Chapter 34: Being Still (1)
Editor: Borderline Masochist
Cale blankly stared at the teacup that Ron was offering him.
“...Lemon tea before bed?”
“Yes, young master.”
Cale was not used to drinking lemon tea before bed. He didn’t feel like drinking it, but he lifted the teacup up without saying anything else. He felt Ron’s gaze on him as he took a sip of the lemon tea.
It was then that Ron started to speak.
“Young master, may I make a request?”
“Kek, what? A request?”
Cale’s eyes opened wide at Ron saying the word, ‘request,’ and turned to look at Ron quickly. Ron still had a gentle smile on his face. Cale’s eyes started to fog up, as he quickly started to think.
‘This devious old man has a request for someone like me, who he thinks is useless?’
Cale had an indescribable sense of ominousness. He felt like the man who tried to get rid of a lump on his face and ended up coming back with two. Either that, or the woodcutter who was greedy and claimed that both the golden axe and the silver axe were his and ended up leaving empty handed without even his own axe.
Cale calmed himself before asking in a relaxed manner.
“Alright, what is it?”
Ron immediately shared his request with Cale.
“May I have two days off?”
Cale subconsciously let out a gasp. He felt like he had his lump removed and received the set of golden and silver axes as a gift at the same time. Cale put the teacup down and grabbed Ron’s hand, before starting to rapidly speak, unlike his usual style.
“Yes. Good idea. Ron, you've worked so hard for tens of years. You had to take care of this trash of a young master. If you want a break, you can take off as long as you want. You are more than welcome to do that.”
Yes, Cale would like it if Ron took a very long break. However, Ron needed to return before the capital terror incident in order to get connected to Choi Han, so two days was perfect. Cale was looking forward to enjoying the next two days without looking at this assassin’s face.
Ron looked toward Cale, who was holding his hand vigorously, with curiosity. However, Cale quickly turned his gaze away from Ron and opened a dresser next to the bed. Cale removed a money pouch out of the dresser and held it up.
Cheques and large amounts of money were in the residence’s safe, but there was still a lot of money in this bag as well. Cale took the whole bag and put it in Ron’s hand. He was the son of a wealthy family and really did not have anything else to give other than money.
“Here. This isn’t much, but buy yourself some delicious food and enjoy your break.”
Ron just blankly stared at the money pouch Cale had put in his hand.
‘Buy myself delicious food and enjoy my break.’
This made Ron think about how long he had been living in hiding. He had spent that whole time taking care of this trash, this puppy young master.
He was now trying to step back out of hiding and restart his life. But there was a good chance that his future would be chaotic. If those people really had crossed over to the Western Continent, it would actually be worse than just chaotic.
‘Then I should leave my son here.’
Ron looked toward the relaxed young master in front of him.
“Young master, will it really be okay?”
Cale excitedly answered Ron’s question. He wanted Ron to enjoy himself so much that he would desire to leave Cale for good.
“Of course. Ron, you are qualified to enjoy a break.”
Qualification. Ron’s original plan was to quietly leave in a few days either alone, or with Beacrox. However, this damn affection was the problem. That was why he mentioned a two-day break. He wanted to see what this little punk would say. He was curious to know.
This puppy young master of his now knew what kind of person he was because of Choi Han. Ron still had a gentle expression on his face, but his gaze started it turn cold.
“Young master, this is too much money. What will you do if I take this and run away?”
‘Or is it that you want me to run away since you heard that I am a strong individual?’
Although the years of forcing himself to smile had created a lot of wrinkles on his face, his sharp gaze was directed to Cale. Ron could see Cale’s reaction.
Cale had snorted.
“You think I don’t know your personality, Ron? If you were going to run, you would have either left without saying anything or just flat out said that you were leaving. Am I wrong?”
That was how Ron had left in the novel. He didn’t say anything to the Count, and whenever he needed to separate from Choi Han’s party for a bit, he would discuss their contract before leaving.
“... You are right. That is indeed correct.”
Ron nodded his head with a smile on his face. Now that he thought about it, this puppy young master in front of him had seen him more than his own son, Beacrox, had for the last tens of years. In fact, Cale might be the person who knows the current Ron the best.
‘I am very old now too.’
The old man accepted that he was getting older. Just like how tree rings don’t grow all at once, the effects of time did not avoid him as well. He then started to speak.
“I will be back to serve you when you head to the royal palace.”
“If you really want to.”
Ron looked toward the uninterested Cale and put the money pouch away.
He couldn’t allow Cale to go into the palace looking worse than the royal family or the other nobles. Ron did not want to see the puppy young master that he raised being looked down upon by others.
That would be his last duty before he left.
“Then I will head out now.”
Cale waved Ron out while sitting on his bed and had a wonderful night of sleep for the first time in a long time.
By the time Cale woke up around lunch time the next day, Ron had already left early in the morning on his break. Thanks to that, deputy butler Hans became responsible for serving Cale.
“Mr. Ron said he wasn’t comfortable unless it was me. Haha, I guess I am kind of amazing?”
“Can you just be quiet?”
Cale ignored Hans and looked outside the open chamber door. Choi Han had been standing outside the door since early this morning. Cale was staring at Choi Han while wondering what was going on, and Choi Han answered without even needing to be asked.
“Mr. Ron asked me to protect you.”
‘What was Ron thinking?’
Cale had a serious expression on his face as he received a cup from Hans. He then started to frown.
“Hans. Why did you bring me lemonade?”
“Excuse me? Young master, don’t you like lemonade?”
Sigh. Cale let out a deep sigh and drank the lemonade. It was better than cold water to wake him up and settle his stomach.
Choi Han watched Hans and Cale from outside the chamber door as he recalled his conversation with Ron the night before.
‘You’re going somewhere?’
‘Nothing a kid like you needs to know about.’
‘Did you come to talk to me for Cale-nim?’
‘You figure it out.’
That was what Ron said before leaving early this morning. Choi Han saw the assassin Ron instead of the servant Ron when Ron walked out of the residence.
Choi Han snapped out of it as Cale called out to him. Cale had gotten up from the bed and was heading to the bathroom. Cale asked Choi Han, who was looking at him.
“Is Lock awake?’
The Wolf Tribe really did have fast regenerative abilities. Cale looked at the time. The piggy bank Billos, the bastard son of the Flynn Merchant Guild’s leader, would soon arrive at the capital. Cale had promised to drink with him, and had already decided where they would meet. It was the same inn he had told Choi Han to stay in once he got to the capital. That inn also had a bar, which was famous for its alcohol.
‘And something that will connect Choi Han and Billos is there.’
Cale thought about the merchant who would be with the 10 wolf children right now and asked.
“What about the children and the merchant at the inn?”
“I was thinking you could stop by on your way back from the meeting.”
Hans approached the confused Cale and started to speak.
“Young master, the invitation from the Northeastern nobles.”
Cale had forgotten about that because he did not consider those nobles to be very important. He started to frown a bit as he debated what to do. What kind of trash actions would he need to do at the meeting? Cale, Kim Rok Soo, had never met these people before, but it didn’t matter. He was known as trash for a reason.
“And the guest wishes to speak with you as well.”
“Are You talking about Miss Rosalyn?”
“Yes. She said any time will work based on your schedule.”
Rosalyn was a smart girl. She probably already suspects that the feeling of mana from yesterday is from a dragon. She has probably never seen a dragon before, but such powerful mana could not come from anything other than a dragon.
Cale opened the door to the bathroom and gave an order to Hans as he went in.
“I will eat breakfast in my room, so get it ready. After that, ask Miss Rosalyn if she would like to have breakfast together.”
“Yes, young master. I understand. However, it is the middle of the day, so it would be lunch.”
“I will get it ready right away!”
Cale glared at Hans, who vigorously answered, and gave one last command before closing the bathroom door.
“Ah, and leave the terrace door open.”
‘The Black Dragon needs to be able to come in.’
It was very odd that it could only sleep well if it slept outside on a tree by the window.
* * *
“Then I will go bring Rosalyn-nim over now.”
Cale sat on a chair by the food, that was breakfast for some and lunch for others and sent Hans out. Beacrox seemed to have put in quite the effort, as the food on the table looked fabulous. The table was full of food, probably because he asked for it all at once instead of in courses.
Choi Han approached him.
“I will go stay with Lock while you are eating.”
“I guess the two of you are taking turns nursing him.”
Choi Han started to smile in embarrassment at Cale’s proclamation. Although Lock was quickly recovering, he was still laying on the bed with Rosalyn and Choi Han taking turns nursing him. Of course, Rosalyn was doing the majority of the nursing.
“On and Hong are helping to take care of him as well.”
“Like hell they are.”
Choi Han could only remain silent at Cale’s words. On and Hong were staying in Lock’s room. But this was what the two kittens told Cale in secret before heading over.
‘I think we are too weak to kill a Wolf Tribe. We will probably lose, even if we enter berserk mode. We need to figure out a way to squash people like him.’
‘Right, we need to figure out a way. That is why we will go study a bit.’
On and Hong were not there to nurse Lock but to determine how to kill such enemies in the future.
“But Lock still seems relaxed having two cute kittens with him.”
“...I guess that’s great.”
Cale had no desire to tell Choi Han and Lock the truth. Choi Han inspected the area to verify that the Black Dragon was not in the room before quietly speaking.
“I did not tell Lock or Rosalyn that I brought them with me because you told me to do so.”
“I told you I would keep it a secret.”
Choi Han was showing a reliable side to Cale. Maybe it was because of yesterday’s vow, but Choi Han did not know how devious words could be. He didn’t know how words could be used to favor one party more than the other.
The God of Death would only follow Cale’s words and his interpretation of it because he was the one to put his life on the line.
‘That is why nobles spent at least a week preparing what to say when they are going to make a Vow of Death. They usually average at least ten pages of texts to say.’
Cale thought about how he would use Choi Han in the future before starting to speak to Choi Han, who seemed to really trust him.
“Choi Han, did you say you were going to kill that blood drinking mage if you saw them again?”
Cale nodded his head at the answer that came without any hesitation and continued to speak.
“I will tell you how to find that person.”
Choi Han’s gaze started to change. But Cale was not done just yet.
“Of course, we have to prevent the terror incident first.”
Choi Han’s expression seemed to be asking Cale to tell him right away, but the moment he opened his mouth, there was a knock on the door followed by Hans’s voice.
"Young master, I have brought Rosalyn-nim.”
Cale nodded at Choi Han and got up from the chair. Choi Han silently got up as well and opened the door. Hans and Rosalyn entered through the open door. Hans did not enter any farther than the door frame and calmly added on to what he stated previously.
“Young master, Rosalyn-nim, please let me know if you need anything.”
Hans then bowed and stepped out of the room. Choi Han followed behind him.
“Rosalyn, I will be with Lock.”
Once the two of them left, only Rosalyn and Cale were left in the room. Rosalyn looked to be calm, yet cold.
“Thank you for the invitation, young master Cale.”
“It was nothing, Miss Rosalyn.”
Cale pointed to the chair across from him and started to speak.
“There are a lot of things we need to discuss.”
“Young master, I guess you don’t like to beat around the bush?”
Rosalyn started to smile as she asked, and Cale looked toward the open terrace window and started to speak.
“Come on in.”
In that instant, Rosalyn quickly turned around. She could see some leaves floating into the room. She could not help but tremble.
However, she was able to logically think things through last night. She had thought about it all night while nursing Lock. Three-layered magic and the ability to do such a thing. There was really just one answer.
She moved her gaze from the leaves floating their way and looked toward Cale and asked.
“Dragon. Is it a dragon-nim?”
Mages really did respect dragons. Her demeanor clearly showed that was the case. Cale started to smirk, as he started to speak toward the floating leaves.
“You introduce yourself.”
In that instant, the leaves that were floating on top of the table, or over the steaks if you want to be really specific, turned into a Black Dragon. It had removed its invisibility magic.
Rosalyn could not even gasp, as she was completely shocked. Even though she knew it was going to be a dragon, it still was shocking. There were less than 20 dragons in existence in both the Western and Eastern continents combined, but such an existence was in front of her right now.
They were known for never leaving their territory and lair, and enjoying life as the most amazing existence in the world. Furthermore, dragons were the king of both mana and nature.
They were also an existence that preferred solitude. Although it was confirmed that there were 20 dragons in the world, they were all different colors and varied drastically in personality, habits, and traits. The Magic Tower found this to be quite interesting. Why were they different in color and personality, even after growing up under their parents?
There was only one explanation they could fathom.
‘Dragons are prideful creatures that want to be different from any other.’
They want to be unique while they are alive. That was the case, even amongst their own tribe of dragons.
Such an existence was in front of Rosalyn’s eyes right now.
It was a young dragon, but the mana she could feel and the unique gaze of a dragon told her it really was just like any other dragon.
The Black Dragon quietly observed Rosalyn for a bit before turning its head away. Rosalyn did not know what to say about the dragon’s action. After doing that, the dragon moved in front of the steak and started to speak.
“I am hungry.”
“...Go ahead, you can eat it.”
Cale shook his head as he answered, and also offered Rosalyn a seat.
“We should eat as well.”
“Ah ... yes.”
Rosalyn had a blank expression on her face as she sat down. She could see the young Black Dragon eating the steak in front of her, while Cale, who was dressed fancier than usual because he needed to attend the Northeastern Nobles meeting, was elegantly eating a soup.
Nobody at the Magic Tower would believe her if she told them about this.
However, Rosalyn believed in what she was seeing in front of her eyes, as well as the rest of her five senses. Everything in nature could be felt by the five senses.
“...It is so amazing that a mage like myself can see such a sight. A dragon is with a human.”
Rosalyn believed in the sight in front of her and revealed her honest observation. Cale did not care to respond, but the Black Dragon stopped eating the steak to look at Rosalyn. He then turned his head to look at Cale.
It was the face of a reptile, but its expression was clearly visible. The Black Dragon started to frown while looking at Cale, who was still eating his soup, and started to speak.
“Very weak. He is no better than an ant. That is the reason.”
Both Cale and the dragon agreed. Rosalyn watched this with curiosity, before eventually nodding her head.
“A meal with young master Cale and Dragon-nim. It is an honor.”
Rosalyn was calm as she elegantly lifted up her fork. Cale observed her expression, as he continued to eat his soup.
‘She really is a courageous person.’
Any other mage would be shaking non-stop and praising the dragon right now. They would then ask the dragon to teach them even a little bit about mana or magic. A dragon’s magic was something that would make any mage on the continent go crazy.
Cale started to speak to Rosalyn, who was starting off with a salad.
“Please feel free to stay here as long as you like.”
“Young master Cale.”
“I have three things I am curious about. But one of them has already been resolved, so I have two more. May I ask about them?”
The first was probably about the dragon. Cale had decided to reveal the dragon’s existence to Rosalyn after contemplating it for a long time. He felt like it would be more beneficial to him that way.
He felt like he could anticipate the other two questions as well.
“Here is the second thing I am curious about.”
Rosalyn asked her question calmly and sincerely.
“Is it okay to allow someone who was not invited to stay in your residence like this? Even if I am a mage, as a noble, you must be sensitive about associating with strangers.”
Cale easily answered that question.
“It is fine because you are someone Choi Han brought.”
Cale peeked at the Black Dragon, that was eating the steak, before looking back toward Rosalyn and continuing to speak.
“I also have this guy.”
The Black Dragon did not respond to that statement. However, he flicked his wing once before stuffing his face into the steak plate and starting to devour the steak even faster than before. Rosalyn watched the dragon for a long time before her red pupils moved back to Cale, who was eating a salmon steak.
“... I see. Then here is my third question.”
Cale stopped eating the salmon steak and looked up at Rosalyn. Their eyes met, and Cale could see her red pupils. Originally, Rosalyn changed her pupils from red to black with magic when they entered the capital. She did the same thing with her hair color. However, that was not the case right now.
Rosalyn asked her question.
“Why do you speak so respectfully to me, despite your status as a noble?”
Cale lifted up the wine glass next to the salmon steak and took a sip of the white wine. He then started to speak.
“Red hair, red pupils, and a mage. Then there is your self-revealed name of Rosalyn.”
It was weird to pretend not to know when someone was being so clear about it.
Cale started to smile as he asked.
“Princess-nim, aren’t you the one who should stop speaking so respectfully to me?”
1. Korean folk tale
2. Another Korean folk tale