Chapter 77: Don’t Talk, Drink
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First Encounter? What does that mean?

Roel’s drowsiness was immediately dispelled by those words from the System. With widened eyes, he recalled the vivid dream he just had, and cold sweat drenched his back.

S-surely not, right? I mean, aren’t dreams usually used as prophetic materials? Or could it be that such dream foreshadowing is too cliché nowadays, so they are skipping right ahead to the main event?

Roel gripped his blanket tightly. The bed in the monastery was already hard enough as it was, and now he was faced with such an outrageous situation. How was he supposed to fall asleep like that?

He stared at the System’s ‘Calculating results…’ many thoughts whirling in his mind. Considering how this System often preached about freedom and that sort of stuff, it was safe to assume that it wouldn’t proactively create events for him. The earlier dream must be a result of some kind of change Roel was undergoing.

There was another thing that caught his attention too.

【Progress of Bloodline Awakening: 80%】

It had been two hours since he fell asleep earlier on, so it wasn’t that surprising to see that his bloodline awakening had already reached such a level. However, there was a new issue right now—the number wasn’t changing anymore. The awakening had halted.

Roel could roughly fathom a guess as to why that was so.

Do I have to answer that question first?, he wondered.

Meanwhile, there were some updates over on the System’s side too.

【Ding!】
【Information refreshed. The user has received a unique status】

【Grandar’s Promise
You have made a promise with the king to bring it back to reality.
Effects: Amplifies your strength significantly, grants temporary invulnerability (Lasts for 30 seconds)
Remaining Uses: 3】

“Invulnerability?!”

Roel exclaimed in shock upon seeing the notification on his screen. He had never thought that the skeleton would actually grant him a spell.

Holy shit! What in the world is that humongous skeleton? This is way too overpowered!

However, just thinking of the question posed by the skeleton brought a frown back to Roel’s face.

How do the dead pass down their power?

Roel really had no idea what that was all about. In this world filled with transcendents, the concept of ‘dead’ was very different from his previous world.

Take the skeleton in his dream for example. With a sword plunged through its chest, it would appear that he had died on the battlefield fending off his enemies. However, could the humongous skeleton really be considered as ‘dead’, especially since he could talk and move?

That was really hard to say.

Besides, what did the ‘power’ that was mentioned refer to? Skills? Bloodline? Knowledge?

Roel scratched his head but the question appeared to be far too complicated for him to give a concise answer to. Soon enough though, another matter caught his attention—the skeleton had mentioned that he was in trouble.

A frown formed on Roel’s forehead as he got an ominous omen. Before he could really think about it, he heard footsteps outside, and Klaude rushed in through the door anxiously.

“This is bad, Ho—Lord Roel! Lady Nora is ill!

“I-I noticed her collapsed beside the table when I was heading to the loo just now. There was a cup on the floor beside her; she appeared to have been in the middle of having some water when she suddenly fainted. I tried calling her, but she isn’t reacting at all. When I touched her forehead, I realized that she was burning up! So, I quickly carried her here to you!” cried Klaude.

“Alright, I got it. Don’t panic.”

“Uhm, a-alright!”

Klaude took deep breaths as he replied, but he was unable to completely rid himself of his jitters.

Could it be because I fed mortal food to the Holy Son that caused her to end up in such a state?

Such weird thoughts filled Klaude’s mind. Unable to bear with the unease, he placed Nora on Roel’s bed before rushing off to the prayer room to pray for her.

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Meanwhile, Roel placed a wet towel on her head. He couldn’t help but blame himself for having neglected her. He had known that she was feeling unwell for a long time now, but he subconsciously thought little of it.

Now that he thought about it, it was obvious that Nora had been behaving rather strangely before heading off to sleep. All this while, she had been bearing with her discomfort, never uttering a single word of complaint to Roel at all, but he took her resilience for granted.

He had a strong feeling that Nora was really undergoing a bloodline awakening, but he couldn’t bring himself to rejoice over this situation. The situation was simply too dangerous at the moment.

Most of the bloodline awakenings of the Xeclydes happened under the supervision of an elder, who would guide and support them through the procedure. However, that was clearly impossible right now. Forget about the guiding elder, they didn’t even have anyone to protect them!

Roel really had no idea what Holy Eminence John was thinking of. Why did he throw the two of them here? While it did allow them to escape from Peter Kater’s ability, their circumstances still appeared to be not much better than before. Their lives were still in danger at every moment.

On top of that, there’s still another 60 hours more before they could leave this area.

“The circumstances are really bad. What should we do about this…” muttered Roel to himself in frustration.

He wasn’t a doctor; he had no idea what he could do to help Nora. On the other hand, upon hearing Roel’s words, Nora’s eyes fluttered open a little.

“The only ones who can guide me through my awakening are my ancestors…”

“You’re awake? How are you feeling?” asked Roel anxiously.

“… I don’t feel too good. Am I ill? I’ve never felt this way before.”

Nora observed her feeble self and smiled bitterly. As a treasured princess of the Theocracy, she had doctors keeping a close eye on her health from a young age. Furthermore, her Angel’s Bloodline granted her a superior constitution, this had led to her never falling sick even once in the ten years of her life.

But right now, her body was feeling so heavy, it was suddenly hot one moment and cold the next, and her consciousness seemed to be drifting in and out. All of these were experiences she had never had before, and it made her terrified. The weakening of her body resulted in the weakening of her will as well.

She stared at the dark and unadorned ceiling above her, and for the first time, she wondered if she could really get out of here.

“My body has already been in this state for a night now. Even though I’ve used spells to reduce my sensitivity to pain and sharpen my will, it looks like I’m only delaying the inevitable. If only I knew this would happen, I would have at least learned a recovery spell…” remarked Nora bitterly.

Due to her personality, she had always preferred powerful offensive spells, which led to her lack of interest in recovery spells. Yet, this bias of hers ended up biting her back.

Listening to Nora’s words, Roel knew that her condition was not something that a non-professional could solve. She needed the help of a transcendent to heal her, but given the current situation… Roel could only clench his fists tightly together.

He took out the only thing that appeared to be useful in this monastery.

“Drink this bottle of medicine. It should at least be of some help.”

“… I’m too weak to get up.”

So, Roel stepped forward and carefully propped Nora up before leaning her against his chest. He uncorked the bottle and brought it over to her lips.

“Come, drink it.”

“...”

“Hm? Nora?”

Roel was surprised by the lack of action from his patient. As he was behind her, he couldn’t see her furiously blushing face and the hesitation that was written all over it.

“What’s wrong? Did I hurt you?”

“No, it’s something else.”

“Hm? What is it?”

“… It feels a little weird. As compared to being fed, I think I prefer to be the one doing the feeding instead,” answered Nora reluctantly.

That answer made Roel grind his teeth in exasperation.

Sis, TPO! Which is more important, your life or maintaining that sadistic front of yours?

“Can’t you control yourself a little?”

“It’s not like I said that I’m not going to drink it.”

“Cut the crap and drink it!”

“Wuwuwuuu!”

The frustrated Roel stuffed the bottle into Nora’s mouth and completely disregarded her opposition. Left with no choice, she could only swallow the entire bottle of medicine down.

“Y-you traitorous subject! How dare you treat me in such a manner!”

Infuriated, Little Miss Angel criticized Roel’s tyrannical actions furiously, but he simply smiled casually behind her back in response.

“My liege, have you forgotten that you haven’t donned the crown yet?”

“So what? Aren’t you afraid that I’ll kill you in the future?”

“Heh, I’ll just stage a revolt then.”

While bickering with Nora, Roel slightly backed away, hoping to lay her back down on the bed. Unexpectedly, Nora grabbed onto him lightly and stopped him.

“T-this is fine. Don’t move.”

“Hm?”

“The bed is too hard,” replied the golden-haired girl with a reddened face.

Roel shot a glance at the rock hard bed before nodding contemplatively.

Indeed, children of esteemed lineage grow up sleeping in feather quilts, so it’s only natural that they aren’t able to get used to such a hard bed. Forget about Nora, even I feel a little uncomfortable sleeping here.

So, Roel stopped what he was doing and allowed Nora to continue lying on his chest quietly. The two of them listened to each other’s breathing and heartbeats while waiting for the medicine to take effect.

Nora looked at everything before her. The renovation in the monastery was old and basic. As a building made out of stone, it was inevitable that the place would become cold at night. The only source of illumination here was the candlelight on the table, but even that felt like it would soon be devoured by the darkness of the night.

Looking at this scenery that was vastly different from the extravagant palace she was used to, she felt a little dazed, as if she was inside a dream.

Nora stared at this dark room for a long moment while enjoying the warmth on her back. All of a sudden, she spoke up.

“You don’t seem to hate me as much anymore.”

“I have never hated you.”

“Liar.”

“It’s true,” replied Roel.

He unwittingly thought about Nora's actions back at the art studio with Peter Kater earlier. Her unyielding spirit to uphold her principles had moved him, and that had in turn changed some of the thoughts in his mind.

“Back then, I was just a little… Never mind, but it’s not like that anymore.”

“… To be honest, I was thinking that even if you do hate me, it’s not that bad either.”

“What?”

Roel frowned at Nora’s words. Somehow, he felt that there was something amiss about her.

However, Nora didn’t respond. Instead, she stared ahead blankly, seemingly thinking of something. It was a long while later that she tilted her head slightly toward Roel and spoke.

“You should leave tomorrow at dawn.”

“Yeah, I was thinking the same too. I’ll carry you.”

“No, I’m saying that you should leave by yourself,” said Nora calmly as she looked at Roel’s face. “You won’t be able to get out of here if you bring me with you.”

Novel Notes

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ℭ𝔥𝔢𝔠𝔨 𝔬𝔲𝔱 𝔪𝔶 𝔬𝔱𝔥𝔢𝔯 𝔫𝔬𝔳𝔢𝔩𝔰:
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