"Your father was the first one to charge in," Myr said to Annelotte.
"Father…" she repeated. The father and daughter were both gifted, so she could understand Marolyt's rage.
"Marolyt destroyed the formation right away and Nidhogg began fighting us like a madman. He didn't hold back at all, and neither did we. He was far too dangerous and we couldn't just leave a time bomb like him roaming around the continent." Myr leaned into his chair as he recounted with a shiver in his voice. "That was the closest fight I've ever experienced. Even though I had two saints covering my back, my magic was nothing to Nidhogg at all. Had it not been for Kevin's divine healing, I might've died then and there."
"But you still won in the end, right?" Leguna asked, finally understanding what really happened.
"That's right. Marolyt and Kevin had a skill they could use in tandem to completely seal away Nidhogg's mana circuits. I then used Death Sentence to end his life," he said with a look of regret. No matter what Nidhogg had become, he was still Myr's teacher. Even after so many years, Myr was still haunted by the shadow of killing his own benefactor.
However, Leguna did pick up on something. "A skill?"
Myr's expression stiffened, but he nodded. "That's right. When Kevin realized that Nidhogg was getting more and more savage, that was the countermeasure he came up with. We couldn't allow someone as invincible as him to exist on the continent."
"So why didn't you bring his body back after killing him?" Leguna asked.
"Because we wanted to bury the secret there for good." Myr turned to Annelotte. "The things Nidhogg was researching was incredibly cruel for gifted like you. If that matter was brought to public, the gifted might become hunted all across the continent. There will definitely be even more bloodbath. Back then, we destroyed everything in that cave and swore to bury it in the depths of our memory. Had word of Nidhogg not resurfaced once more, we wouldn't have told you about this."
Leguna nodded and looked Annelotte in the eye. The two of them could see the shock and understanding in each other's eyes. The truth was finally out, and they now understood something even better than Myr did.
If what they heard was right, this matter still hadn't ended. They knew that Nidhogg hadn't died from Death's Sentence. The myth-realm magus probably cheated death with some kind of spell and swore to seek revenge against Myr and the others, perhaps even the empire and continent as a whole. Eiron and his wife encountered a heavily injured Nidhogg back then and fought him. It was during that fight that the myth-realm magus truly fell.
Additionally, Nidhogg unleashed a prophecy of his return before his fall. That was why Eiron turned into an extraneous lifeform for the sake of life on the continent. While he returned to the elven settlement in Lance, he had never stopped observing Chino.
After understanding the truth, Leguna had a new outlook on the corpse wave. If Nidhogg really was the one behind all that, the level of this disaster was far worse than everyone imagined!
"What do you think about this corpse wave, Grandmaster?"
"I don't know…" he said powerlessly.
"Don't know?" Even Annelotte was taken aback. Myr's knowledge was something even she was impressed by, yet, he said he didn't know.
"That's right. I've never read about any magic like this in any tome. It's far beyond what I know, just like how I was never able to comprehend Nidhogg's power."
The two of them couldn't help but feel disappointed. While they got the truth of the past from him, there was still a huge question hanging over their heads and they had no clue on how they would go about solving it.
After leaving the court magi association, Leguna and Annelotte were completely silent. In the end, Annelotte was the one who spoke first. "What other methods do you have left?"
"I have no clue either. We'll have to cross the bridge when we come to it." While he wanted to be someone she could rely on, even he was helpless to deal with this situation. The entire south of Chino was a dead zone and the army wasn't able to bring them any information from there. As such, they couldn't really tell whether the corpse wave was Nidhogg's doing. Not to mention, even if it was, what could they do about it? He was someone who could face off against two saints and one quasi-myth magus. What could an assassin like him who hadn't even broken through to the saint realm do?
Annelotte wasn't surprised by that answer. She merely asked without expecting much of an answer. She nodded and returned to the academy in a carriage. The academy had much to do to counter the corpse wave and she didn't have the time to dally. Leguna scratched his head in frustration and returned to the bureau.
Well, let's go at this one step at a time. Perhaps the army would be enough to deal with the wave. When it comes to the worst, we can just go to Lance to avoid this catastrophe…
A few days later, Leguna came without Annelotte to the court magi association once more.
"You're here." Myr didn't seem surprised that he was there. Myr had shot him a glance before they left the last time. He knew that he was hiding something he didn't want Annelotte to know.
"I wouldn't dare to not come after you explicitly told me to," he said with a forced smile. "Is there anything else?"
"Kid… Do you really like Annie?"
"Yeah, of course."
"Even though she isn't my daughter, I've begun to see her as such after the years we've known one another. You're free to consider this me asking on Marolyt's behalf. Do you really like her? Would you really do everything in your power to protect her?"
"She's the one that means the most to me. I'm willing to give my life to protect her," he replied without hesitation.
Myr looked at him for a whole minute before he said, "Then, there's one thing I would like you to know."
"Annie's gifts… aren't her own," he said with a sigh.
"What?!" Leguna sprung from the chair. It wasn't hers? Did she receive a gift transfusion surgery? Was it Wayerliss? What was going on?
"It's only a guess," Myr said, shaking his head. "Nidhogg used to have the exact same ice-aspect gifts she does. That's why I suspect her gifts are actually inherited from Nidhogg, given the similar time of his death and her birth. Additionally, Saron's fire and wind gifts are also identical to Nidhogg's."Previous Chapter Next Chapter