Commoners and slaves were indeed obliged to address noblemen as "milord." Therefore, as a "human" and de facto slave, by law, Konrad should have referred to Anselm as "milord."
"You've already fallen to this state, and instead of begging for mercy and release, you want me to call you…milord? I don't know if I should feel impressed or amused."
"Did I say something wrong? Even in evil, you should not lose decorum. Since I am a lord and you a slave, it is right and proper for you to refer to me as such."
Anselm replied while still not sparing Konrad a glance.
"Wrong, very wrong. First, you are not a lord. You would need to at least be at the Grand Knight or Priest Ranks for that.
Second, what makes you think I'm not a demon lord in disguise."
Anselm scoffed at Konrad's words. But at that time, a vast surge of demonic energies erupted from Konrad's body and barreled into the sitting Anselm. Feeling the infernal force, his eyes sprang open and alarmed, he stood up.
"You are…a demon?"
The realization that he was dealing with more than the typical kidnapper suddenly hit Anselm. At first, when he was knocked out and captured by an unknown assailant, he'd believed himself in the hands of a blackmailer of sorts or some enemy of house Kracht. The days spent alone within his cell made him lean on the former.
However, it seemed he'd underestimated the gravity of the situation.
"What do you want from me?"
"How about, a contract of eternal servitude?"
Anselm's eyes widened for an instant, but soon afterward, he glowered at Konrad.
"I'd rather die."
"Dying is simple. It is living that is difficult. There is no glory in freely being able to say -I'd rather die.- Especially when we consider that you don't have much to live for.
Average talent. No elders to watch over you. No background, title, or responsibilities. You don't have friends, significant others, anyone who would mourn your loss. So why would you not rather die?"
It seemed Konrad had struck a nerve. Veins beat on Anselm's temple as he grabbed the bar and yelled at him.
If his eyes could Kill, Konrad would have died a thousand times.
"Me what? Sit."
Telekinetic power surged from Konrad's form and pressed Anselm onto the ground.
"Is the truth not pleasant to hear? If it was, why would people lie? Instead of boiling with pointless rage and putting up a front of false bravado, why don't you listen to my offer?"
"In exchange for your services, I will increase your cultivation talent tenfold and guarantee you a bright future under me. What do you say?"
Anselm couldn't understand why an unremarkable youth such as himself could obtain the attention of a demon.
Clearly, there must be something only he could accomplish. Something related to house Kracht in one way or another.
"If you think you can use me to harm my house, think again. If my hard work isn't enough to amount to anything, then I can only blame myself for being useless. I will certainly not surrender my soul to demonkind and endanger my house for the sake of personal growth!"
Anselm proclaimed in righteous indignation.
Konrad didn't need more to understand that this Kracht youth was an honorable blockhead. Regardless of what he said, he couldn't bring him around. Fortunately, he was only the appetizer.
"Well, if you won't listen to me, perhaps you will listen to him."
Konrad clapped, and Wolfgang appeared by his side in a purple haze. Seeing his house head appear out of nowhere, Anselm stared slack-jawed.
"House head? How can this be? Have you also fallen to this demon spawn?"
To the Kracht youths, Wolfgang was a legendary existence, the mightiest of all Uradel counts, and a celebrated war veteran. Anselm couldn't believe that even he had fallen to the demon's evil clutches. However, if he didn't, how could Konrad make him appear with a few claps?
Wolfgang released a deep sigh and stepped closer toward the bars behind which Anselm floundered.
"Anselm, house Kracht is in dire straits. The imperial family is overbearing and is attempting to coerce us into surrendering our assets. Faced with no other choice, I surrendered my soul to this demon to fight for our house's survival."
"How could this be?"
Although disconnected from the world, Anselm believed that if the imperial family were making moves on the Kracht, there would definitely be rumors and gossips here and there. How was it possible for him to not have heard anything. However, who was Wolfgang? A man of unparalleled character, honor, and steadfastness.
Why would he deceive him?
With Wolfgang's words ringing, Anselm now firmly believed that house Kracht had reached such an abyss that only infernal forces could save them.
"But, I am not enough. Our counterattack plan requires your cooperation. Without you, we cannot proceed. However, the demon is unwilling to deal with someone not bound to his will. Therefore, only if you choose to submit will our house obtain a glimmer of hope."
Wolfgang repeated the words instructed by Konrad while using the image of Zamira kneeling at Konrad's feet to showcase profound sorrow.
It was incomparably effective and swindled Anselm through and through!
"But I'm just a small fry. My cultivation has not even reached the True Knight Rank. How can I be of use?"
"You only need to know that your sacrifice will allow us to deal a severe blow to imperial prestige and thwart the imperial family's plan."
"Yes. Your sacrifice for house Kracht."
Family honor and virtue seemed to be Anselm's guiding principles. For someone like him, sacrificing oneself for the future of the house was glory.
Therefore, Konrad didn't doubt that he would cave in. And indeed, he didn't disappoint him.
"All I have come from house Kracht. If there is something I can do to help it pass this hurdle, I will never hesitate.
I…agree. Henceforth, I am your servant."
Anselm surrendered with his eyes shut close.
"Then I welcome you to my household. As long as I, Konrad, breath, you shall be immortal."
Konrad waved his hands, summoning the demonic glyphs to cement the contract.
With Anselm subdued, all was set in stones.
Alongside Wolfgang, Konrad stepped out of the space pouch. Wolfgang gathered key servants to prepare the festivities and send the invitations. Getting married on such short notice was bound to raise scandals.
That was precisely what they wanted. The world should think that the Kracht were rushed into this by external forces for the next events to go smoother.
In the Holy Flame Empire, marriage was handled by the elders and sanctioned by the court. The church took no part in it.
Before the ceremony, the future couple would sign the marriage contract, including details of dowers and dowry and send an official copy to the department of justice. If one party wished for a divorce, as long as the spouse consented, they only needed to submit a joint petition to the department of justice and their marriage would be null and void.
If one disagreed, it was a bit more complicated.
Konrad left the organization to Wolfgang and headed toward the three Kracht ladies.