"Sia asked me to give this to you…in case something happened to them."
An exquisite blue potion appeared in Evander's hands.
"Something…what happened to them?" Evander took a deep breath and asked. He saw their names in the 'Martyrs' list already. Varian's was in the highest level of the funeral there is.
But Evander told himself that this must be fake. That boy wouldn't die. He faced many dangerous situations and came out alive. This war wouldn't swallow him.
And he promised to take care of his daughter. He wouldn't break the promise. No, he wouldn't.
So with a desperate eagerness, Evander waited for Boo's answer.
Whatever the media and even the Sovereigns say regarding Varian could be false. But Boo wouldn't lie. Boo woul—
"Master fell into a space crack. Sia and Sarah jumped in for him." Boo's words struck Evander like lightning.
Evander's vision froze for a moment before it twisted and turned a grayish red. Before he knew it, Evander was clenching his fists and staring blankly in the direction of Despair Abyss.
'Sarah…Varian…Sia,' Evander felt as if he was watching the three children fight the dangerous abyssals.
They risked their lives when they absolutely didn't have to. As a general, Evander naturally had enough patriotism to die for the federation. But when his daughter and apprentices did the same, he felt uncomfortable.
They should've lived a peaceful life. They're still so young. They haven't experienced anything.
'If I only went with them…dammit!' A mouthful of hot blood rose to Evander's throat and he had to suppress it back.
He didn't remain still during the war and fought anonymously. As a result, he incurred enough injuries. Despite that, he blamed himself for what happened to the three.
Ghostship rose into the air, "This last will was just insurance by them…but not anymore. Please use the power in your hands to fulfill their aspirations."
Evander looked at the blue potion in his hands and nodded. Without another word, he headed to the ruins of Jupiter.
Like all ruins, its areas were divided into Explored, Partially Explored and Unexplored.
Evander ignored all the explored regions and went into the partially explored ones. The first region he visited was Fairy's Road.
The entrance was a green portal. At any given time, only ten people could enter. They'd be transported to a forest inhabited by finger-sized creatures called Fairies. These things looked very much like humans but had wings and lived in flowers.
The space around Evander flashed; the next moment, he appeared on a white crystal road.
The road passed through a dense forest with tall trees and leaves that shone as if they were made of glass. Strangely, two feet on either side of the forest was plain soil without even a blade of grass.
The challenge here was the light gates that popped up on the road every ten miles.
Evander's figure appeared in front of the first gate. It was like a wall of a violet laser beam.
As Evander stepped forward, the gate shone with a strong light and blasted a powerful beam.
Evander swirled to the side and dodged the attack. The gate continued to shine and more laser beams shot at him.
Using his high agility, Evander kept dodging the attacks without much movement.
Due to the restrictions of this place, flying was prohibited. Nor was it advisable to step out of the 'road'. If he did, he'd be eliminated right away.
So, Evander did the only thing he could do. He dodged the attacks while approaching the gate.
Once it was in his range, Evander's fist blasted through the air like a cannonball and broke the gate.
A violet fairy, the size of his little finger, appeared in front of him. As she flapped her tiny wings, violet sparks emitted out.
It was a beautiful sight. But the fairy's eyes were impassive and even looked a bit lifeless.
"Ask." Her voice directly sounded in his mind.
"Strength," Evander answered without hesitation.
The fairy shook her head, "Your internal injuries have eaten your chances of moving forward. You've hit your ceiling."
Evander's eyes darkened.
"But the world is full of wonders. I cannot give you the solution, but maybe someone can," The fairy said and disappeared.
Evander shot forward and reached the next wall in a breath. At the same time, the gate behind him was restored.
The next gate was Indigo. Its attack beams were significantly stronger than the first gate. It's lethal enough that a single hit could vaporize a level 8.
As a peak level 9, Evander had the luxury of taking hits. Especially as a Heal fighter, injuries shouldn't really bother him.
But he spent more time to avoid even the smallest of injuries and proceeded.
"It's very hard to make any progress. I cannot help."
"It's hard indeed. Maybe Green, no, even she can't do this. Yellow, perhaps?"
Evander passed the gates of Violet, Indigo, Blue, Green and finally reached the Yellow fairy.
"Hm, your problem can be cured. But it'd take more than a hundred years."
Evander's face which grew brighter in the first half collapsed with the second half. He scolded himself for being so excited so easily.
Fairy's Road wasn't a secret to high awakeners. The reward this place provided was 'guidance'. Each awakener could receive the guidance just once.
'If it's really so easy to learn anything and solve any problem just by coming to Yellow fairy, everyone would've reached the Sovereign state,' Evander sighed.
Each fairy was significantly wiser than the previous one. Typically, level 7s and level 8s would benefit from Violet to Yellow fairies. The last two, Orange and Red were the best bet for level 9s.
Technically, Yellow Fairy had a solution. But a solution that'd take a hundred years was useless.
Forget whether the abyssals would spare humans until then, he himself would be dead.
For one, he's not a Sovereign to have a long lifespan. Two, his internal injuries—the main reason he couldn't become a Sovereign—would ensure he wouldn't live for more than a decade.
So, Evander went to the Orange gate. And fought hard. Unlike the other gates, he couldn't avoid the laser beams and got hit.
Every time he tried to approach the gate and smash it down, the lasers pushed him away.
It felt like walking against a flood. If he got distracted even for a moment, he'd be swept away.
"Arghh!" Evander spat the blood into the air as a laser beam blasted a hole in his stomach and shook his insides.
A laser beam vaporized the blood upon contact and passed dangerously close to Evander's neck. Evander's injuries were healing quickly and despite his setbacks, he finally destroyed the gate.
The Orange fairy appeared in front of him and said, "There is a special herb that grows in the highest mountains of Kalors. If you soak it in the liquefied aura for a month and take it, your internal injuries will disappear in five years."
"F-Five?" Evander looked at her with shaking eyes. The injuries on his body were healing up and the blood on his body was drying up. But drenched in red from head to toe, he was scary.
"Yes. This is the fastest method I know. And mind you, gaining that herb wouldn't be easy either. You have to risk your life. There's less than a 30% chance you might actually get it."
The fairy thought he was scared of the chances and added, "I can reveal a safer method. But it'll take longer. The underground plains—"
"I'm not hesitating because it's risky. If it was before, I would've backed away from risking my life. But I don't have anything holding me back now," Evander shook his head with a wry smile. "Is there a faster way? Five years is too long. Even five months is. One month is the most I think I can afford to stay away. Even that is fraught with risks."
"Faster? Even faster?"
"Do you even understand what you're asking for? The injuries that festered in you for years are so deep that they altered the flow of your aura and are eating away your vitality. Can such a problem be solved in a month? It's impossible. Not only me, but even Red doesn't have a solution for that."
Evander fell silent for a moment, before crossing his arms and pointing out with a smile, "You're mistaking something, aren't you? I never asked you to heal my injuries. I just want strength."
The Orange fairy looked at him with a thoughtful gaze, "Then are you ready to pay the price for having strength that isn't rightfully obtained?"
"It's a precious method that I don't have access to. But Red can tell you. However, no one has been able to meet her. Even the ones much stronger than you."
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