Chapter 71 – Blood Relatives (4)

Chapter 71 – Blood Relatives (4)


“Why is this person here…….”

does it come out?

Vikir stared at the portrait for a while in disbelief.

But no matter how you look at it, it’s the same old Hugo.

Black hair, piercing eyes, blade-like bridge of the nose, strong jaw, no mustache yet. How could you not recognize this face?

What is it? Why is Hugo’s portrait here?

As Vikir stares in disbelief, Pomerian sneaks up on him and tugs on the pendant’s string.

With what little strength he has, the tug seems to be a request for the pendant to be returned.

Vikir hands the pendant back to Pomerian and asks.

“Who are these people in the painting, and what do they have to do with you?”

The Pomeranian flinched at the stern tone, as if interrogating a criminal.

Vikir spoke a little softer, wanting to be gentle.

“Who are the people in the picture, and what do they have to do with you?”

The words were different, but the tone was the same.

The harshness of the tone made the Pomeranian shiver uneasily.

Then Aiyen stepped forward.

“If you ask me like that, the I will not give you a good answer.”

“……? What did I do?”

“You should ask her with a smile.”

Aiyen’s point made Bikir pause for a moment.

Then a wicked grin spread across his face.

“Who are the people in the painting?”

The Pomeranian looked up, looking less frightened than he had earlier.

“Oh, yes, it’s working. You were right…….”

Vikir turned his head toward Aiyen.

A moment.


Vikir’s eyes caught Aiyen’s blank expression.

She stood there for a moment, looking into Vikir’s face, before she snapped out of it.

“Slave, did you expect me to laugh so hard?”


Vikir immediately frowned.

He hadn’t smiled widely since he was born, so it was no wonder he was being teased.

Then. The Pomeranian answered.

“Mama. Grandpa. Grandma.”

Vikir’s mouth dropped open at the words.

His head spun rapidly.

A pendant, a faded portrait, decades old. Hugo Les Baskervilles and an unidentified young woman and a little girl. A mother and grandmother and grandfather, the Pomeranian said.


Vikir had a theory.

Hugo in the pendant is young. And the young woman next to him was probably his wife.

And the daughter they had together, the first born.

What if that eldest daughter was kidnapped by the Rococo tribe, and the child she bore here was a Pomeranian?

‘Come to think of it, I’ve heard that Hugo’s personality wasn’t always as cold as it is now.’

I don’t know much about Hugo Les Baskerville when he was in the ecliptic before he came to the Fringes, as Vikir was not yet born.

But I had once heard a rumor from old Deacon Barrymore that Hugo had once been very friendly and homey.

‘I thought it was nonsense at the time and shrugged it off.

Vikir takes a moment to recall the history of the Baskervilles.

Once based near the ecliptic, the Baskervilles had moved far to the west of the empire, to the fringes of the Red and Black Mountains, not because of a demotion.

Hugo Les Baskerville had gone before the Emperor and requested that the entire House of Baskerville move to the fringes.

The reason for this was the death of his first wife in childbirth, and the barbarians who had taken his first daughter, whom he loved dearly.

This caused Hugo to hate his enemies and the barbarians beyond the Black Mountains with a passion, and he cared for his wife and children little afterward.

After this series of events, he became an extremely cold and calculating killer, living only for the slaughter of demons and barbarians.

The Emperor deemed him competent and entrusted him with the task of expanding the empire’s borders, and Hugo threw himself even more into his work to forget everything.

That’s how Baskerville, Ironblade, was born.

And now. A rejected hound of the Ironborn has found an unexpected ally here.

Pomeranian. Pomeranian la Baskerville.

Penelope, the daughter of Roxana, the woman Hugo had loved more than anything else in his life.

And Penelope’s daughter, Pomerian.

This means that, if my guess is correct, the girl in front of me is the direct granddaughter of Hugo Les Baskerville.

‘…… That makes me an uncle.’

It was a strange feeling.

Even now, nieces and nephews were being born somewhere, but none of them were girls.

This is a Baskerville family where daughters are extremely rare.

Come to think of it, there was not a single daughter in Hugo’s direct bloodline.

Not even in the entire family.

There are plenty of sons.

“Anyway, Hugo, he’s the kind of man who only looks for sons and grandsons because he thinks men are more useful in battle.

What do you think Hugo, the extreme warlord, the fighting demon, the man who sees his children as nothing more than tools, would do if he saw this tiny, delicate granddaughter?

Vikir shook her head.

No matter how I think about it, I can’t think of anything but negativity.

And with barbarian blood in the mix, he might not be so pleased.

Vikir reached out and placed his hand on top of the Pomeranian’s head.

The Pomeranian flinched slightly, but didn’t shy away as he had earlier.

Vikir spoke in a low voice.

“Apparently, the Rococo tribe has not been treated well either.”


“Come with me.”

If the Rococo tribe had been devastated by the plague and left, Pomerian could not remain here.

But Pomerian stood firm, clinging to the pillars of the barracks.

Vikir looked up and saw the reason for the Pomeranian’s reluctance to leave.

It was the crude stone tomb behind him.

As Vikir pondered what to do, Aiyen stepped forward.

She bowed her head once in front of the tomb, then spoke to the Pomeranian.

“When our ancestors leave this world, they go to heaven and become stars. So will your mother.”


“What lies here in this stone tomb is only a shell, but your mother’s spirit is a star in the sky, looking down on you.”


“She wishes you to leave this dreadful place as soon as possible.”

Then the Pomeranian raised his head. He seemed to understand not only the Imperial language, but Balak’s words as well.

The Pomerian pondered for a moment, then released his grip on the barracks’ pillars.

He takes a step toward Vikir.

Black hair, red eyes.

Vikir and Pomerian looked exactly alike.

Pomerian looked at Vikir and said.

“Mommy. The hair. Eyes. The color. It’s the same.”

“Yeah. All Baskerville dogs look alike.”

Vikir picked up the Pomeranian.

It was the first meeting of uncle and nephew.

* * *

Afterward, Pomerian came to Balak’s village.

“Uncle. Where are you going?”

She clung to Vikir’s leg, unwilling to pull away, which was quite a challenge for a child who was used to being alone.

“Uncle has to go to a meeting, the chieftain has summoned him.”

“Aang. Uncle. I’ll go with you.”

Pomerian seemed scared to be alone.

Now that she had left her mother’s stone tomb, she realized that she was truly alone.

That’s why she seemed to rely more on Vikir, who had the same hair color and eye color as her mother.

“……I can’t help it.”

Vikir quickly picked up the Pomerian and carried him on his back.

He looked around for something that could be used as a swaddle, and a thick, coarse pelt caught his eye.

It was an oxbear pelt, given to me by the chieftain himself as a reward for our successful trade.

He wondered what he was going to use the pelt for, but he realized it was for a swaddling bag.

Vikir carried the Pomeranian on his back and went outside.

“I’ll have to ask the Chihuahua to do it for me …… later.”

He couldn’t keep this girl in Balak’s village.

Even if he didn’t send her to Hugo, she would have to be raised somewhere out of his sight, at least within the reach of Imperial civilization.

Vikir made plans to get out of the water and into the city later.

“Maybe I’ll pay a visit to Morg, too.”

It might be worth spying on the alliance with Baskerville to see how it was going.

While Vikir pondered this, he soon arrived at the barracks of Chieftain Aquila.

Upon entering, he finds Aquila, Aiyen, and the other elders, all wearing serious expressions.

Aiyen and Vikir are witnesses to the meeting.

Chief Aquila asks.

“Yes. You mean there’s a plague going around?”

Aiyen and Vikir nodded.

The report went on to detail how the Rococo tribe had been wiped out, and the state of their remaining villages.

Other hunters also testified to seeing the bodies of orcs, lizardmen, and other apes lying on the ground with red spots sprouting from them.

Aquila stroked his chin, a serious expression on his face.

“The rainy season is coming soon, and we’re in trouble.”

If the plague came, the damage would be even worse. We had to find a way to prepare.


“Chief, it’s not a plague, it’s a curse!”

Shaman Ahheman stepped forward.

He argued that the Red Death was not a disease, but a form of witchcraft that could be cured through sacrifice.

There were a few old elders who agreed with him.

They emphasized that this was the time for a great ritual, and it was clear that they intended to take advantage of the occasion to greatly increase the authority and power of the shaman.

The young people, on the other hand, said that the Red Death was a plague, not a curse, and that it was time to abandon the village and move on.

The old and young debated heatedly between superstition and practical solutions.

It didn’t seem like it would be easy to decide who was right.

“Hmmm. What shall we do?”

Chieftain Aquila was frowning.

Someone silently raised their hand to speak.

The one who first coined the phrase ‘red death’.

“I know how to stop this disease.”

It was Vikir.