that the Engelish stole from the laboratory of the Hoillander. The head agent mentioned that the thing that would burst into loud noises after an ignition was called an "explosive."
"If we can confirm that Etha has had formal contact with His Highness Prince O'Neil... we will send a carriage full of this to the Lady Marshal of West Percy Naval Troop!"
"But this is Vielonna!" William frowned. "This suicide terrorist attack and the carriage bombs are too obvious! You will irritate O'Neil Andrew Morisette! He will not be happy to see his Southern Camp being turned into a battleground for Etha and Fur Seal!"
"Your Highness! For those of us who are constantly fighting in the field of secret warfare... anywhere with an enemy is the battlefield!" Sir James argued while putting on his reading glasses, and began to carefully examine the lead to the "explosive".
William snatched the weapon from the old man's hands and he shook one finger in front of the spy, "My Lord, I admire your work, and I admire you even more for the sacrifices and contributions you made to the kingdom. But, this time you have to listen to me! I don't want to see the serial explosions being published on the front page of the morning newspaper at Vielonna! This is not a good way to show our friends some sincerity!"
"Your Highness! I think I have already explained this problem!" the old man retrieved the bomb carefully from the prince. "Showing sincerity to our friends is something that you do in front of the God of Light. In the dark side that the God can't see, the people who believe in Death have to show their sincerity using the dark way."
"To hell with your damn theory!" the prince finally became impatient. He had worried about not being able to control the old man who was only interested in women and terrorist attacks before he left home. "Turning Vielonna into a second Madria is your way to show sincerity to your friends? Don't forget! Your serial bombings executed in West Percy Imperial City have caused more than 100 innocent civilian casualties. Because of this, the Westland Kingdom Alliance referred to us as the source of political turbulence and terrorism! Do you want to hear other adjectives?"
"Let them say what they want to say! But, the fact is that I have nothing to do with the bombings in Madria, that was planned and executed by the religious extremists in West Percy -"
William sighed and leaned back in his chair. It seemed that he could never persuade the stubborn old man.
"I will write to Father about the difference in opinion that arises between us. If you insist on doing things your way, you must take all possible consequences that might follow, including Etha's crazy revenge!"
The old man grinned slyly, "Titan's Military Intelligence Bureau should have obtained clear information that the most infamous leader of West Percy's religious extremist group has appeared in Vielonna! I expect that Prince O'Neil must have heard of these guys' names, and he will put his guard against them."
"Oh no..." William gave a groan of despair. "Don't you at least have a smarter scapegoat? Those men with brain problems can't even tell the difference between the Protestants and the Puritans!"
Sir James shrugged nonchalantly, "Who cares! The key is that they are willing to die for us."
"Hah..." William snorted disdainfully. "That's because you spent the kingdom's operation funds on explosives for them! They are not willing to die for you, be careful that you might be used by a group of pigs!"
James did not say anything, he only carefully put away the explosive in his arms like it was his own son. After this, the Engels' most famous head spy left His Highness the Prince and the local afternoon tea as he had to personally be at a secret meeting spot. For those neurotic extremists, an offer to God of Light's heaven, and 100 virgins gifted by the True God were not as exciting as a carriage of explosives.
O'Neil Andrew Morisette had a massive headache after seeing over hundreds of illegal religious organizations of different sizes. How true was the saying that "Ignorance is bliss?"
It seemed that the position of the God of Light in the secular world was not stable, as there were always dreamers who misinterpreted the religious classics by their own understanding and desperately tried to change others. These religious fanatics were mostly found in mental hospitals, some among the people of lower social status, and a small part in the courtyard of the nobles.
Although these fanatics who held different views on the divine teachings only constituted a minority, the destructive power of these people was quite astonishing! Tracing back to history, the earliest group that formed these religious organizations were surprisingly the famous Andrew House! Oh God of Light! Oscar felt another pang of a headache!
It turned out that his ancestors were the pioneers of these!
In Church Calendar 4th century, Andrew led the Narcissus Knights and eventually expelled the Persian who invaded Titan, Pagans outside of the border could still attack the Narcissus at any time.
The Andrew House was deeply aware of the potential threat of this harassment. He had to chase down the enemy and drive them further away. In order to maintain a safe distance from the enemy, the best method of defense would be to go on the offense.
Andrew House and Narcissus Knights during the 4th century had not yet possessed the power to attack the territory of the Persians. Hence, he had to summon helpers, and Morisette Imperial Family at this time was still immersed in the joy of the Empire's unison. The founding emperor did not think that over-irritating the Persians would bring any good result, therefore Andrew had to seek help from the Holy See.
At last, the Holy See provided help to Andrew, but those were some unusual assistance! The Pope at that time conferred a sacred and legendary title to Andrew, and with its highest religious authority, it issued an order of mobilization to all countries in the mainland. Under the extraordinary exploits of the Narcissus Knights and the completely distorted, over-glorified divine teachings, the monarchs who were crowned before the God of Light believed that the holy city of Baghdad West was a ladder to heaven, that God's chosen warrior Andrew was the guide to lead the Knights of the world onward honor and sacrifice.
So... all previous expeditions to the East were products of Andrew and Holy See' provoking religious effort.
Therefore... to say the first ideological model of Andrew House was an extreme religious group was not at all an exaggeration.
In the present era, specifically, in West Percy where religious conflicts were continuously stimulated, religious extremists of that place were much crazier than all the religious madmen in Titan and history.
It was mentioned before that the Kingdom of West Percy has gained a comprehensive cultural vision and national civilization while gaining an enormous material wealth. It was seen in their attitude toward religion, where the initial religious reforms' trend and free independent movement were noticed. In the next few centuries, historians and sociologists would regard this early religious reform movement as a democratic movement against feudalism and anti-religion rights. However, in modern times, in the view of His Highness Prince O'Neil Andrew and the think tanks who served him, what West Percy encountered was only various lunatics that born out of the religious reform trend and this free independent movement.
These lunatics were divided into two: the first was the radical reformers who secretly read and interpret the scriptures and demanded the overthrow of the Roman Vatican spiritual blockade; the other was the unique product of the current religious policy of West Percy. The poor people of the True God misinterpreted and organized various gospels in a demand to be independent, aiming to establish their own kingdom that unified the religion of True God between the church and state.
In comparison, the situation of the latter was wretched. The attacks launched by them were also the most extreme and tragic. Among these secret organizations constructed by the pagans, "Pilgrimage Party", the ultimate paramilitary organization, has always been the spiritual leader of this religious independence movement in West Percy, as well as the most determined advocates and promoters of the "Holy War".
"Not only that..." Major General Janin Sherman announced as he marked on the portrait sketching spread on the desk with the tip of an inked quilt. "Five days ago, the inspector of the Internal Security Department found this person in the market of Vielonna."
Prince O'Neil frowned as he glanced at the portrait for a moment, and passed the painting of that haggard-looking man to the militaries on his left.
His Highness spat out his cigar and brushed off the soot that fell on his body. Then he looked at the head of International Operation Department and head of National Internal Security Department from the Secret Operations Office thoughtfully.
"Sir Brayson, can you and Baron Qureio confirm that this is that man - Adoleh Shane?"
The head of International Operation Department Baron Qureio just took a look at the portrait in his hand and nodded toward his Chief, "Yes! This is the madman!"
Oscar shifted his attention back to the leather scroll on the table which read - Adoleh Shane; age and birthplace unknown; the leader of the "Pilgrimage Party"; suspected to be behind the scenes of the arson attacks on the Horibier Cathedral in Church Calendar year 796; the principal offender of the explosion in Port of Basel in Church Calendar year 797; the organizer of the armed riots in the Isar district; the principal offender of the Musta Prison escape; the murder case of Semenuhin Church; the explosion of the Saint Sebastian's Cathedral; the arson of Charlem Palace…
"Ola..." Oscar moaned. He hasn't finished reading yet, but this shocking resume has shown how dangerous the man Adoleh Shane was.
"One problem!" The Chief of Military Intelligence Bureau said as he lifted a finger, "What was he doing in Vielonna? He will not find his oppressed Pagan brothers in Titan."
Viscount Lukas Diyabaker returned His Highness three fingers, considering the answer to this question included three aspects.
"First!" Viscount tapped on a part of the map that represented the territory of West Percy. "The Pilgrimage Party's paramilitary organization has long been defeated by Etha, Adoleh Shane's visit to Titan is likely for the purposes of seeking asylum. It is hard to imagine how he escaped Etha's pursuit in West Percy!"
"Second!" Lukas frowned his beautiful eyebrows and shifted the map so that the area of Vielonna was clear to see on the desk. "There must be a reason why Adoleh Shane appeared in Vielonna. It is quite possible that... he has set up a new terrorist attack plan, and his target is Vielonna."
The military officials present began to whisper. They have never confronted religious extremists before, and the experience of their West Percy counterparts in this was limited although successful. There were no enough precautionary measures that Titan military authorities could draw lessons from.
"Go on!" Prince O'Neil impatiently waved to the crowd of nervous officials.
"Yes, Your Highness!" Viscount Diyabaker had the habit of leaving the most probable explanation in the end, and by now his face was full of worries. "The third possibility! The spokesman of Pilgrimage Party and Adoleh Shane himself have publicly stated that if our country launched a war against Slovenia, and destruct the religious freedom and national harmony over there, the Pilgrimage Party will retaliate against our country!"
"Pfft..." Oscar gave a snort of disdain, "does this guy know where his asshole is? In his mouth?"
The rude comment of the Chief of Military Intelligence Bureau made the officials laughed, only Colonel Lukas still had a cold expression on his face.
"Your Highness!" the university student looked over with great concern. "Your Highness, our military intelligence authorities have never dealt with a suicide terrorist attack before! And... things are definitely not as simple as they seem on the surface. However, there are always hints to be found! For instance… the explosive carriage of Pilgrimage Party."
"Explosive carriage?" Oscar widened his eyes.
Baron Qureio, the head of International Operation Department took on to the subject and spread his hands reluctantly at His Highness the Prince.
"It is a carriage filled with gunpowder that will be detonated after approaching the target! A diplomat of ours had personally witnessed the scene of the explosion in West Cyprus, but... how should I put this?"
The old man hummed and finally spoke after thinking for a long time, "No matter what... a tragedy like this should not happen in Vielonna..."
"You missed out a point!" Diyabaker interrupted the Baron. "The first person who we knew of and used the carriage explosive is Sir James, its inventor. I suspect that Engels' secret operation department has been training the Pilgrimage Party paramilitary organization. Besides... gunpowder is a rarity, and explosives are even more expensive military supplies. Unless the Engels is giving them assistance... the Pilgrimage Party only have means to set churches on fire."
"Haha!" Oscar's smile was confusing. It would explain a lot if the Engelish was involved in this. It seemed that mistress of Etha was not going to spend a leisure holiday here in Vielonna. However, Oscar could not be bothered about these things. So what if Vielonna became the battlefield for the Engelish and West Percian? If the Pagan terrorists really launched their attacks, then it would coincidentally become the perfect excuse for the well-prepared leader of Andrew House to send troops to Slovenia. Since the believers of True God in the world were all family, their innocent relatives should bear responsibility for the sinners.
"I'll confirm with you for the last time!"
All military officials immediately regained their attention as His Highness the Prince spoke.
"Are our rapid commando troops ready?"
"Report Marshal, our rapid commando troops are all on standby at the camp."
"We have all the frontline soldiers in place?"
"Report Marshal, our temporary division in Slovenian has confirmed the position of each frontline soldier and are constantly in contact with us."
"What about our Southern Army Group?"
"Report Marshal, in the depth of the southeast border of the Imperial Guards Ninth Region in Bodega Province, the Southern Army Group was divided into three major camps. In other words, we have eleven crack reorganized troops assembled."
Oscar drummed his fingers on the table. For now, it seemed that only his Red Tiger has not yet entered the pre-war state, yet... if it was not possible to coordinate the interests of all parties before the war, then the plot against Slovenia would most likely fail. Not only that, the capital's attitude was also worth worrying about. Things would be easier if Silver Sox Alan remained ill and passed, but the latest news from Imperial Army notified that the commander was gradually recovering.
Anyway, the Southern Army Group had already deployed the soldiers engaged in the Lighthouse Strategy near the borderline, while the Narcissus Knights had gathered the forces for the eastern expedition, and the war with the Persians has completely been called to stop. In the northern and eastern direction near Slovenia, Marshal Figg Andrew Tibotty has added an additional 200,000 soldiers to the massive troop. In other words, nearly half of the Narcissus Knights cavalry forces were all surrounding the scheduled battlefield.
Alanis Alfa Morisette I Her Majesty watched helplessly as the feeble old Marshal struggled to sit up on the bed. Alan was old and appeared even more so after being severely wounded. His back hunched, his eyes sunken, and his skinny body was trapped between the blanket and scattered documents on the bed.
Her Majesty handed over the teacup on the bedside to the old man, but Alan did not respond. He was focused on reading the personal letter a child wrote to Her Majesty.
The room was silent for a long time, then Silver Fox struggled to get up again. His shoulder was still covered with a thick bandage. With the assistance of the guard, the old Marshal and the Empress of Empire walked down to the backyard of the Hamilton Palace side by side. The flowers in the garden were blooming in pride, the trees were towering, and the refreshing spring breeze blended well with the warmth of the yellow sun. This kind of warmth that sprinkled on the body resembled that kind of feeling as if the God had just walked past them in heaven.
Her Majesty the Empress took her stroll in a graceful manner. She was still so dignified and beautiful. Not many women in the world could be as distinguished and honored as her, but women in the world did not need to be constantly devoting their thoughts and energy like she was, and women in the world certainly have experienced, even if only once, true love. However, after a long session of pondering, Alanis still could not figure out whether the relationship with her husband was genuine or false, right or wrong... Anyway, it was just one of the other helplessness in life.
"If you can't stop him! You must destroy him!"
The empress was indifferent to the Marshal's exhortation, as she was looking intently at a blooming blue rose!
Blue Rose? The gardeners of the Titan Imperial Family had not found genetically stable buds of this species for centuries. Yet, today she suddenly appeared in front of the eyes of Her Majesty the Empress. When she received full attention as though she was being worshipped, she appeared to be so lonely and embarrassed, even though everyone who had seen her praised her for her beauty, mystery, and fullness.
"Even if I destroy him... Andrew is still Andrew!" Alanis finally sighed and looked away. "Since Marshal Figg has already invested 200,000 soldier forces, even if Oscar is gone, he will still send his troops to Slovenia."
"That is not legal! Also -"
"Do you think Andrew will care?" the Empress's cold retort shut the old Marshal's mouth.
After what seemed like forever, Silver Fox Alan finally sighed with impatience. The current Andrew was indeed unable to be controlled, but did that mean they should just sit back and ignore it?
The Empress looked around and noticed the tall palace was covered in the glory colors from the heaven. The sculptures on the palace walls were marked by the erosion of wind and rain. The gold lion in the fountain stood alone courageously. It had the imposing manner of a leader, but, in the eyes of the Empress, the golden lion was near to exhaustion, just like her state of mind. Even if the sky was bright and sunny, it felt like an endless night in her heart.
"My Lord Marshal! Stick to your own affairs! Stop testing my husband's patience. If you irritate him, even I cannot imagine what he will do!"
"Haha! What will he do?" Alan laughed disdainfully, but the sudden movement agitated the wounds on his shoulders, and the excruciating pain made the strong old soldier grimace.
"He will lead his knight to take down the entire Balgan Peninsula, and then use the looted gold and spoils of war to further fill the pockets of the southern nobles. Then -"
Alanis turned her head around as she really wanted to hear what her husband would do next.
"Then it's hard to say..." the commander of Imperial Guards sighed heavily. "We'd better pray for the Lighthouse Strategy of Prince O'Neil to be a success. Should there be any mistake... the western countries will not miss this opportunity to reopen the Anti-Titan Alliance and drag our country into the biggest fight of the entire human history!"
"World war..." when this word rolled out of Her Majesty's tongue, she was amazed at her own calmness. She thought she could not face such a war.
"Yes, a world war!" Alan suddenly smiled, as he realized something now things had unfolded... As a soldier, he has spent a lifetime longing for this day.
"Are we ready?"
The Commander of Imperial Guards shook his head. He retrieved the personal letter that the child wrote to Her Majesty.
"It seems like now... only the southerners are ready!"
The Empress nodded helplessly, "The reserve soldiers in the Narcissus county are of high quality. Once trained, they are ready to go to the battlefield! Oscar first move is already sending out 100,000 soldiers, how did he even come up with such a plan!"
Alan laughed more bitterly, "The Titan Codex does not limit the Imperial to conscript soldiers from the feudal state of Andrew. It was really a brilliant move by His Highness the Prince! Now that he has this precedent, it will not be a problem for him to bring in his soldiers into the Imperial territory in the future!"
Her Majesty the Empress nodded ever so slightly. She walked closer to the Marshal of Imperial Guards and then linked her arm around his like a young daughter.
"What are you worried about? Why can't you tell me clearly?"
The Silver Fox patted Her Majesty on the back of her hand, "I'm just afraid that your husband will bully you!"
Alanis gave a pleasant and beautiful laugh, "He loves me, so even if he bullies me, it's just -"
"Do you still believe that O'Neil Andrew Morisette loves you?"
The Empress of Empire subconsciously turned away under the scrutiny of the old man. She knew that she had been lying to herself so hard, but she had no choice. It seemed that the question of whether O'Neil Andrew Morisette loved Alanis was not only a problem between the two of them but a historical issue that determined a political transformation. In facing this issue, both parties involved chose to deceive themselves and each other. Their association was not usual, their marriage was entangled with various interests, their identity... this was the root cause of all troubles for them. On one side, Her Majesty was the Empress of the Morisette Dynasty, and on the other as the leader of the empire's first warlord family. Their combination was destined for one to sacrifice as to accomplish the other's glory.
History should apologize to those who yearn for love and praise love. This was because O'Neil Andrew Morisette and Alanis Alfa Morisette had been doing everything possible to avoid love and deny love! The occasional embraces and concerns could only be considered as a compromise of each other's soul at that moment.
Do not be deceived by the anxiety and jealousy of Her Majesty, let alone the words of the psychiatrist of His Highness the Prince! In this world, there was love because of life and there was life because of love! There were no people who did not know how to love, even the clumsiest person would love in their clumsiest way, but... Oscar and Alanis were the leaders of Andrew and the empress of the empire, they had to sacrifice one as to accomplish the other's glory. Therefore, these two people who were destined to never sacrifice for others could only choose to deny love, and doubt the existence of their love. They thought they had no alternative other than looking for a reasonable excuse to explain their selfishness, but this was only a self-deceiving excuse.
However, of course, maybe Oscar had never truly loved Alanis, but God of Light praised love, as this was the greatest gift God had bestowed on the human world. Oscar would definitely find himself a woman that would make him intoxicated and love crazily, but… perhaps now was not the time.