After a while, Reina calmed herself down and apologized to Luke, “Sorry. You’re always in danger because of me.”
“You’re sorry? Huh, are you thinking of putting an end to all of this with just a sorry?”
Luke looked away, pretending to be angry. No, actually he was a little angry.
“Did you really have no faith in me? Was that why you decided to jump the moment the high elf said something to you? What would you do if something really bad had happened?” Asked Luke.
“I just wanted you to be safe…”
Reina still couldn’t speak and that made Luke once again embrace her in his arms.
“Don’t ever do that again. I have no intention of losing you again!”
For Luke, Reina was a special woman.
He deeply understood what had led to his past life into a mess, and he fully embraced all those feelings.
That was why he thought of her to be the incarnation of his old lover—Katarina.
“But… What even happened? Why does the Holy Empire think of you as an angel sent by God?”
“Ah, that? That is because…”
Reina told Luke about everything—from the World Tree to entering the Spirit World and meeting the Spirit King Sylphid, and how she got Aether from him.
“Aether, which is every living thing’s source of power since the beginning of the world, has great spiritual power. It is a power that no human should be able to deal with, so Sylphid gave me all the information about the world from the moment of its creation.”
The information allowed her to deal with the Aether, but it was like poison for Reina during that time.
It was because she had taken in huge amounts of it in an unreasonably short time.
“As the Aether moved, a drastic change happened to my body. The same thing happened to my mind. I thought I would go crazy or that I would die, so because of that, I decided to seal my thoughts, ego, and memories.”
It was actually impossible, but it was possible for Reina as the power of Aether split her body into two—her body and her spirit.
“But that indeed was an adventure. I am not entirely at a stage where I can fully control the Aether yet.”
Luke was shocked.
If the seal wasn’t successful, then Reina would have permanently lost her memories and stayed having a kid-like brain.
“Anyway, the seal was successful, and my body was able to transform itself into something new. It changed into something that was as clean as a white sheet of paper. I came back to the world, like a child learning to walk. Step by step, I was able to handle the Aether.”
It was a part of her practice, so she could deal with her power that gave life to the stone statue in the palace or the wings of light.
After hearing her stories, Luke just sighed.
He was just glad to know that Reina didn’t do anything wrong.
“It is easy to learn anything when we start clean. It was great that you had fallen into the capital of the Holy Empire. What would you have done if you fell into the evil den of Veritas Magic Tower?”
The people there would definitely do experiments on Reina. She might get brainwashed, or they could turn her into an evil warlock.
“The idea of sealing yourself is really dangerous. What would have happened if you couldn’t get back?” Asked Luke.
“That could have been, but… I left clues here and there.”
“Clues?” Asked Luke.
“Yeah. There were many things, but the most obvious one was you.”
Although sealed, the Aether had the will of Reina. That was why Veronica III dreamed about Luke so many times.
“Maybe it was because of that will that I was pushed to the Holy Empire. Someone to help you, I wanted to be someone you could rely on,” Answered Reina.
“So, the Aether opened up in response to your will?”
“Yes, it was the same Aether that saved you and the others from the explosion that happened a while ago.”
At the words of Reina, Luke recalled what had happened.
The completed Suicide Magic of the assassin was powerful enough to take down all of Luke’s defenses.
If it went according to plan, Reina, Luke and all the soldiers around the two of them would die.
However, he was alive and so was Reina.
It was obvious that the paladins and the Saint Guards were alive as well.
“The power of the Aether is great,” said Luke.
“But what I have now is still weak compared to its true power. The true power of the Aether is so vast and magnificent that it can’t even be explained.”
Luke nodded at Reina’s words.
He had already absorbed Magi and the Aether, and he had enormous documents of the past. They all spoke about the power of the Aether.
Whether El Kassel made the world or not, the entire world was full of Aether.
In other words, it wasn’t an exaggeration to say that the Aether was the seed of all things, the seed of creation.
‘It is as scary as it can get.’
Whatever its power was, it came with a huge responsibility.
Sylphid, the spirit king of wind, handed over the Aether maybe because of the huge responsibility it held.
Even a small knife could be used as a tool for cooking and carving, but in some cases, it could be a weapon that could take a living being’s life.
“Your expression is dark.”
“I am worried about you having to shoulder such tremendous power?” Said Luke in a low voice.
“Why? Are you worried that we are going to be partners?”
At the mischievous response of Reina, Luke smiled, but seriousness soon took over his eyes.
“But, are you alright? Is there any conflict between your original self and the ego of Veronica III?”
“You don’t have to worry about that. The moment I saw you in person, the seal was received, and my two identities were united completely.”
“Then, it is great…”
When Luke was still feeling anxious, Reina looked glum.
“What is it? Don’t you believe me?”
“I am just worried about you; that is all.”
“It is fine. I am not weak anymore like in the past. I can protect myself now.”
Reina moved her hands lightly.
The rocks around them shook and began to stick together and take the form of golems. The trees approached Reina, using their roots as their legs and branches as their arms.
It wasn’t just that.
Even the wind blowing in the forest began to gather around her, like an escort knight.
‘This is awesome! Is this the power of the Aether?’
Luke saw the legion of rocks and the wind that had suddenly gathered.
If he did the same thing with normal magic or dark magic, it would take a lot of time calculating the magic and the formulas needed to make the magic manifest.
It was a miracle to do it with just one gesture.
“This is amazing!” Said Luke.
“Right? I am not the pope of the Holy Empire, which is equal to the Baroque Empire, just because I am lucky.”
‘It was true that the fusion happened.’
When Reina was gone, Luke thought that Veronica III would display the personality and influence of Reina.
It wasn’t that severe, but it really reassured Luke, which meant that it wasn’t a huge problem like he thought.
“I understand the power that you possess, but the situation of the Holy Empire isn’t so good, and there are people who are waiting for you…!”
When Luke was talking to her after such a long time, he moved and pushed Reina behind his back.
He suddenly felt some strong power around them.
A very strong power being radiated from a person.