Grief’s reaction was strange.
‘What is this power…?’
And the power that rose up to rebel against the darkness of grief that entered my body was even more strange.
An exhilarating energy spreading throughout my body.
Bitan, with a frown, hurriedly withdrew his arms and shouted.
【Confirmation is complete. It’s okay to go out.】
“What happens to me from now on?”
It was an important question for me.
Stay here or wander the world again.
Grief took all my worries away in an instant.
【It will be your home from now on.】
【And all the darkness of the tent will be your brothers. They don’t have any strengths other than being nice, but they will definitely be of great help someday… Huh?】
He put his hand on my shoulder and hugged me gently.
【Don’t cry, boy! Did you hate poetry?】
“That’s not it….”
I’ve never had anything I could call home. At least the moments I had with Santos were happy, but the time I spent with him during this long ordeal was only a fleeting moment.
And no matter what the assortment was, it is true that he was kicked out.
【You don’t have to accept it if you don’t like it.】
“… I don’t hate it.”
“It’s because I like it.”
This is now my new home.
A new nest where you can be with Yurim.
Say goodbye to cages with iron bars anymore.
The door opened and Yurim appeared.
“Really? “Is it really possible for Seol to stay?”
【… You heard everything!】
Yu-rim jumped in, spreading her arms out without paying attention to the fact that Bitan had a rather cold expression on her face.
And he embraced me and my heartbreak at the same time.
It wasn’t a bad feeling to know that there was someone who was sadder than me and happier than me.
“Welcome to the tent!”
It was winter not long after my seventeenth birthday. I am a new member of the tabernacle.
* * *
Time passed quickly.
Next winter has already arrived.
“It’s been a year since you came here.”
“I am grateful.”
Even in the midst of grueling training, there were times when I would take a break like this.
I am talking with Toki and Bitan.
I served two teachers here.
I learned fighting techniques from Toki, and general studies related to the power of darkness from Bitan.
I heard that the grief called Nosa here was actually a demonic spirit with tremendous power. They say he made a lot of mistakes in the past, but looking at him now, I couldn’t believe it.
Instead, the power he had was real.
I am different from before.
Although there was still a long way to go, considering the past of persecution, it could be said to be a tremendous change.
【I saw a lot of potential in you. But it’s not good.】
Are you saying there is no possibility?
【How many times have I told you that you should not skip good training and adequate rest, especially rest!】
【Um… I don’t know, I don’t know why.】
Grief looked at me with a serious expression.
【The reason you want to become strong. What on earth is this?】
Toki also chimed in next to him.
“I feel the same way. “The reason the boy wants to become strong is not a desire for revenge or a desire to fight.”
【You have a burning desire to become stronger, but it’s not because of the hell you experienced as a child… Is there something inside you that’s forcing you to move forward?】 I couldn’t get a single word out
What they said was generally correct.
You have to be strong.
If I were to give a reason, I could give dozens, if not hundreds, of reasons.
However, if you ask me if the reason is sincere… I will hesitate to answer.
‘I don’t know.’
If you ask me if I want revenge on the faces who made my life go to hell, yes. But that could not be the goal of life.
[Intermediate Perception activates.]
[I didn’t find out anything.]
[Intermediate Perception fails.]
Another headache so bad that I can’t continue my thoughts.
【Are you okay?】
I smiled awkwardly due to the worry of grief.
【Well, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a bad thing!】
“I agree. “Don’t think in a hurry.”
[However, it will be necessary to clarify it later. Otherwise, you will quickly hit the wall.】
“… I will keep that in mind.”
Grief held my shoulder tightly and said:
【The grief I have watched for a year tells me that you have a talent that others do not have.】
The cute fingers folded one by one.
【The ability to act against fear, magical talent, and even the ability to read the board.】
“It’s okay to have confidence. You are a talented child. So there’s no need to push yourself too hard.”
It seemed like the group was determined to lift me up. It felt strange to be here anymore.
I had to spar with Yu-rim, so I left first.
Then I heard the words flowing out and stopped in place.
[Among them, what I don’t understand the most is his judgment. Or should I call it luck?】
“That’s right. The hell the boy experienced was a fate where if 100 people entered, 100 would come out dead. But didn’t it eventually flow into this tent, as if it knew the way from the beginning? It was as if all the decisions that saved Yurim had left grounds for them to eventually flow into the tent. … That wasn’t the intention, but it turned out that way.”
The reason I saved Yurim was because I thought it was necessary.
Yes, that’s why.
[The boy who decided to escape from the loading dock was only 9 years old at the time. Does that make sense? Grief is incomprehensible. It was a nosebleed.】
“It’s definitely strange.”
I rested my chin and thought for a moment.
【Perhaps Seol can see through the essence of fate? You know what you must do. The most important thing.】
“… I’m making excessive inferences here.”
【yes? But what about the power hidden in the body… maybe even more than that child who was taken away by the Faces… no, that’s not true.】
“Even if you have many talents, they cannot be compared to deep talents. “The only thing that can compare to that child’s talent is Yurim’s talent.”
【In the fight against the faces, the only people we can hope for are the future generation and those two!】
“What do you think, the owner of the tent between labor and management….”
【Huh? I don’t know about that guy. He’s probably busy with various things. why? Are you worried?】
“It’s been a long time since you haven’t shown yourself…”
【He’s the only one who can stop his angry face, so he’ll show up in no time. We need to leave the angry faces to him and nurture those children. To reap the disaster we left behind. What is the location?】
“… We are continuing to look into it.”
Who is that child that makes me so afraid?
* * *
Time is fair, but for me, who had endured difficult times, these happy times seemed to pass by faster than before.
Today is my 20th birthday.
“Happy birthday Seol-ah!”
Yurim hugged me tightly.
“huh. Will you let it go? Breathing…”
Changes in time could only be felt as changes in seasons. I have never been outside since I came here.
I’ve never had any complaints about it.
They would have shown me the outside world whenever I wanted.
In fact, I was the one who rejected it.
I have always told myself that the world is hell and that in order to get there, I have to become much stronger than I am now.
And now it has paid off quite a bit.
[enlightenment! Awakening new abilities.]
[Awakening the black flower.]
[Enlightenment! Awakens new abilities.]
[Awakens shadow avoidance.]
[Enlightenment! Awakening to new abilities.]
[Awakening to the creation of creatures.]
My strength has grown by leaps and bounds, as if I was walking down the path I had walked before.
Even though Grief is a demonic spirit, he told me that his talent in dealing with darkness is beyond his own.
It was a very strange feeling.
The fact that someone acknowledges it.
Should I say that it makes me cry for no reason?
Even so, I had no intention of being satisfied.
In addition to what Bitan and Toki taught me, I started making my own weapons.
As I worked hard throughout the year, occasionally skipping breaks, I saw progress.
The more I focused on training, the more frequent the headaches became.
I concluded that the headaches were my defense mechanism to avoid the harsh reality.
Because it was easier to think simply like that.
“Happy Lunar New Year birthday! Everyone is gathered, so come quickly. And you two just stop hanging out!”
“Someone was there!”
Yurim is embarrassed and Kiri is making fun of her. Just as I became a complete adult both in age and appearance, she also became a woman with a neat and clean feel.
Of course, their true identities were new fighters trained in the tent.
Anyway, everyone was gathered today, probably because it was their birthday.
A small space provided in the widest cavity of the hideout.
Kiri Zilliac and Toki and Bitan who are always in the hideout.
“You’re surprised, right? huh? “Are you surprised?”
Ah, even Yurim.
The remaining personnel were dispatched externally, so I have never seen them in person. I knew that there were four more people in total, including the owner of the tent.
Anyway, now all the people in the hideout have gathered.
“Happy birthday, kid.”
“boy! “You have become a wonderful adult!”
“I congratulate you the most!”
I didn’t expect it at all.
I had no idea they were planning something like this.
Grief slowly approached me and hung something on the chest of my robe.
It is a symbol of the tent.
【You will start your activities as Jangmag from now on.】
“I’m not crying.”
【Your eyes are moist?】
I cried a lot when I was sad, so it is right to smile on good days.
Yurim laughed together.
【Then… the first mission is…】
* * *
A mountain cabin on the outskirts.
No, it was a guesthouse in the shape of a mountain lodge.
Since it was a guesthouse that must be passed through in order to cross the mountain, there was frequent traffic.
There were times when the floating population was greater than that of guesthouses in large cities.
Now, next to me, a beautiful woman was entering the guest room with her arms folded.
‘Do we have to do this?’
Yurim whispers quietly to my question.
“of course! “Isn’t this the most convenient way for young men and women to avoid suspicion?”
“We came here with a tent. “It’s not Yurim and Snowfall.”
“… Why are you laughing.”
Yurim and I sat down at the guest table and ordered food.
“Why are you ordering so much?”
“You may have to sit for a long time.”
“… I see.”
“And I’m hungry.”
“After all, that was the purpose, right?”
“Shh… Talk back without looking back.”
“Here he is. “If you look back now, you’ll doubt it.”
“It’s the same. “I don’t think it will be confusing.”
“That’s it then.”
“Go into the room.”
“Then cancel the food. “Let’s catch up right away.”
Yurim cried and called the clerk.
Yu-rim’s expression noticeably brightens when the clerk approaches her and tells her that Jori has already arrived.
“Knock on Yurim’s door. know?”
After some time has passed.
Yurim came up to the guest room with her mouth full of something.
“Are you there?”
A startled sound as if someone was shaking in Busan was heard from inside.
“What’s going on! “I’ve never called a customer before?”
“I’m not a clerk.”
“Then get out.”
“… This is difficult, but are you really not going to open the door?”
“I told you to turn it off…”
While Yurim was arguing with the man through the door, a crow flew in through the slightly open window.
The crow waddled over and sat down on the chair.
“Hehe… What, why is the crow….”
At that time.
The crow became huge.
No, it changed into human form.
The man froze with a shocked expression.
If a crow that came through a window instead of a door took human form and sat on a chair, anyone would have the same facial expression as the man.
The crow was me.
“Should I take off my shoes and come in?”
I pulled a chair and got a little closer to the man and said.
“It is a tent. From now on, answer the questions asked.”
I came here on purpose.
“You came into contact with someone named Lian Kuros, right?”
– Ryan, an external dispatcher, has gone missing.
The man was visibly embarrassed upon hearing the question.
Boom boom boom!
A loud noise was heard from the doorway.
I realized something I had forgotten and opened the door.
“… Next time, please open the door first rather than ask questions.”
Yurim stood there with a distressed expression.
And after that, several people were also there.
“know each other?”
“who? Oh, these guys?”
Yurim’s and my eyes crossed.
“… No way.”
At the same time, all weapons were pulled out and a loud noise was heard throughout the guesthouse.