The Devil's Cage Chapter 597
Chapter 597: What I Wish
Chapter 597: What I Wish
Translator: Dess Editor: EbonyFrost
Deep in the night, Kieran and Mary arrived at Lightning Fortress.
The revered and magnificent look of the fortress was long gone. All that was left was wood piles and stones that were gathered in a short time to form a simple defense line.
All they could muster up was only a single side defense, against the direction of the main troops from the Prairies.
Should the defense line be broken through, the Prairies soldier could march directly into Riverdale without further resistance.
As for the Warren soldiers that were stationed at the fortress after the completion of the defensive line, they were still there but not the original troops that once guarded Lightning Fortress anymore.
The three thousand stationed troops were mixed with the imperial guards of Warren royal family, some private militia and a portion of the city guards. There was less than a quarter of the original troops left in Lightning Fortress.
The information should be correct because it was from Mary herself.
Kieran couldn't help but sigh once he listened to how Mary described Lightning Fortress' current situation.
Not only was the rebuilt fortress on the charred land as weak as paper, more importantly, the troops stationed there had almost zero spirit in battle and were demoralized, the sharp imperial guards were no exception either.
When the soldier before Kieran reported in after a whole night on guard duty, Kieran could already picture the fortress being taken down with a single wave of enemies should they arrive.
Still, despite the odds, Kieran didn't regret his decision. He knew what he wanted when he made that move and similar to that moment, he knew what he must do now.
Dak Dak Dak Dak Dak!
Continuous steps from a couple of men sounded right after the report.
It was King James VIII who led a group of men with him with torches lit up high among them.
The king was looking quite different from how Kieran remembered him. It was only days apart in the dungeon world yet the king looked like he aged again, as if he was on his last breath.
His servant beside him would have to carry him properly for each step he took.
The only difference from a common old man though was his sharp eyes, it didn't look as morbid.
The king tried to keep his pride and manners as one but the environment was not suitable for him to do so.
A couple of torches, a campsite in the wilderness and the nervous soldiers.
From what Kieran viewed of it, it made him feel more lonely and pitiful, still, Kieran bowed to the king because of his identity as the ruler of the land and also because of his attitude of being willing to sacrifice himself.
Kieran couldn't know how well a king James VIII was because of the lack of contacts but his resolution to go down with his kingdom was already a respectful point.
Mary called out in an awkward voice and she continued on to tell what happened at Riverdale.
"We need to extinguish the vermins from Riverdale! The people haven't been completely evacuated. If they seized the chance to cause chaos, more people will die."
Although the time spent together wasn't long, Mary already knew how to persuade the man before her. It wouldn't be enough for her to stake her own benefits to move him, instead, it must be related to the people of Riverdale and their well-being.
It was indeed a contemptuous fact from the views of most other rulers. Despite how well the surface was worked on, everyone knew what was underneath the fancy talk.
On the same terms, King James VIII could be also considered as a childish ruler. He was suppressed by his elder sister for almost the whole time of his reign, causing his foundations to be almost nonexistent. One would say he had it coming to him but Mary didn't dislike her father because of that.
Mary's feelings for her father was only at the surface level, like how she couldn't hate a stranger for no reason.
"Rover, bring a group of men back to Riverdale and investigate this!"
The king started to be serious. His little hunched back was straightened right away and his voice was heightened as well.
"Go now! If the Prairies soldiers didn't march on us at the start, they will not for these few days either. They want to know what their vanguard troops encountered."
The king interrupted the middle-aged man beside him who was donning a wizard outfit and he turned his eyes to Kieran.
His eyes were bright and commanding with a slight sense of prying.
The wizard known as Rover looked at James VIII before looking at Kieran.
In the end, Rover bowed to Kieran and took a group of men for Riverdale after Kieran nodded slightly.
The man must have quite the resolution since he was able to follow James VIII to Lightning Fortress and held the position of a wizard.
A loyal person could easily win favors from others, Kieran was no exception.
"Sir 2567, please come with me I have some details to ask of you," James VIII said.
His servant than helped him into the campsite right after.
When the group arrived inside one of the tents, James VIII sent his servants down and left Kieran and Mary with him.
The moment James VIII stepped into the tent, he started to gasp heavily.
It seemed like the king's body was even worse than it looked.
Mary was hesitant for a slight second before going over to her father, helping him to the mattress and provided him with some water in a jug.
"Thank you, Mary" The king muttered.
After his apologetic gratitude, James VIII looked at Kieran once more and said with a never before seen stern manner, "Sir 2567, please bring Mary away from this place!"
"Leave Warren! Find a place that no one knows you and live your lives! I beg of you!"
The king uttered each and every word heavily.
His sincere tone even placed himself below Kieran for the first time but still, Kieran shook his head.
The king's body started to wobble and his breath turned even heavier.
Obviously, Kieran's rejection was a heavy hit to him.
"I'm afraid I can't do that. I've promised Mary to protect Warren with her." Kieran said slowly.
James VIII was stunned, he turned his eyes to Mary.
The girl nodded seriously as well.
"I am not doing this for you nor for the fleeing refugees and definitely not the cowardly nobles. It's just that mother once told me, if it is my responsibility, it is my burden to bear, I can't shift it to others. This is the ideal that every generation of Swursters Castle owner had to live by," Mary said clearly.
"You sounded just like Ellen!" James VIII exclaimed.
The old king seemed to have sunk into his own memories for a while, Kieran could even clearly noticed the smile on his face.
It felt warm, nostalgic and helpless.
The girl saw it as well, so she grabbed Kieran's mantle hard, to the point it dragged Kieran's attention down to her face and her gaze.
"I will deliver what I promised," Kieran assured her.
He signaled Mary to watch over her father.
Mary tried to say something but before her words could form, the heavy gallops tore apart the peaceful night outside.
The girl's face instantly turned pale.
The Prairies soldiers were here!