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Chapter 145

Infinite Mage

03/30/2024

WE TRIED TRANSLATIONS

Translator/Editor: Ryuu
Discord: https://dsc.gg/wetried


INFINITE MAGE


Chapter 145: The ‘Parrot’ (3)

 

"Ha, they're just thugs anyway. Don't worry and just wait for us to return."

Zis shared what he knew. He didn't want to scare them off, but he couldn't bear the guilt if he let them go without warning.

"They appeared out of nowhere and took over the island in just three months. They're not just any organization. From what I heard from one of Falcoa's direct subordinates, they were called the Parrot Thieves' Guild before coming to this island."

"The Parrot Thieves' Guild?"

Shirone's eyes widened. Amy also seemed surprised by this revelation.

The Parrot Thieves' Guild was the same band that Lucas, who had stormed the school with Arcane, belonged to.

Amy had witnessed Lucas's prowess. Memories resurfaced of him, unfazed by the combined attacks of Yiruki and Nade, thanks to the effect of Abyss Nova wearing off.

Had it not been for Siena's unexpected intervention, it would have been impossible for all the students to remain unharmed.

Regardless of their identity, the situation remained unchanged. With an innocent girl's life at stake, it was crucial to leave as soon as possible.

"It's okay. We've even fought and won against the vice leader of the Parrot Thieves' Guild."

Zis bit his lip, holding back tears.

"Thank you. To go to such lengths for someone like me..."

The nobles Zis had encountered until now never considered back-alley scum as humans.

Perhaps it was to be expected. Why would those who monopolize the world's wealth and fame pay any attention to the denizens of the dark?

But these people were different. They were willing to fight for him, someone they could have easily taken advantage of with mere words.

"How can I ever repay this kindness..."

As Zis continued to express his gratitude, Amy, slightly embarrassed, placed her hands on her hips and sighed.

"Enough already. If you think about it, you saved me. If anything, we're the ones who should be thanking you."

"But to go to such lengths for something so dangerous..."

"No need to overthink it. We're not strangers anymore. And since you've manfully asked for help, we're obliged to respond."

Zis looked at Amy with a baffled expression.

How could his actions be considered manly in this situation? If anything, shouldn't it be the opposite?

"Stop it, I don't need your pity. Manly? What man would beg so abjectly? My pride is completely shattered."

"What are you talking about? You set aside your pride to ask for help for your sister."

"Well, yes, but..."

Amy smiled and gently pushed Zis's forehead.

"That's exactly what makes you a real man, you fool."

As Amy walked away, leaving those words behind, Zis felt a lump in his throat and tears threatened to spill, but he felt he needed to hold back, not wanting to dampen their resolve.

Rian patted Zis on the shoulder and followed Amy.

"Don't worry. Since you saved my friend, we'll definitely save your sister."

Tess added,

"But when we return, you owe us a proper tour. We'll make sure to collect our dues for the hard work."

Shirone turned back to Zis at the door and said,

"Trust us. We'll bring your sister back safely."

Unable to hold back any longer, Zis burst into tears. Ignoring his bandaged wounds, he ran to the door and shouted after Shirone's departing figures.

"Be careful! Really, you must be careful! I won't forgive you if you don't come back safely!"

Shirone's group didn't look back, but their quickening pace was a more potent response than any words could convey.

 

* * *

 

Shirone's group rented four horses from the western commercial district. Tess had argued that chasing in a slow-moving carriage would make it impossible to keep up with the time.

Despite the bold promises to Zis, the actual situation was grim.

The revelation of the Freeman organization's true identity weighed heavily on their minds.

Lucas, a member of the Parrot Thieves' Guild, was a B-class criminal.

Criminals' classifications aren't just based on the severity of their crimes but also on their combat abilities.

Even a serial killer causing chaos in the city wouldn't be confined in the western prison, Inferno, if they were a mentally unstable individual without significant physical strength.

Shirone sensed they were entangled in a serious matter.

Something had definitely been off. After the Arcane incident, the Parrot Thieves' Guild's leader was said to be an A-class criminal currently on the run.

So who were they up against now, if not Freeman, the leader of the organization they were about to confront?

"Amy, are you sure it's the Parrot Thieves' Guild? Doesn't something feel off?"

"I had the same thought. How could a wanted organization set up base in a tourist destination? Especially since the pursuit of the Parrot Thieves' Guild would have intensified after the Arcane incident."

Tess, riding alongside them, joined the conversation.

"It's not the Parrot Thieves' Guild."

"Huh? Do you know something?"

"It's likely that 'Parrot Thieves' Guild' is just the name they adopted after crossing into the Thormia Kingdom. Their original name was the Parrot Mercenary Band."

"Mercenary Band? They were mercenaries? Then Lucas too?"

"I can't be certain about him, but I do know how they ended up becoming a band of thieves."

"Why is that?"

Shirone asked immediately, but Tess was hesitant to share.

In essence, it was a common tale, yet she feared that revealing information about their adversaries could demoralize Shirone in the face of the upcoming fierce battle.

"Tess, if you know something, please share."

Urged by Amy's curiosity, Tess reluctantly began to explain.

"There was a significant incident related to the Parrot Mercenary Band on the continent about seven years ago. Have you heard of the Flower Vase Incident in the Iron Kingdom?"

"Oh? I know about it. We learned about it in school."

Shirone recounted what he knew. At a noble gathering in the Iron Kingdom, a senatorial noble named Baltes declared that he would give his cherished vase to anyone who could prove they were braver than him.

A commoner noble named Moos took up the challenge. His method was to throw the vase, which was the prize, against the wall.

On the surface, it seemed like a trivial incident among drunk nobles, but digging deeper revealed a long-festering political conflict.

"The Iron Kingdom's noble system is bicameral. The Senate conveys the king's will, and the House represents the commoners. While this made Iron a wealthy kingdom, it also led to severe conflicts among the nobles."

Involving commoners in politics weakens the authority of the nobles. However, as the number of empowered commoners increases, the nation's wealth grows exponentially.

"The Senate's power comes from authority, and the House's power from taxes. Ultimately, a conflict between the two factions was inevitable. When Moos, a commoner noble, acted arrogantly, Baltes was seething. Although the situation was brushed off at the time, the resentment likely lingered."

"But how does that relate to the Parrot Thieves' Guild, or the Parrot Mercenary Band?"

"Three months after the vase incident, a civil war erupted in Moos's territory. An unidentified army invaded. From intelligence reports, the instigator of the civil war was Baltes. He hired mercenaries instead of his soldiers to attack Moos."

"So, could it be that among those mercenaries..."

"Exactly. They were part of the Parrot Mercenary Band. Although many mercenary bands participated, the Parrot Mercenary Band demonstrated overwhelming power and breached Moos's defenses. However, just as they were about to break into the inner city, Baltes's soldiers suddenly poured in from the rear, ambushing the mercenaries."

Shirone could imagine the situation at the time.

Hire mercenaries to attack the enemy and then use your soldiers to attack the mercenaries. This strategy allowed one to claim both victory and innocence.

"From the start, Baltes never intended to annihilate Moos. The power of the House, backed by the commoners, was stronger than anticipated. He just wanted to teach Moos a lesson. The mercenaries were disposable from the beginning. Attack the territory with them, then eliminate them, a perfect plan."

"But wouldn't the commoner nobles not just stand by after that?"

"Of course, but they couldn't make it public. After all, the Senate is composed of nobles under the king's protection. There must have been some agreement. The fact that Moos hasn't mentioned the incident even after seven years suggests he received some compensation from Baltes."

Rian frowned, clearly displeased.

"So the mercenaries were the only ones abandoned? I can't understand the thinking of politicians. It goes against the code of chivalry."

"It's natural to feel that way. But I've been exposed to far worse intelligence within my family. The world doesn't always operate according to our beliefs."

Everyone fell silent at Tess's words. They knew that someday they would have to step into the world where colossal forces were at play. The Flower Vase Incident wasn't their affair, but it wasn't entirely unrelated either.

"Regardless, they were abandoned. The mercenaries who attacked Moos's territory were all executed under the guise of treason, and naturally, the Parrot Mercenary Band disbanded."

Amy spoke up.

"But they survived in the end. That's why they must have sought asylum in the Thormia Kingdom."

"Right. The mercenary band disbanded, but a few skilled members escaped the battlefield. It's conjecture from here, but perhaps it was difficult for those branded as traitors to maintain a mercenary band? So they degenerated into a band of thieves and eventually, being labeled as criminals, they drifted to this island."

Tess's reasoning was sound, but Shirone felt uneasy.

Above all, for those fleeing under the charge of national treason to maintain the name "Parrot," they would need considerable capital, power, and an exceptionally capable leader.

"Maybe it's just a coincidence in name? After all, there are numerous guilds in the world, and 'Parrot' isn't an uncommon name."

Tess hesitated to respond. The situation she had feared was unfolding.

"Shirone, remember the girl you mentioned last time?"

"Huh? Marsha?”

After rescuing Amy from the palace and eating late-night snacks, Shirone had briefly mentioned Marsha.

Of course, he hadn't divulged every detail.

Especially the story of how he was nearly harmed by his foster father was something he intended to take to his grave.

"I thought it was speculation when I heard Zis's words, but there's a reason it can't be. The name of the mercenary band's leader at that time came to mind."

"The leader's name? Not Freeman?"

"Clay Marsha. That was the leader's name."

As Tess finally revealed this, Shirone's expression turned blank. The kind Marsha, like an older sister to him, and the mercenary band's leader Marsha didn't align in his mind.

"I initially thought it was a coincidence but the story of being raised by mercenaries made me wonder. Then, hearing Zis's words, I became certain. The ones ruling this island are the remnants of the A-class mercenary band betrayed seven years ago in the Iron Kingdom."

"That's impossible. How could miss Marsha...? I explained before. She's not the kind to do such bad things."

"Is that really what you think? The Marsha you're thinking of."

Tess glared at Shirone with an intense look, different from her usual self. It was the gaze of an intelligence agent, piercing through a person's psyche.

"Are you really thinking that? About the Marsha you know."

Shirone bit his lip. Deep down, he knew. Despite his desire to trust her, his intuition had already begun to doubt everything.

"I'm sorry. You must be right. It seems likely..."

Piece by piece, everything fell into place. The reaction she had when discussing the collusion between nobles and criminals, smirking with sarcasm, now made sense.

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Chapter 145

Infinite Mage

03/30/2024

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