Masked Knight – Chapter 104

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Ten Year Agreement

 

Everybody stayed in that town for two days. The guards had started to think of asking the local garrison to help escort the Duke as well. If there were hundreds of soldiers escorting, even the brave assassin would not dare to attack.

 

However, that idea was rejected by some of the guards even before it was proposed. They all had the same thoughts. They were the dignified guards of the Duke of the Tulip Family. If they could not protect the Duke from a single-handed assassin and had to resort to getting help from the local garrison, then they would be ridiculed.  If that happened, they would be better off committing suicide than die of shame.

 

Rody spent a long time in his room. When he came out, the haziness on his face had gone. He ordered his soldiers to stay in town for two days. He also did not to leave any soldier to guard outside his room at night.

 

Dark was actually hiding among Rody’s traveling group. He hid in an abandoned attic near to the place where the group was staying in. In the past two days, Dark stayed in the attic as he observed the movement of Rody and his group. He watched passively as strict precautions were taken. They did not leave any guards to watch at night and they also did not leave the room much for outdoor activities during the day. Rody hid in the room and all daily requirements were delivered to him. For two days, Dark did not manage to find any opportunity to attack.

 

However, Dark had excellent patience. In the grassland, he often needed to pursue a wolf for several days before he could kill it. He would also not feel tired from the hard work. In fact, he was more energetic as the target was his enemy. He would not feel agitated even if he needed to wait for twenty days to gain an opportunity. Moreover, the Duke would not be able to hide in the town forever.

 

On the third day, at around noon time, Dark noticed something strange!

 

He saw that the door of the room where the Duke was staying in had opened. Dark thought that the Duke was about to continue his journey when they took out two horses. However, only two of Rody’s subordinates were on the horses. The two whipped their horses and rushed off towards the South. After waiting for a while, another two horses appeared. Two guards rode the horses and headed towards the East.  Dark waited for a while more and once again, another two guards on horses came out from the yard. Those two rode towards the North.

Dark was bewildered. After all, he was only one person. He hesitated for a long time and finally decided to change his tactic. Anyway, it would not be wrong to continue following the Duke.

 

However, in the afternoon, when the guards who left earlier did not return, Dark’s heart was filled with mysterious doubts.

 

When Dark was feeling confused,  a carriage finally came out. The remaining guards were riding their horses and guarding the carriage on all sides. They surrounded the carriage and headed southwards.

 

Dark gritted his teeth and waited for the carriage to move further away before leaving the attic. He then he covered his tracks before pursuing the carriage.

 

All along the way, Dark noticed that the carriage was moving extremely quickly. Dark sneered in his heart. What’s wrong? Running away in fear?

 

Dark followed from the back as he sneered. He then saw the carriage move faster and faster. Suddenly, it turned into a small path.

 

Thinking of using the small path to get rid of me? Dark sneered. I can even chase the most cunning wolves let alone so many people!

 

He did not hesitate and immediately followed the carriage.

 

In the distance, Dark saw the horses and the carriage quickly entered a small grove. Dark vigilantly observed from behind for a while. Finally, he gritted his teeth and followed the carriage as well.

 

After running a few steps, he noticed that the distant carriage had stopped in the middle of the woods.  Those few guards were missing.

 

Dark frowned and became more vigilant. He hid behind a tree and observed carefully for a long time. Suddenly, he realized. They had abandoned their carriage and escaped on horses!

 

Although he thought of that, he still carefully jumped from tree to tree and slowly approached the carriage. When he was at the front, he saw that the carriage door was open and that the carriage was empty.

 

Dark felt surprised and angry as he whispered, “Well played! The Duke of the Tulip Family had actually run away!” He then jumped down the tree and looked at the horseshoe prints on the floor. However, he felt something suspicious after looking at them. The horseshoe prints on the floor showed that the guards had scattered in all directions.

 

Dark hatefully took out his scimitar and ferociously slashed at the carriage. His face had turned pale.

 

While he was feeling angry, he suddenly heard a voice coming from a distance. “Mister Dark! Are you looking for me?”

 

Dark quickly turned around and saw a person standing next to a tree looking indifferent. That person was the man he wanted to kill, The Duke of Tulip Family.

 

Dark’s heart was beating fiercely. He looked around, and his heart turned cold.

 

He saw that he was surrounded by several groups of soldiers with two soldiers in each group. They had blocked him from all directions. They held their swords as they slowly approached him.

 

Dark’s expression changed as he immediately took out his longbow and shot an arrow at Rody. From far, he heard Rody laugh coldly and dodge the arrow by moving behind a tree. The arrow missed its target. Dark was shocked as he understood that it was a trap. They had lured him into the woods and made him unable to use his bow and arrow effectively. In the dense woods, the power of the bow and arrow was greatly reduced.

 

He noticed that Rody’s guards were slowly getting closer from all directions using the trees as covers. The encircled space around him was getting smaller. Taking a deep breath, he threw down his bow and took out his scimitar. He fiercely shouted, “Come on!”

 

The guards had already completely surrounded Dark but they did not approach any further. Instead, they gnashed their teeth and glared at Dark as they waited for the Duke’s order. Once the order was given, they would rush forward and cut Dark to pieces.

 

Rody sighed. He separated the guards and walked to the front. He looked at Dark with a trace of frustration and said, “Mister Dark! Long time no see!”

 

Dark snorted coldly. He then slashed at an empty space and shouted, “Stop talking nonsense! If you want my life, come and take it!”

 

Rody frowned and lightly said, “Since the start, Mister Dark is the one aiming for my life. I have never taken the initiative to provoke you.”

 

Dark spat as he stared at Rody and shouted, “I already said I will kill you! However, I ended up being trapped by you today! There is nothing left to say!”

 

Rody pondered for a moment. He then looked at Dark’s face and frowned. “Mister Dark, that day, in the Watt Fortress, you said that the late… my father killed your brother. What happened? I have asked the old soldiers in the army but they do not seem to know you. Can you tell me what actually happened?”

 

Dark’s expression changed. His eyes were full of resentment and he gritted his teeth. He asked, “Why are you asking all this?”

 

Rody gave a faint smile and replied, “Whatever the case, you had saved my life. If it were not for you, I would have died in the Northwest grasslands.”

 

“Fine!” Dark hatefully said, “Nothing bad will happen even if I tell you! My brother was one of the captains of the cavalry, serving under your father! As for me, I did not have any important post in the military. Naturally, no one would know me! On the other hand, your father was the Commander-in-Chief of a large army and had killed a countless number of people. Naturally, he would not care about the name of a captain’s little brother!”

 

“Oh?” Rody nodded and then asked. “So, why did your brother die?”

 

Dark’s eyes turned red as he stared at Rody and said, “In a battle, my brother was late in providing support according to the specified time by the late Duke. This caused the other barracks to suffer heavy losses. The late Duke was furious and executed my brother according to the martial law! Hmph! He was just late! However, the Duke refused to listen to my brother’s explanation! The enemy had dispatched small groups of armies to obstruct all along the way. My brother did not rest as he took his soldiers and fought for two hundred miles, but he eventually reached the late Duke! But… but your father still said he violated the military order and executed him. My pitiful brother. When he was executed, he was still covered in the fresh blood of the enemies! Was that his reward for fighting desperately for the nation?”

 

Dark’s voice choked as he finished speaking. His sharp eyes glared at Rody. Randt was alarmed and slowly stood beside Rody. He raised his broadsword and looked at Dark vigilantly to prevent any unexpected attack.

 

Rody was sad. For a moment, he did not know what to say. He was ignorant as to what happened then. However, he had been in the army for some time and had learned from Sieg and the others that the late Duke was very strict and strictly enforced military law. When Sieg and the others talked about it, they had an anxious look on their faces. Having heard Dark’s story, he believed that most of it were true.

 

Rody had experienced a lot of killing and understood that military orders must be obeyed and that kindness must not be shown. Although he felt that the late Duke was too cold hearted, he understood that the late Duke also did not have a choice and had to hold the captain responsible.

 

After thinking for a while, Rody slowly said, “Mister Dark… you… you can go!”

 

“What?” Before Dark could speak, Randt had already cried out.

 

Dark’s expression changed. He looked at Rody gloomily and said, “Duke of Tulip Family! What tricks are you up to? Are you planning to use some ways to punish me?”

 

Rody shook his head. He waved his hand to tell Randt not to speak. After that, he looked at Dark and continued, “Mister Dark! That day you saved me and my companion! By right, I owe you two lives! I spared your life once in Watt Fortress and paid back a debt. Today, I will spare you again! From now on, we do not owe each other anything!”

 

Dark looked confused as he gritted his teeth and said, “You are really letting me go?”

 

Rody nodded and sighed, “Although you hate me, but I do not hate you. Although you had attacked me in the past few days and have injured my guards, but you did not kill them. This shows that you do not slaughter innocent people. Had you killed a single person, I will not let you go today!”

 

Dark shook his head in disbelief. He still looked fierce and said, “Duke of Tulip Family! You better not say these kinds of words! Even if you let me go, I will definitely not let you go! When I see an opportunity, I will still come and kill you!”

 

Rody nodded and suddenly smiled. He said, “Mister Dark. I will spare you your life today but you have to promise me one thing!”

 

Without waiting for Dark to speak Rody continued, “Do not give me any trouble for three years! After three years, if I am not dead, feel free to come and find me. I will give you an opportunity for a fair fight!”

 

“What?” Dark sneered as he heard this. He was about to open his mouth to refuse.

 

Rody immediately replied, “Dark! I may be saying too much, but you are also a person of the Empire! You should know my identity and my current influence in the Empire! Reuenthal is glaring at the Empire from the Northwest Region! The southern mountain tribes are constantly causing disorders! The Northern Roland Continent armies are also getting ready to fight! Turbulence is everywhere. Problems may arise at any time! Think of the consequences if I were to die right now! With the presence of the Tulip Family war banner in the Empire, the enemies from all areas will not dare to create chaos. However, it will be a heavy blow for the Empire if the Tulip Family war banner falls.  There will be chaos. Millions of ordinary citizens would be caught up in the flames of war, and countless families will fall apart! Dark, are you cold-hearted enough to ignore this?”

 

After saying those last few sentences, Rody’s expression turned serious.

 

Dark’s body trembled fiercely, and his eyes showed a confused expression. Rody’s voice was like a hammer pounding on his heart. He thought of the consequences mentioned by Rody. Cold sweat gradually appeared on his forehead. His face turned extremely pale.

 

Rody coldly said, “Mister Dark. You are also a warrior and are full of righteousness! Do you have the heart to see these things happen?”

 

Suddenly, Dark raised his head and looked straight at Rody. He asked without sounding afraid, “Duke of Tulip Family! In this case, what do you mean by three years? Are you saying you can solve all these in two years?”

 

Rody sighed and replied, “I do not know but… I will do what I can!” In Rody’s heart, he secretly thought, Three years? I am afraid, I cannot solve these problems even in ten years! However, after three years, I will stop being the Duke of Tulip Family. Then, when I am gone, you can go and take revenge on the real Duke of Tulip Family!

 

Dark’s eyes showed determination as he forcefully threw his scimitar on the ground. He then loudly said, “Fine! I promise you!” After that, he looked at Rody and coldly said, “Are you not afraid that I will go back on my promise? Are you not afraid that once I am gone, I will come back and try to assassinate you?”

Rody laughed and replied, “I judge people with my own eyes! If I have judged you wrongly, I deserve to be killed!” He then thought in his heart. You dare to come again? I have already repaid my debts. If I were to catch you again, I will no longer be lenient. I can easily harden my heart and kill a few people.

 

Dark nodded and turned to his left without looking at Rody. Rody gave a signal with his eyes and a few guards opened the way and allowed Dark to leave.

 

Dark walked for about a hundred steps, then he suddenly stopped and turned back. He then loudly said, “Duke of Tulip Family! I am afraid that three years will not be enough! I will give you ten years! I am full of resentment, but I am not heartless!”

 

After that, Dark left in large strides.

 

Rody gave a wry smile when he heard that. Ten years? This is good! Ten years later, go and take revenge on the real Seth! You actually hate the Duke of Tulip Family. I am just an imposter…”

 

Somewhere in the Imperial Capital, someone felt a sudden cold shiver on his back in the middle of his sleep. He then rolled over and went back to sleep.

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