Shortly after the Noll raid ended.
"Won't the soldiers need a break? Let's take a break in Reidan."
"Thank you for your deep consideration!"
Chris encouraged the soldiers to take a break before returning home. The soldiers were in tears from the consideration. The soldiers marched without a break because they thought Grid was in danger, then they fought the vampires after crossing the desert. They were physically and mentally in a difficult state. Their eyes were dark at the thought of crossing the desert again to return home. It was recommended that they take a break. It was a break in Reidan, the second capital. It was obviously sweet honey.
"Leave the rest to me and return."
Chris told Grid as he smiled at the cheering soldiers.
Grid expressed his appreciation. "Thank you for taking care of the soldiers. It will cost a lot of money to provide accommodations and meals to tens of thousands of people..."
"It's natural as a duke of the Overgeared Kingdom. It isn't something to be thankful about."
"...It feels good."
Grid was fulfilled. The presence of strong colleagues made him happy. The melancholy of the days when he was alone was washed away.
"What? What force is that?"
"Is this the power of the Overgeared Kingdom?"
'If you want to interview me, come to Reidan.'
This was the words of Chris, the hope of Canada. Since he was busy as duke of the Overgeared Kingdom, he refused to hold a press conference in reality. He couldn't afford to waste that much time. Canada's media agreed to his position. They dispatched reporters to Reidan.
At this point, the reporters' only concern was the National Competition. The most prominent Canadian ranker, Chris, received overwhelming support from the Canadian people. He had been in the top position in the rankings for more than a year. They wanted to know what he thought about the 3rd National Competition, what vision he had and how much he could achieve. The reporters had hundreds of questions to ask Chris, many of which were related to the National Competition.
"Duke Chris is returning in triumph!"
Tung! Tung! Tudong!
The procession of tens of thousands of soldiers following Chris as he returned changed the interest of the reporters.
'The total force of the Overgeared Kingdom was estimated to be 60,000...?'
'The information was wrong...! Rumor has it that the Overgeared Kingdom only has 60,000 troops. Yet how could there be 40,000 troops in Reidan when it isn't the capital...! The Overgeared Kingdom must have at least 100,000 troops!'
'The Overgeared Kingdom...! How can a new kingdom have this much power...? This is Grid's power!'
The media paid attention to the great procession of soldiers following Chris. They were excited to find proof that the power of the Overgeared Kingdom was more than the rumors. It was a scoop. But the real scoop occurred afterwards.
"An envoy from the Saharan Empire has arrived!"
Chris and the reporters were surprised. The empire sent an envoy? Why?
'Haven't the two nations become completely hostile since the tributes stopped being offered?'
Chris looked troubled at the sight of the envoy. He was already worried about what the dog of the empire would talk about.
'The reason why an envoy was sent here might be to test a reconciliation... Of course, it will be accompanied by threats.'
It was upsetting now that he was targeted by the empire. Chris was extremely worried about how the empire would pressure him. He was feeling anxious when the empire's envoy came up to him. The people of Reidan and the Canadian reporters paid attention.
The envoy declared to Chris, "I came to tell you the will of His Majesty the Emperor."
Chris' voice was filled with tension. The tens of thousands of people gathered around him, the people of Reidan and the reporters of Canada were all nervous. It was a message from Juander, the ultimate person who could change the map of the continent with a few words.
What did he want to convey? It didn't seem to be anything good. They could only assume the worst. The moment that everyone was feeling uneasy.
"His Majesty the Emperor wants to make peace with the Overgeared Kingdom. If the Overgeared King doesn't want the empire to invade Valhalla, the empire will make an immediate truce with Valhalla."
The buzz in the air suddenly died down. Reidan fell silent. It was difficult to believe even when they heard it from the empire's envoy. The empire wanted to make 'peace'? They would make a truce with the enemy if the Overgeared King wanted it?
Was there ever such a big event in the continent's history? No. The empire's emperor always exercised absolute power. Everything was resolved according to his will. He only knew how to give commands. He didn't look at the will of others. This was Emperor Juander.
Due to that...
'This is be an overseas topic!'
The reporters were convinced. The story of the empire's envoy would be a featured article.
"Um... Let's go to the great hall."
Chris belatedly noticed the atmosphere and led the envoy elsewhere. Due to this, the reporters didn't know what happened afterwards but it wasn't a problem.
The reporters forgot about their original purpose of interviewing Chris and started to leave.
[The Saharan Empire's emperor, Juander has requested to make peace with the kingdom!]
[The power of the Overgeared Kingdom is much more than revealed.]
[(Column) For the first time in history, the empire is engaging in 'diplomacy'... The meaning of this incident is much greater than imagined.]
The world was overturned. The presence of the Overgeared Kingdom, which made even the absolute ruler of the West Continent aware of it, overwhelmed the public. The media was shaken. Every day, they were busy talking about the greatness of the Overgeared Kingdom and Grid.
Grid thought it was absurd.
"What's this situation?"
Why was the emperor doing this? Why was he requesting to make peace with them? In order to make peace, he was even willing to sign a truce with Valhalla.
"In fact, isn't there an ulterior motive?"
The Overgeared King's office. The uneasy Grid was making underwear with the God Hands. He was feeling confused when he heard a knocking sound.
"Good! Come in!"
Grid welcomed it. The situation had changed recently so he thought that Lauel could resolve his questions. Grid wanted to know the truth and be rid of the confusion. Lauel gave him a thumbs up.
"It's a result of Your Majesty assembling an army in Reidan in a matter of days."
Grid made an expression like he couldn't understand.
Lauel smiled and explained, "Your Majesty convened an army to raid Noll, but the timing was exquisite. It's because the empire gathered most of their troops in Valhalla, while you gathered a force in Reidan, the rear of the empire. The emperor thought you were a threat to the empire."
"This is the result. The empire recognized that it was dangerous to deal with both Overgeared and Valhalla at the same time, making them pull out a carrot. The emperor had to start diplomatic actions. I am sure that the name of Your Majesty will remain in the history of the empire."
"Um..." Grid understood the situation after hearing Lauel's explanation. But he was stunned. "I can't understand why the empire felt a threat? Can't the power of the empire destroy both Overgeared and Valhalla? Why do they feel threatened?"
"That is also because of Your Majesty."
"Because of me?"
"Didn't the descendent of the Undefeated King appear in Valhalla and push the Red Knights to the point of collapse? The emperor is frightened of the Undefeated King's descendant."
The moment he used 100,000 Army Massacre Sword in the war, Grid was misunderstood as the descendant of the Undefeated King. This was the repercussion.
"The rumor that the empire is afraid of the Undefeated King's descendant is true."
"Maybe it's more than rumored."
"Indeed... They're afraid."
Grid was reminded of the Undefeated King's death knight and his body shook. Grid couldn't imagine how strong the Undefeated King was when alive. He felt pity for the imperial army who fought with the Undefeated King.
"It all worked out in the end. We won't have to fear any problems during the period where we're at peace with the empire. The minimum period of a truce is two years. We have to build up maximum power during this period."
"The period of peace is so short?"
"No. It can go from one year to twenty years. Up to twenty years."
"Then isn't it possible for us to set the period of peace as long as possible?"
"Long-lasting peace requires a good talker with a high diplomatic stat. They need to use diplomatic skills and conversation to negotiate with the opponent. Unfortunately, there is no one with this talent in the Overgeared Kingdom.
"He is unchallenged in the art of communication but... He doesn't have the diplomatic stat."
"It's too bad. It would be useful in many ways if Huroi has the diplomatic stat."
Lauel's eyes shone.
"Then will you give the command to Huroi?"
"A command to proceed with the diplomatic quest."
"What is the diplomatic quest?"
"It is one of the quests for high ranking nobles."
"Those who perform this quest can gain a diplomat's status and open the diplomatic quest?"
"Yes, that's right. Of course, the degree of difficulty of the quest is very high. It will take at least half a year to complete the quest."
Grid couldn't say anything. Huroi was also a ranker. Grid knew better than anyone how much effort Huroi put in to be by Grid's side. Grid didn't want to force Huroi to stop levelling up and to go on a difficult quest. It was likely that Huroi would lose the ranker position that he worked so hard for. After a moment, Grid shook his head.
"If no one has done the diplomatic quest so far, it means they don't see the merit in being a diplomat. It's okay. I have no intention of interfering with Huroi. I would rather pick a new person."
"Is that so...? I understand."
Lauel was inwardly disappointed, but he already anticipated Grid's reaction. The moment that Lauel nodded and bowed.
"My Lord! Nooooooooo!"
The door of Grid's office burst open and Huroi ran in. Huroi was someone who tried to stay by Grid's side as much as possible. Even today, he was guarding the front of Grid's office in the name of an 'escort.'
"I heard the two of you from the front door! Leave it to me! A diplomat! I will become one! I will make excellent conversation with foreign diplomats and make them puppets of the Overgeared Kingdom!"
"...Is that a diplomat?"
He didn't think a diplomat would use such methods. Grid's eyes were red with anxiety but he smiled. The appreciation he felt for Huroi was always big.
'Before the start of the National Competition, I need to create a new item for Huroi.'
The National Competition was approaching.