Chapter 1

<< Colin Frederick POV >>

What does it mean to be a noble?

Power?

Wealth?

Women?

Perhaps if you are a truly noble, but for us noble knights – its hell?

“You call this tea? I have tasted mud better than this!”

The woman who was shouting was my father’s legal wife. A daughter of a viscount household, Nina Maccabaeus Frederick. She never missed an opportunity to humiliate my father.

She sat on the sofa with her legs crossed while holding the cup of tea my father had brewed for her.

She wore an expensive noble-looking dress, with expensive-looking rings, bracelets, and a necklace.

She looked down on my father with her brown eyes. Occasionally brushing her red thick hair from her right side of her pure white skin face.

She was beautiful without a doubt, despite being in her late 30s

“Forgive my lack of skill” My father spoke as he kowtowed to her.

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“Every time I come to this dump in the Bonnies your service just keeps getting worse and worse. Are you not grateful for having married the great me?” (Nina Maccabaeus Frederick)

She spoke with a smug smile on her face.

“I am” (Noah Frederick)

“I am what?” she replied with a glare

“I am very grateful, Nina Maccabaeus Frederick-sama” (Noah Frederick)

“What a pathetic man” (Nina Maccabaeus Frederick)

“Indeed. What a loser of a man”

“Truly pathetic indeed”

The two men who just spoke were seated on either side of Nina Maccabaeus Frederick. They were her lovers.

One was the fourth son from a mistress of a baron’s household and the other was a handsome man from the twin lover’s tribe.

The twin lover’s tribe refers to two island kingdoms that sit right in the middle of the great ocean far north from here.

The island on the left houses only beautiful women, while the island on the right houses only handsome males.

These unique island people while being human, are all beautiful or handsome and for some reason, they are unable to have children with people outside their two tribes.

It is for this reason that the men sell themselves as lovers to rich merchants and nobles.

Their islands lack any minerals to better enrich themselves and they rely on this trade to gather richness for themselves.

“Mark and James have gone out of their way to speak about you. Have you nothing to say?” (Nina Maccabaeus Frederick)

She shouted as she trampled on my father with her foot.

“I am sorry… Please forgive me” (Noah Frederick)

“Tch… Whatever” (Nina Maccabaeus Frederick)

“Hey…Hey your father is pathetic isn’t he?”

The little boy who just spoke was Nina Maccabaeus Frederick’s son from her lover, Mark. The baron’s son.

Despite him being younger than me and also not being my father’s son, he was the legitimate heir to the household.

“Hey…Hey, do that kowtow thing. I want to trample on your head”

“What an excellent idea Gary-sama”

“Indeed. A wonderful idea”

The two who spoke to the little blond boy were Nina Maccabaeus Frederick’s maids. They were born from a poor baron’s house and were taken in by Nina Maccabaeus Frederick.

Daughters of poor baron houses often end up as maids to noble daughters of higher rank and use them as stepping stones to become mistress to higher-ranked nobles or rich merchants. Either that or they would find a noble knight to exploit - by becoming his legal wife.

Either way, their life is assured.

As the little boy trampled on my head. I couldn’t help but think of how this kind of life came to be. I remembered the story my father told me.

In the beginning, the Kingdom Of Eleadia was nothing but a small kingdom at the northern edge of the southern continent. It prospered thanks in large to the merchants who traded with the northern continent. These merchants soon enough earned the status of nobles and reached the highest peak of nobility - except for duke and marques.

Over time as the trade grew, so did the demand for raw monster materials. The royal and noble knights at that time were unable to go and conquer large beast lands in the south.

This is where the adventures came in. Many formed clans and headed south, conquering and selling conquered land to the kingdom royalty and nobility. They also sold vast amounts of beast materials to the merchants.

For the kingdom, this was a period of unprecedented economic growth and it lasted for several years - until the adventures could no longer conquer.

The southern continent has a large beast land right in the center. These land are home to the demonic beast with unbelievable power. The deeper you go, the stronger they become.

Eventually, the adventures of the Kingdom of Eleadia found beasts they could not kill and land, they could not fully conquer.

This land in question was therefore unsellable to the kingdoms' nobles and royalty.

They could have simply left, but the king of that age couldn’t allow that. If the adventures left, nothing would stop the demonic beasts from coming from the beast lands and attacking the lands the nobles and royalty had bought. It would be a huge financial cost to deploy the army or constantly hire adventures or mercenaries to handle the situation.

He solved this problem by giving the adventures the noble rank of noble knights and these lands their domain.

Noble knights are the lowest rank possible.

At first, my ancestors didn’t want to accept the appointment, but reliantly accepted when royalty and nobility exerted pressure on them to do so.

Stuck with land that could not be fully conquered and the lowest noble rank in the kingdom, my ancestors did what they do best. They adventured.

After painstaking surveying their lands, they were able to make the land somewhat livable by building rural towns in areas where monsters hardly appear and making areas where they did appear into hunting grounds.

This setup is said to be no different from the setup used in labyrinth cities, except rather than being a city in a dungeon, you are up on the surface.

Over time their lands began to prosper causing much jealousy from the merchants turned nobles.

The royal family on the other hand paid not too much attention to it. Only occasionally increasing taxes.

This all changed however about 600 years ago.

A noble knight fed up with only having the lowest noble rank despite his vast fortune raised his sword against the royals and marched on the capital with an army.

The royal knights and kingdom knights crushed his insurrection so swiftly that the other noble knights had no time to respond to the events that had occurred.

The royal family from then on saw the noble knights as a threat to their rule and sought to limit their power.

The solution they came up with was the noble knight marriage decree.

The noble knight marriage decree set the rules to be followed by noble knight households in the matters of marriage.

My ancestors didn’t think anything was wrong with this degree as there were other decrees for the upper nobility in place and thought of this as them finally acknowledging the noble knights – but what they failed to see was the implications that some of those laws had on them, in particular these two.

- The heir must be a child of the legal wife.

- The legal wife must be of noble birth of a rank or two ranks higher, namely Baron or Viscount.

These laws set the noble knights up for extortion.

At first, it was nothing more than paying a baron or viscount large amount of money, but soon the merchant blood that flowed through them began to bare its fangs.

Over the centuries the amount they demanded began to be ridiculously high and if that was not enough their daughters soon joined in the exploitations.

They saw noble knights as nothing more than their servants rather than husbands. Taking lovers while refusing to fulfill their marriage duties as wives. Noble knights had to resort to marrying commoners to produce heirs.

However, there was a problem with that. Only the son of the legal wife can inherit the house.

Despite many complaints from the noble knights the royal family never changed this decree and it resulted in their households being held for ransom by their legal wives.

The only way around this would be for the legal wife to adopt the child of the mistress as her own as well as for any child she gave birth to from her lovers to surrender their right to inheritance.

Of course, they wouldn’t do this for free.

All this lead to the rapid decline of the noble knight’s domains, making them the poorest lands in the Kingdom.

I sighed as I recalled this story.

“This is fun” (Gary)

Gary said as he trampled on my head

“Wow master Gary. You are amazing” (Susan)

The red-haired maid praised his actions, with sparkling green eyes.

“As expected of Master Gary. I dignified display indeed” (Norma)

The blue-haired maid also praised him as puffed out her chest with pride. Her watermelon boobs jiggled when she did that.

“Now then. I have read your report, Noah. I see that the domain is doing very well. To increase your monthly payments to 50 platinum coins.”

[Oi-Oi-Oi…No matter how you look at it she hasn’t read anything at all. 50 platinum coins? That 50000 gold coins. As it is the 25 platinum coins are already too much. What is this bitch saying? If she read the report, she would understand that we are clearly in the red thanks to her. ] (Colin Frederick)

“That is impossible…” (Noah Frederick)

“Huh…Are you talking back at me you worthless man. If I say increase it then just do it. It costs a lot of money to set up three merchant firms you know.” (Nina Maccabaeus Frederick)

“Three!?” (Noah Frederick)

“Of course. One for Gary, one for James, and one for Mark. Oh, and I have to introduce Susan and Norma to suitable partners soon. I will have to host parties you know. All that costs a lot of money you know. So just hurry up and increase the amount or don’t you want me to adopt your pathetic son.”

[Tch…This bitch] (Noah Frederick)

“Madam, is that true?” (Norma)

“Are you going to introduce us to some men?” (Susan)

“Of course. I can’t have the other noblewomen talk behind my back about being unable to do so. You will see. I will introduce to the richest nobles and merchants in the capital” (Nina Maccabaeus Frederick)

“Thank you Nina-sama.” (Norma) (Susan)

“Yes. Praise me more!” (Nina Maccabaeus Frederick)

“What you are asking for is outrageous. There is no way I can send that amount of money. In the first place, our original agreement at the academy was for 12 platinum coins per month. The 25 platinum coins I currently pay should be just fine for…” (Noah Frederick)

“Huh!” she screamed before she trampled on his head more violently than before, “You useless man…All you have to do is raise the taxes of the people in town. Haven’t I told you that? Do I have to think of everything around here? Outrageous!? You dare call the words I speak outrageously!? Just who do you think you are? you little shit!”

“It’s impossible to raise the taxes…” (Noah Frederick)

“Don’t talk back to me!!!” she screamed.

After trampling on my father’s head for ten minutes, she finally calmed down.

“Tch…Fine then, 35 platinum coins.” (Nina Maccabaeus Frederick)

“Madam!” (Norma)

“You mustn’t show this bastard any leeway” (Susan)

“I agree. Your request of 50 platinum coins is reasonable.” (Mark)

“That’s right” (James)

“Eh…mama, am I not going to get my merchant firm?” (Gary)

"Everyone, there is no need to panic. Even with 35 platinum coins we can still achieve something from it.”

“If you say so mama” (Gary)

Everyone else had a dejected face when they heard those words.

[Bastards, if making 35 platinum coins was easy. then why won’t you do it yourselves?]

“I take you silence as acceptance?” (Nina Maccabaeus Frederick)

“Yes. I will make it happen.” (Noah Frederick)

“Is that how you show appreciation for my generosity? Lick my feet you bastard!” (Nina Maccabaeus Frederick)

Noah raised his head before licking the foot Nina dangled in front of him. This wasn’t anything new. A noble knight’s life went through such treatments.

This was their fate.

But fate has a funny thing of changing over time.  

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