TPCP – 173

Thank you for the Ko-fi sarii!

At that moment, Elisha thought the treatment Merha received in prison was too comfortable. She hid her expression and nodded.

“Right, Pian. He was there. He is a distant relative of Lazri and Lapis. The twins are from the prestigious mage lineage of the Old Kingdom Alliance. Even though the family was annihilated when the Old Kingdom collapsed. That guy Pian was the one that taught me how to be a human. He taught me manners and how to talk to people.”

“They must be like family to you.”

“Not to that extent.”

Lucerne shook his head calmly.

“It was similar in that the members exchanged equivalents. I killed the monsters and they each did what they could for me. It was mainly about assisting each other’s survival. A mutually beneficial relationship. At the time, among those who were driven out, there was a child-soldier younger than me, and he did a lot for me too. He served as my attendant and the first Seed. There was a widow who didn’t know how to fight but even she did her part working as a maid. People become stronger in such an environment.”

Elisha listened intently.

“My shadow demon got stronger the more I slayed monsters and sucked up their mana. One night was the birth of a once-in-a-hundred-year demon. When that happened, they wanted more food. So I had to protect them again, and the shadow demon ran amok. I cut down 30,000 that night.”

“… … how is that possible?”

“It is possible if my shadow works properly. Because it drives the same monsters crazy and makes them fight each other. And the shadow grows the more beasts it swallows. Later, it became a melee where I couldn’t tell the difference between my guardian deity and the monsters. The color of the witchbeasts’ blood is diverse. Various types of blood spilled on the floor like paint. Maybe a painter would have admired it. Even the dullest person would have been inspired by the sight that touched hell.”

“… … After that day, you were able to return from the Elphirim Mountains.”

After that, Elisha knew the story. They were honoured. Maybe they could be Seeds. But they betrayed Lucerne.

“You must hate them.”

“They’re all dead anyway,”

Lucerne nonchalantly pointed out.

“Stevan kidnapped me, tied me up, and used a wizard to restrain my power so I couldn’t summon my shadow. He threatened to return me to the temple.”

“You mean to become a priest like Merha and cut yourself off from the family?”

Lucerne nodded.

“He said that if I turned to the temple, he would spare one of them.”

Elisha’s body shook. This Stevan was indeed the real demon.

‘Lucerne, be a good boy. Pick one. I’ll let him live. If you become a priest and live under Merha you won’t face any difficulties for the rest of your life. The story of Merha is already over.’

Stevan whispered while caressing Lucerne’s cheek. He still remembered it vividly. She got goosebumps at his explanation.

“Did you believe that?”

“Of course not, I’m not a fool. Of course I ignored it. And all fourteen who betrayed me died. On the spot. They didn’t scream loudly, probably because of their pride. I, who was in the next room, heard the loud roar of flesh ripping.”


“But I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I thought about it for years after that. If I had chosen one, who would it have been?”

Elisha’s hands trembled. Her heart ached. A bizarre urge to hug him bubbled up, confusing her. The feeling was so unfamiliar, so instead, she bit her lip.

“No matter who you choose, he would have killed all of them anyway. He needed to seal their mouths to hide his sins.”

“I know. And… … .”

His mouth locked.


“Pian said coldly to me: Let go of your heart. It became easier when I followed his lessons from then on. It was the most expensive lesson I ever learned.”

“… … .”

“It is stupid to give your heart. It is much easier to own.”

“What about the Seeds now?”

“Those bastards won’t betray me because I’m holding on to their weaknesses. If they do, I will kill them right away. Because I am not immature anymore,”

Lucerne noted dispassionately. Elisha was surprised that he showed such candid sobriety. Her heart ached and was pounding with the urge to do something.

“Did the Lord know that? The Head couldn’t have just left it alone… … .”

“Sometimes you’re rather naive. Could Uncle Stevan have done that secretly without the Head knowing?”

“… … .”

“Gaju knew everything. When he saw I didn’t give in in the end, he brought me into the family and kept me for a while. It was my last test. If I had displayed the slightest emotional breakdown that day, he would have thrown me away.”

That was the way of the Cartier family. Some had been favored and cared for throughout their lives simply by being born as a member. But not for a bastard. After so much suffering, he was finally accepted as a member of the family. Even so, it wasn’t unconditional.

Elisha was sick to death with the Cartier family. It was something they could relate to.

“I promise. I can’t help you get revenge on Stevan, who is already dead. But I will destroy Jacob.”

“For whom?”

With a beast’s languid gaze, Lucerne watched her. She didn’t know how to lie this time either.

“For me, of course. Even if I did it for you, you wouldn’t believe me.”

At Elisha’s steady tone, he nodded affably.

“But about 1% is for you, too. Although I originally hated the Jacob couple, I now hate them even more when I think about what they did to you.”

Lucerne laughed.

“Indeed, out of all the things I’ve heard from women all my life,”

he drew out languidly,

“those are the most stimulating words I’ve ever heard.”

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