Although the Earth Kingdom Alliance's central palace was taken by surprise, they still welcomed the messenger with due honor. Afterward, they alerted their Alliance King of an urgent Prosperous Wind message.
"As a messenger, he should at least wait for a day. Who does he think he is to disturb me in the middle of night? Have him wait!"
The Earth Kingdom Alliance King, a tall and rotund paragon spirit roared. However, when his servants attempted to have the eunuch wait, he sneered.
"Earth Kingdom Buffoon King! For the murder of his fifth brother, and the maiming of his son, his majesty, the Prosperous Wind Emperor demands that you submit your head, alongside that of all the murderers to the Prosperous Wind City!
Failure to do so in the next twenty-four hours results in all-out war! His majesty swears not to rest until no soul inhabits the Earth Kingdom Alliance!"
The eunuch's booming voice spread throughout the city, alarming all its denizens. He then turned into a beam of light and returned to his realm before anyone could bar his path.
"Huh? When did we have Prosperous Wind imperial kinsmen murdered? Why am I not aware?"
The Earth Kingdom Alliance King asked his servants in stupor while dropping the large chicken leg in his hand.
"Wait, did he call me a buffoon? THE GALS!"
Meanwhile, Krann returned to Konrad's side.
"You've done well. I'm very pleased with your work."
"Thank you, master, for your praise."
Konrad nodded, then had twelve large bags fly toward Krann.
"Those are resources to accelerate the demonic beasts' training. I will also periodically set aside more blood to hasten the growth of the most talented. You can now resume with their rearing."
"As you command, master!"
Krann vanished into the space talisman where the demonic beasts remained, not forgetting to carry the bags with him. Konrad then used the remainder of the night to cultivate his Infernal Soul Devouring Art.
On the following morning, as per usual, he attended the court meeting by Olrich's side.
Initially, it should have been an uneventful one. But as the officials carried on with their talks and reports.
A disheveled messenger barreled into the throne room, to kneel between the two rows of officials.
"Your majesty, please forgive the interruption but your servant carries urgent news!"
Both Olrich's and Konrad's eyes fell upon the kneeling messenger. And Konrad was surprised to see a high-level Transcendent Knight occupying such a role.
"Oh? Speak. What is so important that you interrupt court meeting?"
Though Olrich's tone was mild, Konrad didn't doubt that if the messenger didn't carry important news, he would perish on the spot.
But the messenger didn't disappoint, his news sending the entire court into an uproar.
"Your majesty, the Prosperous Wind Emperor is gathering a three-million-man strong army to overrun the Earth Kingdom Alliance!"
"Huh? You said what?"
Instantaneously, the dozens of officials' eyes fell upon the messenger who didn't budge under the inquisitive stares he received.
Even Konrad was startled for he had not expected things to process at such a rapid pace.
This was far too soon.
"Nonsense! The Prosperous Wind Empire has always advocated world peace. Across one hundred thousand years of history, they've rarely declared wars on non-barbarians, and never in such a scale.
Now you're telling us that the Prosperous Wind Emperor is gathering a three-million-man strong army? That's half their state forces! Who believes you?!"
The chancellor interrogated, unwilling to trust the messengers' words so easily.
And though he didn't validate the words, Olrich was inclined to agree. Even if he wished to fight with the Earth Kingdom Alliance, unless the Prosperous Wind Emperor's brain was kicked by a donkey, he would never muster such a force.
If others got evil intent, how would he protect his rear?
"Your majesty, your servant dares not deceive you! We've received news that the Prosperous Wind third prince's convoy was ambushed by Earth Kingdom Alliance assassins less than a day after leaving their capital.
The fifth elder prince was murdered, and the third prince barely escaped with his life! The Prosperous Wind Emperor flew into rage, demanding the Earth Alliance King's and the murderer's heads!"
The title of "elder prince" referred to an emperor's brother. Hearing those words, Olrich was no longer surprised. Considering that man's disposition, he would fight tooth and nails with whoever harmed one of his relatives, to say nothing of two.
However, this made absolutely no sense.
"Although the Earth Kingdom Alliance King is a well-known buffoon. He's, after all, a monarch. Knowing the level of his forces, how dare he assault Prosperous Wind Imperial Kinsmen?
That's the first issue.
Moreover, even if such a thing occurred, Prosperous Wind should have dispatched a messenger to ask for an explanation before making such a drastic move.
That being the case, they should still be in the interrogation stage.
How could he already be gathering armies?"
This was precisely what Konrad wished to ask. And hearing Olrich's inquiry, the messenger wavered.
"Well…your servant cannot answer the first issue. As for the second one…hum…the Prosperous Wind Emperor adopted a formidable stance, ordering the Earth Kingdom Alliance King to pay with his, and the murderer's lives.
Hearing this, the Earth Alliance King flew into rage and…"
"...And retorted that the Prosperous Wind Emperor had his brother murdered and his child maimed…to frame the Earth Kingdom Alliance and get an excuse for war. When those words reached them, Prosperous Wind immediately declared war…"
Olrich's eyes widened in stupor.
"He didn't dare…"
Inwardly, Olrich and Konrad wantonly praised the Earth Kingdom Alliance King's guts. This was the kind of man one could always count on in desperate times.
"Well, well, Great Void's response should arrive soon."
As if to answer Olrich's thoughts, another messenger dived in.
"Your majesty, your majesty, urgent news!"
"Speak fast and clearly."
"The Great Void Empire received a formal request for help from an Earth Kingdom Alliance Saint elder. The Great Void Emperor pledged to defend the innocent Earth Kingdom Alliance and save his sister and nephews."
Olrich nodded, but before he could make a statement, another messenger dived in.
"Just give your news."
Olrich cut, unwilling to let formal greetings delay breaking news.
"…yes, your majesty! The Earth Kingdom Alliance Queen is dead, allegedly murdered by Prosperous Wind assassins."
Alongside his officials, Olrich's mouth formed an "O" shape.
"Great Void Emperor, Great Void Emperor, your heartlessness truly knows no bounds. I'm impressed."
Olrich didn't doubt that the Great Void Emperor dispatched one of his strongest elders to take the life of his sister, the Earth Kingdom Alliance Queen to strengthen his "righteous cause."
And again, another messenger dived in. But before he could speak, Olrich cut:
"Huh…the Great Void Empire is asking the Water Kingdom Alliance for their troops' free passage.
The Water Kingdom Alliance King is floundering and swears to follow our lead!"
Again, Olrich nodded, then turned toward Konrad who maintained a genuinely baffled look. Genuine because he'd not anticipated the death of the Earth Kingdom Alliance Queen.
"Konrad, look. Heaven has set the stage for us to unify the Holy Continent. Shouldn't we give our thanks by rushing those fools into destruction?"
Awakened by the words, Konrad turned and bowed toward Olrich. Following his lead, the officials did the same.
"Your majesty is wise!"