01.
How to End the War

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(Estiya’s pov)

“Hey, I almost died.”

Only after emptying a bowl of soup did I feel refreshed.

“Does anyone know you’re here?”

I nodded.
Not only do they know, but my whole family went out to catch me.
I almost got caught on the way.
Fortunately, I was able to get through the dreadful crisis thanks to them thinking I would never become a carriage driver serving Jane.

“It’s quite a distance, but how did you get here? Did you make a plan as soon as I left?”

Rodrigo handed me a handkerchief.
Unsurprisingly, I was given a slightly stained handkerchief.
He was always neat, tidy and clean.
It said that even in the novel, he was described as having a neat face while speaking lewd words.

It makes me uncomfortable to think that he must have been wearing a crumpled handkerchief during the months he spent on the battlefield.

“I’m sorry, things are not going well here.”

He apologized when I touched the handkerchief and didn’t wipe my mouth.
He seemed to blame himself for the ungentlemanly handkerchief.

“I came to know that the situation is bad.”

I wiped my mouth with it anyway and turned it over to wipe my dirty hands.
Rodrigo’s gaze reached my fingertips.

“It’s dangerous here.
Go back quickly.
No, why did you come here?”

He looked like he didn’t know at all.
With a bewildered face, he asked questions without hesitation as if he did not know what to say first.
I looked at him calmly and smiled.

“I’m here to show you how to end the war quickly.”

He couldn’t hide his embarrassment.

 

(3rd person pov)

“Nothing.”

“I was looking in vain today.”

“Same.”

Stefen sighed deeply at the disappointing answer from the children.
It was already the third day.
It has been three days, not a day, since he came through the portal after chasing Estiya!

He was so worried that Estiya, who had grown up like a flower in a greenhouse, might have suffered an unfortunate event in this harsh world.

“Did we cross paths?”

Ether looked at his eyes and murmured.

“What? Nonsense.
We followed right away.
Estiya is not that fast.”

“Yeah, even Estiya doesn’t know where to go.”

Eyla and Kaylan were trapped in the image of a naive and a little younger sister Estiya had created.
It was the same with other family members.

To them, Estiya was a person who could not kill a rabbit if she was in distress in the mountains and would starve to death.
A child who knows basic physical skills, but has never properly hit anyone.
What were her thoughts when she went out to meet Rodrigo alone? 

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…The family’s concerns were not alone.

“At least Jane is still there.”

“By the way, our Estiya told the guys around here…”

Kaylan muttered involuntarily and bit his lips.

“All the kids who are holding this area are kicked out.
If anyone has ever seen Estiya’s hair, bring them along.”

Why didn’t they think of that? The more they go down to the provinces, the poorer the security, and the fact was that there were a lot of sloppy rookies taking advantage of the poor security.
Estiya, who suddenly appeared to them, was beautiful, lovely, and cute, would have been a good target.

Suddenly, there was a sound of force, and they took their weapons.

The night was dark.
It was the perfect time for them.
They then began to inquire the rookies from one town to another about Estiya’s whereabouts.

 

Rodrigo pondered over Estiya’s words.

-I’m here to show you how to end the war quickly.

He wondered what it was.
Judging by the look on her dignified expression, it wasn’t bluff.
But he couldn’t keep the conversation going because a reply arrived from the Imperial Palace.

It has been a while since he received something besides the reply, but what’s the content this time? Read only at pm tl.

Rodrigo was frustrated.
Estiya was allowed to remain, and she said she would take a look around the campsite.
Rodrigo did not stop her. 

It was obvious the contents would be something difficult, and his expectations were right.

-Hurry up.

Those were only words. 

Lose quickly and become a loser, bow your head and don’t come back. 

A short letter with deep meaning.

Rodrigo sighed.
Even if Gunther and the Devlan stopped them, he had no choice but to use his magic.
Rodrigo gently pressed his palms together.
A blue light quickly formed and flickered.

“Can I come in?”

A small head slipped into Rodrigo’s barracks.
Rodrigo was startled and took his magic away.
However, as if there was an afterimage of the light, Estiya immediately recognized that he had used magic.

“Did you use magic?”

Rodrigo paused and nodded his head.

“Are you okay with it now?”

Estiya walked around pretending to look around the barracks and asked Rodrigo.
Rodrigo sat on the table and stared at Estiya.
She sometimes spoke as if she knew Rodrigo very well, and in fact, most of what she said was right.

From the smallest to the most important points.

For example, what she just did.
Her question was based on the premise that he was having trouble using magic, but that was a very important secret.

Who the hell is Estiya?

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(Estiya’s pov)

“Are you okay with it now?”

I asked a question without realizing it, and I was surprised.
I pretended to know too much.
I knew he had been ill after using magic, but it was hard to claim that I figured out the truth he was trying to hide.

But I couldn’t pick up the words that had already been spit out, so I shamelessly looked around his barracks and looked at Rodrigo’s reaction.
Rodrigo looked at me for a long time, but he didn’t say anything.

“Let’s talk about what we were talking about.”

Finally, it was time to tell the purpose of my coming here.
I brought a chair in front of him and sat down.
My neck hurt as I stood, so I had to lean back.
He quietly followed as I slowly explained my plans.

Also known as kidnapping.

His expression became increasingly harsh as he listened to my explanation, and when I finished explaining, he groaned.

“Absolutely not!”

He was angry

Why are you angry?

Rodrigo, who took a deep breath to contain his anger, looked unfamiliar.
He was normally a calm person since he had a very high rage threshold, and he rarely got angry about anything. 

“Is there anything wrong with my plan?”

“Yes, a lot.”

He took the flask to his lips, showing that he didn’t want to talk about the subject any longer.
I was proud of myself.
I thought it was a pretty good plan.
I didn’t expect to be rejected as soon as I spoke.

“What’s wrong?”

I asked harshly.
He sighed and repeated the act of drinking.

“Because you are in danger.”

I shut my mouth, not knowing what to say.
Although I am a Cartina, I hid my skills, but in fact, I am strong enough to subdue my family if I fought one-on-one with Kaylan, Ether, and Eyla.

I’m in danger? Maybe Cartina will take down Veloki before that happens.

Even before I showed my ability, if there was a problem, my body would be healthy.

“If you are worried about that, put it aside.
I am strong.”

“Veloki is strong too.
Especially Frances.”

Frances? Who is he? Ah, the little prince Rodrigo helped?

I remember reading it in the book for a while.
In one paragraph, the story of the relationship between the Veloki Peninsula and Rodrigo was written.
With that relationship, Veloki helped Rodrigo.
It was bittersweet that the relationship between giving and receiving help became enemies on the battlefield at the whim of Emperor Tereo.

But the water has already spilled.
If a war has begun, it must be won by any means and methods!

“You have to win.
His Majesty the Emperor refused the reinforcements.
The soldiers are already exhausted and their morale is low.
There is no way out.”

Rodrigo raised an eyebrow.
His eyes had a lot to say, but instead of pouring out his words, he bit his lip.
All that was left between us was silence.
Rodrigo was only fiddling with the bottle to see if the drink had run out.
His frustration was conveyed, and I also became frustrated.

The air was so heavy it was hard to breathe.
I didn’t expect this kind of picture when I went through the portal in the Cartina mansion.
I thought Rodrigo would welcome me, and I thought he would be delighted with the solution I have.

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I thought it would be good for him, for the Empire, and for us to end the war as quickly as possible.

“Shit.”

He murmured

“I’m sorry.”

Then he immediately apologized.
Even though he cursed, it didn’t matter since I was used to the language in Cartina.

“Estiya, give me a chance.
We will win.”

“How?”

“I didn’t want to do anything like this, but I’m going to shake the king.”

Oh, he’s got a way

My eyes sparkled.
I wondered what he came up with.  Anyway, I liked the character Rodrigo, so I read the novel to the end, and I had fun in the process of solving the case.

“So can’t you trust me and go back? I don’t think it’s going to be easy to deal with Cartina.”

His expression was odd.
He looked worried, sad, and also a little bitter.

“It will take some time for Cartina to find me.
So tell me your…”

“General, General!”

The outside of the barracks became noisy before I finished speaking.
Rodrigo rose from his seat frowning.

“What’s going on?”

“Well, the Count of Cartina has come to see you.”

How did you find me in a few days?

I was surprised, and so was Rodrigo.

“Estiya!”

 

Five Cartinas swarmed in and looked around me.
The family was accompanied by tears.
Kaylan and Count Stefan shed tears.
And Ether and Eyla put a knife under Rodrigo’s chin.
Gunther and Devlan blocked it, but Rodrigo waved his hand.

“It’s rude, even if it’s a Cartina…”

Gunther and Devlan were buzzing.

“Bad guy! Are you trying to steal Estiya?”

Kaylan, who confirmed that I was fine, started criticizing Rodrigo.

“No, it’s not that…”

My words were drowned out by their excitement.
Rodrigo was silently listening to Kaylan’s abusive language, even though it was well worth refuting.
His eyebrows twitched since he was in a bad mood, but he was calm.

When I said I should be taken as a hostage, he shuddered and got angry.

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Kaylan edged closer to Rodrigo.
He raised his eyes to the point where the whites of his eyes were exposed and gushed as he stared at Rodrigo.

“If anything had happened to Estiya, I would have killed you!”

“If that happened, I would have died before you killed me.”

Rodrigo opened his mouth for the first time since Cartina invaded and caused a disturbance.

“What, what?”

“Are you angry?”

Rodrigo rubbed his face with a dry hand and pushed the tip of Ether and Eyla’s knife sideways.
Then slowly, he came forward and stood in front of Count Stefan, who was wiping away tears.

“I think it’s my turn to get angry.”

He glanced at me.
Are you asking me for permission?

“If you have something to say, say it Rodrigo.”

I nodded because I was sure he wouldn’t be as rude as them.

“It’s hard to understand the people of Cartina who let Estiya come to this dangerous place alone.”

He spoke clearly.
Stefan’s face turned redder and redder.
He gets angry when others point out a mistake he knew.

“You dare to twist the situation, Lord Rodrigo?”

Stefan clenched his teeth.
I couldn’t understand how hard he was biting.

“Is there an ignorant man who calls out a woman to marry in this place?”

Stefan looked as if he were about to explode.

“You can never get married!”

He was excited again.

“I’m going to win the war, Count.”

It was the first time Rodrigo called Stefan without honorifics.
In the aristocratic world, no matter how old you are, you honor the elder.
The offended Stefan flinched but he didn’t correct Rodrigo.

“And His Majesty Tereo will grant me permission to marry her.”

It was nothing more than granting a marriage license to a person who has returned from a war that is no less than a loss.

It was saying to give up his daughter when he wins the war.

Stefan clenched his fist.

“I think the war has already been concluded”

Stefan concluded that Rodrigo would be defeated.
I rolled my eyes.
Rodrigo would not be allowed to lose the war.
When these Cartinas gather, they should be forced to help Rodrigo.

Rodrigo said he had everything in mind, but in war, the more soldiers, the better.
At least five people here will be enough strength to participate in the war.

“I’m going to join the war!”

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