I delayed releasing this one because there are so many details lol.
Hope I don’t have to come back and fix anything after I’m done with this arc.


Twenty Fourth Run, Last Rites

“Alright, everyone’s here huh.”

Using what he remembered, Klein managed to follow the same path and arrived at the meeting in the same manner as his first time.

It would be a lie to say that he took the exact same path as his first time and it’s true that he is wary of the traitor but after he tried attending this meeting without preparing any countermeasure at all as a test, he decided to start over from the beginning.

“……It’s been a while since the last time we met, gentlemen.”

After confirming that he managed to recreate the first meeting, he quickly made his move.

It took him 10 times to narrow down the traitor.

He had been narrowing down the suspects one by one and both the identity of the traitor and his cause of death are already mostly confirmed.

After confirming various things one last time in his previous life, he decided to settle it now.

“Indeed, My Lord.
I have been looking forward to hearing more of your profitable proposals as well.”

“My, you don’t have to be so open about it you know.”

This meeting is held with its full members with no exclusion.

That’s why the conversation is the exact same as the first time.

“Oops, my apology.
It seems I got a little too excited by the booming market recently.”

“Hahahaha, I assume that you will continue to act as president for a while then, Boss.”

Even though he had already finished his investigation on the traitor, there was no point in changing the meeting’s attendees.

After all,

—Even when he repeated this meeting 10 times and excluded each member at least once, Klein always ended up dying.

After receiving the stomach medicine from Trek, he tried pretending to be sick and excused himself before the lunch was served and he survived.
He took the stomach medicine that night as well so there’s no doubt that he was poisoned at this table.

Well, since he ended up surviving because of that he had to take his own life to start over so he’s a little dejected though.

At least he managed to confirm that he was indeed poisoned at lunch.

And there were only two people who could have done that.
He also managed to guess at the traitor’s objective.

Using the best possible course of action, Klein came here today to deliver the traitor a perfect last rite.

“I guess we are finished here for the time being.”

“Indeed, My Lord.
Let’s eat.”

After the brief talk of the investment ratio adjustment, around 10 minutes passed after lunch began.

When the main meat dish was about to be served, Klein decided to make his move.

“…….This place is being run by the Hermes company right? What’s the main dish today? Fish? Meat?”

“Today we have the highest-grade fillet mignon purchased from the Jotunn territory, please enjoy it, My Lord.”

“I see.
If the meat is that good then having a glass of red wine to go with it would be nice don’t you think.”

When Klein casually said that, Jean Hermes lowered his head and turned to Dominique Saga.

“If My Lord desires a good wine then I believe that the Saga company should be able to provide us.
If I recall correctly, I think that you have acquired one of the northern special wines recently, correct/”

“Yes, I’ve just got my hand on the best wine there.”

The two are smiling.

At this point, there is nothing particularly suspicious about their actions.

“Hmm, I don’t really know wine but what kind of wine did you bring?”

“It’s the 20 years old Chateau Bordeaux, My Lord.”

“Hmm….I’m looking forward to it.”

Of course, that was a lie.

Klein doesn’t really enjoy liquor much and he doesn’t know anything about the wine brands at all.

He only brought the topic up to make it clear who brought what to the table.

“That’s right.
I don’t think this can repay you for the gifts you gave me but I brought a present for you all today.”

As he started checking them, Klein turned to his secretary, Brynhildr.

“A present is it?”

“I’m looking forward to it.”

In front of the smiling merchants, sets of tableware were placed.

They are the silver tableware that will soon become the Asgard territory’s special products.

“Hou…..these are quite well-made, My Lord.”

“The Southern Count and I are distant relatives so I requested him to lend us some of his craftsmen to teach the people here to make them you see.”

“I see.
So this will become another special product that can be exported from here correct?”

Since he half-forced the Southern Count to lend him a first-class craftsman to make these prototypes, they are of considerable quality.

Since it would cost a considerable amount of money to buy this normally, the merchants all have a nice smile on their faces.

I wrapped them up nicely for you guys but I want to try using one today so I’m intending to use this new tableware for the main dish.
Since a cup was also included in the set, shall we make a toast to commemorate our meeting?”

“That’s a nice idea, My Lord!”

“HoHou, I guess this can serve as a blessing for our prosperous future together.”

Klein brought up a toast and casually observed each of the merchants’ reactions.

Trek seems to be enjoying himself.
President Hermes looks normal.
On top of his present, knowing that everyone is quite happy about the negotiation today, almost everyone has a smile on their face.

Yes, most of them are looking forward to the meal.

However, the president of the company with the weakest standing here, Dominique Saga looked a little nervous.

Since he has repeated this lunch many times before, he has already confirmed that the poison was not within the appetizers.

On the contrary, he has confirmed that the brand of wine that is to be served with the main dish has changed from the one that was prepared beforehand.

From the start, he already knows what item was mixed with poison.

That’s why this is all a show he put up for them.

“20 years old Chateau Bordeaux and the best of Jotunn’s meat.
They are indeed suitable to celebrate our new beginning.”

“Yes, truly.”

Confident in his dish, Hermes answers him with a smile and signals his staff to serve the main dish.

Upon hearing their exchange, Saga immediately turned to Hermes with a look of surprise.

“I’m looking forward to it…….Now, President Saga.
Bring out the wine.”

“Eh, Umm, the wine is, Umm…..”

Dominique Saga.
There’s an 80 to 90 percent chance that he’s the one.

Klein, who has already judged so, started to put more pressure on him.

“What’s wrong? The dish was already served right.
Ahh, since it’s your wine, would you mind pouring it for me?”

Klein sticks out his silver cup in front of the stiffened Dominique to corner him.

Ignoring the already presented sommelier, Klein directly points his cup at Dominique.

The one thing that can unmask his would-be assassin, Klein has prepared the silver tableware just for this.

Since he risked suspicion from Brynhildr to prepare them, he wants to settle this here.

“T, Then, Umm, allow me.”

Dominique’s hands trembled as he poured his wine into Klein’s cup.

After that, Klein slowly took his time to stir the cup.

Carefully, slowly.

He took so long that the surrounding merchants were puzzled at his behavior.

“Is it necessary to stir it that long, My Lord?”

This wine sure has a nice scent don’t you think.
It must have been from the finest barrel—–wait, what is this?”

Over time, the cup gradually turned black.

And eventually, its inside was tainted with black poisonous spots.

“U, Umm,….perhaps the wine was….defective?”

“I don’t know much about wine so I’m no expert but can a poorly made wine make a silver cup look like this?”

“Ha, Haha…….th, that’s true, My Lord.
Perhaps something went wrong with the storage…”

If you do not store your wine properly, it will just turn into vinegar.
However, that’s just vinegar.

Naturally, vinegar can’t possibly turn silver black.
Rather, you need to use vinegar to remove stains from silver.

Even Klein knows that.

However, he pretended to be clueless about that and showed the discolored cup to the other merchants.

“Saga! You bastard!”

“Did you try to poison Klein-sama!?”

That’s right.
Silver will become discolored in response to poisons.

Of course, there are many types of poison that do not work that way but most of them should be detectable using silverware.

The poison this time is pretty common.
And that’s why it caused such a reaction and the new silver cup was completely darkened.

“T, There must be some kind of mistake! Please believe me, Klein-sama! President Hermes, please!”

Dominique desperately begs the two most influential at the meeting.

Of course, Klein is not in a forgiving mood while Jean Hermes, the veteran merchant, was completely expressionless.

“…..For a merchant, the most important thing is trust right.”

“Indeed, Klein-sama.”

Realizing their intention from the replies he received, Dominique held his head and started screaming.

While shaking his head, he scrambled with his eyes wide open.

“UWAhhhhhHH—-! Ah.”

However, the screaming man immediately turned quiet and slowly collapsed on the spot.

Then, centering on the place he fell, blood flowed from his nape, making a puddle on the floor.

“Fufu, it seems he managed to pass away peacefully.”

—–the smiling woman who was standing beside Klein looked down at the fallen Saha with a gentle look.

From Brynhildr’s eyes, it was as if she was saying [I’ve freed you from suffering].

With her sword a little wet from the blood, she wipe it with her handkerchief with a smile.

Are you okay?”

“Y, Yeah.
But I was hoping to interrogate him later though.”

Rather than the panicked assassin, he was more scared of his own secretary.

“We can’t discern the truth from such a mad man.
Your safety is my priority, Klein-sama.”

In front of her gentle smile, Klein couldn’t say anything more.

She is supposed to be his subordinate and ally now but as expected, she’s still scary.

“W, Well, we managed to identify a traitor.
I’m sorry for the disturbing scene, gentlemen.”

Since the people gathered here are first-rate merchants, they are more or less used to such a scene.

Through the development so far, it should be almost certain that the culprit was the man who’s now lying lifelessly on the floor.

In the first place, it was outside Klein’s expectation that Dominique was immediately killed here.

“No, you have nothing to apologize to us for, Klein-sama…..”

That’s right.
Y, You are also a victim after all, My Lord.”

Although everyone managed to regain their composure, they can’t possibly continue their lunch at a scene of murder.

With an awkward atmosphere hanging over them, they go their separate ways.

On the other hand, that night, Klein did not suffer any stomach pain or die of poison.

Finally, he gets a good night’s sleep.

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