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LTBE - Chapter 422.2: Faint Hope (2)

Roel Ascart’s mind had never been so heavy before.

As a transcendent, his physical body had surpassed the limits of an ordinary human, and his rate of recovery had reached a ridiculous rate along with his increasing Degree of Assimilation. It was rare for him to be afflicted with any abnormal conditions, but today was an exception.

He was conscious, but he was unable to wake up from his slumber. He was able to perceive his surroundings, but it felt like there was a thin veil obfuscating his senses. There was only one dominant feeling that continued to plague him.

Coldness.

It had been quite some time since Roel had obtained the powers of the terrifying calamity, and he had used it to its full prowess on numerous occasions, but this was the first time he was experiencing such biting frost. He also knew the reason why he was feeling this way—he was currently more vulnerable than ever due to the severe injuries he had sustained in the battle.

This was not the first time Roel was experiencing the side effects of Glacier’s Touch, but he had never suffered such severe injuries on top of that. He had always been able to obliterate his enemies with ease through Glacier Creator’s sheer destructive prowess, and part of the reason was because those opponents were clear enemies so he didn’t have to hold back against them.

Thinking about it, this was the first time he had ended up with such severe injuries whereas his opponent remained relatively unharmed.

Nevertheless, he didn’t regret his decision.

He could feel a tender touch on his cheeks. Slowly, he opened his heavy eyelids and found himself faced with a saintly and incredibly gentle golden-haired angel.

The sight of Nora stunned the groggy Roel, leaving him overwhelmed for a brief moment. A thought surfaced in his mind.

How beautiful.

A saintly disposition, a delicate face, little seashell ears, clear sapphire eyes that seemed to peer through one’s eyes, long curled eyelashes, a sculpted little nose, and a pair of cherry lips that he had just tasted not too long ago.

Everything about her was perfect as if she was a masterpiece sculpted by Sia. Despite having built up immunity from having known her for years, it was still hard for Roel to bear being in such close proximity to her.

His heartbeat hastened, and he turned his head away.

“Don’t stick so close to me. It’s cold,” he said awkwardly.

Due to having overused Glacier’s Touch, his body was emanating cold air. It must have been uncomfortable to make physical contact with him in his current state.

Upon realizing that Roel had woken up, Nora lowered her gaze and looked at him with a ravishing smile.

“It’s just a bit of ice,” she said.

She grabbed Roel’s hand and placed it on her chest.

“I’ll hurt more here if I stay away from you.”

“… That’s a terrifying disease you have there.”

“It is. You really are an evil one to afflict me with such a terrifying disease,” replied Nora.

She tried her best to keep her voice stable, but her nasal voice betrayed the fact that she had cried. Those fair hands that were holding onto Roel’s were trembling ever so slightly.

Roel looked at her reddened eyes and sighed softly.

“Now that I think about it, it’s my first time seeing you cry.”

“I would have preferred not to show that to you if possible. Besides, you were the one who didn’t play by the rules. Why would you use that sort of method to wake me up…”

“Isn’t that how the story goes in fairy tales? Granted I’m not a prince, but still… Didn’t you save me the same way when we were younger?”

Roel raised his eyebrows as he thought about how he had lost his first kiss. Nora widened her eyes in surprise, not expecting for this matter to be suddenly brought up. Her memories brought her to a place that seemed so near yet so far.

“That sure brings me back,” she murmured as her eyes filled with nostalgia.

Then, she lowered her head and looked at the man in her arms.

“It has been many years since, hasn’t it? Even the stingiest of merchants would know to repay the debt with some interest…”

With gentle words, Nora slowly leaned in.

Roel looked at her tear-stained cheeks, and he couldn’t suppress his feelings any longer. Their lips reunited once more, and the air around them started to heat up with a touch of sweetness.

It was a while before the two of them parted.

Roel’s breathing was thrown into disarray, and Nora’s cheeks were flushed. Tight in embrace, they listened to each other’s heartbeat.

Making use of this moment of peace, Roel began checking their vicinity.

They weren’t in the middle of Tark Prairie anymore but on a bed inside a house. The scenery outside the window was pitch-black, indicating that the night had yet to pass. Seeing that, Roel breathed a sigh of relief, knowing that he hadn’t passed out for too long.

“This house is…?”

“It’s a sentry post built during the previous war against the deviants.”

Nora ruffled Roel’s hair as she answered his question.

According to her, the humans had built multiple sentry posts all around Tark Prairie several decades back to keep an eye on the deviants’ movements. It was abandoned after the previous war, but Nora had been using them as temporary lodgings over the past month.

Roel nodded. He started thinking about the situation they were in, and his complexion gradually became grave.

It was a good thing that he had managed to awaken Nora’s humanity to temporarily suppress the terrifying Angel King, but it was still too early to let down his guard. Nora’s Seraphication wasn’t a problem that could be solved right away. All he had done last night was to avert the worst from happening and grant her a second chance.

According to Kane, Nora was in the crucial period of her bloodline awakening, and her condition would only worsen as time went on. During this period of time, what was most important of all was to keep her company and ensure her emotional stability.

The abrupt disappearance of Tark Stronghold had agitated her to the point that she nearly succumbed to the Angel King. While Roel had managed to salvage the situation in time, he was still worried about what was to come.

Kane’s abrupt disappearance was a huge shock to Nora, and it had opened up a hole in her heart. Even with Roel’s accompaniment, it was uncertain whether she would be able to weather through the upcoming storms. She might appear fine at the moment, but the uncertain plight of her father would continue to haunt her, slowly filling her up with negativity and despair.

Roel knew that there was a need to plug the hole in her heart, so he spent a moment in thought before speaking up.

“Nora, we need to talk about Tark Stronghold.”

“!”

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Roel could feel Nora’s body stiffening the moment he mentioned the words ‘Tark Stronghold’. It pained him to think about the anguish she was, but he tried to remain calm and continue on.

“I know that you aren’t in a mood to talk about it, but there are some things that you must know. The monster you have seen that day is Shrouding Mist of the Six Calamities, one of the Mother Goddess’ envoys. More importantly, I think that there might be hope for those in Tark Stronghold.”

“Hope? You mean that…”

Nora immediately raised her head to look straight into Roel’s eyes to seek confirmation, and the latter gave her an affirmative nod.

The Six Calamities were terrifying monsters that violated common sense, but Roel knew that each of them had their own limits.

Glacier Creator sought to encase the world in ice. Tempest Caller reduced everything to dust through the flow of time. Sire Darkness unleashed earth flames and ash upon the world to suffocate everything.

There was no doubt that they were powerful, but they were limited by their own attributes. The same ought to apply to Shrouding Mist too.

Roel had spent some time thinking about it, but he thought that the greatest possibility was that the ability of Shrouding Mist was to devour space. If that was the case, it was possible for those who were devoured to still be alive.

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Admittedly, the chances were slim, but if his hypothesis was true, they might just be able to do something about it. Roel did wield the power to influence the Six Calamities to some extent.

“It’s impossible to change the past, but it isn’t over yet.”

Looking at Nora, whose eyes had completely widened after listening to his analysis, Roel gently caressed her cheeks and looked straight into her sapphire eyes.

“For that sliver of hope, you have to conquer the Angel King. I’m with you.”

StarveCleric's Notes:

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ℭ𝔥𝔢𝔠𝔨 𝔬𝔲𝔱 𝔪𝔶 𝔬𝔱𝔥𝔢𝔯 𝔫𝔬𝔳𝔢𝔩𝔰:
100,000/Hour Professional Stand-in
Library of Heaven's Path
Martial God Asura from Chapter 4320
Written by Bells on Cat Ears (猫耳铃铛). Translated by StarveCleric. Edited by Welmar.