Chapter 177

“Do you really like me?” San suddenly asked, cutting Biyeon off.

He arched his back to look straight into Biyeon’s eyes.

“Of course, I do…”

Biyeon felt soft hands gently cupping her cheeks. Biyeon’s eyes widened even more.

A soft, warm feeling on the tip of her lips lingered for a moment and then faded away. Biyeon had closed her eyes shut. A bit of sweet regret remained on her lips…

“What do you think of this?”

Biyeon became restless and disoriented. San had now moved behind her. Before long, he had wrapped his arms around her. She could feel his chest on her shoulders.

Biyeon stood tall and took in a deep breath. She felt her brain turn white from shock as she felt a warm breath on her ear. Goosebumps started appearing on her neck. She felt the strength in her body drain out.

“You think this is the end?”

With a dumbfounded expression, Biyeon turned her head to face San. There was no playfulness in his eyes.

“What…?”

“Now! Don’t think! Just feel what’s happening where your emotions dwell.”

San stopped Biyeon from speaking once more. Biyeon couldn’t understand what was going on. Now San, who had his arms wrapped around her just a moment ago, was standing far away and smiling a little brighter.

‘A message?’ Something flashed in Biyeon’s mind. The thoughts didn’t seem to come in any order or structure. Just a jumble of confused feelings rushed through her mind.

She couldn’t put it into words, but something was mixing. Then, all at once, something surfaced. Like an abstract painting, a certain image appeared, unified, blended, and balanced. There were many emotions that couldn’t be expressed in words, but she felt that she was peering at San’s complex fabric of weaving emotions and loving intention.

There were so many things that couldn’t be expressed in words! The depth and vigor of emotions were detailed in multi-layers and a variety of colors. How would one put these feelings into words?

“Thoughts don’t have to be true. However, that thought of mine is not false. Everything is just a possibility until it is decided. Everything is a possibility until the last moment arrives. No one knows what will happen next. The final decisions are usually made in a very short span of time.”

“‘Moment of truth’!”

A small sound escaped Biyeon’s lips. She didn’t know why she was reminded of the term marketing experts often used at this moment. Customers usually defer their decisions until the last minute. The moment she made that decision… A new world was created… Biyeon quickly scattered her thoughts. An enigmatic smile appeared on her lips.

However, there was also a bit of sharpness in her gaze towards her San.

“Why should we hide anything… whatever, if they want to see everything then let’s let them see. What mortal sin have we committed? I have no intention of living my life paying attention to and considering each and every one of these voyeurs.”

“They’re probably already used to us by now.”

Biyeon wiped her lips and smiled bitterly. After entering this world, she had long abandoned the thought of protecting her personal privacy.

“That’s what we should utilize. Do you understand? We can use this to our advantage. You should try planning something.”

San straightened his back while Biyeon touched her chest. The feeling of being touched by San was still vivid in her mind and body. Her face became bright red.

“Will they bring you some medicine? You only have six months left.”

“I don’t know.”

“We really don’t have time. What are you thinking?”

“…”

“Are you afraid?” 

“Very afraid.”

“What are you so afraid of? That’s not like you.”

“Everything… I’m afraid that this life will be broken.”

“Are you happy now? Even though you’re so busy and anxious all the time?”

Biyeon nodded her head instead of giving a verbal answer. She really, truly was happy. San had kept his promise, the promise that she’d conduct the ‘final experiment’ when she wanted to. There was a high likelihood that she could cancel the ‘termination’ clause through the final experiment, or, the ‘termination’ could take immediate effect, killing her off.

In Biyeon’s mind, it was still too risky. Also, she had something she didn’t want to lose in the meantime. Her life with him was breathtaking and sweet yet tenuous, with the danger of death looming over them at every moment. Life was exciting, but it was also very tedious.

She had a foreboding feeling that, although there was no evidence to support her feelings, this peaceful life would never come again… So, she took in each day in stride. Every day was precious to her right now.

Once she makes her decision to conduct the final experiment, everything would be shattered. If she was successful, the days of being chased like a fugitive would begin, as every being would want to obtain her secret. If it failed, she’d perish immediately. From some point on, the red number that was visible in the upper left corner of her vision became clear. The number seemed to be engraved in her mind. It had steadily decreasing like a countdown, probably a guideline function for a being to understand when the termination would arrive.

She had a feeling that she could no longer postpone the final experiment. Soon, this precious period that she cherished would end, and they would have to go out into the wild to fend for their lives once again.

From now, they’d have to face powerful enemies without rest.

Originally, laboratory subjects would be kept alive long enough for an experimenter to gather the desired data… if Biyeon’s final experiment turned out to be successful, they may soon be living the life of lab mice.

***

“Title?” San asked as he narrowed his eyes. In front of him stood a smiling messenger sent by the first chief of the State Secretary’s Office.

“Congratulations, Marquis San.”

“What is this shit?”

“Huh?”

“I don’t want it. Whoever said I wanted a title?”

The messenger looked up at San with a puzzled expression on his face.

‘You don’t want a title? Or is the Marquis too low?’ The official treatment of Royal Guard members who had obtained the Awakener status were given the title of Marquis. However, the titles were not conferred while one was still on duty since one must concentrate on one’s work. Usually only after one resigned or retired would territories and titles be conferred. Furthermore, once one was appointed, and if one was promoted to a Duke, one must swear absolute allegiance to the emperor.

Many high-ranking officials dreamed of being a Duke since Dukes enjoyed greater freedom. However, one’s territory was limited to somewhere within the emperor’s territories, so there was always a lack of prime land. There were too many titles to confer and too little land to give out.

‘But why?’ The messenger straightened his face and continued, “It is our Majesty’s special order.”

“Hmm…”

San grimaced. He knew that he couldn’t deny the emperor. The emperor wanted San’s allegiance.

“What about Chief of Staff Yeon?” 

“She will become ‘the Marquis’ Wife,” the messenger answered cautiously.

“And our territory?”

“It is very close. It is the ‘Gizan’ district, half a day away from the royal palace. It is still undeveloped, but the land is fertile, and the scenery is beautiful.”

“Isn’t that territory under the emperor’s direct jurisdiction, that is, to the imperial family?”

“I’m sorry, but I'm not in a position to speak of or know about those things.”

San frowned and closed his eyes. He had a bitter taste in his mouth. No matter how terrible he felt, he didn’t want to let out his frustration and anger at the messenger, who was just doing his job.

“When?”

“Ten days later. In the meantime, the General Secretary’s Office will guide you through the protocol and procedures. I think it will be a pretty big event.”

“Is the event dealing with other matters as well?”

“I don’t know. There are rumors that it has something to do with the reorganization of the State Secretary’s Office, but…”

“Alright. You may leave.”

After the messenger left, San threw the papers he was looking at a moment ago. The papers were flung up to the ceiling of the office, and dust scattered all around the room.

“Nothing seems to be working out. We have such a busy road ahead, but a lot of troublesome things are happening. Shit, the sun is setting as well. Fuck!”

The red afternoon sun was slowly dimming the sunlight coming in through the office window.

At that moment, Magic Dragon Siluone’s Sages ‘Dam’ and ‘Sil’ were on their way to visit San and Biyeon.

[End of Episode 3]

Winds of FortuneChapter 1

Two servants came out of the door while wiping their sweat off their faces. They had interacted with many guests, but they never felt this nervous before.

The interior was quiet, and the heavy energy of silence made the atmosphere stuffy.

“I’ve heard what you have to say. Is that all?” San asked with a stiff expression.

Biyeon stared at their visitors with a calm, expressionless face.

In front of San and Biyeon was a muscular man more than twice the size of San sitting on a chair and an enchantingly beautiful woman standing next to him.

There was a child about two years old in the arms of the woman. The child was looking at San and Biyeon with clear eyes.

“Yes, we can’t supply any more medicine. You can either do something about the termination clause or you can go ballistic and start doing whatever you want to do,” the male Sage, Dam, said with a blank expression as if he was bored.

“So, you mean… show you all our abilities and then die heroically?”

“No, everything will be settled once the woman gets rid of the termination clause. Isn’t that the most likely possibility anyway? Why are you both putting it off?” Dam asked.

“Or we can just kill you both,” San roared, seemingly seething with anger.

“Ho-oh! Are you serious?”

“Why don’t you try killing us now? You have the power to do that, right?” Biyeon commented sarcastically.

Dam’s lips became twisted, and he waved his hand to brush off the current conversation.

“I’d like to, but we’re in a lot of trouble as it is because there’d be a lot of opposition if we took any steps like that. You guys possess precious bodies. The other Sages have their own experiment plans regarding you two as well. If you feel it’s unfair, why not just get rid of the termination clause? That’ll make everything easier, right? We don’t have much time to wait.”

“And if we do get rid of the termination clause? What then?”

“We’ll all be happy. You both will live a long life, and we won’t have to sacrifice our precious eggs as medicine any longer. The Original Beings will also be happy because they’ll get to live a longer life as well.”

“You’ll leave us alone? How do you expect us to believe that?”

“Then don’t believe it.”

“You son of a bitch. What if we can’t solve it?"

“She still has six months. In lieu of giving up on finding a solution to the termination clause, we are going to conduct experiments on both of you to understand and gauge the capabilities you have developed. Everyone expects it to be a very interesting experiment. Maybe, then, I can show you everything that I possess. Some pretty powerful guys are already getting ready,” Dam said as he broadly smiled.

Previous Chapter Next Chapter