Annan was a little surprised.
He didn’t recall doing anything that required a special trip to thank him.
The coachman’s voice happened to come into the carriage at this time,
“Greetings, feudal lord…”
It was the voice of a middle-aged man. The voice sounded strong, but the volume was low, “My name is Rumu Nottdamm, the tax officer in Roseburg.”
“Before we fought Gerald, Alvin prepared three plans,” said Salvatore.
Salvatore explained to Annan, “If we defeat him, then it will be the same as before and let Deputy Sheriff Ferdinand take you away. That is to hint at you that the entire Roseburg police station belongs to him.”
“I can see that.”
Therefore, it gave Annan a reason to kill Ferdinand without hesitation.
Because of this, Annan needed to bring the viscount’s dead body back to Roseburg.
Annan did it for these people.
Salvatore continued, “But he is not a prophet. How can he know who would be the winner? So he prepared two plans…
“If the three of us die together, or the living people have lost consciousness, then he will dispatch an army and directly kill everyone else here. Then, he will disguise some of them as robbers. The ‘robbers’ will take the blame for the two of us who died here.”
“Although no one will believe it, it is still qualified as an excuse to buy time.”
Annan commented, “The old man is indeed a cautious person. What an experienced elder.”
Annan raised his head and asked Salvatore with interest, “So, what about the third plan?”
The third plan should be the outcome of Gerald’s victory. Was the plan related to Mr. Nottdam?
“If Gerald wins, Mr. Nottdamm will drop by and communicate good intent to Gerald.”
The tax officer, also the coachman, went on, “Master Viscount asked me to tell Gerald how much property we own in Roseburg. He also ordered me to put all the properties into a list and asked me to reset the password that only I know, but don’t tell Lord Gerald.”
When Nottdamm said this, he was silent for a while and sighed softly.
“But Master Viscount doesn’t know that my wife used to be an apprentice of Swamp’s Black Tower. I know what Soul Snatch Wizard is, and I also know the existence of Transcended. If Lord Gerald is a Soul Snatch Wizard, whether I tell him or not makes no difference.
“Transcended is a legend for ordinary people. In terms of evidence, I have gathered the entire Roseburg property, and I put them in a place that only I know. In the end, they are lost in my hands.
“I guess Master Viscount wanted me to take this responsibility. I guess Master Viscount would not make up for the loss of such a large amount of property. I am afraid that Gerald’s identity is not clean. He needs to remain hidden in Roseburg.”
—But I can’t shoulder the responsibility at all.
Nottdamm sighed deeply.
There was no hatred in his tone, only helplessness and loss.
Nottdamm was just an ordinary person, albeit him being a middle-aged person in the upper class. While driving the coach, he muttered, “I don’t know what else can I do.
“I can’t refuse Master Viscount’s order. Please forgive me. Master Viscount is almost like a feudal lord at this place. If I go against his wishes, there is only one dead end. But I don’t want to and can’t bear such a big responsibility for losing such a hefty amount of property. Even if Master Viscount saved me from the death penalty and changed from ‘theft of a huge amount of property to a ‘serious mistake in work,’ I would be sent to mine as labor.
“My wife is about to give birth. My child may be born this month. I can’t let my child be born without a father, nor can I let my wife raise my child alone. My job is as a tax officer, that is, the errands to collect the tax. You should know that I will easily offend many people in this job, but I offended them for Master Viscount!
“If I’m not in Roseburg. No, as long as I am no longer a tax officer, my wife and children will be in big trouble.
“I haven’t done anything wrong. I’m careful in doing things; I have proven my worth in my work capability; I’m the most obedient too. But, why am I…?”
Nottdamm muttered in a low volume.
Annan quietly listened to the middle-aged man who was about to have a son, murmuring outside the carriage, venting her fear and powerlessness, “If it weren’t for you, sir, winning in the end…”
Annan replied softly, “I can understand you completely.”
Annan’s voice was gentle. His tone was soft and soothing like a child.
“Mr. Nottdamm, you are indeed not wrong. You are a kind person and a good tax officer. There is a saying that a tax officer who is not hated is not a good tax officer, let alone being honest and judicial.”
The carriage galloped. The wind howled.
The late-night breeze was wet and cold.
But Annan’s words warmed the tax officer, Nottdamm’s heart, “You aren’t in a tough spot, but it’s not your fault. It’s Alvin Barber’s order that harms you. Do you act boldly and cheerfully when you interact with your brothers?”
“Yes, my lord,”
Nottdamm hurriedly responded, “But I don’t usually drink! There’s idle chatter with them, but it is like you said – ‘bold and cheerful.’”
“Yup, my guess is right.”
Annan put his hands on his chest, interlaced his fingertips, and chuckled softly, “Because your voice, sir, sounds pleasant.
“Are there many children fond of your presence?”
Nottdamm gradually calmed down and became less nervous.
Annan’s gaze seemed to penetrate the carriage, see through the human body, and look directly at the inner core of the human soul.
His tone was soft and tactful.
A French sociologist once pointed out that effective communication between strangers could only account for about 5% of the total conversation between the two parties. Most of the 5% of effective communication came from the first impression of words, character, and appearance.
In other words, when two people who had never met for the first time communicate, only words that were gentle enough to warm people’s hearts or harsh enough to make people fearful could enter other’s minds and be remembered.
The brain automatically filtered out the remaining words.
That was why Annan had always maintained this gentle and docile attitude.
Based on his high status and excellent appearance, this was enough to make his words burn marks in the hearts of anyone who interacted with him for the first time.
“Nottdamm, please keep your chest up because you are not wrong. You have done everything you can do.”
Annan’s gentle voice was like a cure for the soul, “It’s Alvin Barber who is at fault.”
This was enough to heal a scar on the soul.
Annan could also help others and find out more about the people or things that bothered them.
As long as Annan resolved this problem, the other party would trust him, be loyal to him, and even fall in love with him.
“But fortunately, Alvin Barber is dead.”
Annan whispered, “I killed him. Please don’t reveal our secret.”
“Yes, yes… I got it. Thank you very much. I won’t say a thing. I can swear to Silver Sire—”
The tax officer said gratefully. He thanked Annan from the bottom of his heart.
—The shared secret between the two was enough to make them a close alliance.
Of course, the most remarkable thing was that everything Annan said above was the truth.
This was the art of manipulating the mind.
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