The Book Eating Magician - chapter-303
Crowd—there was no one who didn’t know that name. Amazement and
doubts filled their faces. The surname was slightly different, but his
identity was obvious.
He was the empire’s 1st Sword, Andras’ strongest swordsman. They
didn’t know how it happened, but Crowd von Russel had become Andras’
“…I don’t remember seeing his body in the Nadun Mountains.”
“Yes, but being coronated in a few days…?”
“It is a ridiculous replacement.”
Among the buzz of the people’s chatter, the white-masked Orta muttered
in a quiet voice, “It isn’t impossible if he used force. Now that
almost all of the Seven Swords are dead, there is no power in Andras that
can stop him.”
It was as Orta said. The swordsman Crowd was the best swordsman of this
age, so he could take over the throne with force. He wouldn’t raise an
eyebrow even if all of Belfort’s army went against him. Crowd was
literally the strongest person in Andras. In a nation which had been
founded upon the idea that a strong man stood on top, it was highly
probable that Crowd had become emperor of Andras with his own power.
“I also agree with White Tower Master’s words,” the king sitting on
the throne, Kurt III, agreed with Orta’s opinion. “Until now, the
monster called Invidia had worn the emperor’s mask, so he didn’t dare
try. It was how the imperial bloodline was maintained in a single family
up until now. But after Invidia died in the last battle, there is no
obstacle in the way of Crowd’s rule.”
“Additionally, the national ideal of the Andras Empire is to follow the
strong, so there wouldn’t be an uprising.”
“That’s right. From this point on, we must recognize him as the
emperor of Andras and evaluate his letter based on the appropriate
The 1st Sword of the Seven Swords was a great position, but it was
incomparable to the emperor’s authority. The value of this letter was
the same. The letter written by Crowd von Russel and Crowd von Andras was
like the difference between heaven and earth.
Kurt looked at the letter in his hand and continued speaking, “Crowd,
the emperor of Andras, has asked for a ceasefire in order to negotiate
“Ceasefire… to end the war?”
A ceasefire and ending the war… The meaning was similar, yet
Kurt nodded at Orta’s words and read the letter again to deduce the
author’s intent. “Perhaps it is a preliminary negotiation. If we
don’t agree, he knows they have no chance of winning if we keep
The empire had already been defeated—Kurt firmly asserted this.
“Crowd might’ve survived, but there is no way that Andras can win
when the empire’s Seven Swords are almost collapsed. By ascending the
throne, the queen chess piece has become the king. He is in a position
where he can’t freely move. He has lost his ability to act as a trump
card and doesn’t have the power to reverse the situation anymore.”
“They are fair words.”
The emperor was the strongest sword master, but an emperor had two
It might be possible if half of the empire’s Seven Swords were alive to
support him. However, without a rook, bishop, or knight, the movements of
a king were severely limited. Moreover, unlike a queen, Crowd already
knew that the Andras Empire was completely defeated.
Thus, he had asked for a momentary ceasefire in order to present some
“From here on, I’ll read out the contents.” This was the main point.
Kurt held the letter and started reading it. “I hope that Andras and
Meltor will move their armies away from the forefront and discuss the end
of the war in the northern part of the Sipoto Plains, which is the
midpoint between the two places. I, Crowd, will come directly as the
representative of Andras. I will acknowledge our defeat in this war and
make a few promises first.”
Kurt raised an eyebrow at the next words but continued reading the letter.
One. The Andras Empire promises to give up the name of the empire. I will
build an autonomous nation where people of ethnic minorities, who want
freedom, can live.
Two. The Andras Empire will hand over 30% of the territory close to the
border of the Meltor Kingdom and permanently give up the right to occupy
them. The choice of territory is entirely up to Meltor.
Three. I will establish a semi-permanent non-aggression treaty between
Andras and Meltor, as well as designate a safe zone where we can trade
regularly. I hope to promote a friendship between the two nations. All
tariffs incurred in the trade zone for the next 10 years will be borne by
“…Now, anyone here can negotiate these terms.”
After Kurt was done, the expressions of the people present changed.
As if to represent them, Orta opened his mouth, “The conditions are
bad. No, it is hard to negotiate any further. Andras was able to dominate
the Northern Continent because of their territory and population. Now
they are giving up both things. They do actually mean to end the conflict
in the Northern Continent.”
There were those who would want to keep fighting, but the people gathered
here weren’t stupid. Even if they continued the war to subjugate
Andras, it was impossible to tightly control the vast land. It was a
different story if they could take over 30% with peaceful bargaining.
That would be enough to make up for the power Meltor had lost in the war.
Andras would become an autonomous state and trade zone…?
That was nothing more than a roundabout declaration of surrender, cutting
off their hands and feet. Andras might survive the end of this war, but
they would never beat Meltor again. That’s why the facial expressions
of those present were strange.
“By the way, there is one unrelated condition,” Kurt spoke again and
turned to Theodore. “Emperor Crowd has demanded that Theodore take part
in the negotiation. He has a story to share with you, regardless of
whether you are the leader or just part of the group. Perhaps it is
something related to the former emperor, Invidia. What do you want to
“I…” Theodore was troubled for a moment.
It was true that he was curious about the information Crowd had. The
information was obviously closely related to Invidia. If Invidia had
truly wanted to kill him, even Crowd would’ve died in the Nadun
Mountains. It now seemed necessary to grasp why Crowd had become the
“I will accompany the group.”
“Your Majesty, I will follow. Won’t it make things more certain?”
Veronica raised a hand after Theodore’s reply.
It made sense. Crowd might’ve become the emperor, but there was the
possibility that he was seeking Theodore’s neck. However, he wouldn’t
be able to do anything against two 8th circle magicians moving together.
“Please do so,” Kurt agreed with her and nodded. “The date for the
signing of the new agreement is in a fortnight. You all can relax, while
Theodore and Veronica will prepare as the heads of the group. White Tower
Master, please assist them if they require it.”
“Yes, Your Majesty.”
“I hope that this agreement will bring peace to the Northern Continent.
I am ashamed to rely on you again when you aren’t in perfect condition.
After this situation is over, I will provide proper compensation.”
The meeting abruptly ended.
* * *
A fortnight… It was both a long and short period of time, but every
moment was valuable to Theodore. He escaped from the palace grounds and
moved to an area near the capital. It was the new Miller estate that he
planned to visit. The guards were surprised by the unexpected
teleportation, but their eyes widened after seeing his robe.
“No, who are you? Heok, that robe…?”
“A-Are you perhaps Prime Theodore—no, Marquis Miller?”
There was no need to respond with words. Theodore nodded, and they
instantly saluted. It was a normal reaction. As Meltor’s hero, Theodore
was a person whose name was heard at any busy area in this kingdom. He
didn’t know it, but his popularity had long overtaken the king’s.
“Oh, my. Who is this?” A woman embraced him as soon as he entered the
drawing room. The warm and familiar smell disarmed all of Theodore’s
alertness. She could use perfume and cosmetics now that she was a senior
noble, but his mother was still the same. Holding Theodore firmly in her
arms, she then looked back.
“Honey! Leo! Theo has returned!”
“What?! Who came?”
“Brother! It really is Brother!”
His father had thinning hair, and his brother, Leonardo, was much bigger
than before. His family gathered in an instant around Theodore. He was
awkward after not seeing them for a long time, but his parents and
brother talked without noticing.
There were stories about Theodore’s achievements or earls he didn’t
know. Theodore made a surprised expression when he heard that Leonardo
was better at the sword than at magic.
“Indeed. It is so cute how he plays with a wooden sword all day. What
did the knight who taught him say? He said he wanted Leo to be his
“Wow, Leo. Don’t you have amazing skills?” Theodore patted Leo’s
head, causing him to giggle.
Was it because he wasn’t accustomed to being praised by his brother?
Theodore watched him approvingly before secretly asking his parents for
the authenticity of the story. If it was true that his brother had
talent, then Theodore would recommend a proper teacher for him.
“Is there someone that you have in mind?”
“There are two possible people.”
They were Randolph and Rebecca. One was a sword master, and the other was
facing the wall to becoming a master. Both of them would be suitable to
be Leonardo’s teacher. However, Randolph had shown his skills in the
war, so he was likely to become a high-ranking noble. Such a person
couldn’t become a tutor.
‘I will ask Rebecca later.’
It might be different if she went up the master ranks like Randolph, but
she couldn’t stay beside Theodore with her current abilities. As such,
it was more efficient to make her Leonardo’s teacher and entrust her
with protecting his family. Finally, Theodore stopped worrying. He wanted
to enjoy this time with his family.
Then came the very next day. After breakfast with his family, Theodore
returned to Mana-vil Capital. He walked around the infirmary looking for
a certain name. Although he could ask the receptionist, Theodore didn’t
want to attract unnecessary attention.
Soon after, Theodore found what he was looking for.
“…I’m coming in.” He entered without waiting for a reply.
His teacher, whom he hadn’t seen in a few months, was lying on the bed.
Vince Haidel, the war mage in red robes, looked haggard, but he welcomed
Theodore with a large smile. “Ah, I was wondering who would be so
impolite. I’ve heard all about your activities. You did really well.”
“You don’t have to feel sorry for me. I fought my best on the
battlefield and got this result. Rather, I am proud that I survived the
His words weren’t wrong. It was a miracle that he had survived the
onslaught of Invidia and the surviving Seven Swords.
Vince pointed to the empty left leg socket and said with a refreshed
expression, “It is done. Vince Haidel will now live as a magician, not
a war mage. I might be suited for it, but I didn’t really like
fighting. A small library room with a pen and parchment is good enough
for me. The things you tell me are sufficient to last the rest of my
Thinking of the analysis of ancient languages to the reinterpretation of
ancient civilizations, Vince laughed like he was really happy. His face
sincerely showed that he didn’t care about a lost leg. In the end,
Theodore couldn’t help laughing as well. The weight of the elixir in
his pocket was unbearable. If he handed the elixir over now, Vince would
wave his hand and tell him to use it for more important situations.
Theodore Miller knew from a very long time ago that he was such a person.
‘I don’t know who was worried about whom.’
Theodore took off his robe and sat in the chair next to the bed. He
forgot all the complicated stories and chatted with his teacher. This
chat started at noon and continued until the sun went down.
“Why do you keep moving around?”
Until the day of the promised meeting, Theodore met and talked with
He went to see the injured elves, and he comforted Sylvia, who was
saddened by her grandfather’s death. Theodore also shared a cup with
those who celebrated his victory and spoke with elders of the Magic
Time passed by, and the promised day arrived.