A dagger the the size of a finger was drawn out from Aisphany’s sleeve.
It was one of the few weapons she hid on her, therefore it was meticulously crafted and very sharp.
Especially the narrow blade body, it was as reflective as a mirror and it allowed her to take a clear look behind her without turning around.
However, when she finally got a look at what was going behind her, she was dumbstruck.
Grayish golden hair, shallow blue eyes, and those familiar features
It was her! But not entirely her because the face she saw had aged a lot and would probably be a version of her a couple of decades in the future.
Under Aisphany’s gaze, “she” was still aging by the second.
Gradually, the grayish golden hair lost its luster, the shallow blue eyes turned turbid and teeth fell out one after another. The awe-inspiring face of “hers” even wrinkled badly like a crushed citrus skin.
A sharp scream later, she felt like he saw the most terrifying scene of her life. She then ran towards Kieran and Orderfell but the moment she lifted her feet, Kieran who was inspecting the wolf head turned to her in a smile.
The smile was cold, strange and eerie, causing Aisphany to shiver without actually being cold.
Even Orderfell beside him was growling like a beast suddenly but his growling was not as dreaded as the eerie smile in Aisphany’s eyes.
Through the smile, she once again saw the past that she didn’t want others to know about.
The days where hunger was constant and non-stop torturing from others was unbearable for Ms. Swindler.
“Stupid girl, can’t even steal a wallet!”
“Idiot, why the hell would you return the things you stole? If you pity them, why not pity yourself? You will know what real pity is for the upcoming week.”
“Useless trash, I should sell you to Old Derry instead of keeping you here.”
The “parents” in her memories were flooding her mind like the rising tide.
When her memories started to play, her sight was already filled with blood.
The “parents” who scolded, tortured and threatened to sell her away died before her very own eyes.
Their bodies were tortured to death and left with only the skeletons.
Then, the two wobbling skeletons stood up.
“Why did you kill me?”
“Why did you kill me?”
The skeletons growled while Aisphany shrunk into the corner as her body trembled in fear.
Continuous changes before her eyes had dug up the biggest secrets in her heart. She was lost in between the limbo of reality and illusion.
“I’m sorry, I’m sorry! I don’t know what’s going on! I really don’t know! Sorry, sorry!”
Aisphany buried her face in her lap, crying and muttering ceaselessly while the skeletons of her “parents” got closer.
Aisphany suddenly felt pain on her left cheek, the burning kind. She felt like she was slapped by someone.
Dumbstruck, Aisphany looked up. The skeletons were nowhere to be found within her sight and all she saw was Kieran standing in front of her while the wolf head was still in his hand.
“I was slapped? He slapped me? What was that all about?”
Aisphany’s mind was like a pile of messy goo, so confused that she couldn’t comprehend what happened.
Another clear noise sounded.
This time, Aisphany saw the process of Kieran slapping her on the cheek with her own eyes.
However, seeing it didn’t mean she could escape the slap, so following her stinging left cheek, her right cheek was swollen as well.
Touching both her swollen cheeks, Aisphany who loved her beautiful face glared at Kieran angrily.
“You’re awake? Stay quiet then.”
Before Aisphany even finished, Kieran interrupted her with his cold and decisive tone.
Aisphany’s intimidating glare was forced to a stop, the words that she prepared to scold Kieran with were swallowed back just like that.
It wasn’t just because of the hidden fear of Kieran in her heart, Aisphany also noticed the wolf head in Kieran’s head at that particular moment.
Ms. Swindler here had seen the wolf head more than once but what she saw was a sample, the decoration that was hung up on the fireplace but the one before her eyes right now was a live one.
Its eyes were cunning and ferocious; in its mouth was still lingered that red, barbed tongue, trying to consume Kieran but more importantly, the wolf’s neck was tainted with fresh blood, as if it was snapped a moment ago.
Unconsciously, Aisphany remembered the scene in her illusion, the scene where the Supreme God defeated the Beast of Plague and Famine.
Then, naturally, Aisphany went on recalling the changes of the land after bathing in the blood of the Supreme God and the Beast of Plague and Famine; also, the twitching and distortion of the Supreme God’s shadow.
Aisphany looked at Kieran’s shadow and she realized Kieran’s shadow was twitching and distorting as well.
Unlike the helplessness she faced in the illusory realm, this time, Aisphany was able to warn him loudly. However, Kieran turned a deaf ear to the warning, he was completely focused on inspecting the wolf head in his hand as if he found some precious treasure.
The twitching and distorting of the shadow was getting fierce.
Aisphany knew, once the scarlet eyes opened, things would be too far gone for redemption. She clenched her teeth and the small dagger appeared in her hand again.
“It’s not that I want to save you but if you die, I will suffer a heavy loss!”
Aisphany dashed towards Kieran while finding an excuse for herself but again, the moment she took a step out, she noticed something different again.
She was dashing in the opposite direction of the door and window and based on the sunlight that shone through, she would have a shadow of herself on the ground right now but instead, there was nothing.
“What the hell?!”
A bad feeling appeared in her heart and right away, her bad feeling came true.
An irresistible force of restraint appeared on her, immobilizing her completely.
Then, Aisphany’s “shadow” rose from the ground and took form before her. Its scarlet eyes had endless killer intent and ferocity but surprisingly, the Shadow Aisphany didn’t strike its own body but looked at Kieran who was duly looking at the wolf head.
“Hehehe, as expected of the one being watched, until this very moment, he still can be so calm. But do you think you can suppress my shadow by coming here?”
The heavy laughter of a man came from Shadow Aisphany instead.
“Suppress? Did you think I didn’t notice the difference when Aisphany “coincidentally” delivered the message on behalf of Starbeck? Or did you think I would neglect the “coincidence” of Sharly and Evie Dan’s appearance? Or perhaps, you think your trap is smart?”
Kieran laughed as well.
He swung his hand up and down and following the movement, the wolf head in his hand swiftly withered.