Chapter 266: 266
Chapter 266 – Epilogue (5)
Leticia looked at the distant city, and she unconsciously murmured her words .
“It is a beautiful place . ”
The one, who had answered immediately, was Kairen . At his words, Leticia became startled . Soon, she nodded her head .
“Unlike you, your parents had great artistic taste . It really is quite apparent . ”
“Ha ha ha . You’re not wrong . ”
Kairen laughed .
The two of them were looking at the Tarantos castle, which was at the heart of the Dukedom of Tarantos .
Kairen looked deeply moved as he spoke .
“It has been a long time since I’ve returned to this place . My people will nag me to no end . I can imagine it . ”
It had been over a year since he had left his land to follow Azell .
He had sent regular updates on his whereabouts, but he was a lord, who had vacated his land for over a year . He could easily imagine how much stress his absence had caused Havanz . When he returned to the castle, he’ll be assaulted by a storm of words . He’ll have to put up with Havanz’s scolding .
“I’ll have to endure it since it is karma for my actions . ”
“At the very least, you are aware that you’ve done wrong by him . ”
“It couldn’t be helped . If I hadn’t left at that time… . ”
“What would have happened if you hadn’t left?”
“Azell would have floundered without my sublime abilities as a commander . ”
“…if only you couldn’t talk . ”
Leticia gave him the side-eye . Kairen laughed .
“I don’t regret leaving at that time . Our fight won’t be written down in history like the Dragon Demon war, but I was able to fight with the legendary hero . We fought for the fate of the world, and I was able to meet you . ”
The Great Darkness was gone now . When Kayalia and the Guardian Shadows gained their true rest, the party’s journey had come to an end .
They toasted their victory then they broke up the party . They set up a future reunion date .
Azell said he’ll go to the Bijes kingdom, and he’ll rebuild the County of Karzark . Laura revealed her intent of accompanying him .
Arrieta had to return to the Rulain Kingdom since she had to return to work as the Dragon Demon princess .
The only one left was Leticia . She had finished a fight that had consumed her whole life . There was a weird sense of despondency within her . When he saw this, Kairen invited Leticia to his land . Since she had nowhere else to go, she accepted Kairen’s offer .
“It is a bit late to ask you this, but…… . ”
Suddenly, Leticia asked a question .
“Did you talk to Azell?”
“Mmm . ”
“Please tell me the truth . ”
“…I did . ”
Kairen avoided her gaze as he gave his answer . Leticia clicked her tongue when she saw this .
It was quite curious . Azell hadn’t asked Leticia to help rebuild the County of Karzark . She was the only one he hadn’t asked . It seemed Kairen had talked to Azell beforehand .
‘When the fight ends, I want to ask Leticia if she wants to come with me . If she turns me down, you can ask her to participate in the reconstruction of your lands . ’
Leticia looked sullen as she spoke .
“Let’s hear it . ”
“What do you mean?”
“Why did you do that?”
“Mmmm…… . ”
“I didn’t have any future plans . I accepted the offer of being a guest in your lands, because the idea intrigued me . So why did you invite me to your lands? Is it because I’m your comrade in arms?”
“Uh . Mmm . That is . . . ”
Kairen was flustered . When she saw him become embarrassed, Leticia let out a sigh .
“…I’ve lived for a long time, and I’ve never been posed a question quite like this before . ”
“You already know that I’m unlike any woman you’ve ever met . I heard you’ve dated a lot of women, yet you are heirless . What gives, your lordship?”
“I’m sorry . I was wrong . ”
Kairen admitted defeated . He cleared his throat then he spoke .
“Leticia, I like you . ”
“I like you too . ”
“…… . ”
At Leticia’s forthright answer, Kairen’s eyes widened . However, Leticia didn’t sound like she was admitting her dying love for him .
“I think I like you in a different way than you like me . I want there to be no misunderstanding . I cannot answer your feeling . What I’m trying to say is… . I like you, but I don’t know if it is the same feeling that occurs between a man and a woman . ”
“Hmm . So what you are saying is… . . ”
Kairen was careful in how he posed his question .
“…you aren’t turning me down? I have a chance?”
“For now . ”
“That is enough . ”
“We can take our time in figuring everything out . As long as you stay as a guest in my house, I’ll try to seduce you . Please keep your heart open and wait for me . ”
“You really are . . . ”
Leticia smirked .
“You are a shameless man . ”
“Can’t you just say I’m being bold?”
Kairen let out a playful laughter as he replied to her .
The two of them were getting closer to the Tarantos castle as they conversed with each other .
The Bijes kingdom had fallen for the scheme set up by the Dragon Demon King worshippers . This was why they were at war with the Iellos Kingdom . However, the blueprint had been set in the war between the Rulain kingdom and the Rios kingdom . The members of the Guardian Shadows brought about an end to the war .
The war had been very fierce, so the domestic situation within the Bijes kingdom was a mess . The Bijes kingdom was in a state of turmoil, yet in this turmoil, a man started to make a name for himself . He started creating ripples .
Azell Karzark .
He was a man with the same name as the legendary hero Azell Karzark, who had defeated the Dragon Demon King Atein . He had the same name as the man who had ended the Dragon Demon war .
His outer appearance was also identical to the hero’s portrait, which had been passed down through the years . This man claimed to be the descendant of Marquis Kazark . It really did sound like a plan hatched by a swindler trying to use the clout of the legendary hero for his benefit . However, something surprising happened . Count Chieha, who was the king’s maternal uncle, came forward to vouch for Azell . Even Duke Renas, who was the great lord of the east, stepped forward to back the newly found heir of Marquis Karzark .
It created a big splash within the Bijes kingdom .
Afterwards, Azell traveled around the Bijes Kingdom, and he performed great feats .
Thanks to the war, there weren’t enough soldiers to protect the population . The monsters didn’t miss this opportunity to take advantage of the situation . They caused great damage to the human population .
Azell went around the whole country in order to defeat these monsters . He didn’t ask for any recompense, and it allowed him to be accepted by the people .
He killed the orc horde in the south . Then he killed a Frost Dragon that was rampaging in the Berdan region with his companion mage . At that point, everyone accepted that he was the descendant of the hero .
Azell was bold as he told everyone his goal .
‘I’ll take back the County of Karzark, which was taken over by monsters . ’
Azell wanted the throne of the Bijes Kingdom to give him dominion over his land .
The people praised him as a hero . It allowed Count Chieha, Duke Renas and other nobles to support his activities .
It had been eight months since Azell had started his plan . At that point, he was officially accepted as the heir to the County of Karzark by the throne of Bijes . He acquired the rights to take over his lands .
The throne didn’t send any troops . However, people from all over the continent started to gather when he made his desire known that he wanted to restore the County of Kazark .
“We are finally here . ”
Azell sat inside the barracks as he mumbled to himself .
The sun was slowly coming up .
It was getting loud outside as people started to move around the camp . The people outside were equipped with an assortment of weapons . They were from all over the continent . They had come because they admired Azell . They wanted to help Azell take back his lands .
There were several thousand fighters gathered outside . Even if one considered Azell’s reputation, his title as the Marquis was in name only . He didn’t have any resources, so they asked for no recompense from Azell . It was almost a miracle that so many people had shown up .
“It took us a long time . ”
Laura had spoken .
In any rumors pertaining to Azell, there was always a beautiful blonde Dragon Demon girl by his side . Everyone assumed they were an item .
Azell tilted his head in puzzlement .
“Did it take a long time? It has been less than a year… . . ”
“If we didn’t unnecessarily hide our power, it would have been much faster . ”
Azell had hidden his true powers as he accomplished his tasks . In this era, he was now known as someone that possessed legendary prowess . However, he had revealed only a portion of his true power . They were only seeing the peel to the fruit .
Azell shook his head from side to side .
“I don’t believe that is true . ”
“Do you think people would have become afraid of you?”
“In the standard of this era, I have enough power to threaten a nation . ”
This fact had been fine during the Dragon Demon war .
The army led by the Dragon Demon King army had been such a powerful force that they were considered to be a calamity . The Nadick empire had conquered most of the continent, and most countries were under the banner of empire . There were many powerful beings on both sides, so these powerful beings usually moved in concert to take down anyone that went rogue . A being with transcendent power could be stopped .
However, it was different in this era . If Azell revealed his true strength, the common folk might greet him with fan fare . However, the rulers of each nation would feel extreme fear towards him .
“Anyways, we have to live as a member of this era . We cannot make enemies of the people . I am very thankful to the members of Guardian Shadows for making this possible . ”
He was accepted as the descendant of Azell Kazark thanks to Count Chieha and Duke Renas . Both of them were members of the Guardian Shadow . Azell had let them realize their long-cherished wish of taking revenge against the Dragon Demon King worshippers . Moreover, there were practical benefits to having Azell join Bijes Kingdom . This was why they had given their full support to Azell .
Laura queried him .
“Still, I think it would have been ok if you were a bit more greedy . ”
“What do you mean by greedy?”
“It could have been more than the County of Karzark . You could have made it the Karzark kingdom . ”
During the days of the Nadick empire, he had held the position of Marquis .
Currently, seven kings ruled over this continent, but their families had merely been high ranking lords before the Nadick empire fell .
If so, wouldn’t it have been ok if Azell created the Karzark kingdom?
Azell grinned as he asked her a question .
“Why? You want to be queen?”
“No . ”
“It is just an idle thought . In the stories, the hero always becomes the king . ”
“My dream is to make the County of Karzark inhabitable . I want to make it a good place to live . Anything else… Yes, I’ll leave that possibility open, but I’ll push such plans to a later date . ”
“You want to put it off like the plan for us to have children?”
Laura had ambushed him with her words . His saliva went down the wrong pipe, so he started coughing . Azell’s face turned red as he turned to look at her .
“…y . . . yes . That’s right . ”
“I’m not saying we should rush into it . It is something we should do after we build our nest . ”
Laura had an expressionless face, yet she had stuck her tongue out . Azell let out a sigh when he saw this .
“Your personality has changed a lot . ”
“It is bound to happen since I have to live with a rascal like you . ”
“Jeez . ”
Azell hugged her, and he gave her a light kiss .
In the past year, they had become lovers . Azell had been freed from the ghosts of his past, and he was able to become honest with his feelings . Moreover, Laura had accepted his feelings .
Soon, Azell exited the barracks as he spoke .
“Shall we go?”
Laura nodded her head . The change in her expression was so minute that others couldn’t see it . However, Azell knew she was smiling right now .
When the two of them exited the barracks, the people caught sight of them . It stirred the audience . As numerous eyes were focused on him, Azell extended his hand towards the sky .
Suddenly, lightning erupted from the sky . The lightning bolt shattered the darkness of the early morning as it shot towards Azell’s hand . Azell’s cape fluttered as he appeared from within the explosive light with a blue sword in his hand . Everyone let out an ardent shout .
As their shout rang out, Azell and Laura advanced towards the demonic land called the County of Karzark .
Azell looked at the forest as he spoke .
“This is just the beginning . ”
He was finally able to escape from the shadow of his past, and he embarked on his new life .