He has been waiting for you.
Beside the crowded street, Teresa raised her notebook to reveal these words on it. Astounded, Roel couldn’t help but stare at her with his mouth agape.
“William has been waiting for me? What does that mean?” asked Roel in surprise.
Teresa pressed her lips together, not knowing how to respond to that question. She would have to divulge William’s secrets if she wanted to explain the matter, but she didn’t think that it was her place to say those things.
If anything, Mina should be the one to tell him.
So, she let out a sigh and gently shook her head.
Roel caught her drift and decided not to probe any further. He nodded understandingly before raising his cup to take another sip.
It looks like William has his circumstances too.
This thought weighed down Roel’s heart, but when he looked at the pink-haired woman accompanying him, the pressure he felt seemed to lighten a little.
So far, it would appear that not everyone from the Knight Kingdom agreed with William’s stance. That was good news since it meant that Roel could win their support one by one before turning around to pressure William.
Teresa appeared to be a core member of William’s group, and she was the most normal and rational one there. It would go a long way if Roel could maintain good relations with her.
Roel finally understood the purpose behind the guidance, but another doubt arose in his mind.
He came here to fulfill the guidance from the Goddess of Fate, but what about Teresa? It was a little peculiar to see a transfer student like her wandering the streets all alone on her very first day.
“Teresa, are you touring the academy? If so, I can bring you around,” asked Roel.
Unexpectedly, Teresa shook her head. She quickly scribbled on her notebook.
I’m looking for someone.
“Looking for someone? Did someone from your group lose their way?”
Yeah, it’s Brittany. I couldn’t find her since dinner.
“I see… Huh?”
Roel suddenly thought of a possibility that stifled his words to a halt.
In the forest outside Azure Manor, a golden-haired woman dressed in light armor was hidden on top of a tree, spying on a majestic manor through the cracks between the leaves. She watched as the candles slowly snuffed out and the breathing of those inside the manor deepened.
She was Brittany Lunde, the daughter of Pendor’s Lunde Ducal House. She was a ravishing young lady who happened to be a powerful transcendent too, especially after her breakthrough to Origin Level 4 last month. Her Origin Level paired with her Valkyrie Bloodline allowed her to easily overpower any of her peers, to the extent that she could be considered the key fighting force of the transfer students.
Yet, the very day she entered Saint Freya Academy, she chanced upon her fiancé who had left home to escape from their engagement. She would have dragged him back with her right away if not for the fact she had encountered someone whom she must never make an enemy out of—her observation target, Roel Ascart.
The aura Roel released back then at the assembly hall had deeply shaken their group.
Brittany’s sharp instincts from her Valkyrie Bloodline told her that he was an opponent she could never hope to defeat… and Geralt was under his protection.
I can’t defeat Roel Ascart, and Geralt will not return to me on his own accord. However, there’s still another way out.
All she had to do was to avoid Roel Ascart. Her only objective here was Geralt. As long as Roel Ascart wasn’t around, she was confident that she would be able to suppress Geralt and take him away with her.
The first thing she did was to observe the raid location, which was none other than the Azure Manor.
After hours of observation, she found out that most students residing there were First Grade students, and there were hardly any strong ones amongst them. There was a man named Paul who was constantly by Geralt’s side, but that man was only at Origin Level 5 and couldn’t pose a threat to her.
Her initial plan was just to check out the location, but after careful assessment, she noticed something that sparked her excitement—the master of the manor wasn’t around at the moment.
In other words, if I were to rush in right now, wouldn’t I be able to…
Those thoughts were extremely tempting to Brittany.
“I advise you not to do so.”
A sudden voice coming from behind made Brittany’s blood turn cold. She quickly turned around to take a look.
In the depths of the forest, beneath the shadows of a lush tree, there was a pair of golden eyes staring at her, silently warning her not to do anything rash.
Brittany’s eyes narrowed in horror upon confirming the other party’s identity. The overwhelming fear palpitating in her chest triggered her instincts to retaliate, but at the same time, she was apprehensive about provoking that unfathomably powerful man.
While she was stuck in a dilemma, Roel continued his words.
“Teresa and the others are looking for you, Miss Brittany. I suggest you return now.”
Brittany was surprised to hear Roel addressing Teresa informally. It left her wondering whether there was some kind of special relationship between Roel and Teresa. The knowledge that Roel and Teresa were on friendly terms soothed her nervousness a little.
Roel was gladdened to see that Brittany was finally starting to relax a little. There was a short pause before he added on.
“Miss Brittany, I’ve heard about the situation between you and Geralt. I personally think that you could have handled this issue better.”
“Mister Roel, I am his fiancée. Even if you try to stop me, it won’t make a…”
“Pardon me, Miss Brittany, but I hope that you can calm down and hear me out first. I’m not here to stop you. On the contrary, I wish to help you,” said Roel with a smile.
Brittany was stunned. Her eyes flickered in uncertainty as she watched the young man walk out of the shadows with an ancient staff in hand.
“Help me? What do you mean by that?”
“I wish to dispel the misunderstanding between the two of you so that you’re able to fulfill your engagement. Miss Brittany, you should have noticed by now that your attempts to capture his heart haven’t been successful thus far. On the contrary, he’s only getting more afraid of you.”
Those brutally honest words made Brittany’s face turn pale, and she couldn’t help but wince a little. This had always been her sore spot, but Roel had no intention of holding back just because of that.
“I’ve already heard about the Lunde House and everything you have done, so I’ll just get straight to the conclusion. At this rate, it’s only a matter of time before Geralt annuls your engagement.”
Brittany already had an inkling of it herself, but the confirmation of her worst fears was a lot to bear. She had to grab onto the nearest tree trunk to support herself or else she might have just fallen off the tree. Her eyes turned deadpan as despair swallowed her heart.
It was then that Roel suddenly changed his tone.
“However, it’s not all over yet. You still have hope.”
“That’s right, Miss Brittany. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could help each other out a little?” suggested Roel with a smile.
“Help each other out… What do you mean? Just to make things clear, I have no intention of betraying my country!”
Brittany immediately snapped out of her trance and glared at Roel warily. Roel shook his head in response.
“Miss Brittany, you’re overthinking things. All I’m asking from you here is for you to help me forge friendly relations with William. This should be a win-win for both of our sides… unless you intend to make me your enemy?”
Brittany felt conflicted.
On one hand, their objective here was actually to establish good relations with Roel, so there was nothing wrong with his request. However, the act of establishing a private alliance with Roel made her feel like she was betraying her comrades.
This dilemma left her unable to respond to Roel’s offer right away.
Her silence didn’t worry Roel much though, for he had prepared another trump card that would ensure the success of this negotiation.
“Miss Brittany, I have also provided some gifts for you as a token of goodwill.”
“Gifts? Do you think that I’d be bribed by you that…”
“A set of Geralt’s cutleries and bedsheets.”
The bait was simply too tempting that Brittany accepted the deal without a second’s hesitation. Roel revealed a satisfied smile.
Current number of spies: 2