#When I returned, my family was ruined (51)
Sylvia, who watched the two people’s battle, conversation, and even the recruitment process, quietly admired them.
I was once surprised to find that the Archduke’s skills were far beyond my imagination.
I was surprised twice by how much more extensive his knowledge was than I thought.
‘…You’ve completely organized the hierarchy.’
I was surprised three times by the skill with which he mastered the great wizard.
A man like an onion whose contents keep coming out no matter how many times you peel it. That was the person called Archduke.
It was no wonder that Illya, who introduced herself as an archmage, felt deep curiosity towards him.
“Please assign me a room.”
Only after those words were finished did Ilya’s face widen.
I had finally gained confidence that it was okay to stay here.
Sylvia approached Ilya.
“Please follow me.”
Ilya began to walk quickly behind her.
The attention of those around them was focused on the sight of a child walking along the path.
But no one asked a question.
Rumors had already spread throughout the inner circle about how cruel the seemingly docile Archduke could be.
Even if he was a knight, he would never approach her first.
Ilya followed Silvia like a baby bird. After walking for about five minutes.
A large visit appeared.
Sylvia said as she opened the door.
“You can stay here from now on.”
Ilya nodded and looked around every corner of the room.
Compared to the dungeon where we lived without any furniture, it was nice to call it a very well-decorated space.
“Joe…that’s a nice room.”
If I had looked like an old woman, I wouldn’t have stuttered like this.
The image of the old woman was like a shell to Illya, no different from a strong shield.
He is an excellent shell who can smile and joke empty-handedly while dealing with people at the top who are terrible misers, and not only that, he can skillfully suggest negotiations.
It was very difficult for Ilia to deal with humans without her shell.
To the point where it feels like developing a new magic formula is easier.
Ilya composed herself. It was impossible for a girl this young to show as much vulnerability as she did when dealing with the Archduke.
“This is one of the best decorated guest rooms.”
The moment Sylvia finished speaking.
Ilya’s eyebrows narrowed ever so slightly without him realizing it.
‘Guest’ refers to a person who will leave one day. For some reason, it was a tone I didn’t like.
However, there was no need to refute it.
That statement hasn’t been wrong yet.
‘The interior is spacious, so you can quickly place experiment tools…’
Ilya opened the subspace.
Even though he lived in a dungeon, he usually carried key materials and tools into subspace.
Even though basic defenses were made using magic, there was a world of difference in security between those with and without an owner.
The moment she lightly extended her hand. The scenery in the cute room that seemed to suit the girl was completely changed.
Not only were there dozens of experimental tools listed, but all kinds of materials were hanging everywhere.
Geometrical shapes began to spin around the door and the wall. It was a magic circle related to security.
If someone who didn’t know him saw it, he could easily have thought it was a wizard’s laboratory.
Ilya, who showed the miracle with a single wave of his hand, looked at Silvia.
“…big! “What is your name?”
“This is Lawrence.”
“Not that, your real name.”
“…This is Sylvia.”
Just looking at it, it seemed like he didn’t want to reveal his gender.
It wasn’t something I couldn’t understand.
Even Ilya herself had the experience of living as a mixed race between a doppelganger and a human, hiding her true identity as much as possible.
“May I ask what your job is?”
“I’m a strategist.”
It was a term referring to a person who uses his or her head. A woman dressed as a man is in charge of the eccentric Archduke’s affairs.
A little interest arose in her heart.
The moment you want to ask a question.
Sylvia spoke first.
“Have you finished tidying up your room?”
“uh? Yes. “It is over.”
“Then let’s move slowly.”
“Is something wrong?”
“Shouldn’t we introduce it to people around us? “The Grand Duchess will be waiting for you.”
“…Then, like before, I want to change my appearance a bit…”
“Are you talking about the appearance of an old woman?”
“Before that, I think I should ask you a few questions. “Is it possible to change one’s appearance at will?”
“…no. Because I am mixed race, I can only change my appearance. “There are only a few appearances that can be changed.”
Teens. Twenties. And even the appearance of a middle-aged person and an old woman.
There were only four main appearances that Ilya could show.
“It wasn’t magic.”
“To completely change your appearance with magic, you would have to be of the 9th rank or higher. “I’m just a wizard of the 8th rank.”
“Are you doing your external activities in the guise of an old woman?”
“…Most of them? He was a bit middle-aged…”
“Then that’s impossible.”
“The Archduke is now under surveillance from all directions.”
In such a situation, if a person suspected of being a high-ranking wizard joined, vigilance was bound to be heightened.
The archmage in front of him was not yet completely on the archduke’s side. For now, I’m just a customer at best.
There was absolutely no need for the Grand Duke to take such a risk for Ilya.
Ilya immediately understood what he meant.
“Then I guess I’ll have to act in a different guise instead of an old woman.”
“I hope that you will work in a way that few people know about you.”
“There aren’t many in that age range….”
The maximum is between teens and twenties.
At most, only the early days, like today, remained among the candidates. In the dungeon, middle-aged and old people were mainly used to show that they had lived for a long time and were experiencing the passage of time.
Most of those who knew what it was were still alive.
“…Then let’s just do it like this.”
Teens and twenties.
Of the two, Ilya’s favorite was the former.
When she was around this age, it was a time when she lived with lots of love from her family.
Even when I was alone in the dungeon, I usually stayed like this.
He only changed his appearance to an old age when he met someone or occasionally went out.
“Then you do it. “I will introduce myself to the public as a guest invited by the Magic Tower.”
A guest invited by the Magic Tower.
It was a story that could not help but be absurd for Ilya, the great wizard.
However, as a ‘guest’, I could not refute that statement.
Being a customer was just a position that could be kicked out at any time if you were in the way.
“Then let’s go to the Grand Duchess first.”
“If you are an archduchess… do you mean the archduchess’ biological older sister?”
The two people entered the office where the Grand Duchess was.
Elena, who was looking at Lawrence, saw the blonde girl sitting next to her and her eyes lit up.
“Lawrence? oh! Who is that kid next to you? so cute!”
At those words, Sylvia looked at Paulton, the Grand Duchess’s escort knight.
“Could you please leave for a moment?”
Paulton came out of the office.
Sylvia began to introduce Ilya. Because it wasn’t a fact worth hiding, even from the grand duchess.
“Uh… So this means that this person is actually… an archmage?”
“yes. “When you are with other people, I think you should treat them according to their age group.”
Elena’s eyes lit up.
Her favorite thing is cute things.
Ilya, who looks about ten years old at most, could be said to have an appearance that perfectly suited her taste.
When it’s just the two of us, we have to be respectful, but in a public place.
‘…You should definitely pat her head.’
Elena made a firm determination with her eyes shining. When Ilya saw that, her body trembled with an unknown chill.
* * *
Popolence held the reins of the mountain goat with all his might and looked at the huge outer castle.
‘We’ve finally arrived!’
Thanks to the speedy goats, they were able to reach Uldron in ten days.
He rode out toward the inner city on a mountain goat.
The perfect opportunity to bring this guy down has come.
He passed the inspection of the inner city in a single go, tied up the goat, and ran to the front of the Archduke’s office.
After knocking politely.
“Your Majesty, this is Porforens!”
he shouted loudly. Soon the door opened.
“You managed to come this far.”
“haha! It was news I couldn’t keep quiet about. Grand Duke, can you take a closer look at that pattern?”
Where he pointed, there was an elaborate mechanical device. Porforens, who carefully inspected the printing press, nodded.
“also. That guy’s skills are correct. “I’m sure!”
“What if it’s him?”
“There is a guy called Williams who supplies weapons to the royal family.”
Just looking at the way he was spitting out his name as if he was chewing it out, it seemed like he had an enmity with a guy named Williams.
“It’s not an evaluation that reflects your personal feelings, is it?”
“Oh my gosh! Grand Duke! Even though I hate him, he is a dwarf who knows how to waste his life! How could you tell a lie to the Grand Duke? Really really sure! “I can swear on my hammer!”
The Hammer’s Oath.
For the dwarves, it was an oath that must be kept.
I thought the pledge had disappeared because we were so steeped in capitalism, but it turns out that wasn’t the case.
“Would you mind taking a look at this crossbow?”
Ethan handed one of the crossbows to Porforens.
This was the item used by those mercenaries when they attacked the printing house.
Popolence, who was examining the crossbow, nodded.
“This is a very sophisticated crossbow. “It seems like something that was taken into the hands of our compatriots.”
“I think so too.”
Ethan asked, nodding.
“Do you know a place called the Naraxus Church?”
“The Church of Naraxus? Isn’t that a church made up of crazy people who serve the dragon people? I heard it’s rampant in the northern and southern parts of the kingdom…”
“Yes. “It seems like they and the dwarves are related.”
“…yes? Is that really true?”
Porforens widened his eyes.
“Aren’t the dwarves of today structured in such a way that they take care of all the work as long as you give them money?”
At those words, Porforens hurriedly waved his hand.
“Absolutely not! Although we may seem like misers and salty thugs to the Grand Duke…!”
“Is there any?”
“We also have basic duties! “What kind of crazy person would take on a request from an organization related to the dragon race!”
Forensic went on a rampage.
The reason was simple.
In the past, when the dragon race and humans fought a war.
Those crazy dragon people didn’t just attack human territory.
Not only did they send troops to the lands of all different races and devastate the region, but they also had a history of massacring many of their own people.
So even if this crosses the line.
“Very haaaaaanchaam! You’ve passed it! These damn bastards…!”
Porforens, who was gritting his teeth, immediately opened his eyes.
“Could it be… that guy Williams… is in charge of work related to that church?”
“I guess so.”
“You son of a bitch!”
Porforens stamped his foot vigorously.
“I will contact the Kingdom Council immediately! This issue will never be left alone even at the Kingdom Council…”
“Wait a minute. Kingdom? “Not a tribe?”
“yes? What do you mean by tribe?”
“Didn’t dwarves originally live in a tribe?”
“no way. When did that change? Ten years have already passed. Have you ever heard of the Kingdom of Ameria?”
oh my god.
The race that was so closed off even among members of the same race was the dwarves.
Dwarves like that are establishing a kingdom?
Things that were unheard of in my previous life were happening very frequently in my current life.
Like right now.