Home Post 580-chapter-115


As I came to the shelter to avoid Dimitri, I found Avila and Esca.

“Nothing happened while I was gone, right?”

Avila, who took care of the dog shapeshifters, reported while watching Esca, who took care of the cat shapeshifters.

“Except for some minor quarrels over establishing a hierarchy among the dog shapeshifters, there were no major issues.”

“I heard there was a loud noise last night from the west wing where the cat shapeshifters are staying. Is everything okay, Esca?”

I looked at Esca, who always wore a calm expression.

Fortunately, Esca had volunteered to stay at the shelter voluntarily until it stabilized, but his role turned out to be much more significant than expected. Although we had assigned many people to help him, in reality, he was managing a vast number of cat shapeshifters brought in from the entire region almost on his own.

Esca, with his long silver hair flowing down in one piece and neatly groomed as usual, spoke politely.

“It’s because they are a sensitive and fearful species, so everyone is nervous about the changed environment.”

I sighed and nodded, knowing full well how cats were.

“I suppose so. Do you want me to bring in more people to help if needed?”

To my surprise, Esca shook his head.

“They are people who hate change, so it will be more difficult if new people are introduced.”

That was correct, too, since cats strongly hate change.

Avila, who had been listening to our conversation, tilted her head.

“How did you think to come here when you hate change so much?”

“It’s because they were cornered. Since negative rumors about cat shifters spread, and each region was determined to drive them out, they had nowhere else to go. There are limits to living in hiding for so long.”

“But they could have returned to nature. Most other cat shapeshifters live in the wild, avoiding humans, so why did they still stay in human society despite being mistreated?”

The response came from an unexpected place.

“Nature is uncomfortable, isn’t it?”

A cat shapeshifter appeared silently at the entrance of my office.

“Why go back to nature when we know that human civilization, with all its comforts and benefits, exists? Besides, there are philanthropists who provide food and protection like this.”

As soon as I saw her, I thought…

‘Lady Cat…!’

Dressed in tough, elastic black leather that revealed her body, she looked like a female character wearing a cat costume from a comic or movie. Her hair, pinned up in a single high bun with no strands left loose, was speckled with three different colors.

“It’s prohibited to carry weapons here.”

As I stared at the dagger attached to her thigh, she crossed her arms and spoke confidently.

“I have no intention of fighting here like other idiots, so let me off. It’s a precious item.”

She then gracefully walked over and stood in front of me, narrowing her eyes.

“I heard this isn’t a prison. There’s no need to take away all my belongings, right?”

“Not everything, just the weapons, will be stored for you.”

“But this is all I have?”

“Group living requires rules. You must have heard when you came here, but if you don’t plan on following the rules, it might be best for you to leave voluntarily.”

I stared straight at her without looking away.

We stared at each other for a while, engaging in an invisible battle. As I glared at her sternly out of a sense of responsibility to keep the shelter running properly, I was actually worried on the inside.

‘If she keeps pushing me, I’ll have no choice but to drive her away. What should I do?’

But unexpectedly, she lowered her eyes first and raised her hand in a gesture of surrender.

“Even though I know it’s not your scent, my legs are trembling. Alright, alright. I don’t want to get kicked out.”

I looked at her, a little dumbfounded, as she set the weapon down in front of me. Seeing that, she looked at me as if asking if I didn’t know and explained.

“You didn’t know that you’re carrying pheromones of such a strong alpha all over your body?”


“The man you’re sleeping with must be…”

Before she could finish her words, Avila became furious and covered her mouth.

“Who are you saying such vulgar words to?”

She quickly apologized as if indicating that she had no intention of fighting.

“Well, I’m sorry. It’s my first time meeting an actual noble.”

“Your attitude right now…!”

“Thank you, Avila, but it’s okay now.”

I stopped Avila.

Teaching human etiquette to shapeshifters who had lived hidden in the shadows of alleys was a goal that had to be approached gradually. Although the language was inappropriate, I had a sense of what the cat shapeshifter before me was talking about.

‘It must be Dimitri.’

He had been flirting with me all day and seemed to have carefully doused me in his pheromones.

‘Is this something that helps me?’

Though I had considered it annoying and burdensome, I began to think that if it could be useful in leading the cat shapeshifters, it wouldn’t be bad to accept it to some extent.

‘If he sticks around no matter how much I refuse, I can’t be blamed for taking advantage of that.’

Anyway, I couldn’t live without seeing him until our contract ended, and I couldn’t refuse if he came looking for me.

With that thought in my mind, I asked Lady Cat.

“So, what’s the purpose of coming to see me?”

“I heard you’re recruiting mercenaries, and I want to apply. My name is Leyla.”

I internally cheered.

Just as Leyla mentioned, I was currently recruiting members to establish a mercenary group.

‘There is too much opposition to running the shelter only with the welfare budget, and above all, there’s a limit to long-term sustainability.’

It was something we had been planning since we decided to create the shelter. Dimitri, upon hearing about the mercenary group plan, allowed the opening of the shelter.

It wasn’t fair to squeeze the hard-earned tax money from diligent people to let shapeshifters play and eat for the rest of their lives. Therefore, I intended to provide jobs for the shelter’s shapeshifters and generate profits so that the shelter could operate on its own.

That job opportunity was none other than the mercenary group. The tasks my mercenary group would handle weren’t too difficult. It was simply…

“All we have to do is deal with the rat shapeshifters?”

“That’s right.”

“Well. I’ve been doing that kind of thing all the time, but does it make money?”

I smiled at Leyla, who seemed skeptical.

“We’re going to make it profitable.”

“What do you mean?”

“You’ll find out soon. Thanks for applying. I’ll take my leave now. I’ll be assembling the mercenary group soon, so I’ll see you then.”

At my words, Leyla nodded and walked towards the door. However, just before stepping out, she hesitated and turned back to me with a sullen face.

“Really… you’re really giving me a wage for this, right?”

“Yes, you deserve to be appropriately compensated for your labor.”

“…We’re a slave class. Why are you going to such lengths for us?”

“That’s the perspective of humans, isn’t it? You don’t consider yourselves slaves, do you?”


“I thought you needed some motivation to get you moving.”

I knew that cats wouldn’t even listen to people without a treat. However, I also knew that as soon as I held up a treat, their attitude would change, and they could skillfully carry out what they were told to do.

‘Regardless of what others say, it’s impossible to handle cats without treats who think of themselves as masters.’

It was the same with Coco and Sasha. Even though they knew they were slaves who must receive my protection, they obstinately refused to listen. They even boldly challenged Dimitri without any fear.

Paying wages to cat shapeshifters and working with them would be a very enticing carrot for them.

After Leyla left, Esca spoke gently.

“As you can see, cat shapeshifters have clear desires and are quick learners. So, as long as they adapt quickly to the changed environments, they will settle in soon after.”



̊ · : * ✧* : · ̊



A few days later, I looked through the list of mercenaries that Avila had compiled and gave orders to my aide. Baron Placen.

“Invite the lords who govern the main territories in the North to the dinner banquet. I’ll be making a business announcement.”

“A business announcement?”

“I plan to promote the mercenary group.”

At my words, Baron Placen’s pupils shook as if there had been an earthquake.

“This will be the first gathering since the rebellion led by Count Schdental, so everyone is expecting a remarkable announcement. They’ll be eager to seize the opportunity to fill the seats of those who were purged. However…”

Baron Placen seemed concerned that promoting the mercenary group in such a setting might make it a laughingstock.

It was understandable since it was quite ridiculous for a noble to create a mercenary group, and using the grandiose term ‘business’ made it sound even more preposterous.

Rather than creating a knighthood or training soldiers, I created a mercenary group who accepted requests and worked in exchange for money? It would undoubtedly damage the reputation of Blois, the head of the North.

I knew what Baron Placen was worried about, but I didn’t reverse my orders.

“Don’t worry. It’s something I agreed to with Dimitri.”

I smiled meaningfully and added an unexpected request to the Baron.

“It should be a very grand banquet.”