For the first time, Felix understood what it was like to go crazy. It was because he had never encountered such an extreme situation before.
No matter how impregnable the fortress was, in just one moment, Felix was instantly captured. Perhaps it was a consequence of always being clad in the white sorcerer’s robe.
His magic was unsurpassable. He genuinely believed that he was the same as back then. And he stupidly lowered his guard.
He was overconfident even though he couldn’t use magic. He was a fool, drunk in the glory of the past.
As a matter of fact, the moment he faced the Spirit of Life, Felix belatedly realized that he could never defeat it in his current state. That was why he impulsively carried Irene in his arms and chose to run away.
He couldn’t afford to think about his pride. If there were such a thing, he would have chosen to commit suicide the moment he possessed the power of the devil.
He didn’t know about anything else, but he knew that even if he died, he had to ensure Irene’s safety no matter what. However, he made a tremendous mistake and fainted right there.
The Spirit of Life would try to kill Felix now that he had fainted, and if it attempted to kill him, Irene would continuously block it.
Regardless of what the spirit said, Irene would never back down.
Instead of retreating, she would unhesitantly fight with confidence even if she was pushed away by force.
He fell in love with that appearance, but he hoped that she wouldn’t do that this time.
If the happiness of those who were most precious to him were enough, then he should protect it. What would be left of him if he lost even that?
–Since you’ve fainted, you won’t know what’s going on out there. Let me kindly explain it to you.
The power of the devil, who claimed to have the remedy, whispered to Felix, who couldn’t even move his body.
At its words, Felix asked if there was a way to wake up from passing out.
–It’ll take a fifth of your soul.
Ah, damn it.
As soon as it took the lead, it immediately moved on to form a deal. The devil was like that. Amid the chaos, it would aim for a crack and constantly dig into it until it widened and it could penetrate through it.
–By the way, do you really believe it would make a difference if you woke up from fainting?
The power of the devil hit the nail on the head. Felix, who had lost his magic, was no different from an ordinary young man. Even if he woke up from his fainted state, the same situation would only repeat itself.
–If you lend me your body for a moment, I’ll take care of everything.
As soon as he heard those words, he remembered that even though the power of the devil seemed incompetent, it originally had enormous power that was enough to cause the end of the world.
No matter how foolish and frivolous he was, there was no doubt about his strength.
–At this rate, everyone will probably die soon. Your Irene and your sister, what are you going to do?
His heart pounded at those words. Felix recalled what he aspired to protect. He was willing to sacrifice his life, so a bit of his soul shouldn’t matter.
However, it was a mistake to hand over a quarter1 of his soul. It was a disaster caused by complacency as he assumed that since it wasn’t even half, but one-fourth, it wasn’t a big deal.
The pain of a part of his soul being torn out was incomparable to the feeling of it gradually being nibbled away. Metaphorically, it felt like it was smashed into pieces like broken glass.
It was ruthlessly ripped. The pain was equivalent to repeatedly stabbing a section of his soul.
There was a sense of loss.
He obviously lost something.
But he didn’t know what it was.
No matter how much a wound on the body tore, it was bound to heal one day if it steadily received treatment. However, through the cracks of the wounded soul, the blood containing his life force seeped out.
Since Felix had fainted and currently had no idea about the ongoing events outside, he had no choice but to dwell on the pain.
He relentlessly searched for what the hell he had lost. He was dominated by the compulsion to uncover what the devil had stolen from him.
First of all, Felix couldn’t understand the meaning of everything that he had once pondered over, judged, and agonized.
He valued life more than anything else. He believed that there was definitely a reason why the weeds scarcely bloomed on specific bricks.
He believed that there was definitely a reason why the insects that only lived for a day would strive to fly despite being met with death the instant their energy was exhausted.
There was definitely a reason.
…So why? What the hell was the reason?
He rummaged through his memories a little more.
He harbored absolute hatred against particular individuals.
The contempt for them had not disappeared yet. Felix was relieved by that fact. But aside from relief, he felt like his intent to kill them had deepened.
It would be too much to give them a peaceful death, so he wanted to kill them cruelly, no matter what.
He wanted to pretend to arrange a purgatory to let them taste the light of heaven and then toss them into the fiery pits of hell. And he wanted this to repeat over and over again.
He never had such a thought back then.
No, not only that, he never detested them to such an extent.
Felix tried to clear his head and think objectively.
What the hell was he missing?
He couldn’t tell what was right and what was wrong. The criteria for judging things had been utterly destroyed.
Human virtue. The dignity of life.
Did he lose his faith?
‘It doesn’t matter.’
Even if he lost his faith, he didn’t care.
No one would say anything even if someone failed to abide by them. Even so, Felix’s past self was considerably innocent for overly trusting and following it.
He wasn’t even a priest, so why did he do that?
He put aside that thought for now.
As Felix continued to build up various hypotheses to see if he lost anything else, he realized that he couldn’t figure out what made him angry and what made him upset.
What made him smile with joy, and what made him cry with sorrow and pain?
Did he lose his emotions?
However, on second thought, it didn’t matter if he lost his emotions.
On the contrary, he would only suffer if he continued to be shaken by small things that evoked feelings of grief and joy.
Faith and emotions.
He couldn’t figure out why, but it stole the things that filled him up the most. That was what Felix thought.
After all, his past self was a person governed by those two things.
But what the hell was left of him if he lost that? Felix suddenly became anxious.
His desire for life still remained. And humans required motivation to live.
The moment he started to feel dizzy at the idea that there was nothing, Felix realized what the devil had left him.
It was a desire.
A love and desire that resembled the obsession with Irene.
The devil of struggle and victory. And love and pleasure.
In order to create an excuse to devour Felix’s soul as a whole, it turned him into a human being that only lived with it.
* * *
As soon as he opened his eyes and saw her anxious face, Felix decided to leave Irene forever.
The notion of just looking at her from afar like before was gone.
He wanted to keep her by his side. No matter what terrible acts he committed, he never wanted to let her go. However, the level at which he could endure the devil’s impulse had long passed.
The devil’s fragment obviously made a mistake when it took away all his emotions and left only his feelings for Irene.
It still didn’t seem to understand the essence of humans or what the feeling of love was.
If it intended to leave the feeling of love behind so it could inflate such a destructive desire, of course, he would run away. He had no choice but to leave because he loved her.
Felix clutched at his chest.
Then he slowly let go of his clothes.
He thought it was for the best. If it weren’t for this, he would have acted according to the instigation of the devil.
For a moment, Felix gazed out the window at the clear blue sky. He then turned to Irene.
“I want to go to the sea.”
* * *
T/N: Here’s a bonus chapter! (I didn’t want to leave it at Felix’s flashbacks >^<). With this, we will finally be back at the present moment! Enjoy your weekend, my friends~💖 (P.S. I hope I managed to convey Felix’s confusion about his sense of identity!) >_<
1. It takes a fifth of the soul to wake Felix up from fainting, but it takes a fourth of the soul for the devil to use his powers and temporarily take over).↩
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