Chapter 1 Part 1
Kwanach stared at me and carefully pressed our foreheads together. He said in an urgent voice.
“Usphere. You’re the one who shines on your own without me.”
“You’ve been watching me very closely, haven’t you?”
I replied, suppressing a bitter thought. I was treated well in this life, but in my previous life I was despised.
I knew very well how it felt for the world to treat me so poorly. But I couldn’t bring myself to say that I understood him, that I did too.
“No, Usphere. You are a noble and worthy person. This time I am convinced once again.”
“Is it because my power has returned?”
“Your power doesn’t come back for no reason.”
I could feel the hot heat coming from Kwanach’s forehead as we touched.
I hugged Kwanach’s shoulders with my hands. Then I opened my mouth to repeat the words I had said to him as a child.
“Do you know that? You say that I saved you, but you saved hundreds and thousands of slaves.
“Since slaves are treated as property, there was no way to protest even if they were treated unfairly. You prevented the ill fate of a second and a third Roseanne. Do you know how great that is? How valuable a job have you done?”
“To me, it’s just …….”
Kwanach seemed to be trying to say something low about himself, as was his habit. I approached Kwanach with a gentle gaze.
Two lives. Two marriages. To the man who had always loved me in the two lives I had been given.
I kissed Kwanach briefly on his trembling lower lip and said.
“You said that you became king to marry me. But consider what you have done since the revolution. You freed the slaves, cut out all kinds of rotten things, and created a new country. I like you. You are a good ruler. You can have confidence in yourself.”
Kwanach, who had been quietly listening to me, moved away from me for a moment and turned his head away.
He pressed down on his eyes with the palm of his hand. After a moment, he opened his mouth.
He turned to me again and his dark eyes were filled with moisture.
“Don’t you hate me?”
The low cracked voice was laced with self criticism.
“You always save me. This time I swore to protect you and save you…….”
Kwanach stared at me, his jaw slowly flexing as he moved closer. It was as if he wanted to give me ample opportunity to push him away if I didn’t like it.
I did not avoid him. His lips, rough with heat, met mine.
The kiss continued to be soft and wistful. Kwanach weakly grabbed onto my shoulders. It was as if he was afraid that I would collapse under him.
I had heard all he said, but I still didn’t know how he felt. I didn’t dare to guess why he loved me so much.
Only one thing was certain. I felt sorry for this man who had given up his entire life for the love of me, and I loved him.
After a long kiss, we let out a weak sigh at the same time and fell away. I breathed for a while in the lingering feeling of our kiss and said.
“If you protect this country well, that will be the very path that will protect me.”
The look in Kwanach’s eyes, which had been tainted with confusion and anxiety, shone harder than before.
“So hurry up and catch those who want to destroy this land and stop them.”
Kwanach nodded. Then he held my hand tightly and said.
“….I will need your help to do so.”
“I won’t lock you up anymore.”
The man who had been trying to keep me in the safety and illusion he had created for me finally opened the latch.
Now that we talked about what we had been hiding for a long time, I could feel that trust had been built between us. It seemed to have calmed down Kwanach’s anxiety a little.
“Are you sure?”
“Yes. But don’t do anything dangerous…”
I was so happy that I just hugged Kwanach.
Kwanach was somehow embarrassed and trembled a little. I wasn’t happy to be out of the room. In fact, since the return of my powerful power, I could escape from the room at any time if I wanted to.
More than that, I was happy that I seemed to be on equal footing with Kwanach.
And the fact that I didn’t have to struggle with him emotionally any more. And the fact that Kwanach now had a little more faith in me and in himself.
“Don’t worry, Kwanach. Now that my power has returned, there is no problem protecting myself.”
“Still, just in case…. ….”
Kwanach’s voice was again mixed with anxiety. I mumbled, cutting him off quickly.
“Kwanach, I think I’m starting to like you a little……”
“Oh, d*mn it.”
Kwanach grabbed my chin forcefully and kissed me with a gesture I couldn’t afford.
Strong arms surrounding my body. The heat that poured down. It was something I missed so much.
* * *
After our brief kiss, we started discussing this and that together. There were many things that needed to be resolved.
Kwanach put aside his anxious mind for a moment and told me what was going on.
As usual, Roman’s whereabouts were still a mystery. It must be difficult to track someone who was constantly transforming and escaping through a surveillance net.
He searched all of Guilier’s locations but he couldn’t find Roman anywhere. Also, all the Guilier’s members were under interrogation, but he didn’t get much results.
From the looks of it, most of the people in the Guilier did not know who Roman really was. Nor did they know the evil scheme that Roman had hatched.
Roman had perfectly concealed his true identity and was living a double life.
The next place worth going to for Roman was the north, according to Kwanach. If Diaquit was a true friend of Roman, then Roman would go across the border to the north.
Of course, the situation was such that Kwanach had completely sealed off the border area. He ordered that not even a single ant should be allowed out. With even trade with the outside world suspended, the empire was immersed in the search for Roman.
So Roman probably wouldn’t have been able to cross the border. If that was the case, there was a big chance that he was hiding somewhere on the road to the north.
Roman was a man who hid himself behind others like a shadow. He had disappeared, and it was not easy to pull him out.
So Kwanach was going to throw the bait.
To his brother, his best friend, Jaxor.
The suspicion that Jaxor was Roman’s spy hurt Kwanach, but Kwanach was determined to use him. The intention was to lure Roman out by deliberately passing information to Jaxor.
If the operation failed, he would be lucky to confirm that Jaxor was not a spy, and if it succeeded, he would have Roman.
But as I listened to the details of Kwanach’s operation, I was still unsure. Kwanach was a man who was good at cornering people by force, and he was not used to such tricks.
“Kwanach. Put me in the operation.”
“You can’t do it alone. Don’t you know that?”
“…… it’s dangerous.”
“No matter how dangerous the situation is, I can protect myself from now on. I say this with confidence.”
“Then please promise me. If the mission seems to fail, don’t hesitate to escape alone. You must take care of your safety first.”
After reassuring Kwanach several times, I was able to join the journey to track down Roman.
* * *
There were very few people who knew about this operation.
Since Romain had escaped the Imperial Palace, Kwanach couldn’t trust anyone around him carelessly. Not only Jaxor, but even the Kingsguard who had sworn allegiance to him.
Our plan went like this. First, Kwanach would give a false excuse.
“We’ve decided to provide magic supplies in the upper Belzar in the north.”
Of course there was no such place.
We’ve created a virtual organization that we hope will deal in things that will reverse the state of the war. It was against the policy of the kingdom to which the organization belonged, so it had to be done in secret.
Kwanach decided to go near the north border himself and contacted the organization to make sure if it was the original object.
“The three seconds of the time will be opened at a fixed time.”
Kwanach will take the minimum number of people with him to the border, leaving only a handful of people informed of this. And wait.
Until Roman takes the bait.
This was the day when the closed passage to the north will be slightly opened. If Roman had heard this information from the spies embedded in the royal palace, he would transform himself into one of the border guards and take the opportunity to leave the Radon Empire.
Normally, it would be hard to tell who Roman was. But if I was on the scene, that would be a different story.
The plants were able to penetrate the magic and see the true nature of what was contained within them. They also do not lie and are not disillusioned. Then I could ask the plants and find the real Roman.
I asked Kwanach what he had originally planned to do. His original plan was a bit radical.
“I was going to take only Jaxor to the tangent point, with no other escort. It would leave me exposed and unprotected. If Jaxor is indeed in league with Roman, he will inform Roman of this fact and try to remove me.”
This man was going to use himself as bait.
If Roman was truly the last descendant of the Pernen dynasty, he would have a great hatred for Kwanach. And if Kwanach was removed in advance, it would be easier for Roman to swallow the continent.
If Jaxor was a spy and Roman knew this information, he would never ignore it.
“It’s too dangerous a plan. What if Roman’s group hiding there beforehand attacked you all at once? You could be seriously injured.”
“I’m prepared to be injured.”
The strategy was to hand over the meat and take the bones.
Of course, Kwanach had exceeded human limitations. Even if several knights jumped on him at once, they would be no match for Kwanach.
He had a natural talent for handling swords. He was literally a genius. If he hadn’t been born a slave, he would have made a name for himself with the sword much earlier.
However, there was no guarantee that even the powerful Kwanach would be safe against Roman, a wizard with mysterious power.