GOD —The Beginning of the End— Volume 3: The End Begins
Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)
Chapter 9: The Sinner of Pride—translated by lucathia (proofread by elisa)
“Saimi, I want to ask you about a very important matter. Will the Guide of Doom and the Guide of Existence come into conflict with each other?”
Shooting Star asked this with utmost solemnity.
Saiximili blinked. He turned to look at the other person, who sported a head of fiery red hair and a pair of large, golden eyes, a bright combination that hurt his eyes. His expression was blank. He was utterly incapable of understanding what was going on.
“So I’m dreaming then?” he mumbled, slight relief on his face.
Shooting Star looked at the king who was deluding himself with pity and cruelly said, “No, what you just saw was all real.”
Saiximili’s face instantly paled.
On the wall just now, he had seen with his own eyes, dozens of his citizens turning into flames and meat paste on the spot. His eyes simply rolled back, and his whole body directly collapsed against the ground. Following that, Dan had people carry him back to the palace with orders for him not to come back and cause trouble.
“Hey? Hurry and answer my question!”
Saiximili stared blankly at him, still unable to recover from the devastation of his citizens’ deaths.
Shooting Star gripped the king’s shoulders and shouted by his ears, “Will Doom and Existence come into conflict? Hurry and answer me. This is really super important!”
Such a strong grip made pain shoot through Saiximili; however, this pain also allowed him to finally wake up.
“Doom and Existence were in conflict from the start!”
“Why?” Shooting Star asked in confusion.
“Because the two of you are able to decide the trajectory of the world, but only one of you can make the decision. Therefore, you will conflict, and the resulting victor will decide the future of the world!”
Shooting Star frowned and tried asking, “Since you said that I can decide the future of the world, then can I have a discussion with the Guide of Existence about choosing the same future? That way, we don’t have to fight!”
“Uh…” Saiximili hesitated and stutteringly said, “Even though it is your choice, truthfully, both of you have already chosen, and they are two completely different futures that oppose each other.”
Shooting Star was shocked. “Are you kidding me? I haven’t chosen anything!”
“You have chosen.” Saiximili said with certainty, “You are called the Guide of Doom. Of course you have chosen the future of ‘doom.’”
Dang it! Aren’t you the one who told me that name? Who wants to choose doom?
Shooting Star was about to cough up blood. Before, he had thought it was a little amusing, and one of his pets had become a sinner, thus coming into great power, so it was fine to give it a try. But now, he really had a bad feeling, especially since doom was involved… There was no way to put a positive spin on that! He, Shooting Star, was not some crazed person who wanted to destroy the world!
“I’m not playing anymore!” Shooting Star shouted, “I give up! Give the victory to the other side!”
“Give up, how?” Saiximili laughed bitterly and sighed. “GOD, the one who created this world, is the one behind this game, and the stage of the game is the ‘entire world.’ There is no resignation form you can sign.”
Shooting Star screamed, “Are you pulling my leg? I’m forced to play this game? GOD is way too whimsical!”
Saiximili said with a shrug, “He is GOD. No one can control Him. A bit of whimsy is normal.”
Shooting Star was speechless for a while before he snapped, “Hey! Shouldn’t you be telling me that GOD left the final decision to this world, so I’m definitely not allowed to lose? If I lose, the world will be destroyed and turned into hell. Finally, you should be telling me that GOD loves the world, so I should give it my all or something?”
“It’s not like I know what your intention is.” The king said completely irresponsibly, “Maybe your victory would mean the end of the world.”
Hey! Then, am I supposed to win or not? Shooting Star felt his head throb. He attempted a final struggle and said, “The Guide of Doom just doesn’t sound any good. Can I change my game name? To something like the Guide of Happiness and Fortune?”
“What do you think?” Saiximili asked in response.
“I can’t.” Shooting Star’s face fell.
Saiximili nodded as if it were a matter of fact.
“Forget it!” Shooting Star gave a heavy whack and boldly stood up to shout, “No matter what messed up game this is, I’m gonna play my pet capturing game. GOD can play His end of the world game for all I care. I’m not gonna follow the script!”
Saiximili’s face paled—because what Shooting Star had just whacked was Saiximili’s thigh.
Shooting Star said with a solemn expression, “Saimi, I suspect that this army was formed by the Guide of Existence—such a long title is so hard to say, so I’m shortening it to ‘Stench.’ Anyway, I suspect that Stench purposely formed this army to capture you… or to kill you!”
Stench… Saiximili was speechless for a moment until Shooting Star’s words had registered, and his face immediately fell. He mumbled, “I see. It was actually because of me. I endangered my citizens.”
Thinking of the avians who had been burned to a crisp, Shooting Star could only pat the king on the shoulder to comfort him.
“Bai Saya sensed that there are two sinners in their army.” Shooting Star hesitated before asking, “You said that the Sinner of Pride has been born. That should be referring to Alan, right?”
“I believe so.” At last, Saiximili could no longer persist in calling him the blue star.
As I thought! It’s been so long, yet Alan still hasn’t returned. Is he actually in that army? Shooting Star frowned. Could the little elf have been captured by the opposing sinner?
He asked worriedly, “Will sinners kill sinners?”
By now, Saiximili had also come to the conclusion that Alan was among the army. His expression changed, and he shouted, “Of course! Sinners belonging to opposing faction have the mission of protecting their guide and killing the enemy guide and sinners. This is terrible, Shooting Star! The blue star is in danger!”
Shooting Star’s face fell, but he was a lot calmer than Saiximili. “Fortunately, they shouldn’t be able to tell whether or not Alan is a sinner who belongs to a faction, right? Xiao Bai said that he couldn’t tell any difference between the two sinners. I’m thinking that the opponents shouldn’t be able to tell either, so they will choose to win him over and not kill him. After all, there is a possibility that Alan will join them.”
Saiximili let out a sigh of relief at that. “Right, you are right. However, if Alan lets slip that Bai Saya also has a stone, then he might be in danger. Two sinners coming together only happens when a guide is near.”
Shooting Star nodded with a serious expression. He believed that Alan would not easily divulge Bai Saya’s power. But it wasn’t a guarantee that he wouldn’t be tricked. It would be bad if he let anything slip!
“We have to hurry up and bring my golden haired pet back!”
Saiximili asked worriedly, “But what do you plan to do? He is in the enemy’s grasp.”
Shooting Star placed his hands on the king’s shoulders and solemnly said, “It’s up to you now.”
It was currently dinner time in the great hall of the avian palace. Because they were in the midst of battle, even the king’s dining table only consisted of bread and potato stew, a simple meal that was plenty as long as it could fill their stomachs.
The table had been set up for six. Saiximili, Dan, Bai Saya, the guard captain Barna, and even Markham had been invited to sit, yet there was still one empty seat.
“Where is Shooting Star?” Bai Saya grew nervous on the spot. Shooting Star is actually not around during dinner? This is a crisis on par with the end of the world!
Saiximili hurriedly covered for Shooting Star, just like he had told him to do. “He said he’s not hungry, so he’s not having dinner.”
Shooting Star isn’t hungry? A strange, indescribable expression came over Bai Saya, while Dan was completely expressionless.
“Um, is something the matter?” Saiximili asked guiltily.
“Just say it. What is he doing?” Dan asked dryly. At the same time, he understood that there was no need to wait for Shooting Star before eating. He began to eat. As the commander of this battle, he did not have a lot of time to waste on something like eating.
“He’s j-just not hungry… Anyway, Shooting Star doesn’t want me to tell you guys.”
Saiximili’s voice grew smaller and smaller. In the end, he simply changed what he was saying. Bai Saya’s expression had been so strange that Saiximili couldn’t continue lying, while Dan’s expression implied, “You can keep lying, since it’s not like I’m going to believe you.”
“His Majesty is definitely not lying to you. He is only relaying the message. That kitty must be the one who wants to trick you. The cat race always loves to play around!” Even though the guard captain had not been paying enough attention to his king lately, he was still extremely devoted and quickly spoke up on behalf of His Majesty.
To the side, Markham did not dare to say anything and just stuffed his mouth with food, trying hard to squash the disloyal opinion that “His Majesty is obviously lying.”
Dan refuted, “If Shooting Star really didn’t want us to know, he would not have asked you to tell us an excuse that no one would believe.”
“Exactly! Even if the world is ending, Shooting Star will eat his fill before dying.” Bai Saya nodded several times and gazed at Saiximili with pity. “I bet Shooting Star just wanted you to make a fool of yourself. Afterwards, I’m sure he will ask me if you knew what you looked like when you got tricked. Did your lips twitch, or were you expressionless? Questions like that.”
Hearing that, Saiximili expressionlessly rolled off, “He surmised that the Guide of Existence’s sinner brought Alan back to their army, so he plans to sneak in and rescue Alan to prevent the opposing sinner from discovering that Alan is on the side of Doom and killing him.”
He’s expressionless and talking really fast! Bai Saya took note of that to avoid not being able to answer if Shooting Star asked him about Saimi’s reaction in the future, which could lead to Shooting Star playing a prank on him instead—Wait a minute! What did Saimi just say?
Bai Saya abruptly stood up, worried to the point of wanting to rush out right this moment to help Shooting Star.
Saiximili helpfully reminded him, “If you head there, the opponents will immediately find out. Sinners are able to detect each other’s presence.”
Bai Saya fell back in his chair. Right, I nearly forgot about that. If I go, that can’t be considered sneaking in anymore. I would instead expose Shooting Star.
Dan consoled him, “Don’t worry. Shooting Star is sly and full of tricks up his sleeve. On top of that, he is currently disguised as a beastman. He shouldn’t run into any trouble.”
Bai Saya felt that Dan made sense. Shooting Star wasn’t able to help much in a war, but when it came to sneaking into places, even Dan wasn’t as adept at it as Shooting Star.
“It doesn’t seem like I can help.” Bai Saya felt a little discouraged. In the battle with Braids last time, if he had been stronger, he would not have caused such heavy injuries to Shooting Star and Alan.
“If you really wish to help Shooting Star, then quickly master your power as the Sinner of Wrath.” Saiximili said with a grave tone, “As of now, the Guide of Existence has taken the initiative to declare war on Doom. I am afraid that he has a better hand than our side. Please keep this in mind…”
With half-lidded eyes, the starseer spoke, his words half prophecy, half narration. “The wager at stake in the war between guides is the entire world’s future. The war will become even more devastating than you can ever imagine. Everything that is happening now with the war my nation is embroiled in is merely the tip of the iceberg.”
Bai Saya was still ignorant in matters regarding sinners, but hearing that this war had started because of the guides and their sinners, he had begun to pay closer attention. At first, he had just thought of the Stones of Sin as artifacts that could increase one’s power, such as the Sword of Sacred White he wielded. However, he now understood that this was a frightening object that would incite war!
Dan asked, unperturbed, “You know so much. If you know this much, then why can’t you make things clearer?”
He had been suspicious from the start. He had heard of divination before, but claiming that what Saiximili knew came from divination did not make sense. Don’t tell me that names like guides and sinners can be learned through divination?
Saiximili hesitated over how to explain his ability.
“I dreamed of many of these matters. I am unable to choose what I dream of, so I am only able to see bits and pieces.”
“You are able to see the future in your dreams?” Bai Saya exclaimed, “Then, do you know if we will win?”
Saiximili said in a conflicted tone, “I am uncertain if those dreams are of the future. It is of the same time period and the same group of people, but many things do not add up…”
Bai Saya was a bit puzzled. He turned toward Dan, who was also frowning.
Saiximili gave an example. “In the future that I saw, you should despise me a lot, but you do not.”
Bai Saya was taken aback. He asked in confusion, “Why would I despise you?”
Saximili answered seriously, “Because dream me is despicable.”
“One furry tail wags, wags, wags. Two furry tails get tangled together. Three furry tails fight and fight…”
As Shooting Star wagged his own furry tail, he sang a marching song.
In order to rescue Alan, he would have to sneak into the enemy army. As for weaseling his way into the beast army, hehe! How hard could that be? What do you think I currently look like? An imposing lion! It would be very normal for him to appear among the beast army.
Therefore, there was no need for him to sneak around. I can just walk right in under everyone’s nose!
With the notion, “I’m a lion, so why would I be afraid?” in mind, Shooting Star swaggered into the enemy’s army, but of course—
“Brat, where’d you come from?”
The moment he reached the entrance, the guards stopped him. One of the guards was a beast with a pig’s head and a bad attitude. Fortunately, Shooting Star’s behavior was really too open and difficult to doubt, so they weren’t very suspicious.
Shooting Star said as if it were a matter of fact, “I’m one of the soldiers of the army. It was just by accident I was unable to keep up with the army.”
“Haha, this little fellow actually claims to be a soldier.”
Hearing that, the pig-headed beastman burst into laughter and clapped the soldier standing guard with him on the shoulder.
The dog-headed beastman beside him laughed along and mocked, “Little kitty, are you lost?”
“I’m a lion, not a cat!” Shooting Star exploded. I’m clearly a lion. Why does everyone keep saying I’m a cat?! It’s so frustrating!
“Lion, hahaha, this little kitty actually claims to be a lion. My sides hurt!
The two beasts collapsed in laughter.
Shooting Star puffed up his cheeks in anger. He wanted to pull out his whip to flay them, but then he recalled that he needed to be able to get in to rescue Alan, so he could only do his best to squash the desire to flay them until their faces were swollen like pigs… Wait no, one of them already had a pig’s head.
Thinking of this, Shooting Star calmed down. The guy already had a pig’s head without Shooting Star hitting him. I should take pity on him.
“Lion, cat, whatever. In any case, you have to let me pass.”
The pig-headed guy and the dog-headed guy both stopped laughing. The pig-headed guy frowned and warned, “Little kitty, you can’t come play at a place like this. Scram!”
Hearing that, Shooting Star really wanted to pull out his whip and make his face swell up like a pig’s—Wrong again, make him an even worse pig-head!
But I have to bear with it! Thinking of Alan’s beautiful, golden hair, he endured it. Rescuing the elf was what was most important!
Shooting Star’s lips wobbled. His bright, golden eyes began to water, and then large tears promptly fell from them. He used shimmering eyes to stare at the pig-head and dog-head.
“Sob, sob, sob, Big Bro Pig Head, please let me in. My dad was forced to become a soldier. Once Dad’s enemy learned that he wasn’t around, he came to our house and murdered my mom, my older sister, my younger brother, my little sister, and even my aunty. If I don’t go in to find Dad, I’ll definitely get killed by my dad’s enemy, too!”
Shooting Star’s tearful eyes, along with his furry ears and toe beans, made him look both cute and pitiful. Even the pig-headed guy who hadn’t had a good attitude since the start softened at that. He gently said, “Little kitty, are you sure you’re in the right place? There are no cats in the army.”
I told you I’m a lion. Are you deaf or what? Shooting Star inwardly bristled with anger, but he outwardly still tried to squeeze out tears. He shook his head and said, “It’s not that. My mom is a cat, but my dad is… is a pig beastman! Big Bro Piggy, you won’t leave a kid of your own race out to dry, will you?”
The pig-headed guy exclaimed, “So your dad is a pig!”
Your dad is the one who is a pig! Shooting Star rolled his eyes.
The dog-headed guy pushed the pig-headed guy and couldn’t help saying, “Hey, since you’re the same race, why don’t you give him a hand? He sounds quite pitiful.”
The pig-headed guy scratched his head and said with difficulty, “But we can’t just let him in and have the run of the place. If someone sees, we’d be in trouble.”
The dog-headed guy said, unconcerned, “Why don’t you bring him in? His father is from your race. You can help him search among the pig race. I can help stand guard here. Hurry in and hurry back.”
“Fine.” The pig-headed guy nodded and called out to Shooting Star, “Little kitty, follow me.”
Shooting Star quickly caught up with him. Even though his eyes still swam with tears from acting pitiful, his mouth twitched up into a sly smile.
The pig-headed guy led Shooting Star into the encampment. The latter observed the size of the encampment as he walked. Even though he was unable to ascertain a specific number, he could at least figure out whether or not the army had high quality equipment.
“Those of us of the pig race live fairly far. We’ll have to walk for a while. Follow closely. Don’t lose your place.”
“Okay.” Shooting Star looked around, wanting to find the best place. Then again, this place was currently a good distance from surrounding tents…
The pig-headed guy turned around to say, “Hey, you know, you look just like a cat. Why don’t you have any characteristics of us pigs? Just what exactly—”
Bam! Whack! Thud…
Shooting Star walked out from a corner of the encampment. He glanced at the corner while he slowly patted the dust off of his hands, even though there wasn’t actually any dust. It’s just a great feeling to do this motion after beating someone up!
“Hmph! How dare you say I’m a cat, damn pig he… No, you’re just a ‘ball head’ now! Haha!”
Having just beaten someone up, Shooting Star was in particularly high spirits. With a bounce in his steps, he wove through the encampment. Since the army had just had a small victory during the day, they were also in high spirits. Many soldiers of all sorts of races came and went. Therefore, Shooting Star did not particularly stand out. It was just that he was rather young and would occasionally attract some attention.
However, even with some people wondering over his young age and appearance, it was hard to suspect that such a young beast, who seemed on the verge of humming and was skipping along out in the open, could be a spy. At most, they wondered which beastman had actually dared to sneak their child into the army. It was just that it was too much of a bother for any of the beasts to report such a small matter.
“Ugh! Even though I won’t get discovered since I didn’t bring Xiao Bai, it’s also really hard to figure out where Alan is like this.”
Shooting Star looked in frustration at the humongous encampment. He felt a little helpless. If only Alan could release some lightning, then Shooting Star could follow the magic to find him. Ugh, this camp is way too big. A little lightning might not be enough. More lightning would be better…
A pillar of lightning pierced the sky, as if splitting the sky in half. The dark night instantly shone as bright as day, and the beasts in the army also froze on the spot, staring at the lightning pillar with wide eyes, unable to react at all.
This is a bit too much! Shooting Star was also among the frozen. He stared blankly at the magic. W-will I still be able to snatch Alan and run like this?
After the lightning pillar vanished, it still took a while longer for everyone’s eyes to adjust. Only then could they see clearly. The magic had come from a certain tent. Of course, that tent had been completely obliterated and was unable to obstruct anyone’s sight.
A few strands of blue lightning danced around a beautiful, blond elf. However, at the moment, no one had the spare attention to marvel at the elf’s beauty. Everyone’s faces were full of shock. If the lightning pillar had landed on them, then there wouldn’t even be a speck left to find!
Next to the elf sat two men with ashy faces who had fallen on their butts. But from how potent the lightning pillar had been, the fact that these two men only had ashy faces and were not a pile of ashes made all of the beasts around them marvel with respect.
The blond elf’s head was lowered, covering his face half in shadow, making what should be a gentle elf appear frightening and cold instead. He turned his head and saw that the two men on the ground had not perished. Crackling lightning gathered at his hands again.
“W-wait, calm down, Bai Lan!” The man who was sitting on the ground immediately got back on his feet and quickly shouted, “I am Philo. Don’t you remember me? I am you sister’s friend, Philo. We met in a private room at the auction.”
The golden-haired mage did not have much of a reaction to that. He even opened his right hand in Philo’s direction, lightning about to shoot out from his palms toward the latter without any mercy.
At this moment, Shooting Star did not have any time to use Alan’s fake name. Even though he didn’t know what was going on, he did know that Alan did not have much magic left after casting the pillar of lightning. They were currently among the enemy, so choosing to fight was definitely not a good option.
Hearing the familiar voice, Alan froze. He turned and looked in Shooting Star’s direction. By now, Shooting Star had already reached him.
“What happened to your ears?” Alan dispelled the lightning from his hands, leaving only the lightning dancing around him. He was confused as he stared at the furry cat ears on Shooting Star’s head, but he felt that they suited Shooting Star. The image of a beast fit Shooting Star a lot more than a demon!
Shooting Star hurriedly said, “My ears don’t matter. Why did you get into a fight with Philo?”
“Who is Philo?” Alan asked strangely.
“The guy you struck at with the lightning pillar!” Shooting Star glanced at the two guys with ashy faces and added, “Don’t tell me you attacked them with the lightning pillar without even figuring out who they were?”
Are you really an elf who loves all life? Why do I feel like you’re getting more and more violent…
“When I woke up, I suddenly had this strange feeling, like I could feel someone’s presence, and they were very close.” Alan frowned and said, “The moment I opened my eyes, that presence was right in front of me. I thought I was in danger, so I…”
So you attacked with your ultimate move without even knowing what was going on? Shooting Star began to wonder if he really should have come to rescue Alan. Will this really not turn into a case of reaping what I sow? Cause, really, Alan zaps me a lot more than he zaps anyone else!
Seeing Shooting Star’s conflicted expression, Alan finally regained his senses and realized that he had casually cast a lightning pillar, magic that could easily kill several people at once, without even knowing what was going on! The elf frantically surveyed his surroundings and discovered that no one seemed to be heavily injured. Only then did he relax.
However, that odd feeling he had arose again. He could sense the “presence” of the man beside him, as if the other person was shining. But in reality, that person’s body was not giving off any light.
“Shooting Star?” Philo stared at Shooting Star. H-how did she turn into the beast race?
Shooting Star snuck a few glances at Philo, who did not seem to bear them ill will. He immediately rushed over to pull on him and quietly said, “It’s inconvenient to speak here, right? Why don’t you find a place for us to have a good chat? You know, I’m really worried about Xiao Bai… about Saya-jiějie’s safety!”
“What? Is Saya in danger?” Philo’s expression changed.
Shooting Star quickly nodded. Of course he was in danger. Xiao Bai could choke on his dinner, fall down the stairs, or get squashed to death by a collapsed ceiling while he slept!
Philo nodded. With a serious expression, he commanded the beasts around them, “Disperse. Don’t hang around here. Also, find me a new tent.”
The surrounding beastmen all seemed to be quite wary of Philo, and they were even more afraid of the blond elf, wishing to be as far away from him as possible. Thus, when they received such a command, the surroundings immediately emptied out. No one wanted to linger at all.
Philo waved Shooting Star and Alan over, as well as Pisce, who was so scared that he still couldn’t speak. They walked to the new tent that had been prepared by a servant.
As they walked into the tent, Philo waved his hand to dismiss the beast servant who had led the way. As soon as there were no outsiders, Philo immediately turned to look at Shooting Star and Alan. He straightforwardly asked, “Why did you leave without a word again? You clearly said that you would go with us, yet you sneakily left right after. Don’t you know that Belle was saddened by your departure?”
Shooting Star had not thought that he would open with that right off the bat. During that moment, he could not come up with any excuses.
“Belle wasn’t the only one who was sad.” Pisce finally recovered from his fright and teased, “Our Captain Philo yearned after his dream lover so much that he couldn’t even smile anymore.”
“Pisce,” Philo warned lowly, “stop fooling around. I have serious things to ask them.”
Seeing that his captain was serious, Pisce did not dare to fool around like usual. He fell silent right away and quietly sat down.
Even though Pisce had only interrupted Philo’s questioning for a short few seconds, it was enough for Shooting Star. He was someone who could lie without blinking and put on a pretense of innocence like a second skin. A few seconds were plenty for him to think of a number of excuses.
Although he had hundreds of excuses in mind, Shooting Star planned to reveal a bit of the truth to make these excuses sound more believable. This would prevent him from being exposed. They were currently among the enemy. Failure was unacceptable here.
“I’m sorry, Philo-dàgē. I actually tricked you guys.” Shooting Star’s face fell, like a child whose lie had been revealed. He glanced at Philo uneasily.
“What did you trick us about?” Seeing that Shooting Star was admitting to tricking them, Philo’s tone gentled a bit. Besides, Shooting Star currently had the appearance of a kitten. Her ears have even drooped down. How can I scold her?
“I’m actually a boy!” Shooting Star put on a relieved expression that implied “he was finally able to say it.”
Philo was stunned. He had never thought that the so-called lie would be this.
“Back then, you all thought that Saya-jiějie and I were both girls. I thought it was fun, so I pretended to be a girl, but later on, Belle kept wanting to bathe with me. H-how can I bathe together with her? I’m a boy!”
Shooting Star explained his gender in distress, but this was not an act. Who knew why Belle wanted to bathe with him so much? Don’t tell me that girls always bathe together?
Then again, Shooting Star’s gender was a small matter. Even if it was revealed, he believed that Belle would at most kick up a small fuss. There wouldn’t be any big problems. What was more worrisome was that Xiao Bai had two admirers…
Seeing Shooting Star’s distressed expression, Philo could not help but shake his head with a smile. He had not thought that it would be because Belle kept wanting to bathe with Shooting Star, who was a boy, that he had run off in fright.
With the matter illuminated, Philo no longer spent any more time mulling over it. He then thought of how Shooting Star had said that Bai Saya was in danger. He quickly asked, “What do you mean when you said Saya is in danger?”
Shooting Star simply said, “Saya-jiějie is in White Feather Nation and refuses to leave.”
“Why is she refusing to leave?” Philo asked, unable to understand. If she was stuck in White Feather Nation, it was not a problem. If he gave the command, no one would dare to harm Bai Saya. But if she was unwilling to leave, she might eventually get caught in the crossfire.
“Once she heard that people wanted to capture the gentle avians as slaves, she immediately joined the ranks protecting the city. No matter how I tried to get her to leave, she refused to listen.”
Shooting Star put on a helpless expression as he gazed at Philo. Even though he didn’t know how high of a position Philo had, so he didn’t know if this could hinder the battle, as long as he could disrupt a leading officer of the enemy faction, it was something that would benefit Shooting Star. So, it’s best to strike while the iron is hot!
Philo frowned. For a moment, he could not think of a method to solve this, so he could only temporarily put it aside. Besides, the beastmen would be unable to invade White Feather in the near future, so Saya’s safety should not be a problem in the moment. There was an even more important matter to handle first.
“Shooting Star, I have some things I would like to tell Bai Lan. Could you go outside and eat first?” Philo tactfully asked Shooting Star to leave.
Shooting Star was trying to think of an excuse to use so he could stay when Alan bluntly said, “Anything that Shooting Star can’t hear, I don’t want to hear.”
Philo frowned in thought for a while and glanced at Shooting Star several times. Right now, Shooting Star’s appearance was really completely harmless. On top of that, Alan’s blood had dripped on the Stone of Pride right before Philo’s eyes, so he naturally believed that since Alan had just become a sinner, he had yet to choose a guide.
However, he completely overlooked another possibility, that Alan had met the guide long before he had become a sinner.
“Then, hear me out together. Bai Lan, you just said that you were able to sense my presence, right?”
Alan nodded. He really disliked this feeling. He was completely unable to ignore the other person, his attention pulled over out of his control.
“That is because of this stone.” Philo pulled out a chain from below his collar. The pendant was a yellow gemstone the size of a pigeon egg.
At this time, Shooting Star was finally certain. The other sinner was Philo.
“My Stone of Sin is the Stone of Lethargy, Sloth. What about yours?”
Since the other person had already revealed his stone, Alan also answered in good faith, “The Stone of Ego, Pride.”
“So it is the Stone of Ego, one of the Stones of the Yisite Continent.” Philo nodded, thinking to himself that one of the goals of this venture had finally been accomplished. The next step was to convince Bai Lan to return with him and join their faction.
Even though he knew official matters were important, he still could not help considering that Bai Saya would have to follow along as well if this were the case.
Alan frowned and looked down at the staff in his hand.
Philo asked, “Have you heard of the legend of the Stones of Original Sin?”
“From the song.” Alan’s response was neither short nor long.
Shooting Star was grateful that Alan was the one here and not Bai Saya. If it were him, after Philo said he had Sloth, Shooting Star bet that Bai Saya would admit that he had the Stone of Fury, and then he would also say without a thought that Shooting Star was the guide, and Saiximili was Doom’s starseer, and so on. In any case, Shooting Star guaranteed that nothing was easier in this world than getting Bai Saya to spill important information!
“There are some things that the song does not mention.” Philo nodded. Since Bai Lan had heard the song before, that made explanations easier. In order to accomplish the goal of bringing Bai Lan with him, Philo continued to explain, “Those of us who possess Stones of Original Sin are called sinners. You possess the Stone of Ego, Pride, so you are the Sinner of Pride.”
“What is the purpose of sinners?” Alan frowned, his thoughts turning to how Bai Saya also possessed a stone. This meant that he was the Sinner of Wrath. They had both become these so-called sinners. Could there be a reason behind this?
Philo said without any hesitation, “To protect their guide and destroy the other guide.”
“And what are guides?” Alan was even more confused now. Why should I protect some unknown guide?
“The guides will determine the future of the world.” Philo said in elation, “It is fortunate that I found you first. If you were discovered by the Guide of Ending, Doom, then the results would be disastrous.”
“The Guide of Ending, Doom?” Alan continued to ask. Then, he snuck a glance at Shooting Star with a clear warning: You better not have anything to do with such a dangerous name, or else be ready to eat my lightning strikes.
Shooting Star began to wonder: Should I take this chance to hand Alan off to the Guide of Existence?
“Yes, there are two guides in this world, the Guide of Beginning, Existence, and the Guide of Ending, Doom. The victor of the two will determine the future of the world.”
Alan asked in thought, “So, you are on the side of the Guide of Existence?”
Philo nodded. “Indeed, I have already joined the Guide of Existence. That person is a great person, worthy of my loyalty. Besides, there is no way I would ever join the Guide of Doom. Doom is definitely not the future I wish for. In fact, I am completely unable to fathom what kind of wicked person they must be to wish for the world to end.”
How rude! Who’s wicked? Besides, I don’t want the world to end either, okay? Shooting Star rolled his eyes unhappily. He knew that the Guide of “Doom” was a terrible game name. Look! It’s so easy for people to think it means the end of the world.
Then again, he himself didn’t know what it meant either. If I won, would the world truly end…
“If Doom means the end of the world, then what about Existence? Would it mean that the world would return to the beginning of all existence?” Alan said as if it wasn’t a big deal, “If that is the case, then doesn’t it mean that to the ‘current world,’ no matter if Existence or Doom wins, the current world would no longer persist? So, what difference is there in who emerges as the victor?”
Hear, hear! Alan makes so much sense! Shooting Star greatly appreciated his words. If we’re heading toward doom, then we’ll experience doom together. Only then would it be a fair game!
“That isn’t the case.” Philo began to worry. He was really worried that his clumsy words would cause them to lose a precious sinner. He hurriedly explained, “Prince Fylost personally told me that he wished for the people to return to the purity found at the beginning of all existence. That is the meaning behind existence.”
Prince Fylost? Shooting Star’s eyes gleamed. It seems that the identity of the Guide of Existence is now clear, and Fylost and Fischer Merchant Guild? I bet that the mastermind behind the Guild is the prince of the Kingdom of Pegasi himself.
Not only had he been clumsy with his words, he had also revealed important information. Philo smiled bitterly. Then again, these were things he would have to tell Bai Lan sooner or later, so he explained on the spot, “The Guide of Existence is Princess Anabelle’s older brother, Prince Fylost of the Kingdom of Pegasi.
Alan still didn’t have much of a reaction. No matter who it was, they were all strangers to him. What difference did princesses or princes make?
It was Shooting Star who paled in response. The Guide of Existence was actually Belle’s brother.
He had originally thought that since he had accidentally captured a king as his pet, how difficult could getting a princess as his pet be? He might as well return to the Western Continent and capture her as well, but it turned out that the rival guide was actually Belle’s brother…
I really, really want that gorgeous, heart-shaped face!