Book 2: Chapter 98
When Lukas finally arrived at Leo’s hospital room, he immediately noticed the heavy atmosphere.
Nevertheless, the expressions of the two in the room immediately changed when they saw him, and they greeted him with bright smiles.
Lukas nodded and turned to Leo.
“Leo, how are you feeling?”
“I’m a lot better now. Sorry for making you worry.”
Leo responded in a calm voice.
Lukas looked him in the eyes for a moment before speaking.
“Are you okay?”
Lukas didn’t ask him any more questions and instead turned to look at Min Ha-rin.
“Your mana flow seems much more stable than before. It was that guy I saw earlier, Vincent, who taught you, wasn’t it?”
“Ah, yeah. He’s a great teacher.”
As expected of her Master, he could tell that with a single glance.
Min Ha-rin couldn’t help but smile as she had that thought, but her expression was a bit awkward.
Min Ha-rin blinked in surprise at the unexpected question before smiling bitterly.
“…how did you know?”
“It’s written all over your face.”
When Min Ha-rin gently lifted a hand to her face, Lukas smiled softly.
It was a little strange for Lukas to say something like that. It was only then when Min Ha-rin noticed that there was something strange about Lukas’ attitude.
‘…did something happen to you, Master?’
This was a question that she wanted to ask, but Min Ha-rin couldn’t open her mouth.
There were many reasons for this, but the most important reason was that she wasn’t brave enough.
Lukas stood on a level way above her. So she could only imagine how great whatever was bothering her Master had to be. Because of this, a thought pervaded Min Ha-rin’s mind.
What could she do even if she heard it?
“Tell me what happened.”
This was said in a much softer tone than usual, discomforting her even more.
Suppressing the strange feeling, Min Ha-rin slowly summarised everything she’d heard from Vincent.
After hearing what she had to say, Lukas remained silent for a while.
“So what did you say?”
“I told him that I needed time to think. I wanted to talk to Master first…”
“What do you want to do?”
“I want to help.”
After saying that, Min ha-rin turned to look at Leo.
“Because he saved Junior Brother… and because I have this feeling that it’s not the Association President’s time to die…”
That was an opinion Lukas could agree with.
It was not yet time for Neil to die. Of course, it could just be because of his biased views, but he felt that humanity still needed a being like Neil Prand.
“Then let’s do it. I happen to have business with the Saint, too.”
“Right, I’m going to ask him to heal Nina.”
Min Ha-rin felt a tiny shred of hope.
She’d been severely injured during the attack by the Asian hunters, especially her eyes, which had been cursed. The diagnosis determined that treatment would be impossible with the normal methods, but if the rumours of the Saint were true, then it might be possible.
“I can take up to four people to Korea with me! There’s me and Master, and Mr. Vincent will probably want to go too. As for the last person…”
Min Ha-rin’s eyes turned to Leo, and Lukas’ followed.
Leo must have felt their gazes. Nevertheless, his expression didn’t change. Instead, he slowly lowered his head.
There was a deep sense of shame that squeezed out of Leo’s calm face.
“…don’t think I will go with you this time…”
* * *
Min Ha-rin headed over to meet Vincent after her short conversation with Lukas and Leo.
It seemed he’d returned to continue the meeting, but as soon as she alerted the guard waiting outside the room, he came out.
When he showed up, Vincent’s face appeared to be much more haggard than when he’d left Leo’s hospital room. It was as if the meeting was sapping all of his energy.
There was a hint of tension that couldn’t be hidden by his tired voice.
Seeing that Min Ha-rin had come to him, it meant that she had made a decision. However, her expression was so calm that he could not predict what choice she had made in the end.
Fortunately, Min Ha-rin didn’t intend to procrastinate with this matter. She immediately got to the point.
“I’ll accept Mr. Vincent’s request. From now on, I will do my best to save the Association President.”
“Yes. In return, I have a few conditions. I hope Mr. Vincent can accept them.”
Vincent hurriedly schooled his expression.
“I’ll do whatever I can.”
Min Ha-rin nodded before mentioning the condition that she and Lukas had discussed.
“First of all, I’d like North America to officially acknowledge the establishment of Argento Spell.”
Vincent couldn’t easily respond to this condition, and instead, he made a soft sound. There was a mixture of confusion and embarrassment on his face.
“Is it hard to agree to?”
“Personally, I would love to agree to it immediately. I would agree even if you mentioned a more difficult condition than that. However… this is not something that I’m able to decide on my own.”
Min Ha-rin nodded as though she’d expected it.
Authorising the establishment of an organisation was by no means simple. After all, it would mean that the North America Headquarters, which was the most powerful force in the world at the moment, recognised the establishment of Argento Spell. In short, they would be able to carry some of the prestige of North America.
This was a necessary process for Lukas to create a global organisation that went beyond the reach of each region and branch.
Of course, Min Ha-rin didn’t understand the entire process and framework. After all, what she trusted wasn’t the feasibility or validity of the plan but Lukas’ existence. Even if he had decided upon a plan that seemed even less plausible, she would still give him her unconditional trust.
In any case, this was a matter of utmost importance. Vincent didn’t have a low position in the North America headquarters, but he was not powerful enough to make such decisions on his own.
Vincent clenched and unclenched his fists nervously. He seemed concerned that Min Ha-rin would take back what she said if they couldn’t agree.
“There are a few council members in the meeting hall right now, aren’t there?”
“Then wouldn’t you be able to accept my offer if you persuaded them?”
It was easy to say.
Vincent spoke with a heavy expression.
“It’s not that easy. Fortunately, most of the people in the meeting hall had a good relationship with the Association President. It might take some time, but I’m confident I could convince them to accept your conditions. However…”
Vincent’s voice faded at the end, but Min Ha-rin understood what he was trying to say.
“There are some people who are pleased with the fact that the Association President is injured.”
Vincent let out a heavy sigh.
Min Ha-rin couldn’t help but feel surprised. It seemed that even in North America, which she thought was perfectly united, some were antagonistic towards each other.
The reason was unexpected, but the outcome was something that Lukas had already anticipated.
“…of course, Argento Spell already has the extraordinary achievement of taking down one of the Five Dukes. It’s not widely known yet, but if they found out about this achievement, they would certainly not oppose you blindly. Even if they have high positions.”
“In other words, it will take time.”
Min Ha-rin nodded at Vincent’s apology.
“That means my condition will be put on hold for now.”
“Is that alright with you?”
“Thank you for your consideration. Is there anything else you need?”
“Including myself, only four people will be able to go to Korea. So far, the list is myself, Mr. Vincent, and Master. As for the other person…”
Vincent shook his head before Min Ha-rin could finish talking.
“I’m sorry, but I won’t be able to go with you.”
“I can’t leave the Association President’s side for now. He cannot be left alone. Someone has to watch over him.”
Vincent’s expression showed that he meant his words and that there would be no changing his mind.
Was he preparing for a possible assassination attempt?
This would make sense, especially if there were people who wanted Neil dead.
Min Ha-rin’s expression became a bit troubled.
“…then that means we’ll have to find two more… Mr. Vincent, would it be possible for you to gather some of the strongest and most reliable hunters in North America right now?”