Chapter 497: For Our Child
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Moonlight shone through the sky window to illuminate the dark room. Weak candlelight lit up the side profiles of the duo inside the room. With his eyes fixed on Charlotte, Roel took out the items he had been preparing for some time now.

It was a pair of crystal rings imbued with the aura of the gods, shining with enchanting luminosity under the moonlight. Embedded on its tip was a dark gold jewel.

Dignified, divine, and noble, the rings resembled divine artifacts from an ancient temple worshiping the gods. It naturally attracted Charlotte’s attention, who closely examined it. A few moments later, she looked at Roel with confusion in her eyes.

“Darling, this is…”

“I requested Peytra to make them. It’s the solution I can think of,” replied Roel.

He wiped off the tear stains on Charlotte’s cheeks before continuing on.

“You can’t be thinking that I have spent the past month doing nothing at all, fully entrusting your fate into the hands of others?”

“That’s not what I mean. It’s just that you have been with me every single day over the past month. How do you intend to…”

Charlotte could tell that Roel meant what he said, but she had completely no idea what he was up to.

Just like what she had mentioned earlier, there was only so much they could do without finding the source of the curse. Roel couldn’t have had time to investigate for the Six Calamities when the two of them had been together over the past month, and he also didn’t have any spells that would allow him to remotely search for them.

Perplexed, she stared at Roel in hopes that he would explain the matter, but the latter fell silent instead. That brought a frown to her face.

Just like how I went to the extreme of resorting to the serum, is it possible that Roel also…

Alarmed, she immediately grasped Roel’s wrist with anxiety brimming in her emerald eyes.

“Darling, what are you planning to do? Tell me right now. Are you thinking of doing something dangerous?”

“… It does come with some risks.”

“What kind of risks?” Charlotte asked anxiously.

Roel stared at the rings in his hand before he hesitantly answered.

“You’re right. Uncovering the trail of the Six Calamities is practically an impossible feat. We were unable to find Shrouding Fog even though there were so many eye-witnesses that day, let alone a being whose true form we are unaware of.”

“Then what are you…”

“If we can’t find it, we’ll just have to lure it out.”

“Ah?”

Charlotte blinked her eyes in bewilderment. Roel responded with an affirmative nod before he calmly shared his plan with her.

When the expedition team exploring the ancient remnant reported their failure, Roel had already known that it was almost impossible for them to find the member of the Six Calamities behind the curse. It wouldn’t make a difference even if they had ten times the manpower.

There was a simple reason why he was so certain about that—the Six Calamities possessed intelligence.

He couldn’t tell for sure how smart those calamitous ancient monsters were, but they had been shown to be cunning at times. There were numerous indications of that in the historical records he had browsed through. However, for the same reason, it was also possible to scheme against them.

It was not uncommon for veteran policemen in Roel’s previous world to lure hiding criminals out by laying a trap for them. Roel thought that the same trick might work against the Six Calamities.

But that was easier said than done.

The fact that Charlotte had ‘recovered’ during the journey back to Rosa Merchant Confederacy could be interpreted as the culprit’s reluctance to catch Roel’s attention. That suggested that the member of the Six Calamities responsible for the curse might not be fully grown and didn’t want to get into a confrontation with humankind yet.

However, that didn’t mean that there was no way to lure it out.

“It was just a few times, but I have sensed its aura on several occasions while I was with you. I can say with certainty that the monster harbors animosity toward you, or rather, the entire high elf lineage.”

“Animosity?”

“Indeed. It has only just escaped from the ancient remnant and will likely need some time to recover, but it’s already trying to kill you despite knowing that it might risk exposing its existence. This is unlike the Six Calamities’ usual style of silently growing in the shadows,” Roel said.

Charlotte fell into deep contemplation upon hearing those words.

Considering the Jewel Magic’s ability to curb the Six Calamities, the High Elves’ previous allegiance to the Mother Goddess, and the Six Calamities’ animosity toward Charlotte, Roel deduced that Charlotte’s ancestors might have once punished the Six Calamities before.

“I understand the rough situation now, but darling, as much as the Six Calamities detest the high elf lineage, it also seems to fear you a lot. It wouldn’t easily show itself knowing that you’re around. Besides… I don’t think that I can hold on much longer,” Charlotte replied with sorrowful eyes.

She unconsciously tightened her grip on Roel’s clothes.

Roel’s heart clenched. He gently pulled her into his embrace and stroked her back to comfort her. As much as he wanted to assure her, he was unable to refute her words.

With Charlotte already on the verge of death, all that was left for the culprit behind her curse to do was to silently watch her suffer from some unknown corner of the world. There was no reason for it to show itself at all, especially when it was trying to avoid a confrontation.

Roel was well aware of this problem, but he wasn’t dismayed at all. On the contrary, his golden pupils glowed with a sharp glint.

“That’s indeed the case under normal circumstances, but I have told you that I won’t allow anything to happen to you. These rings exist for that purpose.”

“What do these rings do?” Charlotte asked with a voice tinged with skepticism and worry.

Roel stared intently at the two rings.

“These rings will link our life force together.”

Charlotte Sorofya was the daughter of the Rosa Merchant Confederacy’s leader, which made her equivalent to a princess in terms of standing. She was lofty and noble in the truest sense of those words. The Sorofyas had already gone to all lengths to save her, but why was it that everyone was helpless before her affliction?

The answer was simple—her affliction wasn’t as simple as it seemed. Her withering life force was only a symptom of her affliction, not the cause.

Roel had also once suffered from withering life force from having expended too much life force to raise his Origin Level. He was later saved by Alicia, who was practically a walking reservoir of life force. However, the same solution wouldn’t work with Charlotte.

In fact, Charlotte couldn’t even use simple life force serums to improve her condition. Her body was too weak to take the strain.

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In Roel’s previous life, there was this adage that people with frail bodies shouldn’t consume too much tonic because their bodies wouldn’t be able to take the potent medicinal effect. Charlotte’s situation was quite similar to that.

The Sorofyas had the means to acquire precious medicine with miraculous effects, but they would be no different from poison to Charlotte if she consumed them in her weakened state. One could even say that the curse had capped her lifespan instead of reducing it.

Using an analogy, Roel’s previous ailment of withering life force was similar to a cup being depleted of its water. The solution was simply to refill it.

On the other hand, Charlotte’s curse was slowly hacking away at her cup, causing it to become smaller and smaller. The cup was still full, but it was carrying barely any water. Attempting to add more water in wouldn’t help at all; it would only strain her body.

That was why all of the doctors, scholars, and clergymen hired by the Sorofyas found themselves at a loss.

However, after closely examining Charlotte’s condition, Roel thought of an alternative solution. It was a method he had found in the historical records—a symbiotic relationship blessed by a god.

Peytra, the creator of the rings, was the Primordial Earth Goddess in the ancient era, governing over the earth and life. Needless to say, she was adept at manipulating life force. She couldn’t directly lift the curse, but with some manipulation, she could temporarily alleviate its effects.

The proper terminology for the pair of magic rings was ‘Rings of Symbiosis’.

Their effects were fairly straightforward. If one of the ring wearers suffered an abrupt loss of life force, the other ring wearer would replenish it with his own. This meant that Charlotte wouldn’t die as long as Roel was alive.

In a sense, their fates would be linked together with each other, thus achieving symbiosis.

In the room, Roel calmly explained the effects of the rings to Charlotte to dispel her worries of abrupt death, but the latter was hardly delighted about it at all. Instead, it made her eyes widen in horror. Without any hesitation, she rejected the ring.

“I apologize, darling, but I can’t accept the ring.”

“Charlotte…”

“You told me that I’ll be fine, but what about you? The curse will only continue devouring my life force like a ravenous monster that’ll never be satisfied. I can’t drag you down with me!” Charlotte exclaimed.

She tenderly placed her hands on Roel’s cheeks.

“If death is the ultimate fate awaiting me, I hope to show you my best in my final moments. I don’t want to desperately cling onto life as an unsightly leech feeding off your life force.”

“…”

Roel knew that there was a good chance that Charlotte would reject his measure, but his determination didn’t waver in the least.

“Our life force would be pooled together once the blessing has been established, and your constant loss of life force would inevitably weaken me as well. But Charlotte, this measure doesn’t just serve to prolong your life. Rather, it’s a necessary condition to save you.”

“A necessary condition?”

“Have you forgotten what our primary objective is?” Roel asked with sharp eyes.

“!”

Charlotte slowly widened her eyes in astonishment, finally comprehending what Roel was going for.

Roel had said that the only way to find the Six Calamities was to make them show themselves, but their intrinsic fear of the Crown Origin Attribute made it nigh impossible for them to show themselves until they reached maturity.

However, there were always exceptions.

From Roel’s previous experiences, if the Six Calamities believed that it was in a position of absolute superiority against an inheritor of the Crown Origin Attribute, it would instead attempt to eliminate him so as to remove a potential threat. That was exactly the kind of situation Roel was trying to create here.

While he transferred his life force to Charlotte, the unique aura of his Crown Origin Attribute would also rub off her as well. Without a doubt, the cunning ancient monster would also notice it via the curse.

The successor of the high elf lineage was on the verge of death and the inheritor of the Crown Origin Attribute was grievously weakened, but the two of them were still alive thanks to the blessing of the Primordial Earth Goddess…

How would that ancient monster perceive the situation?

It would probably see it as both a threat and an opportunity.

As long as Roel and Charlotte remained alive, there was a slim chance that they might find a solution to its curse. At the same time, this was a chance to eliminate two of its greatest threats down at once. If it succeeded, the only person left in the world who could threaten it was Lilian, who possessed the Kingmaker Bloodline but not the Crown Origin Attribute.

The ancient monster would find it hard to resist this hard-to-come-by opportunity, especially since destruction was encoded into its very nature. By then, what Roel and the others had to do was very straightforward.

“I’ll kill it and destroy the source of the curse. Admittedly, that’s the ideal situation, and it’s unlikely that things will go smoothly. We might end up losing our lives to that terrifying monster. Even so, I want to gamble on it,” Roel said with conviction.

“This is too dangerous. Darling, you don’t have to take this risk for my sake!”

“Charlotte, you promised me that we’ll face all hardships together no matter what happens.”

“I did say that, but…”

“You still don’t get it? Even if I survive alone, I’ll only be in insufferable pain for the rest of my life. That’s why…”

Seeing that Charlotte was still planning to turn him down, Roel looked straight into her emerald eyes and dolefully pleaded with her.

“… for the sake of our child, please live on.”

Novel Notes

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