Chapter 33: You (8)

Nobody seemed to find it odd that Cale suddenly wanted to head out. Ron seemed to have gone somewhere as well, as he was nowhere to be found. The only question Hans had for Cale was about where Cale was going.

‘Young master, where are you going?’
‘Don’t worry about it.’
‘Yes, sir! But since this is your first day in the capital, can you please return without breaking any alcohol bottles today?’
‘…Are you really going to keep getting out of line like this?’
‘Not at all. Please be safe, young master.’

Cale got on the carriage and started to think about how to deal with Hans, who kept stepping out of line. The carriage arrived at the temple while he was thinking.

“Let’s get off.”
“Got it.”

Cale got up to step out of the carriage. Choi Han had been quiet ever since they got on the carriage, no, since they stepped out of Cale’s room. He seemed to have a lot of complicated emotions storming through his head right now.

Cale only knew about Choi Han’s personality until the fifth volume of, ‘The Birth of a Hero.’ However, there was one thing that Cale was sure about. Although Choi Han was a good person, he was not gullible. He was very smart.

‘If I tried to give an unbelievable excuse, he may believe me at first, but will definitely doubt me later.’

Choi Han may have been very lonely after living in solitude for tens of years, but that experience taught him how to survive on his own, and how to stubbornly persevere.

Choi Han may look at him favorably right now and follow him, but, as seen around volume 5 of, ‘The Birth of a Hero,’ he is someone who eventually wishes to be the leader. Choi Han is someone who will live to make his personal view of justice a reality.

“…It is too white.”

The Temple of the God of Death that Cale saw once he alighted was completely white, without a speck of dirt to be seen. The believers of the God of Death considered white to be the color of death, and cleaned everything over and over again every single day to make sure there was not a speck of dust anywhere on the building.

‘What an interesting place.’

The Temple of the God of Death looked like it wanted to show that people had nothing to fear about the night with their actions. They opened the temple to both believers and non-believers once the sun started to set.

‘Apparently, the priests are all sleeping if you come during the day.’

It really was an interesting place in Cale’s opinion. They were greeted by two priests at the temple entrance.

“May you be blessed with a peaceful rest!”
“May you be blessed with a peaceful rest!”

The priests of the God of Death were generally extremely bubbly. Although people may consider death to be the end, the philosophy of the Church of the God of Death believed that it was important to enjoy life as they headed toward the peaceful rest.

“Priest-nim.”

Cale slowly approached the priest. The priest inspected Cale with a curious expression. Cale looked like he was either an extremely affluent noble or a wealthy merchant based on his outfit. But the man behind him looked like a beggar, although the sword on his waist made him look somewhat strong.

“What can I do for you?”
“Is there an open Room of Death?”

The two priests’ expressions stiffened. The priest who asked the question looked back and forth between Cale and Choi Han before asking.

“Whose death will you be putting on the line?”

The priest peeked toward Choi Han as he said that. Choi Han currently looked like he had been rolling on a mountain and been suffering for a while. He also looked like he had not eaten anything for about two days, and seemed to be the type that would be easily scammed. The priest had a bitter feeling about this.

The priest turned his gaze over to the affluent noble. Beautiful red hair and a handsome face. He was not very handsome, but it was enough to catch attention wherever he went. In addition, this man was currently smiling.

Cale smiled as he slightly raised his hand.

“Mine.”
“Huh?”

Cale smiled once more at the confused priest.

“I will be putting my life on the line.”

Choi Han put his hand on Cale’s shoulder at that time.

“Cale-nim.”
“What?”

Cale turned around to see Choi Han with a stiff, yet anxious expression.

“I will believe you even if you don’t do this.”

Cale started to smirk and slowly responded.

“I don’t think you will.”

Choi Han will have no choice but to not believe him. How could he believe Cale when Cale was not planning to tell him anything? That was why they were at the temple.

‘Why would I tell him everything? That’ll just make me get involved in the mess.’

There was no reason for him to get involved with Choi Han that much. Cale wouldn’t be able to live a peaceful life if Choi Han was around. It’s already visible. Didn’t Choi Han bring him more trouble to him by bringing all of the wolf children?

‘He rides on the whales with the Whale Tribe to fight against mermaids in the future.’

In this human-centric world, Choi Han’s position to embrace both humans and non-humans makes him start to change. The start of that is the Whale Tribe. The Whale Tribe that appeared at the beginning of volume 5 was, to be honest, quite scary.

‘They were the deadliest predators.’

The Whale Tribe was the strongest of the Beast people. They were also the most beautiful Beast people. The Whale Tribe had different colors of black, grey, or pink, but they were all extremely beautiful. In comparison, the mermaids of this world had two legs and fins, looking like a human covered in scales.

‘But they are so stubborn that they won’t even be humble in front of a dragon.’

The Whale Tribe was extremely scary. Although they were small in number, their casual punch could easily blow up a human’s head. Even Lock could not lift a finger to the Whale Tribe.

‘Their temper is ruthless.’

Choi Han gets involved with all sorts of people and trouble as well. Cale had no desire to continue being involved with him.

“Priest-nim. The room?”
“Yes, we have one. I will prepare it for you right away. Please head to the basement.”
“Thank you.”

Cale started to walk behind the priest. Choi Han followed behind Cale with an iffy expression. Cale noticed Choi Han’s movement, and leisurely walked toward the innermost area of the temple.

After walking for a long time, they could see numerous doors on one side of the wall. The priest opened one of those doors to reveal a staircase leading down into the basement.

“Death awaits you at the bottom.”
“Great. Let’s go.”

The priest watched Cale walking down the stairs without any hesitation with interest.
The, ‘death,’ that is mentioned in the Temple of Death also meant, ‘vow.’
Death was something that was guaranteed to visit you at some point. It was not something you could avoid, and your responsibility was to accept your role in the world while you are here.

That was why the officials of the Temple of the God of Death brought the end known as death for those who go against their vow.

Because of this, people who headed to this Room of Death, or sometimes called the Room of Vows, tended to be humble and serious. In contrast, this relaxed and confident person was really unique in the priest’s eyes.

‘It makes me think about priestess Cage.’

She was someone who cursed the temple extremely frequently, but she was still loved by the lord. Cage. The priest suddenly thought about her, but quickly erased it from her thoughts. At the same time, Cage was becoming frustrated while hearing the lord’s voice again.

After getting rid of the thoughts about Cage, the priest headed down the stairs behind Cale. Once they got to the bottom, the priest opened the door and informed Cale and Choi Han.
“Please wait a moment. I will get it ready.”

The priest then entered into the room alone. Cale looked toward the closed door and started to speak.

“If you really don’t think we need to do this, I will let you know one of the truths in advance. What do you think?”

Choi Han immediately responded.

“Yes, please tell me. I trust you.”
“Is that so?”

Cale rubbed his chin with one hand before casually spitting the truth out.

“The first of the two truths.”

His gaze turned toward Choi Han.

“I do not know the secret organization’s identity nor their goal.”
“…What the-”

Choi Han’s pupils started to shake. At that moment, they heard a click and the priest came back out of the room.

“You can enter now. The person putting their life on the line just needs to raise their hand once inside the room for the priest-nim.”
“Thank you. We understand.”

Compared to the relaxed Cale, Choi Han seemed extremely confused and anxious. The priest tilted his head in confusion at this, but quietly left the area. It was none of his business. Cale grabbed the doorknob as he turned to look back at Choi Han.

“Hard to believe?”
“That, you see.”

Cale could see Choi Han struggling to answer. Choi Han had said he trusted Cale, but he could not trust Cale’s words. How could Cale not know? Did that make any sense? Choi Han then heard Cale’s voice in his ear.

“I understand.”

Choi Han looked toward Cale. Cale’s relaxed expression made him seem very mature. Cale then started to speak.

“Let’s go in.”

Choi Han followed Cale into the Room of Death that was behind the white door.

As expected, the room was completely white, with a white table, white chair, and white walls. The only non-white thing in the room was the priest who was standing there with his mouth and ears covered.

The deaf priest. Cale did not really look favorably upon that title, but these priests were pretty well respected in this world. Nobles and royalty, anybody who needed to have a secret conversation or stealthily sign a contract came to see these priests.

Cale silently bowed his head to greet the priest before raising his hand. The priest nodded at Cale’s action and pointed to the two chairs by the table.

Cale sat down on the right side while Choi Han sat across from him on the left. The priest moved to the head of the table before pushing a piece of paper toward them.

[For the person who is putting their life on the line. The hand of the God of Death will touch the one who came with you. Once that happens, you can say your vow. Should you break your vow, death awaits you.]

What a vicious set of directions.

Cale pushed the paper back to the priest after verifying that Choi Han had finished reading. The priest then lifted both of his hands up like Cage had done before. At that moment.

Ooooooooong- oooooooong-

The white room started to shake. Maybe it was because this was a place that served the lord, but a black smoke started to form around the priest once the room started to shake. The black smoke then surrounded both Choi Han and Cale before creating a connection between the two of them.

“…Is this the power of the God of Death?”
“Yes.”

Cale responded to Choi Han’s question before trying to feel the black smoke thread surrounding him. It happened when Cage made the vow as well, but the power of the God of Death reminded him of the stakes of this vow.
‘I will die if I break this vow.’

Cale was sure Choi Han felt it as well. That must be why his face stiffened up. Cale could feel the touch of the God of Death and started his vow.

“The priest in front of me guarantees that he cannot hear, and, if that is not the truth, he will pay the price with his life.”

This was the general phrase stated first whenever a vow was made with a deaf priest.

“Furthermore, I, Cale Henituse, vow to speak the truth to Choi Han in front of the God of Eternal Rest, and, if what I say is even slightly a lie, I will immediately die in this spot to pay the price.”

Immediately. That word made Choi Han’s face stiffen up even more. He was nervous.

At first, Cale debated whether to tell Choi Han everything.

I was transported into the novel I was reading. I am also Korean. That is why I know what happens until volume 5. This secret organization goes on to cause issues throughout the continent. The continent soon falls into a state of chaos because of a war.

Should Cale say all of that?

Or, should he say something like this? I was transported into the novel I was reading and ended up as the son of a wealthy noble. That was why I was trying to just live a peaceful life, but I remembered what happened in the novel so I changed it around a bit. I wanted to allow myself to live peacefully, even if the continent was in a state of war.

Cale didn’t like either of them. The first one might get him involved in the continent’s war and make him die out on the battlefield, while the second one might lead to Choi Han’s contempt killing him.

Cale did not want either of those to happen.

“First.”

First of the two truths.

“I, Cale Henituse, do not know the identity of that organization.”

Sigh. Choi Han let out a deep sigh before covering his face with both hands. He slowly moved his hands away after a bit to see that Cale was still alive.

“I am being honest when I say that I do not know their identity.”

It was the truth.

Cale, the original Kim Rok Soo, had read, ‘The Birth of a Hero’ until volume 5, but it did not mention anything about the secret organization’s goals or identity. All it discussed was the actions of the organization.

“And one more thing. I am being completely honest when I say this.”

The second of the two truths.

“I despise the organization and wish for it to disappear.”

Naturally, Cale was still alive. He did not like these people that caused such incidents. They probably take part in the continent’s war as well. Cale wished for them to disappear so that he could live calmly on a peaceful continent.

Choi Han seemed like he was at a loss for words. He looked at the black thread connecting himself, the priest, and Cale, before repeatedly clenching and unclenching his fist. Cale flinched at Choi Han’s scary expression when Choi Han started to speak.

“How can you hate them if you don’t know them?”
“Because I know about a couple of the terrible things they plan on doing. The Black Dragon and Lock are two of them. Choi Han.”

Cale pointed to himself with his index finger.

“I have lived my life as trash. That is my dream.”

Choi Han’s expression changed after hearing Cale say that his dream was to be trash.

“I have no desire to become my family’s successor. Basen Henituse, my blood-related younger brother. I am hoping for him to become the successor.”

This was also the truth. That was why Cale asked Choi Han a question.

“So then why would I have come to the capital as the representative of the Henituse family? Especially when I am hoping Basen becomes the successor? My father, the head of the household, told me to go, but I could have said no.”

Choi Han answered after a duration of silence.

“…I am not sure.”
“It is because I know what the secret organization is planning to do in the capital.”

Choi Han’s pupils dilated once more.

“I cannot answer how I know. But they are planning to kill a lot of people at the capital. I couldn’t send Basen to such a place. I want to prevent that incident from happening.”

Of course, Cale was not planning to do anything and everything to put his own life on the line for others.

“After taking care of all of these issues as quietly as possible, I plan on returning to the Henituse territory.”
“…You cannot tell me how you know?”
“Correct. I cannot tell anybody, no matter who it is, about it.”

Choi Han’s eyes were full of questions, but his mouth stayed shut.

Cale didn’t know the identity of the secret organization but he knew about a couple things they would end up doing. He also despised them and wanted them gone.

Choi Han’s head fell even more as he started to think things over. His head was a mess right now. Even still, the power of the God of Death coming through the black thread gave him serenity. He knew that Cale would die right here if he had lied.

“However, I will tell you one more thing.”

One more. That made Choi Han quickly lift his head to look at Cale.

“The last truth.”

This was the third truth Cale told Choi Han.

“I have no desire to harm you.”

Cale was confident as he said that. He remained alive, which meant this was the truth.

Choi Han started to frown.

Tap. Tap.

Choi Han started to tap his thigh with his clenched fist. Although he was not tapping very hard, veins were popping out of his tightly clenched fist. He slowly raised his head. Cale was still alive.

“…I trust you.”

Listening to that response that took so long to come out, Cale repeated the words he had said to Choi Han before they entered this room.

“I understand.”

He then started to smile.

Sigh.

Choi Han sighed while still sitting at the table. He lifted his head to look at Cale. Cale’s eyes were pure as usual, while stubborn.

“Cale-nim. Please promise one more thing. Then I will completely trust you.”

‘…I didn’t think something like this would happen.’

Cale was feeling iffy about Choi Han’s response. It shouldn’t be a big deal because he would be able to find a way to twist anything to suit himself, but it was the phrase, ‘completely trust you,’ that was not sitting well with Cale. But it wasn’t like he could say no right now.

“Sure. What is it?”
“Cale-nim.”
“Yes?”
“I must get revenge on that organization. I think this is the first time in my life I’ve ever hated a person or an organization so much.”

Anger filled Choi Han’s pure eyes. A sense of nostalgia could be seen behind the anger as well. Choi Han was probably thinking about Harris Village.

‘Mm.’

Cale held back from letting that noise escape from his mouth. This was why he did not want Choi Han with him, even if Choi Han chose to follow him. Choi Han was a good person, but he would always finish something he made up his mind to do. That was why Cale waited for Choi Han’s final request with nervousness.

Choi Han finally started to speak.

“Please tell me no matter what if you find out their identity.”
“Ah-, well, sure.”

‘I thought he was going to ask something difficult.’

Cale had a shocked expression as he made the vow.

“I, Cale Henituse, will inform Choi Han once I learn of their identity. I will pay with my life should I go against this vow. Good enough?”
“Yes, thank you very much.”

Choi Han finally started to smile. He seemed to be relieved. Cale started to think while observing this Choi Han.

‘How would I ever learn of their identity?’

In order to find out their identity, actually, in order to even find the smallest clue about their identity, he would need to go down the same route Choi Han took in the novel. He would have to be crazy to do that. Once Choi Han gets out of the capital and the Roan Kingdom, he would run into all sorts of heroes; humans and non-humans alike.

Just thinking about it made Cale feel terrible.

“Then are we done?”
“Yes.”

Bang!

Cale lifted his hand and slammed down on the table. His smash made the table slightly shake, and the priest opened his eyes and nodded his head. The area vibrated once more.

Ooooooong-

With that, the smoke disappeared into each of their bodies. It was slightly different from when Cale had experienced this with the crazy priestess Cage. Cale felt the two vows becoming ingrained into his body as he took a piece of paper out of his pocket.

It was the cheque for 10 million gallons. Cale put that money in front of the calmly seated priest and got up. He then said goodbye to the priest before heading out of the room. Choi Han looked back and forth between the money and Cale, before following Cale out of the room and closing the door. He then looked toward Cale with confusion.

Cale casually responded to Choi Han’s gaze.

“Nothing in life is free.”
“I see.”

Cale walked back up the stairs to find the priest from earlier standing at the entrance on the first floor.

The priest greeted the still alive Cale.

“May your life continue until its destined time.”

It was their way of telling you not to break your vow so that you could continue to live. It was completely merciless.

“Thank you very much, priest-nim.”

Cale thanked the priest with a smile in response. The priest still found Cale’s smile and relaxed voice to be odd, but Cale just walked past him to leave the temple.

He then got on the carriage and and started to speak once the carriage started to move.

“For your reference, that crazy mage, that person is the leader of the incident that will happen at the capital.”
“……Am I allowed to kill them if I see them?”
“Why are you asking me such an obvious question? Do as you want.”

‘Doesn’t matter to me.’

However, that crazy mage was a highest level mage and a teleportation specialist, so Choi Han was never able to do a he wished in the novel.

“Yes. I will make sure to kill them.”

Cale turned away from the angry face of Choi Han. It was too vicious for Cale to handle.

Once they got back to their residence, there was another individual Cale found difficult to handle.

“Young master.”
“Ron.”

The assassin Ron, who had a benign smile on his face, came to look for Cale, who was trying to rest in his chamber.

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