Chapter 143. Kwak-Jung and Lee Gong-Myung.

“You’re absolutely right.”

Kang Chul-In nodded at Kwak-Jung’s suggestion. 

“I-Is that really so? Do you seriously think that?”

“Of course. Do I look like a liar to you?”

“N-No, sire.”

Kwak-Jung quickly shook his hands, denying the notion.

“I-It’s just that, I didn’t think that Milord would really agree to my opinion and proceed with it. To think that…”

“No.”

Suddenly, Kang Chul-In cut off Kwak-Jung’s words and shook his head.

“Even though I listened, and agreed…”

“...?”

“I didn’t say that I would follow it.”

“Sorry?”

Kwak-Jung’s eyes widened, as if he didn’t understand what Kang Chul-In was talking about.

He wouldn’t follow it?

Then what was all that about agreeing to my opinion before?

“Wait a minute.”

Kang Chul-In told Kwak-Jung.

“Alfred!”

“Yes, Milord?”

Alfred answered immediately, as he was standing guard behind the door.

“Some whiskey.”

“Of course, sire.”

Not even a minute had passed before Alfred had brought over a couple of glasses of whiskey to Kang Chul-In.

“Take it.”

Kang Chul-In handed over a glass of whiskey. 

“O-Okay…”

“Let’s talk while drinking.”

“Yes, Milord.”

Sitting next to each other, they continued their conversation.

“Kwak-Jung, as I had said earlier, what you have said is indeed correct.”

“Yes.”

“You’re right that when there is danger, one needs to know to defend themselves, and keep themselves safe. There isn’t a need to risk safety.”

“Y-Yes, sire. That’s why…”

“However!”

Kang Chul-In interrupted.

“Sometimes, you need to take risks in order to move further forward. Even though it is an individual’s choice to take the risk or not… There are also times where one has to take the risk no matter what.”

“That means…”

“Yes, we will still be moving.”

“...!”

“Do you still remember back when you were a gangster? What was the reason you tried to take Gangnam?”

“Well… in order to make more money, you have to play in a bigger field…”

“Exactly.”

“Sorry?”

“How long do you think it will take until Baruk Al Yusuf gets hunted down?”

“At this rate… maybe around half a year? I don’t think that he would fall immediately, seeing as how he is in 2nd place.”

“And do you think that during those supposed 6 months that I have to wait, the other Lords will just be playing around?”

“Ah…!”

Kwak-Jung gasped. He had finally understood what Kang Chul-In was saying.

“6 months is enough for people to get their alliances sorted, especially since Pangaea is shifting rapidly after the 1st Lord meetings. What do you think will happen if a new person comes out in a region where there are already people occupied?”

“Well… to emphasize a little bit, the Lords there might consider that as invasion. We might get focused on…”

“So, what do you think? Is it better to fight against a group of hyenas like that, or one Baruk Al Yusuf?”

“...It’s easier fighting against one strong person than against a group of weaker ones.”

“Then we’re finished here.”

Kang Chul-In concluded.

“We will still be moving. But your role will be important.”

“My role?”

“When we move, we will be at a military disadvantage in terms of numbers. A situation that’s hard for even me to face head-on will come. At that point, it’ll be your turn.”

“W-What?!”

At this sudden responsibility, Kwak-Jung nearly shouted.

“M-Me?!”

“...Do you think that your position as a strategist is just for show?”

“B-But…”

“Hmm… I think it’s about time I do a double-check with Timothy on how much you’re making every year…”

“M-Milord!!”

Kwak-Jung seemed as though he was about to cry.

“If you give such an important role to me so abruptly…”

But seemingly, without a single care in the world, Kang Chul-In spoke.

“It isn’t that difficult. Just use that devious brain of yours and think of the best way to f*ck them up. That’s easier, right?”

“...”

“What’s important---”

Kang Chul-In grabbed Kwak-Jung’s shoulder with his hands.

“Is confidence. Don’t forget.”

“...!”

“I believe in you.”

“...R-Really?”

“Just remember this.”

“What is it, sire?”

“A threat that has already been detected is no longer a threat.”

“...!”

“Isn’t it obvious which one will hurt more, between getting hit without knowing beforehand, and getting hit while prepared for it?”

That was true.

It would be much easier to deal with a threat that had been detected beforehand.

It still hurts, even when knowing beforehand though…

But Kwak-Jung’s thoughts were different.

Damned, stupid mental training…

It was because Kwak-Jung was thinking of the terrifying beating from Kang Chul-In that was famed throughout the officials of Laputa.

--------

Anatolia.

The territory of Baruk Al Yusuf seemed more like an Islam city than a territory in Pangaea.

How terrifying.

Stepping into the territory, one could already see signs of Baruk Al Yusuf’s influence.

The thing located in the middle of the territory wasn’t the Lord’s castle, but rather a huge Mosque, and it was impossible to find even a single woman out on the streets. It was a sight that one would be hard-pressed to find even in the middle-east, as it would have to be a place where people were extremely strict about Sharia law [1].

“This way.”

A man wearing Islamic clothing led Lee Gong-Myung.

As-Salaam-Alaikum [2].”

Lee Gong-Myung greeted Baruk Al Yusuf in the traditional Islamic way.

They said that one would have to know the enemy to win their battles.

For Lee Gong-Myung who had come to make an alliance, he had to match what the crazy psychopath that was Baruk Al Yusuf wanted.

If not?

He would probably be executed.

“I greet the great Khalifa [3] of Anatolia.”

“You’re the messenger of Rothschild?”

Sitting upon the throne, Baruk Al Yusuf looked down upon the bowing Lee Gong-Myung. It was hard to see that this charismatic man was the same person that had been humiliated by Kang Chul-In during the lord meetings.

“Yes, my name is Lee Gong-Myung.”

“Alright. Cut the chat, what are you here for?”

“Currently, the Cyamodus territory’s force isn’t strong enough to be compared to the Khalifa’s. However, we have come here to offer an alliance.”

“Even though you know that you’re that weak?”

“Yes, great Khalifa.”

Lee Gong-Myung put his head down.

“Even though it is embarrassing, we have come to ask the Khalifa for an alliance.”

“As you said, you’re weak. You don’t have what I need, so how dare you…”

“There’s no way that we were trying to debase the great Khalifa. My own Lord, Lord Rothschild, is also willing to pay the price for this.”

“The right price? Are you talking about money and riches, or women? Lee Gong-Myung… Servant of Alex Rothschild, do not belittle me. Do you honestly think you can tempt me, the reincarnation of the great Allah, with riches of the West?”

Baruk Al Yusuf didn’t care.

They had lots of money and food in their territory, and were completely set. He wasn’t going to flinch no matter how much Rothschild offered him.

“Great Khalifa.”

But as if he had expected this, Lee Gong-Myung continued on with a calm face.

“What my lord plans to give the great Khalifa isn’t materialistic.”

“Oh, then what is it?”

As Baruk Al Yusuf asked, Lee Gong-Myung bowed again.

“Great Khalifa.”

Lee Gong-Myung spoke.

“The thing that Lord Rothschild plans to give as trade is the man you see in front of you.”

They were strange words.

[1] Islam's religious law. Read more at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sharia

[2] "May peace be upon you." A common greeting in Arabic. Read more at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/As-salamu_alaykum

[3] Arabic for "ruler." Read more at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Khalifa

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