Chapter 35: Casting Him
Lugis fell to the ground. His condition was unquestionably serious.
His right hand and shoulder were burnt. However, his condition didn’t reach a carbonized state. It was, in fact, a miracle. The fire also affected his upper body, especially around his back. The skin was significantly altered. The blackish red scene of fire and smoke was too strong and unbearable for the naked eye. Filaret La Volgograd’s expression was greatly distorted.
Still, he could die if nobody saved him immediately. Filaret would blame herself if Lugis surrendered his life to death. She panicked at the sight of the fallen Lugis.
Now. This was the only moment to act, this was the right timing. The burning flames were being subsided by the soldiers. Everything was getting calmer. The situation was getting controlled and suppressed. This was the moment. Yes, the moment before the enemy changed their attention to the prisoners. Therefore, Lugis had to be saved now, or else he’ll be taken by the hand of the god of death. He mustn’t die. He must survive. Nonetheless, proper aid had to be given immediately. Because, even if he managed to survive by himself, his body could suffer with some sort of disability. His life as an adventurer would be hopeless. It would be over forever.
Ah, that horrible fate had to be stopped. Filaret was by Lugis side. She tried her best to tend to his wounds. Her hands trembled incessantly. But, she was determined. She vowed not to let Lugis die. She decided that he should live his life like gold. It would be unfair if he were to die as lead when he behaved like a golden person.
On this moment, Filaret tried to use her magic again… not to heal Lugis, but to reshape Lugis’ health.
Her throat was dry, and her voice was stuck. She did her best to invoke her magic, but it became entangled, she couldn’t produce any magic at all. There was no magical reaction whatsoever. Nothing came from her. Lugis’ body didn’t show any change, neither from his toes or hair.
Filaret’s expression was pale. Her eyes showed remorse and despair. Filaret knew these feelings perfectly well. In the past, she did her best to improve herself. But, her efforts were in vain when she lived through repeated failure.
In reality, she couldn’t invoke her magic because she overused it. She was exhausted. Depletion was the reason why she didn’t exercise her powers, unless she took a meaningful rest.
Even though she was determined, her health proved otherwise. Her concentration started to waver. The magical powers were lacking. She did her best to invoke her magic even on this perilous situation. Yet, her throat didn’t comply. It was as if she lost her voice completely.
“Ah, I can’t cast anything right now.” She thought. She couldn’t use anything even though she needed her powers the most at this crucial moment.
Tears started to fall from her eyes.
“Finally. I finally managed to discipline my mind. I found my way. My calling. It was all thanks to him. But, this person named Lugis, is about to die. I want to save him, but I can’t do anything. Everything ended up as before. I am useless after all.
I should’ve died instead. I would rather choose to be held in flames, and die with him than keep living inside of a hell engulfed by grief, regret and failure. Yes, I would rather perish than live a life without hope. Dying would be a much better solution for my soul. A salvation for my mental health.”
Filaret’s heart became black as if a hole was pierced through her insides. She held her head to the ground and wiped her eyes in despair. Her eyes hurt and became lifeless. She touched her face and regretted being born. Suddenly, two voices echoed in her earlobes. It were the voices of a man and a woman.
「Depletion of magical power huh. You were a bit reckless based on your physical condition.」
「It seems that you’re exhausted. Your powers diminished because of your health. You look extremely fatigued. Filaret, please take a rest. You mustn’t use your magical powers right now. If you push yourself to your limits, you’ll face severe consequences. 」
And then, the last person who spoke extended his hand.
One of the voices that Filaret heard was, in fact, a familiar voice. A voice that she heard quite often. It was unmistakably the voice of Helot Stanley. He was the one who extended his hand on Filaret’s direction. She saw a light at the end of a tunnel. Her sorrowful and painful expression disappeared almost instantly. The other voice belonged to a girl named Caria, a swordswoman. She was the one that stood by Lugis side all the time.
Both of their clothes were torn and tattered. They also had red stains on their clothes. It looked like blood. However, no big wounds were seen on the surface.
Filaret recognized both of them. She felt a huge turmoil inside of her chest. On that immediate moment, she felt two opposing emotions.
The first one was relief.
“Ah, I felt relieved when they arrived to save us. They are unquestionably talented. Even though nobody was perfect, these two are an exception among everyone I met before. Their utter appearance said it all. They are golden people. They were able to handle everything on their own. I didn’t have to worry anymore. That’s why I felt relief.”
The second one was a dry and cold hatred that froze my heart.
Filaret’s body tighten up and she gritted her back teeth.
“Again. Here we go again. Lugis and I did our very best. We went against all odds even though we perfectly knew that we weren’t strong or special. Yet, it isn’t possible to gain recognition as golden people? Please stop it. I don’t want to face that harsh reality. Dying along with him would have been a better choice than relying on golden people because of our incompetence.”
A “relief” given in exchange for dignity and independence. That’s what Filaret thought about herself. She wondered if a downtrodden person like herself could have an opportunity if she took such almighty hand… Would the poor have a place on this world? Filaret’s fingertips shook unconsciously. She remembered, not herself, but Lugis and his bravery early on. He acted unambiguously to protect his dignity and her life and, as a result, he went face to face with death. It was as if the god of death was his friend. He embraced death for a brief moment.
“Ah, how sweet that would be. Could I choose that path for myself too? Could I pick up that “sweet fruit” at the end of my death?”
At the sight of the bright golden people, Filaret distorted her expression slightly. Regrets filled her mind and tears were overflowing from her eyes.
「No, I don’t agree. I got what you meant, but Filaret has one more job to do. 」
Caria blocked Helot’s hand when he tried to help Filaret. Helot stopped midway, while Caria walked away and picked up something from the rubble.
“At first glance, it wasn’t something that was worth that much. It looked like an old-fashionable sword. It probably had some value as an antique, or maybe it didn’t have any value at all. That sword was the sword that Lugis wore on his scabbard. It seemed to be a weapon of his choice.” That was what Filaret noticed amidst the turmoil of her unsettling emotions.
「…This is my family’s treasure. Traditionally, it was called either “mystic” or “miracle”. I don’t know how efficient this is. But, I heard that the blade was refined by magic itself.」
Then, Caria threw her sword casually. A confused Filaret caught that rusty sword with both of her hands after it was thrown to her chest.
“Oh, this is a foreign object.” She thought. Filaret sighed from the depths of her throat when she received the sword. She felt wonders. As a Sorceress, Filaret didn’t understand much about the effectiveness of swords. Still, she knew that that object was made of iron. She realized that the blade and handle were pressed together by the usage of a magic force. She wondered if any of the current sorcerers from all over the world could’ve achieved such feat.
Filaret started to sweat involuntarily. She nervously grabbed the sword with both of her hands.
「I don’t need any explanation of what happened here. I’m sure that this adventurist fool did these things as he pleased…But, things won’t get fixed if I keep complaining, right.」
After hearing those seemingly cold words, Filaret looked at Caria with distrustful eyes.
Her expression said it all, even though she tried to keep her composure. She narrowed her long eyes, and she tightened up her lips. However, that was not enough to suppress her emotions. She quivered and looked at that woman’s silvery eyes with hatred and regret.
“Caria’s eyes looked as if she was the one that came to save the day. While I was the useless one.” Filaret thought. Her hands were pressed strongly with this bitter interaction.
「…Yeah, gotta do something even if my spirit is exhausted. 」
Filaret continued to suppress her lips, but she was at her own limit.
“No. It must be me. Yes, it would be me to save this person. Certainly, I would have Caria’s help as well, but in the end, it all fell on my shoulders. However, this time, a genius person won’t save him. I would be the one to save Lugis.”
Filaret grabbed the sword with both of her hands extremely tight. She connected the sword’s power with her own magical force, and she tried to transfer it onto Lugis’ body. Filaret’s fingers were drenched in blood. However, these trivial things were no longer relevant to her.
She closed her eyelids and saw a parchment with ink floating inside of her mind.
“How could I use this magical power to restore Lugis’ body? This path must succeed. But, this power was different from the magic I knew of.” Inside of Filaret’s mind, she wrote a magical enchantment on the parchment. “The sense of creating a witchcraft theory of unknown properties was strangely beautiful. Somehow, comforting. I tried to invoke similar ideas during my childhood as well.” Filaret tried once before to create a method of incorporating external magic into a person and making it a part of the body and skin. Yet, that was a theory that was ridiculed by others.
However, this time the theory she created emitted a strong light inside of her mind. When Filaret opened her eyes, she took a deep breath and declared the following enchantment without hesitating.
…I cast this person to be bestowed the power from these hands.
It would be a theory that would change the world. A magical theory to alter the root, the source of all things. In the future, it was said that Filaret’s true power, the one that created the long history of successful witchcraft, was said to be this era’s revolution.
An unbelievable scene was happening in front of them. A mass of a powerful magical force emitted from the treasure sword wrapped on Lugis’ body. The magical force transformed the sword into the same existence as Lugis’ essence. Lugis absorbed the sword, and the sword absorbed Lugis. When that happened, the treasure sword gained acknowledgement. That meant that it knew the defects and the need for repair. Then, in order to repair those wounds, the treasure sword began to inject a certain amount of magic into the vitality of Lugis’ body.
The efficacy was great. The magical force circulated through Lugis’ whole body. His body was not created to have magical powers, but on this precise moment, it was as if he held hands with magic. It was as if they became one. The powers altered his body and his skin was repaired.
Filaret stared attentively at Lugis after her magic healed his body. When he slowly moved his eyelids, she became truly blissful. She thought earnestly, “I can proudly say that I casted him successfully.”
However, Filaret’s mental strength, which went beyond her limits, ended. Her whole body was dripping with sweat. Even though she was looking directly at Lugis, her eyesight was blurry and she gradually lost her vision.
Lugis’ fingers were the last part of his body to be healed. When Filaret saw that he was fully recovered, she lost her consciousness and fell next to Lugis.
「Stop it. 」
Caria pressed her lips as she muttered to Helot Stanley.
「I won’t stop it just because you ordered me to stop. Filaret’s life is a top priority for me. And I won’t stop now even if you pulled your own sword at me.」
He paused briefly to respond to Caria’s remark.
「This ended up as a good opportunity for her, you know. She looked fierce since the very beginning, but in reality, she didn’t feel confident about herself. If you think dearly about her, then you should stop doing that right now. She has to get to her feet on her own. She must not be pampered like that or she won’t grow independently.」
Caria spilled some harsh words while she pompously shook her silver hair.
Indeed, this man was full of good intentions. He thought he was doing the correct thing when he tried to help Filaret stand up. Soon, doubts started to cloud his judgement. Caria was the one who questioned his actions. Her wording implied that Helot wouldn’t be able to show good results if he kept helping others. Caria was surrounded by a strange premonition. She continued to speak with Helot.
「And, by the way, I think something is off between them. It looks like your rightful person acted as someone who contradicted the rightful attitude of a comrade like you.」
Helot answered to Caria’s words by pointing to Lugis’ cheek with his finger.
「I don’t really know what happened yet. He seemed to not to get along well with any of us at the beginning, but this scenario sure gives another feeling. What a strange person he is. Even so.」
It was interesting and odd at the same time. Caria’s spine felt a shivering cold pierce her bones. She couldn’t fully grasp the reason behind all of what happened previously.
Thank you to the Patrons for the continued support!