Chapter 74: Different than Intended (6)

 Cale looked toward On, Hong, and Raon.

‘What is going on?’

He asked the three of them with his gaze, but the three just sighed and shook their heads.

“Soooooooob.”

Cale could still hear Mueller continuing to cry. Why was he crying so much? Cale turned back toward Mueller.

Both the dwarves and the Rat people were very short. Having received both sets of genetics, Mueller was smaller than both dwarves and Rats.

He resembled the dwarves in fairy tales, having very cute features that would make almost any adult have the desire to protect this small person.

However, this did not apply to Cale.

“I feel so bad for him.”

On and Hong wagged their tails before approaching Mueller with pity in their eyes. Mueller started to shake even worse as they got closer. He was crying even louder now.

“...I feel so bad for him.”

Cale internally snorted at On’s words.

There was no need to feel bad for him. Mueller was 30 years old and lorded over the others as part of the family that helped develop the Magic Tower. He knew about the Magic Tower’s last line of defense, but did not use it because that would have meant revealing himself to Toonka and his crew. He was so scared that he just ignored his father’s last wishes. [1]

If it wasn’t for that, there was no way that the Mage faction would have lost so badly.

Of course, this was actually beneficial to Cale.

Although he looked like a young and cute boy based on his appearance, inside of that body was a thirty-year-old man who knew the ways of the world. He knew that his own life was what mattered the most.

Naturally, Cale preferred such a person.

“Sooooob.”

Cale was tired of seeing a grown ass man continuing to cry. He decided to stop the good guy act.

“Hey.”

Mueller flinched at Cale’s voice. He started to shake again after seeing the steel rod in Cale’s hand. He felt like this was the end of his life.

Plop, plop.

Cale placed some things on Mueller’s arms while he was still crouching inside the wall. It was a loaf of bread and a bottle of milk. He had taken it out of his magic bag.

Mueller’s eyes started to shake. He cautiously looked up at Cale only to see a slightly annoyed expression.

Eat it.”

Mueller quickly took a bite after hearing what sounded like a command. Cale had an odd feeling while watching Mueller eat the bread that got drenched in his tears.

‘...He seems to be useless.’

He had a bad feeling about this. Mueller looked like a totally useless fool.

He was supposed to have the dwarves’ technical skills and the Rat’s stealth and meticulousness. This combination was said to have given him the potential to become the greatest developer and constructor. But why-

“T, thank you very much.”

Why does he feel like such a doof?

Cale had a bitter taste in his mouth. However, On, Hong, and Raon all looked toward Mueller with pity and approached him. They were trying to be his shield, as it looked like he was afraid of Cale.

However, contrary to their intentions, Mueller was unable to even taste the bread he was chewing. Two purebred Cat tribe kittens and a dragon. At that moment, he heard a noise that brought chills down his spine.

Ding. Ding.

Cale tapped the wall with the steel rod. There was no reason behind it, he was just randomly tapping. He had a bad feeling about Mueller, but decided to take him anyway.

The Henituse territory had a lot of sculptors, as well as skilled artisans of all styles. There were especially many artisans involved in construction. It was because they had a lot of quarries. That was why Mueller would be useful.

“Do you want to live?”

Cale’s low voice echoed throughout the staircase. He started to get annoyed with Mueller, who looked like he was ready to cry again.

Ding. Ding.

Cale calmed himself by tapping on the wall with the steel rod. He thought about how he probably needed to be gentle with Mueller since he was such a coward. Cale put on a gentle smile as he asked Mueller.

“Should I save you?”

Mueller vigorously nodded his head. It was so energetic that the breadcrumbs started to fling off of him. Cale was satisfied with his energetic response and started to speak in a relaxed manner.

“Then you have to listen to me. Got it?”

“Y, yes sir!”

“Eat your bread first.”

Mueller quickly started to eat the bread. Cale was satisfied with the speed and casually asked.

“You know where the Magic Tower liege’s treasure room is, right?”

Plop.

The bread in Mueller’s hand dropped to the ground. Cale gently added on.

“You dropped your bread. You should pick it up.”

Mueller quickly picked the bread back up. He was still crouching inside the wall with Cale, On, Hong, and Raon surrounding the entrance to the inside of the wall.

“I know that you know about the secret room. The real room for the liege of the Magic Tower.”

The room on the 20th floor was not the real liege’s room. The Magic Tower had more to it than meets the eye.

Mueller’s eyes turned chaotic. How did he know about the room? It was something that only the liege of the tower and the members of the developer’s family knew about.

At that moment, Mueller heard Cale’s voice once again.

“You also know how to get into the fourth floor of the basement, right?”

Cale could see the shock in Mueller’s face. The Magic Tower was known as having 20 floors above ground and three floors underground. Cale started to get an odd feeling after seeing that Mueller was looking toward him with fear, wondering how Cale knew about all those secret places. Cale felt like he had become a criminal, taking a hostage and threatening them for information. He had no plans to do that. In fact, his goal was to save Mueller and give him a safe place to stay.

Cale started to smile and console the shaking Rat person.

“First of all, I will at least let you live if you do as I say.”

He naturally had no plans to free Mueller. He needed to take him back home and put him to work. Cale could see that Mueller quickly responding.

“Anything, I will do anything you tell me to do.”

The Rat and Dwarf mix halfling sounded like he was desperate.

“Good.”

Cale responded to Mueller’s desperation.

Mueller’s eyes were still shaking as he looked at the man who brought the scary Cats, Cats that were even scarier because they were pure-blooded Cats, as well as the Black Dragon with him.

“Then eat the bread and guide me to the fourth underground floor.”

“But you need a magic stone to go-.”

Cale took a bag out and threw it toward Mueller before he even finished his sentence. It was a bag filled with many magic stones. Mueller quickly finished eating the bread that was still drenched in his tears.

He then had to go down to the third underground floor with Cale’s group surrounding him.

The stairway to the third underground floor. In front of it was only the door to the 3rd floor and no other stairs heading downward. However, Mueller took a magic stone out and approached the wall, eventually revealing a mechanism on the wall.

Creeeeeeeak-

A cave was revealed accompanied by the noise. It was the pathway to the fourth underground floor. 

“You go in first.”

Mueller mechanically stepped forward after Cale ordered him to do so. Cale was excited as he headed down the inclined pathway. The cave was dry without any humidity, and there were light stones keeping the path lit.

The 4th floor of the basement.

This was somewhere that only the liege of the tower, the mages who were secretly experimenting down below, and Mueller of the developer’s family knew about. Cale walked down the path for a while to find a small door.

“...There is an alarm magic device.”

Raon stepped forward as Mueller stood there mumbling. Once Raon lightly waved his paw, the small door opened. Naturally, there was no alarm that went off. Mueller was shocked, but Cale did not care as he stepped in through the door.

‘Found it.’

He had found the first treasure.

What was hidden in the Magic Tower?

The biggest secrets were the two research projects that the Magic Tower was conducting in secret.

The names of the research projects were simple.

‘A mana storage device that used the principles of ancient powers.’

‘The reason for developing magic resistance.’

A research that Harol would desperately want to acquire, as well as research that would take away the citizens’ greatest advantage, were both held here.

“Wonderful.”

Cale could see the files under layers of security inside two large circular bins.

The citizens who respected ancient power, and Haros who hated magic but also wanted to be able to use magic. How great would they have felt if they had found these research documents?

‘But something like that will not happen now.’

These now belonged to Cale.

Cale approached the large orb located in the middle of the two circular bins.

He could see a seed resting within a fluid inside of this transparent orb that looked like a giant egg.

“Human, that looks interesting!”

Raon approached the egg and squished his face onto the glass in order to observe the seed inside of the fluid.

Cale approached Raon and patted his back as he asked.

“Do you want to try raising it?”

“Human, is that okay?”

“Yes. But it is mine once it is done growing.”

“Deal!”

The young four-year-old happily accepted a deal where he would do all of the work only for someone else to benefit from it. Cale had a satisfied smile on his face as he continued to speak to Raon.

“Let’s pack up everything in here.”

“Of course! I am curious about everything!”

It looked like Cale should create a lab for Raon in the future. Cale started to smile, knowing how much this seed and the research material were worth.

“Mueller.”

“Gasp, you even know, m, my name.”

Cale approached Mueller, who was hiding at the entrance without coming in. Mueller looked back and forth between the dragon that made the documents and the large egg disappear into another dimension, and Cale, who was approaching him. He could not help but shake.

“Let’s go to the liege’s room now.”

“Y, yes sir!”

“Raon.”

“What is it, human?”

“Set an alarm device here and a few magic traps.”

The fourth floor of the basement would be revealed once the Magic Tower was destroyed. Toonka and the non-mage faction would become even stronger if they found the items that were down here. Of course, Cale did not really want them to get stronger.

‘Although they will perish faster this way.’

But that was not Cale’s problem.

Cale just blankly watched as Raon happily created some magic traps.

“Other humans cannot take all of the interesting things in here. I need to make it so they die the moment they step in here!”

Cale watched the excited four-year-old with satisfaction, but Mueller’s face continued to turn paler. Cale didn’t care about Mueller’s current mental state, instead, he waited until Mueller resealed the room that was now filled with Raon’s magic traps before he grabbed the back of Mueller’s neck.

“The liege’s room.”

That sentence made Mueller respond while still remaining curled up.

“We need to first go to the 20th floor.”

On and Hong jumped into Cale’s arms. Mueller, On, and Hong all shared the space in Cale’s arms. Mueller could feel Hong’s front paw on his back and felt like he was going to die. That made him develop the courage to say the following.

“I, I can walk- aah!”

But before he could finish speaking, he needed to close his mouth because they were moving very quickly. Cale had used the Sound of the Wind to quickly rush up to the 20th floor.

Mueller staggered before trying to stand once they got back up to the 20th floor. He needed some support as he seemed to be dizzy, leading On to give him some support.

“T, thank you very much.”

Meeeow.

On gave him a smile, but Mueller started to shake as he avoided eye contact with On. He then started to speak after seeing Cale’s gaze that seemed to be telling him to explain how to get to the secret room.

“There is actually another floor in the Magic Tower.”

“Is the 21st floor the real liege’s room?”

“No, we do not call it the 21st floor.”

“Then what do you call it?”

The Magic Tower’s liege’s room. That was a room that the non-mage faction did not ever manage to find. Cale only knew about it because of something that was written in the novel.

< Although the non-mage faction ended up finding the 4th floor of the basement, they would never learn about the real liege’s room. If they had discovered it, the strength of the Whipper Kingdom would have increased by another step. >

Cale heard Mueller’s voice in his ear.

“The 0th floor. We call it the 0th floor.”

“Get it ready.”

“Yes sir.”

Cale watched the now quick and no longer crying Mueller with satisfaction. The moment a smile ended up on his face, Mueller’s movements became even faster. Although he looked like he was shaking a bit, he was fast after receiving the unique traits of both dwarves and Rats.

“Oh.”

Cale let out a small gasp of admiration.

Ooooong-

“I didn’t expect it to be here.”

Mueller moved some things on the floor of the liege’s room. All sorts of devices popped up and Cale could hear the sounds of gears turning.

Finally, once Mueller used a magic stone, a pretty loud noise echoed in the liege’s room.

Boom.

However, the loud noise of the celebration allowed Cale to not have to worries. Nonetheless, he was soon full of confusion.

“...Mueller, explain.”

“Yes sir.”

There was no change at all. Mueller started to point, not at the room that still looked the same, but somewhere else.

“It is over there.”

“...Over there?”

Cale looked toward where Mueller was pointing.

It was the window.

It was the large window that Cale had looked out of earlier in the day.

“You just have to jump out.”

“Out the window?”

“Yes sir. Then you will be at the 0th floor.”

Mueller raised his head to look at the owner of the shadow that covered him. He could see into Cale’s eyes.

“...You know what happens if you’ve lied, right?”

The steel rod shined in the light. Cale looked toward the shaking Mueller, who nodded his head and started to smile. He then picked Mueller up.

“Aigo, what are you doing sir? You told me you would let, let me live!”

Cale ignored Mueller’s cries, instead, he looked toward Raon and the kittens before looking out the window. Cale sighed while looking at the three pairs of eyes that were staring at him.

“You first.”

“What!”

Mueller was thrown out of the window. However, they did not see Mueller fall to the ground. Cale quickly followed behind Mueller.

Cale did not need to experience falling down twenty stories. 

Tap.

There was a platform right underneath his feet.

“I guess it is magic.”

The real liege’s room appeared as Cale made his observation. At the same time, he could hear the children’s voices from behind him.

“Noona, I can’t tell what I am looking at right now.”

“Hong, my eyes are fine, but this is weird.”

“Oh.”

Raon just had a single word of admiration.

Cale started to smile.

< The liege of the Magic Tower was a greedy person. Because of something that had happened in his past, he was full of greed. >

Gold. Jewels. Magic Devices. Money filled the very wide 0th floor.

The entire room was shining and filled with things that would be worth a lot of money.

< His greed was almost at the level of an average adult dragon. >

“It really makes you think about a Dragon’s Lair.”

Cale headed toward a pile of magic devices. None of the items in this room were cheap. All of the magic devices were decorated with jewels, making it obvious that they were made for nobles or royalty.

The entire room was filled with items like this.

The liege of the tower did not use these devices, even as they faced death. That was because using it like that would not be for himself, but for everyone in the Magic Tower.

Cale covered his face with both of his hands. He could see the slacker’s life through his fingers.

“Hahahaha!”

Cale did not hold back his laughter. He let it all out. Mueller watched Cale for a bit before looking around the liege’s room that he had known about for a while, but was seeing for the first time. He then stealthily reached out and grabbed the golden brooch that was closest to him.

Meeeow.

But he heard a chilling sound as soon as he grabbed it.

On and Hong were wagging their tails while watching him. The Black Dragon also took a step toward him. Mueller quickly let go of the golden brooch in his hand.

The thirty-year-old Rat could not do anything.

On the other hand, Cale had a wide smile on his face as he looked toward the children.

“We are rich.”

Listening to Cale’s calm voice that was very different than Cale’s current expression, On, Hong, and Raon all started to smile. A jovial feeling, similar to the one down below in the celebration, filled the room.

The Rat watched all this with fear in his eyes.


1. (PR: I originally felt pity.  Now I am thinking that we can do without one more mage.)

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miraclerifle's Thoughts

And a double for the sake of it.