LTBE - Chapter 433.1: Being Toward Death (1)
Roel Ascart had been defeated.
That was the conclusion that the crowd witnessing the fight from afar came to.
Roel was still chasing Bryan a minute ago to deliver the coup de grâce, but the tables were turned within seconds.
A grayish silhouette had suddenly manifested beside the fallen Bryan, piquing the vigilance of the crowd. Roel had noticed it too, but it didn’t seem to make a difference. The grayish silhouette released an attack that somehow managed to pierce through all of Roel’s defenses, resulting in an abrupt defeat.
The grayish silhouette vanished after releasing that attack, and Bryan returned to his feet.
It was also at this point that the heretics and inquisitors realized that they had been duped. From the very start, Roel was the true target that Bryan and the others were going for. That could be seen as much from their elaborate preparations.
Their plan worked.
Roel had fallen completely still after being struck by the beam of gray miasma, and his crimson mana and frost aura swiftly dispersed into the surroundings. His body was shrouded by gray miasma, and it was growing blurrier with each passing second.
It had all happened so quickly that the heretics couldn’t react to it at all.
Cynthia’s body froze up. Rodney was in the midst of brandishing his sword when his movements slowed to a halt. Wood stared at Roel with widened eyes, unable to believe what he had just seen.
In contrast, the evil cultists revealed triumphant smiles.
With Roel’s death, no one else would have the strength to oppose Bryan’s powerful divine power. This meant that this battle was already as good as won.
The heretics and inquisitors soon realized that as well, and despair showed on their faces. Most of them were prepared to die in the course of their duty, but they couldn’t accept this loss. They understood what would happen if the evil cultists were to win here.
There was only one person who didn’t think that it was over yet—Count Hanks.
He knew that Roel still had a chance to make a comeback even though his life was hanging by a thread. As long as the latter could find his belief core and make a breakthrough, he might just be able to turn things around.
Ironically, his near-death condition was providing him with the impetus to do so.
Thinking about the month he had spent with the young man journeying to the eastern borders, Hanks was able to calm his nervousness. He had encountered many prodigies over the years, but for some reason, he was exceptionally confident that Roel wouldn’t lose his life here.
This was based on the intuition he had built up over the years.
Meanwhile, Bryan walked right past Roel and advanced toward the house in the distance, where Nora was. Seeing that, Hanks quickly rushed over with white light shrouding his body.
I have to buy time before he returns.
Hanks began gathering all the mana he had within him, prepared to sacrifice his own life to stall time for Roel’s return. However, a sudden burst of mana pulsation changed everything.
The moment Roel grasped the hand extending from the shadows, a slight mana pulsation rippled from the white bones of the fallen skeleton giant.
It created a chain reaction. Bryan halted his footsteps, and in the faraway headquarters of the Connoisseur Guild, a robed figure turned his head around in astonishment to look at the faint glow behind him.
Cracks were appearing on the stone he was using as a medium earlier, causing bits of light to spill out from within.
The robed figure suddenly felt an intense pain coming from his arm.
His surroundings dimmed right after, and a flickering candle appeared before his eyes. A black-haired man was grabbing onto his wrist tightly, infusing a freezing stream of mana into him. An entire half of his body was already frozen.
The robed figure quickly retracted his arm, releasing the candle flame from his grasp.
With the release of the candle flame from its suppression, it immediately unleashed a wave of brilliant mana to wash away the darkness and intruder who dared to trespass on this land.
When the robed figure returned to the real world, he slowly lowered his gaze and looked at his frozen arm in shock. It was the first time in a long time that his true emotions unwittingly showed on his face.
He understood what it meant for the young awakener of the Ascart House to have been able to grab his real body in that dark space.
He has uncovered his own belief core. No one will be able to infiltrate his Inner Sanctum to put out his flame anymore. The Kingmaker Bloodline has been fully awakened.
After the passing of several centuries, that ancient bloodline has resurfaced in the world once more. Everything will change as a result of this. Even demons and gods will have to take heed.
The Collector stared at the glowing medium with an unreadable look on his face. It was impossible to tell what he was truly thinking.
Over at Tark Prairie, Bryan’s blue eyes glazed over with incomprehension.
As if someone had rewound time, the gray miasma began converging around the crumbled white bones, turning Roel’s blurred body corporeal once more.
At the same time, an incredible amount of mana that appeared to have been conjured out of nowhere started congregating in the sky, forming an image. This image was continuously changing, be it a dignified king with a sword in hand, a ferocious wild beast, a holy angel, a majestic dragon…
Beings that had once existed in the ancient era appeared one after another, including the gods and demons. Despite their fleeting appearances, they contributed to a growing pressure weighing down on the surroundings before finally peaking with a glowing silhouette.
The moment She appeared, even the vilest of evil cultists fell to the ground, trembling in repentance as if foolish children who had momentarily lost their way. The devout believers gasped in shock as they reverently murmured Her name.
The scene before him delivered a sharp jolt to Bryan’s heart, and the gray miasma also quickly scattered out of fear. Hanks hurriedly lowered his head respectfully despite being overwhelmed by the situation.
There was no way such a phenomenon could have occurred even for a breakthrough to Origin Level 3. The only possible explanation was that this was a memory originating from the Ascart Bloodline.
As the ancient lineage picked up its glory of the past, a frozen body began to blaze with fervor.
Roel looked at the sky, where a glowing silhouette looked at him with a warm smile as Her hand reached out toward him. The Crown Origin Attribute trembled in response.
【You have received Sia’s Blessing】
【The awakening of your bloodline has been completed.
Degree of Awakening: 100%】
【You have obtained a new skill: Being Toward Death】
【Being Toward Death
In the Inner Sanctum, you held steadfast to your belief and blossomed amidst darkness. No one can seek to influence the flame that burns within you anymore. The flow of fate will change because of you. Death is not the end but the start.
Effects: Increased resistance toward death. Depending on the severity of injuries, the user will receive corresponding enhancements in mana quantity and bloodline ability.】
Several notifications echoed in Roel’s ears as he felt an inexplicable sensation washing over him. It was a feeling of tenderness and tranquility in the depths of his soul. He closed his eyes and allowed the warm light to wash away the filth in his body. At the same time, he could sense the presence of a core within his Origin Attribute that held everything together.
The phenomenon only lasted for a brief moment before fading away. The brilliant light receded into Roel’s body, and the pressure in the air finally dispersed.
Roel opened his eyes once more and gazed upon Bryan. The latter couldn’t maintain a composed front anymore; there was only graveness in his eyes.
It had only been several minutes, but Roel’s aura was completely different from before. The tremendous increase in his mana showed that he had overcome his bottleneck to reach Origin Level 3. His glowing golden eyes showed determination like never before, as if even the notion of death couldn’t frighten him.
Being-toward-death is a concept fathomed by Martin Heidegger, a famous German philosopher. He has explored the topics of death and its meaning, and his ideas are quite interesting. I won’t try to explain it since I don’t think I understand the ideas well enough