“…He’s a Vampire……!”
Cale could hear Bud shout with certainty.
Bud should know because he had smelled the scent of the Vampires once already.
Cale turned back to look at Bud who could not finish his sentence.
He saw that Bud’s pupils were shaking.
His gaze looked as full of astonishment as he had when he was saying that the Marquis with the fan was stronger than Eruhaben.
‘In that case.’
Cale looked back toward the Vampire.
“Are you the leader of the Vampires?”
The young boy warmly looked at Cale and responded.
“Yes. I am their leader.”
The young boy responded before turning toward Choi Han.
“You must be Choi Han. There’s no need to look around like that. There are no other enemies in the area.”
Choi Han who had stealthily been looking around flinched and started to shake.
‘It reminds me of the first time we met Eruhaben-nim.’
The aura of a Dragon Choi Han felt when they first went to ancient Dragon Eruhaben’s lair had let him know that the aura of the individual in front of him was strong.
It was the type of aura that made him feel that it would not be easy to defeat, no, that he would need to think hard to figure out a way to defeat that person.
Choi Han was having the same thought about this Vampire right now.
He subconsciously started to speak.
“…He’s not young……”
Sword master Hannah tightened her grip on her white sword after seeing Choi Han’s stiff expression.
She found it difficult to defeat Choi Han with her sword.
Seeing someone like that being nervous made her nervous as well.
‘The chances of my having to fight are high if he is a Vampire.’
She would have to do the same thing she did against the Dark Elves.
Cale asked the Vampire boy a question at that moment.
"Why are there no other enemies here?”
Now that he thought about it, all of the Vampires had remained in the dark areas of the forest and had not gotten in their way.
‘That bastard didn't even show up at all.’
He heard another magic bomb go off.
There were only one or two more bombs that Raon had planted.
‘The fog will disappear because of the explosions as well.’
The explosions would push away the fog. Then their enemies would be able to find Cale's group's tracks quickly.
Cale needed to enter the snowy region and prepare before that happened.
That meant they needed to hurry.
Meeting a bastard like this at such a time was giving him a headache.
However, Cale hid his emotions and looked as calm as possible as the young boy calmly responded.
“Why would I move with the others?”
“…That’s hard to believe when the others are still barricading us from all directions.”
Cale responded as he stealthily motioned to Choi Han with his gaze. It was a signal to slowly move forward.
The two in the front received that gaze and slowly started to move.
The Vampire boy did not seem to care about their movements at all.
In fact, he smiled and raised his hand to motion to them.
“Don’t mind me and come over. Your enemies will soon arrive from the bottom.”
Choi Han stopped moving.
The enemy was smiling and telling them to come. An extremely strong enemy was saying that.
His gaze headed toward Cale who had an even stiffer expression than ever before as he started to speak.
"What are you planning?”
Were there Vampires hiding in the snowy region?
Was this boulder going to explode?
He must be leading us to a trap, right?
Cale had all sorts of thoughts. He would not have had so many thoughts if he was alone, but…
There were mages and injured allies behind him still breathing heavily behind him. They were receiving Jack's healing every so often when Jack didn't need to worry about the enemies as much.
That was why Cale sent a suspicious gaze toward the Vampire boy.
“Mm. Oh my, it seems you are misunderstanding my intentions.”
The boy shook his head before raising both arms.
“I have no intention of fighting you here.”
‘Does he think that makes sense?’
Cale started to frown.
“W, what nonsense! You’re the leader of the bastards who sucked our brigade members’ blood dry……!”
He could hear Pan’s angry mumbling behind him.
Cale agreed with him.
Someone who had done too many things to solidify his position as their enemy was saying that he had no intention of fighting?
Cale’s eyes sparkled as he looked at the Vampire boy.
He slowly moved forward one step at a time. He then pointed to the boy.
"What is your title?”
This bastard must have a title like the others.
‘Count? No. It's probably higher.’
The boy was giving off a sense of grace.
“Correct. I am a Duke.”
He introduced himself with some fancy movements.
“Nice to meet you. My name is Duke Fredo Von Ejellan, the leader of the two continents’ Vampires. You can just call me Duke Fredo.”
Cale looked at him and casually asked.
“Then who is the King?”
The corners of Duke Fredo's lips went up as elegantly as a picture.
Cale did not stop his questioning after seeing his smile.
“Do you have a kingdom of your own?”
Ron, Jack, and Bud all flinched after hearing that word.
However, Cale was calm.
Hearing that they used titles to address each other and seeing that their forces were separate but somewhat united…
Cale had wondered if they were part of a single kingdom.
Bud was the most nervous about that question.
‘The Eastern continent has a kingdom of creatures with the darkness attribute?’
That could be a problem for the people in power, but it was not much of an issue for Bud.
It would only be an issue if their goal was to fill the world with darkness and bring forth the Demonic race.
He looked even more nervous than Cale as he looked toward Duke Fredo's lips.
The boy then smiled mischievously.
He then avoided answering the question.
However, Cale was at least half certain that there was a kingdom after seeing this response.
That was why he took one more step forward and asked some more questions.
“Is the White Star the king?”
“Or, is it the Demonic race? I saw some people who served the Demonic race.”
Duke Fredo slightly frowned at that moment.
It was faint, but it could not avoid Cale’s gaze as he was using his recording ability.
However, the frown disappeared and the boy started to laugh.
Fredo then continued to speak with a relaxed expression.
“No matter how delicious your blood may be… You can’t look at me like that.”
Cale wondered what he had just heard.
He lowered his head. On looked shocked.
He had not heard wrong.
Cale raised his head again. Beacrox was looking at him oddly while Hannah looked stupefied.
Cale also had a similar expression on his face.
“You're saying some funny things, sir.”
Cale was able to snap out of it thanks to Ron’s chillingly benign voice.
The young Duke was continuing to speak at that moment.
“I am a Vampire who knows about grace and pride. That is why I won't serve anyone.”
Cale immediately responded.
“You're saying you won't serve the Demonic race or the White Star?”
The boy started to smile.
“I will only tell you the truth. I truly do not serve anyone.”
Cale started to think about this race that he had not cared about in the past.
The records quickly passed through his mind.
“Serving someone is something only the weak do. It’s bad if someone like you with such delicious blood has such misunderstandings.”
Of course, Duke Fredo could be lying for the greater good.
However, he would only speak the truth as he said he would do that.
His pride would not let him do otherwise.
Furthermore, he had something to say to Cale Henituse.
‘…He truly is amazing seeing him in person.’
He had heard a lot about Cale. He had high expectations based on what he had heard.
They had the darkness attribute like the Dark Elves but were considered a part of this world.
That was why they were fine when touching life force, unlike others with the darkness attribute. They were fine when coming into contact with fresh blood.
No, it was better for them to do that.
The boy stepped down from the boulder.
He gently landed before slowly walking toward Cale's group.
They tried to nervously look intimidating, but…
Boom. Boom. Boom.
They heard the ground shaking at the distance.
Cale instantly knew what it was.
‘It’s horse hooves!’
The ground was shaking because the horses were running wildly.
The enemies would have stopped being misled and would rush toward here now.
Cale wanted to look behind him. He was curious about how the mountain looked now that the fog was mostly gone.
However, he needed to maintain eye contact with the Vampire Duke.
Duke Fredo stopped walking and looked toward the sword pointed at him.
Hannah’s white sword was pointed at him without shaking.
Fredo chuckled while looking at it.
"What an interesting toy.”
Hannah started to glare.
She twisted the wrist holding the sword and the Condemnation of the Sun quickly started to stab toward Duke Fredo.
However, there was nothing in the spot she stabbed.
She turned her head in shock after hearing a loud noise behind her.
“Hmm. You truly are a bit different.”
Choi Han had appeared in front of Cale and had stopped Duke Fredo's hand.
“…Wait, what the-?!”
However, Hannah was more shocked than relieved after seeing what happened.
She was not the only one.
Even Choi Han who had blocked Duke Fredo's attack was shocked and his pupils were shaking.
The boy had disappeared.
The person whose attack Choi Han had blocked was a healthy-looking adult.
He seemed to be in his thirties, around Beacrox's age.
The only similarities with the young Vampire boy were their purple eyes and light grey hair. Although the colors were the same, his demeanor seemed very slothful and relaxed.
Duke Fredo had instantly turned from a boy to an adult.
This was probably his true appearance.
Choi Han was shocked at how Duke Fredo was able to easily push his sword away with his hand.
However, Duke Fredo just brushed his hands and started to speak.
“Our allies will soon get here, so I'll speak quickly and disappear. You need time to run away, after all.”
Cale's expression turned odd.
The boy’s appearance was just a shell and this must be his true appearance as the pressure he was giving off was intense.
He suddenly had a thought.
‘He doesn’t seem like the type to serve under the White Star.’
It was the same for the Marquis with the fan as well. They did not fit as the White Star's subordinates.
It happened as Cale’s eyes observed the adult version Fredo.
“I would like to offer you a deal.”
Fredo started to speak in a calm voice.
However, the things he was saying were unbelievable.
“A deal? But aren't we enemies?”
“Who knows? We can’t decide that just yet.”
Cale could only ask what the deal was after hearing Fredo's response.
“…What is the offer?”
Fredo started to smile.
Cale had an ominous feeling after seeing that smile as Duke Fredo slowly explained the deal.
“Hand your blood over to us. No, serve it to us.”
Cale's eyes opened wide.
‘What did I just hear?’
Duke Fredo continued to speak as Cale stood there shocked.
The Duke was being serious.
"Then we will cooperate with you.”
"What do you mean by that?”
But at that moment…
Boom. Boom. Boom!
The rumbling got even closer.
Bud who took a deep breath through his nose started to shout.
"The scent is rushing here! They're close!”
The enemies were getting closer.
They really needed to move now.
They needed to lead the enemies to a trap and escape from them.
Duke Fredo looked past Cale's shoulder before gently speaking to the shocked Cale.
“I will invite you to our castle in the near future. Come if you want to hear the details.”
Cale continued to look at Fredo in shock.
‘Blood? He wants me to serve up my blood? Then he will cooperate with me? What nonsense is this?’
“Ah. You should know this.”
Fredo took a step back and started to smile.
It was an extremely mischievous smile.
“Your blood is very good for Vampires. Tastes, nutrients, the healing properties. It’s the best kind of medicine for us.”
Fredo smiled brightly.
The adult Fredo's bright smile looked somewhat decadent and Cale started to get goosebumps.
He felt as if he was looking at a slightly crazier Clopeh Sekka.
‘I know. He looks like someone who has gone crazy.’
Cale's expression seemed to be asking where such a crazy bastard came from, regardless of what Raon said. Of course, Hannah and Beacrox looked completely flabbergasted while a vicious aura was coming out of Choi Han and Ron.
It was at that moment.
“What is this?”
From the other side of the boulder…
Someone started to walk toward them.
The person had some snow on their shoulders as if they had come down from the snowy region.
Red hair flowed out once the person removed their hood.
Rosalyn had a large cloth bag over one shoulder as she started to speak with a shocked expression.
“I came down because you didn't come no matter how long I waited. You were here listening to some unbelievable nonsense. Who is this new crazy bastard?”
She looked at Fredo and looked back at Cale as she asked.
“Young master Cale. What is that?”
“…Uhh…a crazy bastard who is saying my blood is delicious?”
He really didn’t know how to explain.