Regressor of the Fallen Family (Novel) Chapter 187

C187: Envoy of the Ares Empire, His Excellency Count Christian Molang.

With the loud shout of the knight, about a dozen people walked into the great hall. Among them, the one attracting the most attention was a middle-aged man with black hair and yellow skin.

"Look at the color of his skin..."

"A true noble of the Empire..."

Black hair and eyes, yellow skin was a symbol of the Imperial family. The nobles of the Empire took pride in such distinctive features, which set them apart from the mostly fair-skinned people of the continent, as they believed it indicated a closer blood relation to the Imperial family.

As the murmurs of the ministers grew louder with curiosity, the smile on the face of the middle-aged man, Christian, deepened accordingly.

"I am Christian Molang, an envoy from the Ares Empire, and I'm here to see His Majesty, the King of Grandia."

Instead of kneeling, the highest form of reverence, he simply bowed at the waist—a typical manner of an Imperial nobleman not showing absolute reverence to a foreign king.

"So, envoy of the Empire, what brings you to our distant lands?"

The King asked, his expression hardened, not exactly pleased by the envoy's presence or the manner he was addressed. After all, "Your Majesty" was customarily used for a sovereign nation's ruler in Grandia, not "Your Highness," which suggested a rank similar to that of an Empire's vassals.

However, Christian announced, "We may have been delayed, but we bring congratulations on Your Highness's coronation, as well as gifts sent by our Emperor." As he motioned, the displeasure on the king’s face melted away at the sight of the items being placed before him.

"The first gift is a rare elixir called Moonlight's Essence, found in the northern polar region of the Empire, with perhaps one discovery per decade."

As Christian signaled, a servant came forward with a transparent box containing a potion. The blue liquid within it emitted a holy light, capturing the attention of all those present.

"As some of you may know, consuming a bottle of Moonlight's Essence can maintain twenty years of youth. It is a treasure of nature that can neither be produced by alchemy nor magic."

Exclamations of amazement erupted from around the room. The Essence of Moonlight was a treasure that couldn’t be bought with money, even in the Empire. It was a precious gift.

And there was more to come.

"The second gift is an artifact named Elohim, crafted by the most dedicated mages of the Imperial Tower of Magic."

Another servant placed a box containing a golden necklace. 

"This is a 5th-class artifact that enhances metabolism, eases fatigue, clears the mind, and otherwise supports one’s health."

Educated nobles thought the same. Such an extravagant waste - a 5th-class artifact, typically made by 7th-circle or 7th-class archmages using rare materials, devoted merely to health.

But Logan, the recipient of such a gift, was more concerned with the implications of this artifact's existence than the waste of resources.

"If they went to the trouble of making this for a gift..." he thought.

The king spoke up, addressing Logan’s unasked question, "It seems that the Empire has a new archmage. Congratulations may be in order."

The appearance of an archmage was a national treasure but also a potential disaster for neighboring states, as 6th-circle mages were often classified as superhuman. 

"Regrettably, that is not the case. Instead, our Empire's Tower of Magic's highest-ranking mages have recently completed a vision for crafting artifacts just beneath that level. Hence the gifts,” replied Christian.

Despite the explanation, the king’s mood did not improve. If this was about a vision that could topple the existing artifact crafting formula, it would directly impact national power.

However, a relieved Logan thought, 'Of course, there's that.'

The gift implied by Christian was a form of boasting. While such a vision existed, the resources required were immense, making it a forgotten technique within the Empire. In a past life, the Empire abandoned it, supporting Kraune's mass production of cheaper artifacts.

'But I've already secured Kraune's research. Even if Clayton fails, the Empire won't be able to apply it.’

As Logan smiled at the thought, Christian noticed the noble's uncertainty and introduced a third gift to sway them further.

"The third gift is a diamond so grand it is known as the Eye of the Continent. I trust you have heard of it."

As a servant removed the cloth veiling a transparent box, a fist-sized blue gem revealed its stunning beauty.

"Is that the gem estimated at 100 million gold?"

"That's supposed to be a once-in-a-lifetime find. To gift that..."

"How generous of the Emperor..."

Amidst the exclamations, Christian once again bowed respectfully to the king.

"The Emperor hopes for eternal friendship between the Ares Empire and Grandia. He offers this diamond wishing His Highness a long and peaceful reign. We hope it pleases your heart."

Such fabulous gifts left the king with no choice but to accept.

"We thank you for these precious gifts and wish for a friendly relationship with your nation. However, having received such gifts, we must consider a proper response..."

As the King glanced around, seemingly troubled, Logan and another official exchanged puzzled expressions.

"Oh, you need not think of a reciprocal gift. However, separate from these gifts, our Emperor wishes for the young hero, Count Logan MacLain, who resolved the recent troubles of your kingdom, to visit our capital. If Your Highness permits, I would like to ask his opinion on this invitation."

'What?!' Logan's heart nearly leaped from his chest at the sudden shock. 

'The Emperor wants me?'

He had never imagined facing such a situation. As Logan worked to control his shock, the King broke the silence.

"It would seem prudent for you to accept. For the sake of our nations' friendship."

Despite his careful tone, there was a gleam in the king's eye that could be interpreted as amusement.

'Could it be...?'

Logan briefly entertained the thought that the King might be orchestrating this situation, but soon dismissed it.

'The Imperial House playing along with the King's tune? Unlikely.’

Yet if that were the case, it was a most alarming scenario.

"If the Emperor has extended such an invitation, how can I refuse?" His lips curved into a prideful smile, knowing the implications of a refusal—the potential wrath of the Emperor and the strain on relations were burdens too great for a young earl.

Plus, the prospect of war hastening and resulting in the worst of cascading disasters was certainly not a burden he felt he could shoulder.

And even if not for those concerns,

'I’d like to meet the Emperor myself.'

The Emperor had been the primary adversary for the Liberation Front of Grandia in his past life. Despite that, Logan had never seen the Emperor - not while he was in power, nor when he was secluded after abdicating his throne. The Emperor as a conqueror had seized the kingdom. Logan wanted to judge him in person.

Though the timing of such a meeting was far from ideal.

"I... I will accept."

Logan sighed before adding, "However, I will need time to prepare myself for such a meeting. Could you grant me that?"

"Worry not, our gracious Emperor has generously set a forthcoming date. If you could join the Spring Festival at the capital of Aserian next year, that would be optimal."

Logan’s expression hardened at the mention of a set date.

'They've already decided on a date?'

It took three months to reach the Imperial capital Aserian from the kingdom if one traveled leisurely. Considering the current time of year, with the end approaching, even speeding up his travels, Logan would only have a month or two left.

"...Very well. I will prepare as such."

The King declared with satisfaction, "Now, let us prepare a welcome party for Count Christian. This will also improve our mutual relations, and I expect every department's minister to attend."

Before the party started, Christian handed Logan an invitation, elaborately engraved with the dazzling dragon emblem of the Imperial family.

"A magical treatment is applied to this invitation. When you travel to the capital, present this cover and you will be accommodated throughout the Empire."

"Thank you."

Logan had to mask his disdain with a smile as he accepted the invitation. But Christian had one more thing to say.

"Then I shall see you at the party."

"Oh, I must return to my domain to tend to affairs, unfortunately, so I will not be at the party. Please enjoy yourself."

With many matters to resolve in so little time, the thought of joining the festivities seemed too much.

"Oh, that's a pity. His Majesty had hoped to have a conversation with the hero he acknowledges. Perhaps when you come to the capital, may I request you to seek me out?"

"If the opportunity arises, it will be my pleasure."

"Ha ha. Thank you. I look forward to that day."

With the same noble rank, but from the Empire and the kingdom respectively, Christian's respectful demeanor seemed unusual. The Emperor's gifts also seemed to be something that didn't exist in Logan's past life.

'Whether it's the first prince or the third, the Emperor wouldn’t care, so it must be related to my invitation.'

Pondering the issue wouldn't reveal more at the moment.

'First, I need to prioritize what needs to be done.'

After sending Christian Molang off, Logan immediately headed to his master's residence.

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