Knock knock knock.
Helson blinked after hearing a knock on the door and started to focus. He looked at the Purifier.
“Please do whatever you need to do.”
Helson gulped and then opened the door after hearing the Purifier’s comment and seeing the gentle smile on his face.
The black Dragon had disappeared at some point.
“What is it?”
“Marquis-nim, his highness, the Fourth Imperial Prince has come to the door of the top executives’ office.”
He soon shuddered.
He heard an annoyed tongue clicking behind him. It was the Purifier.
‘Does he not like that the Fourth Imperial Prince has come?’
‘Maybe he doesn’t like that our top executives can’t even control the Fourth Imperial Prince and has to report it to me?’
Marquis Helson might be exaggerating what the Purifier might be feeling right now but he had no choice but to be concerned about how the Purifier was feeling.
The power this person had… The fact that this power could protect Precinct 9 was more important than the change he would cause in the future.
The Purifier commented almost as if he was talking to himself.
“It’s coming in the end.”
– Human! Choi Han and Sui Khan contacted Goldie gramps! They said that they felt a similar rumbling like before near the wall!
“It should have stayed quiet since it ran away earlier.”
He mumbled in a low voice.
“Did it already forget about its fear?”
Helson gulped. Chief Eaen could finally see the person the Marquis was chatting with through the gap in the door.
‘Heni Wishrop’s subordinate?’
Cale started to speak as her mind was about to get busy with this new information.
Marquis Helson realized the meaning behind those words and looked at the Purifier with shock.
The top executives’ office door burst open at that moment.
“Again, we received report that they can feel that rumbling again!”
The executive who had gone to the black mages shouted with urgency.
“What is the identity of that rumbling? Why is the Marquis not sharing information with the candidates?!”
Fourth Imperial Prince Noi glared into the open top executives’ office and raised his voice. He sounded as if he could throw a fit at any moment.
Of course, Noi could not see the Marquis’ bedroom.
“Let me go! How dare you try to stop me from entering?!”
He was about to enter the top executives office but the knights standing outside the door stopped him once the Marquis raised his hand.
The Marquis urgently looked at Cale.
“Didn’t you say that it wouldn’t come back right away?”
“That’s what I thought.”
‘It ran way so quickly and even cut off parts of its body to run away.’ Because it showed no signs of chasing after Cale…
Cale had thought that the monster would not attack the wall right away.
– Cale, maybe that monster had no choice too.
Cale paid attention to what the cheapskate was saying in his mind.
– That monster probably has nothing else to eat around it. It might have to move because it is starving and can’t wait any longer.
The cheapskate had said that this monster was a monster that generated dead mana.
It did so by corroding the land and killing living creatures.
“Yes? Hurry up and tell me!”
“It seems as if that monster was so hungry… To the point that it overcame its fear.”
They heard a sharp noise just as the Marquis understood the meaning behind those words and turned pale.
Chief Eaen’s face turned pale.
This was the alarm that rang when the wall was being attacked.
In the middle of the night… Something was attacking the wall.
The people inside the castle felt a strong rumbling underneath their feet.
“Marquis-nim, over there-!”
One of the executives pointed out the window.
All of the lights in Precinct 9 had turned on once the alarm went off. That was why what the executive was pointing at was ever so clear to see.
The Marquis gulped.
There was something black that was shooting up higher than the height of the wall.
It resembled a tree root.
There was sticky black liquid flowing from that tree root.
There was only one root but it looked as if it could easily get past the wall.
That monster was trying to climb over the wall instead of destroying it.
“What is that?!”
They heard Fourth Imperial Prince Noi’s astonished voice.
Cale’s eyes clouded over after hearing his voice.
‘I guess he didn’t know.’
The Fourth Imperial Prince didn’t seem to know about this monster. If this reaction was him acting, the Fourth Imperial Prince should be an actor.
Cale called out to the Marquis who looked shocked.
The Marquis’ eyes opened wide.
There was a black magic circle underneath Cale’s feet.
Although he was not a highest-grade swordsman, the Marquis and his abilities as a high-grade swordsman allowed him to sense that this black magic circle was made not with black magic but magic.
“You should head out for now. You will need to hurry. But you don’t have to worry too much.”
Cale pointed out the window.
“My friend will take care of that root.”
The top of the wall was bright because of the black magic lights that had turned on with the alarm.
That was why the black tree root was completely visible.
They could also clearly see a person who was charging toward the black tree root. They could clearly see the hawk flying above the person as well.
While everybody was shocked by this unexpected situation…
Choi Han… And Sui Khan were moving toward the monster.
* * *
“Hey Han, is it possible?”
Choi Han heard a relaxed voice above his head.
The black Hawk had its wings wide open as it came down near Choi Han’s face.
“Are you so focused you cannot answer right now?”
His tired voice made it feel as if they were in the Super Rock Villa doing nothing on a relaxing afternoon.
Choi Han chuckled.
“Hey Han. You’re too tense right now.”
Choi Han’s face slightly stiffened after what he said next.
The direction that the black Hawk’s red eyes were looking…
Choi Han looked that way and saw individuals who were anxious but trying their best to snap out of it and focus.
Black mages, Dark Elf knights, regular knights…
And even soldiers.
“Cast a shield!”
“The liquid looks to be dead mana! Knights and soldiers retreat!”
“Don’t randomly attack it! We can’t use any wide-range black magic! We can’t damage the wall!”
“There may be more enemies! The reconnaissance team head out of wall right now! Open the gate!”
They were all moving in perfect harmony to deal with this black tree root that had suddenly shot out of the ground.
“Evacuate the residents to the shelter!”
“Go report the situation to the Margrave-nim!”
One of them looked at Choi Han.
“Who are you?! Are you with one of the candidates? Hurry up and get down! This is an emergency situation!”
She shouted while looking at Choi Han. He seemed to be a swordsman based on the sword in his hand.
Choi Han thought about something old priest Durst had told them about this world.
‘There are many talented swordsmen in Xiaolen but there are not many that can handle aura well.’
The reason was simple.
The three hundred or so years had left a single fact about aura on the Xiaolen Planet.
‘Aura starts from the inside of the swordsman. It is a symbol of their inner self. However, the important thing is that humans are also a part of nature.’
‘The nature is dying. Similar to how it is difficult for mages to live in this world, aura became difficult to release as well.’
Elementals were the same way.
As a result, the number of swordsmen who could handle aura decreased in this world and most of the Dark Elves could not handle Elementals either. There were no Elementals to handle.
It was turning into a world where black mages had to succeed.
Choi Han started to walk faster.
“Did you not hear me tell you to get down?!”
The woman’s voice became louder.
“The shield was broken!”
“There’s a hole in the shield because of the poisonous liquid on the root!”
The first shield cast by the black mages around the wall easily crumbled once the black tree root’s black liquid touched it.
“The wall is melting from the liquid!”
The black tree root had shot up above the wall but only its tip was moving as if it was scoping out the area. It looked like it was looking around the inside of the wall despite not having any eyes.
“The root seems to be multiple times larger than what Rok Soo explained.”
Choi Han listened to Sui Khan, to team leader Lee Soo Hyuk’s voice as he moved past the swordswoman who tried to stop him.
“Hey, I told you to stop-”
The swordswoman’s eyes opened wide.
It was bright above the wall.
However, it was still the middle of the night.
That was why she had not seen it clearly.
However, she was sure that she just saw it.
On the sword of the man wearing the half-mask and a common robe who went past her…
Although it was not very thick, she saw something black surrounding the sword.
That was definitely aura.
It was the thing that was called the peak for swordsmen.
There was currently nobody at that level on the Xiaolen Planet.
The level of a sword master.
The swordswoman turned around and looked at the man who had walked past her.
The swordswoman, who was here despite not being a Dark Elf and having no resistance to dead mana, her job was to stop people who tried to approach the monster.
Her sword could not cut through this tree root.
She had no powers to defeat the dead mana.
The swordswoman’s eyes looked at the sword in the man’s hand.
The black aura was shooting up like an angry animal’s roar.
Unlike the black root, that black aura was sparkling, almost as if it had the stars in the night sky inside of it.
However, it looked more violent than anything else and not calm at all.
Sui Khan looked at Choi Han’s aura and started to speak.
“I understand you want to protect and guard them, but… Han, you have no calmness at all.”
Choi Han didn’t look at the black Hawk. His gaze was only looking past the people who were shocked after seeing him at the tree root that was trying to peek its head into the wall.
Choi Han’s life had not been peaceful enough for him to live with calmness since he fell into the Forest of Darkness.
Of course, his soul now had a resting place.
“Don’t you want to get stronger?”
The black Hawk moved away from Choi Han and flew up as it said that.
“An opportunity will come soon.”
Choi Han’s eyes clouded over.
He heard Sui Khan’s jovial yet slow voice at that moment.
“Hey Han, it is okay if you don’t have any calmness. If that is you, that is.”
Choi Han looked at the black Hawk.
The black Hawk smiled at that moment and continued to speak.
“Things and people holding swords…they might pretend to be calm but they can’t be calm.”
He then added on.
“You could kill or save them with your hands. How could you be calm?”
In that moment, Choi Han… Felt as if he could understand the black Hawk, Sui Khan, no, Lee Soo Hyuk’s true nature.
Choi Han started to speak.
“I want to spar against you.”
“Whenever you want. But I’m not completely used to this body yet.”
“Then I guess that I will win.”
The black Hawk saw the smile on Choi Han’s face. It was a slightly vicious smile unlike Choi Han’s usual smile.
Sui Khan also understood a bit about Choi Han’s true nature as well. Choi Han mumbled before kicking off the ground.
“Like right now.”
Choi Han’s eyes were only focused on the thing he needed to slash.
‘Cale-nim is going to do most of the things this time too.’
The rose gold thunderbolt would burn this monster.
‘But that doesn’t mean that there is nothing for me to do.’
As it always had been…
There was a role for him to play.
– Choi Han! I’m going!
Choi Han listened to Raon’s welcoming voice as he lifted his sword.
The black tree root… The tip of the root turned its head toward Choi Han.
The sword with the shining black aura slashed down.
It looked as if the night sky had come down to the ground for a moment to create a rainbow.
However, both the people holding swords on top of the wall and the mages all had to flinch and close their mouths after seeing that aura.
It was vicious.
It was berserk.
The tree root charged forward as if it wanted to swallow that black aura.
It was as if it saw this aura that was puny compared to its body as if it wasn’t much.
A portion of the tree root fell to the ground after being cut off.
The tree root that fell on the other side of the wall made the area echo.
The sticky black liquid that had been on the root could not melt the black aura.
No matter how hard and big this tree root was, it could not stop the path of the black aura.
The tree root flailed while making an eerie noise.
However, everybody was looking at a single person’s back.
“…T, that person, who is that sword master?”
Someone barely managed to respond to that question.
“…Umm, he seems to be Heni Wishrop’s subordinate-”
It was at that moment.
– Choi Han, Sui Khan! Mary and I came first!
Choi Han looked behind him. The people in the area all turned their heads as well.
They were not arrows.
Hundreds of white bones that looked like arrows cut through the night sky like meteors during a meteor shower toward their target.
Their target was the tree root.
Choi Han started to smile.
The starting point of that meteor shower… Mary was there standing on top of a white Bone Dragon.
Badass Mary. <3 TCF is currently posted Mondays and Fridays at evening time GMT. Join our discord to be notified as soon as the chapter posts! If you can't wait, please subscribe to advanced chapters on our EAP website to get access to up to 8 chapters! Almost all tiers already have access to part 2 of TCF! You can subscribe (immediate access) through our PATREON