Translator: AtlasStudios Editor: AtlasStudios
After the crimson light in front of him dissipated, Derrick Berg saw his room once again. He saw the pure crystal ball in his hands.
The crystal ball shattered from the inside. Some of it turned into pieces of illusory beams of light that flew into the void around him, while the other crystalline fragments fell noisily to the ground.
Derrick looked on, dumbfounded. He could see the traces of blood on his face reflected in the bronze mirror. He noticed a crimson light spiraling on the back of his right palm, forming a circle with lines extending out from the edge.
The strange symbol bore into the back of his palm and vanished.
Derrick fell into a daze in the time it took several flashes of lightning to illuminate the sky before snapping to his senses.
He looked at the fragments of the crystal ball on the ground, then looked at the back of his right hand as his gaze turned deeper.
He walked out of his bedroom, returned to the living room, and opened the door to look up at the sky above the City of Silver.
An arc of lightning streaked across the sky, illuminating the city with a silver sheen. Right on the heels of that was rumbling thunder. The world belonged to the dark. Without any speck of light, the heavy darkness only left people in despair.
Derrick clenched his fists. There was no joy in his eyes for they were still filled with the remnant grief and pain.
But he was no longer lost.
Phew, looks like I’ve managed to trick another person into becoming a member. No, I’ve managed to recruit another member… Klein shook his head and mocked the present strength of his Tarot Club.
The leader, The Fool, was only a Sequence 9, one who had just fully digested the Seer potion!
And there were at least three High-Sequence Beyonders at Sequence 4 in the hopeless City of Silver that The Sun spoke of!
“After mentioning the acting method one more time, I can start telling the Captain the specifics and hand in my special application. At the very least, I’ll stop being in charge of support once I become a Clown.” Klein didn’t stay in the world of fog. He extended his spirituality, wrapped it around himself, and initiated a descent.
Tearing through the gray fog and passing through the ravings, he returned to his room before dispelling the wall of spirituality.
Then, Klein picked up the key and headed out of the room. He first went to the two rooms booked by Dunn to take a look in order to confirm that the Captain and Frye hadn’t returned yet. He then headed to the first level and handed the key back to the boss.
The boss looked at the wall clock to the side and gave a thumbs up.
Hey, are you mistaken over why I booked an hourly room? Klein wanted to explain himself, but finally decided to leave the misunderstanding as it was.
Feeling wronged, he tried to console himself.
Yes, this way, he won’t mention that I rented another room in front of the Captain!
After heading out and going through the motions, Klein did a quick divination and returned to the inn based on the results. He headed straight to the second floor to find Dunn and Frye discussing their investigations in one of the rooms, just as he expected.
“We can confirm that the wraith appeared within the last three months,” Dunn summarized to Klein with a nod as he came through the door.
Klein immediately echoed, “My investigations also confirmed it…”
He highlighted the main points of his questioning and concluded, “Heh, there’s a townsfolk named Scoundrel Gray who claimed that he had the portrait of the first Baron Lamud. He said that it was an antique oil painting more than a thousand years old.”
“Don’t tell me you bought it?” Dunn’s eyes shimmered as he was taken aback before he asked.
Captain, do you think that I’m so stupid to be fooled that easily? Klein gave a dry laugh.
“No, I didn’t. Even though I’m a history student, I have attended some lessons on archeology and have some degree of experience in this area. I can more or less determine if something is fake. Heh, the person in the portrait looked a little like my history teacher, Mr. Azik.”
He casually mentioned the most important piece of information.
And indeed, Dunn didn’t pay too much attention to it. He massaged his temples and said, “This is a small town near a historical site. There will always be a myriad of ‘antiques’ here. I just saw a vendor selling the silver wine glasses of Baron Lamud.”
“Someone tried to sell me the insignia of the Lamud Family, claiming that it had been dug out of the castle,” Frye added.
Klein subconsciously asked, “Did you guys buy them?”
Frye and Klein looked at each other, and didn’t continue with the subject.
“The next mission is for you or Frye to take Sealed Artifact 3-0782 out of town to somewhere uninhabited. Otherwise, a good half of the people in this inn will become idiots blathering praises of the Sun. Are you going first, or Frye?” Dunn looked at Klein with his deep gray eyes.
“Me.” Klein raised his hand slightly and smiled. “It’s still quite early, so I can come back and have a nice sleep later. We’re doing two-hour shifts, right?”
“Yes. Frye, go over with Klein and confirm where you’ll exchange the Sealed Artifact.” Dunn turned to look at Corpse Collector Frye. He had already found an opportunity to hand Sealed Artifact 3-0782 over to Frye when they split up to conduct their investigations. Otherwise, he would have been purified and started praising the Sun. Frye hadn’t had enough time to recover, and could only hold the item for another three hours.
“Alright.” Frye took out the Mutated Sun Sacred Emblem from the inner pocket of his black windbreaker and handed it over to Klein.
Klein took the item with a fair bit of curiosity and interest. The metal was warm to the touch, as if hot water was flowing within it.
The warm, gentle glow was like a ripple, spreading outward in waves and bringing with it a pure smell. At the same time, Klein felt that the dark golden Sacred Emblem carved with the symbol of the Sun was cleansing his spirituality, removing the impurities and leaving it pure.
Of course, all Sealed Artifacts have their dangers. Death might occur if one isn’t careful enough. It’s even possible to have a fate worse than death… He muttered to himself as he placed the Sealed Artifact 3-0782 into his inner pocket.
After inspecting his revolver, charms, and cane, he walked out of the room and left the inn together with Frye. They headed straight for the outskirts of Lamud Town.
The two circled an area beside a sparse and deserted forest and confirmed that there was no one within dozens of meters of them.
“Chase away anyone who approaches you,” Frye coldly reminded, “I’ll come to take your place in two hours.”
“Sounds good,” Klein replied with a smile.
After seeing Frye enter the town, he found a tall boulder he had eyed previously. He picked up some leaves from the tree beside him and wiped the surface of the boulder.
He then touched the top of the stone with his finger and inspected the stone under the light of the crimson moon.
After confirming that it was clean, Klein put on his black windbreaker and sat down.
Why stand when you can sit! Klein thought to himself.
After a few minutes of silence, he looked at the dark, quiet, and rather scary forest. He couldn’t help but stand up, taking out several metal bottles from his hidden pockets and scattering their contents—herb powder and essential oils—around the boulder.
Klein recited an incantation in Hermes. With the help of the materials, he created a barrier of spirituality, sealing the area he was in.
He did this simple ritual for two reasons. First, he didn’t want to rely too much on his premonition for danger as a Seer to defend against corpses and spirits launching a sneak attack against him. The second reason was to—was to keep the bugs away…
This is a hundred times better than insect repellent! Klein sat back down, satisfied.
After sitting there for a few minutes, Klein took out Sealed Artifact 3-0782 out of curiosity. He began a detailed inspection of the Mutated Sun Sacred Emblem.
I wonder if I could use divination to find out its origins and how it became special… He took out the pen and paper he always had on him and wrote a statement: “The origin of the Mutated Sun Sacred Emblem in my hands.”
As a qualified and true Seer, Klein had made the preparations needed to divine anywhere.
After reciting the statement seven times, he closed his eyes and entered a state of Cogitation, using that as a launchpad to propel him into his dreams.
All he saw were fragmented pieces of light in his dreams. Other than that, he didn’t learn anything else.
Yes, the Church must have gotten other Seers to attempt the same thing in the past. The fact that there is no mention of its origins must mean that there was no result from the divination, just like what happened just now… Klein sighed. He then thought, I wonder what would happen if I eliminate the interferences?
This thought immediately filled Klein’s head, pushing his curiosity to a peak.
After more than ten minutes of hesitation, he stood up. He decided that it was fine since there was no one around, considering how he was in a secluded area of the forest. He took four steps counterclockwise inside his wall of spirituality before entering the world above the fog once again.
Klein sat at the seat of honor of the ancient table in the magnificent palace. He conjured a few sheets of yellowish-brown goatskin and a black fountain pen, as well as the Mutated Sun Sacred Emblem.
“It feels rather real…” He rubbed Sealed Artifact 3-0782 in his hands, finding the tactile feedback identical to the one he had felt in the outside world.
It instantiates itself based on what I felt? Klein mumbled to himself before writing down the statement he had come up with previously:
“The origin of the Mutated Sun Sacred Emblem in my hands.”
After reciting the statement seven times, he held the piece of goatskin and Sealed Artifact 3-0782 in his hands. He leaned back and entered his dream.
In the blurry dreamworld, Klein saw a drop of glowing gold liquid. It was warm and bright.
It was suspended above an altar, before a man dressed in a white classic robe.
The man only had his back facing Klein. He had lost all signs of life as he fell slowly towards the sacrificial altar.
At that moment, the Sun Sacred Emblem he was holding had come into contact with the golden liquid, the latter quickly seeping into the emblem.
The dream quickly dissipated after Klein saw this, waking him up.
So it was because of the golden liquid that this Sacred Emblem has been so effective and uncontrollable to this day. Hmm, decades have passed since the discovery of this emblem, but its cleansing powers haven’t declined. I wonder what that golden liquid was? Some advanced Beyonder ingredient? Klein toyed with the Sealed Artifact 3-0782 in his hand and slipped into deep thought.
After deliberating over it for a few minutes, he tried to emulate the feeling he had in the dream. He wanted to separate the golden liquid from the Mutated Sun Sacred Emblem he had conjured.
He accomplished it almost immediately as the thought came to him. Klein looked in shock at the emblem which was no longer warm or pure. He watched as the drops of golden liquid silently suspended themselves in the air. He had even more praises for this mysterious space above the fog.
This is practically a miracle, even if the separation and instantiation here isn’t real!
“The origins of this drop of golden liquid.” He penned down a new statement with great excitement.