“…You’re going to go through all of these?”
The Mercenary King urgently chased behind Cale, who was heading toward the center of the area that was full of thousands of books. He seemed to be nervous.
“Cale, I remember what you told me when you made me the offer.”
Bud Illis recalled the things Cale told him the first time they met.
“You asked me to show you the Directory.”
The Directory was not a file that even the Mercenary King could easily show others. However, he still brought Cale here, even acting stealthily in the process.
There was a simple reason for it.
“You said you needed to know the White Star’s history.”
Cale turned his head and looked toward the Mercenary King.
The Mercenary King flinched.
It was because Cale’s eyes did not look human for a moment.
They were cold and emotionless. It was as if he was looking at an object.
However, those thoughts quickly disappeared once Cale started to speak.
Cale had not told the Mercenary King much information about the White Star. However, it was time to share some details.
“The White Star is a reincarnator who has gone through many lives for approximately 1,000 years.”
That was enough.
Cale confirmed the Mercenary King’s expression changing before turning back around and heading toward the records.
Bud just blankly stared at Cale’s back.
He only returned to his senses and started to speak after the ancient Dragon patted his shoulders before walking past him. The ancient Dragon was approaching Cale.
“…Eruhaben-nim, are you saying the White Star is someone who repeatedly died and was born again?”
“Yes. He reincarnated over and over.”
Eruhaben looked toward Cale who stopped in front of a desk and was looking around before continuing to speak.
“That is why we came here to look for records about him. He should have left traces throughout the Eastern and Western continents during his reincarnations.”
Bud quickly responded back.
“…There’s no way that we have no records on such a strong individual.”
However, Bud’s lips opened and closed a few times without saying anything before he stopped hesitating and continued to speak.
“However, it is close to impossible to find traces of him in these tens of thousands of books.”
As the current Mercenary King, he had the most knowledge about these records than any other living being.
“Each book has hundreds of people listed in it. It is … Almost not realistic to go through hundreds of thousands of individuals.”
He peeked toward Ron Molan before continuing to speak.
“Of course, I have a good knowledge of all of the strong individuals in the past fifty years. Those are considered the, ‘currently recording,’ information.”
Ron Molan was an example of a strong individual from the Eastern continent whose traces had disappeared.
That was why the Mercenaries Guild was keeping his record under the, ‘currently recording,’ status.
“…Around two hundred years might be doable, but a thousand years is just-”
Someone cut him off.
It was Cale.
“Where is the first-ever record?”
Bud sighed at Cale who seemed ready to start looking from the first-ever record. He quickly walked over to Cale.
“Cale, are you planning on spending the next few years in here? Hmm?”
Bud was getting frustrated.
He didn’t understand why such a smart person would pick such a method.
“I’m sure it will be helpful to look up his past since the White Star is a reincarnator. However, there are 1,000 years worth of records.”
Bud picked up a book from the bookshelf and opened it up.
“It has each strong individual’s birth, date, and general information about their lives. Furthermore, we also record the powers they use. Each book has hundreds of such records.”
Bud had felt like he was going to suffocate when he first became the Mercenary King and came in here.
He was overwhelmed by the information.
At the same time, it helped him understand how the Mercenaries Guild was able to remain a strong force in the Eastern continent without having any land of their own.
They had records that were just as valuable as land.
In some aspects, this was the scariest power.
That was the overwhelming nature of these records.
Bud started to point out the issues in Cale’s plans one by one.
“Even if you start reading from the first record, it would be difficult to remember the first strong individual in the book by the time you are only a third of the way through it.”
Even a person with a good memory would find it difficult to remember over thirty people’s information.
Just looking through three of the books would make it confusing to remember which information belonged to whom.
“Furthermore, how do you plan on finding traces of the White Star? How will you be able to tell which strong individual was the White Star’s first incarnation?”
Bud had smelled quite a number of scents coming from the White Star.
He had a variety of ancient powers like Cale such that it was difficult to accurately pinpoint everything.
“Plus, Cale, don’t you need to quickly capture the White Star? What you are trying to do will require a bunch of people working nonstop for months, no, years to achieve.”
It was impossible to just read and remember all of these records.
You had to divide up the task with others.
Bud then said the thing that confused him the most.
“I’m sure you know about this fact more than anybody else. So why are you doing this?”
Cale picked up the book that Bud pulled out and turned the pages.
The pages that were stiff like new books thanks to the preservation magic quickly turned one by one.
Bud who was watching this could not help but speak again.
“Cale Henituse, this-”
“It’s fine for me.”
He was not the only one.
The rest of the group who were busy looking around at the area focused on Cale.
Bud asked the calm Cale a question.
‘What did he just say?
He is capable of doing what I just talked about?
…I don’t smell such an ability on him.’
Bud looked at Cale smile as Cale stopped looking at the book and turned back toward him.
“First, one week.”
Cale did not plan on staying here for a long time either.
“I will find the first within that time.”
The strong individual he believed to be the first incarnation of the White Star.
If he finds that person’s birth and death, then he just needed to look for the next information based on the time of death.
Cale’s group knew about the White Star’s Dragon Slayer powers and ancient powers. Of course, Bud did not know the details because none of them had told him yet.
Cale’s group had a decent amount of knowledge on the White Star’s powers.
That was why it was possible to find the first incarnation.
“…How? How will you find the first incarnation?”
Cale chuckled while looking at Bud who was standing there with a blank expression on his face.
It was similar to the expressions people had when Kim Rok Soo had first awakened.
Kill or be killed.
Live or let live.
The war between monsters and humans.
The war between humans and humans.
It was a world full of destruction because of all of that.
Kim Rok Soo had been determined to have awakened an ability that was useless in such a world, an ability that would only help him in a peaceful world.
However, that power allowed Kim Rok Soo to keep living without dying.
He confidently answered the confused Bud’s question.
“Take a look.”
He then asked.
“Where is it?”
Bud stood there quietly for a while before pointing to a location.
“The innermost shelf. The first book on the bottom left.”
Cale walked toward the location Bud had pointed out.
“That book is the first record.”
He heard Bud’s voice coming from behind him as he pulled out the first book from the bookshelf. He then started to turn the pages.
Only the sound of pages turning could be heard.
Cale just stood there reading.
Bud let out a gasp at Cale’s actions. However, he made eye contact with the others before walking toward the innermost bookshelf as well.
He needed to help Cale.
He couldn’t just stand there and do nothing.
However, the group of people heading toward Cale had to stop.
Bud was the first to stop.
Next were Eruhaben, Choi Han, Ron, and Beacrox.
Even the children averaging nine-years-old flinched.
Flip, flip, flip.
They just heard the sound of pages turning.
That was why they felt that something was off.
Flip, flip, flip.
It was quiet around Cale.
He was just quietly turning the pages.
That was the weird part.
Bud had no choice but to ask.
“…What is up with his speed?”
At first, it didn’t seem very odd.
Cale was turning pages at a reasonable pace.
‘…It was as if he was reading a novel.’
Bud then realized that it had been weird from the beginning.
Flip. Flip. Flip.
Cale was slowly turning the pages faster and faster. It seemed as if he was just taking a peek before turning the page.
Bud even had this kind of thought.
‘Is he not thoroughly going through and remembering the details about each strong individual?
Is he just quickly skimming through?’
However, the feeling Cale was giving off did not seem that way.
He seemed to be thoroughly reading.
Cale raised his head after hearing someone calling his name.
The ancient Dragon observed Cale’s eyes with an odd expression on his face. Cale’s expression was same, but his eyes felt cold.
The ancient Dragon could not ask many questions. He used his memory of everything Cale had done as the basis to ask.
“You’re remembering all of it, right?”
‘You’re not just skimming it, you actually remember the information, right?’
Cale answered the ancient Dragon’s question.
Cale answered in his usual nonchalant way before resuming reading. His reddish brown eyes looked at the text inside the book.
He turned a page.
The information on the page became recorded in his mind. The speed continued to increase.
Bud could only quietly watch Cale.
‘…What a scary ability.’
He really thought that this ability was scary.
It was different than the fancy magic, destructive aura, and even the different types of ancient powers. This ability was something that was not visible.
It was so unnoticeable that you would not even realize that he was using an ability if you did not look closely.
It was not an ability that could kill someone, but Bud thought that this ability was really the one that would make it easy to kill or control someone.
Everything would be recorded in the user’s mind.
Bud could only gulp and watch.
However, he soon heard someone walking.
Cale raised his head after hearing the cautious calling. Choi Han was looking at him.
“What is it?”
“I wish to help.”
Choi Han smiled awkwardly at Cale who was looking at him and continued to speak.
“Of course, I am a slow reader and my memory is not that good, but I thought I could still help.”
Cale recalled some memories of his past.
‘Team leader-nim, shall I help?’
‘Isn’t it time to go home?’
‘Nah, it’s okay.’
‘Like hell it’s okay. Isn’t your kid waiting for you at home? Go home.’
‘It’s fastest and most accurate for me to do it. You don’t need to do this part.’
He moved the conversation he had with one of his subordinates to a corner of his mind as he raised his hand.
He then pointed to the second bookshelf.
“I think it would be good to look through there.”
It was rare for Cale to not give detailed orders.
However, Choi Han smiled and walked over to the second bookshelf. Eruhaben and Beacrox followed behind him.
Ron stood next to Cale and just looked at him.
Ron’s gaze made Cale subconsciously start to speak.
“…What is it? Are you shocked that I have an ability like this?”
Cale closed his mouth after saying that. He was thinking that he said something he should not have said.
He heard Ron responding to him.
“Well, I’m sure you just hid it, young master-nim.”
Ron had a benign smile on his face as he continued to speak.
“It’s not like you told us how you gathered all of those ancient powers either.”
The shield, the fiery thunderbolt, the Super Rock, etc.
Cale had never explained to the group how he had gained all of these ancient powers. He always just disappeared before returning with an extra ancient power.
Cale had a random thought that it would be frustrating to have a group member like himself. The old man continued to speak as Cale found it even harder to say anything after having that thought.
“Looking at the books like the others is not my task.”
Ron continued to speak to the twenty years old Cale who was quietly looking at him.
“I am your servant, young master-nim. Tending to your needs by your side is my role.”
Ron then just quietly stood next to Cale.
Cale quietly looked at Ron for a moment before turning back to the book.
“…I guess that is your role.”
Cale also realized what his role was as well.
He was quickly turning pages as he heard another voice.
“I, the great and mighty Raon Miru can read quickly! My memory is good as well! I am smart, great, and mighty! That is why I will do it too!”
“…I…I learned how to read from Hans and grandpa Ron! I’m going to do it too!”
“I’m already reading one!”
“Noona, you really are amazing!”
Cale chuckled while listening to the children averaging nine-years-old.
However, the large records library soon became quiet.
Only the sound of pages being turned could be heard.
Cale then heard Beacrox ask a question.
“What exactly are we looking for?”
Cale thought about the White Star.
“Gather any record on strong individuals who use the Dragon Slayer’s powers or ancient powers.”
A response came from someone else.
“Is that power the Dragon Slayer’s power?”
It was Bud. He touched his nose as he walked over to the second bookshelf.
“The White Star had a unique scent along with the scent of ancient powers. Then I should help as well.”
Bud thought about the information he gathered on the White Star through his scent and turned a page.
However, there was a unique sound through the process.
Flip, flip, flip.
It was the sound of pages turning extremely quickly.
Bud imagined Cale becoming a living record as he focused on reading the record in front of him.
* * *
Ron groaned internally.
This was an area where the temperature was maintained all the time.
There should be no reason for someone to sweat.
He moved his hand.
The handkerchief in his hand landed on someone’s forehead.
‘…Why is he sweating so much?’
Ron Molan could see Cale who was sweating profusely.
Cale’s face had become extremely red as well.
The records storage area was chilly, but Cale was heating up as if he was sick.
However, he did not stop and continued to record the information.
There were close to ten thousand record books behind his back as if they were his footprints.