Chapter 250: The Second Lords' Meeting (3)

“A c-condition?”

“I need your talisman no matter what. It holds enough value for me to even risk a war to get it. It’s true that I’ve thought of forcefully taking it from you.”

“Gasp!”

“But I won’t do that. I understand how you feel more than anyone else. How could I do that?”

“I-In that case...”

“I have two conditions. Firstly, I do not want you to tell anyone that I have my eyes on the talisman. Secondly, if you plan to relinquish that item someday, it must be to no one but me.”

It was a simple suggestion that could satisfy both Kang Chul-In and Lily.

Since Kang Chul-In knew who possessed the Amplifier Talisman, he was in no rush to obtain the Sonic Ring. For Lily, she did not have to relinquish Sumire’s keepsake.

“These two conditions – no, let’s term them promises. Can you keep them?”

“Certainly! I will not give this Talisman to anyone...”

“Only to me.”

“Erm… okay.”

“Promise?”

Kang Chul-In held his pinky up.

“Sure!”

Lily locked her tiny pinky with his.

“Also.”

“Hmm?”

“We can make a deal.”

“A… deal?”

“As a Lord, you will definitely face situations that seem to be out of your control.”

Kang Chul-In spoke with confidence.

She will most likely die or lose her Lord title. Then the Amplifier Talisman will be lost. 

Kang Chul-In could deduce Lily’s fate to some extent.

He had no memories of this girl from his previous life, meaning that she would undoubtedly face a crisis in the future. Just like Lee Chae-Rin’s case.

“R-Really?”

“Everyone faces obstacles in life. Especially Lords.”

“T-That is true!”

“You can request for help if you need it. I promise to help you. In return...”

Kang Chul-In lifted his chin and gestured towards Lily’s Amplifier Talisman.

“I shall take the talisman.”

“...”

“Do you understand now? Your talisman is worth your territory’s fate and your own life. How about that? Isn’t that valuable enough for Sumire’s keepsake?”

“I-Is that so?”

“I do not know what kind of secretary this Sumire was, but she was brave enough to fight and die for you on the battlefield. A warrior like her would be happy to see her keepsake being used to save her master.”

“...!”

“If this deal comes into fruition and it saves you as the result, Sumire would definitely have been happy if she were alive.”

Not a single wrong word.

Brrrr!

Lily’s body trembled.

Thanks to Kang Chul-In, she realized how sacrificial Sumire’s death was.

Tears formed around her eyes.

“T-Thank you… Sob, thanks to you big brother, I could recall how much Sumire cared for me...”

“…What big brother? I am an uncle...”

“Thank you oppa!”

After saying that,

Lily ran into Kang Chul-In’s arms and embraced him tightly. She had received much emotional support from him.

A heartwarming scene to witness.

Kang Chul-In suppressed his desire for the item and portrayed true maturity, so Lily could empathize with his genuine heart.

How could this conversation be more win-win?

However, the crowd did view this scene in the same manner.

“Woah… he was that kind of person?”

“That crazy bastard! Flirting with a young girl in the middle of the day!”

“The Supreme King of the West is a pedophile?”

“Oh god...”

“How did he even tame that young girl? Can he even see her as a woman in the first place?”

The Lords gossiped amongst themselves.

It was all due to Hecate’s statements earlier, which brought upon further misunderstanding.

“Jesus… rumors refer to him as the virility king, but is he really trying to display his virility to such a young kid?”

At that moment, Lee Chae-Rin stepped in.

“Shut your dirty mouths please!”

A sharp, screeching reprimand. She glared at her audiences.

“How dare you spout such impure thoughts? Does Kang Chul-In, the Supreme King of the West, really look like a lolicon to you people? Huh?”

Lee Chae-Rin was fuming with anger.

Wasn’t that obvious?

Her beloved husband was being severely misunderstood. No woman would keep quiet about that.

“Well then, it’s a promise.”

“Yes!”

Kang Chul-In and Lily, however, paid no attention to the others.

My image is already so shit, whatever. 

Especially for Kang Chul-In, he had always been called ‘demon’, ‘man-eating Overlord’, ‘serial killer’, ‘agent of death,’ et cetera. Another nickname did not matter to him at all.

“I reiterate...”

However, Lee Chae-Rin refused to let this pass.

“The next person I see spouting nonsense, I will never forgive you! Remember this. This is my declaration as not only the wife of the Supreme King of the West, but also as the Overlord Lee Chae-Rin!”

Boom!

It was a cold, threatening declaration.

Nicknamed the ‘Overlord of Gold’ or the ‘Golden Summoner’, Lee Chae-Rin’s voice mattered much...

“Huh?”

“What the, Kang Chul-In and Lee Chae-Rin have something between them?”

“Not just something, but husband and wife?”

“But I heard that Kang Chul-In’s wife is the queen of the demi-humans.”

“Two?”

“What even, two wives?”

… or not.

The threat failed to deter the gossiping. Instead, it instigated more curiosity from the Lords.

However, most of their responses were simpleminded.

Kang Chul-In…!

To think of gaining power via arranged marriage! 

What a scary man!

All the Lords and Overlords within rank 20, including Albrecht Vilhelm, became alert.

It indicated how crucial the bond between Kang Chul-In and Lee Chae-Rin would be in the fight for hegemony in Pangaea.

***

The item trades were followed by a ball.

“So? What is it that you want to say?”

Hecate, who was holding Kang Chul-In’s hands, broke the silence. They were slowly waltzing to the music.

“Decide.”

Kang Chul-In’s eyes gleamed.

“Join me. Or… fight me.”

That wasn’t the best line to say during a dance, but he still spoke in a firm tone.

“What if I choose to fight?”

“Then I plan to invade your territory immediately after this Lords’ Meeting.”

“Manly, aren’t you?”

“I’m not kidding. You should know better.”

He was being genuine.

Kang Chul-In, who had experienced betrayal by a member of his alliance in the past life, knew that Hecate could prove to be a troublesome enemy to deal with.

Even if Hecate didn’t betray him in the past, how could he be so sure that Hecate wouldn’t betray him this time?

He had already discussed with Kwak Jung to form one strong nation.

A single power.

To achieve that, Hecate had to be dealt with.

“Well, that is true.”

“I don’t plan to leave a potential source of danger behind me.”

“Don’t you think that telling me this will trigger me even more?”

Hecate was right.

If Kang Chul-In wanted to prevent any source of backstabbing, he had to persuade Hecate to form an alliance, not threaten her like this.

“Are you the kind to sway from persuasion?”

Kang Chul-In, however, thought otherwise.

Hecate was a different breed of woman. Straightforward messages worked the best for her.

“Hmm...”

“To be honest, you won’t even care about your territory as long as you have your one flagship, Temeraire.”

“...!”

“Join me.”

“What?”

“Be the captain of my airforce and navy.”

“Are you asking me to be your dog…?”

“Too much.”

Kang Chul-In shook his head.

“After the war, I will grant you a port city that is five times larger than your current territory. I will acknowledge it as an independent nation with no form of intervention from elsewhere.”

In other words, Kang Chul-In had suggested Hecate leave the power struggle in Pangaea in return for an independent nation. In this manner, she could retain her title as an Overlord.

In addition,

“Sounds not too bad.”

It was the perfect bait for someone like Hecate, who lived for personal entertainment over ambition. Kang Chul-In knew that she had to satisfy her desire to destroy things.

“But you know...”

“...?”

“I don’t get what you are trying to do. What do you plan to achieve by engulfing all the neighboring nations?”

“I plan to unite this continent under one hegemony.”

“…What a tremendous ambition.”

“Is that a compliment?”

“Could be sarcasm, who knows?”

“I will take it as a compliment.”

Kang Chul-In smiled.

Hecate had the left corner of her lip rolled up. One could only see that expression when she saw something interesting.

“Suit yourself. When do you need the reply?”

“Now.”

“Isn’t that too early?”

“I know you will take the offer. Don’t pull out.”

Kang Chul-In let go of Hecate’s hand.

“Well then, see you in my territory.”

“I haven’t replied to you yet.”

“Then it’s a war.”

“I like your toughness, but is that even feasible?”

“Feasible or not feasible, since when did that matter to you?”

“...!”

“You just need something to destroy aimlessly. Your territory exists just to provide you with cash.”

Finally, Kang Chul-In unveiled Hecate’s true nature.

“Give me your territory, and I will let you destroy all you want.”

“How much?”

“Everything.”

“Sounds good.”

“Send an OK sign soon if you like the idea.”

Kang Chul-In turned his back towards Hecate.

Settled. 

Kang Chul-In was confident that Hecate would join him.

She was the female version of Kang Chul-In. Only he could satisfy her hunger for destruction. Hecate knew that instinctively as well.

She may be crazy, but she was certainly not dumb.

***

“We need to find allies to plant within the Gullveig Alliance.”

Having successfully (?) recruited Hecate, Kang Chul-In continued to roam around the ballroom to accomplish his mission.

Who can I trust? I hope for someone reliable. 

He recalled a list composed by him and Kwak Jung.

The list included names of a few Lords who were part of the Gullveig Alliance. The list was as follows:

Priority 1: Lord Christopher Willis.

Priority 2: Lord Hidetoshi.

Priority 3: Lord Vito Clemenza

Priority 4: Overlord Andrei Ivanovic

Four names.

If even one of them agreed to become an internal spy, Kang Chul-In’s ambition could come into fruition.

Excluding Andrei, all of them had caused small troubles within the Gullveig Alliance. In other words, the list was created based on previous history of non-compliance.

Furthermore, each one of them had distinct geographical and military traits, which could prove to be immensely critical in the future war.

However,

This could be the most important gamble in my life. 

He could not trust any of them.

Even if he managed to persuade one of the four candidates, he could be in big trouble if the candidate betrayed him.

Therefore, Kang Chul-In had to plan additional measures so that he could prevent any backstabbing.

Actually, direct contact itself is a problem. 

There were eyes everywhere. Kang Chul-In had no room for privacy. This was one of the downsides of being a celebrity.

“Good evening.”

At that moment.

“Your Majesty Kang Chul-In.”

A man who spoke perfect Korean slowly approached him.

“I haven’t seen you around.”

Kang Chul-In turned around to face the stranger.

“Yes, your Majesty. You won’t recognize me for sure.”

“For sure?”

“I’m not a Lord.”

“...!”

“I am Kwak Jung, his Majesty Vito Clemenza’s tactician.”

Kang Chul-In nearly spewed out his Champaign.

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