[Would you like to reverse the time?]
[All your abilities will be reset.]
[Please choose the date.]
“February 28th, 1985. To the day I was born,” I said while grasping the blood-stained and worn-out talisman.
A consistent rhythm resonated in my world. It sure sounded like my mother’s heartbeat, and there must have been amniotic fluid covering my naked body. So when I opened my eyes, the darkness was more comforting than the dark in the dungeons.
I was inside my mother’s womb.
Her heartbeat quickly carried away my memories of the despair I felt that forced me to reverse time and escape to the past.
Everything was as I expected. I desperately needed this kind of comfort.
Because it was my mother, just listening to her heartbeat made my eyes heavier. It had been a long time since I was tired. The feeling of being drowsy made me feel deep visceral pleasure, and the thought of finally being able to sleep excited me. At least, it was until I became foolishly too excited, then my sleepiness left me. I tried to cover my eyes with my hands in an attempt to fall asleep.
However, my tiny arms and legs were out of my control and I inadvertently touched my mother’s uterine wall.
I heard my mother’s muffled voice, and her heartbeat grew louder than her voice. From the lightness of her tone, she probably got too excited and woke my father to tell him that I was kicking.
There was a reason why I chose to go back to the date I was born and not the next day or a time after I had grown into an adult. It was because that person had told me about a rare achievement that could be gained. In my opinion, some secrets, such as the process of gaining rare achievements, were more important than anything else in life.
Strictly speaking, he didn’t actually tell me these things. Instead, I found out what he wanted to keep hidden. He had awakened in his mother’s womb. In fact, he is probably the only pre-Awakened who retained his entire memories of being a fetus. Overcoming adversity was the character trait he was famous for and I had unintentionally discovered the accomplishment he had received for that. This achievement had made him the most powerful of the Eight Evils and Eight Virtues.
Most people have experienced the process of overcoming adversity, which was being pushed out of their mother’s womb through the birth canal.
However, it was the capability to bring that hardship and pain into a reality that decided whether or not a person deserved the title ‘The Man Who Overcomes Adversity’.
After all, no one remembered what truly happened when they were born. There were some people who claimed to have fetal memories like him, but they couldn’t recall the difficult adversity they had to overcome to come out to this world.
But he had said that the most painful moment in his entire life was passing through the birth canal and that if the rest of us remembered what it felt like, we would have no choice but to love ourselves. That was why he was so narcissistic although he wasn’t good-looking.
Was it really that painful to pass through the birth canal?
I thought something was wrong. I knew it would be painful but not to that extent.
The pressure suffocating me from all directions was beyond my ability to handle.
The amniotic fluid that should have protected me was insufficient. Also, my body was so big that it filled up every single space in my mother’s womb.
As a fragile fetus, I was being crushed in this narrow space under immense pressure. It truly felt like my fat was melting, my muscles were being crushed, and all the bones in my body were shattering.
That person hadn’t been lying.
In the outside world, my soft flesh would normally be injured by the slightest pressure, and it did nothing to protect me here. It was just something else that needed to be compressed into impossible compactness to pass through the birth canal.
It was obvious that it would be all over for me if I were to cry in the middle of labour. But even so, I still wanted to open my mouth and scream. As soon as I opened my mouth, a fluid-like substance forced itself to my mouth with immense pressure. If I closed my mouth only a bit later, I would’ve killed not just myself but also my mother.
My mind went blank.
All I could think of was the unending pain. I was so desperate to be free from this hell that I would even consider joining the loathsome Eight Evils and Eight Virtues in this life.
I thought I had it bad at the start, but the pain I experienced when my skull was compressed at the end of the canal was beyond my imagination. If this continued for any longer, I thought my skull would be smashed. I might have died as I felt my brain being squeezed out through my nose and eyes. The only way to end this pain was to hang me with the umbilical cord.
The exact moment I wanted to give up was the moment I heard my mother crying softly.
Looking back, the whole process of being squished through the birth canal probably didn’t take more than thirty minutes. However, it felt longer than thirty hours due to the never-ending pain.
Was something going wrong with the labor? How can birth be this painful? Did everyone go through this hell just to be born?
I couldn’t believe humanity was created like this. Despite all my suffering, my mother was the only reason I didn’t give up. I knew that she was in immense pain as I could not only hear her moans but I could also feel the walls of the womb trembling.
I was not alone in this fight. I was with my mother.
Soon, my mother pulled together her strength with tears and the direction of the pressure that was suffocating me suddenly reversed. At my moment of desperation, I contributed my own feeble power as a newborn to the force that pushed me out.
As soon as my skull was free from the stress, I let out the scream I had been holding in.
I could finally cry. The world instantly became brighter.
Thank you, Mother, with all my heart.
[You have accomplished ‘Overcoming Adversity.]
[You have earned the trait ‘The Man Who Overcomes Adversity’ as the achievement bonus for being the first person to accomplish this.]
This was the cheat characteristic that upgraded a person’s power level from level S to SS in an instant!
[The Man Who Overcomes Adversity (Trait)
Effect: The moment you are unable to fight, all of your skills and capability levels are boosted by one rank. In addition, you will feel no pain and will be healed slightly until the duration .]
Additional messages such as duration and cooldown timer appeared across my mother’s face.