Masked Knight - Chapter 155
Chapter 155: Crafty Plots
Translator: Evie/Zenobys Editor:
The Imperial Capital was in chaos for a few days. Besides the news of the death of the Emperor's nephew, there was another news that made the Emperor furious. The Emperor was originally in a fairly good mood, but he was badly affected after hearing the news. The news was that the Empire's most famous beautiful woman and the sister of the Empress, Miss Jojo, had gone missing.
After many rounds of investigations, they finally found that Miss Jojo had left the city with some guards on the night just before the surprise attack at the Prince's residence. She was supposed to leave the city for her family residence outside the city. However, there was no news after she had left the city.
The guards at the city gates had reported that they saw Miss Jojo's carriage leaving that evening. However, they did not see her return. Those at Miss Jojo's small family residence also said that Miss Jojo had never returned to the residence.
So, Miss Jojo and her team of guards had just disappeared into thin air.
The leader of the security soldiers had just received two orders from the Emperor. The first one was a commendation that praised his good work for dealing with the aftermath of the attack at the Prince's residence. The second order was for these soldiers to immediately search for Miss Jojo's whereabouts.
Besides that, the Emperor had also dispatched thousands of the Imperial cavalrymen out of the Imperial Capital to search for Miss Jojo in all directions. It was said that even the personal guards of the Imperial Family comprising high ranked magicians and warriors were also dispatched to look for Miss Jojo.
Master Autumn stayed silent as he watched these people busy themselves. He already knew that Jojo was dead. Her body was also hidden by Rody. However, he did not know where Rody hid the body. Rody had never told him, and he never thought of asking.
After the uproar, His Majesty the Emperor had temporarily put aside his marriage with Miss Nicole of the Tulip Family. Instead, almost the entire Imperial Capital was turned upside down. Naturally, this was not because of Bayan's death. Bayan's death was not exactly good news for the Emperor. Although Prince Barond was lucky enough to escape, he no longer entered the Imperial Palace. Instead, he left the Imperial Capital to hide in one of his private residences on the outskirt of the city.
The nobles that knew about the secret fight for the throne and had originally taken Prince Barond's side now all tried to express their loyalties to the Emperor. They did that to protect themselves. However, Abbas XI completely ignored them. The Emperor's eyes were red as he continued to wait for Miss Jojo to return.
’’The Emperor is a fool.’’
In a certain corner of a certain room in the Imperial Capital, Seth was carrying a silver glass. He laughed as he slowly said, ’’Although I am not too sure who destroyed the Prince's residence, but that fellow Rody had suddenly disappeared. This incident is most likely related to him.’’
Mark was lazily leaning on a chair as if his entire body was without energy. He shook the empty bottle in his hand and lightly said, ’’The Emperor has always been an idiot, but what is the point of saying this?’’
Seth's handsome face showed a strange expression. ’’If I were the Emperor, this would be the best time to rebuild my influence and uproot the opposition! The Prince's residence had been destroyed by someone, and the biggest gain for the Emperor is Bayan's death! The Emperor's weakness right now is that he does not have an heir. Bayan is a descendant of royal blood. His father is also one of the late Emperor's son. If the Emperor still does not have a son in the future, the throne would belong to Bayan. The Emperor would not be able to do anything, even if he was unwilling. Prince Barond's efforts in arrogantly winning over the support of the nobles in the Imperial Capital meant that he knew the Emperor's weakness!’’
Mark coldly replied, ’’In my opinion, that Prince Barond has an intellectual problem. Since the throne would belong to his son in the future, what is the point of all the petty tricks? Aren't they unnecessary?’’
Seth sighed and shook his head. ’’It was not unnecessary at all!’’ He exposed a cold smile. ’’When has there never been killing in the battle for the throne? His Majesty the Emperor is reluctant in giving up the throne to others. Naturally, that means he also wants an heir to inherit the throne. Unfortunately, he has no son. That was why he had to suppress the Prince and his faction. Sigh...’’ Seth sighed. ’’Prince Barond also had no choice but to desperately expand his own strength. The Emperor was like a thorn to both Prince Barond and his son. He also knew that the Emperor was focussed on getting rid of the Tulip Family and had not noticed their actions. Prince Barond was more intelligent than the Emperor! He made good use of time to gain more influence in the Imperial Capital, so that he would be strong enough to fight against the Emperor in the future.’’
Old Mark sighed again. He knew that the bottle in his hand was empty but he could not help but bring the bottle to his mouth.
Seth's gaze looked a bit complicated. ’’What a pity. All the people I meet are idiots. The Emperor is a fool. He is the idiot amongst idiots. He had the Tulip Family to support the Empire as pillars, but he did not know how to make the most of that. Instead, he intentionally tried to pull down those pillars. Now, he is not using the opportunity to strengthen his position. He ignored Prince Barond and was putting all his resources into searching for Miss Jojo. Besides that, there is also Rody! I tried so hard to persuade him that day, but that fool did not listen! Now the Imperial Capital is in chaos and he disappeared again... Sigh...’’
Old Mark suddenly looked at Seth and coldly said, ’’Don't you think that your words are very strange?’’
Old Mark lightly said, ’’I don't care if the Emperor is a fool. Whether he wants the throne or that woman has got nothing to do with me. However, that boy Rody... Sigh... You said that you had persuaded him to continue being a Duke. For whose sake did you try and convince him? Isn't it for your own sake? This is because you want to escape your own responsibility!’’
Seth laughed. His expression did not change. ’’Do you think I am too selfish?’’
’’Yes.’’ Old Mark was still lazing on the chair, but his eyes had turned sharp. ’’Who is Rody? He is just someone that is unrelated to all these. You intentionally made him the Duke of the Tulip Family for the sake of the Empire and for the sake of the survival of the Tulip Family... He had to fight, he had to kill... For what? Now he is a skilled person that could defeat Reuenthal in the Northwest. He could also use the 'Lightning God's Whip' to get rid of all the rebels at the Westwood province. Do you intend to chain this person up and force him to work himself to the bone for your family for the rest of his life?’’
Seth's smile was unchanging as he quietly listened to Old Mark. He then slowly said, ’’Do you think I have gone too far?’’
Seth suddenly sighed and walked to the window. He looked at the sky and murmured, ’’Am I really too selfish?’’
He then gave a strange laugh. ’’But, why does the Tulip Family forever have to be the one to protect the Empire and the Radiant continent? Why must the Tulip Family bear this heavy burden? Everyone says that the Tulip Family will protect the Radiant Continent but who will protect the Tulip Family? For centuries, the Tulip Family has been the fence, the castle and the pillars! But... For what? Why does that stupid thorny flower family always want us to be guards1? Abbas XI is obviously a fool! Why do we need to risk our lives for him?’’
’’Is that why you made Rody do it?’’ Old Mark laughed coldly.
Seth's expression was calm. ’’So, what? The Tulip Family's banner has been flying for centuries. It is about time for it to come down and for a new banner to fly instead. What is wrong with that?’’
’’Don't you think you are contradicting yourself?’’ Old Mark frowned. ’’You do not want to risk your life for the Emperor. So why must Rody risk his life instead? I also don't see any new banner. If Rody continues to pose as the Duke, it will still be the Tulip Family's banner that will be flying!’’
Seth shook his head and said softly, ’’You do not understand... You do not understand.’’ He then laughed and said, ’’Rody is a very suitable person for this. He is brave but soft-hearted. He is determined, but he has his own principles. Such a person is suitable to be the Regiment Commander of the Empire. The Empire also still needs the Tulip Family's banner. After a few years, the Empire would no longer have a need for the Tulip Family. At that time, the Tulip Family can safely disappear.’’
’’A few years? Disappear?’’ Mark shook his head. ’’What are your intentions?’’
Seth lightly replied, ’’I will not harm Rody, and I will also not chain him to us. At most... I will temporarily be using him.’’ He then sighed and continued, ’’Unfortunately, I cannot become like him. I have already said this before. I cannot become like my father. I will never be qualified to become a Regiment Commander. I am someone who hides in the dark. The Regiment Commander of the Tulip Family is someone that stands under the sun and is an idol admired by many. Unfortunately, I am not that kind of person. The Regiment Commander of the Tulip Family needs to be brave. It is a pity that I am not brave. I do not even want to see blood. Even if you take me to the battlefield, I am afraid of pain. The Regiment Commander of the Tulip Family has to be upright, but I prefer to use irregular methods. For example, right now, if there was an enemy in front of us, my father or Rody would pull out their sword and challenge their opponent. They would use the proper way to defeat their opponent. That is the heroic way. However, I prefer to use different methods.’’
He turned to look at Old Mark and lightly said, ’’Some people are born heroes. However, being a hero is tiring. I like wine and pretty women. I like to enjoy myself. I like freedom and plotting. Unfortunately, to be a hero and to be admired by millions of people is out of bound for me.’’
’’Nonsense!’’ Old Mark snorted in contempt. ’’Who said heroes cannot like pretty women? Aren't there stories in this world about heroes having affairs with pretty women?’’
’’That is not affair, my friend.’’ 1 Seth laughed. ’’That is called love. It is the love between the hero and the beautiful woman. They are all dazzling and bright. However, playboys are different. Heroes should be burly, with a sword in one hand and his beloved in the other. He would then stand at the highest point and look majestically at the millions respecting him. As for me, I would not use a sword even if you gave me one. As for women, the more the better. The faster the women are changed, the better for me.’’
’’Hahaha...’’ Old Mark burst into laughter. ’’You are not hero material indeed. You should be...’’
Seth also laughed. ’’I should be a playboy that schemes behind the hero. I should be a person like Dandong.’’
Old Mark shook his head. ’’However, I am confused by you. What does this have to do with Rody? You had said earlier that you would make use of Rody for a another few years. After a few years, the Empire would no longer need him. What do you mean by that?’’
Seth looked, at Old Mark and asked back, ’’What do you think the Empire needs the most right now?’’
Old Mark shook his head and replied, ’’Of course it needs a real Regiment Commander of the Tulip Family. A man that wields a sword to defend the dignity of the Empire and repels possible assailants!’’
Seth looked at Old Mark in pity. ’’Is this the conclusion you obtained after living for over two hundred years? My God, you better don't claim to be Dandong's disciple in the future. He would be so ashamed that he would come back to life.’’
Ignoring Old Mark's murderous glare, Seth coldly continued, ’’The Empire needs a real Emperor, a leader! And not an idiot who only knows how to dig his own grave!’’
Old Mark laughed. ’’An Emperor? Are you trying to become an Emperor?’’
Seth was shocked and immediately replied, ’’Of course not! I do not even want to be a Duke! What makes you think I would want to become an Emperor? Do you think it is nice to become an Emperor?’’ Seth smiled and continued, ’’Have you seen puppet shows? The one where the puppets are tied on a string and then made to dance.’’
Seth smiled. ’’If you could stand behind and control the Emperor. Wouldn't that be more interesting?’’
Old Mark sighed again. ’’Who was the one that said you are a person without ambition? The person who said it is blind.’’
Seth shrugged his shoulders. ’’I have never said such things. I only said that I cannot become a hero. I did not say that I cannot become formidable.’’
Seth then gave a strange laughter. ’’I knew two to three years ago that Abbas XI was impotent. He has not been with the Empress in the past two years. This was not something in the open. I would not have known if Jojo had not, inadvertently, told me.’’
’’Hmph, why do you care about these things?’’
Seth shook his head. ’’Of course, if a playboy like me does not care about such things, what else would I care about? Do you think I care about the battle in the Northwest or the holy war with the Roland Continent?’’ He then sighed and continued, ’’But, I still know more than others... Her Highness the Empress is not feeling well.’’
Seth smiled. ’’Our dear Empress seems to be pregnant. However, she has not told the Emperor.’’
Old Mark stared at Seth with wide eyes.
Seth lightly said, ’’That is why nobody should bother aiming for the title of Crown Prince. Even if Bayan comes back to life, I also have a way to kill him again! Nobody can fight for the position of Crown Prince anymore. This is because that position has already been given to the child in the Empress' womb.’’
At that time, anybody would have asked the same question. Old Mark was not an exception and asked, ’’Who is the father?’’
Seth smiled calmly and replied, ’’I am.’’
’’You... You are truly formidable...’’ Old Mark was stunned for a long time before he slowly spoke, ’’You actually...’’ Old Mark then laughed like a madman. ’’You actually cuckolded the Emperor!’’
Seth gave a strange laughter. ’’Such a beautiful future... After a few months, the Emperor would be dead. My son would then become the new ruler. Rody will continue to serve as the Duke of the Tulip Family, and I will be the Dandong of the new generation! I will create a new age in the Empire!’’
Old Mark smiled and replied, ’’I am afraid it won't be so easy. The Emperor will die within a few months? Although that person is annoying, he does not seem to be short-lived. Do you plan to kill him? Don't forget. Right now, he is still an Emperor while you are nobody.’’
Seth lightly replied, ’’You don't understand. I have hundreds of ways to end his life. However, I don't think I even need to act.’’ Seth laughed helplessly. ’’Our Emperor's life would end in about a few months. That is what I saw from his urine and his feces. Don't forget that you are the one who taught me about medicine.’’
’’Stop looking at me.’’ Seth told Old Mark. ’’Your gaze is making me uncomfortable. Alright. Let me tell you. The one that wants the Emperor to die is Barond. He wants the Emperor to quickly die so that his son can succeed the throne early. Poisoning the Emperor is not too hard to accomplish and can be done by bribing the people in the Imperial Palace. Besides that, the Emperor is a fool. This could not be done so easily during the era of Abbas the Great. There are thousands of Imperial Guards and master warriors. Even the strongest warrior, Master Autumn, is there. So, what? They cannot eat for the Emperor.’’
Seth then sighed. ’’It was really a good plan. Administer poison slowly for two years. The poison would slowly accumulate before killing its victim. This would not be discovered so easily.’’
Old Mark sighed and asked, ’’How do you know so much?’’
Seth smiled faintly. ’’This is the benefit of being an unnamed playboy. Rody helped me by attracting all the attention, including the vast majority of hostile eyes. As I hide in the dark, I am able to see and hear more things than others.’’
1. In case anyone forget, the royal family's emblem is a thorny flower.