Cale looked toward Jopis and started to speak.
“She ripped its f*cking head off right away as you mentioned last time.”
Cale knew that Fluffy was no ordinary dog, but he didn't expect her to be strong enough to send most strong individuals to the curb.
‘I guess she must be a divine animal or a spiritual being or something?’
He had no way of knowing the truth about Fluffy and her siblings. However, one person should know. Cale looked toward Jopis.
However, Jopis seemed slightly shocked, unlike what he expected. Her eyes quickly calmed down before sparkling as if she had found some type of treasure.
Fluffy walked over and rubbed her face on Jopis’s leg. That action put monster blood on Jopis's pants, but Jopis smiled warmly and patted Fluffy's back.
“You snapped the f*cking head right off.”
Cale watched them with a satisfied expression before looking forward.
The monster had died instantly and the rat had fainted.
The current situation was very good.
They had no reason to hesitate at all.
He looked toward Mary.
“How is it?”
Mary’s two hands that were covered by the robe poked out.
Her hands were covered in spiderweb-like black threads.
Black threads started to flow out of her hands.
One of the Elves gulped.
This was the first time he saw a necromancer use their power. He had heard that the power that was said to have disappeared a long time ago had reappeared. However, he had not believed it.
Seeing that power again made him flinch.
Everything that had been covering the monster became wrapped up in the black threads and disappeared.
Finally, only the monster's bones were left behind.
“It really was not a regular monster.”
“That’s right. Young master-nim, that monster was poisoned by dead mana.”
The bones that should have been white were dyed black.
The bones had been poisoned by dead mana.
Cale and the robed Mary made eye contact.
Both of them started to speak at the same time.
“It looks like a chimera.”
“It seems to be an experiment.”
Their choices of words were different, but they were talking about the same thing.
The Elves who had been watching saw one of their own stepping forward.
“They should be monsters who were changed through black magic experiments.”
It was Elf Pendrick who could not control Elementals but specialized in healing.
Pendrick who had learned a lot of things from ancient Dragon Eruhaben looked toward the bones of the monster before looking toward Cale.
“They’re just like the golems. It looks like the chimeras were created with black magic as well.”
The Elves who did not know about the Dragon half-blood's existence frowned after hearing the term, 'chimera.’
That was something that went against the laws of nature.
It was at that moment.
Fluffy barked loudly after Mary commented in her calm voice.
The Elves watched as the large skeleton slowly stood up.
The skeleton that stood up without a head picked the skull and placed it back in the proper location as black threads tied the two parts together.
It was 2.5 times Cale's height.
It wasn’t as tall as the maze walls, but it gave off a sense of pressure as everybody needed to look up at it.
The way the black threads were surrounding the black bones made them think about something.
“It resembles a Dark Knight.”
It made them think of a monster not from this world but one that was said to exist in the Demon World. That was how much pressure this monster was giving them.
It would look even scarier if this tall monster got on top of a black steed.
The Elves turned their gazes toward Mary who created such a creature.
Mary looked toward Cale at the same time.
“I’ve gathered one monster.”
Cale looked toward Jeet and Mary and continued to speak as the Elves flinched.
"We need to increase the number of our allied soldiers as much as possible.”
They all looked toward the black skeleton monster after hearing, 'allied soldiers.’
Allied soldiers plural. That meant that she was not finished with just this one skeleton.
"Mary, have Choi Han and the Elves help you increase the number of allies as quickly as possible.”
“I understand. Young master-nim.”
“We understand, Commander-nim!”
Tasha who received Cale’s gaze then headed forward. Cale pointed to the third maze wall behind the monster.
There was a corner, but he had no intention of walking around it. He was only going to move forward.
The Dark Elves responded to Tasha's order and headed past the monster to the third wall.
- A mana arrow this time!
Raon's black arrow that was in front of the Dark Elves destroyed the wall.
A wall was just a wall no matter how thick it was, and the Elementals and Raon had no problem breaking it.
Cale activated his Sound of the Wind and followed behind them.
Wall after wall came tumbling down.
There seemed to be an endless number of walls, but they continued to move forward and Jopis made a comment.
“We should be able to cut the time in half if we keep moving like this!”
Another monster appeared at that moment.
Elf Jeet gave the order and numerous fire arrows appeared and shot toward the monster. The monster soon fell down and Mary walked over and created another ally.
Jeet approached Cale and looked up at the top of the maze as he asked.
“Commander-nim. What if we move on top of the walls?”
He thought it would be most efficient and save a lot of time and effort to run on top of the maze walls.
The maze walls were not up to the ceiling.
The ceiling was extremely high, and the walls that were approximately three times Cale’s height were thick enough for them to run on them.
There was someone who responded to Jeet’s suggestion.
“You’ll fall into an illusion.”
Everything was resolved with Cale’s single statement.
Jopis explained further.
“There are illusions cast throughout the top of the walls. There might be people among us who won't fall into the illusion, but we have no way of knowing who that might be.”
There was a reason Cale had given up on running across the top of the walls when he created the plan.
“If even one person falls into an illusion while running on top of the walls, then that's a loss of two people and not just one. That is why it is safer to go through the maze.”
If one person fell into an illusion… They would need someone to protect that person as well, so it was a dangerous gamble for a group like theirs where every person who was capable of fighting was important.
“…They made this extremely annoying.”
Jeet frowned and sighed before clenching his sword.
“Let’s keep moving.”
Tasha who stopped for a moment started to work again.
It was at that moment.
Cale's gaze headed toward Choi Han.
Choi Han put his index finger against his lips. He crouched down and looked toward a corner in the maze instead of looking forward.
Cale heard Raon's voice in his mind as well.
- There’s something on the other side of that corner!
Choi Han stealthily started to move without making any noise.
He then swung his sword.
They heard the sound of cloth getting cut.
“Aaah! What the… who are you?!”
The Elves quickly ran toward the source of the scream.
Cale quickly ran past the corner.
Cale started to frown.
He saw some children surrounded by the Elves and Choi Han once he turned the corner. The youngest child looked to be around 10 years old while the eldest seemed to be 17 or 18 years old at max.
Their clothes that looked extremely luxurious also looked very loose.
They looked like they had a lot of money.
‘…I have a bad feeling about this.’
Cale started to frown.
He turned his head and looked for Jopis.
‘Jopis might be shaken.’
However, Jopis was already rushing past him.
Cale could see the ripples on Jopis's face that had been completely calm until now.
Jopis could not even finish her sentence.
“Unni…? Is that you, Jopis unni?”
The children blinked in shock after seeing her.
Tasha who was looking at them gasped.
‘They’re part of the royal family.’
The children who looked similar to Jopis in hair color or appearance seemed to be Jopis’s cousins.
Jopis ran past Cale before slowing down as she approached them.
She hesitated before she started to speak.
“Why are you guys here…….?”
Why were the young children of the royal family in here?
Especially in the middle of the day?
Jopis's pupils started to shake and the oldest looking boy stepped forward and started to speak.
He looked wary of Choi Han and the Elves as he made eye contact with Jopis.
“We should do what we can to help her majesty who strains herself day and night with work.”
Jopis started to frown as soon as she heard that response.
The young children had large glass bottles in their arms.
The glass bottles that were sealed tightly were full of a black liquid.
Anybody would be able to tell that they were full of dead mana.
However, the children had not realized that.
The youngest girl who seemed to be about ten years old whimpered as she approached Jopis.
She then proudly lifted the glass bottle toward Jopis.
“So you are Jopis unni!”
Jopis slightly teared up.
Cale believed she had a close relationship with this child named Belle in the past.
“…You were just a baby…you're already this big.”
Jopis seemed to have a flood of emotions.
The child named Belle looked excited as she continued to speak while holding the glass bottle up toward Jopis.
“Our benevolent majesty said that these things are the black jewels that would make the Molden Kingdom even more prosperous. It is so precious that we can't even touch it. She said that each bottle was worth a thousand pieces of gold!”
Cale held back a sigh.
It should be worth that much because it was made with human lives.
- Human. Do you think those children are all under illusions?
‘Probably. That’s probably why they think that black thing is something extremely precious.’
The oldest boy walked up to Belle and Jopis and started to speak with a concerned expression.
“But noonim, why are you in this place?”
He slowly looked over Jopis with concern.
“Isn’t it not okay for you to be here like this?”
Jopis hesitated before she started to respond.
But at that moment…
“A traitor like you…….!”
Cale shouted as the boy's gaze quickly changed and his hand moved into his pocket.
A dagger came out of the boy's pocket.
He seemed to have trained, as the dagger instantly headed toward Jopis's neck as she looked at Belle.
“You betrayed her majesty and the family! How dare you come here?!”
The veins on the boy's neck were visible as he shouted with an angry gaze.
The dagger moved quickly to take Jopis's life.
However, Choi Han who had approached without the boy noticing, moved his hand toward the boy.
However, Choi Han stopped moving.
The dagger was sent flying.
Then he saw Jopis's hand clenching the boy's neck.
Jopis's other hand that had slapped the dagger away was bleeding from being lightly scratched in the process. However, Jopis was not even looking at the blood.
She looked toward the boy and the rest of the royal children who were showing her animosity.
Her gaze seemed to be full of fire as she looked at the boy.
“You stupid fool.”
Jopis who enunciated each word released her grip on the boy's neck.
“Huff. Huff. As expected, a traitor will only continue to sin.”
The boy took a deep breath as he glared at Jopis.
“So stupid. So very stupid.”
Jopis continued to mumble the word ‘stupid’ as she looked at the children while they continued to glare at her with animosity.
Cale then realized that Jopis was not saying those words to the children.
Jopis's tightly clenched fists were shaking.
She was angry with herself right now.
‘You're so stupid. Jopis, why did you live like such an idiot?’
The situation had changed in the many years she lived exiled in Ghost Village.
She was so angry at the fact that even young children were moving dead mana like this that she was starting to get a migraine.
‘But still, sending children to this place? Especially when there are monsters everywhere? And they’re holding glass bottles of dead mana?’
The children could be killed by monsters or by the dead mana if something happened and the glass bottle broke.
Jopis was shocked that Elisneh would make children do that kind of job.
The royal children who saw Jopis's angry gaze peeked at Cale and the others as they slowly took steps back.
However, they had nowhere to go as the Elves were already behind them.
Jopis who was watching them heard Cale’s voice.
Jopis looked up along with Cale.
Fluffy revealed her fangs and started to growl.
They heard people's voices from a distance.
“Everybody, follow me! We need to capture that rebel Jopis!”
Jopis quietly mumbled.
“It’s the Knight Captain's voice. His voice hasn't changed after all these years.”
There were two entrances to the maze.
The knights seemed to have entered through the other entrance.
There were also people who had entered earlier than the knights.
Tap. Tap tap.
Those people were descending to the top of the maze walls.
There were a total of 4 people.
One middle-aged person. Two old people.
The three people who landed on top of the walls started to speak.
“It’s been a while, princess-nim.”
“Long time no see.”
“It's been a while. Former Princess Jopis.”
The three of them all greeted her in different ways.
However, Jopis was looking at the fourth person on top of the wall.
The two of them made eye contact.
The royal children bowed with bright expressions at that moment.
“We greet her majesty!”
“Her majesty came to save us!”
Elisneh the First, Monarch of the Molden Kingdom.
She was standing on top of the wall looking down.
Elisneh had a benevolent smile on her face as she looked at Jopis and started to speak.
However, her voice was directed at the children unlike her gaze.
“Yes. I came to save you all.”
“You came here to save us when you are probably very busy with your work!”
Elisneh’s gentle and warm voice flowed out once more.
“As your ruler and family, of course I needed to come to save you. Why else would I come here in the middle of work?”
The children were full of admiration and one even started to cry tears of relief.
A brusque voice commented at that moment.
“Such bullshit in front of the children.”
Silence filled the area.
Everybody looked toward the source of the comment.
Cale was standing there.
Cale put on an awkward smile and pointed to his mouth.
“Aigoo. My bad. It just popped out because I was so shocked.”Previous Chapter Next Chapter