“Yes, it was His Majesty’s birthday… I dreamt of you back then.” Kafni averted her gaze, and her complexion turned slightly red as she said this, “You were quite cute at the time…”
Are you implying that I’m not cute now? Annan thought to himself.
She held a biscuit in her right hand but didn’t continue eating. Instead, the fingers on her left hand clenched somewhat uncomfortably. She then slowly put them back into her sleeves.
After a moment of silence, she said softly, “I’ve almost forgotten the dream by the time I woke up. But I vaguely recall that you have ended up killing my uncle.”
“…Then shall I apologize?” Annan chuckled and said, “For my behavior in that dream?”
Deep down, he vaguely understood something.
No wonder the key to that nightmare was Kafni…
No wonder Kafni could be so calm. She didn’t fall off track at the critical moment, nor did she panic, cry, or make any noise.
Regardless of how withdrawn she was, she couldn’t become so mature without any experience.
It seems that 2 players had entered the nightmare.
It was just that Kafni did not have the memory of the future as if she was inside a real dream.
“—No need to apologize!” Kafni replied subconsciously. Her voice was a little louder than usual.
She immediately realized her impoliteness and lowered her voice, “Sorry, Annan… I just wanted to say… no, it’s fine. Sorry. I don’t know what’s going on today too… My emotions…”
If you had really killed Phillip at the time… that would be great. Kafni’s rationality made her swallow these words back down her throat.
After all, Annan was the future Austere-Winter’s Grand Duke.
Not only was this inappropriate, but it might also make Annan think of her as a cruel and power-hungry person.
Why are you also such an apologetic oddball? Annan smiled helplessly and said nothing.
Suddenly, Kafni’s eyes lit up, “By the way, I also recalled something!”
Her voice was a little hurried. She quickly stood up and bowed towards Annan, “That’s right. Your Highness Annan… Please wait a moment!”
Annan nodded gently, signaling that he heard her.
Everything else aside, Kafni seemed a little more human after the nightmare than the previous version of her, who spoke leisurely like a ghostly spirit and seemed as if she didn’t have a care in the world.
She also became fluent in speaking, and her emotions had become richer.
It was like a corpse gradually coming to life.
Could it be that the erosion rate had dropped?
Annan had some vague guesses as he watched Kafni bring over her jewelry box from the dresser.
After Kafni opened the jewelry box, a blue gemstone was lying quietly inside.
“Frost Eye…” Annan exclaimed.
“The gift you had given me back then… it’s been of great help.” Kafni said with a lingering fear, “If it weren’t for this, I wouldn’t have realized that my memory was modified.
“It’s just… I apologize. I can’t give it back to you right now. I still need to use it against my enemies… and I… also have nothing of equal value to give you… I didn’t know you were here. Otherwise, I would have brought all my collections with me before coming here…”
Looking at Kafni, who was trying to explain to herself, Annan was in a trance for a while.
Did the original Annan Austere-Winter also choose to give the [Frost Eye] to Kafni?
He even said something similar to me.
Annan was baffled.
He had no real memory of Annan Austere-Winter himself, and there was no possibility for his subconscious to be affected. It seemed he had given the Frost Eye to Kafni and asked her to return something of equal value to him the next time they met. Those indeed aligned with Annan’s character.
He knew himself very well.
But the Annan in history had made a similar choice to himself.
“Keep it, Kafni. It’s no use to me anyway.” Annan said gently, “As for your enemies… you don’t have to be afraid either.
“When spring arrives, I shall accompany you to the capital.”
“But that’s too dangerous!”
“It’s not dangerous, Kafni.” Annan said slowly, “I’m about to advance into the Silver Rank.”
Kafni’s eyes widened slightly when she heard those words.
Under the morning sun, her ruby-like clear pupils seemed to be glimmering.
“Hasn’t it only been a month since you became a Transcended?”
“Maybe I’m a genius,” replied Annan with a smile.
But Kafni stood up somewhat seriously. She walked over and touched Annan’s forehead with her own.
At this distance, Annan could clearly smell the gardenias and citrus scent from Kafni’s body, as well as feeling her body temperature was lower than average.
Annan thought this was some sort of a ritual or that she wanted to see if he had a fever.
But Annan soon saw a line of notification appear before his eyes.
[Kafni Noah is trying to absorb your erosion rate…]
Annan quickly interrupted her actions.
“What are you doing?”
“I want to see if my curse erodes you.” Kafni looked up in confusion and assessed Annan.
She emphasized, “It’s not normal to advance so quickly.”
“Weren’t you quick too?” Annan asked with a casual smile, “And the result?”
“…No. Your soul is clean. So clean that you don’t look like a Transcended.” It was even shining with dazzling brilliance.
It was just like the Annan that Kafni had seen in her dreams.
She said worriedly, “Do you remember… I told you that there are demons in the capital.”
“I remember.” Hearing that it was serious business, Annan became serious, “What actually is that?”
“My mind at the time was clouded, and so perhaps I wasn’t clear…” Kafni bit her lip and explained softly, “Have you heard of the Fallen path?
“Actually, the ‘Transcended path’ that we often mention is the ‘Ascension path’. Instead, the combination of the Ascension path and the Fallen path is then the Transcended path.
“If the Ascension path is to continuously purify nightmares and extract curses, later defeating the curse with strong will and finally reshaping the soul with one’s strong desire to reach the ‘Dyed’ rank, which is the current ‘Gold’ rank…
“The Fallen path is then to erode oneself with a curse ultimately.
“On the two paths, only the Bronze rank overlaps. If you choose to purify your soul, you will reach the Silver Rank… If you choose to be overflowed with curses, you will step onto the Fallen path. The Fallen path does not have a Silver Rank… You can go directly to a new ranking similar to ‘Dyed’. This means that they have all misunderstood. I’m not a Silver Rank without curse vessels… I’m simply on the Fallen path.
“There is also a need for some kind of intense desire, but the desire is not to reshape the soul, but instead to reshape the body.
“…In other words, it is to be a demon. A demon with self-awareness… just like the people who have lost control.”
Kafni paused as she said this and looked toward Annan, “After becoming a demon, we can no longer carry the Truth because our soul is still mortal.
“There is only one exception. That is, if the demon received blessings from an upright deity who is willing to cleanse the erosion on their bodies… In that case, the demon would become an ‘apostle’ and gain immortality like a demi-deity. They would just have to respond to summons from rituals… this is the price of taking shortcuts.”
—The summoned creature in rituals.
Kafni took a deep breath and looked at Annan.
“And ever since I met you… my erosion rate has been continuously dropping.”
Oh, a big reveal on the growing journey of a Transcended. Also, would Annan be able to ascend in rank along with Kafni as well? Find out what happens next by getting early access to chapters with Patreon! Please do check out the community goal in our Patreon as well! Thanks for the support! Click here to access our Patreon page.