“But I must thank you for handling matters well while I was out during my battle with the Larks.” Kasser knew to give praises when one deserved it.
“I have simply done what was expected of me, Your Majesty.”
“I will bestow you a reward later. But first, are there any businesses that I must know of?”
“Although there are no immediate emergent disputes, I have to ask for your permission on something, Your Majesty. I was once told you were keeping an eye on the rebels.”
“Yes, I am.” Kasser replied without thinking twice.
He was aware of the group of rebels within the Kingdom of Hashi. But they existed all through history; during the reign of the former king and even before that.
Mahar was a name for this world, but it was also the name of a god. However, this group which called themselves as the ‘Children of Mara’ denied Mahar. They believed Mahar was an evil god, and Mara was the true almighty God who will bring salvation.
Although it was a dangerous ideology, Kasser had never shown interest in capturing and killing all of the members when they emerged.
The biggest reason was the Sang-je’s attitude towards them. When their activity was uncovered in the Holy City, the punishment remained as lenient as deportation and nothing more.
Sang-je believed in extinguishing the immoral. However, his response to the rebels impacted the public’s perception of them.
Moreover, humans already had a common enemy: the Larks. It wasn’t a big deal whether or not they worshiped a different god and hatched a plot because their actions were never regarded as a serious threat. On the other hand, the Larks were a severe threat.
The rebels, however, were not completely disregarded with their abominations. They were immediately exiled from the Holy City once they were discovered. Each kingdom had its own ways, but not one welcomed them.
In some kingdoms, they were firmly excluded, while in others, they were less excluded. The Kingdom of Hashi belonged to the latter.
When their secret gatherings were spotted, the Kingdom of Hashi would only forcefully disperse the group and seize their property. Warriors didn’t actively knock on every door to hunt them down.
Perhaps, for this reason, the rebels were more active in Hashi than in other kingdoms. It was also because Hashi was the furthest from the Holy City, and the Sang-je’s influence was less in this kingdom.
“I have noticed they have become more aggressive lately. I am planning on creating a separate search party to hunt them down.”
“What do you mean by more aggressive?”
“Traces of organized gatherings were discovered.”
“Organized gatherings, huh?” Kasser’s face stiffened. The reason why he had left them alone was that they had never formed a society large enough to be menacing and appear as a threat to the people.
The rebels consisted of the poor—those from the bottom of the social hierarchy. To assemble, they needed money. To become an organized group, there had to be a financial source.
Kasser felt his blood boil—whoever supported the rebels had the motive of disturbing the order of Hashi.
“Do whatever you need to do. Feel free to report to me after you have dealt with it.”
“Yes, Your Majesty.” Verus replied with a deep bow. It was due to this side of the king why he didn’t want to fall into his disfavor.
The Desert King gave him enough freedom to govern. He left most of the matters to his discretion. He never tried to find a fault in his decisions nor made an irrelevant remark.
Verus found pleasure in being able to lay a foundation on a kingdom of a ten-thousand-year history. It wasn’t a problem for him to take the responsibilities of the king when he was absent from the kingdom.
“You may leave and rest for today and bring the documents I need to check, tomorrow.
“Yes, Your Majesty.” Verus left the office in confusion.
Is he mad at me for watching over the queen’s moves?
Since Verus worked from home during the active period, the government officials came with reports also to his house, meaning fewer people went in and out of the palace. Hence, he had fewer ears and eyes inside the castle.
And from this, it had become difficult for him to find out what was happening on the other side of the palace walls. There was more work for Verus during the active period. He didn’t have time to pay trips to the palace himself.
What had happened during the past month?
It was the first time the king had mentioned the queen directly. More importantly, it was the first time he was warned about issues regarding the queen.
Has the king gone soft… on her?
Since Verus was passionate in governing the kingdom, he was displeased at the way the queen never fulfilled her role. But in all respects, it was his personal feeling. The queen was out of his interests.
But the queen’s disappearance was the root of a change. It invoked his way of investigating suspicious things.
His spite towards the queen grew into a hunch that she was harmful to the kingdom.
Verus was personally looking into her disappearance. He had planned to investigate it deeper right after the active period when he had less work to do. For now, he ordered one of his subordinates to research the people connected to the missing servants.
There was one thing suspicious from what he had heard from his findings. It was that one of the queen’s servants had tried to contact the rebels before she went missing. But he couldn’t report that to the king.
I’m pretty sure His Majesty will instruct me to hide this fact.
So Verus decided to put his brain to work—in secret. Now that he had the permission to research into the rebels, he was going to say he found out about the missing servant after he had conducted the investigation.
If only this was about a single servant attempting to join the rebels…
He was skeptical of the financial source of the rebels. What if the source was the same queen living in the same palace as the king? The woman who managed to snatch the king’s favor?
I hope I’m only overthinking.