39 – Previous life
The great duel ended in vain as Rodenov’s first warrior defeated all of Aiden’s warriors.
Dillard Aiden and Alan Aiden and all of Aiden’s family members were staring at the ground with unfocused eyes.
All their wealth and glory were destroyed by the ugly words of their successor.
The stake of the great duel was everything that Aiden and Rodenov possessed.
The loser had to hand over everything to the winner. Everything including estates and commercial districts.
Even the castle they lived in.
“Thus the loser gives the winner everything they promised. This is the will of His Majesty the Emperor, and Aiden must uphold it.”
The moment the sentence fell, Dillard knelt down and sighed.
Same with Alan Aiden. The malice and meanness he had harbored vanished with the sentencing, and he realized what he had done.
He couldn’t even imagine that everything would go like this.
Now they will be on the streets, and the name Aiden had been downgraded to a commoner.
Where to live, what to eat, what to wear? Deprived of all of that, Aiden’s family will all end up begging in the streets in misery.
Someone will get sick and die, and a life of noble was no longer possible.
Since they were now commoners, they could not treat carelessly even the nobles whom they usually looked down on.
If they do, their necks would fly off.
Really, everything was over.
Aiden’s glamorous life, as well as life as an aristocrat, everything was now over.
All that was left for them was a pitiful body to live on in dirty streets.
“… … Because of you. You… … Ruined everything.”
Dillard just said that and fainted.
With a voice like a scream, Alan hoped that it was all just a dream.
But… … Rodenov’s chilly coldness touched his skin and didn’t even allow him to deny the reality.
“He is not breathing! Please, please anyone call a doctor!”
Gassols screamed and shouted at people, but no one called a doctor for them.
Also, everyone who had been supporting Aiden turned their backs and diverted all their attention.
Before long, the biting wind finally chilled Dillard’s breath and pronounced Alan’s cruel sentence.
This tragedy was just the beginning.
* * *
There was a festive atmosphere in Rodenov. Both His Excellency Johannes and Duchess Claudia did not hesitate to say that I had worked hard.
My older brother, who had come to watch from Ortaire, saw me safely defeating Edith, briefly said that I had done well, and then went back to Ortaire alone, saying that he was busy.
According to the pact with Aiden, Aiden’s everything was given to Rodenov.
That meant that everything that Aiden enjoyed, including commercial rights, had become Rodenov’s possession, and even Aiden’s territory in the center had become Rodenov’s.
His Excellency Johannes said that he would be busy for the time being due to the procedure and everything, but his expression was overflowing with joy.
Sooner or later, several Rodenov administrators will move into Aiden’s territory.
“He was great. After all, he was the person who threw me into the snow.”
The knights, including Sir Lucas, began to praise me. In particular, in the eyes of most of the Rodenov knights who looked down on me, hostility had disappeared before I knew it, and a feeling of goodwill prevailed.
Adilun, who came to me among them, said.
“Thank you for your hard work, Physis.”
“You were amazing. You must have seemed quite capable now…”
“I was lucky.”
However, the expression on her face when she told me I was amazing wasn't as bright as it should be.
It was the same worried expression I had seen on her before, during the jousting. The golden pupils darkened, and a deep mire could be seen in those eyes. Her fingertips tremble little by little, and she tried to curl them up and act calm.
The feeling of fear and anxiety about something. Still, seeing her pretending to be determined as if she didn't want to be found out by me, it wasn't easy to ask her directly.
'What are you afraid of and anxious about?'
I drank and talked with Rodenov's people at a small banquet held after settling various situations, and finally returned to the dorm and lay down on the bed.
But I was worried.
All day long, the expression Adilun had floated before my eyes, and my thoughts without realizing that turned to it.
It was the same during the banquet. Her forced smile, her anxious gestures, all of that… … It messed up my vision.
Even if I tried to find the reason, I couldn’t figure it out at all, so in the end, I would have no choice but to ask her directly, but I couldn’t even ask blindly because she didn’t seem to want it.
And I didn’t want her to hate me.
What I did to her was still holding me down.
'Ahhhh! What should I do?'
I kept repeating my thoughts in search of an answer, but eventually, unable to find the answer, I had no choice but to surrender myself to the alcohol and fall asleep.
I opened my eyes but my vision was blurry.
A field of cold snow with nothing visible was in front of me. The biting wind swept through my skin accompanied by a raging blizzard.
'Where is this?'
I couldn’t figure it out, but somehow I felt I had to move forward.
In the middle of the endless snowfield, I moved forward.
Without even knowing why I was moving, I walked endlessly.
I didn't know the time but something started to appear in front of me.
Its shape was unclear. It looked like a person at first glance, but that was all I could tell. It was all enveloped in a black mist, staring at me.
Caught in a fog, It spoke to me.
“You are… …Who are you?”
[Well. You guess.]
“Where is this? I’m definitely in my dorm… … ah.”
At that moment, I realized that this was a dream world.
If so, maybe that person…
As I looked with conviction, it nodded.
[That’s right. I… …I'm a fragment of your old personality that you’re trying to suppress.]
“Hahaha. It’s ridiculous.”
It was absurd. Why am I dreaming like this?
[There is no need to be embarrassed. The reason you have this dream is simple.]
[You want to know. Why is Adilun so anxious?]
“You… … Do you know?”
[I know. But you don’t know very well.]
In an instant, the surrounding scenery changed. As if a puzzle was being put together one by one, the snowfields were scattered, and the world was fragmented… …It transformed into various sceneries.
And in that sceneries, I… …
I was looking at Adilun with contempt. The appearance I saw right after my reincarnation began to regenerate because of it.
[Why is she anxious? The reason is so simple. The violence you show, the contemptuous glances you shoot at her, the hateful words you shoot at her. Because of all that… …She is anxious. Do you think that by pretending to be nice now, her scars will be erased? There is no way.]
[Are you different from your previous life? Hahaha. No way. You were the same guy in your previous life. I said I am a fragment of your ‘old’ personality. You were the same in your previous life. Haa look. This is what you look like.]
The landscape changed in the same way as before and an overly familiar landscape was revealed to my field of vision.
The images of people being killed by strange monsters, and the image of the city begin stained with their blood.
There, I was approaching a woman who was crushed by the rubble of a collapsed building, screaming for help.
– Can anyone help! please…
– Or is there something that could be a reward?
-Ahhh. Please, please save me!
– No money, no reward… … If you don’t have it, you must die.
Having said that, I turned my back.
[My previous life was different… … Acted for good, finally saved the world… … . hahaha. It’s funny. Yes. Assuming you saved the world and all. But you turned away from so many people. All things that happened for years before you met that child.]
[Even after doing that, your appearance shouting that you are pursuing goodness… … Don’t you think that it’s disgusting?]
I couldn’t say anything. Because what it said was true.
[Why is Adilun afraid of you… … Why does she feel insecure? The reason is simple. She knows That people don’t change easily, she knows what kind of guy you are. Now, let’s be honest.]
Like a child, it demanded the truth from me.
[Can you say that the thought of wishing Adilun happiness wasn’t just to forget the disgusting things you’ve been doing?]
“No. I'm unmistakably sincere that I wished her happiness.”
“It’s not a lie.”
[No, it’s a lie! While wishing her happiness, you don’t know what she likes or what makes her happy, none of it… … You didn’t even try to find out. You just matched what she was doing with what you saw in the scraps of a tree.]
Words like blades pierced my heart.
[Now, are all the questions answered? Then...]
In an instant, all sorts of hatred, anger, and disgust toward me began to appear on its face.
[Get out of here.]
At the same time, my consciousness was thrown into hell.