“What do you mean?”
Lagren widened his eyes, clenching the mug in his hand.
“The literal meaning,” Kieran said calmly.
Lagren widened his eyes at Kieran, his gaze panic-stricken. After three or four seconds, Lagren sighed and said, “I know that right. You weren’t then, but you are now. People will only believe what they want to believe. Even if I were to jump out and say you aren’t one, people would doubt me instead of you. Even though what I have to say is the truth.”
Lagren shook his head as he sighed. He took another gulp of his beer.
When the hotel owner lowered his mug, his face showed strictness, his presence even changing.
It was as though he was a normal man that had transformed into a lion, a fearsome beast. He stared at Kieran and asked, “Then what are you going to do with them?”
“Just follow the pace,” Kieran’s reply was still as calm as ever.
The presence of the hotel owner might be scary, but it was nothing but a breeze in Kieran’s face. It would be an outrageous claim to say such a presence affected Kieran.
Obviously, Lagren noticed that too.
“You and those guys are the same. You people can really upset a man to death!” Lagren sighed again.
His second sigh was much more depressing than the first.
The beastly presence on him vanished with his second sigh. He picked up his mug and prepared to leave.
He knew from having dealt with a lot of Monster Hunters before that it was nearly impossible for him to probe any useful information from Kieran.
Kieran was too similar to a real Monster Hunter.
If Lagren wasn’t already sure about Kieran’s identity, he might really take him for a real Monster Hunter…
Wait! Hold on!
Do I really know all the Monster Hunters out there?
Did I miss someone?
Lagren jolted when he stood up, thinking of a certain possibility. He then looked at Kieran with a doubtful gaze.
“Are you sure you are not a Monster Hunter?”
Kieran kept quiet without lifting his head.
Judging from Kieran’s reaction, Lagren’s speculation in his heart subconsciously grew bigger.
“How can anyone in the world be so similar to those guys? There must be some connection between them. I didn’t notice before, for perhaps my investigation was not detailed enough.”
Lagren hastened back to his room. He wanted to apply for an investigation request from the headquarters.
Excluding the Monster Hunters he knew, Lagren tried to concentrate his search to the last decade… No! Considering Kieran’s age, Lagren must search and investigate all the missing Monster Hunters for the past 30 years!
The secret communication channel got through, and when the person on the other end of the phone heard Lagren’s request, it went quiet.
“What happened? Do you know that your request is already above your authority?”
Two seconds later, a doubtful woman’s voice sounded from the other end of the phone.
“I’ll use my special authority then,” Lagren said without a second thought.
“Fine, I’ll make the necessary arrangements. But…”
“No buts! I’ve been retired for many years now. Leaving behind so many unused special authority attempts is useless. Do you want me to bring them to my grave? Or do you think I have some heir to inherit all these?” Lagren interrupted the person on the other end.
Unlike others who viewed this special authority as a precious power, Lagren wanted to know Kieran’s real identity even more.
The curiosity that he hadn’t felt for a long time swiftly intoxicated Lagren, and he couldn’t free himself from the question.
Lagren never would have thought his conversation with the person had entered Kieran’s ears without miss despite him being in his soundproof room.
Kieran didn’t care about Lagren’s investigation. He never existed in this dungeon world in the first place, and no matter how much Lagren investigated, he would only plunge deeper into a vortex of unanswered questions.
As for finding out the truth?
Kieran firmly believed that Lagren couldn’t do it, just like how he believed Smith would show up.
Amidst the sunset glory, Smith was holding a little girl in his arms and bringing another five behind him to Stove-grilled Fish as though he was their nanny.
Smith quickly noticed Kieran in the corner and brought the girls in without a second thought.
“Thank you,” Smith said in a slightly rough voice.
“Thank you,” the girls followed in a youthful, pleasant voice.
The girls were still afraid of the outside world but when they saw Kieran, the fears in their hearts swiftly calmed down. Even the youngest, Saya, who Smith held in his arms, was no exception.
“Thank you,” Saya turned around and said in a sweet voice.
“Mm. You can get something to eat there.”
Kieran nodded and pointed at the bar counter.
Smith accepted the suggestion and brought the girls over, asking Lagren about the food and prices.
“It’s on the house!” said Lagren.
Lagren glanced at the little girls and showed them a smile that he thought was kind enough.
Though, Lagren had obviously forgotten about his heavy beard.
His rough smile didn’t calm the girls down, instead causing all of them to hide behind Smith.
None of the girls behind Smith’s back was willing to linger around the bar counter. All of them ran towards Kieran.
Lagren touched his beard in a depressed manner. He then left the lobby for the kitchen and when he returned, he had many pastries and cakes in his hands.
Lagren thought he could exchange cakes for the little girls’ smiles, but the little girls showed him not smiles but vigilant, careful gazes instead.
Obviously, after going through a gruesome experience, the little girls knew what was important.
In the end, Lagren placed the cakes and pastries on the table.
Depressed, he returned to the bar counter.
What was more depressing was that the little girls never touched his cakes at all even after he left, only showing thirst through their gazes
Lagren couldn’t help but feel pain in his heart when he saw this scene.
He knew what had caused the little girls to behave and react like this.
“Those damn bastards should really taste the wrath of lightning! I hope you motherf**king bastards have a good life after this, you piece of f**king shit!”
Lagren cursed without holding back.
He then raised the bounty for Blood Kin in Eiders by two fold.
Smith had been paying attention to Lagren the moment he walked into the hotel.
“Is he a Monster Hunter? Is this one of the Monster Hunters’ territories?” Smith asked.
“Can I stay here with them?”
Smith was overjoyed at Kieran’s reply, but right after that, the joy froze on Smith’s face because of what Kieran said next.
“You plan to keep hiding? Living a life of anxiety and hiding, never stepping out of this place? You can, but what about them? Or… what if a similar incident happens again to them? What will you do then?”
Kieran glanced over at the girls who were eating softly.
After a life and death experience, these girls were bestowed with a remarkable maturity, but it wasn’t something that everyone sought, at least not Smith.
Smith clenched his fists hard. His breath hurried because of what Kieran said, sending him into despair again.
“W-What should I do then?”
Smith looked up with clenched teeth, asking Kieran for advice.
He squeezed a word out past his smiling teeth.