Grandson of the Holy Emperor is a Necromancer - Chapter 54
Chapter 54: 033. Imperial Prince is Attending a Banquet -4 (Part Two)
I contemplated for a while before opening my mouth. “Doesn’t the imperial court know how to suss out the vampires?”
Harman groaned under his breath. “In all honesty… no, we don’t have any reliable methods, your highness.”
“Aren’t their bodies usually cold?”
“Vampires can manipulate their bodies. If they want to raise their body temperature, it should be rather easy to do so.”
“You can feed them holy water.”
“They will withstand it even after consuming some.”
“Won’t their flesh burn away after injecting some divinity?”
“These blood-creations have evolved specifically to live in plain sight among regular humans, your highness.” Harman swallowed his dry saliva and carried on. “And their bodies are also that of a normal human.”
A dazed expression floated up on my face.
Vampires were monsters that could survive with their whole bodies being dismembered, as long as their head and heart permeating with demonic energy were left intact. It meant that cutting off and replacing a portion of their own bodies with someone else’s was a fairly simple process.
“It’s possible for a vampire to sever its own arms and legs, attach the limbs belonging to another person on itself, then manipulate the nerves to pass them off as its own, your highness. It can even remove the skin of its victim and wrap itself completely with that as well. In such cases, they should be able to withstand holy water being cast on them, or divinity being injected into them.”
Fomor was still fine after I injected some divinity into him merely because the ‘hand’ I shook belonged to an actual human.
“What would happen if you create a wound and pour holy water on it? A vampire’s body wouldn’t heal from that, am I wrong?”
“As I’ve said earlier, these creatures are wearing the skins of real human beings, your highness. That very skin should react positively to holy water and heal itself instead. Of course, as they are merely wearing skins, they shouldn’t be able to exhibit the full strengths of real vampires.”
I could only click my tongue at this information. But I didn’t give up there and asked Harman for more details on the methods to ferret out the vampires.
“Wouldn’t it be possible after learning magic that utilised divinity?”
“Those without talent can’t gather divinity, your highness.”
“What about wounds?”
“Vampires can simply make it so that they don’t heal.”
“Although they do grow weaker in daylight, they can walk around without any issues.”
“There are numerous vampires with unique taste palates who apparently enjoy garlic from what I’ve heard, your highness.”
“Undeads have demonic energy in either their hearts or heads, don’t they? You can pry them open to see it, right? Medical techniques of this world seem pretty advanced to me, so can’t you at least check for something like that?”
“Actually, a vampire hunt fitting your description swept across the entirety of the continent about five hundred years ago, your highness. During that incident, over ten thousand innocent citizens had their heads and chests sliced open. Only two among them were positively identified as vampires.”
Wowsers, the vampires of this world really were insane, weren’t they?!
I held my head.
If there was a sure-fire way, then I’d have told the Holy Emperor already. But without any indisputable proof, he wouldn’t believe me even if he was my own grandfather.
Being a mangnani sure presented various problems, didn’t it?
“Aha! Can’t I like, just kill them all?”
Wouldn’t it be easier if I just went around smacking them in the head with a shovel or maybe shooting them with my musket rifle? Sure, this method was as dumb as a pile of bricks, but I didn’t have to think too hard about it, plus it was a super-quick way to confirm everything.
A huge commotion might start if I did just that, but there shouldn’t be a better solution than this one. I mean, if I killed them first and proved that they were all vampires, then everyone else would start believing me afterwards.
Since it would be the actions of a mangnani, what did it matter if I was a bit heavy-handed and stuff?
“Harman, isn’t your position pretty high up in the pecking order?”
“I’m a vice-captain of the Holy Cross Knight Order, your highness. I can mobilise a single Paladin corps at my discretion.”
“Okay, in that case, let me ask you for a favour.” While saying that, I entrusted the list to him. “You see everyone on this list? Arrest them all and imprison them. No, hang on. Just kill them all.”
“I’ll bear the full responsibility for it.”
Harman swallowed more of his dry saliva.
“What’s wrong? You can’t do it?”
“No, your highness. I’ll do it. But will it really be alright?” He asked in a worried voice, “We’re still in the middle of the banquet. Mobilising an armed force during such an occasion means that you will be in danger as well, your highness.”
Never mind many high-ranking aristocrats attending the banquet, even the Holy Emperor, Kelt Olfolse himself, was scheduled to show up soon. And yet, the Seventh Imperial Prince wanted to gather troops to such a place?
The odds of this action being interpreted as a coup d’etat, an insurrection, was pretty damn high.
“Coup d’etat or insurrection or whatever, ignore them all and just kill them. We just need to gather their ashes as proof, that’s all.”
The corners of my lips rose up. While leaning back, I interlocked my fingers and crossed my legs.
Since I finally decided to make a move, I needed to do it as quickly as possible.
“Do it as soon as possible. Or else, I’ll find myself in serious trouble later.”
Both Harman and Charlotte’s eyes grew wider from my remarks.
I glanced at them. “It’s obvious, isn’t it? I openly tried to confirm whether Count Fomor was a vampire or not. Which means that he’s already suspecting me and will definitely try to take my life. So, before that bastard makes his move first, we…”
It was right then.
The outside of the banquet hall’s doors were getting noisier.
Even before the chamberlain could say something, those same doors were flung wide open.
“I-Imperial Prince Luan! Your highness, you mustn’t! If you keep pushing that body of yours…!”
My gaze shifted towards the doorway.
A man resembling a mummy with numerous bandages tightly wrapped around him stumbled inside. Not just mine, but everyone’s gazes were quickly focused on him in an instant.
The aristocrats screamed and hurriedly covered their noses and mouths. Their alert and wary reactions were similar to how you’d look at a patient infected with a pandemic.
I looked at the mummy man and furrowed my brows deeply. The stench of death was coming off of him.
What the heck was he? An undead…? No, hang on, he’s still alive. But seeing as how all that demonic energy was wafting out of him…
“A curse, is it? One that necrotises the host’s body.”
Harman looked stunned by this event, then he hurriedly looked at me. With an anxious sounding voice, he opened his mouth, “Your highness, how about we leave first and…”
The patient wrapped in bandages glared at me in pure rage. Then he walked up to me next. He shoved aside the knights blocking his path, and even pushed and overturned the tables getting in his way.
“First Imperial Prince, your highness. Just what…”
Harman stood before me as if to provide protection. He then tried embracing the approaching First Imperial Prince to stop the latter.
“…First Imperial Prince?”
That guy was my older brother?
His eyes were bloodshot and he looked like an undead with his mouth wide open like that.
[Name: Luan Olfolse
Traits: benevolent personality, vicious personality, rotting body, excellent talent in swordsmanship, qualities of a wise ruler, thunderbolts, qualities of a tyrant.
Allen Olfolse! I shall punish you bastard for insulting our mother’s memories!]
Now those were some seriously contradictory traits. On top of that, the stuff written in the ‘+’ section was uncomfortably close to pure hatred.
Wait a second, it couldn’t be that the siblings born from the same mother were trying to kill each other, right?
I recalled the Witch Morgana incident and was overcome with some fear that maybe she had been dispatched by the First Imperial Prince, instead.
Charlotte too stood in front of me to act as a shield.
“You bastard, you even dared to insult my loyal vassal too? You can’t be satisfied with dragging our mother’s honour through the mud and attempt to rape the esteemed daughter of an archbishop, so you now even decided to attack my vassal?!”
“Your highness Luan. If you force your body like this…!”
Harman couldn’t make any careless moves here. Every time he tried to stop the First Imperial Prince from going forward, drops of blood fell and pooled on the floor.
Numerous healers and an old man wielding a crosier belatedly rushed into the banquet hall.
“You dare to blaspheme and dishonour our mother’s memories! And as if that wasn’t enough, you even tried to insult the loyal vassal that served her as well! Just what is your reason for tarnishing our mother’s honour to this degree?! What is your damn reason!”
Luan finally managed to shove Harman aside.
As if he had completely lost his reasoning, he pounced on me. Charlotte grabbed his arms, but just before she could subdue him…
“Just what the hell do you think you’re doing?!”
A loud roar reverberated throughout the hall. The Spirit Speech containing divinity completely filled up the banquet venue in an instant.
All of the aristocrats flinched and shielded their heads.
Charlotte, Harman, Luan, and myself froze up and slowly shifted our gazes in a certain direction.
The grand chamberlain kowtowing on the floor made his announcement with every ounce of his energy.
“U-under the divine protection of the virtuous empire… the g-great and noble ruler of the Theocratic Empire…”
‘He’ took one step at a time. The floor beneath his foot shattered and electricity ominously cackled.
The old man kitted out in a white robe with golden engravings might have boasted only a slight physique, but right now, he was exuding this sense of immense weight.
With every step he took, it felt as if a giant was walking towards us.
“His majesty has graced us with his presence!”
The Holy Emperor of the Theocratic Empire, Kelt Olfolse, was now glaring at the instigators of the commotion in the banquet hall.
< 033. Imperial Prince is Attending a Banquet -4 (Part One and Two) > Fin.
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