SYS (Novel) Chapter 437

C437 - Raiders, Brothers (5)

"Revenge, huh? There was no resentment between you and me. Until today, that is. So, if you attacked me, it must mean you wanted revenge through the power of the Elder Council."

When Jin responded, Luton's gaze turned to Talaris.

He hadn't used the past to plead for his life.

"Hmm, why are you looking at me? Even if I wasn't here, you wouldn't have been able to do much against Tikan. You haven't lost your senses so much that you can't calculate that much, right?"

The assassins who attacked Tikan possessed enough power to potentially annihilate a small country.

If Tikan didn't have Quikantel, he would have suffered significant damage or even disappeared altogether.

"...I know. We haven't heard anything about the Silver Dragon being here either. It seems the Elder Council has become quite incompetent, much like our dull swords. The information about this mission was full of variables from the start."

"Aren't the Execution Knights of Runcandel supposed to carry out their assigned missions flawlessly even amid those variables?"

"That's true, Talaris. But we are just exiles now, no longer Execution Knights. Anyway, it seems strange that you're working for the Twelfth Flagbearer."

"Why is it strange? I'm just helping my son-in-law."

Pfft~

A strange laugh emerged from the distorted lips of the exiles.

"I had a premonition that someday I would meet a lamentable death. I don't know if encountering an old friend in that process is a curse or a blessing."

"If I have to say, it's closer to being a blessing. You used to allow yourself those sentimental things without meaning even when you were young. Luton, tell me what happened. I thought one of you had become a Black Knight, as I haven't heard anything from you for a long time."

Talaris had a curious look, wondering how they had ended up in this situation.

Although they didn't consider themselves friends, they had created a certain bond, so it was natural for Talaris to feel curious.

Jin also had his doubts about them, as they were "Execution Knights" before being exiled.

Apart from the ten black helmets, being Execution Knights was normally the highest position a Runcandel knight could reach.

If accused of treason, no matter how great their merits, they would have lost their lives instead of being simply exiled.

But aside from treason, normally there is no punishment more severe than exile for Execution Knights.

Purge.

That word came to Jin's mind.

'I understand in broad strokes.'

Jin and Luton's gazes met again.

Luton had been silently looking at Jin for a while.

He never thought that the Twelfth Flagbearer would adorn his last moments.

With a smile, Luton opened his mouth.

"Twelfth Flagbearer, we were Runcandel knights long before you were born, and we were the swords of the current Patriarch. Although we couldn't wear the black helms, we could boast of being among the best knights of the time."

If his face hadn't been disfigured, and if he hadn't suffered terrible wounds all over his body, Luton could have become a Black Knight.

"When Cyron Runcandel spent a long time in the Black Sea, we served under the patriarch under the First Flagbearer."

"Big sister Luna?"

It was the first time Jin had heard this.

Luna was famous for her unfriendly behavior, true to her nickname of the White Whale.

"During that time, everyone was convinced that the First Flagbearer would undoubtedly become the next patriarch. But, Twelfth Flagbearer, it must have been around the time you were born."

When the First Flagbearer declared she would not become the patriarch.

Luton kept talking, and Jin could still see an expression of deep bitterness on his face even though it was completely disfigured.

"Over the decades, our affiliations have gone from being the family's guardian knights to execution knights, then knights of the patriarch, and finally knights of the First Flagbearer."

If that was the case, then the next step would have been for them to become knights of another Flagbearer or to join the Elder Council as execution knights for the family.

However, Luton and his comrades had to face a future they had never imagined.

"The Second Flagbearer..."

Joshua Runcandel.

Luton paused momentarily when mentioning the name.

"We thought we would become his knights. Even before the First Flagbearer resigned from the throne, Rosa-nim often showed signs of wanting to support the Second Flagbearer."

At that time, Cyron had spent more time in the Black Sea than in the Garden of Swords.

Therefore, managing the family was mainly Rosa's responsibility at that time. Rosa did not appoint the exiled knights as the Second Flagbearer's knights.

Luton and his comrades were a total of fifteen at that time, meaning there were fifteen high-ranking Execution Knights.

"He just pushed us aside as if we were worth nothing."

Rosa purged them just as Jin predicted at the beginning of the conversation.

Rosa got rid of everything related to them as if they had never existed in the world.

She took away their lives, their families, their fellow swordsmen, the animals they had raised, and even their acquaintances.

Although Luton and his comrades believed in their abilities as high-ranking knights, they felt defenseless when stabbed by the same swords they trusted.

They had never thought that the Family would end up abandoning them.

"The four out of fifteen of us managed to survive with the help of the Black Sword Association Head. We ended up in this miserable situation. However, one of us died shortly after, and another died while assisting the Elder Council with their work a few years ago."

"So, that's why only you two are left?"

"That's right."

They had devoted their entire lives to Runcandel, but why were they purged so brutally?

Exiled Execution Knights could never escape that persistent question throughout their lives.

"It seems my mother judged that it would be difficult for the Second Flagbearer to handle swords like you."

"...Probably so. Otherwise, there would have been no reason to purge us."

Luton and his comrades had been Cyron's knights back in the day, and they attacked Talaris without his orders.

They looked so savage that even Talaris described them as "ferocious beasts."

That's why Rosa didn't assign them to Joshua.

They were not assigned as family execution knights to the Elder Council either because Rosa judged that the Elder Council could gain more power than necessary.

They were left to face the purge without even having the chance to pledge loyalty to other siblings who had not yet become Flagbearers or to those who had recently become Flagbearers.

Of course, it was an unreasonable situation for them.

But in the face of an incomprehensible and irrational situation, they had no power to resist.

The adversary was Rosa Runcandel, after all.

"Hmm... Luton, there's something that makes me curious in this story."

Talaris squinted slightly and spoke.

"What the hell was Cyron doing when things reached that point? Did Cyron just sit back while Rosa-nim executed you without any legitimate reason?"

Luton slowly nodded.

"Yes."

"Why the hell?"

"...I doubt you're asking because you really don't know, Talaris."

Talaris sighed.

It was because he remembered his friend, who had become even more emotionally desolate than the desert.

"Cyron used to worry about you quite a bit 30 years ago. So, did he really do nothing to intervene until it got to this point?"

"After the First Flagbearer resigned from the throne, the patriarch seemed disappointed with everything in the world for a while. Maybe that's why he no longer cared about us. He has never shown curiosity about our well-being, has he?"

"Well, of course, I thought there wouldn't be major problems with your safety. How could I know the inner workings of Runcandel? And comparing Cyron and me in terms of taking care of you would be inappropriate."

"That's true. Since the patriarch didn't care, there was no reason for you to know about us. But, aside from the patriarch, you were the closest to us."

Luton continued as he observed Talaris, who paused.

"Of course, I'm not bringing this up to hold a grudge against you."

"Yes, I understand that. And you shouldn't hold a grudge against me. Unless you've come to the Hidden Palace seeking help after surviving, perhaps."

"That's right. We never came to you because we thought you had nothing to do with this. You were the closest person to me and my comrades, but objectively, it was nothing exceptional. To you, we were just a passing relationship."

Talaris shrugged.

However, if you had come to me, I would undoubtedly have tried to help you in some way.

Talaris didn't say it out loud because it didn't make sense.

There was a brief silence.

"I have nothing more to say."

"That's something I'll decide. I still have a few questions," said Jin.

"Earlier, you mentioned that the reason you attacked me was revenge. Is the target of your revenge my mother?"

"Yes, that's right."

"How did it come to that?"

"The Black Sword Association Head ordered me for his own benefit. And everything he does is in pursuit of becoming the patriarch."

"Do you really think that the Elder Council President Jorden can defeat Joshua and become the patriarch? Seriously?"

Jin gave a look of genuine bewilderment, and Lutan nodded.

"No matter the odds. We have no other choice."

"In other words, you're trying to achieve revenge through the Black Sword Association Head. Judging by what you're saying, it doesn't seem like you're acting out of gratitude for being saved."

"Gratitude? Jorden used us like dogs whenever he wanted, so we've already paid that debt. Maybe we would have been more grateful if he had freed us from this ordeal and let us live, but alas."

Indeed, the exiled Execution Knights were motivated by revenge.

"Well, then let me ask one last question."

"What is it?"

"You mentioned that you survived with the help of the Black Sword Association Head, Jorden Runcandel. However, does my mother know?"

"She doesn't know."

"I suppose so. You wouldn't have survived until now if my mother knew. And that fact is your only practical means of revenge against her... I can offer you a more dignified death."

"A dignified death?"

"In any case, you'll never see a future where the Black Sword Association Head becomes the patriarch. It will all end if you die by my hand now, and your revenge won't come to fruition."

"What are you trying to say, Twelfth Flagbearer?"

When Lutan raised his head, Jin continued.

"Return to the Garden of Swords. Go there and make sure the news spreads that the Leader of the Black Sword Association defied my mother's directives. Undermine his authority. That would be the most impactful revenge you can achieve."

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(Up to '120' more ch4pt3rs)
Publication of up to 6 w33kly ch4pters, thanks.

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