Chapter 323 Ministry of Public Security
Roland already had a rough plan of the future public security system for his territory.
At present, the town had a population of about twenty thousand. Besides the local indigenous people, there were also people who had immigrated from Longsong Stronghold as well as the refugees who have escaped from the Eastern Region. By the time the messengers sent by Barov came back, they might already have brought people from the Northern or Southern Region of the kingdom and as a result would further complicate the cultures that the population consists of. With all the different morals, conflicts like what had happened today would only become more and more common.
He would therefore need to establish a public security system to separate the First Army’s task of patrolling from internal and external violence. He had already thought of this issue before but had not thought of anything definite because of how few staff he had. However, now that he had the First Army to fight against the demonic beasts and the population was growing very rapidly, the time to implement his plan had come.
By formulating and interpreting the laws himself and holding trials of major crimes, he would be the first and also the final instance; the public security would capture criminals according to the law while also settling civil disputes. The Security Bureau would be responsible for maintaining the purity of the system and to effectively prevent the corruption of the systems, they would also use public security personnel to carry out the corruption cleaning operations and in that way save on human resources. This was the outline for Roland’s security system.
The ideal situation would be if he could first try to run the security system in Border Town, and by the time he had established Border Town as a city next year he would expand the system to the whole of the Western Territory.
By then, no matter if it was an autonomous Lord’s territory or not, they would all have to implement the same set of laws and accept the rule of a unified department. Only he alone would be able to stand above the law.
As the mightiest noble of the Western Territory, Roland knew that it was unrealistic to say that everyone was equal before the law, nor could he abolish the aristocracy. But at least he could make sure that the traditional system of feudal fiefdom does not exist within his city anymore. If they wanted to get the protection of the Western Territory, they would have to hand over their power of self-governance.
As for the head of the Ministry of Public Security, Roland already had the right person in mind for that.
Someone filled with a strong sense of justice while also not being pedantic, Carter Lannis would be a fitting choice.
When Vader stumbled back to his temporary residence, old man Kukasim came out to welcome him.
“You… never mind.”
“It’s tolerable,” Vader grumbled, “His Highness only sentenced me with a punishment of ten whips.”
“Let me take a look,” Kukasim eagerly stepped forward.
“Go back to the house,” Vader said as he walked into the house where the warmth inside immediately dispelled the chill within his body. As the door closed, it appeared as if the inside and outside were two completely different worlds. Compared to the wooden sheds from before which would let through wind and rain, this somewhat low and narrow mud house gave people a sense of comfort.
That’s right, the locals seem to call this house ‘cave dwelling’.
The old man let him lie on the kang, and when he tore off the clothes at Vander’s back he couldn’t help but suck in a mouth of cold air.
“Your back is covered with blood, I’ll go get some ash to cover it.”
“Wait, there is no need. It’s only dried blood left from from after the torture, the blood has already stopped flowing long ago.” He had to repeatedly pause as he spoke, “Sir Knight has said that it would be best to keep it open like this and to wait for two or three days by which time the wound will have already healed.”
“Two or three days?” Kukasim shook his head in fear, “No, son, by then you may have already fallen into a high fever and your back will swell up into a ball. Even if you might have a strong body, you will still need at least a week to recover. You of all people should be aware of what happens when a disease flares up.”
“You may not believe it,” he licked his dried lips. “But I don’t feel much pain from the wounds on my back. On the contrary, I feel a cool and itchy feeling, which is a sign that its healing. After they finished the whipping they splashed a bucket of water on my back… “
“Saltwater?” The old man frowned.
“At the beginning, I had the same thought, but the scorch I expected did not come,” Vader laughed twice, “The Knight executing the penalty said that this can eliminate all disease-causing microorganism. If I want to let my wounds heal quickly, I shouldn’t do anything superfluous with it, and allow it to dry.”
“What are those disease causing micro… organism?”
“Microorganism,” he curled his lips, “Who knows what they are, most probably something related to those witches.”
The old man lowered his head, then after a long time he opened his mouth again: “You shouldn’t have stepped forward because of me, if it is only words it’s still bearable… “
“If we were to keep on enduring it, we would have to suffer under an even more severe treatment. I know that kind of person, they have the morality and appearance similar to many of the nobles living in King’s City,” Vader spat. “I’ve heard that in this area the snow will last for several months, but the money we have won’t last until then.” He paused, “and… I also deliberately picked that time to hit him.”
“Caused, deliberately?” Kukasim asked disbelievingly.
“Yes. After all, the Prince will always appear on the west side of the city wall at this time of the day. Since he had promised to give us free food, he must hate this kind of behavior which is damaging his reputation. Thus, this was also the most effective way. If we had merely caused a simple fight, it wouldn’t be certain that it would ever reach His Highness’ ear. After all, Kohya Harvie might have received instructions from others. So if any of the City Hall officers wanted to suppress news about this, it would become meaningless regardless of what we said.”
“But he could also have been instructed by His Highness…”
“The possibility that this was the case was very low. If His Royal Highness wanted to save his money, then the three meals he promised would be reduced to two meals. Furthermore, I have inquired about him in advance and no matter whether it is the local residents or those serfs, all of them praise His Highness’ kindness and wisdom.” Vader said, smiling proudly. “You see, I wasn’t gambling or anything like that, right?”
“Originally… so that’s how it is,” the old man sighed in relief, “It seems you really have considered everything already.”
But there was also a part I hadn’t guessed, Vader thought, that was the penalty.
Working for ten years as a patrol officer in Valencia, he had a profound understanding of the ugliness hidden beneath the city’s glamorous appearance. There were more than a dozen of nobles who have used their power to blackmail, even among the ranks of the patrols. Therefore, there wasn’t much need for him to want to punish these nobles.
His Royal Highness’s reaction had been basically the same as what he had expected, it was only that the amount of punishment was beyond his expectation.
In this kind of circumstances, the Lords who mind their reputation would have ruled the suppressor as the innocent party, but he instead had punished everyone. It seemed that His Highness cared more about the system than of his reputation.
For a Lord, accustomed to doing as he pleased to care so much for his subjects, this was something that was rarely seen.
“What are you going to do next?” The old man asked after a moment of silence.
“Just like Sir Knight had said, rest for two days, then continue as before, and help those guys carrying those strange weapons by delivering groceries.”
“You could have lived a decent life together with the craftsmen in the inner city.”
“But it would be impossible for you to get in, Kukasim. So, stop talking about this,” Vader said, shaking his head. “I refuse to leave you behind.”
This old man was neither his family nor his elder. Half a year ago, the other had still been a prisoner kept in prison. Everyone knew that the old man had been pushed forward by the black street rats to act as a scapegoat, but this matter appeared too often that the patrol had become too lazy to take notice of it anymore. Later, when a group of pirates looted Valencia, Vader had believed that he would die within the turmoil, but in that critical juncture, the old man hidden within the prison had covered him with his stinking bed sheets which in the end allowed him to luckily escape.
Vader did not expect that he would be saved by one of those prisoners he was normally so unwilling to look at. But at that moment he had finally come to understand that there was essential no difference between how they acted and the disgusting nobility.
The other two people in the room were both aware of Kukasim’s identity, but since he was looking after him they didn’t dare to touch him. However, in case he left, they would certainly try and make trouble for the old man.
“Don’t worry, everything will be fine.” Vader patted his counterpart’s shoulders.
Two days later, he heard the news from the inner city that His Highness was recruiting for the positions in public security.