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    Shadowless Night

    Chapter 6


    Translated by Wook
    Edited by Iris Sakura


     

    Calyx was perplexed for a moment. After looking around the room, Calyx was able to find the spy who was supposed to be the original intruder. A black mass lay at Rosaline’s feet as she stood calmly. The man’s neck was completely twisted around. No matter how proficient she was with a sword, a woman with weak physical strength should not be able to twist and break the neck of an adult man like this. Not to mention she didn’t even have a single wound when fighting against someone with a weapon.

     

    Kwang!

     

    Calyx grabbed her, shoved her hard against the wall, and placed the sword below her chin. She only looked up at him with her eyes wide open.

     

    The moment his eyes met her clear ones, he felt flames sear through his body. Calyx had to clench his jaw to keep his teeth from trembling. Rage clawed at his throat. But when confronted with that face so similar to his own and those green eyes under the moonlight-

     

    “Calyx,” the voice calling him rang so clearly.

     

    Calyx erupted into tears that seemed to leak out of nowhere. He was angry, sad, frustrated, and tormented. Calyx clasped Rosaline’s shoulders a little tighter. Despite the pressure from his terrifying strength, she didn’t even show any signs of discomfort. From the first day to this very moment, her unchanging expression bothered him endlessly. 

     

    ‘I am not the person that you used to know,’ she seemed to speak with her whole body. 

     

    Tears streamed down Calyx’s chin. He spits out his words one by one, “Do you think I will not cut you down just because we are flesh and blood? Tell me! Or should I just cut your head off? For what purpose did you come here, and how dare you do this?!”

     

    Calyx took a deep breath and urged her. An unknown emotion ran through his body.

     

    “What are you?!”

     

    Her hair became more tangled as she was pushed and shaken roughly by his hand. Calyx couldn’t take his eyes off her face, which was half-covered by her hair.

     

    “Just who are you?!”

     

    The last question was like a scream. From behind, it looked as if Calyx was holding her in his arms. But the space between them was divided by a single sword. Calyx did not move in this state.

     

    Time passed. But it was such a short amount of time that not even the tick of the second hand of the clock had yet been heard. Rosaline, who had been silent this whole time, finally moved. Her hand lightly brushed against the sword. Calyx trembled but didn’t respond in turn. Her gaze, which had been facing him all along, drifted over his weapon. Rosaline’s figure reflected on the surface of the well-polished metal.

     

    She stared at it for a moment before opening her mouth, “I am the shadow.”

     

    Then she smiled. 

     

    Calyx stared blankly at her. Her smile was very similar to someone else’s. A very gentle smile with her eyebrows drooping slightly, her sharp eyes softening, and only the corners of her mouth raised slightly.

     

    “I am Rosaline’s shadow.”

     

    ***

     

    ‘It’ was sometimes in the form of a bird, a worm, or a large beast. ‘It’ has existed for a long time in the ancient forest of a deep mountain that no one could visit. Considering that ‘It’ was made up of magical properties, nobody even knows if ‘It’ could be called a beast.

     

    Bright red eyes, stronger than wild beasts, and aggressive. Another reason why ‘It’ was not defined as a beast, other than the fact that it barely fit the characteristics of a beast, was that there was no one around to call it a beast.

     

    Deer, tiger, monkey, wild boar, and sometimes even insects: ‘It’ had the ability to mimic whatever it ate in the past. Many people may have seen it while passing by, but the true form of ‘it’ was unknown.

     

    ‘It’ was like black smoke, and looked like a mass of living sand. The black ‘It’ did not have a precise boundary, and ‘It’ seemed to be scattered around as if broken, but it was neither broken nor scattered. ‘It’ had a shape that appeared to be barely held together. 

     

    In the past, some people called it a ghost or even mistook it for the shadow of a tree. And ‘It’ only unravels and reveals its true form the moment it absorbs food. So its real form has never been discovered. Sometimes, ‘It’ did not eat for more than a year. ‘It’ only consumed dead creatures, and did not engage in the act of hunting. That was the reason ‘It’ had to starve for a long time. No animals or witches ever left their prey on the floor.

     

    Whatever fell off a cliff and died, ‘It’ ate. Or sometimes, ‘It’ waited for the death of unfortunates on a battlefield. When hunger became severe, ‘It’ could also eat grass or fruits, but such things were not its favorite food. When ‘It’ was lucky, sometimes it would find some dead low-level creatures. Those didn’t amount to much, but it was still acceptable when ‘It’ was lazy.

     

    The ‘Devil Mountain’ is located in Vista, Drythorne County. A high and steep place.

     

    ‘It’ had starved for a little longer time than usual because Count Drythorne, who inherited the title two years ago, was a person who showed a lot of interest in subjugating the beasts. As a result of the hunters and mercenaries entering the mountain, the number of beasts and animals plummeted. Because of that, ‘It’ starved for a long time.

     

    About three months ago, ‘It’ found a rotting fruit and ate some. But the amount was not enough to satisfy its hunger, so ‘It’ got tired and fell asleep. ‘It’ didn’t move for a long time.

     

    The reason ‘It’ awoke was because of the danger that pierced its senses sharply. ‘It’ felt the mountain beasts screaming and disappearing one by one, so ‘It’ mimicked a bluebird it had eaten in the past and went into hiding. That was the right choice. After a while, humans violently pushed into the place where ‘It’ had stayed. ‘It’ then turned into a ladybug and went deeper into hiding. ‘It’ saw shining silver armor flashing in the distance. Apparently, humans had begun to subdue beasts in the mountain range, and their movements were as loud as thunder.

     

    ‘It’ held its breath as it waited for them to disappear. Hiding for hours and years was its specialty. And what ‘It’ came across after a not-so-long wait…

     

    “…”

     

    …Was a dying creature. It was a human with black hair. Her skin was torn, and her bones shattered by the rocks under the cliff. Her body was sprawled over the largest rock there.

     

    ‘It’ had found the woman while playing with a single white flower, and ‘It’ approached the rockery. The woman had eyes similar to that of a young leaf just sprouting in spring. She blinked her eyes and watched what slowly drew near. Signs of panic appeared in her blurred eyes. ‘It’ waited nearby. Eating the living was its only taboo. The rock gradually became wet with blood from her shattered, twisted, and gaping wounds.

     

    ‘This human will die soon.’

     

    ‘It’ has seen this kind of scene quite a few times. The high cliff had no mercy on humankind. The drop will kill them at once. Sometimes old men, sometimes strong and young men, sometimes lost children. They had broken ribs and pierced lungs; they spat blood from their mouths; and, they were afraid. They feared the black mass floating in front of them. Humans ran, even crawled away from ‘It’. They screamed and threw stones to drive ‘It’ away. Their actions might not be the desire to live but simply the primal fear of an unknown creature.

     

    But no one has ever had eyes like this. It was the first time ‘It’ saw eyes like this. They were crystal clear and pretty bead-like eyes. In those eyes, there was no such thing as tears that humans often shed. Just as ‘It’ looked at her, she did not take her eyes off ‘It’ as if observing ‘It’ as well.

     

    “… You…”

     

    The dark-haired human talked to ‘It’. The wind whispered louder than her small, colorful voice. ‘It’ faltered a little, then moved faster than usual to stand a little closer to her. The human grabbed ‘It’ without fear, and ‘It’ was surprised for the first time in its life. The human was also surprised. The black smoke she thought could not be caught had a familiar yet, at the same time, unfamiliar texture like dry sand and wood. She could feel the scattering particles slipping out of her hand, but she was able to catch some.

     

    “H- Help me…”

     

    ‘It’ was put in a difficult situation. ‘It’ knew the human language. ‘It’ could understand what the woman wanted, but ‘It’ had no means to heal her.

     

    The black mass moved smoothly. 

     

    ‘Something seems to be stirring in it,’ she thought. 

     

    ‘It’ soon began to change into the form of a little girl. The dark areas gradually disappeared, eventually becoming a perfect human being. This was the little one ‘It’ had eaten several years ago. 

     

    She realized that the part she was holding had also turned into a child’s arm. A feeling of warmth circulated, making her eyes widen. She knew about ‘It’. She was aware of its existence.

     

    “You. A lot of blood. Die. I can’t.”

     

    ‘You will die, and I cannot help you.’ 

     

    She understood the child’s meaning. She closed her eyes tightly and then opened them. Something like sparks flashed in those clear eyes. A fragment of her remaining fear flared up. Her consciousness gradually waned due to her bleeding and rapid breathing. She was well aware of her condition and her situation: her death was approaching. It felt like time was running out. She barely uttered a single word in her consciousness.

     

    “… You can eat me.”

     

    The child found this person very interesting. ‘It’ had never asked for permission to eat anyone, and this was the first time that someone granted permission. The woman coughed up blood, and then she smiled.

     

    “Instead, please do one thing in my stead.”

     

    The child could not understand why she was smiling. ‘It’ may have wanted to know a little more, so ‘It’ shared a few more words with her, whose speech was beginning to stutter.

     

    Drythorne County, Vista.

     

    Somewhere in that deep forest…

     

    A taboo contract was made.

     


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    Wook's notes:

    I swear this series can only get better and better. I've read so far ahead and it's SO MUCH FUN, if only I could put 2 comedy tags CAUSE YES IT'S THAT HILARIOUS, just keep reading ok thx bye,, oh and advance chapters are available~~

    Wook

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