After that, we spent a busy time.
First, Theodore, Bella, and I teleported to the location where Bella’s mother was. I quickly cast healing magic on her. Bella and her mother embraced each other while crying, and I couldn’t help but feel deeply relieved.
Meanwhile, I murmured that I wanted to somehow prevent the guards from reporting to the imperial prince. Theodore then took out a sleep aid inhaler and said, “This will make them sleep for half a day,” as he put them to sleep with a calm and professional touch, like a chef filleting a fish. It was true that it would take a day by carriage to reach us, so we wouldn’t receive any news until the birthday celebration. But why did he have that? When I asked, he replied that he had received education as the next king’s consort to be able to handle various emergencies,which left me with a distant look. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to know or not about the education for the future king consort.
Afterward, to ensure that we wouldn’t be discovered by the Crown Prince’s people, we teleported to the Imperial Castle with Diark and reported the situation to the Emperor. The Empress, who had grown impatient with her husband, the instigator, being unable to do anything due to insufficient evidence, happily offered to hide Bella’s mother herself. The Emperor had been complaining of stomachaches, but even if the psychosomatic pain was healed, it would be meaningless unless the cause was removed, so I apologized and said I couldn’t help.
With all that said and done, Bella agreed to be my ally in capturing the imperial prince. To ensure my safety in case the prince goes berserk, she will attend the birthday celebration in my place while Roland acts as my partner and bodyguard.
Furthermore, under the prince’s orders, I decided to go to the designated location to contact Grose Baehr in disguise as Bella at night for information gathering. Theodore opposed it, saying it was dangerous, but there was no other way. He promised not to leave my side, but when I said that we wouldn’t be more than 30 Schritte apart, he sulked, calling it a lame excuse. After calming him down, we left the castle and arrived at a bar where the prince had instructed Bella to go. There, we met a young man named Fia.
“Hey, I can’t mistake that weird veil for anyone else. I heard about it from Null.”
“Are you alone? What about the others?”
“They’ve already infiltrated the castle. I was planning to go when I met you. Want to go together?”
Although I was slightly taken aback by the casual assassin, I agreed, saying, “It would certainly increase the number of eyewitness accounts that the princess was involved.” I thought it would be easier to extract information that way. I didn’t need to hear his Kol’s story to know that Null, the man referred to by Bella, was the imperial prince who created Grose Baehr. He’s an annoying old man who causes more trouble than necessary.
Then, I led the conversation by saying, “I’m sorry for being late. Did you have any plans for a strategy meeting? Is the time okay?” and managed to find out from his kol that they had no plans until the birthday celebration. They seemed to trust each other completely, so I didn’t think they would risk gathering before the attack. I immediately started moving to catch some of them.
Strangely enough, even if they were in disguise, their kol couldn’t change their hair, eye color, or facial features from their original appearance. if a designer who had a female heart and a male body, the kol might have been somewhat dependent on the image they had in mind.
There was also a young man named Fia who was planning to enter the castle disguised as the son of a certain noble, wearing a black-haired wig. However, his kol had ash-gold hair. Of course, there might be people with colors that didn’t need to be changed… I had to find other companions who had entered and mark them with this distinction.
Disguised as a maid using transformation magic, I went around the rooms with various excuses such as lost items and messages from Diark. Since Verde was a vast country that even a magic train couldn’t cross in a day or two, there were many invited guests who arrived the day before, making it a challenging task.
I thought that Theodore would be able to handle all seven of them, but I couldn’t let innocent people get involved even if I was safe. Even if we had to let at least two people go to trap the old man, I wanted to find and capture at least half of them… preferably more than half, four people. After much effort, I was able to find and capture five people. Since each of them was disguised as a noble or a servant, they were imprisoned in separate underground cells – Hindern stone cells, to be precise – and interrogated.