Chapter 2

 


 I’ll Do What I Can

 

Sun Yihan:

     “Master?” My voice was subdued.
My teacher’s voice strangely trembled as well when he called out to me.
Since he stood with his back to the moonlight, his face was shadowed; I couldn’t see what sort of expression he held.

     Master was the only priest who cared for me here in the temple.
The other priests… Well, thanks to the other priests, I have learned just how much indifference could hurt someone.

     I will never treat someone as a worthless nobody in the future.

     To be honest, I understood why the other priests behaved that way.

     ‘I’m the only person in this temple who has mana.’

     Normally, humans were born with mana, a spiritual life-force that makes it possible for them to do magic.
Some, however, were born without a drop of mana in their bodies.
Since mana couldn’t be artificially stored within the body–and only mana could fill the empty void left behind by its absence–those born without mana couldn’t even dream of performing magic.
Those people often entered the temple and served God.

     I, too, was born without mana.
Ever since I was young, I entered and lived at the temple; however, one day, my body began to store mana.

     ‘They don’t know the cause.’

     Something like that had never occurred before.
According to Master, the mana within my body was at a minute level–barely even there.
Therefore, I couldn’t really use magic either.

      Honestly, how could those priests treat someone badly just because they managed to store a minuscule amount of mana in their body? The more I thought about it, the more wronged I felt.

      I thought it might be better to leave the temple than to live as I’d done for the past years.
I’d said that to Master several times.
However, each time, he persuaded me to reconsider.

” ”

     I understood his concerns and, above all, Master wasn’t completely wrong.
After all, I had nowhere to go after leaving the temple.
That’s why I’ve been…

    “Sun Yihan.” Once again, at my teacher’s gruff call, my mind returned to reality.
Because his voice sounded relaxed, some of the tension left my body as well.

     Master walked slowly over to a bedside chair and sat on it.
“Yihan-ah.” He patted my head with an affectionate hand which slowly lowered to my cheeks.
The cool hand cupping my hot cheek felt so nice.

     “You rascal, you used to flap around happily in the middle of winter in thin clothes…and yet you suddenly collapsed.
You’ve been delirious for a long time.” Even though he delivered those words with a friendly smile, his voice sounded weighty and meaningful.

     “I believe there’s a lot you’ll want to ask.
There’s probably much you don’t understand.” He said, “I saw a vision of the future while praying for you.”

     I gasped at his words.
I hadn’t ever received a proper education in this temple, but I knew well how powerful visions of the future from God were.

     Once you’ve received a vision, you shouldn’t reveal the exact details–you may accidentally go against the laws of nature or God’s providence.


     It was okay to reveal a little bit–an appropriate amount designated by higher powers–but it was hard to know where that line may be.
Thus, it was better not to say much about your visions at all.

     “That’s right.
As you’ve guessed, there’s not much I can tell you.” Master, who had fallen silent for a while, continued in a calm voice.
“You’ll leave this place in a week.
Someone will come to pick you up.”

     My teacher’s incomprehensible words fluttered around my brain.
And then, all of a sudden, it hit me.

     …I’m leaving?

     This was something I had desired for a long while, but I didn’t expect it to happen so suddenly.
It didn’t feel real.

     I didn’t know what expression I should make, so I just fiddled with my sleeves.
Master, observing my face, smiled bitterly, “Yihan-ah, are you so happy to leave the temple?”

     “…Yes.”

     “I see.
It must have been hard to live here.
You’ve suffered.”

     “…No, it’s not that.
Master, you were here.”

     “There’s no need to say all that.
I know I was greedy and tied you to my side.” Master gently clasped my hand and looked into my eyes.
The moonlight slightly permeated through his white clothes.
“I should have paid more attention to you–I’m sorry.”

     I shook my head quietly; I knew he was busy.
I was satisfied with his kind gaze.
It would be greedy to wish for more.

     So, I was fine.
“No, I’m always grateful for you, Master.”

     He tapped my head a few times before rising from his seat.
“Take care.
You’ll do well.” With that said, he turned around and walked out the door without looking back.
Pausing at the doorway, he whispered, “God is with us, always.”

     The door closed with a creak; silence settled around me.
Suddenly, the darkness felt too uncomfortable to endure.
I reached out and turned on the bedside lamp.

Click–

    The faint orange light drove away the darkness a little.

    There was an old book, about as thick as my hand, on the table supporting the lamp.
Did Master leave that here? I picked up the book and placed it on my lap; even its weight was quite hefty.
When I rifled through it, my mind felt dizzy at the sight of the letters that filled its pages.
When I wondered why he left this here–

  ‘Foreseen Future’ training in progress.

Progress: 00:00:01 / 144:00:00

      A blue quest window appeared before my eyes.

      I looked alternately between the book and the quest window.
The number on the Progress bar went up, each second accompanied by a small ticking noise.

「Progress:  00:00:02 / 144:00:00」
「Progress:  00:00:03 / 144:00:00」

     Don’t tell me.

     When the system said 6 days…It actually meant the full 144 hours?

◇~◇~◇~◇~◇

     Alright.
I barely managed to calm myself down.

     The reality of my situation wasn’t particularly good.
Still, I had begun to mentally sort all that had happened to me.

     I had sorted things into three categories–the so-so, the good, and the bad.
Which of these was the best to consider first? If it were me, I would probably not care and beg the speaker to just be quick about it.
Let’s go in order.

     First: the so-so.
The color of my eyes had changed.

      I was surprised to see my reflection in the mirror atop the bedside table.
Where did the frighteningly eerie black color go? Now my irises–the color of clear water–sparkled back at me in the mirror.

     They resembled the color of the status window floating in front of me–the color of the flower that flew towards me in my dream.

      I wasn’t particularly happy with the increasing amount of mysterious changes, but I liked the clear and refreshing eyes, so I decided to focus on something else.

     Second: the good.
I checked the tutorial reward.

     I felt quite ashamed to mutter ‘Status Window’ out loud, but, fortunately, the window only needed my thoughts to pop up.
Simultaneously, the reward appeared with a short trumpet blare.

「 Tutorial Reward: ‘The Brave Healer-nim!’ Passive skills have been applied.

Immunity to pain! You won’t feel any physical pain.

Immortal Body! You won’t die until you usher in a peaceful world.」

     It seems I won’t feel pain or die until after the warriors save the world.
This was seriously some fortunate news.

     Third: the bad.
144 hours really meant 144 hours.

     Life really was difficult.
Apart from briefly trying to understand the contents of this book (the quest’s goal), much time had already passed from blankly browsing through the words in the status window.

     I wondered if I really needed to go through all of this struggle now in order to attain some future knowledge, but I couldn’t bear to miss this opportunity.
My personal motto was, ‘Let’s do all that I can right now.’ Besides, it was obvious that the reward would become useful someday.

     I had so little time–I would be leaving less than a week later.
Taking into consideration the time needed to bathe and eat…

     A merciless, sleepless, full-course training course; time leapt by quickly.

◇~◇~◇~◇~◇

‘Foreseen Future’ Training, Success!

As a reward, you’ve reached the beginner’s level needed for the ‘Foreseen Future Events.’

     I’d done it…

     Now that I had finished, it was worth the effort.
It wasn’t easy, but at least my efforts weren’t in vain.

     It was hard not to take my eyes off the book even as they drooped with sleepiness, but it was made easier through my passive effects.
Despite a little dizziness, I was fine.

     It had already been a week.
The morning sun came through a crack under the door.

Knock Knock–

     I heard a knock on the door, and I scrambled to open it.
A refreshing wind blew across my body.

     I raised my head–there was a man, taller than me, standing in the doorway.
The light blue sky and the gentle sunlight poured down on him.
He smiled brightly, “Hello! You’re Sun Yihan, correct?”

     What a bright and lively voice–one that could be heard clearly through my dizzy mind.
A breeze imbued with a clean, rejuvenating scent flowed from his direction.

     I paused for a moment; it was too bright.
His straightforward gaze and voice were unfamiliar.

     I stood, dazed, for a while before I heard a troubled-sounding voice.
“I heard he was here.
Am I wrong?”

     I had stayed up all night and couldn’t think straight.
I managed to pull myself together and answer, “…You’re right.
I’m Sun Yihan.”

     He smiled brightly, like sunshine, vindicated by my answer–a very clear, refreshing smile.
Somehow, I also felt comforted at that sight.

     Since he came here to pick me up, he must be one of the warriors.
Do all warriors shine like that?

     “We should speak comfortably–I believe we’re the same age.
I’m Min Joo-hyuk.” 1

     “Sure.”

     Min Joo-kyuk was so relaxed in his manner of speech that it was hard to believe we had just met.
He continued to speak in a bright tone, “You must have received advance notice about my arrival here?”

     “Yes.
You’ve come for me, right?”

     Min Joo-hyuk continued to speak as he took sidelong glances inside the room, “That’s right.
You’ll be coming with me.
I’ll stay outside, so please take your time to organize and come out, Sun Yihan!”

     “I don’t really have much to pack…I’ll be out soon.” I was telling the truth; there was little I could call my own or desired to bring.
I looked around the room with a bag in hand, but the room was fairly empty.

     It really did feel like I lived on the outskirts of the temple without being recognized as a proper member.
Personal artifacts were considered luxuries.

    Therefore, it was natural that I wasn’t particularly attached to anything in this room.
No lingering feelings at all.

Creak–

     When I opened the door and exited, my body trembled in the cold air.
Min Joo-hyuk leaned against the wall next to the door; he looked lost in thought.

     “Min Joo-hyuk.”

     “Ah, you really were quick.” He said in a startled voice; his eyes widened briefly.
His mischievous and amused expression hardened.

     Or not? As soon as I blinked, his face had returned to its usual happy, beaming countenance.

     “Shall we go?” When I heard the warrior’s nonchalant voice, I decided I must have been mistaken.
I hadn’t slept in a while, so my mind may be seeing things.
I nodded to the man and began trudging along.

     The destination, our carriage, was parked just outside the temple.
It seems our journey ahead, on this carriage road, would be quite long.
Min Joo-hyuk informed my ignorant self of many various things.
To be exact, he started to tell me these things, but…

     After telling me a few stories, he asked me, “Sun Yihan, are you perhaps having a difficult time right now?”

TL: …6 all-nighters? Yihan, plz.
I know you can’t feel pain, but that’s not good.

Footnotes

Korean, compared to English, has levels of formality inherent in our language.
Usually, you don’t drop formalities with strangers.
However, being the same age in Korea as someone else is special–they’re able to be friends without hierarchical issues.

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