‘Friend?’ Yeon-woo was even more confused. Even though he’d been in the Tower for a while now, he could still count all the friends he had on one hand. This person considered himself a friend? ‘Could it be…Kahn or Doyle?’
The Fantasy Regiment, was a large clan that was counted among the emerging powers in the Tower, and many things were known about its members. However, nearly nothing was known about the First Squad, which commanded them all.
All anyone heard was that some of the players in the First Squad had so much charisma that they managed to convince ten rankers to join them, and the rest of the players who followed these rankers made up the rank and file of the Fantasy Regiment.
There were only guesses about the leader of the Fantasy Regiment. No one knew the truth. How could such a mysterious person know him? It had to be either Kahn or Doyle. Yeon-woo hadn’t found any information about them at all, no matter how he tried. He sometimes wondered if they had died or retired to their home worlds.
If they were still alive, there would be traces of them somewhere, but he couldn’t find anything at all. What if one of them was leading the Fantasy Regiment? ‘It’s not entirely impossible but could they really become that strong in such a short amount of time?’
The twelve clan leaders of the Fantasy Regiment were all famous for being rankers. A few of them were even high rankers who had climbed past the seventieth floor. To lead them, someone had to have skills and charisma that surpassed theirs. In the Tower, a leader’s might was what pulled people towards them. However, even if Kahn and Doyle were strong, it was hard to imagine that they could reach this level so quickly.
Yeon-woo, who was already using tips and information from his brother, was barely even a ranker. If Kahn and Doyle had achieved the impossible—‘Rumors would have spread.’
Of course, if the clan leader had a reputation or something else that could make up for their lack of skills, it was still possible. ‘I don’t know about Doyle, but maybe Kahn.’
Doyle was smart but emotional. He was likable, but he wasn’t the kind of person who would receive complete loyalty. However, Kahn was different. The guy whom Yeon-woo had thought was a complete psycho was actually quite logical. He was decisive and had a charismatic quality. If he were given the chance, he could definitely create a mighty force.
Still, Yeon-woo couldn’t figure it out, so he asked Creutz. “Who is the Regiment Leader?”
However, Creutz shook his head. “I’m sorry. I can’t tell you that here. He’s the target of quite a few people. I have to uphold the rules for the sake of his safety.”
Yeon-woo narrowed his eyes. “You mean you expect me to visit someone I don’t know? Does that make sense to you? What do you want me to think?”
“I’ll apologize again, but we cannot tell you no matter how many times you ask. What we can tell you is to trust the name of the Fantasy Regiment and to trust me.” Creutz thumped his chest with his fist as if he really wanted Yeon-woo to trust him.
“If you still have doubts, the Regiment Leader has sent a message that he will be ending secluded training soon. Until he arrives, I would like to accompany you. The Regiment Leader can catch up later.” Creutz seemed to be very loyal to the Regiment Leader.
Yeon-woo could see him being careful out of worry that Yeon-woo might reject the offer. It was an unusual experience for Yeon-woo, who usually didn’t have the upper hand in situations like this. ‘I see, so he’s really worried about disobeying the leader.’
From what Yeon-woo could tell, Creutz definitely wasn’t someone you’d expect to be a subordinate. The way he carried himself, his elegant aura, and leadership quality were all outstanding. Although his style was different from Benteke’s, they were similar in that regard. More importantly, his strength wasn’t lacking compared to Yeon-woo or Benteke.
Yeon-woo became curious about the Regiment Leader, who could command the loyalty of someone like Creutz. However, he couldn’t simply follow the requests of someone he didn’t know just because he was curious. His Draconic Eyes showed him that they were sincere, but there were too many unknown factors involved. ,
“It would be more convincing if you get rid of the suspicious people over there.” Yeon-woo pointed at the gazes that had followed him ever since he fought Triton. There were many players with varying skills and origins who didn’t realize that their presence had been detected.
Yeon-woo had pretended that he didn’t see them, but he’d already identified their locations in case he had to send the Guai to kill them. Creutz cocked his head, not understanding. Then, he burst out laughing after his subordinate whispered something in his ear.
“Those are two of the Six New Stars. It would be strange if you didn’t attract their attention.”
Yeon-woo was hearing the name for the first time. “Six New Stars? Who are they?”
“Hm? You don’t know?” Creutz thought it was strange.
“I suppose if you’ve been too focused on training and climbing the floors, you might not have heard this name since it’s relatively new. It’s a good idea to keep pace on the changes of the Tower occasionally.”
Yeon-woo nodded without saying anything. He knew that he didn’t know a lot about the events in the Tower. At the One-horned tribe’s village, he had only done secluded training, and in the Tower, he was so focused on climbing the floors that he didn’t have time to check.
“The Six New Stars are super rookies like you who’ve created an uproar after entering the Tower.”
Creutz’s explanation was simple. After the destruction of Walpurgnisnacht, many forces had emerged and new players appeared, showing off their talents.
Those at the very top were called the Six New Stars:
The Hoarder, Cain.
Demon Beauty, Edora.
The Regiment Leader.
The Ruler, Benteke.
Doctor Doom, Ranul.
“You and the One-horned tribe’s Cheongram daughter have been included along with the clan leaders of the Four Emerging Clans.” They were considered potential candidates to join the Nine Kings and representatives of the new generation.
“Of course, Doctor Doom and Faceless are a little too old to be included in the new wave, but there’s no denying that they can challenge the Nine Kings.”
Yeon-woo was a bit surprised after hearing all the names. ‘Edora?’ The four new emerging clan leaders were obvious choices because they were the heads of their respective clans. And he had also shown his abilities in the Walpurgisnacht attack, so there weren’t many who doubted his skills anymore. However, he didn’t know that Edora would be included.
“Ah, your friend, Demon Beauty, is currently clearing the forty-second floor. She’s surprising everyone with her quick pace. Most believe that she'll become a ranker on the fiftieth floor soon.
Yeon-woo had heard that Edora had reached the thirty-fifth floor by the time he left the village; it seemed like she had climbed seven more floors since that time. Considering how much the difficulty increased the higher you climbed, Edora was moving at an impossible pace. She had climbed to the forty-second floor faster than she had climbed to the thirty-fifth floor, making her a player whose speed only increased the higher they went. Also, since she was the daughter of the Martial King, everyone paid attention to her.
According to Creutz’s description, her face was always expressionless, like a doll’s. She didn’t work with anyone else, and those who tried to take advantage of her were cut down mercilessly, even if they were rankers. No one could challenge her easily. This was how she’d gained the nickname “Demon Beauty”.
“She even has a few followers who’ve fallen in love with her coldness. They call themselves ‘Demon Beauty Castle’. It’s so funny that it’s almost not. However, she doesn’t seem to care.” Demon Beauty Castle was large enough to be added to the emerging clans if they became organized.
Yeon-woo silently nodded. ‘Phante would be jealous if he ever found out.’ He would be envious of his little sister’s fame. Not that it was a bad thing; he would be more motivated to work hard. Yeon-woo was also grateful to Edora. She didn’t like to show off her abilities, and she was only causing such an uproar because of Yeon-woo’s request.
“I want you to become stronger.” These were the words that had motivated Phante to go into secluded training and pushed Edora to climb as fast as she could.
“Anyway, that’s the current situation. The Eight Large Clans are busy ripping each other apart on the higher floors, trying to claim Red Dragon authority, and on the lower floors, the Four Emerging Clans and the Six New Stars are showing their power. And…” Creutz emphasized his next words. “You are at the very top, Cain.”
Yeon-woo didn’t say anything for a moment and looked behind him. The eyes were still watching him from afar. They were probably skilled players from the Four Emerging Clans or subordinates of the Eight Large Clans. Regardless of who they were, it meant that there was a spotlight on him. Yeon-woo realized that his war with Triton had a bigger impact than he’d thought.
“But it must be uncomfortable and annoying to have all those people following you. You have to focus on your war with Triton, and you don’t know if they’ll get in the way. Most of them are hoping that you’ll decrease Triton’s numbers or destroy Triton completely.”
Yeon-woo looked at Creutz again. “So, are you telling me that if I agree to your protection, you’ll stop them from bothering me?”
“If you don’t like how that’s phrased, what about ‘working together’? Or you can say that you hired us. We’ll help you meet the Regiment Leader, and you can focus on the war with Triton without being interrupted.”
“I can protect myself.”
“Are you saying that we’d only get in the way? Then I’ll have the knightage move back. Allow me to follow you quietly.”
Yeon-woo scoffed in disbelief. It seemed like Creutz was planning on following him no matter what he said. For a moment, he thought of chasing him away by fighting him, but then he would have to fight the entire Illusion Knightage. Besides, since Creutz’s skills were on par with Benteke’s, so it was possible he would sustain a lot of injuries, and so he shut down that option quickly.
There was nothing he could earn from fighting with the Illusion Knightage. He didn’t need to turn people who had good intentions into his enemies, and right now, he had to concentrate on the war with Triton. He had to get Benteke somehow. Finally, Yeon-woo waved his hand. “Fine, do whatever you want. But not the knightage. They’re annoying.”
“Understood.” Creutz nodded, looking at the Illusion Knightage. They began to scatter, creating a protective ring in the distance to protect Yeon-woo from long-distance attacks and nip trouble in the bud.
The players following Yeon-woo began to move further away. The Illusion Knightage was one of the most powerful groups within the Fantasy Regiment, and they didn’t want to fight them. However, some gazes still didn’t move away.
They were all holding their auras in, but Yeon-woo could still sense their presences. They were people who didn’t fall short of Creutz and might even have a chance of defeating him. Yeon-woo thought they might be a few of the Six New Stars. ‘There are a lot of strong people within the Tower, indeed.’ Yeon-woo’s eyes grew thoughtful. “Also, I don’t plan on working with you. If you want to follow me, you’re on your own.”
Yeon-woo scoffed. “You should think before you answer.”
“What…” Creutz was about to ask what he meant, but Yeon-woo suddenly spread his Fire Wings apart and kicked off from the ground, using Blink and Wind Path. He was gone from the oasis in a single breath.
Creutz was flustered. The Hoarder’s movement abilities were already well known. It wasn’t easy to follow Yeon-woo with the heavy armor he had on, and it seemed like he’d have to hurry in his hot armor under the scorching sun. He sighed and whistled with his thumb and middle finger in his mouth. A three-meter-long wyvern arrived. The flying dragons were the Illusion Knightage’s means of transport.
Creutz mounted the wyvern easily and pulled the reins. He would have to fly for a while to catch up to Yeon-woo.
* * *
“Wait! Hey! That’s not fair.”
“We’ve been moving so comfortably so far. We’ll have to run like hell now.”
“Hahaha! I bet this will be fun too.” A player confirmed that Yeon-woo and the Illusion Knightage were moving and slowly stood. Their body was covered in white bandages like a mummy’s, and it was hard to tell their gender or age. Different voices spoke under the bandage, as though there were multiple people living in a single body.
The famous player who had never shown their face to the world, Faceless, lightly hit the ground running.
* * *
At the words of the black-robed magician, the other magicians who followed him all stood. It was the clan of Doctor Doom and his disciples, Necropolis. They disappeared through a red portal on the ground, leaving behind an environment that had completely dried up and died, all life sucked away from it.Previous Chapter Next Chapter