Cale opened his eyes.
He could see the teleportation magic circle under his feet.
He could also hear the sound of the cold wind.
The Gorge of Death was extremely windy.
However, Cale ignored the noise of the wind and looked toward the person who was here to greet him.
“It has been a long time, your highness.”
Rosalyn’s youngest sibling and the Breck Kingdom’s fourth prince, Pen, awkwardly started to speak after seeing Cale’s respectful greeting.
“Ahem, hem. Yes, long time no see.”
His gaze headed toward Cale’s chest.
It was a cookie. Cale was holding a cookie.
That made Pen recall the drenching he received when he went to the Henituse territory to see his sister Rosalyn in the past. During that incident, he had heard the crunching sound of Cale eating a cookie as if it was background music.
‘Youngest brother, do it properly. Otherwise, you will lose your life on the battlefield.’
Pen recalled Rosalyn’s, ‘advice,’ and started to shiver. It made him feel very cold. He awkwardly smiled back at Cale, who was gently smiling at him.
Raon started to speak in Cale’s mind at that moment.
– It’s a fiery thunderbolt instead of water for that crybaby if he whines again. I am practicing the fiery thunderbolt right now.
Cale naturally ignored Raon as he looked around prince Pen.
There were five or six tents behind fourth prince Pen.
The sound of the wind could be heard again.
It was blowing toward them from the Gorge of Death.
This gorge was known to have never-ending wind.
The strong winds made by nature made the sides of the deep and tall valley into a resting place of death.
February. The winter winds were strong and even carried over the snow tonight, making it hard to see. Cale heard another voice as he looked around at the white snow fluttering through the darkness.
“Are you Cale Henituse from the Henituse territory?”
Cale’s gaze headed to the person next to Prince Pen.
This was the Breck Kingdom’s Royal Mage’s number one disciple. The name of this person whom people considered to be the future Royal Mage was Count Ecross.
– …Human, why is that stupid looking guy checking you out?
Cale gently responded in a noble-like manner to Count Ecross, who was looking at him.
“That is correct. I am Cale Henituse, Count Ecross-nim.”
“Ahem, you know of me. But you did not greet me first.”
“I apologize. I was amazed as this is my first time visiting the Gorge of Death.”
Prince Pen felt odd.
‘Why is that person acting like this?’
Cale Henituse was acting respectfully for some reason. Pen looked toward Count Ecross and gave him a signal with his eyes.
‘Count, stop it!’
Unfortunately, Ecross could not read Pen’s signal. He looked toward Cale judgmentally.
A twenty-year-old. He did not like that the Roan Kingdom sent a twenty-year-old punk as their representative. He also did not like how he was pretending to be a hero with ancient powers that only required luck to acquire instead of something like magic, which required effort in order to develop.
‘A typical punk who relies on his connections to make himself look good.’
The thing the Count did not like the most was that this talentless son of a noble had such a strong personal network. Although he didn’t know the details, he had heard that this punk was close to former princess Rosalyn, crown prince Alberu Crossman, and even Commander Toonka.
He clicked his tongue at Cale, who remained respectful to him even though he was making it obvious that he was looking down at him. He totally saw Cale as the type that was fluent in sucking up.
He introduced the people around him on purpose.
“Young master, these are the mages from our side. Over there is a baron-nim, and there is a viscount-nim.”
He made sure to emphasize the word, ‘mages,’ on purpose.
The Roan Kingdom was known to be terrible at magic.
However, they suddenly brought the Whipper Kingdom’s mages and former princess Rosalyn to the Breck Kingdom and started to teach the Breck Kingdom’s mages.
‘Although my teacher was happy about it.’
His teacher, the Royal Mage, was happy about it, saying that it was a great opportunity.
Count Ecross did not deny that it was an opportunity.
‘However, we cannot let go of this power.’
They had to take the initiative. He took a look around Cale.
‘He didn’t bring that many people with him.’
There was just a man who seemed to be a knight and a feeble boy next to Cale.
‘Things within the Breck Kingdom should be done by us.’
Former princess Rosalyn had told Prince Pen and him to take good care of Cale, however, he was different than Prince Pen. He had no reason to listen to Rosalyn, who was no longer a princess and lived in the Roan Kingdom.
‘Prince Pen becomes weird whenever former princess Rosalyn is involved, so I need to step up.’
Otherwise, there was no reason for him to come to the Gorge of Death in order to clean up after this punk who did not even have his own title.
Count Ecross looked toward Cale and started to speak.
“Ahem, I heard from the Roan Kingdom about your plan. You’re thinking about installing magic bombs in the Gorge of Death?”
The baron and viscount that were introduced earlier stood behind Ecross and observed Cale. It seemed as if they were trying to pressure Cale.
‘…This is why my sister should return.’
Pen started to frown after seeing their actions.
Count Ecross had become the number one disciple of the Royal Mage because he was lucky enough to be talented in magic.
Pen could not believe that Ecross would ignore him, even if he was a prince with no chance of succeeding the throne. At the same time, he was amazed at his sister’s foresight.
‘Count Ecross will not listen to you.’
‘Then what should I do?’
‘You? Nothing. Just let it be. He is someone who at least cares a lot about the Breck Kingdom.’
‘…What about young master Cale?’
His sister had laughed at that question. She laughed for a bit before finally responding back.
‘You don’t need to worry about that person. The world’s strongest mage is protecting him.’
The world’s strongest mage. Those words had remained on his mind. Pen’s gaze headed toward the feeble boy. The other person had been introduced as his guard knight in the past.
The feeble boy flinched and turned away when they made eye contact.
‘Is he the mage?’
Pen brushed aside his question as he looked back toward Cale and the Count.
Count Ecross opened up his arms and confidently asked Cale.
“You don’t even have a mage with you, so how are you going to install the magic bombs? We know more about the Gorge of Death and we are mages, so we will do it.”
Count Ecross was serious.
It was something to protect the Breck Kingdom. Even if he was not trying to take control, it made sense for him to do it.
‘Although I feel bad treating someone who just arrived like this…’
He felt bad for doing this to Cale while he was still standing on the teleportation magic circle, but time was of the essence. He needed to quickly take care of this and return to the capital.
The Count kept his arms open as he waited for Cale’s response.
It was at that moment.
“Hmm? Are there more people in your party?”
He could hear the voice of the mage responsible for the teleportation magic circle.
The teleportation magic circle lit up once more. The Count looked toward Cale.
“There are a few more people coming.”
Cale gently responded before stepping away from the teleportation magic circle. The Count stepped back in confusion and looked toward the magic circle.
It slowly lit up until the entire magic circle was shining brightly.
Approximately ten huge people appeared.
They were all wearing black robes, but each of them seemed as large as a mountain.
The Count couldn’t help but groan at the sudden pressure.
It was at that moment.
The person in front took off his hood. An old man’s voice echoed in the area.
“My name is Gashan, the Tiger tribe’s shaman.”
The other people took off their hoods as well.
Ten pairs of feline vertical pupils started to shine in the darkness.
The Tiger tribe. The Count had never seen any members of the Tiger tribe before. However, he knew that they were known as one of the strongest Beast people tribes.
Ecross flinched and turned around.
He could see Cale.
“I will leave the cliffs and high areas to your mages. We will take care of the deep areas.”
Deep areas of the gorge.
That was where the winds were the wildest. It was difficult to fly through there with flight magic.
The Count’s expression changed.
He had thought that they were just going to be installing magic bombs around the edge of the cliff, but Cale was telling him that they were going to be installing these bombs inside the gorge.
“…You are going to go underneath the line of death?”
The line of death.
The Gorge of Death had different parts to it.
The top part started at the cliffs and went maybe tens to one hundred meters below the edge of the gorge.
That was where the gorge started.
It was the location you could see the rough river at the bottom of the gorge.
You needed to avoid that area if you did not want to die.
But Cale was planning on going down there?
“Yes sir. We are going down there.”
His confident voice filled the area. The Count finally took the time to look around at Cale’s party.
All of them had grim expressions on their faces.
Cale was the only one who looked calm. That was why it was so noticeable.
Cale’s comment about how the Roan Kingdom would take care of the deep areas of the gorge was stuck on the Count’s mind. He could not figure out what to say.
It was at that moment.
“I will leave it to you.”
Prince Pen stepped in to respond. He then continued to speak to Cale in a respectful tone.
“We will figure out the best way for you to go down there. Let me know if there is any way we can help.”
Cale gently smiled back to Pen. This was the thought on his mind right now.
‘I’m going to push off the magic bombs to these bastards.’
He needed to install the Dragon’s Rage deep in the gorge.
He couldn’t let others know about that precious pillar of fire.
‘Plus, it’s not like I’m going to be doing the work.’
All he had to do was sit back and watch. How nice was this?
Cale opened his mouth to speak.
“Then we will head off first.”
“Huh? Head off?”
Pen looked toward Cale in shock.
Cale turned around and headed toward the gorge. The Count started to speak.
“It is dangerous at night. You should move during the day……!”
“Do you want the Northern Alliance to see what we are doing?”
The Count shut up.
The Wyvern Knights Brigade.
He had heard about them.
That was why time was of the essence. Those wyverns were capable of patrolling during the day.
He could not say anything after seeing the gaze of the twenty-year-old young boy who was looking back at him. Cale turned back toward the gorge after seeing the Count not saying anything.
‘Let’s do it quickly and leave.’
Cale hurried forward and asked the Tigers who were following behind him.
“Is it dangerous at night?”
Gashan started to laugh.
“We prefer the night.”
Tigers were nocturnal creatures. They had also only brought the best of their warriors, so it would be easy for them to climb down the gorge.
The mages of the Breck Kingdom rushed toward them.
Cale stood in front of the first cliff and passed a magic bag over to Count Ecross.
“There is a map of where to install the magic bombs and the bombs themselves. I will leave it to you, Count-nim.”
The Count felt odd after seeing Cale still remaining respectful. He received the magic bag and responded back.
“…I leave it to you.”
The Count could see Cale’s confident smile.
Cale then immediately gave the order.
It was the moment Cale gave the order.
The black robes all fell to the ground.
The Tiger Warriors revealed themselves in their berserk state.
The Count stepped back. The pressure was considerably higher compared to before.
Each of these Tigers had ruled over a mountain in the past.
The Tigers did not hide their bodies that were shining black and gold in the darkness.
Each of these huge warriors looked toward Cale.
Cale started to speak.
Gashan, the only White Tiger, laughed.
He then immediately jumped down.
That was the beginning.
The Ten Tiger Warriors all charged toward the bottom of the cliff.
The white snow and the golden rays of light caught people’s attention. The golden rays of light started to disappear as they suddenly heard some noises.
Boom! Boom! Boom!
The cliff started to echo.
The Tiger Warriors were punching or kicking at the cliff.
The Tigers’ roars followed the winds up the gorge at the same time. Tigers enjoyed dangerous situations.
Cale turned his head. He could see Choi Han standing there.
“I will be back soon.”
Choi Han also jumped off the cliff.
Cale moved his hand after watching Choi Han jump.
His hand was placed on Lock’s shoulder, the Wolf boy who was taller than him.
“Lock, watch them.”
Lock could not respond to that as he looked toward the cliff. The image of the Tiger Warriors in their berserk state remained on his mind.
He heard Cale’s voice again at that moment.
“I need someone to protect the Gorge of Death until I return.”
Lock observed Cale’s calm gaze. However, Cale did not say anything else before making eye contact with Lock and then turning away.
Cale then looked toward the other people present that were looking at him.
He could see the Breck Kingdom’s mages.
Count Ecross flinched at Cale’s gaze. He suddenly had a question.
‘Why do influential people like Rosalyn, the crown prince, and Toonka keep someone like Cale at their side?’
However, he could not think about it any longer.
Cale started to speak.
“Please get started.”
Cale watched them flinch before quickly moving as he quietly stood there.
* * *
Early the next morning.
The sun slowly started to rise to the east of the gorge. The sun was shining brightly, as if the winter snow could do nothing to harm it.
It was at that moment.
Cale started to smile.
He could see a hand at the top of the cliff.
A White Tiger jumped back up to the top.
“Young master-nim, I am back.”
“How was your late-night walk?”
Gashan started to laugh at Cale’s question.
“Maybe it is because you are out here to greet me, but it was quite enjoyable, young master-nim.”
The other Tigers soon jumped up as well. Choi Han was the last to jump back up as he landed next to Cale.
“I am back.”
“Good, you did we-”
Cale, who was about to tell Choi Han that he had done well, stopped talking.
Cale turned his head.
A noise that seemed to be signaling an emergency was coming from one of the tents.
A magic video communication device was continuously glowing red.
It meant it was a high-level emergency call.
Cale entered into the tent. Prince Pen and the Count urgently rushed in as well.
“Hurry up and connect it.”
Prince Pen gave the order and the call was soon connected.
Cale scoffed after listening to the message delivered through the call.
< On this day, February 15th. The Paerun Kingdom, the Knight’s Kingdom, is a kingdom of knights. Our knights follow the Knight’s Creed and do not do anything sly. >
The Paerun Kingdom’s declaration echoed through the Western continent.
< We wish for land that is not frozen. >
The Northern Alliance announced their declaration of war.
‘I didn’t know they would act like this.’
He didn’t expect them to be so open about it.
‘Why are they doing this?’
It was probably not just because they were knights. They were probably scheming something.
However, that was not the problem.
< Paerun, Norland, and Askosan, as well as the Bear tribe and the Flame Dwarf tribe, announce that we will start our path of conquest to the unfrozen lands, starting today. >
Prince Pen and Count Ecross looked toward Cale.
The Bear tribe and the Flame Dwarves?
They had not known about this. Their gazes subconsciously turned toward Cale. Cale was not looking at them.
Cale, who was glaring into the video communication device, finally started to speak.
“They’re like dogs.”
Everybody flinched after hearing Cale’s comment.
It was at that moment. Cale gave an order to Choi Han, who was standing behind him.
“Contact the territory.”
They needed to hurry.
“Tell them to gather all of the nobles of the Northeast region.”
Cale gave the order for all of the Roan Kingdom’s northeast region nobles to gather.
The Roan Kingdom’s northeast region where the Henituse territory was situated.
It was the land with the most boulders in the kingdom of boulders.
It was time for a leader of the northeast region to finally appear.