Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
Red Rose Manor, outside the luxurious rooms filled with all kinds of antiques.
Klein stood at the door and asked the sixth maid he had met today.
The young maid was wearing a black-and-white servant dress that had the characteristics of the times. She was pretty, in her prime, and had natural curls to her brown hair. She had a hint of playfulness on her face.
“Who does Mr. Talim meet when he visits?” Klein repeated the question numbly.
The maid replied almost without a pause, “Mr. Talim usually requests to meet His Highness, or to accompany him in riding horses, or to discuss matters. If His Highness happens to be absent, he will meet with that lady. They are very good friends. He receives permission from the butler.”
Talim is good friends with the commoner lady who Prince Edessak likes? Meeting in private from time to time? It was likely that he was persuading her to leave this place, so as to not affect the reputation of the Prince… Klein nodded thoughtfully.
“They, I mean—Mr. Talim and the young lady, what would they talk about?”
When he asked this question, Klein suddenly recalled how Talim had fallen in love just recently. With his rich “experience” from the information age, he somehow came up with an extremely contrived romance story.
The maid wasn’t afraid of the detective. She smiled, shook her head, and said, “At times like these, we’re all asked to leave the room.”
This… Even more than ever, Klein couldn’t resist making associations, even to the point of changing the colors 1 of Prince Edessak’s hat and helmet.
Without waiting for him to ask any further questions, the maid chuckled and said, “Detective Moriarty, if you want to find out exactly what the lady and Mr. Talim were talking about, you can ask her directly.”
“The old butler doesn’t permit that.” Klein confidently pushed out his scapegoat.
He changed the topic and said with a smile, “You seem to know more than the other servants. You even know to call me Detective Moriarty.”
The maid looked around, maintained her smile, and said, “It’s because I’ve been serving the lady during my rotations. She’s always wanted to meet you, Detective Moriarty. After all, she’s close friends with Mr. Talim and cares a great deal about his death.
“Unfortunately, she always ends up missing you.”
“Always?” Klein was sensitive to the words “always,” “just happened,” and “missed.”
The maid nodded seriously and said, “The first time His Highness invited you to be his guest, she intentionally threw a tantrum and wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to walk downstairs to meet you. Who knew that you would leave in a hurry.
“Afterwards, she took the initiative to represent His Highness to place flowers on Mr. Talim’s grave, but as she didn’t know what you looked like, she wasn’t able to find you.
“And today, she just happened to go to the golf course out back to relax on horseback. Otherwise, even if the butler didn’t allow it, she would’ve tried to find a way to meet you.”
What a coincidence… Klein sighed as he suddenly grasped a crucial point.
On the day of Talim’s funeral, it was the commoner lady he loved who had offered flowers in the prince’s place!
On that day, Klein was most concerned about the lady with the black veil and the sapphire ring on her finger. She might have a Grade 0 Sealed Artifact or some powerful existence of an equal level!
All of a sudden, a thought flashed through Klein’s mind— the woman with the sapphire ring on her finger was wearing a long, heavy black dress. Accompanied by two maids, she slowly disappeared into the distance…
One of the ladies had brown natural curls.
The image of the maid quickly overlapped with the one in front of Klein, and it was abnormally identical!
Klein’s body tensed up, and sweat rolled down his back, but his expression didn’t change at all.
Using the abilities of a Clown, he pretended like he was recalling the event, and he asked with a smile, “Were you with that lady on the day of Talim’s funeral?”
The maid replied without much thought, “Yes.”
… Damn, it’s really her! Klein maintained his smile.
“Very well, next question.”
As if nothing had happened, he began to inquire about other things, then he switched to another servant and continued.
However, Klein secretly shortened the process and sped up the progress.
He wanted to leave Red Rose Manor before the young lady returned from her riding!
At four o’clock in the afternoon, before the sky had turned dark, Klein left the manor much earlier than expected and took the carriage sent by the old butler back to the city.
Sitting in the window with his back against the wall wrapped in silk and muslin, he was relieved to have the energy to reflect on the whole situation— it was Prince Edessak’s beloved commoner lady who had cursed Talim…
Why did she have to deal with a descendant of a fallen noble family? To take revenge against Talim for trying to break up the relationship between her and the prince?
But there’s no need for her to do it herself. She can find a chance to mention it while in bed. Prince Edessak has plenty of ways to make Talim disappear without a sound…
Talim was in a state of deep love before he died. Yes… The first sign was after he successfully persuaded the commoner lady to leave Prince Edessak… They had an affair? So, the commoner lady who was brought back to the manor killed Talim in order to silence him and remove any latent dangers?
Logically speaking, it makes sense, but the problem is how could a person with a Grade 0 Sealed Artifact or a powerhouse of an equivalent level be restricted by Prince Edessak? Even if the Augustus family is an Angel Family, with the accumulation of enough knowledge, they would still need to use tremendous strength and special methods to be able to restrain someone like that. This isn’t something a prince can do…
Besides, how could such a figure have taken a fancy to Talim?
Why does she want to see me all the time? Did she sense that I’m using the gray fog to spy on her?
No, if that were the case, I would’ve been buried with Talim on the day of his funeral… Besides, when she first wanted to see me, I didn’t have any blood, hair, or belongings. I hadn’t made any divinations yet!
Klein was puzzled as he thought about it. In the end, he decided to bury the problem deep within his heart. He wasn’t to probe or investigate!
I hope that the Machinery Hivemind, with my earlier reminder, will pay importance to this matter of noticing the royal family’s abnormality. Yes, they might regard it with great importance — not because of Prince Edessak’s reputation, but for another reason! I hope the royal family continues to prevent the lady from visiting me… After a few days, when the time is right, I’ll relinquish this mission, express how powerless I am on this matter, and then use the excuse of going to the south for a holiday, to change my identity and hide for a while! Klein’s heart gradually calmed down.
Evenings in Backlund were always replaced by dark clouds and drizzling rain, and Klein, who felt physically and mentally exhausted, held down his half top hat and walked quickly across the wet street to No. 15 Minsk Street under the illumination of the street lamps.
After resting for a bit and taking advantage of the dark surroundings, he took four steps counterclockwise and went above the gray fog.
After advancing to Sequence 6 Faceless, he had always wanted to check the mysterious space to see if there were any changes. However, as he was too tired last night and couldn’t wake up in the middle of the night, he had to wait until he was done being “busy” outside.
In addition, Klein had to eliminate any interference in order to divine a particular matter.
That was, after this advancement, when his spirituality wasn’t stable yet, he didn’t hear the illusory ravings of “Hornacis… Flegrea… Hornacis… Flegrea… Hornacis… Flegrea…” anymore!
He wanted to know if this was a natural change after ascending to Sequence 6, or if there was some other reason.
Within the majestic palace, the mottled bronze tables and the twenty-two high back chairs with different symbols on their backs stood quietly, as if they had remained unchanged since time immemorial.
The same was true for the gray fog below them, as well as the endless emptiness around them.
But as soon as Klein entered, his spiritual intuition was keenly aware that the mysterious space was somewhat different from before.
He was in no hurry to explore or make any attempts. Calming himself down, he sat at the end of the table, conjured a pen and paper, and wrote a divination statement: “The reason why I haven’t heard any ravings after my advancement.”
Holding the piece of paper and muttering the sentence, Klein leaned back in his chair and quickly entered the dreamland with the help of Cogitation.
In the dusky sky and land, images flashed, and in the end, they all came to a stop on a particular scene.
It was Klein, whose face and body was still covered in pale granules. He was surrounded by an illusory, thin layer of gray fog that was undetectable.
The dream shattered. Klein opened his eyes and roughly understood the reason.
The gray fog has interwoven with reality, helping me block out the ravings that come from who knows where…
After advancing to Sequence 6, my connection with the mysterious space above the gray fog has become even stronger; thus, bringing about certain changes and allowing me to naturally borrow a portion of its powers?
From the looks of it, that should be the case.
Yes, I should try to explore the area and see if there are any changes.
Klein slowly stood up and followed his spiritual perception, walking in a certain direction outside the ancient palace. Beneath his feet was the gray fog that spread out like the sea.
He finally decided to stop after walking for an unknown period of time. However, when he gave up on exploring, a light suddenly flickered at the end of the path.
In his joy, Klein quickened his pace and approached.
Seven or eight seconds later, he saw a flight of stairs that seemed to lead to heaven!
The staircase was formed from pure light. It was holy, transparent, and untainted, capable of shocking anyone’s heart.
There were only four levels as the staircase reached up into the void, and each level was rather high, as though it was meant for creatures even larger than giants.
Klein looked up, followed its path, and saw a layer of grayish white fog, condensed and suspended in midair, as though it was supporting something. It was a significant distance from the staircase of light.
The four-stepped staircase represents my consumption of the Sequence 9, Sequence 8, Sequence 7, and Sequence 6 potions? What exactly is above that layer of fog? Klein cautiously advanced until he reached the staircase of light and stepped onto it.
There was nothing odd about the steps, and they were as solid as stone.
Klein went up the stairs, climbed up to the fourth level, and then tried to look up at the area above the gray fog. Unfortunately, his vision couldn’t penetrate anything.
He thought for a moment, then he took two steps forward and jumped up with all his might.
However, the moment he left the staircase of light, he lost his momentum and his Spirit Body’s flight instinct. He plummeted straight down and landed on the bottom layer of the gray fog.
Looks like I need to advance another two to three other Sequences. If Sequence 4 really does result in a qualitative change, then I should be able to see after becoming a demigod… Klein looked up and made a judgment.