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Chapter 52

From Ivan’s perspective, it may have been portrayed as a horribly primitive pre-modern society, but that is an absurd exaggeration. Naturally, people in this world are competent. (The incompetent couldn’t survive.)

Since this competence cannot always be applied in a positive direction, most competent elites and high-ranking members of society intricately accumulate corruption. (This is why the intelligence headquarters believes in the conspiracy theory.)

As everyone knows, the corruption of the incompetent is less fatal than the corruption of the competent. This becomes even more critical when it evolves from an individual challenge to the societal system.

So, those ambitious individuals who have decided to side with the demons are playing in deep waters.

“What about these guys?”

“Why ask that? Don’t act like an amateur. Let’s handle it professionally; respond like a pro.”

Dmitri shrugged, turning his body. His long coat swayed as he turned. Simultaneously, a dry gunshot echoed twice.

Dmitri lit his cigarette with the gunshots as an accompaniment. Hiss, exhale. The glowing cigarette cast a reddish glow in the dark room.

“Annoying bastards.”

As the societal system becomes more sophisticated, the ambitions of the ambitious bury themselves deeper in the shadows.

In this world, the ‘surviving ambitious’ are all exceptionally competent. As mentioned earlier, those who revealed their incompetence in the turmoil of war have all perished.

This seems worthy of a global linguistic experiment.

According to traditional syllogism, it goes like this:

1. All current rebels, terrorists, or anti-establishment figures are somewhat skilled.
2. However, the societal system of the United Kingdom remains robust.
3. Therefore, all factors catching these ‘competent rebels’ are more competent than them.

It’s been just 4 years since the war ended. The structures of all kingdoms are damaged to a level where they can no longer endure further conflict.

Furthermore, the majority of the working-age population has been lost, mainly disappearing into the clutches of the demons.

A flow similar to when popular rights soared during the Black Plague outbreak unfolds. The difference is that the nobles pillaging the populace are overwhelmingly powerful, literally wielding magic.

Naturally, there’s an impending rebellion between the populace and the plunderers. If someone sparks the fire, it will blaze to a monumental level.

In the societal phenomenon, when a major event occurs, the one who benefited the most is often the culprit.

When looking for those who gain the most when a country burns, it usually comes down to:

– The demons under colonial rule.
– Neighboring nations.
– Domestic rebels.
– Exiled royal families due to power shifts.
– Ideologues immersed in the beliefs of the common people.

“Sigh….”

Dmitri exhaled a sigh mixed with cigarette smoke. There are many complexities, spanning across domestic and international aspects. Currently, Krasilov is on the brink of civil war.

The Krasilov intelligence headquarters will have to spend another night awake.

It was a tiresome summer night, no different from usual, until the fire engulfs Frechenkaya.

***

Ivan, being a person who loves peace, tends to resolve most issues through dialogue.

One notable challenge in this primitive era is that, faced with minor issues, the majority of people tend to lock the gates of their hearts and refuse conversation.

However, Ivan, in a manner befitting a resourceful modern individual, effortlessly tackles this issue.

After all, gates are made of wood, and all wood breaks beneath the axe.

Hence, among countless examples (bottle openers, can openers, head openers, etc.), Ivan’s axe serves the role of a door opener, wide-opening and moistening the gates of the other person’s heart.

“St… st-stop! I’ll tell you everything! I’ll tell you everything! Please, stop!!”

“Haa. We haven’t even started yet.” (Ivan)

“I-I didn’t say I wouldn’t cooperate!”

Ivan lowered his head towards this amateur spy.

Since information spoken with the gates of the heart not fully open is highly likely to be mixed with falsehoods, opening the heart further was necessary to increase the reliability of the information. Physically opening the location of the heart often leads to the psychological heart opening in most cases.

“Ugh…!”

“Now let me heal you.”

“Just…kill me…!”

“Don’t say such sad things.”

Ivan gently whispered as he brought out a healing potion to seal the wide-open heart.

Simply repeating torture is a handshake that degrades the quality of information. Information is easily distorted, leading to situations where individuals believe and speak entirely different memories as the truth.

Therefore, to completely break down the psychological barriers, Ivan, too, needed to temporarily set aside his modern intellectual abilities and equip the primitiveness of this era.

After a short psychological counseling session accompanied by warm care (avoiding fatal organs) and delicate treatment (not sparing healing potions), the fifth encounter with the spy eventually ended with the truth being muttered with vacant eyes.

“Dionar is… ugh… already in Frechenkaya… he arrived… the signal flare is… not ours, but Dionar personally…”

“Is he already active?”

“Yes, yes… the infiltration plan is just a decoy… we’re also waiting for the signal from Dionar…”

“What is Dionar aiming for? Is the abduction of Ecdysis the end?”

“No…”

The spy, known to be in charge of the rendezvous with Dionar, suddenly glanced at the sky with vacant eyes and then abruptly tapped the ground, as if that alone would provide the answer.

As Ivan raised an eyebrow, the man, coughing up blood, managed to speak.

“This place.”

“…This place?”

“Frechenkaya… Rev, Revolution hurray… The people’s sword to the peo, people… Above man… Only the presence of the god… Under the kingdom of the sky… Cough! Ah, aah…”

He’s broken.

Ivan sighed and stood up.

If Dionar, who is supposed to arrive within the next day or two, is already infiltrating this city, would it be wise to delay the inevitable with operatives already compromised?

No, it wouldn’t. Once exposed, there’s no turning back for the guy. Even if he tries to return to Drovian, he’ll likely meet Einar’s furious axe.

Frechenkaya is a vast metropolitan area. Therefore, finding a foreign spy who has never been encountered before, infiltrating the city, is a bit more challenging than finding Kim the handyman in Seoul.

But to find a snake, you have to search through the grass.

If Dionar catches wind of the headquarters being exposed, with some operatives and agents left alive but clearly tortured, he’ll be highly anxious.

“Ecdysis should be at home by now.”

Contemplating the significance of targeting Frechenkaya itself, Ivan started moving.

Securing Ecdysis’ safety first and, if possible, intercepting Dionar’s attempt to ambush her, Ivan planned to inquire further.

He was genuinely curious about the psychological foundation that led someone to delusionally believe that assaulting a party of warriors could somehow be a strategy to conquer Frechenkaya.

***

Ecdysis and Mord quietly strolled through the night.

“Wow, but seriously, I can’t get used to this. Uncle, you too, right? How can there be so few people on the streets?”

“It happens when the state is incompetent. Eshi, do you realize how great your father is as a king?”

“Oh, well. I guess so.”

Krasilov spent the past war under a single monarchy. Naturally, a nationwide state of emergency was declared, and the country operated under a martial stance for over a decade.

Even though peace has been restored, such a militaristic state wouldn’t change in just four years. But Drovian is different.

During the last war, Drovian maintained a loose alliance where about a dozen tribes each governed their own regions.

In these tribal nations, there is no centralized authority. Naturally, the rights of individual citizens have developed significantly compared to other countries.

Even the most ordinary warrior on the street, if you trace their lineage seven generations back, is the brother-in-law of the cousin of the great-great-great-great-grandson of a chief. That is what a clan society means.

The point to be wary of here is that warriors are scattered on the streets. Anyway, thanks to that, social order could evolve more modernly.

Unlike civilized societies, in tribal societies, axes are wielded against those lacking manners. Everyone has manners, making the streets less frightening.

In such a society, living conditions and looking at the streets of Frechenkaya might seem bleak and tough.

For Ecdysis, who has been in this city for nearly three months, it was still a challenging environment to adapt to.

“Oh, Uncle. Have you tried that store? The waffles there are really delicious.”

Typically, a waffle shop near a university is not a place to go alone. It’s a space for the unruly insiders.

Therefore, Ecdysis had never tried waffles from that shop. She often found herself gazing at people eating and then returning home.

With a voice tinged with regret, Ecdysis was continuously introducing her uncle to nearby popular eateries while passing the closed waffle shop.

“Oh, right. The waffles with strawberries there are delicious.”

“…?!”

What Ecdysis overlooked was the fact that Mord was immensely popular.

The Knight Department is basically a stronghold of the strong, where men operate according to the laws of the strong.

It’s hard not to like a Drovian man who boasts of being the man among men. Furthermore, Mord is affable, wealthy (thanks to King Einar’s activities), and generally kind.

Ecdysis, who was despised for exactly the opposite reasons, now gazed at Mord with a deeply wounded expression.

A betrayer.

The world is full of betrayers.

The 20-year-old university student, who realized this harsh truth, muttered quietly with bowed head.

“Let’s just go home. It’s not fun anymore.”

“Shall we grab something to eat on the way?”

“Enough!”

And so, they began to move back home for a moment.

Before their eyes, an unexpected but familiar figure appeared.

“It’s been a while, brother.”

“…How did you find this place?”

“Is there a reason for me to come here other than His Majesty’s orders?”

“Uncle!”

“Oh, Eshi. How have you been? It feels like ten years have passed in just three months since you left. The difference is quite noticeable when our princess is here or not.”

“Hehe, Uncle. How have you been, too?”

The person who appeared under the night’s enchanting lights, with wild hair standing on end as if it had a mind of its own, was a spirited male.

Einar’s huscal. It was Dionar Eriksson.


30 Years Have Passed Since the Prologue

30 Years Have Passed Since the Prologue

프롤로그에서 30년이 흘렀다
Score 7.8
Status: Ongoing Type: Author: Released: 2023 Native Language: Korean
I got transmigrated into a game I’ve never seen before. I thought it was a top-notch RPG and spent 30 years on it. I retired as a war hero and planned to spend my remaining time leisurely. But it turns out, it was an academy story?

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