“Why are we here again?” Nora asked her brother as they kept walking to a busy area in the forest.
That question wasn’t hard, but Noah wanted to check on something in Crystalline Academy. There’s something that’s been bothering him since rumors spread about the Great Sage, which he isn’t too fond of.
“We’re here because Cornelius will be giving titles to the children that study here. Since the academy was founded, Cornelius had finally made a move to support the school,” Noah explained then anxiously added, “For once.”
Nora pauses for a moment, staring at her brother in disbelief then laughs. The Great Sage sounds like a goody-two-shoes, to others, but not to them, knowing what his real nature was like. Cornelius lies and makes excuses. Counting the part ‘a hundred years of slumber’ to the human, so they’ll stop searching or forcing Cornelius into those irrelevant businesses. Not only that, but the most important thing is also his wife, Zulima. He’ll spend those hundred years with his wife.
“It doesn’t sound like Cornelius, at all.” Nora checks on her brother’s reaction, seeing if he’s agreeing. However, that brother is emotionless as ever, not giving a hint. “He’s the type to avoid conflict and stay far away from close relationships with any humans. Are you sure he’s Cornelious? Not some imposter.”
Noah bit his lip then said, “That’s why we’re here. To make sure our oldest apprentice name will not be ruined by a stranger.”
“He’ll be thrilled to see us,” Nora slyly smiled excitedly and impatiently to get there.
◆ ◆ ◆
A vast crowd piling into the stadium, while Soluna and Sylvia are in it, dressing like commoners. With this many humans, Soluna isn’t too comfortable. Before her slumber, humans weren’t dominant, but instead, it’s more mixed with a variety of beasts and creatures. Things change so much that Soluna anger roses, not today’s society, but to herself, that causes this mishap. Soluna takes a deep breath, trying not to think about it, instead of focusing on finding Azran.
Something caught Soluna’s attention: a dark-haired man sitting the highest seater, three rows away from her spot. Fears are eating her as sweat pouring down her face. Soluna can’t see or feel this man aura as if he’s hiding. Then came beside him was a woman who happened to be identical to him. Soluna then slowly relaxed, generally breathing while seeing the lady was human. Making it more at ease, seeing those two might be siblings or related to one another.
Soluna can’t help because she doesn’t want any divinity to notice her presence. Those higher up will erase her existence, or either, they’ll remodel her memories. Becoming their puppet is Soluna’s least interest. However, what’s bugging her mind was that man. Why can’t she see his aura, especially a human? Maybe Soluna is right of herself, her power hadn’t fully recovered.
“What do you think of the academy?” Sylvia whispered, asking Soluna’s opinion, which got her attention to forget her worries.
“The academy looks nice, and it’s great to teach children that have magic attributes. What’s unique is that it floats,” Soluna honestly answered. “Reminded me of Altum, where in that world had islands floating in the sky.”
“The other world,” Soluna mumbled, thinking thoroughly. “It’s difficult to travel there when people don’t have enough mana to open the gate and have little capability to control their location. There’s one gate that exists in each world, and the world could be either Altum, Erde, or Inferius. Inferius is the worst out of them all.”
“Yes, I couldn’t agree more. However, what’s deadly, there’s beauty.” Soluna recalls how Inferius was created while smiling brightly. “The crystal in Inferius lights the darkness. It’s gorgeous and hard to describe. If you were there, then you’ll understand what I meant.
Sylvia chuckled and said, “It sounds like you’ve been there before.”
“Will, you see, I… Uh… Heard stories about it.”
“Hmm… I’ll take that as a cover, at whatever mishap you did.”
“It’s not a lie. I’m very enthusiastic about the other world from books that I read.”
“So, you’re telling me that you want to visit there.”
“No, it’s research.”
The audience began to howl as the Great Sage stepped into the stadium, walking gracefully to his position. It got the two sisters at their full attention, closing their mouths and watching the stage, where the lights focused on the announcer. Soluna saw him and quickly stood up. That’s not the Great Sage, and whoever imposed him definitely had immoral purposes. In that kind of situation, Soluna can’t help and let it happen. She’s weak, but there’s no reason for her to interfere.
◆ ◆ ◆
“How are you taking this?”
Noah didn’t reply to his sister, sitting and observing at the so-called Great Sage at the stage. That mana was somewhat colorful, but not the good kind of colorful Noah is getting at. Different or mixing colors indicate that imposter kills many people while consuming them, showing that that mana isn’t mixing well.
“Is Juno here?” Noah asked as he muttered under his breath. “We need his help.”