Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
Kill you? It was the first time Klein had heard of such a request, and for a moment, he didn’t know how to respond to such a task.
He even started to suspect if there was a conspiracy.
Bishop Utravsky opened his eyes and looked down at Klein.
“Kill the old me.”
… Father, can you not have such long pauses when you’re speaking… Klein’s mouth twitched as he asked in puzzlement, “Even in the legends and myths, no one can return to the past. I’m afraid this task of yours can only be accomplished by the seven gods.”
“No, I mean, killing the past me which has never died as it resides in the depths of my heart.” Seeing that Klein was still confused, the slightly hunchbacked bishop said, “The former me, who used to love to kill and fight, didn’t completely die just because of my contrition. I can clearly sense that he’s still living inside my body, always wanting to regain control of everything, and I’m constantly suppressing him, hoping that he will be redeemed through mass, ascetic cultivation, and preaching, making him truly believe in the teachings of the Mother Earth and become one with me again.”
Simply put, the imprints of the past are too deep, and they fiercely conflict with your current life, resulting in a split personality… The pseudo-psychologist and keyboard warrior, Klein Moretti, made a preliminary judgment and said in deliberation, “It’s a psychological problem. I think what you need most is a psychiatrist.”
“I’ve attempted that before. Perhaps you aren’t aware. There is a Doctor Sequence among the Beyonder pathway that the Church of Mother Earth controls, which is also known as Healing Pastor in ancient times. They’ve studied my problem and believe it’s not as simple as a psychological ailment. It’s also mixed with the inclination of losing control. If the past me defeats the present me, I will lose control without a doubt and become a monster,” Utravsky said with a sigh.
Then what you need is the Spectator pathway’s Sequence 7, Psychiatrist… Klein thought for a moment and said, “Your words make me believe that you’ve found a way to solve your problem, but you only lack a suitable executor, am I right?”
“Yes, all these years, besides preaching, I’ve also been searching for people and objects that can help me. In the end, with Mother Earth’s blessings, I obtained a very mystical item. It is said to be a relic of an ancient dragon.” Seeing that Klein wasn’t scared away, Utravsky answered with some hope, “It allows the wielder to enter the deepest part of the target’s soul, or, in other words, the bottom of the target’s dreamland. There, a corresponding scene will be materialized. That way, you can see the past me directly, and then, through combat, eliminate him. In that special state, once he is truly dead, he will never appear again.”
As expected of the mysterious world; there’s actually such a method to treat someone with split personalities… Klein sighed with emotion and cautiously asked, “What restrictions are there, or what harm will it cause to the holder? Why do you think I’m incapable of completing this task?”
Bishop Utravsky looked down at Klein and said, “Once you use that mystical item, although the owner will remain conscious, there are many layers to the soul or dreamland. The past me will be able to make full use of this point to deceive you, or conversely, they can even kill you. And after a set period of time, yes—five minutes—that mystical item will make you completely lose consciousness, and your mind will never be able to return to your body and become its sacrifice.
“In this way, you will become a vegetable.
“In addition, as a result of the scene’s materialization, if you’re killed in the deepest part of your heart—or to put it in another way, the lowest level of the dreamland—similar side effects will occur. It’s equivalent to true death.
“Believe me, the past me is much stronger than you think.”
So that’s how it is… However, this issue isn’t a problem at all for me. I’m someone who can stay awake and rational during spirit channeling and dreams. Even if that mystical item wants to make me lose myself completely, there’s no need to worry too much. As long as there’s room for struggle, I can take four steps counterclockwise and chant my honorable name, and directly head above the gray fog… The problem is, how strong is the past Bishop Utravsky, and what are my chances of defeating him? What restrictions or taboos are there in fighting in a materialized spiritual world? Klein thought for a while and said, “How strong were you, Father Utravsky? I don’t think I would definitely lose.”
Bishop Utravsky’s eyes turned adrift for a moment.
“I was a warrior.
“I have already reached Sequence 6 of my Beyonder pathway, becoming a Dawn Paladin.”
So he’s not a Beyonder of the Planter pathway… He himself said that he had committed a crime and become a pirate before being converted by the Church of Mother Earth… Sequence 6. Yes, it’s not like I can’t win. A Magician is the kind of Beyonder that’s much stronger if they make preparations in advance. Also, due to my uniqueness, the deepest part of my heart, or the lowest level of my dreamland, can be considered as my home ground… Klein pondered for a few seconds and said, “Will that mystical item weaken him?”
“Yes, but it’s still his main region of activity, so the weakening wouldn’t be too great. At most, it would be like he had already fought an intense battle.” Utravsky recalled his previous attempts.
That just raises my chances… Klein continued, “Is there anything I need to pay attention to in that special environment?”
“Just like real combat, effective attacks are always effective, illusions will remain illusions, but one thing must be noted, he can bring you into a few other levels of the dreamland at any time, creating a situation where it’s hard to determine whether it’s reality or an illusion.” Bishop Utravsky emphasized, “So, you have to be at least at Sequence 6, or some other special Sequence 7 to be able to complete this mission, and the risk is nothing trivial. Heh, if I didn’t swear on a Holy Artifact of Mother Earth that I wouldn’t ask the Church for help before my missionary succeeds, things wouldn’t have been so difficult.”
So that’s how it is… I’m not afraid of a dream… The corner of Klein’s mouth curled up.
“Final question. Are there any points to take note of when fighting a Dawn Paladin?”
Bishop Utravsky frowned his wrinkled face and said with a sigh, “This is something that requires absolute secrecy for Beyonders.
“However, as long as you participate in enough battles, others would often be able to conclude certain traits. Besides, the more details you know, the higher the chances of success are, right?”
“Yes,” Klein answered frankly with a nod.
In a reminiscent tone, Bishop Utravsky said, “A Dawn Paladin possesses a power akin to that of a giant, enabling the area within a 40-50 meter radius to be basked in the light of dawn. Such light cannot only dispel illusions, but it also has the special ability to exorcize wraiths and specters, and it can even weaken evil spirits.
“They can conjure Dawn Armor around their bodies which would be equivalent to specially forged full-body armor that doesn’t weigh anything or inhibit their motion in any way. If destroyed, recovery would require a certain amount of time.
“He can also conjure different weapons. The strongest weapon would be a two-handed rapier. It’s often called the Sword of Dawn; it’s sharp, solid, and each strike has a purification effect.
“Apart from that, Dawn Paladins have a type of Beyonder power to create a Hurricane of Light. It can directly destroy a person’s body, eliminate wraiths, and damage evil spirits.”
There aren’t a lot of Beyonder powers, but they are my natural enemy. They have high offensive strength and defense, and they’re not afraid of illusions. The only good news is that, other than for facing wraiths and specters, the mysteriousness of a Dawn Paladin is very low… Klein listened as he simulated a combat situation in his mind, searching for the most reliable way to deal with a Dawn Paladin.
The level of mysteriousness he was referring to implied strangeness, unpredictability, unfathomability, and incomprehensibility.
Bishop Utravsky looked at him quietly. He didn’t press him or drive him away.
After gradually formulating a plan, Klein raised his head, looked over, and said, “Perhaps I can give it a try, but I will need to leave for a few minutes to confirm that you’re not lying.”
Bishop Utravsky replied with a slightly stunned voice, “No problem.
“However, I must remind you once again. Although I don’t know where your confidence stems from, do not belittle the past me. He’s extremely skilled in combat.”
“I wouldn’t joke with my life.” Klein pressed his hand to his chest, bowed, and stepped out of the Harvest Church. He found a secluded spot and quickly went above the gray fog to make a divination.
After obtaining an answer that there was a certain danger but at tolerable levels, he immediately returned to the real world. From the beginning to the end, it only took him about ten to twenty seconds above the gray fog.
Following that, Klein returned to the Harvest Church and said to Bishop Utravsky, who stood in his original spot, “I’ll take this commission.”
Bishop Utravsky stared at him intently before slowly saying, “If you succeed, not only will I give you the Apothecary formula, but I will also gift you a mystical item without much of a negative side effect.”
Klein was taken aback at first before he sincerely praised, “Father, you truly are a generous person!”
Bishop Utravsky didn’t say another word. He took a strange candle from a concealed pocket in his brown clergyman’s tunic.
The outer layer of the short candle seemed to be wrapped in a layer of human skin, but there were also several bumps on it.
Its wick was about the length of a finger segment and was entirely black in color. It was covered in tiny densely packed scale-like patterns.
“Ignite it with your spirituality.” Utravsky handed the tiny, strange candle to Klein.
Instead of following his instructions, Klein took out a matchbox, took out a few of them, and put them in his trouser pocket. He lit and blew out a few other matchsticks before throwing them at various corners of the cathedral. Then, he adjusted the positions of the paper figurines, paper notes, long strips of paper, Azik’s copper whistle, and various charms.
This was in preparation for the worst case scenario that he could imagine.
After all of this was done, Klein snapped his fingers, causing a blue-colored flame of spirituality to appear.
He held the flame close to the top of the tiny candle and watched the black wick light up.
Nothing seemed to change, but Klein was acutely aware that he had entered the world of the mind.
Directly in front of him, he saw Bishop Utravsky still standing in his original spot. His sturdy body, which was more than 2.2 meters tall, gave off a sense of oppression.
The repentant bishop looked down at him, his facial muscles contorting. Following that, his expression became abnormally ferocious.
Soon after, Klein discovered that the surrounding light and shadows were rapidly transforming, and it felt like he was experiencing a real, intense battle.
At the end of the battle, Bishop Utravsky fell heavily to the ground. His breathless body had blood flowing profusely.
Klein’s mouth twitched as he saw the scene before him with a clear mind. He silently evaluated.
What a professional performance.
But I know that this is a dream within a dream.