Wortenia Senki (LN) - Volume 12 - Chapter SS

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Bonus Short Story

Elnan Zeleph’s Resolve

At his estate in the Kingdom of Rhoadseria’s capital, Count Elnan Zeleph stood frozen in place. He had just received an urgent missive from a spy he’d sent to the palace. He felt his knees wobble, and he slowly sank into the sofa behind him. The only other time he could remember being this shocked was when he’d received news of his father-in-law’s tragic fate. Actually, not even that was as shocking as this. This had been enough to make Queen Lupis faint, and Count Zeleph couldn’t fault her for it.

This news was especially distressing since his brother-in-law, Count Bergstone, had been about to expose the nobles’ corruption in that day’s meeting, in front of the queen herself. But all of that had hinged on whether a commoner rebellion broke out.

Such bad timing...

Just a fews days. If the commoners could have withstood the nobles’ tyranny for just a few more days, everything would have turned out better. Count Zeleph had gathered the necessary information, and by his calculations, they should have had more time before things turned critical.

“Now that it’s happened, there’s no going back. We need to figure out how we’re going to handle this, I suppose.”

Count Zeleph slapped his cheeks, rousing himself. It was unfortunate his predictions had missed the mark, but now wasn’t the time to wallow in anxiety.

“First, I’ll need to consult with Bergstone. Though it’s pretty much a foregone conclusion now. I’m sure he realizes that.” His brother-in-law wasn’t foolish enough to overlook the fact that staying in Rhoadseria could be their downfall. “But even if he does understand, will he be able to abandon this country? No. Knowing him, he won’t give up that easily.”

If Count Bergstone had known when to call it quits, he would’ve acted more rationally when their father-in-law, Marquis Ernest, lost to Duke Gelhart. They wouldn’t have been forced to spend the past decade cooped up in their territories. Surely Bergstone had been wise enough to see that this was all avoidable.

“If I leave him be, my dear brother-in-law will almost certainly choose to sink with this kingdom. That might be honorable for a noble, but...”

Count Zeleph didn’t merely suspect that his brother-in-law would do that. As far as he could tell, there was no doubt that Bergstone would go that route unless Zeleph interfered.

“I can’t abandon him like this, not even if we weren’t each married to one of Marquis Ernest’s daughters.”

If Count Zeleph wanted to protect his beloved wife and the subjects of his domain, he was about to make a bad decision. But Zeleph did care about his brother-in-law. Bergstone was haughty and overly confident, but even with those flaws, Zeleph still loved him as family.

“I don’t want to leave him to die. But I want to protect my wife and my subjects. In which case...”

Count Zeleph mulled over his options. Realizing that the first challenge would be to convince Bergstone, Zeleph sighed so heavily it reverberated through the room.

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