Polymath Redux Annex
Chapter 57 – The ‘right’ choice
“Then, my Mistress, if you would be so kind as to bestow upon me a name, I would be most grateful,” asked the summoned Silver Devil servant. Still knelt against the cold floor of the cathedral, he demonstrated his servitude towards his summon.
“Eh? A name?” Rena look to Mordred for guidance on this matter. Perhaps a queer tradition to the residents of this world who only named beings as babies, so a fully-grown adult with no name would be considered strange indeed. “He doesn’t have a name?”
In response, Mordred shrugged back, “you can call him whatever you want. Call him cupcake if you so desire; it really is all up to you as his master.”
“N- no, I wouldn’t do something like that, it’s just…” she trailed off in an attempt to come up with a name that would be pleasant to hear and be called. “I don’t really know much about the names of the devil race.” She continued to contemplate for a few more moments before meekly speaking up, “then… would the name ‘Grimal’ be acceptable?”
The Silver Devil smiled and nodded, “then so shall it be, from hence forth, I will be known as ‘Grimal’. With this name, my life will be yours to command.”
Naturally, having been a slave most of her life, the mindset of being a ‘master’ was not instilled upon her, rather she reacted with modesty and drew back. She gave a complicated smile but ultimately decided to accept her role but tried to lessen the implications, “umm… I’d be happier if we could just be friends.”
“Of every request, that one in particular must not be granted. I am your servant, first and foremost.”
“E- eh… is that so?” she turned to Mordred who only nodded back. “O- okay… please treat me well, Mr. Grimal.”
“Grimal, your mistress is tired. Take her back to her home to rest for now,” Mordred asked of the Silver Devil who only gazed back at him with mild amusement. The Silver Devil was by no means stupid, quite the opposite. There seemed to be an understanding that even if he went all out, he would never be able to put a dent on Mordred. He stayed his hands and accepted the order from a being not his master.
Had it been Irina, it was likely she would’ve backlashed, asking why she would need to follow an order from someone who wasn’t her master. Perhaps this intelligence might have made the Silver Devil the proper choice to summon at the beginning, over Irina who only acted with fervent loyalty. At the time, he prioritized power over intelligence and thus this was the result. That said, Irina was not a bad servant… ‘if she could learn,’ he thought.
“That is only a matter of course,” the Silver Devil responded. “If it is to protect the Mistress, then I will do anything and everything.”
Mordred accepted the reply and turned to Rena with a request of his own. “I do have one request,” he asked.
“Yes?” Rena gazed back, slightly humbled that someone as strong as him would ask something of her.
“It’s about Irina,” he started. “I’ve left her back at the inn, and perhaps treated her less than respectfully. Knowing that girl’s one-track-mind, she’s probably still there. Understandably, it would be hard for your right now with what you’re going through, but please also look out for her.”
Rena nodded as though that was an obvious fact, “don’t worry, I’ll do just that.”
“Thank you. She’s a lot stronger than she looks, so should anything out of the ordinary happens, ask her for assistance.”
With that said, Mordred walked over to Padan and Yda. The small red crystal in his hand started to glow, as two red magic circles appeared, one above and one below. They started to converge towards each other and once they did, the teleportation was activated. The three of them disappeared from the cathedral without leaving a hint that they were ever there.
A certain distance away, the teleportation had succeeded. Mordred, Padan and Yda found themselves at the edge of a forest overlooking an isolated warehouse. This was the place that the transaction of Charlotte over to the envoys of the Baliazoural Empire would take place. Since the time was still at the dead of night- almost midnight- they hand over was most likely going to be the next day.
Mordred summoned more of his ‘Surveillance Spectres’ to scout the area and get a proper grasp of the situation and location where Charlotte was being kept. The grounds of the warehouse had been littered with mercenaries. ‘Sometimes the jobs of mercenaries are less than wholesome,’ Roland’s words at that time in the tavern came back to him. This was the reality of it. They were not adventurers who worked for some kind of supervised guild; they were hired swords who did whatever was asked of them by the highest bidder.
He felt a sort of sympathy for the people who led this kind of lifestyle but… ‘justified or not, everyone must take responsibility for their actions,’ he sighed.
“Ey? Is something wrong?” asked Padan.
“No. Just thinking,” Mordred shook his head and stood up. The plan was simple. Simple in that it was non-existent and all he had planned was that they would charge into the fray to eventually reach the third floor. He had all the power and confidence in the world to know that this would work perfectly. Yet, as Mordred was about to call the shot and proceed with the rescue mission, he stopped. Like a statue he froze as he looked in the distance of the warehouse.
With his shared sight from his Surveillance Spectres he found three people on the third floor of the warehouse. The first was Charlotte, unconscious, she had been placed neatly into a small wooden box with the lid slightly open. The second was a member of the Clergy, most likely there to mediate conditions for the transfer of the girl over to the empire. However, it was the third person… “Shit,” he grimaced to himself. A wave of nausea suddenly hit him like a wave he couldn’t swim away from.
“Huh? Are you okay? You suddenly went pale,” noticing his hesitation, Yda asked. “Come on, we have to quickly rescue Charlotte!”
Mordred glanced back, and nodded silently. He then turned to Padan, “there are about twenty armed mercenaries on the ground floor. Think you can distract all of them while Yda and I go rescue Charlotte?”
“Yeah, leave it to me,” a large smile stretched over the Titan’s tanned face as he pumped his fists together. He crouched down into sprinting posture and just like before he conjured up the same wind technique he had used before to burst down the gates to the church. There was a fearsome presence about the Titan who could so recklessly charge into the fray of twenty armoured and armed mercenaries with that kind of smile on his face.
Yda also prepared herself by revealing the wrist-mounted crossbow stowed under her sleeves. Something like that didn’t seem feasible to be used in battle, but this was a fantasy world. It could be that there were some methods of magically charging up a bolt or something. It honestly didn’t matter. There had been an entire plan for Mordred and Yda to fight their way up to the third floor and gallantly rescue Charlotte from the clutches of the church and mercenaries, but he gave up on that idea.
He no longer felt that he wanted go through with that charade. If it was short distance teleportation, he could do it without the aid of an item. He clutched onto Yda’s shoulders and casted the ‘teleportation’ spell from the ‘Magician’ skill-tree. Their background instantly changed from the edge of a forest into the interior of a warehouse. There he confronted the two responsible for this kidnapping.
“What? Who are you people? What’s going on down there?” shouted the man with the symbol of the Xagontetian Clergy tied to his neck. Mordred ignored him and faced the other man.
That man also looked back at Mordred with an almost sad and defeated smirk. He let out a small chuckle. “...'Mordred', I remembered this time, right? Now, I suppose I should say that I’m surprised to see you here… but for some reason I honestly knew you’d be coming.” ‘That voice,’ it was unmistakable. Mordred glared back with his two red eyes at the man who he had recently made friendship with.
“Why are you here? Roland.”
The rugged, older mercenary smiled back as he shrugged. “Work stuff. You know how it is. Oh, but don’t tell Cecilia about this… little ‘job’ of mine. I get the feeling she’d be way too understanding and try to help out in some way. There ain’t a father in the world who’d want their daughter to be mixed in with shit like this. Even if I’m a heartless bastard like this, that’s the one thing I don’t want.”
“What’s going on? Roland, you know these people?!” the clergyman asked but both Mordred and Roland ignored him.
Mordred shook his head, “to be honest, I really don’t want to have to fight you. Cecilia would probably try to kill me if I hurt you in any way.”
“Yeah, knowing that girl, she’ll probably do the same to me if I hurt you,” he laughed it off as a joke, but behind those aging eyes there was no happiness. He had most likely seen this kind of scene so many times that the outcome would have been obvious. “She’s a gentle and kind kid like that, but… well, let’s not talk about her anymore. Anyway, there was this ‘feeling’ about you, you know? That you were probably more than what you let on. That’s why I kind of knew you’d be coming here.”
“I should say that I’m honoured, but…” Mordred trailed off for a moment before offering his hand. “I’m more than willing to overlook this. I don’t care what you did until now, so take my hand. Do the ‘right’ thing and return the girl.”
Roland let out another laugh, this time slightly less unhappy sounding. “You’re strong… unfortunately, that’s something I just cannot do. There are complicated 'adult' reasons, sorry kid.”