top of page

In a World without God Chapter 29

Night had fallen in the Spider Forest, but for Laotou, it was the first morning in forty years. Laotou's turquoise eyes and Edulis's silver ones met each other. Laotou's eyes reflected Edulis', and Edulis' eyes reflected Laotou's.

 

"Bosha?"

 

Laotou spoke. Her voice was low and subdued. Edulis nodded.

 

"Bosha... You're really Bosha...."

 

Laotou muttered Bosha's name over and over again as if it were a revelation. She was like a child learning the word 'bosha' for the first time.

 

Aruru was too overwhelmed with relief at Edulis' wakefulness and awe at Laotou to say anything and so he could only stare back and forth between Edulis and Laotou.

 

In Laotou's arms was something emitting a white light. She held it tightly in one hand while clenching her other hand into a fist. Her tone suddenly changed.

 

"Bosha... you bastard!!"

 

The next moment, a sound like a hammer striking a rock echoed as Laotou's fist struck Edulis's skull.

 

 Thwack!

 

Edulis swallowed a groan. He didn't dodge the punch. Laotou deserved to hit him, Edulis owed it to her.

 

“Laotou... you're still strong.”

 

Edulis's vision flickered. He felt a sickening sensation in his skull as if he had been hit by a sledgehammer. Edulis struggled to regain his composure and looked into Laotou's face.

Her eyes were streaked with tears. Her teal eyes shimmered like a polished gemstone catching the light. She scratched at her throat and cried out.

 

"Why were you dead?!"

 

Her voice was loud enough to echo through the forest. The spiders crawled closer to see if anything had happened to Laotou. Taharka stood silently by, watching Laotou and Edulis.

 

"Who told you to do such a thing? Who told you to fight for your life against a witch's incarnate? Your job was to provide rear support!"

 

Laotou smashed her fist into Edulis's skull again, but this time without any force.

 

Edulis didn't respond to Laotou's words. Instead, he just stared into her eyes.

 

"Do you know how I felt when you weren't among the Black Fangs who broke through Cyros When I saw you lying there, your whole body turned black, do you know what I thought? The Princess had asked me! She held my hands and begged me to save you! And I couldn’t do anything…"

 

A teardrop fell from Laotou's eye and trickled down the edge of her chin. Edulis placed his fingertips on her chin, his heart breaking to see her face. A teardrop rolled down the back of his hand.

 

"I'm sorry." That was all Edulis could say.

 

"I wish you were there, I've thought a hundred times that it would be different if you were." Laotou sobbed.

 

"If you had been there, the Black Fangs wouldn't have fallen apart. If you had been there, Sijia's army wouldn't have been deceived. Then Lady Lutea wouldn't have had to fight alone in Mastaba! Then I would have... I would have..."

 

Edulis felt like someone had poured acid on his heart. Ygraine and Laotou continued their lonely battle. While Bosha's soul was resting peacefully in comfort?

 

Laotou cried for a long time, then put her hand on Edulis's head.

 

"No.... No.... You're just a little human now......." Slowly stroking Edulis' hair, Laotou said. "I shouldn't have cried. You're a human, and I'm an apostle. It's our duty to protect humans... I can't believe I'm putting that responsibility on you...."

 

Laotou shook her head and looked at the ground with a gloomy face. Then, Edulis spoke.

 

"Cry as much as you want. I've never thought of you as an apostle."


"What? This asshole...."

 

Laotou frowned, feigning anger.

 

"Since when have we been human and apostle? I am Bosha, the Red Fox of Kaldura. And you are my drinking buddy, Laotou."

"What? I...."

 

Laotou clicked her tongue in disbelief, but a smile crept across her face.

 

"I told you, didn't I? I'll take responsibility for everything. What you lost, what I lost, I'll restore it all. If you don't believe me, I swear on Assyria..."

 

"Oh, don't do that. You know I don't get along with Assyria."

 

"Oh, right."

 

Laotou frowned for a moment, then relaxed his expression.

 

"Then... how about some more crying? If you're going to take responsibility for your words, you need to hear what happened after you died."

 

"Okay. Go ahead."

 

Edulis's face went as still as a marble statue as he listened to the next words.

 

"When you died, the princess was already seriously injured."

 

***

 

“Please make me a good world”

 

With those last words, Bosha was unable to open his mouth again. Laotou looked down into his face. She couldn't easily tell that he was dead. It looked like Bosha was going to open his mouth at any moment and spill out harsh words.


Somehow, he'd make a way for himself to live. Laotou stood there, wondering if Bosha had secretly learned magic and would suddenly appear. But she quickly realized that there was no way Ygraine could not have seen through it. Bosha was indeed dead.

 

"I should have trusted you more," Laotou said. Ygraine didn't respond, sitting on her knees on the floor.

 

"We should have drank... more, together...."

 

Without answering Laotou, Ygraine placed her hand on Bosha's chest. And then Bosha's body, eroded by the witch's poison, began to disperse into shards of light. He became a silver butterfly, fluttering through the air.

 

"Let's go, we still have enemies."

 

Ygraine rose to her feet and began to walk away. Laotou stood and hesitated.

 

"Wait a moment, Princess. I want to make a grave for Bosha." Laotou spoke, and Ygraine shook her head.

 

"Don't do that, Laotou."

 

"What?"


"If we make a grave, it feels like it's really over."


"Oh..." Laotou didn't understand the meaning of the words and stared at Ygraine's back. Ygraine spoke calmly as if talking about the inevitability of night following day.

 

"We'll meet again someday, I'm sure."

 

"Princess?"

 

Laotou noticed that there was something strange about Ygraine's appearance. Her face flickered, like a lightbulb with a frayed wick.

 

"Don’t worry. We must return to Sijia...."


"You need to rest, Princess! Leave the rest to me and go to...."

 

And then it happened. Something eagle-like in the sky circled around Ygraine and Laotou.

 

"Huh? Shamas?" Laotou said, and Ygraine's expression hardened. Her eyebrows quirked.

 

Then, the thing Laotou called Shamas descended to the ground. Shamas was a man with the head of a wolf and the wings of an eagle. He landed in front of Ygraine and asked in a very puzzled voice, "Why, Lady Lutea, why are you here?"


"I want to ask you the same, Shamas."


Ygraine's voice trembled. "How many times have I told you that you must never leave Sijia, that even if the mountains fall and the earth rises, even if Uraeus appears and persuades you for seven days and seven nights, you must stay where you are?"

 

It was the first time in nearly a thousand years that Laotou had seen Ygraine address someone so sternly.

 

"But...."

"Why did you leave Sijia?"

 

Shamas said with a tone of genuine resentment. "Didn't Lutea command me to roam around and wipe out the remnants of the witch, now that we’re done with Sijia?"

 

"Me??" Ygraine asked with a long sigh.

 

"By any chance... how many apostles are left in Sijia now?"


"Well, that's the thing. We all thought it was definitely Lady Lutea so..."


"Answer me, Shamas! How many? How many are left?"


Shamas bowed his head and answered. "Not a single one... remains."

 

***

 

"No way...." Edulis muttered, and Laotou nodded.

 

Edulis remembered the problem Kurzina had pointed out in her report. Ygraine's presence in Sijia coexisted with her presence in Mastaba. The problem could now be simply solved. One of them is fake.

 

"It was Granadilla, not the princess, who was leading the army in Sijia. I don't know why the witch was alive, but she pretended to be the princess, scattered the apostles, and led the kingdom's army to annihilation."

 

"How was she able to fool even the apostles?"

 

"I don't know how, but... Granadilla was wearing the same magic as the Princess."

 

Edulis bit his lips hard enough to draw blood.

 

"What did the Black Fang do then? Vala?"

 

"You said that the Black Fangs meant nothing without you... and you all said that long ago...."

 

"Damn it!"

 

Edulis pounded the ground with his fist. The Apostles had been blindsided by the aura. Edulis was furious. What if Bosha had been alive? Would he have recognized the fake Ygraine?

 

Laotou continued.

 

"The witch army, led by Granadilla, has begun to retake the kingdom's territory one by one, and the princess has been following her in their wake...."

 

***

 

"What a bunch of fools, All those apostles are nothing but idiots!"

 

"Don't say that, Laotou."

 

"How can I stop swearing? If they'd just protected Shijia back then, none of this would have happened!"

 

Ygraine grabbed Uttu by the shoulders and said.

 

"Laotou, it is all my fault. Because I failed to completely subdue Granadilla, Granadilla escaped from Sijia Castle, and because my words failed to inspire faith in the Apostles, the Kingdom Army was wiped out. I have no choice but to pay for this."

 

"Tha’s...!" Laotou wondered. What had happened between the witch and Ygraine? Why couldn't Ygraine kill the witch, and why could the witch use Ygraine's magic? 

 

The end came with unanswered questions. Ygraine grew weaker and weaker, and Granadilla grew stronger. Ygraine's followers were killed or gravely wounded. At first, Ygraine was chasing Granadilla, but at some point, Granadilla started chasing Ygraine.

 

Just before being driven to the hills of Mastaba, on the coast of Ascidia, Laotou saw Ygraine for the last time. Just before sunset, when the shadows were longest, Laotou shouted at Egrain.

 

"Princess, we must flee together!"

 

"Laotou."

 

"There is a place to hide in the mountains of Karnak! We can build up our strength there...."

 

"Thank you, Laotou. But you know, I can't leave Granadilla in that state right now."

 

Laotou bowed her head. In truth, she didn't care about the world. The only thing important to Laotou was Lutea.

 

"Without you, what hope is there in this world?" Laotou said, and Ygraine smiled wryly.

 

"Laotou. Hope is like the moon in the daytime, you can't see it, but it's there. Just because you can't see the moon, doesn't mean the day will never end, does it?"

 

"Princess...."

 

"Please, can you wait for hope to come? It will probably be a long, painful wait, but...."

 

Then Granadilla's voice echoed through the Mastaba hills.

 

"My detestable sister, Lutea. Your disgusting odor is everywhere."

 

Ygraine looked at Laotou and said. "Can you believe... that the moon is always there?"

 

Laotou choked and nodded. Then Ygraine hurriedly handed her something. Laotou took it and began to run away.


She lamented that there was no power in the world to protect Lutea and defeat Granadilla.  


***

 

Edulis stared at the thing in Laotou's arms, the only hope left for her, and for Astania.

 

"Bosha. Lutea has entrusted me with her heart."

 

Laotou said.  "I... wait for the day when this heart will beat again."





9 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

In a World without God Chapter 74 (Preview)

Akale looked around. Most of the people didn't care who was a goddess and who was a witch. People were fleeing, screaming, and rolling on the ground, weighed down by curses and poison. There were also

In a World without God Chapter 73 (Preview)

As the night waned and the sun rose, a blurry form of the moon still clung to the sky. The sun still hung on the horizon. The forest was ashen. Clara walked through the forest, carrying a large bucket

In a World without God Chapter 72 (Preview)

In the dark woods, among the gnarled trees, snakes with fierce eyes slithered and froze like statues. They stood still, staring into Edulis's face. "Damn it! That snitch, Ambrosia, has been in Karnak?

Comentários


Sign up and read ahead of others!

By signing up on our website, you'll get one step closer to accessing advanced chapters of our stories and seeing exclusive content. You'll also be the first to know our upcoming events that you surely would not like to miss. Sign up here!

bottom of page