Reincarnated into a Game as the Hero’s Friend - Chapter 132
Translator: Nisarah Editor:Fleeting
There was a large square in the middle of Anheim town, just like any other typical town in the medieval era. In the summer, the town square would become a place for festivals and it would also become a place for the traders to set their stalls. Sometimes, the square became a place for the citizens to gather for a political discussion, a crime scene, or a place to perform.
I gave the order with a loud voice, and the three soldiers cut off the heads of the three bandits. The head of the man named Dagover was cut off by an especially loud sound. When the heads of the three bandits fell, the crowd cheered.
The heads of the three bandits were impaled onto a spear and then brought by soldiers around the town. The town’s citizens gathered and followed behind soldiers. It looked like the scene of the Mikoshi parade in Japan, but since the things that were being brought around were heads of men, not a Mikoshi, it looked rather grotesque.
(T/N: Mikoshi is a portable shrine. There is a festival in Japan where a group of people would carry this Mikoshi around and the crowd followed them.)
There were also many acquaintances and families of the victims in the crowd.
It seemed like this world had the custom of using beheading as a way to execute people of high status, while the execution of ordinary people was done by hanging. It was similar to how in medieval Japan, samurai were executed by telling them to commit seppuku while ordinary people were simply beheaded.
However, I decided for the bandits, who were of low status, to be beheaded instead of hanged for a reason. I also ordered the bandits’ heads to be displayed and brought across the town, which was something I had seen in a drama movie. Because of all of this, execution garnered a lot of interest.
Perhaps because of my memory as a modern Japanese man, I couldn’t help but feel cold when I saw how the citizens seemed to be enjoying the execution. Of course, I was careful not to show that on my face. I knew that this was the norm here, but I still felt uncomfortable.
From the perspective of science, human lives were equal, but from the perspective of politics and the military, the lives of our allies and enemies were not equal. I was in a position where I had no other choice but to think from a later perspective.
It wasn’t like I felt nothing about killing my enemies even though it was to protect my precious people. But because of my position, I couldn’t show any remorse or hesitation in killing my enemies, but on the other hand, I didn’t want to become a monster that felt nothing while killing others. Humans were truly contradictory creatures.
Let’s stop thinking about that here. I pulled myself together and went to my office. There, I had a meeting with several Pledgers. For the Pledgers who decided to support me, I gave them my gratitude and promised them rewards. I also commissioned more work to Pledgers and also asked them to arrange work for the refugees. We would need more human resources in the future, so I wanted to give simple jobs to as many people as possible.
On the other hand, I punished the Pledgers, who refused to cooperate with me. The evidence of some of the Pledgers’ tax evasion had already been collected by Sir Behnke, so I handed out punishment based on that. We got tons of money from fines. As for the matter of monetary assistance to Mangold, I only scolded them. Of course, I had my own reason for that.
I guess the Pledgers were now docile because they saw the execution of the bandits. Despite being executed by beheading, which was an execution method for people with high status, the bandits’ heads were displayed and even brought across the town, which was a blatant insult. For the Pledgers who coincidentally have a high status, the scene of the bandits’ execution must somehow resonate with them.
After the matters with the Pledges were over, while bearing my stomach ache, I sent emissaries to the capital and neighboring territories to share some information. I also commissioned the Iron Hammer to deliver a letter and some goods to Father in the capital.
After that, it was now the time to deal with the reward of the bandits’ extermination operation. This was also a pretty important job, so I must not neglect it.
“…I think there is no problem with that.”
“Okay. Then, I’ll leave the rewards of the soldiers to Schunzel. As for the rewards for Sir Gekke’s mercenaries team, Neurath will take care of it. It’s fine if you do this later, Neurath.”
“Frenssen, put these documents in a box for now. These are the documents about compensation for the victims’ families. If I happen to forget about these, please remind me.”
As for the rewards for the knights, I would consult with Sir Kesten first before deciding on them. Other than weapons and money, horses were also a viable option for the knights’ rewards. Giving horses as a reward to the knights was like giving a luxury car as a reward to your subordinates in my previous life. Horses were technically the ‘luxury cars’ in this era, after all.
In my previous life, I often questioned why the lords in the Sengoku Era gave stuff like headscarves and footwear as rewards. But now I sort of understand. As a person who stood above others, you needed to show your subordinates that you appreciated their work.
To win your subordinates’ hearts, you needed to give them something tangible to show them that you appreciated their work. These ‘tangible’ things didn’t need to be money. They could also be items that symbolize ‘honor’. In this sense, random plates or gloves given by me would be priceless simply because I was a governor appointed by the king. Sorry for thinking you were cheap before, lords of the Sengoku Period.
Although I theoretically understood the necessity of rewards, deciding on what to give to whom was a tedious job. After all, I would be flooded with complaints if the rewards were unfair. While complaining inside, I kept checking and signing the documents. From the side, Sir Behnke nodded in admiration and said, “Viscount-sama is quite skilled in doing paperwork.”
“This is also thanks to Sir’s hard work in sorting the documents. Plus, I am used to handling documents about the military affair.”
Sir Behnke was quite skilled in handling documents relating to the internal affair. As for me, I had experience handling documents about military merits in Finnoi. In addition, I also had experience working with documents in my previous life. That was why I knew the basics of how to work with documents efficiently.
But Sir Behnke’s next words almost made me choke.
“But usually, people of Viscount-sama’s age think of working with the documents as a tedious job and hate them. I suppose Count-sama’s education is excellent.”
“I’ll convey your praise to Father.”
Right… I was, in fact, a student. Come to think of it, I remember my classmates in the academy saying that my way of studying was efficient. My classmates had also consulted me a lot about how to study, except for Mazell, of course.
In my previous life, usually, you would ask for your friends’ help in studying in exchange for treating them to lunch but here since most of my friends were nobles, my friends would tell me about local specialties of their territories or interesting gossip in the court in an exchange of helping them to study. I knew that when you became an adult, the time spent as a student became precious, so I wondered if I would be able to return to being a student in the academy soon…
Let’s end the reminiscing there. As I continued to work with the documents, someone knocked on the door and Frenssen turned to me. Ah, they were here. I guess disposing of a dead body took quite a bit of time. Well, that wasn’t strange considering the crowd.
“Welner-sama. Rafed, Sir Gekke, and the person you have called are here.”
“Let them in.”
As the three of them entered, I put down my papers. The man who came inside, along with Sir Gekke and Rafed, wore the uniform of a low-ranking soldier. That man was someone who was also involved with the bandits’ execution. From his appearance, I could tell that the man was older than me, but our age gap was likely less than 10 years.
“Sir Eickstedt. You’re done?”
“Yes. I cannot thank you enough for your generosity, Your Excellency.”
Sir Eickstedt prostrated. I hoped you could stop acting like that, Sir Eickstedt. Your attitude made me uncomfortable.
I had already explained Sir Eickstedt’s situation to Sir Behnke, Sir Kesten, and Frenssen. So, let’s introduce him to everyone else here.
“It will be hard for us to talk if you act like that, so stop. Everyone, he is Sir Eickstedt, a member of a Count’s household from Triot.”
“I am nothing more than a refugee from a ruined country, sir.”
“I didn’t call you here to see you prostrating like that. Stand up.”
In my heart, I felt uncomfortable seeing a son of a Count from a foreign country who was also older than me act like that. But his country was destroyed, so he was currently in a position where he needed to prostrate and act servile even to someone like me who was younger than him, and because of my position, I had no choice but to accept his attitude.
Sir Eickstedt might be the future me if I decided to escape when the demons attacked the capital.
“Sorry for not being able to do much.”
“Please don’t say something like that. I can’t thank you enough for your generosity, Your Excellency.”
It wasn’t like a person would die immediately after he was stung by bees, but I was still impressed by how this guy managed to survive in that kind of situation. He must have survived out of a sheer will. It also once again made me amazed at the power of potions in this world.
“I hope at least I managed to ease your burden.”
“You have done more than that, Your Excellency. With this, I at least have a face to meet with my daughter and wife in heaven.”
I didn’t know what to say after seeing Sir Eickstedt’s expression. Originally, I captured him alive, so I could interrogate him about how to get drinking water on that hill. To be honest, I was fine with anyone, as long as I could interrogate them.
But after I heard the story of how he became a bandit during his interrogation, I ended up helping him.
I had heard before that Dagover was a bandit who often attacked the refugees from Triot. Unfortunately, Sir Eickstedt’s group of refugees was also a victim of Dagover. Sir Eickstedt’s mother was killed, and his one-year-old son was literally kicked to death by the bandits.
He told us that his wife was abducted by the bandits. When we asked him what happened to his wife after that, he broke down crying without being able to say anything. Whatever it was that happened to his wife must be a truly horrible thing.
His father, a Count of Triot, was apparently in the palace when the demons attacked Triot. His father had most likely already died.
The reason he joined the bandits was to kill Dagover. His original plan was to let Zeghers’ group merge with Dagover’s group, then he would purposely make Dagover drunk after meeting him and stab him to death. Sir Eickstedt, who wasn’t confident in his physical strength, couldn’t think of any other ways to kill Dagover. If I lost my precious people… I would probably do everything to get revenge, just like Sir Eickstedt.
Back then, after he told us everything, he begged, “I am prepared to be executed, but please, let me die after Dagover. I want to see his death.” while crying.
I ended up letting him do Dagover’s execution himself. Perhaps part of the reason I decided to do executions by beheading this time was for the sake of Sir Eickstedt.
By the way, Zeghers, who was the bandit leader of Sir Eickstedt’s group, had become a human porcupine, so I ended up executing a different bandit in his stead.
“Well then, there is something I wanted to ask you, Sir, who has managed to build a base on that hill.”
“Please, ask me anything.”
“If you’re planning to die anyway, how about helping me first?”
When I said it, Sir Eickstedt’s expression became doubtful. Well, I had a reputation for being merciless to criminals, so that was an understandable reaction. But I needed a collaborator, and this guy was a perfect choice.
“Demons are the ones that destroyed Triot. Wouldn’t that mean demons are also the ones that forced you into this kind of situation?”
“…That is correct, but…”
“Don’t you also want to get revenge on demons?”
Sir Eickstedt became silent. A few moments later, with a confused expression, he asked, “What are you planning to do, Your Excellency?”
I took a deep breath inside. My stomach hurt, but I had to tell everyone my plan, right?
“I’m planning to attack Triot.”
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