Chapter 217: Chapter 216: It’s Obviously Not Me, Part IV
It took me about an hour to wipe out the entire third floor FOB. I turned to face the Sand Warrior that had lost its arm and about a third of its body. The other was destroyed mid-battle and only this one was left standing.
“Recall.” At my command, the sand that was keeping the Warrior whole lost its hold and returned to the dungeon. I was satisfied with my Sand Warriors. They had both taken out about seventy devas by themselves. Those devas were healers and supporters that stood the farthest away from me, but killing them definitely helped with killing the other soldiers.
“Hmm…” With the Sand Warrior gone, I finally looked around to see that the base was in complete ruins. “Did I overdo it?” I had just killed over a thousand soldiers in a single battle. A thousand devas had just incurred a single death penalty.
I shook my head. It was war. Soldiers were going to lose lives and there was no need to regret it. Besides, they were the two-faced criminals, not me.
I plopped down on a piece of rubble that was once part of the base’s wall. “What should I do now?” I could stop here and wait for the Windsor Guard to react or keep going. I didn’t have much time to keep thinking about what to do when my Comm Link rang.
“I bet it’s from the Windsor Guard.” They had lost over two thousand lives in all, starting from yesterday. It wasn’t cheap to have to provide all of them with restoration gems. Losing so much at once wasn’t something they could ignore.
“Hello?” I picked up after letting my Comm Link ring for as long as possible.
“Yes, minister, what is it?”
“There’s someone here from the Windsor Guard to see you. She said it was urgent.”
“The Windsor Guard? What do they want with me?” I knew that the representative from the Windsor Guard was listening in and I purposefully played dumb. Obviously dissatisfied with my response, I heard the minister’s Comm Link get taken away.
“Hello, Mr. Lee,” a new voice spoke up.
“Who is this?” I said, adding a small sprinkle of annoyance.
The owner of the new voice noticed the annoyance and I could hear the sheepishness in her voice. “I must apologize. I can assure you that I didn’t steal away the minister’s phone; I was just in a hurry. I wouldn’t do anything so foolish with people from the Sunbin Guild watching me closely.”
“I asked who you were.”
“Right. My name is N and I’m the Chief of Staff of the Windsor Guard. I would really like to meet with you as soon as possible.” For the Windsor Guard to send their chief officer, they must really be hurting more than I had imagined.
“Hmm…I am a bit busy right now…”
“I believe we have many things to discuss, Mr. Lee,” N said. She probably meant what happened here in Bristol Dungeon and Mexico.
“Hmm…” I kept feigning ignorance and pretended to think. “I’m not sure what we have to talk about, but very well. I am a bit curious. I’ll return to Seoul soon.”
“Thank you, Mr. Lee. I’ll be waiting.” I was one step closer to stopping the Windsor Guard’s involvement in Mexico. I hung up my Comm Link and took out a Warp Scroll that had my home recorded.
“And if they don’t do as I ask, then I’ll just make it so that they won’t ever be able to hunt in the Bristol Dungeon again.”
Back at my home base in Seoul, I noticed that there were about a hundred devas wearing the mark of the Windsor Guard gathered on one side. That was an interesting number. It wasn’t enough to be intimidating, but too many for this to be a simple talk. Devas of my allied factions had them surrounded, as well. I gave them a small nod as I headed inside my house.
I had changed my clothes before leaving the dungeon, but my body was still grimy from the fight. I took a long, hot shower and finally met with the British guests an hour later.
“I am N, Chief of Staff of the Windsor Guard. We spoke earlier.”
“It’s an honor to meet you, Mr. Lee. My name is Albert Brown, captain of the Windsor Guard’s 1st Assault team.”
“Welcome to my home. Please, have a seat.” I shook N’s and Albert’s hands and sat down. I was the first to talk. “So, what brings you all the way here? I don’t think I ever had anything to do with the Windsor Guard or have met anyone from your guild,” I said shamelessly, even though I obviously looked like I was just in a fight when I got home.
“We honestly have no idea as well. What reason would you have to do something like this?”
“Something like what?”
N took out several photos in response to my question. It was me with the golden duck mask holding my Harrier.
“I don’t know who that is, but that’s one good-looking fellow. I like his mask, too.”
“…” N didn’t say anything, looking straight at me, and I held her gaze.
“This isn’t you, Mr. Lee?” Albert asked, disgusted.
“Me?” I asked, pointing to myself, as if I was shocked he asked that.
“I don’t see how you think this person is me. Is it because he’s using a spear? There are so many people out there who use spears.”
“Is it because of what happened in Mexico?” N asked suddenly.
I was taken slightly aback. I didn’t expect her to be upfront about it. But if I said that it was, then I was admitting that that the duck-man was in fact me. I mean, we all knew it was me, but I didn’t want to give them the satisfaction.
“Mexico? Why are you bringing up Mexico now all of a sudden?”
“Then can we take that as permission to continue our operation in Mexico?”
“I don’t know why you’re asking me that.”
“You don’t know anything at all… then I’ll put it simply. The Windsor Guard is heavily invested with the battle in Mexico between the NCR Guild and Pedro. The moment we intervened, this duck mask-wearing individual began attacking us.”
“Huh… is that right?”
“Then why are you meeting with me and not him?”
“We want to hear your advice, Mr. Lee,” N said, looking right at me. I could tell she was no easy opponent, but I did want the Windsor Guard to do what I wanted them to do.
“Well, if that’s the case, I can impart to you the best advice I can give you.” I picked up a photo that had a clear shot of me wearing the duck mask. “You can’t see his face, but I can tell this man is very stubborn and has a strong personality. Unless things go his way, I don’t see him ever stopping.”
“……” N obviously knew what I was getting at and remained silent.
“But, that is just my opinion. I don’t know who this person is, so I can’t outright speak for him.”
“He did proclaim he would do something, but he hasn’t done anything about it for a while. That is why we acted instead. Was that our mistake?”
“I don’t know. Maybe.”
“Had he acted first, we would not have interfered. We had no intention of ever getting in his way.”
“Well, I’m not entirely sure what had happened between you two so I don’t really know what to say.” I had already told them what they needed to know when I said the masked man was very stubborn. The choice was theirs now. It was up to them if we were going to continue this charade.
“I see. Well, it certainly was helpful advice. If I may, could I ask one more thing?”
“By all means. I’d be more than happy to help.”
“How do you think he found out about our operation? How did he find out that it was us? We have never executed a foreign operation before.”
“Hmm…I’ll just say what I would do, since you are asking for my advice. In such cases, I just guess. I just leave it to luck and usually, I’m right.”
“You guess…” N repeated. “That’s quite the ability you have.”
“Well, that’s just my experience,” I said with a smile.
“Thank you for answering my questions.”
“Don’t mention it. I just hope it will help.”
“It will; I’m sure of it.”
“Then I’m glad.”
N and Albert stood up to leave the drawing room. Before they left, I spoke up. “Since you say my advice was of great help, could I add one last thing?”
N stopped and turned to face me. “Go ahead.”
“I believe that this man also has a quick temper and is quite impatient. I doubt he likes sitting still for more than a day.”
“…” N didn’t say anything for a moment. She soon put on a smile. “Thank you for telling me that.”
I was soon left alone in the drawing room. “Now all I have to do is to wait.” I had done all I could now. I didn’t outright say it, but I had asked them if they were going to take their hands off of Pedro and gave them 24 hours to decide.
“Ha… to think I would actually help someone I never met with their revenge…” I headed back to my room while thinking about Pedro, who only had five days left to live now. I needed the rest, in case the British bastards didn’t do as I said.
Windsor Guard base beneath London’s Green Park…
The guild officers and Queen Elizabeth herself were gathered to meet. N had just reported on the meeting she had with Lee Jiwon.
“He’s outright looking down on us,” Queen Elizabeth said with utmost disgust, and her officers agreed. The United Kingdom once had the greatest empire in the world, and was still considered a great power.
“Can we not use the Death Prison on Lee Jiwon instead?” the queen asked.
“That’s…” The officers knew what she meant. They needed to exact their revenge on Lee Jiwon, but there was a time for everything, and it wasn’t now.
“If we recall the Templar soldiers, wouldn’t it be possible?”
“It might be, but Lee Jiwon isn’t alone anymore.”
“You mean those six guilds that took it upon themselves to protect Lee Jiwon’s home?”
“Yes, I do. The Myth Guild, Ravi Guild, and the Werewolf Clan all owe Lee Jiwon their lives. Only Lee Jiwon was there to save them. The Abu Dhabi Guild were also the ones to experience Lee Jiwon’s true power up close. If we openly bring the fight to Lee Jiwon… then they will all run to his aid, no matter what.”
“We have allies as well, don’t we?” The Windsor Guard was one of the three strongest guilds of Europe, and maintained good relationships with many guilds.
“I doubt we can rely on them for something as political as this,” N replied.
“Ha… then do we give up here?”
“…” No one could reply to their queen’s question. Not even N knew what to say.
In the end, Queen Elizabeth knew what had to be done. They had to wash their hands of Pedro and leave him for Lee Jiwon. “Fine. Very well. I’m no fool, to not realize that we have no choice. But I won’t ever forget that we failed here today.”
“Yes, Your Majesty!”
And so, the Windsor Guard recalled their secret Templar soldiers.
The next day in Seoul…
The news channels and papers were all talking about the war in Mexico. More attention was on it now when Pedro almost died a few days ago. But the news today was different. The NCR Guild had received another heavy blow.
“Good. They pulled out.” Without the Templar soldiers assisting them, the NCR Guild could not defend against Pedro’s attacks.
“He has four days left now.” I remembered clearly how long the war was because of Pedro’s sudden appearance and disappearance. “Four days. I hope you successfully exact your revenge by then.” I was serious about that, especially with all the work I put in for him.