Violent roar could be heard from Ho-Gyeong’s residence.
That wasn’t all. Various household objects were rolling all over the place in broken pieces, and even large objects such as boulders and tables got swept into and broke due to the violent aura he exuded.
The lord of the Order of Virtue had his face cringed like a devil, and his outburst of anger continued.
Ho-Gyeong calmed down a little and tried to take a deep breath. Baek-Un, the one who serves as his adjutant, said carefully,
“… We kept thinking maybe, and maybe, but we never knew that the Denomination would send out Vulcan.”
“On top of that, his ability is virtually approaching the top end of the Zenith-Rate. Winning may not have been possible for him, but I never thought that Jin-Gwak would lose so easily without being able to put up any fight…”
“Silence. Be quiet.”
Baek-Un tightly closed his mouth. Ho-Gyeong closed his eyes to organize his head which was in a disarray with numerous thoughts.
The first thing he thought about was his desire to kill Vulcan.
‘I want to kill that bastard!’
It was an extreme humiliation that he had not suffered in several hundred years.
He was the strongest in the Beloong City. He had never been so humiliated in public directly like that.
Also, because he always maintained good relations with graduates in trainings that popped up once in a hundred years, he didn’t have bad-blood like this happening in the first place throughout those years.
Because of that, he was even angrier about the situation, and he found Vulcan and Dokgo Hoo even more unforgivable.
He had urge to go immediately and take both of their lives. He wanted to pull out their hearts and break their neck bones.
However, that meant war against the Denomination.
It wasn’t going to be some proxy duel for the sake of some petty quarrel or pride. A full scale war could lead to casualties over a thousand.
‘… That is no good.’
He wanted to gather everyone of the members of the Order, collide with the Denomination with all of his might and satisfy his anger, but that was not possible.
He only had a few that were truly loyal to him. Most of the members joined the Order for self-serving reasons or because they succumbed to his influence.
They were mostly bastards who only pretended to follow his orders with intent to receive teachings from Ho-Gyeong. Because most of the members were like that, he wondered if he would be able to keep them in line if he proposed an all out war.
‘Also, The Six wouldn’t just sit and watch that either…’
At a basic level, The Six appeared to have no interest in the Beloong City residents’ businesses, but their hands-off attitude wasn’t to the point that they would ignore a war between two factions. It was certain that they would come to prevent it.
All in all, there were so many problems. Ho-Gyeong tried hard to calm his rage.
Of course, it was not easy.
In the lower dimension, Ho-Gyeong was a top-notch warrior who always acted as he wished. Back then, he never had to care about what others thought.
Bellon was getting on his nerve as it was, and now that he had thunder-monkeys called Vulcan and Dokgo Hoo in to the mix to agitate him, his patience was hitting the bottom of the well.
Once again, terrifying energy flew out from Ho-Gyeong’s body and engulfed the objects near by.
Baek-Un wanted to calm him down, but Baek-Un couldn’t think of any good ideas that would work besides killing Vulcan and Dokgo Hoo, so he stood there helplessly.
At that moment, Lee Jung-Yup, who was only watching two men without a word like a stone statue of the Buddha, spoke.
“… Senior Officer Lee.”
Ho-Gyeong calmed down his energy, which was running out of control, and listened to Lee Jung-Yup. With his head tilted down, Lee Jung-Yup continued,
“I know what you truly wish.”
“They made you suffer humiliations that could never be undone. Without any intention of offering you an apology, they schemed inside the safety of the Denomination, and Vulcan came to the proxy duel and killed Jin-Gwak. All these can only be interpreted as actions with intent to make a fool out of you. If we left this be, your good name will soon fall to the ground, and the strength of the Order could gradually diminish. Given the situation, I believe the right thing to do would be killing both of them.”
Ho-Gyeong turned his body and faced Lee Jung-Yup. Lee Jung-Yup had achieved an incredible growth due to an enlightenment from a few years ago. Even before he reached such heights, Lee Jung-Yup was the one that caught Ho-Gyeong when his tendency for being easily agitated got the best of him. Also, Lee Jung-Yup earned his trust while serving in the Order and carrying out its difficult tasks for over a hundred years.
Lee Jung-Yup wasn’t just a top-notch warrior with superb combat potential. He was also brilliant and a quick thinker. Lee Jung-Yup always knew what Ho-Gyeong wanted better than anyone else, and even without specific instructions, he always acted in the best interest of the Order. Lee Jung-Yup was a man that was very capable and a royal member of the Order that served him.
Considering that Lee Jung-Yup had such a deep understanding of Ho-Gyeong’s thoughts, he had no reason to be unaware of the reasons why Ho-Gyeong was so hesitant to act.
“Get to the main point.”
“I’ll go to the Battle King myself.”
“What do you mean?”
“I’ll negotiate with him so that he won’t have objections even if the Order eliminated Vulcan and Dokgo Hoo.”
Ho-Gyeong stared at Lee Jung-Yup in silence. By the rapidly progressing conversation, Baek-Un, who was just standing there with a vacant look on his face, quickly interjected,
“What? If it was that simple, our lord would not be agonizing over this matter in the first place! It is not like the Battle King is a bonehead. Do you really think he will turn his back on them by hearing a few words from you?!”
“It’s true that they have become members of the Denomination, but they have not accumulated trust yet. The relationship between them and the Denomination is not solid. All it is that there is no bad-blood between them and the Denomination.”
“Even if that is the…”
Ho-Gyeong interrupted the adjutant’s words and said to Lee Jung-Yup.
“Senior officer Lee.”
“Yes, my lord.”
“Is there a certain way to make that happen?”
“It is not for certain. The possibility of success is about five to six out of ten… However…”
Lee Jung-Yup paused for a moment. His eyes were beaming.
“At least it probably won’t result in any harm to the Order of Virtue.”
Ho-Gyeong fell into a deep thought as he tapped the sheath with his fingers.
Baek-Un broke cold sweat in middle of the uncomfortable silence.
For about a minute, the sound of Ho-Gyeong’s tapping on the sheath grew louder.
Ho-Gyeong, with a dignified and stern face, gave an order to Lee Jung-Yup.
“Senior officer Lee, go and negotiate with the Battle King Bellon in secret.”
“Yes. I understand.”
On Lee Jung-Yup’s lips, who still had his head tilted down, a smile passed by for a moment.
“You aren’t even interested in leveling up, so why are you insisting on following us here? What for?”
“Huhu. You never know? Just like the south gate field, there might be a hidden quest location on the north gate field. Since you know almost nothing about that kind of things, I’m going to look around carefully to find it.”
“But why do I need to help you find it? It’s getting in my way of training.”
“What are you talking about? You just focus on training. As for protecting me, he will be the one doing that.”
Jake said as he looked at Dokgo Hoo.
In Dokgo Hoo’s hand, there was a large buster sword that Vulcan had not seen until today. He glanced at it with the SYSTEM and learned that it was a 450 level grand sword.
Dokgo Hoo was smiling so big that the tip of his lips was hanging on his ears. Noticing this, Vulcan said to Jake,
“We are in Asgard, yet, to think the Materialism still works…”
Jake giggled. He tapped on Vulcan’s back and said,
“You never know. If I do find a hidden quest area, isn’t that also a good thing for you? I’m getting in your way a little, but please understand.”
With the proxy duel concluded, as promised by the Holy Denomination of War, Vulcan was able to hunt freely in the hunting ground that was under Denomination’s control.
Dokgo Hoo didn’t tag along to the hunting ground. He claimed that dueling against Murim warriors is a more fitting training for him than beating up monsters.
Vulcan thought it was not becoming of a mountain bandit that looked like a simpleton brute, but he roughly accepted his answer and had been going on hunting by himself.
When Vulcan had been like that for a while, Jake came with a favor to ask. It was about asking the Denomination to allow him to explore the Denomination’s hunting ground.
Jake was a Third-Rate who’s level wasn’t even above 200, and he hardly had any useful skills related to combat, but Jake had something else that was his specialty.
When it came to skills such as searching, gathering and discovering, the type that were not related to combat, Jake had amazing masteries.
There were a few occasions where Jake went to explore the south gate field’s mountain by hiring someone, and the occasions were to use these skills.
Now, with Vulcan’s help, Jake was going to enter and explore the north gate field that was under control of the Denomination, which was difficult to enter under normal circumstances.
“But, I’m not all that close to the Archbishop of the Denomination. Don’t you know?”
“Huhu. I know that, but, if it is not too difficult, Bellon will try to be on your good side.”
“Why would that man try to be like that? Looks like he intends to work me on something else.”
“That’s right. Well, with the proxy duel done and over with, the trade standing between you and Bellon are now even, so it is up to you to accept or decline his request, but anyway, Bellon has no intention of turning his back on you, so he will accept a simple favor like this.”
“If you discover a hidden quest, you have to tell me right away.”
“What’s that? What’s a hidden quest?”
“It’s a matter that doesn’t really have much to do with you.”
Since then, the three walked as they talked about unimportant matters. They eventually reached the entrance to the Denomination’s building where the Battle King Bellon was. They informed the Denomination of their visit, waited for a moment, and soon, they went to stand before Bellon.
“So, is the leveling up going well?”
“Yes. It’s safe there. I’m satisfied with how the hunting is going. Thank you.”
“Asking someone about how their life is going isn’t becoming of my personality. All these pleasantries are quite awkward. Why don’t you just get to the main point?”
Having heard Bellon’s words, Vulcan smiled. Unlike in the past, Bellon was talking to Vulcan in a tone with somewhat of respect.
‘As Mr. Jake said, it looks like he wants to maintain a good relationship with me.’
As Vulcan introduced Jake to Bellon, he even thought about asking Bellon for help on another mass hunting like during his training for the proxy duel when he sees a good opportunity.
Of course, Bellon knew Jake. Jake explained his objective to Bellon with far smoother eloquence than Vulcan, and Bellon accepted the request without any reservation.
“All right. It’s not like we will be spending or breaking something in the process. Even if you searched the place, I’m afraid you won’t find anything. Our members of the Denomination had been in and out of that place countless times, but we have not found anything other than monsters there.”
“Thank you for caring about us. I’m exploring just because of my curiosity as a merchant.”
“Hm… In that case, it’s fine.”
Jake exchanged a look with Vulcan as he peeked a smile.
The people of the Denomination had good eyes, but it was not like they specialized in search and excavation like Jake who possessed skills specific to those tasks.
Vulcan was thinking about perhaps he should feign ignorance to everyone else if Jake found anything during his search. While Vulcan was deep in thought, he noticed someone rushing in.
It looked like he had something important, however, because Vulcan’s party was still half a stranger to the Denomination, it seemed the man was hesitant to speak with them present.
“We will take our leave now.”
Because Vulcan got everything he wanted, he quickly left. Bellon made some hand gestures to see them off.
While they were leaving the Denomination, the look on Jake’s face was not looking good. Looking at Jake who appeared to be thinking very hard about something, Dokgo Hoo asked,
“Why are you making a face as if you just chewed on a piece of shit?”
“I was just… thinking about what happened a moment ago. What could have happened that this man had to rush to Bellon to inform him about?”
Jake tilted his head to the side as he continued,
“The proxy duel is over, and there isn’t anything that could cause further incidents. Just what could it be about…”
“Well, he is the leader of a faction, so they must have a lot of matters that we don’t know about.”
“It’s not like he is the king of a country. At the most, this city only has about twenty thousand people. What could possibly have happened in a city like this? Even if it is something big, it’s probably about the Order of Virtue…”
As Jake continued to agonize over his thoughts, Dokgo Hoo, frustrated, put Jake on his shoulders.
“Ah, hey! You! Just what are you doing…!”
“Little brother! I’m tired of hearing about this, so why don’t we just get there fast!”
Vulcan shook his head as he watched Dokgo Hoo running far ahead.
Around the same time, to inside of the Holy Temple where Bellon was, strangers came to visit.
There was Lee Jung-Yup, a Murim warrior carrying two curved swords which were making an impression, and Miluwall, one of commanders from the Players Alliance.
Looking at Lee Jung-Yup, who was standing tall in silence, and Miluwall, who was a nerve-wreck, Bellon cringed as he looked at them one after the other.
‘They don’t have any particular reason to come here.’
Bellon skipped the formalities and pleasantries and asked toward Lee Jung-Yup.
“So, what kind of message does a high ranking officer from the Order had to deliver? You even brought someone?”
With an expressionless face, Lee Jung-Yup looked at Bellon and said,
“I’ll get to the main point. The Order of Virtue will eliminate Vulcan and Dokgo Hoo.”