My Family in the Novel?

Chapter 19: Truthful Rewards 4
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Chapter 19: Truthful Rewards 4

"To what do I owe the pleasure of your visit, Zekel?" a beautiful green-haired woman perched gracefully upon a massive tree, bathed in the ethereal glow of the moonlight, inquired.

Her majestic emerald eyes fixated on her familiar guest, their luminescence mirroring the enchanting radiance of the night sky.

In response, the visitor merely growled, emitting an aggressive, wolf-like sound that carried the weight of its concerns.

It had journeyed through the moonlit forest, its instincts compelling it to seek out its long-time friend.

Zekel, the tempest wolf, embodied a striking presence beneath the silver moonlight. Its fur shimmered like moonbeams, and its translucent, azure eyes radiated not only untamed ferocity but also a regal dignity that spoke of ancient wisdom.

Tonight, it had come to Meralda, one the forest's guardian, bearing grave concerns about the sanctity of their beloved woodland realm.

"So, you've also noticed, huh?" the green-haired woman, Meralda, remarked, revealing her keen awareness of the issue at hand.

Zekel growled angrily in response, as if questioning, "So why aren't you doing anything?"

"Leave the being be, Zekel," Meralda responded with a serene wisdom. "Although I can sense an evil presence behind it, it hasn't taken any direct action against the forest. It's not yet something we should be concerned with."

"As the chosen guardians of this great forest, it is our duty to eliminate threats that may cause imbalance or severe destruction," Zekel retorted, its conviction unyielding.

Meralda countered with an air of patient understanding, "I don't see how an insignificant being like that could pose a threat to this forest"

"While I sense great evil lurking in its shadows, its presence is currently too faint to justify any drastic measures"

Zekel growled even louder, a tone of frustration in its rumbling response.

"It would be best to eliminate that being, Meralda"

"Although I only caught a glimpse of that boy from afar, my instincts keep telling me that he's something that needs to be eliminated immediately."

"So, you would harm the innocent without sufficient evidence?" Meralda retorted, her voice carrying the wisdom of ages. "If anything, that boy could just be a misguided worshipper of malevolent spirits."

Zekel's growl carried a tone of frustration as it replied, "Did hundreds of years of peace cloud your mind, Meralda? Or have your senses dulled with the passage of time? You know for a fact that boy is a threat, no, a great threat! I can feel it; I don't need evidence when my instincts are already warning me."

Meralda scoffed, her confidence unwavering. "You're letting your instincts control you, Zekel. I thought you had evolved beyond being a mere beast and become an intelligent being. It seems that once a beast, always a beast, huh?"

"What did you say?" Zekel growled menacingly, its aura crackling with latent power, causing the very atmosphere to shudder as he unleashed his pent-up energy. fre ewebnovel.com

Meralda maintained her composure but secured her hair from behind as the gust of wind hit her and the tree she sat upon. She was cautious of the branches potentially tangling her hair.

The glint of playful mischief in her eyes never wavered as she observed Zekel's display of power.

Meralda gazed at Zekel once more before proposing a deal, her voice carrying an air of compromise.

"Why don't we do this, Zekel? I'll monitor the boy for the time being, and if I discover any evidence, be it small or substantial, that he might harm the forest, I'll give you permission to eliminate him"

"In fact, I'll even join you. But if nothing ever comes to light, you'll leave this matter alone. So, what say you?"

"Deal" Zekel growled his acceptance, surprising Meralda.

"Hmm? That was fast. I thought you'd argue more. How boring" she remarked, puffing her cheeks playfully.

Zekel only retorted with a slight growl and said, "You'll only make fun of me anyways"

"Besides, I got what I wanted, and my instincts have never betrayed me in my hundred years of existence"

Zekel then moved forward, leaning closer to the tree upon which Meralda was resting. His piercing azure eyes bore into her, filled with silent contemplation.

"Oh, my, are you going to sleep here? I thought you hated old man Habas," Meralda asked, her voice laced with amusement.

"What, this tree is Habas?" Zekel replied, puzzled. "I thought there was still a year left before he reincarnates back."

"No, I thought so too, but it seems he reincarnated earlier than usual. I'm currently staying by his side so that he would mature and regain his memory faster," Meralda replied.

"That makes sense," Zekel conceded.

Habas was no ordinary tree; he was an intelligent and ancient being, a Treant. He belonged to one of the rarest species in their world.

Together with Meralda, the great spirit of the forest, and Zekel, the tempest wolf, the three of them formed the triumvirate of guardians tasked with protecting and preserving the forest's wondrous beauty and natural balance.

Unlike the other two guardians, Habas couldn't live for more than a hundred years, for his duty was to sacrifice his life once he reached that age.

This sacrifice was crucial to continue the seal on the beast of the night known as Kaksan, which lay deep within the heart of the forest. freewebn ovel.c om

Kaksan was a creature of such ferocity and destruction that it took their combined powers, as well as assistance from the Elf tribe living

in the forest, and Habas's ultimate sacrifice to seal it away. They didn't truly defeat the beast; they only managed to contain it, for Kaksan possessed the terrifying power of adaptation.

Thankfully, Habas possessed the unique ability to reincarnate through his seeds, gradually regaining his powers and memories during his hundred-year lifespan.

And at the end of it, he would willingly offer his life once more to maintain the seal.

It was a sad and tiresome duty, and both Meralda and Zekel would have done anything to take his place. But Habas, as the oldest and wisest among them, had always insisted that it was his responsibility to do it and protect his little siblings.

Although they weren't related by blood, their centuries of companionship had forged a bond stronger than any blood tie—a bond known as family.

Zekel looked at Meralda, his azure eyes holding a hint of mischief, before speaking, "You got something wrong, Meralda."

"What do you mean?" Meralda asked, her curiosity piqued.

"I don't hate him; I just find him annoying," Zekel replied with a wry grin before closing his eyes, positioning himself near the tree to rest.

Meralda couldn't help but chuckle at his response. "Is that so?" she remarked, her voice light and playful.

"You really can't be honest can you" Meralda chuckled

...

"So has he done anything yet?" Zekel asked, his voice carrying a touch of impatience as the early morning light filtered through the forest.

"No, if anything, it seems he's just looking for something," Meralda replied, her emerald eyes focused on the young man who had been searching all night long.

Zekel couldn't help but voice his concerns, "And you don't find that suspicious?"

Meralda chuckled lightly, shaking her head. "How exactly is that suspicious? Seriously, you're making a fuss over such small details."

Zekel scoffed in annoyance, clearly frustrated by Meralda's nonchalance.

As time passed, Meralda updated Zekel on the situation, "Oh, it seems he fell asleep."

"What? What do you mean sleep?" Zekel questioned, his curiosity piqued.

"Exactly as it sounds," Meralda replied with a hint of amusement. "He got exhausted from trying to find something all night and ended up falling asleep on the ground."

Zekel couldn't help but express his concern, "How foolish of him. Won't the wild beasts attack him then?"

Meralda raised an eyebrow, a playful smirk on her lips. "Isn't that what you wanted? Don't tell me you're worried for the young man now."

Zekel quickly clarified, "What, no! I'm just worried for the beasts that may end up eating poisoned meat if anything."

Meralda laughed at Zekel's response. "Yes, yes," she said playfully, enjoying their banter as they continued to observe the situation together.

…..

Time passed, but nothing suspicious happened. They continued to watch and observe as the young man peacefully slept. The forest seemed calm and undisturbed, much to Meralda's satisfaction.

As the day wore on and the sun began to dip towards the horizon, the young man finally stirred from his slumber. He glanced around, checked his bag, and then ventured deeper into the forest.

"See, I told you nothing would happen," Meralda remarked triumphantly to Zekel.

But Zekel remained resolute, his instincts still on high alert. "No, let's continue to watch. My instincts are still screaming that we should eliminate the boy immediately."

Meralda was about to retort when suddenly, the ground beneath them trembled ever so slightly, and an oppressive pressure descended upon them. It was a sensation they both knew too well – the presence of the Beast of the Night, Kaksan.

"What? How? Why is he waking up all of a sudden? Habas hasn't reached a hundred years old yet" Merilda's panic was evident.

Before she could react further, a wolf's howl pierced through the forest, and it was a howl of anger and urgency. Zekel had decided to take matters into his own hands and had already run off toward the young man's location, accompanied by the wolves he had called.

"Wait, Zekel! Let's assess the situation first!" Meralda screamed, but her brother was too far ahead to hear her. Her worry for Zekel was evident and natural, knowing that the young man's presence alone had been enough to rouse the dangerous beast.

"He's too dangerous for Zekel" Meralda thought, her resolve firm. Without thinking twice, she took to the air, her emerald hair trailing behind her as she flew to assist her impulsive brother. But as she left, she couldn't help but cast a worried glance back at the tree where Habas resided.

"I'm sorry, Habas. We'll be back later" she whispered to the tree, her heart heavy with the knowledge that their older brother's safety was at risk.

With unwavering determination, Meralda sped toward her destination, her mind set on the task at hand – the awakening of the looming threat that was Kaksan, the Beast of the Night.

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