The moment Kieran pushed the door open, he attracted everyones attention in the room.
There were three badly-dressed, vicious-looking men standing in the middle of the study. Opposite them was a white-haired man.
The old man was sitting behind a desk, a pair of spectacles hanging in front of his chest.
When he saw Kieran come in, he instinctively tried to stand up and say something, but someone interrupted him.
"Who are you? It might be best for you not to interfere in our business!" the most buff man out of the three said in a threatening tone as he inspected Kieran.
In Kierans eyes, the man was just intimidating on the outside.
He might have looked big in size, but there was not a single callus on his hands, palms or fingers.
When Kieran entered the room, the three men hadnt moved from their spots, and even now they were still facing him with their sides turned towards him.
Every sign pointed at those three being amateurs who only relied on their size to bully normal people.
As he recalled what Herbert had said about the men, Kieran got a general idea.
He did not stop. He ignored the guys empty threat and walked up to Herbert right away.
"You bastard! Ill show you how powerful big Oli is!"
The big guy opened his mouth again before the three of them threw themselves at Kieran.
"Be careful!" Herbert warned Kieran in a loud voice.
Before the elderly scholar could finish his sentence though, the three men who had charged at Kieran had already flown backwards and crashed against the wall.
The heavy crash made the wall tremble slightly, and a couple of books from the bookcase dropped on them.
The three men were knocked out instantly after getting hit.
The whole fight was over in a flash.
Herbert could not even comprehend what had happened, even though he had great experience and vast knowledge. He was looking at Kieran in awe.
Under Herberts watchful gaze, Kieran went over and picked up the books, placing them back on the shelves.
Although he had tried his hardest to control the strength and angle of his kicks and had avoided hitting the bookcase directly, he had not been able to stop the wall from trembling.
After he returned the books to their original place, he turned around and smiled at Herbert.
"I know the expedition hasnt started yet, but you dont mind me fulfilling my bodyguard duties, right?" Kieran said slowly, adjusting his tone to the simple memories the system provided.
"Of course! Pierre is not here, so you being here really helped me! If you hadnt interfered, I think I might have suffered some broken bones!" Herbert said jokingly.
He was not as strict as the average scholar, but the thick books and notes around the premises showed that he was worthy of the title.
Kieran was more concerned about that Pierre he had mentioned.
According to his memories, Pierre was Herberts butler, bodyguard and chef. He was a very reliable person who took care of Herberts everyday needs in an orderly manner.
In other words, he would definitely have been around Herbert, unless something more important had happened.
"Can I ask where Pierre is?" Kieran asked casually.
"Well, I had to raise more funds for the Isogu City expedition, and the Herl City local government was willing to donate some funds, so I sent Pierre on my behalf. If I had a spare second, I would definitely have gone myself. The expedition funds are too important to me!" Herbert said before taking a few breaths.
"Not only are they necessary to acquire all sorts of tools and equipment, but I also need them for the salaries of the bodyguards! As a matter of fact, Ive sent out invitations to many famous bounty hunters and mercenaries, but other than you, no one else has accepted my offer! My only choice was to publish an ad in the newspaper!" Herbert told Kieran.
Kierans actions had obviously won his trust.
"I see..." Kieran nodded, his mind flooding with questions.
"Its such a coincidence! Pierre just left and those guys appeared! The newspaper ad was only published this morning, so it should have taken a day or two for the news to spread! It shouldnt have spread this fast!"
Kieran glanced at the knocked-out trio and took another look at their clothes.
He doubted those men were illiterate.
If they had been, they would not have been able to read the newspaper.
If a timely coincidence was ruled out, only one possibility was left.
"These guys knew Pierres schedule and all his future plans as well"
Kieran squinted as more questions popped up in his mind.
"Herbert, before the policemen arrive, I want to ask them some questions. Id also like to come to your study to read before we leave. Would that be okay?" Kieran asked.
"Of course! We need to call this in for the police to come though. A couple of my students will be back after dark to help us contact the station, so you have plenty of time to yourself now!" Herbert did not reject Kierans suggestion. He just gave him a reminder.
He was no fool either. He was a scholar after all, so he had his own doubts about the timely appearance of those men.
Kieran nodded and walked over to the trio.
The basement was a storage room for winter supplies, rations, vegetables and dry food. Kieran had to modify it into an interrogation room.
He tied the three mens hands and ankles with a two-finger thick rope, as if they were livestock.
A pail of cold water was splashed at them.
"Sh*t! Who is this?"
"Who the f*ck is it?"
"I will knock all your teeth out!"
The splash of cold water had woken the three of them up.
Confused, they started cursing right away. When they saw Kieran in front them though, they suddenly went quiet. They still had a fresh memory of what had happened.
They had been knocked out without even reacting. Even if they were idiots, theyd still know Kieran was not someone to mess around with. Thankfully, they were no idiots.
"Talk! Who sent you?" Kieran said coldly.
The three of them exchanged a glance and fell into silence.
"So there is really something fishy here!" Kieran thought to himself.
The three of them didnt speak, but their manner and expressions betrayed them.
That was enough for Kieran. It would not be hard for him to make them talk.
They did not look like tough guys after all.
Just as Kieran was ready to start his questioning, a loud explosion came from above and a fierce tremble shook the whole basement.
Kierans heart suddenly skipped a beat.
Merry Christmas! (Well it is on my timezone...
Extra chapter for all!