SYS (Novel) Chapter 455

C455

From that day on, a large construction project began immediately.

Jin and his companions had no time to exchange greetings or share New Year's jokes with the new members.

They were busy from morning till night.

This was because the grand construction had literally begun.

"Jin-nim."

Kashimir stood next to Jin.

They were standing on a sailboat circling Tikan Free City, observing the progress of the construction.

There were hardly any external workers; instead, Black King Mercenaries personally transported and installed the equipment.

Even the combat sailboats had been brought by the Black King Corps.

Their base was on land, but they had plenty of equipment for naval battles, like the mercenaries.

"Jin-nim, a day like this has come to Tikan thanks to you. Except for the main factions, there are hardly any regions in the world with the level of defense that Tikan has now."

Kashimir said that, and his expression was so deeply moved that it seemed tears could roll down his moist eyes at any moment.

Suddenly, Jin recalled the thoughts he had before meeting Kashimir for the first time.

When I tried to establish a base in Tikan, I thought what Kashimir-nim needed the most was the foundation of national power that would be needed after the city's status was elevated to a nation.

Tikan had a small population, and as a result, talent and human resources were scarce.

It was a land that relied solely on the intelligence of the Seven-Colored Peacocks, so even after becoming a nation, it couldn't escape the status of a small country in Jin's past life.

That's why, when I didn't know the danger of the Divine Artifact Mirror of Colón, I thought about proposing a deal to share its effects.

A defense system at the level of major factions was established without even using the mirror.

Both Jin and Kashimir had achieved such remarkable results that they hadn't even considered it when they first met.

Once the construction was finished, there were many possibilities for Tikan's status to be elevated from "Free City" to "Nation."

That's why Kashimir was so euphoric.

"As soon as the construction is finished, I want to declare to the major factions and countries that we have also become a nation."

Kashimir changed the joy on his face to determination as he spoke.

"Yes, that seems likely."

"And if you wish, you can ascend as the king of Tikan."

It was an unexpected proposal.

It was also a proposal that Jin had no intention of accepting.

"Why would I do that?"

"Because you have to achieve more."

It was clear that it wasn't something Kashimir said just to test Jin, which left him even more perplexed.

"Do some Flagbearers of Runcandel also serve as kings of some nations?"

"That's merely symbolic. In reality, they don't perform the functions of a king but simply wear the crown on behalf of protecting that nation. It's not a kind of protection you would like."

"I know. And my proposal is not for that."

Jin shrugged and shook his head.

"No, Kashimir-nim. The king of the Free Nation should be you. Besides, I am like a double-edged sword in Tikan."

"Jin-nim, a double-edged sword? What an analogy! I don't believe that. Why do you think so?"

Because I saw before my return that the people here managed to turn Tikan into a free nation without anyone's help, Jin thought to himself, but he didn't say it out loud.

He stared at Kashimir.

"Kashimir-nim, you must understand it too. When we announce that Tikan has become a nation, the major factions, especially Runcandel and the imperial family among them, will pay a lot of attention to this fact."

The four main factions: Runcandel, Zipple, Vermont, and Kinzelo.

Zipple and Kinzelo were less likely to directly pressure Tikan, even if it became a nation.

As long as my father is alive, Zipple rarely interferes with me or with Runcandel, for that matter.

They may exert indirect pressure, but they won't dare to do anything drastic.

Kinzelo's Zephyrin aimed at Jin this time, but she also fled after suffering some damage.

She won't be able to attack me until she recovers.

And her actions in the Black King's Mountain were very different from Kinzelo's usual tactics.

Attacking me first was a reckless move, and I can't rule out that it was her decision.

Since the incident at the Black King's Mountain, Jin and his companions had come to the provisional conclusion that Zephyrin is the Demon Dragon of the "leader of Kinzelo."

-If she is as strong as Murakan said, she is undoubtedly under the direct control of a Demon God-level being. There are only a few names that come to mind immediately, but I have no knowledge of the name 'Zephyrin.' Either it's an ancient Dragon that was never active during my time and Murakan's, or a being that has been erased from history.

-If she was erased from history...

-It's not just the ancient Runcandel whom Zipple had erased from history. The same goes for Archmage Tzenmi, and there are quite a few people who have been erased from the memory of us Dragons who lived in those days.

-Then, the leader's story may also have been manipulated by Zipple. I was already leaning towards that when I saw Sister Rinpa express that she had met the leader.

-It's not an entirely improbable possibility. It could be a forgotten figure from the time of the ancient power struggle. Anyway, Zephyrin will need more time to recover. Demonic Dragons usually borrow power from a Demon God or an equivalent being, and the Leader of Kinzelo was already in a bad state even during the fight with the Sword Emperor.

This was the conversation between Quikantel and Jin after the incident at the Black King's Mountain.

There were many doubts and unanswered questions, but one thing Quikantel confidently asserted was that Zephyrin is the Dragon of the Leader of Kinzelo, and her recovery would be slow.

For these reasons, Jin thought that Zipple and Kinzelo would not directly intervene when Tikan became a nation.

On the other hand, the situation with Runcandel and the imperial family was different.

"Runcandel may act differently depending on what my mother decides, but most likely, she will establish policies that maximize the Family's benefits through Tikan. At the very least, she might demand tribute payments, and at most, she might force mission assignments. She might even try to insist that Tikan serves as one of the bases for the Guardian Knights."

Of course, they wouldn't just stand by and accept that, but it was an issue that could pose a significant burden for Tikan on its own.

"I am prepared for that matter. The pressure from the major factions was inevitable even if we take you out of the equation, Jin-nim. Also, regarding the imperial family, it seems like you're thinking about the recent proposal you rejected and exposed their experiments with living golems."

Kashimir continued with a bitter smile.

The truth was that Tikan had always been a thorn in the side of the Empire. Ironically, having you here makes them act more cautiously, Lord Jin. That's why I believe your contribution is the most significant for Tikan to become a nation.

Kashimir was not aware that he alone had elevated Tikan to a Free Nation before Jin's return.

At that time, Tikan couldn't completely shake off the status of a small country, but Kashimir had been known as the Wise King and managed his small territory.

As far as Jin knew, no other faction threatened Tikan during that period, or at least none dared to challenge him.

That's why Jin felt guilty.

Kashimir and Alisa had saved Euria on their own and had acquired immense national strength, far superior to the weak countries of his past life. And the more Jin intervened with them, the greater the risks.

'Can Tikan really have a better situation in the upcoming wars than in my past life?'

Since Jin had gotten close to his Tikan companions and forged deep bonds, he had often asked himself this question.

He couldn't help but wonder if his regression had only brought positive changes or if, indeed, it had burdened them with a dangerous fate.

Of course, it was a question he couldn't answer no matter how much he thought about it.

Soon, Kashimir nodded as if he knew what Jin was thinking.

Of course, he was unaware of Jin's regression, but he clearly understood his concerns.

Even excluding the element of Jin's regression, establishing a deep connection with a person like "Jin Runcandel" had always involved taking on many risks.

From the moment Jin saved Euria, he had been a benefactor to Kashimir and Alisa, and the same was true for other members of their family.

From the moment he helped Quikantel rescue Enya, from the moment he accepted Jet and his son, and Jin told Kuzan and Beris the truth about Taimyun and helped them, from the moment he helped Yulian save the Thunder Dragon, Caltor.

And the Phantom Legion Mercenaries and the Black King Mercenaries, who had joined more recently...

They also owed their lives to Fey and the mercenaries to Jin.

In this way, Jin had offered a lot first to all the people of Tikan before becoming part of the family.

Their relationships transcended mere consideration of benefits and losses.

"We're always willing to sacrifice for each other, right? Jin-nim. So don't think too much. Especially the expression 'double-edged sword' is quite annoying."

Jin smiled and nodded.

"Still, I can't become a king."

"In that case, I will. In fact, it's not even an important question of who wears the crown between us. I only considered giving it to you if you wanted."

"Oh... Then, is it okay if I become the king?"

It was Jet who intervened and said this.

Jet was busy loading luggage, assembling equipment, and sweating profusely, like other mercenaries.

He skillfully navigated the tense atmosphere between the Black King Mercenaries and the Phantom Legion Mercenaries.

He made sure that neither party felt uncomfortable.

That's why Jin and his companions believed that Jet played a vital role in resolving conflicts within the mercenary corps.

It was fascinating to realize that this capable individual had been a clandestine information agent in his past life.

"Are you serious? If you want to, well... I won't oppose. But I can already see what the future holds for us."

"Haha, I'm joking, Kashmir-nim. Actually, I dropped by because I have some news to share. I overheard it while carrying luggage down the hall... Oh, here it comes."

Jet saw a woman waving her hand in his direction.

It was Quikantel.

As soon as they saw her, Jin and Kashimir realized the news that Jet was about to convey.

"Jin! He just regained consciousness. Come quickly."

The one Quikantel referred to as "he" was the Black Knight they had rescued from the Black King's Mountain.

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(Up to '120' more ch4pt3rs)
Publication of up to 6 w33kly ch4pters, thanks.

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