Without a delay, Kafni, Jiu Er, and the others came to Annan and Salvatore after Benjamin left.
“Hey, what are you all doing here…” Annan greeted the approaching people timely.
In actual fact, he had learned from the forum not long ago that Kafni was rushing over to his side.
If it weren’t for her not knowing the path, she would have hurried over alone.
Jiu Er’s party hurriedly stopped Kafni in a panic after seeing her eagerness.
Annan engaged in a CG battle with a false deity at the Truth level at that point in time.
Did you come over to add more trouble or intentionally feed the enemy?
What if there comes an AoE attack that suddenly kills you?
Players can respawn, the main protagonist won’t die for sure, but the problem is you’re just an NPC.
Luckily, the “game” offers quite a high level of freedom. Kafni is still willing to listen to our explanations.
Jiu Er patiently and euphemistically explained to Kafni on several key points. Only then did she obediently agree.
1. Annan had administered the Sage’s Stone.
2. He and Rotten Man were in a gambling fight and couldn’t accept an outsiders’ aid.
3. The Silver Sire was protecting Annan on the side.
4. The battle took place at a level where she couldn’t get involved.
For some reason, Kafni didn’t ask where Jiu Er got the information but just replied, “I got it.” Then, she rushed over with Jiu Er and the rest, watching from a distance two blocks away from the battlefield. She didn’t meddle in the fight on her own accord.
Of course, even if Annan knew what had happened, he still had to ask politely.
After all, he shouldn’t know these events in a logical sense.
Jiu Er once again assumed the role of a diplomat and explained to Annan, “We also encountered a couple of monsters over there, but we didn’t find the Soul Eater.
“Her Royal Highness Kafni was worried about you, milord. So she asked us to lead the way and rush over to your side immediately.”
“You don’t need to explain.”
Kafni spoke in a tender but slightly hoarse voice. The mystical pupils that were as luminous and transparent as rubies stared at Annan intently, “His Royal Highness Annan naturally knows we are coming.”
…What? Annan was startled.
He knew it because he could look at the forum and see the players’ chat.
But how did Kafni find out about it?
Is this also a manifestation of a monk’s superb perception?
“It’s your heart, your Highness.” Kafni seemed to know what Annan was thinking.
She continued to stare at Annan while stepping forward. Then, with her hands put above her heart, she whispered, “I can feel your heart.”
“My heart?” Annan repeated.
He was a little at a loss. Are my expressions that obvious?
Seeing Kafni approaching him slowly, Annan took a step back subconsciously.
Kafni immediately took two steps forward and grabbed Annan’s hand.
She immediately showed a relieved and soothing expression.
Until then, Annan finally realized something when he noticed the relief in Kafni’s eyes.
He felt something was amiss from the very beginning.
Why does Kafni feel so close to me? Why do I always feel that something isn’t right?
Her attitude towards me is unlike “affection” or “respect”. It is more like “attachment” or even “dependence”.
It’s like Kafni is troubled by an illness, but the illness will alleviate or even disappear when she approaches me or even looks at me.
But do I have an ability that makes it that way?
Annan was at a loss.
Wait, this isn’t quite right, either. He reacted.
He seemingly indeed had the ability that befitted this explanation.
His soul essence reflected in the mirror could reduce or even clear the erosion rate directly by just looking at it.
Kafni had never established a Silver Rank curse. The erosion rate troubling her was at an alarming state. Although the curse didn’t turn her into a monster, the overloaded erosion would bring her some pain.
“Can you see my soul essence?” Annan leaned forward and whispered in Kafni’s ear.
Kafni raised her head, hesitated, and nodded slightly.
Annan’s eyes lit up suddenly. “What is it?”
He asked, “Do you know what it is?”
Kafni nodded but hesitated and shook her head later without giving a solid reply, “I’m not very sure.”
“It’s fine.” Annan didn’t put pressure on her.
Maybe my “affection rating” on her isn’t enough.
Anyway, there are still many chances to ask in the future. This is only the first time we have met. I better not screw this up.
Even though this angelic girl was tolerant of Annan, he also understood he shouldn’t abuse this tolerance and trust.
Just like Annan wouldn’t want to manipulate Salvatore’s trust and accommodation to use him at will, kindness should be repaid with kindness instead of exploiting it as a weakness or being ungrateful. This was basic ethics.
“If you don’t want to answer my question, then don’t answer it, Kafni.” Annan said gently, “No need to force yourself. I’m serious.
“Also, I’m glad you are safe.” He added.
Hearing that, Kafni tightened her grasp on Annan’s hand.
[TN: Annan is freaking smooth.]
Annan felt that her hands were cold, so he held her hand back casually, trying to warm her palms. However, her hands were still as cold as a corpse.
Annan explained earnestly, “The Rotten Man made a bet with me and he lost. So now, the Silver Sire will eliminate all of the Rotten Man’s believers in the Noah Kingdom. This naturally includes the Soul Snatch Wizard controlling the Fourth Prince’s mind and your mother.
“You are now safe. Even if you return to the capital, you will not encounter any danger.”
“—Annan’s assurance: There is nothing to be afraid of.”
“—OMG, Annan is great at paving the ‘flag’ for his future.”
[TN: When the player is presented with choices that affect how the other characters view the player and potentially change which route the player goes on, it’s called a flag.]
“—Seriously, it’s the first time I have seen a male protagonist who flirts with a beautiful girl he met for the first time.”
After opening the Freezing Water Port forum, Annan’s expression stiffened slightly when he saw the post mocking him.
…Haih, it really looks like I set a ‘flag’ for myself.
“I’m not going back.”
Kafni just looked at Annan and didn’t care about his frankness for holding her hand. On the contrary, she grabbed his wrist harder to the point where he felt some pain. As such, he bent his wrist closer and was forced to move closer to her.
It felt like Kafni had captured Annan and conquered him on the spot…
“I’m not going back,” Kafni repeated seriously, “There are a lot of dangers looming in the royal capital, not just from the Rotten Man.”
Annan breathed a sigh of relief after hearing that Kafni didn’t plan to return to the capital.
This pretty girl is quite witty. Annan inserted a death flag for her, and she pulled herself out of it immediately.
Afterward, Kafni added, “You shouldn’t go either.”
Annan was stunned when he heard that. “Why? What is the danger at the royal capital?”
“Demon,” Kafni hesitated for a while before replying, “There is a demon in the royal capital.”
“The same kind of demon as me.” Kafni grabbed Annan’s hand and tightened her grasp again.
She warned, “They will take you away.”
Annan’s expression grew more subtle.
A demon like you…
Is there anything scary about that?
“I think what Kafni mentioned should be those scholars.” At this time, His Highness Albert’s slightly gasping voice came from the side.
Annan turned around. He saw that the Fourth Prince of Noah Kingdom followed Bishop Daryl off the carriage from outside of the street and hurried over.
Bishop Daryl was slightly startled when he noticed Annan’s clothes.
He took a step backward and stayed behind the Fourth Prince imperceptibly. After seeing Annan, he stopped moving forward to join the chat but politely waited in the distance.
He respectfully bowed to Annan behind His Royal Highness Albert.
Credits to MindMatrix for editing this chapter and improving the readability.
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