“I can’t believe it. These fields…”
At first glance, the fields here might seem normal. On a closer look though, one could see that it was anything but.
Firstly, crops here were absurdly gigantic.
Weirder than that though, there were crops out of season.
An area was colored golden by what looked like wheat, despite the season being winter right now.
I have never heard of wheat growing and being ready for harvest at this time of the year.
In fact, I have never heard of anyone succeeding to grow any kind of crop out here in the wasteland.
A little later on, I discovered they even had orchards!
“Moreover, this road…”
Our carriage was currently travelling on a magnificent cobblestone road that could rival even the famous Alpira highway.
I could hardly feel any shaking throughout the journey. If such a highway was present throughout the land, journeys—even the ones to the capital—would become more comfortable.
“The two layers of walls, this road…it goes without saying that these require substantial technological prowess, but the manpower required for all these must have been substantial as well…”
Even then though, it was still hard to believe that all these were built within the last 6 months.
“Then, has Lord Albert been secretly building this fortress city throughout the years? And then sent his son…”
I thought that, but pouring immense resources here just didn’t make much sense.
This wasteland offered no strategic importance whatsoever, after all.
To the south of the wasteland was the Albert territory itself.
To the north was a forest and to the east was a mountain, but both were full of dangerous monsters.
To the west was a land where two factions were fighting against each other, but Lord Albert has showed no desire of wanting that land.
Before long, our carriage reached the inner walls.
After passing through a gate, the carriage stopped.
Waiting for me to alight was a boy of about 10 years of age.
◇ ◇ ◇
I hurriedly got out of the open-air bath, and headed toward the village’s gate.
My body was still warm and I still got that fresh-off-the-bath feeling, but there wasn’t much of a choice this time.
The carriage escorted by brawny soldiers was fast approaching. When I spotted it, it was already halfway through the road between the walls.
Speaking of the walls, I had made them taller.
The reason I did so was to lessen the impact of the cold winds blowing from the mountains to the east. It really, really was cold.
The stone walls were now about 5 meters high, surprising the villagers when they first saw it. Some even commented that it could already be considered as castle walls now.
After passing through the gate of the inner walls, the carriage stopped.
Alighting from it was a nicely dressed man of about 40 years old.
He looked very surprised when he saw his surroundings.
In the Albert territory, there were about 20 people who held the position of governor.
They were all appointed by my father, but each one’s circumstances were different from the others.
After a territory has been taken over through war, the former lord and their family was usually executed and then replaced by a loyal subordinate of the victor.
However, it wasn’t unheard of for an opponent who has surrendered and swore fealty to the victor to be made that newly acquired territory’s governor. They already knew the land, after all.
In the case of the northern region of the Albert territory, it was the latter case.
That said, the incorporation of the region into the Albert territory happened in the generation before my father’s.
“Welcome. I am Luke Albert, the chief of this village.”
“…and I am Dant, the appointed governor of the North.”
Technically speaking, I held the higher social status because I was the lord’s son. As such, Dant-san felt it proper to kneel down.
“I deeply apologize for not greeting you sooner.”
Dant-san apologized like so.
Whenever the lord’s son would be sent on a mission—like developing a frontier land—nearby governors would usually give the lord’s son a courtesy call right away.
This time though, my mission of developing this wasteland was just an excuse to exile me. No governor would go out of their way to pay me a courtesy call now.
They probably didn’t even expect me to give building a village a good try. There was even a chance they didn’t know I was sent here in the first place.
“Oh, it’s nothing. Please don’t worry about it. More importantly, I hope you enjoy your stay here.”
He was the leader of the neighboring region, so it was likely we would be interacting with one another plenty of times. As such, I wanted to make a good impression as much as possible.
––I didn’t know it at the time, but some of my villagers were less keen on building a good relationship with Dant-san and more interested on keeping an eye against him and his group.
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