The light was so bright that it made them close their eyes out of reflex.
The ground shook from the large explosion.
No, it sounded as if it was splitting.
Someone plopped down on the floor from the shaking.
It was a Dark Elf on the reconnaissance team. He had lost all strength in his legs and could not stand up.
His hands were covering his eyes. He felt as if the bright light would make him blind.
However, there was someone who still had their eyes open.
Zero, the ninth candidate.
He did not close his eyes at all. The bright light made his eyes tear up and become bloodshot but he did not avoid that light at all.
Darkness would return if he closed his eyes.
He laughed out loud.
The explosion and the red light swallowed his laughter but he did not stop laughing.
“This, this is truly the light that would destroy the darkness!”
He looked at the red light without stopping even as tears poured out of his eyes.
He embedded the image in his mind over and over again.
“Yes, it should be like this!”
‘It needs to be this kind of light!
There is no way that a light that would chase away the darkness would be beautiful and warm!’
Zero’s fingertips were shaking.
Zero’s subordinate who barely managed to open his eyes became anxious after seeing him like this and reached toward Zero but his hand could not reach him.
Zero was looking at this red light and laughing despite tears coming out of his eyes that were so bloodshot and red.
He was scared that touching such a crazy person might lead to his death.
Zero’s eyes looked full of lunacy right now.
“It’s a crazy light!”
This red light was even capable of destroying a Dragon’s shield.
Zero turned his head.
He made eye contact with the Dragon.
The Dragon was continuing to put new layers of shield as they broke.
Thanks to that, the people inside the shield were not swept away by the explosion despite the ground shaking.
Zero heard the Dragon’s voice in his mind.
The Dragon started to smile.
– You’re a part of the Agents of Destruction, right?
A smile appeared on Zero’s face.
His smile was extremely bright and happy.
Eruhaben thought to himself while looking at that smile.
‘This human bastard is not completely sane.’
Raon would probably say that this guy was a bit cuckoo.
However, Eruhaben stopped paying attention to Zero.
Eruhaben couldn’t help but scowl.
The red light did not subside despite it being a few minutes. The light was instead spreading out so that no darkness could be seen.
‘Just what the hell did this bastard Cale do?!’
Eruhaben had seen Cale use a lot of powers while fighting against the White Star.
Cale was someone who used strong powers that were even greater than those of Dragons depending on the situation, but this power right now was even beyond that.
‘…It really feels like the power of a god.’
This seemed to be at least a couple times stronger than anything Cale had used until now, so strong that it made him have such thoughts.
It was strong enough to destroy the strongest shields Eruhaben could cast in this situation where mana was not plentiful.
He was certain that Cale would bleed again.
‘Even though he said that there was no need to bleed in this world!’ He should not have believed those words.
Rather than being proud of how much Cale’s power had grown, he was concerned about how long Cale would be unconscious.
Eruhaben couldn’t help but sigh at the fact that not only did he recover his youth in his final year of life; he had to worry about a goddamn full-grown adult.
Zero felt calmness from the Dragon who was sighing.
The Dragon simply continued to create shields as if he had experienced something like this many times.
‘The sword master and Heni Wishrop seem used to this as well.’
The two of them were still keeping an eye on the bounded First Imperial Prince’s party with odd expressions on their faces.
‘Concern? Annoyance? Frustration?’
Their faces were filled with mysterious emotions that were hard to describe.
Even the nonchalant-looking Heni Wishrop had a scowl on her face as she continued to peek toward the center of the red light where the purifier was located.
Zero looked around.
Everybody seemed to have gotten used to the red light to a degree as they were all looking around while waiting for the light to subside.
‘No, there are some crazy bastards too.’
There were some people who were blankly staring at the red light without even having the thought of looking around.
Fourth Imperial Prince Noi was one of those people.
“…A real power of a god……?”
The Fourth Imperial Prince’s eyes were shaking.
His eyes were bloodshot like Zero’s. Noi’s gaze slowly moved somewhere.
The most likely candidate for the next Emperor…
First Imperial Prince Sanders.
Noi looked at his blood brother. His brother’s eyes were just like Noi’s had been, unable to look away from the red light.
He was smiling.
The First Imperial Prince was smiling.
This was the first time Noi saw his brother smiling since they were young.
That smile was a bit empty and full of resignation.
But he also seemed happy.
There was someone aside from Sanders who was showing happiness on their face.
It was Chief Eaen.
She was feeling a sense of awe and could not help but smile.
We definitely got on the right side this time!
Marquis Helson is working with someone legit this time!’
She did not think that the Margrave would make the wrong decision. However, Eaen had not been able to hide her uncertainty while watching Marquis Helson and the other Margraves secretly planning something together.
‘Getting rid of the enemies does not mean that we can stop the destruction.’
Eaen had thought that the world was too far gone and would be destroyed in the end even if they got rid of the House of Huayans and the Imperial Palace’s leery actions.
She believed that the best that she and the Margrave could do was to delay the destruction as long as possible to extend the lives of the people as much as possible.
‘…My thoughts were wrong.’
However, that thought was wrong.
The darkness was disappearing.
The dead mana truly was perishing.
It was disappearing even without leaving behind grey ashes.
She tightened the grip on the video communication device she was holding as if it was a precious treasure and started to speak.
However, she did not hear a response from the Marquis.
It was like that despite the video communication device still working properly.
Eaen had a feeling that she knew what the Marquis was doing.
* * *
The Marquis was at a loss for words.
He had seen only red light coming from the video communication device once numerous rose gold thunderbolts gathered together to create a giant bundle of light.
The ground shook at that moment.
A deep and long shaking went through the entire Precinct 9.
He immediately looked out the window.
He was not the only one.
Advisors, knights, administrators… The core individuals of Precinct 9 who were with him had all stopped what they were doing and were looking out the window.
Beyond the wall…
The place that was dark even during the day and gave off darkness that was even darker than the night during night time…
The place that was usually covered in black fog so that they could not see anything was different right now.
The bundle of light was sending red light in all directions as it exploded.
It felt as if the sun was on the ground.
The black fog was disappearing.
They could see that all the way from the wall.
“…I can see it.”
He could see the ground that was covered in black sand.
He couldn’t see the central area where the bundle of light had exploded.
That area was surrounded by such intense rose gold light that they couldn’t see anything.
However, the areas that were touched by faint rose gold light had the darkness disappear to the point that they could see the polluted ground.
The Marquis’ legs gave out as he stood by the window.
He pushed the knight’s hand away and clenched onto the window sill and did whatever he could to put some strength into his legs to stand up straight.
Once the rose gold light got rid of the darkness in the air and the fire touched the ground, grey ashes started to rise from all over.
The Marquis pointed to a spot.
“D, do you see that?”
“…I can see it sir.”
The knight was tearing up.
The red bundle of light was slowly disappearing from the central area, making that area slowly start to become visible.
The Marquis couldn’t help but say what was on his mind.
The black sand…
“The ground is not black.”
Had been purified.
“…The Fire of Purification.”
The fire with thunderbolts inside it had burned the air and the ground.
It then sent the ashes flying in the wind to return the ground to normal.
It was marvelous.
The Marquis turned his head.
There was a video communication device that had been continuously contacting him since earlier.
The black mage and advisor who were by the video communication device looked at the Marquis.
“Is it the Imperial Palace?”
The Marquis had immediately created an attack team and dispatched them as soon as the black tree’s roots had attacked the wall.
The Imperial Palace had been contacting him since not long after that.
They had sent a regular call at first but the importance level of the call had continued to increase as the Marquis ignored them.
“…It is a call request from his Majesty.”
The Emperor had personally called him.
Marquis Helson started to smile. The corners of his lips were slightly shaking.
He looked around.
Everybody here was like his own hands and feet, they were the core members of Precinct 9.
“You all understand what you just saw?”
However, their faces were all full of some sort of determination.
The initial concern, disbelief, and worries about the wall’s defense they had when Helson had created the black tree attack team… All of those emotions were no longer visible on their faces.
Helson continued to speak.
“All that is left for us to do is to believe what we saw and push forward.”
The Marquis really realized that he was at the turning point of history.
“Connect the call.”
He sat on the chair across from the video communication device.
The knight quickly closed all the curtains in the meeting room.
Although the light outside was subsiding, he made sure that none of the rose gold light from outside could be seen.
“…It has been connected.”
The Emperor’s face appeared above the video communication device as soon as the black mage announced in a solemn tone.
– Marquis Helson.
Marquis Helson quickly stood up and bowed.
“My apologies, your Majesty!”
He moved without caring about the Emperor’s reaction at all.
Not only did he bow, he knelt down on the ground.
He still did not raise his head.
‘…The Huayans patriarch is there as well.’
However, he had already confirmed the faces of the influential figures in the Imperial Palace as soon as the Emperor’s face appeared on the screen.
‘Marquis. It’ll be fine if you do as I told you.’
Helson recalled what the purifier had told him.
‘I’ll capture all of the First Imperial Prince’s forces so you just have to make sure that the First Imperial Prince’s attendants or subordinates who stay back here don’t do anything funny.’
‘Would the purifier really be able to capture the First Imperial Prince?’
He had such a question.
However, he did not have that question any longer.
How could he have such a thought after seeing that rose gold light?
“My deepest apologies, your Majesty!”
The Marquis lowered his body to the ground.
– …Marquis, I heard that Precinct 9 was at-
“My apologies, your Majesty!”
The Marquis didn’t even listen to the Emperor properly and continued to apologize.
The moment the Emperor scowled at that and tried to open his mouth again…
The people behind the Marquis all knelt down and lowered their heads as well.
There was a sense of solemnity.
The Emperor closed his mouth and…
– …Marquis. What is going on?
The Huayans patriarch, who was right next to the Emperor, asked instead.
The Marquis fixed the expression on his face and slowly looked up.
“…His Royal Highness, the First Imperial Prince-”
The purifier had told him to say the following.
Of course the Marquis did as he was told.
“His Royal Highness has also p, passed, sob!”
He could not finish his sentence and lowered his head as his shoulders moved up and down.
“My apologies, your Majesty! His Royal Highness said that he would protect Precinct 9 and the western part of the Empire in my place and headed beyond the wall, and then……!”
The Marquis continued the act of pretending to cry.
“A, an honorable death……!”
– Marquis! What are you saying right now?!
It was rare to see the Huayans patriarch unable to hide the shock on his face as he scolded the Marquis.
Anger was visible on his face.
The Marquis lowered his head again as if he was apologetic and shouted.
Of course, he had discussed this with Cale in advance as well.
“My deepest apologies, Duke-nim! The first young lady, the first young lady also left us honorably!”
The Marquis did not hear anything from the video communication device but he kept his head down as he shouted.
“Even the Dragon and the other helper have passed away!”
“Numerous candidates have died and we were able to protect the western part of the Empire thanks to their deaths!”
The purifier had said the following.
‘All three of them will be alive. Nobody will die. But just tell them that they have died.’
The Marquis moved his shoulders up and down one time.
He then cried.
* * *
– C, Cale.
Cale blankly stood there and looked around.
The cheapskate was stuttering as he continued to speak.
– …Umm… Cale, you know…
The Fire of Destruction mumbled in a broken voice.
– …I have used 100 percent of my power before but I have never used 50 percent of my power to get 2,500 percent as a result… No, anyway……
The cheapskate was wary of what Cale was thinking as he spoke.
– …Umm… I think we are seriously strong in this place.
Cale could see the scorched, no, the now purified area.
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