Cale closed the reception room door as he recalled what Sheritt and Raon had said.
‘Cale. We will finish our conversation as quickly as possible, so go visit the World Tree.’
‘That’s right! Oh, human, I’m coming with you!’
They would go meet with the World Tree as quickly as possible.
Cale walked down the hallway and looked around to see where the others were located.
The chances of Choi Han and the Dragon half-blood being together were high because he told them to go elsewhere. Cale was looking for the two of them and soon managed to find them.
“…What are you doing?”
Cale looked toward Choi Han and the Dragon half-blood as if he saw something odd.
“Ahem. Cale-nim, you see…”
Choi Han had a rare anxious expression and tried to scratch his cheek before stopping.
Choi Han’s hand was covered in white flour dough.
Cale could see the flour dough.
The dough looked like a weird slime as if they had made a mistake with the ratio of flour to water. Anything they make with that would end up as a failure.
And then there was the Dragon half-blood who quietly let out a fake cough.
“…And what the hell are you doing?”
The Dragon half-blood was using his sleeve to wipe away his teary eyes.
…He was peeling onions.
Seeing the Dragon half-blood saying he was sorry in a depressed tone put Cale at a loss for words again. This bastard was difficult to deal with in a different way than Guardian Knight Clopeh. This bastard’s talent for making people be at a loss for words was amazing.
Cale found it more difficult to deal with the Dragon half-blood than that crazy bastard, Clopeh.
Cale could only scoff in response.
The Dragon half-blood peeked at him and cautiously continued to speak.
“I came to the kitchen to do anything I might be able to do. I was going to ask Beacrox for something to do, but he wasn’t here. That was why I thought I might as well prepare some ingredients.”
Cale’s gaze headed toward Choi Han.
“…I was just trying to cook something.”
“What were you trying to make?”
“…Sujebi.” ( Korean style pasta soup. )
“…I thought it was one of the rare dishes that all of the ingredients could be found here……”
Cale started to frown.
‘Sujebi? That sujebi from Korea? He wanted to make sujebi with that kind of dough? It looks more like he’s going to make flour porridge than sujebi.’
“I thought that it would take a while for Beacrox to get a response from the Lord’s Castle once he got to Harris Village. But On and Hong said that they were hungry when I went to look for Lock earlier.”
It would take long for Beacrox to come back, but On and Hong had told Choi Han they were hungry.
Lock and the children who had been training would be hungry as well.
Choi Han was going to ask others for help, but Cale, Sheritt, and Raon all looked to be part of a serious conversation. There was definitely something going on involving the Dragon half-blood, but the tense atmosphere made it difficult to ask.
In the end, Choi Han had been keeping an eye on the Dragon half-blood who was prepping ingredients before touching the flour that he noticed.
“…I guess I have no talent in cooking.”
“…I’m sorry. I was trying to help Choi Han and prepped the ingredients as he told me to do. But I am not used to this.”
‘Aigoo, my head.’
Cale grabbed his head with both hands.
He got annoyed for a different reason looking at them like this after worrying about the Demon World and the White Star.
‘Seriously, why the hell did he use so much flour?’
He didn’t know where Choi Han got such a large basin, but it was almost overflowing with flour water. Choi Han’s head lowered after seeing Cale’s expression.
‘Did they make onion soup instead of sujebi?’
Why did he prepare so many onions?
He had ended up chatting for a while with Sheritt and Raon, but the fact that he could prepare so many onions in such a short amount of time showed that the Dragon half-blood had become a talented worker now.
‘I guess they really put him to work at the inn.’
Cale’s silence continued.
Of course, there were all sorts of noises inside of him, but Choi Han and the Dragon half-blood could not hear that. That was why both of them continued to look down at the ground and did not move.
Cale stared at the two of them.
He found the two of them to be amazing.
Why was the Dragon half-blood in so much pain? This was because of Choi Han’s despair darkness attribute inside his body.
Furthermore, didn’t Choi Han have a lot of hatred toward the Dragon half-blood?
Of course, the two of them were still not close.
It was obvious that Choi Han was wary of the Dragon half-blood. That was why the fact that they had cooked together was amazing.
It was at that moment.
They heard something falling at the door to the kitchen.
Cale saw a round potato that touched his foot.
He slowly turned his gaze toward the direction the potato had rolled from.
He could see potatoes, as well as other vegetables, fruits, and meat.
He then saw the bag and basket that had fallen to the ground.
He also saw Beacrox with an extremely scary expression on his face.
Unlike Choi Han who has an innocent face while having a vicious expression, someone like Beacrox who normally had a cold expression frowning like this made it look even more vicious.
“Hey, you. Choi Han.”
He was talking viciously to Choi Han as if he was openly challenging Choi Han to a fight. Cale slowly walked over and stood next to Beacrox.
In a situation like this, it was best to take the side of the person who would feed him.
Cale could then see Choi Han looking toward Beacrox with a grumbling gaze.
He then shamelessly asked.
Forget the White Star and the Demon World, Cale was thinking that this kitchen would explode first.
However, Choi Han gave Beacrox a short apology and bowed his head.
Cale had never seen such a forced apology coming out of Choi Han like this.
Cale was thinking that that punk, no, that senior had this side to him as well. Cale soon started to frown.
He heard the Dragon half-blood shaking as he sincerely apologized. Cale could see Beacrox started to frown as well.
Beacrox looked away from the Dragon half-blood as if he didn’t want to see him.
He then snarled in a cold tone.
That made Choi Han and the Dragon half-blood start to clean up their mess, however…
The two people quietly left the kitchen right away after hearing Beacrox’s stern tone.
Cale, who somehow ended up alone in the kitchen with Beacrox, made eye contact with Beacrox.
“Should I go out too?”
Cale could see Beacrox almost glaring at him.
“Young master-nim, are you not going to listen to my report?”
Cale smiled awkwardly before sitting down on a chair. He debated helping to clean up the onions or the flour, but he quietly sat there after seeing Beacrox’s gaze that seemed to be saying that he was dead if he touched anything.
‘I’m actually a good cook.’
How long had he lived on his own?
Cale didn’t know about the food from this world, but he was good at cooking Korean food.
He wasn’t as good as a professional chef, but unlike Choi Han’s cooking skills, he could make something edible for others.
“Ahem. Your trip to Harris Village had no issues?”
Cale slowly asked Beacrox who was cleaning the kitchen at a fast pace. Beacrox continued to clean as he started his report.
“I contacted the Lord’s Castle through the mage who is in Harris Village.”
“Is that so?”
“Yes, sir. My original intentions were to chat with the mage at the Lord’s Castle to give a short report that you have arrived, but I was immediately connected to the territory lord-nim and directly gave the report.”
Cale thought about the people of the Henituse household for the first time in a long while.
Actually, it wasn’t that long.
He had been with them at the Roan Kingdom’s celebration not too long ago. It had not even been a month.
It just felt like it had been forever because he had immediately gone to the Caro Kingdom and ended up in the middle of numerous incidents.
“How’s the county doing?”
Cale asked and Beacrox looked toward him before responding.
“It is a duchy now, young master-nim.”
“Ah, right. The duchy.”
“Yes, sir. Everything is going well. They are quite worried about you, young master-nim. Don’t they know that you went to the Caro Kingdom?”
Cale’s expression turned odd after hearing that they were quite worried.
Duke Deruth and Duchess Violan knew that Cale’s planned to enjoy the celebration before immediately heading to the Caro Kingdom.
Beacrox peaked at Cale’s changed expression before continuing his report.
“Young master-nim, I informed the Duke-nim that you were planning on staying for a bit in the Forest of Darkness before quickly leaving again. I also said that you would return to the Henituse territory as quickly as possible.”
He was planning on coming back to the Henituse territory after meeting with the World Tree. He needed to see crown prince Alberu as well.
He would need to leave every so often after that to take care of things, but he was planning on visiting the territory quite frequently.
‘I don’t know when the White Star might come to the Roan Kingdom.’
Cale was thinking about staying in the Henituse territory or the Roan Kingdom more frequently now that there was a possibility that the Demon World was behind the White Star.
‘…Of course, there are times I will need to go away to take care of things.’
The Cat tribe and the Gate to the Demon World, the last of the Three Restricted Areas.
Cale needed to leave in order to take care of those two things, but he was planning on taking care of everything else while being in the Roan Kingdom.
Beacrox looked at Cale’s stiff expression before calmly continuing to speak.
“Apparently, the Henituse territory is quite loud these days.”
“Is that so?”
“Yes, sir. The residents are very happy that the first Duke or Marquis household in the northeast region is the Henituse household. The Duke-nim also personally funded a short festival to celebrate. The festival is over, but the mood still feels very festive.”
Tap, tap, tap, tap.
The onions that the Dragon half-blood had peeled were quickly being cut into pieces.
“There are also many tourists coming in from outside. It is difficult to get to the Henituse territory because of its remote location, but I guess everybody was curious about the territory of the new Duke who played a pivotal role in the war.”
“Is that so?”
Cale smiled at the fact that the territory was vibrant and loud.
However, that smile quickly disappeared.
“Young master Silver Shield, the youngest sword master, and the final necromancer whom the world thought was gone from the world. People must be curious about the hometown of these three people, as the number of tourists still continues to rise.”
Young master Silver Shield.
Those words made Cale start to frown.
‘When the hell is that nickname going to disappear?’
“That might be the reason, but the residents are full of pride and happiness about being in the strongest territory. They all seem to miss you as well, young master-nim.”
Cale touched the armrest of the chair with a stoic expression.
The strongest territory.
Those words felt weird.
Tap tap tap tap-!
Beacrox who was chopping vegetables heard Cale’s voice behind him after a long time.
It was a brusque and grumbling tone.
“…I need to take care of things properly this time as well.”
It didn’t matter if it was the Demonic race or whatever that was involved; Cale was thinking that he needed to take care of things properly once again.
The territory should develop even more with this rowdy mood and the increased number of tourists. The territory needed to become even more affluent and peaceful in order for him to pass the administration of the territory over to Basen and run away to live his slacker life.
That would increase the chances of him being able to live a relaxed slacker life.
“I’ll go somewhere quiet to farm after everything is resolved.”
Young master Silver Shield.
He would quietly live a life as a slacker and a farmer until that nickname disappeared.
Beacrox shook his head at the mumblings coming from behind him and chuckled, but Cale who was thinking about how to do less of the difficult farming did not manage to hear it.
They heard a different voice at that moment.
Actually, it was not just one voice.
Cale turned his head toward the kitchen entrance.
Lock, Maes, and the other Blue Wolf children were walking toward him. On and Hong were in front of them.
Cale could see the dirty Lock and the Blue Wolf children coming in with Choi Han and the Dragon half-blood behind them.
“How long will you be here for?”
“Long time no see, young master-nim!”
“Have you been well?”
Cale started to frown as the Wolf children loudly asked their questions all at once. They didn’t care and surrounded him.
It was because Cale patted all of them on the head once even though he was frowning.
Cale then made eye contact with Lock who was one step behind the rest of the Blue Wolf children.
The smiling Lock still looked slightly timid, but he looked more confident than before.
Cale smiled toward Lock.
It was at that moment.
He heard Beacrox’s vicious voice and saw the dirty Wolf children.
Cale quickly followed On, Hong, and the Wolf children who rapidly moved away and ran out of the kitchen.
He then looked toward Lock who walked up next to him and started to speak.
“I guess your skills have improved a lot?”
Lock scratched his disheveled gray hair with an awkward expression.
Cale, who quietly looked at him for a moment, casually commented.
“Sorry I’m late.”
Cale had said that he would finish his conversation with Lock after returning from destroying the four Alchemists’ Towers in Mogoru.
However, multiple things had delayed his return.
“That’s okay, young master-nim. I was able to train hard during that time.”
Cale quietly looked at the responding Lock before almost whispering in a quiet voice.
“Do you remember what I told you?”
Lock tightened up.
He recalled what Cale had said.
‘I plan on attacking the Cat tribe.’
Lock started to speak.
“Yes sir. I remember it.”
He recalled their past conversation as he responded.
‘What do you think?’
‘Is the Fog Cat Tribe the one On and Hong ran away from? I think I heard about it from them before.’
‘That’s right. Them.’
‘Then I need to help.’
Lock had said that he would partake in the battle against the Cats as well.
He thought about the past as he asked Cale a question.
“Is it time for me to fight?”
Cale quietly looked at Lock and his firm gaze was enough of a response for Lock. Lock calmly responded.
“I will be waiting for it.”
“Good. Thank you.”
Cale was speaking in his usual nonchalant tone, but hearing, ‘thank you,’ made Lock clench his fists.
He had said that he would learn Shield Arts to help in the fight against the Cats. Lock recalled what he had said at that time.
I want to become a shield like the greatest shield I’ve seen!’
The greatest shield Lock had ever seen was Cale’s back.
Lock, who had worked hard to be like Cale, quietly looked forward to the approaching future.
Cale did not notice this as he walked away and saw Sheritt who came outside.
She was looking at the Dragon half-blood.
“It looks like we need to chat.”
The Dragon half-blood’s flinched and walked toward Sheritt.
Cale watched them for a moment before turning his gaze to the clock at the center of the hall.
Time was flowing by.
It was moving at the same speed as the time in the letter from the God of Death in Cale’s inner pocket.
The God of Death had said the following to Cale through the letter.
< Do you wish to return to your original world? >
< Or will you die in this world? >
< You will need to decide when this countdown reaches zero. >
Decide whether to live here or to go back to his world.
The time that the God of Death had given Cale was slowly approaching.
* * *
“Human, we are done talking!”
Raon approached him with a bright expression and Cale immediately stood up and started to speak.
“Raon, Choi Han, and I are going to visit the World Tree. Contact me if anything urgent comes up.”