Atelier Tanaka Volume 3 Chapter 2 Part8
“Then, let’s try this.”
The King turned away from the Prime Minister to face Ester-chan.
“I believe it would be best for you to return to school and continue your studies. Your territory will be left in your father the Duke of FitzClarence’s care. There won’t be any problems this way.”
This way Ester-chan will still keep her reward for her efforts during the dragon extermination, and he can grant my request.
But the Prime Minister seemed upset with his response.
“Wh!? N-No, Your Majesty! You can’t expect her.”
“How is there a problem? It’s the duty of the parents to look after their child. Even amongst the nobility, this rule holds true. I believe this is fair to everyone involved.”
It almost seemed like the Prime Minister was about to defy the King’s judgement.
This old man is clearly obsessed with Ester-chan’s territory.
This territory seems to be handed from one lord to another rather frequently. Before Ester-chan held it, it was being managed by the government. Does it hold some special meaning that I’m unaware of?
“Y-Your Majesty! Shouldn’t I be allowed to give my opinion?”
“What did you wish to say, Viscount FitzClarence?”
Ester-chan yelled and interrupted the exchange between the King and Prime Minister.
She must be desperate to be heard if she’s willing to interrupt the King.
“I wish to continue managing the territory you gave me!”
This damn loli bitch.
She’s still trying to make me a baron.
I would’ve been happy if you agreed to the King’s suggestion.
“What that man said is also true. I think, as I viscount, I should complete my studies. I’ve been fortunate to have Lord Fahren teaching me thus far. However, there is still much I can learn to become a proper viscount.”
Ester-chan’s status had reached maximum gununu state. (TN: I don’t know how else to translate this. Basically, she’s making this face)
Even if she’s a duke’s daughter, is it okay for her to be making that face at the King?
Why don’t we change the reward to a handful of gold coins and be on our way?
My knees are starting to hurt.
“Well then, in regards to your efforts thus far.”
“Your Majesty, I have travelled a long distance to be here today. I believe I should be given more time to speak!”
“you still had more to say, Viscount FitzClarence?”
The King is looking irritated.
I think it’s about time you stopped, Ester-chan.
His sheer presence was starting to scare me.
“In the first place, I came here specifically to discuss that man’s great achievements during the conflict.”
“Hm? Ah, if that’s all it is then he’ll be given.”
Ester-chan interrupted him as he reached out to grab a handful of gold from a nearby case.
“I received the rank of viscount from you, Your Majesty. My parents have done all they can to ensure my success. I’m very grateful that my parents have done so much for me. This time I wish to be the one to improve the future of a child.”
“I see. Richard has raised you well.”
Ester-chan’s words caused an uproar in the room.
I’m sure there are plenty of people that would love to receive the patronage of the daughter of a great noble family.
It’s not just limited to the nobles present today. There have been plenty of people asking for it ever since she was a young girl.
“Your Majesty, this man is beyond humble. Regarding the conflict with the Pussy Republic, I find it difficult to put into words just how much we owe him. If he wasn’t present, Tricklis would’ve undoubtedly been captured by the enemy. The staggering difference in our fighting force reported earlier is true.”
“hmm, it’s a little hard to believe.”
“It’s true, and this is exactly why I wish to reward him properly.”
“What is it you want? Please, speak frankly.”
“I humbly request that you reward this man with the position of baron.”
As expected, this crowd of nobles didn’t think this request was any less ridiculous than the one in Tricklis.
Several voices rang out in the crowd. When she mentioned a child earlier, I’m sure none of them expected her to be talking about me. The exact same scene from Tricklis’ castle was now playing out here. I didn’t think this girl would actually go through with her ridiculous plan.
Even though we’re in the middle of an audience with the King, the crowd is on the verge of rioting.
Many of them were pointing and yelling at me.
“Is this desire yours alone, Viscount? Or is it that person’s wish?”
“It’s merely my own one-sided hope.”
The King’s eyes darted around.
From left to right, corner to corner, the King scanned every inch of the crowd.
“It seems that the Duke of FitzClarence isn’t present.”
“My father is in poor health and is currently undergoing treatment at home with my mother.”
Maybe that’s the real reason the loli bitch went to see him last night.
The King seemed surprised to hear this.
He looked angry as he spoke quietly to the Prime Minister at his side.
“Viscount FitzClarence, aren’t you asking for too much? Even if he has achieved great results, he’s not even a citizen of this country. For me to give a man like him a position amongst the nobility would be an unprecedented event.”
“No, it’s not unprecedented. Going back to the tenth generation of my family, the then Duke of FitzClarence took a foreign woman as his wife after she achieved many great things. There are records showing that the King at the time, who would’ve been the then thirteenth king of our country, granted her the position of duke once her husband passed.”
The blonde loli immediately countered the King’s statement.
She’s got a lot of nerve.
Did she go back through her family tree expecting this?
“Really? I never knew that.”
“If you still wish to deny my request, I will abandon my rank as viscount and renounce the FitzClarence name. I wouldn’t want to be associated with a country that refuses to properly honour a man willing to sacrifice his life for his country.”
She said it.
She truly seemed desperate.
“are you being serious, Viscount FitzClarence?”
“Yes. I’m sorry to betray your kindness, Your Majesty. I humbly beg your forgiveness.”
She stared directly into the King’s eyes, refusing to even blink until she heard his response.
And the King did the same to Ester-chan.
The two people continued staring at each other.
How long has passed now?
Suddenly, the King began to speak.
“Lord Fahren, there is one thing I wish to ask you.”
“As you wish.”
“Is what Viscount FitzClarence says true?”
“What do you mean?”
See, the loli bitch talks too much. She’s even causing trouble for the noble mage now.
“I’m talking about the achievements of that man.”
“If you’re talking about the results of the battle, what Viscount FitzClarence said was true. I was on the battlefield to witness this with my own two eyes. If that man wasn’t there, the city of Tricklis would’ve been the next battlefield.”
“and what would you say your overall opinion of him is?”
“It remains the same as what I reported to you earlier.”
I just want this to stop. Please, end it.
Just give me a few gold coins.
I don’t care anymore as long as I can leave this place.
“Your Majesty, you can’tyou can’t be seriously considering this! The past is the past! Viscount FitzClarence must be exhausted from her time on the battlefield. We should allow her to rest at home before hearing her report!”
See, even the old man is starting to yell.
“Did you know, Mordred?”
“About what, Your Majesty?”
“The thirteenth king is written about in many books. He’s described as a benevolent lord with an unknown past. When I was a child, I read through these books countless times, hoping to one day become a king like him.”
“Your Majesty, you can’t be saying.”
“However, what Mordred said is true. I can’t act purely based on decisions made in the past. The world has changed and I have to take current matters into account before making a decision like this.”
“Exactly! That’s right, Your Majesty!”
“With this thought in mind, I’ll agree with one added condition.”
The Prime Minister was looking agitated.
“Why are you raising your voice?”
“If this is what you wish, then let I, Mordred, give the condition. I’m an uninvolved third party and you shouldn’t have the burden of handling all responsibilities. After all, it is my duty as Prime Minister to hear the complaints of the nobility and our citizens.”
“I agree. Go ahead, Mordred.”
Seriously? This is bad.
He really just gave this responsibility to the worst possible person.
“Then, tell Viscount FitzClarence your condition.”
The old man now turned to face Ester-chan.
“During the conflict with the Pussy Republic, this man managed to defeat an army of over forty thousand with only a few hundred men. As reward for this, the great Penny Empire grants him the position of baron. However, this appointment comes with some attached conditions. I’ll provide further details to you both during the ceremony.”
“From this day onwards, the Viscount shall not be allowed to raise any complaints about anything that may happen to this man after he receives his position. You both must fully understand that giving a rank amongst the nobility to a foreigner is a rare occurrence and that you each will be responsible for whatever may happen. Do you have any objections?”
“no, I’m okay.”
Ester-chan gulped and gave a slight nod.
No, it’s not okay.
That old man is still aiming to gain control of Ester-chan’s territory.
“All right. It seems both sides have reached an agreement.”
The King showed a bright smile.
It was the look of a man that thought this was a job well done.
“We’ll meet again when the ceremony is to be held. I hope to see Richard there as well.”
“By the way, Your Majesty, may I be the one to decide what to do with his position and her territory if they were to fail? There’s no need for you to bother yourself with such a trivial matter. And there’s also the matter of the Hagenbeck family.”
“That sounds fine, Mordred. I’ll leave everything to you this time.”
“Now that the rewards for Viscount FitzClarence and that man have been decided, let’s move on to Lord Fahren. You did well again after your previous help with the matter concerning my daughter, Lord Fahren.”
The rest of the audience went by uneventfully.
But the King really makes no effort to hide how much he loves the noble mage.