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338 Start of a Conspiracy 2/2

 As the sun ripped through the darkness, the final feast of the Midsummer Festival began.

This time, there were more people entering the arena because this was the climax of the entire event. After two days of competitions, the two winning teams emerged from the individual competition-Starlight and Liberty Wings-and would be engaging in the final match. The winner would receive an incomparable remuneration: any wish to be fulfilled by Lydia.

Due to this reason, the arena was flooded with a sea of audience members. Even though it was so crowded that some audience had to squeeze in the aisles to enjoy the match, they were unconcerned as they looked forward to the battles. Yesterday, Rhode displayed his amazing strength, which sparked a hot topic across Golden City and now, the audience was looking forward for a phenomenal spectacle.

Who will be the final winner?

No one was confident. Rhode was powerful but Rosen was definitely nowhere weaker. But this time, many were sure that this would be an exhilarating matchup because during the night before, many of them heard rumors about members from Starlight being ambushed while on their way back to their campsite. Furthermore, the ambushers were mainly from Liberty Wings, who tried to kidnap a little girl whom they thought to be blood-related to Rhode. All of this was to force Starlight out of the competition, but they failed in the end.

Although this was only a rumor, many of them didn't question its credibility. The previous rumor that Shauna and the others were ambushed had been spread by many, but most of them were only surprised that some idiots were brave enough to start a riot under Lydia's watchful eyes. Were they sick of living already?

As this latest rumor spread, it immediately answered everyone's doubts. After witnessing Rhode's strength, the Liberty Wings must have been afraid and came up with this scheme. If not, why would anyone do such a thing at this timing?

Moreover, they knew that Rhode was enraged by this matter and swore to make those people pay. That was why everyone knew that this would be an exciting matchup.

But, at this moment in the resting room, Waltz stared out the window with an ashen expression and the fury in his heart raged. Last night, his men found his son in a rubbish bin as though he was disposed off like a bag of trash and his conditions weren't looking great. According to a Cleric's diagnosis, his son had been struck with overbearing snake venom and although it wasn't serious enough to snatch his life, his senses were lowered to those of an idiot's. In other words, that once adorable and brave little boy had become an idiot who couldn't care for himself nor speak.

Waltz blew his top, but things didn't end here. Everyone on the streets knew that he had sent men to ambush that bunch of country bumpkins. Although there wasn't any evidence, Waltz was clear that if this rumor got too big, Lydia would surely investigate it. When that happened, the Liberty Wings would face huge trouble. He was clear that as the core strength of the Reformist Party, his guild was always the target to be removed by the King's Party. Once the King's Party found an excuse to do so, they would gladly destroy the guild that Waltz had worked so hard to build up.

Rhode...

Waltz gritted his teeth and glanced at the bracelet on his wrist.

That damn bastard, did he really think that I would give in to this little plot of his? You must be kidding! Kid! I am Waltz! The leader of Liberty Wings Guild! You think that you can destroy me with this scheme of yours? Wishful thinking! Do you really think that I don't have a way to deal with you?

Waltz clenched his fists and stared furiously out the window.

This time, you'll die!

At the same time when Waltz swore, on the other hand, Rhode looked sternly at the folks before him.

"I have told you the situation with today's competition. Now, I want to reiterate. I hope all of you remember that this matchup today will not be an ordinary one. It involves life and death. If anyone is afraid, now is your final chance to back out."

"Anne will never back out!"

Anne sprung up and waved her little fists. Ever since Rhode informed them the truth of the ambush on Christie and the rest, Anne had been acting this way. She longed for this moment to smash those bastards into bits with her shield.

"Me too, Sir!" Randolf stood up with his chest stuck out. "Although I'm inexperienced and the missions assigned to me were always dangerous, I will still do my best!"

"Me too! Those bastards hurt our people and if we don't teach them a lesson, they will really think we are some pushovers!" Joey brandished his dagger and stood up with a furious look on his face.

"Besides, we believe that you surely have a plan and as long as we follow you, the guild members will get to see how good we 'country bumpkins' are!"

"Good."

Rhode nodded and turned to Lapis.

"Is everything ready?"

"Everything's ready, Sir."

Lapis quickly stood up. Although her movements were still clumsy and panicky, her determination was clearly reflected in her expression. She carefully retrieved a few bottles of potions with various colors and passed them to Rhode.

"These were made following Sir's formula. Everything's normal and there won't be any problems."

"Good."

Rhode nodded and took over the potions. Then, he handed them to Randolf, Joey, Anne, and Lize.

"Let's go." Rhode turned around and said.

The arena was filled with bustling noises.

Marquis Gunst sat in the VIP lounge with knitted brows. He hated such clamors. If it were possible, he wished that he could send a team of guards to shut the mouths of those who hadn't received proper education so he could quietly ponder. However, this became an extravagant hope. Although the VIP lounge was separated by sound-proof walls and carpet that lowered the noises to their minimum, Marquis Gunst was still annoyed.

At this moment, a butler opened the door and the clamors barged into the peaceful room, which forced Marquis Gunst to turn around irritably. Then, a man dressed luxuriously stepped into the room. As the butler closed the door, the luxuriously-dressed man removed his hat and bowed politely.

"Good afternoon, Marquis Gunst."

"Stop your hypocritical boot-licking, Elman," Gunst said in a foul mood before turning his head back to the arena.

"How's the situation at your side? How's Waltz's attitude?"

"The situation... is still alright. Mr. Waltz is still fuming, but he can't be blamed. A son who he has carefully raised up turned into an idiot overnight. Who on the receiving end would still be in a good mood?"

Viscount Elman displayed an appropriate smile and sat beside Gunst. He looked ahead and there was a golden flag hung at the top of the entire arena. The flag displayed two criss-crossed swords with an angel spreading her wings and soaring in the air. Only one person in the Munn Kingdom had the rights to show it.

"This is our final chance." Gunst lowered his smoking pipe. "That woman obviously intends to eradicate us and we can't sit idly and do nothing. Is everything ready?"

"Everything is going as you asked for, Marquis Gunst. Although it wasn't easy causing a ruckus under her watchful pair of eyes, I still carried out my mission successfully."

"Hmph. Good to hear that."

Gunst's huge chin, which almost covered his entire neck, turned calmer. He struggled to turn his body into a more comfortable position..

"I hope Waltz won't disappoint me. Have you given it to him?"

"Of course, Sir. Mr. Waltz was grateful for your help and promised to fulfill the mission you assigned to him."

"He'd better do it." Gunst sneered. "That young man must die... The King's Party is too powerful now and if another formidable man joins them, we will be in dire straits. Hopefully Waltz can do it."

Gunst sighed.

At this moment, the deep bugle horn sounded.