Weighing the importance of things — it meant to distinguish between what was important and what wasn’t, and to get one’s priorities straight.
In truth, what Seol Jihu wanted to do the most was to train. As he had just advanced to Level 5, he wanted to quickly learn the skills befitting a High Ranker. He also wanted to re-harmonize his mind, body, and technique, which hadn’t made any progress in a while.
But there was something that was even more important — to transform Carpe Diem from a team to an organization.
To do this, he had to move to Eva, where he promised to meet Hao Win, but Jang Maldong had placed three conditions he had to fulfill before then.
Since he had already won over an influential organization, that condition was fulfilled.
Jang Maldong telling Seol Jihu to organize the team before spreading Carpe Diem’s influence meant to have a solid foundation and wasn’t anything too difficult.
But Seol Jihu had no choice but to accept the cold reality at the condition of acquiring enough funding for expansion.
In truth, Seol Jihu had never been short of money ever since his arrival in Paradise. Well, except for when he was trying to recruit the Yi siblings.
He had amassed quite a wealth, but it was a different story if the talk wasn’t on an individual scale, but at an organizational one.
Jang Maldong had once criticized Earthlings for playing real estate in Paradise. Meaning, land trade was just as popular here as on Earth.
Strictly speaking, Paradise’s land wasn’t for buying or selling. All territory within a city was under the permanent jurisdiction of the Royal Family in charge of the city.
However, some Royal Families set aside land for themselves and the livelihood of Paradisians, issuing land transaction permits for the remaining land and allowing Earthlings to buy and sell them.
While the permit only gave Earthlings partial rights to the land, these rights also included the right to construct buildings.
In other words, the Royal Families only traded the right to the ownership of land, with Earthlings having the right to the buildings built on top of them.
This wouldn’t be such a bad thing if not for the rich and powerful having total control over Paradise. The influential organizations of each city acquired large regions of land from the Royal Families and made money by reselling these to other Earthlings.
That was why concepts such as building-for-sale and monthly rent existed in Paradise.
The Royal Families were rather speechless as they witnessed these events. They had signed a long-term lease for the land for reasonable prices, but buyers of the land were having a blast playing with money.
Of course, this was yet another problem of the Earthlings.
‘If only we could just chase them all out….’
In any case, the need for money was unchanged, so Seol Jihu racked his brains for a long time.
‘I still have the Golden Eggs, so we should be good for now… no, monthly rent is a no-go.’
Renting a building and paying a monthly amount for its use could be doable for a few months, but they would quickly run into a wall. In reality, Seol Jihu was troubled by the fact that it was hard to liquidate most of the valuable items he possessed.
The cleanest method was directly trading with the Royal Family’s administration to receive a long-term lease and construct a building themselves.
The problem was that the price of land wasn’t cheap, and the added price of erecting a building easily pushed the total cost into billions.
‘I should have said yes when he said he’d help.’
Seol Jihu now regretted declining Hao Win’s offer to help them move. He had spoken with courage, wanting to do this himself, but he now realized it was nothing more than bravado.
‘Should I look for a place on the outskirts of the city?’
Seol Jihu’s worry deepened.
Flone was the first one to notice Seol Jihu’s worries. Recently, she had been spending most of her time next to Seol Jihu. To be precise, she was spending more and more of her time in the pendant.
Although she merrily wandered about when she was first released, there wasn’t much to see within a limited space. When there was nothing new to see, her interest in going out naturally dwindled.
Her boredom was so unbearable that she was starting to get discontent at Seol Jihu for only wandering around the same places every day.
But because Seol Jihu’s mood was almost permanently downcast, she found it nigh impossible to express her dissatisfaction.
She could see at a glance that his face was wrought with worry.
Even today, he had spent quite a bit of time standing in front of the plaza’s noticeboard, sighing his heart out. He then returned home before clutching his head and rolling around on his bed grunting.
Eventually, Flone asked, unable to bear seeing him so distressed.
[What’s wrong? Are you worried about something?]
Seol Jihu didn’t react.
Flone tilted her head before plucking a tree branch and poking him with it. Only then did Seol Jihu raise his head.
[Why the frown? You better spit it out now!]
Hearing’s Flone intimidating talk, the crest-fallen Seol Jihu opened his mouth.
“It’s because of money. I need money, but I don’t have any….”
Blurring the end of his speech, he gritted his teeth before shouting, “Stupid money, money, money!”
Flone tilted her head and asked.
[Money? Can’t you go get some?]
Seol Jihu gave a dull smile.
“I need a good amount. Well, every little bit counts, so it’s true that I could save up enough until I eventually meet my goal. I just don’t know how long it will take….”
It wasn’t as if Carpe Diem always had a mission, and even if it did, it was impossible to meet his goals with just the mission completion rewards.
Seol Jihu rolled around some more on the bed and murmured.
“I need a way to make enough in one go….”
[No, I mean—]
Flone spoke as if she was frustrated.
[I was going to ask you about this anyways. Since you said you need money, why not go get it!?]
Noticing that something was up, a question mark popped up Seol Jihu’s head.
Flone pointed at the pendant.
[This, I mean! This! Grandpa’s secret!]
Seol Jihu finally stopped rolling.
[Remember how Grandpa said he hid all of the family’s wealth before going to the emperor’s villa?]
[Don’t be surprised. He said this pendant has the coordinates of the hidden wealth!]
Was it when he first heard about the Parasite army’s advance? Barely remembering what he heard back at the Huge Stone Rocky Mountain, Seol Jihu shot up from his bed.
Seol Jihu turned towards Flone. When he stepped forward with his eyes blazing, Flone shrunk back.
[W-W-What? You’re scaring me.]
Seol Jihu grabbed Flone’s hips tight. Suddenly caught, Flone wriggled, telling him to let go.
“Please… I really need… ah, can I have it?”
[Yeah, it doesn’t have an owner anyways.]
“But it’s your inheritance.”
[I don’t care. I’m dead anyway. Feel free to use it however you want.]
Seol Jihu became dazed. Sometimes, Flone talked about being dead too nonchalantly. Well, perhaps he shouldn’t care so much about it either seeing as how she didn’t consider it a big deal.
[That’s only if you can find it though.]
Seol Jihu was about to jump in happiness before being struck down by Flone’s words. He suddenly had a feeling that it wouldn’t be so easy.
[Grandpa said he hid his wealth in five different places.]
“He split them? Why?”
[What do you mean? What idiot hides all their wealth in one place?]
When Flone asked back, Seol Jihu became speechless.
[Grandpa was super careful, you know? Even that greedy emperor gave up trying to find these places!]
Right, they were talking about the wealth of the entire Rothschear family. Since the Rothschears were famous for their immense wealth, Seol Jihu could only imagine how much Flone’s grandfather had hidden away.
[He said he separated them by type… hnng.]
Groaning like a puppy, Flone escaped Seol Jihu’s hands and flew towards the wall. There was a huge map hanging there.
[The first place is here!]
Quickly rushing forward and checking the map, Seol Jihu’s expression sank. This was because Flone’s index finger was pointing at the heart of the Empire.
“…Didn’t you say he hid them outside the Empire?”
[You know what they say, it’s hard to see what’s right beneath your nose.]
Seol Jihu smacked his lips.
“That place is a bit…. The Parasite Queen is there. If we go, I can promise you we’ll be dead before we even get there. Absolutely.”
[Really? What a shame. Important documents and account records are buried there….]
Flone muttered in disappointment, but Seol Jihu’s expression became a bit brighter. Of course, he wouldn’t know their real value until he saw them, but these documents didn’t sound so important to him now. After all, it wasn’t as if he was going to live in the Empire.
[Then the next one is…]
Flone’s finger slid down the map.
Seol Jihu clasped his hands and prayed earnestly.
Please don’t let it be in the Parasites’ territory.
However, Flone’s index finger pointed at the Parasites’ territory again. Although they were no longer in the territory of the old Empire, it was a rear area that was far apart from the human territory.
[This is where antiques and offerings are buried.]
Seol Jihu’s eyes shot open.
“Offerings? Your grandfather kept offerings separately as well?]
[Of course. The Rothschear family served the Goddess of Chastity (Castitas) of the Seven Virtues. We were in charge of holding Ceremonies every season.]
“Then the quality of those offerings must be amazing.”
[That goes without saying. The Goddess of Chastity really liked items with holy power, so I remember Grandpa always making special requests for them from the temple.]
Seol Jihu swallowed hard.
This place was in a different situation than the first place, and the inheritance buried there was difficult to give up.
Although it being inside the Parasites’ territory still weighed on his mind, it wasn’t as if there wasn’t a way around it.
Since Paradise was round, couldn’t he get there in a roundabout way somehow…?
[Oh, and this is where gold, silver, and other treasures are buried.]
Seol Jihu paused his train of thought and looked at the map again. This place was also in the Parasites’ territory, but it was still the frontier area.
Perhaps Seol Jihu had gotten a bit bolder after going to the ancient emperor’s villa, because he felt this place wasn’t so out of reach.
[If you want to carry everything back, you’ll probably need about ten large carts.]
Flone spoke proudly, clearly wanting to boast about the wealth of her family.
[The treasures there might really be forming a mountain! So? So?]
Flone chattered, hurriedly asking for his reaction.
Seol Jihu stared at her fixedly before…
Flone jumped in shock.
[Y-You’re crying!? Why are you crying!?]
Seol Jihu shook his head immediately.
“I’m just happy… my worries were solved in an instant….”
[Things must have been hard for you until now. I mean, that’s what it looked like.]
Flone patted Seol Jihu’s head. He wiped his tears before nodding.
“I’m happy. I really am. Now I can find a place to call home, buy a new spear, a new armor, and…”
“Yeah… The one I used to have broke during the war….”
He didn’t even remember when it broke. But when he woke up, the spear was nowhere to be found. He was later told that the spear was shattered completely, and there was no need to even mention his armor.
[Great. Then what about this place?]
Seol Jihu sniffled while following Flone’s finger. This was the only place that wasn’t in the Parasite’s territory.
Something about the location was strange. It wasn’t the Parasites’ territory… but a border region…
With the Federation.
[The Rothschear family’s valuable items are buried in this place, so it should have a weapon that catches your fancy.]
Suddenly growing curious, Seol Jihu asked.
“Was your family a merchant family?”
Flone replied a beat late. She seemed slightly angry.
“I got curious all of a sudden. With how wealthy they were, I was wondering if they were famous as a weapon merchant.”
Her voice instantly turned sharp.
[No way! You say the Rothschear family became famous through selling weapons!?]
[Meanie!? How could you say something like that? Do you think it’s possible for a family in charge of Ceremonies to be merchants?]
Seol Jihu became speechless, seeing how Flone was acting like she had been insulted greatly.
Although he couldn’t understand why she was so mad, he apologized for offending her.
“Sorry, I’m not knowledgeable about these things….”
[You really don’t know a thing, huh! Fine, I’ll tell you just once, so listen up!]
Flone yelled like a pouting kid and continued.
[The Rothschears are one of the four deeply-rooted families, who founded the Empire. They’re also a duke, which only the founding contributors of the Empire can become.]
[Gorgonu, crowned as the emperor and known as the Heart of the Empire! Rhetinhen, the Shield of the Empire! Monpansha, the Eyes and the Head of the Empire! And Rothschear, the ‘Spear of the Empire’!]
Seol Jihu’s eyes widened.
[What’s buried here is our family’s sacred artifact!]
“Wait, you mean—”
[That’s right! I’m talking about the Spear of Purity, which Goddess Castitas has bestowed our founding patriarch! You thought I was talking about some items to sell at an auction?]
Seol Jihu’s jaw dropped.
A weapon bestowed by a god?
He couldn’t even begin to imagine how powerful such a weapon would be.
[Of course, I know that the emperor’s Gorgonu family was unrivaled in my time, but still!]
“Oooh! Rothschear! Ooooooh!”
Seol Jihu gave a fervent applause. Finally getting the reaction she wanted, Flone ‘hmphed’ before placing her hands on her waist and strutting her chest out.
[It’s fine if you know now. Anyways, where do you want to go?]
Greed filled Seol Jihu’s eyes as he looked at the map. He was faced with happy worries, which was choosing which place to go first.
His head was telling him to choose money, but his heart was shouting for the spear.
‘An, an artifact from the Empire… and one that was bestowed by a god….’
Swallowing his saliva, Seol Jihu glanced at the proudly floating Flone.
“Flone, this place doesn’t just have the spear, right?”
[Ei, how could it?]
“Right? It must have something else, right? Like decorations and a little bit of gold and silver.”
[Probably. Grandpa split them into categories, but I doubt he separated it completely… But why?]
Seol Jihu licked his lips.
“Nothing. But how much do you think will be there?”
[Mm… there’s no way to find out until we get there ourselves… but don’t hold your hopes up too high. I doubt there’s going to be a lot.]
“But shouldn’t it at least have what the emperor’s villa did?”
[Eh? What are you talking about?]
Flone snorted and waved her hand.
[It obviously will have more than that.]
‘As I thought.’
Seol Jihu’s eyes sparkled. Rubbing his hands together, he asked again.
“So, about how much?”
[Mm… I would say at least a few boxes of gold coins.]
Seol Jihu coughed loudly.
A tiny fraction of the family wealth was a few boxes of gold coins!?
There was no need to hesitate any longer. Seol Jihu set his next destination on the spot.
Although there was still one place he hadn’t heard about, he could do so at a later time.
‘This is enough for now.’
The moment he made up his mind…
Dollar signs appeared in Seol Jihu’s pupils, which began to spin like a slot machine.
The giggling Flone flinched in surprise.
[W-What’s wrong? Don’t make that face. It’s scary and weird.]
Seol Jihu ignored her plea and stared at her with profound affection.
“Are you my lucky charm? Or an incarnation of Lady Luck herself?”
[W-What are you talking about all of a sudden? Go away. Shoo!]
Flone hurriedly turned around, trying to escape. But unable to restrain his happiness, Seol Jihu…
…spread his arms and pounced.
[Don’t touch me! You can’t do that to a maiden…!]
[Uaaaang, I’ll kill you!]
Screams and giggles continued to ring in the room for a long time. Thankfully, no one else was in Carpe Diem’s office.Previous Chapter Next Chapter