When one’s idol crumbles, the people who feel empty and hollow must go and find another idol in replacement.
Luckily, or unluckily, Evan was precisely that replacement. As the prince of the Miya Empire, as well as with his dashing good looks, physical strength, great education and proper upbringing, not one thing about about him made him less deserving to be called a male god than Xi Wei.
However, beautiful and handsome people abound and could easily be found at Providence College. Family background and looks were considered nothing; what people really valued was strength.
Xi Wei had occupied the title of number one in the martial arts department for many years, which was why he was so revered.
That was also why no one paid attention to Evan who was eternally in second place.
However, the times have changed!
The former male god had a daughter. Amongst those shy and awkward youngsters trying to find love, that was basically a forward-thinker who had crossed over to a whole new generation1.
The students whose hearts had shattered immediately abandoned their former male god.
Zeno immediately understood these looks that were clearly asking, “What?! You know Evan, please introduce us!”
Actually, there was no meaning to being a male god or a scumbag to Xi Wei. He had never cared about those fake names. As the person who understood Xi Wei the best in the world, Zeno thought, if he’s scum then he can just be scum. That way all those girls will stay far away.
Wasn’t Jonia the perfect example? At least from what Zeno had seen since he came back, the rose princess could not possibly be any more of a bystander than she already was. Any sparks that could have flown, any roots that could have taken hold, had been completely destroyed by the butterfly effect.
Now, it was purely Xi Wei’s roommate’s older sister bringing with her all these bystanders.
Dear God, he hoped karma wouldn’t bite him back for purposely sabotaging all of the flowers in the protagonist’s harem.
While his thoughts were a jumbled mess, he slowly made his way over to the entrance of the classroom.
Evan leaned against a tree, fanning himself with one hand. He noticed Zeno out of the corner of his eye and waved.
Zeno reluctantly came over. Putting up an extremely high guard, he asked, “Senior Evan, did you need something from me?”
Evan was full of smiles, “Don’t be so nervous. You’re called…Zeno?”
Zeno nodded once, which could be taken as affirmation. Evan looked thoughtful, eyeing him for a long time, though he appeared serious for only a second before returning to his playful attitude, “This little underclassmen, are you interested in hearing a story?”
Zeno had a feeling that the story would have something to do with himself, so he indifferently indicated that he would like to listen.
“On New Year’s three years ago, because a young girl was greedy for fresh experiences, she was fooled by a magician called Lyon. She got kidnapped and went missing. She did something wrong despite her good intentions and even got a small girl kidnapped along with her. Though she and the small girl were saved, thereafter the small girl was forced to part from her father and hasn’t been able to return to this day.”
The story was very short. There weren’t any points that particularly stood out, either. Yet, Zeno heard a different story from Evan’s mouth. It looked like Xi Wei’s ability to fool others was still outstanding. If he saw a person, he could talk about that person, if he saw a ghost, he could talk about that ghost– all in vivid detail[^2].
However, Zeno still had to pretend he didn’t understand, and shake his head, “Senior, these two girls you spoke of are..?”
“They’re my sister, Jonia, and the daughter of Xi Wei whom everyone has been talking about. Oh, right, she’s also called Zeno.”
Pasting on a very surprised expression, Zeno cooperatively asked, “So it wasn’t that Xi Wei sold his daughter?”
Speaking of that now, Evan turned serious again. He was someone who could clearly distinguish those he should feel gratitude towards from those he should not. Xi Wei was his benefactor, so no matter what, he couldn’t let his benefactor bear a blackened name after helping him. Even if Xi Wei himself didn’t care and wouldn’t let him clear things up, Evan would still do whatever he could to explain it clearly to Xi Wei’s ‘friend.’
The words of bystanders could not cause any harm. The most harmful words were from the people familiar to you who you cared about.
Evan swung the sword in his grasp, “I swear upon my integrity, everything I’ve said is true!”
After Evan left, Zeno remained standing in a stupor. Jonia no longer had any relationship with the protagonist, but what did Evan, in all his protective knightliness, intend to do? The plot’s butterfly had already fluttered its wings off, but it was okay, like that he didn’t have to be wary of Evan anymore.
With his face full of black lines, he decided to leave when he noticed something on the ground. He bent over to pick it up, and it turned out to be a jade pendant. Evan’s name was engraved on it, so it appeared a certain prince had been too agitated and dropped his own jade pendant.
Thinking it over, there was still some time before class started, so there should be enough time to go and return the pendant. He turned and walked from what he remembered in the direction of Xi Wei’s dormitory.
Providence College’s layout had been planned out very well, so it wasn’t difficult to find the dorm.
Just as he arrived at the entrance, he was startled by the sound of shattering glass.
Right after came Evan’s shocked shout, “Xi Wei, Xi Wei what are you doing? I’m Evan!”
Zeno was extremely sensitive to the two words making up Xi Wei’s name. Hearing Evan, he dropped every thought and rushed in without even knocking.
What he saw was a complete mess.
Xi Wei was lugging the Sword of the Gods, trying to brandish it, but because it was too heavy he could only occasionally lift it for a moment and smash something into pieces. Yet also, due to the pull of gravity, it would fall to the ground in an awkward position, full of destructive power.
Nearly everything in the room had been destroyed, Xi Wei was clearly acting abnormally.
There was no expression in his eyes, with flecks of gray in the black of his eyes, overall looking cold and detached.
Although Xi Wei was also cold normally, it was a high and mighty kind of indifference. This was more like contempt towards all life, a frigidity that viewed human life as worthless.
Evan had no way of getting close to him, being forced back by the Sword of the Gods on every attempt.
He could only stand anxiously to the side.
Zeno shouted, “Xi Wei!”
Xi Wei finally glanced at him, but it was like looking at someone dead to him.
Zeno wasn’t brave, but when it came to Xi Wei, he felt himself filled with boundless strength, able to overcome anything. He wasn’t afraid at all, even when Xi Wei laid the Sword of the Gods against his neck.
The Sword of the Gods was way too heavy and weighed Zeno down flat on the ground. Xi Wei coldly looked down at Zeno, the sword brushing against his neck as it stabbed into the floor.
Zeno shuddered at the coldness of the blade, the sharp blade that had drawn a thin line of blood on his neck.
Zeno nervously called up at Xi Wei, while Evan had already gone to find a teacher.
Xi Wei remained completely unmoved.
Things couldn’t continue like this. Zeno grit his teeth and directly gripped the blade of the Sword of the Gods. With the Sword of the Gods’ weight coupled with Zeno exerting all of his strength, Xi Wei was unable to pull the sword out for a moment, and in that short moment, Zeno tackled him. He was a magician, so that move did not have an ounce of technique behind it.
However, Xi Wei was hugged by him.
Zeno embraced Xi Wei with a death grip while shouting his name, shouting…Baba.
Xi Wei’s expression softened a bit and he let go of the sword, subconsciously returning the embrace.
Xi Wei’s head just so happened to rest on Zeno’s shoulder, an inch away from the wound on his neck. Bewitched by the smell of blood, Xi Wei extended out his tongue and lightly licked the bloody cut.
The warm and moist sensation made Zeno freeze, all of his attention focused on that area of his neck. His muscles loosened and he almost let go.
Like that, Xi Wei licked harder, to the point his lips were on Zeno’s skin and he began sucking instead, with an attitude like he’d practically directly bite into Zeno.
Xi Wei dug in with his upper teeth, Zeno thought while suffering, isn’t the protagonist supposed to be human, great author, did you change the setting and make him a vampire?
What was strange was that Zeno did not want to push Xi Wei aside. Wasn’t it just blood? It wasn’t even the first time that he’s…
Recalling the topic of blood, Zeno quivered, how could he have forgotten? Xia An had told him before, Xi Wei had to drink his blood three times to remove the effect from the plague demon. The year that he had left, Xi Wei had only drank twice and afterwards, although he returned, Xi Wei had looked fine so Zeno almost completely forgot about the matter.
Could it be that Xi Wei was this way because of the disease?
Feeling the sensation on his neck, Zeno was shocked to the point his whole body turned numb.
He was an otaku for so long, he had never been bitten on his neck like this.
At last, Xi Wei seemed to calm down. His eyes shut, he limply collapsed against Zeno and fainted.
The frail magician nearly fell over.
Evan finally returned with reinforcements, who happened to be Master Clark. Due to the Temple pulling away nearly all the magicians with light attribute, there were none in Providence College. Xi Wei did not look sick and more like he was possessed, and coincidentally only Clark was in the office, so Evan was not picky and dragged him over.
The old magician was wheezing, but when he heard that something had happened to the work-study student he had recommended, he anxiously followed Evan over.
Upon entering, he came upon the scene that was like a hurricane had swept through. Clark’s mouth twitched and for some inexplicable reason, felt the weight of his wallet in his hand.
Evan and Clark appeared to struggle to carry Xi Wei over to the bed.
Xi Wei was really heavy. Zeno had to use a ridiculous amount of strength to move his upper body onto the bed, but his feet still dangled on the ground.
Evan released a relieved breath upon seeing this, coming over to slightly correct Xi Wei’s posture. Seeing Zeno’s pitiful state, he guiltily said, “Sorry, I left you here alone.”
Zeno rearranged his bloody hands, righteously saying, “It’s only natural to help each other out when a fellow student is in trouble.”
Clark looked over Xi Wei’s condition and said, baffled, “There’s nothing wrong with his body, just a bit deprived of energy. He should be fine by the time he wakes up.”
Evan was a bit disbelieving, “That’s impossible, he was like a demon just now, destroying everything.”
Of course, Zeno couldn’t possibly tell them the reason. He finally understood why his blood could lift the plague. As one of the demonic royal family, how could something with blood as weak as the plague demon possibly amount to anything against him?
Unable to find a logical answer, Master Clark could only return and wait until Xi Wei woke up.
Zeno stubbornly insisted on remaining to take care of Xi Wei, and though Evan was bewildered, he still readily agreed.
Zeno laid down next to Xi Wei to sleep. Gazing at the side profile of Xi Wei that was still aloof even in the midst of sleep, he felt especially at peace.
When they were young, they held onto each other for warmth just like that, and made it through that most difficult period of time.
He fell asleep while gazing.
Then, he had a dream.
Piper Panda: Hi guys, I would like to announce that Sen translated this amazing chapter, so please give her a round of applause for her amazing work ヾ(☆▽☆)
Kleep: Bless her precious heart.
[^2] Basically his ability to bullsh*t and make it believable is godly
- The gist is that having a daughter at his/their age is inconceivable/unacceptable to them, like a generation gap ↩