The World after the Fall - Chapter 19[Updated at: 2021-01-11 07:15:40]
Chapter 19: Silver Bind (3)
Killing soldiers was easy for high-ranked Adapters in <Chaos>. The problem was what came after.
Fighting the ‘Fortress’.
This was very different from fighting against an individual or a clan. The fortress worked as an administrator who controlled the Interface System and information about Adapters.
A fortress meant it was a world.
The leaders of the Ten-Clan could kill high ranking Adapters single-handedly, but they would not attempt such a foolish action. There was no benefit to it.
Mino realized that this man would not care about any of that.
“Wa-wa-wai-wait-WAIT! James! He’s my friend!”
“…Didn’t you say you don’t know him?”
“I was just fooling around.”
Mino answered quickly, smiling awkwardly.
“Please, can you let him pass?”
James looked at the man again. It seemed like he was only a rookie in <Chaos>. James, with his job to teach newcomers, did not want to let the man go after he did something that he was not allowed to do.
“What if I say no?”
‘It will mean death for all of you, you fool!’
But she couldn’t say that. Her joke was now endangering a man’s life.
“I’ll treat you once if you let it go this time.”
Mino bit her lip.
“What’s with you? I’ll pay more if you need it. Do you want a horn?”
James narrowed his eyes at Mino’s over-eagerness.
“You doing that makes him more suspicious. I’ll take him to the Captain.”
Mino frowned. All gates of the fortress had a Captain. Most of them were powerful enough to easily handle 1st or 2nd stage Adapters. The one at this northern gate was the most famous among the gates. People called him…
Karlton the Stubborn!
Mino had to go through a series of annoyances because of him in the past. Karlton was infamous, but it wasn’t because he was violent, rude, or corrupted. It was the opposite.
No gate captain was innocent and Karlton was no exception. Born within the subfamily of the Sky people, the ones who inherited the blood of Angels, Karlton was a person who went by the book.
That was the problem.
The gate captains needed to be corrupt. They needed to be bribed to let criminals pass. That would allow the fortress’ underground markets to thrive, allowing the officials in the fortress to gain more profit.
However, Karlton never allowed any unjust habits.
That was why people avoided coming through the northern gate. Even innocent people had been taken in for simple mistakes.
Mino looked at Jaehwan.
‘If he meets Karlton, it will be the end for him.’
One was an outlaw who did not abide by the rules, and the other was a Sky person who did not let such things happen. She felt sweat rolling down her back.
“James, he’s not a bad person. You’re mistaken! Come on!”
Mino began to explain frantically.
“This person saved me! You know the Red Fox Clan, right? He killed them all single-handedly!”
“Killed the Red Fox Clan alone?”
“Yeah! He’s not suspicious!”
James looked at Jaehwan again. He seemed to have a good sword, but other than that, he looked like a beggar.
“…It makes him more suspicious, you know.”
“N-no, I mean… Hey! You should say something!”
Jaehwan narrowed his eyes at that. It seemed that he was also enjoying the moment. Mino sent a [Whisper].
[Come on! I was just joking around!]
Mino begged and Jaehwan answered, “She speaks the truth.”
“Please, explain in detail! Tell him how you killed them and where!”
Jaehwan did not answer and James scoffed. Another [Whisper] was sent to Jaehwan.
[Come on! Please! I’m sorry! I’m sorry, okay?]
Mino then saw Jaehwan focus on someone approaching. A powerful Spirit energy was approaching. It was the person that made her efforts useless.
It was a tall, fair-skinned, handsome man. Other than a silvery wing on his back, he looked just like a human.
The most stubborn one within the Gorgon Fortress.
Mino became grim as James brightened up.
“…What is going on here?”
It was Captain Karlton the Stubborn.
After hearing what happened, Karlton scratched his clean chin. It was his habit when he was thinking. He was famous not only for being stubborn but also for his handsomeness.
It was beautiful to see how he gently touched his chin with his blonde hair tied behind him. Some sculptors even sculpted Karlton touching his chin and sold them to the women in the fortress.
The most famous of all was [Karlton in deep thought].
But to Mino, he was just a stubborn, annoying gate Captain.
“So, Captain, he killed the Red Fox Clan…”
“Everything’s fine about the Red Fox Clan now. Thank you.”
Mino closed her mouth. The situation had gotten worse. Karlton asked Jaehwan, “So, you want to enter our fortress?”
“But you don’t have a Certificate.”
“Then you can’t enter.”
Karlton closed his mouth. Why was he asking the obvious? He couldn’t understand it. He had been doing this for over 55 years, and no one asked such an obvious question. It was just not possible. There was no reason for it. However, Karlton seemed happy to hear that question.
Mino slapped her forehead. It was time for ‘that’.
Karlton opened his mouth,
“If you cannot prove yourself with a Certificate, a Captain has the right to turn a visitor away. It is written in Chapter 27, the 4th Line of Gorgon- Entrance Code of Law. And according to Chapter 34…”
The soldiers became excited.
“It’s here! Captain’s [Stubborn Encyclopedia of Law]!”
“It’s been a while since I’ve heard it.”
“How does he memorize all that?”
“I sometimes think it might be a lie. Doesn’t it sound different every time?”
The soldiers seemed excited because they trusted their captain. The one that Adapters agreed to be the strongest of the gate captains was obviously Karlton. For the past 55 years, not once was his gate breached. Nobody knew how strong Karlton was.
“…and according to the law in Chapter 2, line 7, we can take custody of the traveler…”
Jaehwan interrupted him. “Stop. I get it.”
The guards immediately turned to Jaehwan.
“So you want to arrest me?”
Everyone moaned. No one had spoken like that to Karlton in the last 10 years. Karlton did not change his expression but every soldier knew. Karlton was really angry now.
“If you do not have the ‘Certification’, I might have to do that.”
“Why do I need that to prove myself?”
“Because you need it. Everyone here uses it to prove themselves.”
“What does it contain?”
“Your true name, organization, class, skills and status, criminal record, corruption rate of the spirit and…”
“Then I really don’t need that ‘Certification’.”
Karlton raised his eyebrows. Everyone in <Chaos> had a certification and used it to identify themselves. It was one of the few ways to prove themselves in <Chaos>. But this man was denying its importance.
“I don’t understand you. How are you going to prove yourself?”
“I won’t prove myself.”
Karlton was shocked. It was a rare case for an Adapter to be this defiant throughout his 55 years of duty. Most Adapters could not resist the bind that his law readings gave them. He didn’t just read the laws for no reason.
Skill [Order of Law]
It was a skill only a few people in the fortress could acquire. Karlton was the only one who was allowed to learn even though he was only a gate captain. Even 3rd stage adapters could not resist his [Order of Law].
However, this man easily ignored it. What was weirder was that it was Karlton who had received damage by using the skill. A spirit that not even [Order of Law] could break through. Karlton was astonished.
‘He seems to be proving himself by not proving himself.’
How was that possible?
“Then, I, Gate Captain Karlton, will arrest you under the Gorgon Gate Code of Law, Chapter 2, Line 7.”
Karlton’s hands began to be covered in a silver aura. The silvery net shot out from his hands and wrapped Jaehwan’s entire body. The guards shouted in excitement. It was a rare sight.
If [Karlton in deep thought] was the favorite for women collectors, then there also was the wealthy collectors’ favorite. A sculpture of Karlton covered with a silver aura.
[Karlton of the Silver Bind]
The motive for the sculpture was standing in front of them. Silver Bind was another one of Karlton’s nicknames.
The unique skill of the Sky people, [Silver Bind].
This was the best skill Karlton had. It bound the target no matter how powerful the target was. However, Karlton was shocked yet again. The net aura that was shot out at Jaehwan dissipated into smoke and disappeared as it touched him.
There were some who had resisted [Order of Law] as some Adapters had powerful Spirit Power. But even they were powerless against [Silver Bind].
Everyone who disobeyed the Gorgon Code of Law was ‘Evil’ who could not be freed with the [Silver Bind]’s power. But [Silver Bind] was now saying that this man was not ‘Evil’.
Mino took the chance to interrupt them.
“Captain! He has the Certificate but he just forgot about it! I’ll make sure he carries it around if you let him go this once! Please!”
Mino’s small shoulders were shaking and her hands were pale. Jaehwan looked at Mino. If she was doing to this extent, the fortress seemed to hold great power.
‘Code of Law… hmm..’
Jaehwan then changed and let go of his powers. Mino brightened up.
‘Finally, he’s listening!’
It wasn’t anything troubling actually. All he needed to do was to follow the Captain and provide information through the Interface and receive a new certificate.
“Good. I will follow your Code of Law.”
Mino became worried that he was too willing, but Karlton nodded.
“Good. So, I will now arrest…”
Jaehwan shook his head.
“No, I don’t need to be arrested.”
“Don’t I just need to do what this woman did?”
Mino flinched. What did she do? She immediately turned pale.
However, Jaehwan already took something out from his backpack and threw it to Karlton. Karlton caught it easily.
“Take that and let me go. That will do, right? I saw that you all seemed to be doing that.”
Everyone was dumbfounded. It was even more interesting to see James whose eyes met Jaehwan’s.
Karlton was looking down at the thing that Jaehwan threw to him.
“What’s wrong? Isn’t everyone doing this? That’s what I saw a while ago.”
[Code of Law]. Everyone knew, but not all followed.
Jaehwan spoke again, “Isn’t it enough? Then take this also.”
Another thing was thrown at Karlton, as Mino shouted in a [Whisper].
[W-WH-WHAT’S WRONG WITH YOU?!]
The air became cold as James and the other soldiers who knew about the bribery became pale.
‘We have to kill him now…!’
If Karlton knew what they had been doing, they knew that this would not end lightly. James took up his weapon.
“How dare you try to bribe the Captain! You fool!”
“Captain, we should kill him now!”
This was one thing that could never be done to Karlton the Stubborn. A total of 154 Adapters tried to bribe Karlton and had lost their lives. And this was the 155th one.
However, Karlton did not budge.
“…Did you say you’re Jaehwan?”
Karlton stared at the teal gem in his hand for a long time. Then, something unexpected happened. He suddenly became polite.
“You sure know how to crack a joke. I was waiting for you, The Messenger of the Greens.”