Twenty Years Ago
When everything was said and done, Eiron's body became translucent. He no longer had a solid, physical presence and seemed like an apparition.
"I took him back to the elven settlement and promise that he will be in deep slumber for the next century," he answered their questioning gazes, "My interference in this world has reached its peak. The future will depend on you, children."
"But what were the two of you talking about?" Leguna asked. While Wayerliss seemed to have understood something, Leguna and Annelotte were completely clueless and left out of the loop.
"I'm sorry, but I no longer have any power to answer your questions," Eiron said with a shake of his head, "You will have to uncover the truth yourselves. Answering Wayerliss's questions have made it hard to maintain my existence…"
"Uncle Eiron…" While Eiron was old enough to be Leguna's grandfather, he was used to calling him uncle. "At least give us a hint! Something that's permitted by the laws!"
Thanks to Gahrona and the Stokian myth-realm magus, Leguna got sick of people who couldn't talk about certain things. It was like they were in on a huge secret, told him about that fact, and said that he couldn't know about it, which was infuriating to say the least. He was so frustrated that he would rather stoop to begging to be fed even the slightest crumb than to be kept hanging.
"It's better for you to ask Myr about this. Perhaps you might yet find some answers through him. As for Wayerliss, the only way he'll make it out of this alive is to stay out of it. That's why I had him enter deep slumber."
Eiron grew even more translucent and hard to see. He didn't seem surprised about it at all and shrugged while muttering to himself. "Looks like this is the end. Hehe, why would it matter? It's not like I owe this world anything…"
He turned to Leguna and snapped, "Leguna, remember what I said to you in the beginning. True courage isn't having baseless bravery. It's the ability to retain your hope and faith for the existence of light in the world even after having experienced the worst it has to offer."
"Instead of worrying about my mental health, why don't you do something about my actual wounds?!" he snapped as he spat another mouthful of blood out. He didn't even know whether it was from the infuriating answer or the wounds Wayerliss gave him.
"Miss Annie," Eiron said, ignoring Leguna's complaints, "You are the bravest person I've met, the most fearless, in fact."
She remained silent and merely met his gaze.
"You are capable of facing many scary things in this world without backing down, but why can you never face your own true heart?" He stretched his hand out and stroked her head like he would his daughter's. Then, his old, frail body that managed to stop a saint faded even more.
Half a minute later, the two of them were no longer able to see the hands and pained expression of the old elf. He had completely disappeared.
"Can you still move?" Annelotte asked. She wasn't seriously injured and only had a few bruises. Leguna, on the other hand, had broken ribs and innards punctured by his bone. If he wasn't treated soon, even he would be at risk of losing his life.
"Umm…" He gave it some thought and spat out another mouthful of blood. "I think… I'm at the end of the road…"
"Is that so?" She saw through his little spiel long ago and smirked. "Then, I'll get Eirinn and Innie to prepare your funeral right away."
"Hey! Annie, you can't leave me like this! I was even your meat shield just now!" Had he not been injured, he would be jumping around animatedly.
"Hey! At least cast a levitation spell on me! This is murder and it's on your hands!"
"Barf… Ah… Hack! Hack! Ugh!"
While she still wore a dissatisfied look, she helped pull him up. With the magic seal Wayerliss put on her weakening, she could barely dictate a low-level levitation spell.
As she pulled him back to Melindor, a soft voice rang out in the empty space behind them. "So… The greatest threat has been removed. Fate, did you choose to walk upon that path after all? Wayerliss, I didn't go back on my word. After all, Eiron is now dead, right? My promise is fulfilled… Hahahaha…"
When Annelotte brought Leguna to Eirinn, the half elf jumped in shock. However, she was no longer the teary girl who only knew how to hide behind him from before. With a perfect combination of the Breath and conventional medical techniques, Leguna recovered rather quickly. As for Eiron's secret, the two weren't in a hurry to ask Myr about it.
After so many things happened, Leguna felt that there were too many secrets behind the founding war of the Hocke empire. Different people had different views on the matter, and he believed he had to investigate each perspective in detail to gain a better picture on the story. So, Annelotte often came while he was recovering to break down what Wayerliss and Eiron had said in an attempt to figure out what they had experienced.
According to the information Leguna had collected and the conversation between the two elves, Leguna and Annelotte got a rough picture.
Hundreds of years ago when Eiron traveled the continent of Chino and met Wayerliss's mother in the Stokian Magic Academy, the two of them got married and gave birth to Wayerliss.
In his childhood, he didn't have much talent for magic, so he chose the path of the fighter. In a few decades' time and effort, he became a magnificent assassin and decided to leave his parents to further grow and improve.
In the time he trained, which lasted around two decades, Duke Mellin started the founding war. To avoid being embroiled in the chaos, Eiron and his wife chose to live in seclusion, but after the war, they were surprisingly drawn into a conflict. In that conflict, Eiron had lost his life, but right before doing so, he seemed to find out about a shocking secret.
To protect the world and prevent what he saw from coming to pass, he managed to become an 'extraneous lifeform', as Wayerliss had put it, with the help of his necromancer wife. The price of the transformation was likely her life.
As for what an extraneous lifeform was, Annelotte spent a lot of time and finally found a definition in a nameless tome.
Basically, every lifeform in the world was bound by its fate, which was a combination of the many choices the lifeform makes and the many coincidences it experiences. That was the basic law that all living creatures had to obey. It was the fundamental wheel of fate.
But some lifeforms, at the point of their death and end of their fates, were still able to maintain their ego in the world. Those lifeforms were called extraneous lifeforms -- external from the jurisdiction of the fundamental laws of the world. As a result, they would be rejected by the laws of the world.
One of the strongest restrictions applied to them was the interference in the fates of other lifeforms. Simply interacting with normal lifeforms, getting into conflict with them and even killing them would cause endless changes in the complex network of differing fates.
The network was an intricately complicated machine with small, but interconnected gears pushing each other along. If an extraneous lifeform interfered with the fate of a normal lifeform, it would be as if a gear in the machine that wasn't supposed to move started spinning for no good reason, and the effect would cascade across the other gears connected to it and cause the machine to spiral out of control.
As a result, the planar laws would punish extraneous lifeforms strictly who interfered with the operation of the machine. The bigger change inflicted upon the world by that lifeform, the bigger their punishment would be. Should it be necessary, the planar laws could wipe out the existence of the extraneous lifeforms right away. That was why Eiron only told the truth at the very end. The moment it was out, Wayerliss's fate would be greatly changed and Eiron would be deleted by the planar laws.
Given that extraneous lifeforms weren't bound by the planar laws, they had their own methods to resist them. One such method was power, great power. If an external lifeform was powerful enough, they would be able to maintain their existence despite the planar laws' effect.
Eiron, for instance, was able to live in the elven settlement for two whole decades and influence the fates of his kin and even reveal the secret to Wayerliss, completely rewriting his fate and forcing him into a deep slumber. The depths of his power was unfathomable.
But no matter how powerful he was, he still wouldn't be able to take all the punishment from the laws and was utterly annihilated.Previous Chapter Next Chapter