A leaf crumbled under Cale's feet.
“…For such a place to really exist…”
Mercenary King Bud looked around in disbelief and could not hide his shock.
The group who slowly descended with Raon's flight magic had different emotions as they looked around.
“It's even bigger than the Underground City!”
“It really is! Wow! Wow!”
On and Hong had their jaws dropped as they looked around.
“…I expected it to be similar to the Underground City…”
Choi Han mumbled as he looked around.
The Dark Elves Underground City had many trees as well. There was even an artificial river.
It was all thanks to magic and Elementals.
Choi Han had looked at that Underground City and thought that it was a nice city.
It was a beautiful city where Dark Elves and humans could live together.
‘But this place is different.’
This village that was multiple times the size of the City of Life could be called natural.
It didn't give off any sense of it being created.
Everything in this region that was surrounded by these large cliffs on all sides looked natural.
Choi Han nodded at Bud’s description and looked up.
There was a small orb that shined like the sun at the top of this large underground area.
Trees freely grew underneath it.
Flowers and other vegetation were freely growing as well.
It was not all beautiful.
There were some dead and rotting plants and fruits.
However, that was what made it look so natural.
Choi Han slowly turned a full circle.
This place was quiet, but full of life and freedom.
Paradise was definitely a fitting word for this place.
It didn't seem like the place to have wars nor anything of the sort.
Choi Han kept turning until he made eye contact with Cale. He subconsciously started to share his sentiments about this place.
“This place is beautiful.”
“Do you feel that way even after seeing that over there?”
However, Choi Han could see Cale's stiff expression.
He looked toward the place Cale pointed out.
Cale was pointing at a spot near the cave that the group just came from.
Choi Han looked at the cliff with the cave.
His expression stiffened up after looking at it.
He had not noticed it when they had descended close to the cliff.
He had just thought that it was a rough cliff.
It was because all of the other sides of the cliff looked normal.
Bud who looked at the cliff as well started to frown.
“…Are those letters?”
There were large lines on the cliff.
The lines looked so clear that they seemed as if they would never disappear.
Bud started to step backward.
Just a bit farther.
He needed to get farther away from the cliff.
He would be able to tell what these lines portrayed if he stepped back.
Bud took many steps back before he could see the words written on the cliff.
They were written in the Eastern continent’s common language.
Bud read the words on the top row.
“Become strong. Then save the world.”
It was a sword.
He was certain that a sword was used to write these words on the cliff.
The person who did this had to at least be a sword master.
No, forget whether they could use aura or not, this person was extremely skilled in sword arts.
Bud drank some alcohol to wet his dry throat.
It could not be helped.
Underneath the first row that he read…
There were other words that he had not read yet.
“…These look like they were written by someone else.”
The style and calligraphy of the words underneath were different.
These people were able to write on the cliffs with swords as if they were using pens.
They needed to be extremely skilled to be able to do that.
He looked toward the others.
They had all been able to read the Mercenaries Guild’s directory using Eruhaben’s translation magic.
They should have seen these words as well.
However, Bud still read the other words written on the cliff.
“I will rule the world. Do not resent me.”
The first row.
< Become strong. Then save the world. >
The row underneath it.
< I will rule the world. Do not resent me. >
Bud could not tell who wrote the first row.
However, he felt as if he could tell who wrote the second row.
“…The White Star.”
He was certain that the White Star, the last Dragon Slayer, wrote those words.
He probably wrote it for the villagers right before he went to destroy Sheritt’s castle.
Bud could hear Cale's disapproving voice.
“I can’t hear any birds nor insects. All I see are vegetation, a fake sun, and these suffocating cliffs.”
Bud made eye contact with Cale.
Cale casually commented with a stoic expression.
“The strongest people in the world must have been frustrated with having to live here.”
He started to walk as he added on.
“It must have felt like a prison.”
Bud could not say anything about it.
“Cat got your tongue?”
“…Huh? No, I just-!”
Bud scratched his head as he looked at Cale walk past him.
However, Cale had not been talking to Bud.
He was speaking to the Scary Giant Cobblestone.
However, he did not hear a response.
The ancient powers had been quiet ever since he blocked the White Star's attacks.
However, Cale needed the Super Rock.
The first Dragon Slayer that the Super Rock had protected. He needed information about the first Dragon Slayer.
“Ahem. Cale, in response to your thoughts that this place could feel like a prison… I-”
Cale made Bud shut up.
Bud looked toward Cale with sorrow, but Cale just motioned to Raon.
“Let’s go to the center.”
Cale looked up above the lush forest.
He could see a tall stone building standing between the trees.
It was surrounded by vines, but he could still tell that it was a building.
“That’s where the village should be located.”
The Sound of the Wind gathered around Cale's feet.
He kicked off the ground.
The others followed behind him.
Cale moved forward while pushing aside the leaves.
This place that nobody touched for a thousand years felt like a jungle.
Choi Han pointed in front of him.
On and Hong who were both jumping through the trees shouted as well.
“I think there's a village up there!”
“I can see buildings!”
“Human! It's over there!”
Cale was already looking at the place Raon was pointing at with both paws.
He could see a large open area.
It was the center of the forest.
He could see buildings made of stone or wood.
The buildings were so old that they were crumbling or covered in vegetation.
There were two large statues at the entrance of this village.
“They are swordsmen.”
The large statues were of swordsmen kneeling on one knee.
Choi Han took out his sword.
The eyes of the two statues flashed.
‘There are guardians I created at the village entrance. They are there to protect the village.’
Everybody recalled one of the things that Lord Sheritt had said.
The two statue guardians raised their bodies that were covered in vines after being abandoned for 1,000 years.
The vines surrounding their bodies started to rip away.
The two statue swordsmen took out their large stone swords at the same time.
The points of those swords were pointing toward Cale's group.
However, Cale's group did not slow down. In fact, they started to speed up as they got closer to the village.
The guardians started to move. They got into a position to defend the village.
These guardians were three times as tall as Choi Han.
They raised their swords high into the sky.
As their swords headed back down…
“I'll see you later.”
Cale charged forward.
Choi Han’s sword swung down vertically in response.
The vines blocking Cale's way were slashed away by Choi Han’s aura.
There was nothing in Cale’s way anymore.
A stone sword was slashing down toward Cale.
The stone swords fell to the ground.
The guardians started to move at the same time.
The large guardians’ two knees created craters on the ground.
The swordsmen knelt down.
Their stone swords were stabbed into the ground.
Between the two guardians.
Cale who was surrounded by wind easily landed on the ground.
Lord Sheritt had said the following.
‘Once the guardians appear.’
The white crown was on Cale's head as he descended to the ground.
‘Cale Henituse, become a king.’
The two guardians lowered their heads toward Cale.
‘That village is a place for Dragon Slayers. All things there will welcome the return of the king.’
Cale looked past the kneeling statues.
The stone building that he could see from the distance was now fully visible in front of him.
‘There is a stone building at the center of the village.’
Cale started to walk toward the stone building.
‘There is a barrier surrounding that building. The first Dragon Slayer and I created it together.’
There was a half-transparent barrier surrounding the stone building that was covered in vines.
‘Plants and water can freely approach that building, but humans and animals cannot get past the barrier.’
Cale walked straight forward.
Nothing was getting in his way.
He took a step toward the barrier.
The white crown on his head started to shake.
The barrier surrounding the stone building disappeared at the same time.
He looked back to make sure the others were following him before entering the stone building that nobody had entered for 1,000 years.
‘That stone building was the first Dragon Slayer’s home.’
It was a building that only the person with the Dragon Slayer's crown could enter generation after generation.
The others looked toward his back after hearing him mumble.
However, Cale did not look back at them as he walked past the old stairs and headed toward the center of the building.
There was an altar at the center of the empty first floor hall.
Cale walked toward the altar as he started to speak again.
“The traces of people have not disappeared even after a thousand years.”
Bud's expression stiffened up after hearing that.
They had not seen any skeletons since coming down from the cave. It could be said that they all returned to dust after such a long time, however, there were traces of clothing.
There were traces of children’s toys in the plaza as well.
There were no people, but their traces had remained.
Traces that showed that they must have been full of life.
It was as if people who were living peacefully had suddenly met their ends and all that remained for a thousand years were their belongings and traces of them.
Bud started to think that what he described might have actually been how it happened.
He quickly snapped out of it and followed Cale to the altar.
Lord Sheritt had told them about it.
She had said there would be a record book that the first Dragon Slayer created.
She had said that everything would be written inside it.
‘Look through the record book on top of the altar.’
She said that they would be able to find the White Star’s weakness in the book.
‘That book is something only someone who can put the crown on their head can grab.’
Bud looked toward the crown on top of Cale’s head.
Cale was the only one here who could grab the record book.
Bud could see a very thick book once he approached the altar.
The book that was covered in a thick barrier looked fine even though 10,000 years had passed since the first Dragon Slayer.
It was soon time for this book to end up in Cale's hands.
Bud could feel his heart beating wildly.
It was from excitement.
However, Bud's expression stiffened after hearing the group calling for Cale.
“…Hey, what’s wrong?”
Cale was standing in front of the altar with an odd expression.
Bud had never seen such an expression on Cale before.
Cale’s face was completely pale.
Cale clenched his fists.
The tips of his fingers were shaking. He brushed his face with his shaking fingers.
He could see the book on top of the altar.
This record book had survived for 10,000 years underneath this barrier.
He could see the title and author written on it.
‘The Birth of a Hero.
It had the same title and author as the book that Kim Rok Soo had laughed at and read until volume 5.