End of the Tournament
The old man frowned. He looked at me for a few seconds more before finally turning towards the emperor.
“Sorry, your majesty. I was just a bit anxious due to my disciple’s condition.”
“And do you think that is an excuse to interrupt a battle I approved!? Moreover, you even tried to attack one of the contestants in my presence!”
The old man narrowed his eyes. His gaze became incredibly chilling for an instant, and a hint of killing intent leaked out of his body.
However, it quickly disappeared as though it never existed.
In fact, I’m sure nobody else but me noticed it.
The old man then bowed to the emperor with a respectful expression.
“Sorry, your majesty. I promise you that it will not happen again.”
“Hmph! I hope so!” The emperor grunted coldly and waved his hand. “Get lost then and take your student with you. I don’t want to punish someone in this kind of day.”
“I thank you for your benevolence, your majesty.” The old man bowed once more before grabbing at Louis and disappearing from the stage.
How interesting… I thought to myself as I saw the old man leave.
That old man, he did not seem to show much respect for the emperor.
He even showed a bit of killing intent towards him. That is not something many people dare to do.
Could it be… is he related to them?
As expected, the forces that want to end the reign of the Quintin family are very powerful.
I even dare to bet that the old man is not the only beyond-twelfth layer practitioner they have.
Once the old man was gone, the emperor looked at me.
“Yes, your majesty.”
“Congratulations on your victory. That was a spectacular battle.”
With these words, deafening cheers erupted from the stands.
Several people screamed my name as crazy and the emperor, the empress, and Dina smiled seeing that, although each one of them due to different reasons.
Only Alan seemed as though he had bitten a bug.
The cheers continued for almost one minute. Only when the emperor waved his hand, indicating the people to calm down, they stopped.
The emperor then looked at Dina with a smile.
“Dina, you should go and greet your fiancée.”
“Huh?” Dina was startled.
But she quickly understood the meaning of his words.
Immediately, her face fell.
If she greeted her fiancée right now, it was the same as declaring to the world that she did not have more ambitions for the throne. After all, she would stop being a Quintin and would take my surname.
It was a ruthless move. One aimed to cripple Dina’s political power.
With that, the noble families that had started to side with Dina would slowly distance themselves from her.
Dina frowned with a dark expression. She bit her lips with an unwilling look.
The emperor did not hurry her. He just stared at her with a smile, like a benevolent father.
Behind that smile, though, was a frightening pressure.
It was as though he was daring her to go against his will.
In front of that pressure, Dina could only nod.
“… I understand.” She spat out.
Then, she left the booth under the smiles of the emperor, the empress, and Alan.
“It looks like we finally took care of this problem.” The empress could not help but smile in satisfaction, although her expression quickly turned complicated when she remembered that her lover would marry Dina.
Even Alan put on a smile. In the end, although his plan was not completely successful, this was already a good result.
However, none of them noticed the slight smile on Dina’s lips.
She walked towards the stage in front of the thousands of spectators, stood in front of me, and planted a kiss on my forehead.
“Well done.” She said with a slightly sorrowful smile that seemed filled with resignation.
I smiled wryly in my mind. As expected, women are great actors.
“Thank you, your highness.”
Dina nodded slightly. She then left the stage with a vulnerable expression.
However, she had accomplished her goal.
Because the nobles that the emperor values so much are no longer important to us.
We have the support of [Hidden History]. We have the backing of the ancestors and guardians of the Quintin family.
And once they give their word, the opinions of the nobles will not matter in the slightest.
The emperor, the empress, and Alan, however, did not know it. To them, Dina’s increasingly high popularity was our weapon to aim for the throne.
Hence, now that they took care of it, they don’t need to care about Dina anymore.
When Dina left the stage, the emperor looked once more towards me.
“Good work, young man. I was rather surprised that there is such a strong person in the young generation of the empire.”
“Thank you for your compliment, your majesty.”
“Mm. Go and rest. I will have an audience with you one hour later.”
“Understood.” Bowing slightly, I left the stage under the cheers of the spectators.
“Dammit!” Carlo, the old man that interfered with Claus and Louis’s battle, slammed a table with a furious expression. “I swear I’ll kill them!”
“Calm down, old man. Don’t get agitated.” A middle-aged man spoke up at that moment, trying to calm down the powerful powerhouse.
“Don’t get agitated? How can you say that after my disciple was crippled to amuse the Imperial Family! Damn Quintin Family! I swear I’ll kill each one of them!”
“Be patient. The opportunity will reach soon. We just need to wait a bit more.”
The old man grunted, but he seemed to agree with the middle-aged man words.
“Right, who is the little bastard that injured my disciple?”
The middle-aged man frowned deep in thought.
“… He is the Red Skull Gang’s true leader. I still don’t know how much he is involved in the current situation. But I know he has ties to the church.”
“I don’t care about that. I want to kill him!”
The middle-aged man hesitated. In truth, he did not like the idea of offending a powerful force as the church at this delicate time.
But seeing the hatred in the old man’s face, he finally relented.
“Okay. But you will have to wait until after the coup.”
“I can wait for that much.” The old man nodded in agreement. “How much longer do we need to wait, though?”
“Until the emperor’s birthday. That day will be the start of everything.”
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