A period of two weeks’s worth of time was now available.
At first, Sungchul had thought he should use that time to upgrade Sylphid or do maintenance on the miniature Golems. But an opportunity found Sungchul from a completely unexpected source.
The fact that Sungchul was now off of the Allied Merchant’s Coalition’s blacklist.
It meant that a whole new world of possible trade opportunities that had been unthinkable until now became available to him.
It wasn’t even half a day since the negotiation with Horneko that one merchant sought out Sungchul.
Sungchul was taking a scroll in the unremarkable yard of Nampas with Marakia and Bertelgia at his heels.
“Oy, look over there. Isn’t that a statue of you?”
Marakia pointed out a space next to a storage shack on the back of the garden that was filled with stacks of firewood. And as suspected, statues bearing the likeness of Sungchul were standing here.
There were axe marks on the statues from turning the statues into firewood. But there were also evidence of shallow scratches left behind by swings of an amature swordsman.
Close to the storage room was a middle aged maid carrying a stack of firewood. Sungchul called her over and pointed at the statues.
“His majesty regularly replaces the statue of the Former Commander in Chief. These are likely the older statues that had since been replaced”
It’s not like it was a difficult explanation to accept, However, it did not stop him from feeling unhappy still. After all, recreating someone’s likeness and bringing harm upon it is one of the older traditional methods of cursing someone.
Of course it was also true that no amount of curses from such a weak country could bring harm to even a single hair on Sungchul’s body.
Sungchul decided on being generous and lenient as he resumed his stroll.
There was a woman watching him from across on the other side. She wore merchant’s clothing that greatly contrasted from those of the palace folk.
She had tied up her hair into twin tails which gave her a sprightly atmosphere. But rather than looking young, she had childlike appearance.
‘Is she a merchant of the Coalition?’
Sungchul didn’t think much of it. Nimpas Palace was already firmly in control of merchants of Horneko’s faction so seeing one or two merchants within the palace would not be out of place in the slightest.
It was when he was about to pass her.
“Hello sir, ex Commander in Chief.”
The young woman initiated a conversation with Sungchul. Sungchul turned his face slightly to glance at her. Her cloudy blue eyes reminded him of someone.
“I am a merchant of the Allied Merchant’s Coalition, Derha.”
“I never asked for an introduction.”
Sungchul replied coldly.
Most people would have been completely silenced by his intimidating presence. But whether she was brave or clueless, Derha broke into a bright smile and replied with a clear voice.
“I may appear like a greenhorn, but! I am a professional broker. If anyone speaks of a broker from hell, then it’s definitely about me, Derha.”
Sungchul sintantly judged that this young woman was either incredibly stupid or possessed an unbelievable strength of will.
“Please let me know if there is anything you would like to purchase. I’ll use the connections of our family to procure anything that can be bought with money!”
After watching the woman stand her ground and say everything she wanted to say without hesitating in the face of Sungchul’s intimidation, Marakia tapped Sungchul’s back with his wing.
“Should I step in? I miss fresh liver.”
“No, there’s no need.”
Sungchul looked at Derha and replied in a calm but slightly hurried voice.
“Go procure a Letter of God. I’ll give you one day to do this.”
“Letter of God? What is that?”
“If you are unable to fulfill the request within the time limit, do not ever show yourself before me again.”
It was not something he had said with the expectation he would really obtain a Letter of God. It amounted to nothing more than Sungchul’s attempt to chase away an annoying random merchant that was interrupting his stroll.
But the next day, Sungchul was told by a palace maid that there was a guest for him.
Sungchul who had been in the middle of making a rotting meal that could satisfy Marakia looked blatantly annoyed as he received his guest.
“I do not make exceptions just because someone is a woman.”
Even as Sungchul was growling out his threatening warning, Derha unpacked a sack before him.
What was hidden inside the sack were dozens of ancient documents of indiscernible age.
Sungchul picked one up and could not believe his senses; Every single item Derha had brought him were Letter of Gods created by a Lesser God.
“I have tried to narrow down the items to what I thought matched your request the closest. How are they?”
Derha blinked her eyes as she waited for stunned Sungchul to recover and reply.
‘All of them are Letter of Gods.’
Sungchul who had been completely engrossed in appraising the Letter of Gods snapped out of it and realized she was speaking, so he turned to look at her.
“Perhaps… it’s not to your liking?”
To her question, Sungchul remembered a legendary TV advertisement he had seen in his homeworld as he raised one thumb up and replied calmly.
Sungchul immediately took out a box filled to the brim with the unmarked coins and offered it to Derha.
“My my. How generous!”
Derha put away the boxes into her own Soul Storage and bowed deeply.
The contract was easily fulfilled.
Sungchul internally wanted to shout out in joy. If she were to ask for it, he would willingly give Derha multiple boxes of gold.
While gold no longer held any value for him, the Letter of Gods were priceless items of untold potential.
Sungchul immediately locked himself in his room once she was gone.
‘Should I have agreed to stay a month instead of two weeks?’
Reading the Letter of God demanded an enormous expenditure of energy for even Sungchul. The most he would be able to read per day was likely just two. On the other hand, the number of Letter of Gods Derha had brought him were, unbelievably, 34.
Assuming Sungchul managed to read 2 books a day, it would take 2 weeks to read them all.
Once a course of action was decided, Sungchul was never the one to procrastinate and leave things for later. He declared free time for Bertelgia and Marakia before sitting upon a soft well cushioned chair.
Leaning back against the seat, Sungchul opened one of the Letter of God and undid the seal.
As the seal came off of the document that was imbued with mighty power, a field of stars took over Sungchul’s view.
The unexpected luck brought with it a powerful sense of expectation flow through his body, causing him to tremble.
‘I’ve been very lucky on this trip so far.’
For someone with nearly zero luck like Sungchul, an opportunity like this was something that was only going to happen once in a lifetime. Something along the lines of winning the lottery off of a ticket found lying randomly on the ground.
Sungchul was in high spirits as he waited for the words of the Lesser Gods to appear.
Soon, the Lesser Gods’ words only legible by Lectors appeared before him.
[On behalf of all the Executors, we welcome you, residents of paradise. The harvest festival we have long hinted at will soon take place.]
Sungchul tilted his head once he read up to this part.
He continued to read the Letter of God.
[There are a good number of gifts and blessings prepared for the residents of the paradise for the upcoming harvest festival. Those with the ability to read this document, please let this news be known far and wide so that even one more person can partake in God’s feast.]
The Letter of God ended there. Sungchul doubted his eyes but that was all there was to this Letter of God.
‘How can this be?’
Sungchul reread the scroll he had picked but the content remained the same. He threw away the one he already read and picked up another scroll and spread it open.
Like any other Letter of Gods he had interacted with so far, this scroll, too, was filled and brimming with powerful energy of the Lesser Gods.
‘This one should be fine.’
Sungchul breathed in deep as he read the next scroll.
[On behalf of all the Executors, we welcome you, residents of paradise. The harvest festival we have long hinted…]
Sungchul threw away the scroll once he read up to that point. There was no need to go any further. It was the same creator, same message.
Although there was no way to know who exactly it was that had written it due to the fact that the name was not stated in the Letter of God, Sungchul could tell from using his five senses that the general tone and personality of the energy given off by the scroll was identical to the one he had seen just before.
‘Could it be that these are just marketing flyers?’
Sungchul had a bad premonition as he took out the next scroll to read.
Perhaps due to his increasing experience with them, Sungchul could now instantly recognize the creator’s personality, style, and atmosphere at a glance.
Going by his previous experience, this document was created by someone else.
‘I hope this one is useful.’
Sungchul held his breath as he watched as the verses from the Letter of God take over his field of view.
It did not take long for the Lesser God’s message to appear.
[Since last winter when we began preparations for the harvest until the present, not a single day have i slept. Now, only two days remain until the official festivities are scheduled to begin. Thinking back, there were countless condemnations. I had tried to respond to each and every one, but it was unfruitful.
Empty winds hitting the walls of the temple could be heard.
This is truly the silence before the storm…]
Once Sungchul reached this part, he was once again enveloped in a terrible inescapable premonition.
‘This… doesn’t feel good…’
Sungchul felt a cold sweat drip down his back as he finished reading the rest of the message.
[Which one of us is the foolish one, the result will speak for itself…!!]
“What’s up with you?”
Bertelgia popped out from the side to ask him a question. Sungchul had not noticed Bertelgia’s presence. She must have entered the room via the open window while he was engrossed in reading the Letter of God.
“Anyway, the King of Nimpas wanted to invite you to dinner.”
“Yeah. He seemed to be really looking forward to it.”
“I’m not really in the mood for that at the moment.”
Sungchul retrieved another Letter of God from the box.
Bertelgia looked around at the Letter of Gods that were discarded and littering the room like some garbage before looking back at Sungchul again.
“Mmm? Why are you mistreating the items you paid so much for?”
“I do not like the content.”
“But before you said Tt… Ttabon? Anyway you even used Favre class word to celebrate earlier.”
“It’s Ttabong. And pardon me Bertelgia. I’m going to read just one more.”
Sungchul asked Bertelgia to be excused before hurrying to read the next Letter of God. The reason why Sungchul was in a rush was because he was anxious. Worried that dozens of Letters of Gods he had paid an entire chest of gold for would all turn out to be utter garbage.
The content of the next Letter of God soon appeared before Sungchul.
This document had a completely different atmosphere from all previous Letter of Gods. It was written by someone else.
[The first Harvest in a decade was a total bust.]
Sungchul could predict the rest of the content of this Letter of God after reading just one sentence.
Sungchul lost his temper and threw away the Letter of God again. Bertelgia watched this happen then commented bluntly.
“I thought you said it’s Ttabong?”
“…Ttabong is revoked.”
Sungchul hopped to his feet. His eyes seemed like that of a cruel and feral predator.
“That accursed woman must be around still, right?”
Sungchul looked like he was ready to grab Derha and completely mangle her. Bertelgia flew to block Sungchul from leaving.
“No! I told you that the King of Nimpas invited you to dinner!”
“… It won’t take long.”
But things did not go as he planned. Bertelgia grabbed onto Sungchul’s coat and did everything in her power to stop him.
The nagging did not drag on for too long.
“It’s already evening! Look out the window! Can’t you see the sky getting dark?”
As Bertelgia said, it was well past evening and beginning to turn into night. The heavens were on Bertelgia’s side.
Sungchul had no choice but to put off his plans for tomorrow and go join the King’s feast.
Aege Harbor and Nimpas were practically next door, and there was no guarantee Sungchul would be able to locate Derha in the bustling streets of a harbor city even if he were to leave the palace.
A maid of the palace soon knocked on the door to inform them that it was time.
“Where is Marakia?”
Bertelgia let out a sigh before answering Sungchul’s question.
“Probably already there.”
“Is that so?”
“That guy, he is strangely popular wherever he goes. Same as back at the Tower of Recluse.”
“Yeah. Maybe it is because of his high Charisma?”
Sungchul, who is unwelcome everywhere he goes, consciously chose to ignore the possibility that a bird had a higher Charisma score than he. Sungchul pushed open the bedroom door.
Once he reached the banquet hall, Sungchul saw that there was a fair variety in the arrangement of food. There was even a hired bard troop performing lively music.
The participants of the feast, as opposed to the lavish preparations, were few.
From the kingdom of Nimpas was the king and queen of Nimpas, captain of the knights, four advisors of the court. From Sungchul’s side, everyone except Baron was present.
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