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18 The castle and the envoy part 4

*I really need to learn about the layout of this place…*

Thinking to myself as I once again followed the faint markings appearing right on my real sight, as if the system created an overlay on the reality in order to help me reach the place I wanted.

But that problem was just the tip of the real iceberg, being the entire capability of the system! Reading as many novels as I did in my life, I knew that either the origin of the system or the reason why I was transported to this era, would remain ambiguous for the greatest part of my adventures here if the architect of this scheme even bothered to consider the option of ever allowing me to learn about it, so instead of striving to understand what actually happened for me to be here, I decided to just go with the flow and use any mean at my disposal to achieve the things I always dreamed off when imagining this kind of situation.

If I will be able to learn about the origin story behind my appearance here just by stumbling into it while dealing with other matters, then that's great! But if not, then so be it, I won't bother my mind with something I have no power to change.

Thankfully, the general way in which the palace was built was insanely easy, if not to say, too simple. With a single corridor leading through the entire wing of the palace allowing one to use any of the doors to enter a chamber of his choosing. Since we went inside through the side tower, we initially missed the chance to adore the main hall, but with how it connected both wings and both levels in a huge open space, as soon as we reached the end of our corridor, we stepped into said area riddled with stairs, chairs and all sorts of art displayed on the walls.

With the second level corridor of the southern wing connecting to the other wing of the palace, we could either use the stairs to descend to the lower level, or step through a sizeable yet delicate-looking set of doors adorned with glass mosaic depicting the founder of this castle greatness, who literally picked it up as simple stronghold with a single tower and wooden palisade making out what was today a lower castle, and turned it into the magnificent piece of architecture that it was today.

Heavy Crown Hetman, Jan Tarnowski, from the banner leliwa. (Titles explained later)

It was hard to find a more important yet less known figure in the entire history of the Commonwealth. As his indirect descendant from the branch family that allegedly won the struggle for the city, but lost the majority of his other titles and lands, I couldn't help but look up to him, both in my current personality and as a normal young man in the future times.

Modernised the city of Tarnow, heavily investing in the promotion of the economic development, ending up with Tarnow being the most important trading port in the entire surrounding area outside of Krakow. Thanks to how much he was investing in the city, two different Kings offered more and more privileges to the town, that only helped in its further growth.

But that was only a small part of his deeds, a part that didn't even begin to touch how he modernised the entire military doctrine of the country and influenced the politics of this behemoth of a state!

The more I thought about this history, the more information system was provided to me in form of various history windows, detailing the parts that were either forgotten by the history or the ones I simply didn't remember myself! With each word I read and each puzzle I pieced together into the bigger picture, the worse and harder my actual situation turned out to be!

Fight for the Pilzno city? Potential conflict with Ropian city? Wasn't it just a struggle to unify the lands that all formerly belonged to this guy?

My train of thoughts got interrupted by our arrival at the main dining hall. Being just a normal noble, all sorts of meetings would take place during the meals, instead of inviting political allies and adversaries to something akin to a throne room, allowed only to the real princes of the state.

Pushing the massive doors open, I entered a huge room, with an enormous, long table, fitted with the chairs all around it. With how the meeting and my arrival itself were bound to happen, a multitude of servants was already running around the place, bringing dishes, wine and beer to the table in order to prepare a small-sized feast for their lord and his guests.

Taking the main seat, I made sure to get Elia to sit on my right, just in order to indicate her position in my court to the guest that was bound to arrive soon.

"Nervous?"

Taking a small piece of some kind of meat I never saw before and didn't dare to look up to it through the system, I stuffed it in my mouth after asking. With the servants already filling our cups with a Moldavian, imported wine, I couldn't help but feel excited for what was about to happen soon.

"Just a bit."

Beating me up by a few seconds, Elia raised her cup and took a small sip of the crimson liquid, barely even wetting her lips with it. Only thanks to how close she was sitting to me, I could see a small tremble of her hand in this simple movement.

"Don't worry, it's not like…"

Before I managed to finish my sentence, a knocking on the doors broke my train of thoughts once again, with my household chamberlain stepping inside the room.

"Sir Peter Hellan, of the Leliva crest!"

Most of the people from the future would think that announcing someone's arrival was only an event at the balls or in the royal chambers, but in reality, it was a tradition whenever a guest appeared in any landed noble's place. With how big the noble population of the commonwealth was, it was impossible for any noble to remember all of his 'brothers' making the position of the chamberlain all the more important to avoid social mishaps.

Right after those words reached my ears, a young man in the middle of twenties stepped inside the room. Dressed in modest and more practical than a classy outfit, just with the bouncy step he gave of the vibes of a seasoned warrior, despite his young age.

"Welcome to my castle. I'm sorry for being unable to greet you upon your arrival, but being in the middle of my travels, as soon as I got the chance to change into fitting clothes and refresh myself a bit, I couldn't help but want to meet you. Here, have a seat!"

Despite my nice and cultured approach, in fact, my words were filled with poison. From the fact how I pointed him to a far-away spot at the table indicating how I didn't consider him my equal after denying him the spot at the other end of the table, or even someone close to my status by denying him the chair right to my left.

It wasn't that I wanted to escalate the conflict between us right from the start, but with the system pushing more and more windows filled with information about this guy in my face, I couldn't help but realise how inescapable and deep that conflict would really be.

"No need to stand on the ceremony!"

Copying my kind attitude, the young guys lowered his head just a tiny bit to indicate the respect towards me as the host, before taking the seat at the opposite end of the table, denying my previous invitation and putting himself at odds with me right away.

"I hope I'm not imposing on your hospitality, sir brother!"

EXPLANATIONS:

Heavy Crown Hetman, Jan Tarnowski, from the banner leliwa

Hetman - General.

Crown Hetman - General in the service directly under the crown, instead of serving as the Hetman for the Rthuthernian part of the commonwealth (under princess or in general, as lower rank general)

Heavy Hetman - a poor translation that gives only a small part of vibes of the real name, General that commanded mercenary troops.

Leliwa banner - You need to google it out since I won't take it upon myself to describe it, with how complicated it is. Leliwa family was one of the magnate houses that were fragmented and disappeared from the political table after the death of the Jan Tarnowski, the last great statesman from this line.

Sir brother - The way a noble of the same status (all nobles were equal, but you referred to someone with additional titles or lands with respect, like, ceo of small restaurant would refer to ceo of Microsoft) All in all, All nobles could refer to other nobles (outside of the prince class, that belonged to the ancient households acknowledged by the crown) would refer to each other as sir brother.

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