Chapter 16 011. Imperial Prince is Hunting a Witch -4 (Part Two)
Chapter 16: 011. Imperial Prince is Hunting a Witch -4 (Part Two)
“You son of a b*tch! You used Necrom….!”
Before she could finish her words, the shovel smacked her in the face once more. Despite blood dancing about everywhere, she didn’t die.
The Prince looked down on the dazed and bleeding Morian before speaking out loudly, “I shan’t be the one to judge you, but my fellow villagers will.”
He then stepped aside. Even the platinum-haired girl released her grip on Morian.
Before long, the villagers approached her from all sides. She looked at their expressions and her own complexion paled greatly.
She was quickly gagged and then dragged out from the cave. Eventually, the group returned to the monastery. The remainder of the villagers were informed of her evil actions.
The enraged people stoned her mercilessly. Once she became a broken wreck, they tied her up and hauled her back to the forest before dangling her up by the neck and abandoning her to her own demise.
Some time later, starving beasts passing by tore into her flesh and devoured her.
Three days later, she herself became a zombie. While still hanging on the tree, she flailed about ungainly.
The Imperial Prince looked at that spectacle and clicked his tongue. “Even if this is a fantasy world, the medieval setting sure can be scary.”
The zombified Morian who was dangling by the neck continued to flail away while howling out loudly.
Without a Priest to perform her purification ceremony, she’d have to remain as an undead for decades, maybe even for hundreds of years.
This was the fate waiting for a Necromancer who relied on the magic of death.
“That’s too bad though. I wanted to find out what that Black Order thing was all about, but oh well.”
If only he possessed a skill to talk to souls like a real Necromancer, that would’ve been real nice. Unfortunately, he wasn’t blessed with such a descriptive ability.
It didn’t matter at the end of the day though, since he was still an Imperial Prince.
After he was banished to this place, his influence as a potential successor to the throne had pretty much disappeared. Even then, there were still some people who made a move to eliminate him, perhaps fearing that despite his current state, he could pose some threat to them.
If that was the case, then he could certainly think of a few likely suspects.
“My brothers, huh.”
His siblings from the Holy Imperial Family who were eligible to inherit the Holy Emperor’s throne–it was possible that they were targeting him.
“Damn, how cold-hearted. I didn’t expect to get tangled up in a power struggle…”
The Imperial Prince clicked his tongue again as he shook his head.
Nevertheless, the curtains on the Witch Morgana incident had closed with this.
They were in the northern frontier’s Land of the Dead Spirits. The time for the ‘Tide of Death’, the moment when the instincts of the dead awoke, were closing on them once more.
Charlotte grew interested in the boy referred to as the Imperial Prince.
During the defence against the zombie horde, and during the mass funeral, she observed him from a faraway distance.
She heard stories about him. One of them being that while she was still unconscious, the prince took care to move the remains of her parents and sincerely performed their funeral.
She quietly watched the boy prince tirelessly perform numerous funerals throughout the night. Even when everyone was dog-tired, he didn’t rest and continued to work. He prayed with great care so that the dead souls could find some peace in their afterlife.
While seeing him like that, she felt a certain frustration well up in her chest. He was her life’s saviour, her benefactor. And he was also another type of a saviour, who saved her parents by performing their funeral rites.
“What kind of person is the Imperial Prince?”
Charlotte’s question was answered by the older girls and aunties of the village.
He was a mangnani, a maggot, an irredeemable trash, a dumbass who killed himself after failing to seduce a woman. All sorts of criticism aimed towards his direction were whispered right into her ear.
She frowned deeply after hearing them all. This wasn’t what she wanted to find out. Charlotte ended up glaring at the village’s womenfolk.
“Well, it does feel like he’s somewhat changed since three months ago, actually.”
“Yeah, he performed my father’s funeral with such care back then, too.”
“That’s right, he even saved everyone this time, didn’t he?”
They were grateful towards the Imperial Prince-nim. And they also seemed to be relying on him, too.
Charlotte recalled the time she supported the Prince-nim back in the cave.
‘He was so small and young.’
Indeed, his figure felt tiny and very light. He was even more immature than she was, with a face that looked younger than her. And yet, with such a small body, he fought off against that huge bear. Even though he was injured badly, he still tried his best to rescue the kidnapped woman.
‘He’s actually very caring.’
But then, that woman named Morian betrayed his faith in her. She lunged at the boy prince and tried to kill him.
Charlotte quickly stepped in to stop that from happening.
It all transpired in the blink of an eye, really.
By the time she regained her wits, she was already leaping high in the air, grasping the woman’s hair, and then slamming the woman’s head down on the floor. She even pointed the knife at the woman’s throat, almost slicing it wide open.
She herself was shocked by her own agile movements.
‘Was my body this light from the beginning?’
As it turned out, the woman was a Necromancer. Charlotte found that out after the woman and the Imperial Prince conversed for a while.
Charlotte couldn’t understand what they were talking about, but she was sure that this female Necromancer was targeting the Prince’s life. And for that purpose, many, many villagers had to die.
The Imperial Prince didn’t forgive such a person.
In the end, Morian was hung by her neck in the forest while she was still alive.
It was a truly gruesome fate.
That’s how this incident came to an end.
Charlotte and the rest of the villagers began rebuilding the village and hunted down the still unaccounted-for zombies. Then, they helped the Imperial Prince perform the funerals for the dead.
When the situation had somewhat normalised, farmer Gril came to speak to her.
“Charlotte, if it’s alright with you, why don’t you stay at my place?”
He smiled awkwardly while asking her. She had no place to stay anymore, and that’s why she nodded her head to express consent. But still, she looked in the direction of the Imperial Prince in the monastery.
“Is there anyone there helping the Imperial Prince-nim?”
“Helping his highness? What… Ahh, you mean as a gravekeeper?”
She shook her head.
She didn’t just mean the role of gravekeeper, but someone to clean the monastery, managing it, as well as performing other sundry chores.
Wasn’t such an environment just too unforgiving for a young prince to live alone? Shouldn’t someone at least try to lend him a helping hand?
“Ah, you wish to work as a maidservant?”
Charlotte nodded her head in response.
But Gril formed a troubled expression on his face. “The thing is, the Paladins told us not to place a servant near him. The reason being…”
…Because he was a mangnani; he was banished so that his personality could hopefully change for the better.
The Paladins said that having a maidservant would only cause the boy to become even more arrogant, rather than reflecting on his past and grow remorseful about it.
Gril pondered the situation for a moment before addressing Charlotte once more, “There’s one other way. Maybe it might work if you decide to become a nun.”
“Well, it’s a monastery, right? If you enter it to study faith, then the Paladins might not mind.”
Charlotte nodded her head.
The next day, she went back to the monastery.
She found the Imperial Prince by the library. He was busy going through the written records recovered from the Necromancer’s cave.
“How complicated. At this rate, I’ll get assassinated for sure. Without a shield to protect me… I’ll definitely get killed. As for my skill proficiency, I gotta…”
Not only that, assassination?
Charlotte approached the boy prince. He flinched after sensing the presence of another human and sneakily hid the book.
She tilted her head as she stared at him.
He replied to her with a heavy frown. “What’s this? Why are you here? I don’t have any funerals scheduled for today, so why can’t you let me take a break for at least a single day?”
“I wish to pay my debt.”
She inwardly went, ‘ah, I made a mistake’. ‘Debt’ wasn’t the right word to use here.
She should’ve said the kindness he had shown her…
While regretting her choice of words, Charlotte tried to open her lips again.
“Wait, are you talking about back then?” The prince said.
He looked really surprised just then. For some reason, he quickly retreated and sneakily reached out towards his trusty shovel too.
Why was he reacting like that, though?
Ah, perhaps he still had unfinished business he needed to attend to?
“It’ll be better to forget about the past, alright? I mean, our first encounter wasn’t all that memorable as a shared experience, am I wrong?”
As expected of the Imperial Prince, his heart was secretly generous. He was even telling her to forget about the kindness he had shown her. But… how could she dare to do that?
He saved her life and ensured that her parents could rest peacefully, didn’t he?
“I wish to serve you.”
Charlotte recalled the word ‘shield’.
She remembered that this boy-prince had been exiled here. And not to forget, that woman Necromancer spat out the word ‘assassination’ too.
Someone was trying to murder this young prince. Without a doubt, his banishment had to be that person’s underhanded trick as well.
There was no way that a prince like this boy could be a mangnani.
Charlotte’s gaze shifted towards the books that were lined up on the bookshelf.
[The Imperial Swordsmanship Tutorial]
[The Imperial Self-Defence Technique and Practice Drills]
[The Methods to Operate and Control Divinity for Paladins]
There were several books here.
A shield… he was searching for it.
He was searching for someone to protect him.
However, if she came out and openly said it, he’d reject her. Because it’d be a dangerous task, that’s why.
“I’d like to offer my services in this place as a nun.”
This didn’t mean that she should give up though. No, she definitely had to protect this person.
In that case, she should masquerade as a nun instead. As a nun, she would study his religion and train herself so that she could protect him when the time came.
A young girl might not be able to properly defend an Imperial Prince, but still, she decided to give it her all regardless of this fact. Besides, there could be a way for a nun to switch to a Paladin by learning swordsmanship.
This would be the only way for her to repay the kindness he had shown to her. She would protect the boy prince who had no one to rely on.
Charlotte smiled at him.
“…I’ll be in your care.”
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