Warlord of Chaos - Chapter 106 - Carefree Man
Chapter 106: Carefree Man
Translator: Wuxia Dog Editor: Wuxia Dog
Hand up, sword down. Thomas slowly fell down with his hands covering his chest. He couldn’t believe this until the sword was thrust into his chest! As the mayor of Tenth Town, Thomas was a relatively powerful man in Beitman. Except the four castellans and several generals, the most powerful men were the mayors of militarily strategic towns. No one had expected that Reg would simply ignore Thomas’ position and kill him without giving it a second thought.
Han Jin had predicted that Reg’s mentality would surely go through great change after experiencing so much; Reg heart had been filled with a deep sadness after Conrad’s early death, and combined with his recent experience, it would be strange if his mentality didn’t change! But now, what he had done was rather extreme. The whole execution ground was in perfect silence as Thomas staggered down.
A moment later, the knights burst into cheers. Some of them were comparing Reg to Conrad in their hearts, and imagining what Conrad would have done in this situation. He would have surely solved the dispute according to the proper procedure, such as arguing for arbitration rights. Reg, on the other hand, had solved it in an extreme manner, a manner that only bandits would take. But the soldiers all felt excited and uplifted. The former was the manner for bureaucrats, while the latter was for a real man: if you want to harm me, I will kill you first!
The officers all hid behind the bench and did nothing even when Thomas, their mayor, was killed before their eyes. They all knew it would make no difference even if they stepped up. What’s more, none of their subordinates had come. They must have been stopped by the knights of the Riptide Regiment on their way, which meant that there were far more soldiers that had arrived in Tenth Town than those present at the execution ground.
Reg defiantly wiped the blood off his dagger and descended from the bench. He was still thinking about his father’s coffin. Now that he had achieved his goal, he was in no mood to stay here any longer. After a shout, he rushed outside the town, followed by the knights.
“Remember to dig up the roots after cutting the weeds…” Han Jin sighed. Behind the bench was a young man whose eyes were flashing with rancorous flames. He had tried to rush down several times, but had been stopped again and again by the men standing beside him. If Reg had seen this, he could have killed the young man by some far-fetched excuse. However, Han Jin couldn’t. He had no relationship with Thomas at all. If he really killed the young man, he would only make things worse.
* * *
When dusk came, the knights settled in the woods after running day and night. They carried no military supplies. They just found a clean and windless place, leaned on their steeds, and took a break.
Ronning was really a man with sharp eyes. Regardless if he agreed with Reg’s extreme practices or not, Ronning did not judge him and only talked freely and to his heart’s content about his own real thoughts, which soon eliminated all potential barriers between them.
Han Jin watched him icily. Ronning was a man with clear goals who had set a clear position for himself. Throughout all their talking, Ronning had never once proposed to try to salvage the situation caused by Reg. This was very important and had a far-reaching significance.
If Ronning had put forward any suggestion to ease the conflict between the nobles and themselves, it meant that he thought he had a better way to solve the conflict – at least better than the one adopted by Reg. In other words, it would mean that, in his mind, he thought he was at least equal to Reg as a leader; Reg had simply met everyone before him, and he would want everyone to see Reg’s mistake and treat his own opinion with more weight.
But he didn’t say anything like that. What he had done and said were impeccable. Though he had a deep friendship with Reg, which was obvious from the excited bear hug he had given Reg when Reg had stepped down from the scaffold, he behaved properly in front of Reg. All the suggestions he put forward were based on facts instead of targeting someone.
To be brief, the suggestions Ronning put forward were about what to do if things turned against them or turned for the worse. He might have realized that their conflict with the four castellans was irreconcilable after Reg had killed Thomas. Any unrealistic ideas would mean betrayal and disloyalty to Reg.
Though he had talked very much, his main idea was simple: seize power via every means possible, and at all costs. He listed all the names of the commanders and generals, pointed out those who had the closest ties with former Regimental Commander Conrad and could be trusted, those who were promoted by Conrad and could be trusted with limitation, those who remained neutral and should be both trusted and guarded against, as well as those who were subordinates of other castellans and must be wiped out.
Though Ronning was only the leader of the first cavalry regiment, he had a clear understanding of Riptide Regiment’s entire situation. Now, he was sitting there, speaking with fervor and assurance, while Reg, the real leader, felt it too boring and left by some excuse.
“Why did you come out?” Han Jin asked in surprise when he happened to see Reg.
“To get a breath of fresh air. It’s too stuffy in there.” Reg forced a smile, sitting close to Han Jin.
It was quiet in the woods, aside from the occasional neighing of horses. On the road were several figures walking up and down; they were the knights responsible for the night watch. All the others had fallen asleep due to tiredness after a whole day and night of traveling.
“Do you think… some of Ronning’s proposals are unacceptable?” Han Jin asked in a low voice.
“No.” Reg shook his head and sighed. “I am just too tired…”
“Tired? You haven’t done anything yet! And you feel tired already?”
“I… Maybe I am not really good at this.”
“But regardless if you are good at this or not, you must keep going,” Han Jin said. “Otherwise, what can the villagers in Green Garden do? What can the soldiers do?”
Reg bit his lips but made no reply.
“You feel tired because you are not fond of this, not because you are not good at this.” Han Jin paused. “A bard once said that despicability is the passport for the despicable, and dignity is the elegy for the dignified.”
“Bard? Cessacioun said that?”
“No.” Han Jin smiled. “But I disagree with him. His thoughts were too shallow. The real world is completely different from what he had described. Dignity is the passport for the despicable, and despicability often becomes the elegy for the dignified!”
Reg was confused. He looked at Han Jin blankly.
“Think about Rudolph and Knight Conrad, your father. They are the best examples.” Han Jin still smiled. “Rudolph defamed your father as a traitor and made up many crimes against him. In the end, he declared that he ‘had enough’ and ‘couldn’t watch it go on’ anymore, and thus righteously stood up to expose your father. Ha… he set himself up as a dignified and righteous knight, while your father’s tombstone was to be engraved with the word ‘traitor’. If you had not come back, no one could have changed this. It might have been that hundreds of years later, people would have really thought of your father a despicable traitor.”
“I can understand why you feel tired. You don’t want to destroy your father’s reputation, do you? You had thought it was the right thing to do when you had killed Thomas this noon, because you wanted to warn your enemies and to avenge Ronning and the other knights. But you regret it now, because you think you caused a big trouble for us and damaged your father’s good reputation of integrity and loyalty. Am I right?”
“Yes, but not quite correct.” Reg cracked a bitter smile again.
“You want to protect your friend, the soldiers, the villagers, and also the reputation of Knight Conrad. Don’t you think you expect too much from yourself?”
“What do you think I should do?”
“I… I can’t offer you any advice in this matter. If I were you, I would follow my own heart, so you can do what you think is right. In this way, you will be much more carefree,” Han Jin said in a low voice. Suddenly, a burst of laughter came to them. This man who had talked so much about being carefree showed a strange look on his face.
Ronning was having a good time talking with Sunier. Both of them were good at military affairs, and one had served as the commander of a great escape, while the other was the leader of a cavalry. What’s more, both were young, appreciated each other, and had numerous common thoughts and topics.
Han Jin was not in a good mood, especially just now when Sunier was laughing so happily and clapping hands after hearing something from Ronning. Obviously, she agreed with him and his words strongly resonated with her. Han Jin wanted to hit someone when he saw this, but soon silently slapped himself instead. “What is wrong with me?” he thought.
Another burst of laughter came. This time, Ronning was laughing and applauding.
At last, Han Jin found an excuse and slowly walked towards them. “Hush! They are sleeping.”
Sunier blinked at him. The Han Jin standing in front of her with a solemn face seemed foreign to her. However, she didn’t think much of it and simply nodded.
Sitting far away from them, Moxinke knocked Cessacioun on his shoulder and grinned. “Did you see that?”
“Why are you the one laughing?” Cessacioun said helplessly. “If things go on like this, we will all be in trouble.”
“What trouble?” Moxinke was confused.
“If someone were pursuing Sylner, what would you do?”
“Ha! That would be a blessing! I could finally be free!”
“Do you really think so?” Cessacioun asked in a mixed tone.
“Of course I do!” Moxinke replied decisively, but his expression was unnatural.
Han Jin walked back. Anyway, he could not separate the two. But the sound of talking and laughing came about again. Sunier and Ronning were sitting closer in order to lower their voices.
Han Jin punched on an old tree to vent out the anger caused by his own mistake. He had tried to be smart, but had only made things worse. “What’s happening to me?” he asked himself in his mind. “I should have no special feeling for Sunier. Why would I… Have I neglected this because no one had such intimate conversations with her in the past?”