Book 3 Chapter 66 - Battle for the Throne (3)

Game of Divine Thrones

‘So it’s him.’ 

Gwain was one of the court’s nobles which King John favored highly, so with how much he relied on advice from his entourage, he was essentially almost running the Rhine kingdom as it was.

Even John’s nephew, Duke Arnold, didn’t care too much. If he wanted to, he could easily get rid of Count Ludwig and be a strong competitor for the throne.

No doubt the Wildfire would act as his trump card when the time came.

As he watched Gwain order his troops, Woohyuk starting thinking in hypotheticals.

‘He must be deliberately hiding his ambition.’

Count Gwain was only biding his time, as he pretended to yield the throne to Count Ludwig.

Although he had a lot of influence on politics in the capital, it wasn’t to the point that he would have the army do his bidding. That was the reason he needed to make use of Count Ludwig.

Still, seeing as in the past it had been Count Ludwig that had emerged on top and taken the throne, his plan would most likely fail once more.

‘Obviously one of the two had betrayed the other.’

Han Jangmi had already informed him that the leaders of Akatsuki and Exodus weren’t on good terms. Such cracks could lead to internal conflicts and eventually a complete collapse.

Right now however he didn't care about the feud between the clans, Woohyuk had some business with Gawain.

“Then I’ll take my subordinates and search for Duke Arnold. If he were to be found by the loyalist faction, it might hurt us.”

“Let us help as well, you could use the extra manpower to scour such a large area as northern Cerendia.

As Shinichi tried to take the lead with his initiative, Sergei quickly jumped on the same boat.

A competition between them to secure favor. 

Shinichi simply ground his teeth.

‘He’s so arrogant simply because he’s closer to Gwain.’

Sergei started in the Floren province, so it was normal for him to have quickly come into contact with Gwain. He started up as a mercenary doing odd jobs for him around the estate, gradually working his way up.

‘Watch out, I will surprise you.’

Unlike Sergei, he kept his options open. Even now, he was still secretly communicating with Count Ethan from the Issilon province.

If Count Gwain discriminated against him, he would have no reason to remain on a sinking ship.

Shinichi’s eyes shone as he left along with Sergei. Woohyuk then took the chance to descend from the wagon.

‘First let’s secure this batch of Wildfire.’

By stalking Count Gwain, he should be able to get inside the military warehouse without too many difficulties.

Of course he would have to use some force on his way out.

Recalling the layout of the underground layout of the kingdom's military headquarters, Woohyuk set off.

* * * 

“What is this?”

“A letter from the Queen, your Majesty.”

The royal guard asked while giving his king a bow. King John proceeded to immediately open the letter and read its content.

“Typical, she’s treating me like a child again. What’s wrong with her?”

“She may have written this while her sanity had left her.”

Queen Joanna had been confined to her quarters, upon being deemed too sick to walk around by the Court physician.

It was all a plot by the nobles to hold her hostage and limit her influence. It was such an obvious ploy, but King John had never suspected a thing.

“What a joy kill, just as we were having a good time.”

He had been busy boasting about the boar he had just hunted. Of course the truth of the matter was that it had only been killed by his huntsmen after an hour long chase, but the nobles showered him with praise all the same.

Simply by being in King John’s good graces, you could basically get anything you wanted.

“I agree, why don’t you try some of this fine wine to change your mood. It comes straight from the Issilon province.”

“That's a good idea, let’s have a taste.”

As King John held his cup in the air, a noble walked over and poured the wine inside. It didn’t take long for the red wine to fill his cup.

“I feel like getting drunk tonight, I’ll also want to be accompanied by many women.”

“You can do as you please, your Majesty.”

“Who would dare stop you?”

As the nobles which participated in the banquet cheered him on, King John downed his cup of wine in a single shot.

Not long after however…


King John fell down to the ground, as blood seeped from his mouth. He had finally been poisoned by the rebels.

“Why aren’t any of you doing anything!”

“Call the court physician!”

Some noblemen who weren’t in on it shouted at the Royal guards to act, but they never budged. They had long ago turned their backs on King John.

“Everyone, attention please.”

As the banquet descended into confusion, Count Gwain stood up and spoke, causing all eyes to turn to him.

“I’ll take charge of investigating who murdered the king . Please stay calm and remain in your seats.”

Naturally they wanted to frame someone else for their crimes. All the present nobles trembled in fear, hoping that they weren’t the unlucky one to become the pazzi.

“If there is anyone who tries to escape, you can execute them immediately.”


The Royal guards consented. He had already compiled his death list. All those that might interfere with their plans would need to be eliminated.

Count Gwain left the banquet hall behind, as he approached the Queen’s chambers.

“You are quite the trickster.”

Woohyuk said, as he had been awaiting his arrival.

“How are you!?”

Count Gwain had a startled expression.

Woohyuk had changed his appearance to match that of Duke Arnold using his Jester Mask. After all, technically the Duke was next in line to inherit the Rhine kingdom’s throne.

“Are you trying to seize power after assassinating the King? But how can you do so while I still live?”

“How did you get into Blackburn? Did you work together with the 1st Legion’s Commander?”

“Kennis? No, I don’t see why he’d help me. I’ll just say that my helper was some foreigner from the far east.”

“Akatsuki clan, that cursed Shinichi has betrayed me in the end….”

Count Gwain quickly jumped to conclusions based on Woohyuk’s description. It was because Sergei, who was Russian, had a similar appearance to the natives from the Rhine kingdom.

Shinichi would have been the only person that the Duke would refer to as a foreigner.

Woohyuk struggled to control his laughter as he saw Count Gwain give new instruction to a member from the Exodus clan.

‘Looks like there will soon be a war between those two clans.’

Sergei and Shinichi were both currently in the northern forests of Cerendia, out in full force with their entire clans.

It was only a matter of time now before the two fought, and he really didn’t care who it was that came out on top.

The goal was to weaken the rebel faction’s overall strength.

“Oh, I also saw that you managed to secure large quantities of Wildfire. Who did you buy from?”

“It is none of your business….”

With a glance from Count Gwain, the guards rushed toward Woohyuk. However, they never even managed to get close.



Seeing his guards drop to the ground, Count Gwain’s eyes widened in surprise.

‘Since when was the Duke so good with a sword?’

He knew that he had enjoyed hunting, but never that he practiced any martial arts.

It was as if he had been knocked on the head and became a new person. 

“I’ll give you one more chance to answer my question, but I assure you this will be the last.”

Woohyuk said as he placed Grandia against the Count’s neck, his eyes hiding a violence behind them.

Count Gwain gulped nervously. 

“It’s the Cohen merchant group from the free city of Media. I heard that they were able to procure it from the Owen kingdom.”

The Owen kingdom was just south-east of the Holy Aperian Empire. It was quite the distance from the Rhine kingdom.

Still, Woohyuk had a good idea who it was that the Cohen merchant group had dealt with.

‘Could it be the Golden Rose Society?’

A secret organization composed of masters in their respective fields. It’s purpose was to control the Eeth continent from behind the scenes, using their vast network and deep pockets.

They were definitely a group worth having friendly relations with, since they were so influential that they had branch offices all across the continent.

‘I might be able to get in touch with them this time.’

Even in his past 40 years in this world, the mystery which was the Golden Rose Society had never been unmasked. Because of this, even he knew very little about them.

It looked like he would have to seek out the Cohen merchant group to learn more.

As he added another thing to his to-do list, Woohyuk quickly knocked out Count Gwain.


“Sorry, but I need you to help me with something.”

By using his ability, he would be able to save himself some time, as a black mist enshrouded the two of them.

* * *

After turning Gwain into a puppet, he now had a firmer grasp on the capital’s politics. Woohyuk then had Duke Arnold assume the throne.

Of course, that was all just for show. The real power was in Woohyuk’s hands, as King Arnold was more than willing to spend his days in the palace.

He had never been one to thirst for power, and was rather content with just living a pampered life. All he hoped for was a swift end to the war so that things could return to the way they once were.

The throne would be far too burdensome, so he promised to hand it over later.

The nobles outside of Blackburn however were completely unaware of any of this. This was because Woohyuk closed the castle’s gates and wiped out any rebels inside.

Because of this, Count Ludwig simply led the rebel army to march on the capital city of Heidelberg, as had been the original plan.

On the plains of Cerendia, they naturally met the opposing loyalist army. 

It was a very close and hard fought battle, as the two sides tried to gain an edge over the other. However, as soon as Marquis Nelson arrived with his forces, holding a royal decree, the battle quickly tipped in the loyalist’s favor.

Soon after the rebel army was defeated, and forced to retreat to the Issilon province.

They sent a carrier pigeon asking for Count Gwain’s help. After poisoning King John to put a temporary puppet king in place. 

However, contrary to their expectations, the throne had already been occupied by Woohyuk.

“It looks like they will dig themselves in for a long drawn out war. What’s the current situation in northern Cerendia?”

Woohyuk, who had just read Count Ludwig’s letter, asked the scribe.

“The kingdom army is chasing down any rebels.”

The Exodus and Akatsuki clans had been busy going at each other’s throats, that they had been caught off guard by a surprise attack from the 4th Legion.

Although both Clan leaders were alive and had gotten away, it was only a matter of time now before they were caught.

Woohyuk nodded and then continued.

“Don’t give these rebels any time to recover. If we can’t stamp them out soon, we will have to wait until after winter.”

Even if they had achieved a big victory, dragging out the war wasn’t in their interest.

It was the reason that the loyalist faction and the kingdom's army were still in the field, having yet to return to the capital.

He would be awaiting their good news.

“Okay I will pass on your orders to the Legion Commanders.”

After the scribe left, Woohyuk got up from the throne and began walking away.

The new Royal guard quickly spoke as he followed Woohyuk.

“Boss, no… Lord Regent. Where would you like to go?”

It was Lee Jaesung. Although his skills were still a bit lacking, there was no one he could trust implicitly.

The other members who had fought alongside Huntington, also came to Blackburn.

“To the Queen’s chambers..”

Now that the war was heavily in their favor, it was past time to have a face to face meeting with Joanna. She would know everything there was to know about the Royal Palace’s underground dungeon.

Upon arriving at her chambers, he had Lee Jaesung guard the door.

“If anything urgent comes up, contact me right away.”

“Yes, Lord Regent.”

Although he had increased the security in the castle, he couldn’t let his guard down. There existed a vacuum due to him having to kill the previous Royal guard as well as the Commander of the 1st Legion and other high position officials.

Things would also get complicated if either Duke Arnold or Joanna were assassinated.

As Woohyuk opened the door and stepped inside, he was greeted by the sight of a woman with long blue hair, sitting by the window.

“How can I help you, Lord Regent.”

Joanna, despite turning 39 this year, she retained her beautiful appearance form when she was in her twenties.

Since the average lifespan of a native on the Eeth continent was 300 years, they would age very slowly.

“I have some questions to ask you.”

“... Please speak, I can help you I will.”

Joana felt greatly indebted to Woohyuk. Not only did he avenge her son’s murder, he also prevented her from having to marry Count Gwain, a man she considered to be a psychopath.

“What is hiding beneath the royal palace?”

“There is a secret passage that takes you to the emergency safehouse for the royals.”

The place where the mysterious altar resides.

Although the treasure from the Clavis Dynasty were hidden down there, the Devos royal family had been trying to get in for generations, with little success.

“Take me there.”

In order to obtain the Key to Medusa’s Temple, he would first have to clear the dungeon beneath the Rhine kingdom’s royal palace.

As he organized in his mind all the pertinent information he had gathered in the past, Woohyuk placed the Banshee’s Veil on Joanna.

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