Rosalyn was the first to run toward her. She was headed toward Mary with shock and joy at seeing her.
Mary was blankly staring at Rosalyn when an arrow was shot toward her.
Choi Han urgently pulled out his sword.
However, a large fire gobbled up the arrow.
“I, it’s a mage! That level of magic must be a high-grade mage!”
“Why the hell did another mage appear?!”
“Protect the cave entrance!”
Rosalyn easily destroyed the arrow aiming for Mary, and her fire blasted forward until the cave entrance.
“She is higher than high-grade!”
Everything other than a few knights at the cave entrance was done for.
“We can’t waste time on the minions.”
Choi Han walked past Rosalyn, who was speaking calmly. He was headed toward the knights at the entrance.
Of course, he didn’t forget to greet Mary with an innocent smile first.
Mary waved her hand at that moment. Her hand, that was covered in black spider webs, moved as if she was conducting an orchestra.
“Ugh! That monster, that monster is doing something again!”
The enemies screamed and looked somewhere after seeing her action.
Skeleton monsters were headed toward the enemies.
“The cursed necromancer has reappeared!”
“We must inform the temple!”
The regular soldiers who must have come from the villa were unable to look at Mary as if they thought she was disgusting and sought out their gods.
Rosalyn could not hide her bitterness as she watched.
She felt as if she could understand Mary’s sadness and despair a bit despite this just being an illusion of the past.
“We must go.”
Her stiff but warm voice made Rosalyn follow behind Choi Han with Mary.
“You came to rescue Raon-nim?”
“Yes, ma’am. We must save him.”
Rosalyn felt many emotions after realizing that the first person who came to rescue Raon was Mary.
“It’s a monster!”
“Get rid of that disgusting thing in the name of the sun-!”
People’s voices painfully stabbed at Rosalyn’s back. However, she could not let it show as Mary was walking forward without any hesitation.
“But it seems as if everybody is in the same illusion.”
The moment Mary said that…
Two knights were sent flying by Choi Han’s sword. Choi Han easily took the enemies down without even using his aura.
“Did the young master-nim send you here?”
“Young master Cale is not here.”
Mary stopped walking.
Rosalyn could see Mary’s purple eyes as Mary raised her head. Her eyes were shaking.
“Cale Henituse does not exist in this world.”
“…It must be a test.”
Mary thought for a moment before mumbling to herself again.
“That is why this may be a test.”
She lowered her head again.
“I will ask questions after we first rescue Raon-nim.”
“I have a lot of questions as well, but I agree about saving Raon-nim first.”
The last knight was easily taken down with Choi Han’s sword, and the three of them immediately entered the cave.
The skeleton monsters moved according to Mary’s hand movement to not allow anybody else from entering the cave.
Clopeh had an odd smile on his face as he stood outside without being able to go in.
“Did they forget about me?”
Clopeh shrugged his shoulders and headed toward someone who was shaking and running somewhere.
“We must hurry up and contact! The temple, no, we need to contact the Marquis-nim- ugh!”
A sword was stabbed into the man as he ran.
He turned his head. The white-haired, green-eyed knight was smiling brightly.
“I guess I can at least take care of the back end.”
Clopeh pulled out his sword and headed toward the villa that was known as Viscount Neo Tolz’s villa but was actually a secret villa used by Marquis Stan’s family.
The people who entered the cave quickly arrived at the end.
Outside the metal bars of a cage… A man was shaking while walking backward. It was the bastard who had tortured and beaten Raon.
Rosalyn became overwhelmed with emotions the moment she saw Raon inside the cage. Her red mana gathered around her and she looked ready to kill the man in front of her at any moment.
“The bomb inside his body will explode if he dies.”
Choi Han quickly moved and hit the man behind the neck to knock him out.
“…It was like this.”
Rosalyn clenched her eyes shut. On the other hand, Mary wasn’t even shaking as she looked inside the cage.
‘Good little Mary! The night sky is extremely beautiful! It is black like me but it sparkles! I still can’t forget the first time I saw the night sky! The human was with me at that time!’
‘Little Mary! This is an apple pie I just bought! Let’s eat it together! The human eats everything well so I don’t know what to give him!’
She could hear Raon’s voice in her memories.
In front of her was Raon, who was warily glaring at her.
An aura-infused sword easily sliced the metal bars.
Choi Han crouched down in front of Raon. The black Dragon had mana restricting chains on his neck and four paws and was looking at Choi Han with distrust and loathing.
Choi Han did not smile.
He simply hugged the black Dragon in his arms.
The Dragon flinched, but Choi Han only said one thing.
“I will give you your freedom.”
‘The same way someone had done that for you in the past.’
Choi Han did not remember exactly what Cale had said to Raon when he On, Hong, and Cale went to rescue Raon.
However, Cale would have acted nonchalantly without being dramatic.
Choi Han headed toward one of the cave walls and looked for the spot he had punched in the past. He then kicked it with similar strength.
“Is that the exit?”
The emergency escape route that Venion Stan had prepared appeared.
Choi Han had quickly walked through this place as if he was running away last time, but he was relaxed this time. He just intermittently patted the back of this stiff black Dragon in his arms.
The black Dragon was looking around confused while peeking at Choi Han, Rosalyn, and Mary. It seemed as if he was judging their strengths while also looking as if he had reached a state of nirvana where nothing mattered.
However, he was unable to hide his wrath and loathing.
Choi Han quietly whispered at that moment.
“Don’t you smell the scent of the outside air?”
As the sun shone down on the mountain during this springtime… It would be day instead of night time when they go out of the cave right now, unlike when he first met Raon.
“It’s going to be a bit bright.”
The black Dragon’s nose was twitching after hearing Choi Han’s whisper. He was cautiously sniffing.
A robe in Rosalyn’s hand was gently placed on the black Dragon.
They made it through the secret passage and arrived outside.
The black Dragon was experiencing a spring day this time.
Choi Han kept the robe on Raon as he put him down on top of the grass.
The black Dragon moved around a bit before looking up. He seemed to be slowly adjusting to the light. Of course, he seemed to be quickly adjusting to the environmental change as he was a Dragon.
The black Dragon silently looked at the scenery, the sky, and finally, the three people. Choi Han, Rosalyn… And Mary.
Mary crouched down and made eye contact with Raon as he looked at her.
“You can now do whatever you want.”
Rosalyn suddenly flinched. She was naturally thinking about taking Raon with them.
“Yes, if it was Cale-nim.”
Rosalyn chose to quietly observe after hearing Choi Han’s mumbling in response to Mary’s comment.
‘Yes. Young master Cale wouldn’t try to take Raon-nim with him right now.’
Three days later. Rosalyn, Choi Han, and the others had to fight against the White Star’s side. They had no idea how fierce the battle would be and they didn’t know how much more they would need to fight to reach the end of this test.
‘We will need to rethink taking On and Hong with us as well.’
If it was young master Cale…
If he was here knowing the future…
He would try to fight on his own without dragging On, Hong, and Raon, and even all of them into it.
‘Yes. Let’s leave the children out.’
Mary quietly continued speaking.
“However, if you don’t really know what to do, you can always ask us any questions, observe us, or even follow us.”
Raon was someone who had taught Mary about the outside world and been with her.
He had shared with her everything he had seen without her having to ask, and Mary had been able to do things with him as she watched. He was also someone who had told Mary that she could come to him whenever she wanted.
Mary was doing things exactly as she had learned.
The black Dragon grabbed the robe with his front paws.
“One moment, please.”
Rosalyn grabbed the black Dragon’s front paws at that moment. Raon flinched and fear appeared on his face.
Warm red mana surrounded the young Dragon’s body. The warmth was more like the rays of the sun than the sun itself. The Dragon quietly observed Rosalyn while feeling the warmth flowing out of the woman in front of him.
Everything binding the Dragon was destroyed by the red mana.
“Please eat this if you get hungry.”
Rosalyn placed a basket of apple pies in front of Raon. There were potions and many other things inside the basket as well.
Choi Han turned around and was the first to leave.
Mary and Rosalyn followed behind him. The black Dragon watched them leave before clenching the basket and the robe.
Rosalyn whispered quietly so that only Choi Han and Mary could hear when she could no longer see Raon.
“He’s following us.”
Choi Han, Mary, and Rosalyn…
The three of them could feel the inexperienced flow of mana behind them despite being unable to see him.
Choi Han couldn’t help but laugh.
Although Cale-nim was not here and they were in an illusion where everything had to be started again…
‘It’s not bad.’
It was bearable.
They had the strength to push forward in this place.
Rosalyn suddenly stopped walking.
“He’ll find his way to us.”
“You have a point. He will be able to take care of things properly no matter where he is left right now. Oh, but Miss Mary?”
Mary looked toward Rosalyn and Choi Han.
“Are you curious as to how I got here?”
The two of them nodded their heads.
Mary was in a different situation from Clopeh.
She was currently living in the Underground City located in the Forbidden Region in Caro Kingdom, the Land of Death.
It would have been extremely difficult for her to get to the Roan Kingdom and to Viscount Tolz’s territory.
It would have been even more difficult for Mary since there were a lot of negative feelings toward necromancers and Dark Elves right now.
“I arrived at the Roan Kingdom one week ago.”
“Please wait a minute. Did you say one week ago?”
“Yes. One week ago.”
Rosalyn sounded shocked at Mary’s response.
“I got here last night-”
“I only got here a few hours ago.”
She couldn’t finish her sentence after hearing Choi Han’s comment and turned to him in shock.
It was at that moment.
“Something is odd.”
Mary spoke as if something didn’t make sense.
“I have not seen Toonka-nim yet, but if everybody else is in this world, shouldn’t young master Cale-nim be somewhere here as well? I believe that the chances of us being unable to find him despite being in the same test are greater than him taking a different test on his own. This is especially true if we take into consideration that we all arrived at around the same time frame.”
She then added on.
“I also believe that many things will go differently from what we expect. Many things have already changed.”
* * *
Cale had arrived at the Forest of Darkness and mumbled to himself while entering the cave with the Super Rock Villa.
“Now that I think about it, something is odd.”
He stopped walking.
There were badges in his hand. Cale could feel the powers residing within the badges.
The Blood-Drenched Rock. He could feel that ancient power. He could feel the unranked monsters. He could even feel the existence of the fake World Tree.
…Finally, he could feel the White Star imprisoned in the golden plaque.
Of course, feeling those powers meant that ‘Embrace’ was working properly to imprison them and not that he could tell their conditions.
“I am unable to be seen here but I exist here.”
In that case…
“The White Star also came in here with me, albeit sealed.”
Did that mean that they needed to include the White Star in their dispatched team?
Was he not considered a person as he is currently sealed?
‘No, that’s weird.’
Cale started having questions that made him feel extremely iffy.
“I can’t be seen and I don’t exist here. But the White Star does? Especially the White Star from two years ago?”
Of course, it wouldn’t be difficult to create a fake White Star from two years ago if all of this was an illusion.
The White Star was properly Embraced inside the golden plaque.
That bastard was imprisoned here. He could not come out. He could not come out without Cale’s authorization.
“Hmm. Choi Han should be able to take on the White Star from two years ago.”
‘Why do I have such an iffy feeling?’
Cale stopped walking. He turned around and looked out the cave.
“This test should not be going so easily.”
He finally realized the foundational reason for this iffy feeling he was having.
The sealed god.
That existence was one that would not give up until he experienced a moment of despair.
That was why Cale had to take care of some variables while going through the sealed god’s test and dealing with the unranked monsters. The monsters had been stronger than the records he remembered.
“…And when does it end?”
The sealed god’s test from before was over once Cale took down the first unranked monster. It was something that Cale could come up with a plausible end point.
But this current situation?
If simply watching them was his despair and sadness…
How long would he have to do it for?
Was there no basis for it?
That wouldn’t be the case.
A test by a god always had a basis.
In that case, what needed to be done to overcome this test?
He came up with an answer.
A basis that Cale could accept was formed.
He was not sad or in despair because his allies could not see him.
He simply could not step in to protect his allies, so he just hated the fact that they needed to experience the terrible things they had faced in the past.
Even if it was just an illusion…
Cale didn’t think that he would overcome the test simply because his allies realized he was by their sides.
“…Not unless I destroy this illusion first.”
Cale did not like this situation at all.
He needed to get rid of this situation for that reason.
“In order to do that… the bastard who created this illusion and is the foundational problem for us.”
This damn temple that cast this damn illusion as a test.
That bastard who existed at the end of this temple and created this test.
“Unless we take care of that bastard… This situation will not be resolved.”
The problem was that the bastard was a god.
Cale quietly mumbled to himself.
“There is guaranteed to be a method to finish this test. And if my goal is a god?”
Cale’s eyes were looking up at the air with a burning gaze as he smiled.
It was as if he was looking for someone.
It was at that moment.
A sharp noise reached his ear.
He quickly took a black pouch out of his pocket. He opened the pouch to reveal an orb. Cale noticed a shadow the moment he grabbed the orb. The shadow that started from the orb…
– Rok Soo. Are we able to chat now?
Lee Soo Hyuk smiled brightly, as if he was happy to see Cale.
“Wow, shit! This is it!”
Cale held the orb in his hand as he urgently ran out of the cave. He then headed over to a nearby water and raised the orb.
Cale was not visible in the water.
However, the cintamani was floating in the air.
“This is visible! Hahahaha!”
– Mm. He seems to have gone crazy.
– Hey Jin Tae. We should probably be quiet.
“Hahahaha! The God of Death must have planned for this! Hahahaha!”
The God of Death never claimed to have created it, but the cintamani was most likely sent by the God of Death.
The God of Death had said the following to Cale.
‘Human, do not think that this is the end.’
‘You never know when you might be reconnected with people you know.’
‘Fate is something even the laws of the world cannot fathom.’
Now that some time had passed since then, Cale could tell that the God of Death had been talking about the cintamani.
It was the only item currently in Cale’s possession that could be seen by others.
The item belonging to the God of Death, an unsealed god, was bound to be stronger than the sealed god.
“I can destroy everything with this!”
– …This is scary. Did he really go crazy?
– Hey Jin Tae, Jin Tae. Let’s not say such mean things.
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