Book 7 Chapter 174 - Empire’s Princess (1)

The Talis Kingdom and the Norton Kingdom were on opposite sides of the world.

On the western continent, the Talis Kingdom was located at the bottom of the southwestern part, and the Norton Kingdom was located at the top of the northwestern part.

It would take more than a month to reach one country from the other even if they used the finest of wagons and rode day and night along flat roads.

Even though time was pressed, Woohyuk stopped the wagon at the Dane Kingdom.

He had to resurrect Valkyrie Brynhild before searching for the Edda Chronicles.

[New Quest]

Name: Whereabouts of the Edda Chronicles

Type: Linked (1/2)

Content: Use your abilities to resurrect Valkyrie Brynhild (requires Brynhild's undamaged body and the Valkyrie’s Dagger)

Others: There is no second attempt for this quest.

'The next linked quest should be to find the Valkyrie's ruins in the Norton Kingdom.'

Assuming that Lilith's subordinates from the past had obtained the Edda Chronicles, they could enter the ruins without having obtained the quest.

But that was a flawed plan.

Even if the document were restored, it would be unwise to omit the intermediate process, as the Epic Quest would only be granted under certain conditions.

“I have been waiting, My Lord.”

Sieg greeted Woohyuk and his party as his red hair fluttered.

He then turned to Carnelian and tilted his head.

“This child is…?”

“She's a red dragon. Her name is Carnelian.”

Carnelian's existence was not yet known to him, as they had just arrived at Leifina's mansion.

Sieg nodded and spoke again.

“I have brought Brynhild's coffin as per your order. I also brought Tinia with me.”

"Good work. Did Choi Kayoon return to her estate?”

“Yes, she was ecstatic to be able to return home.”

Choi Kayoon wanted to train her monsters while riding her horse in the quiet region of Floren.

She also dreamed of becoming an actress, but that was for later.

Apparently, her fear of men had resurfaced while she was pretending to be Woohyuk during his absence.

'I shouldn’t force her to act as me for too long.'

It would be troublesome if Choi Kayoon made a mistake and made Rosenkreuz of him.

Rosenkreuz had most likely healed from all his wounds from his previous battle. 

There was the possibility that he would return here sometime soon or contact him through the Informant’s Messages.

‘We’ve bought enough time.'

Currently, Woohyuk was influencing five small kingdoms of the western continent.

Now, as long as he organized the Norton Kingdom and the Enoa Kingdom, he would be able to advance to the Central Plains where the capital of the Holy Aperian Empire was located.

However, he had excuses he could use to attack the Norton Kingdom and the Enoa Kingdom at any moment, so he no longer had to hide from Rosenkreuz.

As Woohyuk received the Jester’s Mask and the Informant’s Messages from Sieg,

Beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep.

He heard a noise indicating a request for connection from the Informant's Messages.

Truly exquisite timing.

Woohyuk immediately checked the caller's name.

“… It’s Rosenkreuz.”

“Will you speak with him now?”

“Yeah. Otherwise, he will be suspicious of me.”

A considerable amount of time had passed since he had last seen Rosenkreuz.

He had to use this opportunity to talk about his current situation, albeit falsely.

When Woohyuk triggered the item, Rosenkreuz's voice resonated in his head.

[It's been a while, King of Rhine. I hope you've been well.]

[I am busy dealing with the pagans of the Dane Kingdom. The Witch Cult has been expanding its influence in particular recently.]

[Ha ha ha ha ha! Witch cultists do not deserve to live! We must burn them as soon as we see them.]

[But why did you contact me? Do you have something to inform me?]

[Ah, actually, I was told that you were in the Talis Kingdom. As far as I know, you are in the Dane Kingdom. So since the information didn’t match, I contacted you to confirm.]

Rosenkreuz was able to track the location of the Informant's Messages in real time.

So Woohyuk had used the Jester’s Mask to disguise Choi Kayoon as himself, and left the Informant’s Messages with her.

Luckily, Rosenkreuz was still unaware of that.

[I have always been in the Dane Kingdom. There is no reason for me to go to the Talis Kingdom when the demons are aiming for my kingdom.]

[I think so too, King of Rhine. It seems that the information was incorrect. In any case, do you know about Lemegeton?]

Rosenkreuz asked about Lemegeton because there were rumors that Woohyuk had it.

Lemegeton was a magic book that Pronoia and demons would fight for their lives in order to obtain it.

It was wiser to deny the rumors so as not to go through troublesome problems.

[Isn't it one of Solomon's treasures? It is said that it was stolen by heretical wisemen...]

[That is correct. It has not appeared in the world for thousands of years. However, more and more people have begun to see it recently.]

[It may be related to the emergence of the demons. If I get any information about it, I will notify you immediately.]

[Thank you for being so cooperative with the Holy See. May the grace of the God of Light be with you. Oh, I recommend you to prepare some hot tea. The troublesome princess must be almost at your mansion by now.]

[… The princess?]

There was only one princess of the Holy Aperian Empire who could currently come here.

[Eleonora].

If she appeared now, things would get complicated.

She would inform the Empire that Woohyuk had demonic energy within him.

[While it may trouble you, please persuade her and send her back. And if the princess makes unreasonable demands, I recommend you to refuse. Although she was chosen by Ertia, the Holy Sword, she does not hold a lot of power and authority.]

[Understood. I will treat her as carefully as possible.]

[Finally, this may sound ridiculous, but don't be too dazed by her appearance. If she realizes she’s at a disadvantage, she will use her beauty as much as she can. Then, have a good day.]

Rosenkreuz unilaterally hung up after saying everything he had to say.

Since his attitude had returned to its original arrogant version, his body must have completely recovered.

As Woohyuk expressed his dissatisfaction to the man within his mind, a loud bird cry resounded in the distance.

“Kiyaaaaak!”

The black wyvern was a precious animal used as aerial transportation on the Eeth Continent.

Only the Empire’s imperial family could use one.

At first glance, the Wyvern looked similar to a dragon, but was much smaller and less intelligent than that of a dragon.

“… It's fast.”

Woohyuk looked up at the sky and spoke to himself.

Leifina and Tinia rushed out of the mansion, wielding their weapons.

“My, My Lord! What is happening?!"

“Why is it so noisy here? Did a monster appear?!”

They were wearing aprons as they were helping Hans in the kitchen.

Their intention was to learn cooking slowly and gain Woohyuk’s favor.

However, it was an urgent situation, so Woohyuk didn’t even notice their odd attire.

“Don’t come any closer! I will solve it!”

“… Understood, My Lord.”

“Is something dangerous happening?”

Leifina and Tinia stopped in front of the mansion’s entrance with anxious expressions.

Then, the black Wyvern slowly landed on the ground.

“Ho ho ho ho ho ho! How interesting! I didn’t expect to meet demons at the Hero King’s residence!”

A beautiful blond woman in a gorgeous dress jumped off the wyvern, a longsword by her side.

Woohyuk approached her after telling the people around them to stand back.

“You seem to be a bit confused after crossing the harsh and tall Karlheinz mountain range. I am the Hero King.”

"Huh? Certainly, he said that the Hero King was a good-looking man with black hair and black eyes... But then why is the demonic energy emanating from your body so intense?!”

Eleonora ran toward Woohyuk and swung the holy sword Ertia.

Grandia blocked the blade, creating a strong upward current around them.

Clang!

A cold, icy atmosphere.

Woohyuk stared at Eleonora with a deadpan face.

“Why did you come here?”

“To seduce the Hero King with my beauty. The man who sealed demon kings and rescued the kidnapped princess is worthy of me!”

“You better give up. I'm not interested in you at all.”

Woohyuk guessed that the real reason Eleonora had come to see him was because the northern front was on a stalemate and needed support from other small kingdoms.

According to Allen and Reina’s words, several groups from the demon faction had joined the battles in the Enoa Kingdom, becoming another threat to the Empire, in addition to the Queen of Thorns Alice.

The Paladins and the high-ranking priests of the Holy See were most probably struggling to fight them.

In this situation, if Nigel, the Lich Lord of the Norton Kingdom, were to lead the undead army to the south, the Holy Aperian Empire would suffer considerable damage.

Before that were to happen, it was best to end the war with the Enoa Kingdom.

However, from Woohyuk's point of view, it was wiser to have the Empire’s main force remain stuck on the northern front.

“You’ve been insisting that you are the Hero King… but do you have any proof? You’re not telling me to believe you unconditionally despite that evil energy in you, right?”

“Here, take a look. This is the item that Rosenkreuz gave me.”

When Eleonora retreated a few steps, Woohyuk took out the Informant’s Messages as if he had been waiting for this moment.

Eleonora's eyes widened when she saw it.

“Exclusive artifacts of the Pontifical Office of Castineon...”

“You can ask Rosenkreuz if you want to hear his testimony. You do know that he recognized me as a representative of the God of Light, right?”

“I’d rather die than have to talk with that fanatic.”

Within the Holy Aperian Empire, the imperial power and the papacy had been in conflict since 10 years ago.

Because of this, Eleonora grew up under Pronoia's monitoring from a young age and had a particularly strong resentment to the Holy See.

The reason she had come to meet Woohyuk on her own was because she didn't want the Hero King to be taken away by the Holy See.

Even though she believed he was a devout believer of the Light Doctrine, she thought that with her beautiful appearance, she could somehow make him join her side.

Woohyuk also knew about her thoughts, so he continued to talk about the Holy See.

“Yeah, Rosenkreuz is an inquisitor of heretics with a strong conviction. If I were really a demon, do you think he would have given me this token and recognized my existence?”

He was intending to erase her doubts and increase his control of the conversation.

Fortunately, the strategy certainly worked on Eleonora, who looked troubled.

“Well, that...”

“You heard from rumors that I use the power of the Death God, right? You may have misinterpreted that power as demonic energy. You seem to lack in the brain department for what you have in appearance.”

“… Ho Ho. I do hear a lot of people say that I jump to conclusions. But don't be too discouraged. Despite my looks, I grew up with a high level of education from a young age, so I am not empty-headed in any way.”

Since Woohyuk had praised her beauty, Eleonora covered her mouth and laughed in joy.

There was a high chance that she had made a mistake, so she was trying to erase all her hostility.

Watching them from behind was Helena, who whispered to herself.

“Nope, she’s definitely a moron.”

“...”

A heavy silence followed for a while.

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