The Great Mage Returns after 4000 Years – Chapter 79 – Hruhiral (2)
Editors: Ana_Banana, Yahiko
(TL: This is not something I usually do, but I’ve found that this chapter hits even harder while listening to ‘In the End’ by Linkin Park. Also, prepare your tissues, this one is a tear jerker.)
‘Today is the day I die.’
Schweiser predicted his own demise.
His internal organs were a mess. Even if no one came to finish him off, he probably wouldn’t live to see another day.
But in the end, Iris had come to finish the job herself. Because of this, his probability of survival plummeted to zero.
His life flashed before his eyes like a kaleidoscope of memories.
He didn’t have many happy memories.
Meeting Lukas for the first time, learning magic in the magic tower and finding friends who would accompany him for the rest of his life. The sincere gratitude from his students.
…But there were countless bad memories.
Especially after Lukas died.
In the face of death, Schweiser realised why a calm heart preceded regret or fear.
‘I’m so tired.’
Schweiser looked at Iris before saying.
“Lukas trusted you. So I… no, we all trusted you.”
He disliked Iris Phisfounder.
But it was not to the extent of being hatred or disgust.
Instead, as someone who had overcome countless trials with her, he felt like he knew her more than anyone else.
This was why he found it hard to believe that she had betrayed them.
He’d just assumed that she could not accept Lukas’ death and had shut herself off from the rest.
He never would have guessed this outcome.
“Same here. While we were teammates, I trusted all of you.”
“…do you know what you are doing?”
Blood began to clog his throat.
Unable to hold it in, Schweiser turned his head and spat. Pieces of his organs were visible in the blood.
He struggled to wipe his mouth again.
“Lukas’s life-long desire was to completely destroy the Demigods. And now you are directly opposing that wish.”
“You are making it sound like the subjugation of the Demigods will end with your death. Aren’t you overestimating yourself too much?”
Iris was still smiling.
Schweiser couldn’t tell what she was thinking.
She only ever revealed her true emotions in front of Lukas. In front of him, she became a girl in love.
However, the dense Lukas never seemed to realise it.
“Are you blaming us? Do you think that we are the ones who drove Lukas to his death?”
“I don’t have any feelings towards you guys.”
Iris walked towards Schweiser slowly while speaking in a sing-song voice.
“This is the truth. Of course…it did make me sick to see you trying to take Lukas’ place.”
“As you said, my abilities were lacking.”
“Ahaha. Don’t pretend to be modest, Schweiser. It’s disgusting.”
Iris let out a laugh as she said those vicious words.
Had the situation not been the way it was, she might have been able to take his words as a bad joke.
“What are you going to do next?”
“After killing me.”
“That’s not something you need to know.”
Schweiser looked at her with sunken eyes.
“Are you really working with the Demigods?”
Iris’ smile faded, and a strange light seemed to flash in her eyes.
“If so…I’m sure that Lukas would feel extremely disappointed, even in death.”
For the first time, anger erupted on her young, beautiful face.
“Shut your mouth. Lukas isn’t dead.”
After a while, a bright, seductive smile appeared on Iris’ face once again.
“Schweiser, I’m sorry that I have to kill you. Truly.”
In that instant, a crack appeared in Schweiser’s chest, from which blood poured out like a fountain.
He felt no pain.
He couldn’t speak for when he was at his peak, but there was definitely no way for him to defend against Iris’ attacks now.
He could hear Iris’ whisper through his fading consciousness.
“Don’t worry, and take a rest, Schweiser. I will fulfill Lukas’ wish personally.”
Schweiser’s body collapsed, his blood forming a pool around him.
“Because I’ve thought of a way to deal with the Demigods. However, it’s impossible in ‘this era’. A little more time will have to pass. Enough to drive them into a corner. Perhaps…4,000 years…”
“I know, it’s a very long time. But that’s fine, I’m patient. Ah. You probably can’t even hear me anymore.”
Iris shrugged and left.
Schweiser couldn’t even watch her departure. His head was slowly sinking into his pool of blood on the dead earth.
‘My eyelids are heavy.’
He knew that if he closed his eyes now, he would never open them again.
So Schweiser stood up.
No, he tried to stand up.
Schweiser struggled but ended up falling face first into his blood again.
His body felt like it weighed a ton.
‘In the end…in the end, I accomplished nothing.’ (TL:…in the end, it doesn’t even matter…ㅠㅠ)
He couldn’t defeat the Demigods, bring his friends back together or even prevent Iris’ betrayal.
No. In the first place, he couldn’t even prevent Lukas’ death.
He never felt more undeserving of the title Great Sage than at that moment.
‘I have to get up…’
He felt that even death was a luxury he didn’t deserve. But his body wouldn’t move.
He’d lost too much blood. It was an injury that even a Saint wouldn’t be able to heal if they were to come.
‘In the end…I still failed.’
His vision became blurry.
Schweiser realised that he was crying.
This was the first time he’d cried since Lukas disappeared.
His lips parted slightly.
I’m sorry, Lukas.
I’m so sorry.
It’s impossible for me now.
* * *
Hruhiral shook her hand, causing the scene to fade away.
She turned to look at Frey.
He had a rather strange expression on his face.
It felt like he was angry and grieving, yet at the same time, it still felt like there were no changes to his emotion.
There was no way he was okay.
Hruhiral knew just how much he cared about his four friends. Because she had seen his memories.
Iris had betrayed him, and he had even seen her kill his best friend, Schweiser.
This would be incredibly difficult for Frey, who cared about his friends more than anyone else could imagine, to accept.
Still, there was something she had to say.
Hruhiral opened her mouth with a stiff expression.
“Iris Phisfounder is still alive.”
“Alive. In this era?”
“Yes. But…there is no guarantee that she is the woman you remember because too much time has passed. It’s possible that even if you were to meet her again, you would not be able to recognize her.”
Frey remained silent.
It was natural that she would not be able to recognize him since he now had the face of ‘Frey’. But Iris would have to become an entirely different person for Frey to be unable to recognize her.
And it was possible that it was not just her appearance that had changed.
Frey remembered Schweiser.
He remembered the tears that he had shed at the end.
And just like in his note in the dungeon, Schweiser had apologised to him.
He didn’t have to.
Frey felt that he was the one who should apologise.
He had irresponsibly and impulsively fought against Lord and lost.
And now, he was seeing the consequences of his actions.
All the heroes who had been fighting to save mankind were now dead.
Except for one.
When he recalled her face, he couldn’t help the heavy feeling from filling his heart again.
He still couldn’t believe that she really killed Schweiser.
A part of him felt like it still wasn’t true. But he was forced to accept the truth.
What Hruhiral had shown him was one of the earth’s memories, which meant it was something that had definitely happened.
It was something that was impossible to fabricate. And even if it was an illusion, there was no way he wouldn’t see through it.
Hruhiral said that Iris was still alive.
This was information that he would have originally been pleased to learn.
There was someone from the same era as him who had survived 4,000 years. Moreover, it was one of the friends who he had opened his heart to, so it would be strange if he didn’t feel a sense of joy.
However, Iris killed Schweiser.
There must have been a reason for it.
She might have been threatened, or she might have acted after coming up with a plan of her own.
Regardless, she wouldn’t kill Schweiser for no reason. Because she was a reasonable person.
But that didn’t matter to Frey right now.
The important thing was that Iris had killed Schweiser. Regardless of her circumstances or reason, that fact could not be changed.
Killing a friend.
That was something that Frey, no. That Lukas would never accept.
…It seemed there were more and more things that he had to do.
Not so long ago, he’d thought that he would be able to relax. But he couldn’t.
There were so many things that he had to do and so many things that he had to look into.
Frey felt like he didn’t have time.
He looked back at what he’d been doing. Until now, he’d assumed that he was making good progress.
He thought that he was calmly putting one foot in front of the other without being impatient.
He hadn’t spent his time in vain. In fact, he even had a few achievements.
But…he had been too relaxed.
“It’s not enough.”
Frey muttered to himself.
Hruhiral tilted her head slightly.
Oydin Predickwood, the Apocalypse’s Apostle.
To subdue him, Frey had tried to be cautious and careful.
Without alerting him, without revealing his identity, he would have slowly applied pressure onto him as if driving his prey into a corner.
But was that really the best way?
Wasn’t excessive prudence just as bad?
It was time to reconsider.
‘As time passes, Oydin will get continually stronger. He’ll keep growing stronger every day until he is defeated.’
Riki had told him that Oydin was already strong enough to defeat them even if they worked together. So what would happen if a week or more passed?
Or what if the situation became complicated and they ended up being delayed till just before the deadline?
How strong would Oydin be by then?
Frey, no. Lukas was once defeated by the terrifying being known as Lord.
He’d thought that he’d gotten over it, but that didn’t seem to be the case. The defeat from that time had left a deep scar on his heart.
So even when he was dealing with Oydin, he tried his best.
He was moving under the impression that he would become stronger as time passed. But Oydin was the same.
He knew that.
Yet he still didn’t make an effort to move quickly. This was because it was more comfortable to prepare thoroughly.
The fact that Oydin was Snow’s blood relative was a good excuse.
Frey realised what he was lacking.
Of course, there were many aspects of him that had improved compared to 4,000 years ago, Like his calmness, coldness and experience.
If so, what had worsened when compared to then?
He had been determined. To the point where he was even willing to throw away his life.
4,000 years ago, in a situation where defeat was inevitable, he would have still tried to take down even a single Demigod with him.
Sometimes, there were even moments when he would throw his body into thorny situations without hesitation.
At that moment.
Frey regained that desperate mindset that he’d lost 4,000 years ago.
Then, he was able to view his present situation from a different angle.
He could not delay this any longer.
Oydin was a barrel of gunpowder that could explode at any moment without warning.
He was a risk factor that needed to be dealt with even if it was a second sooner. He shouldn’t give him any time.
Wait for Oydin to contact the Demigod?
Report to Snow after obtaining conclusive evidence?
No. This was not a situation where he could be so relaxed.
He would kill Oydin before the Elves could notice.
Even if his relationship with the Great Forest became sour as a result, it was still nothing compared to being able to kill a Demigod.
His thoughts were still complicated, and his chest still felt like it was filled with dark clouds.
But he knew what he needed to do now.
He would settle it before dawn.
(TL: This is the end of Book 3. The first part was sad but the last part was quite spicy. Also, all the ‘in the end’s were the author’s idea, not mine.)