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Book 2: Chapter 443
It was a voice she’d never forget.
[Lukas Trowman is alive.]
Sedi turned around. Standing there staring at her was a lion with a black mane. No emotions could be felt from its black eyes. But the moment she faced it, her heart dropped.
“What the h.e.l.l…”
She paused, unable to finish her sentence, then, she bit her lip slightly.
“…what are you talking about?”
In the end, the words that came out of her mouth were filled with politeness. Sedi hated that she was speaking in such a way, but it was like she could no longer control her tongue.
She clenched her fist and shook her head.
It wasn’t her tongue. She couldn’t blame her body.
It was her mind that was giving in. The being in front of Sedi had great influence on her inner self.
After all, this black lion had once been the Master whom Sedi had given her everything to.
She resented him. Detested him. She quivered at the sense of betrayal.
However… she still had lingering feelings.
And after meeting him face to face, she came to realise that there were complex feelings she had been avoiding all along.
[He is in a place that cannot be reached easily.]
The Black Horned Demon G.o.d didn’t repeat what he said. In the first place, he wasn’t that kind of person.
That att.i.tude gradually cooled Sedi’s head as well.
“…you mean he’s in another universe?”
It was one of the highest possibilities that Sedi had considered.
“But why can’t I go there? Is it because I’m a fallen Absolute?”
[I said it is a place that can’t be reached easily. And if you’re asking if you’re qualified to go there or not, I’ll give you an answer. Out of all the beings I know, you have the highest possibility of being able to enter that place and maintain your existence.]
[Because you experienced your own existence flowing into that world once before.]
Sedi wasn’t stupid. Nor was she ignorant. If it had to be said, it was just that her head was on a strange tangent.
So she was able to easily understand.
“…the World of Void. Are you saying he went there?”
[It was only speculation a while ago, but it is now a certainty.]
[In this situation, the reason isn’t important, Sedi Trowman.]
…s.h.i.t. Sedi cursed inwardly.
Her heart throbbed when she heard Trowman, the last name she’d always been insisting on, come out of the mouth of the Black Horned Demon G.o.d.
[We conducted many experiments in parallel to gain an understanding of that world. Many things are still unknown to us, but the things we know are steadily increasing. The biggest harvest we obtained was learning the conditions to go there, and finding an entrance.]
[Then, we created a world. It is not very special compared to the rest of the multiverse, but there is one difference. It was designed so that the beings here would go to the World of Void when they die.]
The Black Horned Demon G.o.d spoke.
[I’m talking about this world, the place that was prepared for the Great Game’s preliminaries.]
She was unable to hide her surprise.
The thought that this world was much too large for just the preliminaries had crossed her mind several times. Nevertheless, she hadn’t found it too strange.
Because they were Rulers.
For them, it wouldn’t be difficult to erase an entire continent just because a fly bothered them.
“…I don’t understand. How did you connect death here to entry into the World of Void?”
[One by one, we each created a world we knew best. The Black Earth, Heavenly Realm, Thunder Gorge, Giant Field… All the beings that lived there are real people. We peeked into the multiverse’s records and successfully produced puppet copies of them. Of course, this wasn’t a difficult task either.]
[The puppets were made with very little difference from the original person so it’s a bit awkward to call them copies. Naturally. Every single minute cell was made to the same standard. Of course, they can’t be called the exact same either. This is because they have different souls. At that time, there was nothing we could do about that… but that turned out to be the difference we sought after.]
Sedi was beginning to have trouble understanding the Demon G.o.d’s words.
The story was gradually progressing to a perspective that exceeded her level of comprehension.
[Even though they are fundamentally the same, they are still different. This is the prerequisite we were looking for, and it is the key to opening the door to that tightly closed world.]
“What do you mean, that…”
[It allowed the World of Void to mistake the beings living here as ‘abandoned possibilities’.]
This wasn’t a conversation. It was the Demon G.o.d’s one sided rambling.
[But our plan couldn’t progress to the next level. It was possible to send them to the World of Void, but that was the limit. Soon after entering, the beings were unable to withstand the power of the surging emptiness and their very existence perished.]
[This is probably because they aren’t beings who have been forgotten. The power of emptiness exists everywhere in the World of Void. If they are unable to withstand it, it is impossible to avoid death. However, you are different, Sedi.]
The Demon G.o.d continued.
[You can maintain your existence there. There is just one condition.]
[Accept my power.]
Sedi’s eyes became cold.
[The Seven Fanged Dragon G.o.d fought a being in the World of Void called the Twelve Void Lords and was defeated. It was surprising, but it turned out to be an acceptable result. We cannot exist in that world in a clear state. Because we cannot hold our breath forever. It is possible for us to stay for a while, but the longer we stay, the more of a burden it becomes.]
[So we changed our plan. We decided to select a representative, who would play the role of oxygen tank, to enter. The first experiment was already a success.]
[You are the best candidate. Beings who fall under the category ‘Absolute’ cannot enter the World of Void. You may have fallen, but you possess overwhelming strength when compared to other mortals. That factor will be of great help in the World of Void.]
She could feel her nails digging into her palms. Feeling her head grow colder, Sedi spoke.
“What if I meet Father there? Don’t you hate him?”
[I do not hate him. He is simply an annoyance.]
“If you intend to use me to deceive and kill him…”
[Deceive you? I do not lie. I’m sure you know that.]
[I have no intention of breaking up the relationship between you and Lukas Trowman. Naturally, that means I will also not interfere with your reunion. The role I want you to play is extremely simple. Relay information about the World of Void. And act as my representative.]
“You want me to be your tool again.”
Sedi was sure that her expression was as cold as her voice.
[You understand perfectly.]
[You seem angry. Is there a problem with my proposal?]
“A problem? There is. It’s full of them.”
[What are they?]
“You abandoned me.”
Her voice fell even lower. But it was no longer cold.
Instead, it was mixed with scalding heat as if it was burning.
“After taking my power away, you want to take advantage of me again? You want me to be your representative? Do you think I’d accept that offer?”
[Then will you refuse? To protect insignificant pride?]
She was speechless.
[This isn’t the time to raise your pride. I don’t understand. Is that really what you should be focusing on right now?]
The Demon G.o.d continued to speak in a flat voice.
[Is it uncomfortable to borrow power from a being you followed in the past? Does it hurt your pride? Do you feel humiliated? I’m just asking if you can’t even tolerate that much.]
[Has your focus shifted from reuniting with Lukas Trowman to protecting your own pride? Is this all your obsession towards your goal amounts to?]
[There is no need to distinguish between means and methods to achieve a goal. Cause, justification, and righteousness only matters after.]
[Or is it perhaps that you still have lingering feelings towards me? If you accept my power again, you won’t be able to go back-]
The Demon G.o.d, who was currently in the form of a lion, looked at Sedi with black eyes. His eyes seemed to gleam for a moment.
Sedi wasn’t scared.
Instead, she smiled as she spoke.
“If your goal was to provoke and tempt me, then I’ll have to tell you that you’ve succeeded.”
She could do it. She would do it.
Some of the words that the Demon G.o.d used in the conversation this time touched her heart the most.
There is no need to distinguish between means and methods to achieve a goal.
* * *
Sedi stumbled back to the room.
‘I, I don’t think that was me.’
Even her basic ability to think felt like it had been paralysed. Her heart felt tight and her head throbbed. She panted as if she had been sprinting, and her body was filled with heat.
She wanted to sleep. Otherwise, she felt like she would pa.s.s out at any moment.
She couldn’t do that. She couldn’t show any weakness.
Leaning against the wall, she breathed heavily and calmed her body.
And she remembered.
She could feel it just by looking at his eyes. Just how much Lukas relied on her.
She was glad. After all, it was none other than Lukas.
The fact that he regarded her as his daughter, loved her, and relied on her filled her with an irreplaceable sense of fulfilment.
But she wasn’t satisfied. Her thirst and greed grew uncontrollably.
More, more, more.
She wanted him to rely on her more, depend on her more, and lean on her more.
So that he wouldn’t care about anyone else, so that he’d only look at her.
In order to do that, she couldn’t show any weakness. She had to show a perfect and strong appearance.
…But she’d made a big mistake not so long ago. She’d stupidly failed to manage her own condition and had spilled blood in front of Lukas.
She’d managed to gloss over it in her own way, but the other side was Lukas. He might have already noticed something strange.
So for the time being, she intended to play the role of the perfect innocent daughter without making even the slightest mistake.
‘…The Beginning Wizard.’
That motherf.u.c.ker had arrived at the worst time.
Of course, since he was bothering Lukas, she had intended to kill him eventually, but it was too soon.
She managed to stabilise herself.
Her headache was gone, her heartache had ceased.
Walking through the long hallways of the castle, Sedi wiped cold sweat from her face.
Then she slammed the door of the room a.s.signed to Lukas open.
Fortunately, her voice didn’t falter.
Lukas was in the room.
But she didn’t receive an answer.
He wasn’t sitting on the bed, he was standing in the middle of the room, looking at her.
“What’s going o-”
“What about the Beginning Wizard?”
Lukas interrupted Sedi. Perhaps it was just a feeling, but there felt like there was a hint of chill in his voice.
Flinching at the cold, Sedi responded.
“He just, left after talking.”
Why did she lie? That was a lie that was bound to be discovered one day.
Although she questioned herself inwardly, Sedi continued to look at Lukas’ visage.
Something was wrong.
Lukas’ att.i.tude, his voice, his expression. And the atmosphere in the room…
“I was comfortable.”
“After coming here, I was able to spend the most peaceful time of my life. All thanks to you. So thank you very much for that.”
Originally, she would have been happy.
Lukas had softened a lot, but he had never spoken so straightforwardly before. That was probably something he’d never told anyone before. Just having this thought would have filled Sedi with overwhelming happiness.
However now… it was different.
“Why are you saying that all of a…”
Sedi stopped talking.
Then she spoke in a stiff voice.
Lukas’ silence was an affirmation.
“How? No, what did you see? Was it the thorn? Or…”
That one word was enough.
He caught me. He caught me.
Father caught me.
Did he know everything? Then what did he think of me? Then what am I supposed to do?
Stunned, Sedi opened her mouth. Tens of thousands of thoughts swirled in her mind.
Then, a voice that added to the chaos sounded in her ears.
“Sedi, I’ll be leaving this place today.”
Lukas spoke in a calm tone.
“I cannot continue like this. I can feel myself growing weaker. This is natural since I was relying on you for everything.”
“What’s wrong with that? It’s not a bad thing to rely on someone.”
“Someday, it will get very bad. After all, there are some things that cannot be entrusted to others. There are things you can only do on your own.”
“I’m not ‘others’. We are family.”
“I know. And I still feel that way.”
“…n-, no. Fa-, Father doesn’t think so.”
Sedi’s voice was beginning to quiver.
As if it was resonating with her, the surrounding s.p.a.ce began to tremble as well.
“No. No. No. No. Not this.”
Sedi began to shake and mutter to herself.
And pukpuk, pukpuk, she began to scratch her head till her skin started bleeding.
“I, do I disgust you? Huh? Do you feel betrayed, deceived, and contempt because I accepted the power of the Black Horned Demon G.o.d again…?”
“That’s not it.”
It really was.
As if to prove it, Lukas had not directly made mention of the Demon G.o.d even once.
“I know it was all to meet me. I’d be lying if I didn’t say I didn’t have a bit of regret, but I’m so much more grateful than that…”
Sedi shouted like she was getting a seizure.
Boom. Like an explosion, a shockwave rippled through the air. The table and bed were flipped upside down, and the vases were broken.
“Stop lying! You wouldn’t want to leave if you didn’t think I was disgusting!”
“If I stay by your side…”
“You’ll get weak? What’s wrong with that? If there’s anything you can’t solve because you’re weak, I’ll solve it for you! No matter what it is, or who it is! I just have to destroy and kill them all!”
“No. Not this, Father. Father’s thoughts right now are wrong. So…”
Sedi shook her head vigorously and paused.
“…huh. You just need to think a bit more. With me.”
Lifting her face, she showed a bright smile.
“I have a good idea. Stay with me until you change your mind. I don’t have anything to hide anymore, so I’ll always be by your side. Uh, but I still can’t let you run away, so I’d better cut off your limbs.”
“You’ll be fine. It won’t bleed, and you won’t die. It might hurt a bit, but Father can withstand that much, right? Even if you look like that, I’m sure you’d be much happier by my side. So…”
The smile transformed into something dangerous.
“Stay with me until the day you die.”