SYS (Novel) Chapter 524

C524

From the public's perspective, life was nothing out of the ordinary just a few days ago.

But now, even they could feel a heavy atmosphere looming over the entire empire.

Everyone knew that the Emperor's sword was not aimed at foreign forces but at Hairan, who was called the pillar of the empire.

"I know better than anyone that the Imperial Sword has long been fighting for the Imperial Family and the people."

In front of the Imperial Palace, the Emperor of the Empire, Amir Vermont, stood on a giant golden platform, towering over the crowd.

The platform was supported by about two hundred convicted criminals dressed in red robes.

The crowd felt bewildered by the Emperor's unexpected announcement, but they dared not express it.

The Emperor stated that the cause of the purge was treason and civil war.

"It would be curious. What kind of treason did the lord of Sword Emperor Castle commit? You might dislike it too, but I am also aware that you favor Ron Hairan more than me."

The Emperor slowly looked at the people.

"I, too, as the supreme ruler of the Empire, trusted the most loyal servant Ron Hairan. Additionally, as a human, I respected and admired him, so there's no hiding my frustration. However, Ron Hairan, the lord of Sword Emperor Castle, ignored my orders as well as my fervent pleas, putting the empire in danger of terror, war, and destruction."

As the Emperor gestured, two blackened flags torn from the masts on both sides of the platform unfurled.

They were the flags of the Empire and Hairan.

"Everyone remembers the day when the disaster occurred at Sword Emperor Castle. These flags were destroyed that day, and I will inform the people about the cause of the terrorism that happened that day. It was because of... a single object possessed by Hairan."

The crowd gathered in the square murmured for the first time.

Then, the Emperor cast a sidelong glance, and a Warrior wearing Hairan's armor stepped forward.

He is Ron Hairan's second son and a Flagbearer of Hairan:

"Tion Hairan."

After the terrorist attack on Sword Emperor Castle, traitors appeared one after another within Hairan.

They were all those who were pushed by Dante and treated as 'nonexistent people' by Ron Hairan.

They, who had never imagined betrayal under Ron's majesty, saw an opportunity when the Imperial Sword suffered an unprecedented blow, coupled with the Imperial Family taking a back seat.

Tion was the first and took the initiative to betray Hairan.

"...there is a white stone in my clan that was passed down only from patriarch to patriarch."

Originally, Tion had no idea, but the Emperor informed him about the white stone.

And the Emperor didn't hesitate to reveal the white stone to the public, unlike Hairan, who kept a secret that threatened the world by being passed down from patriarch to patriarch.

The eyes of the crowd watching Tion were tainted with disdain.

Unless one was a fool, it was impossible not to realize that he had betrayed his clan and was in this position to covet Hairan's power, which would soon pass to Dante.

"It may be hard to believe, but if you can melt and use that white stone, it has the power to support all the magical equipment of the empire and make the empire many times stronger in an instant."

From the crowd's perspective, it was an absurd and exasperating story.

Wuuubuuu!

Finally, the crowd booed Tion.

As the Emperor mentioned earlier, Hairan is a clan more beloved by the people than the imperial family.

Those gathered in the square wanted to stone him to death at any moment.

"Your Majesty."

The leader of the imperial guard, 'Alton Hairan,' met the Emperor's eyes.

It meant that if the Emperor gave an order, he would immediately suppress the commotion.

However, the Emperor, with a corner of his mouth raised, silently ordered him to let it be.

"But isn't it just an unpleasant noise? Let them vent their anger at least a little."

"Yes, Your Majesty."

The Emperor didn't deliver this speech to reprimand Hairan out of fear of public opinion or fear that the people would side with Hairan and rebel.

The first was to expose Hairan's secret and pressure them, and the second was simply because he loved the people in his own way.

It meant raising his voice a little, showing his displeasure, and relieving their anger.

"After all, they have no power to stop me, nor the will to do so. Hairan may like them more than me, but they won't risk their lives for it. The silly and annoying look of the people seems quite charming and adorable to me."

The Emperor was sincere, and his eyes shone as if the public were fascinating.

"...Your Majesty, my clan was ordered long ago to return the white stone to the imperial family. The term 'return' implies that the stone was originally entrusted to Hairan by the previous Emperor."

Of course, the imperial family had never entrusted a white stone to Hairan. They only say this because the public can't know the truth anyway.

"What a bunch of rubbish!"

The boos grew increasingly furious.

"But, as you can see, Sword Emperor Ron Hairan is not following Your Majesty's order. Enemies seeking the stone even carried out terrorist acts in the Empire's lands, Sword Emperor Castle."

"Get lost! Dirty traitor!"

"Living golems and unknown giant demonic creatures threatened the empire because of the stone! However, Hairan clings to his greed and doesn't return the stone to the imperial family. As a member of that clan, I know better than anyone that the lord of Sword Emperor Castle is using that power to plot treason."

The Emperor applauded, and the enraged crowd immediately calmed down.

"Tion Hairan's testimony may seem dubious. I also know very well that it will be difficult to accept as it is such a sudden story. But listen to me, my people. I am willing to forgive Hairan for instigating civil war and treason if they return the stone even now."

As the speech reached this point, a mix of curiosity and anger was brewing in the hearts of the crowd.

What the heck is this white stone?

Does it really exist? If so, why doesn't Hairan return it to the imperial family? Such questions naturally arose.

"I, Amir Vermont, the Emperor of the Empire, declare. I will stop the purge as soon as Hairan returns the stone. However, if they do not apologize to me until the end, Sword Emperor Castle will disappear from the face of the earth."

------------------

The content of the Emperor's speech quickly reaches Sword Emperor Castle.

"Emperor, this damn bastard...! How could he do this to Hairan? White stone? Ridiculous! He makes up such absurd stories because he has no justification. And he pretends to be the supreme ruler of the Empire?!"

"That lunatic will surely pay the price. He acts as if Hairan is powerless and silently endures, being supported only because he is the Emperor."

"The throne will be stained with his blood. It was Hairan who deserved to sit there from the beginning, not the Vermont family. If it weren't for Hairan, the empire wouldn't have existed!"

Each Warrior in the meeting room raised their voice with anger.

Most seemed ready to storm the palace and fight, but undoubtedly there was an underlying unease among them.

Anxiety had already begun even before the Emperor's speech.

"We can't stay here gathered; we must take action first! We must show that child the dignity of Sword Emperor, the meaning of that name."

"We are accused of treason, but we must show what true treason is. A few traitors switching sides and the Emperor raising an army? As long as Ron-nim is here, those who turned their backs will end up kneeling before our sword!"

They all shouted, looking towards a person sitting atop.

It was Dante Hairan, the young patriarch of Hairan.

Dante could barely hide the signs of fatigue on his face.

However, bloodshot eyes and dry lips could not be concealed.

"Come out, Ron-nim...!"

"Ron-nim...!"

The restlessness of the Warriors was no different.

It was because of Ron Hairan, the man who summoned all the Warriors to this place with only dignity without any action.

Several days had passed since the Warriors gathered, but Ron has not appeared in front of them even once.

'Grandfather....'

Now even Dante was aware of Ron's condition.

In the past few days, Ron's health had deteriorated so rapidly that it was impossible to hide.

Ron was unconscious.

Dante was in command of Sword Emperor Castle in his name.

As time passed, the gathered knights began to doubt if Sword Emperor was really in good health.

The suspicion was becoming undeniable.

Ron's absence equaled the absence of all Hairan.

Although there were still individuals in Hairan without Ron, the result of waging a war without him was as clear as day.

A sense of pressure, powerlessness, and nausea overwhelmed Dante.

Dante felt dizzy after not being able to sleep for several days, and cramps hit various parts of his body if he didn't concentrate.

'A weak body makes it difficult for me even at times like this...'

Dante gritted his teeth and looked into the eyes of the gathered knights.

It seemed that he had to reveal the truth.

"...My grandfather is sick at the moment, and he is unconscious."

At Dante's words, the angry voices of the knights faded away.

Those who had already realized didn't startle too much, but those who didn't know were hit by thunder.

"Ron-nim... unconscious? Could it be that the wounds he suffered that day have worsened?"

"Why are you telling us this now?"

"Without Ron-nim, how will we respond to this...!"

When Dante was about to respond, an old knight opened his mouth, clicking his tongue.

"If Ron-nim is absent, are you saying you won't fight with Hairan? You're talking nonsense. Without Ron-nim, are the rest of you nothing more than a bunch of foot soldiers? We came here to fight against the tyranny of the Emperor, to protect our friendship with Hairan. We didn't come to overthrow the Empire with Ron-nim at the helm."

The one who spoke was Shuras Helter, the patriarch of the Helter Family.

Dante avoided giving an uncomfortable answer to Shuras's words, but as long as Ron remained in bed, Dante had no means to dispel their anxiety.

They faced adversaries who would be difficult to handle even if they united solidly.

However, a significant number of knights couldn't help but contemplate the crack created by Ron's absence.

'Without Ron-nim, the war is lost.'

'If we lose the fight against the Emperor, not only will we die, but our entire family and kin will be brutally murdered...'

Moreover, once they learned of Ron's illness, thoughts like these crossed their minds.

'The white stone the Emperor talked about... What if it really exists?'

'If the Emperor's speech is true, it's best to return the stone and resolve the situation. Should I wait for his absurd story to be real...?'

A tense silence fell.

Just as someone was about to raise the question of whether the Emperor's speech was true, urgent footsteps were heard from outside.

It was the sound of commanders rushing in.

"Young patriarch! The Emperor's forces' movement has been confirmed. The vanguard will reach Sword Emperor Castle in approximately three hours...!"

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