-Mayor, you should reduce your consumption of wine. It is not healthy.
The butler was near the mayor that was currently opening his second bottle of wine this day. The daily life of Graeme Sorrel Tyne was very grim, since the days that the ratmen were found. The previously all-powerful mayor was reduced to just stay inside his manor and not leave it. The worst part of that? He was not in charge of anything at all and even the local guards weren't under his control. If it was just that, it would have been fine, the mayor would have even considered it as holidays. But the other side of the coin was the total lack of information. Nothing was coming from the outside, it was a tower of ivory, a good place to live, but cut from the outside.
It has been the second week that the Church had officially arrived at Ronta, and besides the first day were the foreign archbishops told him that he was fired from his position. The reason was that he let the ratmen escape and let a member of the Iron Beards gets heavily injured. In truth, it was a miracle that the number of victims was this low, especially since he didn't have any reinforcements for a long time. The Great Magus and even Archbishop Mathews pleaded his case, but to be brutally silenced by the power of the Church. In the end, fearing for their jobs, they decided to abandon him.
Honestly, the mayor was glad that they even tried to defend him, he expected nothing out of them. The only reason was the basic survival since after the mayor was removed, the next to blame would have been the two of them. But it still warmed a little the cold heart of Graeme. Following that event, to explain to the remaining population and the guards why he was fired, it was quite easy. They blamed him for corruption, bad conduct, adultery and everything else. The habitual condemnations against a noble.
The only funny thing is the adultery since he had lost his wife fifteen years ago. As for the rest, of course, every mayor is a little corrupted, it goes with the job. Even Mathews was corrupted, a man of the Church, so for a normal noble? The bad conduct was explained when they were hiding under the brothel. During that time, it seemed like a great idea and no one managed to find them so they were safe. But after that, they distorted the fact, saying that I was indulging in pleasure while my men were dying. The brothel was even closed and all the girls that could have been found to prove my innocence were sent to repent in some far abbey. As for the guards, they just shut their mouths and enjoy the protection of the Church.
And that's it, that's everything that happened to the mayor and lead him to this life of wait, with just the pleasure of drinking good wine left. Right now he had in front of him a bottle from the Green Coast. Normally, he shouldn't be drinking such a harsh alcohol drink, but who cares. Right before beginning to really drink it, the butler informed him that he had some visitors. Great, a new thing will finally happen.
He immediately rushed toward the reunion room, to stay presentable. Only after arriving inside the room, he noticed that he still had the bottle of wine in his hands. With not enough time to leave, he only put in on a table nearby. He quickly arranged his face, his clothes, and right after he finished, he heard the door opening. Do his big surprise, it is two archbishop surrounding a dwarf. And not just some random dwarf, he wears the emblem of the king of the Mountain.
-Greetings master dwarf, I hope that you will find this humble house to your liking.
-Bah, don't bother with some pleasantries human, I am only here to finish a request made by someone. I already explained to all those Church men the location of the city of those vermin, and they are here because they don't want me to say it. I will truly never understand all of you, facing a mortal enemy you still have time for petty politics.
-Yes master dwarf, I am afraid that we will always remain like that. Strong and brave against an immediate danger but petty and untrustworthy before it. So what is the request, if I can do it, I will gladly try my best?
-Not a lot human, it is coming from Lansco, I know that you two were friends, or at least, were pretending to be friends. Anyway, I know that it is only you that has the key to the apartment of the Guild Master. During the battle with the dirty rat in the sewers, he lost his key, meaning we can't enter the Adventurer Guild.
-Yes, of course, Charles!
-Charles, please, go fetch the key that I have prepared on the red desk, the big one, thank you. As you see I was already prepared for anything. In truth, I was expecting the adventurer guild to recover his property, but with the war coming here, they didn't even bother. So for the last month, the Guild was abandoned, except the reception and the public basement. As for all the dangerous tools located on the first floor, I guess you can let those two gentlemen deal with it. As proof of our sincerity and friendship, whatever you see that you need will be offered to you.
-Is it true?
At those words, a strange light appears inside the eyes of the dwarf. He looks anxiously at the two members of the Church, to see their reactions. But, those two humans were clearly not expecting that move from the mayor. And they are in quite a pickle, should they refuse that to their ally, that will fight with them against the ratmen? Or should they keep the ingredients to strengthen their own forces? But by doing so, they will clearly anger the dwarves. Seeing the clear embarrassment of the two men, the mayor quickly seals the deal.
-Of course, the Church will never be stingy with their allies, especially the proud dwarves. You were those that managed to destroy those dirty machines inside the Gold Summit, turning the tides in the past war. That's why, if there is something that will be useful to your incredibly talented engineers, you can get it.
-Haha, good words mayor, very good words. I know understand why you two were friends, the tongue of the human is truly a wonderful ability. I don't really know if you think all of you said, but you make me happy anyway. A drink! To this! To the END OF THE VERMIN!
After seeing this, the dwarf approach the wine put on the table. The mayor has no fear about that since the dwarves are naturally resistant to alcohol. Even if he drinks all the bottle, at worst, he will be drunk. But seeing the dwarf being an endless hole, Graeme is regretting this. He will probably not even be able to taste the wine before the bottle is empty.
What nobody expected was the previous healthy dwarf to spit blood right after finishing to drink. The two agents of the Church instantly get near him and begins to heal him, preventing the death of the emissary. If a dwarf really dies inside Ronta, who knows what will happen to the alliance between the two races. Because the Church had assured that not a single ratmen was located inside the city, so the only explanation was a poison used by a human.
This line of thought was currently running in a circle inside the minds of the three men around the dwarf. But while the two men of the Church was currently targeting the mayor with death stares, Graeme himself was truly shocked. First, if he had drunk that bottle, he would have been dead, since even the strong dwarf only survived because of the presence of the archbishops. And then, who had poisoned that wine?
Because the bottle was sealed, or at least he thought it was sealed. And it is one of the last bottles in his reserve, something he would probably never have drunk if not being fired from the position of mayor. No matter what is the solution, it doesn't make any sense to him. The people inside the mansion was loyal to his family and himself, he will swear on everything he had. Charles, for example, his son had managed to enter the order of the knights only because Graeme had helped him. And for the rest of the maids, they all had many favors granted by him.
During all of this, Charles finally enters the room, carrying the key. But seeing the weird scene, he doesn't really understand what happened, only looking at the mayor with troubled eyes.
-Charles, where does this bottle comes from?
-Eh, mayor, I think it is from one of the different pubs that have closed after the evacuation. I don't know anything else.
Seeing his last hope fly away, the poor mayor resigned himself to his fate. After stabilizing the state of the dwarf, the two archbishops look at the former mayor with angry eyes.
-Graeme Sorrel Tyne, you are under arrest for the tentative of murder against the emissary of the king of the Mountain. You will be judged by the Church for this attack against the dwarves and during such conflicted times. You will also be labeled as a traitor, betraying the human race from whatever payment you had coming from the ratmen. You truly have disappointed us.
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