– Human, careful, careful! You’ll fall and die if you trip!
Raon’s nagging did not reach Cale’s ears. Cale walked toward the destroyed remains that Beacrox pointed to.
“What is going on?”
“Please take a look.”
Beacrox pointed to a dark area underneath the remains. Cale looked down and saw a box that seemed to have been busted in multiple locations from the explosion.
At that moment, Cale said two words while acting like he was shocked.
Beacrox nodded his head at Cale’s exclamation.
‘As expected, the young master is good at acting.’
Cale then turned around and looked toward Beacrox as he asked.
“How far down is it?”
‘It seems to be lower than the third floor of the basement.’
That was supposed to be Choi Han’s line.
“That. place. Is-”
But Beacrox blocked Choi Han with his left arm and answered instead.
“It seems to be lower than the third floor of the basement.”
Cale heard the footsteps getting closer to him and asked with a serious expression.
“Was there a fourth floor to the basement? Didn’t they say that the Magic Tower only had three basement floors?”
“I. Know. Right? That. Is. What. I. Heard.”
Cale completely ignored Choi Han for the first time. He didn’t even look at Choi Han, and instead turned around to make eye contact with the people approaching him. The mage, Rosalyn, started to speak with a serious expression on her face.
“Young master-nim, to be honest with you, I have heard that the Magic Tower was conducting some secret research. Ah!”
She sounded shocked as she covered her mouth with her hands. She acted like she didn’t know what to do as she looked behind Cale. It was as if she had said something that the person behind Cale should not have heard.
Cale applauded Rosalyn’s acting skills as he slowly turned around.
Harol Kodiang was looking toward Rosalyn with an odd expression on his face. He slowly turned his gaze toward Cale once Cale called his name. An unknown look of passion was in Harol’s eyes as Cale started to speak.
“Something unexpected seems to have happened, Chief Harol. Don’t you think so?”
“…It does seem that way.”
Harol was trying to answer with a calm demeanor, but he could not hide the greed in his heart.
“What is going on? Why are you all gathered around the broken Magic Tower?”
Toonka and his subordinates soon arrived. The other Chiefs were arriving as well. Cale put a hand on Harol’s shoulder as he started to speak.
“…What is it?”
Toonka seemed to be nervous. Cale had never called his name so seriously yet gently before.
“We seem to have found a hidden area of the Magic Tower.”
“What about it? Is it not completely destroyed?”
‘…You stupid idiot.’
Cale wanted to smack Toonka on the head, but held back as he gave an order to his crew.
“Go figure out what is down there. And Harol.”
“Yes, young master-nim.”
Cale looked toward Harol and asked.
“I’m sure you’ll help us?”
“Of course, I will help you, young master-nim.”
‘Like I don’t know what you are thinking.’
Cale wanted to laugh at Harol’s greedy face, but he focused on his acting and played along.
Everybody nodded their heads with serious expressions, as if something unexpected had happened. At that moment, Choi Han, who approached Cale, spoke in a relaxed manner. Choi Han was acting properly for the first time.
“Cale-nim, it is dangerous down there because of the aftermath of the explosion. Please wait here while we go down to look.”
– Yes, human. You are weak, so go sit in the shade!
‘Why are you both saying something so obvious?’
Cale had nothing to say to these repetitively obvious statements. Why would he go to such a dangerous place?
So, Cale just remained silent.
“They are right. Our soldiers and warriors will go with them, so you do not need to worry, young master-nim.”
“Is that so, Chief Harol?”
Harol seemed anxious to go in as well. Cale nodded his head with a relaxed expression and gave Harol a warning.
“Of course, everything in there belongs to me. You do know that?”
Harol smiled back.
“Of course. However, won’t you sell it if it is something that you don’t need?”
“Obviously. What? You want to follow them so that I don’t hide anything?”
“That is definitely part of it.”
Harol did not hide his thoughts. He was worried about Cale’s group hiding the items, but he also was greedy to see everything in that underground lab.
“I see. Harol, I don’t want us to have such lies between us. So, go ahead.”
– Weak human, you are lying again! You’re really good at it! That is your talent!
Cale apparently had a talent for lying.
“Thank you for your understanding. I will do my best to assist them.”
“Sure, sure. Just don’t get hurt.”
Beacrox had to hold back a snort at Cale’s final words. Ron patted his son on the shoulder before heading down into the half-destroyed basement.
Naturally, Harol and his subordinates followed behind them.
Cale leisurely moved away from the spot and observed them.
– Human, it is a bit disappointing.
What could Raon be talking about?
– We put a bunch of traps down there and destroyed the place last night.
Cale recalled what he had just said to Harol.
’Don’t get hurt.’
Cale wanted to laugh. He was the one who told Raon to install a bunch of traps, as well as the one who told Ron about the location of the traps in order to make Harol’s group fall into them.
Wouldn’t they think that the information was more valuable if they had to suffer a bit to get it?
– Human, you have an evil smirk on your face! And give me my gold coin! I did the work!
‘An evil smirk?’
Cale touched the corners of his lips with his fingers and quickly hid his smirk.
Cale approached Toonka while Harol and the Chiefs were gone. Two of Toonka’s subordinates, his two most trusted subordinates, were standing behind him.
Cale quietly asked Toonka a question.
“You told his highness the crown prince that we were friends?”
It was rare to see Toonka look so shocked. Cale did not miss this opportunity to keep talking.
“I presume we will find some of the mages’ research documents in that hidden floor. If there are any documents that will help all of you, I plan to give them to you.”
Cale answered back seriously while Toonka stood there looking lost like an idiot.
“And if it is something that could bring you harm…”
The words, ‘something that could bring you harm,’ made Toonka’s expression turn serious. Even an idiot who did not think much like Toonka knew that it was reasonable for the mages to have research that would be able to harm them.
That thought made Toonka start to worry. However.
“Then I will definitely hand that over to you too.”
The word, ‘definitely,’ echoed in Toonka’s ear.
He recalled how Cale had found a ship for him and had come to say goodbye when they first met.
“…Should you be saying that? Shouldn’t you at least pretend to not sell something so precious in order to be able to sell it for a high price?”
Cale looked shocked.
“Toonka, do you think I am such a person?”
“No. You are not like that.”
Yes, Cale Henituse, this person was not such a petty person. Cale continued to speak after hearing Toonka’s comment.
“You said that I was your friend. I believe that a fair deal can only start between two people who are at the same level. I don’t think you are the type of person who will try to cheat me.”
Cale then jokingly added on.
“You’re not a petty bastard like those mages.”
Toonka started to smile. The concerned expression slowly disappeared from his face and Toonka started to laugh out loud.
“You are right. Indeed, kehehe! I am not like that! Hahahaha!”
Toonka laughed for a while.
However, his gaze was still focused on Cale. He had never seen such a noble before. He was worlds different compared to those noble bastards who were pretty much dogs to the Whipper Kingdom’s mages.
Nobody, seriously, nobody had cheered him and his subordinates on. However, he had now found someone who was cheering for him. ((PR: I almost feel sorry for the idiot.) )
Toonka himself was shocked after saying that word to the Roan Kingdom’s crown prince. However, he now felt that it was a good thing that he had used that word.
“You really are a weak, but good person.”
Toonka had approved of a weakling for the first time in his life.
“Don’t say such obvious things.”
Cale accepted it as something obvious as he was thinking to himself.
‘Now Harol cannot try to trick me.’
He stealthily reinforced it with Toonka once more.
“A fair deal. Sound good?”
“Of course! I am not a swindler! Don’t you all agree as well?”
Toonka’s two subordinates nodded their heads.
“You are right, Commander-in-Chief-nim.”
“Absolutely. It must be fair.”
There was nothing wrong with what Cale had said. It was only right for people at the same level to have a fair deal.
Even Cale himself believed this to be the case.
That was why he just waited for Beacrox and crew to bring back the research and share the results with everyone once they came back to the surface.
They found a half-destroyed box in the hidden fourth floor of the basement.
A portion of the documents inside of the box were still intact, with the contents revolving around two topics.
‘A mana storage device that used the principles of ancient powers.’
‘The reasons for developing magic resistance.’
Both of these could become poison to harm the reformed Whipper Kingdom.
“I’m sure that the Whipper Kingdom side knows the worth of these documents better than anybody else.”
Nobody responded to Cale’s comment.
They were currently in the Chiefs’ tent. Toonka, Harol, as well as the other Chiefs, were all gathered together with Cale. Cale’s group was by his side, like they were protecting him.
“…Yes. We are well aware.”
Cale held back his laughter while seeing how slowly Harol responded to him.
‘A mana storage device that used the principles of ancient powers.’
Harol was a poor soul who hated magic because he could feel mana but could not become a mage because he could not store mana. However, a mana storage device, as well as part of the research regarding it, was now in front of him.
Something that would give him the opportunity to use magic had appeared.
‘I’m sure that he wants to get his hands on it.’
Cale touched the small cloth pouch in front of him.
“And this is supposedly the mana storage device?”
Harol’s eyes started to shine at Cale’s comment.
– You are right human. I raised it.
The seed that Cale had passed off to Raon a year ago was the mana storage device. However, the item currently in Cale’s hand was not that seed. Once that mana storage device sprouted and then developed a plant…
He had simply taken one of the plants and extracted the seed.
Of course, this seed was modified as well.
“Rosalyn, is this usable right now?”
“No. It is currently in seed form, but it is too dry to be used. You might be able to use the seed and the research documents to create a new device however……”
Rosalyn stopped talking and peeked toward Harol.
Cale also observed Harol’s reaction. Harol could not hide his greed for this seed and the research documents, even if they were damaged.
Cale verified this before moving on to the next topic.
“‘The reason for developing magic resistance.’ This is some tremendous research as well.”
This time, it was Toonka and the other Chiefs’ turns to flinch.
The reason that they were able to defeat the mages had a lot to do with their magic resistance. This document regarding the reason for developing magic resistance was something that they needed, as well as something that they could not pass off to anybody else.
Cale looked toward Toonka.
Toonka smiled back at him. Cale turned away and asked the Whipper Kingdom’s side.
“Well, it’s only a portion of the research, so it probably isn’t that important. I can just throw it out, right?”
The table shook. Someone had kicked the table with anxiety.
“Of course, I was joking.”
Someone let out a sigh.
“It may just be a portion of it, but it is valuable information.”
Cale recalled what Rosalyn and Raon had discussed with him before.
‘Young master Cale, it would take at least ten years to figure things out with just these files. Although, it is only ten years if talented mages are leading the research.’
‘Human, you need to be able to control magic to be able to research that.’
Cale focused on those words.
Research that required mages to complete.
Harol would do whatever it took to continue the research.
In order to do that, he would need to hire some mages.
Rosalyn had accurately pointed that out for Cale.
‘Young master Cale, we might be able to have the Whipper Kingdom’s weakness in our hands.’
‘I knew it. There are many times you and I are thinking the same thing.’
The Whipper Kingdom’s leadership, who claimed their goal was to get rid of magic, was using mages to do magic research.
Something like that was bound to happen if the Whipper Kingdom acquired these documents, and Cale just needed to find an informant to gather some evidence of it.
Rosalyn and Cale were smiling while thinking about having that information in their hands, while Raon was looking inside the box and giving his feedback.
‘This is no more than the scraps.’
The actual seed was safely in Rosalyn’s lab that Raon liked to visit.
“I will hand these documents to you.”
Toonka’s expression quickly changed.
“D, do you mean that?”
Cale looked toward Harol and nodded his head.
Cale tapped the table with the cloth bag in his hand.
The dry seed made a dull noise as it hit the table. The Whipper Kingdom’s side all flinched at every tap.
Cale did not care as he proceeded with what he wanted to say.
“I spent ten billion gallons on this Magic Tower without managing to gain anything from it. Now that I have found something, I plan to sell it all to you. Toonka, what would you do in this situation?”
“…I would try to get as much compensation as possible.”
Chief Harol started to frown. If it was the Cale that he knew, and if it was him in Cale’s position, he would try to take as much money back as possible.
Especially since the Magic Tower itself was gone now.
‘But our financial state is not very good right now.’
They did not have much money available because they were preparing for a war with the Empire. However, Harol wanted to get those two documents, no matter what.
‘But we also cannot fight them.’
Cale had quite a large amount of power. Their war against the Empire would be delayed if they started to fight Cale. Delaying the war any longer was not good for the soldiers’ morale.
‘He’ll try to get more than ten billion, since he bought the Magic Tower for ten billion.’
The Empire would happily pay ten billion gallons for it if Cale tried to sell it to them. Both Harol and Toonka were well aware of this fact.
“This is what I’m thinking.”
Cale opened up his left hand.
Harol let out a gasp.
“Fifty billion gallons?”
Toonka shouted with surprise. Harol quickly started to smile.
‘We can negotiate now that we know the starting point.’
You always started higher than what you wanted at the beginning of a deal. Harol was about to speak in order to properly start negotiating, but Cale was a bit faster.
“Fifty billion? No, just give me five billion.”
Harol asked with confusion.
‘Did he really say five billion?’
Cale put on a gentle and pure smile. His warm gaze swept by the leaders in the room.
“Yes. Five billion.”
He had already agreed to sell the actual documents to the crown prince for quite a sum.
It would be great if the Roan Kingdom’s mages managed to eat up the Whipper Kingdom once it was weakened by the Empire.
Cale recalled the conversation he had with the crown prince last winter.
‘Cale, sell it for five billion to those poor souls. It’s not like you were the one who paid the ten billion gallons to purchase the Magic Tower in the first place.’
‘I planned on selling it to them for ten billion, but I will do as you command, your highness.’
‘Good. Wouldn’t it be great if you could be their benefactor? That’s what you’re really aiming for, isn’t it?’
‘You terrible bastard.’
Alberu cursed at Cale as he started to laugh. Cale laughed with him as well.
“The Whipper Kingdom is currently struggling. I feel like it is a fair deal for your current situation.”
“You, you really! Really, such a noble, I!”
Toonka could not speak properly, as he looked toward Cale with teary eyes. Cale found this to be annoying, but maintained his smile.
Toonka finally stood up from his chair and started to shout.
“Thank you! Thank you very much!”
Cale had never seen someone thanking him after buying scraps for five billion gallons. However, Cale naturally responded back.
“As long as you know.”