The Unicorn Legion
- Golden Capital
Author: Demon Lord D (D魔王)
Prologue: Queen Amelia’s Troubles
Queen Amelia Grecia sat in the large throne, with an armrest that was fully half as tall as she was, with a troubled mind. Her father – the late King Allen Grecia’s crown was too large on her small stature, if she moved even the slightest, it would slide down. It had been a month since the coronation, but they still could not free anyone to adjust the size. As all the blacksmiths in the city were busy forging new weapons.
The patrols around the city had been doubled in size, but that still was not enough to give the nobles in the city any sense of safety. If it was not for some sort of godly protection – or some miraculous luck –a month ago, the Golden Capital would have been captured by the rebel army ten times the size.
Now she was paying for that luck.
The most important issue was the reshuffling of political power. After that battle, a full third of the offices and land were left empty.
The land owned by the rebel faction’s leader, Archduke Crane* was distributed among the nobles with some sort of achievement during the war or those that at least joined the right camp. It was a good thing that the bastard climbed high enough, was just greedy enough when he was alive, that there was just enough to satisfy everyone.
As for government offices, that was a little tighter, the misters were all hinting that they or their sons would not mind helping with the burden of the state, but who knows if another Archduke Crane would emerge among them?
Following that were the knighthoods, normally just a titles that comes along with one or two remote villages, given to the common born commanders and to those who have some accomplishment. From now on they would be elevated from their original class, becoming respected gentleman – most of these gentleman probably couldn’t read a single word.
Finally, the treasury gold, given to the others, ones that didn’t stand out nor achieved anything of great mention, but still lived to tell the tale. But even if this was the Golden Capital, there wasn’t much leftover after such a great civil war.
— Duke Lesting**, the financial minister in charge of rebuilding costs after the war, was about to go insane. These last few days, during meetings, Grecia felt that he was staring at her crown and necklace with wolf like eyes.
The award ceremonies have been going on for a month, and anything with even a speck of value had already been given out.
Other than the traditional reward, those with exemplary performances could also ask one extra favor from the crown. Naturally, she could veto them, but refusing too many would affect her image and make the Queen seem too stingy.
Within this month, she had refused fifteen marriage proposals, five of which were from titleless peasants. – Does the word “overstepping” not exist in their dictionary?
Another eight wanted to send their heirs into the palace as Prince Consort candidates (being lovers was fine too), four that wanted the rights to adjust taxation in their own lands, three that wants the position of the Captain of the Royal Guards… etcetera etcetera. After negotiating with them they accepted alternative proposals, and happily went back to their drinking and merry making, leaving the Queen alone with a headache.
Now, there was only one person left. Thinking about that made Grecia very happy, but also a little uneasy.
There really was nothing more left to give. If they wanted a thousand gold coins, she could only write an IOU.
This man – the records say his name was Ellen, no last name. The name left Grecia with a strong impression.
One month ago, this was the man that led a small group of mercenaries and after spending half the night leading them around on the leash like dogs on a walk, eliminated the group of elite scouts sent by the rebel faction; they also gained a lot of information from the ones that lived. This made the Archduke Crane hesitate, the attack was delayed for a full two days, giving the Capital some breathing room, enough to hold on until reinforcements came. If he were a noble, this would guarantee a promotion of at least two ranks, even if not, it was worth the title of Viscount.
This man whose face was covered by a hood, the newly appointed Viscount of Soloris Valley (it was a remote ravine, the name means “Carefree Valley”, but it was probably more appropriate to call it Nothing Valley, there was even some rebel stragglers camping around there), knelt before her, head down. The hood hid part of his face in shadows, only his straight nose and thin mouth could be seen clearly. His chin was smooth, with no beard, perhaps he was young.
Upon hearing that he could make a request, the Viscount spoke, pure Sistare*** Common tongue without a hint of accent.
“Your Majesty, I do have a request. It might be a little abrupt, but I hope you can grant it. After all, historically –“
The Queen’s eyebrows twitched, her mouth pulled downward almost unnoticeably.
–Here it is, the sixteenth marriage proposal. The marriage of the first Queen of Sistare to a commoner was an undying legend that had been passed down in history, but the idiots who happily continue to recount that story will never know, that the commoner was actually a bastard prince, and the first Queen was the child from an adulterous affair between the Queen and a guard, not the King’s own daughter. It was an under the tables agreement in order to maintain the bloodline and power, that’s all.
Her mind wandered for a while, so by the time she returned to her senses, she had already missed the first part of his narration. So the Queen nodded her head as if she had been listening and cut off his speech.
“Then, what is your request?”
“Please reinstate the establishment of the [Unicorn Legion].”
Grecia thought for a moment, before the phrase [Unicorn Legion] came to her from a deep corner of her memory. It was an independent unit chartered by the Founding King, its’ purpose was… to travel the country and protect the livelihood of the citizens from interference from magical creatures.
In most cases, these magical creatures refer to Dragons, Medusas and Vampires, those with such strong supernatural powers that normal armies have no chance of facing.
The problem was, within the magical creatures, even the smallest, most harmless Gnomes, have disappeared from this country for over two hundred years.
If the one that made such a request has not gone insane from reading too many stories of the Legendary Age… then…
The Queen looked at the new Viscount, who raised their head just in time, to look back at her calmly. He didn’t seem insane, no matter how you look at it.
If there was any sort of trickery involved, then it would have to do with the special rights permitted to the legion. Even though the Unicorn Legion was not financially supported by the Kingdom, it was one of the organizations in a small number with [First Class Recruitment Rights].
Top Class Recruitment Rights, means that they have the power to recruit anyone into their troops regardless of their wishes, and only in times of war, could this be specially permitted by the King.
First Class Recruitment Rights, means that as long as the recruit was willing, they can be recruited, and no one can interfere other than the King. This means, the organization can recruit anyone. For example, a bandit on death row, or a heretic about to be burned at the stake by the Pope, or a wanted criminal on the run, all of these could coin the legion to escape from a death sentence. Therefore, only groups that are constantly at the edge of life and death, could have this power.
Undoubtedly, when the magical creatures still roamed, the Unicorn Legion fit all these requirements. But now…
The Queen’s eyes became sharp, but the young man named Ellen still made no move, on the contrary, he addressed her concerns.
“Regarding the limit of the recruitment rights; cannot include the remaining rebels and traitors, you can add that to the documents. Everything else can also be determined by you. – What I want… is a memento of the past.”
The youth stood up, and gently pushed his hood down.
The Queen heard the exclamations from the guards around her, she herself also held her breath in shock.
All eyes in the audience hall were riveted on the new noble, he had pale golden hair, green eyes and a pair of long slim ears, not belonging to any human. – A symbol of the elves that had long disappeared from this continent.
The elf regarded these stares with poise, as if he was no different from anyone else.
“Viscount,” the Queen said, after a while, her voice calm as always, “I will have the registry prepare all the necessary documents. – May victory always be with you.”
The elf elegantly came forward to kiss her hand.
The Queen gazed at the lord that was half knelt before her, unavoidably, a thread of regret entered her heart.
— Such a beautiful man.
— But he didn’t propose marriage.
*克蘭大公 – Names are basically phonetic translations of English names into Mandarin, if anyone has a better translation, please do tell me!
***西斯塔爾語 – “西斯塔爾” is the name the country that they are in, no mentions of any other countries besides this one has been mentioned yet. But I believe the continent is called something different. So I believe there should be some other countries scattered around.