Chapter 70

It was the next morning.

Everyone left the White Dragon Villa before sunrise.

This included the people from the Pendragon family, and the people of the royal family.

In the morning, several knights sent by Count Sagunda accompanied his personal doctor to the White Dragon Villa. They came to a stop in front of the villa’s locked gate, and after speaking with the custodian guarding the empty villa, they turned away dejectedly.

They returned empty-handed, reporting what little they saw and heard to Count Sagunda.

***

“What? Nobody was there?”

“Yes, yes! My lord, the villa keeper said that everyone left at dawn.”

“W, what about Alan Pendragon? What did they say about his condition?”

“Well, the keeper said that he wasn’t at the villa last night, so he has no idea where he would be. He was told to stay at home because everyone would have left for the banquet last night… I’ve only heard that he looked pale when he was getting on the carriage…”

“Tsk! Tsk!”

The knights flinched at the sound of Count Sagunda clicking his tongue. They knew that their master always clicked his tongue in that matter when he was in a very bad mood. And when he wasn’t in a good mood, he became very violent.

“All right, everybody out! Go call Sir Ron!”

“Yes, my lord.”

The knights left the governor’s office in a hurry, feeling the atmosphere turn to ice.

“Damn it!”

Count Sagunda sank into his chair. It was apparent from his expression and the constant chewing of his lips that he was nervous.

“What the hell is going on…? Why would that little snake…, no, then what about the report I received yesterday?”

Last night, long after the banquet was over, Sir Ron had come up to give him a report. The mercenaries failed in their ambush and most of them were slaughtered by the Cavalier of Valvas, the orc warrior, and Alan Pendragon himself.

“It just doesn’t make sense…”

If last night’s reports were true, then Alan Pendragon should have already come to today to hold him accountable.

Alan Pendragon’s duel with Toleo ended in a draw, but everyone there had seen Alan sustain a heavy injury. For the Pendragon family that was just starting to regain its momentum, a serious injury to their family’s master would have been a heavy blow.

In any case, if Alan Pendragon managed to recover his body, then he would have come to Sagunda’s mansion. He would have wanted people to know that he was healthy, and his family was still going strong.

But he left early in the morning as if he were being chased by something.

“Why? Why did you just let go of this golden opportunity?”

Count Sagunda moved on to chew on his nails while he muttered to himself.

He was worried that he was in a dire situation as his plan had utterly failed, but the two men had walked away, even though the arrow was now theirs to fire. He felt like he was wandering in a dense fog.

“Should I get in contact with that person… No, no. Not yet. Not until I put Geoffrey in the crown prince’s seat…”

Count Sagunda agonized over his thoughts with bloodshot eyes for a long time, then stood up as he banged on his desk.

“Damn it! Where is Sir Ron? Have you not called him yet?”

Count Sagunda shouted in anger, and the door to the oval office was hurriedly opened. A guard said in a voice of dismay.

“G, governor-general. We can’t find Sir Ron anywhere.”

“What?”

“He’s not in his residence, and he’s not in the drill hall either.”

“What do you mean!? Why can’t you find him? You incompeten…”

“T, that’s…”

The guard was at a loss for what to do, but then a knight rushed into the room.

“Your excellency! I found this in Sir Ron’s residence…”

The knight held out a thread-bound letter. Count Sagunda snatched the letter, then unfolded it with a small frown.

“Ha!”

Count Sagunda became apprehensive.

Only one line was written on the yellow paper.

- In accordance with the tower, I will take the righteous road…

***

Vincent stopped and turned his head on a hill. The cries of birds belonging to the mountains could be heard instead of seagulls. A bitter smile came to his face as he looked at the port of Leus at the far end of the coastline. It was the place he had chosen to keep the tower’s law for the past two years.

But his first choice was wrong. Of course, he had tried his best to walk the righteous path to keep the balance of the world, but what was wrong, was wrong.

“Whoo...”

Vincent turned his horse around, leaving behind the familiar scent of sea breeze.

Now, he was headed to the land that ‘he’ came from. The one who had shown him the mistakes in his choices, and the one who acted as a huge variable.

Vincent would find the righteous path in that place. If it turned out that it wasn’t the righteous path, then Vincent would personally vindicate that man.

“Alan Pendragon… I will trust you for now.”

Vincent slowly paced forward on his horse and recalled the image of Alan Pendragon in his head -- skills unbefitting his young age, bold determination, and cold judgment. He possessed traits that were hard to find even in the Twilight Tower.

The most surprising thing was his monster-like recovery. It was hard to believe that he was human.

Alan Pendragon had credited his Shield of Healing as an excuse, but Vincent knew that even an artifact couldn’t mend broken ribs that quickly. If such an artifact existed, nobles and knights from all over the world would go into a frenzy to obtain it.

The White Dragon’s power? Maybe.

The only thing that was clear right now was that Alan Pendragon was hiding a secret.

“I’ll find out when I’m there.”

There was no use thinking about it right now. As Alan Pendragon had said, he would head to the duchy. In that place, he would find answers.

Vincent took out a letter with the seal of the Pendragon Duchy. It was given to him by Alan Pendragon and acted as a token of recognition and verification.

“Hmm.”

Vincent stared at the scroll with determination, but a puzzled look soon dawned on his face.

“But what does that even mean? You want me to crush the other one?”

“When you get to Lowpool, show this to the guard captain. Then tell them that I have told you to crush the other egg, and ask them to call the person who is in charge.”

The night before, Alan Pendragon had a mysterious smile while speaking these puzzling words, and now, Vincent shivered as an ominous feeling came over him.

***

Rumors spread fast in the harbor.

Especially if that rumor originated from the governor-general’s banquet, where most of the nearby nobility attended.

- His Grace Pendragon and His Highness Ian have united!

- As proof, Princess Ingrid is officially marrying into the Pendragon Duchy!

- His Grace Pendragon and his knight, as well as an orc warrior, defeated the killer whale, Toleo Arangis and his orcs!

- In a ferocious duel, Toleo Arangis and Alan Pendragon tied. Toleo Arangis had his arm cut off, and Alan Pendragon was forced to return to his territory after a huge injury!

A series of rumors spread throughout the coast, riding the sea breeze to cities, villages, and ultimately to the mainland.

In addition, the words and actions of Prince Ian Aragon and his sister Ingrid added to the credibility of the rumors. As they returned to the imperial city, they began accepting the invitations of famous nobles and willingly confirmed the rumors at the banquets.

The social and political circles of the Aragon Empire were turbulent.

Prince Ian had gained the next duke of the Pendragon family as an ally and joined in the fray for the position of next crown prince.

In addition, it was revealed that Prince Ian had not yet forgotten the incident in Sisak from three years ago. Messengers hurriedly ran between nobles, and courier pigeons constantly flew in the air.

Everyone’s attention was focused on Ian and Ingrid Aragon, who were returning back to the Royal Batallium.

The buzz was not only limited to the nobles. Merchants and the commoners joined in on the conversations. Ordinary citizens started to talk about the incident in Leus, sharing the royalty’s words and actions in the banquets on their way back to the Royal Batallium.

And the same situation was occurring in Leventon, the gateway into the Great Territory of Sisak.

“Who do you think will become the crown prince?”

“Oh, man. What does that have to do with us? Are our taxes going to be reduced? Are imperial soldiers going to come to take care of the monsters? They are just trying to satisfy their desires. Don’t worry about such things and think about grabbing a good seat once we arrive at the destination.”

“Hmm! You’re right.”

Two people moved busily while talking in a Sisak dialect. An old horse-drawn cart passed by the two ragged men, raising up dust.

“Cough! Cough! Damn! Does this horse have diarrhea? Why are they driving it like a madman!?”

The man spoke while using a handkerchief to cover his mouth from the dust. He turned his head angrily at the carriage. Then, his companion hurriedly warned him.

“Shh! Be careful!”

“What? Why?”

“There was a mercenary in that wagon just now! I saw the sword!”

“Oh…”

The man shriveled up with an awkward discomfort and glanced at the teetering carriage that was slowing down in front of the gate. A mercenary in a small place like this was the equivalent of a reaper. If they were accidentally provoked, you were as good as a dead man. Even if they hurt you outside the gate, you couldn’t do anything about it.

“He might’ve seen us. Why don’t we go slowly?”

“Ugh! So why would you even say such words…”

The two men slowed their pace and watched as three people exited from the old carriage.

“Next.”

“…..”

A mercenary lowered his hood at the voice of a guard. He stuck out a small metal identification token on his palm.

“We’re from Southern Valvas.”

At the expressionless and emotionless face, the anxious guard hurriedly turned his head to look at a bulletin board that was on the wall of the gate. The bulletin board displayed the various symbols that identified the different lords from various parts of the empire. After matching the identification token with a symbol on the bulletin board, the soldier held out the token with a sullen expression.

“C, confirmed. Then next…”

“This is my sister, and this is her husband and companion. Both are mercenaries.”

“Uh, I still need to check their identi..”

“My sister can’t speak.”

“Ah… is that so?”

The soldier looked behind the mercenary, only to see two hooded figures. One was definitely a woman as the guard could see a slim face and red lips under the hood.

The guard pondered for a moment, then shook his head.

“We can let the woman pass, but I’m sorry. I need to check the identification of the man. Show me your identification token.

The man did his job responsibly as a guard and turned his face to the hooded mercenary who was the husband of the woman. A thin summer hood was rolled up and a face was revealed.

“Uh…”

The soldier’s mouth propped open unknowingly. The mercenary seemed to be around twenty years old and had dark brown hair. But his blue eyes were sharp, and it seemed to draw everything into it.

‘A noble, maybe a free knight…’

Moreover…

‘It’s the eyes of a man who has killed many people…’

Many mercenaries visited the village since many monsters roamed in the vicinity. The guard recognized that the mysterious young man in front of him had ample experience for his age.

“Identification token…”

The guard asked carefully, feeling more intimidated than before when he was speaking to the other mercenary.

“Here you are.”

The young man smiled and took out a token and presented it on his palm. The engraving was of an ordinary barony from nearby.

“May I go, then?”

The soldier started to nod his head at the Valvas mercenary’s words, then asked another question.

“For mercenaries, you must write down the name of the representative in the visitor book. Please give me your name…”

“Hm, I’m…”

The blue-eyed man raised his hand and stopped the other mercenary from speaking. The young man smiled graciously at the puzzled guard.

“Valt. Raven Valt.”

In more than a decade, the name Raven Valt once again reappeared in the world.

Previous Chapter Next Chapter