I Fell into the Game with Instant Kill - Chapter 137
Chapter 137: Preparation (2)
After concluding the conversation with Reef, I returned to my territory.
I continued to prepare for my entrance into the Academy, but I also thought about what I needed to take care of before the time came.
As always, I wasn’t concerned about the affairs of the territory because it always managed well, even in my absence.
What needed to be sorted out was not related to the territory but rather some personal matters.
It was about Shadow Freon.
That woman, I don’t know when she will return.
The woman who infiltrated the territory as a spy and was now somewhere diligently gathering information.
What I had assigned to her was regarding the villain with the mystery of possession, who would later terrorize the capital city of Santea.
I don’t expect her to have discovered much with the meager clue I provided.
I didn’t have high hopes that she had discovered anything significant based on the tiny speck of information I had given her. It was a long shot, to begin with.
When I tasked Shadow Freon with gathering information, I had instructed her to report back within a maximum of one year.
I wanted to keep the intervals shorter if possible, but having her travel long distances would interfere with her operations.
So, I had to delay the time as much as possible. There was still quite a lot of time left until her return.
If I were to be admitted to the academy, external activities would become difficult.
Therefore, it would be wise to check on the Shadow’s current progress before that.
I retrieved the item that I had taken from the Shadow before.
An ancient magical tool that revealed the direction of the stamped target.
I had coerced the Shadow into collecting information by threatening her with the seal of this ring.
Even now, the ring emitted a faint light, pointing in a certain direction.
I don’t know how far away it is, though.
Still, no matter how far it seemed, it wouldn’t take an incredibly long time. Because Ti-Yong was there.
With the thought in mind, I quickly prepared to leave.
Asher still hadn’t returned, so this outing was one of the rare occasions when I was alone, without a companion.
More than ten days had passed since following the light indicated by the ring on the map.
As expected, the Shadow’s location was beyond Calderic, in the direction of Santea, with a considerable distance.
I gazed down at the endless forest below in wonder.
This forest was a massive one located outside the Santea territory. It had no specific name.
The reason for my confusion was that once you crossed this forest, according to the map, there was nothing but a sea in the deserted wilderness.
I had no idea what kind of investigation she was doing, but I couldn’t imagine what she was doing all the way out here…
Could it be that she’s not properly investigating?
As long as I had the ring, I knew better than anyone that there was no way for her to escape from me.
Amidst that thought, a slight uneasiness arose.
It was because I knew someone who lived in the depths of this nameless forest.
Curel the Witch.
Naturally, the powerful individuals of RaSa were not solely those with continental fame.
There were also many reclusive masters, whose names were not well known to the public due to various reasons.
Among them, Curel the Witch was a remarkable figure, comparable to the Five Stars of Santea.
Her background and details were not well known even to me, as she had never appeared in the game.
However, what I did know was that she was a bizarre mage who had been referred to as a witch in the past due to her eccentricities.
Being secluded in such a forest, conducting solitary magical research, was a clear indication of who she was.
Although it’s unlikely to encounter her in this vast forest…
What made him uneasy was that the direction of the light pointed by the ring happened to be in the direction where the forest was.
I couldn’t help but wonder if she had come here to find the witch.
Shortly after, that intuition became a reality.
I let out a small sigh.
It was because I could gradually sense a massive magical presence from afar.
The ring’s light was pointing towards the source of magic and had been tilting slightly downward for a while now.
It was an unmistakable sign that the Shadow was here.
And in a forest devoid of any human presence, there was only one reason why magical energy could be felt.
Is that the witch’s territory over there?
Considering how the magical energy was spreading across a wide range, it seemed likely to be a barrier.
The Shadow would undoubtedly be within that barrier. Did she really come here to meet the witch?
“Let’s go down.”
I descended to the ground for now.
As I stood there, having disembarked from Ti-Yong, I gazed at the other side of the forest, where I could feel the magical energy.
Should I go in or not?
While I didn’t know if the witch, Curel, was an evil person, she was certainly a formidable individual.
If I were to recklessly enter her domain, she wouldn’t welcome me with open arms or anything.
However, my contemplation was short-lived.
I felt like I’d bought myself a bad deal, but I couldn’t just turn around and go home.
“Wait here for a moment.”
I said as I gently stroked Ti-Yong’s neck.
Curel the Witch was a formidable opponent, on par with the Archmages of Santea. She was probably around level 92.
Although I had confidence in protecting myself, even if I was alone, it could still be burdensome.
As I ventured alone into the depths of the forest, the aura of magic gradually thickened.
Once I entered the mysterious magic barrier, an eerie stillness enveloped the surroundings.
The sky seemed to have become even hazier, perhaps due to the barrier, as I looked up for a moment before continuing my steps.
A voice of unknown origin echoed shortly after.
– Who are you?
A young woman’s voice, as if it were muffled by noise.
It was Curel the Witch.
I stopped in my tracks, surveyed the area, and spoke.
“And who might you be? Are you the mage who cast this barrier?”
I asked in a nonchalant tone, not wanting to draw attention to myself by feigning that I knew more than I did.
After a brief silence, the voice resounded again.
– Answer the question. Who are you? Why have you entered this forest?
“There might be a woman within this barrier, or perhaps she passed through here. I’ve come this far to pursue her.”
“I don’t know who you are, but that’s the only reason I’ve come here. Do you happen to know the whereabouts of the person I mentioned?”
Suddenly, I heard a sigh, and this reply followed.
– What’s your relationship with that Freon girl?
Freon was the name of the Shadow.
So the witch had some connection with the Shadow. Judging by the way she addressed her, it didn’t seem like they were on good terms.
“What’s your relationship with her?”
– I ask the questions, intruder. If you want to save your life, stop pissing me off and answer it.
I shook my head and spoke.
“We have no reason to fight. As I said, all I want is Freon. She is my captive. So if she’s not that important to you, hand her over to me. Otherwise, explain your reasons first.”
Suddenly, the surrounding magical energy fluctuated and surged towards me. It wasn’t a physical attack.
Having experienced a similar sensation in the ruins of Cabolissa, I could immediately recognize what it was.
“It’s pointless. Mental magic doesn’t work on me.”
Then, once again, the magical energy surged and this time, offensive magic was unleashed.
I erected a barrier and blocked the blades of magic attacking from all directions.
Now I realized that this barrier was essentially the witch’s domain. Quite literally.
Although I couldn’t sense the witch anywhere nearby, the flow of magical energy composing the barrier was as if it was being manipulated right here, freely.
I wondered if such a thing was possible, but it was a futile question, since I was a stranger to magic in the first place.
Well, she had been living here for a long time, so she must have a lot of devices prepared here lying around.
Still, there’s no danger.
These attacks couldn’t even scratch the floating veil that could withstand the full force of the Thunder Lord’s power.
Only after completely reducing the entire area to ashes did the witch’s attacks cease.
I withdrew the barrier and spoke.
“Pushing back with firepower doesn’t work, either.”
As I stood still in my place, calmly warding off all attacks, the witch seemed a bit flustered.
After a moment of silence, the magical energy gathered around me again, enclosing me.
I immediately escaped through space leap upon witnessing the formation of a barrier that seemed like an attempt to confine me.
“Give it up. With your abilities, you cannot overpower me.”
– Fair enough. It seems like you’re right. Although it doesn’t seem like magic, what exactly is your identity?
“Isn’t it better not to be curious about each other? If you just let me know where Freon is, that would be enough. You must also find it tiresome that I continue to stay here.”
The witch replied with a chuckle.
– Tiresome? That’s amusing. You also have nothing you can do within this boundary. Keep wandering around until you find a way out.”
The witch’s response displayed a disgruntled and uncooperative attitude.
It would have been easy enough to ignore her and follow the light of the ring, but the way she was talking, it seemed that she would continue to be a hindrance.
The witch was capable of unleashing various strange magics. Even if there was no direct connection to me, she could easily confuse my path or divert Freon elsewhere.
I heightened my senses to their maximum and thoroughly examined the witch’s magical presence.
The intentionally confusing and scattered waves of magic power.
Amidst them, I felt a faint thread of magical power extending far in one direction.
I was certain that the direction led to where the witch was, so I focused my gaze in that direction and spoke.
“Don’t assume I wouldn’t know your location. Are you there?”
There was no response. Even without looking, it was evident that the witch was taken aback and surprised.
In a slightly softer voice, I addressed the silent witch.
“Hey, witch. As I mentioned, we have no reason to fight. I apologize for intruding into your territory unannounced. However, the person I’m looking for is within this barrier, and I can’t afford to wait until they come out from the outside, can I?”
Since I had no intention of actually confronting the witch, I restrained myself appropriately.
Mages didn’t have a good compatibility with me. Even if I were to continue searching, it would be inconvenient for me if she had prepared defensive magic and was waiting for me.
Of course, there was no way the witch would know that, so she wouldn’t be able to ignore me now that I knew her location.
– …The least she could do is give me a heads-up.
Suddenly, magical energy gathered in the air and formed an arrow shape, pointing in one direction.
Since the witch’s words only sounded like she was trying to save face, I smiled inwardly and thanked her.
– By the way, what does the term ‘captive’ you mentioned earlier mean?
“It’s nothing special. It means she was caught trying to gather information about me like a little rat.”
I asked the witch,
“Can you tell me anything about your connection with Freon? I’m curious.”
The witch clicked her tongue and replied,
– Nothing at all. I owed him a small debt once upon a time, a debt I’d already paid, and now he’s here with a strange demand.
– She asked me to remove the magical inscription engraved on her body. Now I see that it was because of you. Damn bitch, what kind of monster did she bring into my dwelling?
The witch grumbled.
Only then did I understand the exact reason why the Shadow had come here. It seemed she wanted to escape from me after all.
The witch must have been knowledgeable about various types of magic, so perhaps she thought she could remove the inscription from the ring.
– I had her confined in the direction I just pointed. Take her out. I hope you will never return here again.
With those words, no more voices echoed around.
I moved my feet since I didn’t have anything else to ask the witch.
After moving for a while in the direction where the Shadow was, a cave appeared.
It seemed like the place where the witch had confined the Shadow. There was a sense of presence coming from inside.
There was a magical barrier at the entrance of the cave, but as I approached, it seemed that the witch had released it, and it disappeared on its own.
Passing through the entrance and entering inside, I could see someone curled up on one side of the cave.
The Shadow opened her closed eyes and jumped up, startled to see me.
It was no joke that she had been trapped in the cave for quite some time, looking disheveled.
I pitifully looked at her and then spoke.
“Come out, Shadow.”
The Shadow cautiously approached me.
She looked around with her eyes and then laughed softly before speaking in a sarcastic tone.
“So, Seventh Lord, you’ve come to rescue me? Thank you. Did you kill the witch?”
Her audacity left me speechless.
Did she really expect me to not know the situation?
“The witch is unharmed. I’ve heard that you came here to remove the seal of the ring.”
As soon as I finished speaking, the Shadow fell to the ground, hitting her forehead.
“Please spare me just this once, Seventh Lord.”
I asked, clicking my tongue.
“How far along is the investigation?”
“Have you not done anything at all?”
“I have committed a grave sin. From now on, I will not engage in petty tricks and will do my best to gather information with the utmost dedication.”
Since my expectations were not high to begin with, I wasn’t particularly disappointed, but I let out a sigh.
“Yes, my lord. Please give your command.”
“Do you see that over there?”
I pointed to a spider web hanging from one side of the cave ceiling.
A single beetle was trapped motionless on the web.
“Yes, I see it.”
“That represents you now. Do you really think that by erasing a mere seal, you can truly escape from me?”
“There won’t be a second chance. Do what you’re told properly. Don’t forget who I am and what your position is.”
I gestured towards the outside of the cave.
“Leave. Come back exactly one year from today to my territory and report your achievements.”
The Shadow, who quickly stood up, lowered her head and swiftly exited the cave.
Watching his figure, I let out another sigh.
In truth, there was no way to chase after the Shadow once the ring’s seal was erased. What I just said was merely a hollow threat mixed with bluff.
Still, since I personally came all the way here, this should serve as a clear warning.
But still, I can’t completely trust the Shadow either.
I couldn’t just trust that woman and wait endlessly, so I needed to continue thinking of separate measures to deal with the terrorism that would happen in the future.
I too moved my steps out of the cave. I had to return to the Lord’s castle.