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Chapter 368: Unjust

 Chapter 368: Unjust

Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio

The atmosphere in Moramatch was strangely peaceful. Fernando was an amicable and talkative man. Anfey knew that Fernando wouldn't try to make the mercenaries his enemies. This was the first time he came into contact with mercenaries, and if the relationship between them was bad, it could affect the pope's plan in Country of Mercenaries.

When they were sitting down for the meeting, Fernando purposely stated several times that Anfey was the head of the town and that he should not sit on the seat prepared for the most important guest, since Christian was more important than he was. The two spent a good five minutes trying to get each other to sit, before Fernando finally compromised and sat down.

After he sat down, Fernando glanced around the room and his eyes landed to Alice. Most of the important people had already introduced themselves, but Alice was a stranger to him. Fernando needed to understand the situation at all time, and he could not allow anyone to slip by without knowing her name.

"Who is this?" Fernando leaned over and asked Anfey quietly.

"This is Lady Alice," Anfey told him. "She runs this town. She is the one that expanded and stabilized Moramatch."

Fernando nodded and smiled in admiration. "You are as capable as you are beautiful, my lady," he said. "It is rare to find someone with both beauty and brilliance. You are very special, my lady."

"Thank you," Alice said with a prim smile.

Fernando grinned. "I've always known that God is unjust. Some people are born into money and nobility, and others into poverty and destitution. Some people, like Lady Alice, are born with grace and virtue. Some others, though..." Fernando sighed and waved his hand.

A few of Fernando's men left the room and quickly returned with two men. Fernando looked at them and shook his head. "Some others barely have any redeeming qualities. It still escapes me how these two became Knights of Light."

The two men stood in the middle of the room, uncertain of what to do. One of them peered at Fernando fearfully.

"What is the meaning of this?" Anfey asked, surprised.

"I know that weapons supplies are a major problem for you, my lord," Fernando said. "But I believe that as long as we have honest conversations, we can come to an understanding. These two, however, attempted to disrupt peace and abused their power. Not only did they cause unnecessary conflicts, they also created a rift in our relationship. I cannot allow that, especially during such a crucial time." Fernando paused and glanced at Martin and Hilde, who were staring at the ground. "I will hand them over to you. What you do with them is your business."

"It's not a big deal," Anfey said, smiling. "Let them go. I think they've learned their lesson. To be fair, the mercenaries weren't exactly acting properly, either. They are mercenaries, after all, and did not care for formalities. If there's any misunderstanding, it's likely because of them. It's partly my fault, too. I've never managed this many people at a time and I didn't establish any rules. If you want to punish them, you must punish my men as well."

"You are kind, my lord," Fernando said. He turned to the two knights and asked, "Do you want to say anything?"

"Thank you, my lord," Martin said hurriedly.

"Yes, thank you, my lord," Hilde whispered.

"Take them away," Fernando said, waving his hand. He turned back to Anfey and said, "My lord, eliminating those zombies and necromancers is our utmost responsibility. I don't want any disagreements from the past to affect our future relationship."

"I understand," Anfey said. "I believe that no one wants to see the necromancers win this war."

Fernando smiled. "You are very sensible, my lord." He waved his hand and dismissed his men. The priests and knights stood up slowly and left the room. Only one knight remained. He found a map and laid it out on the table.

Fernando had dismissed his people, but did not request the mercenaries to leave. This, combined with his attitude towards the two rogue knights, lessened the mercenaries' hostility towards him.

"I understand that this may be a difficult topic and it may be better to wait until tomorrow, but this is pressing matter," Fernando said. "We encountered a few small groups of zombies on our way here. I believe that the necromancers are now aware of our presence in this nation. They haven't attacked yet, but I don't think they will wait for much longer. We must strike before they can to achieve maximum damage." Fernando pointed at a location near Moramatch and said, "I have a plan, but I want to consult with everyone before formalizing it."

The mercenaries glanced at each other and then turned their attention to the map. Country of Mercenaries was their home. It was where they grew up and the only place they've ever known. They did not want to lose it to the necromancers. Now that they had backup, they would try anything in their power to defend their home.

"This red circles are the remaining strongholds," Fernando said. "Besides Moramatch, Blackwater and White Mountain City, there are thirty-seven of these. But most of these are understaffed due to prolonged conflict. A lot of them have only a few hundred combatants."

"How did you come to find this map, my lord?" Anfey asked, impressed. Fernando must have conducted a thorough investigation to find everything. It must be difficult to investigate in areas infested with zombies.

"It is thanks to the help of Lord Mauso," Fernando said.

"The Hawk King?"

Fernando nodded. "I had two plans before coming by this map. One was to go through Transverse Mountains, and another was to take my men through Shansa Empire. The second plan was not as efficient, but it was more secure."

"Why did you not use the second one?" Anfey asked.

"His Majesty Yolanthe and General Baery did not agree to it," Fernando said, shaking his head.

Anfey nodded. Most of the Shield of Light legion were men from Maho Empire and Tumen Commercial Union. Yolanthe wanted to secure the major supply providers. He couldn't allow this coalition to have a third member. It would be too hard for him to control a situation like that.

Fernando was the actual commander of the legion and knew what sort of influence he had over the men. He wanted the legion to expand and include more people from different nations. If he could recruit men from Shansa Empire, he could expand his power.

"What is your plan, my lord?" Anfey asked. He could tell that Fernando was a capable commander and he couldn't do anything but trust him for now.

"We attack from here," Fernando said, pointing at the map. "We have to eliminate the mercenaries and save those mercenaries in blockaded strongholds. This is the fastest and most direct route."

"What do you think?" Anfey turned to the mercenaries and asked.

The mercenaries hesitated, then nodded slowly. They couldn't understand the map, but they wanted to save the trapped mercenaries and agreed with Fernando.