I woke up to Lien gently shaking me awake. Feeling her soft body resting on me, I yawned loudly and hugged her tightly as I opened my eyes. “Hmm, what did I catch so early in the morning?” I asked playfully, smiling at her.
“Awawaa, what are you doing? You’re crushing me!” she cried out.
“Mhhm, but this is my love hug!” I put a even more strength into my big hug, and then loosened my arms.
“Ugh, my arms are sore now,” she grumbled as she sat up.
“Come on, it’s ten minutes to seven, the bus is going to leave if you keep sleeping, we overslept!” she broke free from my arms and walked up to my desk to pick up the clothes she prepared for today last night. Quickly wearing them, she urged me. “Move!”
“Fine, fine,” I waved my hand and stood up, eyeing her lustfully. I couldn’t help it, it was early in the morning and she looked sexy, like always. She wore a straw coloured sweater dress that reached only till her thighs and had black stockings under. She looked really cute and I kind of felt excited to unravel what was hidden underneath. Last night just left me wanting more…
Strangely enough, when I stood up she turned around and a cold breeze rushed a place it shouldn’t have. Looking down, I realised that I forgot to wear my underpants before going to sleep and I naturally got rid of it while we had sex. I felt a bit embarrassed because of her reaction, but I got over it quickly and shrugged it off.
“I’m going to the bathroom,” she left in a hurry.
“Won’t you dress me up?” I shouted after her.
“NO!” she shouted back and shut the door laughing.
Going down, I entered the bathroom as well, but I couldn’t find her outside, which meant that she was on the toilet. I honestly considered going after her for the sake of fun, but she didn’t seem to appreciate my visit last time, so I decided to brush my teeth instead. Maybe it was too early to ‘intrude’ so much on her privacy.
But exactly when I was about to press my toothbrush against my teeth, she called out, “Seth? Is it you?”
“Yeah, what’s up? Need help peeing?”
“No, you moron. There is no… there is no paper!” she shouted. She sounded very embarrassed.
“Haha, wait a moment,” I replied while I took out a roll of paper and took it to her.
As I opened the door, she glared at me, “What’s so funny? And give it to me already!” she snatched it out of my hand.
“You’re cute even at times like these,” I smiled at her.
“Thanks,” she replied unconsciously. “Wait, fuck you!” she cried out, realising what she said.
“Why would you want to tease me at a time like this?” she rolled her eyes. “And why do we keep meeting on the toilet? Are you doing this on purpose? Did you throw away the remaining paper in advance just so I’d run out of it or what?”
“Hahaha, what kind of thinking is that? I don’t think anyone would go that far for a meeting and it’s not like I can’t see you whenever I want to. Also, this all happened by chance, not even fate wants us apart!” I stuck out my chest and spread my arms.
“Yes, yes,” she shook her head, seemingly tired of everything.
“What’s up?” I asked as I leaned on the doorway.
Finally raising her head, she looked into my eyes, “Hmm? Nothing, I just thought that at this point, it doesn’t even matter that you’re here while I’m on the toilet. For some reason, I don’t even feel embarrassed like last time…”
“That’s a good thing, no? It just means the barrier ‘separating’ us just lost another layer,” I said happily.
“I guess it did, now please let me finish my business,” she shooed me away, but reached under her ass anyway. She really didn’t mind my presence, after all.
“Aye, aye, but hurry up because we’ll be late again.”
“Oh.my.fucking--God! I wanted to hear from you the last! I had to wake you up and now you’re urging me? Ridiculous!” she cried out.
“Ah~ this morning is getting better and better,” I turned around and left the bathroom in a good mood. When I closed the door behind me, I happened to run into my father in law who was coming down the stairs.
“Good morning. Did you sleep well?” I asked.
“Good morning, and yes. Is the bathroom empty?” he asked.
“No, Lien is still inside,” I replied casually.
“Then why were you- whatever,” he shook his head and gave up on the matter. “As long as she doesn’t do anything stupid and is happy, I don’t care what you two do.”
“What can I say? I have no reason to complain about my father in law, you’re really understanding despite being a doting father,” I said with a smile. “And I wouldn’t do anything that could harm her,” I added seriously.
“Alright then, and thanks for your kind words, but I’m nice only while my daughter is happy,” he said meaningfully.
“I don’t think you’ll have to worry about that-” I was interrupted by the click of the door behind my back. Quickly stepping forward, I avoided it. “That was close,” I said as I stopped in front of my father in law, only inches away. If not for my good reflexes, I’d have fallen on him…
“Oh, I’m sorry, but you shouldn’t stand in the door,” Lien said sarcastically. She definitely knew that I was standing there.
“Good morning, dear,” Michael said with a huge smile on his face. Seeing how he reacted as soon as he saw his daughter, I couldn’t help but shake my head. Maybe I’d understand him in the future.
“Morning, Dad,” she replied, carefully eyeing him, trying to figure out whether he heard us last night or not.
Oh, right, I still didn’t tell her that I used a wind barrier. Whatever, it’d just take away from the charm of last night.
“Will you stay here for today or do you plan to leave early?” she asked.
“I’d like to stay for longer, but I don’t want to intrude on you, so I’ll leave early in the morning, well, probably once you leave, I’ll go as well,” he replied as he looked at me.
“I don’t think anyone would feel that you’re intruding on us. When I was a child there were times when you came over with Ms. Lana and slept here and there were times when it was the other way around,” I remarked.
Furrowing his brows, he asked, “How do you even remember that? You were just a toddler at that time.”
Shit, I shouldn’t tell him I remember everything since birth.
“My parents told me,” I replied calmly.
“Makes sense. Either way, I shouldn’t stay in your house while everyone would be out working and at school.”
“What if we just skipped school then?” I laughed.
“No, don’t take on bad habits like skipping school. I don’t want my daughter to turn into a deviant or some kind of thug…”
“Dad, you’re being pretty extreme there with your delusions,” Lien rolled her eyes.
“As your father, I must always think of the worst case scenarios.”
“Huh? I haven’t even done anything bad, why’d you assume stuff like that?” she frowned.
“Let me ask you then, would you continue going to school if Seth entirely stopped attending it?” he asked a very interesting question.
“Well, I- I would,” she replied, not even believing her own words. Pressured by Michael’s silent staring, she corrected herself, “I wouldn’t.”
“See? That’s what I’m talking about. I’ve been in love with your mother, I know what it’s like. It can make you go crazy,” he shook his head.
Clearing my throat, I stepped in before they started a fight in front of the stairs. “Honestly, just stay here if you have the time.”I knew that he wanted to spend more time with Lien and we even moved back to my room yesterday so he didn’t have the chance to spend time with her.
“Oh, I know! We could go and watch a movie this afternoon, how about that?” I asked.
“That sounds good, I really appreciate your efforts,” he put his hand on my shoulder. Remembering that we were a bit tight on time, I took out my phone and looked at the time.
“Shit, we better hurry up or we’ll miss the bus!” I said as I grabbed Lien’s hand and pulled her towards the door.
“What about breakfast?” my mother shouted after us from the kitchen.
“We’re sorry, but we’ll eat something else in the school!” Lien shouted as she shut the door and then rushed towards the bus station. By the time we got there, a few kids were getting on the bus already. Seeing that we were coming, the driver was nice enough to wait a few seconds for us. We both got on and then the door closed behind us.
Sadly, today was a Market day. This meant that many stands would be set up around the park where all kinds of travelers would sell their wares. Sometimes you could buy treasures for the price of an ice cream and sometimes you paid a lot for garbage. The Market was that kind of place, but it was set up only once a month for three days, always starting on Tuesday, so today was the first day.
Naturally, many people moved out to look around at these times, so the bus was way more crowded than usual. I didn’t want some sneaky guy to get a feel of her ass in the crowd, so I switched places with her and made her stand next to the door. Placing my hands on the door next to her shoulders, I tried my best to push the crowd back and avoid squeezing my girlfriend into a pulp.
“You don’t have to hold them,” she said in a low voice, embracing me at my waistline.
“It’s fine,” I replied. With my body enhanced, I had no trouble holding back the crowd and I really wasn’t doing it to look ‘manly’ in front of her.
“Thank you, in that case.”
“By the way, are you not angry because I brought up the movie in front of your father? I mean, you said that we should go on a date last night,” I asked.
“No, I’m not, in fact, I’m happy about it. I didn’t want to neglect you, but I knew that Dad wanted to spend more time with me, so I wasn’t sure how to satisfy everyone. Thanks to you being considerate of him, now I don’t have to worry about it anymore,” she smiled. She looked so lovely I was afraid that others would get to see that beautiful smile. I wanted to keep it all to myself!
“That’s good then,” I replied, brushing her hair to the side.
When we told my mother that we’d move out, she almost started crying and said that she’d miss me so much. That made me understand that the main reason we looked for a partner in our lives was that theoretically, they’d stay with us for the rest of our lives. Unlike our children who would leave to live their own lives or our parents, who’d probably die earlier than us.
Humankind was gregarious and no matter what people said, neither of them would like true solitude. And it was exactly this sense of wanting that drove us to find a partner for life, well, most of us. The rest usually realised it only when it was too late. I wouldn’t make that kind of mistake, so I wanted to hold onto Lien as much as I could. She was doing the same anyway. I didn’t even dare imagine what it’d be like if our feelings were one-sided, it sounded like a nightmare…
What people didn’t know was that our souls had different shapes, sizes, colours, and many of these aspects described our personalities. I could check anyone’s soul upon body contact and I thought about using this partner-seeking aspect of humankind and my knowledge about souls to start a business. I’d help people figure out how much they matched with their chosen one. I was quite sure that people would pay some money to find out, even if just for the fun.
Maybe they’d be angered if the result was unpleasant, but it’d probably turn out to be true later on and people would realise how ‘accurate’ my ‘fortune telling’ was, which in turn would lead to fame! Fortune telling… I always despised that occupation since most people were just talking bullshit and took the money for nothing, but if I was the one doing it, it’d be real ‘fortune telling’ of the sort.
I didn’t want to sell spells that’d change the world and I wasn’t interested in a luxurious life. I believed life was fun only if we had something to work towards. If I used my knowledge to get everything I wanted, what would make my life enjoyable? Everything would turn meaningless, so I wanted to do something original, something different!
I knew that my idea would work because I tested this already by coming in contact with a few couples. Those that I found a terrible match usually broke up in one or two weeks, while the ones that were a good match stayed together for who knows how long. Of course, I couldn’t follow every couple I tested since they moved and stuff like that, but I was sure that they had a long relationship.
Lien didn’t know this, but when she returned and I first touched her, I checked her soul as well. She was the kind of perfect match I’ve never seen before and it got even better since we started going out. If I had to grade how much we matched based on our souls, I’d say that she was a nine out of ten for me and became ten out of ten in no more than three days!
Of course, there were differences like gender, some favourites here and there, but we generally liked and hated the same things, or found them funny. And I didn’t even consider our looks! She was a million out of ten for me, really… A top grade beauty! That being the case, I wasn’t surprised to see how well we came out with each other.
Lien’s soul was a perfect match with mine, so it just enforced the idea in my mind. If we got along so well, then why would others be any different? It was rare for people to not get along with others who had similar mindset and interests.
Although I was thinking hard about how to set up what I imagined, I noticed something strange going on with Lien, so I couldn’t help but stop.
--- Lien’s POV ---
Biting my lower lip, I ran my eyes up on his muscular arms and down on his chest. His black shirt emphasised his well-toned body so much that I wanted to jump on him. I was really hoping that he wouldn’t be able to hold the crowd and would just fall on me instead, but he didn’t seem to get tired of it. Last night just left me hungry, I wanted more of that kind of pleasure!
Why is he not getting tired? I bet he enhanced his body, damn it. How should I make him fall on me? I’d love it so much if he just squeezed me between his body and the door and gave me a deep kiss and then… ah~ I’m such a shameful pervert, I’m terrible! What happened to me? My love was so pure at the time I returned and yet I’ve become a pervert.
Ah, and that serious face. I bet he’s thinking about something important, he’s doing it all the time. I want to break that focused face, I want you to focus on me, Seth~
“Are you alright? You’re breathing a bit heavily,” he put his hand on my forehead.
“It’s just a bit hot in here,” I replied, slightly pulling on my top and flashing my cleavage to him.
“Ah, uh, you’re right, too many bodies produce too much heat,” he stuttered a bit and said something randomly, visibly lost in the valley between my breasts. Knowing that he desired my body and that I could seduce him anytime I wanted, filled me with pride and confidence. Of course, I didn’t want to turn into a prideful bitch who looked down on everyone… so I made sure to watch out how I behaved.
“Did you like it?”
“What?” he raised a brow.
“Don’t play the fool,” I smirked. Clicking his tongue, he turned away knowing that he had been found out. If only he knew how often I found him out… like last night. “By the way, I knew that you knew that I wasn’t sleeping and yet you went as far as to masturbate using my body. Just how shameless can you be?” I tried to tease him, but my plan backfired.
He looked at me in silence for a few seconds and then put his left hand on my right arm. Leaning close to my left ear, he whispered, “You’re one to talk, I know that you’re lusting after me, your body is selling you out. I’m always watching you, I’m looking only at you. Did you think I wouldn’t notice how you were looking at me? I’m not blind.”
I loved how his deep voice entered my ear and shook me up inside, it just felt so good to listen to. “Hey, could you answer my question honestly?” I asked.
“Hmm? Of course, what is it?”
“Does being your apostle affect my personality in any way? I know that you said that maybe I’d become more faithful to you, but anything else?”
“Nothing then,” I averted my eyes.
“Out with it, you know that you can tell me anything,” he caressed my face. It felt wonderful to be loved by the person I loved. Every time he touched me, it felt so gentle and I could feel how much he cared for me, but that didn’t mean that I’d tell him that I was lusting after him more and more!
“Believe me, it’s really nothing,” I smiled at him. It wasn’t like I had to tell him that I’ve become more perverted… it wasn’t a secret, but it wouldn’t feel good to say it aloud, especially not in the middle of a crowd.
“Alright then.” Just as he finished talking, the bus stopped at the side of the road to pick up a few more people. I really had no idea where the driver planned to put them, even we were standing in the door and there was no more room.
Most people cared little about their surroundings and while the door was opened, some fucker started moving and pushed him, making him fall towards me. Since Seth had nothing to hold onto to stop his fall, he reflexively threw his arms around me.
“I’m sorry,” he said as he was about to pull back, but when I smelled his deodorant, I couldn’t help but press my body against him and take a deep breath to take in his manly fragrance. I loved when men cared about themselves a bit, just shaving and using a deodorant was good enough for me. Any more than that and I’d find it a bit girly…
Placing my right hand on his chest, I slowly caressed him while the kids got on the bus through the rear door.
“Ugh, this is the last time we took this damned bus, we’re going to fly every day from now on to avoid times like these,” he grumbled, but I was honestly satisfied by the current turn of events.
“Mhm,” I nodded while he tried to take a step back when the door closed again, but he couldn’t because I put more strength into my arms and pulled him closer. Seeing me intently staring at him, he raised a brow and looked into my eyes, returning a smile.
“Do you want to hug?” he chuckled.
After kissing my forehead, he started caressing my back. Despite the crowd and the heat, I felt so wonderful and safe in his arms. But in the next moment, he broke the silence and used Link to talk to me, “I apologise for breaking your lovely silence, but this week we’ll have three important things to do. Firstly, I want to set up a small business, secondly, I want to buy a house for the two of us, and thirdly, I want to deal with Olaf. I’ve had enough of him. Oh, and lastly, we should talk with Mary again.”
“That’s four… and what do you want from her?” I asked.
“Yeah, I’ve just remembered in the middle of talking. Anyway, it’s not because I want to see her, believe me-” he started defending himself, even though he had no reason to.
“Wait, wait, I wasn’t being jealous, I was just curious,” I cut into his words before he got too much ahead of himself.
“Oh, okay then. I just want to find out whether they have some sort of community or if she knows about other gods and stuff like that. I don’t like the idea that maybe a group of gods know about me and yet I know nothing about them, not to mention that just because I don’t plan to change the world, for now, it doesn’t mean nobody else wants to,” he said
“Do you mean something like world domination and stuff like that?” I asked.
“Yeah, I guess.”
“I can’t say that was very convincing.”
“I can’t see the future, so I don’t know either. I just want to think of every possible outcome these inheritances could lead to. For example, imagine if an orphan started remembering stuff he or she wasn’t even supposed to know. What would they do with the kind of knowledge I have?”
After quickly thinking it through, I concluded, “They’d probably get out of control and start living a carefree life, maybe run amok. They could also start hating the world or maybe the people who ‘abandoned them’ and other similar things. Yeah, I get your point, there may be gods who want to do bad things with their powers.” If Seth didn’t have a family, or even if his family handled him differently, he could have turned into an entirely different person. He could have turned into a thug as well.
“Yes. I’m not saying that it must be orphan incarnations who’d do bad things. There are too many things affecting one’s personality, but I’d say that orphans are the most probable to turn their back on humanity for their own good. What I’ll be looking for from now on are suspiciously talented people, and people who rose to fame from nothing and became powerful or rich. Or even both.”
“If there were the kind of people you mentioned, they surely wouldn't want you to destroy their advantage. Is that why you released a soul related spell? Do you think Mary is like that?”
“I did but I don’t think that’s the case. She’s either the contact of a group of gods or she never thought about greater things other than living a carefree life and making things easier for herself. To be honest, I have a hunch that it’s the latter because I don’t see why would anyone want to reveal their origin. Unless… she lied as well. There are just too many things I don’t know about so I can’t be sure. That’s what I want to fix,” he replied.
Over the years I spent with him, I’ve realised that as long as he wasn’t obstructed by others and wasn’t put in front of the unknown, he was a very kind and helpful person. Although he didn’t admit it and believed that he was a bad person, if others asked for his help, he always did his best to get things done as quickly and precisely as possible.
Our goals would always cross with others’, so it was only natural that we’d have to step on others to reach them. But he wasn’t exactly like that. I always found attractive how he worked hard to reach his goals, trying to cause as little damage to others as possible. If it was necessary, he’d increase his own workload instead. He used underhanded methods only when there was no other way around or when he was annoyed by the people who obstructed him.
‘Problems’ arose only when he was pulled out of his well-known and ‘controlled’ habitat. As I’ve noticed, he was a rather insecure person when out of the box, which made him behave differently. I always thought that he’d lose his inhibitions if something like this happened and that he’d do anything to get in control of his surroundings once again. And he happened to do just that.
Considering that his environment grew and that the school and his home wouldn’t be the only things affecting him, he instantly started planning and taking steps to make his new surroundings well-known and controlled. I wasn’t sure how he planned to do that, but he seemed to be in a hurry to fix things. Well, he always did things quickly and precisely, so that wasn’t surprising. I didn’t mind this aspect of his either, in fact, I found it charming.
I liked it when people worked hard to change their own ‘fates’, instead of just lazing around and waiting for something to happen.
“What are you thinking about?” he put his hand under my chin and raised my head.
“I was thinking about you,” I mused, pulling down my hands and resting them on his sides.
“Oh? And what was it about?” he raised his brows, tightening his embrace.
“It was about your P.”
“P? What is that?” he asked confused.
Smirking, I raised my brows and stayed silent.
“P as... penis,” he muttered to himself as he realised. “Pervert,” he added.
“Hahaha, I’m just kidding, though. Did you get excited for nothing?”
“Why are you provoking me,” he shook his head.
“Because it’s fun, and you’re imagining things,” I laughed.
“So what was it about in reality?” he tried to pull it out of me. I knew that he didn’t like that he didn’t know what was I thinking. He wanted to break the barriers between us, things that normally made people feel ashamed of themselves in front of others. Since it was visible that he really didn’t give two fucks about those kinds of things, it wasn’t hard to let go of my shame and be myself. But that didn’t mean that he had to know everything!
“It’s a secret~” I mused, happy to leave him in the dark.
Gritting his teeth, he said, “Fine then…” He really wanted to know.
“I know that you’re a positive person, but even you could start assuming stupid things, so I’ll let you know that I was thinking of good things,” I added to calm him a bit.
Nodding his head, his stiff arms loosened around my waist. I was surprised how much he cared about my opinion of him, it wasn’t like him. Back then when we were still kids, he didn’t care so much about my opinion, but he was in love with me, so it was no wonder. I could totally understand him, I felt the same way towards him.
“I’m sorry, I wasn’t trying to force you to talk, I just really don’t want you to start disliking me,” he sighed, kissing my forehead..
Holy cow, he’s so cute saying stuff like that, I kind of want to tease him, but he’s so serious about it that I don’t have the heart to do it… lucky you.
Placing my hand on his face, I said, “Since when can girls twist you around their fingers? And don’t be stupid, I’ve been in love with you for more than eight years, do you think a feeling like that would just disappear from one day to the other? Especially when you keep pampering me and showering me in your love every day.”
He looked at me with shining eyes, as if he was about to tear up from happiness, so I stopped talking and ignored that he tightened his hug even more. I appreciated that he loved me so much, but he really shouldn’t crush me every time.
Turning to the left, I rested my head on his chest and noticed a guy staring at me fervently. Raising a brow, I waved my hand in front of my breasts, which made him break out of his daze. Panicked, he turned away and dared not look back anymore. If I remembered correctly, he was one grade below us, but he was definitely from the same school as us. I couldn’t even feel bothered by stares like that. They were just too common.
“Could you stop doing that in public?” I turned to look at Seth because when I looked at that guy, he started groping my ass and had been doing it ever since. Although nobody saw it, it felt really embarrassing to be groped in such a crowded place.
“Fine, but he shouldn’t stare at my woman,” he said in a low voice.
“Haha, so you knew… but if you really cared about it and wanted to show it to everyone, you’d have to grope me all day.”
“Well, I might just do that,” he smirked, tracing the line of my neck down to my shoulder, stopping above my breasts. His finger felt good, so I kind of wanted him to continue, but we finally reached the station where we had to get off.
When the door opened behind me, I smacked his hand away and stepped down, turning my back on him. Quickly following behind, he took hold of my hand and pulled me closer.
“Let’s go,” I mused.
About ten minutes after we reached the school, our classmates started arriving one by one. Elena took her place in front of us as usual, but this morning she was different because she turned around and talked to us as if nothing happened. It was strange because ever since Seth shook her off, she had been avoiding us.
“Good morning, you two. How’re things going between you?” she asked playfully.
“Good morning, but I think we both know that you’re working for Olaf, so tell me, what does he want this time?” I asked. I honestly didn’t feel the need to play along with her.
A bit taken aback by my question, she straightened her back. “What are you talking ab-”
“Come on, are you seriously trying to say something so half-assed?” I rolled my eyes.
“Haah, I swear, you’re the worst I ever had to deal with,” she shook her head.
“I’ll take that as a compliment, also, your attempt to seduce Seth sucked. Does it even work with other men or was it your first time?” I smiled as I leaned on my hands and looked into her eyes.
Her face stiffened as she replied, “No, it wasn’t my first time, but most guys usually come after me by themselves when I give them one or two signs. I don’t have to be that aggressive,” she said, eyeing Seth.
“I honestly don’t care, it was your job,” he shrugged and then put his back against the wall.
“You’re definitely a weird one…”
“He definitely is,” I nodded my head.
“You two are just being rude,” he said blandly. “Anyway, could you answer her question?” he pointed at me.
“Uhm, if this got out I’d be punished, so I hope that you aren’t going to tell Olaf about my failure, please? Since you’re so understanding with me… I really need the job,” she pleaded.
“Could it be that you’re poor?” I couldn’t help but ask, of course, I kept my voice low. I wouldn’t shame people for no reason, not that I considered poverty as something to be ashamed of, but that didn’t mean that every kid my age thought alike. I didn’t hail from a rich family either, after all. In fact, Seth’s family was only average when it came to wealth, so the fact that he became a millionaire overnight was still rather shocking to me.
I never expected that my love would suddenly come out with something like being the incarnation of a god out of nowhere. I’d lie if I said I wasn’t happy and excited about the money, but I was afraid that he’d misunderstand it and think that I was after the money. Or that I thought that the money would be mine as well when it was him who earned it, all by himself. I had no right to take even a single penny from it. At least, that was how I looked at it, even if he thought otherwise.
Deep down I knew that he’d never suspect me of something like that, but knowing and accepting it were two different things. That being the case, I just hid my excitement and behaved as if nothing big happened, even though my fiance turned into a millionaire! It was a big deal for me as well!
“What? No, it’s not like-” being caught off-guard by my question, she tried to think of something, but she couldn’t continue. I wouldn’t say that she was a brave one.
Raising my brows, I kept looking at her. Crushed by all the attention she got, she sighed, “Yes. My parents have terrible talent in magic, so they have low salaries and after the birth of my little sister, it’s even harder to make a living. I started working for the Asuma clan since I’m quite talented in magic and a few other things…”
“In bed?” I asked bluntly.
She didn’t say anything in return, but her eyes told me everything. Selling her own body… I couldn’t imagine doing it even if I died of starvation. I was too prideful to do something like that, even though with my talent and with my looks, I had many times when I could have got a way better position than Elena. Being the wife of a noble wasn’t something to scoff at, and one of the nobles in Ushua asked for my hand…That was a terrible memory.
Seth sat up all of a sudden with a small smile on his face and even his eyes seemed to smile.
Oh, no. I know that look. What is he planning this time?
“Are you interested in a better job?” he asked as he waved his hand, probably making a wind barrier around us. I was really bothered by the fact that I couldn’t even sense it when he used mana. It was so annoying! Just how much was I behind?
Maybe I’m trying to compare myself to the wrong person. He’s just unfair… Yeah, it’s stupid to set my standards as high as him, he isn’t just a normal guy, after all. At least, I don’t have to feel as inferior as in the past since I know his secret. Yay!
The time we spent apart definitely did good to me because I was really lacking in confidence when I was a child. After I spent five years apart from him, I realised that I wasn’t half bad, it was just him who was a freak.
“Shh-” Elena quickly hushed him.
“Nobody is going to hear us, not even those guys who listened in on us last time,” he said with a smile.
Furrowing her brows, Elena asked, “Who are you? How do you even know about them? They aren’t here this time, but still…”
“I know, they were using resonance magic to listen in on us, though they sucked at it. Anyway, what’s your answer? You can talk freely,” he said.
“I- What is it about?”
“I thought of starting a business, but the thing that I’d do isn’t very much to my liking. I’d rather leave it to someone else because I’d have to deal with many strangers, which I don’t want to do. You’re rather popular in the class, so how about giving it a shot? If you accept the job, you won’t have to work for Olaf anymore and I can say with confidence that your life and your family’s life won’t be under threat. I’ll also teach you something… nice,” he smiled.
“Huh? What is this about?” I asked through Link.
“I’ll tell you when we get back home.”
“Damn you, why are you saying that all the time? What about not having secrets and stuff like that? Do you not trust me?” I asked.
“Are you asking this seriously or are you joking?” he asked aloud as he looked at me.
“Why are you asking me?” he laughed. Shaking his head, he added, “Whatever, my answer is still the same. I thought of this on the bus, so I didn’t have the time to tell it to you, but Elena seemed like a good candidate for the job, so I decided to ask her. If not for that, you’d be the first to hear about it. Also, I didn’t tell you about it only because I was talking with her. Are you happy now?”
“Yes~” I mused happily.
Rolling his eyes, a smile formed on his face. “Hai, hai, this silly girl,” he laughed. “Anyway, back to the matter at hand, are you interested?”
“To be honest, I don’t know what the fuck just happened between you two… but I am. My only problem is that I’d prefer numeric values over ‘it’ll be enough’ and stuff like that. Can you say anything specific?” Elena asked.
“It depends on how well the business is going to go, but if I have to be honest with you, the knowledge alone I’d share with you would be worth more than all the possession of the noble families in this city combined. Wait, that’s not even true, I don’t think this is something that you could pay enough to learn. You may think that I’m just talking bullshit, but the world you live in is but the surface of a pond. If you aren’t stupid, you must have realised by now that I’m not just a regular student, the kind I’ve been pretending to be.”
“Hmph, what is this bragging?”
“Come on, I need it to hook her, I really don’t want to do it myself and I’d cast a spell on her that’d make it impossible for her to reveal anything about me. It’s a win-win for everyone!” he replied.
“I was just kidding… it’s quite hard to change the tone of the thoughts that I send through Link, how can you do it? You can talk as well in your mind as if you were saying it aloud.”
“I’m feeling terrible for not teaching you earlier. I’m really sorry, today when we go home, the first thing I’ll do is to teach you the basics of souls, okay? I swear, I’m not going to delay it anymore, not even for a single second!” he said.
“Even if I dropped all my clothes and jumped on you?” I asked.
“Even th- No, I take it back, I don’t think I’d stop you if that happened. But I’ll teach you right after!” he admitted honestly.
“Come closer,” Seth motioned for Elena.
As she leaned closer, he put his finger on her forehead and a blinding light shone for a moment. “Alright, in case you disagree, you’ll forget everything that I’m going to say from now on. If you agree, this seal is going to keep your mouth shut about me and the knowledge I’m going to give to you,” he said as he pulled his hand back and eyed the strange tattoo that appeared on her forehead for a few seconds and then faded into nothingness.
“I’m the one who sold the Link spell, which is a simplified form of a much stronger spell, the one I share with Lien. Anyway, that spell is still nothing but crap compared to the real deal, but it touches upon the souls of living creatures. Although humanity doesn’t have the necessary knowledge to find out about the existence of souls, much less explore it, I managed to turn Link into something that just grazes its surface.”
“If you’re willing to work for me, I’ll tell you a few things about souls, which you’ll need for your job. I’ll tell you now that it’s nothing dangerous. It’ll be something like fortune telling, but yours will have a real basis and you won’t just scam others. You can hide your face as well if you want to, that’s up to you, though I’d advise doing it like that to be honest. And now, I’ll show you that I’m not all just talk,” he said as he stood up and his whole body disappeared, leaving only a pair of eyes.
“This is an ethereal form, which makes it impossible for you to damage me with normal magic, go ahead, try to punch me or anything you want, the others can’t see you either at the moment. Or to be more exact, they can’t perceive you.”
I honestly didn’t get any of what was happening. How was that even possible? Humanity was really lagging behind these god incarnations, and there were so many of them out there, probably…
Nodding her head, Elena punched through his ethereal form. Seeing that nothing happened, she made a fireball and threw it towards him, but that too just flew past him. I didn’t know he had this kind of ability. Doesn’t this make him invincible among normal humans? No wonder Mary didn’t want him to reveal stuff about souls… he’d be an idiot if he told about this to others. Unless he wants to change the world.
Humans could easily push back monsters and retake the planet entirely with this. Is this the real reason why he said that he isn’t sure if it’s worth changing the world? Certainly, people would start fighting each other once again, at least, humankind is united right now. Unlike in the past. Thousands of people could avoid death if they knew how to do this, but they could also use it to do bad things.
Thinking it through, I realised how heavy of a weight he was carrying on his back. He may have his shiny spells and his godly knowledge, but he had to carry it with him while considering the effects it could have on the world. Even something ‘small’ he does could lead to the death of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of people. Nobles were greedy enough as they were. I didn’t even dare to imagine what would happen if they learned how to use this ethereal stuff.
Baffled by what happened, Elena continued looking at him with her mouth slightly opened. “I can’t find the words to describe this. I believe you, when can I start?” she asked excited. I could relate to her, she wouldn’t have to sell her body anymore. Even if she got used to it, she definitely wasn’t enjoying it and she probably lost all her pride.
I believed pride was something stupid most of the time, but it had its uses. It was a very important aspect, actually.
“First you’ll have to tell me everything you know about Olaf and the Asuma clan. By the way, do you know the White clan?”
“The White clan? Yes, they’re famous in the city… everyone knows about them.”
“Ah, of course, except for me. I never cared for famous people, so you’ll have to tell me about them later. Especially about Mary White, in case you know her,” he added.
“I’ve heard of her,” she nodded.
“Great, that’s it for now. I want you to cut all your ties with the Asuma clan, I’ll know if you don’t, so don’t try to screw with me. I hate backstabbers more than anything, so call this a threat if you want, but I wouldn’t recommend you to become the object of my hate,” he said with a creepy smile on his face.
“This sounded lame.”
“I don’t know, it just did,” I shrugged my shoulders.
“But it worked on her, look, she’s intimidated,” he said, eyeing Elena.
“Whatever, it’s fifteen minutes to eight, so the bell should ring in a mom-” I couldn’t finish my sentence since it happened as it should. Cancelling his ethereal form and his spells, he picked up his stuff and then waited for me to move.
Picking up my bag, I took hold of his hand and then followed him towards the changing rooms. When I finished changing and entered the arena, I realised that our first period would be mixed with Olaf’s class again… it was so irritating that I had to run into him again.
Much to my sadness, he couldn’t sit on his ass and came over to bother me, “Hi, do you have a moment?”
“I have about three minutes before the teacher comes,” I replied.
“That’s enough,” he motioned for me to go somewhere with him, but I wouldn’t do something stupid like that.
“What? Why can’t you say it here?”
Looking around, he waved his hand and made a wind barrier, excluding Seth as well. Of course, it wouldn’t work against him… I was sure of it.
“Since you don’t want to come, I’ll say it here and now. I contacted the other guys you mentioned and they told me that they really wanted to go out with you, but you refused all of them and moved somewhere else. Could you explain yourself? You told me you’d answer in a few days, then instead of doing it, you came up with something like this. I really thought that you were chased after by other nobles, but they’ve given up on you, it seems.”
“Are you trying to make things hard for me intentionally? If that’s the case, I’ll have to dirty my hands,” he looked at Seth.
Raising a brow, I asked, “And how do you plan to do that? Why do you even have to bother me? I love him, can’t you just find another girl for yourself? I hate that all of you keep pestering me because of whatever reason. Have you never considered how I felt? Are you nobles even humans? You’re like animals, always forcing yourselves on others,” I raised my voice, pissed off by this bastard.
“Your feelings? Well, if you want to know the answer, I don’t give a fuck about it.” Stepping closer, he reached towards my face, though I quickly stepped back, “You’re pretty and talented, so I want you to be mine, there is nothing more to it. You shouldn’t waste your genes on a guy like him. Imagine what kind of children you could give birth to if I was the father!” he shouted, eyeing Seth.
Turning around, I looked at Seth for a moment. Seeing him glaring at Olaf, I knew he heard everything. “You’re disgusting.”
“Oh, what do you even know? You aren’t from a noble clan. Do you know how bad my life could be in the clan if I couldn’t show any significant contribution? Even my parents care only about my contributions to the clan. Since I’m the strongest among my generation, I’ve had a good life up till now, but if I could bring over a woman like you to the clan… my position would raise even higher and maybe I could inherit the position of the clan leader!”
“So, in short, you don’t even need me, right? You’re just greedy and want more,” I frowned.
“Who wouldn’t want a woman like you? But it’s true, I don’t really need you if I don’t want to get higher up on the ladder,” he smiled.
Smiling back, I asked, “How about a bet?”
“If you can beat my boyfriend, I’m willing to go over to your side, but if he beats you, you’re going to leave me alone,” I said.
“Hahahaha, that’s hilarious. Why not?”
“And how can I make sure that you’re going to keep your promise? Maybe I should make it public, right?” I said as I looked around.
“Well, there is no need, if he could really beat me, I’d leave the school as well,” he waved his hand.
Hmm? Is this because of his standing in the clan? It’d definitely leave a stain on his reputation if word got out, but if he moved to another school and we kept our mouth shut, he wouldn’t have to worry about his loss. The other students wouldn’t dare to talk about it for too long and he could also avoid lowering his own standing in the clan. No rumours of his loss, no side effects in the clan.
Heh~ I’ll record the battle and threaten him with it if he ever comes close to me again. I don’t think he’d give up on his standing just to get us punished by his clan. But for that to happen, Seth shouldn’t shame him too much.
Turning around, I looked at Seth, as I said, “Are you up to it?”
“Wait, he can’t hear you,” Olaf chuckled.
“I am,” Seth said with a smile, while Olaf’s face froze.
“How is that possible?”
“You made a wind barrier to prevent your voices from leaking, but I made a tunnel that carried every word you said to me,” he winked.
“I didn’t even sense it…” Olaf muttered, making a serious face.
Using Link, Seth said, “I really want to destroy this guy, but that would just hurt his little pride and maybe he’d go out of control to get revenge on me. If that happened, your efforts would be for naught, so I hope that you understand, that I don’t want to beat him into a bloody pulp.”
“I’ll enlighten you, I thought of the same thing and was about to request you, but I guess it’s no longer necessary,” I smiled at him. We really thought alike. I didn’t think I could ever get in sync with anyone as well as with Seth.
We waited patiently for the teacher to come, who just had to be late this morning… but when he arrived, Olaf and Seth requested to be matched against each other.
“Seth… Olaf is from the Asuma clan, I know that you improved a lot these past few days, but it’d be rash of you to fight him,” Tim shook his head.
“Don’t worry about me,” he replied.
“Yes, we agreed upon this match,” Olaf followed up, sounding rather authoritative. Being a common teacher in an average school, Tim didn’t dare to go against his will anymore and nodded his head.
“If that’s what you want.”
“I do,” Olaf and Seth said at the same time.
The Asuma clan was known for their body-strengthening magic and their incredibly tough defenses. If Seth went all out, I was sure that he could kill him before Olaf even made a move, but he wasn’t supposed to do that.
Standing only one meter away from Seth, Olaf said, “Are you ready?”
“What the fuck are you doing? You should stand ten meters apart from each other,” I furrowed my brows. I wasn’t worrying for Seth, but this definitely calmed Olaf’s mind a bit and made him think that he got the upper hand by cheating at the start. It was a common rule that before a spar, you had to stand at least ten meters apart and yet he left only two meters between them.
Smirking, he replied, “What does it matter? I’d reach him before he could make a move anyway.”
“Leave him be,” Seth waved his hand and took a stance. He steeled his gaze and focused all his attention on Olaf. I kind of wanted him to look at me with those unmoving eyes instead of Olaf, he usually did it only when we were having sex.
“Would you count down?” Seth asked.
“Of course,” I nodded my head. Raising my hand, I started counting down, “Three… two… one… Start!”
A red light flashed around Olaf’s body as his muscles bulged and grew larger. He was about a hundred and seventy centimeters tall, but after using his clan’s spell, he grew to a height of two meters. He looked rather intimidating, though Seth didn’t seem to care about it and just stood there awaiting his next move.
Rolling his fingers into fists, Olaf stepped towards Seth and punched out, putting his whole waist and upper body into it. He knew how to exert strength effectively, unlike most of our classmates. He wasn’t a noble for show, at least.
Leaning to the side, Seth only barely avoided it, but he managed to grab his arm and knee Olaf in the stomach at the same time, but the latter didn’t even react to it.
“Hahaha, that’s not going to work on me, you idiot. You common magicians have no way to harm me,” Olaf laughed at his ‘futile’ attempt to hurt him. “Well, enough of playing,” he said as he lunged towards Seth with his fists caught aflame.
Jumping back, Seth made a wall of rock in front of Olaf, but he punched through it without any trouble, propelling sharp splinters towards him. Seeing that Seth was smiling, I was sure that he was just playing around. I wasn’t sure how much mana he had, but I was knew that he’d be able to use many of the spells he couldn’t in the past. All because of me!
All of a sudden, the splinters stopped mid-air and then shot towards Olaf like bullets.
“I didn’t know you could use telekinesis,” he remarked in his surprise, ignoring all the splinters that hit his body. Only one of them wounded him, but even that was only enough to graze him, which healed in two seconds.
“Can you see this? He can’t even damage me, why’d you stay with this weakling?” Olaf shook his head, disappointed.
Shrugging my shoulders, I continued watching the show in silence.
“How strong is your resistance against spells? I don’t want to kill you,” Seth asked.
“You should worry about yourself instead,” he replied.
“Hmm- let’s use that then,” he mused as he looked at me for a moment, ducking down to avoid Olaf’s fist. Grabbing his shoulders, Olaf wanted to knee him in the face, but Seth turned into a shadow and appeared a few meters further. Clicking his tongue, Olaf charged towards Seth once again, probably annoyed by the fact that he kept missing all his punches and kicks, despite his insane speed.
“This might hurt,” Seth said as he raised his hand and made a gripping motion. A fist-sized, blue coloured ball formed behind Olaf, who stopped his charge for some reason. Turning around confused, he tried to step forward, but as soon as he raised his right leg, he was dragged back like a ragdoll and got pulled down to the ground. I was about ten meters away, but even I felt myself being pulled towards that ball, along with large piles of sand in the arena.
The blue ball slowly started rotating, forming a smaller whirlwind of sand which would turn into a tornado if its rotation became even quicker. With his legs in the air, Olaf had no way to take a footing and escape the gravity zone.
“Dear, could you stand back a bit?” Seth waved his hand.
Nodding my head, I quickly ran further away, feeling the pulling becoming at least twice as strong in just a second. The speed of rotation kept raising and the fist-sized ball flew higher up in the air. Panicked, Olaf tried to use wind magic to free himself, but it seemed to have no effect since not even the sand was blown away.
Hearing a girl shouting, I turned to look towards the sound, only to realise that she was too close to the blue ball and got lifted off the ground. The pulling force wasn’t quick, but it was terribly powerful. The girl was already mid-way to the ball when Seth pointed at her, and in the next moment, she shot out of the zone, straight towards me.
“Could you catch her?” he asked, but I was already reaching out towards the girl. As the blue ball sped up, a ball of sand formed and started swirling around it with Olaf in the middle. Although the sand couldn’t cut though his tough skin as I expected, Olaf couldn’t do anything while in the whirlwind.
Seth made a clenching motion and the ball became even smaller, while the sand turned into tiny blades around him. Looking at me with a smile, he started making positive and negative charges in an area of three meters, but all it took for him was a second. Instead of firing a deadly spell, he just started bombarding the sand ball with bolts of lightning, liquefying the sand.
“AAARGH! HOT! LET ME OUT! LET ME OUT YOU BASTARD” Olaf started screaming after a few seconds passed, when the sand reached its approximate melting point of 1650 ℃. I wasn’t sure about the quality of the sand in the arena, but if it was of good quality, maybe it was even hotter. Common humans would definitely burn to death, but Olaf had a layer of magic armour around his body and his skin was much more resistant as well. Still, I wouldn’t want to be in his place, even if my body was as resistant as his.
Pointing at the liquefied sand ball rotating in the air, it exploded and splashed all over the place, strangely enough, avoiding everyone. The sand sizzled as its liquefied version reached the ground, while Olaf was writhing in pain on the ground. His skin turned reddish at many places and even a black spot could be seen on his bare chest.
“Shit, I went overboard, he said he was resistant…” Seth cursed in a low voice. Walking up to Olaf, he put his hand on his forehead and knocked him out, somehow… As Olaf turned silent and stopped whining, Seth used water magic to cover his whole body in water and made a few flowers I’ve never seen before grow out of the sand. He tore off all of them and when he opened his hands, I could see only grounded herbs.
When he put it in the water covering Olaf’s body, his burnt skin returned to its original colour, and even the black spot disappeared without a trace. He touched Olaf’s forehead once again, and the latter opened his eyes and sat up breathing heavily, his body wet all over.
“I’m sorry, but you were confident in your magical resistance, I didn’t think you’d receive so much damage,” he said when Olaf looked at him.
Grabbing his collar, Olaf shouted, “You bastard! Were you trying to kill me?”
“He healed you, you idiot,” I slapped his hand away and squatted down next to him. Wasn’t he so high and mighty a moment ago? Why’d he blame it all on Seth.
Looking down, Olaf realised that he didn’t have any burnt marks on his body and looked at Seth with an amazed face. “What the fuck?”
“It was a mistake on my part. I can’t say I like you, but you haven’t done anything yet that’d make you worthy of this kind of pain, so I healed you. Either way, I think we can agree that it’s my win, and don’t worry, I’m not going to make things any harder for you, I’ll keep my mouth shut and pretend this whole thing never happened. I won’t brag about beating you, okay?” Seth was already trying to put an end to the matter.
A bit confused by the sudden turn of events, Olaf nodded his head unconsciously. “Wait, what? But-”
“You promised,” I said sternly. “Are you not a man? Where is your backbone? At least, you should keep your word! Also, I wonder how much chance you’d have to become the clan leader if your clan found out that you lost to a common magician. What do you think?” I asked with a smile, showing him the record.
“Tsk, fine, I’ll leave you two alone,” he stood up and dusted off his bottom. Looking around, he cancelled his magic and his body returned to normal. I was amazed by the fact that he didn’t even mind that he was strolling around half-naked while in front of two classes and even his trousers were torn.
Seeing that he was walking towards the exit, Tim shouted after him, “Wait! I wanted to announce something!”
“No need, I’ll drop out of this school,” Olaf waved his hand.
“Haah- finally, one less person bothering us,” Seth patted my back.
“Mhm, but what was that spell?”
“It was a super mini and super weakened white dwarf. I’d need much more mana to create a real one, but I can make a small one like this and I can also control its gravity to some degree. The only downside is that anyone who knew some gravity magic could escape this spell, but I knew that Olaf was more of muscle head when it came to magic,” he replied, this time not saying ‘I’ll tell you later’. I was really happy about that…
“Well, then the rest of you, come here,” Tim said awkwardly. I didn’t blame him, a student just said he’d drop out right after losing a battle, and he probably perceived this battle as a miracle. A common student beat a noble, which was a big deal and it was definitely weird. He kept eyeing Seth from the corner of his eye, but he didn’t say anything about the battle that had taken place. Maybe he even thought that Seth was a noble with a hidden identity.
When our classmates encircled him, he cleared his throat and said, “Before we start the first period, I have something important to share with all of you. Since you’ve entered third year, you’ll have to take part in much more practical combat than in your previous years. There will be two large events this year. The first and most important is the Tournament of Light, held by all the schools in Usuha and Eglon, meaning thirty-two schools!”
Every city had four schools, differing in skill-level, and both countries had four cities.
“The winner is going to earn a lot of money and the support of both nations. If you manage to get into the top one hundred, you’ll definitely have a bright future ahead, so make sure to perform as well as you can. The winners always end up in well-paying jobs early on and usually become as successful as noble clans as they progress!” he shouted, really getting into the idea. He probably dreamed of tasting success, sadly, he didn’t have the talent. But nature wasn’t kind to everyone.
“You must understand that winning the Tournament of Light would mean that you were the strongest of your own generation! Of course, not just one person will be rewarded, but I’m sure that you’ve heard about the tournament from the previous years. This event is going to be held towards the end of the semester, in May.”
True enough, even I knew that there’d be a tournament and I also knew that we’d be have to take part in it.
“The second event is a survival trial, which will start tomorrow. You should get ready and pack up everything that’s necessary because it’ll be a week long and it’ll be held outside the city. There will be real, powerful monsters, not just the ones we have in the parks.”
“I’ll tell you what you’ll need for this trial, so that you can get everything ready when you go home. If you feel that you need more time to get everything, you may be excused from attending school today.”
Does this mean that we won’t have to come to school? Hell, we need more days, we could look for a house in the meantime, I bet it’d be fun! Ah! I could watch the movie with Dad and then go on a date with Seth as well. Yes! I hope Tim is going to let us leave.
After he finished listing everything that we’d need, I raised my hand, “Teacher, can we leave now? We need more time!”
“Me too,” another classmate said.
“Same here!” Alex shouted as well, followed by Leo.
“I really need it!” I said with a smile.
Rolling his eyes, Tim waved his hand, “Okay, you may leave once I tell you everything that you need to know in advance.”
After doing as told, we were let off. I didn’t expect that I’d have today off, it came at the best time! Although the trial was serious and many of our classmates were worried after hearing the details, I wasn’t concerned by it. I’ve been to the wild outside the cities many times before, and with Seth around, I had few things to worry about.