Cale started to think.
‘Looks like I’m always dreaming whenever I faint now. It has to be this damn annoying dream though. Is someone doing this on purpose?’
His cold eyes looked around.
He was currently dreaming.
It had to be a dream. How else would he be able to explain going fifteen years into the past?
‘Is it that moment?’
It was early January right after he had turned 20 years old. He could see a destroyed concrete wall.
Cale, no, Kim Rok Soo, was curled up inside a building with one destroyed wall.
He could faintly make out the sky as he raised his head through the debris.
It was raining.
It really was a damn annoying dream.
The Kim Rok Soo during this moment had survived curled up in a corner of this destroyed building for three days by drinking the rain water that fell from the hole above him.
The rain drops fell on his eyes, but Kim Rok Soo had not even thought about turning his head to the side.
However, the Cale in the dream cussed as he turned his head.
It was dark. He looked around the dark building that was quite a mess.
There were a lot of corpses inside. Corpses of both humans and monsters filled the building.
A sudden change had occurred in the world when he was doing his part-time job at a restaurant one day. As a result of that change, Kim Rok Soo had to fight against monsters.
‘It really is that day.’
Cale, no, Kim Rok Soo was the only survivor in this building.
Kim Rok Soo had to survive in the debris of this building for three days as the collapsed portions made it impossible to find the exit.
The first day, he had hoped that no monsters would find him.
The second day, he hoped that someone would come rescue him.
On the third day-
‘I had no thoughts at all.’
It could not be helped.
All he could see while being curled up was the dark sky and the debris of destruction, while the only things he could hear were screams and the cries of monsters.
However, this had all ended after three days.
It was before he had awakened as an ability user.
The tiny hole the size of his palm had been the only thing connecting him to the outside world.
He could see someone through that hall.
“…Hey, can you hear me down there?”
Cale started to frown.
He could not clearly see the face that had blocked the hole. However, he remembered those eyes even after all this time had passed.
It was his former team leader, Lee Soo Hyuk.
“You can hear me, right? Can you move?”
Although he would become a team leader in the future, Lee Soo Hyuk was just one of the first awakened ability users at this point. Using an informal tone from the beginning was very much like his former team leader.
Cale said the same thing he had said to this former team leader when it actually happened.
“…I am hungry.”
Lee Soo Hyuk smiled and responded back.
“Looks like you are fine, little punk.”
Lee Soo Hyuk threw a chocolate bar down the hole. Cale picked it up and said the same thing he had said in the past.
“Is it free?”
“I have no money.”
“Is that so? How disappointing.”
Lee Soo Hyuk moved his sword like a lever and started to move the debris one by one. He moved a good amount of debris before getting close enough to reach his hand out to Cale, who grabbed it.
Cale was able to come out of the building as Lee Soo Hyuk easily pulled him up.
“What is your name?”
“Kim Rok Soo.”
“I see. Can you walk?”
“Yes sir, I think so.”
Lee Soo Hyuk turned around and motioned toward Cale.
“Follow me. I’ll take you somewhere safe.”
He looked at the person’s back.
This was how Cale had first met his former team leader. He would end up as a rookie entering the company where Lee Soo Hyuk was a team leader a long time in the future. A lot of things would happen during that time, however, this relationship with his former team leader was quite a long one.
Cale looked at his former team leader who was walking away for a moment before raising his head.
The winter rain continued to pour down.
It was cold.
‘It’s quite realistic for being a dream.’
Cale felt something weird as he put on a bitter smile along with that thought.
Plop. Plop. Plop.
‘These water drops feel too realistic.
How can a dream be so realistic?’
‘…What is this wet feeling?’
Cale heard a voice coming from somewhere else as the Cale in the dream was confused by the realistic sensation of the rain drops.
To be more specific, it was not a voice.
‘Sniff? Someone is sniffling?’
The world around Cale changed the moment he realized this. His former team leader and the destroyed city slowly disappeared as if they had all been mirages.
And finally, once only darkness was left…
“Sniff, sniff! Something is weird with our human!”
He could hear the Black Dragon sniffling.
Cale realized that it was time to wake up from his dream.
Cale should wake up in order to stop the Black Dragon from crying, however, he felt tired after thinking about everything he would need to take care of once he opened his eyes.
Finishing up with the Empire’s issues, the Church of the Sun God, the Alchemists’ Bell Tower, and even the balance of power in the Western continent.
‘I feel sorry for Raon but should I relax a bit longer?’
Cale had that thought in his mind as he debated whether to open his eyes or not when something he heard forced him to open his eyes.
“It’s really weird! His body is completely fine! But it has been 14 days, 7 hours, 21 minutes, and 41 seconds, and he is still not waking up!”
‘Huh? How many days did he say?’
Cale’s eyes jolted open.
“H, h, hu, ma, man! Y, you opened your eyes!”
He then flinched.
Raon’s round face was right in front of his face and there were tears dripping from those large round eyes.
Along with snot…
“Our human opened his eyes after 14 days, 7 hours, 22 minutes, and 3 seconds!”
He could hear Raon’s happy voice.
Cale slowly turned his head away from the black Dragon’s round head that was covering his view.
He then ended up flinching once more.
“…Where is this?”
He could see gold behind Raon’s head.
The soft bed was normal, but the fancy ceiling decorated in gold was not something that he was used to.
He turned his head to the left.
Raon’s chubby body was covering most of the view, however, he could see a bed canopy with fancy embroidery on it.
‘What, just what-’
Cale started to frown.
It was a fancy bed that was not his style at all. Cale wanted to look past the bed, but the curtains surrounding the bed made it impossible to look out.
Cale heard a voice by his right ear at that moment.
“Are you awake?”
Cale curled up in shock before turning his head.
He could see the pale ancient Dragon Eruhaben sitting with a relaxed expression at the corner of the bed. He was chilling there eating some fruits.
“…What the fuck?”
Cale unintentionally shared his honest feelings.
‘This is not what I expected to see at all.’
Cale had opened his eyes expecting to see a chaotic Empire, however, the sight in front of him was luxurious and relaxed.
“What is the issue? You are resting.”
Where is this place?”
“That bastard Adin’s room.”
“Excuse me? Where? Imperial Prince Adin’s room?
…Is this Adin’s bed?”
“Human! Aren’t you hungry? Choi Han is supposed to bring food soon. We didn’t prepare anything for you, but I will give you some of mine! He is bringing all sorts of different steaks! I will give you one, no, two, no! I can give you all of them if you want!”
Raon pulled the blanket that he had kicked off in excitement as Cale awoke back up to Cale’s neck and patted his head.
Cale’s expression turned even odder. Eruhaben poured a cup of water as that happened and handed it to him.
“Drink. Drink some water before you speak. I’m sure your throat is hurting.”
“… Uhh… mm.”
Cale took the cup of water from Eruhaben.
It was true that his throat was hurting after speaking as soon as he opened his eyes. He drank some water and asked in a slightly less dry voice.
“What is the situation outside right now?”
Eruhaben looked toward Cale for a moment before getting up and pulling the curtains open.
“Quite a lot has happened while you were unconscious for 15 days.”
The curtains were opened and Imperial Prince Adin’s bedroom appeared in front of Cale’s eyes.
Cale ended up flinching for the third time at that moment.
He could see the golden table that Adin had obviously used in the past. On either side of the table were large couches that were just as fancy.
But that was not the issue.
The Dark Elf, Tasha, was sitting on one of those couches.
She could not respond to Cale. She was sitting with her back on the couch with a document in her hand-
“Human, Tasha is smart, so she ended up doing a lot of work. That is why she is tired!”
She was asleep.
There was someone sitting in a relaxed manner on the couch opposite Tasha as well. This person had a document in his hand as well.
Cale let out a gasp.
Crown prince Alberu. Alberu was in his quarter Dark Elf appearance as he waved toward Cale.
Cale started to think.
‘Why is he here?’
This was supposed to be Imperial Prince Adin’s palace, so why would Alberu, the crown prince of a foreign nation be inside here? And why was he in his quarter Dark Elf form?
‘I did tell Choi Han to contact him if he had any questions. But why?’
“Isn’t it obvious?”
Crown prince Alberu brushed back his dark brown hair. His face was full of fatigue, however, he observed Cale’s pale complexion after being unconscious for two weeks as he jokingly responded back.
“My younger bro was calling for his hyung. So how could I not come?”
‘That stupid hyung nonsense.’
Alberu chuckled and continued to speak as Cale started to frown.
“You said you were going to act stealthily, but you just openly used your shield in the Empire.”
Cale recalled the large silver shield he had activated in the battle against the White Star.
No matter how covered he was inside the robe, the citizens of the Empire, especially the residents of the capital, were used to Cale’s silver shield even though they did not know about Choi Han or Mary.
He had received a medal of honor after supporting the falling palace with the silver shield in the past.
“Thanks to that, I cannot appear in the Empire as crown prince Alberu Crossman right now.”
Cale continued Alberu’s explanation for him.
“Doing so might make other nations think that the Roan Kingdom was trying to gobble up the Mogoru Empire.”
“The citizens of the Mogoru Empire might think that this was all a devious plan by the Roan Kingdom as well.”
Alberu took it back and finished the full explanation.
Cale sat up and leaned on one of the pillars by the bed as he continued to speak.
“I guess we have to say that I acted on my own in order to help Saint Jack-nim.”
“Well, that’s pretty much how we are handling it.”
Cale bluntly asked a question after seeing how relaxed Alberu was despite the load of documents in front of him.
“But still, was there a need for you to personally come here, your highness?”
Cale could see the corners of crown prince Alberu’s lips curling up at that moment. He couldn’t help but feel iffy about that smile as the crown prince responded back.
“The Emperor and the rest of the royal family are all imprisoned in the Empire’s underground prison. The grand nobles are all there as well.”
“Sir Rex supposedly took some knights and his friends and thoroughly raided the palace.”
‘Who did what? Sir Rex?’
“Sir Rex was crying as he shouted that he needed to save the Empire and charged toward the palace. The Empire’s people were supposedly touched by his actions.”
‘What did he just say?’
The events of these past two weeks were nonchalantly thrown toward Cale.
“Imperial Prince Adin will probably be executed. Of course, we planned on making a final determination once you woke up.”
“Oh, the Alchemists’ Bell Tower’ underground was revealed as well, and funerals for the dead have been going on since two days ago.”
A storm had swept through the Mogoru Empire in the past two weeks.
“In addition, the black mages are all imprisoned with the Dark Elves watching over them, and I’m sure that they will all be punished based on the severity of their offenses.”
Alberu leisurely flipped the pages of the document in his hand as he continued to speak.
“Ah, as for people seeing Raon Miru-nim, we just said that it was someone wearing a black robe. We just said people didn’t see clearly because of the shock.”
Tower Master Bernard’s black storm.
The tiny Raon Miru appeared after that as the silver shields, white gold light, and all sorts of other things clashed with each other in the air.
They had given a fake explanation when the people who saw all of it from afar were curious about the black being.
“Will they believe us?”
“Who knows? That won’t change our official explanation of the matter. It’s not like there are any recordings of the incident.”
This type of method tended to work in situations like this. It was because it was an extremely hectic situation.
“Ah, there are many people within the capital who are demanding to destroy all of the Alchemists’ Bell Towers within the Empire.”
Alberu took a sip of his tea.
The Dark Elf Alberu stood out quite a bit in this bedroom that was adorned in gold.
“The Mogoru Empire’s Church of the Sun God is also planning on reopening its temple that has been closed since the terror incident last year.”
Cale just quietly listened.
He could feel that a lot has happened in the Empire during the past two weeks.
“Oh, you probably want to know that sword master Hannah said no thanks to being the Holy Maiden. But it looks like Saint Jack will become both the Saint and the Pope.”
‘…Hannah rejected what?
…Saint Jack might become what? Pope?’
“Ah, the Caro Kingdom’s crown prince Valentino and his group had been imprisoned in the underground prison. Sir Rex rescued them from there and the Caro Kingdom agreed not to touch the Empire for a while in order to thank him.”
‘I was wondering why crown prince Valentino had been so quiet. He had been imprisoned.’
Cale quietly nodded his head.
“In addition, the Whipper Kingdom said that they will be humane and released the Empire’s soldiers. They returned to the capital yesterday.”
Cale was shocked.
These were the soldiers that the Imperial Prince had left behind.
The Whipper Kingdom had let them go and the soldiers had returned to the capital.
Cale was certain that crown prince Alberu was the one to come up with this plan.
“The soldiers are currently defending the capital and guarding Sir Rex and the Sun God twins while making sure that none of the nobles do anything shady.”
It was obvious who the soldiers that were left behind by the Imperial Prince would support and how badly they would want to get rid of the black mages within the Empire.
“For your information, the Royal Palace is empty right now, but Sir Rex is at the Central Palace that is responsible for all of the administration. The majority of the urgent businesses has been taken care of and the Empire is currently quickly stabilizing itself.”
Alberu then asked Cale a question.
“What do you think?”
Cale started to speak.
Clap, clap, clap-
He clapped his hands as well.
“It looks like a lot of things have happened in the past two weeks.”
Alberu let out a sigh.
“A lot? You’re just calling it, ‘a lot of things?’ ”
He did not like the look in Alberu’s eyes.
Cale recognized that gaze. It was the same gaze he had in the past as Kim Rok Soo when he wanted to flip everything over while doing work that the company had assigned for him to do.
Cale quickly responded back.
Sir Rex and the Sun God Twins would not have been able to do all of this.
It was highly likely that Tasha, who has worked in a palace for a long time, along with Rosalyn and crown prince Alberu, who was explaining everything so casually, suffered in silence while working hard in order to make sure they were not noticed by people from foreign kingdoms.
It was most likely that crown prince Alberu, who had the most experience with all of this, had a hand in almost everything that happened.
‘I’m sure that it wasn’t free knowing Alberu’s personality.’
Crown prince Alberu probably only helped this much because he was gaining something from the Empire or Sir Rex.
Cale activated his glib tongue for the first time in a long time.
“As expected, your beauty that is like the beautiful night sky brings joy to everyone not just in the Roan Kingdom, but in the entire Western continent, your highness. A lowly noble like myself can only cry in admiration-”
Cale quickly added on after seeing the sharp gaze still lingering in Alberu’s eyes.
“Thank you very much, your highness.”
Alberu finally put on a satisfied smile and casually commented back.
“The White Star is a Dragon Catcher and a reincarnator?”
Cale flinched at the sudden change in topic as someone else chimed in.
“Yes. He is both a reincarnator and a Dragon Catcher.”
The ancient Dragon, Eruhaben. He was the one to respond back.
Alberu addressed Eruhaben in a respectful manner as he asked.
“Doesn’t that mean he will reincarnate again even if he dies? And even if we let him live, he will end up dying of old age at some point and reincarnate as someone else again.”
Cale could see the pale ancient Dragon looking at him. The ancient Dragon hesitated for a moment before starting to speak. His voice was full of sorrow, but quite stern.
“…We need to destroy his soul.”
His soul needed to be destroyed so that he could not reincarnate again.
That was an extremely cruel thing to do. That was why the ancient Dragon was frowning.
The bedroom door opened at that moment.
Choi Han and Vice Captain Hilsman entered with a tray full of food.
Choi Han stiffened up in shock after making eye contact with Cale. Hilsman looked like, no, he was crying as he started to speak.
“Oh! Our young master Silver Light-nim, the treasure of the Western continent! You are finally awake! This Hilsman is so happy that I would be able to see your glorious gaze once again! I’m certain all of the Western continent will be happy that their treasure has reawakened! Sob!”
‘…The treasure of the Western continent?
Why would everyone in the Western continent be happy……’
Cale ignored the ancient Dragon who was shaking his head and sighing as he looked at Cale in pity.
He purposely looked away.
“Tsk tsk. You unlucky bastard.”
Cale’s pupils started to shake.
‘…My goal was to just become a small hero.’
He wanted to faint once again.
However, his eyes focused again and grew large.
Cale, who had looked away from the ancient Dragon’s eyes and was looking elsewhere, had seen Eruhaben’s hand. Eruhaben quickly moved the hand behind his back.
But that hand definitely had been shaking.
Cale was finally able to clearly see the pale expression on the ancient Dragon’s face.