Silence filled the area for a moment.
Harol was still quiet while someone was whispering in prince John’s ear as he observed Cale and the Whales.
Witira started to speak at that moment. She seemed more confident than ever while looking at the leaders of the four kingdoms. She did not even bow toward them.
“My name is Witira and I am here as the representative of the Whale tribe. We came at the invitation of our benefactor, young master Cale. Nice to meet you.”
She was respectful, but still showed her status. It was only obvious that she acted this way as the Whales were the greatest faction in the ocean, especially after defeating the mermaids. As the future Queen of the Whales, there was no reason for her to be subservient to these four leaders.
Furthermore, they were the tribe that was known to be the strongest after the Dragons. The people present could all see the whip wrapped around Witira’s forearm.
Cale watched all of this with satisfaction. He had asked Witira to do this.
‘Set the tone for the meeting.’
Witira properly set the tone as an influential member of a strong tribe. Paseton and Archie stood behind her with stoic expressions to help set the tone as well.
The warriors and the respective members of each Kingdom probably have a strong impression of the Whale tribe now. Their impression of the Roan Kingdom that was able to bring the Whale tribe to this meeting should have improved as well.
Cale was satisfied with how things were going and slowly looked around. He then suddenly flinched.
Litana, who had been anxious until a moment ago, was looking at him.
She was smiling at Cale as if she was looking at something very magical. Cale could not handle such a bright smile, so he turned his head away only to make eye contact with Harol, who was also smiling at him.
Harol was giving Cale a similar look that Litana had given him.
‘Why are all these people like this?’
Cale could not understand why they were looking at him like this. It was at that moment.
A soft clap echoed through the area. Everyone’s gazes turned toward the source of the clap.
Crown prince Alberu Crossman received everyone’s gazes as he started to speak.
“Let us go in and have a longer chat.”
Prince John agreed with Alberu.
“I believe we need to do so. There is too much information being thrown at me at once. My mind is a bit chaotic right now.”
Contrary to what he was saying, John’s expression was calm. It was completely different than the anxious expression on the face of his youngest brother Pen, who was behind him.
Alberu nodded his head at John and looked toward Litana.
“Queen-nim, it looks like we need three more chairs.”
Litana nodded her head.
“Chairs for the three Whale tribe guests, right?”
Litana looked toward Bin and started to speak.
“Bin, bring a fourth chair for young master Cale while you are at it.”
“Queen-nim, young master Cale is accounted for in the three chairs.”
Litana turned her head back toward Alberu as she asked. Alberu was saying that Cale was included already.
‘Will only two of the Whales sit down?’
That was what she was thinking. In fact, that was what everyone was thinking.
However, a noise that proved all of their thoughts wrong soon appeared.
Someone spoke in a nervous voice.
The teleportation magic circle was starting to create sparks. Anybody trying to use this teleportation portal needed the magic incantation along with the passcode sent by the Jungle’s mage.
That was why the mage standing in front of the magic circle was starting to get anxious.
At that moment, someone put a hand on the mage’s shoulder and pulled him back.
The mage turned his head.
It was Cale Henituse, who was looking down at him.
“It is someone we invited.”
The spark became even rowdier before a bright light morphed into a human silhouette.
The Whale tribe was not the only thing Cale had prepared. He started to smile while looking at the person slowly appearing in the magic circle.
He had not seen this person for a while. He reached his hand out as the new arrival grabbed his hand to exit out of the teleportation magic circle.
“Miss Cage, long time no see.”
“It sure has been long, young master-nim.”
It was the crazy priestess Cage. She followed Cale’s hand to step onto the sand. She was wearing a black priestess robe without any crest. The robe fluttered in the wind as she greeted everyone.
“It is an honor to meet all of you.”
She was still good at pretending to be a proper priestess.
Some people became nervous after seeing the arrival of an unknown priestess.
However, the Breck Kingdom’s side was calm. They had seen Cage before.
Cale introduced the crazy priestess to the group.
“She is a priestess serving the God of Death.”
Everybody thought about one thing after hearing Cale mentioned the God of Death.
The Vow of Death was the only reason for a priestess of the God of Death to show up to a meeting.
Alberu added on once Cale stopped speaking.
“The things we are about to discuss are extremely confidential information.”
Alberu smiled before continuing to speak.
“That is why, rather than relying on faith or trust, shouldn’t we use something more reliable? What is more reliable than putting your life on the line?”
Alberu was smiling brightly, but the mood in the area was quickly going down.
Alberu was showing everyone that he had access to a priestess of the God of Death as well as the Whale tribe. That meant that everybody here needed to make a Vow of Death.
“Really, you really.”
Someone finally started to speak.
Chief Harol looked toward Alberu and Cale as he continued to speak.
“I think that you really have a lot of interesting people in the Roan Kingdom. Such a fun method of doing things is definitely my style.”
Cale made eye contact with Harol who was smiling brightly.
‘Why is he looking at me?’
Just as Cale was having that thought, Harol turned his gaze toward Alberu and continued to speak.
“You are right. Life over trust. I agree with this method.”
“I will first listen to what you have to say before deciding whether or not I will follow this method.”
John spoke after Harol then took a step back. Litana was the only one left to state their opinion, so everyone turned their gazes toward her.
She soon started to speak.
“The three chairs must be for the future Whale Queen-nim, the priestess, and the last one for young master Cale.”
She gave Bin an order.
“Go make a list of all of the warriors and mages here today.”
Her gesture showed that she accepted the conditions of the Vow of Death. Alberu walked into the tent as he started to speak.
“Let us talk about the rest inside.”
* * *
After the chaos in the middle of the night, the new group was added to the table.
Cale sat down on his seat and started to think. The meeting was already underway.
‘Isn’t it enough for me to just stand behind his highness?’
Originally, only Witira and Cage were supposed to sit down. Of course, since Cage was a priestess, they were only going to let her sit once the other parties agreed.
‘Why am I sitting down as well?’
Cale held back his question as he observed the meeting with a stoic expression.
Witira and Alberu had just started to share information about the secret organization as well as the, ‘Arm,’ faction, which was the organization’s battle faction.
Arm had taken control of the Eastern continent’s underworld.
They were the ones responsible for the Roan Kingdom and the Church of the Sun God’s terror incidents.
They attacked an Elf Village to try to steal the branch of the World Tree.
They also recruited the Mermaids to try to take control of the sea route connecting the Eastern and Western continents.
The mood in the room continued to go down as they shared these details with different pieces of evidence.
Prince John could not keep his poker face up as he started to press on his temples with one hand. He started to speak almost as if he was sighing.
“So you are saying that such an organization is working with the Northern Alliance and the Empire and that we didn’t know about any of this, including what they have been doing on the Western continent?”
John was flabbergasted.
‘How could there be such an organization and how could we not know anything about them?’
He could not understand this at all. However, it was possible if the Northern Alliance and the Empire were helping Arm out. Furthermore, there was no way that an organization that took over the Eastern continent’s underworld was weak.
A calm voice started to speak at that moment.
“What a terrible organization. We must get rid of such an organization that goes around causing magic bomb terror incidents everywhere.”
That was Harol’s reaction.
Cale turned his head toward Harol in order to see his expression before flinching.
For someone like Harol, who detested magic, something like a magic bomb terror incident should disappear from this world. Toonka would probably have a similar reaction.
‘They’ll do their part well.’
Cale was satisfied with Harol’s response. That was why a smile was about to appear on his stoic face. However, that smile instantly disappeared once he made eye contact with Litana.
Litana was looking at Cale with an extremely serious expression. Cale subconsciously started to speak after seeing her expression.
“Miss Lina, is there something you wish to say?”
“It is amazing.”
A question mark appeared in Cale’s mind. What nonsense was she talking about?
Litana continued to speak.
“I heard that young master Cale played a pivotal role in preventing the Roan Kingdom’s magic bomb terror incident. You also helped the Whale tribe out and even put out the fire in our Jungle.”
Litana really found it to be amazing.
She could not understand how good of a person the man with a stoic expression sitting down in front of her was after hearing the information about, ‘Arm.’
“You also saved the Elf Village?”
‘Does young master Cale ever get any rest? How much suffering must he have gone through with that calm expression on his face to work for world peace?’
Litana was thinking that this person in front of her probably had many sleepless nights because of a heavy heart.
“Not only that, you worked hard to save the Saint and the Holy Maiden.”
Looking past their friendship and the fact that Cale had saved the Jungle, Litana truly felt that Cale was the person with the most qualifications to sit at this meeting. That was why she asked for Cale’s opinion.
“Young master Cale, what do you think our next steps should be?”
Everyone’s gazes slowly turned toward Cale.
Cale started to think as they all looked at him.
‘Why is she asking me? Isn’t it all of your jobs to figure that out?’
Of course, Cale had already decided what he was going to do. However, he could not tell them about it nor did he have a reason to tell them. Cale looked toward the group and was about to speak when Raon started to speak in his head.
– Human, are we saving people again? Saving people is a great deed! It is very satisfying!
Cale did not ignore Raon as he usually did.
A Crown Prince, a Queen, a future Queen, a Chief, and a First Prince. A simple noble’s son’s voice started to speak to this group of heavyweights.
Cale’s response to Litana’s question about what they should do next was very calm.
“Shouldn’t we save the Western continent? Shouldn’t we bring peace to the citizens of our continent?”
It would also give himself some peace and quiet to slack off at home.
“I believe that the people here can make that happen.”
‘Please work hard so that I don’t have to do much.’
That was what Cale was thinking about.
– Human, you are right! You really are a good person!
He ignored Raon’s compliment.
Cale finished speaking and looked toward Litana who started to speak.
“…Really. You are right, young master Cale. You always seem to be walking down a path of justice.”
Cale saw that the others were looking at him with admiration and peeked toward Alberu. He then flinched.
Alberu had a warm smile on his face, but his gaze seemed to be saying, ‘this bastard is saying things he doesn’t mean again.’
Cale smiled back at Alberu who understood his true feelings.
John then started to speak.
“The Roan Kingdom-.”
He stopped talking without finishing his sentence.
John could not remember what he was going to say after seeing the trusting smiles on Cale and Alberu’s faces as they looked at each other.
However, their mutual enemy became very clear. This was the case for the others as well.
Litana started to speak in a refreshing way.
“We will reinforce the Whipper Kingdom with rations of food.”
This statement meant that the Jungle was willing to work together with the group and provide something that was not related to Alchemy or magic.
Harol had a bright smile on his face as he started to speak.
“We want to handle anything related to the magic bombs. We need to kill all of those bastards.”
It was a vicious answer that was fitting for someone who detested magic.
Cale saw that the table was getting active again and leaned back into his chair. The meeting progressed well with Alberu leading the way since he had the most information.
The three kingdoms would secretly deliver funds and rations to the Whipper Kingdom. Furthermore, if the Empire manages to cross over into the Whipper Kingdom’s borders, the Jungle would immediately send a secret battle squad to help.
In addition, if the Empire uses the dead mana bombs, The Roan Kingdom would provide the steps to handle the situation while the other kingdoms would provide the funds to put those steps into action.
They also discussed their support for the Whales battle in the winter, as well as the issue of the Northern Alliance. They had set the plans for everything until next spring.
“Then let us make the Vow of Death now.”
Cage stood up at Alberu’s statement.
The meeting ended after everyone made the Vow of Death.
Cale could see that the sun was coming up as he headed toward the teleportation portal. Eruhaben was walking behind him.
Cale stood in front of the magic circle with Alberu’s group and Cage. Harol was the first to leave.
The teleportation magic circle was activated and Harol started to disappear.
Cale, who was waiting by the side, made eye contact with Harol who started to smile.
“Young master Cale-nim, see you after our victory.”
Harol disappeared before Cale managed to respond. Alberu looked toward Cale and asked.
“He wants to see you again?”
Alberu got his response through Cale’s indifferent expression. He chuckled before moving to stand on the teleportation magic circle with Cale.
The two soon arrived at the Ubarr territory. Alberu had something to say before they went their separate ways.
“Looks like you have nothing to do until winter. Get some rest while waiting for the good news of their victory.”
Cale had no issues responding back, as it was already obvious what he had planned.
“That was my plan, your highness.”
However, Cale felt iffy after seeing Alberu’s smiling face. Alberu was thinking that it had been a while since Cale had said something unbelievable like this as he said goodbye.
“Of course. Make sure to get some rest.”
* * *
However, Cale could not do that.
Cale frowned while looking at Toonka, who had his face right up to the video communication device.
“I can do it!”
These energetic shouts could still be heard outside Cale’s window.
It was already Fall, but the voices did not seem tired at all.
Cale needed to see Toonka’s ugly face to hear the first bit of news since Fall had arrived.
“What is it?”
Cale had been getting daily updates on the Whipper Kingdom through Alberu and the information organization that Ron was leading. The Whipper Kingdom was doing pretty well against the Empire.
The Empire did not reveal all of their cards, such as the dead mana bomb.
This was only possible because, contrary to the belief that the poor Whipper Kingdom would eventually run out of funds, they were able to keep their soldiers equipped and fed.
‘But it is moving too slow.’
That was the last piece of information Cale had heard. That was why he did not care to chat with Toonka right now.
– I wanted you to be the first to know.
Toonka then added on.
– We’ve won about half way.
Cale’s expression changed.
– We managed to take over a castle! Kuhahahahahaha!
Toonka stepped back from the screen to laugh.
‘This crazy bastard.’
Cale could then see that only Toonka’s face was clean. The rest of his body was covered in blood. He could also see a lot of corpses behind Toonka.
He had piled up the enemies’ corpses before calling him to share the news. He really was a crazy bastard.
– I also did as you asked.
Cale found it odd that Toonka would say something like that.
“Like I asked?”
– Yes. I didn’t throw the injured soldiers away. I brought them with me.
Did Toonka lose his mind?
Cale was shocked at what Toonka was telling him. It was weird that he was doing something that he would not normally do.
Toonka continued to speak with a proud look on his face.
– The strong need to know how to take care of the weak.
‘Is this really Toonka?’
Cale was seriously debating if this was the real Toonka. However, he pushed that thought to the side after hearing what Toonka had to say as well as seeing the worried look on Toonka’s face.
– But I think that it will be difficult to heal them.
Cale had an idea about what was going on.
Even if the Whipper Kingdom now had more funds, they could not buy expensive potions to heal all of their soldiers.
‘They also do not have enough priests.’
No churches had a strong influence on the Whipper Kingdom as churches were a faction of magic. That was why they were lacking priests for the war.
Furthermore, the church considered the citizens of the Whipper Kingdom to be barbarians as they believed in nature but not in a god.
This led to the churches not sending any priests over to the Whipper Kingdom.
The fact that the Whipper Kingdom had any healers was amazing because the mages had attacked all those with healing powers in the past.
Cale could see the sorrow in Toonka’s face.
– We do not have enough healers. We cannot use a lot of potions after only achieving a half victory like this. We only have so many healers and we don’t have any priests.
Cale thought about two people at that moment. Both of these people were currently doing nothing at his place.
They were the crazy priestess and the half Saint.
There was also one more person.
There was the Elf chilling in Eruhaben’s lair.
Cale started to contemplate things with his arms crossed. Each of those three would be able to do more than multiple average priests put together.
Raon started to speak into Cale’s mind.
– Human, are we saving people?
There was an odd sense of expectation in Raon’s voice. However, Cale first asked Toonka a question that was on his mind.
“What do you mean by half-victory?”
You either win or lose. Why would it be only half?
Toonka put on an awkward expression at Cale’s question.
– Ahem, the enemy ran away after leaving their castle behind.
“So then you took over the castle.”
Toonka managed to take over one castle.
– Ahem, we did take it over, but we cannot enter.
‘…What the hell?’
Toonka scratched his head after seeing Cale’s questioning gaze before turning the screen to the other side.
Cale could see something red through the screen.
Cale could tell why Toonka had contacted him in the middle of the corpses. He could not enter the castle, so he found somewhere that the soldiers would not be looking. Raon’s voice echoed in Cale’s mind.
– Human, it is burning brightly!
There was a raging fire.
The pillar of fire was so high that you could not even see the castle.
– Ahem, this fire suddenly started and we cannot put it out.
“…You can’t put it out?”
– Yes. That is why I currently have the soldiers surrounding the pillar of fire. What is amazing is that the pillar of fire does not extend past the castle. It seems like a wall protecting the castle from us.
Toonka shared his honest feelings with his friend. He felt a bit better after telling Cale about it.
Compared to when he was fighting people on his own, there was a lot to think about and a lot of things to take care of during a war.
The pillar of fire was one of those problems.
– I cannot tell what the Empire did. But I will definitely take care- mm?
Toonka stopped talking once he saw Cale’s face. However, he then asked with concern, unlike his normal self.
– Is something wrong?
Cale was frowning. Cale was ignoring Toonka and just staring at the fire through the screen. An excited Raon started to speak in his mind.
– Human, haven’t we seen that fire before?
Cale also recalled the pillar of fire he had seen more than a year ago.
It burned down Section 1 of the Jungle without spreading and did not go out, even when it rained.
Cale touched the necklace on his neck.
It was the necklace with the Dominating Water.
Cale started to frown even more.
‘It looks like I have to go put out that fire.’