Silence filled the library.
None of them could easily start to speak.
One thousand years.
Just thinking about the flow of events for that long period of time was giving them headaches.
Bud and Cale were looking at each other.
Bud let out a short laugh.
“I need some booze.”
He then plopped down on the ground.
He was feeling frustrated.
It was a hypothesis.
It was a hypothesis that the White Star might be the first Mercenary King.
He needed to verify if this hypothesis was true.
However, he had an odd feeling that this was indeed the case.
Bud grabbed his hair with both hands. It was hard for him to suppress the anger and frustration building up inside him.
Nobody could say anything while watching him.
It was at that moment.
Someone was breathing heavily.
Ron, who was supporting Cale, looked at Cale's face.
Cale’s face was red from overheating, his body was covered in sweat, and his breathing was heavy.
Ron looked at how Cale's wet red hair was stuck on Cale’s face and handed him over to his son, Beacrox.
Beacrox helped Cale slowly sit down on the ground.
He then leaned his back toward a bookshelf.
Raon and Hong approached Cale. On was already near Cale’s leg and looking up at him.
Cale's eyes were half-closed as he breathed in and out. He looked extremely weak.
“…This is driving me nuts.”
Bud brushed his face with both hands after seeing Cale's condition.
He had not checked on Cale’s condition because he was so shocked by the hypothesis.
No, he could have just ignored Cale’s condition because the story he shared was so important.
Eruhaben wet a towel and handed it to Ron, who carefully wiped the sweat off of Cale's forehead.
Cale continued to breathe while feeling the cool towel on his cheek.
It was hot.
Kim Rok Soo, Grade 1 Ability User. ‘Record’ was the most well-known of his abilities.
His entire body, starting from his head, heated up every time he used this ability.
However, his mind was clear.
The side effects were mild compared to the other abilities that clouded a person's mind from overuse.
He closed his eyes.
He needed to organize the information gathered in his mind.
“…Cale-nim, I will take you outside.”
Choi Han approached Cale, who had his eyes closed.
“Yes, let’s finish the rest outside.”
Eruhaben agreed with Choi Han. Choi Han tried to carry Cale who was quietly sitting there. Beacrox grabbed Cale's shoulders to help Choi Han.
Bud who was watching this had a smile on his face as he cursed. He had no choice because these people who were most definitely more frustrated than he was were moving with the next steps in mind.
Bud stood back up as well.
He could not just sit here right now.
He approached Cale's group and started to speak.
“Let’s just use magic to leave since it is fine if we get caught.”
It was important to use this facility without being noticed, however, a person’s life was more important.
“Then I, the great and mighty Dragon, will use teleportation magic! I’ll help too!”
Raon seemed to agree with Bud as he moved his front paws forward as if he was getting ready to cast a spell.
Bud walked up next to him.
“Raon-nim, I will give you the coordinates.”
“Alright, go ahead! Tell me the coordinates, alcohol-loving Mercenary King!”
“Yes sir, the coordinates are-”
It was at that moment.
“There's no need.”
It was a low voice that came along with a quiet breathing sound.
It was Cale. Bud subconsciously started to raise his voice.
“Hey, look at your condition before-”
Cale ignored Bud and continued to speak.
Cale’s actions that followed made Bud anxious.
“…What are you doing?”
Bud asked but Cale ignored him. It was annoying to respond.
Cale’s shaking hands slowly started to move.
He then started to undo the buttons of his shirt one by one.
He needed to get rid of this heat in his body.
Cale was mumbling that it was hot as he continued to undo his buttons.
A sharp alarm rang inside the library at that moment. Bud turned away from Cale.
The black Dragon’s paws that looked ready to cast teleportation magic suddenly had a video communication device instead.
It was glowing red.
“Human! It's the crown prince!”
Cale's personal video communication device only glowed red when crown prince Alberu Crossman was calling.
Raon peeked at Cale's condition before continuing to speak.
“Human! The crown prince is calling! Should I tell him to call back later?”
Bud also peeked toward Cale before starting to speak.
“I’m fine even if you connect the call. We already decided to use magic anyway. But your condition is, mm.”
Cale did not seem to be in a condition to accept a call right now.
However, Cale petted Raon, On and Hong on the head before starting to speak.
Cale actually had something to say to the crown prince as well.
“I will help you, Cale-nim.”
“There's no need. I'm almost done.”
Cale shook his head toward Ron and Choi Han.
He was getting annoyed because he was hot.
However, Cale was quite relieved as he undid his buttons.
He could not undo his buttons nor pull up his sleeves in front of his subordinates when he was Kim Rok Soo, no matter how hot and sweaty he became.
He didn't want to show them the scars on his body.
It's not like they were anything to be proud about. It would just scare the people who were doing the same jobs as him.
Cale looked down at his body that was now visible and started to think.
‘…This is nice.’
This body did not have any scars.
Even if it did, the Vitality of the Heart would quickly get rid of them.
That was good.
Scars were records as well.
It was better if those disappeared.
It would only cause pain to those watching and those nearby as well.
“Human, I connected him!“
Cale, who was undoing his buttons, looked forward after hearing Raon's voice.
He could see the video communication device and the screen floating above it.
A familiar face appeared on the screen.
Naturally, it was crown prince, Alberu Crossman.
Alberu, who was wearing a more majestic outfit than usual, started to speak.
- …What are you doing?
His tone was extremely casual.
Alberu's majestic-looking face started to frown.
- …Have you been drinking?
His expression seemed to be saying that Cale was doing all sorts of crap now.
It could not be helped.
The crown prince had never had anybody answer his call with a red face while unbuttoning their shirt.
That was only possible for someone who was so drunk that they didn’t care about respect or etiquette.
- Did you just decide to return to your old alcoholic trash days? Hmm? How much did you drink that your face turned so red and your head is full of swea-
He suddenly stopped talking.
He then started to frown for a different reason.
- …What did you do this time?
Alberu could see all of Cale's group members.
They looked fine. He could see that only Cale was extremely red.
-…Did you use an ancient power? And who is that person wearing glasses? Is that the Mercenary King?
Bud and Alberu made eye contact through the screen.
Bud immediately understood who this was as soon as Raon said, ‘It’s the crown prince!’
“Pleasure to make your acquaintance, your highness. My name is Bud Illis. I am the Mercenary King.”
His tone was respectful, but he was standing tall.
Although he did not have any territory of his own, he was the representative of one of the top factions on the Eastern continent.
The Mercenary King did not easily bow toward the kings of the Eastern continent either.
- Nice to meet you. I am Alberu Crossman.
Alberu's self-introduction was short.
He believed that it was enough to just reveal his name.
His name should be known by the power players in both the Eastern and Western continents.
He heard Cale's voice at that moment.
“I am currently going through the Mercenaries Guild’s Directory.”
- The Directory? Why?
Alberu was confused for a moment before his eyes clouded over. He saw Eruhaben’s better complexion and immediately answered his own question.
- Looks like you went to find information on the White Star.
This was why Cale found it easy to deal with Alberu.
There was no need to explain things in detail to him.
“You are correct, your highness. I went through the records in the Directory.”
Cale then calmly explained everything he learned by going through the records.
“…And that is it.”
The hypothesis that the White Star might be the first Mercenary King.
The hypothesis that the Directory might really be a record of ancient powers.
Alberu’s expression looked heavy after hearing all of that.
- …Cale Henituse.
His eyes headed toward the tired Cale.
- So, what is it that you need?
The corners of Cale’s lips slowly went up.
This was why it was fun to work with the crown prince.
“Seven days and approximately 9,889 record books.”
Cale closed his eyes.
His eyelids were shaking.
- What is that?
“That is how many books I read.”
Alberu finally managed to see the bookshelf Cale was leaning against, as well as the numerous bookshelves behind him.
He continued in a cold and emotionless voice.
“I acquired information from 9,889 of 45,788 total books.”
Cale still had his eyes closed.
However, numerous records were going through his mind like pages in a book.
“There were a total of 31 people with ancient powers in those 9,889 records. 29 of them are determined to have passed away. Four of them had water attributes, nine had wind attributes, six had fire attributes, one had wood attribute and 11 had other attributes.”
Mercenary King Bud subconsciously gulped.
Cale was the only one who could talk right now.
“The first record of someone using an ancient power was about Lisetter, an archer. Born approximately 962 years ago in the northern part of the Eastern continent. Died 901 years ago at the age of 61. He had a wind attribute ancient power.“
Cale was feeling hot. However, he did not stop talking.
“Second, Chaaru, a swordsman. Born 954 years ago on a southern island. Died 930 years ago at the age of 24. She had a water attribute ancient power. And the third……”
Bud brushed the back of his hand.
“The seventeenth person, Elsren, a spearman. Born 781 years ago in a free city. Died 740 years ago at the age of 41. He had a fire attribute ancient power. The eighteenth……”
He had goosebumps all over his body.
Cale was bringing up every person within the 9,889 books he read who had an ancient power.
Cale's confident voice that continued without any hesitation made him believe Cale was not bluffing.
“The thirty-first person, Inkter, a fighter… Year of death, unknown. Water attribute ancient power.”
Cale looked toward Alberu after mentioning the final ancient power wielder before seeing Alberu start to speak without any hesitation.
- I will gather records of people with ancient powers on the Western continent.
The corners of Cale’s lips started to go up again.
The crown prince looked full of disbelief. However, he too had goosebumps all over his body like Bud.
‘He read 9,889 books and memorized all of the information?
A totally crazy bastard was in front of him.
That was why the crown prince bluntly added on.
- What’s so funny?
The crown prince also felt that it was easy to work with Cale.
- I need to gather information on ancient powers, but it looks like you guys need to do the opposite.
Bud's body flinched at that moment.
Cale looked toward Bud.
Bud let out a sigh before starting to speak.
“It looks like.”
If the White Star was the first Mercenary King, it was very likely that he had stealthily infiltrated this place many times.
That was why he needed to make up his mind.
It was not because the Mercenary King suddenly shouted.
He understood why Bud would feel that frustrated. There was a different reason he flinched.
“Damn it! I can’t say it while I'm sober!”
He opened a bottle of alcohol. The Mercenary King then started to chug.
Cale understood the look Alberu was giving him.
‘Where did you find such a person……?’
That seemed to be what Alberu’s gaze was saying.
Bud one shotted a whole bottle before starting to speak.
“This place, this place! Yes, this place!”
He seemed to be shouting to himself.
"We will blow it up!”
Bud looked toward Cale and continued to shout.
“We’ll make it so the White Star can't come here! We will move the Directory and blow this place up! Kahahahahah! Then he won't be able to find the Directory in the future even if he wants to do so! Kahahahahah!”
He was laughing in a refreshing manner.
“Kahahahah! Blow it up! Destroy everything!”
Cale looked away from Bud with a stoic expression.
Bud was not wrong.
If the White Star really was the first Mercenary King, then it was a good direction to move the Directory and blow this place up.
“Soob, it doesn’t make sense that I, the Mercenary King, am going to destroy the first Mercenaries Guild building and this records storage place, sob, but I have to do it.”
Bud then looked toward Cale and continued to speak.
“Who will do it if I don't?”
The White Star knew about the powers of Cale's group.
He especially knew about Cale's ancient powers, as well as the strengths of the main strong individuals such as Choi Han and Eruhaben who showed themselves in the past war. He would quickly realize that Cale was in the Eastern continent if he saw the slightest traces of their group.
He needed to avoid that.
Bud had mixed feelings about destroying this Mercenaries Guild building with his own hands, but he had no choice.
It was at that moment.
“I will destroy it.”
There was a person putting a cold towel in Cale's hand and looking at him.
Cale wiped the sweat off of his arms with the towel before starting to speak.
Ron, his servant. Ron was the one who was stepping up to destroy the Mercenaries Guild building and this records storage place.
He smiled toward Cale.
“I’ve never been in the front lines. Would there be anybody who knows of me?”
Ron and Beacrox had never fought in the front lines during the Western continent's war.
“Plus, aren't all of the Arm members who realized I was a servant dead?”
The members of Arm who realized his identity and made him lose his arm had all died during the combined battle with the Whales.
He was only known as Cale’s servant to those who do not know Cale well.
Ron had not just been playing around in the Eastern continent during this time.
He trained himself over and over during this time. He didn’t just sharpen his sword, instead, he had sharpened and trained himself to strike his enemies’ hearts.
“I think this is a good time to do it.”
It was finally time.
It was time for him to step into the front lines and help Cale.
“I think it is a good time to reveal the return of the Molan household.”
It was time to use the fire inside of him that Cale had helped reignite.
Most of the Eastern continent knew about Arm’s battle against the Mercenaries Guild.
But what if an unexpected variable appeared?
There didn’t need to be many variables.
All that was needed was a small but sharp dagger that nobody expected.
“Molan, Arm, and the Mercenaries Guild.”
The Molan household would be the dagger.
“Let’s make this a three-way battle.”
They would help shake up the balance of power in the Eastern continent.
Ron continued to look at Cale as he added on.
“Son, am I right?”
Beacrox responded back with a stoic expression.
“Yes you are, father.”
Cale could see that the benign smile had disappeared from the old man’s face to reveal a cold smile.
The eyes on the face that was full of wrinkles and the head full of white hair was burning passionately.
“He agrees with me, young master-nim.”
His voice was warm.
Cale smiled back.
‘This vicious but smart old man.’
He could clearly tell that one of the reasons that Ron had stepped up was for Cale and the others.
Ron was the one who Cale could trust more than anybody else right now.
“Ron, wasn’t your duty to remain next to me?”
“That is what I am doing.”
Cale started to laugh at Ron's response.
- Similar people have gathered together.
Alberu started to grumble.
“Crown prince, you’re smiling like that again! You have a wicked smile on your face! Let’s show it to the White Star!”
Alberu slowly stopped smiling after hearing Raon’s shout.Previous Chapter Next Chapter