Horizon:Volume 3C Chapter 66
Chapter 66: Viewers of the Metal Tower
What can only
Be whispered about?
Point Allocation (It’ll be found out eventually)
The tower simply stood there.
“Is it just me or does this thing look really fake?” asked the crossdresser.
The metal tower pierced up into the night. The base was thirty meters across and as for its height…
“I’ve heard it is five hundred meters tall,” said Tenzou as he looked around.
They stood on a hill. It gave them an excellent view and a forest and village were located at the bottom of the hill. They had left the carriage in the forest and spent a few minutes walking the rest of the way.
…But there was no defensive wall.
Perhaps to house guards, a few small, decorated buildings were located around the tower and they were all connected by a wall. Another wall surrounded the tower outside those buildings, but neither wall was tall enough to be any defense.
“I see.” Tenzou crossed his arms and turned to the Reine des Garous who was also looking up at the tower.
“Reine des Garous-dono, does M.H.R.R. have no intention of protecting Chancellor Rudolf II? I can think of no other explanation for sending the Catholic chancellor to Protestant land.”
“I believe the information and facts you already have cover that. The chancellor and student council president were given their positions due to their family, but the elder brother turned away from politics just as his historical counterpart did. He immersed himself in Technomagie and the arts and was confined to his residence while his brother faced the Thirty Years’ War as a puppet. However…”
The Reine des Garous shrugged.
“From what I’ve heard, Rudolf II was all for the move to this tower.”
“Really?” asked Mary as she stepped up next to Tenzou.
She may have been interested because she herself had essentially been imprisoned for a time.
She wrapped her arms around Tenzou’s arm and asked the Reine des Garous a question.
“Does Chancellor Rudolf II think he is unwanted?”
“That’s a good question.”
Tenzou saw the Reine des Garous narrow her eyes at Mary’s question.
“I think most everyone has thought that at some point or another. …Of course, that’s just a personal worldview.”
Those words pushed Tenzou to look at Mary.
She seemed to think for a few moments but eventually bent the scar on her cheek and nodded.
“Judge. Thank you very much. …That’s right. I think both Chancellor Rudolf II and you are normal people just like us.”
“Testament.” The Reine des Garous’s eyes bent as she smiled toward Mary. “I would say it is especially true of someone from the House of Habsburg like Rudolf II. So many other families want that bloodline, so their personality is often completely ignored.”
“I can imagine so,” said Tenzou as he and Mary nodded.
…The House of Habsburg, huh?
Rudolf II and his brother Matthias were from that well-known house that had its origins in Switzerland and formed the foundation for M.H.R.R.’s southern principalities and Tres España’s ruling family.
Rather than focusing on a single nation, they let their “house” stretch between nations so they could all prosper.
…In a way, you could say they’re trying to unify Europe through a bloodline rather than a nation.
Europe was filled with war, but the bonds between two nations were much stronger when their rulers came from the same house. So any nation ruled by the Habsburgs would send more Habsburgs to other nations through political marriages, avoid war between the same house, and work together to develop further.
And because the foundation of that development came from the bloodline…
“They are a…prolific house, aren’t they?”
Their house motto came from the fact that Habsburg women were said to have many children.
“I think it was ‘Let others wage war. You, lucky Austria, shall marry!’.”
That had been said by Maximilian I, the M.H.R.R. chancellor who had brought the imperial throne to the Habsburg family. Mercenaries had been the stars of the battlefield during the late middle ages and he had gained the support of those mercenaries, but he was still popular in the middle ages genre of porn games. Tenzou was fairly certain the most recent title was “The Final Middle-Aged Knight”, but displaying that house motto at the end had become the tradition, especially when the player made the wrong choices and reached an unmarried ending.
…It really gets to you after an NTR ending.
Mary then tugged on his arm, so he turned to see what she wanted.
“Master Tenzou, you have a game with those words in it, don’t you? You wouldn’t let me see very much of it, but were you studying for today?”
…Giving me that impressed look makes it hard to know what to say, Mary-dono. I mean, look behind you. Mitotsudaira-dono and Naito-dono are gesturing for me to come over there.
He ignored the gestures, but he did look back and forth between the Reine des Garous and Mitotsudaira.
“But Hexagone Française didn’t want any interference from the Habsburgs and their strong M.H.R.R. influence, so you set up a dynasty with the House of Bourbon, didn’t you?”
“Testament. That is why we have to take the Thirty Years’ War so seriously. Ever since the middle ages, the Habsburgs have been attempting to rule Europe, but Hexagone Française will stop them. When you get down to it, that is what we are fighting over.”
“I see,” said the girls.
Mary and Mitotsudaira had their connections to other nations via family or inherited name, so this topic was closely connected to them.
Tenzou decided not to avoid this kind of topic in the future and to instead discuss it over tea with a newspaper in one hand.
“Anyway, Chancellor Rudolf II seems like a complicated individual.”
He looked up at the tower and noticed the only windows were on the stairway circling along the outer edge. The very top was solid wall.
“What do you think is going to happen here, Toori-dono?”
He looked over but found the crossdressing idiot had vanished. Oh? he wondered as he looked around and spotted him by the entrance to the tower on the surrounding wall.
“Heyyy! Get over here, everyone! They say they’ll tell us how to get in!!”
“Ahhhhh! Why are you starting this on your own!?”
Tenzou pulled on Mary’s hand and walked over.
“This is enemy territory, so it is too dangerous to act on your own!”
“What!? Acting on my own!? But you do that all the time! Like when you sit in the corner of the room and grin while imagining Mary naked.”
Mary placed her hands on her blushing cheek, but the real danger was Naito recording both that and the breasts trapped between Mary’s elbows.
“Mary-dono?” he said so only she could hear. “Wh-while that may be…a little true, it’s, um, inappropriate.”
“Eh? Oh, judge! I-I suppose it would be. In public at least. Yes.”
Now that he had her understanding, he could make a show of denying it.
“I-I do not do that! Isn’t that right, Mary-dono!”
“Y-yes. Master Tenzou would never do something so inappropriate. He has no interest in his wife’s body and he always focuses on his games when I’m changing. Not that I would mind if he looked.”
Mitotsudaira and Naito started gesturing him over.
The Reine des Garous also said “oh, my” with a hint of warning in her voice.
“What is this about not imagining your wife naked?” she asked him. “Listen. When you see your beloved, it doesn’t matter what they are wearing or if they are in another room. You need to use their scent to imagine every inch of their body and your imagination cannot stop until you have pictured how you will intertwine your bodies, take them into your mouth, and offer yourself up to them. And I am not talking about later that night; I mean five seconds later.”
“W-wait, mother! That’s taking this way too far!!”
But Mary must not have known what the women meant because she tilted her head. All the same, she blushed and smiled at the Reine des Garous.
“I don’t mind if you don’t imagine me,” she told Tenzou. “After all, you can actually look at me whenever you want.”
She averted her gaze a little and smiled.
“You still haven’t taken a good look, but…have you been looking without me noticing? I know I toss and turn in my sleep a lot, but my blanket has never fallen off by morning.”
…That is far too dangerous to mention without getting into the details!!
Naito and Mitotsudaira glared at him from behind Mary and Naito gave an extremely wooden comment.
“I neeeeever would have thought you were so kind, Tenzou.”
“You only look at her in her sleep? That’s just creepy.”
Th-that is not the case! I asked the female kobolds to fix her blanket for five yen a night! I haven’t been looking! Not to mention that she likes to hold things in her sleep, so she holds the blanket in place. She sometimes grabs one of the kobolds and it gets too tangled in the blanket to escape.
…She is so lovely.
But the next thing he knew, Naito was recording from behind Mary and Mitotsudaira was checking over the footage with a glare. And from beyond them…
“Heyyy! Hurry up!”
The crossdresser was calling them, so Tenzou pulled on Mary’s hand and continued that way.
Mitotsudaira hurried toward the wall surrounding the tower and heard Naito say that Tenzou had escaped. It did not take long for the idiot to come into view.
“What is it, chanc-…no, um…”
He was crossdressing and she wanted to believe it was a disguise and not his personal preference. However, she was not sure what to call him in that case.
“Oh, c’mon, Nate! My name is Pressie! Call me Pressie!!”
Was that supposed to come from his position as student council president?
Anyway, Naito gave her opinion as she too lined up in front of the tower.
“How about Miss Wit? First name: Dim.”
“Oh, I guess my idea of Miss Stupid was a little too direct.”
“Our girls are surprisingly harsh,” added Tenzou.
At any rate, the idiot was speaking with someone standing at the center of the path leading to the tower. Mitotsudaira looked to the person standing beyond him.
The woman wore an M.H.R.R. girl’s uniform as a dress. She gave a kindhearted smile and another woman stood near the wide-open entrance to the tower.
“This is looking a lot like a brothel to me.”
Naito sounded concerned, but the woman speaking with the crossdresser only smiled.
“Surely you are at least prepared for that if you came here. Whether day or night, Master Rudolf is always searching for a partner. But by this point, plastering the neighboring city with posters isn’t enough to bring anyone in.”
The tall, well-built woman who seemed to be standing guard at the entrance nodded.
“Master Rudolf’s policy is to never turn anyone away. If you will provide him some entertainment, then please continue. Or are you here to take someone back?”
At that point, she smiled bitterly.
“Surely you did not think you could simply make a casual visit.”
…Eh? Does this mean…?
Mitotsudaira could not help but gulp.
“Ehhhh!? This is that kind of mission!?”
She turned around and found the idiot gesturing her over.
She ran over and the idiot began a scrum with the others.
“Good, girl. Now, stay, stay.”
“Nate, how are you treated on the Musashi?”
“N-not like this! I assure you!”
At any rate, the idiot, Mitotsudaira’s mother, and everyone else joined the strategy scrum. First, the mother nodded calmly.
“How about we just climb on up and kill him?”
“M-mother, why do you always jump to the most extreme option?”
“Then are you volunteering to go, Nate?”
She could not help but fall silent at that.
“We have no choice,” said the idiot. “I guess I’ll go.”
“Eh!? Wh-what are you talking about, chancellor!? If Musashi’s chancellor had that kind of…fabulous relationship with another academy’s chancellor, it would be like having a black belt in International Shudo and his approval rating would drop like a rock!”
“You really get worked up sometimes, you know that?”
“Personally, I think people would just think it’s one of his usual physical comedy routines.”
Mitotsudaira nearly agreed with Naito but stopped herself. Regardless, the idiot scratched his head and glanced over at Mitotsudaira.
“Yeah, I guess you’re right. …But while it’s true something might happen, Maman is way too strong when she gets serious and Tenzou would be ignored from the get-go.”
“D-did you have to throw an insult in there!?”
“What!? If you don’t like it, then get to crossdressing! I’ve definitely got the upper hand in life compared to some hat boy who can’t even crossdress!”
So you have an upper hand in a race to the bottom? wondered Mitotsudaira. And…
“Chancellor, um, well…”
“Call me Pressie. You promised, remember?”
He quieted down when everyone glared at him, but then they slapped him on the back to get him speaking again.
“Anyway… Mary’s definitely not an option here, right?”
Mary did not seem to understand what any of this meant, but there was no helping that.
“And Gold Mar isn’t an option either,” continued the idiot.
“Yeah, I have Ga-chan.”
“Right? So that leaves me.”
The idiot left the scrum and turned his back. He looked to the tower, got down in a bowlegged crouch, and pulled on the crotch of his clothing to adjust the position. Finally, he slapped himself on the butt.
“Okay, I’ll be going. I’ll probably be back late, but wait to eat until I’m back.”
“Y-you are awful!” shouted Tenzou. “This guy is just plain awful!”
“No, um, w-wait a minute!”
Mitotsudaira frantically called out to him. He had already been licked all over by her mother, so if he was taken away by that side of things as well, she would be a disgrace to the title of knight. And so she spoke more on reflex than as a thought-out decision.
“I will go!!”
Mitotsudaira shouted without thinking, but…
She was ashamed that part of her regretted the decision.
But she saw the crossdresser turn around in front of her and he looked to her with the ends of his eyebrows lowered.
The idiot hung his head, placed his hands on her shoulders, lowered them, and then groped her.
“You just don’t have the chest to pull it off.”
She swung down a fist and embedded the idiot in the earth.
The Seto Inland Sea drifted in the dark night.
A victory celebration was underway in front of the aerial ships that had landed on the beach.
The revelers wore M.H.R.R. and P.A. Oda uniforms.
They were celebrating the defeat of K.P.A. Italia by the southern warriors of the M.H.R.R. Catholics, Hashiba, and P.A. Oda.
The boundaries between nation and religion were crossed on that beach, the bonfires illuminated countless figures, and Garudas and Djinns were sent flying around by celebratory fireworks spells.
The religious gap created a difference in foods that divided the festival stands, but both sides spoke with each other and the beach was perfect for drawing out diagrams to review the battle.
They bragged or talked more rationally, but they were all after the sense of liberation brought on by making such a racket.
There was plenty of music and dancing and the groups of girls were especially loud as they got into fights and hit back.
But in contrast to the commotion below, the ships moored on the beach remained entirely dark.
However, a table was set up next to the railing on the bow of the largest ship in the center.
“Matthias, you did well today.”
Matthias turned toward a red uniform as he cut his nails with a knife he pulled from his pocket.
“Well done? Well, I’m sure you’re just being polite, but I didn’t really do anything, Maeda. It was all of you that did all the work. …Speaking of which, I heard Kuki was hurt pretty badly. Will he be okay?”
“Testament. The bleeding has been stopped and he is speaking with the health committee about whether they should regenerate the arm or create a new one. Anyway, he is the kind of person who will be honored to hear you were concerned about him, so that is enough.”
“You all really are amazing. And…”
Matthias sat in a chair he carried over to the edge of the deck and asked a question of the red uniform.
“Maeda, are you headed north like me?”
Toshiie nodded, as did Matsu on his shoulder. He then approached the edge of the deck while wrapped in a faint light.
“You don’t have to go to Magdeburg if you don’t want, Matthias.”
“I’m worried about my brother, though. Not that I think he would meet with me.”
“That’s a tricky situation. …But from what I had heard, Chancellor Rudolf II was the one distancing himself from you.”
“Well, he has no desire for fame or anything else, so he’s the normal one. I’m the one at fault. Historically, Rudolf II so loved chivalry, Technomagie, and the arts that he never gave any thought to his nation.”
Matthias crossed his arms and smiled bitterly.
“But I ended up being the one that preferred chivalry and pretending to be a king. And while we’re at it, I also seem to like pretending to be a Sengoku commander. After all, I’m about to supplant my superior.”
“Matthias… Chancellor Rudolf II is…”
“Testament.” Matthias nodded. “My brother isn’t the type to die that easily. He wouldn’t be when he was born from the history of the Habsburgs. He is their one and only success. And…that means no one can ever understand him. Which is why everyone refers to him as a Wahnsinniger.”
He then changed the subject.
“Now, let’s get going to Magdeburg. It might be over by the time we get there, but we still need to go bring an end to my brother’s era.”
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