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Chapter 547: Carrot and Stick

 Chapter 547: Carrot and Stick

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

Diplomats usually used the carrot and stick approach. In normal circumstances, one would first apply the stick approach. If one first gave out a carrot, he could be looked down upon. The stick approach would then be ineffective in the future.

Alice was applying a similar strategy. In the Moro Province, after she had killed many people, she mellowed. The situation in Moro Province was very different from the other provinces. Moro Province was at the border of the Maho Empire. As it was their native land, some of them could not bear to leave, whereas some could not make it on time to leave. Most of the royal families had stayed in their feudal estate, and there was chaos.

After the royal families had heard about the situation of Moro Province, they were afraid. Many had escaped to Diamond City. They were running for their lives, and could not be bothered with dealing with their properties. Those who had decided to stay put were disappointed with Edward VIII. They were looking for other opportunities. In fact, they were looking for a new master. These people need not be treated harshly.

Alice had arranged a cocktail party for a purpose. She was trying to break the ice between the two parties, so that they could get comfortable with one another. In another words, form a united front. Alice had reaped the fruits of her labor. The atmosphere was cordial. The generals of the Maho Empire and the royal families were chatting happily with one another. The royal families were looking forward to making themselves a place in this new world. They did not want to be abandoned by this era. The generals in the Maho Empire had no personal feud with them. As for state hatred...since Lord Yolanthe did not pursue the matter, it was pointless for them to do so. Everyone knew that, by having more friends, it would open up more opportunities for them.

Anfey was leaning against the railing at the balcony. He was observing the people below. He was very sharp and caught sight of Douminge, who was walking out of the backyard. He was surprised and said, "Douminge doesn't like to attend banquets. Why is he here today?"

"He should be here to pave the way for his students," Suzanna said softly.

"Not bad, you have improved!"

"Do you think that I am stupid?" Suzanna stared at Anfey.

Anfey was about to say something, when he saw Baery following behind Douminge.

"Marshal Baery is here too!"

"At dusk, Alice sent someone to invite Marshal Baery. It seems like she wants the students of Douminge to hand over the information to Marshal Baery personally."

"Seems like you are right. Douminge is paving the way for his students," Anfey said with a smile. "Ever since we stepped into the Shansa Empire, Douminge has never taken any action. Do you believe that? When we attack Diamond City, Douminge will volunteer to participate in the war. Hahaha...I guess Douminge has remained silent because he was afraid that he might do something drastic that will cause Edward VIII to lose his cool and vent his anger on Douminge's students."

"It is hard on him. As the great magician, he still has to defy his own wishes and do the things that he doesn't like." Suzanna understood what Anfey meant. Douminge would not only volunteer himself, he would give his best, in order to pave the way for his students.

"I can understand. How has the master been treating us? Douminge is also a good master." Anfey smiled and said, "Moreover, he has to make it up to his students, as his betrayal has put his students in danger. They have been imprisoned, and that has made Douminge feel guilty."

At this instant, Alice appeared in the courtyard with five to six people in magic robes. They ranged in different ages. They gathered around Alice, as though she were a star. Alice was very warm toward them, and chatted happily with each.

"They are the students of Douminge." Suzanna saw that as well.

"Alice is Douminge's student. It seems like they have known each other for a long time." Anfey suddenly frowned. "I find it weird that, when Alice was being forced to marry into the mercenary country, they did not stand up for her."

"Probably they were not in Diamond City, or...their words do not carry any weight. Nothing would have changed, even if they had stood up for her."

The presence of the host made the atmosphere even better. Now and then, the royal families would go up to Alice and greet her. Alice would always reciprocate politely, and introduce the people who were beside her. Anfey had computed that Alice had been held back more than 20 times, when she moved from the courtyard to the main hall. She had also said the same words more than 20 times. Douminge, who was in front, was surrounded by people as well. He looked extremely friendly, and was high-spirited. He was chatting happily with the people.

However, Baery was being neglected. As the number one in the Maho Empire's army, and Marshal of the Empire, he was more useful than Alice and Douminge. However, the royal families dared not go near him. They were not qualified to do so, as well. If the generals of the Maho Empire were to go to the Marshal and talk rubbish to him, that would be digging their own graves. There was no one around Baery. When the royal families of the Shansa Province saw Baery walking toward them, they would smile and step aside. For the generals of the Maho Empire, they would stand upright, and after Baery had walked past them, they would quickly sneak to the side.

"Since the host is here, why are you still up here?" Suzanna asked softly.

"Why should I go down?" Anfey shook his head and said. "I am just a calefare."

"Those few elves really are..." Suzanna felt helpless and said. "I think there is a slave market here. I will go there tomorrow and get you two maids. These elves are not capable of taking care of people."

"Forget it." Anfey looked at Suzanna with a smirk and said, "Who knows, someone may get soft-hearted later and let them go. Although your husband is now filthy rich, you can't possibly buy all the slaves in the entire continent!"

Suzanna's face turned red. When Anfey had been confirmed as earl, someone had told her that it would seem improper not to have a few servants to serve Anfey. Suzanna had thought that it was a good idea to have a maid around, to take care of the house and of Anfey when she was not there. She had then gone to Violet City and bought a maid from the marketplace. Out of curiosity, Suzanna asked about the girl's life. She found out that the girl was from the Maho Empire and had been captured by the army of the Shansa Empire. She was later captured by the soldiers of the Maho Empire. When she told the soldiers that she was from the Maho Empire, the soldiers told her to keep mum, and threatened to kill her if she told others about it. After that, she had been sold as someone from the Shansa Empire.

There are black sheep everywhere. For the sake of money, the soldiers could not care less. This was detestable.

Suzanna took pity on her, and knowing that the girl was from Blackania City, she gave her some money and let her go. Suzanna tore up the slavery contract on the spot, and told Anfey about it. Anfey laughed about it, and when Suzanna had wanted to buy another slave, Anfey stopped her. No one in the world would want to be a slave. Every slave had her own sad story. Once Suzanna let one go, there would be a second, and a third. It would be pointless to buy a slave. Moreover, Anfey preferred not to have someone to disturb the two of them. Suzanna also liked the idea and agreed with Anfey, so she gave up on getting a maid. However, since the two of them were digging up the past, she felt a little embarrassed.

"I am only showing my concern for you!" Suzanna said angrily.

"Be good, don't be angry." With one hand, Anfey held onto Suzanna's waist, and with the other, he pinched her cheek and said, "Marshal Baery saw us."

When Anfey had said the earlier sentence, Suzanna was still pouting when she looked at him. However, upon hearing the latter, she quickly moved away from his arm and looked down. Baery was smiling as he looked at her. Suzanna felt embarrassed. She stamped her foot and said, "You are so bad! You know that someone is watching, and yet you..."

Baery had reached the balcony. "Anfey, why are the two of you still up here?"

"This is a good spot," Anfey said with a smile. "Sir, those few people...can the students of Douminge be trusted?"

"This is not important. Anyway, Edward VIII cannot play any tricks now. He can only make his last ditch defense in Diamond City." Baery suddenly frowned. "But...there are 22 mage towers in Diamond City. Edward VIII's palace mage group has never taken part in combat, so they did not suffer any losses. If he is scared, this will pose a problem. We will not be able to capture Diamond City before winter. Anfey, you are lucky and full of ideas. Any suggestions?"

"Sir, what suggestions can I have?" Anfey smiled wryly. "Previously, when I suggested assassinating Scarlet, you were being implicated. Till now, I am still..."

"Don't say this, Anfey." Baery waved his hand. "No one expected Scarlet to have the Ring of Immortal. It was just an accident. Why? Just because of one incident, you dare not speak out now?"

"I am not good at military operations, so what suggestions can I have?" Anfey shrugged. "But, if you need me to kill someone, you can just tell me. Wherever you point to, I will just go!"

"Hahaha...I am not asking you to give me any suggestions now. Do think about it, though. We still have two more months to go." Baery laughed loudly and gave Anfey a pat.

Baery's laughter attracted the attention of the people. They saw Baery talking happily to a young couple. Ever since Anfey had buried the dragonborn, Kamlin, he had been keeping a low profile. The royal families did not know Anfey. They were whispering to one another and making speculations.